Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Crash !

Saw a truly awesome movie today … Crash. I think it deserves every bit of accolades it received along with the best movie Oscar. A riveting story of lives of many people … all strangers to each other … all belonging to different races … coinciding at some point towards the end of the movie. But it’s more than just a touching story of people. It, more importantly displays the various prejudices that are harboured and eventually govern and affect the lives of the American people.

The other thing that struck me when I was watchin’ the movie was the kind of strong arguments it provided in favour of anti-reservation anywhere. It also reminded me of the kind of argument provided in the movie American History X to Edward Norton by his father ------ Ed Norton’s father, who is a white cop, is explaining to him why he doesn’t like black people. He explains the kind of insecurity he feels when he is in the field fightin’ criminals. The insecurity stems when he’s being covered by a black man who came into the force above 6 white men who were more competent than him just because he was black. In the field, according to him, that reduction in confidence can cost an officer’s life. That is no doubt a pretty strong argument. In the movie the father dies of course … he’s shot by a black gangster. Poetic freakin justice. Crash is quite similar to American History X in many respects.

Anywayz I wouldn’t like to get into the whole pros and cons of reservation debate again. It kinda seems pointless to debate about it all civilized reasoning and debating has only fallen on deft ears. The whole issue is now lost in the labyrinth called the judicial system now and it shall only see the light when it’s too late.

All in all, Crash is a thoroughly enjoyable movie. It was even better to wash off the excitement and profundity with a dose of the good old ‘Hot Shots 2’.

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Right around the corner

I was looking for G-55 C.P.
I reached the inner circle and slowed down next to a guy and asked where I could find the place. He said to take the next left and it would be just around the corner.
Ok, I thought. So I took the next left and reached towards a dead end with the address no where in sight. So I stopped to ask another guy where G-55 was. He contemplated, and then said it was just there on the left row, a few steps down. I must have had a lost look on my face when another generous fellow peered into the passenger’s side window and asked me what I was looking for. He had a shocked look on his face when I told him G-55. he pointed in the direction from where I was coming from and said it was somewhere over there. Now the first guy broke into a quarrel with him vociferously defending his directions. Finally the second guy gave up looking even more confused than me.

The great thing about the place is that it has all these shops declaring their names, owners, offerings, affiliates, blah blah but none of them mention their address. Banking my faith on the triumphant guy I finally parked my car and decided to follow his directions. He even showed me a pillar marked ‘G’ and told me to walk down a few feet and it’d be just around the corner. This lead me to the outer side of the inner circle.

Assuming his relative definition of ‘a few feet’ was a little different from mine I walked down the row of shops. After a couple of corners down I still couldn’t find what I was looking for. I crossed some small shops indicating 61 .. 62 .. 63. The increasing progression made me a bit worried. So I asked a guy selling cigarettes. He chewed on his paan for eternity and with a condescending look said, walk down, take the left on the corner and it’ll be a few shops down. Having abandoned my hope to have walked just a small distance quite a few corners back, I crawled along thankful that atleast they were all pointing in the same direction. Finally, and thankfully, that corner was the last one and I arrived.

It was then that I realized that the poor guy who had told me earlier that I was in the wrong place was actually right ! I had actually traveled almost in a semi circle around half a kilometer I might add) to where he was pointing.

Nevertheless, I did pick up a couple of valuable things on the corners.

Monday, May 29, 2006

What could've been ...

Every once in a while I am haunted by this thought
It magnifies the pain that on myself I have brought

It’s like watchin’ a fantasy on the big screen
It’s just a thought of what could’ve been

I see a group of friends … laughin', reminiscin’, havin’ fun
But wait a minute, someone’s missin’ … I am the one

It only causes heartache and sufferin’
Oh why do I think about what could’ve been ?

Just today, a thought brought a tear to my eye
It was always because of me, but still I wonder why

I know … it’s futile to regret over consequences unforseen
Still … It’s never easy to not think about what could’ve been
- by Me (I'm no freakin' poet)

"For all sad words of tongue and pen, the saddest are these - 'It might have been" - John Greenlead Whittier

Underworld evolution and The Last boy scout

A day full of crappy movies :)

Started off with The last boy scout .. a very typical Bruce Willis movie. Although I like the guy, the Die Hard kinda junkie cop (Ex NSA this time) was a drab. Plus the stunts were very normal. Plus the story was useless. Plus .. aah forget it.

Then with high hopes I put in Underworld Evolution. I was wrong again. Nothin new here again. The same old war between various factions of blood sucking century old idiots. And very strangely, normal bullets were a little bit effective in this movie ! Now that's the value proposition in the movie. The only saving grace was Kate Beckinsale in the tight leather suit. Period.

"My dentist said to me the other day, I've enough problems in my life, so why should i see your movies ?" - David Creonenberg

Saturday, May 27, 2006

A gentle spirit

Another First. And a very delightful one at that.

Just finished reading a short story titled ‘A gentle spirit’ by Fyodor Dostoevsky (the first I’ve ever read by him).

I was delighted and moved would probably be an understatement.

It’s a beautiful story, albeit a tragic one, of an owner of a pawn shop. He marries a girl out of pity for her as she is very poor and tortured. But somehow after the marriage, he displays very little affection towards her out of his pride for having done a favour to her. The girl, who is beautiful and is described as a gentle spirit by nature, slowly grows independent and rebellious and tries embarrassing him as a punishment for how he treats her. These plans are foiled by the man but she is forgiven for he, as he realizes gradually, truly loves her. But the silence between them has grown too huge and opaque to allow any of them to show the emotions and respect they have for each other. All the ‘coldness’ that had existed between them has estranged them from each other.

Until one day, the emotions are too much for the man and he just rushes to her and breaks the silence by confessing his love for her. While he overlooks the symptoms of irrecoverable damage, she is unable to look beyond the years of solitude she has been subjected to because of his pride. The turning point of the story is when he is at her feet begging for her love, she says to him, “I though you would let me go on like that”. She grows delirious, confused thanks to the torturous burgeoning past and sudden rush of the present. He realizes the mistakes he has made, and also realizes that irreparable damage which he is still willing to correct nevertheless. He realizes that he truly loves her. The next day, the girl prays to god for the hope she’s been shown to her by the man. She stands facing the window, smiles at the past and the prospects, and then jumps. The man is condemned to live his life in the shadow of the girl’s death. The girl he loved so much.

Obviously the synopsis I have given is a very miniscule representation of the rollercoaster of emotions and events in the book. For me the story emphasis a very special aspect about ‘love’ and I’d like to offer a few pennies for my own thoughts here. It makes the case stronger for me that ‘love’ is not a noun but a verb. Most times ‘love’ is treated as a noun, something which is acquired, possessed, and sometimes lost. I don’t think so.

