Categories
Miscellaneous

Mister Christopher Nolan,

The way I see it, The Dark Knight Rises or TDKR as people around call it (it took me a week to know what TDKR meant) is certainly not meant for people who believe, life is much more realistic than what they see through your movies. Its harder, especially when this comes at the back of two other non nonsensical movies – one in which people are getting into extra terrestrial space to find out the roots of their existence and the second, in which a boy who should be ideally thinking of passing out of college tries to level all evilness in his city by flying all over like a zombie – a third one with an imaginary superhero trying to save an imaginary city from an imaginary terrorist would be too hard to digest. 
But then, what makes it impossibly astounding to believe, is how so many people got hooked onto the comic book character, which I believe has to be the inspiration behind Batman, the movie. Because when we grew up/ were growing up, life had much more to ask from us than all the funny comic characters that were being dished out on television. Maybe they all are aware of your ability to make contorted reality into believable stuff. Or maybe, they all are twisted enough to believe your stories to be indeed sensible. Anyhow, my reservations against this should not matter to you since there are a lot of imaginary human beings with some deal of imaginary commonsense paying what seems to be insanely huge money to see your movies and then get orgasmic about it. So you are good, anyway. OK, thanks. Bye.    

Yours Sincerely,
Categories
India Opinion

Dear BCCI,

A letter from an anguished cricket fan, seeing the state of affairs of the game and the callous attitude of the governing body…

For the sake of the future of the game in this country beyond Sachin Tendulkar and Rahul Dravid, please ensure that you take a leaf out of Cricket Australia is forcing them to take off, towards other aspects of the game. When they could get rid of Ricky Ponting – arguably the greatest ever after Tendulkar and Lara, despite him scoring two centuries inclusive of a double in the recently concluded test series, you could man up to do this as well. Make no mistake when I say this – Sachin is god as far as I am concerned, but the time has come to look beyond him, to the rest of the guys in the team.
And its not that our subjects have been performing exceedingly well as well. So it should be making your job a lot more easier. The time has come to put off your selfish materialistic mindset about the game and work on motivating the average Indian to take a lot of pride from the wonderful game. As of now, I don’t see myself watching the game anymore after Tendulkar is done and dusted and I hold you completely responsible for my decision. The main reason being that you have never thought of looking beyond the “fab four” when it came to marketing the game into the billions. Maybe it was due to the fact that they could single handedly drive the country into euphoria. But then, what needs to be realized is my views on watching the game post the Tendulkar era are echoed by millions of fans the world over. And if you don’t step up to act on this aspect, as an ardent fan of the beautiful game I am afraid to say the future of Indian cricket looks very very bleak.
And I do not understand the reasons for your haughtiness and arrogance when it came to the abiding by the Woolf Report, your constant opposition to the ways in which ICC affairs are conducted and your persistent opposition to DRS. And it doesn’t end there. Your refusal to set up an inquiry into the double whitewash and your constant bragging about winning the world cup at home turf as a compensation for the shame caused in England and Australia is shocking, to say the least. It tells me how much you care for the future of the game. And when Sahara bailed out of the mess, you went the extra mile in ensuring they got back on track. This at a time when, you had wasted no time in driving the Kochi Tuskers out of the IPL in the name of some financial irregularities. And we all know it was the money more than your concerns of a long term alliance that made you hold their asses for cover.
Sadly, the plot keeps getting thicker and thicker. I wish there was a government legislation which could force you to clip your wings and come under public scrutiny. It is the case with countries like Sri Lanka and South Africa and they seem to be showing results when more able administrators have stepped in. That said, I do hold you completely responsible for taking the game to this level, take no credit away from you. But I also hold you responsible for bringing anguish, frustration and a sense of grief into the average joe out there, who is afraid the good times are slowly getting over.
Yours Sincerely,
An-ardent-cricket-fan-who-is-afraid-for-the-future-of-the-game
Categories
Europe Life

