Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Pro Choice

I hate dictations. Remember the spelling tests in lower classes? The teacher would dictate a word and we had to write it. I was pretty good at that; but still, I hated it.

Dictating words is one thing.

Dictating life is totally different.

I don't want a life where I am dictated things. If I am the only one who has to face the consequences of my actions, why should you dictate? For lemonade?

So let me live.

Live smoking.
Live drinking.
Live making out.
Live making in.
Live working.
Live lazing.
Live eating.
Live working out.
Live doping.
Live meditating.
Live travelling.
Live sleeping.
Live playing.
Live fighting.
Live writing.
Live reading.
Live farting.
Live puking.
Live blogging.
Live commenting.
Live thinking.
Live dreaming.

And if you don't agree with me, I will buy you a lemonade. See I CHOOSE to buy. Or I CHOOSE not to buy. You CHOOSE to accept. Or you CHOOSE not to accept.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Dev D - From a curious onlooker


I accept I am kind of a newbie when it came to knowing about Anurag Kashyap. I don't know what made me buy the 2-DVD pack of Black Friday. But well, I put money into it. And it blew me away. Narration that doesn't preach. Editing like it's sprinting towards a finish line in Olympics. Special effects that didn't shout "LOOK AT ME!"

Later I looked into his filmography and was mindblown! Many films that meant something to me. Including the shelved Alwyn Kalicharan. I still remember seeing a small teaser image of the movie. A fleeting glance, but a longlasting image.

Paanch, with its brilliant score. It was like the opening of a floodgate in an unknown dam. We all felt the rush, but never realised where it came from. Watching Paanch is something I want to do before I die.

No Smoking. His first film after I was a true blue fan boy. And was I excited! But a step too many that one. I liked it. I couldn't dislike is more appropriate. But not many others felt the same.

And now, Dev D (I am not mentioning Hanuman Returns, well for whatever reasons). My curiosity is peaked. The trailer runs in my iPod and I hook it up to my speakers and listen to the all-too-short strains of 'Emotional Atyaachar.'

Here is the trailer of the movie.



And here is the poster.



I want to know what you guys think about the poster and the trailer. I know there ain't many of 'you guys' out there. But whatever trickle nevertheless is water.

Picture courtesy: www.passionforcinema.com
Trailer courtesy: Utv Motion Pictures

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

I know you love me...

... so why don't you buy me a PS3?

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Death: Home Delivered

He was probably close to 80. Yellowed teeth (a few missing, probably 'coz they were too yellow), hollowed cheeks and grey hair so light, it was like a dense fog that settled over his scalp. 

He stopped me outside my gate. I presumed he wanted a lift somewhere.

"Can you do me a favour?"

His voice definitely didn't hide his smoking preference. It was a hoarse whisper at the loudest.

"Where are you heading towards?" he asked. 

"Oh, I am sorry, but I am just going to the junction. Not anywhere far."

I rarely like the prospect of giving lift to strangers. Humanitarian considerations have taken a quiet back seat, thanks to Bangalore newspapers.

"I want a small help from you. Can you buy me a pack of cigarettes?"

Now this was more than just a regular dilemma. This has become a moral issue. One of conscience. The man was obviously hiding his desire for nicotine from his family. Else I'm sure he'll have an able-bodied son or grandson to get this task done.

I decided to play the white samaritan.

"I am really sorry. You shouldn't probably be smoking at this age. Plus your family might not really like it. I'm sorry."

There. I have said it. Being someone who smokes a strict four cigarettes everyday (never less,  often more), it was a dire decision for me to make. Does it imply that I don't care about my health as I do about others'?

I brushed the dilemma off my white samaritan uniform. After all, he was pretty old. I wouldn't be smoking at that age. So it's best he too doesn't.

I couldn't get that old man out of my head. I kept thinking. He was asking out of possible desperation. A desperation for something that might seriously affect his health. Now if a packet of cigarette can have such an effect on me, what about euthenesia? Both are questions of personal choice. But to hand it to them, you need someone else.

Can I pull the plug on someone suffering from a possibly terminal disease?

I remain a huge advocate of euthenesia. I am ready to keep money aside for a flight to any country were euthenesia is legal, and get my plug pulled. But who will pull it? If my life doesn't go into progressively deeper ditches, I am sure none of my close family will.

And if ever someone asked me to stop his aching heart from its miserable journey, I don't think I can. There will be a dear someone, somewhere in the world who wants to see the ailing man live how much ever he can naturally. Who am I to decline their needs? Who am I to decline the dying man's needs?

See why this is a question of moral dilemma more than just of personal choice? There is no answer here. My hands are empty. Probably yours too.

As I came back after my short ride. The old man was still there. I don't think there passed anyone else who granted his wish. Will the cigarette pack make his today brighter and tomorrow pitch dark? Is that what he wants? Or a bleaky today and a bleakier tomorrow?

I didn't look at his face. I couldn't stand the question anymore. I was too scared.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Bite my Rave

(Courtesy Nikhil Chinapa's note in facebook)

"Rave parties are a heady mix of drugs, Alcohol and sex", say Headlines Today.

Music anyone? Did we forget the music? Rave parties are a heady mix of free spirited individuals, gathering together to celebrate life under the influence of some of the best music in the world. Screw drugs, screw alcohol, screw you, Headlines Today - you clueless bunch of useless journalists who wouldn't know a "Rave" if it stood up, poked your eye and bit you in the leg.

I'm not for a second condoning drug use or even attempting to stand behind the often used argument of, "Oh, but drugs are everywhere". Yes they are, but for the millionth time, the people who do the drugs continue to do them with or without the music!! Will you moron's stop maligning the music I love and reinforcing public paranoia against electronica and electronic music artists?

The media are all the same - in a rush to report anything and sensationalize the latest "hot" story. I still don't know what EXACTLY happened with the so-called terrorist encounter in Delhi where Inspector Sharma lost his life. Which channel is continuing it's coverage that story? Screw channels, which newspaper is still covering it, or EVER covered it? As far as I know, all they did was mouth the official story.

