JournalismPakistan.com Aug 10, 2013
We all have a latent talent that would spring up and flourish if it wasn’t crushed in infancy victim to conspiracies of pure green.
Mine is singing. At an early age I knew I was born to sing. Just that no one else thought so. You know how it is, they wreck your confidence, family, friends, especially brothers and sisters, always telling you to stop making those terrible sounds.
Those were not sounds, they were aspiration to higher notes.
Then you grow up a bit and you try to fight this army of opposition because for sure you know that you have it in you, you can feel it and then your parents sort of tell you why don’t you try something else, like pottery or painting and mine never invited me to sing for sundry visitors even though I was a ready volunteer. What they did to is commiserate with the music tutor who left our home weeping uncontrollably because he had never met anyone like me, muttering, not one note, not a note, how can he not get one note?
It is a testimony to the arrogance of youth that in school (Sherwood, Naini Tal) I was asked to sing ‘Little drops of water, little grains of sand, make this mighty ocean and this mighty land.’ After I had finished and it was still raining, our piano teacher Mrs. Vance being decidedly on the slow side, I was asked to go stand left of stage. I thought I had made the cut. It was much later that I realized envy for sheer talent had risen its ugly head again and I had been bypassed.
Such is the hostility that true genius faces.
Then I got married and my wife joined the throng asking to please, please, do anything but don’t sing, which I thought was rather sad because I was sure she would at least stand by me...see, stand by me...I am a natural.
My daughters were born and they gave me the support of a soaked noodle usually expressed rather forcefully as, Daaaaaaaaad, please will you stop or more explicitly, Mum will you stop him now, I am studying.
I am hoping my grandchildren will right this rampant sort of injustice as they grow a little older.
The talent is still there, crushed like a violet in a book but still waiting for the power and glory to strike its first real note.
(The writer is a Senior Editorial Advisor of Khaleej Times and the paper’s former Editor. He has also been the Editor of Gulf News, Gulf Today, Emirates Today and Bahrain Tribune)
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