Starry strategies

Starry strategies


What is that one thing you would like to do before you die? I was asked this question at a workshop on human behaviour I had attended last year. The participants had different things in their bucket list: to scale Mount Everest, take a family vacation to Alps, experience the rush of adrenaline while bungee jumping; one 60-year-old gentleman wanted to meet the girl he wanted to marry way back in college. For me, none of these things fell into the category of that one thing I would like to do before I kick the bucket.

After much deliberation and brain storming over endless cups of tea with my husband, I zeroed in on my secret wish list — to be famous, to be a page 3 social butterfly. I would love to see my photograph in hired designer clothes splashed all over the papers, paparazzi chasing me everywhere, even when I go to the corner grocery shop to fetch a kilo of onions.

But now, the question remained — how does one become famous? These are the times of instant gratification, like instant food and instant cures. Surely, there must be a short cut for instant celebrityhood. Modelling and films, which give you guaranteed fame, would have been possible if I were born a decade or two later. No point crying over history. 

“Cooking,” suggested my gourmet better. “Look at Sanjiv Kapoor, he is a celebrity chef,” he added, while helping himself to some chocolate soufflé that my neighbour had sent over. “You can write recipe books and go for TV shows. You may be invited to talk about how you converted your humble hobby into a money churning enterprise.” The belly rules the mind. I had already started day dreaming. 

If cookery is to be my road to stardom, then I would like to be a specialist. As they say, the proof of the pudding is in eating. I decided to give myself a litmus test by baking a pizza for my children.

I spread pizza sauce on the pizza base, topped it with vegetables, mushroom, shredded chicken, sprinkled spices and lots and lots of mozzarella cheese and kept the pizza in the microwave oven for baking. As the cheese melted away on top of the pizza, I felt that celebrityhood was only a whistle away. The pizza looked appealing, but looks are deceptive. My signature pizza was bland, the veggies were uncooked, the cheese was everywhere in the microwave, and not on the pizza, and to top it all, even our dog refused to eat it.

But the flattened pizza was unable to flatten my spirits. There should be something for me. Never judge a book by its cover — I remembered my own words. I should try penning a book! Taking a cue from the title of a flop Hindi movie, I declared, “Mein bhi Chetan Bhagat banna chahti hoon.”

“Writing is simple, the skill lies in choosing a gripping plot,” suggested a friend who is a voracious reader. If the storyline is catchy, your book will sell like hot cakes. I could already imagine myself signing autographs. Perhaps, my book will be adapted into a motion picture. 

I began to search for ideas during my numerous verbal feuds with my husband: it may work for the character of a nasty husband. Only the feuds have increased. No idea has caught my fancy. Now, I am looking at a different off-beat track to stardom. I hope to strike gold one day. Until then, I remain contented as a mother of two.