Same story... different city. "Police bust drug fuelled rave". "241 revelers arrested" "Large quantities of drugs confiscated." Really? did the cameras catch the "large quantities" or are you just taking the word of our lads in Khaki? Are we going to get statements from the peddlers, from our arrested revelers... or will we only continue to loop the same footage of carefully worded statements from the authorities?

Come on Headlines Today, NDTV, Times Now... either shit or get off the pot.

Real jounalism. I crave for it in my country.

I wonder if someone will deport me off this country. What should I do for this? Any suggestions? Rave perhaps?

Friday, September 26, 2008

IT - Indian Terror

The news channels are going berserk. Finally a terror outfit that functions like an MNC. There are designations, project plans, risk analysis and territorial delegations.

The recent crack up of the Indian Mujahiddeen has presented itself as a five course dinner for the news channels. Especially hungry are Headlines Today, Aaj Tak, India TV and Star News. No surprises there.

Headlines Today aired a show called the Web of Terror yesterday (September 25, 2008). What they also managed to do was to grab a hammer, take a nine inch nail and drive it straight through your skull. No. They were not finished yet. That was just their bg'm'. They proceeded to pluck the nine incher, firmly placed in the thick of your brain, by announcing that the information they are so confidently airing is from a "secret source" in the Police Department. Then they hammered the nail back into our skulls with the rest of the show that actually convicted these people. Isn't there a clause somewhere in the rule books of news channels that a person not yet found guilty by the court of law has to addressed as "accused"?

The show presented the Indian Mujahiddeen as something we all could relate to; an IT company. You know those blue-collared, knotted-on-the-neck professionals responsible for the Indian economy's flourish.

So with the show, someone became the Head of Operations of their Delhi unit. "Like the CEO of a company," they informed us.  There was a Human Resource manager who "recruited" new blood into the outfit. And this one takes the cake. They have a Public Relations Officer. A Public Relations officer for a terror outfit. And I thought I had seen everything. Or heard everything.

You can just imagine the role of a Public Relations officer. Once they have successfully completed a blast, the Public Relations guy calls a press conference. He then proceeds to inform the world in front of camera flashes that it was their diligence in planning and executing this operation that has successfully killed hundreds. You know this is going into his annual performance review.

So. I'm a buns hole sitting in my chair and trivialising a national menace that has killed thousands. Adjust those glasses a bit and tune your hearing aid. 

I did not start this. One viewing of the programme in discussion that was aired on national television ( ! ) and you see there is a responsibility at rapid threat here - integrity of news channels. The supposedly serious matter has been trivialised or sensationalised for TRPs. It is a much blown horn of concern this, decline of integrity. But I bow down before you, my majestic audience, and blow it just once more. Pom!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Darkos, Drives and Desi Smokers

Herd mentality is a bad thing. You are stuck in a crowd, and you start thinking like the crowd. Your individuality goes for a toss. 

Imagine you are in an elevator with five other people. There is a next-to-zero chance of you striking a conversation with them. Now, if the elevator gets stuck somewhere. You crack a joke about saying your prayers. Or the sad state of elevators. Somehow, a common fear always brings people closer.

Is that the reason why 'No Smoking' bombed? 

You are in a movie theater with a hundred odd other people (I saw it on the first day of release, so the count is justified). The movie chugs along better than most other movies, with a story line which is weird, but still comprehensible. And suddenly, the elevator stops. You lose connect with the movie. The last half an hour beats your intellect. Now that is really a question for your highly inflated ego. You are a successful businessman, or IT professional, or whoever. You cannot fail to comprehend something. That too something as 'trivial' as a movie. Our sixth sense kicks into action, and we sense the same fear in others. Ah! Now its time for the jokes. The director must have lost it. Your boo is echoed by other boos from the crowd. Result? Bad movie.

I liked the movie and was ready to 'overcome' this slight issue of not getting this movie. I had faith in Anurag Kashyap, and knew there was something in there. This though not obvious at first, is definitely there. It has to make sense somehow. But how many of us are really ready to take that step?

Recently I saw two familiar movies, which made no sense at first. But the way these movies are made, you build this faith in the director. He will not take your hand and guide you through the movie only to throw you off a cliff in the end. You sit down and think. (SPOILERS) Donnie Darko has some obvious references to time travel, so maybe the end can be justified with that theory. Mulholland Drive has this reference about dreams. So maybe, you can interpret the movie as a surreal dream. These are again just interpretations and not necessarily a conclusive fact.

Good art, they say is like connecting the dots. You remember those numbered dots you have in children's books. You connect them and you get the picture. Now you take the numbers off these dots. This series of seemingly unrelated dots can be interpreted to many images. It can be a duck, or a dinosaur. Appreciating art is all about interpreting art.

No Smoking is a very well made movie. Its production qualities are some of the best ever in Hindi movies; even better than the big budget super-hero kinds. Sadly, it didn't work. Because our brains are better put to use in our 9 to 6 jobs than in a two-and-a-half hour movie. And please, we cannot be wrong. The director was smoking Afghan Hash.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

A great risk...

...when you blog about grammar and typogarphical mistakes is, you get ripped apart if you make a typo of your own.
See this for example.

And, stop drooling. typogarphical is intentional.

Waats your name?

The question is a tricky one. The name you choose can set you back by Rs.400 or more. Ben is a pretty good choice. John is probably not. Shekhar is quite the worst choice you can make. Who would have known that the syllables you have in your name will help a policeman analyze the alcohol content in your body?

God knows this technique is still better than the breath analyzer gizmo some of the Bangalore cops carry around. My friend broke the record for "alcohol" content one day. To this day, he swears he just had gelucil. You might disagree. The cops might too. Electronics can't go wrong, right?

But if you were to make a choice between the two techniques, you will have to see which one of those is a lesser misery.

You really don't want a sweaty policeman bringing his face close to yours. Ask your name and wait anxiously for the whiff of intoxicant. You tell him your name and pray he doesn't close his eyes now.

Neither do you want to blow into a tube that God knows how many others have blown into. Chances of you getting caught for drunken driving might be low (unless you are having a bad case of laryngitis and took some expectorants), but the chances of you contracting some disease can be really high. Syphilis?

