Sunday, December 12, 2010

Who moved my cheez?

I love the fact that when you misplace your phone, you can ping it, find it and live happily ever after. Why can’t we do the same for keys, lip balms, gym socks, clean tissues, when you need them and pens that work?

Friday, December 10, 2010

Intellectual Cinema

Am sure everyone has a separate definition here. For me its cinema that is not intriguing, is surreal, doesn’t impact or touch you in anyway and leaves you mildly annoyed for having succumbed to the lure by the rave reviews.

I happened to watch two of these in succession a while back. Being John Malkovich and Adaptation. Both written by the celebrated script writer Charlie Kaufman.


Nicholas Cage plays himself twice over. One is the nerdy, socially awkward, idealistic guy and other is his socially popular and scruples-less twin brother. Throw in Meryl Streep who is in search of passion and meaning in life and a toothless nomad Laroche who is deeply passionate about all and every whim of his. What follows is interaction between all four protagonists, all in search of elusive meanings. The passionate Laroche in search of the elusive ghost orchid. Streep in search of meaning and passion following Laroche. Nicholas Cage (idealistic) in search of elusive strings that will help him tie up a movie script and Nicholas Cage (scruples-less) ah, well he isn’t in search of anything. He is the hollow, shallow guy who likes enjoying life and trivial pursuits.

In the end a lot of people end up dying and you end up in the elusive search of the meaning of it all. So why was the movie made? To personify life? We all chase meanings and passion and idealism and in the end we find a few of those and we miss a few and not a lot of it makes sense. Whatever the reason be, the end feels like watching a deflated colourful balloon left on the side of the road.

People with personality flaws looking to be complete and chasing elusive pursuits does not make for intriguing cinema as far as I am concerned. It just mirrors the emptiness, ache, defects, wants and needs that we all have. Watching it is not pretty. We know it. We live it. Watching someone conquer it, defy it, complete it would be intriguing cinema. In the end Nicholas Cage (idealistic and socially awkward) does find love and that is the only saving grace.

Will lament on Being John Malkovich next….

Monday, September 6, 2010

Information overload age?

" an information-rich world, the wealth of information means a dearth of something else: a scarcity of whatever it is that information consumes.

Hence a wealth of information creates a poverty of attention and a need to allocate that attention efficiently among the overabundance of information sources that might consume it“

I loved this definition that I chanced on; it is from a write up that defines what Attention Economy is all about. (Attention economy is an approach to managing information and resources taking into account the 'scarce commodity' - attention)

From what I see though, I think we are gradually shutting ourselves out from too much information by well….diving right into too much information.

When bored at work or otherwise when we get time, we : Read a book - paperback or kindle, forward and read e-mails, text and read jokes on the phone, blog, watch television, watch movies on DVD, tune into an IPod, Log on to Facebook – to share and soak up some useful and mostly useless information..... Log on to twitter – share and soak up some useful and mostly useless information in shorter bursts.

I am guilty of this as well, too much information - disseminating it as well as consuming it. Unsurprisingly ofcourse most of this information is trivial and not life altering, forwards which could be about how someone created amazing art using old disposable razors or videos on Facebook that you just have to watch coz they are an amazing way to look at life, or because it’s just too hilarious for words to miss it.

No wonder Gmail now has a priority inbox, we soon will need to prioritise the way we consume information or it might soon consume us.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

musing of the moment

Its funny if you really think about it. The fact that you can worry and fret and plan the future, but how much ever you try, you cant put yourself in its shoes.The future almost always is completely different than what you'd imagine it to be, unless of course its a dentist's appointment.

For the most part however, the 'future' remains an intangible, hypothetical concept which can be fully experienced and savoured then, only in that point of time in future. Like a rich dark belgian chocolate, it makes sense to savour it then, than imagine it now in excruciating detail.

