Gluttonous reporters: As far as food is concerned
Some reporters attack refreshment tables as if they haven't been fed for days. Are they giving journalism a bad name?
Journalists or ‘media walay’ – as they are locally labelled – are a branded bunch. There are enough clichés about people from the news industry to fill a (rather wordy) book. But my favourite cliché is that if you want to see a lot of reporters at an event, make sure that there’s lots of food and that they know about it!
So the story goes: I was sitting at the office of a rather suave business executive, busy jotting down his responses to my inquisitions, when he mentioned that his company was about to organise a very elaborate award ceremony. Since I hadn’t heard anything about this ceremony, it could only mean one of two things: either there would not be any food, or they had not invited the media.
When I asked him, my host replied (a little sheepishly),
“Actually the last time we called reporters to an event, they ate so much that the other guests couldn’t even get close to the tables.”
At first, I was a little offended and considered giving the gentleman a piece of my mind. But then, I thought about it a little and started justifying the behaviour to myself – maybe they called a rowdy bunch or kept them waiting very long. Later that night, as I sat at home I thought of ‘deeper’ explanations like our reporters aren’t paid enough and often cannot afford to dine at such posh hotels on their own.
I even blamed my colleagues for being unprofessional and easily swayed by the thought of a samosa. I thought long and hard until I got a call from my cousin.
“Dinner at Nandos, I’m buying. You in?”
I stopped thinking, jumped into my shoes and said, “Of course I’m in. I’ll be there in five!”
I jumped at the opportunity because I was hungry and the food there is great. That’s it. It has nothing to do with my Karachi Press Club membership (which is still pending).