Monday, December 31, 2007

Sunday, November 11, 2007

books r a mans best frnd

i absolutly luv readin books...i read ol kinds of em. but ma favorite is murder mistrey. maan they make me byt ma nails outa ther roots..dats wat i luv bout em. wanna becom a writer sumday...wanna be on da bestseller list...wanna b sum1 big. meknows me cn b a freakin gud english grammar is gud 2. ma philosophy of life is watever u do do it wel...m a big believer in perfection. sum ppl harp bout gen x using chat lingo 2 much. i say wut da long as da msg getz thru what freakin diff does it make. lolz! get a life ppl!!! those comas and colons are so not kool. ive gotta awsome story awsome dialogs and topofall m a dam gud storyteller. ma sense of humor ll make u ol roll on ur ass i swear. luk out fr it dis oktober! m sure u guysll hav a fuckin gud xperience readin ma work. wud be greatful if u guys gav me a frank review.
k now get outta ma way freaks!!! time for me 2 watch ma fav sport futbol!!!

This post is inspired by Ankit Khanna's post on the state of the English language.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Review: Laaga Chunari Mein Daag

Rating: 2/5
If you want to cut the crap and read the review directly, scroll past the first two paragraphs. If you have nothing better to do than pick your nose and check your scraps, read on.

What do you get when you combine two great actresses, one great actor, one charming actor, one character actor, a famous actress of yore (who is, if I might add, a famous mother, wife, daughter-in-law, and now, mother-in-law), an acclaimed director, an innovative music director, wonderful locales, excellent promos, and a kissing scene? I know this question tempts you to go to the start menu, click Shutdown, sneak out of office, take a loan on your credit card, borrow Mallya’s chartered helicopter, land straight on PVR’s terrace, buy tickets in black at 10 times the price, grab a cone of popcorn, and nestle in your expensive seat, waiting for the movie to start. But hey! What’s this? Why’s is the ticket line empty? Is there another India-Pak final today? Or is there a new Pamela Anderson video on YouTube?

Well, my dear hopelessly hopeful Bollywood fan, are you out of your mind? How could you miss the most important name on the poster? YASHRAJ FILMS. Read it again. YASHRAJ. Yes, the same house that succeeds in turning everything it touches to crap- a genetically mutated Midas. In many ways, Yashraj Films is worse than Suniel Shetty; or even Tusshar Kapoor. The latter two at least don’t try to fool you into watching their films.

Laaga Chunari Mein Daag was disappointing to say the least. After Parineeta, Pradeep Sarkar was expected to spin another tasteful web around his audience. But though his actors did well, though the cinematography was good and so was the camera work, the story was a loser from the start. It wasn’t the kind of movie that promises much in the start and falls flat as it progresses. It was drab right from the first shot, and never made an attempt to rise above the mediocre.

The film was bathed in clichés. Like every hatke Hindi movie now, the protagonist (Rani Mukherji) is a prostitute; and like every modern Hindi movie she finds a man who’s ready to accept her in spite of this; like every hatke / non-hatke Hindi movie it begins with a song; like every prostitute-centric Hindi film she is vindicated by the majboori drama; and like every Hindi film worth its salt it has a happy ending. If you’re curious about the story, please read on- don’t bother buying even a pirated CD.

The story begins in Banaras, with its picturesque ghaats and bustling roads. Anupam Kher is the head of a middle class family, leading his retired life in an ancestral home. Crippled by the termination of his pension, his wife (Jaya Bachchan) is forced to wield the sewing machine day and night for their daily bread. As Anupam’s perfidious brother tries to wrest the house from him, Anupam laments for not having a son to bail him out. This activates some main-aapka-beta-banoongi hormone in Rani Mukherji, who resolves to go to Mumbai to earn a living for herself and her family; and show her father that having a daughter is not such a curse after all. Konkona, her younger sister, is oblivious of the family’s hardships and lives her happy, giggly life to the fullest.

