Saturday, November 20, 2010

Dealing with boredom...

I used to think it's a curse to be bored. I used to chide myself and yell at myself mentally saying, how can you be bored, when there are so many interesting things to learn? Then I'd open some newspaper website and start concentrating on the day's events. For the past two days though, I've been bored beyond belief and beyond relief. No matter how much I tried to coax myself to study, I just couldn't do it. 

I decided to throw caution to the winds, and do whatever I felt like. I started watching Russell Peters shows on youtube. That guy is hilarious! After watching about 10 video clips, I thought that I was sufficiently entertained. It dawned on me much later that, in the process of entertaining myself, I'd come across quite a lot of new information. While watching his videos, one link led to another and I ended up watching his interview with Riz Khan. It's in two parts and you can see it here and here.

I came to know a lot of things about him and about stand-up comedians in general. Moreover, when he said that religion is something he never jokes about or messes with, I had an "Oh yeah" moment. Till that point, I'd never noticed that when he makes fun of peculiarities of cultures and accents, he never makes any references to a religious peculiarity. It made me think, is he scared? The reason he gave is, religion is a personal thing, and he is nobody to tell which religious habits are peculiar and which aren't.

When we watch stand-up comedians perform, we rarely realize the kind of efforts that go into making up the act. They've to always be prepared to get booed down. Or worse, they've to be prepared for no laughter at all. They're under constant pressure to come up with good jokes. And of course, each comedian is only as good as their last performance. Therefore, I was quite amazed to know that Russell has been at this for more than twenty years now, and is still going strong.

I also felt proud when I saw the vast crowds that came to watch him do his act. That struck me as very unusual. Russell is an Indian of Canadian origin. He has never been to India while growing up. In fact, he came to India for the first time to perform when he gained fame. Therefore, it is quite possible that India or Indians had very little to do with his success. Why do we feel pride for Indians based out of India? Ours has been this sort of rags to riches story, where post Independence we were a poor and developing country, with a very low self-confidence. As Indians started becoming visible in the global spotlight, our self-esteem grew, both individually and as a nation. This practice of collective victory for individual achievement is still continuing, as we take every Indian's success as a measure of every Indian's capability to become successful. Every Indian's victory is a personal victory. If he can, then I can too, irrespective of where he has come from.

So I'm happy that I got bored. It made me realize that everything you do, whether its for work or entertainment, has the potential to change your perspective and teach you something new.

I think I should really get back to work now, or else as Russell Peters says, Soma buddy gonna get hurt real baaad! Lol :D

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  1. Nice read... :) Am waitin eagerly 4 my period of boredom man... December !! :D

  2. Stand-Up is tough, truly, the effort these guys put in, as you mentioned is obviously a huge feat... also yes, they have to tread a thin line, between insulting someone and poking fun at them! And boredom is just a state of mind. I always say, an idle mind leads to your creative juices flowing!

  3. @Neha: Thanks.. :D Hope your period of boredom leads you to many new discoveries :D

    @MrNarci: Thank you for commenting :D

  4. Check out his 'Red, Brown and White'. Let me know how you feel towards the end of this show. :)

  5. Hey K,
    I've seen it.. It's hilarious! I was holding my stomach and laughing throughout :D