While I do not refute the chemistry and bonds and attraction that are created between two people and cannot be helped, but I believe that love is something more enduring that that. For me, when you love someone that means that you take a proactive stand to appreciate them and stand by them. It is not, therefore, an involuntary action when you stop loving someone. It is a very conscious and voluntary response when you decide to not endure the various aspects that are brought upon by being in a relationship and living with someone.

That’s probably the reason why a lot of couples actually stay together for long periods (and throughout their lives even) because they choose to love rather than be in love.

"Marriage is the triumph of imagination over intelligence. Second marriage is the triumph of hope over experience"- Samuel Johnson

The good Life !

Today I have in my possession, two things that would keep me occupied and entertained at the same time. It's not like there aren't other entertaining things to do. Sure there are. There are things which can keep me occupied for the next 2 weeks as well. But what's different is that these things are new.

So first of all, I got a combo drive installed in my computer today. So I shall walk down to the DVD parlour closeby and catch up on all the movies I have missed in the last 2 months of being grounded. :)

Secondly, I just found, and downloaded the complete collection of Calvin and Hobbes from the net. (I don't wanna post the link here ... who knows I might get into trouble!). I had never read much of C'nH before. Hadn't read it properly for sure. (Mostly because TOI doesn't publish it). But i had stumbled upon the strip sometime back on the net and had fallen in love with it instantly. Very funny. Very profound.

So, all in all, I am looking forward to the next 2 weeks. Also because they're the last 2 weeks at home !

"May your life be like toilet paper ... long and useful"- Unknown

Friday, May 26, 2006


Found this song on my computer .. couldn’t help but be nostalgic.. (Photograph by Nickelback)
I couldn’t find an all-inclusive picture but this is the closest. DCP as always is here, there, everywhere and nowhere

Look at this photograph
Every time I do it makes me laugh
(aah those bakar days ... nutcracker)
How did our eyes get so red?
(well that’s natural)
And what the hell is on Joey’s head?
(actually … what’s on pon singh’s head can briefly be categorized as a testicle)

And this is where I grew up
(I do account a lot of changes to it)
I think the present owner fixed it up
(someone did get fixed up .. namely me :))
I never knew we ever went without
The second floor is hard for sneakin’ out
(never felt like it as well )

And this is where I went to school
(Beeeee school)
Most of the time had better things to do
(Ceeeeee Essssssss !)
Criminal record says I broke in twice
I must’ve done it half a dozen times
(We did break a lot of things, including bottles and dustbins )

I wonder if it’s too late
Should I go back and try to graduate?
(How true )
Life’s better now than it was back then
(Only in some ways though)
If I was them, I wouldn’t let me in
Oh oh oh
Oh god I am

Every memory of looking out the back door
I had the photo album spread out on my bedroom floor
It's hard to say it
Time to say it
Goodbye, goodbye
Every memory of walking out the front door
I found the photo of the friend that I was looking for
It's hard to say it
Time to say it
Goodbye, goodbye

Remember the old arcade
(ceesssss n the dome )
Blew every dollar that we ever made
(booze is expensive )
The cops seen us hangin' out
They say somebody went and burned it down

We used to listen to the radio
And sing along with every song we’d know
(mu me lo bhai mu me lo …. )
We said someday we’d find out how it feels
To sing to more than just the steering wheel

Kim's the first girl I kissed
(no comments )
I was so nervous that I nearly missed
(yea rite )
She’s had a couple of kids since then
(hmm )
I haven’t seen her since God knows when
Oh oh oh
Oh god I am

Every memory of looking out the back door
I had the photo album spread out on the bedroom floor
It’s hard to say it
Time to say it
Goodbye, goodbye
Every memory of walking out the front door
I found the photo of the friend that I was looking for
It's hard to say it
Time to say it
Goodbye, goodbye

I miss that town
(second floor, theka, dome, sec 14 )
I miss their faces
(don't think I need to name 'em )
You can't erase it
You can't replace it
I miss it now
I can't believe it
So hard to stay
Too hard to leave it

If I could relive those days
I know the one thing that would never change
(I wouldn’t change almost anything )

Every memory of looking out the back door
I had the photo album spread out on my bedroom floor
It’s hard to say it
Time to say it
Goodbye, goodbye
Every memory of walking out the front door
I found the photo of the friend that I was looking for
It's hard to say it
Time to say it
Goodbye, goodbye

Look at this photograph
Every time I do it makes me laugh
Every time I do it makes me...

"Don't be dismayed at goodbyes, a farewell is necassary before you can meet again and meeting again, after moments or lifetimes, is certain for those who are friends" - Richard Bach

Thursday, May 25, 2006

A dying wish

One of my favorites, Anand was coming on television today. It was towards the end when Rajesh Khanna was about to die a painful death thanks to cancer. Undoubtedly it was a touchy moment.
Just then I imagined myself dying a painful death. Infact I imagined myself dying many kinds of deaths. I checkout out various forms of it. From falling of a bridge to being in a plane crash to slipping in the bathroom and smashing my head on the sink to getting a heart attack to passing away silently in my death. I imagined them all. Admittedly, there was nothing funny or romantic in that.
Like probably everyone, I have in the past, imagined what’ll happen to the people who care about me / I care about when I die. I have imagined the pain of the loss. I have also plotted what all I’d like to achieve before I die. However, not surprisingly, I have never imagined the actual moment and experience of dying. (after all it is difficult to imagine such a thing when u can only feel it once). And let me tell you, it was definitely not a pleasant experience.
I mean to my imagination, a heart attack or a collision of one’s head with the bathtub which result in his/ her death must really be painful. It’s not like I’m afraid of pain. After all, anyone who’s ever been to a dentist can proudly proclaim to have tamed the beast. But definitely something as powerful as killing you must be painful.
On the other hand, I also somehow cannot comprehend passing out peacefully in sleep. I mean if I am sleeping, and suddenly something starts hurting, I immediately wake up! So how come when you get a heart attack or something resulting in your death you don’t wake up instead just happily pass on? This I cannot understand. Nonetheless, although less painful, it seems like a dull alternative. No drama. No last words. Boring.
Maybe it is alright not to imagine that moment. There’s no point in imagining something you absolutely cannot do anything about and don’t even know when and how it will occur. It only makes you afraid of dying. Afraid of the inevitable.
As for me, imagining such scenarios provoked overwhelmingly existential and belittling emotions. I thought it would be quite pointless to live a very nice (moral, generous, honest) life and then be eventually crushed to pieces under millions of pounds of rubble thanks to some lunatic Islamic extremist flying a plane into my building. (I hope they atleast get grounded in hell)

"It's not that I am afraid to die, I just don't want to be there when it happens" - Woody Allen

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

The Rang de Basanti effect

I’ve been meaning to write about this for a while. Not like I’m in a rush to be the first to ‘coin’ a term or anything. I don’t really care about that. But I think some credit should be given where it is due. I think the makers of the movie / movie itself deserves credit for the kind of movement it has ignited.

