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Wednesday, September 27, 2006

In the name of Language…

Language and the diversity of it is what we Indians cherish and are proud of. In my childhood sometime I heard that dialects in India change in every 30KM and this variety is certainly rare. It’s good that we have held on to our languages with the moving times. I mean with English gaining importance it’s necessary to remember our roots and hold on to them. But certainly a level of sanity is expected while you claim to maintain sanctity for the language.

My experiences about Bangalore have rather have been not good. Traffic and City congestion are definitely big time problems. But Language politics has been something which has bugged my head the most. Infact now I get the feel that definitely would get the award for the most bugged city in the world sometime soon (if someone does give that award, add Bangalore to the list). The city is sure to change is nature from a happily laid back city to a High Tempered one soon. That’s inevitable. Similar to a change from the Laid back movies of the 60’s and early 70’s to Angry Young man movies of the late 70’s and Amitabh era.

Three issues have hogged up and bogged down my spirits. Let me mention them not chronologically but in an order of increasing priority.

First one was the Tipu Sultan controversy. A pathetic attempt at creating a divide based on religious lines which led to some tension in the city as I read it in the papers. It’s not good to dig out a person from his grave and tell him that he was against Kannada culture. As I know it he was the only King with a Head which could think in India in those days. Quite an uncommon phenomenon for Indian Royalty especially under British Raj. Why did they blame him?

Second one is Bangalore changing to Bengaluru. Firstly Bengaluru is not recognized by the spell-checker as I came to know it now. A funny incident happened that the news papers in Kannada reported “Bengaluru changing to Bengaluru”. Again the cost involved will be heavy but you can spare the politicians atleast for this one. Their brothers have done this in other parts of country so why not they do it. Some things can be spared but I personally don’t believe in these things of changing the name attaches a sense of pride and stuff. But the last issue looks to me like a crime.

Some how Mr. Basvaraj Horetti, Minister for Primary and Secondary Education, Karnataka seems to have done something which is completely out of the box. May be nowadays these de bono terms are catching up with the politicians too, but in a completely different sense. Closing of Karnataka schools is a move which brings us all to shame. Maybe Mr. Horetti and his colleagues are habituated to moving around schools in their childhood but for 250,000 students here it’s damn difficult, that too in the middle of the session. Reason, quite simply they were being taught in English.

Now the schools didn’t follow the rules, I mean they were running a Kannada medium school but imparting education in Kannada. Not as per the rules. But if you twist the rules in so many cases then why this case do you act in such an efficient manner which is close to insanity. Ok you talk about moving the children and staff to some government schools but they are already crowded. Most of the kids going to the closed schools come from sections of society not so sound economically. If you fight for caste based reservations on the higher education front why neglect good education given to students at primary level. I don’t know what will happen if Politicians start doing what they want so regularly like this. They should have atleast waited for the year.

All this fills me up with just shame and disappointment. Two weeks back when I was roaming around at Garuda Mall a reporter from a news channel came to me (that news Group driving a effort to Restore the lost so many things in Bangalore, quite a commendable effort) and asked-“What should be done to resurrect Bangalore?”. I said nothing can be done. But then I went back and greed of a T-Shirt (which she never gave me) burbled a lot about what can be done and what not. I wish Bangalore could transform into a city like Mumbai or Delhi which can just absorb everything. If we look at it from the viewpoint of Thermodynamics, the entropy of these cities keep on increasing forever never touching a limit whereas that of Bangalore has touched a maximum already. I am sure everyone in Bangalore can feel the Heat which has completely made us forget the wonderful breeze once flowing here.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Ek se Bhali Doosri...woh bhi do-do baar

It was beautiful, it was emotional, it was fun, it was enlightening, it was difficult to get into first but when you get in you have to get in twice, it was good to see Bapu getting more importance than Mamu, it was something which everyone enjoyed, it was MunnaBhai at last.

Somehow managed to see it finally after 3 attempts of getting a ticket, the final attempt was relatively easy to get a Rs. 45 ticket in nearby normal theatre, and again on Sunday for Rs. 35.

At the end of movie everyone went Mamu again at Munna and Circuit’s performance. The new edition delivered much more than it promised. Only occasionally sequels have been better than the first movies (with a few exceptions being Godfather and Shrek series, but again my personal opinion). And to get it right was important, so was important to communicate Bapu using a populist medium.

If RDB earlier this year connected with the Young Junta to drive it to success and more importantly occupy a special space among viewers mind, Munnabhai cuts across all sections. With the main protagonists as BHAI's it is much more reachable than RDB which had a domain restricted to the educated mind or the padhi-likhi junta. With only 65% of Junta being Literate a social movie with such a protagonist is the best thing to happen to Indian Cinema. RDB preaches pop-patriotism but MunnaBhai throws a goody goody social message like the Aam-Aadmi movies of Raj Kapoor.

Though one thing I have been rather angry about nowadays has been the ticket prices, I mean they are quite high in cities and for movies like this families and the aam junta don't get a place to see it.

Everything forgotten now with all the scenes from the movie still playing in my mind it’s good to be among Munna and Circuit again. Though circuit with his comical expressions was much more bole to solid than ever before but Munna was great too as the Bhai with a Chemical Locha in his head that he sees Gandhiji.

It’s good to be practising Gandhi-giri nowadays it seems, as Gandhiji has been around all newspapers and media after the movie. I am sure even he would have enjoyed the movie. Now me desperately praying that the team comes up with third so that I can watch it three times. First one once in theatre, second one twice and third thrice. Makes sense, doesn’t it?

Friday, September 15, 2006

Do I talk too much?

I don’t think so. But still last week I realized that I do talk too much. I mean knowing about things is OK but burbling everything out is not so OK at times. Sometimes you may put off people. My father has warned me against doing so in Companies. And I agree in some sense.

I mean staying quite can be regularity for someone but it’s a rare thing for me. And may be its time I try to practice it, because sometimes it’s necessary. You may think you are acting smart but you may be incomprehendible with all the crap you omitting out of your system.

At times it good because talking so much and about so many things helps you striking a chord with new people. Last week while talking to the German visitor to my company we talked about Cricket, Football, Bollywood, Vineyards in Nashik, Beer in Germany, FOOD, SEZ boom in India and China, Middle-East peace process, terrorism, German history, India History, Gandhiji, Schumacher, Stefi Graf and blah blah blah. OK. So it’s kind off ok till a point. And he enjoyed it. But so much of information causes pollution which can happen while talking to some other person. It would backfire on you which I observed in one of my other conversations. Talking sense all the times is surely not possible.

Right now may be I need to find a middle path. For that may be a MAUN VRAT(not talking for a day) is required. But that’s impossible.

Leave this crap it’s better to talk and bug people rather than to keep silent and bug them. People who talk less are boring So I will continue talking.

Monday, September 11, 2006

Bye Bye Schumi...

Yesterday he told everyone that he will quit at the end of this season. Enough to get my attention back to a sport which I had stopped following like crazy (obviously I keep in touch with the results and stats). For the 37 year old it was the ride of lifetime in his home country. For this 21 year old writing this, he has got to learn from Schumi that life can be a ride.

I have been following Formula One from the days when I thought racing was all about two guys- one named "DIAMOND" Hill in his blue car and the other some SHOEMaker in the red car. Actually I related much more because earlier when I was a kid, I had two Hot Wheels- One red another blue. Though those were the days when all of European Football was ManU for me and the only player from Brazil was Ronaldo. It was maybe sometime around 98-99.

My Grandfather once asked me what excites you about some silly cars going round and round for 70 laps (this is what actually the F-1 fans instead ask to the NASCAR guys). I said most of them watching don’t know it why they are watching it for. But as I know it most of it throughout the last decade watched it for Schumi.

Just today I was discussing it one of the German guys visiting my company and he said that no one at least in Germany will watch it now, don’t know about the rest. Rest will be chucking it soon now I think. It’s another case of the sport loosing its importance vis-à-vis the sportsman. I read somewhere that F-1 will die when Bernie Eccelstone dies (he is some 93-94 may be). But for half the world F-1 is almost over now. Anyway it was never a sport in any sense, and things like these needs icons like Senna first (poor guy died in '94 at Imola Grand Prix) and later Schumi to put some sense into it.

Germany has always given the world Sports Icons to look up to. 70’s was Beckenbaur era and in 80's and parts of 90's we witnessed Boom-Boom Becker. The bestest Tennis player ever on this planet Steffi Graf came from Germany and then came Schumi. Nowadays the Germans are running into a deficit it seems, with no one to look up to now as a sporting icon (though there Chancellor is quite something, as President Bush should everyone by giving her a backrub.)

While I college I lost touch with F-1 but now I will definitely see the last races. I want him to win. Infact everyone wants him to win. And everyone knows he will do it.

Anyway remember the one sided schumi domination from 2000 to the 2004 season. Only Coulthard came anywhere close to beating him occasionaly. Have a look at what all did Coulthard try to beat schumi.

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Inflation and Inhalation

Inflation for me was rise of prices before. Now it’s like rise of prices when I have started earning. This is not dad’s money anymore. New definition can be put as increasing prices with decreasing salaries.

With all that crap about software people being paid more and all that I can’t understand where that came from. Infact salaries seem to me as going down every week. I mean adding to the frustration was my 3 attempts at viewing Munnabhai, all of which went bust.

First one was the Rs. 35 charging good old hall in the neighborhood that couldn’t show the movie because of high exhibition prices which have been put by the distributors. Second hit was at Urvashi another hall in Bangalore where the ticket prices are now 70 but still after standing behind 400 people for an hour my friends couldn’t get a ticket. Then I checked out the prices at INOX in Garuda. At that was a shock. I mean a real shock. Rs. 220 for a single movie. And that crappy guy told me,” sir you can go for 550 ones 220 ones are sold out”. I felt like hitting him. I mean can you believe 220 for a movie. No movie deserves that much. And for a movie being touted as new generation social movie isn’t it ironic that someone can’t spend so much. I could have spent the amount. But something stopped me. Just think suppose a person takes his four member family for a movie today, he has to spend 1500 for four member family minimum (including the costly Pepsi, popcorn and parking). Anyway inflation is not only restricted to halls. Places you eat, places you shop anything doesn’t come cheap nowadays. Yesterday also encountered Cool Joint increasing rates. This joint in Jayanagar, Bangalore famous for its sandwiches and ice creams boasted itself of not increasing rates for 8 years. Finally they also gave in. Even the good old college canteen has also increased rates as my college mates told me.

Inflation is a serious problem; I mean all the rising shining India is crap. If salaries and spending power is increasing everything is going up. For a country habituated so long to a socialist dead economy globalization has brought many goods but it has hit us. And hit us hard. May be not everyone realizes it. But everyone will soon. People who have been spending 20 Rs. For last 20 years on movies are now easily spending 220. I can’t get it.

Anyway if inflation is a problem in Bangalore so is inhalation. I mean not the pollution, but the Cold (Zukaam) you get in Bangalore is awful. I have been living last couple of days on Sinarest and paracetamol’s add to that heavy rubbing of Vicks Vapourab. The pollution adds to the anger of your nose and with all this frustration of not seeing the movie my nose is pumping even harder.

May I get well soon…I mean every way possible.