Friday, January 27, 2006

They ARE everywhere!

Once upon a time, dinosaurs roamed the earth. And we learnt to read and write. We read “Radiant Reader” and “Borno Porichoy” and we even wrote complete sentences. Mainly because we were very primitive and we wrote with pencils and pens. On paper, in note-books. We didn’t have cell-phones (most of us were lucky if we had phones that worked). We didn’t know textese (till the age of 11 I didn’t even know I HAD .. umm, I forget what I was saying). We had no idea what letter-combinations like “cu2mro” meant (and most times still don’t), we only knew boring WORDS.

Some of us were so square, we actually learnt things. Like who Akbar was, and where Plassey is, or the capital of Holland, or when a man named Gandhi was born.

Which means, of course, that we can’t be successful in this day and age. Or selluhbriteez. Though I do try to learn. Not from books. Or even magazines. From television, of course. Why, is there any other way?

This is what I learnt today ….

· If you’re a f**wit moron who grew up on second-hand Fox TV, you MUST pronounce “because” as “buh-kezz”. It is totally beneath your dignity to say “be-kawz”.

· If you’re shown on TV in the company of Farooq Abdullah (who doesn’t even look rakish or debauched any more, poor man, he looks like a worried publican who’s had a few too many of his own stock - come to think of it, that’s more or less what he IS), you must try to say wise things about Kashmir, only you must pretend you’re so fornicating la-de-dah you don’t know the difference between a state in your own country and a kind of woollen fabric and you MUST pronounce it “Cashmere”

· If you’re deemed semi-literate and asked on camera WHEN Republic Day is and WHY we celebrate it AND it turns out you have NO IDEA, you must laugh uproariously so that everybody knows how terribly funny your ignorance is.

· If you look good in a swimsuit, you must assume you also have a brain, so if you’re asked why you should be Miss India you must come up with something earth-shattering like “If you’re Miss India the whole country listens, if you’re Miss Universe the whole world listens”. (I can’t even begin to list the chamois leaps of reasoning there. If there is any reasoning there.)

· If you’ve appeared in a film where all you have to do is shake your booty in a tight black leather skirt, remembering the name of the character you play is sufficient proof of the depth of your talent

· If, three years after your first two films, you’ve eventually appeared in another film where all you have to do is shake your booty in rather less than a tight leather skirt, you must hold forth on how you took time off to hone your acting skills (in New York, always in New York, no matter that you think Strassberg is a kind of lettuce). Then, when asked what is so special about your latest role, you must smile in dazzling fashion and say (modestly!) “C****a J*****y in a bikini .. in a METALLIC RED bikini!” (so much for two years of acting school!)

· If your biceps measurement in inches is rather more than your IQ, remember to appear at ANY social engagement in attire like Supriya Debi’s in a 1960s Bong tear-jerker. No matter that the “slibless blaa-uj” was originally meant to be female attire.

· If you have a television channel and sinking TRPs, start an awards do where your channel’s programmes and actors compete for awards in important categories like “Best Parivaar – Punj” (I kid you not!)

· If you have nothing much to say and know even fewer words to say it with, try combinations of the following – “buh-kezz”, “by-zickly”, “like”, “well”, “y’know”, “it seems”. If you can throw in a “sensitive” or a “skey-dool” as well, you might get nominated for a Nobel. Or, since you’ve probably never heard of the Nobel prizes, an Oscar.

· If you have nothing much to do on a weekday evening, watching television can make you feel superior at very little cost. Unless you admit to yourself that the objects of your ridicule earn at least ten times as much as you. Oh well ….

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Monday, January 23, 2006

Winter, passing

Alone at home, sun languid on trees and city walls, first leaves lush on the krishnachura, shadows in the guava tree foretelling the evening. A holiday afternoon recreates the long hours of summer vacations, alone at a window at the top of the stairs, looking out at a blimp far away and a kite wheeling so high it hurts the eyes to seek it. Memory embellishes the smell of scented "nylon" erasers and schoolbooks wrapped in brown paper. The silence accentuated by birds and the occasional car. The quiet luxury of books waiting to be read. Sharp-etched, bitter-sweet crisp like a dark chocolate twist.

