Monday, December 29, 2008

Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi - a Reviewwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww!!

DISCLAIMER: As usual Heavy Sarcasm ahead.

Ok!! I tried my level best to give a neutral title which wouldn’t give away what I felt about the movie but sigh, I guess my hatred for the movie got the better of me and hence the title.
Before reading ahead I would request you guys to have a look at Arun's brilliant spoof on the same movie which represents perfectly what I think of it. "Drab and Banal Jodi". God Arun!! How do u think of such befitting names. Brilliant!! :)

Some movies are made just for critics. If all movies were good, critics would be out of work so u can always trust yashraj movies and Aditya Chopra to dish out something which can make critics rub their hands in glee and close in for the kill

Ok!! maybe my review might be biased because,
1. I can’t STAND SRK and his hysterics (read acting)
2. I can’t stand his exaggerated smile and dimple
3. I can’t stand him crying and my favorite movies are the ones where he dies in the end and I am not kidding when I say I was the only one clapping my hands cheerfully in the theatre when SRK died in Kal Ho Na Ho.

I mean seriously. Doesn’t Aditya Chopra get tired? Of making the same kind of movies again and again and again and again with no other formula except boy+girl+gooey sappy love. All his movies have just these ingredients but different variations of the same nonsense.

For how many years will we keep hearing dialogues like the following

1. 'Har ladki yehi chahti hai ki koi ladka usse deewanon jaisa pyaar kare. aur kuch nahi chahiye ek ladki ko'

Oh yeah!! we don’t care if the guy is a serial rapist or doesn’t earn a penny or owns a garage or doesn’t have a sense of humor or wears crappy clothes and has an even more crappier accent
we just want a guy who can cause a blackout in the city and trouble all its citizens and do "deewaanon jaisa pyaar" (whatever thats supposed to mean). Though I have never been in love frankly I really think a sensible girl would want something a little more than "dewwanon jaisa pyaar"

2. 'Maine to aapko ek boondh bhi pyaar nahi diya aur aap mujh pe baarish pe baarish barsaate gaye'
Eeeeeeeeeeeeee!!
I thought Hindi movies had stopped having dialogues like "Aap mere maang ka sindoor ho", "Mai apne pranon ki ahuti de doongi". You know the kind I am talking about. I mean how much more clichéd can it get. Girl loves someone else. Cant marry him. Marries boy who dotes on her. Doesn’t realize his love till last scene and then belts out dialogues like those mentioned above!! The same concept was handled so beautifully and subtly in Mouna Ragam. Maybe I am biased or maybe I just think Mani Ratnam is a much much much better director than Aditya Chopra ever will be. Even hum dil de chuke sanam handled it very well while RNBDJ makes a mockery of it.

3. 'Mujhe maaf kar do Raj. Ek pal ke liye tumhare pyaar ne mujhe kamzor kar diya tha par maine unme (the other SRK) Rab dekh liye'

Sighhhhhhhh!! The whole movie is based on the premise that we only oughta be with someone in whom we can see Rab (god) and they keep harping about it in the whole movie. The silliest thing being that our heroine plans to run away with the Raj-The Electrician (Errrr. yeah. to prove his love, Raj our mohabbat man take his Taani partner (ewwwwwwwwww) to the top of a hill and writes "I Love You" by cutting out the appropriate lights in Amritsar city) because her husband is a big bore.

And then the next day she goes to the golden temple and prays "Mujhe Rab dikha do, Rab dikha do" and she opens her eyes and sees Shahrukh walking towards her and realisation dawns upon her that he is her Rab. (All Rab's doing mind you. He doesn’t have time to save this world from terrorism, feed the hungry millions, prevent global warming but oh yeah!! He does have the time to show some non descript girl in Amritsar her true love!! Extremely realistic don’t u think?? If u want to know who you must spend the rest of your life with just go to the nearest temple and say "Show me God, Show me God" and then when you open your eyes, whoever you see is your man/woman. errrr. Author of the blog is NOT to be blamed if someone of the same sex stands in front of you or the temple's pujari stands there. No sir!! C'mon. its a "formula" suggested by Aditya Soap-Opera(Thanks Arun!! :)) in RNBDJ!! Its as realistic as any movie can get! BAH BAH BAH!!)

The movie is ridden with such cliches.

1. The bubbly chirpy girl who sings, laughs, loves her doggie, kisses her dad as he goes 'Babul ko chod ke ja rahi hai tu beta', is never sad, so bubbly that she would make champagne look like nariyal paani and then our boy will fall for her. Sheeeeeeeesh!! Aditya Chopra. We saw Kajol in DDLJ dancing in the rain doing the bubbly girl act, we saw her in K3G doing the fun-jabi girl act, we saw her again in KKHH doing the same thing, we saw Madhuri (or was it Karishma) doing the rain dance in DTPH. Just asking, but "HOW MANY MORE SUCH MOVIES WILL YOU MAKE US WATCH"

2. The dying father "sonpofying" his beti's hand in marriage to a nerdy guy.

3. The girl going "Mai aapse kabhi pyaar nahi kar sakti. Pyaar mein bohot dard hota hai" and trying to play the dutiful wife who cant love her husband

4. The rains. The girl getting caught in the rain and the boy giving her a lift.Puhleeeese!! and as if thats not enough to RUB (pun intended!! :P) it in we have Raj the mohabbat man belting out dialogues like "Baarish mai apni aankhne band kar ke.." some shit. I don’t even remember!!

