wilson college was the college that i took my baby steps in the world of social welfare. i remember the walls of the college. the so very philanthropic ambiance that i walked in. it was an animal welfare campaign then. a get-together. life has come a full circle since then. today, i had visited this college as a chief guest for the bmm festival of theirs. "polaris". and what a feeling it was. truly fantastic!
first when i got a call from this guy called demetrius to be the jury for their college fest. I thought of it as an opportunity to unlearn all that i have learnt, and imbibe in me fresh thoughts from the next generation. (yes... they must be a decade younger than me... so, next generation). i did use the opportunity to teh best of my ability, i wanted to reach out to a larger audience, especially students. though i might sound like a philosopher, i really dont care, i will speak my mind. i believe that the future is going to be defined by the nearing 30ish and the 20ish crowd. (well, id be 20ish for life in attitude. so i will fall in that bracket ever.)
me, inaugurate? what did you say?
but then in a while i got a call from ranjit, the student chairperson of the festival telling me that he wants me to INAUGURATE the festival. frankly. it felt very nice. yes i have judged many events. but inaugurated none. so this was a first for me. and i look forward to firsts with as much enthusiasm as anyone else. :-) but this one was different. i knew that i am no celebrity, i wouldnt get more foot fall to the event as much as a bollywood star would. so my instant reaction to ranjit was "you need to bring in a celebrity, it will be good for your event" and prompt came the reply from ranjit "no sir, we want you". i obliged. i wasnt behaving modest when i said that they should call in a celebrity, but, i have done college events for so many years, i cant just bask in glory at the cost of their event.
i sent a message to anjulika and asked her if she would like to join me. she immediately said yes and in fact reached before i did. i reached laaaate some 10 mins or so. i asked shraddha to shut up and carry on with the inauguration. and she insisted. sir, we wil wait for you. i was feeling terrible that i am being a late latif and delaying their event. but bombay traffic. ewww!
i met up with sudhakar soleman, the bmm coordinator. brimming with enthusiasm. he is a wonderful person, liked speaking to him. i was asked to go on teh stage with him. i am more of the tambu guy. just cant behave like a celebrity. and when i did get the opportunity, i liked it. but felt odd. i also met mallika who was the warden of the hostel and the vice principal. she amazed me with her love for her students and her love for teh institution. i thought only i valued my mother institution. i was wrong. infact she did much more than what i did. (or to keep up my ego let me say, "as much as i do.")she would bring in her students and tell us, ohh you know, he does this so so well. his name is !@#$$ ". so sweet. seems like nothing gives her more joy than her students successes.
fast forward films
anjulika and i along with the writer of munnabha mbbs, judged the first event fast forward films, which was bascicaly films shot in 2x and above speeds. the two films that completely touched me was one on the song "hip hopper" ohh what a film, and what cuts, what direction and above all what editing and acting man. i completely fell in love with both the actors. i want to work with them sometime soon for some social cause. i'l post about that soon. and the other film was "puppy love" which was bascically about a teenagers love for a puppy. great thought guys. fantastic.
the next event was sports promos, which was a contrast. it was very appauling. i mean, there was no thought applied, all the kids wanted to do was dramatize the whole thing. you don't need to dramatize every time to create an impact. some of the students in this segment had not put in efforts, as in, that's what we could make out. they might have put in efforts. but if their efforts don't show enough on screen and we as judges, unanimously felt so. then what is the use of such efforts. the result: we announced just one consolation prize. the student organising committee member did request us to announce 3 prizes. anjulika has a great heart, we two comparatively were stone hearted. we thought that we would be doing injustice to those who did work well if we gave off prizes to anybody who didn't deserve. we stuck to our guns. we gave just a consolation. the student requested us to announce. i agreed. and when it was asked who amongst us. all looked at me. hehehehe. i came ahead and said that i could just mutter good things for the heck of it or state facts. and i did tell them without mincing words that they could've done much better. though i did ask them to take it in the right spirit.
the "reality show" effect
we did have a girl who came up to me and tell me. "sir, i don't feel you saw our film". i replied "yes, i did" she retorted "i was watching you during the screening, you were talking, you were not watching". well, this is what i call the "reality show effect" where students make allegations on their judges. now, judges are not superhuman beings. they are people with a little bit more experience and acumen. if your product is good, you would look at the whole film without jhapkaofying a palak. but if you know right from the start that this isn't going the way you thought it should. you lose interest and start chit chatting. we might have as well. basically, if the young lady had taken so much of effort in intricate detailing than looking at us while judging, the results would've been so so very better. i would love to interact with her and give her my perspective. just that she needs to have the willingness to learn.
see you... tata
then i was escorted to the cab by the beautiful girl, shraddha. and she signalled her volunteers to get me a cab.
siting in teh cab, i looked back at the magnificient institution. i looked at where i had been. what a college it is. and wao, what students. what professors. wao wao wao.
i wished i be a student again. i wished i was a wilsonian. i always maintained that there is none like khalsa. but wilson. guys, you are better than my college. i could understand that every event will have some broken hearts, some sad undercurrents, some jealousy... all of it goes in teh making of a marvel. i could quite sense that even the wilsonians wouldve all such issues. but they didnt let it turn destructive for teh festival. all of them were together. together for a cause. the cause here being. Polaris.
thanks anthony, thanks demetrius, thanks harendra, thanks isha, thanks mallika ji, thanks principal ji, thanks rachael, thanks shraddha, thanks sudhakar ji and everyone else whom i interacted with.( im sorry, i am very bad with names. and if i do get the names. i cant put names and faces together :-( )
thanks so much for making me a part of your experience. thanks for getting me acquainted with this magnificent institution.
love you wilson. love you wilsonians.