It could probably be verified with the help of statistics but I don’t have the kind of patience to do that. But by memory, I can recall how the movement against the accused in the Jessica Lall murder case was initiated by the people and actually carried out in the Rang De Basanti style. People actually had a candle march at the India gate just like in the movie. The courts (especially the supreme court) also swung into action soon afterwards. Not just in the Jessica Lall case but infact in a battery of other cases, which had been lying stagnant for years/ decades, some activity and judgments were seen.

It is very likely that these protesting people and the proactive judges were inspired by the movie and the whole of the recent improvements are a resultant of that.

Maybe RDB was the tipping point.

Love at first sight … yea right!

Out of absolute boredom and thanks to some parched programming by my preferred channels I was finally forced to settle on some crappy Hindi movie. There was as much excitement and ingenuity in the movie as there is snowfall in the Sahara Desert. The same poor family of the hero and the greedy and stinkin’ rich family of the heroine were introduced in a drab fashion. The regular twist of fate and finally … Love at first sight !

This is where I beg to differ (well not exactly beg) with probably quite a few people. I don’t believe in the eyes meeting – bells ringing – white doves flying kind of a first encounter which bonds a couple for life. Plus I’m probably not too sure about the definition of the most popular 4 lettered word love itself (second to none other than the enabler of speech – F**K).

While I would not like to get into the definition, I would like to offer my thoughts about the dynamics of the first encounter of the essential kind. Much like God Hisself, I don’t know about women’s side of the story, but I’m pretty sure about what goes on in a guy’s head when he first sees a woman. It’s no mystery. I can infact count the thoughts on my fingertips:
1. She’s Hot (“let’s knock boots”)
2. She’s Cute/ pretty (“let’s talk for a while .. then let’s knock boots”)
3. She’s average (“maybe I can get to know her … then meet her girlfriends … and then maybe knock boots”)
4. She’s below average/ ugly (“I wonder if she can help me do my homework while I go knock boots with someone else”)

I may be crucified by some for this, but these are actually the thoughts at the beginning of the first encounter in most guys (with the only exception of gays obviously). Obviously these thoughts shift from carnal to other subsequently.

The most important thing is that there’s absolutely nothing wrong with it. There’s nothing pervert in it like many (especially women) think. It’s something which cannot be helped. Call it primal instinct or involuntary procreative reaction if you will.

People have it so wrong.

Monday, May 22, 2006

work in progress

In a sudden burst of inspiration and creativity (i don't know which one's stronger), I have decided (after a loT of thinking), that i shall write a book :)
Now to be honest it is not a very ambitious project. It's not like I plan to publish it or something. I guess more than anything, it represents probably an innate human wish - for his life / moments / parts of his life to be preserved forever. It represents the thought in every human being that what he's going through is unique and needs to be told. Thus, enlightened with this existentialist knowledge, I can safely say it'll be for my own personal preservation and satisfaction and nothing more than that. But it is quite fun to deliberately go back in time and try to analyze and understand events that happened in one's past.
But then I do have a few ideas that I may consider making public.
But then I'm me so the tomorrow I may completely forget about the whole thing.

Sunday, May 21, 2006

What’s DA point?

I would like a very convincing explanation for 2 things which haven’t been answered satisfactorily by the pious followers of the Gods (I call them fanatics).
1. Why is it that when the Da Vinci Code was released in 2003 there was not much racquet created by the Christians all over the world? Why is it that while the book sold millions and millions of copies, the so called ‘vulnerable’ children of the God sat on their hands?
2. Why is it of all the countries in the world, a country such as India which probably harbors a peanut size population of Christians in the world (which also form a peanut size percentage of the country’s population itself), has to ban the movie the Da Vinci Code while most other Christian-laden countries allow it to be screened?

The questions seem very valid as they question the validity of the freedom to be creative and the freedom of expression themselves. While there is no such legal asset such as freedom of creativity, it is very much ingrained in the concept of creativity itself. A seamless boundary of thought is obviously given as a basic characteristic of creativity. It is very easy to explain the violation of freedom of expression legally and otherwise anyways.

Amongst all the reasons given for banning the movie, probably the strongest argument the fanatics have been able to put up (and quite a valid one according to me) is that many Christians are gullible and would not be able to differentiate fact from fiction. It’s needless to add, that the protestors do not present a very ‘sensible’ or ‘mature’ picture while trying to preserve their ‘faiths’. Otherwise, why would they imagine that people of their ‘kind’ would be confused? Are they not sensible enough to differentiate fact from fiction (something called research might help) and are they not mature enough to be able to believe and stand by something? More importantly, do they not have so much confidence in their ever-lasting, so-eternal ‘truth’ that they have to shoot down a single man’s thought and stifle his creativity? These questions, however, still lie unanswered in vain.

Since it is quite obvious that the two questions posed would go unattended, I would try to answer them myself.
1. While there were a few insignificant protests after the release of the book, it was just left it at that as it was considered a mere work of ‘fiction’. It was widely believed that such a book would anyways raise a few interested eyebrows and then fade into obscurity. Ofcourse the power of sensationalism harnessed by Dan Brown had been underestimated by the protestors and the book soon developed a cult status and that’s when the problems for the poor old church began. Suddenly a lot of people worldwide, who were in any case growing disillusioned with church / religion, began using the book as a way to shun the (lost faith in) church. By the time this came to light, it was probably too late. The earlier merely disregarded work of fiction was suddenly drawing people away from the church and therefore putting a dent in its power and authority. Finally, the marketers of Sony pictures realizing this, clearly saw an excellent marketing ploy (no expenses whatsoever) and started fuelling the debate hoping someone might catch the bait. And someone surely did.
2. This is a very simple question to answer yet difficult to swallow for many. It’s a typical dilemma faced by a country and its people trying to be much more ‘modern’ than they actually are. After all, most modern/ developed nations (widely accepted) must not actually be lying about their status by approving the movie to be released. They understand the difference in the domains of art and religion and decide to let them be separate. We, on the other hand, have it all bungled up. Plus our politicians (who have it all wrong I may add) see the Christian population not as a religious sect with some demands but as a vote bank which must be preserved in any case. That’s probably the reason why the Information and Broadcasting ministry viewed the movie first and then sent it the Censor Board. I’m sorry, but I thought it was the Censor board’s job to review movies and not the ministry, I thought the ministry was just to make the policies so the industry develops in a sustainable and proper manner (I must be crazy for thinking that!).

The movie may or may not be released. The movie-pirates are always there for the rescue. I would just like to give my hats off the Sony Marketing executives.

