Thursday, August 31, 2006

Did I miss the train?

Geek Speak (at a q for billing during a sale)
G1: This Q is so long because they have closed two counters.
G2: It might have crashed
G1: That could be because they have not tested package properly
G2: Talking of not bad testing have you tried this feature on this phone? It doesn't work properly
G1: Oh it works fine on my phone. You need bluetooth for it to work.
By then G3 is interested and jumps right in.
G3: Yes I have the same phone. G1 and me use it all the time. Let me explain.
And then then three happily chattered on about the intricacies of bluetooth technology with terms like MMS, MP3, speed and cost factor thrown in. While I stood there with a mobile phone that did nothing but call and send text messages. The only extra feature it had was that it doubled up as a torch when needed. So I stood there wondering about my position in the gadget freaks' world nursing the sore spot which was turning blue where a tooth previously existed.
In the same Q there were two little girls who very excitedly talked about their new aquisitions, a complete Barbie kitchen set (pink mind you) and a delicately proportioned doll whose name now I have forgotten, in a bright purple dress. What shocked me was the price tag, together they cost 1200/- Not the kids but the dolls. I don't remember ever owning anything that expensive even when I was 20 let alone when I was 8. Nor do I remember knowing anyone who owned a Barbie doll let alone a complete kitchen set.
Suddenly I was in a hurry to finish paying and go home to my "drab" world.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Tress Stress :-)

All those women, not so blessed with straight manageable hair (in short curly hair) will relate to this. And all those women who like me had their initial hair cuts in the hands of their dad's barber and so are now struggling to communicate with new age hair stylists will surely relate to this.
I will write about my own hilarious struggles some other time :-)

blog hopping thoughts

Two days ago I realised that at least once a day I peep into other blogs. Some of them friends, some are strangers, in the sense I don't know them any other way other than through their blogs. I drop in nevertheless. It also occurred to me that I was getting entangled their stories. I wonder about A's travel exploits or if that girl got her husband to cook a meal for her or if that other guy found his love...
Now a question popped in my head. Isn't this a new form of gossip monging? I mean sure instead of someone else telling you about someone else here the concerned person was putting it all out in the open for every one to read. But still...
Or is blog hopping becoming the soap entertainment of internet? You see so many different lives unfolding in their own words thankfully minus the (K)Ekta Kapoor elements. It works on the same principles; atleast for me. You see a new blog find it interesting because the author is writing about the same issues that you are interested in either in the exact same way or with her own spin to it. You go back to that blog as often till you find other more interesting blogs or this person offends you or bores you.
For obvious reasons I have decided that I surf the blogs for the second reason. Why do you do it? Do tell me.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Dental Discoveries

This week I learnt that the innocuous wisdom tooth (why wisdom tooth) can be a super pain in the well ofcourse the mouth when "impacted." Did you know that just the simple act of lying down can cause enormous pressure on the jaws? Well I didn't know till I removed one of the wisdom teeth. I have another one to go and I don't even want to think about the when of it.

For the last four days I have been living on ice cream, soups and sweets since I can't even open my mouth let alone chew! This is my childhood fantasy come true. Didn't you want to live on ice creams and chocolates? Only I am hating it right now. I want sambhar with veggies (!!!) in it. I want lots of veggies (I know mom you are smiling reading this). I want lots of chinese food and I want to bite into cashews and groundnuts. And what's worse I get tired of talking. Sigh.................

There is a good side to this process though. You can actually sit around and demand things. I have not had this fortune in a very loooong time. So there's mom who is constantly trying to feed me. There's dad actually taking off from work to be with me. A husband who is actually cooking his signature dhal for me before he gets to work! And a very jealous brother of mine who is trying to get back at me saying I am imitating Sean Connery while trying to talk. But except for the pain I am not complaining at all.

I also discovered that being a dentist is a very lucrative biz. 15 minutes of cutting, trimming and pulling and stitching up he gets a thousand rupees! It takes me at least a week's work and 1500 words to get that kinda money!

