Wednesday, June 30, 2004

The classic debate

ESPN-Star is still down. I have threatened my cable operator that I will disconnect but it seems to have fallen on deaf ears. After all, how does Rs. 200 lesser every month matter to someone who is reportedly serving 800 households. Monopolistic trade practices be damned. I've tried praying also but it doesn't seem to be working. So in the absence of Wimbledon, the next most exciting thing I do is watching movies in my CD player. Monday night, dunno why, I revisited that ageless classic Casablanca... Ahem...The enigmatic Rick Blaine helping the divine Ilsa and her husband Victor Laszlo to escape and then walking into the sunset with the unimaginable ally Louis Renault is one of the most memorable cinematic sequences I have ever seen. After watching it for the umpteenth time, I sat back and thought. (Danger ahead)

It’s been 60 years since then but why hasn't anyone ever bothered to find out what might have happened in the lives of these characters. Positive that there must have been something that happened, I googled and was not at all surprised when it threw up some of the following results.

1. A horrendously stupid movie sequel idea unfortunately called Brazzaville that has to be the product of some retarded bloke.

2. Micheal Walsh's book "As Time Goes By" released by Warner in 1998, sort of a prequel and sequel to Casablanca. It answers a lot of hypothetical questions like

Do Victor and Ilsa make it to America?
Do Rick and Louis join the Free French garrison in Brazzaville?
Why can't Rick return to New York?
Will Rick and Ilsa ever see each other again?


I, for one, have never been bothered to seek out answers for all these questions. However one thought that's always haunted me is "Can Ilsa ever be happy with Victor?" My good friend Girish and I have had a million discussions on this one and other similar situations. While he feels that it’s more important to be loved and contends that Ilsa's memories of Rick will soon fade away, I am of the firm opinion that even it doesn't last long, it’s important to get the person you want - Ilsa would have been much better off with Rick.

Wot's your take on this?

Tuesday, June 29, 2004

Oh my dear England!

Damn Sreenidhi Cables. To hell with ESPN-Star. Yes, it’s my infamous foul temper at work. My cable operator has blacked out ESPN-Star since Saturday evening and I have missed the best part of the last four days of action at Wimbledon and Euro2004.

Even though the punks are out thanks to Portugal, England continues to be the flavor of the month for me. These Brits are never short of real entertainment. Take Tim for example. Come June and the whole of this nation gets into a frenzy hoping to see their local boy crowned champion atleast this time around at Wimbledon. When was it the last time around? Fred Perry in 1936? I never support Brits but this time my heart goes out to Henman. He has struggled through the early rounds but surprisingly beat the Scud yesterday. Next up is Ancic and then it’s the usual semifinal date. Never matters who the opponent is - this one will be Tim's mental match. If he can cross this, it will be his year.

Sunday evening had another British treat in store for me as I finally saw Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. I have always had crazy tastes and just to give you an idea, my favorite character in the books is without a shadow of doubt, Severus Snape. But then he hardly gets any screen time in the movies which narrows down my choice to Hermoine Granger. (Pronounced: Her-Moy-Nee: I insist on everyone getting their pronunciation right) Wanna know why ? Read on..

Intelligence is a rare commodity to find amongst women and when this is coupled with oodles of loyalty and loads of attitude, the combination can be truly deadly. Born to Muggles, Hermoine is the smartest of her lot at Hogwarts. She's studied wizardry since childhood and has answers to all the questions. Backgrounds of creatures, histories of characters - If it’s ever been in a book, Hermoine knows it. And just like all other brilliant people (pat on my back), Hermoine can't tolerate stupidity and rubbish. Check out her disgust for Cybil Trelawney and Divination, watch out as she ticks off Ron over and over again :-) Sigh !! Hermoine is one heckuva intellectual turn-on :-)

Emma Watson.. Hmm.. Don't get ideas folks but I would be failing in my duty if I did not compliment this wonderful lady for her glowing performance in HP3. Be it the scene when she ticks off Harry for trying to reach out for the magic pendant or when she punches Malfoy, Ms. Watson is a sheer delight. She more than compensates for the drab and boring Daniel Radcliffe and is a wonderful foil for the adorable Rupert Grint. IMHO, this is clearly the best of the three movies and full credit to Alfonso Cuaron for extracting such wonderful performances and also deviating from the book to add his own magical touches. Couldn’t agree more with this wonderful review.

Sunday, June 27, 2004

A return to the idealized past

It’s been a week now and things have slightly become better. But as Frost said “There are miles to go before I sleep". It's in these difficult circumstances that I remember that wonderful movie I had seen a few weeks back. Got to give the devil it's due.

Starring Jim Carrey and Kate Winslet, Eternal Confessions of the Spotless Mind written by the redoubtable Charlie Kauffman is the story of two people who have been in love just sometime back till they suddenly realize there is no fire in their relationship. Deciding to undergo a procedure to erase each other from their memories, it is only through the process of loss that they discover what they had to begin with.

Now let's come to my Aaha experience. Imagine the implications of a memory erasure - just think how it would feel waking up one morning to find out that a certain part of your past has been completely wiped out. The first situations I can think offhand where this would really help me are:

### I wouldn't need to buy people a lot of presents. The second half of the calendar year traditionally has me GIVING more than GETTING - If only I could forget that I had ever received :-)

### I would not need to be reminded of the various times I goofed up. For starters, How about the last time I loved a perfume so much that I presented it to my aunt failing to notice it was one for gents. Or how about wiping off going out on my first date to a Hindi picture without realizing she doesn't know the language and whose original I'd already seen in Tamil?
I am sure there are million other practical applications for this magical memory erasure but hey, I don't think it ever should be used to wipe away recollections of a happy-once-sour-now kind of relationship. After all, u win some u lose some - Life should go on.

Leaving you with some wonderful lines from the movie. These lines are part of Alexander Pope's stirring poem "Eloisa to Abelard"

How happy is the blameless Vestal's lot!
The world forgetting, by the world forgot.
Eternal sunshine of the spotless mind!
Each pray'r accepted, and each wish resign'd.

Go Portugal Go


Portugal go
Originally uploaded by Jupieee.

England have crashed out of Euro 2004. And rightfully so. After going ahead through (surprise of all surprises) a freak goal by Michael Owen in the 3rd minute, England played disgusting football for the rest of the 87 mts of normal time. Their attackers seldom moved forward, their creative midfielders lacked imagination, the combative midifielders just didn't win enough balls and the defence barely managed to shut out the rampaging Portuguese.

Big Phil has always proved himself to be a very shrewd reader of the game and the introduction of Simao in the second half was a stroke of sheer genius. What impressed me most was the confidence with which he pulled out Luis Figo, a move sure to have cost him his job if Portugal had lost. But Simao and the other two subs, Rui Costa and Helder Postiga repaid the faith reposed on them by their coach with two wonderful goals. To their credit, England did play brave football in extra time but the tired legs showed. Besides, the passionate crowd and the intense desire to win was the difference between the two teams. An exhilarating match that produced breath-taking football - the rest of the tournament now has to match up to some really high standards.

