Wednesday, 31 December 2008


My seven foot tall beauty

View from my house at night

during the day

The Christmas gift my sister gave me (a wise investment, I must say!)


Monday, 29 December 2008

Ghajini - 2 on 5

My Hindi teacher in school used to always say 'Nakal may bhi akal chahiye' which translates to: 'Imitation also needs intelligence' (for the benefit of my American blog readers :P). It couldn't be more apt in this case. Trust Bollywood to copy a classic English movie and make a complete hash of it. And Memento is one helluva film.

Ghajini starts off extremely well and maintains a good pace till the first half hour. But after that it just falls flat and becomes so predictable. The movie is a bit like soda, which after it loses its initial fizz, is just bitter water! Ghaijini is ridden with flaws and leaves you with a thousand question marks. Even if you ignore the technicalities, a lot of basic inconsistencies leave you puzzled, to say the least. Fifteen minutes, which happens to be the duration for which Amir Khan can remember things, on one occasion is as short as half a bus ride and on the other is so long that he can go through two entire diaries, travel half way around town on a scooter, beat 23 bad guys, before he forgets what the hell he is doing there! The movie is never ending, much like Asin's hips (what more can you expect from a South Indian starlet?) It could easily have been at least 45 minutes shorter and each of the songs were as unnecessary as Amir Khan's show of cleavage in those very songs. To top it up, you can guess the ending even before the movie actually gets underway and that is the biggest let down.

Having said all that, the movie does have its moments, though they are few and far in between. Amir's brilliance, in combination with some tidy sound effects makes your heart skip a beat on more than one occasion. The chemistry between the lead pair is sweet, before it gets overdone. Ghajini does have its share of laughs, which is a welcome diversion from its gory violence.

Of the cast, Amir is excellence personified in the first half but then, like the rest of the movie, he cools off too. He overdoes the climax and reminds me of a young SRK in Baazigar. Asin is refreshing. She is meant to look cute and does just that. It is the kind of role that Juhi Chawla was born to play. Jiah Khan acts badly, looks worse. And the biggest disappointment is the villain (whose name I dont know, nor wish to) He just doesn't evoke fear and speaks with an accent similar to my local Rajasthani grocer. Amir Khan auditioned scores of girls for the lead female actor (actress, I hear is a banned word!) Surely, he could have done better with the villain.

To sum it up, Ghajini is long, boring, violent and ya forgettable!

P.S.: I do plan to post some Christmas pics on my blog. But that can only happen when my sister finds the time to upload them on the computer!

Wednesday, 24 December 2008

Dombivili Dossier

I had the misfortune of going to Dombivili a few days back. Here are some observations about a place yet to see modernization.

- Buffaloes grazing in large fields are a very common sight.
- The average height of a building is 2 floors.
- Asking for a non veg restaurant is blasphemy.
- Hard to find your way around if you don't speak Marathi.
- There are 27 jewelery stores near the station.
- After hunting for the best part of an hour, the closest I got to non vegetarian food, was a pastry which had egg in it!
- The only place I have been to, where trees outnumber people.
- You can bargain on the rickshaw fare!

Currently Reading:

Moonlight becomes you - Mary Higgins Clark

Currently Listening:

1. That's what I go to school for - Busted
2. Rockstar - Nickelback
3. Stacy's mom - Fountains of Wayne

Quote of the Day:

"There is a saying that winning is everything. It doesn't say winning in the 10th minute is everything or winning in the 20th minute is everything or winning in the 89th minute is everything. Today we won and that is everything" - Jose Mourinho after Inter Milan won 1-0 courtesy an 89th minute strike!

Friday, 19 December 2008

Sporting Blues

"I hate being called the wall. It is something I really dislike"

That was what Rahul Dravid had to say in an interview after he won the 'Cricketer of the Year' award in 2004. Honestly, I was quite confused when I read that interview. To me, 'wall' always symbolized security, stability, endurance and everything else. So to have someone say that he doesn't like being called 'the wall' was perplexing to say the least. But having read the headlines in the past few days, I now see why the most well read person in Indian cricket had a problem with his nickname. 'The wall crumbles', 'Holes in the wall', 'Bring down the wall' etc are some of the many headlines used indiscriminately to describe Dravid's dip in form. That is certainly not the way to treat Indian cricket's finest Test batsman. And by scoring another gritty and determined hundred today, Dravid has proved his detractors all wrong. This innings for me, has to one of the finest bricks in the wall!

