Monday, October 18, 2010

How Fair is FAIR??

Is your skin’s melanin content remotely associated with your confidence level or your individuality for that matter? Ask the people from Fair and Lovely and they will tell you better. It has been a couple of decades since when such cosmetics have been brought into the market just to encash on people’s emotions and to convince them that just a mere change in complexion will provide them with the qualities they were supposedly devoid of.

The obvious question remains that does our social framework has anything to do with the kind of notions which develop in our minds regarding the advertisement of a particular product? And if the answer is yes, then how does it bring about such a radical change? The concept of fairness has struck a chord with the Indian population ever since the times when the British ruled over India. On being insulted day in and day out, something led us to believe that may be if we were fairer, our adaptability and popularity would increase amongst our rulers. But that was quite unlikely the case as Indians still continue to be treated unjustly in abroad on similar grounds. More often than not, the Fair and Lovely ads are quite stereotypical which mostly shows a girl trying to impress a boy but fails miserably as she is not beautiful. Then comes a miraculous fairness cream which takes away all her problems and gets her the boy as well. This girl is the “supposed” embodiment of every Indian woman but sadly fairness is not a synonym for beauty; it never was and never will. These advertisements have affected the Indian population so much so that every single matrimonial ad has the word FAIR as an important criterion. These days such products have been even brought out for males to emphasize on the fact that we are never happy with what we have. But does a minor change in skin colour actually help us climb up to the upper notches of the social ladder. Does it keep us happy for the rest of our lives or provide us with the much needed social security?

As Bob Dylan has once said-“The answer is blowing in the wind”. One might say, it’s not me, it is the society but it is the little drops of water which makes the mighty ocean. Americans may be fond of a tan and Indians might be obsessed with white skin but that should not, in any way stop us from being what we want to be. A commodity might be hugely popular but that should not interfere in your process of growing up. Social structures are made and broken but it affects our line of thinking which remains the same forever. I would like to end by saying that a society inspires the media to function the way it does ensuring that certain ideologies never go out of people’s mind. Mere discussions won’t help as we need to take this forward. Quoting George Gillespie -“Reformation ends not in contemplation, but in action.”

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Anjaana Anjaani

An effort to explore the both sides of a coin.......


I remember rushing out of Rajeev’s Apartment in anger but I still don’t remember why I was in such a mood.I was dead drunk trying to make my way to my PG at the dead of the night. I was so stoned that I could barely walk. Before I could realize I stumbled and tripped across the subway stairs. I don’t really recollect what happened next……
I was blinded by scorching white light when I first opened my eyes and it was then I first saw her. She was too plain to even be a nurse. Her hair was neatly tied and her face was pale. She was nowhere close to kind of girls I dated and there was this look in her eyes, a look of concern and that of anxiety which made me feel alive inspite of all the body pain which held me to the hospital bed. She used to come every day, bring me flowers and cards which she made herself. We talked about a lot of things apart from ourselves which is why I don’t even know her name. I longingly waited for her on the day of my release but she was nowhere to be seen. All I got was a note of her saying-“It was a pleasure knowing you. Keep safe and take good care of yourself.”…………….


All I knew was that I had never seen anything so beautiful. All I knew that he was in pain and needs immediate help. I remember begging for help in order to take him to the hospital. It was not before an hour and half when I finally succeeded in my endeavour. I came everyday to see him. I remember touching his wounds in anguish, I remember flinching in his sleep. His entire face was bruised but he still managed to look divine. Inspite of being in intense agony he was an epitome of hope in my lonely life. For an entire week I spend most of time sitting beside his hospital watching him go to sleep. I felt that if he was by my side nothing could ever go wrong.
It was not before the day of his release that reality struck me. I was not some college cheerleader or the daughter of a millionaire….I was not even the kind of girl, a guy would introduce to his friends. I was just plain and reserved and nothing changes that…Not even the prospect of new found love. I knew that I was not strong enough to stand against a heartbreak….I knew that I could never curb anyone’s existence just because I could not get used to changes.
And so I left. His image comes back to me off and on to make me realize that love is not always about a lifetime of togetherness but about certain moments. Moments which keep you alive, moments which tell you to never give up on love come what may……I still hope that I will get to see him someday but then again the course of love never did run smooth, and never will.