Sunday, July 31, 2005

The toddler crawls

Its official now, I have fallen prey to blog mania. I discovered this for a fact today morning after I woke up. I was following my routine of net browsing rubbing away sleep away from my eyes aided by a freshly made cup of tea in hand when even before I had finished checking up my mails I flipped on my blog site checking it for comments simultaneously looking up 2-3 of my other favored blog sites too. It was then and there that I knew that this was going to form my inspiration for my next blog. I thought about why I was curious about whether X had managed to make it to office after the Mumbai rains, whether B managed to recover from the binging drive he went on Sunday to make it to work, whether E had decided on whether she loved Y or Z, whether V had come up with her take on the new Big B movie or whether what T thought of my new blog. I reasoned that blogs served as my window to lots of lives and following their developments served as my guilty pleasure. Lots of blogs served up some real in-your-face reality TV and this somehow kept me going back to lots of blogs. Some other ones served up some really interesting takes on life and that made me see lots of commonplace and mundane things in a new light. Also I identified with many people because they mirrored me in some past, present or future phase of my life. I reasoned that my blog reflected my thoughts that I put up for public consumption and I really wanted to know about various people’s views on the subject. I realized that every comment on my blog made me learn something new, made me know more about different kinds of people, how people thought, how they agreed, disagreed, appreciated, ridiculed my views and somewhere ended up in making me a better person at the end of the day. It opened me up to a whole new world of people who I consider as friends and I keep checking up on them and their lives through their blogs because I am somehow concerned for them now. As these thoughts kept playing in my head I realized that I had progressed also from the days when I thought of the blogs as just a selfish means of self expression and crawled my first steps as a toddler in the world of blogging.

Friday, July 29, 2005

Meeting with a stranger

She sat all curled up in the corner of the compartment playfully needling out the snowflakes lodged in her curly hair. She looked blissfully unaware of the surroundings full of people trying so hard to get to offices which they so hated. She was too lightly dressed for the New York winter but her face still glowed in the radiance and austerity of her smile. She looked 21, probably 22 at the most with the most beautiful pair of green-blue eyes he had seen all day. In all he was sure that she was the most beautiful thing that had walked through these compartment doors ever. As he coyly looked at her while pretending to flip through the newspaper he suddenly found himself looking straight into her green-blue eyes as she stared right back at him. He shifted uneasily and flipped the pages of his newspaper. It was then that he found himself staring at those green-blue eyes again on the obituary page. She would have turned 22 the coming Christmas.

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Zara has ke zara bach ke, Ye hai Bombay meri jaan


I have been a thoroughbred Delhite having lived there for 21 years of the 24 years that I have walked this planet. So most of my opinions about Mumbai are from whatever falls on my gullible ears from conversations with people belonging from there or from my faint recollections of a 3 day stopover in Bombay during the 3rd year of my undergraduate studies. This has given rise to countless and now done to death debates of the Delhi v/s Mumbai thing and therefore I shall not venture there preferring to retain the readership of the 2-3 people from Mumbai who drop in here once in a while. Going into a rainbow tinged flashback to probably the best days of my college life I pause to recall the 3 days I spent over in Mumbai all immediately my memories are soaked in the 3 continuous days of torrential downpour I encountered over there. It just rained incessantly while I went all around Mumbai in shoes that went 'splish splosh' as i walked around weaving through endless lanes of traffic. I was told that this happened to be an annual feature during the monsoons when it poured for days altogether and paralyzed life all around the commercial capital of the country. However yesterday's turn of events seemed to have zapped even those who claimed to have seen it all as 94.4 cm or more than 3 feet of rain poured all over the city. It is easily the heaviest rainfall ever recorded in day anywhere in India beating the previous record of Cherrapunji which incidentally happened to be its only claim to fame. As this sequence of events unfolded over the 26th of July everyone seemed to have been taken aback because no warning was issued by the Met department the day before. Also Mumbai's drainage system which has been pitiable and exposed in the briefest of downpours was left facing a major crisis with thousands of people stranded all over the city and about 35 dead as per the official estimates. The commercial hub of the capital was shut down for 2 whole days and this irks me because even though the drainage has been a problem in the city for many years, precious little is being done to improve it. However in this dark hour I was still happy to see the ethos of India shine through as the common man abandoned their personal concerns and stepped out on the streets to help one another displaying a spirit and grit that is quintessentially Indian.