5. The guy going "Rab naraaz to nahi ho jayenge na, kyunki mai tumhe unse zyada chahta hoon". Sheeeeesh!! Thats the most clichéd dialogue I ever heard. I think the dialogue writer probably made a list of "100 crappiest and most clichéd dialogues ever used in Hindi movies" and generously sprinkled RNBDJ with items on that list.

6. And I am not even talking about the MOST talked about loophole in the movie that how can a girl not recognise her husband after he shaves his mouche off?? Selective Amnesia? Alzheimers? Naaah!! They don’t even attempt to explain that in the movie. According to the movie the best disguise a men can ever get is a mouchless face!! We had superb Hindi films like Golmaal (the old one!!! Obviously!!) where we had guys who were twins and the only difference was that one of them had a mouche and the other didn’t and we have movies like RNBDJ (director of Golmaal wherever you are please forgive me for mentioning RNBDJ in the same breath as your movie) where a mouche changes the entire person!! HUMPH!!

7. one more time I hear someone go “Hum hain rahi pyaar ke, phir milenge, chalte chalte” kasam mamta kulkarni ki, I will shoot myself. Mohabbat Man Raj says this a gazillion times in the movie thinking its very cute, hoping to induce a couple of laughs among the audience but failing miserably and only managing to do what he does best. Irritate us with his “he he he he he”!! :-\

Ok!! Now for the positives

Just one. Vinay Pathak.
I don’t understand why an actor of Vinay Pathak’s caliber agreed to work under the Yash Raj banner and belt out sappy dialogues now and then. But Vinay Pathak is the saving grace of the movie. His timely comedy and his dialogues (ironic isn’t it? That the hero and heroine get all the crappy dialogues and the comedian gets the best ones) are seriously worth a watch. The scene where Vinay Pathak says “Saara macho kharab kar ditta” and SRK innocently asks “yaar, yeh macho bike ka kaunsa bhaag hota hai?” is brilliant. Vinay Pathak does a good job, but that’s what he always does.

The newcomer Anoushka is ok with her dancing and acting (not that her character gave much scope for it but she is ok) but is definitely not in the big league of heroines.

And the Surinder – SRK does a fairly decent job at being a nerd but this good show is spoilt by the overacting done by his alter ego - Raj

On the whole I would say watch the movie if you liked KANK, KHNK, K3G, K2H2,DDLJ,DTPH, Mujhse dosti karoge etc and if you think that everyone is blessed with true love and all u need to do is wait for a full moon day where fairies will make u meet your dream boy/girl, and that god has nothing better to do than script your love story and that while it rains you should not run for shelter but taste the rain drops and think about the one you love.

Ok I don’t want to RUB it in any further. You get the drift dotchya? Final verdict - Don’t watch it. Please!!

Friday, December 26, 2008

Ok. So following is what i wrote for a mystery story writing contest in office. Please do let me know what you think of this because i didnt like it much when i read it the second and third time around. anyway. here it is!! :)

brickbats welcome!! :P

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December 12th 2007
He sat on the cold stone slab inside his cell, his head bent down, breathing heavily even as he felt a warm sticky liquid, his blood, trickle down the base of his neck and drip on his jail clothes. He winced as he thought of how the brutal jail barber had inhumanly shaved off all his hair with a few quick strokes of a rusted blade. But not a cry had escaped from his mouth as he had sat through the ordeal.

A grating sound came as an aluminum dish was crudely pushed into his cell and the warden said “khana kha le. Khuda jaane phir kab tujhe khana naseeb ho –Eat your food, lord knows when you will see food again”. He picked up the dish which consisted of rice in a yellow color liquid and sighed as he saw the little boll worms in the rice. They didn’t clean the rice even for the prisoners on the death row he thought as he pushed away the plate disgustedly. But then again food was the last thing on the mind of a prisoner on the death row.

Its funny how they say your entire life flashes before u just moments before you are about to die. He now closed his eyes and saw Tasneem, his beautiful Tasneem standing in front of him, smiling a shy smile and wearing the gorgeous pink salwar he loved so much, her head bent, looking just the way she had looked the first day when he had gone to meet her. For him it was love at first sight. It was a standing joke between them and Tasneem would say that it was the pink salwar he had fallen in love with at first sight and he would be quick to assure her that it was Tasneem in the pink salwar that he had fallen for – hook line and sinker. Tasneem. Charming, beautiful, intelligent, playful, a perfect mother, wife and daughter in law. She was too good to be true. The smell of jasmine in her hair, the faint smell of her favorite rose perfume from her clothes, her twinkling eyes, her laughter, the comfort of her arms. He would never feel them again. He would never see her again.

16 year old Sohrab. An adolescent now. He remembered how his neighbor qazi Aslam had held the baby in his hands and said “Inshallah khoobsoorti aur dimaag pe yeh baccha Tasneem aur sirf Tasneem par hi jaaye - God willing, I hope the baby is blessed with the looks of Tasneem and the brains of Tasneem” and laughed. He was glad Aslam’s prophecy had come true. Sohrab with his handsome face and pleasing demeanor was the kind of son any father would love to have. Playing chess with him and losing miserably, going on drives with him, laughing defenselessly when Tasneem and Sohrab ganged up against him. He would never experience all that again.