Gloomy Day

It’s just one of those days when just nothing’s right.

You wake up with a heavy head from last night (not a hangover … but something following on from last night). Minimum conversations. Atmosphere heavy with disappointment. Tensed glances. Silence. Conflict. Mourning. Irrecoverable damage.

No palpable good news. Fading responses. Wondering why the anticipation. Mixed emotions. Incomprehensible behavior. Doubts.

It’s just one of those days … you just feel like taking a gun and … well Fuck It !

Saturday, May 20, 2006

The whole 11.5 kilometers

The other thing that seemed to occupy my mind apart from the flashy guns was the fanaticism. It was everywhere I looked!

Be it the ruthless sun or rainstorms (may be a bit exaggerated, but I experienced both) or just the suffocating smell of horse shit (that smell still lingers!), there were people everywhere! There were ‘barely alive’ oldies dragging themselves with the help of sticks. There were numerous handicaps/ oldies/ fat aunties and uncles being carried on ponies and other carriages. There was even a guy who had decided to traverse the whole ‘yatra’ distance by crawling! (I’m not exaggerating)

Now, even though I’m not a believer, this still seems amazing. It is just difficult to believe how 3 carved stones (supposedly gods) can draw people from the extremities of the country and endure an 11.5 km (or longer depending upon the path you choose) incline just so they can see them for 2 secs!

If you ask me again, I’d do it again probably for company or the walk but not for that reason, but apparently people (millions) do it just for those 2 seconds! Its simply an amazing thought. (Although stupid according to me)


I just came back today from a family pilgrimage to Vaishno Devi. It was the normal hoola-hoopla 3 day affair. But amongst all the sights, sounds and smells related to the whole experience (most of them revolve around horse-shit, literally), the only thing that I remember at the end are the AK-47s.

There’s been a recent threat by the terrorists and the security’s been beefed up over there. That means I got to see AKs from the beginning of the yatra to the very inside of the cave!!!

I’m not commenting on the presence of AKs at the holy place, etc. I’m just saying that I think that I’m crazy about guns!!! Maybe it’s a consequence of playing too much CS … or maybe I’m just a terrorist at heart … but whatever the cause I don’t give a …, I’m just crazy about them. It wasn’t just AKs but there were other semi-autos everywhere as well (B32 for example).

I’m sure there’s something about the AK which makes it the most favoured weapon all over the world (apart from its performance and cheap price of course!).
The shiny black metal smartly covered with wood in certain places … just makes you wanna get some (at least me).

So if anybody ever reads this, and really wants to buy me a birthday present, then please … now you know!

Monday, May 15, 2006

Da Vinci Mania !!! ... and Bakar !!!

I am very excited today. I generally get like that when I buy some books. I bought a nice mix consisting of The Prince (Nicolo Machiavelli), Digital Fortress (Dan Brown), On a clear day you can see GM (Patrick Wright) and Blink (Malcolm Gladwell). So there you have it, everything from Business to revolutionary books to plain old riveting fiction !

Also, a very interesting co-incidence happened today. I bought Digital Fortress by Dan Brown which happens to be about hardcore code breaking (like most of his novels) and ... I just found out about the Da Vinci Code breaking contest on IBN. I'd like to quote The Merrill Vinji (screw the spelling!) from the Matrix to allow a better insight into my excitement -- "Where some see coinzidence (imitating his slurry accent) ... I see Cauzality .. where some see Conzequence (Slurrrrp!) ... I see Chanze (slurp slurp)!". So well there you have it, I am already going through all the anagram-breaking pages Uncle Google can throw at me and come hail or ... (blah blah .. I’m a bit sleepy though).

Another thing, people have voiced their opinions, rather vehemently, on the lack of 'Bakar' here. I would like to apologize about that and like our 'very responsible' government, I have set up an inquiry in that matter and will be coming out with an adequate solution to satisfy all strata of the society very soon (few days ... maybe ... weeks ... could be ... years .. always possible!).

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Right here, Right Now

I was watching all these so called ‘experts’ on television debate about reservation and the right to equality when I realized that I couldn’t recall my fundamental rights. Of course then it’s a foregone conclusion that I had absolutely no recollection of what my fundamental duties were.

So out of rabid curiosity on what all I am entitled to in my package to live and be born in this country, I asked uncle Google to enlighten me on my fundamental rights. Sure enough I got all kinds of descriptions and was surprised about my ignorance. (I have asked a few people here and there since and I was consoled that I wasn’t the only one in that department)

It’s not very difficult after reading the fine print a couple of times that you realize that one is actually not as free as he/ she thinks he is. Sprinkled generously in the description of the rights are innumerous loopholes disguised as ‘security of state’, ‘public order’ and the ace of all … ‘morality’.

With so many kinds of people in the society, I am very confused on the definition of that word. I don’t think I need to elaborate on just how much ‘unity in diversity’ our nation or our society has on the bounds of morality. So if you actually try to include everyone’s definition, then the ‘right to freedom’ should actually be renamed to ‘miniscule acceptable – things’. On the other hand, ignoring someone’s moral concerns would probably be considered un-democratic and the person may exercise his Right to freedom (of speech) to invoke his Right to constitutional remedies to protect his Right against Exploitation (of morality), being not held in the light of Right to Equality (by me) therefore undermining his Right to religion and his Cultural and Educational rights.

Phew ! No wonder these lawyers always have these volumes and volumes of books in the backgrounds whenever they come on television. :)

There’s nothing like born musical talent

The first English music album that I’d ever bought was Backstreet Boys when I was 15 years old. I find that a tad bit embarrassing but thankfully I soon graduated to rock and moved out of the whole ‘pop’ era. I was soon head-banging to Metallica, Iron Maiden, etc. I had been introduced to a completely new world.

Very soon I was dreaming of playing a guitar and was hanging out with guitarists and other musically inclined people. I bought my first guitar at age 16 (I have only bought one more since then). As I would sit with it all day, and take out one cranky note after another, I knew I had more of a musical bent than the general junta. It kind of makes you feel good that you have something that others don’t. (of course soon you realize that the same ‘others’ have a lot of things that you don’t ! .. then it’s crappy again)

Well anyways, what I just came across has simply shocked me and broken my heart. Apparently, scientists have discovered (those damn scientists again !), that we are all born with a perfect pitch (basically we are all born with so called ‘musical talent’). It’s a different thing that some of us just loose it over time as we learn languages. Infact, babies’ cootchy-coo language is nothing but them communicating in musical notes at apparently a 100% success rate. (and we thought they were just foolin’ around ;))

They have even discovered that the Neanderthals had a perfect pitch and used to communicate by singing (let’s direct the funding to something more constructive!). I would actually like to them naked ape like Neanderthals holding sticks and stones ‘n jumpin’ around ‘n singing to each other about how hot the whether was.

But there is still something special I can be happy about after all. I didn’t, after all these years of grappling with language, loose the pitch I was born with. Or so I think !

Awkward reflections :)

Ok so I was getting REALLY bored. So I decided to clean up some rubbish and make some room on the hard disk.
While doing this I came across a folder somewhere in the obscurities of the complex network of folders marked ‘Private’! Two things instantly struck me. First was of course my own stupidity on having named a folder Private and expected someone to not open it then. Secondly, on opening the folder, I felt a small amount of curiosity on going through the files marked with dates.

I have a habit, wherein I write various happenings in the day, my thoughts, emotions and ideas onto a word document and save it with the name of the file as the date. It’s not a discipline like writing a journal, just something I do randomly. I’d obviously not written anything in that folder for some time and had forgotten about it.

Anyways, as I started reading whatever was written in those files, I felt slightly funny, and slightly embarrassed. I’m sure this happens with a lot of people (or atleast that’s how I like to console myself) when they read what they’d written about their emotions (in particular) some time ago.

Certain instances when I’ve described my emotions / reactions, times when I’ve obviously tried to rationalize with myself and make sense out of my own actions by trying to sound very wise and calculative whereas they were simply impulses. They all brought a sort of an embarrassed smile when I read them now. Then you can’t help but think how prejudiced / irrational / impulsive / surprisingly right (rare) you can be. On reading those I felt sorry, proud, happy or angry with myself. Its really surprising but sometimes I felt like I was reading about some complete stranger. It made me rethink my current situation / behavior / relationships.

Mid-day Crisis!

It’s the same problem I face every Sunday when I’m not going anywhere.

Wake up around 7
Read the newspapers.
Have breakfast by 10.
Log on
Get arbit on the net.
Have lunch
Surf TV including all news channels.
Look at the watch – only 3 !!!! (@!#$@!#! …. Crap !)

This is when my regular battle of Sunday begins as I look for what to do next. Don’t feel like reading a book. There’s nothing new on HBO or Star. Even all news channels are showing repeats. Can’t sleep.

Arrrrrrrrrrgh !

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Devil in the Music !

I just discovered, that there are particular intervals in music which are actually referred to as Diabolous in Musica or the Devil’s Interval because it is believed that the Devil resides in these intervals. As a matter of fact, some of the most famous examples of these tritons are Black Sabbath (quite naturally!) and the Simpsons theme song (this was a shocker). I find this very amusing and scary in a weird way.

The reason given for this fascinating christening is that the tritons create a kind of a dissonance which was not acceptable in the earlier days of long curly-haired, tuxedo-wearing, stick-swinging musicians. Besides it was apparently difficult to create as well.

Of course the alternative explanation I found which also happens to be more interesting is that tritones create a spooky, eerie and sometimes sexual feeling in the listener. That would explain the name and the fact that the tritones were not taught in the earlier times.

After reading this I listened to Black Sabbath (by Black Sabbath), the Simpsons theme song and even the whole Diabolous in Musica album (by Slayer) but I did not experience the spooky or the sexual emotions (damn!). Although I sure wish it was true, we could have had a much better alternative to Viagra in the making.

For me, the music I choose sometimes depends on my mood, and sometimes the music I choose shapes up my mood. There’s nothing like putting on the Dark side of the Moon or P-U-L-S-E, laying back, staring at the ceiling and thinking or experience nothing but pure bliss. Or, like putting on Master of Puppets and feeling the adrenaline rush. I believe that music definitely affects or is affected by emotions. And I can’t stop imagining the possibilities if the kind of emotions about the tritones were true ! :)

Beat them, for we have no excuses !

If anyone saw the news channels today, it was a heart wrenching sight. Uniform-clad men were showering some 20-somethings with laathis (sticks). It looked like the kids had been reduced to nothing more than mere clothes and the cops looked like unrelenting washers trying to beat the dirt out of them. And I am not exaggerating.

On the other side of the story was helpless patients, some critical, stranded hopelessly outside hospitals because their would-be doctors were getting beaten by cops.

All this commotion, and all just because our government has decided to play a deaf and dumb. It has shunned away its responsibility to the people and its duty of being answerable to them. How can they sit quietly and allow this ruthless aggression at peaceful demonstrators is what I don’t understand.

The silence also conveys the fact that they have no answers, or rather no excuses. If the government was infact serious about the proposed reservations, then it has been shot in the leg by the very anti-reservation media and again in the groin by its very own knowledge commission voting against it and even going as far as asking to review the existing reservations!

But according to me it is not out of answers, it’s simply out of excuses ! That’s because I think the way the whole the reservation-game was played out makes it look like nothing but just a pre-election stunt. The clandestine remark made by Arjun Singh itself proves it. As he himself claims, it was merely ‘mentioned’ and not ‘stated’, that too just before the elections … perfect timing! After that it was very easy to play the ‘responsible but helpless’ government tied down by the EC.

Moreover, I think the whole review and the subsequent decision of the knowledge commission is just a part of the farce. After all, it makes it easier for the government to deny the increase moreso if its very own knowledge commission also denies it. Manmohan Singh’s apparent silence further goes on to verify the farce for otherwise, if he was concerned, he should have asked some questions or defended the reservations.

So the next question is to tell the nation why it is not possible to implement the proposed change (just to get additional votes) … or rather give an excuse for its pre-election, caste based - vote grabbing cheap tactics.

So in the meantime, while our doctors get beaten and water-cannoned on the streets, our government hunts for answers, or rather excuses.

Click, record, play !

This is one of those things I’d like to get my hands on. It is a music system, radio, DVD player, TV and a digital Media library all combined in one ! In other words, at least for me, Windows Media Center PC is just one of those things which you’ve gotta have.

For me the coolest bit is that fact that it allows you to save what’s coming on TV. How many times I’ve wished so desperately that I could’ve saved that episode of F.R.I.E.N.D.S. (although now you can easily buy it on DVD) or some documentary on NatGeo and Discovery or the movie coming on Star Movies or HBO. Well, it’s possible to simply click, record and play it later!

But the fact is it just doesn’t end there. I mean for a music freak like me, I would be able to save all the music videos I want! That makes me wonder, is that allowed ? Well it is a problem because I might now wanna buy a CD again, I could simply burn them from the PC (I’m not complaining though).

I’m actually one of those people who like to ‘keep’ certain things they like. I have huge number of movies, music, arbit videos, etc that I’ve burnt over the years. It’s probably a materialistic kind of a sin but I think it’s always good when you r stranded at home on a rainy day and there’s nothing on TV to have some classics you can always watch. I think the PC is a great opportunity for such kind of people. I mean imagine the possibilities, a collection of my favorite movies, tons of music that too videos, all the cool documentaries like Extreme Machines or on space etc, and all that recorded for free! I just can’t stop dreaming!

