My heart was beating frantically. No, I was not proposing to my girlfriend.
It was the time for the result at division level humorous contest.
And my mind flashed back to that moment when my 9th class results were announced.
“What??? Only Seventy three percent??”
Do you know?? How much Sharmaji’s son scored this year?
“Go!! From today onwards you are not my son.”
I said: “Dad, It was a school test , Not DNA test.”
“Shut-up! USELESS! Become like him.
Madam Contest Chair, fellow toastmasters, invisible judges and dear guest.
Have you ever felt? That your worst is compared to the best of others?
20 years of my prime time, I had been taught pull others down and become number one in the class.
Everything about me is compared – My marks! My looks! These days- even my hairstyle.OMG, at this very true moment, Judges are comparing my speech with others.
Finally I took control of my life and decided to leave my village and went to Bangalore just to prove that: “I am not USELESS.”
One day my best friend, PINKU teased me, saying: “Change your dressing sense stupid. Don’t be like villagers, do some cool yo-yo honey things.
“I wear enough clothes to cover my body, what’s wrong with it?”
“If it is only necessary to cover your body, then why don’t you take a bed sheet, make a hole and cover your body? USELESSfellow.”
And then I compared my dress with hi-fi Bangalorians where Jeans and tees are everything.
To change my USELESS I entered to a ‘Lifestyle” mall. I bought 5000- rupees shoes, 3000/-Levis Jeans, 1000 rupees T-shirt, 500- sun glasses and since I had no money left, I bought a cap for 25 – from road side vendor and wore it back to front.
I stood in front of mirror and found myself ………….costlier at my foot and cheaper at my head.
My dear friends , when you are internally frustrated, you run after the brands, but when you are internally empowered….you become a brand.
In this frustration and dilemma I started to contemplate… “Am I really USELESS”. And I got the answer in my first Toastmasters Meeting.
I entered the room and said: Hello sir, I am Madhuranjan.
And He replied: Hey, I am CC, CL, and ACB Francis Mohanty.
Though I did not understand those prefixes, my feeble voice hinted me: Madhuranjan, Join Toastmasters and replace your USELESS prefix by CC, CL, and ACB.
But, as you know in toastmasters INVOICE matters More than your VOICE. First you have to pay the money, become a member then deliver the projects. I did.
Because of this comparison, whenever I was delivering the speech, I wanted to be the best speaker of the day.
I delivered project 1, but…failed. Project 2, but…failed… Project 3, but…failed…
The most insulting incident was when recently joined Priya delivered her ICE Breaker, and I delivered Project 4, and she was the best speaker of the day.
I reached out to my uncle and said: Uncle, Nothing is working in my life. I am completely USELESS. I hate myself.
He hugged me and said: “When you were a young child, you lived in this world to be good to yourself. And when you fell down 90 times and people around you laughed!!
You said: So what man! If you can walk, even I can walk.”
That time you loved yourself today you love your society. You have started hating yourself. / First you were made to hate others and you hated others so much, that what left to you? is only hate.
And today this comparison lead the world to such an extent that
“Those who have straight hair, are made to feel so bad that they should have curly hair, so they put curlers whole night and trying to make it curly.”
“Those who have curly hair are told …look at the straight hair…… So they go and apply all the shampoos in the world and iron it to make it straight.”
” Those who are dark are told…if you become fair, you will get better job, better increment. Why do you want to become an Air hostage, Apply fair and lovely and become a pilot.
And those who are fair are brainwashed, so they go to Goa, put suntan oil, sleep under the sun, and bake themselves and become dark.
We say to god, O god…I don’t like your painting what you have given me, I am a better artist than you and we go on painting our outside.
My heart was still beating frantically. No, I was not proposing to my girlfriend. It was the time for the result at division level humorous contest in 2013.
I did not become like Sharmaji’s son, as you cannot make a jeans out of Dupatta.
I did not change my dressing Style “As changing LIFE is more important than changing Life-Style.”
Then Suddenly, I heard: And 2nd runner up for 2013, Division L humorous speech contest is: Dheeraj Madhuranjan.
Though I didn’t get 1st place, I didn’t compare myself with the winner Mr. Rajdeep Manwani. It didn’t matter… as I had given my best. What yours?
Today, if I win, I win ….. If I lose I will learn and that’s why I will win.
But if all the time you are treating me as a useless, I will remain as a useless. I want somebody to believe in me , and I think Toastmasters you are one of those. Can one of you come and believe in me and say: – “You are not useless, you are USED Less”
YouTube Link : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SQdBgaQO5fc&t=50s