The past too is not a place you can physically go to and re-organise the skeletons in your cupboard. So you literally have to let bygones be bygones.And for that I for one, am sincerely glad.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Quick Review: Tere Bin Laden

Osama Bin Laden, try saying it aloud….it’s a little like saying Lord Voldemort instead of you-know-who and have everyone wincing or dropping what they are holding. The man has single handedly inspired terror of which even Gabbar Singh, whose name was enough to induce fear in sleepless little children, would approve.

I have a friend who can draw parallels between branding and the most unlikely concepts and situations. This sounds like one of those situations. Marketing companies could take lessons from Osama. Coke, Marlboro and Budweiser have serious competition for the most recognized brand in the world. Try standing in any corner of the world holding his photograph. Chances are that’s the last thing you will have done before spending a goodish time behind the bars.

So much so, that he has now a movie to his name. Which brings me to the said movie....Tere Bin Laden
Tere Bin Laden is a small budget movie with poor production values, or maybe that’s how dismal and drab Pakistan really looks like. The first half of the movie tries real hard to get access to your funny bone with wigs flying off in the wind, the cute looking Ali Zafar being deported for handing over a dropped knife back to the air hostess who cries foul, and other weird unfunny incidents during which you get ample time to ruminate on questions like: Shit, movies are so subjective, and humour all the more, so why am I here on the recommendation of someone whose idea of humour very well could be a Priyadarshan movie?

But mercifully and I really mean mercifully things start picking up in the second half of the movie. The guy who plays Osama is quite cute especially the way he speaks in Punjabi. Ali Zafar, his crony and others suddenly seem to get the hang of acting and start looking convincing. The movie and its characters out of nowhere, suddenly grow on you and the film does manage to make you laugh at places.

Overall the best bit about the movie is the sheer audacity of its plot. The fact that the movie manages to do what America hasnt managed,with all its bombing. It has brought Osama down, merely by turning the world’s most feared terrorist into a caricature.

Creative Commons License
In Musing Mode is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 2.5 India License.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

An attempt at a not-so-short story

“Abhi is always getting into trouble. The bigger problem is he gets into it because he starts it”. Saying this, the principal began listing all the mischief Abhi had been up to that year. Abhi stood quietly near the door of the principal’s office, fingering the transformer he had got with his last happy meal, while his mother looked at her watch and back again at Abhi with chagrin.

“Abhi, stop fidgeting! Why do you do this?” You know how busy I am, yet you keep doing these things which require me to come to school, apologize on your behalf and keep postponing my meetings”. Abhi looked at Mom blankly and went back to work on the transformer, transforming it from a robot to a car and back to a robot again.

Sighing, his mom addressed the principal, “M’am I am sorry, you have Abhi on your hands for just a few months now, we plan to send him to a boarding school for his sixth grade. I know you suggested, one of us should consider leaving our jobs and pay attention to Abhi full time, but that’s just not possible now” Saying this Abhi’s mom looked at her watch again and rose to go.

Leaving the principal’s office, both Mom and Abhi made their way to the car. Mom tried talking to Abhi again, “Abhi, what is the problem, can’t you talk to me?” Abhi just quietly got into the car, rolled down the window and resolutely stared outside. Mom gave up and got busy on the phone to re-schedule her meetings. She asked the driver to first drop Abhi at Mona Auntie’s house and then move on to office.

As they neared Mona Auntie’s house, Abhi got out of the car without looking behind and adjusting his back pack started walking ahead. He dragged his feet all the way upstairs but skipped Mona Auntie’s house and went on to the terrace of the old building. Mona Aunty was Mom’s distant cousin and was interested only in watching cookery shows on television. She never got around to cooking anything from the shows, giving Abhi just the same curd rice every day. But she lovingly wrote down all the recipes in a thickly bound book which also housed lyrics of old Hindi songs. She hummed the songs during commercial breaks and the recipes were meant for when her grandson, who lived in Singapore with his parents visited her.

Abhi meanwhile had reached the terrace already warmed by the afternoon sun, and unmindful of the heat he climbed the rickety ladder leading to the water tank, from where he could sit and stare at the city and where no one would come looking for him.

