Some hearts to be broken Some words to be spoken Some paths to be laid Some promises to be made Some wishes to be fulfilled Life to be lively and fun filled And I wait for the New Year With mind steady, sound and clear!
I am an owl enjoying the night I am the cuckoo crooning in the sunlight I am the peacock dancing in the rain I am the hen picking up the grain I am the vulture waiting for the prey I am the turkey drawn into a gory fray I am the duck paddling in the lake I am the ostrich of a sturdy make I am the crow drooling in the dirt I am the pigeon engaged in fractious flirt I have all the colors, even grey and white Docile yet dodgy, strong yet very light!
Love, thy has many names
When a guy is besotted with a girl, you are called infatuation
When a mother showers her attention on her child, you are called affection
When two strangers care for each other, you are called friendship
When a soldier dies for the country, you are called patriotism
When an artist shows his creative prowess, you are called the muse When a person shows dedication in his work, you are called passion
When there is a mark left on the platform, you are called lust
Love, you have many facets
Which one suits you the best?
I had a chance to trot from the west to the east or rather north to south of the northern hemisphere in a quick span of time which left me completely tickled as well as throttled. It was a rare opportunity to spend July in Ireland and August in Singapore, the only common factor in both these trips was that I was neck deep with work. However the variegated experiences in both these countries, the good ones and the not so good ones, were enriching and elevating. It helped me evolve as a person with more maturity and poise.
Dublin matches a lot with India especially in terms of the freedom struggle that it had to endure. The Irish flag resembles with Indian one, horizontal stripes are replaced by vertical stripes minus Ashok Chakra. The city is well maintained and well connected by Luas tram services and buses, people quite warm and friendly, the only turnoff being the cost factor. Cathedrals, museums, parks are the major tourist attractions like any other European counterparts.
City is famous for its literary heavyweights – James Joyce, Bernard Shaw, Oscar Wilde, Jonathan Swift, W B Yeats… can find books at very cheap prices. Another must to do is to taste Guinness and Baileys! Luckily, I visited Dublin at the right time of the year, around July – August when the sun never sets before 10pm.
I thoroughly enjoyed the short stint during July in Ireland but was extremely let down with my long stay during August in Singapore. May be it’s because Dublin and Singapore are on the extremes as far as the climate and citizens are concerned. Heading straight from Dublin to Singapore was not a good idea at all - from severe chills to humidity that kills! It took nearly a week to adjust to the tropical climate and the stinking odor of the oil used to prepare food. While in Dublin, one get to see most of the fellow travelers quite engrossed in books, in Singapore, they were quite engaged with the high end phones, laptops and other gadgets. As for working environment, I prefer Dublin to Singapore, for Dubliners know exactly how to separate out play and pleasure!
Singapore has mixed population – Chinese, Malays and Indians, settled in well defined regions. Since each section represents the different cultures of its inhabitants, it’s good to travel to places like Chinatown, Little India, Paya Lebar and experience the diversity! The various parts of the country are well connected by MRT as well as buses. It just takes a week to cover the entire country!
Singapore Zoo, Night Safari, Jurong Bird Park is worth one time visit. River cruise at night is quite invigorating – cool chilly breeze, illuminated elevated buildings, magnificent marvelous Merlion statue! The man made island Sentaso is a huge tourist attraction.
Now as I enjoy the Indian September, I recollect these beautiful lines brilliantly penned by Robert Frost
The woods are lovely, dark and deep. But I have promises to keep, And miles to go before I sleep, And miles to go before I sleep.
How true! The cities abroad are good in their own way but home is where my heart is and it is known by the name India!
Raajneeti could be hailed as the casting coup of 2010, the best character actors (Naseeruddin Shah, Nana Patekar, Manoj Bajpai)sharing the screen space with the younger brigade (Ajay Devgan, Arjun Rampal, Ranbir Kapoor, Katrina Kaif).
The movie is a modern take on Mahabharata – belligerent brothers (cousins), illegitimate offspring, shrewd manipulator caught in a war called "politics". The ultimate winner has an ulterior motive which forms the twist in the tale.
As far as actors are concerned – Shah is wasted, Patekar at his usual best, Bajpai stands out, Devgan sails smoothly, Rampal shows improvement, Kapoor steals the show, Kaif comes up with new expressions but that doesn’t guarantee her a National Award! Prakash Jha has captured the mode and mood of elections substantially well.