Images courtesy rediff.com and Hindustantimes.com

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Disturbing Insouciance

During last weeks foiled bomb blasts in London I found myself sitting scanning my television for hours altogether checking to see if there was any loss of lives in the dastardly terrorist act. I kept scanning the web for any news updates on the story hoping that it wouldn't be as bad as the previous terrorist strike. It was in one of those moments that I started to wonder why similar incidents going on in India fail to attract similar attention from me. I wondered when I had slipped into such a state of indifference that in case I read a story about people being killed in the north east by a Bodo attack, or in Assam by Ulfa militants or in Kashmir by the cross border terrorists I don't even bother reading into the story. Have I become immune to such news to such an extent that it fails to evoke nothing more than a 'not another one of those attacks'. In fact how can I even become immune to loss of human lives especially when its the lives of our countrymen and soldiers who so zealously protect our country. Have I actually begun to differentiate between the loss of lives in a place like USA or Britain say compared to India or Palestine. It was actually the guilt of all these emotions that made me actually pen down my feelings and let it be a note to self for all future purposes.

I really don't know about all you people but any of you have somehow degraded into thinking alike me I guess you should also be taking a long hard look at your outlook towards the issues addressed above.

Thursday, July 21, 2005

LOVE STORY

He caught her from the corner of his eye, the same childlike giggle, the same nervous flicking back of her hair and the same indifference she sported while her friend kept an eye on him for her. He thought, for the hundredth time tonight, just like for the past 100 nights about going over and asking her out. But probably there would be a more perfect time a more perfect setting for speaking to THE ONE and he let the moment go away. Next evening he heard about the accident. And in his life’s greatest tragedy all he could think about was the moment he had held and then let slip through his fingers taking away her life along with his.

They walked away to the two ends of a bridge which would soon be swept away by a tide of tears. While people died fighting for a cause he had always thought she was one cause worth living for. He had never imagined it would ever come to this but mebbe this was the way it was meant to be. As he walked away from her he imagined a life that didn’t have her, and he knew that he wanted her back more than anything. But all bridges had been swept away. It didn’t matter to him anymore though, Love will always find a way or so she used to say.

It had been a long day but as he ate lone at the restaurant he couldn’t help but notice her as she eyed him apparently from behind from her bowl of ice cream. Something about her was different as she shone bright on her table all alone. He didn’t know why but he walked up to her table and asked her if the seat next to hers was taken.
It’s a free world you can sit wherever you want.
I couldn’t help but notice you smiling at me
That’s because you are wearing 2 different colored socks
Hmm its part of my Friday dressing and by the way you have ice cream all over your nose
It goes with my new top you see
They laughed for a long while after that……… and they lived happily ever after.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Beauty lies in ....... beholder (me in this case :) )

