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By Nisma Elias

I'm sure pretty much all of you are familiar with the above slogan. Radio has taken Bangladesh by storm, with Radio Foorti being one of the most prominent radio channels of the pack. Thousands of Bangladeshis tune into Radio Foorti every single day and its popularity as a radio station that caters to everyone's tastes is growing. As can be imagined, the radio jockeys or RJs, of Radio Foorti are just as popular, if not much more. So many listeners tune into 88.0 FM to listen to the magnetic voices of their favourite RJs. I caught up with RJ Nusrat, Sadia and Simin and chatted with them on their break. Unfortunately RJ Sakib was doing a show right them and could not be interviewed.

RS: Just as an introduction could you please tell us the times of your individual shows?

Nusrat: My show starts from 11 am and ends at 3 pm.
Sadia: My one is from 7pm to 11 pm
Simin: My show is the earliest bird; it's from 7.30 am to 11 am

RS: Thousands of people tune in to listen to you guys every single day; it has made you guys instant celebrities. How does that feel?

N: It feels great actually. People recognize me more now and I feel like my own value has risen (laughing)
S: Yea, I get a lot more recognition now. It is a bit weird though when I'm introduced to people as 'RJ Sadia' than just plain Sadia. However my friends don't seem to like it very much because now I'm hardly able to give them time like before

RS: Is being an RJ very time-consuming? How would someone who's doing it as a part-time job be able to cope?

N: It's not as time-consuming as you think because we all have our different time slots for our shows. We have to come a little in advance however, and work on our scripts. But now that I've graduated and Simin and I work full time here, we don't have to worry about time management so much.
S: It's slightly different for me as I'm still a student at Brac University. However as Nusrat said, we all have our different time slots so at the most I have to devote 4 hours each day to be on the Radio.

RS: I'm sure many of your listeners are fascinated by the radio just as you are. What exactly does it take to be a Radio Jockey?

S: Well, you have to spontaneous and obviously talkative. All of us working at RF are naturally very garrulous. You also have to be prepared to talk for long hours and not get tired.
Simin: We have to be responsible as well because many hang on to our every word so we have to be careful what we are saying. It's always about being very upbeat. You can never let your listeners know that you are feeling down or angry, you have to be able to remain cheery and engaging.

N: Exactly and that's a very hard thing to do sometimes, day in and day out but that's part of the job. However the audience can be very shrewd because I remember once I was feeling a bit blue and my most ardent listeners caught that and later asked me what was wrong. It's wonderful to know people care so much.

Simin: It's very important to make the listener your friend.

RS: So there's no age bar to be an RJ?
S: Not really. You need to be talented in this profession. If we see that a youngster would do very well, we'd take him/her and the same goes for an older person.

RS: As your timings are different, do you get specific audiences tuning into your shows?
N: Oh yes. As my show is from 11 am to 3 pm, I usually get those people who are going home from school or college and are stuck in traffic jams with nothing to do. It's my job to entertain them and make sure that the ride home is not boring.

S: My show is in the evening, so I usually get those who are addafying or just chilling and relaxing with their friends outside or at home.
Simin: And I get students and folks who are going off to school or work and are listening to RF to get a pleasant start to the day.

RS: Since RJing is such an interactive experience, there must be a lot to learn from the whole gig. How has becoming an RJ changed your life for you apart from the fame?

S: I personally found out that there are a lot, and I mean a lot of talented musicians right here in Bangladesh. Before I joined RF, I was more interested in listening to bands like Pink Floyd and the rest but now I realize that Bangladesh is brimming with musical talent and our music is awesome.

N: I was not that into music before I became a RJ. Sure, I would listen to music to pass away the time but it didn't interest me as such. Now I think music counts for a lot in our lives. Also it's not just about the music, you have to have a bit of specialized knowledge so that you can engage the audience and discuss serious matters.

S: Yes doing your homework is very important and researching on certain topics is a must so that you can have a meaningful discussion with the audience. As we all have to be very creative and come up with topics that will interest our listeners, it's good to be knowledgeable.

RS: Is RJing a very fulfilling experience for you?
N: Oh yes, we love our jobs. The best part is that there is absolutely no jealousy between us RJs for more sms or for a larger audience which I imagine might happen elsewhere.
S: I was always fascinated by the radio and I am able to do everything I love by being an RJ.

Simin: The response we get from the listeners is absolutely phenomenal too. We receive like 2000 to 3000 smses on a regular basis and it is so hard to choose which ones to read out.

RS: And lastly what kind of music do you girls like to listen in the sanctity of your own homes?

N: To say the truth I don't like to listen to music at home because I have to listen to it so much at work (laughs). Ornob is one of my favourite musicians.

S: Same here. And a favourite song would be impossible to choose because we're in love with so many. I pretty much listen to all genres like metal, punk rock, alternative rock, psychotic etc.
Simin: I have an affinity for everything except for hard core metal.

RS: Thank you so much girls for taking the time out of your hectic schedules and sharing your thoughts with us. Many you have many more smses each day!
All of them: Thanks to you too!

Photos by Niloy

By Sabir Mahmood Sanim

Yup, you read it right. After much debating and research, it has finally been substantiated.... Trees can talk! Shocked, are you? I couldn't believe it either.

A recent research has just concluded this astonishing discovery. Scientists around the globe have devoted months to bring this breathtaking discovery. This idea probably came up centuries ago, but at that time, scientists had neither the necessary equipments nor the energy to zero in on this matter. The concept remained buried for eons, but now after all these years, now have enough evidence to substantiate that this is not just any idea, but rather a universal truth.