Although I don’t think its positioning as the complete Family PC is quite correct. I mean imagine a situation when your teenage daughter wants to listen to FM, your son wants to do some head banging on the latest RHCP CD he just bought, your mom wants to watch Swami Ramdev and your wife wants to watch the Saas-Bahu dramas and all you’ve got is your Family PC ! I mean then u are in deep …. ( and I didn’t even mention what you wanted to watch !)

According to me it should’ve been positioned as one of those products where you get more out of the deal. I mean at just 30,000 Rs the starting price, and the easy financing schemes generally available on these things, it doesn’t look like the complete family ‘thing’ ready to replace all the benefits it claims it could alone. Besides not all the typical families are all that tech-savvy. It’s probably for those couples who’re busy earning money and can’t really find the time to watch they want to. Or for those working bachelors.

For me, I just have to wait till I fall in any of those groups. :(

The cheapest car: a boon or a bane ?

As Tata looks to setup a plant for its much talked about ‘1 lakh car’, I can’t help but wonder, do we really need a car as cheap as that ?

The actual viability of the minicar is not actually my concern at the moment as it is not to come out before 2008. What I’m really concerned about, is that can the burgeoning population and the already traffic-clogged cities accommodate a car which will be in the reach of virtually anybody.

Let’s just take Delhi as an example. The capital’s daily car sales are more than all the other metros combined. Now that is an impressive statistic. But an accompanying footnote which is always there and is always overlooked is that fact that the city’s roads are not being able to handle this impressive statistic. My fear is, that if Tata actually comes out with the minicar, and if it actually sells well, our country’s infrastructure might just burst out of over-congestion.

What worries is that all those people who travel on two-wheelers, who travel in buses or by the metro may actually be able to buy and afford that car with easy financing schemes available. For a city that’s trying to shut down shops for re-claiming parking space as one of the reasons, that could spell disaster.

Now don’t get me wrong. I’m not against people moving up in society or towards development. I’m all for it! But it’s just that I believe, that for the benefit of the society, there should be a minimum threshold which cars should not stoop below. There should be a minimum threshold which people have to cross in order to move into a next group/ class. The minicar threatens to narrow it down to an irrelevant figure. Imagine all those reckless two-wheeler riders suddenly driving a four-wheeler. Imagine all those two-wheeler parking lots trying to fit in a similar number of minicars. Imagine the additional pollution caused and additional fuel spent by them. It’s not that pretty a picture.

Plus, I don’t believe a car produced that cheaply would be providing safety to the passengers even matching that of a Maruti 800. Moreover, with Mr. Tata himself reckoning that it’ll meet all Indian (note not international) environment and safety standards, the resolve seems weaker. Why can’t they try to create more eco-friendly cars or safer cars instead of finding more ways to produce little pollutants cheaply?

Ofcouse in the end the biggest question that remains is who will buy that car, if at all. That depends much upon the styling and the positioning of the vehicle. After all, Indians are pretty much status-conscious and many would not like to be seen driving a no-frills car which probably their clerk buys for his son as well.

Call me a traditionalist if you may, I like cars to be cars and bikes to be bikes. And I would prefer to spend a little extra money for a more safety and cleanliness rather than save money and compromise on them.

Friday, May 12, 2006

Time for winding down ...

Another day gone by. My highlight of the day - getting a haircut (some would laugh at that thought ofcouse!)
I just looked back at my posts for today and realized they've all been critical ... cynical to some extent. Well that's not how I am always ... it's just one 'o those days I guess. One 'o those days ...

Just some scientific trivia I came across today - a group of scientists have discovered that women are attracted to men who are fond of children. Well that's not the interesting part ... the interesting part is that they can determine whether men are fond of children or not simply by looking at their faces ! Now that's a thought that makes one feel humble doesn't it :) But on the other hand, they don't appreciate such features in men if they're looking for short term relationships (read: one night stands). Now that's good news for some and bad news for the rest ;)

But an even more interesting discovery was this - another group of scientists have discovered (thank god not the same ones) that Monkeys' drinking patterns (alcohol) have very, in fact almost as similar to that of humans. The various similar trends include :
- They drink more alcohol when they're alone, just like humans
- They like to end a long day in the lab with a good cocktail, just like humans

Damn those lucky monkeys ! :)

A society with a short memory span

A mute conspirator. That’s exactly what I’d like to call Arjun Singh, the honorable HRD minister. I honestly respect him for his deviance for having dropped a bomb of a hint and then pretending to look helpless because of the Election Commission. Moreover, he conveniently forgets to provide any kind of response on the day he’s supposed to. What ? Does he think that we are some animals who have a short memory span who’ll simply forget ?

Not that he can be blamed really for thinking like that if he does. We, the people, are definitely guilty of having short memory spans many a times. Now I’m not making sweeping statements just like that. The evidence is all around us.
That’s the reason why criminals get elected, the reason why they live freely like any other citizen (but on bail), the reason why cases like Jessica Lal or Chutaliya’s disproportionate assets keep happening again and again in some form or other. It’s simply because we either forget to implicate those responsible, or we forget about the lessons learned. I don’t think I’d be wrong in saying that a lot of cases that come to the attention of the media make a big impact in the beginning, linger on for a while and then just get lost in oblivion.

Some may argue that the short memory span may not be to blame for this. It’s because of the system they’d add. Well I just say its because of the short memory span that the system is able to overshadow in the first place.

Some say ‘learn to go on with life, let go. Forgive. How long can u fight with it after all? It’ll take you down eventually’. Well I just say that if your fight it once and set an example, on top of that if you don’t forget it, such a thing may not happen again.

Song of the moment : Someday – Flipsyde

Awesome song ! It was chosen as the theme song for some games that happened in Finland i think ... Check out the lyrics:

Someday we gonna rise up on that wind you know
Someday we gonna dance with those lions
Someday we gonna break free from these chains and keep on flyin'

They tellin' me it's all good just wait
You know you're gonna be there someday
Sippin' on Jim Beam ok
Gotta get these things one day
Till then do another line you know
Searching for that other high
Stop or I gotta steal then steal
Kill or I'm gonna be killed
I got a sack in my pocket
Conscious yellin' drop it
You know we're gonna lose it someday
And we tryin' to hold it all together
But the devil is too clever so
I'm gonna die you gonna die we gonna die
Someday one day I said

Someday we gonna rise up on the wind you know
Someday we gonna dance with those lions
Someday we gonna break free from these chains and keep on flyin'