When Rani dearest lands in Mumbai with just a 10th class certificate in hand, nobody is willing to employ her. In her desperation she agrees to sleep with a man in return for employment. The man, however, refuses to give her the job after a night of fun. (Of course! If sex could elevate your status from a 10th-pass to a working professional, colleges would be sweatshops of a different kind!) When the man tosses a bundle of notes at her, she gets her big idea. From a small town happy-go-lucky girl, she becomes a “high-society escort”- which is a euphemism for a prostitute much like “a sub-optimal performer” is a euphemism for Tusshar Kapoor. (I’m sorry I use Tusshar Kapoor so often. I can’t help it; because when you scrape the proverbial rock bottom, all you find underneath is Tusshar)

It’s amazing how the 10th-pass girl who eats Hindi, sleeps Hindi, and giggles Hindi, starts conversing so fluently in English after a brief training period. Spoken English classes shouldn’t miss a trick here- they must highlight this highly ‘satisfying’ job prospect as an incentive for joining their course. Anyway, Rani’s escorting talents earn her a fortune, and she remits huge sums of money home to fight her villainous chacha. Anupam Kher was delighted with his daughter’s prosperity; while Jaya Bachchan, who knew her daughter’s plight, was the perfect embodiment of the sad smiley (she should seriously consider taking a royalty from Yahoo). In one of her escorting trips abroad, she meets Abhishek Bachchan who along with expertise in patents and trademarks has a gold medal in the spot-the-prostitute championship. Still, he falls in love with her; but is aggrieved when she just vanishes into thin air.

Yawn! I’m bored of writing. I’m sure you’re bored of reading too. And I’ve just completed the first half! I’ll speed it up for your sake and mine. Konkana gets a job in an advertising agency in Mumbai, where she falls in love with Kunal Kapoor, the Creative Head. Konkana comes to know about Rani’s profession and showers us with some more senti dialogues. Kunal comes to Banaras to marry Konkana, and lo and behold, Abhishek turns out to be his brother. While junior was busy solemnizing his nuptials, senior was trying to woo the aadarshwaadi prostitute. Rani says no to him because of her sleeping habit, but then Abhishek reveals his prostitute-spotting talents and says he fell in love with her in spite of (or because of?) her promiscuity. He was apparently moved when she recited the Hanuman Chalisa during a turbulent flight. Anyway, all’s well that ends well. Abhishek says please, Kunal says please on his behalf, Rani says yes, Anupam’s chest bloats, the villainous brother’s chest shrivels, and so they lived happily ever after.

Well, that’s about it. At the end of 2-and-a-half hours I felt like I’d seen nothing at all- as enraged as Rani was after that fruitless first night of labour. I felt like sitting for some more time to claim my money’s worth; soak up the AC for some more time. If you still want to watch this movie, you either hate me or you have no better use for money. If you haven’t seen the promos, you’ll probably like it; but for those who have great expectations (like I did), stay away.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Weighed Down

He opened his cupboard, and looked approvingly at his brown pant. His new brown Van Heusen pant- which he had bought in that bumper Buy 1 Get 2 Free sale. He stepped inside the bathroom for a daily ritual that involved a trasparent, neutral liquid, and a fragrant, opaque, alkaline solid. As always, he readied himself for the shower by unbuttoning his shirt or pulling the t-shirt above his head, depending on what he forgot to change the night before. He eagerly looked into the mirror- was he bearded enough for a shave? Or could he get away with his overnight stubble? And what of his hairline? Was there more brown now? Or was the shampoo successful in arresting the recession? And recession reminded him of the US economy, and of subprime, and of Sensex and his own investment in mutual funds. Was this the right time for him to invest, or should he let the Sensex correct? Anyway, his more immediate concerns revolved around the huge mass hanging 80 cm above the ground, enveloped by skin, and holding 3 months worth of rich North Indian food and ice creams. As he turned his body by ninety degrees for a side view, he saw the mass stretching from the end of his sternum, hanging down low enough to eclipse the elastic of his bermudas, and extending far out enough to serve as a tray. In fact, he thought with half a smile and half a grimace, ants could use the edge of the tray as a suicide point. As he let the shower run, he tentatively poked his finger into the falling stream to see if it had warmed up sufficiently. No it hadn't. Then another grimace- not long back, he used to bathe in icy cold water everyday- he was not sure he liked this breaking-in into royalty very much. Anyway, he eventually stepped into the pillar of the hot, transparent, neutral liquid; rubbed his skin with the fragrant, opaque, alkaline solid, and followed it up by massaging his scalp with a fragrant, opaque, green liquid. After drying his body, he looked at the clothes bar with a confused expression. Which of the 2 banians had he worn yesterday? They looked so damn alike- both VIP Bonus vests and both bearing toothpaste stains. Did it really matter which one he had worn yesterday? Wasn't he used to wearing the same clothes for days and weeks on end?

