Life's Like That

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Arrey!! bangali naki!!?

That one sentence opens up a vista of opportunities for the Bengali ouitside Bengal. The way the language can bond people is amazing. I spent greater part of today in the company of this lady who Im slightly scared of. .a very senior journalist, very serious and very very no nonsense...I am more than a little intimidated by her. And certain incidents today (I hate having to be so careful on this blog...damn!! should have created an anonymous url!!) did absolutely nothing to help matters.Imagine my surprise then when on our way back from the venue, she starts talking in fluent Bangla...my joy knew no bounds!! There was a sparkle in my eye and a song in my heart (ok ok..a bit much, I agree) when I turned to her and said..."Eki aapni Bangla janen?" Needless to say we spoke only in Bangla after that, she is a nice person...and Im not that scared of her anymore.

My Bangali roots have helped me out ever since I left Calcutta...from befriending fellow passengers on trains (to the point where they looked after my luggage while I visited friends in other comaprtments and in one case where they came looking for me coz we were approaching Howrah and they were worried as to where I had vanished) to getting quick service from waiters at restaurants, to making friends with vague strangers, to befriending journalists I was previously scared of....it helps to be a Bong!!

Now I only wish I had had the sense to date a Bong guy or at least make sure the few Bengali friends I had in Bangalore remained here. Why u ask?? Because Chondrobindoo is performing next week..n I want to go(Im in a very very Bengali fied mood rt now and am missing Cal like crazy)...n i dont have any Bong friends to go with . The same thing happened with Nishijapon..though Rahul did agree to accompany me...it would have been painful coz he wouldnt have understood n I would habve had to translate etc etc.Life is very sad!! :-(

Saturday, August 27, 2005

!!!!!!!!

Stumbled upon this while taking a break from work. Is this guy for real!!???? What kind of a psycho is this?? I wonder why he wastes so much time reading these blogs written by the despicable "westernised" women? or painstakingly critique each one for that matter!! And if we must all "stop fawning over these moron women", then why on earth is he increasing the number of hits on their sites through his own really pathetic blog!!!??
It just occured to me that maybe I should not increase his hit rate either by linking him on this blog...but then..why not..not too many people visit my blog anyways, and I guess the few people who do,need some entertainment too!! Go ahead guys! check it out!! Its quite something else!!
This guy is so obviouly jobless and frustrated and delusional (he seems convinced that blogosphere NEEDS him to "showcase some of the mediocre work floating around"!!) Poor thing!! To be so pathetic and sick in the head is indeed quite sad!! In the meantime do visit his blog for your daily dose of entertainment!! Ramblings from a delusional mind..that would be such an apt title wouldn't it?

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Malleshwaram?? Mumbai? Mongolia? Moooon?? Where is it that you will go???????????

This city has to have the worst public transport system in all of India. Buses are few and far between and everything is written in kananda...hence indecipherable for people like me..n the autos never seem to want to go ANYWHERE!!!


Had walk home the other day in the pouring rain because none of the empty autos around wanted to go to richmond road (from office in Ulsoor)..don't ask me where they wanted to go..after they said no to Richmond Road and Residency Road I tried Malleshwaram,Rajajinagar,station,airport,Singapore,moon (I was getting that desperate)....nothing worked..they said no to everything I said!!!!!!


I tried offering double the meter..they still said no! Another intersting thing Ive noticed, the guys with autos parked in the auto stands never want to go anywhere...they will push each other giggle n pass comments..n thats about it. if you want to take an auto in Bangalore its better to try your luck with one thats idly cruising by rather than try an auto stand.


So seriously what is it that these guys want?? Why do they just want to sit in their autos all day and go nowhere?? Don't they need to earn?Any answers anyone????

Saturday, August 20, 2005

PR....

Over the last 2 yrs Ive come across people whose reactions to what I do for a living ranges from "Ohh PR...so what is the advertisement ur working on now" to "gawd...you people are the scum of the earth".