Lately I really cant seem to come up with any inspiration for my next post, I guess I have hit the blogger’s block. Therefore I visited around a few blogs and I notice that when this happens to other bloggers they come up with fancy lists which range from 10 resolutions for this year, 5 things I miss aboutt my ex, 7 reasons why I have seen Gigli 77 times, 5 reasons why I cant seem to blog anymore etc etc. I guess its an easy practice because you don’t have to write much, it doesn’t take too much brains and of course if you have the number on the list to play around with.
Now I have noticed that people always come up with their lists of their most beautiful people in the world very often. Every month new magazines and new websites come up with their own versions and we actually keep skimming with bated breath till we get to see who shows up at no. 1 on these lists. Also we fail to realize that these lists inspite of the fact that they are released by some prestigious magazine are actually made by a particular person or a select panel of people. Even if they are chosen by popular internet polls we fail to dismiss their triviality as we had so quickly done when Amitabh Bacchhan was chosen the superstar of the millennium.
Also I have noticed that I am at a loss of words whenever females ask me as what kinda females I like. Some people on the other hand seem to have all the answers ready and they quickly emit out a voluble mix of sensuality, homeliness, class, sense of humor, beauty topped of by an hourglass figure. As I am nt one of those who seem to have all the answers in life figured out I thought I would in light of all the above reasons blog about females I thought would make my list my 5 most beautiful females ever. Now before you decide to go through this list you must realize that I rate them on the quotient of their beauty and beauty alone (being a sex bomb, having a most desirable body / booty /cozonkas, being the most desirable kisser, being the most sweetest or cutest face / eyes etc don’t count at all) so here we go.
Madhubala has been one of the most beautiful faces to grace the black and white screens of Indian cinema and had a smile that would just light up the silver screen. She is one of the prime reason why Madhuri Dixit failed to make it of the list as even she was considered a look alike of Madhubala early on in her career.
Waheeda Rehman is probably a controversial selection but she makes it to the list as she has always been a personal favourite. You just have to see the grace and dignity which which she carried herself on the screen, the personification of Chaudvin Ka Chaand :)
Marlyn Monroe another classic beauty on the list would probably make the cut on any such list in any century. She has probably sold more posters than anyone and probably inspired more wannabes than anyone else.
Liv Tyler is one of few contemporary females who make it to the list because she is absolutely, drop dead gorgeously and angelically beautiful. I kept wondering how such ugly parents to give rise to such a pretty progeny till I saw Esha Deol came around and pretty much covered the other end of the spectrum on the question.
Aishwarya Rai but of course had to be in any list of mine. I must have been really devoted to Aish coz I remember my Mom telling with a very straight face once that she was actually too old for me :). She had waltzed right into my heart when she blazed the silver screen with the ‘Hi I am Sanju your new neighbor, Ek Pepsi milegi’ bit and has pushed up guy’s expectations from their new next door neighbours to previously unheard of levels.

Well that’s pretty much my list so I must list my also rans which include Angelina Jolie, Kylie Minogue, Kim Basinger, Parveen Babi and my 2nd grade English Teacher. I would love to include my next girlfriend to the list but I am too bad a liar to fib my way through that one (the sheer practicality of my nature might have something to do with it too :) )

Wats ur list people ?

Monday, July 18, 2005

Half Blood Prince - No spoilers ahead

It began at 1:15 pm a pleasant Sunday afternoon innocently enough. 12 HOURS, a sandwich, a pizza slice, a sumptuous dinner followed by a mango lassi later I can finally claim to be a small drop of the all consuming Harry Potter wave that seems to have swept the muggle world and possibly also the parallel wizarding universe. It is an interesting notion that all wizards of the world would be waiting out for this book which they would be regarding as another edition of the adventures of the wizard they would have now come to treat as God. So the book instead of being as just another book would be something of the lines of a Bible / Ramayana part 6. Anyways before I digress too much (I know some might argue that I have already) I must get back to discussing my opinion of the book. Well first things first I must inform all of you that HARRY POTTER DIES. Do not repulse back in horror and shock for I have not given away a spoiler here (J K Rowling would probably sue my a** to hell if I did that I guess) its just that the Harry that we’ve come to know from the past books is kinda missing and we see new facets in his personality as well as his trusted and loyal circle of friends Ron and Hermione (the new age fellowship as some would like to believe). In the part of the series they all grow out from their overprotected shells and face the big bad worlds themselves. They all go through experiencing their own share of happiness, anger, and hatred dealing with most of it themselves. They discover their loves experience their heartbreaks thus lending a much higher emotional quotient to this book. Thus while there is a lesser amount of action the book scores and moves successfully forwards through the undercurrents running through its various sub plots (almost like how Kill Bill 2 compared to part 1). The book thus makes for interesting reading and would probably end up second best to only Goblets of fire. Moving on to the negatives I felt that the book was needlessly loquacious (mebbe all that talk of the Potter books encouraging reading habits amongst children has gone to JKR’s head) and there are chapters that can be removed in entirety without making any difference to the book. The title of the book was also not well justified and seemed like a gimmick because I seriously felt it would somehow be the main plot of the storyline. Also the ending of the book looks like a shameless publicity stunt for the next book in the series (that doesn’t stop me for waiting for it nonetheless).
All in all the 12 hours were well invested so people with that kinda time on your hands I say go grab your copy now (or request your room mate for it as I did  ).