His parents. So much they had done for him. So much he had to learn from them. His mother’s chicken tikka, his father’s stories, their beautiful house by the river. Never again.

His closest friend. Major Enthu. Called so because of his infectious enthusiasm. Tall, Smart and extremely intelligent. At the age of 24 he had been a major in the army. He could liven up the coldest of days and the bleakest of atmospheres on the war front with his jokes and enthusiasm. They were best buddies despite the difference in age and ranks. Extremely fun loving and a never ending reservoir of jokes and anecdotes.

Operation Vijay during the Kargil war. Being shot in the right leg and being incapacitated right on the enemy lines. Enthu again. It was Enthu who had come back for him when everyone else had retreated to the safety of the trench. It was Enthu who had carried him over his shoulders for almost 8 kms to the safety of the Indian camp braving enemy shelling and firing and the extremely hostile weather of Kargil. It was Enthu who hadn’t given up on him though he had lost his senses because of immense blood loss and though Enthu himself had suffered minor injuries. It was Enthu who had arranged for him to be admitted in the army hospital in Srinagar. Enthu who had given him a new lease of life. Enthu who had enabled him the luxury of another 8 years with Tasneem and Sohrab.
He always wondered if he would ever be able to repay Enthu. Not any more.
He would never feel Enthu’s slap on his back, never hear another enthralling anecdote from him. Never again would he hear his comrades laugh saying “Major Enthu, maaaajor enthu”. Never again.

“Chalo chalo. Waqt aa gaya hai – Time is up” the heartless voice of the warden broke his reverie.
He got up, rudely pushing away the warden’s grip on his limp shoulders, staring right ahead at the empty wall, refusing to look into the gloating eyes of the warden.
“Vikram Rathod ji” read the warden sarcastically from the tag dangling from his arm and smirked. “Koi aakhri khwaish aapki? – Any last wishes?”

As a last act of defiance he spit on the floor.

The warden hit him hard across the shins and he bore it unflinchingly.
“Chalo Chalo” the warden spat out and pushed him roughly towards the exit of the jail to the open ground where the gallows were waiting for him.
He refused to look at anyone, he refused to look at the triumphant faces of the Pakistani army general and prime minister, refused to be intimidated by them, refused to be overcome by emotions. He had eyes only for the gallows which in some time would envelop him and release him to heaven. It seemed like the only friend he had now, in this foreign land.

There would be no 21 gun salute, no Indian flag draped royally over him, no medals for his bravery, no rewards for his wife and son, but it didn’t bother him.
He stood on the trap door, dispassionately facing the gallows and not uttering a sound as the black hood descended over his head and the noose was tightened over his head. It was ironic. All through life man is afraid of death, the inevitable, but in the last few minutes before facing death a deep calm descends over him which overpowers any feeling of fear.

Click

The trap door opened, the noose tightened around his neck and the body of the condemned man twitched for a few seconds before periodically swinging like a pendulum from the gallows.

October 15th 2008
Detective Farzana was at a loss. 10 years as the best detective of the Pakistan ISI and this was the first time such a case had presented itself before her. “Either this case only seems uncomplicated or age is finally getting to me” she thought as she got up to have her nth cup of coffee from the vending machine and sat down to read the case history for the 100th time.
She had been appointed to investigate the death of Top Indian Spy and Best intelligence officer Major Vikram Rathod who had been hanged until death about an year back without a word to the Indian government. Though this fact irked Farzana she became mechanical because she knew how scrupulous the Pakistani bureaucracy was and she got down into the details of the case even as she reached the fag end of her coffee, the bitter part which she liked and which helped her think.
There was something not right about the case was all that had been told to her. The man, Vikram Rathod the top Indian spy and a prize catch for Pakistan had however turned out to be a damp squib because he had refused to reveal any information despite being subject to acute torture. Farzana winced for she knew the kind of torture techniques which were used by the Pakistani police. And finally out of frustration and just to spite the Indian government he had been hanged to death in front of all the leaders of PPP. Though these facts had been hidden from the India, they had told the Indian government that Vikram Rathod had been accidentally blown to bits when he had ventured unwittingly on Pakistani soil and had sent back his belongings as a sign of maintaining good will between the two countries.

The Indian Government had been surprisingly silent about the whole thing and the intelligence seemed stronger than ever and there didn’t seem to be any chink in india’s armor. Though India’s resilience and the inefficiency of its politicos was well known, their hardiness was too good to be true and it rankled the Pakistani government and intelligence and with the ISI reports that Vikram was still alive and working undercover they had issued a probe into the issue and assigned it to Farzana, easily their best.

But Farzana was at her wits end. It seemed like she was groping blindfolded in the dark. She had no evidence, she had no leads, hell she didn’t even have a case. All she had was the Pakistani government’s and intelligence’s intuition that there might be something wrong in the death of Vikram Rathod about an year back. Sigh!!

“Salaam alekum Farzana jaan. Working so late? Want some tea? Not this vending machine one. Like horse piss it is I always say. People say that you haven’t lived if you haven’t drunk Rahim’s tea” said Rahim the night watchman who had come to check on her.