Think again, and you really wouldn't mind just handing the cop Rs.400 as soon as he approaches you. Saves you possible thousands towards hospital expenses. Or think about the trauma of having a near romantic encounter with a fat, sweaty policeman at the middle of the night. Guess it's a boon that they decided to cut down on nightlife. Hail this might city! If you are still wondering "Where on hell?" Bangalore my friends, Bangalore.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Herry Womm

It's not greek. It's not spanish. You know it is not french. It is quite surprisingly, Hindi! And, it's the name of the new Himesh Reshammiya song from Karzzz, Hari Om.

The capped crusader is back, and for once he has lost his cap. But replaced it with a wig which is more disastrous than the one Rani Mukherjee used in Laaga Chunari Mein Daag. For all those who were expecting to see Himesh's bat-lair of a scalp, this is disappointing news.

But for those who want to take non-stop digs at this 'Naak naak naakin' on heaven's door' singer, these are wonderful news. He looks as bad as ever, acts terrible even when he mouths only a single line of dialog and sings as nasally as ever before. And to add to these miseries, you have ta-tanananana tandoori nights and the latest herry womm.

The video for the herry womm song features Himesh on stage enthralling a huge audience of sinus victims with his song and dance. Dance, yes, that rhythmic thing you do with your body accompanied to a song.

Except. For Himesh, dancing really means taking six steps to the right and raising his hands another six times. Then taking six steps to the left and raising his hands another six times. And this whole 'dance move' repeats for, you guessed it. Six times.

For those who are still puzzled with all this, here is a video.
Disclaimer: This video is for representational purposes only. The website or the author (lame skinned me) do not take any responsibility for your contraction of diarrhoea, tubercolosis, cancer, or even AIDS.


Thursday, September 18, 2008

Cow-A-Bangalore

I hate cows. I mean I don't hate cows as a part of the animal kingdom, but I just hate them on the roads. Bangalore has enough traffic worries even without the cows. The heights was when a particularly long car had to stop diagonally across the road so that the guy inside could get a good blessing from the cow. Other motorists who weren't so cow-inclined had some equally honest 'blessings' for the guy as well.

I mean, they are cows. Legs, ears, eyes, nose, tail, udders. Nothing we don't have (ok, scratch the last two). I understand that they're a huge part of the Hindu religion and all that. But on roads they are just a misery for various reasons:
1) They are slow. They crawl and make absolutely no use of those four legs.
2) They think there is grass on Bangalore roads. I mean, Bangalore roads hardly have any roads, forget grass.
3) They drop humongous piles of cow dung.
4) They are plain traffic dumb. Unlike dogs. Dogs are in abundance in Bangalore, but they are traffic friendly. They are quick and rarely cause a traffic block.

There aren't half as many cows as there are dogs. If there are dog relocation programmes by the Government, there should be a cow relocation programme. I know all you religious right wingers are gonna scorn at me for suggesting something like this. But, there is a way.

Temples take donations. Why don't we start a new hundi (donation box) to create a large green space outside of the city where these cows can roam freely. And eat freely. But that's not the end of the story. There's more good news. Let us make this new habitat for our traffic-weary cows a monument. Let's make it our... (drum rolls here)... Cow Temple. Nandi will be the main deity and we can throw in Lord Shiva, Parvathy and the likes as well. I am sure it will be a huge success. And who better to give us those other-worldly blessings, than the hundreds of cows grazing happily on the monument lawns.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Archive Ulcer

It started with one small burp. Then it grew to farts. Sitemeter informed me (via email) that my blog was stinking. These days it has started farting every 5 minutes. Apparently the blogosphere has taken a leaf from the Beijing Olympics and sent a climate-changing shell up to its heights. The time had arrived for me to take this blog to intensive care.

The doctor said it wasn't a big deal. Said it was more like a stomach ulcer; except that blogs don't really have a stomach. They have what he termed 'archives'. And this blog archive was particularly starving. The idle internet released acids on its sensitive '.css' file which burnt it pretty bad.

So I have decided to feed it more. This time, it will be more of an imposition than a vow. Imposition on you guys to read this crap. Imposition on me to write more crap. Apparently, by writing more crap, my crappy writing becomes less crappier. And I thought my earlier post was shitty.

Eat shit; in other words, heres a pledge (like the ones our ministers take). No more posts related to shit, crap, stool, poop or any other excrements. This blog, from today, will be a place where I improve your life. Ok, it may not be that ambitious, but here's why. A good read a day, is well a great thing. A bad read a day is even better; coz you get to criticise.

Cheers to a new and much livelier blog.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Shitting Through Our Mouths

There is an episode of South Park in which Eric Cartman discovers that if you shove food up your ass it comes through your mouth as, well SHIT!!! Yeah, I know it sounds a bit creepy and disgusting and all that, and you are entitled to feel that way. After all, its South Park.

The truth about Indian Sports is stranger than such antics of South Park. They just cannot come up with the right access to this pipeline. India has received much accolades (compared to our previous shabby history) this year thanks to some brilliant sportspeople. At the achievements of these guys, what does our sports ministry (lets say Government in general) do? They shower them with cash inaams of 50 lakhs and name streets and markets in their name. That. Is shit coming out of the mouth.

The correct way for this 50lakh was for the ministry to invest it on facilities and have faith in these youngsters. But no, in India anything related to sports becomes BIG ONLY if there are accolades. Accolades, not spirit. We need heroes we can look up to; not sports which can liberate us. In a way, we are all shoving food up our asses and shitting through our mouths. Imagine this REALLY improbable scenario. Imagine, Indian football team, through some odds made it to the Football World Cup. You can see how THAT will increase the popularity of football in our country.

But well, we don't live in an ideal world. An ideal India on the other hand is most other countries' perception of an ideal hell. So I take my confidence-in-Indian-Sports paani puri, crumple it up my ass and probably in 2012 London olympics many more medals may rise against the Indian tally, and I will quietly lay my golden nugget of crap, through my mouth.

Friday, August 08, 2008

A Good Bye note to my former employer

This was published in the newsletter at my previous project. IT is finally over for me, and I move forward to something a bit more taxing on the brains and a little less on the nerves.