Abhi sat on the tank for half an hour looking at the distant builidings. He hated being alone with Mona Auntie, watching cookery shows and hated his parents for never being around. He especially hated mom, who tried very hard to make him feel loved, but he didn’t remember the last time she fed him or read him a story, like Sharad’s mom did. She didn’t pack in upma or idli or even plain biscuits for Abhi in his tiffin like other mother’s did. Instead he had a generous pocket money to eat from the canteen every day.

He didn’t hate dad as much, who he thought was brilliant. Dad was a scientist and had taught him to build a model airplane, had taken him to the club to teach him swimming and also played cricket with him at home. But all that was before he received funding for his project. Now he and his team were working hard day and night for a breakthrough on their project. Dad was absent most of the days, now practically living at the lab.

Abhi suddenly felt restless, he felt a cramp coming up his leg. He climbed down and decided to use some of his pocket money to buy a packet of chips than being subjected to curd rice and the forever hungry Nigella Lawson. Just as Abhi was paying for the chips at the corner shop, a small round faced boy came running right at him and pushing him, ran laughingly past him. Abhi saw that four older boys were chasing him and they were pretty close on his heels. Abhi quickly pocketed the chips and started running behind them to see what would happen if they caught the little laughing boy.

They were quick on their feet and Abhi ran as fast as he could to keep up with them. He saw them all running into a huge open gate, beyond which there were stone benches, a mud track, swings, a slide, a huge climbing wall and massive trees. He was wondering what kind of a place it was, and read on a plaque that it was called the Green Valley Park. Though Abhi had heard and read about parks, he had actually never seen one. Mom and Dad had always thought that Abhi needed to concentrate on studies, learn judo, swimming and computers and then spend weekends with them at the club.

As Abhi got in further into the park, he saw the little boy climb a tree, quite like a monkey and scamper high up above a tree. The four boys chasing him gave up and started fighting for the swings instead. Abhi sat down on a bench and watched in fascination as the boys started swinging high up in the air. He sat there for a long while munching on his chips. Slowly the light began to fade, with the bright afternoon giving way to a breezy evening. The lamps in the park began lighting up one by one, throwing shadows in the corners of the park.

With evening, came fluttering moths and different groups of people. A group of old men with booming laughter wearing shorts and sneakers, young couples with little kids all dressed up. Women who looked close to Mona Auntie’s age, all wearing huge sneakers below sarees and swinging their arms wildly. While a group of teenage boys came and sat on a bench and watched pretty young girls jog by with their earphones on. Abhi was so fascinated with these sights that he completely forgot all about Mona Auntie and Mom coming to pick him up.

He heard a car honk somewhere nearby and with one frantic look at his digital watch, Abhi picked up his bag and raced towards Mona Auntie’s house as fast as he could. Mona Aunty was mid-recipe with Jamie Oliver this time around and Abhi’s explanation that he was at Sharad’s house finishing his homework was satisfactory enough for her to not look up from the TV.

Abhi combed his hair, washed his face and dusted his bag. He told Mona Auntie that he would go down and wait for Mom. When Mom did finally pick him up, Abhi tried very hard to contain his excitement and look indifferent; but Mom noticed Abhi looking less sullen. That night as she served his dinner, Mom ruffled Abhi’s hair lovingly like old times, and for once like the old times Abhi didn’t push away her hand.

Next day, Abhi put Mona Aunty’s gullibity to test again, saying he was going to Sharad’s house. Hearing a feeble yes, Abhi didn’t wait but picked up his bag and dashed to the park. Today he saw a group of boys getting their knees dirty playing with round glass discs on the ground. Abhi saw that the little laughing boy from yesterday was a part of the group. Abhi made his way towards them with curiosity and before he knew it he was a part of the team - cheering on, haggling over the glass discs, aiming and hitting one perfect shot and even managing to pocket three of the yellow green ones.