Once he stepped out of the bathroom all dried, combed, boro plussed, deodorated, brylcreemed, undied, and banianed, he opened, once again, the varnished cupboard, and pulled out the brown trouser. His memory flashed back to the day he bought it- the room that was hastily converted into a retail outlet, the irresistible offers, the delighted son and the smiling mother, the trial room that was conspicuous by its absence, the crude wooden partition behind which many a seductive Hindi film heroine changed her clothes, and above all, the perfect-fitting brown pant whose buckle hooked up beautifully around his waist. As he slipped his legs through the brown pant and pulled it up, he reminisced about that happy June afternoon when he bought 3 Van Heusen pants (including that fateful brown one) for Rs.1099. But what's this! Why wasn't the buckle fastening now? Why were the two ends, now an inch apart, groping to hold hands, like lovers after a Hindi movie bomb blast pulling themselves towards each other for that last touch. But here, the two ends weren't pulling themselves- the now-happy now-stunned boy (or man) was playing matchmaker but all attempts to marry the ends failed. Thank god for making human stomachs pliable or else what followed would've shattered it to bits. He pushed his stomach in his with a deep breath first, then used 3 fingers, then 4, then his palm, and then his entire fist to flatten his stomach enough to make the ends meet. When he finally removed his fist and released his breath, the paunch overflowed on all sides. Worse, the pant squeezed him so tight, he feared his guts would travel all the way up and spill out of his mouth. (Later that evening when he undid the buckle, his stomach rushed out like crowds would rush in when the doors to the cinema would open.) He could still remember the time when size 30 pants would fit him with absolute ease. This sarkaari babu-type tummy was certainly not what he expected from corporate life.

As he walked out of his room with a heavy heart and a heavier tummy, he noticed that the lift was, as usual, out of order. Was it poor electrical engineering or was it providence forcing him to use the staircase? As he trudged down the stairs, he felt something he had never experienced before- a mass, enveloped by skin, 80 cm above the ground bouncing in front of him. With each step he took, his tummy was charting its own course. That was the first time he allowed a certain suppressed voice inside him to blurt "You are FAT!". FAT? FAT? The word pulsated in his head like a Bose speaker was placed inside. He, who till recently, was counted among the skinny, the underweight, the weak, was now in the league of the fat? Fat reminded him of Adnan Sami (before he lost 110 kilos); it reminded him of overweight uncles who looked like they'd tucked a ghatam under their shirts; it also reminded him of obese teenagers with fat cheeks, Mc Donald's burger in hand, and cheese streaming out of the sides of their mouth and dripping down on their respective trays (pun intended). But hey! Were things really that bad? He had just put on 10 kilos in 2 months (from 57 to 67), and had rendered 3 trousers and a pair of jeans useless. All he needed was a strict control on his diet, and a strict exercise regime.

For starters, he stopped using the lift, both at home and at work. His flat was on the fifth floor and so was his work desk. Five floors 6 times a day was a decent workout, wasn't it? He supplemented this with a complete ban on ice creams and creamy desserts. And of course, there was the regular night walk. To intensify his Mission Pant Fit campaign, he decided to pay the apartment gym a visit. He detested gyms in general, mainly because of the grotesque cutouts of men with swollen muscles and grinding teeth placed in front of them. He hated gyms also because of his nightmarish tryst with it 4 summers ago, when 4 days of gymming almost made him a living robot. The second attempt at gymming started as badly as the first. 15 minutes of furious cycling and 1 round of jogging led to thighs that throbbed like a frenzied heart, and a stomach that threatened to puke-aabhishek the road. He laboured up the stairs, threw himself on the bed, and tried to soothe his palpitating thighs, and his churning stomach.

