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January 26, 2008

Posted by K in contemporary, Diary, Gender, Recent reads-and my comments, Reviews/Rants.
Tags: , , , , ,

Hindustan Times has a new obnoxious writer: Vinod Nair(Damn, and I thought all Mallus were nice). I don’t know what his column profile officially is, but it ends up being a space where he unleashes his misogyny. The first column I read of his was about Indian women and their inner wear , and the second one I read, today, was about inner wear again, and though he tried (or did he…?) to make it about both genders, he managed to produce schpiel about how women like displaying bra straps and underwear bands, but get offended if men stare. Now the problematics of him not seeing a problem with lecherous men apart, I wonder why he writes such shit. Does he get paid by the scale of nastiness? It’s HT City, hence quite possible (though I admit I quite like Under Honey’s Hat: the fictionalized gossip column).

Maybe the issues raised by him are pertinent, if not to me, then somebody else; but why does he deal with his subject matter with such female body related venom? Why does he objectify women with his very male gaze, and more importantly, why is he allowed to??

In other matters, I attended a placement presentation by a company called Star Magna. Now I don’t know what the company actually is like, but the representative who presented the company sure didn’t create a very good image of it. And considering that this company deals with brand management it seems a trifle amusing that they couldn’t build their own brand in front of wee college students.

The problem was not so much with the nature of their work-brand management. I might not be a fan of the luxury segment but that doesn’t mean I go about, fangs bared, looking to bite all such companies. I had a problem with what she said. They were looking for PR (Press Relations) agents who would talk to the media regarding whatever company they were handling. She went on to qualify ‘media’: we, ofcourse, don’t call the likes of Punjab Kesari and Jain TV, she said. My head went !!! immediately. One of the first things she said was that at the end of the day, what the clients want is money. And managing brands ought to be about maximising profits. So I asked her if she thought readers of Punjab Kesari and watchers ofย  Jain TV either were all poor and/or did not desire brand-y things. She seemed too think not. Her answer made it evident that either she wasn’t doing a good job presenting the company, or that the company was disgustingly wannabe and wannabe-elitist.

A part of the presentation spoke about how the company also deals with model management and promotion of artisans and craftsmen of India. So when Question Time came, I asked her how the elitism was reconciled to this NGO work, how one company could on one hand, only want to deal with the likes of E-News and not the ‘masses’ that presumably patronised the likes of said Punjab Kesari and Jain TV, and at the same time look to give visibilty to the artists who come from such ‘masses’. She, ofcourse, felt the question was irrelevant, that the NGO was just something the owner did as a hobby (why put it on the COMPANY profile, then? And even so, the incongruity/hypocrisy stands)ย  and that I was asking it just for the sake of arguing, and that she didn’t get my question anyway. I was much amused by now, and conveyed to her that I, however, had got the answer.

The woman was rude when others asked less-controversial questions, and had come to recruit without an idea about the package she would be offering. She snapped at people, was ill-informed ( “We would prefer post-graduate students here”… “How many first and second years are here”…”Doesn’t your college offer post-graduate studies?”), and didn’t know she had earlier conveyed to the Placement Cell that the recruitment process would include a GD followed by an interview.

And then she has the gall to say “I mean, aren’t you guys, like, a little, like, whatever” Rude, I think she wanted to say.

I mean,like, yeah I want a, like, a jawb, but please don’t insult my intelligence, and don’t think you can bully me just because I’m a wee student. Sheesh.



1. pallavi - January 26, 2008

important post…i really like it ๐Ÿ™‚ just a few observations
i think you’re still way too polite to them, they’re not wanabe elitist … THEY ARE ELITIST. The question i guess is not whether watchers of jain TV are all poor or dont deserve branded products but that how can one living in this country exercise such active dislike of the masses. also considering they were SO elite , the kind of money the offered (10 grand) wasnt in sync either. i mean if youre being ruthless then go all the way, create a group of elite people so that you might be able to erase from sight the masses that so disgust you, but for that you need to give out salaries like other corporations–
thoroughly disgusted by them , glad you did the post , very well written as always , couldnt spot any typos;)

2. sporadicblogger - January 26, 2008

Pallavi-hahaha, I am sure ‘innumerable typos’ lie here somewhere ๐Ÿ™‚

Yeah, I know what you mean about being elitist, I have a problem with them at that basic level obviously, but I was thinking EVEN if I overlook that fact, and consider that they are looking to build brand image in India, I would have thought they would have looked to pass on their mentality to the moneyed classes. Get Prada/Sabyasachi etc etc visible and desirable etc etc

But obviously, on top of their ‘monetary elitism’ they also display regional/language-anal(pun intended) chauvinism. So they are disgusting on several levels, besides being stupid.

3. pallavi - January 26, 2008

hehe yeah absolutely. and we students arent just wee students , very powerful if we want, almost made a corporate rich snooty representative cry, deserves some credit ๐Ÿ˜‰

4. sporadicblogger - January 26, 2008

Hahahaha indeed ๐Ÿ˜‰

5. ish - January 26, 2008

We don’t get HT City in here, what we get is called HT Style. Does the person in the gossip column have an imaginary character called “Madhu my mottu maid” or something like that? If yeah, then it’s probably the same thing with different names. The Underwear guy(sorry, that’s the best name I could come up with ๐Ÿ˜› ) sounds weird to me. But yeah, maybe they do give him more money for writing cheesy stuff.

6. sporadicblogger - January 27, 2008

Ish- Yeah, that’s the one ๐Ÿ˜€ I find it quite artistic ๐Ÿ˜€

7. Vasudha - January 27, 2008

Vinod Nair is the obnoxious guy with the lame, wannabe funny, oh-look-at-me-I’m-a-P3person-so-I-therefore-write-well column, isn’t he? ๐Ÿ˜›

8. sporadicblogger - January 27, 2008

Vasudha- Yeah, I guess ๐Ÿ˜€

9. ish - January 28, 2008

Ah yes, I like reading that column too. Whoever she is, she does manage to make gossip even more exciting than it usually is with her writing style.

10. jonathan - October 16, 2008

you are right vinod nair is a complete jackass

11. sporadicblogger - October 20, 2008


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