Tuesday, May 1, 2012

A Bollywood Cancer

I was lying in my bed, trying to get some sleep, but that seemed like a luxury.Bollywood numbers were piercing the atmosphere from some trumpets, most probably of some baraat.Playing 'Mujhe pehchaano, me hoon kaun' at a wedding , and that too an arranged marriage lends itself some unintentional humor. But I digress.
I started thinking of how bollywood or films in general has invaded our lives , much like those blaring trumpets. A few months back we had our rail budget. On the day the budget was introduced at the parliament, a popular national daily had a strip dedicated to "Top train moments in Bollywood". Had they run out of ideas or suggestions for a rail budget for our country? While channel surfing a few days back I noticed that almost all daily soaps have lends its name from bollywood lyrics. Can't they take some time out of their busy tear jerking schedule to find a title that suits the storyline? To know the difference one should try surfing for internet radio station. There were plenty of channels to choose from offering variety of news, analysis, discussions, stand up performances, music, and podcasts. While I found foreign channels to be enlightening, all the Indian channels were narrow minded and focussed only on celebrity gossips and film music. I remember during my schools days  I used to hear a lot of light music on radio and TV. But where are they now. The malayalam radio channel I was listening online was playing hindi songs.
Genuine, fresh and creative music and writing should be a source pride but apart from dewarists and few other programmes I hardly find anything original on TV on arts and music.
While cheerleaders of IPL mindlessly gyrate to recycled bollywood tunes, I have turned to news channels for entertainment.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

My mobile app

I recently bought a samsung galaxy ace S5830 and dived into the world of android apps. I would like to share some apps that I enjoyed using. And all of them are free
1.Angry birds I know all of them are familiar and enjoy destroying the evil pigs with thpse fluffy and very angry birdd. Nut love them so much that i had to give them first place.
2.Dolphin browser Though it is not as versatile as opera its no nonsense simplicity caught my eye. It is ideal for browsing through simple webpagrs and comes with a lot of handy add-ons like webpage to pdf converter. It can handle video pages very well too.
3.World newspapers I am a newspaper junkie and I love to browse through various newspapers. This well organised app helps me a lot. Also check out the indian newspaper app. It has a good collection of regional newspapers.
4. Tunein radio this is one of the best apps - after angry birds,of course - in my mobile. Its an app that helps you listen to radio channels over the internet. I am in love with radio because of this app. It is much simpler than the next best app Pandora.
5. Easy battery saver. This app lets you choose various profiles that suits your needs and reduces your battery consumption accordingly. I was a bit apprehensive at first but it works.
6. Google listen this app from google lets you listen to podcasts under numerous categories. Its quite fast and simple to use
My phone becomes slow quite frequently since its internal memory is very low. Here is a tip if you have the same problem. Go to system->applications->manage application and under various application clear your cache memory. This will free up your memory to an extent. Also remember to uninstall all those apps that you have installed just to try out and forgot about completely!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Star signs

"Have you recently looked up at the sky and watched the stars?" a friend of mine asked me. I was taken aback by his question.
And then I took my time trying to show how ridiculous he sounded and gave him some advice on how not to look stupid. Meanwhile my friend was desperately trying to explain his side of the story. But I was not listening. Later on during the day, I tried to recall the last time I had witnessed the night sky. I was horrified. I could not remember!That night after dinner I took a walk just to watch the stars. It was simply beautiful! Tiny little sparks on a dark endless carpet. I rediscovered beauty in something I had taken for granted. The irony hit me like cold water on a winter morning. I was trying to look for extraordinary things and beauty of the small and ordinary was just above my head. I am not trying to criticise modernity or development initiatives that have been empowered by technology. I do strongly believe that technology is the future. But sometimes we all miss out on things lying right there in front of us in our pursuit for the big and the great. Hyperboles tend to have a muffling effect on the melody of the natural. I now make it a point to look at the stars every night - through the little squares made by the apartments or through the dangling branches of trees. I thank my stars for the beautiful celestial show.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

The Rozabal Line

After reading 'The Davinci code' I had tried to familiarise myself with various theories connected with the life of Jesus Christ including his having spent a considerable amount of time in India. It was therefore with much scepticism that I approached The Rozabal Line by Ashwin Sanghi.  I was not sure whether it would provide me with something novel and fresh. I was pleasantly surprised. I am happy that I stand corrected.