In short, Rajneeti rocks. What’s your opinion on this decent take on a dirty game?
Latest book that has joined my shelf is "A Pack of Lies by Urmila Deshpande". The book has nearly 300 odd pages which should have ideally taken max of 3 days to complete but instead took nearly 3 weeks. The question is, why so? The answer is simple – A Pack of Lies is nothing but a bundle of balderdash!
The book is written in first person and highlights a journey of a girl who yearns for her mother’s attention. She wins it eventually when she becomes heavy with a fatherless child.
There is an overdose of sex, smoke and booze, and if coming of age is all about these activities, I rather not grow up! There is not a single instance in the book that caught my attention.
Ms Deshpande, truth is bitter, no wonder you came up with a pack of lies! I would be lying if I suggest A Pack of Lies as a good read to other fellow readers.
A lady traveling in "Ladies coupe" from Bangalore to Kanyakumari, gets to hear about the lives of her co-passengers. Their "Lessons in forgetting" cognizes her real purpose of life to such an extent that she does not shy away from trying "Satyr of the subway"!
Well, that’s Anita Nair! Her stories are complex and contemporary centered around women of all ages, concentrating hard on the trials and tribulations they encounter during the span of their lives.
After reading her novels, various thoughts clog my mind:-Are most women nymphomaniac? Do they always want to be desired and drooled over? Do they feel lonely and lifeless even in their marriage? Or are these just the fits of imagination of the author?
The chosen, finest fifteen Is all set to come back As the weakest, ever seen Low in attitude and in knack
Little did they fathom short ball Would ruin their world cup hope For instead of tackling it and standing tall Played meek and weak, unable to cope
Batting was attributed as their forte Little did the batsmen play and portray At many times, even after winning the toss Bowling first was what their captain chose
Not winning a single match in the super eight Captain is left with no more excuses or no one to blame For the team hardly gave a sturdy, spirited fight Once upon the time, they were the champions of the game!
The current trend is that people who have graduated from prestigious institutions like IIT, IIM etc to flaunt their creativity. The latest to join this bandwagon is Amish, surprisingly, his work can be termed as fresh and fascinating!
He just published the first part of his trilogy series called the “The Immortals of Meluha” – distinctive fictional take on the Hindu mythology about Lord Shiva. In the book, Shiva is not a Lord but a leader, whose valor and vision make him the Mahadev, the God of Gods!
The book starts with Shiva, a tribal leader from Kailash in Tibet, along with his folks, immigrates to land of Meluha, a perfect empire created centuries back by Lord Ram. The peaceful existence of Meluhans, the Suryavamshis are in jeopardy due to the freedom- loving, law-breaking, corrupt Chandravamshis. To make the matters worse, Chandravamshis have joined hands with Nagas, ominous race known for their exemplary martial skills, to overpower the Meluhans. The onus lies on Shiva, the “Neelakanth” to protect the Meluhans and whether he will succeed, forms the rest of the story.
The writer deserves kudos for doing an extensive, intensive research on Lord Shiva. The flow of the book is quite mellifluous, the most striking being the way the writer interpreted “OM”.
Like any work of art, this book has some loopholes too, the primary ones being some dragging war and marriage sequences. Even the ending is quite abrupt but can be overlooked!
Verdict – Quite enjoyed the book, in fact waiting for the next part which would be hopefully out next year!
It all started last year. She was way too thrilled to meet her long lost friends but destiny had other plans. The day she landed, her mom was laid up with "Chikun"gunya. She knew that it was her turn to look after her mother. Her plans to meet her friends had gone awry.
By the end of the trip, she learnt a lot about herself, a kind of introspection and enlightenment! As she boarded the bus back to her place of job, she promised herself to be a more dutiful, dependable daughter.
In her place of work, she was assigned a new project, a work to be completed offshore, but one day, out of the blue she was asked to apply for visa. She did, but fate played spoilsport again! The week when she was supposed to travel, she was diagnosed with "Chicken" Pox. She needed somebody to take care of her, so she headed home to be with her parents. All through the journey, she was thinking of the hard work that had gone haywire, a classic example of God proposes, human supposes, God disposes!
She reached home and was taken straight to what is known as the isolation room. She was given strict instructions not to strain herself in any manner –not to surf, read books etc. Other excruciating instructions were not to have bath, cut nails, comb hair etc till the pox recedes.