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Blogging rediscovered

Once there was an artist who was brimming with many ideas and as an extension of his personality he used to paint his creations using the empty canvas as a vent to his thoughts. He painted without a care in the world filling one canvas after the other and always found himself a little more content and a little anxious after every painting, content with what he had achieved and anxious about what facet of life his next painting would reflect. Somewhere along the line some friends of his noticed his work and told him that it was criminal to keep such creations to himself and they goaded him to show his work to the world. He received more acclaim for his work as he put it out for public display but somewhere down the line he found himself getting more and more affected by people’s reactions. He would float with every praise and felt his soul deflated by every critical remark. So he started painting stuff that would please all…..except his own self. Gradually goaded by his support group he started selling his paintings to public and he found himself evaluating his creations by the price they managed to eke out from selling them. He found that painting was no longer fun just because he was no longer painting for his own joy but for materialistic pleasures that he gained from selling them.
By narrating that story I was trying to draw a parallel to most bloggers of the virtual world. As I state in my first few posts I started blogging in an attempt to capture my feelings, my reflections, my musings and practically anything else that came to my mind. But as I blogged on I noticed that people comments started affecting me and eventually I started evaluating my blogs by the number of hits and comments they got. Recently the topic of how to increase blog traffic also came up with people coming up with their own ingenious ideas. I suddenly realize that this was not the motive of blogging in the first place, it was meant to be my personal space where I spoke my mind. I should have welcomed ppl’s opinions and thoughts on my posts but they should never have been the motivation for my writing my blogs………what say u my fellow bloggers.

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

SAIF choice ?

After years and years of cringing every year seeing Shahrukh Khan carry away the best actor’s award at virtually all the award platforms I thought I was ready for anything. But no…………ppl in India have really unforeseen abilities to shock you out of your boring life once in a while. So as I woke up today and was looking at the various headlines of various dailies through my half shut eyes I was kinda zapped to read that Saif had picked up the best actor award at this year’s National Awards. I gave him the benefit of doubt initially thinking that he had probably been awarded for his role in Parineeta which I still haven’t caught this year. But imagine my surprise at having discovered that he wins the award for the movie ‘Hum Tum’. Now this movie even though wasn’t the worst to come out of the Bollywood stable last year wasn’t the kinda of movie that even gave anyone scope to perform well enough to be voted the best actor amongst the 1000 odd movies that were made in India last year. Besides being a blatant rip-off of one of the all time classics of Hollywood ‘When Harry met Sally’ it essentially showed Saif in an extension of his Dil Chahta Hai avatar which also made an appearance in Kal Ho Naa Ho. I can almost imagine Saif laughing his head off hearing the announcement along with millions of other Indians like me. Also odd was Page 3 bagging the Best Film award even though it was released this year (which puts BLACK in the running too then).
Wat next Mallika Sherawat bagging the thing next year?
The only silver lining: Best Male Playback singer award going to the underrated Udit Narayan for the song, Yeh tara in Swades, Ashutosh Gowariker's Swades winning won Mahesh Aney the Best Cinematographer's award and the Nargis Dutt Award for National Integration going to Shyam Benegal's Bose: The Forgotten Hero.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

DESTINY

When things are going well and so overflows the cup of joy
They pat themselves on the back beaming with pride they aren’t so coy
When things take a turn for the worse and life’s a pain
Suddenly they remember HIM; the keeper of all is to blame
However when things happen for no rhyme or reason
Everyday bringing on a new season
For a method in madness when they all are game
Only then Destiny thy is to blame.


