Monday, February 16, 2009

Early morning giggles

The little one burst into fits of giggles early in the morning—in her sleep. She was moving about and making small sounds and I was moodily thinking that she was going to wake up for the day, when she started laughing. It was the cutest thing I ever heard. Lasted only about six, maybe seven seconds, but it sure made my day, alright.

Then during her noon nap, madam woke up after sleeping an hour or so, saw me lying beside her, called out to me and demanded that I hug her. Which I promptly did. Tried getting up after a while, only to be clamped firmly back in place by the lil angel. And she fell asleep again, hugging me. Ooooh…

What a con job

Since bloody when have filmmakers been expected to provide for the artistes they hire? Why are the makers of Slumdog Millionaire being harassed, both by the parents of the actors and the media, for ‘disregarding’ the upbringing and welfare of the youngest kids in the film? Whose kids are they anyway? Is there no onus on the parents to provide for the welfare of the kids they have conceived?

First there were reports on how the ‘kids’ were provided far less than the minimum income an artiste in Britain would earn. Duh!! I’m sure the kids and their parents, whether illiterates from slums or not, were informed of just how much they would be paid. I’m also sure that the ‘loving parents’, true to the Indian tradition, haggled for the money too.

Then came reports of how what they were paid have all been spent already and how the filmmakers should have considered paying the kids enough money so they could buy themselves a house. Duh and double duh!

Man, that’s a joke and a poor one at that. How can the media readily print such stuff as legitimate demands by the actors or their parents?

And now there are reports of how the filmmakers had actually provided for the education of the kids, held discussions with the parents and set up a Trust to cater to this need and so on and so forth.

Sheesh! Just because the film has now hit the limelight any news is worth carrying, is it? Even if it is the most ridiculous and unimaginably embarrassing accusations? What happened to verifying facts? Is that no longer a journalistic dictum? Don’t reporters and editors need to even wonder nowadays what the other party concerned has to say about the whole issue?

Huh! Journalism has gone to the dogs, for sure. And probably some of the first to take it there are organizations like the Times of India and Malayala Manorama.

PS. Oh sure, I worked for Malayala Manorama. But if anyone thinks I upheld the stuff they consider ‘newsworthy’ (I'm talking about the newspaper) and the way they handle it, you’ve got another thought coming.

Bee – hive – honey – money – tsunami

A single bee will visit 500 flowers to make one gram of honey, read a snippet on Animal Planet or some such channel. I started calculating and got to somewhere around 5000 when Appu finished his calculations and said about 1000 bees visiting 500,000 flowers to make one litre of honey.

And man, in a few minutes, smokes out the bees from their home and hearth, pilfer their food and render them homeless, not thinking for a moment of the solid effort that went into the making of that hive, the honey… nothing.

Imagine hovering in and out of flowers of all sizes and colours, draining out nectar from them, storing it, then moving on to the next one for days on end with a hope of collecting enough food to sustain them and their offspring, only to find that in a matter of a few minutes they are totally deprived.

Like an earthquake shattering lives all around, like a Tsunami wreaking havoc…

I’m glad I don’t like honey all that much. But the sight of two alcohol bottles in my kitchen, filled with honey instead of the original IMFL, has started to bother…


[Is the sound of my ears ringing]

Learning sign language will soon be a necessity—for those going pubbing especially. [And for all I know, it is probably the ‘in’ thing among pub goers] The decibel levels of the music played is so darn high you can actually hear a ringing sound in your ears even half an hour after leaving the place.

But what is actually expected of you? Go with a gang of friends then sit there smiling at each other while downing drinks? What about conversation? Isn’t that which keeps pepping up the mood? And how can you have decent conversation when you have to cup your hands and yell into the ears of the person sitting next to you?

So while Appu and I sat side by side and kept ‘yelling’ at each other a friend who was with us kept looking at us and smiling. [I had given up yelling across the table at him once my throat started aching.]

But to my complaining the guys remarked how it’s never been much of a problem with them, cos after a few drinks they reach a certain level where they only have to look at each other to know what they are thinking and generally have a good time.
Oh boy!!!

Fucking for virginity

‘Fighting for peace is like fucking for virginity’
So says the message on a Zippo lighter that Appu got gifted by his friends. It’s a Vietnam war memorial. So some poor soldier actually used that thing to light his cigarettes while doing his best to stay alive. What that guy must have gone through to come up with something like this is beyond my* imagination.

I wonder if he survived. But if he did, how did his lighter end up getting refurbished and getting sold as a memorial? Maybe he dropped it. I hope he dropped it.

*Made the mistake of showing this post to Appu. His remark at what the soldier must have gone through: Probably a lot of grass.
And since Appu on a roll will not stop at one comment; and glares and frowns are lost on the chap, he went on to remark that the lighter has a scratch which he believes is the mark of the bullet which ricocheted off the lighter and thus saved my ‘poor soldier’s’ life.
Double PffT.

Tring, tring

The phone rings. I notice it’s a local landline number and answer it wondering who it could be.
“Hello… crack… brr… kirk… to Thrupti?” a male voice asks.
“Thrupti? I’m sorry, you have the wrong number,” I reply.
Wrong number hei?”
“Thrupti nahin hei?”
“No.” Duh?
“Then may I know who is on the line?”
Now why the hell does he wanna know that? So I ask him and he promptly replies:
“Ok Ma’m. Sorry ma’m.” and hangs up.

Here’s looking at you, kid!?!

Read Brida by Paulo Coelho. Read the first quarter at a stretch. First impulse after putting the book down was to grab the mobile and call/SMS people to tell them to get a copy, the book is brilliant.

Then I slowed down, thought I’d do that after completing the book.
Well, aren’t I glad I didn’t jump the gun.

The book read like one of our many Hindi movies—a neat story, or in this case ‘line of thought’, but bad treatment. Especially that Casablanca line – ‘Here’s looking at you, kid’ killed it. Just killed it.

Quite unlike a Coelho! In fact this is probably the first time I’ve come off feeling like this after a Coelho!!

There seemed to be too much of a Christian – anti-Christian element about the book. Sure, Coelho often touched upon the subject, but there was always a certain subtelity that would make you smile to know what he was getting at. But this was too much in the face. Not offensive, personally, but just too obvious.

Brida is good. Especially the beginning. The first half is revelatory and quite thought provoking, but it just didn’t carry till the end. The second half is too fast and abrupt. The second half also reminded me of Angels and Demons, and The Da Vinci Code, where I felt Dan Brown was writing all that stuff with the sole intention of creating a ruckus/controversy. Indeed, it felt as though the first part of Brida was written by Coelho while Dan Brown took over in the second part.

Maybe like the author says in the book, the complexity of certain rituals [mentioned in the story] has a simple solution hidden in them. [Maybe there was a hidden message in those parts that I found humdrum!]


Found it to be a little too filmy… Tch.

PS. But somebody please read it and tell me how you felt.