Yesterday, the last day of 2009, end of decade, moving into new year, resolute on the new decade, optimism overflowing from people's eyes...ok I need to shut up and move on.
So I was seeing TV and the fact is that I could find nothing that would remotely interest me. Mostly it was some rehash of year's headlines, replay of same movie trailers and songs that have been played on channels a zillion times, comedy shows that make most of the content for most a few news channels. I checked DD National too and what was on it could not stop me from moving to the next channel. It made me nostalgic about the late 80s.
People in 30s, who grew up in India in mid/late 80s have witnessed the cable TV explosion in this country. And they certainly know what DD was before the cable TV advent. DD was like a pizza with all the toppings - pepper, corn, tomato, olives...everything (now you know I am a veggie). It had Chhayageet, Mahabharat, Saturday evening movie, The World this Week, Surabhi and so many other things.
While the above toppings were weekly fare, people also awaited its annual fare - the New Year Eve program, Holi Haasya Kavi Sammelan, Coverage of Grammies and Oscars etc.
The New Year programs were a grand mix of everything. It was like an abridged version of what DD was. A bit of news, some songs (and by some I mean 10 at most), lots of contextual comedy stuff and some live programmes.
In particular, I remember the first time I was mesmerised by Javed Jaffrey doing his "I do not have bones" dance. There used to be those spoof shows. There was some controversy over BVO, on which I think it was, Harish Patel cracking some hilarious jokes or Raja Bundela trying to construct the spelling of Czechoslovakia.
The best part was all this was a compact package of 2 hours or so. Starts at 10pm, finishes at midnight, the channel says Happy New Year and off it goes. Amazing.
No, that was not the best part. The best parts were the discussions on these programs on the following day in school, some idiot getting caught trying to pass one of the jokes from the program as his own and the attempt to show off who remembers the most of the program.
Well, these days the TV does not stop, the viewer has to muster the courage to go to the power off button. These days there is no need of news wrap because you have been fed the same news 24x7 till you have learnt it to the last headline and you no longer wait for that 5 minute magic from Jaaved Jaffrey because there are like a million copies doing rounds on 50 channels.
I guess I had a great new year eve remembering those good old days. Perhaps they are good old just because I was young then and am slightly older now.