An ample amount of free time and mumblings uttered by me trying to explain the concept of fate during a chat session shall assume responsibility for this post.

Monday, July 11, 2005

Rendered unusable

I have been thinking about a lot of lines that have been rendered unusable due to the overpowering influx of movies, TV and other real life events. I have tried to put together a short collection of the same in this post.

You’ve got beautiful eyes. They remind me of my ……… (you just can’t use that for some reason even if someone actually does have beautiful eyes)
How u doing? (U just can’t say that w/o the Joey hangover)
I just love small children. (Michael Jackson takes lone credit for that one)
We are just friends. (Ya rite)
Asta la vista / I’ll be back. (Arnie seems to have that one patented now)
XYZ karna to mera farz tha….. (sounds like a hangover of all those old Hindi movies)
Have we met before? (supposedly the most clich├ęd pickup line)
Do u wanna get some coffee? (but of course wat else do u want)

Fell free to add more to the list :).

Saturday, July 09, 2005

When u want something real bad........

Remember days when you wished it would just rain tomorrow so that you would not have to go to school and it rained. Remember times when you wished u would somehow get to know that cute female that you noticed at school and u did end up getting an introduction with her within a week. Remember times when the phone rang and you for some inexplicable reason thought about an old friend of yours whom you hadn’t spoken to for ages and sure enough he/she happened to be on the other end. Remember times when you wished that your team wins a game more than anything and they eke out a victory from a no win position. Remember times when you wished you could somehow see this particular movie which has been lying to your ‘to be watched’ movies list for a long time and sure enough as you settle down at home after finishing up your work the same movie is showing on TV. I don’t know about everyone but its moments like these that give me unbridled joy because these are moments that bring along unexpected happiness and they occur without any reason, absolutely and totally inexplicable. For this reason I have had this funda for life that if you really want something bad enough you do end up getting it one day or the other. All that’s needed is that the desire should come straight from the heart, should be something that you really crave for and not just a passing emotion and of course it should not be encroaching on anyone else’s feelings.

Thursday, July 07, 2005

S E 7 E N

He stepped out in his new pram, the cynosure of all eyes and he beamed with PRIDE
He walked into his garden and noticed over his fence the new swing that her father had gifted her for her birthday and he was filled with ENVY
He knew if he wailed long enough he would get his bottle of milk he liked so much, so he wailed longer and harder as his GREED increased
He could never understand the big fuss about him taking his first step if he had it his way he would have stayed in his crib all day overcome by SLOTH
He just loved the after lunch ice cream and even though his nose and hands lay smeared in some he asked for more and so he fell prey to GLUTTONY
He could never understand why daddy would always be late from work so late that he only got to see him weekends and ANGER against him rose up within him
He beamed at the angelic face of his baby sitter wondering if he could be a good boy long enough to earn a peck from her again as he fell prey to LUST

They pronounced him to be a SINNER, he argued ‘Aren’t we all?’ while still wondering when exactly he became guilty of it all.

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Racket science v/s rocket science

I have been trying to find words for Roger Federer's performance as he demolished Andy Roddick's hopes in a flawless display on the Wimbledon center court. You couldnt help feeling sorry for Roddick that he had to come up against someone so damn good that he made it seem that only one guy was playing tennis while the other guy moved around the court like a ballet dancer. As I see it the tennis was racket science for one while making it seem like rocket science for the other.

