Saturday, July 01, 2006

Baby pictures and other wonders.

Quick now. What’s the ideal tv fare to go with a lunch of boiled rice with shrimp curry (preferably green made with coconut milk) and crisp fried bombil (Bombay Duck)? In my book, it’s a segment from one of those movies with precocious kids, at times babies, as the chief protagonists pitted against totally inept, bumbling villains, usually burglars with a huge grudge against the youngsters. I especially relish the portions where the villains get their comeuppance quite violently from the unlikely traps unwittingly laid by the kids as I crunch at the tasty morsels of the crisply fried succulent bombil. But I draw a line when it comes to the first pictures of the Brad Pitt and Anjelina Jolie co-production pre-sold to People magazine for a reported preposterous $4.1 million My doubts are about what’s so special about the baby that People magazine should be willing to pay such a gargantuan sum for the US publication rights. It seems Hello!, the European gossip magazine, paid a further $3 million for rights outside of the U.S. The entire sum is earmarked for UNICEF and other assorted charities. So, the intentions are obviously noble and humanitarian. My problem with the pricing is obviously a matter of my perception, I’m ready to admit. I love babies. Here’s what I wrote (on the dedication page of my as yet unpublished novel, The Last Gandhi Movie) about Avantika whom I saw as a just-born babe: “For Avantika who has been eyeing her world with unabashed curiosity ever since she arrived here.” What prompted me to write these words was the vivid memory of the first look she gave me. “Who could this bloke be?” she seemed to be asking herself, as her alert gaze followed my waving hand. I know it was only my mind playing the game but I tell you her first look was something else. Maybe, People and Hello! magazines expect something out of the world in the first picture of the Namibia-born baby girl, Shiloh Nouvel Jolie-Pitt. Yes, that must be it.,26334,1184497,00.html.

No comments: