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Teasing: The new victims

It was the year final practical exam and CSE third year student Shuvra was sweating profusely. The stupid circuits just wouldn't work. Frustrated out of his wits, he suddenly noticed a lanky guy clad in a plain T-shirt and torn jeans approaching him. The guy, who Shuvra thought was surely a demonstrator or a lab boy, came over to his table and started pointing out “Not like this, do it like that, etc.” Irritated, Shuvra executed the deadliest jhari he could muster, “Oi, jah bhaag!!” and the guy scrammed. Meanwhile it was time for the viva. Shuvra entered the room and guess who he saw sitting leisurely at the teacher's chair with a smug expression on his face? The jharafied lanky dude!!!

Now those of you wondering what happened to poor Shuvra after that, I'll leave it up to your imagination. But interestingly enough, these days, incidents such as these seem to have become more and more common in academic campuses. The general rule of teasing (if there is any) implies that anybody who can be teased, will be teased. But one cannot possibly expect the teachers to fall in that category as well! A student, on condition of being anonymous, shed some light on the situation, “Nowadays people graduate timely, especially in the private universities, and then enter the teaching profession. So basically most of the teachers are quite young and can often be mistaken as students, therefore bloopers take place.” Another student confessed guiltily, “Once it happened that me and my group were addafying in campus and a very pretty and hot girl arrived. We all whistled at her in unison and later upon entering the classroom discovered that she was our new astrophysics professor!!”

So, how are the teachers faring with this kind of behaviour? Although these incidents are, no doubt, nothing but pure misunderstandings and are often shook off with casual “arey na na, kichhu hoy ni”, it mainly depends on the teacher whether he's generous enough to overlook them or hold a grudge because his pride as a teacher was damaged. Some teachers who have a superb sense of humour, however, tend to find these bloopers very amusing and become friendlier with the students. Trosporsha Tasnim Khan, an ex-teacher of Mastermind, says, “Basically, being a teacher means to hold a position of great responsibility and it's mostly up to the teacher to make sure his or her students behave well. You can get friendly with the students, yes, because that somewhat lifts the stressful academic atmosphere. But a teacher should also know when to put a leash on situations before they get out of hand.”

There is a common concept among teachers (and also students) that if you are not popular with the students, you are not a good teacher. Some also think if you are not intimidating, you're not a good teacher. Well to that, another student (intent on being anonymous) commented, “It's rather hard to be intimidated by someone who barely comes up to my waist, hahaha!!”

Anyway, as long as it's harmless, teachers getting teased is mostly a good (!) thing for a change…well, that is as long as we don't start seeing teary-faced teachers protesting in front of Shaheed Minar with banners that say: “Please don't tease your teachers”

Disclaimer: This article is in no way intended to hurt the feelings of the teased teachers. Yours truly herself is a midgety math-tutor of a high-school kid who towers over her and upon getting cross-marks for miscalculation, squeals, “Aww teach, that's such a cute cross, aww….!!”

By Raisa Rafique

Writings on the wall

Michael Jackson may not be around in person anymore, but he's left behind a legacy that will not be forgotten anytime soon. Musician, performer, genius, enigma, the man wore many hats, and this week, the Rising Stars team pays tribute:

Nothing sums up the King of Pop better than "Smooth Criminal" for me. Aside from having the greatest dance beat in the history of music, it has the coolest plot of any Michael Jackson song. I remember singing it in the halls with all of my friends, and whenever we shouted "Annie, are you OK?" people would get ticked off and leave. However, the best part of Smooth Criminal is the part in the music video where Michael leans in a way that is not humanly possible. All of us tried it at home- and failed epicly.
-- Ihsan Kabir

"Beat it" and "Thriller" have been two of my all-time favourites since I was a mere six year old. You have to give it to MJ for making even a kid who knew nothing of rhythm and melody dance to his tunes. And the music video of 'thriller' in itself was a masterpiece of epic proportions. I was watching MTV's MJ tribute yesterday where they played all his videos and still got a chill watching 'thriller" after all these years.
-- Raisa Rafique