As I lean back and let out a luxurious plume of smoke, suddenly, from somewhere across the road, “Rangeela rey”…

A moment so perfect it hurts with the thought of its passing.

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And in other news, they're everywhere.

Saturday, January 21, 2006

Random gold

Take one Bong voice-over specialist. Place in recording studio. Between takes, stir him up with jibes about the sudden lack of Bongs in the Indian cricket team. The result is a hilarious 6:41 track -
"Bonguly". Collector's item. Truly.

Bids open from Sunday. (Suggestions - Terry Pratchett's last 5 novels; one good SG bat, medium handle; the complete Tom Lehrer; any Monty Python DVD). OK, for a good offer I'll throw in the unique track GMD as well. (Haven't heard it? Very melodious, tasteful arrangement, softly lyrical. The title's an acronym, MD denoting ".. mein danda".)

Hooray for G-Mail!

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Friday, January 20, 2006



Now try that for word-verification!

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Thursday, January 19, 2006

Dear Who?

I’m looking over my shoulder as I write this. That kind of proves my point. If there IS a point.

Spiritual. Dharmik. Devout, even? Bollocks.

All right, come out of there, You! Zap it to me. Lay it on the line. Umm ... I’ll take that back and try again. In the manner of civilised debate.

(Civilised? What’s civilised? Cutting a man’s chest open while he’s still alive, to extract his heart? Of course, you’d only have this done to a man who’s lived in your family for a year, a man on whom you’ve lavished your hospitality and affection in unstinting measure. A man who’s known, throughout that year, that THIS is the horrible death in store for him)

(Civilised? Like killing all the members of a dead man’s household so they can serve him in the afterlife? Or offering human sacrifice on the night of the new moon?)

(Very civilised. Like burning a woman at the stake. Or burning children sleeping inside a station wagon. Or locking the doors to a railway carriage or a bakery and burning the people inside. Burning bright.)

(Extreme civilisation. Like taking a poor woman’s jewellery for Your glory. Or neglecting a site where millions of pilgrims come every year, no matter that stampedes claim hundreds of lives every other year. Or reducing dependence on cannabis / hemp / Ecstasy, because young men get hopped up on the Belief that if they kill a few other people as they die themselves, they’ll have 72 beautiful women as their fuck-toys.)

No, I don’t think I can take much civilisation just now. Not even in debate. Suffice it to say that this man has been generous in his evaluation … If it turns out that there is a God, I don't think that he's evil … the worst that you can say about him is that basically he's an underachiever (Woody Allen)

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Tuesday, January 17, 2006


THIS is the funniest man on the Net.

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Sunday, January 15, 2006

Jaast-e ...


Do not harm the heffalump;

he would not eat your rose.

Observe him as he peels a tree

- such delicacy -

partakes of nuncheon, and goes

slow thunder-rolling through the bamboo clumps

(wistful Chinese bamboo-clumps,

visual haiku bamboo-clumps)

complements their poetry

with his sev’ral tons of prose.

Examine now the heffalump’s

high brow and huge physique.

Does he know the Rule of Three ?

Are his declensions weak?

Can he use

those massive thews, are wind and limb quite sound ?

Why does he freight

his awesome weight with gut so near the ground ?

Can he conjure up scenes of mirth,

an elephantine Life Divine, gigantic chic ?

Can he move his ponderous girth

in light-foot waltzes by the hour ?

Can his forehead wide, his wrinkled hide,

cloak the oppressive sense of power ?

(By one fairly common measure

of greatness, worth and such-like things,

his heffalumpen stature grows : out-topping Caesar

and the sorry Sphinx

by virtue of his nose.)

Shall we now judge the heffalump,

his intellect and charm ?

His mien is calm

and yet sometimes his orbs gleam quite distracted;

his spiring tooth, his bulk uncouth,

give cause for some alarm.

If you still seek the cause whereby,

the deeper darker reason why,

his sundry claims to grace are all hereby rejected -

to tell the truth,

it is because the heffabrute

just doesn’t give a damn.

1988, 1994

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Thursday, January 05, 2006, "beta" version

I hate jargon, so I shan't use words like 'commoditisation'. Perhaps the best summing up is in the last line of this post by Uma.

And these are funny, but they're also sad.

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