Soon unknown to Mom and Mona Auntie, Abhi was spending almost all of his afternoons at the park. He spent his time getting dirty climbing trees, scaling walls, playing marbles and learning to spin a top with his new found friends. They would play hide and seek, ride the swings and slurp on ice cold golas from the golawalla at the park, using Abhi’s money.

The fact that Abhi was the rich kid among them and went to one of the poshest schools in the city made no difference to anyone, least to Abhi. Abhi no longer felt alone, or even in need of playing his favorite games on the computer. He had four friends to share everything with now. He no more played pranks at school to seek Mom’s attention, or try and make life difficult for her. In fact, his relationship with Mom had changed completely.

Abhi had slowly now started talking to Mom again. He was also now helping out at home as Dad was not around as much. He had even accompanied Mom on her shopping for the weekend. After shopping, Mom took Abhi out for the new Ice Age movie. When Abhi saw Mom laughing at the antics of the animated characters, he realised he had seen Mom laugh like that after a very long time.

After the movie, they bought pizza and ice –cream back home for dinner. Seeing Mom in such a good mood, Abhi decided to not make things difficult for her any longer and gathered his courage to reveal all about his visits to the park in the afternoon and skipping Mona Auntie’s house.

Sure of a sermon, a shouting or pasting, to Abhi’s utter surprise, Mom began to cry. She hugged Abhi and started crying uncontrollably. Abhi tried his best to console Mom but she kept sobbing. “Abhi, I have been a terrible Mother, haven’t I?” I didn’t even know my son was so unhappy and so alone. I am sorry Abhi, I am really very sorry” saying this Mom continued crying.

Both Abhi and Mom talked late into the night that day over cheese pizza, their favorite ice-cream and lots of wet tissues. Abhi learnt Dad was not coming back, he had found someone else at his workplace and soon there was going to be a court case over Abhi’s custody. Abhi also learnt that Mom worked so hard and left him with Mona Aunty because she was planning to buy another place close by, big enough just for both of them.

Mom told him that she was okay with Abhi spending time at the park, but wanted him to be back in time at Mona Auntie’s house everyday to finish his school work. And to Abhi’s joy, she said that she would also come and meet his new friends over the weekend and that he could play with them on Sundays instead of going to the club.

That night onwards there were no more closed spaces between Mom and Abhi. Just one expanse of open space that was Green Valley Park had changed a lonely child and a lonely parent’s life forever.

Creative Commons License
In Musing Mode is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 2.5 India License.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

The Kulfiwallah

On warm summer nights when the air is as still as those Tussauds wax statues, and you can hear the crickets go chirp chirp in the backyard. When those orange stalked fragrant prajakta flowers spread their achingly sweet fragrance through the still warm night air, and you can hear a lonely frog go croak croak from a dark corner.

Suddenly you hear that awaited - 'Kulfiwallahaaaaah'...and you leap, much like that sulking frog in the corner and make a dash to the gate. 'Aeeeee Kulfiwalle' yell....Kulfiwalle....idhar idhar....right here, cant you see?... You meanwhile get battle ready, as you get the youngest of the lot to quickly scout for his/her slippers, hurry hurry them on, and urge him to go...go get him here before he slinks into the night with that red caped basket of his...

All that commotion and sudden activity gets the Kulfiwallah's attention and that apparition in white comes closer, with cool respite of milky kulfi hidden in the folds of the red cloth. He gets the basket down and as he unfolds the cloth you see a dozen aluminium cones shining in the street light, nestled on a bed of salt and ice.

The Kulfiwala '...sssssk' opens the rubber vacuummed cones with his knife, pushes in a wooden stick and coaxes the creamy kulfi out for an eager audience, one by one. The Kulfi tastes slightly salty, creamy and milky cold with bits of cardamom. And while most of us go slurp and lick with kulfi dripping down in savory urgency, someone always will want their kulfi diced on a green leaf. We are left holding a wooden stick and the lingering aftertaste, while they neatly dice up their kulfi further and make it last longer.

