The “Unusual” Poster-Boys


Posters have been an integral part of our lives now. We see many at the billboards – some selling products, some propagating a message and rest for everything else. Typically most posters have a brand ambassador aka Poster-Boy. Most of us, including ‘Yours Truly’, connect with few of these Poster-Boys because of the trust one has in the Poster-Boy’s persona, ability and/or sincerity. Today I write in honour of the 2 “unusual” poster-boys who have influenced my life and whom I have put high up in the billboard in my mind.


1.       The Sportsman

I have tried to be an active sports guy during my school and college days. With job and later family commitments, sports – and consequently health – took the back-seat. As time went by, the reason to be actively involved in Sports dissolved for the immediate requirement to be at work or to be with family until I met Gopi (name changed on request).

Gopi is a low profile, sincere, disciplined, happy person. This is what I think of him from the limited 20-25 interactions I have had with him. What stands out remarkably with Gopi is his impeccable health at age 50. Well-built, without an ounce of fat, a fully-loaded powerhouse of stamina and strength, Gopi is Adonis when it comes to health. His body is his temple and he maintains the temple really well. To be like Gopi needs a long-term commitment towards ones health. It is a daily challenge to negate the impulses of the taste-buds and/or the warm-bed. This requires utmost sincerity and control over ones mind, taste-buds and immediate peer-group (including family). This also requires sacrificing on various fronts – low-fat diet, time for daily exercises, missing out on late-night parties, etc.

I know this now because with age and increasing professional and social engagements, it becomes more and more difficult to push the body and the mind to do what is the right thing to do. Gopi has been doing this for years now and it reflects truly in his persona. He is my poster-boy because of his triumph over the warm-bed, the taste-buds and because of his unwavering commitment to being healthy and being so happily. Being low-profile kind of person, he does not make an agenda about health. You will never hear him telling what is best and what is not. He does what is and leads by example…silently.


2.       The Believer

Most of my fiends are ambitious and when ambitions come with hefty pay-cheques every month many find reasons to be more so. The journey is trade-off between ones own personal believes and ones professional ambitions. With time the security that comes with pay-cheques and the promotions that comes by lingering on becomes a battle between the soul and the bank-balance. Soul is unquantifiable and invariably succumbs at the altar of calculable bank-balance. Not for everyone though.

 Chand (name changed on request) is a guy who could have continued being in the circle doing what professional ambitions demanded to be done, but he sensed that the circle has its rules, politics and sacrifices. Everyone within the circle was with a soul bit less. Chand has everything what it needs to be a high-profile business-guy but he was not raised to turn a blind eye to greater details. For him everything that touches his life where he can make a difference must be changed so.

He left the main-stream circle to educate and help the poor in distress. I asked him whether it was because he could not take the stress. He smiled and said “If not Me, then Who? If not Now, then When?” He smiles genuinely. You know it was not stress. It is ones sincerity to pursue the truth and a commitment toward the nourishment of soul. He lives frugally, spends wisely and he does so without an inheritance or comfort a a big bank-balance.


I also admire the usual Poster-Boys, like Amitabh Bachchan and Sachin Tendulkar, but the commitment and triumph of regular people is what makes the ‘unusual’ poster-boys real competition for the ‘usual’ Poster-Boys.


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