Saturday, September 27, 2008

The Phantom of the Soap Opera

We are familiar with how our parents feel about soaps and serials.

Soaps. The name in every household. The very meaning of entertainment for womenfolk (not generalizing, but, a lot of them actually). Soaps have become a routine for homemakers giving them “something” to watch from dawn to dusk. A lot of women, (il)literally, speak of nothing else but the happenings in these shows. I haven’t witnessed even stock markets being this speculated upon! What has really puzzled me is the audience’s ability to recall stories (if they are), though incomplete, that are stacked up in their memory. At least it might help to keep Alzheimer’s at bay [;)].Anyway I guess I’ll have the question answered soon.

One evening, a conversation that happened between my mum and me. I was just back from being a nomad because of the indefinite holidays, cursed.

Me: Hi ma, whats up?
Ma: sshhh…
Me: Alright!

I turn around to see what the idiot box was yapping. I’m not surprised to see a soap star on screen.

Me: Ma!! I think I’ve see that guy somewhere. I guess some other TV channel. Happened to catch a glimpse of him while switching channels.
Ma: illa da. That was the guy appearing in (*&^*&%) as a (&^$&*) (censored due to safety reasons)
Me: hmpf.. I’m lost. Save it. Why don’t you go outside? Get some fresh air!?
Ma: HEY!! I’m NOT like the majority of ‘em. A lot of people watch soaps starting from morning till evening not moving from their couch, not cooking, not socializing, not..
Me: …??

She stopped. It was a godsend. But why an abrupt stop? Then I realized that the conversation had happened during the break. Now the soap had started again. I hit the sack. That night, I had a dream. Some guy being ill for a myriad amount of time recovers from cancer, “miraculously”. The doctors called it a “Medical Marvel”. The next morning I got up thinking about the unusual dream finding it vaguely familiar yet difficult to fathom. That evening, I was back home after my routine role as a nomad and while parking my vehicle, I couldn’t help but over hear my neighbors, 2 ladies, discussing something about some guy recovering from cancer.

Lady 1: Hey, I was outside last evening. Had to go to some important meeting at my son’s school. They call it some “Parents and Teachers Association meeting”. (Indistinct chatter). What happened yesterday?
Lady 2: Well, Manoj recovered from cancer! The doctors called it a “miracle”!!

I was shocked yet elated. Have I just had a premonition the previous night?!? It was hard to believe. Yet it had happened .Ignoring the rest of the conversation I went upstairs.

Me: Hi ma! I’m home… after doin… nothin!
Ma: Hi. (and that’s it. She didn’t ask much about what I was doing the whole day. Not that I did something important like saving the world or anything of value. Still, I consider it an obligation to ask)

Intrigued, I speak out loud.

Me: What’s that!? What’s so important that it’s not to miss??

Break time.

Ma: Don’t mock me! Anyway, Manoj just recovered from cancer. That was what they have been showing since yesterday!

I was shocked. I had just guessed what was going to happen in a soap opera in my dream! Then it dawned on me. Soap operas don’t need any premonitions or divine interventions to guess what was going to happen. All you need is the brains of Homer Simpson. I had the dream because I was trying to figure out the meaning of these soaps last night that my brain had to perform an emergency de-fragmentation of my memory while I was asleep. As usual, I hit the sack.

Soap operas are MUNDANE, ordinary, dull, routine, boring, unexciting, dreary and monotonous.

The above sentence was written with the help of a thesaurus. Soap Operas DON’T keep Alzheimer’s at bay but probably provoke it. They promote obesity and brain degeneration transforming lively homemakers to friendly neighborhood zombies.

This post is quite long for a blog post… like a soap opera is for a human life cycle


Vivek said...

Its amazing how elders make this a big deal in every household.
And forget about asking for the TV at the time. Its near impossible and even an atom bomb blowing next door wouldn't make them move!!
(Am I describing my lazy self again??)
Welcome back to the blogging world.
Nice new blog makeover.

Vivek said...

Its amazing how this is common to elders in every household.And you can forget getting the TV at the time and wouldn't even move or realize whats going on around them (unless an atom bomb blew up).

Welcome back to the blogging world.
Feels like you did some construction on your blog.
Bruce Wayne Blog--> Batman Blog
Vibushan Blog--> Man oh Man!

Chiju said...

hey... the blog world has regained its hero... good post man...

i once remember my friend telling this. His mom was talking on th phone with his aunt. Suddenly her voice went like this, "Oh! What happenend next?". He was wondering what bad news of someone was his mother hearing. After she hung up, it was about some serial only...

My grandma used to stay with us few years back... She used to start with the serials by 11 in the morning and take a break from 2 to 6 PM... again it used to go on till 11 30... she had memory problem then... i used to even wonder that she was watching all of them because she thgt it was all one drama because everthing had the same story and almost same actors...

Vivek said...

The funny thing is you miss it for a week and the story doesn't seem to have shifted!
Indian Soap Writers are all part timers!

Vibushan Lakshminarayan said...

@ Vivek
Ha ha ha.. true.. very true :)
@ chiju
Infact, now, the symptoms are highly pronounced. Its like a whole new race is gonna emerge.

Jayaprasad said...

Once when i was in my native place i happened to see a serial where the hero was hospitalized because of some accident. After 3 months i happened to see the glimpse of the same serial in which the man was not even out of ICU.Even if the accident was real,he would have easily recovered by that time... :) good blog dude...