Saga of a dream

And so we completed a whole year in existence. Not a long time. Not when 90s whizzed by like yesterday. Not when the new millennium’s new decade galloped away even quicker. Over the last year though, each passing month propped up like a milestone for The Thumb Print.

 

We’re talking of a world where currency note magnetism rules over human values. We’re talking of a world where big businesses influence governments. Big money glues thicker than values. Big businesses eat up small fries.

 

It’s a world where you are told not to dream big if you have no big money to invest in your dreams. Convert yourself into a debt repaying machine if you want that coveted degree. Debt for your degree. Debt to get a roof above your head. Debt to start your own little road-side eatery. If you don’t have that seed capital, forget dreaming doing anything on your own at all.

 

In a world where currency notes get prime-time pageantry over everyday joys, in a world where even charity gets veiled with opportunism, our paperless magazine has survived solely on readers’ goodwill and the abundance of selfless contributors. That is how this e-mag’s dream really found its meaning.

 

With sparse knowledge of website technicalities and spartan resources, The Thumb Print came into existence, to join the endless list of web portals. It was frightening for a start. What if it failed? The choice was between abandoning an effort for fear of failure and going ahead with the first step. And thanks to endless love, it worked.

 

Its genesis was in reality a dearth of coverage for the eight Northeastern states of the country. Each passing week has thrown up new lessons for the team. At times we falter. At other times we struggle. That is when a shaft of enthusiasm flows through from readers, contributors and critics alike.

 

The team makes a conscious effort to give sufficient space to stories that are otherwise ignored by the media. And it is only natural that environment and the arts get their due in the magazine.

 

I have never been to the Northeast. Only dreamt of it. But The Thumb Print that benefits from virtual world’s real time has brought me closer to the region like nothing else has. The journey has just about begun.

 

June is the month of World Environment day. The world needs 365 days of environment-conscious efforts every year though. For its own survival. The Thumb Print decided to leave the whole month open to green stories.

 

Do you and I as individuals really care for all the hooplah around environment and climate change? It’s time we did. India has latched on to economic liberalisation at the cost of its own welfare. Promotion of nuclear power plants while ignoring global disasters such as Fukushima during the 2011 tsunami in Japan, throwing caution to wind with large dams and reservoirs that drown forests, reckless mining for export, rapid urbanisation, they are only a tip of the ice-berg. We refuse to understand that storms and winds have gone haywire thanks to reckless pursuit of power and currency as a human race.

 

The thousands of tonnes of garbage we generate in our households every day without quite considering how we hurt ourselves, is even more dangerous. Are we really bothered about the piles of plastic we throw away in the form of not just grocery bags, but non-recyclable bottles, furniture and even accessories? Do we care that these plastics will find their way into the food chain and may end up inside our bodies after all? Are we concerned at all, when we go vacationing in jungles or any tour-worthy place and throw plastic litter? Isn’t it high time we made zero-waste a daily goal in our lives?

 

Mainstream media does not devote as much newsprint to organic farming as to Bollywood and business besides cricket. In the West, a blogger like Bea Johnson of the zerowastehome.blogspot.com gets to become a star by practising and writing about a zero-waste lifestyle. India has hundreds of unsung heroes who find negligible mention in newspapers and TV channels. It is these people who need to be talked about.

 

We love big homes, big cars, big bridges, big businesses, big power plants, big everything. And we are not satisfied with used homes, washing machines, clothes or utensils any longer. When buying a new apartment, do you care to ask the builder about renewable energy use and solar power options? Do you know that there are companies in the US that make tiny homes and promote it as a fad? When you travel, do you pack light?

 

How about limiting our needs? And thinking of small as the real big? Thinking of mending our clothes rather than throwing them? The idea of throwing an entire month open to green stories is to share. And learn.

 

Be part of this effort today and everyday in your homes and outside, without wondering how much it will help. A small step without wanting to achieve the moon. That is what drove an effort like The Thumb Print to come into existence.

 

Radhika M B

Radhika M B

(Radhika M B is a journalist, blogger and crafter living in New Jersey, US. Over her 12-year span in the field of news writing, she has worked in print and internet – The New Indian Express, Tehelka, Techyolk and The Times of India. Her work in print has ranged from environmental reporting and human rights, to politics and lifestyle. An aspiring writer and avid blogger, she blogs at www.cerebraltoothbrush.com, http://sandbythesea.blogspot.com and www.imprintshandmade.blogspot.com. She is currently Consultant Editor with The Thumb Print. The Bangalorean has lived in Mumbai and Chennai besides in Delaware, US, before moving to New Jersey).