Tuesday, May 31, 2005


Introducing Bhavya Version 5.0

Cliched as it might sound, the only constant is change. When you're a control freak like me, you like to have the guiding hand on how you choose to go about that change. And boy have I had to, not having been blessed with any natural skill, talent, intelligence, spelling, or particular social ability!

Since I was about nine or ten, I've conciously tried to change myself, instead of "just letting it happen". Sometimes, it's been out of nessecity, sometimes out of design. Conciously,there had been four different occasions when I've brought about a great difference in myself. The last one was at the beggining of Class Ten. My older classmates from Ninth, Sinha, Ishani et al would know what I'm talking about.

The next one has been building up. Most of it, I've planned although some of it has come as an incredibly pleasant surprise. There are things that have quite obviously changed about me, and then there are things that are subtler, harder to spot. And then there are things that are none of your business! The rest, I'm still working on.

I'm The Eternal Working Progress

SMU Scholarship

On this blog, I may have mentioned in passing that I wished to obtain a merit Scholarship at SMU, as it would be "A Good Thing".

I got it.

It entitles me to a full tuition grant.
And 5000 Singapore Dollars for expenses, every year.
And 3000 Singapore Dollars (1800 USD) to purchase a laptop.
And it has no work bond.

Oh, did I mention
Woo hoo!
(You may congratulate me now)
(You may also suggest which laptop I should get)

Monday, May 30, 2005

In Defense of Infamy

Now, I don't often do this, but every so often I feel the need to defend my stance on things. My good friend and fellow blogger Mr. Misra has long taken pot shots at me, for not having read Harry Potter, for not listening to Pop Music, and indeed for giving a tepid review to Star Wars. He tells me candidly that I am simply cynical and too arrogant to ever admit I like anything popular, such as "pop music", or star wars. This statement is both uninformed and ridiculous. Of my favourite books, movies and music artists, many are very popular if not the most popular things ever.
Take as a case in point, The Beatles. I am a big Beatles fan, I have every single song of theirs on CD, and most on my iPod. I know lyrics to even highly doped out songs, such as Strawberry Fields Forever(I love that one), and I am the Walrus.
The point is this. A greater example of popular, and indeed pop music has NEVER existed in all of music's recorded history. In sheer volumes of albums sold, singles sold and general fandom, the Beatles is to music what Harry Potter is to books. If my arrogance was to get in the way of my taste, I simply would not listen to them, but I love their music.
I however, do not have much love for the fantasy genre, and I have little or no love for the Boarding School Genre. Combining the two will obviously greatly reduce my desire to pick up and read something, and thus I have never felt inspired to read the Harry Potter series. The only thing I do not care about is hype, it does not affect my desicion whether to, or not to listen, read or watch something. That's the way it should be with pretty much everyone, I feel. You should neither take to, or shy away from something because "everyone else is doing it". Make your desicions based on your own tastes and needs, and my cynical needs mean that I shall never enjoy a Karan Johar film, regardless of how many people did, or did not, but will love always Sholay, Amar Akbar Anthony, and Dil Chahta Hai, regardless of how many people did, or did not.
And that as they say is that.

Sunday, May 29, 2005

Female Sirens and Male Egos

But less interesting, of course

Hehe…I read this in the papers today. When Dilip Kumar was campaigning for Indira Gandhi in 1977(I think), he raised the naaraIndia ka leader kaun?” to the masses, expecting, of course, “Indira Gandhi!!!” to be hollered back. The whole crowd as one, shouted, “Saira Banu”. This is very funny, if you picture Saira Banu in something like Padosan, with her shrill voice and overdone eyes…

I have always been a Sharmila Tagore person. She is, and always has been, too cool. Apart from the whole wearing-bikini and marrying-Pataudi deal, she was just so elegant. She even made the sad role of being Rajesh Khanna’s lover seem poignant and thought provoking. But above all, she was Hot. She Rocks with Shammi Kapoor, like no one does. Plus, she’s Bengali…The only thing I ever wanted in a film, was to have her in Amar Akbar Anthony…but ah well. Shed have been too old.

