What comes to your mind when you hear the word ‘Colours’?
Is it a splash of orange or shades of grey? A dash of turquoise amidst the silver clouds? Or a streak of fiery red streaming from the orange sun… May be the transparent green of divine waters in a Kerala lake... Or the colour blue of a serene pond, borrowed from the morning sky...
Well, I won't be amazed at all if you answer in an apathetic ‘none of these’.
And if you are not one of those glued maniacally to the TV channel called ‘Colors’ (thanks to the disgustingly high boredom quotient generated by Mrs. 'Bowely' Bindra in Big Boss) or if you aren’t much enthusiastic about Holi, then the word ‘colour’ may create an altogether different picture in your thoughts. As a journalist who has to deal with a sea of breaking news pouring in at every moment, what will the colour of that sea look like?
Of course, electric... borrowed from the lightnings in the world's ether... For it is at t
he speed of electricity, that news takes birth.
Similarly, the colour pink, which to a poet would seem so eternally romantic and love soaked… ‘Pink cheeks of a cherub or a beautiful damsel’ is an old cliché now… But it’s time to invent new ones.
Now, guess what ‘pink’ means to people these days…
Let me tell you, the colour pink no more refers to the blushing of cheeks from where they have travelled few inches upwards to occupy the forehead, in the form of four parallel lines… i.e. wrinkles.
Yes, because pink now reminds us of onions that went on to become priceless, changing the name of dishes from ‘chicken do pyaza’ to ‘chicken ek pyaza’! And if unfortunately, it’s your turn to host a huge feast, then again a quintal of onions for the event would require you to burn a 'pink' hole in your already anorexic wallet. Pink, because a 1,000 rupee note is thankfully pink. I swear those who decide the colours of currencies are great psychologists or colour therapists. Why? Because the colour pink, as they say, attracts your attention. You tend to like it, hold it close to your heart. So a thousand rupee note is pink, so that you love it and ensure that you hardly let it go… promoting frugality.
Let’s move on to some grey areas now.
Thanks to our honourable Home Minister P Chidambaram who mentioned it and courtesy the likes of Swami Aseemanand & Sadhvi Pragya who substantiated it; the colour saffron has a new 'terrific' meaning. Generally, the colour saffron is an emblem of spirituality, purity and passion. You can imagine the extent to which Sadhvi Pragya was sadistically passionate, when she ordered an ice-cream while watching on TV the horrific news of Samjhauta Express blast (I read about it in an esteemed Indian newspaper). I don’t know if the ice cream too was a saffron one, but it must have been cold enough to freeze and fossilize any remaining iota of humanity into stark bestiality.
Well done Saffron! You are competing brilliantly with the colour green so as to embezzle, what meaning the latter used to signify. A 'terrific' one again!
Well after a surfeit of fire and terror, let’s now feed on some peace. Peace is symbolized by blue.
The light blue serene sky,
Be it country side or urban.
Someone's light blue eyes,
Someone's sky blue turban…
Well I would love to pause here at the turban.
I shall like to stop and stare,
Question as well as care!
You should know who I am talking about when the turban is a royal one, drying in the laundries of 7 RCR! Thanks to our prudently apologetic PM (who has the guts to stun the ever-belligerent opposition by accepting mistakes) who has managed to retain the meaning of blue as peace.
Presiding over a bunch of people, many of whom are stained with different shades of black, Mr Manmohan Singh with a blue turban has reasons to ‘feel blue’ but thankfully our graceful PM manages to remain an ‘odd man in’ and keeps on splashing dashes of brilliant economics and sober simplicity to eclipse the dark patches of UPA governance.
So, in today's world where it is not just people who change colours but colours too have started changing what they mean; money has also got a fresh colour. And it’s not steely silver as in one rupee coins, or golden as that of new five rupee coins. It’s neither the soothing green of a five-rupee note and nor the energetic orange of a 20 buck note.
Sadly, the most popular and paradoxically mobilized yet sedentary hue that has been taken on by money is ‘black’.
Courtesy, Hasan Ali and his likes! Ali, who is allegedly supposed to have garnered an eight billion dollar stash in Swiss banks, before painting it black, did not for a moment pause and think that he was also painting his future pitch black.
Hail Jesus Christ! I pray to Almighty to immediately send a Santa Clause here on earth, so that he would utter hallelujah, wave his gloved fingers through his sterling white beard, and instantly reverse all the blackness into an immaculate white.
Not just black but all the afore-mentioned colours with maligned meanings would merge to form a hallowed white.
And as Newton had depicted, a prism disperses the colour white back into its constituent colours. Let’s all pledge to instil in our eyes, a prism of sublime purity, which would scatter the white into colours again but with more elegant and divine epitomes.
A royal violet spreading warmth and affection, an orange oozing with positive energy and enthusiasm...
Let all these vibrant hues embellish your lives!
Let us all breathe in the golden fragrance of the colours' fraternity, and wish to be in pink of our health; avoid turning red, or yielding to the green-eyed monster. Let’s feed on enough of green veggies and blue peace to strengthen our ‘grey matter’… And lead a golden life. Celebrate colours… And this festive season, let Holi celebrate you!
(The views expressed by the author are personal)