Sunday, August 29, 2010

Fake, but entertainment

Am I glad that I don't follow cricket? Perhaps. Am I relieved that I did not get swayed by the histrionics of the Fake IPL Player at its height? Definitely. I don't know what to make out of it. Looking at the Fake smiling on TV, happy about relieving himself and coming out, answering questions of tons of his fans, who despite being massively misled into believing something that they thought was gospel, but was infact nothing more than someone's figment of imagination, as he basked in his glory on TV that showed him like a trophy, like an achievement of being the first TV channel for breaking the identity of the Fake and kept reiterating how many zillions of phone calls they've been getting ever since they broke the story, I don't know whether to be happy or sad.

Let's get one thing straight. The world has moved on. We've all come a long way. In the world of reality shows where contestants shed rivers of tears, even strip their dignity to get ahead, this one seems to be the mother of all reality shows. He made it look so easy; create a mass hysteria and capture the nation's imagination. You could say its a masterstroke. And it probably was. This sort of stuff puts Bollywood scriptwriters to shame. (Not Hollywood; they make Inception.) With no source on the cricket field, the Fake conjured up stories, filled with pseudo names, allegedly purely out of his own head and drove millions of cricket fans in a tizzy. The guy has to be mighty creative to do something like this. And while fans must be kicking themselves (c****** banaa diyaa sabko), you can't deny talent here. Or creativity, whichever way you look at it. If I am running an advertising agency, or even if I am a brand manager, I'd pay to get this guy on my payroll. As a fan, I'd kick myself. As a citizen of this country, I'd say yeh hain India meri jaan. As a journalist, I'd say more power to the pen, which yet again has proved, is mightier than the sword.

Every word that the Fake wrote on his blog seems to have triggered heated discussions and debates in offices, cafeterias (as one caller said) colleges, classrooms, coffee shops, not to mention, locker rooms. Conspiracy theories floated around and realms and realms of newspaper and air space was spent on deciphering what this Fake meant, where did he get the news from and all the repercussion. And all this for what? If everything was his figment of his imagination, many would call it a waste. Entertainment? Sure, why not? Dollops of it. I can think of some Hindi news channels who would look for fodder here, who would throw their bodies and souls to get him on their TV shows, do his psychoanalysis, his dog's psychoanalysis, decipher him inside out, what colour of clothes he wears, what time he goes to the toilet, and what not.

I am so glad that I am not a fan of cricket. I wouldn't dream of getting caught in this sort of hysteria. I am happier gallivanting between Flinders Park, Rolland Garros, SW19 and now, Flushing Meadows.

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