The kind of films I like seeing, have Hindi film heroines who always seem let you down. Of course, I haven’t seen too many arty or serious films, so I wouldn’t know about those. Asha Parekh was…hardly worth remembering. Jaya Bhaduri looked nice in Parichay, and Mili and suchlike, then something catastrophic happened, and she became Mrs. Bachchan, and she has looked scary ever since. After you have seen Khoon Bhari Maang n number of times, as I have, you will stop looking at Rekha as an actress, and just remember her as a nightmare. Hema Malini was wayyyyy too loud, and Rakhee was too eurgh. There’s this gap period-on the negative axis, there’s the lovely Sharmila Tagore and Wahida Rehman, on the positive axis is the gorgeous Parveen Babi and Zeenat Aman and the younger ones, and a depressing void in between. Maybe if we had had more hot babes then, women’s rights would be better off now….

Chupke Chupke is on, so I shall leave this rather random entry and go watch, Again. Oh, and do check out Economist’s article on why we have spines…basically, because trilobites wanted to impress some babes some gazillion years back, and having spines was this extremely radical thing. I think HT has given a sexed-up version of the article…but it Is, a very interesting thought.

Friday, May 27, 2005

Tennis Ball

One of the advantages of being male is the simplicity your mind offers you. You can simply not think at times, and this prevents you from getting majorly bored. Two or more guys together do not have to talk to enjoy themselves, all they need is one of mankind's lesser appreciated inventions. The Ball.
I refer of course to the game of catch. The game is simple, get a spherical ball like thing, preferably tennis, but in times of need things as varied as cotton, tin foil and knitting wool have been used. Once the object has been aquirred or arranged, simply throw it back and forth, and ensure you're not completely incapable of latching on to it, a la stranger members of society now safely placed in Bangaali hellholes.

The greatest thing about the game of catch is that it completely empties your mind. I am completely incapable of any serious multitasking if you take me away from my keyboard, so you can either think about catching or you can think about insane things(which as I have mentioned is what happens when you are bored). Thus the game of catch represents freedom from the shackles of thought and should thus be given an award of kinds for helping many people get through the day. God alone knows what one would do without it. We might be forced to apply our minds.

Star Wars III Revenge of the Sith

Okay, so sue me. I didn't fall magically in love with the film. It didn't move me to tears, as it did certain obese members of society who thinking random punches to the stomach are a fun event.
It's...just a complete timepass movie. Watch it only for the special effects, the plot is pretty much predetermined (you know what happened before, and you know what will happen afterwards). The annoying part was a decent number of the lines were also predictable, and this I do not appreciate. I don't want to go into a theatre knowing what the ruddy actors are going to say. Additionally, everything now seemed to be a path to the dark side, it's a wonder everyone isn't already a Sith Lord. Fear, doubt, anger, confusion, sex, love, power, chocolate, is there anything that won't push me to the darkness?
Then of course, there is the matter of Yoda. Now, one would surely think that a little muppet who's the head of the most learned advanced order in the entire galaxy, and is over 500 years old might have found the time at some point to pick up a few lessons in grammar. But I guess he didn't really find it important. Thus, we are treated to the highly amusing spectacle of watching a little puppet rape the english language. At least he fights well.
Ah, well, I live in hope. Bunty Aur Babli, don't let me down.