Coming to the ongoing series between India and England, it is quite refreshing to hear what England's captain Kevin Peiterson has to say in the press conferences. The Englishmen normally pack their excuses along with their bags when they tour the sub continent. And to see the way Kevin takes defeat on the chin like a man, is praiseworthy. Probably it has a lot to do with the fact that he hails from South Africa and thus doesn't have the whiny nature of the English!

I really don't know what Saina Nehwal has to do to beat Sania Mirza in the popularity rankings! I mean Sania hasn't played a match since the last six months and I still have a pop up on rediff asking me if I want to download a Sania Mirza wallpaper! And that on a day when Saina has reached the semi finals of the World Super Series. Even in today's Times of India, an article on Saina has her name misspelt as Sania on more than one occasion. I really feel for the girl cause she is definitely more talented, hardworking, has better legs and guess what, she can serve too!

Monday, 8 December 2008

Incredible India!

Some interesting trivia on India. Even I wasn't aware of most of these facts!

In the last 100,000 years of history, India has never invaded another country.

It is forbidden for an aircraft to fly over the Taj Mahal.

India’s motto is “Satyameva Jayate”. It is in the Sanskrit language and is translated as “Truth Alone Triumphs”.

34% of Microsoft employees are Indians.

The most languages in the world have originate in India, around 845 different languages.

Until 1896, India was the only source of diamonds in the world.

India is one of the very few countries with no official religion.

Chess was invented by Buddhist monks in India who preferred it to war. Badminton too, was invented in India.

Algebra, Trigonometry and Calculus all originated in India.

India has the largest number of Post Offices in the world.

Sanskrit is considered as the mother of all higher languages. This is because it is the most precise. The Forbes Magazine stated that Sanskrit is the most suitable language for computer software!

The longest railway platform is in India, that is in Kharagpur.

Before New Delhi, the capital was Calcutta (until 1911).

The art of Navigation & Navigating was born in the river Sindh 6000 over years ago. The very word 'Navigation' is derived from the Sanskrit word NAVGATIH.

India used to be the richest country in the world until the British invasion in the early 17th Century.

Barbie's boyfriend Ken was not sold in India until recently because it clashed with the traditional arranged marriage.

Bucket List

Inspired by Dasvidaniya, here is my bucket list. A bucket list is a list of things (normally ten in number) which you would like to do before you 'kick the bucket'. So here is my list, in a very random order:

- Visit Egypt and see the pyramids and sphinx first hand.

- Tandem sky dive from a plane, preferably with a blond, female instructor!

- Participate in the 'Amazing Race'.

- Gamble at Las Vegas (all trappings inclusive).

- Lose 15 pounds. After having lived a very unhealthy and unfit life, I wish to die fit.

- Watch the Champions League Final live at the 'Theatre of Dreams', Old Trafford and see Jose Mourinho lift the Cup!

- Go on a boat ride in the Amazon.

- Be part of the mile high club ;)

- Eat 5 more different kinds of meat!

- Pop the question atop Eiffel Tower :) ;)

Thursday, 4 December 2008

The week that was

Honestly, I am quite fed up reading about the recent terror attacks in Mumbai and its aftermath. Every news channel I watch or paper I pick up has these gory images. Even the sports and business sections of the news programmes have given way to these terror attack 'special reports'. But what struck me as being as insane as the terror attacks was the burning of Pakistani flags and the chanting of anti Islam and anti Pakistan slogans by the vast majority of the people gathered at these so called "protest rallies". Not that I have any particular love for Pakistan. I think it is one of the most screwed up countries in the world, governed by impotent cowards. But dude, burning Pakistani flags won't scare these terrorists! Certainly not. What it will definitely do, is that it will give those masterminds back there in Karachi more material to brainwash these fools into taking innocent lives. It will give them exactly what they want: footage to show anti Islam sentiment in India, something which is totally unfounded.

Ever since these attacks were over and done with, there have been a spate of signature campaigns, SMS campaigns, 'wear white for peace', 'wear black as a sign of protest' rallies! I find them totally ridiculous. The terrorists don't give a fig as to the number of SMS's you have sent and stuff. These rallies do nothing to stop the ongoing camps in the jungles of Pakistan. Now is the time for answers and not questions, the time for action. And by action I don't mean wear white or wear black!

On the other hand, I didn't find Ram Gopal Verma's visit to the Taj surprising, because frankly India has always been a land of opportunists!

Something quite ironical is the fact that the ATS chief Karkare, now that he is dead is being hailed a martyr, a man of integrity etc etc by the very same saffron brigade, who hours earlier had called him a cheater and a liar. This because he was bold enough to show that terror in India has shades of orange to it too. I for one, always had utmost respect for this man, as he chose to look beyond stereotypes.