The kulfiwallah meanwhile counts his loot, and silently saunters away, a little lighter, taking his wares to other neighbourhoods to spready milky joy and some summer cheer. And you wait till the next week when the summer air is still warm and your tongue remembers the milky taste of cold kulfi.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Maximum city review

A book that hits you just like the overpowering stench that emanates between mahim and dadar from open train doors.Suketu Mehta's Maximum city brings into our clean pristine shuttered Mumbai lives,the grisly reality that we roll up our car windows against.
The glass partition that separates us from the spit splattered streets, the overflowing garbage, the lives that flourish in the shanties is rolled down and how.
Its a book that opens up the can of worms that Mumbai is and overturns it, leaving you to inspect your life in this teeming metropolis.
It is in much parts voyeuristic, and takes you deep inside the labyrinth that makes up Mumbai's murky underbelly.You are led through back doors of beer bars , front doors of brothels,the killer minds of the ganglords and the crowded lives in the slums.
The only negatives being,the experiences at places seem disjointed - the author seems to want to cram in it all from bollywood to bar dancers. And at places you recognize a clear attempt to shock and sensationalise.
Barring that, its a must read for every mumbaikar - only if you can stomach it, that is

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Do you lose your sense of humour as you get older?

Shucks, does anyone still use shucks? Either I am getting older and as a consequence am losing my sense of humour or am losing my sense of humour and as a consequence getting older…

Really people should stop putting up all those flowery wisdom quotes and inspiration stories…

Saturday, April 17, 2010

is there anything as beautiful as words?

a draft of last beautiful by robert sloan...the link is


I rode my bike to the beach on the last of the beau­ti­ful days.

Timon had to lure me out of the house. As a rule I’m unim­pressed by the sun, and I have this the­ory that beau­ti­ful days are totally over­rated. We all go crazy when the clouds part and the ground shim­mers. Every­body gets dis­tracted and scram­bles out­side as if it’ll never be nice again.

I’m not cranky! I just have a deep faith in the future, you know? There are beau­ti­ful days behind us and beau­ti­ful days to come—so relax and play some video games.

But it turns out my faith was unfounded, because Sat­ur­day, March 27 was, in fact, the last beau­ti­ful day.

On Sun­day, the sky over the city was gray-​​​​green. Mon­day was worse, and the week that fol­lowed was a cage of dark clouds that trailed cur­tains of cold rain. There was light­ning. It went on like that, week after week, month after month, all across the city, the penin­sula, and the headlands—the sun sim­ply refused to shine. And today, about a mil­lion of us are still stuck liv­ing in a weather non sequitur.

Some­thing fun­da­men­tal has changed; some­thing impor­tant is broken.

But I’m not just talk­ing about the sky.

The thing that sucked about the last beau­ti­ful day was that I didn’t get to spend it with Kate Trudeau.

Back at the begin­ning I lied: it wasn’t Timon’s coax­ing, exactly, that got me out of the house. Rather, it was the under­stand­ing that Timon is friends with Lacey Pell, and Lacey is friends with Kate Trudeau, and Lacey was def­i­nitely com­ing, so Kate Trudeau was maybe com­ing. I mean, they’re really good friends. She was almost def­i­nitely coming.

If this sounds ridicu­lous, it’s because it is. But I’m in a quasi-​​anti-​​relationship with Kate Trudeau, which means that we made out twice, hooked up once, got angry at each other 1.5 times, and were cur­rently trav­el­ing through some sort of roman­tic nether­world. Don’t look back, Orpheus.

There’s a spot in Golden Gate Park where you’re cruis­ing down the green-​​cosseted road and you make a sharp turn—there’s a wind­mill on your right—and sud­denly, there’s the ocean, so big and bright it messes up the color bal­ance of your eyes. It’s wide and white and waves are crash­ing and you can’t believe it’s been there all this time. And, espe­cially if you are coast­ing towards the pos­si­bil­ity of Kate Trudeau, it feels like the newest, biggest, great­est thing in the world. Like: wow, who invented this, and why didn’t I know ’til now?