Wednesday, May 25, 2005


In the ancient days, when men were real men, women were real women and the word iPod didn't exist, there existed a wonderful concept called a Swayamvar. Now, as many of you may know I am very fond of ancient hithero unknown concepts(read pyramids) that are no longer in current usage for very remarkably odd reasons. I mean, I can understand throwing out Sati, and Purdah and other such disastrously outdated and silly concepts but here's one that just got phased out for no rhyme or reason.
Explanations are in order for my more culturally bankrupt readers. A Swayamvar is a ceremony where a stud girl gets a bunch of guys to indulge in feats of strength, valour and intelligence to vye for the right to marry her, and eventually chooses pretty much whoever she feels fits her bill. Read Sita Ram and the Big Bow. For you western types, read Portia in the Merchant of Venice. Ah, there's the point I missed, it's the father's responsibility to design these tests of Valour, Strength and whaddyamaycallit, and this is a role I feel I'd quite frankly warm to.
See, here's how things are going to pan out. If I have a son, then the need to worry about these matters simply does not exist. If indeed I have a daughter, she will grow to be witty, intelligent charming and generally every guy's dream. She will have several suitors and will be in a mess over choosing the right one, for they shall all be studs in their own right. Thus, she will need my help to help her decide, and like the times of old, she will have a Swayamvar to pull this off.

Any suggestions on what kinds of tests of Valour, Intelligence and Strength I should design to suit the needs of this modern age will be much appreciated.

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

Take That! Ye Scallywags!

It's been a long time, since I've been gone.
Okay, enough with the Velvet Revolver Openings, things have been afoot, many things, momentous things, and generally enjoyable things. In short, I've been busy and pretty much as remarkably busy as you can be when your life revolves around the pursuit of fun through nothingness. Lets get through things one at a time, in nice short bloggettes(doesn't that sound like a nice word for blogger babes?).

The All India Senior Secondary Certificate Examination

Also known as the Boards, also known as the bane of teenage existence, for their sheer volume and pointlessness. Happily, this 12th set of them didn't screw me over as badly as I thought it would. I got an 86.6 percent. If you take away Economics, which was the Boards way of saying "Haha, lets see you try to get marks in what you're really good at", my best of four percentage jumps to 90%. Since it is this Best Of Four which has any relavance to the scheme of things, I am now my family's first 90 percenter. That doesn't feel too bad at all. Notable is the fact that I got 94 in Physics.
Now, let me relay something I missed out about the physics exam(for fear of being hit around silly). I left it ten minutes early. This was the long paper that no one could finish, and I had to hear a lot of MCs BCs and other general C's for walking out without so much as revising, when everyone else was struggling to finish. To all these people, I would now like to say "Ha Ha, suckaaaahs".

But see, as inconsequential as they are, they're going to make Singapore mighty pleased, as I've just about hit my predicted marks, in most things. Except of course economics. Which is the course I'm applying for. Bah.
See, predicted marks are these wonderful things you send to foren colleges, so that they get an idea of what you plan to score at the end of the year. You're supposed to keep them realistic, because they'll be damn cheesed off if you tell them you're a clever dick who's going to get 93-94 percent, and don't. Why? Because they've offered you admission on the belief that you are a clever dick, and not a scallywag idiot who gets say, 75% in his boards. So you've got to make every effort to hit what you think you will, cos if you don't the college that gave you admission may just decide it wasn't such a bright idea after all. I've missed mine, if you don't count Eco, by a mere single percent. Yay.

Wings of Flame

Wings of Flame was a set of two youth theatre plays I went to see the night before my board results, starring my good friend Vidz(yes, the much talked about one).
The first one was, surprisingly, decent. Vidz played the lead role of a 14 year old Tomboy, who was denied the opportunity of going fishing, so discovered some valuable family heirlooms and money with the help of the ghost of her great great great grandaunt, who was haunting her for some time. Now, when I first heard the plot, even I thought it was remarkably stupid, but trust me, it actually pulls itself together quite well. It has coherence, structure and form, and good performances from Vidz, her Grandfather in the play, and a chap named Pranav who liked to yell a lot. The ghost was kind of bland though, and could have been done better. Sondra is just a stupid name for a ghost.
The second play on the other hand, was terrible. I shan't go into the details, they aren't worth going into.

Watch out. If I get the time, and the comments I just might relate in the next post my great plans for the future. And I don't mean the next four years.

Friday, May 20, 2005


Okay, so it's late, it's out of date but bear with me. I could only publish once the issue was outdated, and it's too fun a piece to miss out on Blah!

It’s Done With Mirrors

LIFW, I was told by one and all was all about the business. The show’s the glitz; the glamour was all just a cover up to India’s biggest designer fashion sale, and almost all of that trade I was assured was foreign.

I talked with a Media Representative from FDCI, who told me that the show was basically designed to sell to International Buyers. She told me how it was all about the business, and how the designers were creating clothes to meet that market, and abjuring their stereotypically risqué, revealing, or just simply un-wearable clothes. Clearly, she had not taken a look at some of the shows that I had. But I was new, and keen to find out more, so I asked her if there indeed existed a market for Indian brands, and she promptly replied that there was, and that most of the designers were sold out. Clearly, no one had taken a look at the figures.

Research at their wonderfully well equipped Media Center revealed to me that the entire industry as a whole was worth a pittance. How much, you may ask, and let me tell you. A KPMG survey done in 2004 valued the entire industry, designers, models PR agencies and all, at an incredible….build the suspense…Rs. 176 crores! When I confronted the same representative with this figure, I was told how it was a niche industry, still in Development. Now, lets not kid ourselves, India has many niche industries, the computer and IT sector can still be said to be niche, our Food and Hospitality sector in development is niche, but all these markets are valued at staggeringly large sums of money, compared to the pittance that is Rs. 175 crores. More famous Dhaba’s in Delhi, such as Rajinder Da Dhaba run up annual sales of over 2 crores each, forget established restaurants. The fashion industry is not niche; it is as good as nonexistent. Something is sustaining them, therefore. Something is propping them up, allowing them to survive, because it sure isn’t the promise of rapid growth. A ten year projection by Industry Leaders claims that they might grow to a 200 million dollar industry. Assuming the rest of the market doesn’t grow, and only our share in it does, this is still a measly 0.6% of the world fashion market. It’s done with mirrors, ladies and gentlemen.

I don’t think it can be called a fashion industry; the word industry doesn’t really fit. They’re not industrious about it, it’s a self sustaining industry. The little money they do make doesn’t exactly go into expanding output; it goes into trips to Milan, and other fashionable locales. It’s an industry that seems to drain rather than generate wealth, and yet has the highest markups of any product in any Market. Where else can you take Rs 50 of cloth and turn it into a dress worth Rs 50000? But then, who’ll buy it? You? Me? Or the three hundred celebrities who turn up for LIFW.

You decide what all the fuss is about.

Almost Famous

Any of you seen Almost Famous? Where the kid reporter gets sent on a whirlwind adventure with a rock band? That pretty much sums up how I’ve been feeling for the last couple of days. I’ve been a stranger in a strange land, the outsider looking in, and I can’t say I’ve always liked what I’ve seen.

When I entered, I was totally out of my league. Everyone around me could tell I don’t belong, and but for the pass around my neck, I would have been thrown out of the shows, the media lounge, and I suspect the hotel as well. A faded shirt and a pair of jeans was my chosen garb, and I had entered the only place in the world where this actually made me stand out. As you enter, the lobby is crowded with every single woman in Delhi taller than me, and guys who’ve spent the better part of two years in the Gym, here are the wannabe models, hoping a designer will notice them. As the designers race through the lobby, they brush these few off, and run towards the show, or he backstage to get their models ready.

I saw quite a few of the fashion shows. Ever heard of Anjana Bhargava? Maybe Shantanu and Nikhil? Don’t sound familiar? Don’t worry; I hadn’t heard of them either, they only pop up every so often. They’ll exist in your collective conscious a week every year, and then disappear again, never to be seen or heard.

As the show begins, you see the entire page three crowd show up, which I figure it pretty much the entire market for their wear, aside from the one lone buyer from Harrods, who looks least interested. A hundred reporters and cameramen from different media groups are there, who are also faux interested, and to my great and unnerving surprise, know as little about fashion as I do. Which is why the reports don’t contain much insight, they’re just vomiting out lines from the press releases that are neatly placed on their seats before the show starts.

