Vantage point

Monday, August 30, 2004

Poetic PJs

Behold...some of the worst PJ's ever cracked....

1. Which poem do you get when you cross Rabindranath with William Blake?

- Tagore Tagore burning bright....

2. Which poem do you get when you cross Wordsworth with a single Eminem?

- The Solitary Rapper

3. Which poem do you get when you cross Kipling with an image file format?


4. What do you get when you cross Iodex with Longfellow?

- The Balm of Life

Readers can get back at me by posting their own sins here. :)

My new house

Moved in to my new rented apartment last week. It is in santacruz east, close to the Mumbai university. Am sharing it with a colleague from IBM. Nice newish place, on the 5th floor. The "killer app" is that it is less than 18 rupees by auto from office/western express highway/santacruz stn/kurla stn etc. :)

Sunday, August 29, 2004

New Journo on the Block

Guess who has just joined the league of published journalists. Sarika. :)

Cybergames is Timepass No 1

Saturday, August 21, 2004

Umbrella Coalition

I've got a theory. Somewhere out there, waiting to take over this world, is a coalition of umbrellas. They hide underground, and plot to overthrow the current governments. Their numbers are swelling by the day, and they are on a recruiting spree.

Nothing else can explain why so many umbrellas that I buy just disappear!! :(

The song "I am sixteen, going on seventeen" carries a very different meaning for me nowadays.


I'm so glad
I am not a cat
Really glad

Thursday, August 19, 2004

Main Nostradamus ho gaya!! :)

Just re-read my review of Shwaas from three months back. I had hoped for a suitable reward in the National Awards. Main Nostradamus ho gaya, sapne mein dekha future. :)

Wednesday, August 18, 2004

Silver is Gold!!

Hurray for Major Rathore. Hope this is one of at least a few more. Paes and Bhupati are just one win away from a medal.

Go India!!!

A breath of fresh air!

Shwaas very deservedly won the National Award for the best film, becoming the first Marathi film in over half a century to do so.

Shwaas is a very moving fact the first Indian movie that moistened my eyes since hrishida's Anand. The sheer calibre of the story is further enhanced by the manner in which the story is told. Full credit to the director for that. The realism with which the movie has been shot makes it even more moving. You almost feel as if you're watching a documentary about a boy and his grandfather. It takes a great deal of mental effort to keep in mind the fact that whatever is happening is just plain fiction.

Sarika and I absolutely loved the film. Both of us agreed that if we send it to the oscars, it will stand a good chance of winning. She was insistent that Shwaas would win the National award. i doubted it, simply because I have hardly ever seen good marathi films take the Swarna kamal. Fortunately i was proven wrong.

Hopefully this will act as a shot in the arm for enterprising marathi film-makers. There is a lot of talent in Maharashtra, be it writing, directing or acting. Most of it stays limited to stage, or falls prey to the crass commercialism of Bollywood. The new multiplex culture however offers hope to ventures like Shwaas.

Now that Shwaas has bagged the award, I hope the government sends it as the official entry to the Oscars.

May a thousand Shwaas-es bloom!!

Friday, August 13, 2004

Pardon Dhananjoy (or is it Dhanonjay?)

I too think Dhanonjay should not be hanged. Instead, he should be pardoned and released. That way, he will come out on the streets and...... millions of us Indians(who do not really give a fig about him, but have been forced to read about him by the media) will pounce on him and thrash him to death. I am planning to SMS the words "I dont care" to all news channels and newspapers.

Times like these almost make me yearn for terrorist attacks. At least the media will be more bearable.

Monday, August 09, 2004


What you overhear in restaurants often tells you a lot about the city that you are in.

In Pune, more often than not, you will overhear something about boyfriends, girlfriends, relationships, exams, parties, teachers and outings. In Bangalore, you overhear PM and TL a lot. And in Mumbai, it is about sales targets, stock trades and films.

Thursday, August 05, 2004

Belated Post

This is a belated post about Sunday's Asia Cup final.

Of late, I have been getting the feeling that Tendulkar has forgotten the art of marshalling a tough chase.

Opinions in the Indian cricket-following community....i.e in India, :), are polarised about this issue. One half feels that Tendulkar is a choker, he can't finish matches off, and all that. There is another half which feels that the team does not support him when he plays well, and that an opener can't be expected to be a finisher in high chases.