It was October 18, 2007- more than a month since he gave up ice creams, shunned lifts, night-walked, and 3 days since he started cycling and jogging. With hope in his heart, pride in his efforts, a stomach that was peeping eagerly out of his navel, and a hand that was well positioned to pat his back, he stepped on the weighing machine. He adjusted his spectacles, then wiped the lens with his sweaty t-shirt, stepped off the machine, checked the zero-error, and stepped on again. The reading did not change- 68.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Going Dutch (This is the smartest title I could think of at this hour)

Washing machines are best used in the Mix mode where they wash clothes of all materials- denims, cottons, synthetics, etc. Running the dryer for 40 minutes might not be enough if you stuff too many clothes in it. One detergent cake lasts very long in the washing machine. In steam irons, make sure you don’t fill too much water. When washing dishes in a dishwasher, keep all utensils facing downwards and run the tap at moderate speed. You must change the dust bags of the vacuum cleaner regularly. One tea spoon of red chilli powder and one-and-a-half tea spoons of garam masala are perfect for aloo curry. To let the aloo cook, close the vessel. Use more oil if you want crisp aloo. Oh!

Reading this, people who don’t know what I’m actually up to will quite understandably assume I’m on a training course for house-husbands. Of course, that’s not the case- the truth is that I’m training in The Netherlands, and being in an apartment, have to handle all the ghar ka kaam myself. There’s not too much work actually- BHU has taught me the art of taking pride in wearing the same clothes for days, so washing is not a problem; we need to fend for food only on weekends, so my limited knowledge of cooking suffices. Vacuum cleaning is not really necessary- since I wear slippers I can’t feel the dust on the floor and since I take off my specs I can’t see if anything’s dirty.

Yes, ironing is a problem. Even my refined sense of bad-dressing doesn’t allow me to wear crumpled clothes. Vowing to change my attitude towards dressing, I picked up the sleek steam iron. One problem I’ve always had with irons is setting the mode according to the material of the cloth. Now, I do a great job of feeling the cloth and saying “cotton” or “synthetic” like a seasoned pro, but the truth is that I’m as unsure of the material as Sreesanth is about where his next ball will fly. Worse, it’s a steam iron- which means I had to fill water in it. I don’t want to bore you with details of how I struggled with the damn thing, but let’s just say that at the end of 5 minutes, my shirt looked more washed than pressed.

The Hague is an empty city. It’s unbearably well organized. For people who’re used to the push-and-shove culture of Indian roads will be taken aback by the peace and calm on Dutch roads. The roads are so clean that I almost feel an impulse to dirty it. The standard of living is pretty high too. Tram and bus drivers are dressed much better than I am. I know I’m not a valid standard for comparison, but hey they’re really well dressed!

August 12, 2007: I’ve changed my opinion about the cleanliness of the roads here. On close observation, you can see as many chewing gums pasted on the road as you can see bird droppings on Indian roads- and they don’t look very different from the droppings too. The real reason for the apparent cleanliness is the small population. On busy days, the streets here are as dirty as any I’ve seen.

The markets here close at 5 p.m. on all days except Thursdays. Can you believe that? The city is dead by the time I return from work, and it’s not like the sun sets early. There’s daylight till 10 p.m. on most days. The place is just lazy and reluctant to work.

There are some things about The Hague that amused me greatly. One is their predilection for long names. These are some of the stations the tram stops at on the way to office: Rijswijkseplein, Jonckbloetplein, Van Vredenburchweg, Oudemansstraat. Or consider this url- Or this building- Rijvaardigheidsbewijzen. To steal Preeti’s thought, names like Swaminathan, Subramaniam, or even Sivaramakrishnan pale in comparison. I mean, imagine calling your house ThisisthehouseIlivein, or naming your dog Mydogdoesnotpeeintheopen. Most names look like someone’s typed them blindfolded.

