Way to go Fisi

Giancarlo_FisichelaGiancarlo Fisichela, driving a Force India car, made lot of Indians and Italians proud yesterday by first capturing the pole position of the Belgium grand prix and then finishing a commendable 2nd less than a second behind Kimi Raikonnen.

I had missed the qualifying session as I was travelling. But I was amazed when I read the sunday’s news paper that shouted Giancarlo’s name at the pole position. Then how could I miss the race? Giancarlo drove amazingly in the entire race. Unfortunately he was done in by the KERS (Kinetic Energy Recovery system) in the Ferrari, which gave a distinct advantage to Raikonnen. Incidently, Kimi has spoilt Force India’s party on more than one occasions. Two seasons ago, he bumped into Adrian Sutil when the later was almost certain to finish 4th at Monaco grand prix. Even last year he had bumped Sutil out (I dont remember the location) when in a points winning position.

The raced was marred by a big crash at the start when 4 cars, including that of defending champion Lewis Hamilton and current championship contender Jenson Button were forced to retire. This helped reduce the competition in some way. But all said and done, Fisi drove a wonderful race, and most importtantly, has put Force India amongst points. This means now Vijay Mallya has more money to spend and take the team upwards.

Way to go Fisi! Way to go Force India!

My Dil goes…

What makes me happy? Rather thrilled?

… a strong coffee or a very well made tea

… sitting in the window with Rats, chatting about future and watching it rain

… a good game of football to watch- Chelsea or Liverpool against Man U- a defense splitting pass from Xabi Alonso, a pile driver from Gerrard or a header from Drogba

… Yuvraaj in flowing form

… excellent rally in badminton or TT

… a drive on the highway with soft music and flooding memories

… long, late night chat with an old buddy

… me, my Canon IXUS and nature

… racing with a stranger on busy streets

… really chat pati pani poori

… me, my dog and an unmowed lawn

… a beautiful inspiring story

… excellent business idea

So what makes you happy?

Kaminey!

Frankly speaking, I was very skeptical to go and watch Kaminey. That is not because of the fact that swine flu is rampant around here. But purely because of the fear to be disproved. I like the film maker in Vishal Bhardwaj. I have watched all his movies from Maachis to Blue Umbrella and none of them only once. But all of the movies either were made to show cast a purpose or pure adaptation of world class stories (or should I say themes) in Maqbool and Omkara. I knew Kaminey is neither, none.

Another reason of my fear of disappointment was Shahid Kapoor and Priyanka Chopra. I like bothof them. I feel they are very talented and genuine actors. I didn’t want their film to flop. But eventually I went ahead and watched the movie. Thank fully I was not disappointed. Kaminey is a very very generic story masterfully crafted into an intriuing piece of work. Although I think the comparison of Vishal to Quentin Tarantino or Ridley Scott is a bit hyped, primarily because Vishal Bhardwaj is a unique film maker. Matching Tarantino is a herculean task. I think Kaminey’s filming has a reminiscence of ‘The Departed’ by Martin Scorsese more than any one else. Anyway, Let us come to the movie now.

kamineyKaminey is a story of two siamise twins Guddu and Charlie (played by Shahid). Both have a speech defect. Guddu stammers where as Charlie pronunces ‘S’ as ‘F’. Charlie is a small time goon who bets on horses, manipulates and earns his daily bread. He has a dream to achieve, to be a big time booker one day. One day he gets double crossed by his own jockey. In a bid to revenge, he lands up in a 5 star hotel to bash the conspirator. But time turns the tide and while running away from the opposition gang, he gets embroiled in a drug smuglling controversy involving a don and the corrupt narcotics department of the Police.

Guddu on the other hand is a ‘guy next door’ who works with an NGO, loves a ‘marathi mulgi’ Sweety (Priyanka) and hates his brother for all his bad deeds. The story book affair turns soar when sweety gets pregnant. They can get married and live happily ever after, except that Sweety is a sister of a goon turned ‘Marathi wadi’ wannabe politician Bhope Bhau (Amole Gupte). Now Bhope Bhau surely doesn’t like this and when learning that Guddu is from UP, wants to finish him off.

The happenings in 24 hrs from here on, the movie gathers unmatched speed. Charlie wants to sells the drugs so that he can start his bookie business. Bhope wants to kill Guddu and marry his sister to the builders son for party funds. Guddu wants Charlie to give the drugs to Bhope so that he gets his money for funding his election campaign and Guddu gets his girl. The narcotics department wants Charlie so that they can get hold of the drugs and deliver it to the Don ‘Tashi’. And Tashi wants to finish every one off, get the drugs, sell it to the Angolian gangster in exchange of the diamonds. Confused? He he…  🙂

This is what makes Vishal Bhardwaj a master film maker. Excellent narration, brilliant camera angles and deft editing makes Kaminey a wonderful treat to watch. I heard lot of people saying the movie could have been little less violent. But I think to make a movie of this genre, it has to be raw. The dark surroundings, back ground score and the crisp dialogues makes it even more appealing. No point in singling out one actor as every one have performed par excellence. Shahid and Priyanka’s chemistry is great (I so much wish if she could have been a marathi mulgi in reality). And the Industry might have got a new baddie in Amole Gupte.