Try to lie but it ain't me
Ain't me try to look but I can't see
Can't stop right now cause I'm too far
And I can't keep goin' cause it's too hard
In the day in the night it's the same thing
On the field on the block it's the same game
On the real if you stop then it's no pain
But if you can't feel pain then it's no gain
Rearrange and you change and it's all bad
And you try to maintain but you fall back
And you crawl and you slip and you slide down
Wanna make it to the top better start now
So I hold my soul and I die hard
All alone in the night in the graveyard
Someday one day I'm gonna be free
And they won't try to kill me for being me
Hey someday

Someday we gonna rise up on that wind you know
Someday we gonna dance with those lions
Someday we gonna break free from these chains and keep on flyin'

If you know how this is
Gonna see it's not that easy
Don't stop get it till it's done
From where you are or have begun
I said keep on try a little harder
To see everything you need to be
Believe in your dreams
That you see when you're asleep

Someday we gonna rise up on that wind you know
Someday we gonna dance with those lions
Someday we gonna break free from these chains and keep on flyin'

The Demolition Men shot down

First of all I’d like to say that I’m really enraged by the bill passed today. I mean here are certain respected men (the judges of the Supreme court) trying to uphold the law and the constitution and what happens ? Well the same in just any other romantic tragedy, the anti-hero gets shot down for standing up for what’s right !

I don’t know much about the legalities but I think the current government should be held in contempt of court.

I mean amongst all the chaos surrounding the demolition drive in the city, what comes up is that thousands of traders will be left stranded. What is generally very conveniently overlooked by everyone including the media is the question that how could have so many people disobeyed the law in the first place, and I’m talking about the same thousands here. I think it’s simply preposterous that such mass-scale fraud could have taken place in the first place. The concerned bodies should simply not be forgiven for that.

But well, what’s done is done and we should not look at the past but think about what can be done. Right. I completely agree with that. Let’s forgive the offenders, after all they’re also families just like mine and yours. But let’s atleast stop it now that we are aware of it! Simply acknowledging the fact that the law has been broken and generously forgiving those responsible still does not cure the problem. That is exactly what the demolition drive was doing. It had identified the problem and was castrating it. Until ofcourse the unwelcome child of democracy – vote bank politics stepped in.

Indeed the politicians, whose vote bank lies in the illiterate small traders, street hawkers, etc wouldn’t bare a chance to get re-elected or gain political mileage if they hadn’t stepped in. So instead of making these people understand why / how they were wrong, and providing relief to them by compensating them somehow in some way, they just used their constitutional muscle and stopped the drive altogether. Why can’t they see the long term repercussions of their actions I fail to understand. It’s all just about getting re-elected the next time.

All I can say is that I really hope that they actually come out with a viable action plan in the one year they’ve stolen. In my crystal bowl, however, the prediction is pretty easy though. At the end of one year, a committee will be set up to investigate into the matter which will come out with a very depleted figure of the number of encroachments. They will then give recommendations which the already incompetent authorities will sit upon and probably get new ways to gobble up some money as well. People like you and I on the other hand, people who struggle to find space or infact air to breathe which should be rightfully ours, will simply eat a hard bullet.

Masti ka Chamata … (oops !) … Chataka !

There are only two things I’m sure of every year when the summer comes along. First ofcourse are the record breaking temperatures recorded every year and second is a barrage of nonsensical ads on the idiot box let loose by soft drink manufacturers (affectionately called the Cola Wars). And it is the second variety that never fails to amuse me year after year. Some are good I admit, some are even funny, but most of them are simply an assault on your senses.

Let’s start with with a few moderate ones … Do the Dew that is. Mountain dew brings another variation of its ‘adventure enthusiasts’ bunch of guys doing an outrageous stunt like base jumping with a bike off what appears to be the Grand ‘Dew’ Canyon. There’s not much here as they’ve not really toyed around with the idea and have simply played it safe. I really doubt how long they can keep using the same old rug though.

Then there’s Taste the Thunder ! I liked the idea of Akshay Kumar trying to literally ‘capture’ the thunder in a bottle and then tasting it. It’s a decent execution as well with the setting and picture-isation and especially Akshay Kumar sporting a long-haired dude hairdo. But the ad again portrays the same adventure-seeking kind of image. So how is it different from Do-ing the Dew ?

Mallika Sherawat enters the galaxy of stars endorsing soft drinks with 7-Up with Fido literally playing ‘genie in the bottle’. Now this is amongst one of the better ads in originality, idea, execution and communication of the message according to me. The ad is able to pass across the message of a curvy and the coolest drink pretty well.

Finally I think the trophy is taken by Coca – Cola with two classic ads, one starring Aishwarya Rai and the other with Amir Khan. Both the ads have been well executed and are able to captivate the audience. The Aishwarya ad simply by her stunning looks and her charm, while the Amir Khan ad by his great acting prowess. The message may not be as clear as some of the others, but the executions still takes the cake.

But wait ! That’s not all . I forgot to mention the real Winners ! I mean this was all just formalities. The best campaign I still haven’t even mentioned !

Let us start with the runner-up … Pepsi TV !
This is a classic case of ‘peanuts-in-the-end’. A classic case of ‘dig up a mountain to find a mouse’ (a direct Hindi to English translation). It’s simply a classic example of marketers ending up over-promising and then failing to deliver.
The idea was good I don’t deny it. Pepsi wanted people to drink Pepsi at home while watching TV ! ( although where have I heard that before ? … wait … hmm .. does anybody remember the Coca-Cola ad with Amir Khan dressed as a lady ???)
Infact, the first ad was able to create quite a tangible amount of curiosity with the mystery of what exactly Pepsi TV could be. Obviously everyone though it was a new channel that Pepsi was launching. But you can’t promise people something that huge and ‘bubbly’ and hand them a little pipe to suck on to some Pepsi in the end can you ? I mean that should be a criminal offense. Well I don’t have anymore to say in this regard.

And finally … the winner … give it up for … Masti ka Chataka !!! (Fanta)
Now where do I start ? Hmm.. let’s start with the idea which is the birthplace of any great marketing campaign. But wait, I must be stupid to expect anything like that from this ad ! Simply said, the advertisement lacks any kind of a motivation behind it. It’s a part of a rat-race, a race to capture the consumer’s attention … but unfortunately it is very short-sighted.
Ok, nothing lost, so what if there’s not much of an idea behind it. Let’s make the execution great. Right ? Nope, wrong again. With the already existing clutter that bombards people’s senses, the creators of the ad have simple added more clutter. I mean what is it with all those scribbling in the background and the irritating sound effects ? If nothing else they just distract the viewer from the message and make them focus on irrelevant and non-creative (if there’s such a word) things. I don’t think I should start to even mention how stunning ( read ‘horrible’ ) Rani Mukherjee looks.

Well in the end my whole point is that I’m saddened by the fact that a lot of money goes waste in the hands of people lacking a vision who run these things.