Another thing that amused me like hell was their dustbins. They don’t have the traditional ‘Use Me’ (or the equivalent Dutch screw-up) scribbled on them. All their bins are called Sita (and I’ve verified that Sita does not mean dustbin in Dutch). Sita is a brand of dustbins- ever heard of people using branded bins? Back in India, anything from polythene covers to empty barrels to king-size rabbits are used as crap holes.

August 12, 2007, 23:40 hrs: I’ve just tried my hand at ironing again, and to my relief (and to the relief of my war-worn shirt) I’ve successfully operated the steam iron. It took me more effort to figure out this steam iron than James Watt would’ve taken to build the steam engine. Still, I’ve been only partially successful. Let’s just say that if I get thrown out of office tomorrow, my shirt will not be to blame.

We guys went to Amsterdam last weekend. When we walked out of the railway station, we saw this huge banner saying “I Amsterdam” with a picture of a group of naked people with their backs facing the camera. Generally you’d expect a “Welcome to Hyderabad” banner to have a steaming plate of biriyani or a “Welcome to Kerala” banner to have a green-eyed Kathakali dancer; so this unusual welcome to Amsterdam gave us an idea of things to come. Many women were wearing stuff that I used to see on MTv, including tank-tops (or how-the-hell-does-that-thing-manage-to-not-slide in layman terms). Beer was flowing like water, and water itself was scarce. In general, water is more expensive than beer in Holland. Ok don’t worry ma, I still have juice- have tried wine, though.

Most restaurants in Holland have an open-air seating arrangement. It’s amazing those cane chairs don’t vanish overnight. Beefy men downing cans of Heineken and families munching on some processed creature are common sights at these restaurants. There’s also live music at some places adding four moons to the atmosphere. (Ok that’s a really cheap translation of chaar chaand lagaana) Restaurants don’t have those customary glasses of water on tables. Many eateries are too expensive- so expensive that I can just order extra cheese. I’ve got used to drinking juice and flavoured milk when I’m thirsty. Even my apartment doesn’t have a drinking water supply. I was asked to drink water from the basin if needed!

We started our Amsterdam trip by scratching our heads for directions and convincing each other that we were not very hungry, when in reality we could’ve each devoured an Adnan Sami. We went to Madame Tussaud’s Museum, paying 15 euros for each ticket. Fifteen euros! Can you imagine paying Rs.850 to enter a museum! I made sure I got my money’s worth and clicked photographs like crazy. The museum was wonderful, and the wax models were stunningly similar to the originals.

We then went to Van Gogh’s museum, and though I tried hard, I couldn’t appreciate his paintings. Unfortunately the use of aniline ink and the use of charcoal and acrylic paints don’t really turn me on, so the museum was a put-off.

A striking feature of Holland is that you have to pay to use every public toilet. Would you ever pay 28 rupees to use the loo? This has made me an expert in the art of hypnotising my bladder into believing that the only place it’s supposed to make its presence felt is in the apartments.

August 13th, 2007, 1:30 hrs: My Sunday dinner was at home. After a successful day at the kitchen 2 weeks back, we guys were at it again. Aloo-tomato with gravy, rice, and boiled eggs were on the menu. The rice almost became a paste, the aloo-tomato gravy became unresponsive to salt, and thankfully boiled eggs taste okay when left alone. Too many cooks spoil the broth, right? Well, what about 6 engineers with as much knowledge of cooking as of the minimum temperature of Vanuatu? While cooking, each of us spoke like we’d been possessed by Tarla Dalal, and the result of that was in front of us, and later inside our helpless stomachs.

After labouring through the meal, we loaded the dishwasher. Dishwashers need running water for as long as it takes to clean the vessels. The amount of water it took to do the job could’ve irrigated a few hectares of farmland back in India.

