Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Counted as Worthless

The good book says human life is invaluable. Does it apply to an Indian? Let’s take a walk around and see how much we value an Indian life. If ‘we’ is out of context, let’s see how much we are worth to our system.

I got this information from a blog. Do you know sportspersons and artistes who already earn crores are exempted from their taxes. I am not aware of the intricate details. The ‘socialism’ in our constitution applies only for the poor.

I completely agree that artistes and sportsmen add to the pride and heritage of our nation. Does that make them more equal or more patriotic than others?

India is full of legendary love stories. Our big budget love stories are a rage. But you dare to love someone outside your caste and you can get ‘honour-killed’. Don’t worry the killers will be venerated for preserving the honour of their community.

If you are rich and drunk, you have all the freedom in the world to spill your wild oats around. You are also allowed to rape and kill a few in the process. Don’t worry about the law of land. It’s for the poor. Even if the NGO, papers and family create a problem, you will be tried only when you are old enough for chest pains. Then mercy on medical grounds will come to your rescue.

A multinational who can afford a film or cricket star are given the privilege to sell any cheap food item at high cost and false weights. The only condition is it should be wrapped attractively.

Have you eaten Kit Kat or drunk Pepsi, Cola or 7-UP from anywhere outside India? The MNCs are kind enough to come up with the ‘Swadesi’ versions. Recently 7-UP came up with its new release. It’s said to be the lime version but tastes like soda water.

Nuclear Liability Act is the favorite child of Clown Mohan and Co. According to him American companies will help us out to solve our energy issues. They will get a small profit in return.

If any accidents happen then the government itself would pay out the damage. In simple terms people will bear the damage while the firangis escape. We are very generous to our guests aren’t we?

Firstly, the court rubs salt on the victim’s wounds. Then Clown Mohan and associates step in. He asks the victims to stop making a fuss and move on. Come on, it has been 25 years. And we can’t wait for your justice. And they start lobbying in for the newer version of Union carbide- Dow Chemicals.

Recently my friend’s uncle died in a road accident. He was survived by a small child. The kid can thank a young drunk. We all have enough money to afford our kids a cool 4 wheeler but no guts to rein them in. The road laws provide provision to allow them to repeat their mistakes. We can only learn from repeating our mistakes, right?

Infosys is one of the largest IT vendors. They are blessed with a founder full of values. They firmly believe in equality but sadly non-Indians are more than equal. Infosys have a special training centre for non-Indians down here in India where we Desis are not even allowed to peek. Moreover they get more than equal salary too.

According to our tradition, education is divine and teachers are considered equivalent to God. Education has gone a step further in providing refuge to crooks, villains, politicians and businessmen to wash their black money. Thanks to these angels, we have in our hands doctors who barely passed schools. Soon enough, we will have our country filled with doctors who can take us to maker fast.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010


There was a time when Malayalam cinema set the benchmark for rest of Indian cinema. Thanks to the species, ‘Superstars’, we have been plunging to abyss of doom.

Kerala has been a land blessed with fabulous scriptwriters, actors and directors. But in recent years there has been a clear dearth of talent. The reasons could be more than one. During the golden years, the actors had a good scope for their talents. The actors gained popularity and audience started to weed out the less talented ones. In the coming years they gained monopoly in the market and they were started to be deemed as ‘superstars’(SS).

The rot began as soon as the creative side of cinema started to come under the influence of SS. Scripts started to get out of hand from the directors as SS tried to get immortality through their films. Right from the scripts, technicians and supporting cast started to be decided by the SS. So no matter how talented you are, if you are not in the good book, your career is doomed. As far as actresses were considered they had to do a few sleepovers too.

This went as far as paid ‘fans’ to cheer the movies and boo the opposite camps.

The unscrupulously rich found the film industry to wash their black money. They wouldn’t have to invest huge money and returns were fabulous. So more mediocre movies came out, because results no longer mattered.

The period between 2000-02 is something everyone here loves to forget. The audience had enough of the garbage churned out. Theatres closed out in huge numbers. It was then the sleazy and adult movie makers came into the scene. The heroines like Shakeela, Maria and Reshma became huge stars and household names. The ‘Mallu Masala Movies’ became a synonym associated with Malayalam cinema.

Here are some superstars seen exclusively in Kerala:


He is the big brother in Malayalam cinema. He turned 50 ten years ago. But still stars opposite girls 1/3rd his age. The media claims he is the evergreen star who never turns old. The camera men do their part by avoiding many close up shots.