But Kate Trudeau did not in fact come, so I spent the whole day pre­tend­ing to be inter­ested in Lacey’s new job and play­ing quarter-​​hearted fris­bee with some dude named Chad. Really, I was barely there; my spirit was out can­vass­ing other beaches, other streets.

Sunday, April 11, 2010


Broken pieces of yellow sun glinting bangles on the floor
A book of self deprecating poetry on the shelf
Dreams of grandeur wrapped in stained satin
Trust which gathers rust in the attic
Unclean looks stashed away in the bottom drawer
Laughter that made its escape as cerulean soap bubbles through the open window
Sorrow that is stored in barrels in the cellar
A patchwork quilt of emotions lies on the settee
An empty coffee cup with lipstick marks and a veiled sigh
A cesspit where conversations have run dry
Waiting that lies coiled over the threshold
A tarnished nameplate that adorns the closed door
Mind your step
Welcome home.

Creative Commons License
In Musing Mode is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 2.5 India License.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Hmmm....pondering pondering...

Only after the last tree has been cut down.
Only after the last river has been poisoned.
Only after the last fish has been caught.
Only then will you find that
money cannot be eaten.

Prophecy of the Cree Native American Tribe

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Are we losing our sense of self in the name of globalisation?

So have you received a mail lately that extols the virtues of growing up in the eighties and your eyes mist over with nostalgia? Do you find yourself wondering; is his blackberry better than mine? Are quite a few people you know either into Buddhism, Art of living, Vipassana, Yoga, Meditation or some other spiritual quest?

Guess you must be somewhere in your thirties and living in a metro if you answered yes to one or all of the above.

You must be one of the many, dwelling within the closed confines of a new order – You communicate mostly through sms and Facebook. You feast on reality shows and download podcasts. You watch the MUFA, PUFA content on oils and fried snacks. Your next vacation is no longer at a holiday home. And catching up with friends is now meeting at bars and pubs over drinks, with loud music playing in the background.

You shop at supermarkets, spend your weekends at malls and queue up for the latest release at the multiplex. You carry hand sanitizers in your bag, credit cards in your wallet and the hanging sword of EMI’s on your head.

Welcome the new breed living in post liberalization India. The shift from chawanprash to cornflakes has been a phenomenal one, just 10 -15 years’ post liberalization and we have had the boom of satellite TV, the credit card craze, high penetration of mobile phones, steadily increasing internet users and Indians traversing the globe like never before.

We are all now on the quest for smaller, better and faster. Just Google it, is the new just do it. No more research or fact finding for that truly accomplished feeling. Will it be a Samsung, Nokia, Motorola, iPhone or Blackberry? And will it be Pizza, Sushi, Khowsuey or a Gelato? Global trends, global exposure, too much information and too many choices are gradually eroding our identity.

Indian urban cities will soon become a homogenous fairy tale, just like every pizza hut looks the same anywhere you go. You will have the same retail chain of Departmental Store, Book Store; Supermarket, Restaurant and Coffee house which ever metro, mini –metro or even a tier 1 city you visit. Everybody now watches the same YouTube videos, forwards the same posts and uses the same Facebook applications. Conversation with anyone across the world is easy, we are all heading towards the ‘one’ culture of consumerism.

Just as human bodies, animals, plants and eco systems evolve over time so do societies. And India is now an evolving society grappling with the ills that come with fast paced growth. People are grappling with stress that comes with a fast paced lifestyle- living beyond their means and looking for newer and innovative means of entertainment to satisfy their limited attention spans. The overall quality of life has improved, but time is the new luxury in short supply to develop, sustain and maintain deep and lasting relationships. Hence the increasing need for answers and the spiritual quests, as the wants and the choices endlessly mirror each other into infinity.

The fabric of our society has started fraying at the edges. If we don’t wake up to this phenomenon in time, our local bhajiwala’s, fishwali’s, doodhwala’s and the kirana store wala who still know us by our first names, will be displaced by impersonal, swish, automated and sterilized environs of a supermarket. Too much of TV and internet is going to make us isolated and obese just like the Americans. Independent lifestyles, higher disposable incomes and more options are already leading to an increase in divorces, while the concept of a joint family is being edged out to make space for super kids and super moms in nuclear families.

