Trivial Pursuits

One fine morning I opened up the Bombay Times and realised that someone was having waaaay too much fun on the job.

It's the guy who writes a little window called 'Fact of the Matter'. Maybe you've seen this section in BT - it appears alongside the funnies and the daily horroscope. Every day it carries one totally pointless piece of information that makes you blink and say "What?". (Your immediate next thought is often "Why?") True, some people find these little pieces of trivia endearing, nay, interesting even. But really, do you want to waste news-space just for the seven of them?

Consider this fine example of craftsmanship:

An ant, when inebriated, almost always tends to fall on its left side.

Look at the fine construction, how carefully the sheer ridiculousness of this little factoid has been disguised. And then, observe the master-stroke: almost. A drunk ant will always fall on its left side - NO! Almost always. I believe my brother was dazed for a full ten minutes after he read that. (Yes, to be frank, it doesn't take a lot to stun my brother. I think he was born in a kind of semi-zapped state of consciousness, so even a tiny stimulus can keel him over into Level 10 of Totally Spaced Out Airheadedness. But still.)

And there is similar madness every day, mind you. I wondered what he did - run a Google on "Absolutely useless drivel"? Randomly typed and saw what turned up? What? What?

But before the answer presented itself, up popped a dangerous thought: if the guy who just finds these annoying little facts is getting paid for it, what about the guys who actually discovered them? The guy, for instance, who patiently fed alcohol to every individual member of a medium-sized ant-hill and recorded their falls for posterity and Bombay Times to document?

And to think I thought advertising was fun.


Anonymous said…
wah wah, compliments again ms veda (plugged music and lit a cig to re read this one)

you are making me a big fan of your brother , maybe he deserves exclusive posts,and some royalty.

... finally getting close to the revelations
Veda said…
I'll let my brother know he has a fan. Royalty he's not getting any - I might concede to an exclusive post and maybe not kicking his butt so much.

As for your mysterious last line - I see you're back in your element, Anonymous.
Akshay said…
I painted a caterpillar once and put it in a matchbox to see what would happen.
Veda said…
Was that before or after you discovered that polar bears are left-handed? :)
Akshay said…
That would be a great Fact of the Matter. Bill Clinton is also left-handed, btw.
Veda said…
IT WAS! And so's Amitabh Bachchan.
Matt said…
Thats one drunk ant, V !! Good one !!
Anonymous said…
since there were no new posts i thought I'd entertain my self

do left handers when looking at the mirror get confused about which side is which ,

or while watching cricket on a mirror reflection of television can they make out which arm and which side of the bowler is bowling (it takes on further level of chaos if your lying on the bed and looking back over your shoulder on the mirror...)

somebody please call Amit jee clinton jee or that dammed ant to find out
Veda said…
Or you could just ask me.

Left handers don't get confused about sides while looking in the mirror.

Am not a cricket fan, but you can ask Akshay if you like.
Akshay said…
Anonymous, what does watching/looking at anything have to do with being left-HANDED?
Anonymous said…
rhetorical musings, darth youngun
kedar said…
imagine what'll happen if the person gets to know that his is the stuff of blog posts.
Aditi said…
Lol, Think about the guy who writes lyrics for david dhawan movies.. i wud pay to have tht job :P

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