Imagine her plight! Blisters all over her body, quite itchy but not allowed to scratch. On top of that, the blebs were wrapped up with Neem and Haldi paste. She had to withstand the pungent odor of the pus and the paste. She was quite hungry but the thought of having food with dirty fingers made her feel sicker. Any noise downstairs enthuse her and she yearned to be a part of the conversations but not allowed to move out of the room. She always enjoyed loneliness but all of a sudden she craved for company, somebody to share her anguish and annoyance. She made animated communications with ceiling and pedestal fans (Yep, two fans to beat the heat!). In her good days, she enjoyed wakefulness and when she needed good rest, she was denied, for humidity and blisters played dirty. Weird dreams traumatized and tormented her. For two weeks, the regime of being dirty and dingy continued.
One fine day, she was allowed to take bath with only water and no soap. She felt like a new born baby having its first bath. Three days later, she was allowed to take bath again, this time around, Haldi and Besan powders were provided. This bath also took her out of isolation. She was quite elated being back with her folks, discussing and dining with them. Her doctor advised her not to use any cosmetics (which included soap and shampoo too) for another two months. Diet restrictions would continue for the same amount of time.
The disease taught her a lot about life – One need to keep improving one’s inner beauty, for the external one can be tarnished quite easily. In the hour of the need, one gets to know the people who one can really rely on.
Now, she is back to work, quite astonished as well as annoyed to see the number of mails that have bombarded her inbox. On top of that, she has again moved to a new project, challenging one once again!
She has decided to take life as it comes, no point in wailing about the past and vexing about the future. There is always a "Chicken" that can ruin the current flow of reality.
Vinnai Thaandi Varuvaayaa – a love story about a boy chasing a girl, a girl chasing a boy and with a climax that the audience might not expect or accept!
Karthik (Silambarasan), 22 year old tamil boy, mechanical engineer, aspiring film director falls in love in the very sight with Jessie (Trisha), 23 year old malayalee girl, program analyst with Polaris and his neighbor. He stalks her, proposes to her and at a later stage she does reciprocate his love. Will they live happily ever after? That forms the different and distinct finale of the movie!
Silambarasan, unlike his previous large than life outings, has come up with finesse, flawless performance. Gautham Menon has indeed underplayed him, like the way he had done with his previous heroes. Trisha equally match Silambarasan with her restrained act, her chic sarees, salwars, western attires add to her confused, conservative character. Nobody could have acted the role of Karthik and Jessie the way Silambarasan and Trishan have portrayed, they share a visible, vivacious chemistry! Of the other support actors, the character of Ganesh, enacted by one of the producers, truly stands out.
The music and the background score – Maestro A R Rahman has done it again! Aaromale haunts you, for it plays throughout the movie! How could one do such wonders with Malayalam lyrics?
The flow being a little slow being the major flaw, but isn’t it made for audiences who love romantic tracks and have plenty of time at disposal?
I wonder and ponder - Is there anything called TRUE love?
Many thoughts clog my mind... irrecoverable loss, inexplicable fear … may be a temporary phase leading to a better, bigger, brighter moments! Change is inevitable, the only variable that remains constant (isn’t it an oxymoron?).. This time I have no choice, can’t flee, and need to tag along.
I will miss him very much, for the past two years, he has been an integral part of my life. Its time to leave him and move on with no hopes of ever coming back! I will lose my address for a while, very soon will know my new coordinates.
Our parting wasn’t decided by me, but by huge set of bigwigs for whom all that matters was revenue The walls, the corners, the spacious cubicles - its time for me to bid adieu and explore the new avenue!
Never noticed that an inanimate object could make a profound impact in my life!
I have been reading couple of books recently, thanks to the book club that I am a part of! The one book that really caught my attention is “The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time” by “Mark Haddon”.
The story revolves around an autistic boy, Christopher who decides to investigate the death of the dog in his neighborhood and in this process unravels a lot about himself and his family. Though he is quite detached and doesn’t understand human emotions, he is a genius when it comes to Mathematics. He tries to handle the situations quite logically and programmatically.
The chapter numbers in this book are prime numbers, unique concept to illustrate the mathematical inclination of the main character. The book also brings out the reasoning power and inquisitiveness in a child marvelously. The author’s deep insight of autism is clearly visible for the entire book is written in first person.
Some of the quotes that was quite impressive
I like dogs. You always know what a dog is thinking. It has four moods. Happy, sad, cross and concentrating. Also, dogs are faithful and they do not tell lies because they cannot talk.
