Tuesday, May 20, 2008


I hate it when I try so hard to remember the name of someone or something (song/ movie/ book/ place) and my memory fails me. I have been trying to remember the name of a book I had read few years ago. It had a teenage Indian girl as the main protagonist who was born in a slum/brothel of Calcutta (or was it Mumbai?) and was then adopted by a young and kind British lady. She had a short name like Mira or Radha or Gita. The story was quite interesting and in the end the girl ends up murdering the British lady's boyfriend (or probably husband?) accidentally. Also, the girl had some Afghani/Arabian connection. The book was not by an Indian author as far as I remember.

I want to buy that book, but I have no clue what its name was!! Sigh, age is finally catching up with me :(

Thursday, May 15, 2008


For the past few days I have only been seeing death, destruction and terror in newspaper headlines ... earthquake in China, cyclone in Myanmar, blasts in Jaipur.

Even nature seems to have joined hands in terrorizing mankind. I could sure do with some good news ...

Monday, May 12, 2008

A day on the banks of Kaveri

I can't think of a better way to spend a Sunday than lazing in the midst of nature - far away from the maddening city crowd. It was quite an unplanned trip with the five of us leaving early on Sunday morning (well, 7.00 AM is early for a Sunday!) with the vague destination in mind as Kaveri banks .. somewhere around Bheemeshwari. We had a beautiful drive - with Gulmohar trees in full bloom forming an orange canopy over our heads for as far as eyes could see. We first stopped at the Sangam - it is the confluence of Kaveri and Arkavathy rivers. Thankfully we had arrived early and had the river almost to ourselves for an hour or so before busloads of tourists started arriving. The water here is not very clean (probably due to large number of people) and sadly the banks are badly littered. Water was only knee deep here and we loved it when the small fish nibbled dead skin off our feet. We all sure saved some bucks in the pedicure :).

By the time we came out, we were so hungry we could almost eat an elephant! After a breakfast of rotis, omelet, coconut chutney, fried fish and chai (yes yes, it was only breakfast and we ate everything that Parveen and Irshad, the shop owners, had available). Colin even helped them fry the fish! We then headed to Golibore which was just 9 kms from Sangam (it was an untarred road that led to Golibore). We did not go to the fishing camp & jungle lodges as it required prior reservation but the gatekeeper let us go the the Kaveri banks (it did come with a small price though!).

This part of Kaveri was much better - clear water, clean sand, very few people & many mountains. A board near the river bank warned us of unexpectedly deep waters and crocodiles, so we tried not to venture more than 10 feet inside water. After a while Colin & Pallab started displaying their skills in skipping stones across the river. After trying our hand, and failing miserably at it, the rest of us decided to find the perfect stones (medium-sized, flat ones) for them. We enjoyed watching them hurl stones and relishing the applause for doing good job at times; and all of us happily turned brown under the hot sun.
Once the sun started going down, we decided to head back home after a big late lunch at a restaurant at the Sangam. And before we knew it, we were back to the hustle and bustle of our daily city lives.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Globally Inspired

One of the most talented Bollywood composer of this and the last year - Pritam was extremely inspired by various artistes of the East (Chinese, Korean, Indonesian) and many other places around the globe. So much so that all his hit numbers from recent films like Race, Bhul Bhulaiya, Jab we Met, Life in a Metro, Woh Lamhe, Gangster, Pyar ke Side Effects are a blatant ripoff, with little or no variation, of the original numbers. Of course, no credits were given to the original artistes.

This video shows the comparison between original & inspired songs like Pehli Nazar Mein (Race), Jaane kya chaahe mann (Pyar ke side effects), Kya mujhe pyar hai (Woh Lamhe) & some more. Surprise! These songs are hardly any different from the original ones.

There are two more such videos showing other songs by Pritam here and here. If I disregard these songs and try to think what other hit numbers Pritam has composed himself, I can't think of even a single song! Yes, I know it is a very common practice to get inspired by other songs in Bollywood (and probably elsewhere too) and the most common excuse I have heard from these composers (like Bappi Lahiri, Anu Malik etc) is that there are only seven notes in music after all and it is likely that your notes will match with someone else's too. Also, I have to give credit to Pritam for having chosen artistes from the far East rather than the more popular international artistes (how many of us Indians listen to Chinese, Indonesian & Korean music anyway?) - the guy did hard work in some department after all! But it is such a let down that the music composer who seemed to be so promising and talented just turned out to be a copycat.

Albert Einstein summed up this whole plagiarism business so well when he said - Creativity is all about hiding your sources (also shown in the beginning of these videos).

Monday, May 5, 2008


... for life.
Got my first tattoo done almost a month ago. As regards the choice of this design, I wanted something neutral. I don't believe in sun signs, so no zodiac patterns for me; I don't believe much in religion so did not go for an Om either. I had considered getting a flower/butterfly/dolphin at one point of time, but find them overly cute now. Hence this simple tribal design that (I hope) has no meaning attached.

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Empty ..

Suddenly the house seems big and empty. Everything is so quiet that I can even hear myself think. I had got so used to having my parents around for the past few months. But they had to suddenly leave for Ranchi 2 days ago on hearing the news that their house there had been burgled.

Even watching the IPL match between Bangalore and Hyderabad (which Bangalore actually won after a nail-biting finish) without them was not as much fun ...