There is a little thorn stuck in my heart as I am writing this. Later when I am done, it goes as an email and then into the document you are reading this from. In this slightly dizzying journey, are words that are traveling from one form to another. I hope the journey is worthwhile, if by the end of it, you feel something pricking on your heart.

Three years ago, in the sprawling banquet hall of Gold Finch Hotel, I started my journey of a career. A career in the IT industry with one of the big players in the market. At that time, Accenture was a little known name outside of the IT circle. I had to convince my parents and their friends that I am taking the right choice when I had two more offers from well known indigenous IT companies. Right now, three years down that line, when i tell people that I am working with Accenture, I see that glint of awareness in people's eyes. People over 50 who works as Chartered Accountants and Hospital nurses in remote corners of Kerala know that there is a pretty big company that goes by the name Accenture; and I am proud to be associated with that name.

The journey from a recluse college goer to an IT professional is something that scares you at first. Then when you join the company you think it is going to be like college; except that you get money at the end of every month. Not a bad prospect. But incomprehensibly, there is this change that happens inside us. Till the end of our college, we are with people who we like. Studying is a personal task. You don't really need the help of anyone else to achieve good marks in examinations. But that changes when you are working. You realise that the work you do is a small but significant part of a large enterprise. Here you learn how a team of people from diverse backgrounds and ethnicity gel together to achieve things that you are incapable of doing yourself. Here, you learn true team spirit.

"Where there are people, there is politics," said a disenchanted friend of mine once. Close to 7 months into the project, I told my friend that his theory wasn't always true. ACG as a project is the best thing to happen in my time with Accenture. I found people who are passionate about work and passionate about people. I have heard people saying ACG is a great project to work in. I brace myself as I go into the same cliche; ACG, without doubt, is an absolute dream of a project with people who you actually love to work with.

I have gone around telling people that I will like anything which has a soul in it. Even the worst movies, if it was made with a genuine soul, a genuine non-monetory intent, will appeal to me. Likewise I try to find a soul in every person I meet; one single identifiable entity that encompasses who they are. If they are true to themselves, their intent is good. Outside they might not be the most capable in their work, but inside you can see their will burning bright. ACG is filled with people with will and courage to get the work done in the best way possible.

It was this bright beacon from a person I look up to a lot, that started this newsletter. From an idea that might have been just instantaneous, this newsletter began taking a physical form. The contributions and discussions and execution of every month of the newsletter was something I cherished a lot. To be honest, it is here that I actually gained the confidence in writing. Here, within this frame of THIS pdf, are words. Words that are put together after countless hours of thoughts and rework. Words that convey a message, words that has an intent, a soul. If you don't read it, you are missing something. Heck, forget this newsletter, every word that you see anywhere, from shampoo bottles to encyclopedias, conveys a message. It has an intent. It is trying to get an idea into your head. A wise man once said, a word read is a penny earned.

Having been part of the newsletter team from its conception, it is with trembling fingers that I write these last few words. After this, my words are not going to find a place in this newsletter. Am I the one who is forsaking it, or is it the reverse? Either way, the apparent end is an uneasy one. The end of all journeys is the beginning of another one. Likewise, when my journey with this newsletter, with ACG and with Accenture ends, I am embarking on something new. I will be a happy person, if through this journey with Accenture, I have left some footprints behind that others can follow.

The thorn in my heart is off now, but a slightly irritating pain remains. A wound that will never really heal completely. We tend to forget it as we move along in life. But touch that spot sometime, and it will bring back the same nagging pain. A pain so subtle, you enjoy it. The pain of the happy times I have spent here, in your company, that is slowly going out of my grasp.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

The GuJju Perspective

The bumper sticker is not too bad... just a little, hmm, self-reflective so to say.

PS: If the image is not really clear, here's the dope. The environmental friendly bumper sticker is stuck upside down.

Monday, August 04, 2008

Perfume Melody

A song that I am loving these days. I searched the whole net for the lyrics but couldn't find it. So I decided to go the old fashioned way and wrote the lyrics down as I listened to the song.

My Private Sunshine - Ashley Slater

Here comes the sunshine
It burns away clouds like they never were
My own private sunshine
She walks on the earth but I love her

And now I'm feeling in a better way
The darkest night wont steal my light away

A perfume melody
A scent of the mind sweet as flower
And now I'm feeling in a better way
The darkest night wont steal my light way
A perfume melody
The scent of the mind sweet as flower...

Here comes the sunshine
And it all becomes clear from my point of view
My own private sunshine
The joy that I have comes through loving you

And now its always shining just for me
And rainy days are just a place to see...

A perfume melody
The scent of the mind sweet as flower...

And now its always shining just for me..
And rainy days are just a place to see...

A perfume melody
The scent of the mind sweet as flower...

A perfume melody...

Heres the video for those interested:

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Bendi's Last Few Days in Accenture

Which also was my last few days... been sitting idle after that... Bendi... not me...


My izzatt!!!! Nahinnnnnnnnnnnnn!!!!!!!


Emulating The Joker's upside down pose



Bendi does a Mountain Dew

I Spy...

With my little eye, another spy, spying with its little eye!

By the way, these are the small spy cams thats popped up in some of Bangalore's busiest signals.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Pappu Can't Dance - So?

Why is everyone complaining that Pappu can’t dance? Is dancing the sole stakeholder when it comes to attraction? Let us look at other aspects of Pappu and see if it will compensate Pappu’s two left legs.

Pappu has a fabulous physique (Hey muscular).

Pappu, apparently, is also spectacular (don’t know what that means really; spectacular like the Pyramids?).

Pappu has a very fast car. His eyes are blue and he looks like a foreigner and this makes him a craze among girls. (God... why didn’t you bless me with blue/green/grey/smoky/Clooney eyes?)

His materialistic tastes are of the highest order; what with him wearing a Rado watch and Gucci perfume. (I would have actually preferred Pappu going for Tag Heuer; but it doesn’t go with the rhyme)

Though Pappu was born into a wealthy family with a silver spoon stuck in his mouth (which was later removed surgically), his parampara with his parents are intact. His Papa apparently thinks Pappu will make it big and land himself in a job. Pappu is qualified enough for this task with his MBA and frequent trips to France. Well, maybe France was for holiday.