The book begins with the revelation of the tomb of Jesus in Kashmir -Rozabal and from there goes on an international roller coaster ride with an impressive array of characters  across the boundaries of space and time. The chapters are short and crisp and follows an almost fluid like motion - very much like a grain of sand. But each chapter is like the grain of sand in an hourglass; each grain filling up a crucial piece of the story and inching towards a scintillating climax.
The author has done his research and it clearly shows in work. The book is very Indian and hence one finds a delightful intepretation of history from an uncompromising Indian perspective. The etymology of some words are so shockingly close home yet oblivious to the average Indian mind that it sends us on a detective hunt for intepretations of  siimilar words dispersed throughout the book.  He has done a commendable job of being patriotic while avoiding the narrow minded nationalism that we are so famous for. Thus there is no dull lecture on the extinction of the 'bharatiya sanskar' due to the import of western culture. I won't call him the Dan Brown of India. That would degrade him. His work is fiercely independent with enough masalas mixed to provide a wholesome entertainment. I believe that this book will send us on a journey to rediscover the myths, folklore and traditions that we believe we are so familiar with. It did that to me.


Saturday, July 2, 2011

Delhi Belly

When Dk Bose(click here) was launched it raised quite a few eyebrows. If your eyebrow(s) were among them then do NOT watch 'Delhi Belly'.
I would term the release of this film as the coming of age of mainstream bollywood cinema. Gems like 'Udaan' or 'Peepli Live' in my opinion were not mainstream enough. This movie is dirty, filthy, crass but not hypocritical. And that is what I liked about the movie.
The movie deals with the miserable lives of three losers, one of whom (Imran Khan) is about to get married to Sonia (Shehnaz treasurywala). Sonia picks up a package for a friend at the airport and through some series of intricate, comical(/vulgar) , and unfortunate events puts the lives of the three main characters in danger.
This short, crisp movie with a running time of just over 100 minutes have stretched the boundaries of acceptable scenes and language in bollywood cinema. Expletives flow freely like water and toilet humor is packaged (see the movie to know what I mean) in an entirely shocking manner. It is this boldness that is remarkable about this movie. It is bad and does not feel sorry about it.

Sunday, June 19, 2011


"Shaitaan.."exclaims kalki while  her character menacingly holds a teddy bear and " Pareeee !!" she calls out while playfully brandishing another. The movie Shaitan is about all of us juggling the shaitans and angels within us every moment of our life.
The movie has promising start with the mentally traumatised  Amy (Kalki) coming to India with her parents. Here she meets a group of friends - all of them super rich, carefree and lives a wacky lifestyle. Their  lives take an unexpected turn and they have to confront the devils within them, and in the society.
The movie is shot brillianly with breathtaking colours and tantalising angle but the direction has a 'david fincher'  feel to it. The music is funky and creative but sometimes goes over the top. The 'khoya khoya chaand' sequence is simply superb.The dialogues are the real gems of this movie. Sample this -" Kuch dost aisen hein jinhe raath ke do baje hi call kiya jaata hein" or the brilliantly delivered "himani navratna tel kahaan lagate hein?". When a  police superior tells his junior "Sach aur Sachchai mein fark hota hein" you can't help comparing it with the present situation and nod your heads.
Shaitaan portrays the brash, violent section of Indian youth who are aggressive in pursuit of the 'trophies' they are obsessed about and get confused after getting them. A good watch.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

My election manifesto

Its election time in Gods Own Country and this time yours truly has decided to contest the election as an independent candidate .I can't promise freebies like the grand old man of Tamil Nadu but here's a list of nothings that I promise to work for.

1. Distribution of alcohol to be made through PDS
To put the people out of their misery I think it is better that we start distributing alcohol of all forms, colours and brands through outr
very own 'raation shaap'. How else will the hardworking malayalees find time to attend more pressing matters like
going to a strike or burn up some shops? You don't expect them to waste their precious time waiting in the serpientine queues in front of Bevco do you?

2. Declare 'the Gulf' as the 15th district of Kerala
All gulf countries should be given DoK(District of Kerala) status. This will be of great assisstance to keralites in their exodus to the 'sheik-lands'
And my government will try applying VAT tax on the sheiks. Imagine the revenue that can be collected!

3. Declare the entire state as an amusement park
The narrow,winding roads, dotted with potholes, that seem to fall off into the underworld makes this the best investment opportunity for the state. We have many bus, lorry and jeep drivers
who have shown their expertise in plunging their vehicles into rivers , ponds, backwaters, canals, puddles and other waterbodies. They can be hired to make kerala
the adventure tourism capital of the world

4. Registeration fee for strikes and hartals
An online registration form (along with a small fee of course) has to be filled by any party before they can start a strike.

5. Banning all words with "o"

The sound "O" has been the bane of malayalees, causing shame and embarassment to him whenever he speaks. My government will start an initiative to replace all those
words with "non-o" words. This will increase the morale, and self confidence of all mallus.

Please will you people support me?