England's hero for the day: Ashley Cole
Portugal's hero for the day: Christiano Ronaldo
England's Villain for the day: David Beckham
Portugal's Villain for the day: Costinha
Magical Moment of the match: Helder Postiga's outrageously taken penalty.
Controversial moment of the match: Sol Campbell's disallowed goal


For more match stats
For complete photo gallery, click on the link at the bottom of this page

Friday, June 25, 2004

Timeline

"The journey of a thousand miles starts with a single step" - and quite often its a faltering one. Heavily panned by the critics, here's my first amateurish attempt at short-story writing. After all history needs to have a record of my humble beginnings.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Friday, February 13, 2004
11:54 pm


…I do it for …. You.” The lilting music came to a slow stop and the audience instantaneously broke into raptures. The handsome crooner took turns bowing to various sections of the audience, lapping up the well-deserved applause. Sitting at the far end, Preeti watched as all the people jostled towards the centre of the dance floor where the huge 10 feet cake had been laid. It was almost midnight and Preeti glanced at her watch yet again. There were a lot of things that bugged her in life but men coming late for a date was one thing she had never been able to tolerate. "How could people mess up on what is probably the most important occasion of their lives?" she pondered aloud for the umpteenth time, staring at the three empty chairs in front of her.

And just as she was resigning herself to making a quiet exit, she saw them coming. Surprise. "They have all made it finally - but hey, am I seeing it right ? Are they actually coming in together ?” Viewing them suspiciously as only a woman can do, Preeti's instincts told her that something crazy was about to happen.

Friday, February 13, 2004
10:57 pm


Checking her appearance one last time in the mirror, Preeti walked back to the table she had reserved for the evening and steeled herself for the most important hour of her life. In a few minutes, they would all be here. It was time for her to carefully weigh the merits of each case and decide on her future. The last conversation with her best friend Divya and those final words of advice rang loud and clear.

“So you told him yesterday that you would give your answer tonight?”

“Yes, I hinted at that.”

“Are you really sure today is the day ?”

“Yes, Divya ! I have waited too many years looking for Mr. Perfect that I have given up. Surely he is not going to fall down from heaven on my lap. I got to decide with what I’ve got – Besides there is no point in postponing this.”

“But Preeti, you barely know this guy. How could you even be thinking about him seriously ? C’mon, you met him during one of your training sessions and then went on-site with him. Granted he is intelligent, going places with his career but don’t you think he suffers from a big “I-am-the-biggest-gift-to-womankind” attitude ?”

“We vibe well, Divya. I think his attitude rocks. If he’s got it, I see no reason why he shouldn’t flaunt it.”

“So does that mean Mr. “Funny n Romantic” is out ?”

“Hmmm.. I have actually called him too. Yes, we did have some wonderful times together. Those coffee dates, those movie outings, those delightful mail exchanges – I don’t deny that he is special but then we have drifted apart these last 6 months. I always got the feeling he wasn’t serious about this whole thing – he kidded around too much for my liking.”

“Oh my god ! You are just imagining things. Why don’t you just ask him ?”

“Maybe today I shall”

“Is that all or has anyone else also invited to this Swayamvar ?”

“Don’t kid me Divya. Of course, you-know-who is also coming. I just mailed him today morning and he said he would join me.”

“What ??? Don’t tell me. Has the puppy still not stopped following the lady? Its been a year, Preeti. What more proof do you want? Can't you see he is madly in love with you."

“Hmmm”

“So how are you going to choose between them ?”

“God knows. Shucks, gotta rush coz I don’t want to be late. Maybe I will just choose on a first-come-first-served basis considering you know how finicky I am about being on time.”

“You are so impossible. Whatever happens, darling, just remember to go with the flow. Follow your heart.”


Friday, February 13, 2004
10:46 pm


"F&^%, crazy son of a gun" shouted Harsha from the side.

Screeeeeeeeeeeech!!!

"Hey, what’s the matter with you, mister ? Your girlfriend dumped you or something and you decided to end your life in front of my car. Would have happily run you down except that I’m just not in the mood for it - You better explain" said Priyanshu as he rolled down the glass and shook a fist at the visibly shaken guy standing in front of his car.

"S-s-sorry folks. I was just lost in my memories. I should not have strayed onto the road. I am sorry. I am kinda late for a date and I could not find a taxi" mumbled the lanky jeans clad guy "Btw, the name's Girish" and proffered his hand.

"No time for all this. We're bloody late. I am heading downtown - so if you want a ride, jump in" said Priyanshu.

"That would be really useful" said Girish, climbing into the rear and settling down after moving aside a big bouquet of flowers.

Watching him closely in the mirrors, Harsha asked "So. Where exactly are you headed?”

Fingering an exquisitely etched wooden casket, Girish exclaimed "Valentine Day party at TDS - There was so much work at office that I could not pick up my date for the evening - had to call her and fix up to meet straight at TDS. I just hope she is a good mood. Especially since I plan to ask her to marry me tonight."

Shifting gears and maneuvering the sleek Ikon ahead of a slow moving bus, Priyanshu remarked "Good luck mate". Harsha turned back and smiled. Returning the smile, Girish leant on the soft cushion, closed his eyes and tried to recall the strange phone conversation he had had with Preeti yesterday evening.

"Hi Girish. Guess who this is"

"Hmmm.. sounds familiar but please, I am no good at these guessing games. Can you please spare me this suspense?"

"Hey, its me - Preeti. Long time nuh..How are you doing ?"

""What a pleasant surprise. Hi Preeti. I am doing fine. Where were you these last six months ? I had called you up at office and even left behind numerous messages. You never called me back after that Barista date where I serenaded in front of everyone. Was I so awful that day ? We were supposed to see Koi Mil Gaya together, remember. What happened ?”

"Sorry yaar. But I shifted jobs and had to leave for the US on a short term assignment for my new company. You know how these things happen right ? I just came back on Wednesday and you are the first friend I am calling here."

"Great to hear that. So..Hmmmm...Whatcha doing for Friday nite ?"

"Nothin' really...You've got any plans ?"

"Why don’t we hook up for that party at TDS?”

"Deal. But hey, I have to meet an old friend of mine so I will join you there directly. Shall we meet there at, say, eleven p.m."

"That sounds real cool. Ciao. Will catch ya then"


Friday, February 13, 2004
10:22 pm


Harsha sprinted down the stairs, taking them two at a time. Reaching the bottom of the last flight, he turned and ran towards the door. Govind, the night-watchman wished him Good Night. Half-acknowledging the greeting, Harsha eyes searched in vain for a taxi. One look at the deserted streets and it dawned on him that today was the taxi union’s strike. Damn. Silently cursing his bad luck, Harsha tried calling up his room mate Shiv to summon help. Damn. The mobile was not reachable. Murphy’s law had always worked against him and today seemed to be no exception. “I’ve got to hitch a ride. Preeti said 11 and I am already running late. Maybe I should buy her some flowers”

Walking purposefully towards the florist at the nearest chowk, Harsha saw a nice, sleek Ikon a few metres ahead at the intersection. It appeared as if the driver seemed to be stuck in an argument with a traffic cop. Sensing his opportunity, Harsha moved in and said “Any problem?”

“Hey mate, I have no clue why this guy pulled me over but now he refuses to let me go and I can’t seem to figure out what he is saying.”

“Let me handle this”


Harsha settled the issue by bribing the cop to ignore the “minor offence” of speeding,

“Thanks a tonne, mate. I am terribly late but I really owe you one so maybe you want me to drop you off somewhere ?”

“That would be wonderful. Any chance are you heading towards TDS ?”

“Touchwood – pile on”

“Wow. Thanks. So who’s the lucky chic ?”

“Am just meeting a friend of mine – what about you, Mr. Flowers-In-Hand Romeo ?”