First Thoughts – 2012

Ola people! Hope everyone had a fantastic new years eve and a grand welcome into 2012. Happy New Year from the bottom of my heart, wish it turns out to be as special as it possibly could be. And I hope a few have already started ruing over their new year resolutions, if not broken them once or twice already. Just a real quick update on life and an extremely interesting incident which has been occupying a good enough space inside my head. Life is quite dull again since work has already kicked off. Exams on the 9th and 13th with a possible resource exam to be taken for Transport Economics and a project due on the 18th, which is evidence enough for the word “dull ” being tagged along with life. It isn’t really that I hate doing this, but there is really nothing else and thus life is quite predictable until the 19th. A bit of travel is also on the plans after the 19th since I have like 4 days before the next semester begins, though not sure how much of that is going to materialize. Now to the incident.
So I had a visitor on New Years eve. Nobody else was in the apartment and I opened the door when the bell rang. A Portuguese lady was standing outside – neatly dressed, posh, in her 40’s if not older. The conversation started in Portuguese, but soon turned to English when she figured out that her English was way better than my Portuguese. And she told me that she was the daughter-in-law of my neighbour, a lady in her 70’s. To talk more about my neighbour, she is Ana Maria, 75+ , rich with two houses in Lisbon alone, knows 6 languages including English (which is way too impressive for a European), quite a rare visitor to our place, largely peaceful and nice. She was working in the Portuguese department of transportation during her hay days, so we found a lot of things in common for a conversation to sprout up. Besides her career, she is vastly read, knows a lot about world culture and history and is very interesting to talk to, something which is very rare nowadays as far as I am concerned.
So yeah, the daughter-in-law. She is  accompanied by another lady who is Ana Maria’s sister, asks for Ana Maria who hasn’t been in touch with them for almost 3 weeks now and they are worried. So they came by to check on her. Soon we realize she is not present at home as nobody answers the door. Realizing that she has a key to this apartment, she opens the apartment to check for her. Its all very dark inside, so she asks me if I can come in too. I say yes and we go in. This apartment is a 6 room, old school place, large with a long alley and rooms on either side. Surprisingly, there is no power inside the apartment. We try the different switches and realize the power supply has been disconnected. And that’s when things start getting weird. I get a torchlight from my apartment and we go in. Its pitch dark and as soon as we reach the living room, its a scene of distress. Papers, books, flyers, clothes, unwashed plates, cutlery are all strewn around. I nearly pierce a fork onto my leg since it was lying on the ground in the dark, largely unnoticeable. And it was hard to imagine that someone lived here, amidst all the confusion that was called this apartment. The six other rooms resembled a similar picture and after seeing all this, I didn’t really have the courage to check the kitchen or the rest rooms. The daughter-in-law was being way too normal throughout this time and I was inching to ask her about her reaction.
So when we came out of the ghost house, I invited them to my apartment and asked her about her reaction on seeing the apartment all messy and weird. To which she replied, “Maria used to be such a task master lady until her 60’s until Miguel (her husband ) was around. After his demise, she lost all interest in life. She did not understand why she had to tidy up the place, and for whom, since no one ever visited her anymore. More so, since she didn’t want them to.” To see the condition of such a well learned lady, in her 70’s reaching a stage where she didn’t appreciate living life anymore was a hard thing to digest. She was very wealthy, but still lived the life of a gypsy. Why did she have to live life anymore if this was so meaningless for her? And that was the hard reality of life, that even a lot of money could not bring any happiness into her life. That’s because the essence of life is not entirely dependent on material things, though it does play only a small role in making it better. People run so much behind material comfort that they forget to live life in between. I have a professor at Tecnico whose story is equally interesting, though that is a story for another day. Though for the sake of debate, if I ever had to encounter that stage in life that Ana Maria was going through, I would just renounce myself from this world and move away. I am sure we all have different takes on it though.
Nevertheless a strange new year realization indeed.
Categories
Miscellaneous WTF!

:: Spotlight ::

I am somehow able to remember the dreams that I experience. I am afraid I might be alone in this world when I come to say that, but I do. Not that I remember them long enough to be etched into history, but long enough to write about what I saw early into the morning today (7 am). And strangely enough, the connect well into what lies ahead in life. Not that all my dreams comply to Freud’s* theory of wish fulfillment or is it influenced by events in the “day residue” but they serve as some sort of a connect to the future.So, I had a rather interesting dream today. 
Time has gone ahead and I have gone grey. I am still alone, quite predictable seeing the current trend. The place that I am in, is not very well defined. But I know seeing the people around me that I am in India. The sun hasn’t risen very prominently, but is nestled amongst the clouds. Its drizzling a wee bit too. The air has a fragrance of burnt/half burnt human flesh. The town has succumbed to a growing epidemic/phenomenon and very few people (mostly women and a very few men) have lived through it. And those who are alive are enclosed in a casing, transparent, which I think is made of glass. 
 