All his ‘hit’ movies have the same story line. He kills someone in his childhood and runs off to neighboring state. There he turns a gangster. He becomes the close friend to the Chief Ministers to Prime Ministers to Washington DC. He returns to his homeland in a BMW or Benz. On the way he borrows some odd slang too. He brings a bunch of cronies and reunites with his long lost brother/sister. After a few fiery dialogues he avenges his childhood enemy.

Plus Points: He is a fabulous dancer. He resembles someone paralyzed waist down.

He is good in cracking jokes too. We will not get a clue on when that would have happened, unless some stupid back ground music accompanies it.


He is the eternal naughty boy of Kerala. He has a slight resemblance to a wine barrel.

Plus points: Awful hairdo is his USP. He loves a pointed moustache. He is the one who started showing off his white boxers. He has an eternal weakness to item sluts and booby actresses. He manages to come up with sexual innuendos disguised as jokes in almost all the movies.


He is a late comer into the SS section. He became a favorite through his self depreciating comedies. He had a difficult climb to the top.

Plus points: He married the best actress ever in Malayalam industry and locked her away from movies. He tried his hand in action films and thankfully has almost stopped trying that. The story, jokes and even the support cast is same in all the movies. So he ensures that movies always stay at a substandard level. His heroine is the same in all the movies. She had recently married some NRI and bid adieu but to everybody’s relief divorced the guy and came back.


He is the policeman/detective forever.

The villains would be CM, DGP, IG and a businessman. He comes up with trademark dialogues like ‘Shut up your bloody rattletrap’ (Go, figure out the meaning)

Plus points: He has the body structure suited for a romantic hero and tries it out once in a while. When he appears topless it would be difficult to differentiate the hero and heroine. The bed scenes would resemble a bulldozer leveling a small puny girl.

He is good in doing comedy role and facial expression accompanying is fabulous. He always wears loose shirts in order not to provoke the censor board.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

The Cup of Life

There is no other event in the world that has the capability to capture the global attention, Truly the scale and magnanimity is astonishing. Right from the start of the tournament there were many permutations and combinations. The coach, players and strategies were analyzed fibre to fibre. But as the group stage progresses there has been many disappointments (and appointments)

1. Brazil:

Even their worst detractors will agree, Brazil has the most fool proof team in the world. They have got the world’s best players in every position. Brazil might have bid adieu to the flair game and embraced the European style. Nevertheless the European style has more capability for score line victories.

But still they have a slight problem in their out of form playmaker Kaka. He hasn’t risen to his sublime levels. In that scenario responsibility might fall on the shoulders of Robinho.

Apart from frontline, they have the best defense. It will be difficult to get past them and they rarely concede a foul. Not many teams can claim equally strong offense and defense.

Brazil has a great fan following in India. If my assumption is right, it could be because they are marketed very well. Besides, their players have great off-the-field characters.

2. Spain:

I came to be a Spanish football fan the day I watched the Euro-2008 finals. They are a talent powerhouse. They play the football in their own way and never bother to change it for the sake of cups. Their short passes and possession football is an eye candy.

But for Spanish football their biggest weakness is the over dominance of Real and Barcelona. As a result most of the teams have become ineffective and non-competent in La Liga. And for the WC most of the players have been picked out of Barcelona team.

The player selection and strategies have been baffling against the minnow Switzerland. As a result Spain has paid a heavy prize. Hopefully, they will bounce back.

Another reason for my liking is the presence of, El Capitan.

3. Argentina:

Argentina’s sole claim to legacy and fame is their famous prodigal son, Maradona. Neither before him nor after him has Argentina made an impact on the world stage. Argentina has not foregone their traditional flair play.

The reason why I support Argentina is the presence of classic no.10 player, Messi. He can carry with him two or three player like fly sticking to spider web. This frees the other frontline players like Higuain. Argentina has the world’s best frontline with many sitting in the bench too.

Unfortunately Argentina’s biggest weakness is their biggest strength- over emphasis on Messi. Their defense seems to be vulnerable too. They donot have a creative midfielder in the deep.

4. Holland:

Holland has the famed quartet. On a good day they can be more threatening than any. They have the world’s best midfielder in Sneijder and world’s best striker, Van Persie. But unfortunately, Holland hasn’t risen to their best in the tournament. Still they had faced no trouble in winning.

For the illiterates- Holland has the best talent factory club in the world, Ajax Amsterdam. They have the claim to world’s first team to play the total football under, Johan Cryuff.

5. Ivory Coast:

I haven’t watched an African team play before and this Ivory Coast surprised me. Can Ericson achieve this much in this short time! They have a well organized defense and attack and they stick to their plans. I would love to see them advance to the later stages of World Cup. It would be a morale booster for African continent.