Anyways, Pappu seems capable of playing the guitar. Above everything else, unlike such all-in-all fantastic dudes who have such big heads on their shoulder, Pappu is very down to earth and is a friend of friends (yaaron ka yaar).

All this makes Pappu a great person, very admirable and likeable. I believe anyone will fall for his traits; except for his dancing skills.

Now really; is dancing that important to overrule all these facts? In corollary, will dancing alone make you swoon over someone? Or is this whole song a pointless piece?

PS: I am really sorry if I ruined this wonderful and crazily addictive song with such a ‘theses’. So for now lets enjoy Pappu can’t dance $aala… tirkit daana tirkit daana.. gee gee daana, lets dance!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Ladies and Gene-elmen


This one was taken outside of a 'restroom' (trust me I found only panic inside there) in a hotel in Tamil Nadu.

Somewhere along the road, our 'gene'tical finger print lost its ability to spell. Sigh. sad is evolooshun.

Deadly Poster

Ok; now two questions.
1) Deadly hit means one hit from the movie and we are Khatam aka Khallas aka dead?
2) Why do all Kannada actors carry a sword (or whatever that is) in the poster?

Balls on Walls


And thats the writing on this wall. If its still not clear, you have a picture of two balls with 'balls' written inside it. Now, get out of here! Balls to you!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Words of Nostalgia - Isthmus

My brother and I discuss various nonsensical topics through the day. Yesterday, one such conversation landed on the Panama Canal.

Let me do a trip down memory lane and see how we landed up discussing Panama Canal.

General talk about movies

à How mechanical movie watching these days are

à How much fun it was to go for movies in a HUGE hall (not the multiplex kinds) with our parents

à How treasured such instances were (as they were rare; you see not many movies to choose from in a small township in Kerala)

à The regional advertisements shown before the movie

à This absolutely hilarious advertisement about a cigarette brand called “Panama

à Actual Panama Canal

So we were arguing if Panama Canal was in South America (to connect to Africa) or if it was in Africa (to connect to Asia). It was the former.

Reading more about it while waiting for our dosas, we hit upon this word called Isthmus.

Wow… now this word took me straight back into a Science textbook maybe in the 6th Standard or something. I did a wiki search for Isthmus and came to understand how interesting this little piece of land is.

What equally dawned on me was the failure of my Science teacher then to make learning Isthmus interesting. She could have made the whole topic interesting by connecting it with Panama Canal (what with thousands of lives being lost during its making; accept it, kids love mysteries). But for my Science teacher then, Isthmus was a term which has to be defined. You remember it, and it will get you 2 marks in an exam.

Schooling I believe (and I think I’ve told this before), should essentially be a place for children to garner the interest in learning, but it always ends up being an exercise in existence.

Also, going by the title of this post, please do suggest other words that evoke such strong nostalgia.


Thursday, June 05, 2008

The Fragrance Pouch

The sun was shining brightly through the window at my right. I couldn’t see it though, my eyes was tightly shut. Exhaustion is what I had been faced with for the last couple of days and my body ‘ably’ responded to it with continuous slumber and inactivity; especially during mornings. It was Tiesto again, through the progression for “Dance for Life”. I thought it will make a huge difference having something as pumpy as this track for your morning alarm. Well, it was a damn squib alrite. I think even psychedelic trance will sound like a classical raga at 6:30 in the morning. Maybe that’s why they play classical ragas in the morning; you know, you cant take it any step lower.

My suryanamaskara had always been of the utmost intimate kind. Sun though it seems all shiny and everything is not quite a morning person you know. So you see I prefer to share that relaxed attitude of the sun in the morning. I wonder why people go jogging and hit the gym in the morning. It has to be spent in peace with the Sun; sleeping. The warm rays of the sun gently running over your closed eyelids; its like the sun is consoling you or caressing you.

They say it’s the mood you wake up in that sets the tone for the day; but there is a catch there. The mood you wake up will always be grumpy. You cannot change that. God has made us all grumpy when we are awake. I mean there is bound to be a synchronization failure in some part of your body. Maybe your legs are working and your eyes fail you. Maybe your eyes are wide open but your body fail you. If everything is alright, your grit and determination fails you. So you see, there is very little chance that we can wake up and hit a six over cover which wins us the World Cup; wham! No way! So you have to control your body to remain in the state of sub consciousness, until gradually you are wakey wakey. So then you get up and hit the kinda music that peps you up. Oh you bet you will start dancing away to glory alright.

Well, that’s the morning you want. Don’t force yourself from bed. It doesn’t do you any good. Relax and take your time to get up; and when you are awake kick start the day with music; or crossword if that’s what interests you (YOU DORK!).

But many a times I have noticed that there are certain other aspects of the morning that really cranks you up. Its almost always that special someone. That bundle of already awake and kicking joy that just injects you the energy you need. I tend to call her (ok ok, or him) The Fragrance Pouch. You don’t know what a fragrance pouch is? Its that you know, pouch which has some powder or what not in it and it spreads this fragrance (if which you don’t read the label can be as good as jasmine or musk; really, doesn’t make much difference).

This particular person, or this fragrance pouch, is incredibly soft on the outside. If the pouch is besides you it’s the best thing ever. A few unlucky ones can also use the amenities of modern life like a cellphone by the bedside. Yes yes; the fragrance spreads in the form of audio waves as well. And when you get the fragrance inside you, it’s the best thing ever. You can feel the lifelessness inside you slowly boiling up into a warmth. The morning seem warm and bright and not the cold blue you were erstwhile used to. The fragrance pouch doesn’t just incite your sense of smell; it’s an all encompassing warmth that surrounds you. You hear that in that one extra cuckoo in the neighborhood cuckoo choir who seems to be giving her everything into the performance. You open the window and the Fragrance Pouch again conjures up her magic in the form of that small droplet of dew still on the window sill; and shining brightly thanks to Mr Sun. And when you finally get down to your music, you hear it as the extra hi-hat or crescendo that just takes it all to a higher level.

