Archive for March, 2008

If you can

One of my favourite poems that I keep repeating to hopefully keep me level-headed in office:
If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you,
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too;
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
Or being hated, don’t give way to hating,
And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise:

If you can dream – and not make dreams your master;
If you can think – and not make thoughts your aim;
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same;
If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to broken,
And stoop and build ’em up with wornout tools:

If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings
And never breathe a word about your loss;
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: ‘Hold on!’

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with kings – nor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,
If all men count with you, but none too much;
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run –
Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
And – which is more – you’ll be a Man my son!

– Rudyard Kipling

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I have always been suprised at the way websites work. I mean the way they go picking the brains of other websites. I had worked on a story for Medindia on Dr Ian Simpson: http://www.medindia.net/news/interviews/The-RIGHT-Way-to-Deal-With-Snakebites-Ask-Dr-Simpson-32986-1.htm

and imagine my suprise when I see it on http://forums.kingsnake.com/view.php?id=1475688,1475688

The same thing has happened earlier. I had done an interview with wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales for News Today http://www.newstodaynet.com/26feb/ss2.htm

and suprises of suprises I see it on http://randex.org/index.php/weblog/2007/02/

I wonder If I give an article for DC, will Asian Age do the needful and just upload it on to their site? Would look better on my resume…

And meanwhile, my animation story has also got recycled and I saw its new avatar on India forum. com, without the slightest clue what is Indiaforum or how my article landed up there.


And the funnier part is all these sites give a link to the original. While I don’t have a high opinion of me or my articles, I wonder what posessed them to do this… I heard of websites operating on a policy of Ctrl+C and Ctrl+V….

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Life Down The Cyber HighwayBy D.R. Chitra(http://groups.yahoo.com/group/journalismonline/post?postID=MF1hozEJNsHxDlS5MJGeQEto3DiqoiS8AYxVQa5hIngKnDA3KgGg9QMzjvFjzln4prdL5Kkiw1cGWF-7jQ)

11.30 in the night. The MP3 collections were getting downloaded at snail’s pace. Deadline for the karoke was tommorow night 9.00. Rohit yawned and kept playing a desultory game of minesweeper, occasionally checking the download process. Just a lot of junk mail and a few ads popped up, which he quickly deleted.

The ad for Shaadi.com with a picture of awell-groomed couple and two sets of idiotically grinning parents alone refused to go. He felt frustrated and started clicking on End Task. When suddenly he was seized with the impulse “Why not?”. No harm in checking out the site with a false ID, after all he wasn’t going to end up married. He knew it would be a punishable offense, but curiosity woudn’t kill this cat, and what the heckIndia wasn’t America.

It was this very same impulsiveness that had made MTV select him as a roadie for its Madras-Manipur trip, made Wilson College refuse to have anything to do with him even before he had completed his first semester, and had also made him DJ at the Meridien with his precious little know-how on music. He had four Ids 1-work, 2-friends, (not too sharp a line of demarcationbetween the first two), 3-family, 4-for all the X things he was interested in ranging from sex to salvation. He had made a lot of queer friends and the experience, as he consoled his troubled conscience, was highly educative.

He decided against all four especially the fourth, as he had only recently done some online chatting in an adults only website. He started filling out the form for a new Id, when it struck him, since itwould be a false email Id, why not go the whole hog and become a totallydifferent person. So he made out his name to be Reshma Agnihotri, got his Id and went back to shaadi.com. He started filling out the particulars, including the column for parents. He was feeling slightly revolted by the questions asked which were downright racist, sexist and casteist. The final application made him or rather her out to be 25, single, software engineer, salary-25,000 (at least that part was true).

For the rest of the story you can read http://groups.yahoo.com/group/journalismonline/message/59

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TV Channels: Twisting The ScripturesBy ————–D.R. Chitra(http://groups.yahoo.com/group/journalismonline/post?postID=EWqc0kDZEnKSK_UfhDwObSfP7D4JwEqsAIeWgsgYdl0MIdLKZS3vppEIADQ5LZ3XLq4KgP6NTV_k9VuLERzH)

Anti-Christian broadcasting networks are exactly what GOD TV and CBN are though they claim to be otherwise. Both these channels have extensive networks in all the five continents. GOD TV has its base inBritain, and CBN is an American channel.

Though they may disagree onvarious issues (divorce, PMS, Human GM), they all managed to reach a consensus on the Iraq war. CBN’s mascot during the war was undoubtedly George. W. Bush Jr.
Evenafter the ‘45 minute claim‘ and the ‘uranium import‘ were proved to be false, the 700 Club still did a show on how well Bush can get along with Christians of all denominations. You had commanders-in-chief testifying to his bravery (by staying in the Home Guard), pastors commending him for making Texas crime-free (by the simple means of sending the maximum number of people to the electric chair)… You even had snapshots of the President, the Security Adviser and many of his close aides kneeling down for prayer at the White House.
God TV, not to be left behind, came up with a Tony Blair special, in which we see Blair holding the Bible at a public meet, after the invasion, proudly declaring, “I am ready to meet my Maker today.”The very same week, there was another programme on the Axis of Evil. Even now if you visit the 700 Club official website, you can read so much on the Saddam Hussein-Charles Taylor-Osama bin Laden link, North Korea‘s nuclear programme, the Talibans in Afghanistan, that one wonders if they shape the American Foreign Policy and issue the White House Press handouts.
Not satisfied with my tirade against the money-minting religious channels? You can read the original at http://groups.yahoo.com/group/journalismonline/message/56

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If you’re a working journalist, whose ambit is Chennai, the first mission of your life should be getting a placement in the Times of India. The TOI, which has been promising to come for many years, has finally got bored with the hype of arriving and decided to get the irksome job of getting to Chennai done and over with.
So landed TOI HR personnel, machines, baggage and all…..And no they did’nt advertise. Advertised recruitment drives are for measly papers with a circulation of less than 1 lakh (by the way this should not be construed as any hit at the New Indian Express, Chennai). For the TOI, advertising is more elite – only word of mouth. Or maybe the word of mouth stuff is a discrete cost cutting measure.
Anyway, the average TOI Chennai aspirant had to try his luck at the great, grand TOI. And applying for a company in the conservative circles of Chennai is not as easy as you think. First thing one has to get leave for the interview. And for that one has to be good at inventing stuff. “My grandmother is sick. She’s on her deathbed.” “Im suffering from writer’s block, tennis elbow, hepatitis, or even better mental depression…” are just a few excuses to give to the boss.
But for all you know when the boss is scolding you for taking too much leave, he/she might actually be thinking; “Will I get the job in TOI? What If I don’t? I’ll have to explain why a whole lot of people stampeded out of my office. And what if I meet this guy in the TOI office during the interview? Or even worse this loser gets the job and I don’t?”
So the boss decided to leave you in the lurch and not give you leave in the greater interests of his own career in TOI. Then you’ll have to squeeze in the interview between the hours you were supposed to have been in office.
The TOI guys are going to be here for three days. But its going to be three days of hell for the average TOI aspirant.
TOI aspirant to another reporter in the same beat: “Machan, I have some urgent work. I heard you’re attending the same press conference. Can you tell me what happened later?”
Another reporter: “Machan. I wanted to ask the same thing. My wife is not feeling well. So can you tell what happened there…”
(Deep silence. Mutual suspicion)
Both TOI aspirants hang up.
End result: All dignitaries will have to face empty chairs for the next three days in press conferences, business lunches and all the other events for which people want journalists to grace the attention.
And those who don’t want to be part of the TOI herd are dismissed as people who have to a) take up permanent residenship in Kilpauk IMH b) neurotic c) have enough money – damn the filthy rich and the cover-taking journalists or d) people who want to apply to TOI later after they get their annual hikes and increments in their current office.
(I suddenly realised I’ve used more than 14 TOIs in the post. Just shows the overall TOI fixation doesn’t it?)
Rachel Chitra

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