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If Shah Rukh Khan was your professor, he’d ask you to close your books and invite you to have a conversation. He would smile slightly at your wide-eyed, flustered faces and try to make you comfortable. “Let’s just talk, okay, it’s simple,” he’d say. He’d sense your discomfort. “Well, how about I tell you a story?” he’d say. That would send you quickly securing a nice, cozy place so that you can listen to him without any further disturbance. “Please, don’t stare at me, this story isn’t that interesting but it’s beautiful,” he’d say. He’d be as nervous as you but will try to hide it, only to fail eventually.
“It’s a simple story. Nothing much complicated. Sometimes, we tend to forget small things that bring great joys. Like, this coffee mug from your college canteen. In the little time that we have spent together, we have become great companions. I have whispered a thousand truths about myself to it while taking each sip. She listens to me patiently. And I seek her company quite often. I meet her at random moments. There’s no fixed pattern of our relationship but……,” he’d be hesitated by the pin-drop silence hovering over the classroom.
A curious whoosh of breeze would ruffle his hair, making him look two decades younger. A little twinkle would touch his eyes as he would try to break the awkward silence. He’d finally say, “Well, I think that should be enough for the day. Let’s take it slow.” He is about to leave the room when he would suddenly whip around and say, “I forgot to tell you something, young ladies. I am here to teach you English literature. But I am open to discussing any idea, theory, philosophy……I like reading science fiction and my favorite book is Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy written by…..any guesses here…yes…Douglas Adams. I recently visited Prague and read some Franz Kafka. Interesting fellow. In fact, life is all about indulging in a series of fine pleasures. Don’t you think so? …Please, stop me if you find me meandering …I can go on and on….But before I go, any questions you might have for me?”
You would have your question ready, but you will be too scared to ask it. One of you who would dare to ask him, “Sir, are you married?” To everyone’s surprise, he’d be frank with you and will say, “Yes, am.” The same person would ask him further, “how did you meet your wife.” He’d not be surprised with this rather personal question and will say, “I met her at a party. Her name is Gauri. Gauri Khan. But that’s a long story. I fear, we don’t have time to discuss it. However, you can text me or call me if you want to have a nice conversation. I would like to say that am available 24*7 hours, but unfortunately, my body needs proper 6-7 hours of sleep. But do let me know……”
If Shah Rukh Khan was your professor, he would give some nice advice on your graduation day. As you will be ready to face your early twenties, confused by your career choices and trying to make some sense of the world, he’d assure with these words,”It’s okay to be confused. Confusion is the route to all the clarity in the world. But, I will only say this: Don’t become a philosopher before you become rich. If you want to be a writer, first be a good copywriter, earn something. Whatever you do in life, do it like it’s your first and last time, and you’ll never get another chance.”
If Shah Rukh Khan was your professor, he’d stay in touch with you. He’d share his contact details and ask you to tell him if you face any problem or just want to ring him and say hello. Years later, when you would be busy with your soul-crushing job, you will miss him and his words. For there wouldn’t any relief of the same enlightening and philosophical conversation. You’d have shared your fair share of failure and success. On those days, you would call him or text him. He’d not disappoint you and will return your call.
He’d say, “It’s not necessary that the world will accept your creativity but don’t give up on it. There might come a point when you’ll feel lonely. That is when your creativity will be your best friend. If you live in your fear, everything that could go wrong will go wrong. Don’t ever treat your little insanity as aberrations. Acknowledge and use them to define your own way of living…….”
You’ll feel better and thank him, but he’d brush it off.
Some quotes are imaginative. Others are by Shah Rukh Khan.