Thursday, August 17, 2006


Yesterday The Hindu had published a survey on the thoughts and aspirations of the youth. Some of the figures confused me a lot.
18% own mobile phones
18% own Two wheelers
47% say dating should not be allowed
58% say marriage decisions should be left to parents
Are they talking about the same country that I live in?
In my country -
1) Every kid who has learned to talk can operate a mobile phone and the moment he or she is of mall hitting age they pretty much get a mobile phone.
2) Any kid who is over 13 is allowed to ride mother's, sister's or sometimes even father's bike and then they pretty much own it.
3) As soon as they can stop wearing uniforms (sometimes even before that) they have boyfriends and girlfriends whom they take on their bikes and talk for hours on their cell phones.
I am not blaming the kids, I am guilty of one or two things that I have just said. But the point is that I had assumed the whole country is like this only. That's what you see in movies, advertisements and even in news reports right? But the The Hindu - CNN IBN survey doesn't seem to be talking about the same people?!?!?
Yes they are. Only they talked to the rural India; whom all of us have happily forgotten. 80% of the youth questioned are supposed to be from rural India.
So all the media and advertisements are becoming richer just by milking the 20% urban population? And all the so called telecom revolution, and easier loans have been only for the urban junta?
I am not suggesting that the whole country should become mobile flashing brainless, courtesyless people that we have become. But doesn't the report make feel you very uncomfortable and confused about the so called progress our country seem to be have made?
Something is wrong here isn't it?

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Broadcast Bill

The controversial bill has been withdrawn. Didn't realise in all the holidaying :-))))

Earning vs. Living

I was on inner ring road today and at a signal, a guy on a bike started honking while there was still about a minute to go before the red light changed to green. I tried my best to kill him with my glares. He didn't die but he did stop honking. Just as I was enjoying the powers of my glares there was more honking. This time I didn't know who the culprit. The constables at the signal , however got irritated and shouted that there's still 30 secs to go. And someone said its an ambulance. The constables and a few of us at the head of the signal, panic and try to make way, but we can neither see nor hear the ambulance. The signal opened and I frantically moved to the left of the road, wondering why I can't hear the the ambulance. Full two minutes later I heard it. Not before the mad honking of a call centre cabbie! He was driving faster than the ambulance and wasn't letting it overtake him. No one in the vehicle seemed to be perturbed by it. For next five minutes the ambulance tried helplessly to overtake the stupid cab which just wouldn't let up. The ambulance got its way through only when the cab turned off in a different direction. I prayed that those five minutes of delay and the other such delays that I didn't witness, didn't jeopardise the patient in the ambulance.
Why are we in such a hurry that we can't even let an ambulance go past us? Will that cabbie really lose his day's pay if he slows down, even for an ambulance? Will those passengers in the cab lose their pay? Who'll pay if the patient loses his chance to live because someone didn't want to lose his day's pay?

Friday, August 11, 2006

New broadcasting bill

The Ministry of Information & Broadcasting (India) has put up theDraft Broadcasting Services Regulation Bill, 2006 and a ConsultationPaper on the Broadcasting Bill here
It is believed that the new act will go a long way in gagging the media. You can see related articles here , here and here.
I am wishing some one would explain the lawly gobbledygook of the act in English to me.

Bollywood Othello

When it comes to Bollywood (I will never call it Indian cinema. Hindi Cinema, may be, that too not today) I have learned to expect the least. Originality is expected only in terms costume designing. When films like “Kuch Kuch hota hai”, “Mohabbatein”, “Kabhi Khusi Kabhi Ghum”, “Kal Ho na ho” become successful despite their absolute inaneness, I am justified in expecting the least. Yes there have been movies like DCH, Swades, RDB, Being Cyrus, Ek haseena thi to name a few but there are still not enough of that kind. The recent string of “intelligent” movies has however given me hope.

I watched Omkaara yesterday and loved every bit of it. It was almost three hours long but not once did I feel like stirring from my seat except at the intermission. I have not read Othello (Not for the lack of trying but Shakespeare is just not very easy for me) and don't know how many liberties has the director Vishal Bharadwaj, taken. Frankly I don't care. For this Othello adaptation delivers in every department. The cinematography is captivating in spite of the absolute barren locations the movie has been shot in. Music is really good. The title song is already a hit, so is the Bipasha number "beedi". But the other songs are worth listening too. My favourites are “jag jaa ri gudiya”, “naina thag lenge” and the other item song “namak.” The lyrics of “jag jaa ri” is beautiful. The romantic number "O saathi re” is also pleasant. Gulzar rocks :-). The songs don't really come in the way of the narration.

What can I say about the cast - Somewhere I read that Ajay Devgan is adequate as Omkaara. It is true he is not spectacular but I can’t see anyone else doing that role. He looks every bit the hardcore hitman, the love infected man and at the end a very convincing betrayed man. Nasiruddeen Shah ‘s character doesn’t have great scenes and with what he has he is good. He really can’t go wrong. Vivek Oberoi (or however the hell he spells his name these days) doesn’t impress. He has not impressed since his fantastic debut in “Company.” Konkana Sen Sharma is so comfortable in her role, it is beautiful to watch her perform. It is especially interesting how she utters hard-hitting Hindi expletives without any awkwardness :-) I am glad to see her in a “commercial” cinema as opposed to “off-beat.” Bipasha Basu seems to be a shade better than in her previous films (My memory is from her debut film Ajnabee) She might get a filmfare award sooner than John Abraham for acting. Vishal Bharadwaj needs to be applauded for showing Kareena Kapoor as tolerable person. She actually managed to get my sympathies at times.