6. England:

Indians can easily identify with the England football team. The reason why England fails to perform on international stages is the same reason as why India fails in T20. Putting it simply, the overflow of superstars.

Fabio Capello has come up with all the ingredients for a failed team:

a. Pick up a team of 11 superstars whose ego has been over boosted in Media and EPL. They never need any inspiration

b. Picking up a player who fucked his captain’s wife.

c. Picking a semi-fit, about-to-retire player and making him the captain.

Alex Ferguson too did his part in over playing Rooney. So he too gets a share in the credits

7. Portugal:

They were supposed to be a genuine contender. But I didn’t find a trace in their first game. To make matters worse Deco hit out at the coach. Cristiano is a well marketed player. But he is nowhere near the best media claim him to be. Building the team based on him failed for Portugal. As soon as he was marked with two defenders, the destiny of Portugal was doomed

8. France:

The strategy of Domenech is simple make some formation that adds to 10 and then put the worst players in it. Domenech should have retired after the last WC. He would have gone out in glory. Now French will realize their king is naked.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Lesson 2

Before I enter the main subject, there is a small announcement to make. This space is turning a year old. For me it’s quite unbelievable to survive for a year doing posts fairly regularly. I still remember the first days of confusion, learning and excitement.

Getting in to the serious stuffs-

I was in college and the exam seasons were back again. I have this special luck with the exams. No matter how hard I tried I ended up with average marks. This time the teachers screwed up too. They ended up skipping the important chapters. So there was no other option but to go for a private tuition.

I was returning home that evening after the day’s classes. I had been out all day and there was growling of an empty stomach to be heard. I entered my lane and on the way I saw a man asking our neighbors the directions. The neighbor called me over, ‘Aren’t you Jose’s nephew?’


‘This man is asking direction to your uncle’s house’

I didn’t understand the bewilderment in his expression. My mother’s brother stayed near us. I asked the stranger to follow me.

‘Isn’t Jose the one whose dad passed away this afternoon?’, the stranger asked en-route.

I was bewildered. I had seen my granddad this morning. He was strong and healthy and no namely illness to speak of. He was sure to last another 30 years and 60 was too young for him. He must have mistaken it for the ailing old lady living next door. The tension provided spring to my strides as I ran towards home.

I can only recollect the rest in images- the crowd, the body dressed in white, the tears.

That was the day when reality called ‘death’ sprouted in me. There comes a point of time in life when you value the lives of your loved ones dearly. I spent the bulk part of my childhood with my maternal grandparents. He had acquired the place of a father in my life. He was stubborn in his beliefs and today I have realized I inherited most of my values and traits from him.

To this day I pray for long life and health for my parents and everyone I love.

But sadly, I still have to endure the pain of ‘good bye’. The very day when this space turned a year old, someone announced I will have to bid adieu in a few weeks.

I am an eternal believer of goodness of fate and the good bye might be for the good for everyone.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

A new leaf

In my younger days I was desperate for a trophy. I would be waiting eagerly for the annual cultural competitions. May be I was jealous of the famous stars in school or may be I wanted to get the acceptance from my folks, I always yearned for a prize. But I would always be disappointed when the results were announced.

Singing competition was one of my favorites. Back then my voice wasn’t as horrible as it’s today. So I enrolled for any opportunity I could find. But rarely was I lucky.

My friends would testify my singing skills. A dumb friend of mine was planning to start a band and he did a private voice test for me. The only reply I got was a smile. The band didn’t materialize.

So I gave a rest to my singing and started going for keyboard lessons. I enjoyed the lessons a lot. It went on for a year. That was a time when the household finance was tight and there came a point when the lessons no longer was a source of enjoyment. I dropped it.

Late last year I decided to learn something useful (not any academic course). Guitar was a good option and it was put in my new-year resolution. But the plan remained in back burner. Then due to reasons more than one I decided to pursue the decision rather vigorously. It was tough to find a tutor. Everyone liked to teach a school kid. Older guys would be irregular and a pain in the arse.

Somehow I managed a teacher and started lessons 2 weeks back. The challenges are many and I don’t know how long I am going to carry this on. The tutor initially tried to discourage me and relented when he saw I was determined. The unforgettable moment is when he handed over my first pick. Make no mistake, I don’t aim to be a rock star. But would love to strum a few notes to admiring female fans down the years.

The inspiration behind the new venture is- Jabri and Achu. I don’t know how good Jabri is as a guitarist. But he seems to carry forward his profession, music, blogs and photography all at a time, comfortably. Achu is very young to me but one of the top notch guitarist. I admire him.

