Thursday, August 18, 2005


The UNICEF recently organised a workshop to create awareness amongst young people on HIV and AIDS. The participants were students, journalists musicians and radio jockeys - essentially people in a postion to spread the message and hopefully influence change.

At the workshop a DJ from Washington D C, George Collinet, said, "The first message we need to send out is abstinence."

"But is that a realistic message in these times?", I asked him.

He replied, "We need to make abstinence sexy. Thats the challenge."

Cyrus Broacha, supremely funny MTV VJ, was there too. I asked him if he agreed with George's point of view. In characteristic Cyrus style, he said, "Whoever said we need to make abstinence sexy has been drinking. Abstinence is good... all the girls I knew practiced it. But nobody is going to listen if you preach to them!"

If George manages to make abstinence sexy someday he would have pulled off the impossible. And that will be great. But for now I think i agree with Cyrus.

Thursday, August 11, 2005


Its a forward going around, but i cant resist mentioning it here. Look no further for testimonials to the greatness of google. Just type the word "failure" and see what you come up with!


Covered yet another bland cricket story - the Indian cricket teams return from Sri Lanka. An obviously irritable Greg Chappell gave monosyllabic answers even as the press tried hopelessly to eke out a fresh angle to write a story on a team that is nauseatingly over-reported.


Q: "Mr. Chappell, what is the realistic time table you have set for yourself and this team for a turnaround."
Ans: "Yesterday"

Q: "Mr. Chappell, what are the early lessons learnt from this tour?"
Ans: "Bat better, bowl better, field better."

Some TV channels had this live!!!

Friday, August 05, 2005


One of the hazards of television is that you hear the best quotes when the camera is not rolling. Let me give you one small example. I was waiting for the grand-daddy of blogging, Kiruba, at the reception area in his office. He strode in and we introduced ourselves. The first thing he told me when he heard my name was, "The advantage of having an unusual name is that you can get it as your own domain name." Spoken like a true-blogger, i thought. But where was my camera? On my cameramans lap, with the lens cap on, as he sat there on a sofa, in the lobby of the offices of Sify.

Another hazard is that unless you happen to be in the right place at the right time, you lose your best visuals. A mob stoning police vehicles makes for gripping television. But its a spontaneous act again. So the visuals you'll probably have to settle for are shots of shards of glass lying around on the road, smashed wind-screens and people standing around. Which is why, a film-maker recently remarked, "watching television news is like watching faces in my window." And shes right! Just a lot of mid-shots with people, people, people, people, people. The television is on mute all the time in front of me in the newsroom at work. Very, very, very rarely does what im seeing make me sit up and take notice.