Harsha grinned but did not reply back. It had been three months since he had first met Preeti in a training session and as usual, he had started off flirting shamelessly with her. Working together in the same team for a client, Harsha had realized that he shared so much in common with Preeti as far as career goals and ambitions were concerned. So it didn’t surprise him too much when he actually found himself increasingly thinking seriously about the relationship. He had casually brought up this topic with her on a few occasions but had seen no green lights. Maybe something nice would happen today – his instinct told him there was a happy ending in store.

Friday, February 13, 2004
08:00 pm


"Chadthi Jawani..." blared the stereo. The gongs struck 8 in Priyanshu’s sub-conscious mind. He had never needed an alarm to wake up for dinner - Anand always took care of that. No sooner would Anand enter home after work, than he would switch on the damn radio. Snuggling deeper into the sheets, Priyanshu tried to ignore the music which had now risen to intolerable volumes.

“Don’t you want to shave, take a shower, and grab a bite and leave? You don’t have much time, dude and Preeti despises late-comers, remember” piped Anand from the shower.

Getting up from his bed, Priyanshu grabbed the towel and ambled on towards the other bathroom. Looking into the mirror, he reflected silently on the events of the afternoon. He had just returned from the night shift and checking mail for the last time before his siesta, he had been surprised to see a mail from Preeti. All it said was

“Dear Pumpkin,
Its Val Day tomorrow – in case you didn’t realize.
Wanna meet you @ 11 @ TDS.
Love,
Plum”


Aware that the evening might not transpire into anything remotely romantic, he had very reluctantly agreed to join her. Now, on second thoughts, he wasn’t so sure it had been a great idea. For one, he knew he still didn’t have it in him to bare his heart to her and more importantly he has this strange fear that something awful was going to happen that day.

“ Hey Anand, I don’t think I should go.”

“You moron, this could be your last chance to tell her. You have been Preeti’s friend, philosopher and guide for a year now. Need I remind that it was precisely this date that you broke off with Divya last year. You’ve waited long buddy. Just go get her.”


Tidily decked in an ironed, pink shirt (Preeti’s favorite color) and reeking of expensive CK perfume, Priyanshu pulled his car out of his garage and set off to see Chameli. An hour and a half into the movie, Priyanshu changed his mind and decided to go to TDS after all.

Friday, February 13, 2004
11:58 pm


Girish was first. Nervous that he clearly was, fiddling with his hands in his pockets, he ventured “Hi Preeti. Sorry I am late.” And just as he was done with the sentence, Harsha, who had a big bouquet of Preeti’s favourite orchids, rushed in. Seeing Girish around, he quizzically turned towards Preeti seeking an explanation and had barely started a question when Priyanshu trooped in. Seeing the other two, he was totally puzzled.

And then it happened.

The green-eyed, handsome crooner who had been wading through the crowd of admirers joined the group and introduced himself. “Hi, I am Jupiter.”

Ten... Nine... Eight....

Turning his eyes to Preeti, he said “ I’ve been observing you all evening. You’ve been waiting for someone for the last few hours. Some people spend their entire life times waiting to find their soul mates. I have found mine today. When I saw you from that corner , I realized you were my future. I realized my existence would be meaningless without you. Will you marry me ?”

Three...Two...One...

Saturday, February 14, 2004
00:01 am


“Yes, I will.”

Thursday, June 24, 2004

Wordsworth's successor ?

Dear Reader,

Confusion reigns. I am all hazy. Came across this wonderful (??) poem some time back but after giving it three reads I am still none the wiser as to what this profound poet has to say. Would someone please care to elaborate ? For starters I do understand that this is a verse where the poet has bared his heart out to his muse but beyond that I would really welcome if someone explained the passion in more simple English.

Expecting your inputs.
A very anxious Jupe

Thy, the heavenly blossom of mine,
Why, this quest in u'r eyes so benign.

You aer the one, my life's bubbles spring up from thee,
Deep blue horizon, where my sky chooses to die
The breeze that glows up the fire in my soul
You are my breath, the anchor that wont let me fall

The very life of me, oozing from the pores of my heart.

My heart ceases to beat, fading ur song in my ears,
I stand in a dream, with trembling lips for the feel of ur cheek.

My only friend, my foe, u make up for both.
The gloriest rose an, the thorn laying beneath.
Sparkling drop of rain an, the cloud's fiery breath,
My eternal soul, an its brittlest sheath.

My birth an my death, here I lay in ur lap.

The heavenly blossom of mine,
Never want to see those blue eyes in a pain.

My joyous company, an dreary loneliness,
The fire of my script, an the words I misspell,
You light up my nights, still my sorrow of darkness,
You r my sky, my wings that fell by

My dearest, you own me , all seen an unseen.

Thy , the heavenly blossom of mine,
Dew drop in my desolate terrain.

The breeze that glows up the fire in my soul
You r my breath, the anchor that wont let me fall


Note: Spellings and words have been reproduced verbatim - didn't wanna be sued for misrepresentation.

Wednesday, June 23, 2004

The importance of being Jupe

There are just two kinds of people in this world - people who have a Gmail account and those who don't. For people who fall under the second category, all I can say is "Get a life" - You folks aren't even worth talking about - insignificant, worthless elements who have no reason for their existence :-) For all the junta who fall under the first category, all I can say is "Join the gang".

In case all ye laymen and laywomen (perverts, don’t get ideas) out here reading this fantastic blog are wondering what this brouhaha is all about, Gmail is an internet email service from Google and is currently available here. Now hold your horses. There's a catch to it. Right now it is still in the Beta testing phase hence the registrations are restricted. You can join only if you get an invite from an existing Gmail user. The existing Gmail users do not have the luxury of inviting unlimited users to Gmail. Hence getting a Gmail account is actually very difficult (So do I see expensive gifts coming by courier?)

What’s so great about Gmail? First things first - it makes for amazing party time conversation. While having a Gmail account might help you score brownie points with the more intelligent amongst the opposite sex (chest swells with pride), not having one is a sure sign of a loser.

Let’s now get technical. It offers 1000 MB of space (ok, rediff also does but..) and their simple text based interface loads up really fast. Messages never to be deleted (after all space is not a constraint), they can be flagged, archived but also retrieved easily since Google's searching technology is extended to Gmail too. The address book on Gmail is also on auto-prompt mode - when you type the first few letters, it displays all possible matches from your address book. I am a mouse guy but for all the keyboard junkies, the keyboard shortcuts are really cool. There are so many more features but I am yet to discover most of them. For more details

Signing off,
Jupe17(at the rate of)gmail(dot)com

Tuesday, June 22, 2004

The weekend that was..

The weekend is done. I know it’s been done almost 36 hrs back but as usual, it was so eventful that it’s still worth revisiting it so late.