Overall I will give a 3 and half stars to the movie. And this rating is purely on the basis of the way the movie is made. Had there been a brilliant story/ theme (a.k.a. Omkara), I’d have given 5 stars easily. Go and watch once if you haven’t and if you can tolerate raw action.

Garfield on Planning Future

I love Garfield and there is no doubt about it. Jim Davis is brilliant. Strategists and planning manager… this is what you guys do!

garfield

Get away you Swine!

I’m working from my company’s ‘different’ office today.

There was a guy sitting besides me who had cold. He was sneezing and coughing since morning. Initially I thought it was fine. But then I got a little scared. When I came back from lunch, I realised that another guy sitting on the other end of the cubicle started coughing a bit.

By 4pm they got their handkerchiefs out. I changed my place.

… And I just realised the building is centrally air conditioned.

… And now I think I have a soar throat.

… Shit!

Bon Appetit

paneer-chilliI’m just back from lunch. I had gone out to a nearby restaurant. Since this is a busy area and there is a dearth of good restaurants  around, naturally the ones here are in demand irrespective of the taste. So I had to share a table with another guy. I found he had an extraordinary appetite!

When I joined him on the table, he was feasting on a fried masala papad. From the look of the plate I guessed it that it was probably papad numnber 2. While I placed my order for a Pav Bhaji, the waiter served him a bowl  of some chinese soup along with half a bowl of fried noodles. That followed with a Paneer Chilli and two (yes two) butter naans. Even before he could finish all that (and I could gasp through the Pav Bhaji and the only extra pav I ordered) the waiter served him some thick shake. And I had no two guesses if he hadn’t ordered rice as well.

I some how pushed the additional pav and left the restaurant. I wish I could have that sort of an appetite. 🙂

Scary Picture

I saw thie movie ‘Eagle Eye‘ over the weekend. While it was just a movie, it scared me a bit. The movie makes an attempt to show the invasion of technology in our private lives and lets us know how vulnerable we already are. I dont think any thing I have done so far, except what is there in my mind is private. Google Chrome proved me right yesterday.

Fed up of the new ‘slow’ version of Firefox, I decided to try out Chrome. Whn I was done with installation, just before starting up Google threw me a question. It was asking me if they could store my browsing history with them and use it for analysis and study purpose. I instantly clicked ‘Nah!’ Why would Google want to know what I browse? Of course for the Ad Sense, Ad Words, for future improvements of Chrome… as a Google fan you will answer this. But what for? And what is the surity that Google will still not store my browsing history? I think I have already exposed all my passwords and other details about so many things linked online to a web browser (May it be IE, FF, Chrome, Opera…). And it is not just about Google alone.

We were already captured on innumerable CCTV cameras around our world. The bank websites already know all about you, your history, your family, your possesions. Face book knows all about your friends. Linkedin knows all about your business contacts. WordPress knows all about you blog. Visa knows all your credit dealings… and your bank records. And the insurance company knows every thing about your family. What if you were caught nude on a CCTV camera in a changing room and it has come back to haunt you now after 10 years? What if some one hacked your browser and siphoned the money out? What if the entire data was being stored in a big storage space and your life is being monitored day in and day out?

The picture is scary and we cant do any thing about it.  :mrgreen:

L19: The Tune of Love

Disclaimer: This is fictitious story and has no resemblance to the truth, what so ever.

In the green room of the hotel, Vijay as getting ready for yet another performance. He donned his red colored best looking band suit and now was trying to buckle his complicated coat. He had complained to Prady, his boss, mentor and a good friend so many times that the dress looks much like other ‘band walas’  and that he was a musician and not a street smart trumpet player. But the truth was a little different from his imagination and about similar to what his father had predicted. He was indeed the lead trumpet player in Maharaja Band, one of the most sought after bands in Parel, Byculla and Dadar put together. They were called today to play at a wedding of some high profile businessman at ITC grand central, a 5 star hotel. That was indeed big and a relief from playing only at the ganeshotsav mandals and substandard marriages. Vijay thought he had come a long way.

His story actually started 8 year ago when a 21 year old Vijay ran away from his father’s home in Raver, a small town in Jalgaon district of Maharashtra. He never took interest in his Father’s pulse milling business. They supplied pulses to the oil mills around. This meant his father had to be travelling most of the time. When he was 13, his father brought him a small trumpet. Young Vijay was so fascinated by the small instrument that he mastered the art within no time, much to the disliking of his father. They were Patels and his father wanted Vijay to learn the roots of business just like other kids in their caste did. However Vijay had other intentions. He often missed a class or two and practiced playing melodies on the trumpet. As he grew up, he started getting some money from his parents as a pocket money. He saved enough and one day with some help from his mother, Vijay bought a second hand picolo trumpet. He struck a good bargain with one shrewd scrap dealer. His happiness knew no bounds that day.

