Monday, November 30, 2009

Eccentric Gentle Man: Popeye

Poppay the sailo ooo ma sss n po ppoo

Found strange? But if you are following the cartoon Popeye the sailor –man, you would not have bewildered like this.
Yup, it’s extremely funny and crazy thing to watch the adventures of Popeye, and his miraculous Spinach. I started liking spinach more after seeing Popeye becomes incredibly powerful by having it.
Hmm ask any kid to have spinach, and he will not hesitate to eat, thanks to Popeye!
The reason behind calling him gentle man is that he is such a personality who cares for Sweepy (littile kid: Popeye’s relative) and Olive, loves them a lot and saves them from any obstruction without deviating from the path of truth and ethics. But wait, if you are thinking, Popeye is a very serious thing, then take a look-

Will write more on eccentric Popeye and why I called him eccentric, in detail, see you soon.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Ubiquitous Mobile Learning

I was amazed to hear about mobile learning and extremely curios too. The first thing I did to dig out information about it was to visit Wikipedia.
I learned the following definition from it.

“Any sort of learning that happens when the learner is not at a fixed, predetermined location, or learning that happens when the learner takes advantage of the learning opportunities offered by mobile technologies.”

Wow, I really liked the concept of learning anywhere. I was aware of the spiritual thing that knowledge is omnipresent , but was not sure whether it’s possible to grasp it in real life while living with too much of distractions. which provides access to all the different learning materials available.

This ubiquitous M-learning is convenient as it is accessible from virtually anywhere offering access to all the different learning materials available.

I got to know about following interesting information:

“It is also collaborative; sharing is almost instantaneous among everyone using the same content, which leads to the reception of instant feedback and tips. M-Learning also brings strong portability by replacing books and notes with small RAMs, filled with tailored learning contents. In addition, this kind of learning is engaging and fun. Therefore, it is simple to utilize mobile learning for a more effective and entertaining experience.”

I also read about the challenges, which I would like to present in following manner:

Hmm, now I will explore more and write something interesting about this.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Calligraphy - a magic

I was so amazed when I just got to know about calligraphy. Calligraphy means beautiful writing.
This art has survived and flourished many years.

Modern calligraphy ranges from functional hand lettered inscriptions and designs to fine art pieces where the abstract expression of the handwritten mark may or may not supersede the legibility of the letters.

Use of colorful pencils, cut nibs and sketch pens makes it possible to write beautifully.
Any calligraphic letter is built up stroke by stroke. Direction of strokes plays a very important role in this matter.

Seeing such art really enhances our sense of aesthetics and make us feel enriched. I saw some calligraphy art forms where a Devnagari script is used and they were extremely enchanting. They really literally created a magic and left me speechless. This form of communication I have never experienced before.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Enter the nutty world of Hagemaru

I was so frustrated that day, so went and sat in front of television.
I started surfing channels just to let off the burden. I always watch cartoons to let go the so called tension. My friends find watching cartoons very childish but I find it very entertaining, even more than TV serials.
So I was surfing channels and stopped to see a cute character with big eyes, broad eyebrows, smallest nose, and especially with countable three hairs.
Bewildering! Isn’t it? But if you take a look at the following picture, you will get to know how it is.

This character is called Hagemaru. It is a Japanese name and the character also resides in Japan.
When I started watching the stories of Hagemaru, I found them extremely crazy, funny and humorous.
Hagemaru is such a character who is although scrooge and nutty loved by all his friends and neighbors due his innocence and helpfulness. He has friends like Kondo and Mezzurita.
Hagemaru always cracks extremely funny jokes which are senseless yet based on plausible situations.

With his unstoppable creative and witty nature he can do the things out of this world.
He is and his family is famous among people and has a tag Scrooge.
He is witty, funny, scrooge, crazy, mad, cute and the list goes on.......

There’s one instance for this, once he sees his friends surfing near the sea shore, he also tempts to do that. Since he is very poor, could not afford a surfing pad. In the next scene, we see him surfing with a pad on the surface of sea.
His rich friend asks him from where he brought the surfing pad; he points out to the door and shows how he took out the door of that office and transformed it to use as a surfing pad.

Hagemaru’s eccentric family makes you laugh till your stomach aches. His mother, father and pet dog Pesu are unique characters with one common characteristic- stinginess.

In spite of all his so called weird qualities you tend to like Hagemau, due to his cute innocence.
What makes you always curious is his style of using extraordinary tricks to get the things done.
You never know what he and his extremely stingy family will do the next moment.

I must mention the voiceover artists who have made this character lively and close to Indian viewers. The voice-over used for Hagemaru is extremely peculiar, on other hand that of his friend Kondo is amusing. The influence of Gujrati dialect related to story and used to present the whole animation series adds to the fun.

Ok, I spoke a lot about this cute cartoon character. To enjoy this amusement you have to watch it.
For me, it was a refreshing experience; it taught me that we should take things very lightly. We should not be always serious and stressed.
It also gave me another aspect to look at things…………….hmm…….bizarre? isn’t it? yes …but not more than Hagemaru.

Friday, October 16, 2009

My first Voting

I was tremendously excited that day. Do you know why? It was a voting day.

Since my childhood, I had been wishing to vote. Later by hearing the pessimistic views I was depressed since I was considering voting as the only ray of hope that can bring a revolution in our country and will someday lead to prosperity and progress, which a common Indian man always wishes.

I am also not very happy with the progress of our country, but always wanted to contribute significantly for my motherland. But as any teenager could not find a right way to do something creative and progressive. So I regarded voting as the only way to get the expected development done in society.

I thought profoundly and finally decided to vote.

I started asking my friends, colleagues, and neighbours, that Are they willing to vote? 99% response was NO.

I was again depressed to see their gloomy faces. When holiday was declared on the voting day, somebody was planning to enjoy the holiday, somebody was planning to go out of town, somebody took a long leave adjacent to voting holiday, somebody…………………
There were lots of interesting plans, except voting.

In middle class and higher middle class, this kind of depressing behavior is observed most. Since the basic needs are fulfilled and there is a cut throat competition in education and jobs, we are busy running in the rat race to achieve our goals. We are busy running behind the desire to become more prosperous.

But do we think of bringing our nation ahead? Bringing prosperity to our nation? But do we say that Let’s get rich and show the world our power and bring significance to our glorious History, culture and heritage?

I know all this may seem a dream and there are chances that some [people find it overdramatic also, since patriotism has become a big melodrama in our country due to lack of honesty and devotion.

I admit that there are miserable things and situation regarding political India since years, still I have some positive hopes for my country, I still want to contribute significantly in the development of my nation.

That day I woke up early in the morning. I got ready and went to confirm my number and place for election, as we have already found out the place. I went with my license as an identification proof.

I was so excited and was making my mind to stand in a long long row, but …. There was a very tiny row of 3 /4 old men and women. I became dejected again, but voted. The time recommended for voting was from 7.00 a.m. to 5 p.m. So I thought people will come in the afternoon may be….

In the afternoon, I heard some people are shouting near the residential areas….I saw from the window and realized that they were some volunteers trying to appeal voters to go and vote. I felt very bad to see them plead. I was also shocked with people’s reluctance.

The next day, everybody was teasing me when I said them that I went for voting. In their view, I was childish….hoping something good for my country…..

Let it be..I am childish then…. least I have that urge to contribute for my nation….and I will cherish it, I know you also want our country to be a well developed nation, with content people, only the thing is you are waiting for an initiative….like me…like any common citizen…

Saturday, October 3, 2009

A study of Lexical Relations

The branch of semantics that deals with the word meaning is called lexical semantics. It is the study of systematic, meaning related structures of words. Lexical field or semantic field is the organization of related words and expressions in to a system, which shows their relationship with one another. e.g. .set 1 angry, sad, happy, depressed, afraid.
This set of word is a lexical field all its words refer to emotional states.

Lexical semantics examines relationships among word meanings. It is the study of how the lexicon is organized and how the lexical meanings of lexical items are interrelated, and it’s principle goal is to build a model for the structure of the lexicon by categorizing the types of relationships between words.

There are different types of lexical relations-
Antonymy and


Hyponymy is a relationship between two words in which the meaning of one of the words includes the meaning of the other word.
The lexical relation corresponding to the inclusion of one class in another is hyponymy.

A hyponym is a subordinate, specific term whose referent is included in the referent of super ordinate term.
e.g. Blue, green are kinds of color they are specific colors and color is the general term for them. Therefore color is called the super ordinate term and blue, red, green, yellow, etc. are called hyponyms.
A super ordinate can have many hyponyms.

Hyponymy is the relationship between each lower term and the higher term(super ordinate).It is sense relation. Hyponymy is defined in terms of the inclusion of the sense of one item in the sense of another. e.g. The sense of animal is included in the sense of lion.
Hyponymy is not restricted to objects, abstract concepts, or nouns. It can be identified in many other areas of the lexicon. e.g. the verb cook has many hyponyms.

In a lexical field, hyponymy may exist at more than one level. A word may have both a hyponym and a super ordinate term.

We thus have Sparrow, hawk, crow , fowl as hyponyms of bird and bird in turn is a hyponym of living beings .So there is a hierarchy of terms related to each other through hyponymic relations. Two or more terms which share the same super ordinate terms are co-hyponyms.
Hyponymy involves the logical relationship of entailment. e.g. ‘There is a horse’ entails that ‘There is an animal’ Hyponymy often functions in discourse as a means of lexical cohesion by establishing referential equivalence to avoid repetition.


Homonymy is ambiguous words whose different senses are far apart from each other and not obviously related to each other in any way. Words like tale and tail are homonyms. There is no conceptual connection between its two meanings.
The word ‘homonym’ has been derived from Greek term Homoios which means identical and onoma means means name.Homonyms are the words that have same phonetoc form (homophones) or orthographic form(homographs) but different unrelated meanings.
e.g. Thev word bear as a verb means to carry and as a noun it means a large animal.
An example of homonym, which is both homophone and homograph, is fluke. Fluke is a fish as well as a flatworm. Other examples-bank, an anchor,etc.


Homophony is the case where two words are pronounced identically but they have different written forms. They sound alike but are written differently and often have different meanings. e.g. no, know and led, lead and would, wood.etc.


Homograph is a word which is spelled the same as another word and might be pronounced the same or differently but which has a different meanings. E.g.bear,to bear. when homonyms are spelled the same they are homographs but not all homonyms are homographs.


When a word has several very closely related senses or meanings .Polysemous word is a word having two or more meanings.
e.g.foot in :He hurt his foot
She stood at the foot of the stairs.
A well-known problem in semantics is how to decide whether we are dealing with a single polysemous word or with two or more homonyms.
F.R.Palmer concluded saying that finally multiplicity of meaning is a very general characteristic of language.
Polysemy is used in semantics and lexical analysis to describe the word with multiple meanings.Crystal and Dick Hebdige (1979) also defined polysemy.

Lexical ambiguity depends upon homonymy and polysemy.


Synonymy is used to mean sameness of meaning. Synonym is a word, which has the same or nearly the same meaning as another word. There are several ways in which they differ
1.Some set of synonyms belong to different dialects of language, e.g. Fall - used in united states, Autumn-used in some western countries.
2.There is a similar situation but are more problematic one with words that are used in different styles or registers.
3.Some words may be said to differ only in their emotive or evaluative meanings.
4.Words are collocationally restricted they occur only in conjunction with other words.
5.Synonyms are often said to differ only in their connotation.
Examples-hid, conceal,
It is very hard to list absolute synonyms: words, which are identical both in denotation and connotation.


The word antonymy derives from the greek root anti(opposite) and denotes opposition in meaning.
Antonymy or oppositeness of meaning has long been recognized as one of the most important semantic relations .e.g. quick-slow, big-small, long-short, rich-poor, etc.
Antonyms are divided in to several types-1.gradable antonyms/pairs, 2.nongradable antonyms/complementaries, and 3.reversives 4.converse pairs
1.gradable antonyms/pairs-They can be used in comparative constructions like bigger than or smaller than, etc. Also the negative of one member of the gradable pair does not necessarily imply the opposite. e.g.not hot does not mean cold.
2.nongradable antonyms/complementaries- The relation of oppositeness is that which holds between the pairs as single:married, man:woman,etc.
The denial of one implies the assertion of the other and the assertion of one implies the denial of the other. It is the characteristic of complimentaries.
3. reversives-It is important to avoid most antonym pairs as one word meaning the negative of another.e.g.tie-untie.
4.converse pairs –Another kind of antonymy is forming converse pairs. e.g. Converseness is used to refer to the relationship between buy and sell.


A metonym substitutes for the object that is meant the name of an attribute or concept associated with the object. The use of ‘crown’ for ‘king’ is an e.g. of metonymy. This term has been derived from Greek word meta means after and onoma means substitution for name.
e.g. gray hair can be used for old age.
The distinction between metonymy and metaphor is made in linguistics. For instance, the phrase ‘to fish pearls’ metonymy is used and in the phrase ‘fishing for information’ metaphor is used. In cognitive linguistics, the word metonymy stands for the use of one basic characteristic to identify a more complex entity. Metonymy according to American Linguist Bloomfield is nearness in pace and time.
More precisely it focuses on specific aspects of objects having direct physical association to what is being referred to.

References (Bibliography):

1.Lexical Semantics-D.A.Cruse (Cambridge university press)
2.Semantics – a course book-James R..Hurford, Brendan Heasley (Cambridge university press)
3.Semantics –a new outline-F.R. Palmer-(Cambridge university press)
4.Introduction to Theoretical Linguistics-John Lyons- (Cambridge university press)
5.LANGUAGE Its structure and use- Edward Finegan -(Harcourt Brace Publishers)
6.Longman dictionary of applied linguistics-Jack Richards,John Platt,Heidi Weber-(Longman)

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Reviving Trek To Tikona

We all know the hand of second. How fast does it run? We all run with it.
We are ruthlessly bounded to our jobs and we have to do it by hook or crook. Though our mind needs rest and it reminds you many a times, we reluctantly ignore it and run to achieve our targets, finally our short term and long term goals.

But do we think that there is life beyond all this? There are lots of things which make our life vivacious.

Going for shopping and following all western standards to enjoy the weekends is I think not the correct way to relieve stress. By doing such things today’s youth is straying from the path of ethics and finally ending up with not contributing anything meaningful to society and to themselves also.

I think the best way to forget stress and rejuvenate life is Trekking. It can not only make your life exuberant as you go close to nature. It adds vitality and pride to your life as you remember the incredible lives of Marathas which are filled with miraculous adventures of Shivaji Maharaj (the incredible emperor of Maharashtra) and their divine aspirations of making the motherland independent and prosperous by gaining victory over evils.

I am going to share my experience of trekking with you all.
One day we planned a one day trek to tikona fort, which is near to pune city.

Tikona is a hill fort in Maval in western India, located near Kamshet around 60 km from Pune. The 3,500 feet high hill is pyramidal in shape and the name Tikona means "triangle".

Our team leader was Tanmay who is a proficient trekker and has all the knowledge regarding trekking. It is really important that you are guided by an experienced person while trekking.

He took a small meeting of all the amateur trekkers and provided all the necessary information like Items to carry: Water bottle, Caps, Sports shoes (recommended), Dry food (Preferably more biscuits and less oily stuff) for breakfast, Optimum one or two pairs of clothes, Cutting knife, Lunch, Safety matches, First Aid kit.

He also made us aware of all the DO AND DON’TS. Do’s include instructions like -Keep the surroundings clean, Collect and dispose them once back to the city, Trek together and ensure the safety of your fellow friends in the group. DON’TS include the instructions like, Avoid noise pollution (music systems, screaming, etc) as this may disturb the silent surrounding, Do not throw garbage around, Do not smoke and consume alcohol.

Finally keeping all the instructions in mind we started the journey. As we crossed the city area after chandani chowk, we started coming across the village life. We crossed the ghats leaving behind amazing sites of water reservoirs and finally reached tikona peth , the village near the fort . As Tikona is located in the region of Pauna Mawal and hidden just behind the twin-forts, Tanmay showed us the forts adjacent to it, like Tunga.

As we started climbing the hill, we could see clouds crossing the hilly area of Tikona, which was the ultimate view. We started climbing the difficult route and heard chirping of some birds which can be considered as extinct. As we crossed the first hill, the view was extremely delighting and the cool breeze was like a cherry on the cake.

The way was extremely beautiful; appearing like a green carpet sizzled with tiny, colorful flowers. The hill in front of our eyes was lush green and full of tiny waterfalls. Violate, Red, Purple, Yellow and White colored flowers were ensuring nature’s unbelievable art. Nobody could control the numerous clicks of camera.

Here we took a small halt to eat though we were totally fed by the amazing views. We started the trek again to explore the pages of glorious history.

As of now the route started becoming difficult to climb. It forced us to admire the energy and courage of Marathas who conquered numerous forts which were extremely impossible to climb.

We climbed the hilly area and enter the jungle. Here the instructions of the trek leader were really mattered a lot, as there were huge rocks and slippery steps to go up. We came across a huge green wall where we thought that we lost the route and there is no way to go up. The only word we could utter was “Khul Ja sim sim”. But trek leader guided us the correct way to go up and we were shocked.

The huge creations of nature were literally making us humbling. The colleagues were extremely helpful to each other, which was a good example of team work.

Nobody was tired, but keen to reach to the end, which was in front of our eyes. Suddenly it started raining and we all became mesmerized with the beauty of nature. The temperature was extremely soothing and cool. We could feel the purity of air and redefine the fresh air.

Finally we reached to the end and saw the divine creations of nature. We were among the clouds. We started singing jingoistic Marathi songs. It was hard to see down as we were on 3,500 feet high. Still we experienced the thrill.

I was astonished and happy to see that other trekking groups were also following the rules. The environment was very clean and beautiful. It was hard to find Plastic bottles and dishes there which we generally see on forts and historical places.

We ate our lunch in the caves enjoying the dripping water. We also went to the two ancient temples on the fort. This obviously made us spiritual and tranquil.

Unknowingly we were connected to nature and not willing to come back. By keeping the heart-throb view of Tikona in mind we headed towards the way of return. This route of returning was easier as there were no huge rocks and hills. We finally returned to the base where we parked the vehicles, and planned to visit Pauna dam. We crossed the ghat and explored the beauty of this water reservoir and took the way to Pune.

This astounding experience was plainly reviving and cheerful.
So when are you going for a trek?

All photographs by: Tanmay Mehendale.
For amazing snaps of this trek, visit:

Monday, September 28, 2009

Interesting characters in Short Stories

I like to read short stories a lot.
Let me tell you some interesting facts about short stories.
Short story is a popular literary genre, a fictional narrative prose and it is more concise than fiction. Short stories are less complex than novel. Generally a short story focuses on one incident, has a single plot, single setting, limited number of characters and covers short period.

Elements of short stories are Plot, Narrative viewpoint, Characterization, Language and style.
Within these elements, I find Characterization very interesting. Characterization plays a very important role in short story.
Characterization refers to the author’s manner of presenting his individuals. If the characterization is direct the reader is told at the traits that identify the characters either by the narrator or by the character, if indirect the reader learns about the character through his actions.

Recently I read various short stories of Khushwant Singh, which has a flavour of Indian culture. Let me tell you about the interesting characters in these stories in brief.

In the short story, "Karma", Khushwant singh has elaborately sketched the character of Sir Mohanlal and Lachmi,his wife. The character of Sir Mohanlal is revealed through his thoughts and feelings. When he thinks about his personality and image, he appears snobbish and proud. He calls himself as distinguished, efficient and handsome. He regards Indians as inefficient, dirty and indifferent. This discloses his hypocrisy. Further the author gives the physical description and behavior of the character. He has acquired the manners and attitudes of the upper class, he imitates Englishmen and likes to talk on books politicks and people. He considers his wife as dirty and smelling like any other countryman in India He thinks that being Indian is shameful. This reveals his frivolous nature. He can be called as flat character as he does not change throughout the story.
The character of Lachmi is contrasted with him. It is more authentic. She represents a common Indian. This character is revealed through description. Author describes her as she is more than forty five,fat,fair and short. She wares a dirty white sari with a red border. One side of her nose gistened a diamond ring and she had several gold bangles on her arms. After this physical description author describes her behavior, that she is talkative. She chews betel leaves, eats chapattis with mango pickle. She reflects typical Indian ness trough her dialogues and behavior, hence she is a type or stereotypical character. The minor characters are the coolie,Bill and Jim and the bearer. By this way the characterization is done and it helps the story to proceed further and enables the reader to draw a conclusion. In Mark of Vishnu, The protagonist is Gungaram. The minor Characters are children of Gunga Ram’s master, The teacher,Kala nag and school children.Here the minor characters are not focused at all. The story revolves around GingaRam and his nature. Author portrays him as illiterate and superstitious figure. The description reveals that he is very religious and interested in rituals. He gives a sassure full milk to the cobra without knowing the science that snakes do not drink milk. His blind belief over the religois stories does not let him think rationally. He represents a stcok character.He stands for the group of peipoe in India whio believe in supersticioud nad it is really impossible to convince the tha t it is wrong .Gunga Ram proves to be a tragic figure as thae story comes to its emnd,Where cobra bites him,and he dies. Author successfully leaves a melancholic note through his character His character conveys that how blind belief leads to destruction.

In the story "Voice of God", The antagonist Sardar Ganda Singh is focused more to satirize the Indian political system.The characters are revealed here through description.Author porttraies the character of Ganda Singh by describing his behavior and his personality.ilke, He is tall and corpulent,his eyes were darkened with antimony and his trimmed glossy black beard gave him the lecherous look.he wore a white shirt which hung just above his knees and a pair of baggy Punjabi trousers whose blue silk cord was displayed under the hem of the shirt.On his feet he wore a pair of black pumps which squeaked as he walked.This elaborate description enables the reader to understand that how this character is .He was always accompanied by two armed men. This shows that how he is powerful and rich. He represents the rude leaders of Indian political system who always win the election with the help of money, power and all wrong ways. He is a type character. The other major characters in the story are Kartar Singh and Baba Ram Singh. These characters are also revealed through description. Kartar Singh is a city lawyer who takes help of Seth Sukhtankar who is millionaire owning a chain of cloth mills and well-known nationalist leader. Author discloses the dishonest and corrupt nature of these characters by telling the ways by which they made their fortune. Author uses them to show the corruption in politicts. Author introduces Baba ram Singh as a very honest and genuinely patriotic person who is not corrupt and willing to work for farmers who are suffering a lot. He had been arrested several times for peasant movements. He was homeless. People respect him a lot for his sacrifice and honesty. He is popularly known as Babaji. His character stands for the hones and patriotic persons who still exist in politics. He is a total contrast with other major characters. He is a static character as he is firm and does not undergo significant change. The minor characters are Forsythe,Zalidars,lambardars and villagers who contribute to the effect of the story.

In the story, "Man how the government of India run", the major characters are Sunder Singh, Ghosh Babu,Sambamurty they are type character as they represent a type and minor characters are Clerk, Chaparasi,manager of the restaurant. Here the characters are revealed through the dialogues and actions between the characters. The central character is of Sundar Singh. Author describes his behaviour in detail and discloses his lazy and hypocrite nature. His character enables the author to satirize the officials in Government office i.e. Indian beaurocracy.Sundar singh and his colleagues reveal their own follies when they praise and boast themselves. They represent the people who are corrupt irresponsible, hypocrite, lazy and still think that Government of India run due to them. They arise the humour and irony. Author successfully discloses this truth through their conversation and description of their behavior where we come across the art of characterization.

In the story "Kusum",author portrays a character of a young girl called Kusum.This character is revealed through description, that she was a short, fat and has dark oval face spotted with small pox marks. Author narrates about her nature that she is good-natured, traditional, unattractive but clever in studies. Old people like her but not the young. The Her character changes at the end of the story, so it can be called as dynamic character as there occurs a change in behavior and views. The minor characters are hawker her college friends who contributes to the change in central character.

In "Death comes to Daulat Ram", characters are revealed through description and thoughts and feelings of the central character. There is not much scope given to the characters but they add to the effect of the story.Ranga is the protagonist who can be called as Stock character, which represents any common man who believes in intuitions and loves his family. One major character in the story is the beggar, which adds to the mystery, suspense and supernatural elements in the story. Silver locks, bushy eyebrows, wrapped turban, his melancholy stare, etc. are the words which describe him .The minor characters in the story are nurse, Ranga’s brother, barman, moti, Daulatram and his relatives. These characters only contribute to the story. They don’t have much significance.

In the story "Grandmother",the major character is grandmother. Author has unfolded various aspects of her personality. Remain static till the end of the story. The story ends on a tragic note. Her character is different shades like dynamic character but her character is revealed by her behaviour and shows that she is type character. She does not change her way of thinking and remain firm on her nature. She is loving and caring. She is religious. Author describes her as old women and with wrinkles. Though she is static in her principles and religious she is courageous, generous, and loving also.

The "Insurance Agent" is the ironical comic story, which unfold the mysterious person and his uncommon behaviour. This character is Mr.Swami whose name is introduced much later in the story is revealed through his behaviour and dialogues. The protagonist is insurance agent, People’s thoughts and reactions also his image in their minds. His character conveys that he is a happy, light hearted, philosophical, sympathetic, sensitive and humorous person who greets and praises others, pretends to be rich, and remains mysterious through out the story. He can be called as round character as he is complex.

These are the glimpses of various stories, but it’s really interesting to analyze different characters and their nature.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Horns still blow

Sometimes some instances teach us a lot. They make us think differently. They dramatically show us how our perspective was wrong and how need to keep our eyes open and see the world without any bias or prejudice. They contribute to become more kind. This is one of the incidences in my life; I’d like to share with you all.

Horns still blow

We all know how these beggars irritate us, mainly at signals! I hate beggars as they do not work and beg money. Sometimes they force and scare you. Sometimes people give them money but sometimes they really trouble people a lot.

One day I was going home on my two wheeler. I came across the red signal and stopped. I saw some poor children with torn cloths begging at the left side of the road. I felt very sad about them and their future but thought it is not right to donate them money directly, we should help them by giving them a good opportunity to go school.

One of the poor girls from these children looked at me and started running towards me holding a dirty cloth in her hand. I was confused to see her and felt irritated. I started thinking how to avoid her. By the time she caught me, before she could ask me anything I shouted at her, “I will never give you money, you should feel ashamed of yourself, while begging. You know you should go to school.” As soon as I said this, horns started blowing and I realized that in the fit of anger I didn’t notice the green signal.

I started my vehicle and stopped when the next signal came. One little girl was coming towards me, I was able to see her through my side mirror. She was running fast and calling somebody. When she came closer, I turned back. I was shocked, she was the same girl. My anger crossed limits , I was just going to scold her. How disgusting she followed me till the next signal! Just to irritate me and beg money?
I controlled my anger and ignored her totally. She still came in front of me and showed me something.
“Your Mobile” she said.
I was bewildered, it looked like my mobile, still I couldn’t believe her and started searching mine. I used to hang my mobile to the string which I wore around my neck, as many other girls. I checked it was not there and embarrassingly looked at her. I took my mobile from her and said “Thank You”.
“ I sell Alepak (name of a sweet made from ginger) at the roadside and go to noght school.” She said..
I kept looking at her I failed to understand what was happening. Before I could tell her anything that poor girl vanished. She ran away and again horns started blowing……, but this time in my mind too!

That poor girl proved, how my point of view was wrong. How the perspective was biased.
These little incidences teach us a lot and enrich us to become a generous, good human being. Whenever I see these poor children, horns still blow in my ears, to encourage me to make their life better and do something for them.

Demurring Common man

We keep on thinking on various issues continuously. Sometimes we get upset by whatever happening in our country. I was also thinking of India, its unending problems. I got depressed and felt that somewhere the common man is responsible for all theses and his reluctant nature is the only reason behind it.
Just want to express it through this poem:

Demurring common man

I am strolling near a chilled lake
And frozen grass
With my chilled mind and
frozen thoughts
Nothing can break the ice, nor a prayer or a smile nice.

Neither a riot, nor a massacre,
Neither an earthquake, nor a storm
Neither a war nor a blast
Nothing can break the ice, nor a prayer or a smile nice.

Neither a speech nor a poem
Neither a lesson nor an advice
Neither a fraud nor an injustice

Nothing can break the ice, nor a prayer or a smile nice.

I am a common man
Nothing can touch my waterproof heart
Neither a God nor an evil
I’m strolling with chilled mind and
Frozen thoughts
Till my blood clots.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Effects of food marketing on children

Effects of food marketing on children

The power of media is increasing day by day. It is not only changing our lives but influencing it rapidly. No body has imagined this some decades back. Media has become an inevitable part of human life .Marketing is one of its aspects. It is now in its peak period. It has occupied an important place in media. It has penetrated the human life to affect it for the benefit of somebody. The four important elements of marketing are product, price, place and promotion. Advertising is the eminent tool in any marketing process. It plays an important role to attract children towards food products. Children are the most important part of society and target audience for the food products. A lot of competition has aroused in the market is leading to unethical food marketing to children.
The following points should be considered while dealing with this subject.

  • What is unethical food marketing?
  • How does it affect the children?
  • How to prevent chidren from the influence of it?
  • What parents can do?
  • How do we help children to eat healthy?

Marketing ethics is the area of applied ethics which deals with the moral principles behind the operation and regulation of marketing. Some areas of marketing ethics which includes ethics of advertising and promotion overlap with media ethics .Applied ethics is, , "the philosophical examination, from a moral standpoint, of particular issues in private and public life that are matters of moral judgment"( in the words of Brenda Almond, co- founder of the Society for Applied Philosophy)
In short, Unethical food marketing is the marketing which do not follow ethics. It is not concerned with the consumer’s health. It only thinks of industrial benefits.
Advertising affects children through various appeals like, emotional, rational and moral Due to their favorite celebrity icons children tend to follow them as depicted in the advertisements. Children are forced to desire the food products that are not nutritious. They end up consuming food that affects their health causing diseases and problems like obesity and malnutrition. They compromise with their health while following their so call idols or heroes. Now lots of television shows are also marketing food products. Lots of children’s programs are also now doing marketing of food products like, soft drinks, other beverages and fast food items.
We can prevent this penetration of food marketing by educating children. Government can also help parents by making strict laws and reinforcing them.
Lots of NGOs and organizations working for the welfare of the children have done research and shown results that give the overview of children’s health problems caused by unhealthy food. World health Organization is also actively working for this matter to save children.
Children are future pillars of the nation .Their health matters a lot. Parents should spend their own time for them and communicate the importance of healthy and home cooked food.
Government can take the help of celebrities and use them in advertising aiming at convincing the importance of healthy and home cooked food to children. All state Governments can contribute this promotion of healthy food under the campaign ‘Eat Healthy’. Many creative thoughts can be applied to make this advertising campaign a success. Media can be used as a prominent tool to convince children the importance of healthy food. Parents should take initiative and complaint against the unethical food marketing. Mothers can be taught to make healthy and delicious food, through various government and private institutes. It is very important to; create an awareness regarding this subject like “Pulse Polio Abhiyan” It can work very well to make parents and children aware. Children’s shows like cartoon films also can be used as a tool to spread the idea of eating healthy food. An imaginary character of Superhero can be created to influence children and convince them to eat healthy.
There many research projects, seminars, talk shows, other programs has been organized at different places, countries, television channels, etc to state and discuss the effects of Unethical food marketing to children. They have given an overview considering the short term and long term effects.
According to me, its time to think solution oriented. I have suggested some solutions. They can be summarized as:

  • Teaching Health science as a subject at school level
  • Teaching housewives healthy and delicious food, through various government and private institutes
  • Using media as a tool to create awareness
  • Taking help of celebrities to convince children to eat healthy
  • Convincing the bad effects of food products in market which cause health problems trough an advertising campaign with the help of government.
  • Presenting children healthy food products by government and private companies

Decreasing the influence of unethical advertisements by the above solutions can be made possible by active support and participation of parents and schools. The implementation of solutions suggested by parents and various organizations is important regarding this subject.

Anuja Khaire