Friday @ work was godawful - I could hardly wait to get back home and chill out - Saw When Harry Met Sally for the fourth time. Funny, witty, clever and definitely romantic, this is what one would call a timeless classic - which brings us again back to the fundamental question "Can women and men just be good friends?" Harry Burns, much as I think u rock, its such a pity that you simply cannot understand the comfort levels in such platonic relationships. The movie was over by 11 and I still had over an hour to wait till Euro 2004 came up on telly. Was really down, more so after seeing the movie, that I was quite tempted to down a few bottles of beer. But then a promise is a promise :-(

The best thing about friends, and I mean the really close ones, is that they know how, when and what exactly to do to lift one's flagging spirits. Considering Lakshya was so hyped it was no wonder that all big halls were displaying House Full boards for the whole weekend. However the big depression (not in the seas but within me) had still not tided over by Saturday noon so two of my bosom buddies realized that the only way to "help" me was to take me out for a flick. So we ended up at Tribhuvan watching Lakshya 4 to 7 pm - I personally enjoyed the movie and now realize Farhan Akhtar might not be a one film wonder after all. We then hung around in a few pubs and as much as Satan tried all his tricks, didn’t down a single mug. (Pat on my own back - proud of ya nigger)

Sunday was simply the highlight ! Good, nay excellent, Veg Pulav at my cousins for lunch was just the start of what turned out to be a delightful day out. I had planned to catch up with my good friend cum Sunday movie date, Mansur (single and available - he's joining IIMA too) and we had made plans to see HP3. Reaching Symphony at around 5 pm, we found that balcony tickets were sold out. Snobs that we were, we refused to sit in stall and so decided to buy front row tickets (no sniggering pls). Since such cheap tickets are usually sold only after the costlier ones are filled up, we decided to while away time at Planet M and hang around MG and Brigade doing boys stuff :-) Surprise of all surprises, when we came back at 6, it was HOUSEFULL. Faced with the prospect of a full 3 hrs at our disposal we didn't know wot to do. After an hour of book shopping @ Crosswords and an hour @ Barista bullshitting under the guise of advising about life at B-school, we had an early dinner. No sooner had the plates been cleared when Mansur opened up and gave me gyaan on how to succeed in my social life. My, my, I have never heard anything funnier than this before. Here was one of the biggest MCP's and an engineer too (hehe) teaching me how to score with women. And listening to those pearly words of wisdom I couldn't but help observe that they seemed to reflect experience. Did I miss something these last 3 years da ?

You know I get around 32 readers every day - hopefully 50% are female of which 50% are single of which 50% are looking - That should give you 4 to choose from..Inky Pinky Ponky Wonky..Lemme know if u score :-)

Ciao folks !

Monday, June 21, 2004

People I admire - Part 1

Tamil film music has seen a lot of new talents emerging the last decade thanks to the incomparable AR Rahman. One such person who's impressed me tremendously since her arrival in the music scene has been Anuradha Sriram.

Born into a family with deep roots in music, Anu despite doing very well in acads in Padma Seshadri Chennai and wanting to become a Doctor, was persuaded by her father to take to music seriously. She trained under many respected Gurus such as Padmasri Tanjavur Sri. S.Kalyanaraman, Sangeetha Kalanidhi Smt. T. Brinda and Dr. T.Viswanathan in the Carnatic style and under Pandit Manikbua Thakurdas in the Hindustani style. She was a Gold medalist in both B.A., and M.A., in music from the Madras University. She was given a fellowship to do her Masters in World Music from Wesleyan University, Connecticut, U.S.A. While in the U.S.A., she learnt Western Classical Opera and Jazz. Besides this, she performed in Indonesian and West African music concerts. The President of India Gold Medal in 1987 for Carnatic and Light Classical Music and the Central Government Senior Fellowship in 1989 add to her list of many achievements.

Diversifying into films, her first big break came when she was part of the chorus (supporting vocals as ARR likes to say) in Bombay. She however gained fame only with one of her early solo numbers under ARR, the haunting Anbendra Mazhaiyile in Minsara Kanavu. From there till today (she has even turned MD with Five Star along with her husband Parasuram Sriram), it’s been a wonderful journey and it would be an understatement to say that she has been a sheer delight to her millions of fans. Be it folk tunes, classic melodies or outright dappanguthu numbers, Anu's versatility is to be heard to be believed. And this is one artiste who can sing better in live programmes if ever that is possible. I personally feel she is the female equivalent of SPB in Tamil and would not be surprised if she acted in movies and did extremely well. To be honest, I even have a superb role for her in my script - if only someone would lend me the dough :-)

Here are some of her best hits. Long live Anuradha Sriram.

Friday, June 18, 2004

So what’s on my play list?

Aldous Huxley once said "After silence that which comes nearest to expressing the inexpressible is music." Music is a very integral part of my daily routine - No day starts without me switching on my music system after the early morning jog, I can't imagine how I could endure those torturous last hours at work from 4 pm if it weren't for my Winamp play list and then the bed-time .

While I listen to just about anything from boy bands to balle balle and trance to tapori numbers, my season's flavor changes as much as my moods do. Since the audience for my blog spans language barriers, let me mention 3 of my current favorites

1. Rom-com movies always hold tremendous appeal to me and when their sound track has some fun numbers, I always fall for them big-time. Purrfekt example: Ladki Kyuun from HUM TUM with that extremely witty ad-man Prasoon Joshi penning the lyrics.
Trivia: It seems Prasoon wrote the lyrics of 'Hum Tum' on the pot in Malaysia and text messaged line after line to Aditya Chopra and Kunal Kohli in Mumbai! Thankfully, we won't say that they're potty lyrics! Sample these...

Pyaar Usse Bhi Hai Magar Shuruaat Tumhi Se Chahe
Khudh Mein Ulji Ulji Hai Par Bhaalo Ko Suljaayein
I Mean You're All The Same Yaar
Hum Achche Dost Hai Par Uss Nazar Se Tumko Dekha Nahin
Woh Sab To Teek Hai Par Uss Barein Mein Maine Socha Nahin
Sab Se Alag Hai Tum Yeh Keh Ke Paas Tumhaare Aaye
Aur Kuch Din Mein Tum Mein Alag Sa Kuch Bhi Na Usko Paiye
Uff Yeh Kaisi Shirt Pehnthe Ho
Yeh Kaise Bhaal Khatathe Ho
Ghaadi Tehz Chalathe Ho
Tum Jaldi Mein Kyo Khaathe Ho
Gimme A Break


For full lyrics

2. For all you Tamil music lovers, wake up..There's life beyond AR Rahman. Yuvan Shankar Raja simply rocks in 7G Rainbow colony and how !! The album with sensitively penned lyrics by N. Muthukumar has a wonderful mix of fast paced numbers, lovely instrumental music (Raja's genes after all) and of course my favorite slow, sad melodies. Here's a taste of YSR magic.

Ninaithu Niniaithu (Male version by KK)

Pallavi:

Ninaithu Ninaithu Paarthaen
Nerugi Vilagi Nadanthaen
Unnaal Dhaane Naane Vaazhgiraen...
Unnil Indru Ennai Paarkiraen
Eduthu Padithu Mudikkum Munnae
Eriyum Kadithum Edharku Pennae ?
Unnaal Dhaane Naane Vaazhgiraen...
Unnil Indru Ennai Paarkiraen...

Saranam 1
Amarndhu Pesum Marangalin Nizhalum
Unnai Kaetkum Eppadi Solvaen
Udhirndhu Pona Malarin Mounama...
Thoodhu Pesum Golusin Oliyai
Araigal Kaetkum Eppadi Solvaen ?
Udaindhu Pona Valayal Pesuma...?
Ullankaiyil Vetpum serkkum
Viralgal Ingu Engey...?
Tholil Saayndhu Kadhaigal Pesa
Mugamum Illai Ingey
Mudhal Kanavu Mudindhidum Munnae
Thookum Kalaindhadhey...!