His love for music grew over the years. As he reached adolescence, cupid struck him right in the middle of the heart.Vijay was popular amongst his friends because of his gifted ability to play trumpet, mouth organ, flute and almost any instrument he could play with his mouth. That attracted lot of attention from girls and boys alike. Anjali was no different. She was at least 4 years younger to Vijay. But her aesthetic sense was way beyond other listeners, he thought. She was sweet and very naughty too. Slowly their friendship grew and Vijay’s public performances steadily started getting private. Vijay had a pressure from the family to attend colleges and Anjali was still in school. So the only time they could find to meet and water their plant of love was during the breaks and on their way home. Vijay composed tunes for her and she would drool over his melody. This continued for a year or two. One day Anjali’s brother caught them hand in hand in a neighborhood farm. Vijay was beaten and summoned to Anjali’s father, a Choudhary of the neighboring village. Vijay did all he could to convince him. But the fact that Vijay did not earn or do any thing for living went against him. On learning about his family back ground, Anjali’s father contacted Vijay’s father and narrated him the entire essay. On hearing them out and fearing that his reputation was at stake, a shrewd businessman he was, Vijay’s father offered to marry them in future on a condition that Vijay leaves his trumpet behind and joins him in his business. The choice was easy. Vijay chose his first love.

On the same night on being thrown out of the house, Vijay left Raver for Mumbai. Like any other starry eyed charmer, he landed in the city of dreams. He thought talent could work its way up and he will be appreciated here as much as he was loved in Raver. But soon the harsh realities surfaced. He blew his trumpet every where. From Shankar Mahadevan to Bali Sagoo and from Jatin Lalit to Vishal Shekhar… all turned a deaf ear to him. They were inaccessible. Soon the scarcity of money began to pinch him. Financial troubles meant he played wherever he could earn some money. But he was prepared for it. He loved his trumpets more than any one else in his life. During one such performance in a night club, Vijay met Prady, aka Pradeep Ghosh. Prady was a musician turned small time band owner. He earlier was associated with certain music director Shantanu Moitra. But Prady accused him of stealing his idea for some song. He was now in search of some one who could play wind instruments. Vijay fitted that bill perfectly. With two more associates they went on to form a Maharaja Band, a one of its kind. Mixing latest songs to suit the street smart audience, Maharaja band grew from Night clubs to parties and from small time ganeshotsav mandals to now playing at some of the biggest weddings. They indeed weren’t acclaimed musicians. But they were good and people loved them where ever they went. Their association for 7 long years was extremely fruitful and the love of music had come a long way.

Vijay had been practicing the song ‘Tumse hi…’ from the latest movie Jab we Met, which they had mixed on a banjo and a flugelhorn trumpet. It sounded amazing. And now Vijay was struggling with the buttons on the coat. As much as he loved music, he hated being called a ‘bandwala’. Once he was done, he looked at himself in the mirror. He wished if he could wear a black Armani suit instead, which the groom was wearing in the hall next to him. He thought of Anjali for a moment. Since he had left Raver, he had regularly written letters to her. Initially Anjali replied, begging him to come back. But later she understood what his trumpet meant to him. Her letters began to dry. The last time Vijay had heard from her was about an year back. She had written that her father had now aggressively started searching for a suitable groom. And Vijay didn’t know if he was suitable. A knock at the door broke his stream of thought. It was Prady calling him for the performance.

The wedding rocked to the tune of the Maharaja Band. They were mind blowing. Especially the song ‘Tumse hi…’ on flugelhorn and banjo was a super hit. While dining after the performance, a rugged looking guy came to them and asked who the boss was. Looking at the guy’s prudence, other three pointed fingers to Prady. He took Prady away saying some one wanted to meet him. While they joked around, Prady came back huffing and puffing as if they made him run a marathon race.

“What heppened?” Vijay asked.
“Do… Do you know… who called?”
“Who?”
“Loo… Looks at this card!” and Prady handed over a card to them.
“Anurag Kashyap?”
“Yes. He wants us to…”
“Anurag Kashyap, I think I have heard this name before.”
“You fool… Anurag Kashyap the director. He has called us to his office tomorrow. He wants to give us a chance.”
“Anu… oh my god! Anurag Kashyap?”
“Yesssssss! He will introduce us to Amit Trivedi, his music director. He wants us to compose a song for him”
“What………!!!”

“What happened?” Vijay asked.

“Do… Do you know… who called?”

“Who?”

“Loo… Looks at this card!” and Prady handed over a card to them.

“Anurag Kashyap?”

“Yes. He wants us to…”

“Anurag Kashyap, I think I have heard this name before.”

“You fool… Anurag Kashyap the director. He has called us to his office tomorrow. He wants to give us a chance.”

“Anu… oh my god! Anurag Kashyap?”

“Yesssssss! He will introduce us to Amit Trivedi, his music director. He wants us to compose a song for him”

“What………!!!”

What was going to happen was history. They were offered to compose a song for Anurag Kashyap’s new movie Dev.D. They had no idea the song ‘Tauba Tera Jalwa’ they were going to make will become a cult success. Vijay had no idea he was going to go back and marry Anjali.