After each show, there is a Release Interview, which involves journo’s asking, and I quote “So, why were there so many colors used in your designs?”

The reply to which was equally inane.

“Basically, I really like colors.” But then you can’t blame them, how are you supposed to answer a question like that?

The designs themselves range from over the top, to simply ridiculous. Now, over the top is great for lookers like me, but I really can’t figure out to which occasion someone could wear the clothes these people produce. Fancy dress parties, possibly, but not much else.

Shows however, are brilliant for heterosexual males, and the sad part is there aren’t enough of them in there to appreciate the display. Here’s the deal. Guys, we’re discreet in general when checking out females, to stare wide eyed is considered to be bad form, even in a city of Lukhas as Delhi is. The fashion show gives you sanction, nay acceptability to ogle, you are SUPPOSED to look straight ahead. This is every man’s dream come true.

Eager to learn, and figure out what lay beneath, I have a word with enough people around me. Everywhere, I heard conflicting views. The Fashion Design Council of India representatives drill it into my head that the show’s about the business, and the Elle magazine stylist covering the event assured me that the designers only cared about their own creative talent, and didn’t give a stuff whether the clothes would sell or not. I saw the shows, I’ll show you the pictures, and I’m sure you’ll side with the Stylist on this one.

The designers themselves seemed interested in “The Indian Market”. Wendell Roderick’s candidly stated that he didn’t care if even four of his pieces were sold in the international market, as long as he could “help expand the fashion industry in India.” But my favorite conversation was with a professor at NIFT, who kept arguing that the couture and prêt fashion employed many, and thus was beneficial to the country. Yeah, that’s the best argument I’ve heard so far.

In the designer stalls, I run into Indian Idol, Abhijeet Sawant, who looks as lost as I am. Surrounded by two bouncers, a PR agent, and a stylist, he’s putting on an endless series of shirts to give interviews for Sony. Once that ends, I manage to have a couple of words with him, and joke that he’s not in fact the worst informed person over here, there’s me and Virender Sehwag too. He laughs, and tells me how he’s just a Jeans and T-shirt chap, and how all this is a bit much for him. I sympathized, as a minute later, he was rushed away by the PR lady, off to prepare for his modeling assignment. He looked quite harried.

So that’s how it went, the few days of India’s greatest fashion extravaganza. It’s one hell of a show, but leaves you with a bitter aftertaste. When I got the assignment, I had great dreams of finding out what lies beneath it all. In the end, I discover that like a balloon, it’s got shape, and form, and is filled with a lot of gas.

These can of course be read by paying Rs. 8 Wonly for JAM.

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Review: Kingdom of Heaven

Don't watch it. Seriously. Don't. It's really not worth it. Here's why.
You go to the movie, thinking it'll be one of those great epic type things, think Troy, think Gladiator. You really hope for a gladiator, because the director was Ridley Scott. The movie simply drags. No, it does far worse than just drag, it adds a three hundred kilo mental weight to your patience, and then goes for a leisurely stroll with it. The first hour and a half are a futile waste of time, nothing that happens in them bears any relavance to the conclusion of the story.
Oh, lets just press on the story a bit. Balin is a blacksmith, who by the intriciacies of plot ends up as a crusader and a Baron of "Someplace or the other", sworn to defend Jeruselum. The first hour and a half, and that's a remarkably long time, is simply wasted in telling us this important bit of information. The next hour, which is the only decent bit about the movie, is about the sack of Jeruselem by Salladin, who was upset over his sister and a bucha fellows being killed by some french idiot who became king of Jeruselum, and felt liked picking a fight. So it's up to Balin to defend the city, and this he does adequetly well, right up to the point he surrenders. As soon as he does this, the movie restarts it's incredible drag, and we can't see an ending for another fifteen minutes, till everyone is merrily relocated in Christian Friendly lands, and Mr. Balin is back with his blacksmithy.