Times indeed are a changing with many everyday rituals and old ingrained habits vanishing just like papads and achars left to dry on terrace tops. The disposable mentality has hit us with zip locks and aluminum foils. Remember recycling at its best, getting sweets from your neighbor neatly wrapped in a used plastic milk bag. Where are the traditional kid’s games? When was the last time you saw kids play Kabbadi or Lagori? When was the last time you saw friends just hanging out at building compounds or neighbours catching up over the day’s happenings?

Time we started somewhere. Let’s nurture our languages, traditions and customs. Patronize and bring alive our traditional cuisine, arts, crafts and games. Let’s spend more time with our parents, relatives and friends and less with mobile phones, television and the internet.

Let’s learn from the mistakes of the west. Let us always be the answer and the meaning that foreigners come in search of. Let’s not get caught up in the same mindless rat race of smaller, better, faster, richer and smarter. Let’s keep our values intact and ensure we pass them down to our children. Let’s not push them into the rat race and on the knife’s edge of a suicide.

Let our rich culture, traditions and heritage shine through the gaps of change.

Creative Commons License
In Musing Mode is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 2.5 India License.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Musings of the day

We are all one universe inter-connected in mysterious ways, and I just figured it is called facebook.

Oh crap! – Two most succinct words in the English language and they connect perfectly with how I feel right now.

It all started with a goldfish bowl with two little listless fish in it. I hate this whole fish bowl and aquarium thing that people have a thing for. Can’t stand the poor fish swimming away in circles for our viewing pleasure. So was completely against the idea of having them swim around in circles in a fake foliage fish bowl at home.

After many a debate on the right and wrongs of keeping them at home, we finally decided to keep them. And for all of four days through everything one was aware of two small little red gold fish swimming around in circles. Eventually we got around to naming and observing them.

In this small little fish world, there was a bigger fish and a smaller one, where the bigger fish was constantly bullying the smaller one, who kept scurrying to whatever corner one can find in a circle to hide.

Anyway the point I am getting to is the smaller one died today!....a little dead fish in the universe and you feel…oh don’t even realise you get attached to these little things and before you know it…they are gone…..damn…I am never keeping a dog...

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Stress Busters of the week

When stress gets you, who do you get? Apart from the poor unsuspecting tele caller I mean…

Top two stress busters of the week

Kiddie Conversations: These little people come in neat baggage and prejudice free packages. And they can make amazing conversation about planets, oceans, next door kids, tiffin boxes, Jonas brothers and other such esoteric concepts.

Point of stress: It’s not exactly a great feeling when a ten year old asks you, who Sting or Bruce Springsteen is? This pretty much is an exit cue, no point accumulating additional stress feeling like a preserved fossil from the Triassic

Gossip, Gossip and then some more: Nothing makes stress disappear faster than this sweet sounding three word line, you know WHAT?
No, I don’t, but I sure want to hear about someone else’s blooper to take away the focus from mine… Someone wants to think up a gossip hotline for stressed women?

