Tuesday, September 13, 2005

better than Bollywood

...if you can believe such a thing. Wandered downstairs to finish K3G and, as the tv flickered on, set to PBS, was delighted to see that tonight's "Wide Angle" was on the "offshoring" phone center industry in India. I only saw half, but the segments I saw, looking at the lives of four young women who work in this industry, were more moving to me, and the smiles they brought to my face more resonant - and I suspect the whole thing will stick with me longer - than any movie yet. Don't get me wrong - I genuinely love the movies. But it felt good to be reminded of reality, of how even a few real young people live - and they squabbled with their spouses, they giggled with their roommates, they supported their families, they danced around the office to filmi music (in a huge coincidence, I think it was a song from K3G, right?), I saw them! They discussed how their lives were different from their parents'. They set up savings accounts for younger sisters. They commuted four hours a day. They laughed with colleagues in the office cafeteria. A young Hindi woman said of her Muslim ex-boyfriend that her mother was the only parent she had left, so why do something against her wishes? Another young woman said her father had cried when she was born - because she was a girl. Her mother said she wanted her to continue her educaiton but had nothing to give her daughter to make it possible. Now that her father has seen where she works, that her colleagues act like brothers and sisters, he was proud of her, of the confidence she'd gained. Drama, family, risk, love, life, all right there together. It even had dancing - just not a choreographer.

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