A Journalist Turned Standup Comedian – Guess Which Is Funnier?
Well, where do I start? No part of my life is not worth mentioning. I have had a very close encounter with diversity throughout my life. Be it in my family, my education, or my work life. almost feels like I left no topic unattended. Being a journalist made me report and study multiple disasters, while being a standup comedian, made me talk about those disasters.
Little Preeti Growing Up :
I have been very close to nature growing up. The barefoot running in the sand to playing hopscotch and coming home with bruises. My school was a wild ride of mischief and learning. A bunch of girls stitching their skirt up while visiting a coed school to get suspended in college for playing in an ongoing class. College life was some of the best learning years of my life. It not only provided me with a safe space to put forward my opinions but also placed me where my opinions were mattered.
Apart from being suspended, I was also cherished as a student. A brilliant student who was always up for learning and executing them in the right place. After finishing college, I got baffled. My parents recommended that I take a drop. An opportunity for me to fathom myself.
During Those Break Years :
Parents in today’s time believe a drop year as a wasted year. My parents thought completely opposite and it turned out in my favor. They wanted me to take a break to get more exposure and do more fieldwork. I soon got a job where hearing people’s stories and deciding whether to pass their insurance claim. Meanwhile, my dad’s friend called in asking if there was someone available to cover the 2004, Gujarat earthquake. Someone who could speak the local language and the national.
He recommended me and there, I got into journalism. At that bit, I comprehended the potential of the media. On feet for 20 days, covering up the victim’s story. Midway I had a realization of how fascinated I was by it. Went ahead to take up a master’s degree in mass communication.
Books Vs Experience :-
The Aaj tak company came to our campus for job roles for their Chennai department. I got selected because I could speak Tamil and Hindi fluently. At the age of 23, I had procured a job which included me coming on national television. Over the moon, I called everybody to celebrate the news. Who knew it would be the most self-wrecking stage of my life.
They never covered up my piece to the camera because I am a dark-skinned person. That I should wear makeup more so I could look presentable in front of the camera. This right there broke all my courage and confidence. Never could’ve anticipated what journalism was actually holding. The job is to excavate the truth from the country and present where the truth inside it was darker.
I Quit and Led My Life Better :-
I couldn’t do it, it wasn’t me to take that sort of racism. My parent’s upbringing didn’t teach me that. Back home, now I was working on my blogs. Meanwhile searching for jobs, I got placed in Chennai, yet again. This time I acquired the post of communication head. My job made me travel a lot. The fieldwork, covering disasters. Changing several jobs gave me a lot of wisdom and experience. After all, I shifted back to my comfort place, Ahmedabad.
During helping in the first film festival, I met the love of my life and we got married. I have to say, I am blessed with the kind of men in my life. From sharing the bed to sharing the bills, we keep no gender roles between us.
My Journey with Stand Up Comedy :-
Audiencing a few comedy shows myself, I couldn’t help but wonder how all the jokes and punchlines revolved around genders. Starting as a bet with my friend, I hosted my first comedy show in Baroda. I later went ahead on being one of the participants to being a co-founder of a club, MAHILA MANCH. A standup platform is a space for me to vent out and share my opinions. Me and my co-founder Shefali, have hosted many super hit shows from nighty unties to women bootleggers of Gujarat.
I believe humor is like a rubber sword, you make a point without shedding blood. For me, having and speaking about my opinions is more important. While researching more, I found out that people just don’t want to listen to sexist jokes. They are inclined towards knowing and hearing the truth.
What Makes Me, Me :-
Living in a country where people have started to take standup comedians more seriously than journalists. I am a combination of both which makes my voice and opinions stronger. Talking about things will only make you stronger because you get to know that you’re not alone.
People in this generation are so much stronger and brilliant. They grow through tough times every day, and still, stand up.
The only piece of advice I would like to pass, step out in the real world. You are not bound to anyone’s validation. The most important person should be you. Your digital may be happy, but your real one should also be.