Sunday, November 11, 2007

My only appearance on television - alas, not to be!

The channels, I mean television channels, are becoming a little incestuous, me thinks. And I think this is a bad thing. Consider this: the other day Star Television was showing footage of the Great Indian Laughter Challenge before its news segment, as if laughter is news. This while farmers are committing suicide, and another bunch of species are saying goodbye to the earth for ever. There are stories out there crying to be reported and Star Television is showing re-runs of its laughter program, which consists of a celebrity judge who would laugh uproariously if I tell a joke such as the one about Santa saying to Banta: the moon is more important than the sun because it give light in the night when there is no light, but the sun gives light when there already is plenty of light. Yeaaaah, whatever!

Tomorrow there would be channels that would feature only news about what happened in the Virani family in their prime time news slots and even discussion panels about the saas-bahu happenings in that family. Cynical, yes, that’s what I am by nature.

That reminds me of the only time I was to appear on television, on a formal program, I mean. Yes, I thought, this is my finest hour. A literary group of which I am a member was being showcased on CNN IBN and we were all told to report for a shooting of a program where we will all read our stories, poems, articles, etc. So I dressed in my best Fab India churidar kurta, even taking the day off. The shooting took many hours with close-ups, long shots, individual takes of the writers.

I told everyone, I mean everyone, that I was being featured in a CNN IBN interview the following Friday, and even that day I took half day’s leave to sit before the television. Meanwhile, friends and colleagues also were fired up by the news of my television appearance and were glued to CNN IBN for hours to watch the program.

And then the big come down, let down, whatever. After so many, many hours we had wasted on preparing for shooting that program, and keeping a watch for its appearance on television, the program was dumped by the producer. That’s as close as I came to making a television appearance. These days I wonder how Shekhar Suman, Siddhu-paji, and Shahrukh Khan (he is giving interviews left, right, centre, up and down for Om Shanti Om) must be making these unending appearances on television.

No comments: