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The waves

As the Wind Blows

Location: Chennai, Tamilnadu, India

19 June 2005

Ever since The Hindu changed its looks, I have been hearing all sorts of comments. Most of them in the negative. For some strange reasons many readers couldn't accept the transformation - some cosmetic and some in spirits /contents.

But I appreciate the changes. I feel there is some kind of fresh blood pumped in :-) while I take the cosmetic changes of fonts and layout in my stride - people have to do something to stay on, right?- I am happy with the changes brought in the contents. There seems to be a concerted effort to high light more positive stories - there seems to be a conviction that media, the fourth pillar of democracy need not always project the negative, disaster and political tussles as News and there seems to be a realization that there is news beyond these.

Particularly, I feel the newspaper has begun an effort to bring the focus on tomorrows citizens - today's younger generation. There is a clear editorial attempt to run stories relating to the concerns / about/ for/ of / the younger generation. Many of them are in positive strains and some are with concerns - Posing key posers on various issues that pertain to the welfare of the Gen Next.

The Sunday magazine, I feel, has happily shed its avant grade` approach - fromthe earlier format where many of the stories were written by the avant grade` and read by the ditto segment. The man on the street seldom could relate to either the topics or the style.

But that, I feel, has changed. I see the content of the magazine is different and more down to earth - touching problems/concerns/aspirations/lifestyle/ of the common man - allowing more input from a variety of readers/writers who discuss more things that concerns you and me - the common people. And there is certainly variety - including good humor and experiences - shared by readers. Earlier, except for Slices of Life by Gangadhar there was nothing in lighter vein.

Musings is one column which has made a happy come back. If my memory is right, I think the paper ran this column long ago. A few days backs there was a short story by a first time author - In the former Avatar of the supplement, giving space to new- unknown authors was sacrilege :-)

And today's Musings has a " Yes - I think-so-too-It -is-time-we-did-something-about-it" kind of piece. Like many parents, I endorse with the author that there is life beyond marks. And what she says is perfectly true of today's parents. The youngsters never had it so good - I mean with parents being so liberal and almost letting it go completely - to the fault !! As this student finds it in this piece !

And that makes me think. Really, how far should parents interfere/ advice/lead/ guide/motivate/ - I can think of all kinds of words. But where do you draw the line?
I think the species called parents will always be in the wrong side of the fence :-) Now this student will be more ambitious with his children - because he thinks his parents didn't persuade him enough!! And his children will feel the heat and start wishing that his parents were more liberal like his grand parents !!

Jokes apart, I am happy that the author was able to salvage the situation and the boy pulled himself up once again cheerfully. Personally I feel that the boy has a misconceived notion that his parents were less ambitious and allowed him to be mediocre. On the contrary, perhaps sooner or later, he will discover his real potentials and pick up the threads where his real interests lie. And that is because his parents didn't spoon feed him. They allowed him to be himself.

And that is key to real growth.