Sunday, July 03, 2005

When Harry met Sally

Imagine a scene when a guy friend (call him Harry) of yours is caught off guard with some new chick that he is probably going out with. Sample this conversation
‘Hey Harry watsup how is it going’
‘Not bad man how r u doing that was hell of a game last evening’
‘Yeah man u bet, I almost spilt my can of beer when they got that last minute shot’
…………………………after n number of minutes after going thru the entire NBA season in a quick flashback and discussing loads of other things including how hot Angelina Jolie looked in Mr. and Mrs. Smith, how maddeningly frustrating the new courses are turning out to be, how well the weather’s been holding up etc. till you realize that you have more pressing matters on hand including that half eaten sub demanding ur attention at the office and make a quick exit. It is only then that you realize that ur friend very conveniently forgot to even introduce u to that girl (let her be called Sally ….wat u want it to be Angelina….hey it’s my blog and Sally is wat it stays as). I mean Sally just stood there grinning the whole time (while u just gaped at her looking interested in wat ur friend was saying, all the time wondering how such an angel was delivered to a devil like ur friend) without your friend having the courtesy to introduce her. You know what I would have dismissed such an occurrence as an exception but just that I have seen too much of it happening and it’s just plain rude on the guy’s part to just dismiss her from the conversation’s presence. I have thought over this situation for a while and have been able to come up with 2 plausible explanations for all those females who have felt absolutely invisible in situations like the ones mentioned above. I guess guys are just insecure with females and have this chronic fear of losing their girl. Also sometimes Sally doesn’t get introduced coz Harry has no idea the status quo of their relationship (happens when u get stuck with the ‘we r just friends’ bit for too long I guess) and so the non introduction is just an escapist gesture on their part.
Girls on the other hand are an absolutely different cup of tea. Sample this scene as Harry sees Sally in a bar all alone and walks upto her. After going thru the cheesy and done to death pickup lines he dares to offer her a drink only to be zapped back to square one (if all that cud actually be considered as any progress) when the first thing he is told is rudely made aware that she is there with her boyfriend. Suddenly Harry feels light tug (understatement of the year) and he comes face to face with this guy in a baby Gap T with biceps the size of Harry’s head………..sayonara Sally. My point is that if they are with someone it’s the first thing that they will make will aware you of for some reason unlike the guys. mebbe girls reading this can tell me why?

As I said guys are from Mars, girls from anywhere else.

CRASH

"Moving at the speed of life, we are bound to collide with each other. And we do. Sometimes our collisions bring out the best in us. Sometimes they bring out the worst. Either way, they shake us, they slap us in the face, and they wake us up to the reality that our world is much bigger than just ourselves and our lives.

It's the sense of touch. Any real city,you walk. You know? You brush by people,they bump into you. In L.A. nobody touches you. Were always behind this metal and glass. It's the sense of touch. I think we miss that touch so much that we crash into each other just so we can feel something."

Opening lines from 'Crash' easily one of the better movies I have seen this year.

Saturday, July 02, 2005

Believe it baby this one's for u

Just finished with watching an epic slug fest at the Wimbledon final with Venus Williams prevailing in the longest ladies final ever in the Wimbledon history. It was an amazing battle of 2 big hitters and Venus reaction at the end of it said it all. It was a mixture of relief and joy of having prevailed on a day when no one would have been shamed in ending up as a runner's up. In the end she just couldn't stop jumping in joy as the inner child in her came out from within and walked all over the center court. As she came over her disbelief battling her inner demons and beamed a smile that said believe it baby this one's for u.

P.S. As I finish this post England have tied the match with the Aussies. Although it technically still means that honors are even before the Ashes I just have to add that England were 5/33 chasing 197 and Lee and McGrath gave away 18 from the last 12 balls to a combo of Giles and Goughie with Lee misfielding of the last ball to give the poms 2 runs to tie the match.