I have lots more to tell- interesting stuff about my stay here, but I’m kind of busy so I’ll update sometime later. Thanks for your constant enquiries about the wellbeing of my blog. A lot of you have asked me for an update, and here it is. Hope it’s okay. Good night :)

Sunday, July 15, 2007

A More Relaxed Round-Up

Sunday, July 8th, 2007, 11 am

My previous round-up of the summer vacations was brief (those of you who enjoy the mother of all stale jokes can chuckle at ‘brief’) owing to my flight to Bangalore. Well, I’m now on board the aircraft and have an hour to kill. For people like me who don’t fly very often, airports are temples of stifling etiquette. To my relief, this time I saw a suited-booted gentleman executing a gigantic yawn and stretching like someone’s pulling him from all directions. Probably a nose-digger or ear-shaker would’ve made me feel more at home, but this was unacceptable enough. Anyway, apart from pacing up and down a hundred times and entering the ladies toilet once, my wait in the airport was without incident. As I now sit with the pen on my lips and my eyes on the airhostess, I try to cope with the turbulence at take off. You remember the post where I mentioned my stomach churning like someone had switched on a fan inside? Well, due to the accuracy of that description and my stunted imagination, I say it again. I have a very fragile stomach, but the plush interiors of the aircraft don’t give me the heart to puke.

July 10th, 12:30 am

I am now lying on my belly in my comfortable room in Bangalore. I moved in here yesterday, and though I’ve lived in hostel before, this stay away from home is a little different. This isn’t a college hostel where I can throw my stuff around and breed cobwebs. This is a place where the house-keeping guys call me sir and where we get parsley potato instead of aloo fry. It’s a wonderful room and a wonderful place to stay in. I’m loving it!

After unpacking, I decided to make myself a drink (a beverage, rather). I could choose between an Akshay-made tea and an Akshay-made coffee. Now that’s like choosing between a Sunny Deol pole dance and a Tusshar Kapoor strip tease- still, I stuck with coffee simply because it’s more difficult to screw up. How wrong I was! One cup of water, 2 minutes of heating, one packet of sugar, one of coffee, and one of the creamer gave me an excellent alternative to Harpic. By the time I hit the right proportions, the water had gone cold. Still, I gulped it down and dared my memory to forget the proportions.

As the day wore on, I decided to get my dress ready for the next day. I unfolded 2 shirts to check if they were crumpled, dirty, etc. I finally selected a shirt, one pant, a belt, kept all my documents in place, and finally changed into my bermudas. Done for the day huh? Not quite. What about the other shirt I unfolded? Mom had taught me the art of folding shirts the way we see them packed in showrooms. I rubbished her detailed, step-by-step instructions- after all, we engineers are born with the right to trivialize everything from gay pubs to the Big Bang. I paid the price this time though, and spent no less than 45 minutes in trying to fold the damn thing.*

July 14th, 2007, 9 pm

On the road today, I saw a leading telecom service company’s latest ad- “Newspaper, Rs.150 per month, Mobile Rs. 99 per month." Well, Mr. Ad-man, consider this: Your Hutch recharge lets me only talk and send smses. A newspaper lets me read it, solve the crossword and su doku, scribble phone numbers on it, wipe dusty seats with it, lay it on shelves, make aeroplanes out of it, and use it as a wrapper. The only thing you have worth offering is customer care voices (female), which we can hear even with a zero-balance.

July 15th, 2007, 3:03 pm

I’m sitting in a cyber café now, hammering out my next post, which incidentally you have been reading all this while. This is the only way I’ll update this page now- sitting in the cyber café on Sunday afternoons with random thoughts scribbled in a notebook. I’ve just read the comments on my previous post. I’m really grateful to all you guys for taking the trouble and reading my stuff. I want you to know that your comments are a real driving force for me to keep this page alive. And just to ensure that you guys remember me with fondness or bitterness till the next update, I’ll finish with the riddle of the day.

Q. Why did the Punjabi cop arrest Sachin Tendulkar for match-fixing?

Scroll down for the answer.

A. Because he said he loves batting for India.

*For the record, I finally succeeded.