“ha ha. Walekum-as-Salam Rahim chacha. Thanks a lot. I could do with some. This case is eating my head”

“And what case is that?” asked Rahim chacha as he returned with a cup of tea

“Nothing. You wont understand.” smiled Farzana as he sipped the “special tea”

“Ah!! You are underestimating my intelligence Farzana jaan. Bol ke to dekho – try me”

“Ah!! well” began Farzana condescendingly. “Can u please tell me what is so strange about Vikram Rathod’s death Rahim chacha?” she smiled as she pored over the case history again

“Vikram Rathod??” whispered Rahim chacha

Farzana looked up and saw that all the color had drained from his face.

“Are you ok Rahim chacha? Here have some tea” she urged him. “Did u know him?”

“Did I know him? Of course I did. Or at least I knew the man who pretended to be Vikram Rathod”

“What??? What are u saying??”

“I will tell you one thing Farzana jaan and may Allah strike me and my family with lightning if I lie but that man who was hanged an year back was not Vikram Rathod. I don’t think he was even Hindu.”

“B.But how do u know?”

“He recited verses from the Kuran everyday, he would do namaz silently when he thought no one was watching. He had the faint almost unnoticeable scar on his forehead which every staunch Musalmaan who does namaz regularly has and he never responded to the name Vikram Rathod when woken up in the middle of his sleep.”

“But ho-how do u know all this”

“I was the warden who was with him night and day. I got a chance to observe him closely and deal with him. It was recently that I quit that job to take up this less demanding one”

“But if u knew he wasn’t Vikram Rathod why didn’t u tell the higher authorities? Why didn’t u tell them when u saw him doing namaaz?”

“We have a law among us Musalmans Farzana jaan” said Rahim. “A man while he does his namaz and recites the Kuran is the son of god. And no son of God can be wrong. And there was something about that fellow. I don’t know what. He wasn’t a criminal. After 20 years as a jail warden I can tell the difference between a criminal and a good man. A criminal’s guilt settles around his shoulders, giving him a tense, wary and shifty look.” Said Rahim chacha
“But this man!! This man had this calm and quiet face. He had no fear, no guilt. Just blank, deep staring eyes which never looked at anyone, never spoke to anyone and just waited for an absolution to come. To be honest I was scared of him. If I had told on him Allah would never have forgiven me. I will leave you to do your work Farzana jaan but be rest assured that Vikram Rathod never stepped on Pakistani soil and we hanged a Musalmaan last year. Khudahaafiz”

Farzana’s head was spinning. If she were to believe Rahim chacha, the case was getting thicker and thicker. Who was the man who had been hung a year back? And where was Vikram Rathod if not dead?
She quickly logged on to the internet to read more about Vikram Rathod. “The late Vikram Rathod”, it said “was a sterling army officer and a gem of a man”. The website was full of praise for him and she quickly scanned the page till her eyes fell on a title named Awards. “Vikram Rathod was awarded the President medal for bravery for having saved the life of a fellow soldier Abdul Mohammed in the Kargil war in 2001. Abdul Mohammed was declared missing and later dead around the same time when news of Vikram’s death reached the Indian government and his body was never found”
Farzana quickly checked the date when the website had been updated and the date was around 6 months back. Which meant an year back Abdul Mohammed had been declared missing. She ran a search on Abdul Mohammed to find out that Vikram Rathod and he had been very close friends and he had been declared missing around the same time when news of Vikram Rathod’s death had reached the Indian government. And in a little family photo of Abdul’s she saw his face and her heart skipped a beat and she looked up from the computer to her confidential case file – given exclusively to her, which had a photo of the man who had been hung an year back.
They were the same.
The overwhelming truth dawned on her and the weight of the fantastic deception crushed her and she slumped into her chair and sat numb as she let the facts sink in.

Two months later Farzana closed the case on the basis of insufficient and lack of incriminating evidence and quit her enviable position at the Pakistani intelligence

December 12th 2008
Vikram Rathod, popularly known as Enthu among his friends, lifted his hand up to salute the brave martyr Abdul Mohammed as a 21 gun salute for him rang through the air. It had been an year since Abdul had died in an unknown land at the hands of ruthless extremists. An year since Vikram had been wounded very close to the LOC while escaping with extremely sensitive information from Pakistani soldiers. An year since Abdul had taken him to safety and told him he would tackle the Pakistanis. If Vikram knew the way Abdul was going to “tackle” the Pakistanis he would never have allowed it. Maybe that’s why Abdul never revealed the plan he had in his mind. Never breathed a word because he knew Vikram would never have allowed it.

Abdul knew that it as only a matter of time before the Pakistani soldiers caught up with the wounded Vikram, took him into their custody, tortured him and got the information which Vikram had guarded more securely than his life. Keeping Vikram alive and the information secure was vital for the success of their operation and realizing this Abdul had quickly stripped Vikram and worn his clothes. In his unconscious state Vikram hadn’t felt anything. Abdul had told Lieutenant Srivastav of his plan and asked him to take Vikram to safety and despite protests from Srivastav had gone ahead and ventured into Pakistani territory, deliberately gotten caught by the soldiers who had captured him, discovered his identity as Vikram Rathod, the top Indian spy, tortured him and killed him thinking he was Vikram.

It was the ultimate deception or the ultimate sacrifice depending on which side of the border you were on.

Vikram wiped a lone tear and felt the hair on his neck rising as he thought of Abdul and saw Tasneem bhabhi and Sohrab collect the compensation, Abdul’s medals and the posthumous Param Vir Chakra awarded to him for exceptional bravery and exemplary camaraderie as a sterling officer of the Indian army, from the President.

