Yesterday we had the cultural day in the seminary. It was good. Though as per 'tradition' this was supposed to be a day to showcase talents, in any and every form, I altered it to make it a little more meaningful. When I heard what the impression and learning experience was of the Brothers from this event in the past, I realised, it was purely for entertainment... one full day for real foolery and making mockery of oneself, in order to make others laugh, I was absolutely not for it. Hence I slowly 'tailored' the planning to bring in some sense and sensibility, especially for oneself. Narrowing the criteria of performance to showcase the rich cultural heritage of Andhra Pradesh, I managed to restrict the number of entries and what surprised me further was what happened once the programme began. To my great surprise and edification, the first few who appeared on stage for song, speech and other competitions, were well prepared. Seeing this a few who intended only to make a fool of themselves, silently withdrew their names at the announcer's desk. They must have realised, that not all were foolish like them to get on stage without any preparation. I very well know that in order to gain the approval of some or make the group laugh some would stoop low to any extent. To add a sense of decency, another great help was the presence of the parents and relatives of one of the Brothers. I think their presence with us for the whole programme was very formative. None would demean themselves in front of parents, and especially women folk - this I learnt yesterday morning.
Gives me ideas... perhaps the next time there is a programme of this sort, it would be good to invite someone from outside. Those keen on some foolery and mockery - even of oneself - can have their way during recreation or family circles.
Furthermore, the organising group, Speed n' speed too did a simple but decent job. I was quite surprised to see that they pulled off this event without much confusion and tension.