The scene outside is grim. Women are seen wailing their hearts out at the sight of their dead partners, children amongst others. They are covered by a coating of ice, so that they can sit near their departed loved ones. Maybe it is a means of prevention of the spread of the epidemic. Some of them are doing the last rites of their loved ones, something which has never happened before in India. The graves have filled out and overflowing. And the roads are soon filling up as make shift graveyards.  
It ended right there and I woke up to a start. Strange as it felt waking up to it, maybe the world is set to reach this stage 200-300 years from now. Have you, the reader experienced such notions about life ahead through the dreams you see? If yes, I would like to hear more on that.* Sigmund Freud – Austrian Neurologist, father of modern psychoanalysis. Author of the book, “The Interpretation of Dreams“.  The book is highly recommended for those who haven’t come across it.
Categories
India Life Opinion People

There are indeed guys with the same thought process | A reply to the young Indian woman

A couple of days back, I read this post on the Indian Homemaker’s blog where a girl had written to IHM with her queries about life, something which I thought was indeed very genuine. It goes like this:
An email from a young Indian woman who has seen her parents respect each other as equal partners.
I wanted to share an incidence with you and also what it means in the future, for young Indian women (and men). However, at the outset I would like to clear out something since it features my late maternal grandmother prominently. I loved her immensely and she did too. I know I was destined to spend time with her just a month before her demise, because she genuinely wanted to meet me.
My father since childhood always stressed that girls and boys are equal, each are unique and there are no grounds for differentiation between them. That’s why I have grown up questioning the status quo.
My mother ( C ), including her are 3 sisters ( A, B, C ) and two brothers( D, E ), in order of their ages. Now my B mashi got married before my mother, and within a year she had a daughter. A year later my mother had me. And my nani cried when she heard it, because “Ek aur beti” (’0ne more girl child’)I learnt about this fact as a kid, and it hit me hard because honestly my nani loved me. When I went over to her place………..
Read the full letter here.
It was a very genuine thought that had crossed the mind of the young Indian woman in the letter. Born into a family which treated her as equals (the best thing is that she fought for it, whenever she felt she had got a bad deal [*respect*] ) with a person of the opposite sex (which by the way is not very common in my part of the world), she was afraid whether she would find a guy who would treat her in the very same way, meaning sharing the same thought process as her. This reply to her, is in many ways the sentiment echoed by the average Indian man who would be very much willing to treat his woman in the same equal terms as himself, thus sharing the same thought process (I know there aren’t many, but still ).

Dear woman in the letter,

First up, thanks for bringing up this dilemma of yours into the forefront. You have echoed the sentiments of a very many number of women in this country, who have probably thought of this aspect at some point in life. As someone from the opposite sex who is a believer in equality and equal opportunities, I would like to tell you that there is indeed hope for people like us.

Though I must confess that I do represent only a minority of men who would want his woman to be treated equally well as he is. But then the fact remains that if you are patient enough and have the mind to stick by what you think is right for you, there is a good possibility that you will end up finding Mr.Right. It might mean having to deal with the pesky neighbors, nosey aunts among others, who might end up branding you as being “demanding and choosy”, but don’t you think life is worth the wait for the right man?

Having given you the bright side, I got to tell you one more aspect of it, namely the alternate view. The predicament that we are in, you might also be well advised not to keep your hopes very high on this. And I have my own reasons for saying this. I represent the opposite sex which has been accused of not living upto the expectations of the womenfolk in all universe (the converse is also a very well debated topic, but for many different reasons mostly). I do not have any explanations in my defence as to why many of my women friends who have recently been married, ended up coming out of it because they felt that the guy they got married to, was so much different from the guy who was in love with them a couple of years before they ended up in wedlock. Reasons, which I am not really proud of.

On the being single debate and its viability, ending up being single for the rest of your life is better than being married to the wrong person. If you thought that the fear of getting married to the wrong person was just a woman thing, you might be surprised to know that you are wrong. Again it comes to being a minority but then, there are men in this country who have the same fears as you have echoed here. And some of them have succumbed to the pressures and ended up with the wrong person, only either to struggle through the ordeal without any positives or to come out of the relationship, bruised and battered, with what was a horrible past.

Lastly, I just want to say one thing. I, for one, believe that I will never end up being with someone who is not even remotely compatible with me. I am seeing someone even now (someone I know for like 8 years, been in an in and out thing for like the last 2 and the like) as I write this letter, but it remains to be seen if she will end up being a part of my life. And that’s the thing about being of the same thought process (not gender equality as in your case but then, that should be a story for another day) and the fact that I will only listen to what my mind says about this and none else. So as you can see, it ain’t any piece of cake, but it is definitely worth the try. Because we have only one life and its always a comforting feeling to realize when you are old, that you have lived life thus far in your own terms rather than succumbing to the pressures of the people around you. I don’t know if I made things easier for you with this letter, but then you are not alone if that makes you feel any better.

Yours Sincerely,
The-minority-indian-man-who-is-a-preacher-of-equality-and-equal-opportunities.