Sunday, July 30, 2006

Blogging Style

Your Blogging Type Is Thoughtful and Considerate

You're a well liked, though underrated, blogger.
You have a heart of gold, and are likely to blog for a cause.
You're a peaceful blogger - no drama for you!
A good listener and friend, you tend to leave thoughtful comments for others.

I must say this seems to be very much true, though I'm not sure about the first line of me being well liked and underrated.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Decisions Decisions

Why does it take me ages to finally pick an option? Why is the decision postponed to the last possible moment? Why is there a need for endless deliberation to decide inconsequential things? Why after so much deliberation does my decision not seem right?

I have to come out of this cycle. I have to stop analysing things over and over again. I have to stop looking at all possible angles. I wish I could see just black and white and not the multi-coloured multi dimensional model that I see when I have to decide. I want to be sure for once in my life.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Golmaal and Corporate

I saw two movies this weekend – Golmaal and Corporate.

These are not exactly reviews but just some of my thoughts.

Golmaal - Golmaal was your typical laugh riot hindi movie of the genre of No Entry, Phir Hera Pheri etc. Nothing special or endearing in it and it is true to what it is – a light hearted comedy to be watched once and to be forgotten. Making sense of the script is not called for. It will not make sense, and trying to do so will spoil all the fun. So it is better that I do not analyse the subtleties of the movie and just give my recommendation – watch it once.

Corporate – This is a movie by Madhur Bhandarkar, the same director who gave us the brilliantly sensitive Chandni Bar and the critically acclaimed Page 3.

Chandni Bar was a story of one girl through her eyes about the kind of people she met and how they influenced her life. It was supremely sincere as being just her account of happenings of her life, nothing else. There were few generalisations and the film was more emotional and sensitive than judgemental.

Page 3 was a film carrying forward the theme of a young female protagonist observing the world around her. But this time it was not just the story of her life. It was more a story of the realm she moved around in – the Page 3, the affluent upper class. It was a story of parties, of drugs, of the hypocrisy hiding behind the façade of beautiful faces and seemingly kind hearts. It was a story that made you think about the sad lives of the rich and the powerful. One wondered if it’s really worth becoming richer if that meant moving around in social circles where every smile hides a deep rooted contempt and every act of kindness hides some ulterior motive. The story eventually got perceived as an original among the various genres of comedy, love and action movies in popular Hindi cinema.

Warning: Though I'm not disclosing complete details here, it is advisable to not read further if there are plans of seeing Corporate in the future

With Corporate, Madhur Bhandarkar has continued his tried and tested formula once again. The lead character once again is a girl named Nishi stuck in a new atmosphere. It’s now the big bad corporate world. The competition is intense. Competitors do just about anything to get even a tiny bit of advantage. Nishi is not new to this world and knows all the tricks of the trade. She breaks just about every rule in the book to bring down their biggest rival. But somewhere in between when her boss decides to go all out in the war, she finally sees how this could adversely affect innocent people who are not part of the war. That is the turning point and the beginning of her downfall. Like Page 3, this movie tries to make us think. In the process, the movie does become judgemental. It gives a highly clichéd view of the corporate world. Every businessman is out to make profits without concern for anything else. The dirtier you get, the bigger you grow. Every government employee and politician can be bribed, either through money or/and through sex. It’s a stifling sick world where everyone is selfish, deceitful and money minded.

The movie is well made though. Barring a few exceptions, the story comes out to be quite believable as could happen in any corporate setting. I laughed at the amateurish attempts of recreating board room discussions and the way deals were actually finalised. The most hilarious was the way confidential information was stolen from a high powered executive’s laptop. A movie of this nature of the corporate world of which not enough is known outside it calls for a thorough research. The lack of the same was painfully apparent in some places. But for a hindi movie, I think Madhur has done a commendable job of recreating actual business wars.

Frankly I’ve had enough of the Madhur Bhandarkar formula. While one must appreciate the uniqueness of his plots, one realises that in the end they are all the same. A small change of setting, an innocent seeming female lead, an unnecessarily brutal and one sided portrayal of the outside world and you have a new critically acclaimed flick. What does one take away from the movie anyway? A false sense of smugness that one doesn’t belong to the corporate world or a determination to suddenly clean up all the mess that the corporate world is in? I wonder…

Saturday, July 08, 2006

Tummy Troubles

The past three or four days have been like a roller coaster ride for me. I was suffering from diarrhoea. Now I’ve had my share of loose motions before. My stomach is relatively strong and was easily able to come out of them. There is this medication called Entero Quinol that was very affective. One or two of these were more than enough to get back in shape. But this time I was facing something new. I have not come across such a brutal attack in my entire conscious life. This thing just refused to go away. So much so that on the first day I had to take as many as 7 tablets.

The roller coaster began after this. I was never really sure if it was over. The thing about such diseases is that if you decide to take a leave, you always get this guilty feeling if you are not sick enough. But if you decide to go, there is always this high strung tension on your mind. You never know what could happen. After all with the heavy rains, travel times become notoriously long and the probability of you being in an uncomfortable spot increases that much more. Anyway I decided that it is best to not to go and I was duly supported by the forces of nature.

As I realised that I was encountering a new potent form of the disease, I decided that a simple use of medication wouldn’t help. I needed to change my diet to really get well. Now a new trouble began. I thought I am not really knowledgeable enough in such matters and decided to stay away from cooked food on the first day. I ate bananas and papaya. I next day when I was talking to my neighbours, say N1 about the illness, they said that Papaya was an absolute no go. “It is a warm fruit. It heats the system”. They were also not too sure of the bananas. I panicked and sought their highly informed advice. “malai burfi” (a sweet derived from milk) was the first word that came out. I was surprised. After all this would be one of the toughest things to digest. I was reassured that my apprehensions were uncalled for and malai burfi indeed would bring quick relief. My interest was aroused. I asked for more dietary advice. Cake, bread, oranges, curd etc. were among the few things suggested. “Great! So my diet will not be so uninteresting like the papayas after all”, I thought.

I managed to survive one more day. Now was the turn of another neighbour, say N2 to give advice. I asked him about the bananas as there were still some left and I was not too sure whether I should go ahead and eat them or not. “Bananas cause constipation which is the opposite of what you have. So go ahead.” OK. Fair enough. N1 was not too sure about bananas anyway. So I finished the bananas in breakfast. Soon after I was talking to a close friend, A. “Don’t eat bananas, but papayas are good.” I enquired about the curd. “I guess it should be ok to eat curd, but there is something about curd that I am not able to recall right now. Why take the risk? I suggest you avoid it as of now.” Later that day another friend, B gave this piece of advice, “All milk products should be avoided and that includes curd too”. So if we consolidate the different nuggets of advice I got from all sources, I should and should not eat papaya, I should and should not eat banana, I should and should not eat curd, I should eat malai burfi, cake and bread. Earlier I was just sick. Now I was sick and confused.

I had all of the above food items (yes, even the dangerous seeming malai burfi) and have not found enough reason to either support or negate the claims made by any of the advice givers. So when it comes to the stomach, everyone has an opinion. And it necessarily is not the same. I suspect everyone forms an opinion based on his/her own experiences. I guess everybody has a unique tummy, like a fingerprint, and it behaves in its own unique fashion. Of course it will also depend on the kind of food one has been having through his/her life. One should take advice but it is also helpful to experiment a bit to know what is suitable an what is not. I know this is but common sense but because I didnt face a major fiasco with my tummy till now, I was a bit complacent. I wont be now.