Aug 7, 2010

Bhavnagar ka Kung Fu Panda

Pidilite industries have a Science Center at Bhavnagar. I went there officially to introduce Robotics at their Center. It was a Sunday but the day was spent in a completely formal way, unlike any of my other Sundays. I was preparing to leave when they introduced me to the local cable channel guy who wanted to shoot our product and ask some questions. The formal day took a sudden u-turn.

He took 5 stair steps to come and greet me. Fighting for breath after this physical assault, he said "Vinay bhai let's go to the Studio. It is at the 3rd floor." "You go and make yourself comfortable. I will take sometime reaching up," said the 5' 5", Fat, Chatterbox Kung Fu Panda.

I went up. Camera and Cameraman were in place. I waited for 10 minutes. Panda came and exhaled volumes of air. The AC sensed the temperature difference, beeped and turned on the compressor. He was seeing spots and needed time to settle down. I waited for 5 more minutes. He stood up, closed the door and switched off the fans. Fine, he's canceling the external sound before shooting, I thought.

After this point, whatever happened made my feelings hover in a 3-D space. The parameters being Fear, Frustration and Fun.

(1,0,0): He started unbuttoning his shirt. The cameraman started smiling at me. That can't be fine, this place is perfectly set for any kind of shoot, I thought. I feared for the 4th possible F parameter. The cameraman sensed the 1 I assigned to Fear and pointed towards a polythene bag. It was a bright blood red shirt. Oh! The Interview Shirt, he's just changing, I thought. This was my turn to make the AC beep. People exhale after mental assaults too.

(0,1,0): In that red shirt, he looked like the imaginary son of Bappi Lahiri and Jayalalitha. With that get-up, he gave me some facing-the-camera and vocab tips. The tips vividly reminded me of Tusshar Kapoor and Inzamam-ul-haq respectively. So now, after the Whistling Woods training, the interview started. He asked me to keep a robot in hand and shot the first question: "Is this a new kind of laptop computer?" Stumped, I decided not to answer his questions and somehow convey about the company and its work.

(0,0,1): So the interview went like a 5th standard kid blurting the table of 2 when asked the value of square root of 2. One has got to say what one wants to say! In this case it didn't even matter as his only reply to my any answer was "arey Vinay bhai, kya baat boli hai." He stopped the camera thrice during the interview as I kept hiding my smile by scratching my nose. Each time, he gave me more tips. I then vividly remembered the likes of Kamaal Khan, Dabboo Malik, Rajiv Shukla and Arun Lal.

Then I got my chance. Panda made a weird face. I couldn't figure if he was trying to sneeze or yawn or cough. Half of his face was normal and the other half looked like that of a desperate bull looking out for party cows. I grabbed the opportunity with both hands and stopped the camera. Got a kick, trust me. I wanted to do that to the Panda too.

The Panda, however, stole the show with this: "arey Vinay bhai kya baat kar rahe ho .. mera camera facing side thode kharaab tha .. main peeche wale side se hi cheenk leta"

I laughed majestic-fanatic-gigantic-ally!