Although I’ll never forget the Nirma advertisement with the little girl in the white dress, I quite liked this new one. I love the way they’ve got little details of people standing by and recording on their phones instead of helping. So true! The advertisement is particularly nice considering the only role a woman plays in most advertisements even now is of a concerned wife worried about cooking oil and oats.
This ad reminds me of an incident some 2-3 weeks ago. We were all dressed up and headed out for a party one very hot evening when we came across a stalled car at a busy intersection. The poor driver was all alone, struggling to push it out of the way and holding up traffic. The OA drove past so as to not hold up traffic and parked the car with me and the kids in the shade of a tree. Then he jumped out and rushed off to help the driver, glaring at me with a – ’Not with the way your knees are.’
Whenever we’ve had the misfortune of our car stalling, there have always been people willing to help push it and I was quite surprised that the poor man had received no offers of help (was it because he was a drivr and not a sahib?). The driver on the other hand was shocked when the immaculately dressed, freshly shaved OA appeared out of nowhere and began to push the car with him. I got out of the car and began to direct traffic away from the car being pushed to avoid a jam. Right next to our car, under the same tree stood a lady fanning herself indifferently and watching us.
They finally pushed through the traffic and came and stopped it behind us. I took out a bottle of water for the OA and he stood there for a moment drinking water and checking with the driver if he’d managed to call the service helpline to be towed. The man assured him that he would do it, that he needed no more help. And all this while the lady stood next to us, saying nothing. As we got in to the car to leave, the driver turned to the woman and said, ‘Ma’am, aap taxi leke aage nikal jaeeye, main yahan intezaar karta hoon.’
I was so… taken aback. Maybe she didn’t want to push the car in the heat and had left the poor guy struggling for whatever reason (maybe her knees were bad too!). But she stood there and saw us help her driver and didn’t have the decency to even say Thank You!
Also, speaking of advertisements, I took the Bean for a trim yesterday and while we waited our turn I caught some really shady serial – Some young girl whose husband wants her to study and her mother in law wants her to make tea. She stands there, head bowed, blinking like a gold fish, turning helplessly from one to another with no say over her own time or life. The www has seen enough rants about soaps projecting women in such a regressive manners so I will not wax eloquent upon it, but I am shocked anew each time I catch one myself. No wonder we still hear about dowry deaths and female foeticide. My driver is on two days leave for his court hearing – his brother in law strangled his sister to death because they couldn’t give more dowry than a car. Welcome to Haryana. Thankfully before the show made me burst a blood vessel, an ad break came up and this Stayfree ad came on – rather ironic. Women being active during their period is all very well, really, we get the picture, but must they zoom up her butt?!