As he watched them the words of Srivastav about Abdul kept ringing in his ears.

“Not for a moment did he think or even reconsider his decision sir. He just jumped at the opportunity to repay you. He said if you had been there you would have done the same thing for him. I can say only one thing sir” Srivastav had paused as he swallowed the constriction in his throat. “I wish I had a friend like that”

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P.S: Concept "inspired" (Read: stolen shamelessly) from one of my favorite Archer novels and written by me to suit an indian audience!! :P:P.

P.P.S: Mystery for the readers!! :P. Find out which Archer novel i lifted this concept from!! ;)

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Labak Ghulak Jhatak

DISCLAIMER: A fair knowledge of hindi, english and tamil is required to follow this post. :)

Sometimes it is not a boon if you know too many languages and can get very very confusing at time. For eg: i know hindi english and tamil fairly well and can converse and switch between the three languages quite fluently but sometimes i get thoroughly confused as to what language to talk and end up making a khichdi of all languages i know.
Sample the following incidents

1. Situation: A team mate telling me that XYZ is wearing new clothes and asking if i have pinched her (Errr yeah. you know the "new pinch same sweet" concepts which we used to indulge in as little kids? The "Hey new rubber, new pencil. New pinch" and then pinching the new person with all your might. I always thought it was a means for jealous people to vent out their frustration on their peers having new stuff which they wanted but didnt have. whatever. My team mates still indulge in such activities and yours truly can do nothing but oblige!! :-\)

Me: (always the one to discourage such activities): No man. Dont kill her. especially you. it hurts like hell when u kill.
Team Mate: errrr. what?
Me: what?
Team Mate: who said anything about killing her
Me: Sheeeesh. i meant kill as in pinch, u know in Tamil!! sorry.

2. Situation: I was with 2 of my friends the other day and one of them eats entirely too much and we were generally teasing him
Friend 1: He can actually eat 17 naans. no kidding. 17 naans and thayir sadam after that
Friend 2: i just like to eat man. whats wrong?
Friend 1: kids in somalia are probably dying because of the amount of food u consume
Me: Awww Chod na. Bechara valartha baccha hai.
Them: errrr
Me: what??
Them: valartha what??
Me: i mean badtha baccha, vallarra payyan. Sheeesh!!

3. Situation: a friend asking me to give an invitation to some body
Friend: Hey do give him the invitation man.
Me: Hey sure.
Friend: Courier it to him if u cant meet him
Me: Sure. i will give it to him when i see him in naer
Friend: eh??
Me: mmm
Friend: see him where??
Me: Errr. i mean see him in person or "naer la pakkaropo"

See what i mean. Total Confusion.and how can i forget all those umpteen times when i have said "I will talk later. Mujhe thookam aa raha hai" or "Pagal hai kya? Na kaise mail pannuven? i cant access gmail" or "Amma na tujhe later call pandren. Ippo i am in office" or "andha book tune padha. Yevlo super tha na" or "yaar movie itna kevalam tha, mai solla mudiyadhu".. :-\Reminds me of this time when my sister and i were travelling in train and this little gujju kid from sowcarpet fluent in tamil and gujju wanted to tell his mom that the "towel she had hung on the window was flying" and the kid went "mummy mummy thundu(Tamil) parke(Tamil+Guj) che(Gujju)" :D:D

P.S: The title..err.. my creativity is at a nadir today. I cant think of a single decent title that i can give to this post. Can you?

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Owing to the installation of the toll at OMR all buses come half an hour early to office as a result of which i am here in office at 8.30, with no one around me, trying hard to start working and do a decent round of requirement analysis at least this time. exactly 20 seconds after i opened the requirements doc i realized i am totally totally not interested in this and so here i am another word doc open in front of me typing this nonsense.

· This weekend has been another one of THOSE weekends where i have done 3207423 things in a short span of 2 days. I like weekends like these. They leave me no time to think or brood. Even before i am done with one thing there is something else demanding my attention and i switch to that and before i know it whoooosh!! the weekends gone

· My close friend got married and friends’ marriages are always amazing fun with all the speculation about who is getting married next, brainstorming sessions about what gift to buy, staying the night at a friends place putting mehendi and watching movies. good fun :)

· I finally did hold the veil for my friend when she got married. God!! i felt so important. I mean no one was allowed to come close to the bride but another friend of mine and i were allowed to stay close, talk laugh and hold the veil. Felt good!! No one has ever given me so much of respect before!! :P

· This year started off with me attending the marriage of a hindu friend, followed by the marriage of a muslim friend and then followed by the marriage of a christian friend and i have come to the conclusion that hindu marriages are the most cumbersome and complicated of the lot. the muslim and christian weddings are over in half a day. thats it. i mean they start at 11 in the morning and by 4 everyone is home again. Hindu marriages on the other hand are a 3 day sloth fest and are an abominable waste of money and time. I remember when my sister got married we had sumangali prarthanai, maplai azhaippu, kasi yatra, oonjal, thaali, metti, grahapravesam, nalangu and reception!! Phew!!! by the time it was over we were all so tired that for a week after her wedding, i remember we just slept and rejuvenated ourselves. I think everyone should just run away and get married. Would make things so much more easier