You might think all of it is not real and there is no such thing as a fragrance pouch; you know it’s a myth your mind is conjuring up. So what? Maybe that’s what mind is best doing. Conjure up certain myths that just makes your day seem brighter and a lot happier. I say give in to the Maya the world is and enjoy every moment of it. If you have a fragrance pouch; there is nothing better than it.

This little fragrance of a person can just brighten up your day. You feel that spring in your step and that lilt in your voice. Theres joy everywhere. A smile comes easily to you. You breathe, and you feel like you have inhaled one huge cylinder of perfumy life.


Monday, June 02, 2008

The Aura of a Leader - Shane Warne

As I write this down, one of the biggest spectacles we have witnessed in Indian Cricket , the Indian Premier League, has just drawn to a close. To be honest, I have never really enjoyed cricket. Cricket is a long game which gives lot of scope to correct errors in any aspect of the game. The smaller version of the game brought to light, how important it is to avoid mistakes and how easily the game gets away from your hand. It brought out a spirit that was necessary to win the game.

But, was this IPL just about cricket and entertainment? I would have said yes if it wasn’t for Rajasthan Royals. On paper, Rajasthan Royals is the weakest team in the league. They are the cheapest team; they don't have icon or star players and even their foreign players (except Graeme Smith) are either retired from international cricket or benchwarmers (Man of the series, Shane Watson) in their respective national sides. So what is the key factor that helped Rajasthan Royals succeed and that too in an awesomely convincing fashion, losing just 3 games one of which was inconsequential at the least.

In the end, it wasn’t technique, it wasn’t the millions spend on buying players, but it was getting the leader of the squad right, that became the key factor to Rajasthan Royals’ success in this tournament. Shane Warne was an all-in-one father figure, mentor, friend and motivator for the whole team; and it is a lesson for anyone leading a team.

Even before the tournament started, Shane Warne was studying his team. He prepared actual documents for each of his players underlining what their roles will be. Shane Watson who is not even in the national side, had a three point agenda with details on his fielding position and ways he should be motivating the other fielders. In a way, Shane Warne had a very thorough project plan in place.

Shane Warne, also reportedly hated Indian food and Indian climate when he toured here last with the Australian Team. But when he got the job of coaching an Indian regional side, he had to side with his differences. He started having Indian food, he started taking language classes and he made a huge effort to understand the ethos of leading an Indian side. This made sure that the local boys never feel alienated to him. More importantly they could easily warm up to him as a friend. Yusuf Pathan after the final match told the TV reporter that before he went in to bat he was very nervous and that it was talking to Shane Warne that helped him ease his nerve. Yusuf Pathan speaks next to no English. How did Shane Warne manage to have such a friendly relation with Yusuf when language was a huge barrier? That can be attributed only to the personality of Shane Warne who very successfully dissolved boundaries of nationalities to have a successful team.

Kamran Akmal, another player who speaks next to no English, was endearingly honest when he commented about Shane Warne as a captain. He was emphatic about the support Shane Warne provided to the youngsters. Shane Warne made everyone understand their capabilities. Though they were considered underdogs by the whole media, Shane Warne never let the team feel that way about themselves. The players refused to see themselves as underdogs even after repeated remarks by Ravi Shastri in the presentation ceremony. The mood was upbeat, and the air was of confidence; success is what happens when people start believing in themselves.

We have to open our eyes. To see that where we are right now, is not because of luck, its not chance either. We are all capable of doing something and that is exactly the reason why we are doing what we are asked to. But to haul it all up as a collective effort takes the vision, compassion and level headedness of a great leader. A great leader, as Shane Warne remarkably exhibited throughout this series, is not someone superior to you. A great leader is rather someone who helps you understand your abilities, instils in you a passion to win, and cheers you up even in the worst adversities. Shane Warne, I bow before thee for teaching us all a lesson or two in being a great leader.

Saturday, May 31, 2008

The Baby Steps

I am here, in a room full of people from Media and Entertainment background. Its crowded and its loud; but is a welcome break from the dull drawl of the other office. Its a 3-day trial run my stint this one. If it succeeds, I really have no clue where to go from here. If it fails, well I'll try again I guess.

For now, there is nothing much I can relate to here. I moved from test scripts to tv scripts. I read the draft about 10 times and sent it to the guy. I am thinking its a hypothetical script; God forbid they come back to me saying they dont have the visuals I have written here.

I am at a loss on where they head for a dose of nicotine and caffeine, though most everyone seem to be hooked to that. For now the only freedom I enjoy here is, blogspot is not blocked. HAPPY BLOGGING TO MYSELF!

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Bangalore Airport - The High Points

The tirade of the media against the new Bangalore Airport continues. The latest as I heard from a friend (reported in Deccan Chronicle) is that it puts IT companies in a situation because of the rather extended periods traveling to and from the new airport. The productivity of these companies are affected because the important visitors (read phirangs) have lesser time to get to their works. Yeah? Really?!?!?! I mean comeon, that doesn't make any sense. Someone who travels half way around the world cannot spare an hour and a half on a road commute to the city?

Another problem the Deccan Chronicle reportedly reported was the lack of hotels near the new airport. Give it some time; I am sure the hotels of all the major hoteliers will crop up around the Airport. It seems to me that the new paper Deccan Chronicle wants to jump into the readers' side from the very first edition. Nothing wrong there really, but make sure you place valid points on the table for a fair judgement.

The airport, from the time the location was decided, has been plagued by criticism. It becomes inconvenient for people to travel via air because of the distance. I personally don't catch a flight more than thrice a year. I use the airport road (now old airport road) once every day. The traffic in the inner ring road is the worst with one having to wait possibly 15 mins to get to the end of it. The closing down of the old airport has eased the traffic a lot. I didn't foresee this one, but the decrease in traffic in the airport road is really a huge help. I can save atleast 10 mins of commute thanks to this difference. Now if you do some simple maths, it is clear that the time expended commuting to the new airport is easily offset by the time saved on commute in the old airport road.

All these rather tangential benefits aside, I can simply say that I hated the old airport. It was small, dirty, ill managed and crowded. Dogs and a mob of taxi drivers and autorickshaw guys (who are ready to slit your throat if you refuse to pay the fortune they ask for) is not the first thing you want to see stepping off an airport. If this is the case for me, imagine what the condition of the tourists or IT company visitors be?

I haven't had a chance to visit the new airport to see how better it is from the old one; but for now, lets all just stop cribbing and enjoy a peaceful ride or drive through old (and definitely more peaceful) airport road.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

The Bendi Lives On...

Dont think I have stopped playing around with Bendi... Hes rocking my cubicle alrite... A few of his latest and greatest...


Bendi taking a nap


Acrobat Bendi


Zeig Heil Bendi


Bathroom Singer


Bendi Shows the Way


Bendi-shayanam


Bendi enjoying the 'sun' - Energy Efficient CFL Style


Bendi the Cynic


Bendi - Heartbroken

The Ominous Space

The Great Indian English Challenge continues... with...

Ass whipped... I know...

My Niece - The Latest

Here is a picture of my latest to Earth niece. Great going PK and SIL.

Street No. 1525, Dell Inc

Yes!!!! You got it right!!! You did not?

Well, I just got myself a new Dell Inspiron 1525 with the Street Pattern. And am loving it. Waiting to buy a WiFi router for home so I can blog, write, and do anything from any corner of my home. Right now, my ergonomics is going for a toss. I have been perched on top of my bed like a vulture sharpening its beaks on rocks.

I am putting up a few pictures of the new arrival (peoples already started asking me if its a boy or a girl, but i can surely tell you am a happy papa). Leaving you with the pics:





Monday, April 14, 2008

Having better headlamps in Bangalore is a crime

If you happened to catch Times of India dated 13th April, 2008 (Sunday); they have news about how the Bangalore Police have registered around 500 cases of vehicles using “flashy” lights. Now I know, considering the rather ‘Speed-ed Up’ attitude of the Bangalore youth, there are quite a few irritating headlamps on the road; the kind that flashes, like an Aircraft lamp, when it’s parked. Those are really irritating.

But one should also know that many of the new cars (like Honda Accord, Skoda Laurent, etc) come with Xenon lamps. The basic purpose of a headlamp is to illuminate the road without distracting the vehicle coming from the opposite side. But is there a fool proof solution with the Bangalore Police which will determine which headlamp causes discomfort. The obvious and sad truth is no. The world is moving forward to a world illuminated by xenon lamps and LED lighting for vehicles. LEDs are proven to be energy efficient, highly directional and widely illuminating. But the law and order in Bangalore hits unknown lows and stinks with the odor of brainlessness.

The Bangalore Police believes that any headlamp which is white colored (rather than the dull orange of regular headlamps) is bad for eyes. They go to the extent of proclaiming that such headlamps causes blindness. If you look at it theoretically, looking at the setting sun damages your eyes. Will the Bangalore Police go to the extent of giving a challan to the Sun? In this very out worldly real world of Bangalore and its various rules and regulations, that is an event that’s waiting to happen.

The Bangalore Traffic Police needed a casualty to finally install some reflectors along the median of the Inner Ring Road. Along with that they drew the lanes of the wide road. Again, reiterating, they needed a casualty for this. Is there a casualty for this drive against bright white light? None I could find. Have there been any complaints against vehicles using such lights? Again the answer is no. Then the sole and rather obvious purpose of this drive to crackdown on such ‘harmful’ light is to make the light pockets of many in the law and order department a little heavier.

Kudos to Bangalore police for once again turning the clock back.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Marshall Montgomery on Leadership

“The leader must have infectious optimism and the determination to persevere in the face of difficulties. He must also radiate confidence, even when he himself is not too certain about them. The final test of a leader is the feeling you have when you leave his presence after a conference. Have you a feeling of uplift and confidence?”

- Field Marshall Montgomery (as quoted in ‘Ogilvy on Advertising’)


Krazzy Bollywood

“Save the industry!!! Stop buying pirated cds and dvds… buy original!!!”

In any other country I would have said “Ok fine… you made something truly awesome and original… heres my dime, yen, cents, penny, paise for your work.”

But Nah! Not Bollywood… no way… half the music of this industry is plagiarized without due mention of the original.

I know for a fact that these songs are copied:

1) Kya Mujhe Pyaar Hai – Woh Lamhe

2) Yeh ishq hai – Jab We Met

3) Aao Milo Chale – Jab We Met

4) Pehli Nazar Mein – Race

5) Ya Ali – Gangster

Incidentally all the above are by Pritam; who is hailed as the most successful composer. We have qawwali, carnatic classical, Hindustani classical, tonnes of folk songs, all these to be inspired from; but no, we go to Indonesia, Finland, France to copy music. For more on copying please do visit www.itwofs.com

But finally, someone seems to have won something. Ram Sampath (Music Director: Khakee) won a court case against Krazzy4 for copying his an ad jingle he’s composed for Sony Ericsson.

But am I relieved? Apparently, no.


Picture courtesy PassionforCinema.com

Saturday, March 15, 2008

An i-doser Q&A

For starters, the i-doser is an application which plays binaural audio (jargonified freaky sounds) which stimulates your brains to give you the effect of various drugs (among others). I had decent results with i-doser and I was a skeptic.

For a very in-depth research on i-doser click here.

Let me try answering a few of the regular concerns:

1) Does it work?
A: Binaural audio HAS to work. Many years back i had seen an article about a Tantric (Saint) in Japan. He had many disciples who went week after week to meet this guy. The Jap cops found him to be a major fraud who was into other shitty business; what they were clueless about was how he got so many disciples. They checked everything, no success with drugs. Finally someone checked a tape of one of his prayer sessions. They analyzed it and VOILA... the recorded prayers were layered over Binaural sound. They edited the prayer and played only the Binaural part. I can still remember my feeling... it was scary scary sound.

2) Placebo?
A: No. I don't think so. Why not? See below.