Since I am already good at singing in a few months I will be strumming out ‘Here I am on the road again’. So guys wish me luck in this new chapter.

Here is my guitar

Thursday, June 3, 2010

A journey back

‘Do you really have to go?’, this is what friends and family asked me when I told them my plan. It’s just a brother of a friend’s marriage. You could just pay them a visit during the reception at home. Why to make a trip to other end of Kerala for that? But I had to go. This trip was not for my friend. It was for me. I was determined to get away from the grind.
I had to convince my folks that there were other guys coming along. I am sorry for lying. Travelling alone is not a great idea. You must be either a freak or desperate to do that. I don’t know to which category I fall.

I reached Kozhikkode the Sunday morning. I haven’t counted but I might have walked around the place atleast thrice. The weight of the shoulder bag no longer bothered me. It was ecstatic to walk around a place where no one knows you and where you know no one.

I stayed there only for a single day and was back in office the very next day. In between my wanderings I managed to attend the wedding and had a sumptuous banquet. In this single day I met four different set of people or rather four emotions.

Any parent convinces themselves that their child is a superior being- brilliant, handsome and smart. They will reach out for the stars with a bit of hard work. The success stories of rags to IIT that comes in the newspaper is a propellant. And of course, there are banks to help us out with educational loans.
There was this middle aged couple in my train. They seemed to be an average family with an average education. The child was supposed to write an entrance exam for her medical studies the next day. Unfortunately, they hadn’t booked the train and so had to spend entire night awake. But still they didn’t show any tension. I wonder how the kid fared in the exams after a sleepless night in a train.
Their hope for a bright future for the kid struck me. Even if the girl passed the exams she would have to pay an astronomical sum as fees in the college. I doubt if the thought worried them

Kappad beach was my primary destination. But since I wasted lot of time roaming around, I was in a real hurry.
The person sitting next to me in the bus was dressed in black and white. He was old, bald and sat quietly. Being a lone traveler makes you vulnerable. You fear to expose your vulnerability or lack of knowledge. In the end I asked him,out of impatience, ‘How long does it takes to reach Kappad?’
I couldn’t make out most of what he said. But he went on and on about the beach, it’s historical importance etc.
He then opened his bag and fetched out a bundle of papers. I doubted if this was some kind of request for donation.
He opened it up and showed me Photostats of a young man who got into Guinness book for playing multiple instruments at a time. As I said before, his voice was too soft and I couldn’t make out much due to the rumbling bus. I had to decipher the young man was him. There were photos of him posing with famous personalities and even a half naked photo from the hippi era
He worked in a resort now as a musician. As we alighted the bus he expressed his inability to invite me over to the resort. It was a shady area.
In his twilight years, he must be helpless but to reminiscence the glorious years. He must feel very satisfied when he gets someone to show the old clippings to someone.

After the wedding function I hit the famous Kappad beach. You get good pictures out of these beaches. The people are relaxed and the sunset gives an awesome lighting effect. But in a Muslim dominated area you can easily be mistaken too.
While I was busy clicking, a chubby girl approached me. She asked me for the reason I was photographing the rocks. I was apprehensive about her first but later learnt that she had only the best of intentions. She went on talking and talking. My eyes were on her attractive cousin standing quietly nearby
In the end she said ‘You have a very smart personality’. I do not know if she is crazy. But getting appreciated by the fairer sex is rare. So I count this invaluable. I wonder why none of the girls of my age finds me attractive.

The railway platform was crowded even at night. Many had to get back to their workplaces the next day and were impatiently awaited for the train. A drunken man was entertaining the crowd with his speech on the corrupt government.
I managed to get a seat in the platform. A beautiful woman sat next to me with a child. She was a muslim and presumably younger than me (These muslims are in a hurry for parenthood as soon as they are married).
I sat there tired and wanting to get some sleep. She asked me which train I was getting in. Her voice was very soft and she wore no cosmetics. Still she looked extremely beautiful.
She was visiting a famous cancer centre in the capital. I asked if it was for studies or job. She nodded negatively. I assume someone dear must be sick or she might be going for a check-up.
But the serenity she oozed – I was spell bound. Hope everything goes well for her.

Guys, there are wide variety of people in this world. Open your eyes and watch in wonder.

(Go to my PhotoBlog for the snaps)

About Me

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Shakespeare,Da Vinci, Benjamin Franklin and Lincoln never saw a movie,heard a radio or looked at TV. They had loneliness and knew what to do with it. Thay were not afraid of being lonely because they knew that was when the creative mood in them would work.