· One of my friends got over enthusiastic during the wedding and put the hair iron (the one which straightens your hair) on my hair and now i have some 10-15 strands on the right hand side of my head which refuse to curl and are just standing upright and it looks kinda sad coz i have super curly hair otherwise and these strands really stand out

· So (sigh) a couple of my friends (sigh) are going to the himalayas (sigh). and i cant go(sigh) because i have office and (sigh) some other crappy exams too (sigh)
oh BTW if you hadnt guessed yet i really really really want to go(sigh)

· have finished reading all of Rohinton Mistry's books. I liked them all but none even come close to fine balance. Wondering what author i should start off with next. Any suggestions? How does Amitav Ghosh write? Should find out and buy him next. Will settle for good ol' PGW or RKN this month though. finances are really poor and i really dont think i can afford to buy Amitav Ghosh or any book now. I have also been trying to get my hands on Out of Iran by Sousan Azadi suggested by a friend. I also finished reading Midnight’s children and maybe I am just shallow or maybe I don’t have the taste for Rushdie kind of writing. The book bored me to death.

Ahhhh!! It is 9.15. time to call the on site and get my requirements clarified!! Sigh!! Adios!!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

A Sister's "Love" :-\

Its amazing how much my sister loves me!!

Its astounding how irritating elder sisters can be

Its puzzling why parents cant stop with just one child. the YOUNGER one!! (errr. i know this makes no sense!! but whatever!!)

Sample this conversation bewteen my sis (who is currently in India visiting my parents) and me the other day

Pardon all the hindi. Since my sis and i talk only in hindi it made more sense to write the post in hindi!! :)

Tring Tring

Preethi: Haan bol.

Me: Mai hoon.

Preethi: pata hai. Kya hai? (in the most disinterested voice)

M: amma ko phone de

P: Pehle bata kya hai. kyun phone kiya??

M: (voice going up 2 decibels and accquiring a threatening tone): Amma ko phone de

P: Nahi. She is busy

M: mujhe baat karni hai. its urgent. phone de!!!!

P: Then tell me. Anyway she is busy making pakodas for me

M: pakode????? kameeni!!

P: ha ha. yeah. and mom just told me that the pakode she made now are wayyyyyyy better than the pakode she made when u came

M: u LIAR. she so did not say that.

P: math maan. mujhe kya hai. mai to pakode kha rahi hoon. tu kya kar rahi hai? Office mein hai? ha ha ha. Aur haan. Aaj raat ko aloo ke paranthe ban rahein hai aur hum sab raat ko movie ja rahein hai. Uske baad thodi daer park mein baith ke baatein karenge. tu office mein kaam kar theek hai?? Soooooonu! (this is what my sister calls me. An irritating name which i completely completely hate!!Sigh!! this name was the darkest and deepest secret of my life and now its out there!! :( )

M: Mera naam Soonu nahi hai.

P: Soonu Soonu Soonu Soonu Soonu Soonu

(Yes!! My sister is 26, married and supposedly holds a very "high" position in Satyam. Her brains however stopped growing when she was 4)

M: (bellowing now): Amma ko PHONE de kameeeeeeni!!

P: ha ha ha ha. Bye Soooooonu!!!

(Click)

M: sputtering and gasping incoherently at a dead line!!

Sigh!!! Elder Sisters. One breed of humans i want to send to the moon when the first flight of chandrayaan leaves this planet carrying humans!!

BAH!!! :-\

Friday, December 12, 2008

Operation Sunrise - III

DISCLAIMER: Pardon the length. You can choose not to read it but i had to record each and every one of these events and didnt have the heart to axe any part of this post!! :)

So where did i leave u guys last. Ah!! yes. hanging on to every word of mine and wondering when i would write my next post on the actual operation sunrise. :P (ok probably not. what u were probably thinking is "why the hell should i read about how she stayed up all night with her friends" and quickly closed the window or navigated to better blogs. but just this once humor me this once. ok?? :))

Seriously where was i? Yes. We had finished packing and CF (Close friend) and her fiance (lets call him CFF) where the first visitors to our new home.

Its funny when u meet the fiancé of a really close friend and like him. You experience a motley of emotions. For one you are insanely happy for her because something tells you that this silent quiet guy with a sincere smile and placid demeanor is going to keep her happy. On the other hand you are also inexplicably sad that now you cant call your friend up at 2 in the morning to tell her about how you accidentally placed your jeans on top of a rotten banana peel and now your favorite pair of jeans is covered with green color yucky looking fungus and laugh like crazy till 3 (Err the jeans part is a true incident which I will write about some day when I can think of my favorite pair of jeans without tears welling in my eyes. Fermie, I will never forgive you for leaving the banana peel on the chair. NEVER!! :-\)

After meeting our gang of hooligans CFF decided he had had enough of us and dropped us off at Pupil in Besant Nagar where we made CF give us a treat for managing to convince someone to marry her. I might sound really cheap but I always feel extra hungry when someone is treating but that day I guess I was so happy for CF that happiness filled a major part of my stomach and I didn’t eat much. (Ok!! Cutting the crap I didn’t eat much because I was too busy drooling over a poster of George Clooney in the restaurant) For the first time we weren’t the centre of attention in a place because of the racket we created but for ordering something called the “chicken sizzler” which lived up to its name and sizzled and cackled really really loudly and all eyes in the joint turned to look at us suspiciously. I mean imagine you are sitting in a decent eatery, looking deep into the eyes of your girl friend, holding her hands and just about to utter those three words while she smiles coyly and suddenly you hear a “sizzle, siszzzzzzzz, shizzzz, lizzz. Cackle cackle tee hee” sound (the cackle cackle was us). How irritating would that be? Multiply that irritation factor by 10, square it and that is how irritated you will feel when u r sitting in a restaurant where we happen to be eating too!! Don’t blame us. Its our parents. They just didn’t bring us up well. :P I don’t remember my mother ever teaching me to eat quietly, laugh daintily, talk meaningfully and exude an air of elegance.