I think both camps are guilty of generalisations. However, one clearly noticeable trend in the recent past has been Tendulkar's inability to marshall chases. Here I am not measuring the ability in terms of wins and losses, but just the way he manages the innings. For instance, Tendulkar's innings in the second ODI in Pakistan, is an excellent example of marshalling a chase well. That however, stands as the only such example in the last two years or so.

Whether he has cut down a lot on his shots, or whether his hand-eye-co-ord isn't the same, or whether the opposition have finally sorted his batting out, the simple fact is, his game lacks that consistently authoritative touch that it had in the late 90s. Nowadays he finds it tougher than ever to pick up boundaries, as well as singles.

Most of the times, with the exception of the aforementioned Pindi ODI, he goes either too fast early on and perishes, or he takes it easy until too late and perishes.

Remember how he marshalled chases in the past? He was in charge of the whole situation, pushing his partners, dictating the strike, and picking his spots. Nowadays, he bats without an eye on the run rate.

Hence most of our victories, while chasing a target of 250-odd or above, have come when Dravid was guiding the chase. I'm sure a statistical analysis will prove the point.

Anyway, moving on, something that has been bugging me.

I do not like this batting order. If Laxman is not going to bat at three, then he is being wasted. He's the guy who, once he gets his eye in, is impossible to dislodge. What the hell was he doing coming so late down the order? If it was a one-off thing because of his injury, then fine, but hope Ganguly does not persist.

My ideal batting order is -


And one more change I would suggest is, that suppose the fourth wicket falls early, say in the 25-35 over range, then it would be better to promote Kaif. Almost all of Kaif's successful innings have come when he has come in early, be it the Natwest Trophy, The Champions Trophy Zimbabwe match, the World Cup Pakistan match, or the 4th ODI in Pakistan. Post-35, he does not have it in him to just start belting from the word go. Yuvraj on the other hand, gets going from the first ball.

Ganguly coming in before the fifteen overs means that he is exposing himself to pace bowlers. Why? Let laxman tackle them. Ganguly is at his best attacking spinners after the 15th over.

I hope the Indian team sorts all these issues out before the Holland outing.

I am just waiting for these pyjama-parties to end, and for the real stuff to begin. The test matches in october. :)

What a City!!

For the past few weeks, the media has been full of meteorologists saying "the Monsoons have flagged off". This week, the Monsoons yelled "OH YEAH??? SEZ HOOOO?".

To say that it is raining cats, dogs, hamsters, hens, buffaloes, goats, possums, and other fauna, would be the understatement of the century!

More so in Mumbai, where it is pouring in sheets. And yet it is astounding how the city keeps moving. A lot of trains have been cancelled, but the locals were running. The BEST buses lived up to their name. And the taxi drivers and auto-rickshaw-wallahs lived up to their reputations of being the most honest fellows, not charging any premium for the rains. This is my first first-hand (weird repition :)) experience of the whole "Tenacity of Mumbai!!" funda, and I am overwhelmed by it.

Mumbai is as professional as a city can get. And it starts right at the top. the BMC Commissioner, Johny Joseph, was scheduled to go on a foreign trip, but he cancelled it to preside over the crisis management.

There is something amazing about the DNA of this city, and it quickly seeps into your DNA as well.

What a city!! :)

In Defence of the Government!!!

For the last week or so, I have been observing this whole KGL-Hostages issue, with a great deal of amazement. It shows how the media can often screw up as far as priorities are concerned.

I have also been amazed at the relatives of those three hostages criticising the Indian government!!

Now when it comes to bashing the government, I am always game. But please, let us not be illogical. Take this hostage crisis for instance.

- It happened in Iraq, light years away from the jurisidiction of the Indian Govt.
- The company venturing in to Iraq is from Kuwait.
- Both the Vajpayee and the Singh governments have shown no inclination of sending troops to Iraq. We have not helped the Americans in any way possible.

I mean in general, we have nothing to do with the situation. These blokes knew they were going to Iraq. They knew there were risks. They took the chance, and lost. It's just like the guy who sits perched atop a billboard, 100 feet above the ground, painting letters, is aware of the risks. If he slips and falls, one can blame the people who hired him, for not providing enough protection. But how on earth can you blame the Indian government? More so when the billboard is not in India?

And the media is giving soooo much footage to their families. Come on! There are other deaths, and other issues which are just as, if not more important.

At times, I feel like I am living in a crazy world. Especially when it is raining like crazy, and the city is still moving....but that's for another post.