READING HABIT BUTTRESSES RUNNING COMMENTARY
By Brigadier Chitranjan Sawant,VSM
A commentator of repute enjoys a sound reading habit. One’s background knowledge is enriched by developing a reading habit. A commentator should do a lot of general reading even if he is not required to go on air on any specific subject. This forms background knowledge and is stored in the mind. It is available on call and is handy when one needs it while one is on the air. The memory chip in the brain retains it and also makes available when needed. On many an occasion a commentator is required to go on the air at a short notice or at no notice at all and the knowledge is made available by the brain at no cost. Wonderful system indeed created within the body and mind that can be made use of.
READ ON AND ON
There is no specific date and time when a commentator should commence reading a book, a magazine or just an article picked up at random from the table drawer. One may take notes or one may not. Noting part is done by the brain and the information is presented to the Reader on a silver platter as and when required. However, if the topic is of importance and relevance to the Reader, short notes may be taken in a notebook. One has to take care that such notebooks are properly stored and not form a part of the junk or old and stale newspapers discarded and thrown away in the rubbish bin. Catalogues may not be made or maintained as it would entail a lot of additional work that may not be made use of at a distant future. A Reader may have to make use of his own memory and that will remain standby at all times. Of course, memory too requires dusting and refreshing lest it is consigned to oblivion. The law of disuse is applicable here too and so is the law of use to let the memory chip remain active and alert.
Is it possible to have a lot of reading material available at hand to be made use of as and when required? The answer is indeed, Yes. Please do not allow your knowledge on any given subject go rusty. The only way to have the knowledge at your beck and call is by tapping it as frequently as possible. One will be pleasantly surprised to find some childhood reading material made available to the adult mind when required. What about discarding some old out of date information that has not been made use of for a fairly long time? Well, one does not have to do so in a chronological order; it takes place on its own when a Reader’s mind is on the “Auto”.
Generally speaking, a student of history finds it fairly easy to read events and correlate them with historical dates. Thus the events and dates surface on recall and there is no mix up. Of course, it should be conceded that a student of arithmetic is quite good at reading and recalling events in a chronological order without getting mixed up. This brings us to the point that the factor of Individual Differences comes in play. One cannot be an expert in different branches of knowledge. One should pick and choose as per one’s likes and dislikes. This path will lead to excellence and one will win laurels thereby.
A successful commentator catches opportunity by the forelock to make hay while the Sun shines. If one lets it go by, it would be well nigh impossible to catch hold of it because Opportunity is bald at rear of the head. There are no tufts of hair to hold on and an opportunity lost once is lost forever. There is a saying that an opportunity knocks at one’s door only once in a lifetime, losing it then is like losing it forever.
Procrastination is the thief of time. Postponing an event of importance is like losing it forever. Catch hold of the opportunity when it knocks at your door and please do not let it slip by. As a good rider does not let his horse to canter to stables at will, a successful commentator makes good use of an opportunity as and when it strikes at his door. If one has to do an important piece of work, one should do it at the first opportunity. When a commentator gets hold of a good reading material that may be of importance to him, he does not let the opportunity of reading it slip by. Make use of it then and there and it will hold you in good stead in future.
Read one must and the Time to read is now. No soothsayer is going to predict what time is good for reading. Is the time to read is auspicious now or inauspicious- the silly question of this nature is debated by a lazy and lethargic Reader. There is no such thing as good time or bad time to read. Such debates are indulged in by procrastinators who wish to postpone making a good decision because they do not wish to put in labour leading to successful culmination of the project. If a commentator gets hold of a good reading material, he or she must make use of it then and there. Time to Read is Now – that should be the slogan always and every time. Please recall the saying: Procrastination is the Thief of Time. For Pete’s sake do not allow anyone to steal good things that you have come to possess. You have earned it by the sweat of your brow and let no thief steal it.
PLACE AND POSTURE
One should select a good place to settle down for good reading. It should be ship shape where mosquitoes hate to go. Your mission is to develop a sound reading habit and not be bitten by mosquitoes causing malaria, dengue and diseases of that nature. Spray anti-mosquito devices as fogging helps drive away our age-old enemies, they beat a hasty retreat. Common flies must be kept at bay because they are obnoxious and cause spread of diseases.
It needs no underscoring that the place wherein one settles down for a comfortable reading must be well lighted. If load shedding of power is the order of the day, keep an alternative arrangement stand by. The light should fall on the book or the magazine from across the left shoulder and must not flicker as it is harmful to the eyes. A potential commentator has to read a lot over a long period of time and the eye sight has to be protected. Anything that is likely to damage the eyesight like poor lighting or small prints must be given a farewell, not o reappear there.
Posture of the Reader plays an important role in helping him or her go a long way in the profession of doing running commentary. The backbone has to be taken care of. Sitting in a wrong posture, bending forward or backward may damage the backbone in the long run. Please sit erect and read but do not slouch. By the way, sitting in one posture for over an hour or so may check the smooth flow of blood in the body. A clot may be caused and if the clot travels to brain or heart it may cause brain haemorrhage or heart attack that may at times be life threatening. The best way to avoid such a situation is to take a short walk after an hour or so and facilitate blood circulation in the entire body. It helps a Reader go a long way without causing any permanent damage to the life or limbs of the Reader. One has to derive the best out of a given situation and many alternatives are recommended. If a Reader reaches a blind alley and there is no light at the other end of a tunnel, the best course of action open to a Reader is: consult a physio-therapist. On your own, you may avoid sitting in the same posture for over an hour or so.
Reading a book in the lying position may be harmful to the mind, body, especially the eyes. The best posture is sitting at a desk, the reading material placed thereon comfortably where one can read without shifting sides.
Fresh air plays an important role in encouraging a Reader to pursue his hobby without encumbrances. Oxygen is life giving and to a Reader it helps pursue the goal relentlessly. If one lives in a crowded locality and fresh air is not available in the precincts, going to a public park to Read is highly recommended. In the new habitats, generally speaking, care has been taken to provide a public park for a cluster of houses. Greenery is taken care of by the municipal authorities. A Reader must make use of such public parks and the green environment to pursue the hobby of Reading to become a good commentator.