Whatever!! After everyone at Pupil had breathed a sigh of relief (read: after we had left) I got the bright idea that since this was the last Operation Sunrise when CF would be a bachelorette we ought to celebrate it with cake. So what do u do when u have a bus to catch in ten minutes, a bright idea in your head, enthusiasm galore to execute it and crazy friends to cheer you up and give you company to execute it? You tell CF that u need to buy some aspirin, shoo her off the bus stand, locate the nearest cake shop (coffee day) order the first cake which u can lay ur eyes on (chocolate fantasy) gape at another CF’s face when the waiter asks you “what do I write on the cake ma’am”, settle for ‘ot appen? something which we very frequently asked each other in hostel to cheer the other person up. Basically “what happened” with a heavy Gujju accent on “what”. (you really are not allowed to raise doubts regarding our sanity or lack of it) grab the cake (pay of course!! Sheesh!! We aint that cheap) rush to the bus stand only to realize you have missed the last bus to CF’s place, ask CF and others who are in the bus to plead with the bus driver, make a mad dash to the next stop the bus is likely to stop at, make a fool of yourself in the middle of the road by waving like madmen at the bus driver asking him to stop, get to hear a couple of new and interesting words in Tamil from the driver, settle down in your seat and laugh like hyenas.

This operation sunrise was planned in CF’s place – at Ayanavaram which is not even in Chennai. Its about 20-25 kms from Adyar (which we like to call the centre of the city!! :P) and it takes a good half hour to reach there from Besant Nagar. And on the bus journey as Atif crooned in my ear and the gentle polluted breeze blew on my face I caught on my sleep for the day.

So what do u talk about when there are 7 of you in a room and one is about to get married in a week? We discovered that an impending marriage changes nothing and we gossiped into the night reliving each and every moment of four wonderful years of college life. We talked about the “marriage class” which CF and CFF had to attend before marriage for the church to accept their union and the “things” which are spoken about in the class. We spoke about that time during the first sem when two of us had made a list of the “worst looking boys” in class and how it accidentally landed in the hands of one of the boys in the list and how we were threatened by mean looking boys in the second month in college life.

About the time in second semester when we finally came to our senses and were able to separate wheat from the chaff and differentiate between good friends and bad friends, about all those semester exam times when we had the maximum fun (almost all nights before sem exams have been OS nights actually) doing everything except studying, sitting in the mess at 3 in the morning drinking tea and supposedly studying probability and queuing theory but gossiping about A and B and wondering what it was that A saw in B. its no wonder that most of us flunked that paper. :P. about that time in fifth semester when the rain played havoc but bought all of us close together, about the microprocessors exam when we didn’t study at all, extremely confident that the exams would be postponed and horror of horrors we DID have the exam the next day, about our very first singles party, about the time we got caught for ragging in second year and almost got suspended and had to beg and plead the principal to let us off the hook, about the cultural times when in the name of doing “work” we would break the curfew and come back to hostel only at 3 or 4 in the morning, about the times we pleaded with the security (‘Please thatha, indha oru vaati let us go inside. We PROMISE we will come in time next time’) to let us in after curfew time, the time we discovered Makku, the time when after Holi I asked the head of the boys and girls hostel what right he had to come into the ladies hostel mistaking him for a peon. To this day all my friends believe that because my face was so badly disfigured with all the holi colors in the them I didn’t get suspended because he couldn’t recognize me!! :D, about all those inter college basketball matches, our only chance to feast our eyes on some good looking boys, about the time we formed all those gangs in hostel (the final count of gangs at the end of final year was I think 33. I am sure we missed a couple). I cant even name some of them. Ranging from the GG’s to the OG’s to the Robin Hood’s I firmly believe that if we had invested the time we spent forming gangs in studying all of us would have been university toppers, all those nights when everyone would beg and plead with Fermie and me (the night owls) to wake them up, eventually not study anything and listen to stories from anyone willing to tell them. those tense moments before the semester results when a last column full of P’s was what we desired, the times we cried even though we had cleared but a friend had got the feared and dreaded F, the times we hung outside the staff room begging and pleading for minimum internals, mercilessly teasing all the staff, getting the dubious distinction of being the unruliest “girls” the hostel had ever seen, the time when we latched the warden in her room and very innocently opened the door the next day and sympathized with her while the rest of us laughed uncontrollably even as the warden fumed and said “I cant able to understand why someone locking me inside in middle of night”. Yeah. She didn’t really believe in conjunctions or articles!! :P, about all those birthday’s celebrated at the stroke of twelve, all those crazy dances in the rain, all those night raids into every room for food when we slept hungry after the hostel dog also refused to eat the mess food, all those symposiums, all those culturals….