Prime numbers are what is left when you have taken all the patterns away. I think prime numbers are like life. They are very logical but you could never work out the rules, even if you spent all your time thinking about them.
I think people believe in heaven because they don't like the idea of dying, because they want to carry on living and they don't like the idea that other people will move into their house and put their things into the rubbish.
A quite delightful read and must say, it revived and relived the moments of child within me!
Karthik Calling Karthik – a thriller which doesn’t really send chills down the spine! Overall, it’s a well crafted movie with decent performances from the lead cast. The music and soundtrack really stands out, must say, Shankar Ehsaan Loy proved yet again that they are here to stay (for a very long innings!)
The movie revolves around Karthik(Farhan Akhtar), in spite being a IIM topper and diligent worker, is a loser in his personal and professional life. One night he receives a call from Karthik and his life no longer remains the same. He undergoes a transition from an introvert to an extrovert, gets promoted, and wins the heart of his colleague, Shonali (Deepika Padukone) who all the while was ignoring him pre metamorphosis! Now, the man behind his makeover remains the suspense of the movie!
What to say about Farhan? A multi faceted personality with eagles’ eyes picking up the character that suits his style! Deepika, looks gorgeous, her tresses and dresses make up for her acting skills! Farhan and Deepika share a reasonably good on screen chemistry!
The most important lesson learnt – If you are planning to change your landline phone, never go for the Chinese ones! Verdict – It’s worth one time watch, a tailor made movie made for the classes and not for the masses!
Did you pick up the phone? If so, did you enjoy the call?
Astrologer studied my “jhatakam” (horoscope) with profound attention. At once, he gestured “She is going through testing times. God seems to be quite unhappy with her. She needs to make few visits to temples to get things back to normalcy.” This caused a huge concern and commotion in my aunt’s mind, she made a frantic call to my mom and said “Its time for pilgrimage. Call her up and summon her as soon as possible.”
And that was it! Last Thursday, I packed my bag and made a short trip to appease and make peace with deities at Guruvayur, Palani and ancestral home.
Day 1 --------- I reached home early morning on Friday and within an hour’s time, I was on my way to Guruvayur. Newspaper reported of a huge crowd swarming in to get “darshan” of "Lord Guruvayurappan" (avatar of Krishna), but Friday seemed to be my fortunate day or should I say, Lord was indeed in a generous mood/mode. Apart from a decent "darshan" of Lord, got an invite to have “prasada ootu” (sumptuous feast at temple) which was quite lingering and lip smacking!
At any time, on any day, the atmosphere in Guruvayur is serene and silent, amidst vast turnout the temple, the sanctum are maintained well, clear and clean, adding more luster and sheen. We called it shots, by evening we were back in Palakkad, discussing and deciding to meet at wee hours, the next day.
Day 2 --------- Now that we had pleased Lord Vishnu (The Preserver in Hindu mythology), it was time for Lord Shiva (The Destroyer) to shower his blessings. We started our journey to Palani at about 6am, a temple which had "Lord Murugan" (son of Shiva and Parvathy) as the main deity. Having a cuppa tea in the empty stomach, we were pretty hungry on arrival at Palani. We headed towards “New Tirupur Hotel” (supposed to be the best in the town), but there are no words to express the nauseating experiences we had there w.r.t lavatories and food. It’s high time for my fellow Tamilians to work on their personal and environmental hygiene (no offense meant whatsoever!)
While mom and I decided to climb all the way up, dad and aunt chose to use the rope way, their ill health shattering their hopes to do it the hard way! It took us solid 15 minutes to ascend the hill while dad and aunt reached in less than 5 minutes. Money speaks a lot in Palani, we indeed had a special “darshan”, a kind of direct rendezvous with the Lord. Throngs of “pujaris” were conducting “pujas” and distributing “prasadams” to the special set of devotees! It made me wonder how Lord was taking in and tolerating all the corruptions that were unfolding in front of his divine eyes! What were scarce at Palani were found in abundance at Guruvayur – sacrosanctity, serenity, decorum and discipline!
On our way back we decided to surprise my uncle by visiting him, but he wasn’t surprised at all because we had informed him about our visit while having lunch at Pollachi. His wife prepared some scrumptious “gobi bhajji” (a delicacy made of cauliflower) for snacks and must say it was the best food that I had on that day! We reached Palakkad at about 7pm dog-tired.
Day 3 --------- A day when I tracked down my ancestors, being a Malayalee, I inherently inherit maternal surname! We reached “Nallukettu” (ancestral home) at Kuttanur (nearly 10 to 15 kms from Palakkad town) by 10.30 am. We were welcomed by an old grannie (still not able to figure out how she is related to me) who remembered my mom and aunt. Though it was extremely hot outside, the Nallukettu was quite cool and chilly, must say, craftsmen during those times had immaculate skills! We prayed to our “Kulla Daivam” – "Amma Bhagavathy" and "Lord Ayyappa"! I also got to meet the oldest member of my family – a dignified, distinguished grandpa. Talking to him was indeed an eye opener for me!
Overall it was an enriching and exhilarating experience to trace my roots, a feeling similarly shared by Alex Haley!
Three day pilgrimage did cleanse my soul and spirit, so isn’t it time to get back to my sinful, sinister ways again?
Sena se panga lena was not my intention, still I saw My Name Is Khan on the very first week of its release. Karan Johar, the director of this flick had stated in an interview that this could be the last movie of Shahrukh Khan and Kajol together, a good marketing strategy to keep the cash registers ringing!
It’s a believable story of an autistic guy Rizwan Khan played by Shahrukh, making a long journey to meet the president of USA just to win back Mandira played by Kajol, his wife, or the only true love of his life!
Here we don’t get to see Shahrukh doing his uber cool roles, in short, he really acts, not overreacts! Kajol gives him ample company. After starring in more than half a dozen movies together, the chemistry shared between Shahrukh and Kajol is still pleasurable and laudable.
Film tends to drag in the middle, which could have been edited, shortening the length by at least 15 to 20 minutes.
Verdict - Karan! "I am X(does it matter anyway?). I am not your fan, but I enjoyed this movie”. Its time for you to sing “I did overcome”, for you got over your fixation for the letter “K” and your style of making opulent, larger than life movies!
Till I get to hear your opinion, I shall soak myself in Noor E Khuda!
“Tiger, tiger, burning bright In the forests of the night.” Lots of us have grown up learning and listening to this poem by William Blake. But the heartrending fact is there are only 1411 tigers left in India.
Do you want the next generation to witness one of the most grandiose animals? Do you want them to hail tigers as extinct species? Do you want them to realize and recognize tigers from writers like Crichton? Will they be able to enjoy the fun and pun in the form Hobbes until they haven’t seen one?
Lend your voice Make some noise Wake up and fight for a cause Not to regret later for a loss!
Like you, tigers have the rights to live So its time not to take its life, but to give The issue of its extinction should be dealt Contribute and make your presence felt!
What happens when a leading director casts a leading actor and actress in his next movie? The expectation soars! To cut it short, 3 idiots has a decent start, a dreary middle and a drag ending!
The characters are over the top especially that of Rancho and Virus. Mr Irani as Virus is at his petulant best, a typical case of a great talent in a miscast! Ms Kapoor doesn’t have much role, in fact couldn’t make out why she was there – to add glamour quotient? Mr Khan as Rancho does well but his character does have shades from his previous flicks like DCH, RDB etc. Its time for the entire “Khan”dan to move on and make way for the “Kapoor” clan!
I was let down by the movie and its director Mr Hirani who had come up with some outstanding works in the past! Why Mr Bhagat made such a hue and cry, the movie is just “inspired” by “Five Point Someone”! May be Mr Hirani will ensure that Mr Bhagat is duly credited next time while filming “2 States”!
Mr Hirani, all I can say is “Aal is not well that does not end well!” Waiting for more Munnabhai type series from you! In fact, the audience is the 4th idiot for making the movie a roaring success.
I have never waited for anybody in my life like the way I waited for him today. I made a few frantic calls which were unanswered. I don’t understand why people sometimes utilize their “mobile” phones like their landline counterparts, defeating the purpose of being available all the time!
I asked few of his friends whether he would turn up, they said “Not quite sure, he had stayed back late in the office yesterday.” I had to meet him today else I would have to live in the mercy of others! By noon, a silhouette near my cubicle signaled his arrival. My joy grew no bounds!
I turned back and said “Dude, I have been quite paralyzed since yesterday night. I have been waiting for you!”
He said “Lady! Don’t you trust me so much? I am not going to run away with it. Here is your purse. In fact I saw it lying near your office phone and ensured that it is safely returned!”