Of Ponting and Roebuck….

January 9, 2008

“Peter Roebuck” is almost a household name now in India, thanks to the verbal lashes he gave Australian Cricketer Ricky Ponting. For a couple of days, Roebuck shared Page 1 of most Indian Newspapers along with the likes of the late Benazir Bhutto and other Indian netas. He was referred to as “One of Cricket’s most respected writers” over and over again. “Of course!”, I thought, having remembered “The Peter Roebuck Column” from the sports section of the Hindu, a series of articles that were published a few years back. I found his thought process wonderful, the usage of language fantastic and his general sense of the game immaculate.  Curious to know more about him and read what he’s written, I wiki’ed him.

“As Peter Roebuck is not your average cricket writer, it would only make sense that his website was also something out of the ordinary. May you enjoy all it has to offer!” roared his website – www.peterroebuck.com. “This guy has reason to boast”, I thought. Then I came across this article titled “Ponting graduates to top of the class”.

The article has been written by “Callum Twomey” on 02/01/2008. However, I find it difficult to accept that Peter Roebuck would allow someone with a view so different from his to publish it on his website, right under his nose!


The Federerarian Religion

September 8, 2007

As I speak, Roger Federer is trouncing Davydenko. Watching anybody play with Federer (except when he has clay under his feet and his opponents name spells N-A-D-A-L) is like watching a high school kid enter the ropes to fight a Muhhamad Ali. There is zero hope and Federer kills the very definition of sport : uncertainity.

I’ve often wondered if this man has a limit. What I’ve realised is that even if there was one, it is meaningless. There would be no reference points. So if we see it, we wouldn’t know it. Or rather, we wouldn’t believe it. Every time the opponent raises the bar, Federer goes higher with efforless ease. In my view, he will win every game sans the inevitable one : time.

A cynical thought – not a good one for Federer’s fans – How would it be if Federer retired now? Blaming the lack of competition? Would that deify him? Would he not become a saint? a religion? Arrrrgh – if only HE didn’t invent clay!

February 14, 2007

First day of placements..

Need I say more? 


A laugh riot!

January 19, 2007

BORAT's famous swim suit!

Kazakhstan TV Head ‘Borat’ is sent to report on the greatest country in the world “U S and A”. With ‘Azamat’, Borat lands in New York and the rest, as they say, is history. Among other things, Borat manages to wash his face from a toilet bowl, try to marry Pamela Anderson and bribe a couple of cockroaches which he thinks are ‘kudu-vittu-koodu-payara’ Jews!

The movie starts thus: (In heavy East European accent): “Hello there! My name is Borat! I like you, and I like sex. It’s nice.” … “This is Orkien, the town rapist. Naughty, naughty! Over here, our town kindergarten (children pose with Kalashnikov rifles). Over here, Sakanov (who appears to be welding something), our town mechanic and abortionist”…. “This is Natalie” (Proceeds to kiss her full on the mouth for a good ten seconds) “She is my sister. She is number four prostitute in all of Kazakhstan (she displays a copper cup). Nice!!!” says Borat. The culture shock is immense, but the novelty of the situation combined with the background score and Borat’s animated actions make the audiences laugh-out-loud.

Reaching the “US and A”, Borat proceeds to meet white house representatives, television broadcasters, etiquette teachers, Jews and a crazy group of Christian fundamentalists. Considering Larry Charles’ stand that Borat was almost totally unscripted, Sacha Baron Cohen sure has managed to keep the laughter clouds hovering over the movie.

Complete with a naked hotel brawl between Borat and Azamat (a three hundred pound hairy, supposedly-human gorilla), Borat isn’t for the conservative minded. Nor is it for Jews, considering that Borat is the quintessential anti-Semitic, misogynist, bigot character complete with racist taboos!!


December 17, 2006

A tribute is essentially a formal token of appreciation for a persons high achievements. And a copy, aimed at making money – can in no way be called a tribute. The motive was money and what he called as a ‘tribute’ right at the start of the movie is actually a sad copy.