Just for one month, just one month can I please have my college and hostel life and all my friends back? Please?

That night as we had a marathon chat session by the time we looked at the watch the time was 4.30 and 7 tired souls went to bed, realizing that we had grown old and didn’t have the enthu which we had in college to talk late into the night and neither did our bodies and work schedules allow us the luxury of staying awake all night.

Sigh!! So operation Sunrise III though beautiful, left me in a kind of ambivalent mood, reminding me painfully of the passing years and the pathetically little that I have achieved in these years, and also reminding me of all the great moments and great friends I have.

Here’s to the groundnuts!! :)

You guys are the best!!

Monday, December 08, 2008

of friends and dirty kitchens and operation sunrise III :)

So one of my closest and bestest friends (if we were any closer our relationship wouldn’t be legal in many countries if u know what i mean) is getting married and everything is happening so fast that before u can say 'what the fulcrum' it’s all over!! 2 weeks back she didn’t even know if she was getting married and now she is engaged and going to be married in a week!! And before u can blink ur eye..Whoooooosh!! She is married.

There are times when Life flies past you so fast that you want to catch it by its shoulder and go "whoaaa!! dude. not so fast". This is one of those moments.
Anyway i am digressing. So since she is getting married this close friend of mine (lets call her CF) called all of us and said "One last operation sunrise!!?? please??" (read PART I and PART II of operation sunrise if interested!! ;))and we just couldn’t say no. So this weekend has been one crazy weekend where i have managed to do maximum number of things in minimum possible time and am feeling quite good and super-womanish about myself.

Before CF threw a bomb saying she was going to get married we had been planning to shift this weekend from our place in Besant Nagar to a place in Adyar owing to safety reasons (errr. not our safety but the safety of our neighbors whose safety was being threatened because of our presence)

So realizing our responsibility and tight schedules and also realizing that we had to finish packing on Friday night and shift by Saturday evening to implement operation sunrise on Saturday night, we sincerely played scrabble the whole of Friday night and wasted time till 1 in the night fighting with each other and justifying that yikes, oops, jeez, eeks etc were words which we could make in scrabble. Hunger overtook responsibility and we trooped into the kitchen at 1.30 to cook some maggi and suddenly realized that the kitchen looked like hurricane Nisha, Rita and Katrina had had a competition as to who could cause most damage to the kitchen and all three of them had had a go at the kitchen and ravished it as best as they could. (Nisha won. She is Indian after all!! :P)

so even as one of us made maggi the other two started packing the kitchen or rather throwing stuff because all the stuff within all the bottles had rotten. Our kitchen at that point of time could have been a biology lab considering the different kinds of fungus each bottle had. green, yellow, white, red. you name it and we had it. Not to forget the worms inside one vessel (Hey there is some maggi left in this vessel. Its moving!! you IDIOT. it’s not maggi. They are worms. Blechhhhhhhh!!) The reader ought not to jump to wrong conclusions regarding our levels of cleanliness and hygiene. Given our busy lifestyles (oooh!!) and our tight work schedules (aaah!!) and the fact that the kitchen is on the first floor (errr!!) and so we need to climb a flight of stairs to reach it (ahem!!) our kitchen is not exactly the place where Tarla Dalal or Sanjeev Kapoor can say "Ab thodi si hari mirch daal dijiye aur yeh ho gaya thaiyaar aapka swadishth *insert name of food item which uses hari mirch-i can’t think of anything!! :P*"

So anyway by the time we had thrown everything, finished with the kitchen and packed exactly one carton (one feet by one feet) of kitchen utensils it was 3 and we decided to call it a day.
Saturday morning (errr afternoon) dawned nice and bright and three inspired warriors (girls), attacked the house with a vengeance last seen when Alexander the great set about to conquer the world.
(errmm, i am assuming Alexander the great was scared of lizards and spiders and roaches and dust :rolling eyes:, which is how one of my friends was)

Fermie : Revs, can u please take this bag out from the loft?
Me: Fermie cant u see i am busy packing this carton. you are taller than me. get it yourself or stand on that chair
Fermie: errr.i am scared there might be lizards behind it
Me: so?
Fermie: mmm, so i thought u could shoo them away and give me the bag
Me: and what do i look like? a lizard charmer? what do u want me to do? dance and sing in front of the bag jutting my tongue out at regular intervals and make the lizard come out
Fermie: Revs, please
me: Fermie, no
Fermie: please
Me: no
Fermie: humph
Me: HUMPH to u too.

So given how brave my roomies are, packing 2 rooms with no furniture and just clothes took us a good 5 hours and by the time we finished we realized that our house apart from housing us had housed umpteen lizards and roaches, three "pooraans" (what do u call them in English? the mean poisonous centipede like creatures), hundreds of ants of different sizes and colors and lots of other fauna. we had been sitting on top of the rain forest without realizing it.

By 6 we had finished shifting to the new house, finished admiring our place, taken a lot of photographs, and checked out the neighborhood for cute looking guys (we found that the whole building was only occupied by octogenarians who had obviously never seen girls wearing jeans in their building. So much for cute looking guys!!).

Jeez!! I have just completed Saturday and this post is getting way too long!!
(operation sunrise part III and the rest to be continued in the next post and yeah!! quit thinking "Sheeesh!! there is actually more??" :P)