Now that you know the plot, you need not go for the film. It'll be money well saved, so that you can go watch Bunty Aur Babli, and later on, Hitchhiker's Guide(Both Movies I WILL be seeing).

On a completely unrelated note, I have realised that sleeping on the floor with no form of support is a terrible idea for you neck.

One grows ever wiser with age.

Sunday, May 15, 2005

Saturday, May 14, 2005

Review: "Surely You're Joking Mr. Feynman"

By Richard Feynman

Obviously, the book is an Autobiography, and I must say it is the best autobio I have read since Richard Branson's Losing My Virginity. See, for an autobio to be a good read, the man involved must a)Lead an interesting life b)Have a point of view that appeals to you c)Must write it exceptionally well. Richard Branson only scored on a) and b), Richard Feynman scores on all three counts.
First, a word to the title, which is explained in one of the later chapters. "Surely you're joking, Mr. Feynman" is what a stuck up prof. told him when he asked for both Lemon and Cream in his team, disobeying accepted social norms. This was, pretty much through the book, a trend in his life. A staunch refusal, what he explains as pretty much an inability to be politically correct. He was prone to just blurting out things exactly the way he saw them, because as he says "I just was too stupid to take the time to think".
Now, I find this inspirational(I can just hear your slapping your forehead...). Inspirational because, here's someone who's lived a full life without having to pick up social graces at all! It's possible! Everything everyone has told me is wrong! I can live the way I am!
But that's besides the point. I'm supposed to be telling you why it's a great read. Let me continue.
a)Leading an Interesting Life: A VERY interesting life, I must add. Feynman's sheer love for learning, and being a part of wildly different experiences ensure that his tale is one of constant intruige and amusing anecdotes. More than just that, it's the way he actually lives his life, for the better part. He lives for the sheer fun of it, which is the way to go. Whether it's figuring out how to plate plastics with silver, to devoloping the Nuclear Bomb, to learning how to paint Nudes and defending the right of the the Local Topless Bar to remain open, he did it all with a simple hedonistic motive in mind. You simply have to love and appreciate that.
b)Having a point of view that appeals to me: Okay, I think I've covered this bit already, but let me expand. Living life to it's hilt, and enjoying everything, that appeals to me. Not giving a damn about social graces and preferences, and just being honest, that appeals to me. Getting away with it pretty much all the time, that REALLY appeals to me.
c)Must write it exceptionally well: That he does. It's a wonderfully relaxed carefree style of writing. Feynman would have made one hell of a blogger, it's just that right level of disconnectedness, reminiscent of hitchhikers, yet he manages to keep things together. There's an exceptional number of exclamation marks used in his writing, and it's one of the rare books where you can feel the author actually speaking out what he's typing. It's got soul and character, which in my opinion is just what you need in an Autobio.
It's also wonderfully unpersonal, which is another reason why he'd make a great blogger. It reveals just the right amount about his character and life, without making it sound like a personal confession.

Bottom line, I loved it. If you love science, it's a great read, and even if you don't it's well worth it. I don't idolise anyone or anything, but there are a good few people and things I look up to. Surely, Mr. Feynman, you are now one of them.

Friday, May 13, 2005

My Computer "Hood Ornament"