Saturday, July 07, 2007

A Quick Round-Up

I’m nearing the end of my vacation now, and much has transpired between my last appearance on this miserable page and today. I’ve been gripped by a dreadful writer’s block, and heck! I’m not even a writer. Anyway, I’ve successfully finished my engineering in four consecutive years without any major lapses save 5 missing kilos and a few million strands of a fibre that its possessors call hair. I have wonderful memories of my stay in Varanasi and hope to pen them one day.

My stay at home has been loaded with stereotypes- and I won’t bore you with the regular stuff like tv soaps, Indian Idol, good food, etc. Perhaps the most exciting activity at home this time was revamping my loo and ‘westernising’ it. For years my sister refused to step into that bathroom because it was frequented by he-who-must-be-thrown-into-a-washing-machine, and revamping it and making it less offensive to the strong-nosed has hardly changed her stance.

The honeymoon years have ended, and with it has ended the freedom to dress in rags, move around in a barbaric beard, and not change clothes till you forget when you last changed them. Resultantly, I’ve been shopping actively for good clothes. Every shopping trip follows the same pattern. We enter any shop that says “Up to 50% off” (with the “up to” a billion times smaller than “50%”) and my role in these trips is strictly Presidential. That is to say, my clothes are picked by the trio of mom, dad, and sis, and my job is just to shake my assenting head.

I watched 3 movies this time- Metro, Cheeni Kum, and Aap Ka Surroor. For the uninitiated, Aap Ka Surroor stars the-one-and-thankfully-the-only Himesh Reshammiya. I couldn’t believe I paid to watch that movie, and I literally paid for it! It took me a Coke, popcorn, and a bulls-eye (a large chunk of cake bathed generously in chocolate sauce and topped with vanilla ice-cream costing as princely as it sounds) to digest the movie. The movie lasted two hours and was punctuated by a few official songs and a few nasally rendered -uh…hmm…okay let’s give him the benefit of doubt- songs, peppered throughout the movie. In fact if you have the habit of going out for a smoke or to the loo during songs, you might as well carry an extra pack or a portable urinal with you respectively. The best dialogue of the movie was Hanssika Motwani saying, “Mein duniya ki sabse lucky ladki hoon kyonki mere paas aapki ek smiling tasveer hai.” or something to that effect. She then pulls the photograph and shows it to him. For the benefit of my readers, here’s the closest match I could find on the internet.

TV was a little more exciting this time, with French Open, Wimbledon, and the Future Cup being telecast. I’ve always been amazed by the dresses women tennis players wear. Anna Kournikova’s presence on the tennis court used to be so Serena and Venus Williams have always been the torchbearers of on-court absurdity. Their weird hair dos and weirder dresses have made them look like escapees of an African zoo. Particularly this time, Serena’s clothes looked like she had run away from the middle of a rape.

Well, I have a lot more to tell you guys but it’s 1 am and I’m leaving tomorrow (or today for sticklers who don’t believe that ‘tomorrow’ starts only after waking up). I’m off to Bangalore to begin a new phase of my life- so I need all the aashirwaads, pats on the back, and kicks on butt that you can give me. I’ve been very careless by not updating this page often enough, and I can’t promise that I will be any more regular. But if you have a good internet connection and time on your hands just stop by my page once in a while- I’ll try not to disappoint.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Kunvergram- 2 & 3

Solution to Kunvergram-1

A solar eclipse should not be seen with naked eyes.

First three crackers-

Radha Ganesan

Saranya Balasubramanian

Rahul Singh

Good job!


This game introduces the transformation ‘Remove ___’ and the funda of dummy transformations- an extra transformation to confuse you. Mail your solution to

Hoist snipers contain acres high shawl aisles.

Remove I

Replace with O

Replace with L

Replace with M

Replace with Y

Replace with R

Replace with L


This game introduces the transformation ‘Add __’. I’ve also given a dummy transformation.

Those metals eat used long oar prosecute.

Replace with R

Replace with F

Replace with M

Add L

Replace with B

Replace with Y

Replace with R

Monday, April 16, 2007


Solution of Transfixz

Patience (Nice + Tape) -> Induced (Nice + Dud) -> Contrite (Nice + Trot) -> Traitors (Trot + Airs)

The first 3 solutions came from

Vikalp Agarwal

Rahul Singh

Radha Ganesan

Good job! Hope I make life a little tougher for you next time around!