Saranam 2
Pesi Pona Vaarthaigal Ellam
Kalanthorum Kaadhinil Kaetkum
Saambhal Karaiyum Vaarthai Karaiyuma...?
Paathu Pona Paarvaigal Ellam
Pagalum Iravum Kelvigal Kaetkum
Uyirum Pogum Uruvam Poguma...?
Thodarndhu Vandha Nizhalum Ingey
Theeyil Serndhu Pogum...
Thiruttu POna Thadayam Paarthum
Nambavillai Naanum
Oru Tharunam Edhirinil Thondruvaay
Endre Vaazhgiraen....!


3. English music .. ahem.. I know there are scores and scores of mad rocks fans here who would love me to quote from some of those cult classics of the 70s. But pray forgive me, considering the way the last month has turned up, one song which had me all ears has been Daniel Bedingfield's If you're not the one. I know, I was always a sucker for mush, but still... this is one heckuva song, check out these lines that start the song..

If you re not the one then why does my soul feel glad today?
If you re not the one then why does my hand fit yours this way?
If you are not mine then why does your heart return my call
If you are not mine would I have the strength to stand at all
I never know what the future brings
But I know you are here with me now
We ll make it through
And I hope you are the one I share my life with


for full lyrics

Any comments ?

Thursday, June 17, 2004

A typical "work" day !

One question that keeps popping up often when I meet folks who cant understand what a "Senior Marketing Executive" does is how does a typical work day of mine shape up. So lemme just give you the more significant events.

Kaalai ezhunda udan kaapi (Coffee as soon as I wake up in the morning) - Hindu crossword in the bus - check blog and write some crap - Idli n Vada for breakfast - mails (Yippeeee) - Good Mornings over MSN - official phone calls - more mails - hot pantry coffee - a little casual flirting over YM - a little bit of work - mails again.

LUNCH


More phone calls - a few official mails - strong coffee - a meeting here - personal mails - a presentation there - music in Winamp - closing mails - sleep in the bus - dinner at home - Friends on Zee English - 11pm HBO - hit the sack.

The real high point however is at 2 pm - jes after lunch when I get my daily dose of Calvin and Hobbes. Am sure everyone worth his/her salt knows about this strip but for the nerds out there, C&H was created by Bill Waterson in 1985. It features principally Calvin, a hyper active six year old kid with a monstrous imagination and his best friend Hobbes who is in reality a stuffed tiger.(or is he not?) Then there are the fringe characters like Susie, the gal Calvin loves to hate (or is this jes a mask for hidden affections?) - Calvin's teacher Mrs. Wormwood who gets harassed no end - Calvin's Mom and Dad who have to perennially endure his whims - Rosalyn the baby-sitter, who is the only person with some control over Calvin.

Different people like C&H for different reasons. I love the inherent contradiction in the "real" Calvin exhibiting eccentricity bordering on lunacy and the "imaginary" Hobbes firmly rooted to reality. I love the rebel in Calvin, I think his brattish attitude rocks but I also freak on Hobbes and his common sense. You need to experience them to understand how I feel. Just to give you a sample, here's some delightful Calvin-speak for you:

"If ignorance is bliss, this lesson would appear to be a deliberate attempt on your part to deprive me of happiness, the pursuit of which is my unalienable right according to the Declaration of Independence"

"Childhood is for spoiling adulthood"

"There's never enough time to do all the nothing you want"

"The problem with the future is that it keeps turning into the present"

"If I 'm not going to be eternally rewarded for my behavior, I’d sure like to know now"

"Weekends don’t count unless you spend them doing something completely pointless."

"I'm only civil because I don’t know any swear words"

"I thought I knew everything when I was three. Now, a lifetime of experience has left me bitter and cynical."


And the last line of the last strip that WATERSON drew continues to be one of the most endearing ones ever..C&H are zipping off on their sled and Calvin says "Its a magical world, Hobbes ol' buddy...Lets go exploring."

Doff my hat to BW ! Long live C&H !

Other useful links:
All about C&H - one of my favorite haunts !
C&H quizzes
C&H trivia

Wednesday, June 16, 2004

KISS, Bob and the Reebok store !!

Keep It Short n Simple is one of the biggest lessons I learnt at B-school. If you cannot sum up a 1 hr project meeting in 5 mts (I am just back from one such long drawn affair..Twas all Aramaic and Hebrew) or a 3 hr movie in 8000 words, you are simply put - inadequate. The elevator test, which I presume most of u have heard of, is the oft quoted reference in this context. Now, I am sure u are asking me how is all this relevant to today's blog. Simple answer is that I don’t have much time to write anything earth shattering so will simply KISS.

Before I forget, let me try and fill you in on whatever happened last weekend. After a meticulous search which included downloading specs from multiple websites, taking down quotes from atleast 6 vendors, I finally zeroed down on a Nokia 3100 for my new mobile. I can hear the groans - yes, it’s an old model but then the joy I had on discovering it is akin to that of a palaentologist who discovers fossils of a dinosaur in his backyard. So please welcome Bob, the latest addition to my family. No prizes for guessing wot color he is.. Blue rules..Pete, though is still with me - have turned it over to my parents.

So where did I finally buy it from ? There is a Sangeethas shoppe at the Forum in Koramangla and they sell mobiles at prices which are considerably cheaper than anywhere else in the market.(Thanks Priya for the tip) And lo, who did I see when I went there on Saturday evening ? Guess.. Guess..Clue: Some of the Indian cricketers are attending a camp in Bangalore..Okie, times up. I saw cho-chweet Irfan Pathan (SS, this guy is tall, handsome and has a winsome smile..He's an Adonis..n he has talent too - Neday better than that bloke Yuvraj - sudhar jao) and butter-fingers Parthiv Patel at the Reebok store presumably trying out shoes..An hour later they were still there at the shop and twas then that I realised it was a publicity gimmick.. People were going crazy with their camera phones. Neway it was a good evening out at Forum.

Shucks. This post has exceeded its planned length. Havta go. Byeeeee.

Tuesday, June 15, 2004

Will the Azzuri ever score?

Saw Denmark dominate Italy yesterday @ Euro2004 and am now not so sure that we will go all the way after all. This opinion has only been reinforced seeing Sweden's dominant display later last night. So what should Traps do? Remove Del Piero and bring in Pirlo for sure, after all AC won the Scudetto thanks to this wonderful playmaker. Gattuso has to start - we need this combative midfielder to win us more balls. But most importantly I believe that with the hyped 4-2-3-1 formation, quite a few people do not really know where they fit in and what they are expected to do. Zanetti looked lost, Totti looked bored and Cassano after coming in as a sub hardly created a ripple. I still prefer the old fashioned 4-4-2 with Vieri and Totti up front. Wonder what the Italian papers said this morning.

Another thing that struck me as I watched Italy play yesterday was that these guys could actually do well in Rugby too - beats me how they never do well in the 6 nations cup. Their fullbacks, Nesta and Cannavaro in particular, tug at shirts and bring down opponents so effortlessly they cud easily make the switch to the back row or scrum halves. Ever observed how these Italian midfielders move forward - its always a 5m pass backwards who then moves forward 3m and then passes it back again.. Getting it ? Aint it summat similar to rugby ?

Enough of footer. Got this joke over e-mail yesterday - found it quite amusing. (Dedication: P, Lage raho) Enjoy !

Boys are like apples on trees. The best ones are at the top of the tree. The girls don't want to reach for the good ones because they're afraid of falling and getting hurt. Instead they just get the rotten apples that are on the ground, that aren't as good, but easy. So the apples at the top think that there is something wrong with them, when in reality, they are amazing. That is why we just have to be a little patient and the right girl, the one who takes a chance to find the good, right apple, will come someday...

Ps: Today’s episode of “The Original Love Story” will not come out due to the scriptwriter suffering from verbal constipation. The inconvenience caused is regretted.

Monday, June 14, 2004

So who’s gifting me what?

Came in late 2 office today since folks have moved in finally..Have so much to say about the weekend but then theres loads of work to do :-( So will fill up space with something i wrote some time back..Needless to say, its "utter crap"..Ensoii the toture !

Good friends are like four leaf clovers: hard to find and lucky to have. Thankfully, my friends have been fortunate to have known me. Acknowledging the fact that many of my buddies have had defining influences on me, this leads to a more fundamental question: What does it take to sustain such friendships ? Easy enough question but the answer is not so simple.

Quite often I’ve realized that all it takes is to say a few simple words like “I care” or “I’ll be there for you” rather than leave it to be implicit. And what better way to say these than with gifts/presents/treats/simple acts! However if you are a pathetic poet like me, then forget all those filmi herogiri where you can break into a song at once :-( Here’s what I usually do…

• The easiest way to a man’s heart is thru food. So all you gals, just find out his favorite restaurant, book a table in advance for a crowded Saturday evening - preferably somewhere in the centre (shady corners are only for lovelorn couples), order his favorite dishes (men hate ordering) and then let him ogle at all the women who come in. If possible, sweetly bitch about a few and engage in casual banter about the women in his life. Believe me, he feels on top of the world. He feels he is significant and people care about him!!

• For all you guys listening, nothing turns on women like new clothes.. So take your friend along asking her to help you pick clothes for your sister/cousin. While she helps you out, no woman can resist trying out some for herself. Just observe what she freaks out on and without her knowledge, gift her same stuff she tried out.

Note: The above two acts are better done on just any other day rather than a special occasion like a Birthday.

• Girls love lipstick and makeup. Read about it, find out the latest “happening brands” and then take them to a big shopping mall where they can try out a million shades before choosing the one they saw first.. Stand besides and offer ’’educated opinions’’ (women really appreciate that). Try n sense their pulse, reassure them about their selection - Generally be very supportive even if you don’t agree with their choices!

• An ordinary friend knows all about your favorite movies and your crushes on the stars. A great friend takes you out to all those movies even though he/she cant stand them - I know its tuff for gals to like Govinda but have u ever seen the joy in his face (read mine) when you sit with him and ensoii the mindless antics ? Be with him and watch him go ga-ga over Bipasha Basu and i promise, he wont forget that evening for a lifetime!! And yes guys, we all care a damn for Hrithik Roshan or Brad Pitt but its just 3 hrs - Surely its worth it , for friendships sake !

• For an erudite friend, nothing is more appropriate than a thoughtful book. It always works! While Bach is recommended, Ayn Rand is not! Heavy philosophy, murder mysteries are a no-no. Light comedies, classics have done best for me!

Music is divine! Nothing can work better than a CD recorded with all the songs that he/she has enjoyed since his/her youth. And if you are a childhood pal, it helps if you know who his /her heartthrob was during school and college days and recording all those hits songs.

• Another simple yet sentimental idea would be to gift your best friend a framed photograph of u and him/her together.

• On second thoughts, all the above are useful but in my list, this last one tops it all. I’ve never claimed to be a great poet but for my dearest of dearest friends, I always gift ‘em a Tee with a personalized poem inscribed on it.

Hasta manana till I get my gift!

Saturday, June 12, 2004

I let my fingers type..

and all I have are questions.

Why is it that we never realize the value of something that's been with us all along till we know we've lost it forever ?

Why is it that after so much preparation for the most defining moment of our lives, we still miss it and realize only after its too late ?

Why does it happen that in the search for perfection, we miss the simple joys of being flawed ?

Why do we so insist on dwelling on dreams that we forget to live ?


Contemplative mood this surely is.. And what’s more frightening is the fact that most of these questions are today throwing up answers that seem to be diametrically opposite to what I have believed all along..

Thanks to all those who commented on the previous blog :-) I wud love to comment that "Emotional blackmail works" but I guess I shud know better.

Friday, June 11, 2004

Random rants on a Friday...

Its been a very rough week @ work what with bushfires all around, the fire brigade on leave and anyone and everyone who knows how to handle a water hose asked to pitch in..Neway its all a thing of the past n I shant spoil my Friday by having yet another flashback considering there's so much to look forward to this weekend.

For starters, F1 moves to the American continent and I have this gut feeling that Montreal is gonna throw in a real shock result. The folks at Maranello aren’t gonna be popping their champagne bottles come Sunday - am tipping BAR to put in a strong performance. After all its gotta happen sometime this season - Button and Sato have been simply too good. And of course there's Euro 2004 at Portugal - it doesn’t get more intriguing than an England vs. France match, can't wait to see Henry and Pires run riot.. And then there is my Fatherland trying to salvage its reputation against Netherlands.

N then there's Bebo to drool at in Dev..n Cybil Trelawney to catch up with... Loads of B'day shopping to complete..Must also look out for Bob since I’ve decided to offload Pete to Mom n Dad..So much to do, so little time !

Interesting times are back again !

ps: I need to crib - its compulsive. I know there are a million people reading my blog everyday (or so I wud like to believe - sitemeter though maintains its only 31) but why on earth can't they jes leave behind a nice li'l comment. I understand its a pain to register but atleast as ANON, yaar. I demand it..Else I will stop blogging..Okie, I didn’t mean that..But u better or else !!

Thursday, June 10, 2004

Mayhem at 2 am...

He he he :-) That actually rhymed.. which means I am making progress in my poetic endeavors. (My heart swells with pride - but why am I almost blushing like a new bride - Shucks, yet again I digress - but then maybe its due to the stress - There's loads to do n its already bloody late- Ranting at this odd hour seems to be my fate ) Holy Cow !! That also rhymed ?? Mebbe I am India's answer to Wordsworth ;-) Its now 2:04 am.. That brilliant verse took me jes four minutes..Wow !!

Neway, wots it with two o clock n me..When I look back(that’s the third flashback for this week) I remember a lot of crazy things that have happened at this unearthly hour..The most recent thing I can recollect is meeting Ramkumar, a long lost school mate of mine after 9 years at a roadside motel last week. Both of us had been returning from our hometowns to Bangalore and had alighted from our respective buses half woozy suffering from the intolerable movie being played in our buses. Literally bumping into each other at the Johnny, we had exchanged visiting cards, cell phone nos, gossiped a little about life and then gone our ways.

And then…The 11 pm late night HBO movie ends at around 1:15am and after eating my Maggi from the night canteen, I still clearly recollect the endless hours of Table Tennis that I’ve played at SP. Thrashing the living daylights outta Ashish " Bond" Jain at those odd hours gave me a terrific kick. It was as if I was taking revenge on behalf of all the engineers against the CAs - the buggers used to screw us in acads :-)

And anyone whos ever watched Asianet (shant tell u which day) will also tell u that 2 am is a great time to have an honest man-to-man talk.... Distinctly remember how Murali, one of my good friends from under grad days, called me up one night in December 2000 (it was the week when our cable wala disconnected our line citing our refusal to settle his back wages), woke me up from my deep slumber and gave me a blow-by-blow account of what had transpired you-know-where :-)

There are lots more..The drunken walk from Enigma to SPCE after Tusku's job treat.... I could go on.. but I shall rest here..yawn... Zzzzzzzzz

Wednesday, June 09, 2004

Confessions of an eccentric mind !

We are all quirky..Every single Joe (and his mother too) but some of us are quirkier than the rest.. And then there are people who are downright nuts. No prizes for guessing which category I fall under. It isn’t entirely co-incidental that I was called "normal" at college. Tracing the origins of the way i am today.... Zzzzzzzzz...Transport to the not-so-distant past...

The movie was Roja..Posters were put up in very few corners of Trichy.. There was hardly any publicity.. Sensing a chance to watch a Mani movie FDFS, I remember rushing to Ramba cinema hall at around 9 am to catch the 11 am première. I was eighth in the Queue..The counters opened at half past ten and after selling precisely seven tickets, they downed the shutters. Imagine missing it by just that proverbial whisker.. Undaunted, I stayed back determined to catch the matinee..After all, I was now first in the line. But believe it or not, they did not even sell any tickets at the counter at 2pm. It was all out in the black market. I returned home dejected and swore not to see the movie at that hall.. And it ran there for 75 odd days before they shifted it to another hall - whilst poor me was torn between wanting to see it desperately and maintaining my resolve.

Then of course, I also need to mention about my cricketing experiences. I think the year was 1994 and I was in Std 11. I was representing my district at the under-16 level and we were playing Pondicherry in the quarterfinals away from home. The whole of the first day had been rained off and winning the toss, we put them in on the final day. Pretty soon things had taken a horrible turn for us and we'd dropped around 8 catches in the first hour. Edges were flying to the slips and gully and all the butter fingers in our team had been taking turns in letting them through. Since I had a strong arm and was one of the safest pair of hands in the team, I had as usual landed up in the outfield. (If not, I'd have settled for nothing but Point) But at the drinks break, my coach ordered me to get into the slip cordon. Reluctant to join the circus, I stood at second slip and watched my captain Navin drop a sitter at first slip. We switched places but the ball followed him to second. He dropped another. And in the middle of all this, our wicket keeper Lawrence muffed a sitter of a run out. There was too much action around me and it was on that chaotic day, I solemnly pledged never to get into the slips again. Needless to say, my pledge remains unbroken. And ya, we won that match - wanna know how - by spin of the coin since both teams could not complete even a single innings.. So ironic !!

There are numerous other incidents that I can recount but the latest cranky decision of mine is to never see the movie HUM TUM. Lemme explain. There is this person I asked out for this movie (and I don’t ask every Jane, Sally and Susie out..so u can stop smirking) and she actually had the gall to turn me down :-) Wots this world coming to ? People are out to ruin my statistics. Killjoys. Sadists. Considering my plight, I decided to fall back on the standard rules that are religiously followed by "losers".

Rule 1 - If u don’t get what u want, erase all evidence that u even tried. But since I am honest (did I score any brownie points with this confession) I cannot obviously follow this.
Rule 2 - If you cant erase the evidence, rubbish it away. But again this is not gonna work coz I have told all n sundry that HUM TUM was a movie I strongly believed to be MISS NOT.
Rule 3 - Last resort- damage control: Create an impression that it does not really matter :-p

I think I will settle down to saying "When Harry met Sally is an absolute classic and I am not gonna let a cheesy, Bollywood remake ruin my fond memories". Wotsay ?? :-)

Tuesday, June 08, 2004

Music from the motion pictures...

Unforgettable moments on the silver screen can sometimes be relived through their sound tracks. After all, who can ever forget Nino Rota and Carmine Coppola's haunting score in the Godfather trilogy (remember the mournful solo trumpet in the Godfather Waltz) or Francis Lai's catchy piano notes for Love story.

However being the sentimental silly that i am, one sound track that has always had me rivetted to my ear phones is Notting Hill. With a super script penned by Richard Curtis, ably directed by Roger Michell and starring the exteremely likeable Julia Roberts and the incomparable Hugh Grant, Notting Hill remains one of my all time favorite movies. A fairy tale romance between a famous movie actress and a loser of a bookstore owner, Notting Hill is absolute feel good fare. And the music in this movie contributes so much to the magic that even the sound track was a mega hit. It has something in it for everyone - from boybands (98 degress, Boyzone) tp country singers (Shania Twain) to classic soulsters (Al green, Bill Withers).

Everyone's surely heard the hugely popular "When you say nothing at all" by Ronan Keating but the album also boasts of two enchanting instrumental pieces composed by Trevor Jones on his guitar. However my personal favorites in the album are the heartfelt "Ain't no sunshine" by Bill Withers and the surreal but nice "She" by Elvis Costello.

And before i sign off, here are some lines from Al Green's "How Can You Mend A Broken Heart?"
And how can you mend a broken heart?
How can you stop the rain from falling down?
How can you stop the sun from shining?
What makes the world go round?
How can you mend this broken man?
How can a loser ever win?
Please help me mend my broken heart and let me live again


Track listing:
No Matter What - Boyzone
You've Got A Way - Shania Twain (Notting Hill remix)
I Do (Cherish You) - 98 Degrees
She - Elvis Costello
Ain't No Sunshine - Bill Withers
How Can You Mend A Broken Heart? - Al Green
Gimme Some Lovin' - Spencer Davis Group
When You Say Nothing At All - Ronan Keating
Ain't No Sunshine - Lighthouse Family (bonus track)
From The Heart - Another Level (bonus track)
Everything About You - Steve Poltz (remix, bonus track)
Will And Anna - Trevor Jones (Score)
Notting Hill - Trevor Jones (Score)

Highly recommended !

Monday, June 07, 2004

Move over Rolland Garros..

Welcome to the most romantic fortnight in every calendar year

'If you can meet with triumph and disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same.'


Welcome to the annual pilgrimage to the Mecca of tennis – Welcome to the Theatre of Dreams - Welcome to Centre Court, Wimbledon.

The usual suspects:
Strawberries and umbrellas – “Play is suspended” and Alan Mills - Smartly dressed ball girls in dark green and purple The courtesy for the royalty – Sir Cliff Richards and Mick Jagger – Sue Barker and the pilgrimage to Henman Hill……..

Down memory lane:

Borg’s fifth in 1980 - John “You can’t be serious” McEnroe in 1981 Boom Boom Becker in 1985 Tearful Novotna in 1993 - The first streaker in 1996 The People’s final in 2001

I could go on and on but I will leave you to reminisce on your own fond memories of the hallowed turf. But before you folks leave, please also check out this virtual tour of Centre Court and the rest of Wimbledon and don’t forget to visit the new art gallery in the museum.

Friday, June 04, 2004

Despondency, cipher and my "hike"...

40000 feet below sea level...That was how low I had felt yesterday.. There have been days when i've been cross with everything and everyone around me for no rhyme or reason.. God help all those who interacted with me on one of those days..But yesterday was different. I knew exactly why I was feeling run down but could do nothing about it..It all boiled down to one person

35 42 24 54 11

.. I know that's cryptic - Maybe its my predilection with puzzles or my new found obsession with The Da Vinci Code but do have a shot at it just for kicks - Hint: Don’t assume its a name with five alphabets ;-) The bell has rung and I am on my last lap as far as the novel is concerned and much as its been predictable these last hundred pages, I could barely put down the book as my shuttle reached office this morning. Am leaving for home today evening - might be my last visit to Trichy, so nostalgic - and hope to finish it in the bus.

And yes, the much awaited hike happened today and u know how I feel :-)))))))))))))))

Ciao and have a nice weekend folks !

Thursday, June 03, 2004

The Holy Grail, Rolland Garros and my "salary correction"..

Continuing from Page 164, yesterday was a stark contrast to Day one. The chapters have become increasingly shorter, the encounters more and more predictable and the whole novel seems veering towards an end I think I already know. I guess only time will tell..After yesterday's read, my inadequacies in history and religion have been thoroughly exposed. I am totally intrigued by the fact that there seems to have existed a "radical" school of thought which actually believed that the Bible was a totally fabricated book compiled by people with vested interests with the sole idea of promoting the divinity of the human Jesus Christ and using his influence to further their own power base. Besides this, it is also believed that the Holy Grail is not simply a cup but actually refers to a woman who is a direct descendant of Jesus.(So Jesus Christ did have a girlfriend) Remarkable, isn’t it ? And yes, one of the scenes also mentions in passing about a Bois de Bologne or "Garden of Earthly Delights" situated very close to the famous Roland Garros courts. Gotta check it out whenever I go to Paris :-)

And talking of Roland Garros, its the second week at the French Open and believe it or not, some things never change. The Spanish Armada, a regular in the last 4 for the past decade, might have been replaced by three Argentinians (??) - Korea(Coria), Nalla pandian(Nalbandian) and Gow Deo (Gaudio) but its still those long, overdrawn rallies, still the same rowdy crowd and still the dark red, slow clay.. How boring ! I cant wait for Wimbledon to start ! However on the flip side, those two siblings (yuckkk) are out and what we have now are some mysteriously romantic names from the erstwhile USSR - Anastasia Myskina and Elena Dementieva. Three cheers to women's tennis !

"The old order changeth, yielding place to new..."

What’s cooking on the office front ? Nothing much. My sweetheart of a boss finally broke the news to me about the impending "salary correction" - the pessimist in me noted the usage of "correction" rather than "hike" and started worrying, my optimist of an ex-roomie Anand explained that maybe my boss felt I was grossly underpaid (wishful thinking) and hence used the word "correction" instead of "hike" to boost my ego. Wotever it is, I just hope it happens - and if it does - Anand, u get an extra special "mmwaaaahhhhhhhh" - on MSN, of course ! :-)

Wednesday, June 02, 2004

1.618, holidays and account projections...

I can't believe I am in office today - started Dan Brown's The Da Vinci Code yesterday evening and must confess that it's been gripping so far - never read anything as compelling as this since Forsyth. (Gee, thanks Mansur!) Besides the fact that I am a crossy aficionado and the anagrams were delightful, what’s impressed me so far is the way Brown has mixed fast paced fiction with loads of details about art.

And of course, there was this incredible thing about PHI..Lemme explain..PHI (pronounced like in fie), as the more mathematically inclined amongst us would know, is the numeric constant 1.618. However 1.618/1 which is also called the Divine Proportion is a very important number, almost ubiquitous in nature. Would you believe if I told you that

# the quotients of adjacent terms in the Fibonacci series has the astonishing property of approaching PHI

# you divide the number of female bees by the number of male bees in any beehive, the result is PHI

# sunflower seeds, which grow in opposing spirals, have the ratio of each rotations diameter to the next as PHI

# the next time you are in a shower, measure yourself from the tip of your head to the floor and then divide it by the distance from your belly button to the floor and the result is PHI

# the ratio of distance from your shoulder to fingertips / elbows to fingertips = PHI


PHI is present everywhere - in the architectural dimensions of the Greek Parthenon, the Egyptian Pyramids, the United Nations Building in New York, in the organizational structures of Mozart's sonatas, Beethoven's Fifth Symphony and was even used by Stradivarius to calculate the exact placement of the f-holes in the construction of his famous violins (think Sherlock Holmes)

Exhilarating, isn’t it ?

164 pages done and 320 odd more to go, I called it quits at 2:40 today morning.. If only I didn’t have my appraisal due for discussion today, I would have been on my way to Chennai to attend Ramakrishnan's engagement (my roomie at SP), reading The Da Vinci code in train ! (sigh) Alas - things don’t always fall in place.. Wouldn't it be so nice if we could have Book leave to add to Casual, Sick leave etc..Wotsay old hag ?

The lappie is still not working - My office PC is still shutting down for every 15+ mts of inactivity and I don’t have the time to reformat it..Life sucks !! And the first mail I check after logging in is one from the big boss with a "big wish list" as to what he needs of me pronto. Fair enough but when most of it is work like calling up people to get the latest business projections and then sieving through loads and loads of data in XL, you can imagine how I feel..Neway havta rush now..Will keep you all posted on The Da Vinci Code..Till then, ciao !!

Tuesday, June 01, 2004

Me, myself and I

Ego trips have often taken me on unforgettable journeys of self-discovery. A lot of us must have often indulged in Googling about ourselves to measure up where we stood on the popularity scale. "Self-Googling is not simply narcissism, though that's certainly part of it," explains Alexander Halavais, who teaches at the University at Buffalo.

Unable to decide on a topic to blog today, I set off yet again trying to determine how much the world knew of this wonderful superhuman Jupie - with considerable help from a few passer-bys, I finally landed up at Googlism. Trying out Jupie, I drew a blank and my ego was shattered. Settling down for the more common-place Jupe, here's what came up...N my my, was I surprised..My comments on the results in italics.

 Jupe is thinking of how to make a perfect crime
(Not again :-( How does everyone find out whenever I plan to smoke in the loo to set the fire alarm off?)

 Jupe is a lovable 2 year old shepherd mix who loves to play with other dogz as well as kongs and jollyballs
(Talk about a dog's life - spot on)

 Jupe is adept at using big words and frequently uses them to his advantage
(I hold an opposing viewpoint - I think that’s preposterous propoganda - unpardonable sacrilege.....)

 Jupe is jann's husband's ex
(Its all relative, u see!)

 Jupe is missing
(Advertise in LOST and NOT TO BE FOUND pls)

 Jupe is a skirt
(Errr..Its okie..You shud complete that.. add chaser)

 Jupe is a slow learner
(Whoever said that the slow and steady win the race wasnt lyin', I hope ?)

 Jupe is a business studies graduate with over 15 years experience in the marketing services industry
(This is scary..this thing knows me..The real me..)

 Jupe is one of the best artists I know
(Knew it all along - Vincent and Leo' ve been singing my praises since ages)

 Jupe is the best thing i've had in bed
(Aint this the heights of self-gratification? Yuckkkk)

 Jupe is more human than oliver
(Is this the Twist in the tale?)

 Jupe is the only character who gives us a sense of hope in hard times
(N this, ladies and gentlemen, is why I blog)

 Jupe is still doing its job as the solar system's vacuum cleaner
(Eureka! Finally my dream job..)

 Jupe is redeemed humanity
(This is THE TRUTH and nothing but THE ABSOLUTE TRUTH)

 Jupe is disqualified from being a director from 1st august 2000 to 10th july 2006
(And to think that I had barely yelled my first ACTION and CUT..tch tch)

 Jupe is one of the most interesting yet laid back people I know
(Come to my arms, ye enlightened soul)

 Jupe is the brains
(Arent we forgetting the CAPS and bold)

I sure enjoyed this.. Dont hold back..Just go ahead and try it :-p