Tuesday, May 10, 2005

Baby Talk

Memories are strange things, the strangest part about them is that event related memory and emotional memory, which I think are pretty much the same thing(you can't remember an event unless you have some emotional attachment to it) doesn't even begin till the age of three or four, and isn't really clear till a couple of years later?
Why should this be? Till four, you can remember other things really well, new words, new faces, new ideas, you soak it all in. Things you learn then, how to walk, how to talk, et al, you do not forget for the rest of your life. Yet memory at that age remains a complete and absolute blank. I can't remember how it felt like when I took my first step, I can't remember what I was wearing my first day of play school, hell I can't even Remember my first day of play school! While it is brushed off as a function of the age, on closer inspection (which is what I did), it all seems very strange. It's not that our memories don't work at that age, I concluded, it's that we've purposefully forgotten.
It has been noticed in children and adults that situations that cause a lot of fear and trauma can be effectively shut out from the human mind, as a reaction to prevent injury, mental or otherwise. Many incidents of extreme trauma are simply removed from the conscious memory. This is what I feel happens to baby memories, they are just simply wiped clean, because they are by and large exceedingly traumatic.
Wonderful childhood, you say? Treated like a little prince? I don't think it matters. What causes fear and trauma to most people? The unknown, and the feeling of being incapable of influencing one's environment. Those two factors combine to make most of Man's rational and irrational fears, so just imagine what it would be like to be a baby. Everything is the unknown, and you're almost completely helpless. Being a baby must have been the shit scariest experience anyone of us will ever go through, and thus nature has provided so that we don't have to remember. Ages none through four have simply been wiped for us. Lets take a minute to appreciate the way things work out; if my feeling about this matter is right it's a matter of great joy that I don't know what it felt like when I was a baby. The age of innocence can be better described as the age of fear.

Such is my opinion.

Saturday, May 07, 2005

My First Feature!

Yesterday, my copy of JAM arrived in the mail(well, technically, it's my brother's copy, but since he no longer lives here, mine by right), and reaching the point, I just saw my first written feature. I must say, I was much enthralled, there's a particular sick joy you get out of seeing your words in print, especially if they're covering an entire page. Lemme give you a few samples, anyhow, of the editing work if not my article.

"Bhavya Khanna knows Nothing about fashion. Which makes him the perfect candidate to cover the Lakme India Fashion Week. He reports from Delhi"

And they named my piece on the futility of the actual industry "The Great Big Fashion Balloon", from my concluding line, which I thought was a nice touch.

Now, I'd publish the thing over here, except I can't till May 15th, and by that time I'm betting it's going to be a little stale, so just see if you can pick up the thingummy instead.

On unrelated news, this blog now speaks for two, as most of you astute lot would have figured out.

Feeding Time

Brother is also in town for the weekend, and I am thus spending two days doing nothing but loafing around at home with him, and eating copious quantities of food that Ma ensures are present whenever he's around. Mothers all over the world have one great defining characteristic, their undying belief that their sons (I can't possibly claim to know about daughters) must be fed, and fed well. The longer you are absent from home, the greater the desire of the mother to feed. If you're back from school after 8 hours, you will be fed decently. If you're back from a holiday after a week or two, you will be fed quantifiably. If you're back from College and a Summer job after a few months, there'll be a buffet waiting on the table for you. It is now my belief that you can judge how long a mother has been removed from respective progeny simply by the size and number of dishes on offer on the dinner table. This will evolve into an art, nay a science, except it needs a lot of fine research.
Well, I'm off to college soon, and I'm sure I'll get the opportunity.

Thursday, May 05, 2005

Wuthering Heights

By Emily Bronte
(big grin)

The only reason this review is being written is, that most of you will get bored witless by the very Thought of the book, and will never get around to reading it. This will be pretty sad, for various reasons. For one, it is full of Deep Philosophic Truths. For two, it is a Great Love Story. But above of all, it will remind you how truly marvelous your life is, compared to these poor sods.

The setting and locale are supposed to be a reflection on the wilderness and despair in the protagonists’ hearts. But the most endearing part about the book is how it seems to imply that the more the inbreeding, the greater the literary value. Having had to explain this to someone, I realized how truly warped it is. Picture this scene, if you will:

A is B’s sister. (B’s a guy).C is a runaway gypsy, who is adopted by their father. D and E are a neighbouring pair of brother and sister. A and C love each other, passionately. But B hates C. A marries D. For some obscure reason, C marries E. B has a kid, whom C hates, but lives with, called F. A and D have a girl, G. E and C have a boy, H. H and G marry (big surprise). H is a stupid twit, and he dies. Then G marries F. In the middle, A and D die. And C, who loved A more than heaven and earth and everything else combined, kills his own son so that A’s daughter is not happy, so that A’s soul doesn’t rest, so she can haunt him forever.

