Monday, June 07, 2004

rats in the house?

This week India's two big weeklies, India Today and Outlook, both have cover stories headlined "New Age Parenting." How did this happen? They say imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, but it looks to me that one or both of these magazines has a rat in the house.

From the looks of it, India Today dug up its cover photo from an issue it first published in the late 1970s, perhaps fearful that if the magazine wasted time shooting something new Outlook would hit the stands first. Outlook, on the other hand, has opted for some strange new twist on potty training, which should win the prize for the magazine's ugliest cover of the year. Fortunately for the magazine's designers, it still looks better than India Today.

Readers will experience a strange feeling of deja vu if they're capable of wading through both of these lengthy pieces, which tell us that Indians of a certain class are now consulting experts to learn how to raise their kids. Like most supersoft features, both cover stories are vehicles for the magazines to talk about the private lives of the rich, successful and/or famous. India Today starts off with singer Shaan Mukherjee, while Outlook weighs in with Shahrukh Khan and Sushmita Sen. Are star kids now to be the most well-adjusted of the whining lot? I, for one, am looking forward to Stardust 2020.

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