Thursday, December 25, 2008


Saw that obscure Aamir movie a short while back. It also stars these terrible, very ordinary-looking women called Asin and Jiah Khan. Asin should go back to the South. And Jiah Khan should go back to romancing old men.

A really terrible film, if you ask me. The hall was, not unexpectedly, almost empty, but for me and a few old ladies (that's one of the sentences you never plan on using).

They seem to have made a hash of the Tamil movie that they have blatantly copied. Which makes it a frame to frame copy of Memento. Which was a terrible film to begin with.

The songs suck. This can't be AR Rahman! And why have they got so many songs in a film that's supposed to be a taut thriller.

And who taught the cameraman how to hold a camera. Or probably no one ever did.

Absolutely boring. They should have at least publicized it a bit. Might have pulled in a few more people. Would be a huge flop.

Aamir Khan should give up making movies. That one with that buck-toothed kid was the absolute bottom I thought he could get to.

Sunday, December 14, 2008


While it is true that a woman should be able to dress as she pleases, it is not always wise. - Roger Ebert (in the review for Irreversible)

Am watching this movie called I Spit On Your Grave. I have seen some real crazy shit in movies. In fact, I have grown so immune to bloodshed in movies (but probably not in real life) that I normally choose a gory/horror/violent movie to watch while having my lunch/dinner at home.

But, there are some movies that just kill me. Irreversible was the first. Last House on the Left was the other one. And I'm watching ISOYG right now. Which Ebert gave no stars in his original review. Which is quite discouraging for any film. But, I don't think the movie is that bad (it has a near 5-point rating on IMDb). It is probably devoid of any artistic merits, but it does bring about the horrors of the crime it is about very very strongly. Ebert says that he felt ashamed after watching the movie. And I think that is what this movie is supposed to do. I am 3/4ths into the movie. And if I were Ebert (and how I wish I could have the same authority as he does), I would have given it 3.5 stars.

We really do need disgusting movies like these.

Updated later: I just got done with watching the entire movie. And no, we don't need movies like these. It is very evidently a soft-porn movie that is trying to earn brownie points by saying that they are on the woman's side, when they are just trying to show as much nudity and titillation as possible.

And I pity the people who would find this sad sad movie titillating.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

My Best Friend

I think I love dogs more than human beings. No, I am not into bestiality. We'll talk about the kinky stuff some other time. I mean ell-ooo-veee-eee love. Or a form of it. OK, let's get along or I'll write a few hundred words on a topic I think I am an expert on.

Well, as far as the comparison with human beings is concerned I don't think it is that big a deal. Considering my low opinion of most people, I probably love a snail more than most human beings.

But, I somehow feel really really happy in the company of dogs. And the dogs generally reciprocate.

Two recent instances.

Last Saturday, I spent about 6-7 hours at my boss's home discussing a deal. He has recently bought a Labrador pup and he's a couple of months old now (the pup, not my boss). He was named Frodo earlier, but was renamed as Schumi soon after. And I think this name does suit him better. He is one crazy, ultra-energetic kid. All through the day, interspersed with brief moments of sleep (his, not mine), he kept trying to press keys on my laptop, tear my boss's wife's dupatta, eat the dining table off, bite our fingers off, bite my jeans off, etc. As is evident, the poor chap is teething, and needs to have something between his teeth all the time. All the rubber balls have been destroyed already. So, while my boss and a senior discussed NPVs and IRRs and debt-equity ratios and what not, I took on the responsibility of handling Mr Schumi. I would love to get paid for playing with dogs. I have been pursuading my boss to get him to our office some time soon.

The next day, after all the planning at my boss's place, I accompanied him to a client's home in Chennai. Yeah, I have to work Sundays too, on some occasions. This client's home, which was more a museum than a house, had four dogs. One of the dogs was this huge jet-black Lab called Kipper. He is supposed to be a guard dog and is not allowed inside the house. So while the other dogs - Candy (a pug (thank you Hutch)), Amber (a cross between a Lab and some other breed) and Melody (a Pomeranian) - after having their fill of licking the client's 9-year old son (whose name I can't recall) ran inside the house, poor Kipper could only follow them to the door and then stopped. I wonder how much pain he must have been subjected to to make him understand that crossing that threshold was wrong. Anyway, so I went and patted this chap (Kipper, not the kid). And he jumped on me and put his forelegs on my chest. I hugged him real hard, and we became friends. This was towards the end of our meeting there, but for the remaining 20 min that we stayed there, he kept on following me and apparently loved it when I scratched his neck and back. I know he loved it because everytime I stopped he would put one of his paws on the palm of my hand and ask me to keep doing it.

Was missing our dogs real bad. Sheru and Heena.

The first dog we 'bought' as against the stray ones we used to generally take in earlier, was a German Shepherd in 1991. I still remember very clearly when my father brought her from the Jamshedpur Kennel Club to my aunt's place where we were staying. She was just 1.5 months old (I know this is getting tiring, but I mean the dog and not my aunt) and got completely confused in that huge dupleix apartment. We drove to our place, which was around 2 hours away the same night, and on the way I named her Heena. After the RK Films Henna that I had just seen.

All my memories from that time, when I was about 9, to the time I got into engineering college are marked by her presence. She was a pure German Shepherd, and had a recorded lineage probably older than mine, and grew from a tiny pup into a huge dog in a few months.

I left home after Class XII. As luck would have it, my parents got transferred soon very close to the place I was doing my coaching at. I remember the day they first came to meet me at my hostel in Kota. They brought Heena along and she climbed on to my bed and slept there while we went out for lunch.

