Thursday, January 05, 2006

I wonder about life....

Well, off late I am talking a lot about my career. Ha....do I really have a choice, especially when I spend more than 12 hrs a day at work. Not that I am complaining...I am enjoying every bit of it. But well...I am gonna talk about something related to work only.

Few days ago one friend of mine told me, I think journos are more grounded than people from any other field. I nodded in affirmation. She then proceeded to narrate her experience as an intern in an ad agency where the prime concern for the people after a hard day's work would be where to party....well, that's not bad, I am not generalising out here. But she just felt it was more of a shallow existence. Anyways, I just began reflecting at our lives in general and over here I mean, a journalists' life in general.

We lead different lives. Every single day is different. One day I could be in a slum, the other day i could be in a highrise apartment. I am some of the very few ones who actually see life very closely. I am happy about the fact. However every day poses to me a new challenge. Some days I meet an AIDS victim, other day an AIDS victim's family. One day I meet an artist, one day I meet a pauper. One day I get a chance to go to a discotheque, another day i go to a municipal school. Still there are days when I go a little beyond Mumbai and I feel, shit, how restricted is my reporting....There are thousands of worlds which live here in Mumbai and lakhs beyond it. Not many report about that, including me. I wonder when I will do that.....one day I shall. There are days I meet a mother who has lost a baby, there are days I meet a mother whose son who tops a race. I see pride and grief in a matter of few hours. Sometimes I wonder how to cope up with such myriad situations I inadvertantly become a part of. Sometimes I wonder what it does to me emotionally. In the past few days I have met two families....one wherein one member committed suicide and one who lost her one day old baby. When i listen to them talk, I am sometimes numb. Most of the times numb infact. I think that's the key to survival. Otherwise we species come across so many problems that we would simply die if we aren't numb. but sometimes I wonder if this numbness would lead to indifference. i hope not coz that's a day I will cease to be a human being :|

I remember one day my colleague told me that he's doing a story about a boy who was spanked so hard by his teacher that he had to be admitted to the hospital. Immediately on hearing the story I went like....Oh shit, poor chap, split second later I go like....Super story man :| Typical journo talk I tell you. I sometimes wonder how insensitive I have become. All in the business I think....every thing is a story. As they say, the system has a way to co-opt u....hmmmmm. Finally I pacify myself saying..."Shobha.....thankfully you didn't go Super story and then poor chap....atleast you had the empathy to say poor chap first...."

12 comments:

wormtongue said...

bigshot journo n all >:D< .. keep it up and we have our next barkha dutt.. maybe even better :D ... remember.. change the world n all that ;).. krantikaari amma ki JAI!!!

Wig-nes said...

nice! I have to be numb too :)) Else i'd end up punching "what yaa"

satosphere said...

Nice train of thought.

But then again, there are many journos, who think so solely in terms of the story. They become thick-skinned so much that anything which would bring a normal person to tears would not even elicit a bit of pity or remorse in them.

Atleast thats how I imagine most hard-earned journos are.

Alex said...

Would the hallmark of a good journo be, the ability to detach himself from the grimness of reality and report with an unbiased, cold unemotional perspective and yet be sensitive enuff to not treat a story as just another bunch of words to fill up some space or make a good headline. I hope you find that balance coz its sad to sometimes see the media get so carried away by competition...the pell mell to be the first on scene and the competition to show the most gruesome images!

Barnita said...

Hey SHobha...guess who??? Can't guess? Well...tis Paula. Nice blog you've got here.

Anirudh said...

I guess we all know what is a good story and what isn't whether we say it out loud or not. You can feel bad and still realise that something would be a good story.

And even though you are a part of the "journalistic system", I think you should stay detached because as you said somewhere- it was you, wasn't it?- almost all systems are far from perfect and if you become like the average journo; well, I don't know- you'd lose your sensitivity perhaps. And that is important. The fuel that makes you write shouldn't be money.

indscribe said...

Nice blog....and your photo is great :)

Khushee said...

Just wanted to wish you a happy new year!

Anand said...

Hi Shobha

I can empathise with how you feel and appreciate it. But I think its inevitable that you will your sensitivity a couple of years down the road...That is if you want to be 'successful' in your career...

komal said...

i simply love, reading your thgouts, HONEST THOUGHTS....it always starts some revolution in me (which offcourse dies after few hours) a passion to change the whole world with some kind of supernatural power...but then it also makes me feel lucky to be blessed! not go through something which mite turn out to be "Super story man"

editindia said...

Yes you are right, that's what I often tell my friends. Every day the work may be similar but stories are different so the interest remains...and there is less boriyat than other jobs. My feeling of course, I love the job so may be that is for me not all. Haven't got bored once in so many years...

Darsh the amateur journo said...

Hey Sobha...
I've officially fallen in love with your blog and persona as a journo! this is my first impression of you (this entry) ... can't wait to read the rest.
Why i've fallen in love with you/blog?
I'm an aspiring journalist :) and am an INDIAN woman. I'm passionate about my future career and enjoy the reinforcement I recieve (ie your entry on what it's like!)
Regards
Darshni