I have very fond memories with Jackson's 'Black or White'. It came out a year after I was born and I spent most of my early childhood listening to it on MTV. According to my parents I would try to copy the moves in the video all the time, albeit unsuccessfully. I still think, after 18 years, the concept of the changing faces at the end of the video is brilliant and shows how we are the same people and the colour of your skin or ancestry does not matter. The song is one of the most entertaining I've ever heard and the video just plain amazing, putting a musical spin on race politics and having an international appeal. I will miss Michael Jackson for his genius, musical creativity and his ability to touch people of all kinds, races and ages.
-- Nisma Elias

Remember the first time you saw him moonwalk? The first time you saw the Thriller video when you were little and it seemed creepy and fascinating at the same time? Remember when you tried to DO the thriller dance or the moonwalk yourself? You can NEVER sit still when his songs are playing.
He started off as a young boy of eight performing with his brothers in the band The Jackson 5 and continued on to become the King of Pop and the most renowned musician in the world.
Let us remember this great musician not for the scandals, but for his great music. And let us pay tribute to him by listening to his words and by really trying to create a 'better place for you and for me'.
After all,
We are the world
We are the children
We are the ones who make a brighter day
So let's start giving
Another legend lost so young. Goodbye, Mr. Jackson, we'll miss you.
--Musarrat Rahman

Choose just one song? Are you kidding me? When you're talking about Michael Jackson, that's almost sacrilege. “Thriller” and “Beat it” started off a love for choreography that would last a lifetime. “Billie Jean”, and “Smooth Criminal” wowed me over with the complexity of emotions in their lyrics. When things were really getting hairy for MJ, he vented (with the help of little sister Janet) through “Scream”. There's a Michael song for every emotion, everything you could possibly experience and more. Thank you, Mr Jackson, for the soundtrack to my life. Rest in peace, and know that you'll never be forgotten.
-- Sabrina F Ahmad

Equal parts playful and frightening, "Thriller" was one of the first MJ music videos I'd ever watched. Yeah, it was during the daytime (and a sunny one at that) but when you're five, the magical moment when he stares into the screen with evil yellow eyes will give you nightmares. If I'm not mistaken, they must have been showing his songs back-to-back on TV because this was followed by the unforgettable little scenario that precedes his heart-warming "Black or White". It's a shame but it would be many years since then that I'd reconnect with the music of Michael Jackson - it happened in 2005 while we were at some chicken eatery when the soothing vocalisations of “Heal the World” made us all look up at the screen. As we watched, all these misgivings I'd built up over MJ, kudos to a voracious press machine, melted (couldn't have been a more apt song) and that's when I realised what he truly meant to the world, to all of us. His is a music that is truly timeless and transcendental.
-- Azfarul Islam

It's quite the irony. I was due writing a Centrefold piece titled 'The Return of Pop' an article that was meant to celebrate Michael Jackson's rejuvenation; and here I am, staging words for the opposite.
For my generation, my peers and I recall growing up to MJ's hits. They were ecstatic, in the sense they shared an opinion while adding a beat a rare combination to be found nowadays and he had remained an all-time favourite to many.
. Whether in time, the world will learn to separate his music from his persona, his electrifying performances from his secluded lifestyle is a debate of its own. For now, Michael Jackson's death is not a standalone, and signifies the death of pop since he was, at the end of the day, one of the few artists with a massive outreach who knew what his music was doing. The music scene will surely miss that magic and feel that deficiency for a very long time.
--Sabhanaz Rashid Diya

“I wouldn't be exaggerating if I mentioned that I was first introduced to music through Michael Jackson. My sister initially made me watch his videos. At first they were irritating but later as I got exposed to more I began to realize the innovation behind his videos. My personal favourite would be "You Rock My World". Although it's not one of MJ's super duper hit tracks but his dance moves, actually his overall persona was just too charming over there. That's when I truly fell in love with him!
-- Faria Sanjana

I remember watching my first ever MJ music video, "Thriller". Truthfully, for a six year old, that video scared the hell out of me. However, growing up (and being comparably wiser), the King of Pop wasn't that freaky anymore, rather cooler. That started a love for Michael Jackson's music and for pop in whole. His music videos were... to say the least, unique. However, my personal favorite stands to be “Bad”- 22 years later this song is still badass! RIP MJ Regards,
--Wahid T. Khan



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