Physicist Ed Wagner who led the research for months, was called for an interview after this great discovery. He concluded that after months of hard work and extreme patience, he, along with his team-mates have found satisfactory evidence that trees can talk in W-waves.

Wagner found that whenever a tree was chopped off, it let out an electrical impulse that can be recorded on an electrical recorder. The adjacent trees also let out electrical impulses but those are much fainter compared to the injured tree. The W-waves have a unique frequency and wavelength that can travel much further than human's. It was predicted that since all trees talk in W-waves which travel much further than human's, a tree in Brazil could directly communicate with a tree in Bangladesh.

From the research, it was also determined that trees can actually communicate with each other even though the distance between them seems endless. Its really weird when considering the fact that trees can actually have a family of their own, have fights among themselves, have crushes on each other, and can have an entirely a world of their own...
So the next time you walk past a tree and rip a leaf out, well think twice, because that tree may have thrown a curse back at you. Even trees have families, cultures, moral, ethics, religion and so on..

Compiled by: Nayeema Reza

How big is the Sun?
The Sun is HUGE! Even though it looks small in the sky it is actually bigger than you might imagine. It only looks small because it is 93 million miles away. (That's about 150 million km.) The Earth is very tiny compared to the Sun. In fact, if you think of the Sun as a basketball, the Earth would only be the size of the head of a pin -- a mere speck.

The Earth is about 13 thousand kilometers (8000 miles) wide, whereas the Sun is roughly 1.4 million kilometers (900,000 miles) across. This means it would take more than 100 Earths to span the width of the Sun! If the Sun were a hollow ball, you could fit about one million Earths inside of it!

How far away is the Sun?
The Sun is very FAR from Earth. In fact, it is 93 million miles away. (That's about 150 million km.) Another way to understand the distance is to think of driving to the Sun in a car. If you actually could do this, and drove really fast, say 60 miles an hour (80 km/hr), it would take you 176 years to get there! Light from the Sun takes about 8 minutes to reach the Earth. If you understand how fast light travels, you can recognize that the Sun must be very far away.

How old is the Sun?
The Sun is about 4 1/2 billion years old. Humans have only been around for a tiny, tiny fraction of this time. As a comparison, if you think of 4.5 billion years as the length of a 12 inch ruler, then the time humans have existed wouldn't even be the width of the lines marking the inches. (Metric equivalent is 30.5cm and it would still be just the width of the markings.)

Anime Review By Le Chupacabra

Comedy / Slice-of-Life
12 Episodes
Media Works / Geneon Entertainment
ALL Ages

Anna Coppola, 11 years old, is a British expatriate living in Japan. However, the only thing foreign about her is her appearance. She's forgotten how to speak English over the last five years but when the time comes for her to go to school, she refuses to let others know she can converse in fluent Japanese (interesting, if a little skewed, analogy… *hint hint*). On the way to her new school, she bumps into three girls who'll soon become her closest friends - the bookish Matsuri, sensible Chiko and the devious little troublemaker you'll all come to love as Miu. In class however, Anna's little façade is uncovered by Matsuri…

With practically half the story of Azumanga Daioh (half of zero is…) and about tenfold the cuteness, Ichigo Mashimaro is an exercise in triviality that will warm your heart like no other.

Translating to “Strawberry Marshmallow”, Ichigo Mashimaro is about a group of elementary school children who just live out their lives as all children do. With a caring, if not slightly irresponsible, elder sister in tow you'll watch how these kids turn the most banal, ordinary activity into something that's as funny as it is touching. At the heart of all the laughter and mischief is Miu who has made it her life's sole ambition to annoy everyone with her utter impetuosity and disregard for commonsense. There are few anime that can make everyone burst out into laughter when it comes to random humour, but Ichigo Mashimaro is easily one of the best in that regard.

Like Azumanga before it, Ichigo Mashimaro doesn't try to be particularly clever or witty with its comedy. Rather, it takes situations we were all too familiar with as kids and then just makes light of them in an inane albeit outrageously hilarious manner. What's particularly appealing about this anime that it's simple and pure. There aren't any hidden connotations or innuendo (well, the tiniest bit) but merely innocent mischief and wholesome fun. That's what makes it so beautiful and even tender at times.

The characters themselves are really adorable and are capable of melting even the coldest of hearts with their charm. You can also find a little bit of yourself in each of them; Matsuri is the slightly nerdy one that everyone takes advantage of whereas Anna is the somewhat out-of-it, well-meaning girl. Chiko is basically your conscience in cuddly form and Miu is simply that precociously cute devil that makes life hell for others. Seeing these kids interact tends to bring back quite a few fond (and not-so-fond) memories.

The minimalist artwork really does well in giving the show a light-hearted, child-like appearance. The characters are drawn in a rounded, almost cherubic style while the colours are bright and pleasing to the eyes. The music is bubbly and cheerful with a superbly catchy intro theme that I dare you to try skipping!

The thing with these quiet little slice-of-life comedies is that they can be an acquired taste. However, I'm pretty confident that Ichigo Mashimaro can and will win over even the most eye-rolling of cynics with its nectareous humour and seraphic magic.

Despite lacking what mainly makes a fantastic anime tick, Ichigo Mashimaro is a gentle, soothing trip down memory lane and a heart-warmingly irresistible journey that's nepenthe-like in its charm and will truly make you feel all fuzzy inside.


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