The beauty of the book is, you actually start believing this nonsensical plot. I mean, when the actions aren’t inexplicable, they are just plain stupid. The only plot stupider than this you are ever likely to find, would be Romeo and Juliet-or maybe Oliver’s Story J. But despite all this, WH is Definitely worth a read…it’ll make you think differently-if you’re patient enough to read through it, that is.

Oh, and by the way, Hey all.


I've always been a crappier at art, I can't draw a straight line, let alone a masterpiece, and it's a real shame I feel, because I have really fantastic mental images sometimes. I can, at my best, translate them into ideas which I then pen down into stories or essays or the like, but I'll be the first to admit that it's not the same. Some things are best visually represented.

I've been working for the school magazine, you see, and have thus had the opportunity to go to the printers. At the printers, there are professional designers, who are simply fantastic with Photoshop and Corel, and other design tools. They also understand quickly and immediately what it is that you want from them and put it into immediate(okay, not that immediate) action.

I'm in love with this concept, because for the first time in my life, someone exists to convert my mental images into an actual physical projection, and woo boy do they look good. They're almost exactly, and usually better than what I picture them initially to be and as a result, I have, through them created what I believe to be a work of art; the DIPS DIARY front cover.

I'd like to thank Abhijeet and Mukul (the designers) for that, it might sound really over the top, but a little piece of my life that was missing just got filled.

PS: Speaking of Artistic Beauty, do check out my latest linked thingummy, Prateek Rrrrrrrrrrrungta's Photoblog, where he has put up some of the finest displays of photography you'll see around. Screw em flikring dolts, this is the real deal.

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

Review: State of Fear

By Micheal Crichton

Micheal Crichton is one of those popular literature writers who thrills by going beyond just page turners, and excites us with the content. He's your dividing line between serious science fiction, and best-seller thriller, and he seems to dance across both sides with ease. State of Fear is another such book, which along with a fast paced storyline, and page-turnability also has great content. Consider it the science fan's Da Vinci Code.
So, the book basically deals with Global Warming, and the great sham that it was, and has become. The thriller element is provided by an extremist eco-terrorist group, that's plotting ecological terrorism on a big scale, to prove to the world that Global Warming is doing bad things, which well, it isn't. Consider this book the anti "The Day After Tomorrow", which is incidentally one of the worst movies I have ever seen in a theatre.
The thought provoking element is provided by the stimulating Ayn Randish discussion placed into the book, where theories of Global Warming, which I myself stopped believing in two or three years back, have been systematically debunked in a fun, cruel and vicious way. Along with that is the crux of the novel, that the world is now in a constant "State of Fear", created by the governments and the media of the world, to make it easier to cattle control the mob. Fear about terrorism, the environment, our health, and about the five billion things scientific studies in universities now seem devoted to finding out that can kill us, or take "2-5 years out of our lives". Sounds nuts? It's not. Why the hell else did George W. Bush get a second term back?
Just the way I like it. That's pretty much all the plot I'm going to give away now, though I will reccomend you go pick up the book. It's a great read, and if any of you are those environmental chappies who think the world is going straight to hell, it really might change your view on things.


Tuesday, May 03, 2005

Before the evening storm

Sunday, May 01, 2005

Take Two

People are crazy, times are strange
Things are generally liable to change
Like a hell froth, boil and bubble
double, double, toil and trouble
Fire burn and couldron bubble
Eye of newt and toe of frog
Wool of bat and tongue of dog
Adder's fork and blindworm's sting
And yet many more a troubling thing
Oh, just in case you were looking
It's not only pulao that's been cooking
Now, dear lot, do not be unkind
I have not, in fact, lost my mind
This talk of change has warped your mind
And before some begin to grumble
It's to myself that I do mumble
By Toutatis, Mars, Juno or Ra
I swear that this shall still be Blah!
I just wished to take the trouble
To tell you that its daily dose will double