Sunday, November 27, 2005
It's an elite club that gives you membership only after you complete three years of rigorous penance, but serves you alcohol at possibly the cheapest rates in Bombay. Welcome to the Press Club of Bombay.
As the motorcycle zoomed through the entrance, the first things I noticed were the huge cut-outs of campaigning political figures at the gate, and that reminded me of the same at the Chennai Press Club gates. The Chennai Press Club of course was this rather raggedly looking motley collection of houses/ hutments on prime property near the cricket stadium, and while the building of its Bombay counterpart is certainly nothing to crow about, it still exudes an auro of... awe, perhaps? Or perhaps, that's what you get when you're a fledgling journo and you're entering those portals where so many weighty subjects have been writted, debated and even plagiarised... or perhaps it was the awe of having a glass of port wine Number Seven at the ridiculously amazing price of Rs 30.
On one entire wall, Goan artist Mario Miranda, he also of the Cafe Mondegar fame, has drawn cartoons showcasing that awfully cliched profession of mine. There's a fat neta going blahblahblah surrounded by flashbulbs and warring hacks and snarling dogs. There's the TV anchor inventing stories with the 'Once upon a time...' tagline. And on the other end of the room, there's the flatscreen TV showing India losing to South Africa, while a host of grizzled journos sip their bourbons and lament the batting line-up.
Journos and flat-screen TV, you wonder? O, please do grow up!
So there was this moderately big group from the office, sitting around and talking about office politics and carnal drives, as men from the office tend to do, and playing pool at the sidelines, while dropping back to the table for some more gossip and chilli chicken wings (at Rs 25). Cheap liquor has a tendency to get you to drink more than you are wont to, so the entire gang soon starts giggling at silly jokes, and proclaiming loudly: "I'm haaaaaaaaappy!". Mingled with that hint of awe and shock among us newbies (and non-members of these hallowed and cheap portals) when we see some distinguished Member of the Press (another often used and cliched term) come over and shake hands with the Old Warhorse with whom we had come to the club. And of course, the fierce pride that surged at these moments: we have our own warhorse!
Yes, a good time. Thank you Mr Miranda and the Excise Board.
I HATED the Delhi press club.. reminded me of wedding receptions when I was little where at least one old uncle with blood-shot eyes was taken home slouching on other people's shoulders.
Hahahaha...That was well said! Good to be on your blog. I still remember your piece 'a song' on caferati and nominated as one of the best pieces on that blog! Now I'd return here more often. :-)
hi... i love mario's drawing on mondy's... isn't it so lovely? i can't imagine a drawing like that for delhi.. i mean how do you draw assholes and make em look nice? ;)
Let the good times begin eh?
*Sigh* Subsidised liquor.. some people have all the luck in the world! Watch out on your consumption now ;)
Hmmm..the scoop being? ;-)
cowlick - hehe
dan - well, thanks, and ure welcome to drop by anytime. ;-)
bgfs - delhi has more than just assholes, da-ling! an assholes are very tricky to draw, anyhow. lol
jedi - aw, shucks.
geet - i spy with my lil eye...
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