The Irresistible Pull of Irrational behaviour

A new book called 'Sway' sheds some light on irrational behaviour in human beings.
Some major, salient “sways” mentioned in the book.
  • We often overreact to potential losses, focused more on the short-term consequences rather than the longer-term effects.
  • The more meaningful a loss is, the more loss averse we become, meaning we don’t want to give up our hold on the loss (even when it’s economically, emotionally or otherwise beneficial to do so)
  • We hold on to the pervasive pull of commitment. When we are committed to a relationship, decision, or position in our lives, it can be very difficult for us to see the better, healthier alternatives available.
  • Humans have a tendency to imbue someone or something with certain qualities based on its perceived value rather than objective data. This is called value attribution.
  • If we see something labeled a certain way, we’ll take that label at face value.
  • When things are discounted off of their regular price, people tend to give the product or service a reduced value attribution. In other words, when we get a discount on something, we tend to unconsciously value it less than if we had paid full price.
  • Humans have a propensity to label people, ideas or things based on our initial opinions of them. The authors term this the “diagnosis bias,” and it includes our inability to reconsider those initial value judgments once we’ve made them.
  • A single word or label can color our entire perception of a person, closing off avenues of shared experience and seeing people for who they really are. Once a person is given a label (and even directly, a diagnosis), it’s hard for people to see people in a way that isn’t biased by that label.
  • “Mirror, mirror” effect – we like and look for people like us
  • We constantly sway others and are constantly being swayed by our expectations and labels — what is called the “Chameleon effect.”
  • It is vitally important for people to feel they have a voice. People want to be listened to and heard, even if nothing changes.
To end with the book offers no lasting solutions but to look at long term gains and perspectives than the short term ones. Now try explaining that to irrational beings...

Monday, February 22, 2010

Writer's Block leads to quoting other writers from a movie about writer's block

I had vowed will not lift quotes just like everyone else seems to be doing...a slight departure before my frenzied brain gets back to functioning mode...So, these aint quotes but extremely lucid lines and observations by that seemingly small but powerful group of people who dont change the world but still manage to move it - writers

Brilliant lines from movies.From the movie 'Adaptation'

John Laroche: You know why I like plants?
Susan Orlean: Nuh uh.
John Laroche: Because they're so mutable. Adaptation is a profound process. Means you figure out how to thrive in the world.
Susan Orlean: [pause] Yeah but it's easier for plants. I mean they have no memory. They just move on to whatever's next. With a person though, adapting almost shameful. It's like running away.
Susan Orlean: There are too many ideas and things and people. Too many directions to go. I was starting to believe the reason it matters to care passionately about something, is that it whittles the world down to a more manageable size.
Charlie Kaufman: There was this time in high school. I was watching you out the library window. You were talking to Sarah Marsh.
Donald Kaufman: Oh, God. I was so in love with her.
Charlie Kaufman: I know. And you were flirting with her. And she was being really sweet to you.
Donald Kaufman: I remember that.
Charlie Kaufman: Then, when you walked away, she started making fun of you with Kim Canetti. And it was like they were laughing at *me*. You didn't know at all. You seemed so happy.
Donald Kaufman: I knew. I heard them.
Charlie Kaufman: How come you looked so happy?
Donald Kaufman: I loved Sarah, Charles. It was mine, that love. I owned it. Even Sarah didn't have the right to take it away. I can love whoever I want.
Charlie Kaufman: But she thought you were pathetic.
Donald Kaufman: That was her business, not mine. You are what you love, not what loves you. That's what I decided a long time ago.
Donald Kaufman: Whats up?
Charlie Kaufman: Thank you.
Donald Kaufman: For what?

Thursday, February 18, 2010

MNIK quick verdict - All hoopla, no heart

I have been wondering did the rest of the world and I go see two separate versions of the movie? I really didn’t find it ‘inherently sincere’ as Rajeev Masand put it and I certainly didn’t find it worthy of the five stars that TOI bestowed on it.
The marketing is way better than the end product. I don’t know if I can say end product, since didn’t stick to watching it till the end.
But overall found the movie (the first half at least– since that’s all I saw) to be fake, shallow and superficial trying to take the higher ground. The dialogues are amateurish, Kajol is screechy and over the top, the guy who plays her kid is so damn right down irritating and SRK as the bumbling but sincere autistic guy can grate on your nerves and you want to yell at him – ok come back to normal right now!
Films like these which deal with sensitive issues, need to be dealt with far more depth and sensitivity than marrying Kurbaan with K3G.
So Karan needs to get into introspection mode pronto, leave these kinds of films for filmmakers of the likes of shimit amin and rakesh mehra, and get back to those extravagant family dramas I so used to like…
Creative Commons License In Musing Mode is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 2.5 India License.

Free Blog Counter