The highlight of the film is of course Saif Ali Khan. The movie opens with him. If he managed to get a national award for his role in Hum Tum (???!!!) he should get an Oscar by that standard for this. He is simply brilliant. It is refreshing to see a hero ready to change his “image” for a role. Saif actually limps through the film and has yellowed teeth. He is very convincing as “Langda Tyagi.” I read somewhere that his mom convinced him to do this role. It is a good thing to be a mamma’s boy sometimes isn’t it?

I had only one problem though - the entire movie is in a dialect of UP which was very hard to follow, many dialogues were lost on me.

That just takes the score to 99 on 100 :-)
PS: BTW I am convinced the new movie "Kabhi Alvida Na Kehna" realeasing today will be in the list of inane films. It will still be a hit for it has great costumes designed by Manish Malhotra you see.
Update: KANK is pathetic, just as I expected but people still want to watch it. Mostly to see how pathetic can the Karan Johar, SRK, Bacchans (who btw have been appreciated for their acting) Preity Zinta (some one tell her, screaming is not acting) and Rani (pl. stop acting in Johar films) great costume drama set in NY can get :-)))))))))))

Thursday, August 10, 2006

To say or not say

I remember giving a headline "East meets west" to one of my articles back in college. I thought it was very witty (?) or something to that effect. The euphoria or the relief of coming up with something smart (!) lasted only till my professor asked me "As opposed to?"

Err, hmmm, ahem...gulp. He looked at me exasperated and said "do yourself a favour stay away from these supposed smart lines. They have been told a million times in this week alone"

Later another professor said the same thing again and again till I could actually catch myself saying it or writing it.

And in today's fast paced, globalised world cliches in the media are abound. Someone actually took time to put a list of them together and ranked them too. It could actually serve as a ready reckoner for budding journos. These things can especially come in handy when you have to end your PTC and can think of nothing smarter than your name and the channel's name.

Read all about it here.

In the list of cliches they have forgotten the most important ones "Only time will tell" and "as good as anybody's guess"

My humble contribution.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Things I heard on a Sunday afternoon

"I should've listened to you"
"How could that b****** do that?"
"Are you sure he is the one?"
"Are you sure that's what he was trying to do?"
"Yeah otherwise there is no need for him to be there, we know but still..."
"It shouldn't have happened. But what can we do?"
"Bhagwaan kasam humne kuch nahi kiya"
"You say he was the one, but don't beat him up. No we can't beat him up either. It will be an offence on our part if we touch him. We will just fire him from the job."
"Why call the police? They will let him go."
"This won't even stand in for a legal case. You will be the one embarassed about it."
"The same thing happened to my wife you know. I didn't do any thing, what could I do?"
"Beating up people is not for us; we are educated folks."
"You go around the city by yourself, what if he comes after you holding a grudge?"
"You should've been more careful. These criminals will keep on doing these things."
"No don't call the police we will just ensure he doesn't come back into this building."
"Well we know that he can go and do this somewhere else to someone else, but it won't be us."
"Don't be emotional about this. They are psycho men. we have to learn to deal with it."
"Why do want to make yourself visible for wrong reasons? Do not complain."
"You can't change the world. Don't be silly, you just make sure you are safe."

I just have one thing to say to all these men. "Spineless *******"

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Friends came along.

We held hands together and walked all day
We saw everything there was to see there
We parted only when our parents came to pick us up
You were my first best friend in all the six years of my life

Then he came along, told me stories of things I didn’t know of
I spent more time with him, and saw very little of you
You too moved on to the front of the class, to another friend
We lived on without bitterness and heartaches with new friends

I stepped into the world of adulthood, I never saw you again
But friends came along, some instant relationships that lasted
And some slowly and steadily made their way into my life
There was laughter, happiness and few tears on the way

Then came the crossroads of life, we parted ways to meet our lives
With promises to keep in touch, very few of them fulfilled
But friends came along, adding new shades to the heart’s colours
Opening worlds that I didn’t know existed, I took it all gladly

This time it was romance that came in the way of friendships
Leaving gashes on the heart, though filled with love, it still hurt
We got busy setting up our own worlds, with love, happiness and hopes
But friends came along, bringing their part of the world to mine.