The Godfatherish essence was missing in the ‘Sarkar’ movie:

  • For the Godfather family, everything was business. Nothing was personal. For Sarkar, the opposite was true.
  • The Godfather never let his enemies know what he thinks, does. He never ever becomes angry. Sarkar is a senile old man in this regard.
  • Sonny Corleone worshiped his father. He was talented and devoted. Vishnu is just another f*rt with no values or talent. The only things they share are superficial – a liking for women and a hot-headed nature.
  • Luca Brazi was the only man the Don feared. In Sarkar, the guy dies even before his own introduction. And the Godfather family kills off anybody who goes against the family – including its own son Fredo (Movie II), there are no second comings. And the Sarkar family was dumb enough to allow Vishnu in once again (for the sake of Indian sentimentality).
  • The role of women in the Godfather is limited – and for reasons mentioned in the book. In Sarkar, this notion is not appreciated.
  • Sarkar runs an NGO in the movie. There is no talk of where the money comes from, what his lines of businesses are. The Godfather has a nice little bit when Michael explains the family business to Kay Adams. So – there really is a lot of confusion right from the start as to who SARKAR really is!
  • The Godfather never hogs the limelight. SARKAR waves his hands to crowds who seem to be waiting at his gates at all times.
  • The portrayal of Tataglia, the Turk, Barzini – are deficient to say the least.

So – all RGV does is copy the superficial story line (incompletely), change the fundamental thoughts and Indianises them for the sake of commercialization. And still calls it a tribute.

If he were going to call it a ‘copy’, it would have been fine. But to call it a tribute?!

BTW, this is just talking about the story line and the philosophy of the Godfather. Not to mention that we could compare the ‘tribute’ to the orignal on the basis of music, acting and cinematography!

IMHO, Nayagan was the only Indian movie that ever came close to show respect to ‘The Godfather’. It wasnt a ‘tribute’ or a copy. A few passing thoughts borrowed, but the story line has its own Indian roots and emotions.

Sarkar is a good movie in its own right. But please do not compare school rhymes to gospels!

The Fountain

December 14, 2006

For those of you who are fans of Darren Aronofsky’s cult movie – Requiem for a dream, the six year long wait is over.

Intellectually as engaging as Pi and Requiem and visceral in its impact, the film is presented in a non-linear fashion spanning a thousand years, portraying beautiful visions and breathing life into a universe dependent on life, love & death.

The lush cinematography with black and gold miasma blend perfectly with the minimalist score based mostly on string instruments.

A usually action oriented Hugh Jackman pairs up with Rachel Weisz in a soul story that simply forgets about time. The chemistry between them is absolute albeit with shades of melodrama, and any lesser actors wouldn’t have portrayed the three-dimensional characters in a more vivid and emotional way.

In Aronofsky’s own words, this isn’t a story to be analyzed, but an experience to enjoyed.

Hamilton gets 2nd McLaren seat..

November 26, 2006

A decade ago, a ten year old boy of Afro-Carribean descent approached Ron Dennis, stating that his ambition was to drive for the Woking-based team. Ron Dennis saw potential in this young boy, for it is his money that has underpinned LH’s success at the karting and junior formula levels..

Needless to say, Hamilton will have enormous pressure – not only from the Ronster & double WC Alonso, but also from the British media…

Quoting the times..

“he could become a black sporting icon of the stature of the American golfer Tiger Woods, with the potential to earn millions”

Would it only be a matter of time (and we have a long winter ahead..) before the young lad (who is yet to start in a GP) believes that he’s WC material much on the lines of Button?

I hope not 🙂

Pitpass & Linksheaven



November 24, 2006

Of late, I’ve not been doing exaclty what a typical b-schooler would do. I’ve been watching a lot of movies. Among those I liked a lot are ‘Gangs of New York’ and ‘The Aviator’. Gangs was the typical Scorsese flick – a narrative style, set in New York and having unrealistic cathartic violence. Aviator was catering to a different set of Scorsese ‘attributes’ – Lone ranger struggling with inner demons and rock-meet-opera sound tracks.

Oh. And any write-up of Scorsese can’t be complete without a word or two about Marty’s Mob Movies – ‘Goodfellas’ & ‘Casino’ both featuring Robert DeNiro.