3) Why restful state of mind and lying down and all that shit, when a real drug doesn't need all that?
A: The real drug ACTUALLY alters you chemical structure. There are ACTUAL changes happening inside you. We, as mortal human beings, don't have control over the chemical composition of our blood. We cannot manipulate it. A drug can; and easily. Thats why its a straight out trip. Whereas, the i-doser works through sounds stimulating brain waves. And we have a more direct control with our brain than with our blood stream. We can forcefully start thinking and analyzing so that our brain remains occupied and unaffected by stimulus. I can argue on the same defense that you can quell down a marijuana trip the same way. Thats the reason why the relaxed state requirement. Oh by the way, it is actually difficult to relax your brain, thats why meditation is so niche.

4) How are the trips?
A: Not bad actually. Like a few people had mentioned; you feel REMs. Oh yeah, really thats freakish. Rapid Eye Movement they say happens only during dreams. So this has to be something. And weird dreams, dreams that you can feel and experience; but unfortunately, I couldn't remember them. A creepy stuff happened when I actually heard someone shout in my dream, and the sound just dissolved into the binaural audio. I swear i could feel that shout just melting into the sound through the headphones.
That said, the trips are really not all that great when compared to the real stuff. For example, their DMT trip promised cosmos and planets and all bull crap and I didnt see any of that. But the trip was good. Acid trip was a load of face twitching and real fun.

So there, now its upto you to make whatever of it. Try it, its fun, and quite effective, like their Calm ME. That made me feel good through the day, and trust me it was a rather nasty day that. Placebo? Why should I care when it actually worked. All you sceptics get me something else (another placebo even) to make me feel good, I will take it.

Update: The anesthesia dose works; and how! My whole left leg was numb.

Friday, March 14, 2008

More Bendi Pics

Yogic Bendi


Bharatanatyam Bendi


Bendi gyrating to the rhythms of House Music


Bendi goes bowling


Bendi kicks himself up into action

Sex sells...

and even the lowest denominator of Indian business men knows this tactic.

This here is a picture of a board showcasing their work. 'Lover basement' is as erotic as it gets when it comes to ads.


PS: If anyone knows a flat with a 'Lover Basement' please intimate me. I would definitely love to put my money in it.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

The Great Indian Swiss Kabab

I will really be wondering what the Swiss has to do with Kababs. But if any of you have any idea about Swiss Kababs, ENLIGHTEN ME!

Bendi - My New Obsession

It was months back that I came across some small stick figures with magnetic hands and feet which could be made into various forms. It was called Acrobots and it is available in thinkgeek. Last month I went for a trip to Pondicherry was really surprised to see an Indianised version of the Acrobot. It was called Bendi and it was available in one of the numerous Auroville boutiques in Pondicherry. It did not have magnetised limbs, but wooden one. But, oh did I forget something here? Yeah, ITS AWESOME FUN!

I have it in my office cubicle and everyday I make sure I take one picture of the Bendi in different poses. Here are a few of them:






Jurassic Era PC Mod

PC Modding is an aspect of computing I never thought I would involve myself in. But well, destiny's round table conference made other decisions.

I have made my first official PC Mod and it is titled 'The Jurassic Era'. 'The Bat Cave' was another name I had in mind for it, but the blinking LEDs of The Bat Cave made me decide otherwise.

Here are two pictures of the inside of my modded computer.

Viewer's discretion advised if you are seriously allergic to dust or you actually honestly love your PC.








Wednesday, February 13, 2008

SAY NO TO DANCING (???) : THE TRUTH BEHIND IT ALL

Bangalore Police have never had it easier. With the 11:30 deadline they can get their 'fair' share of bribes AND reach home early enough for a good night's sleep. But no, the thinking caps in the Bangalore Police have to go one step 'ahead'. They wound their clocks way back to the 19th Century and brought the 'NO DANCING' rule back. A fair guess would be that EVEN in 19th century India things were not this bad; comeon think Khajuraho with all those nasty biatches of courtesans, around.

The whole concept of this No Dancing rule doesn't make any sense. Do they think that people dance like a mating ritual and then the best male dancer gets to copulate with the most fertile female on the dance floor? Even if things were like that it would have been advantageous to India as a whole. We get a whole different ball game for arranged marriage; this will be like getting the Swayamvara system back. As we all know, healthy, dancing offspring is the key to a healthy economy. These days it jumps up and down with as much grace as of a Sumo Wrestler show jumping.

But guess what, I believe that this whole thing of ban on dancing is just a smokescreen. I had been to a few parties over the last couple of weeks and no where have I had the difficulty of not dancing. Actually I was tired of dancing too much (to DJ Vachan who else).

Bangalore Times is making a big time meal of this dancing ban. Every other day there will be an article which covers the hardships people face with the ban on dancing. Owners complain that their revenue stream has been mauled apart by the Bangalore Police. DJs complain that there is no audience for new songs and no scope for them to experiment; other than of course on "How to play songs that makes a crowd NOT Dance?". Hell, even the waiters are complaining that they cannot brush past those awesome beauties on the dancefloor, because there is NO dancefloor.

Maybe all this would run a sympathy tide against the police department and they will revoke all such restrictions. Thats what I am hoping would happen. But for now, Bangalore is fast losing its sheen and hardcore Bangaloreans have to put up with a lot of jeers from their partying-all-night neighbours from Mumbai, Hyderabad and Chennai. As for me, I am heading off to Hyderabad for the Tiesto Gig. Its been too long a time since I have seen the sun rise while returning from a party; and trust me there is no sobering high like that.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Calvin and Hobbes - Taare Zameen Par

Taare Zameen Par is easily one of the best movies of the year; what makes it even more special for me is its association with Calvin and Hobbes. When you watch Ishaan Awasthi, you are actually seeing huge parts of Calvin minus Hobbes.

All hail Bill Watterson, Amole Gupte and Aamir Khan for understanding kids as they are.

The following are a few strips from Calvin and Hobbes that has been used rather directly in the movie. I wouldn’t say it is a blatant lift because am in love with that movie and am not going to say anything against it.




The below strip is a rather not so obvious inspiration. It is the shower fight scene that has been partially used in the movie; though the theological aspect in Calvin has not been brought forward in the movie. ‘The Universe has an attitude Mom!’; which 6 year old would actually say that? But well, Calvin’s been 6 for like ten years through the life of the comic strip; so he must have learnt a lot.