Sunday, September 14, 2008

Only in America

I am only 23 and I have already bought my Dream Machine. And what might this Dream Machine be, you ask? Well, it's just a digital radio-clock made by Sony. I figured that I needed one to enhance my American experience. I remember countless Hollywood movies when the grumpy lead stirs out of his/her sleep to slap off the buzzing alarm on the top of the glowing digital time display. Also goes to show that in this country, they actually trust the power companies to supply electricity 24/7 which is why they let their clocks run on electricity from a power socket. This is a country of uninhibited self promotion. Even a poor old alarm clock has to project itself as a "Dream Machine" to ever hope of finding its way off the shelf and into the hands of the discerning consumer!

I was out with my cousin to a tourist destination called Castle Rock north of Boston last Sunday. It's a grand old rock on the coast of the Atlantic and surrounded by some of the prettiest houses I've ever seen (though for me all it takes for a house to be pretty is for it to have an open view of the sea). All I expected to see was a spectacular view of the Atlantic and it's rocky coastline. But fate it seems had better things in store for us. A tantalising photo-shoot was in progress at the rocks that enclosed the Castle Rock. A stunning blonde model in a bikini was posing amongst those rocks with the ocean as the backdrop for a fashion photographer, probably getting her modeling portfolio shot. As she struck a heady mix of innocent and provocative poses, my cousin and me, like all hot-blooded young males on the hunt would be, were transfixed! And when the first phase of the first photo-shoot ended, and she headed for a drink to refresh herself, I noticed a couple of kids maybe 8 or 9 playing by the shore only about 12-15 feet away from her. Then I realized that this was not some secret exotic location but some kind of a week-end family hangout too! There were numerous families who had come to this same place for some quiet get-together time as the kids thrilled at the sight of the ocean did their stuff while their parents earned some kind of a break from entertaining them.

And the model with all her posturing could take nothing away from the glee with which the kids jumped up when the occasional big wave crashed into the rocks and doused them with spray. It's as if they were still insulated in their own cocoon of innocence, unaware of all that surrounded them. A young kid fished alongside with his father on the rocks behind the model and they did not even turn around. There were fathers who seemed to be content at being with their families not even gazing in the direction of the photo-shoot and there were also men who were pushing their families ahead of them so that they could just grab an undisturbed sneak peek. For all the hue and cry over censorship and issues of supposed moral degeneration that we grapple with back home, it was fairly evident that for all men, it should come from within and just cannot be forced from without. Free a person to do whatever he wants to and in most cases, the desired scheme of things will be the end result.

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