Both reactions make me think.and think seriously. I came into this field at a stage when the industry is slowly gaining the recognition it deserves. Unfortunately, its an uphill task because noone really understands the full scope of Public Relations in this country. Here PR= Press Release or Press Relations. Ive had situations where we have worked on brilliant direct consumer connect activities only to be told by client that it was a failure because it did not yield "good coverage". This is the kind of reaction that has left me disillusioned with my field of work...there is more to PR than just clips in the media.How about non media PR activities which reach your TG directly?? How about realizing that every marketing activity cannot lead to fantastic media coverage?? How about working out marketing comunications plans in tandem with the PR Agency's inputs, instead of deciding on the (non)news peg, key messages and number of clips required, on your own??

Then there is the matter of the way people look at PR reps...(mentioned above.."scum of the earth etc..) We are just trying to do our job..n our job involves ensuring media coverage for client (because thats the only damn thing that counts with most clients at the end of the day). We are typecast as being dumb, pushy, ignorant, irritating etc etc by some journalists. Some even feel justified in being rude with us (A journalist once told me to go out of the office stand outside in the corridor and wait for him to come and meet me).

All I can say is..it takes all kinds..yes there are some INCREDIBLY dumb and unprofessional PR people in the industry today....the kind of people who agree to the clients' every nonsensical demand, the kind of people like the lady who once advised me to ensureI look nice and meet a particular journalist on a Saturday afternoon, smile and bat my eyelashes and generally give the impression of a damsel in distress (because of no coverage) to get my work done, the kind of people who don't begin to understand the concept of "newsworthiness" and irritate journalists with meaningless follow up calls, the kind of people who don't know when to take no for an answer. The list goes on.There are unprofessional inefficient people in every field..journalism included. There have been instances when journalists have asked us to fix interviews, then said they will come to the venue on their own and then vanished....after having switched off their cell phones..how the hell do I explain this to my client?? How the hell do I justify the cost incurred in taking a journalist on a familiarization trip to XYZ location when after the trip he/she says "I do not intend to file a story. This was for my own interest".

It takes all kinds of people to make up the world....I have been lucky enough to work in Bangalore where, for most parts, interacting with the media is a pleasure(I dont know how the scene is in Delhi/Mumbai but Ive heard its damn difficult) most journalists here are friendly and extremely good with their work. PR too is gradually changing...we are not expected to wag our collective tails n give in to every whim of client/media, we are not expected to treat journalists/ clients like gods, we are not expected to bat eyelashes etc to get work done( I refused to do this and made a hue and cry about it, which resulted in my then branch head coming down rather heavily on the lady who suggested it in the first place). Things are changing....thank god!!! Lets hope its all for the best!! As for us being the scum of the earth...guys give us break...not all of us can be bracketed into the whining a**licking category...there are those of us who go about our work professionally and intellegently!!!!

PS: Deep...i know what you said about ranting and raving on this blog..but then... HADDDD to get this out of my system....as a journalist Im sure you understand what I'm talking about!!!

Thursday, August 18, 2005

me myself and.....

Been reading other peoples blog for sometime now, finally decided to jump on to the bandwagon. Should I start with an introduction to me? Do I go straight to stuff I want to talk about? But then...what do I want to talk about? Reviews and opinions on books/movies? Serious sociopolitical issues?? work? media...I don't know...have'nt decided what this blog will be all about..will go with the flow I guess.
For the time being... Im 26 years old, a Bong outside Bong land (Bangalore to be precise) grew up in Calcutta (wasn't Kolkata then) and since then have lived in Hyderabad, Mumbai (for a vry vry brief period of time..n don't particularly want to go back there) and Bangalore. Work for a well known PR agency (Do not even ask me why I got into PR..am still trying to figure that one out..) love books. movies, Calcutta, adda, chaats and coffee. I have some pretty strong opinions about quite a few things....but will try not to rant and rave too much over here.
Comments, topics of discussion, opinions etc are most welcome...lets see where this goes.