I seriously miss those good old days of the real ‘cola wars’ when you’d see the companies trying their best to make a fool of each other. Atleast it was funny.

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Planning for the Mecca-s

My folks just came back and are planning a trip to visit 2 Meccas of the Hindu religion. Namely Vaishno Devi and Jwala Ji. They both have fascinating stories behind them and I’d definitely like to touch upon them once I’m back from the trip (and better acquainted with them).

But what is of more attention right now is the planning and strategizing that goes behind this. The meticulous calculation of the kilometers and the per kilometer rates. The careful revision of the hours and the lodgings. I was a mute spectator to this however. But that’s because my opinion in this matter would not be given a lot of weightage as of now and secondly, and more importantly, I don’t know how to plan a trip !

The former issue doesn’t worry me too much. After all, its just a matter of a year or so when I start living by myself right ? But this very thought, the fact that I’ll be living by myself, coupled with the second issue produces the kind of irritation probably equaled by scratching your nails on a blackboard. Its not an emotion of fear, anxiety or being overwhelmed. Its just irritation. I mean I’ve seen people my age travel 3,300 km alone on a bike to one of the most challenging places in the country like Laddakh. And here I am having gone only as far as Beawar, a non descript village near an equally boring city in Rajasthan. I mean of course I’ve taken the odd trip with friends to hill-stations like Nainital, etc. and I’ve had my share of weed at places like Dharmashala. But the drive for adventure screams inside me, the adrenaline inside begs to rush. It is irritating.

Well to use a cliché, there’s always a first time, and I’m glad mine is coming soon. In September to be precise, when I pack my bags and fly to Warsaw for three months on Exchange to Warsaw School of Economics. I’ve already started ‘googling’ for various trekking opportunities available.

But as for now, I’ll have to be content with Vaishno Devi and Jwala Ji and sit mutely in the passenger’s seat.

DST: Delhi Standard Time

Found this in the newspaper and found it amusingly accurate so I just had to share it !

It gives examples of complex and variable definitions of time Delhiites live by. I’ll simply quote them from the article.

2 Minutes : This can mean anything from 20 minutes to 2 hours depending on the situation. If you’re at the office and the supplier says “I’m just reaching in 2 minutes”, you have enough time to 1) Have lunch 2) Have a smoke and 3) Finish all your mails.
10 secs : This could be anything from 10 days to 100 years. When someone who owes you money says “drop by any day, I’ll write you a check in 10 seconds’, well best of luck.
5 mins : This means 10 kilometers. For some reason people in Delhi on the road are very shy of telling you how far something is. If you ask “how far?”, they will point and say “5 mins”. Of course what they actually mean is 5 mins by plane and that too a Mach 5 !
1 hour : Now this means 5 minutes. When on the rare occasion you are late and the supplier idiot is waiting for you, he will say “I’ve been waiting here for an hour !”. Hah !
I’m just downstairs : Can mean anywhere. When you call someone who is late and they say “I’m just downstairs”, you think they mean they're in the parking or the driveway but they actually could be anywhere !
2 days : 10 minutes or 10 days depends on who is saying it. If a car mechanic says “this car’s gonna take 2 days to repair”, he actually has 10 minutes of work but he wants to charge you for more. And if a carpenter promises you a bookshelf in 2 days, add 8 more days.
24 hours : Never. Try calling the MTNL guys and when they say they’d come in 24 hours, that’s when you can assume this meaning.

I have to admit I was a bit embarrassed after reading this (for obvious reasons).

God ... and Great Great Grandfathers

Now I personally don’t believe in god. Like probably most other people of my age and generation, I like to believe in the power of self and refuse to acknowledge a thought that my destiny is controlled by something/ someone other than me.

My mom, on the other hand, is a staunch believer. Although generously sprinkled with moderations of rationality and modernism, her idea of God mostly is, traditional.

Therefore, like expected, she and I constantly have these debates on religion and God. Just yesterday, we started off on the topic of whether god really existed or are these stories merely folklore passed on through generations. I mean I honestly wouldn’t believe in any God (be it of any religion) unless I found some proof that they really existed. Finally there came a point when I told her that all religions are merely based on writing of obscure people in history and concluded that if I would’ve written a book on Tom and Jerry, and if it would’ve caught on, then maybe we’d all be worshipping idols of a mouse and a cat instead !

To this my mother just smiled.

It was one of those warm smiles that wise people give when they know what’s coming. She said “Let me tell you a story … “
A long time ago there was a king (like there is always in those stories). He was a very arrogant king (like most of them are) who didn’t believe anybody else was greater than him (hmm… what’s new!). He heard about this great saint in his land who was giving people great faith in God. Feeling a bit challenged, the king summoned the saint to his palace to explain to him why he thought the saint was wrong.
Later, he was taking a walk with the saint in his palace and came across a hall with portraits of his great lineage. The king, with a chest swollen with pride, proceeded to introduce the pictures on the wall elaborating on how many great battles each one of his ancestors had won. He came to the portrait of his great great grandfather and started rambling about his feats when suddenly the saint spit on the face in the picture.
The king was enraged. He demanded for an explanation when the saint calmly replied back in a question, “How do you know he is you Great Great Grandfather?”. The king explained because his father had told him so. So he asked how his father knew that he was his great grandfather. The king replied because, obviously, his father's father had told his father so. At this the saint concluded that the king had never seen that man in the portrait and it was his belief that he was what he was because of the generations of legends that had passed on.
Similarly, the saint replied, I believe in someone whose legends have been passed on through many generations. Just like you, he told the king, I have faith in that person and wouldn’t appreciate anyone disrespecting him or questioning his existence.

This is the part in the conversation with my mom where I’m supposed to think hard as to how should I reply to that.

Well I’m still thinking … but I’m not giving up ! :)

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Testing one two three ...

Well I have finally done it ! I was thinking of doin this for quite some time.

A lot has happened in the last couple of months. The ground beneath my feet has literally parted into two completely different textures.

I failed a year at my MBA.

Well for some it may not be as dramatic as I just described it. But for me, it has been a life changing experience.

Why someone may ask ? Why did it happen ?
Well the answer to that is quite simple actually.
I simply did not take it seriously !
I'd cruised through my first year being completely disillusioned by the whole concept of an MBA and I was thinking it'd be just one of those things where the biggest deal is just starting it and the rest will fall in place. But ofcourse, like most things in life, even this was not Free ! Ofcourse this was exaggerated by excess of a few things which I could've done without.

So anywayz, there's ont much point in dwelling in the past. Bygones are Bygones.

Its a new beginning now. I have a chance to undo the damage.

And well that is a picture of me last year. (I uploaded it mainly to put it on my profile)
But come to think about it ... They say that pictures speak a thousand words. Well my story's gonna change a bit, let's see how the picture changes ;)