This an old game, you can scroll to the bottom of the page to see an example, but here’s one anyway. Observe the example carefully, and read the explanation. Mail your solutions to


A dot is name best finger.

Replace with S

Replace with G

Replace with D


Dot -> G -> Dog

Name -> S -> Man’s

Finger -> D -> Friend

Final Sentence- A dog is man’s best friend.

Explanation of the example

In the sentence given, pick some words and apply the transformations given. E.g. in ‘finger’, replace G with D and jumble it up to give ‘friend’. It is not necessary for all words in the sentence to be transformed. It’s up to you to guess which words need to be modified.

Note: The transformations need not be in the order in which they are applied in the sentence.

Hope the rules are clear. You can see the example at the bottom of the page for more clarity. However, unlike the example at the bottom, there is no funda of a dummy transformation, i.e. all transformations given must be applied.


A lasso special should one be sent with naked bees.

Replace With T

Replace With E

Replace With Y

Replace With R

Replace With E

Sunday, April 15, 2007

New Word Game- Transfixz

This is a new word game I’ve devised. I’ve made just one now. If you guys like it, please comment; I’ll make some more. Please mail your solutions to For general observations, suggestions, and queries please feel free to comment.

Rules: Observe the following example-

Image (Ditch + Treat successfully) ->

Sharp (_______ + Finished) ->

Artist (_______ + Close-by)


Picture (Pit + Cure) -> Pointed (Pit + done) -> Painter (Pit + near)


Using the clues given in the brackets, get two words (e.g. pit & cure)- lets’s call them sub-words; then mix them up to give the main-word (e.g. picture). Now carry over one
of the sub-words to the next set and try to solve for the other sub-word and main-word.

Unlike in this example, it’s not necessary for the main-word to always have the same number of letters.

Note: Though I’ve carried over the same word (pit) into both the transformations, it’s not a rule. I can carry over either sub-word from the immediately preceding set. So, I can carry over either ‘pit’ or ‘done’ into the third set, but not ‘cure’. I hope the explanation hasn’t been shoddy.


The opposite of restlessness (agreeable + recording medium) ->

Drew, prompted (______ + dunce) ->

Remorseful (_____ + horse’s gait) ->

Betrayers (______ + haughtiness, showing off)

Clue- The first main-word has 8 letters.

I’d label this problem medium, though it depends on the problem solver.

Incentive: Well, it’s not much of an incentive, but still- The first three correct solutions will find their crackers get a special mention in my next post.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Screw-Ups VIII- That Nerd (The Beatless)

That nerd studies in the dead of night,
Wakes up every morning without a sigh,
And his wife, she is only making rava idlies all her life,
That nerd strives.

That nerd even works in candle light,
Takes an earthen lamp and burns the ghee,
And his wife, she is in fact planning to elope with Sharma ji,
That nerd strives.

Now only corn is the madman's diet,
That nerd cries.

Original Song- Blackbird
Artiste- The Beatles

World Cup Blues

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Team India

Disclaimer: Though these ads defame Greg Chappell and the Indian team, I strongly believe India has a realistic chance of bouncing back in the World Cup. I have great faith in Rahul and his boys. These ads are just a figment of my imagination.

Friday, January 05, 2007

Screw-Ups VII- My Life Is Dear

Song- My Life is Dear
Artiste- Blue Void

Original Song- Wish You Were Here
Artiste- Pink Floyd

Do you think you can fell,
The wrestler Mitchell?
Make him writhe in pain?
Can you make the guy scream,
And howl a shrill wail?
Fly with his tail?

Why'd'you want me to fell?
Did they get you trade,
Your diamonds and gold?
Your hash and rubies?
Your chairs and your TVs?
Dude go check your brain,
Did you see his range?
He'll walk all over your arms, and beat bones out of shape.

He fight two big bulls and a whole pack of mules, day after day,
Running over lion's corpse, and deforms, the faces of deers,
My life is dear.