Oct 29, 2003

Why me?

"Why is this happening to me? Oh God, why do you test the devotion of your most fervent bhakt in this way? Why do I have the worst possible ill-luck?"

Do not mistake these laments and moans to be heartfelt philosophical mutterings of people trapped in GhOr Kaliyug - rather, these are the routine utterings of the righteous in our many television serials. I have never known any group of people who have to cope with more awful luck in all turns of life. They never have a moment of peace - whatever tranquility appears in their lives is usually that which filters through the eye of the cyclone. Surrounded by evil-doers, pursued by misfortune, bathed by glycerine - this is the plight of all the pure-hearted in TV-land.

We real life people (not wishing to tempt fate here) do have our bouts of difficulties - but we do enjoy the occasional cheer here and there. But not if you are Radha or Krishna Murari Verma - your names themselves invite trouble from the deviously named Chandika who hates your guts, your Rs. 20,000 silk sari and yor husband that should have been her's or the megalomaniac Ajay Pratap Rathore whose entire business empire is devoted to one purpose - your slow-paced annihilation. Don't think you can escape by taking on a middle-class kirdaar: your kids will see to it that your punya-ka-ghaDa is always being credited to as you forgive and forget all the nasty deeds they do.

So is there no escape from this vicious cycle of sorrow and righteousness? Such puNyaatmaas would do well to recall the story of the philosopher and the dying king who asked the wise man to sum up the story of human existence in three sentences. The sage replied: "Man was born. He suffered. He died". TV makers have embraced whole-and-soul this primeval concept, just making a minor adjustment: "Man and woman were born. They suffered. The TRPs ended".

The next time I hear someone lament: "Why me, why should I of all people suffer three business losses, two injuries to my tailbone and one misplaced silver necklace", I wish I could loudly say: "Because you're in a TV serial, dummy".

No comments: