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Stupid cupid

On-again, off-again love affairs may be boring. But then wait till the media tell you so.

india Updated: Jun 15, 2009 21:37 IST
Hindustan Times

The most effective way of getting noticed, as popular culture guru Marshall McLuhan told us many moons ago, is to get noticed by the media. Two people, whom we don’t want to name and, therefore, fall into the trap of propagating their faux importance, have done exactly that since last December. What is interesting is that their story (for the lack of any other noun) of getting together, breaking up and getting together again has been followed as if the spree of actions was the latest initiative between India and Pakistan by the tongue-hanging, ears-perked up media.

The logic of covering this ‘romantic’ soap opera has been that ‘that’s what the viewers/readers want’. Whether the latest high point of this ‘story’ — one of the two having said, “I’ve yet to decide whether I’ve forgiven him” — is top-of-the-mind news (even though displayed bottom of Page 1) or not, surely, there are other things that our media can feed information consumers even when they feel like chewing on pap: a Page 3 celebrity’s lost kitten, a man sporting the longest fingernails in the world; a politician saying that he will marry soon but not yet; a film star’s opinion of global warming (“The green carpet, as opposed to a red one, at the International Indian Film Academy awards here in Macau, symbolises our concerns with the environment.”)

In our humble opinion, the silly story of an oily-faced, moustachioed man and his ‘not quite Sangeeta Bijlani’ wife isn’t worthy of news because it’s silly, but because it’s boring. But then boring is whatever us media folks tell you is boring. Got that?

First Published: Jun 15, 2009 21:36 IST