Oh – and coming to that, Scorsese did some brilliant films with DeNiro – Mean Streets, Taxi Driver, Raging Bull, Goodfellas, Cape Fear & Casino.

Perhaps the best Actor-Director pair ever…

Now he’s picked on Leonardo DiCaprio – Gangs of New York, The Aviator & The Departed.

Next comes “The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt” , based on Edmund Morris’ Pulitzer-winning book.

As screen writer Nicholas Meyer (on Ted Roosevelt) put it –

“His life reads like a movie that requires a big bag of popcorn”

Looking forward to the movie and hope they the Scorsese-Caprio combine produces many more such movies despite the obvious age problem!

L’Attitude 13’05

November 17, 2006

I believe that I’ve found a new reason to become a productive renegade for a while and bunk classes with full conscience. The next couple of months, a bunch of us from b-school are gonna spend our time in finding creative ways to sponsor the dhum(for the non-tanglized, its called smokes,ciggies,etc) bills, booze bills and funding for every other activity that other b-schoolers would (or might, to be politically correct) indulge in. It’s called b-school competition prize money.

B-Schoolers, bring out the brains and rake in the moolah. Then get wasted (if you wish to)…. (again to be politi….whatever)

And who better to go for money than the corporate junkies who have been on the other side of the table at some point of time or the other? The spin machine shall set the ball rolling and I shall learn my lessons in management, albiet not in the manner prescribed by the evangelists…

For those of you wondering why I’ve spelled Latitude wrongly and put an apostrophe there and then uttered some , it’s the annual B’School fest of Great Lakes with a twist. Of course you figured out the 13’05 part.

Out of hibernation

November 17, 2006

Well – I wouldn’t exactly blame my b-school curriculum for having not blogged in something like 5 months. Not that a whole bunch of people have asked me why I haven’t blogged (in fact, more people have asked me why I’ve stopped spamming them with my F1 reviews on Y! Messenger) !

Everything has a reason and mine is something credible, something that has been plaguing humanity for like a billion years or something – lethargy. And of course there are the vices that every other 23 year old is addicted to..

Ok. Back to business. Now that Schumacher is gone for good, I’m reflecting on the strange predicament I am going to be in from next season. For the better part of the last decade, I’ve fought for ages and pages on Forums, IRC’s, Orkut, Y!M, my blog etc on why the seven time champion is to be loathed and sets a bad example for budding racers. Much that I dislike chewing cud over and over again, I’ve come to understand that I will have no new fodder from next season. Who would replace Schumacher as my symbol of evil and the Sultan of Satanic activities?

I do hate to say this, but with the likes of Montoya, Villeneuve and Schumacher gone, the genre of drivers who I’d call the ‘messiahs of mayhem’ would come to an end. I’d have to endure with only David Coulthard from the previous generation and then a few. A Kimi Raikkonen who prefers to drink from his champagne bottle before he sprays it on the crowd and an Alonso who’d give any stage monkey a run for his money with his stupid jumping act. And of course there is ‘1-in-120-odd-races-Button’. Not to mention that the British media will make Hamilton realize (without having a single F1 start) that he is the next Clark/Stewart. Famished!!

As an addendum, there’s Schumacher, and now that his era is over, I do feel the necessity to agree that I did in fact love his racing style. Well, the liking started at Imola the season before last. The brilliant pit strategy and the Scuderia Ferrari racing out of the pit lane into an empty piece of tarmac with the air-horns of Tifosi blasting the air is the stuff of legends. A chain of thought triggered from there made me realize the unwavering f*ck-you-all-i’m-here-to-win attitude that this man had. It might sound disgusting to the cultured, but how many of us can do that with a conscience as clear as Schumachers? He did it, and as Roy of linksheaven said, in twenty years from now, kids will be asking me what it felt like watching Schumacher race the prancing horse. It’s similar to what I used to do in the late 90’s. Ask people how they felt watching Senna race.

I did pen down an article for Links, I call it “Magical Memories“.

Watch out this space, the hibernation is more or less over!

P.S -> My other blog is http://kihsuok.blogspot.com . I would have been glad to continue there, but UNF, the server at my college has blocked blogger, and I have no other alternative but to use wordpress. Hence the duplication.