About a month or so before JEE, I came back home. During the next 4-5 weeks, all the time I spent preparing for the exam, she would sit at my feet. My mother still thinks I got through because Heena wanted me to.

Towards the end of my 2nd year we bought another dog. His name's Sheru and he's still with us. Being a pup and a little crazy in the head, he obviously used to get more attention from my parents and my sister. The next time I visited home, I noticed for the first time that Heena had grown old. Because she showed it. She wouldn't get excited when I picked up the chain to go for a walk. She wouldn't play. Or even when she did, it was more because it was expected of her.

At the end of my 3rd year, I ended up doing my internship in my dad's company. Stayed at home. One evening, as I was taking Heena out for a walk, a cow passed by. Heena jumped on her and the cow hit her on the face with its feet. Heena didn't make a sound, but I noticed a few minutes later that she was bleeding from the mouth. I called my mom up (my dad had been transferred and was hundreds of miles away). She rushed back from work. We took Heena to a vet. We took her to several vets over the next few days. But the bleeding would not stop. She normally used to sleep under my mom's bed. But the last night, she crawled under mine. Next morning, after my mom and sister had left, I went to see how she was doing. I sat down beside her. Took her head on my lap. A few minutes later, she passed away.

I still remember that day like it happened just now. And it feels like that. My mom drove back crying all the way. I went to my sister's school to get her. I could not tell her on the way. By the time we got back home, she had guessed anyway.

Heena was buried behind our house.

My dad was alone, and he probably felt it the most. A subordinate of his had a Dachshund couple, and they had a litter soon after this. Most of the pups got sold, but one slightly frail female pup got left out. My dad took her. And named her Heena.

Monday, December 8, 2008

TOW We Resume 'Normal' Transmission

Last one was the 150th post. Decided that the usual racist crap - you know where I rant against surds, chinks, nepalis, maddus, muslims, hindus, etc. - would not be in good taste in the current conditions in India, when everyone is getting touchier than usual about such things. And I do see the irony in looking for taste in a deliberately tasteless post. So, I decided to write on the thing I could identify as the next most outrageously idiotic. But, I was hoping to get some more comments. Just one person chose to comment, and that too anonymously. Damn you!!

Work and other higher pursuits have kept me from writing about a lot of stuff I would like to.

These stuffs include:

1) The fact that I am missing Delhi now after reading this.*

2) A value-for-money, slightly unhygienic, hole-in-the-wall joint called Zaks that I discovered recently, which serves Arabic food. I had khaboos, or khubus as they spell it, and grilled chicken after such a long time!

3) I had a Takashi Miike retrospective at my home recently. Saw Ichii the Killer, Visitor Q and Crows: Zero almost back to back. Several more are in the pipeline. I can't even begin to describe how much I enjoyed watching these movies. So, I won't.

4) Am almost through with a book by Syd Field. He would be a really great author to read if he didn't keep dropping names and enlisting all his achievements. His other books might be better. This one's supposed to be autobiographical and he is really painful. But his theories on screenplay are quite interesting, if not always as revolutionary as he makes them out to be.

5) My Tanzania trip got cancelled. Now, I am never going to talk about my trips till they actually materialise. Though I am not particularly unhappy about the Tanzania thing. We were going to do around 3500 km BY ROAD in about a week, and were covering pretty much the whole of the country except Mt Kilimanjaro, Mt Meru, Serengeti and other touristy areas. Plus meeting a whole lot of boring government officials.

6) Have finally given in to the temptation of buying original DVDs, which have all the additional features intact, unlike the pirated ones. Have bought Taare Zameen Par, Rock On!, The Bourne Trilogy, Om Shanti Om and a couple of others in recent times. I also found this gem of a DVD brought out by FTII, which has the first films of around 20 FTII grads, including Jaya Bachchan, Smita Patil, Sriram Raghavan and some others.

7) Have taken up reading soft copies of grahic novels again. Mainly because sourcing all of them in Bangalore is difficult. Not, as you thought, because I realized buying each one of them was getting too expensive. Nope.

8) Found a DVD print of Burn After Reading, which is quite good. But Coens have the habit of coming up with an under-whelming experience once in a while to balance their general greatness. So, NCFOM had to be followed by something like this.

* Disclaimer (issued after the anonymous commenter struck again): I did not do everything that the blogger talks about. No, I didn't buy cotton kurtis at Dilli Haat (did have momos and fruit beer though). No, I didn't swear and curse in a bus after being groped. And no, that does not mean that I was groped and enjoyed it instead. As far as I can remember, I certainly never had to worry about my long-wrinkled-cotton-Janpath-skirt getting tangled across my legs and feet (I generally preferred wearing mini-skirts).

And I didn't go to school in Delhi for him. I didn't go to school in Delhi at all.

But I did bitch about women in LSR.

Saturday, December 6, 2008


I hit upon a couple of undeniable truths over the last few weeks.

If you were intelligent enough to do engineering in India, and if you still fucked up and could not get into an IIT, you really are not worth any respect. Of course, if you were one of those morons who did BA, BCom and the other weird stuff people seem to come up with to help the lesser mortals feel good about themselves, you probably are just lucky to have access to the net to read this.

And if you were one of those hundreds of people who decided to do an MBA, and then ended up being one of those idiots who could not crack CAT and could not get into an IIM, well, you really are sad.

You know that water tank on the roof of your building. Unless you are living in some chawl in Mumbai, which you should be, if you ain't from an IIT and/or an IIM. In which case these instructions should anyway be too complicated for you. Go, climb those stairs to the roof. And, then, go jump into that tank.


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