Saturday, February 26, 2005

Arundhati Roy: Public Power in the Age of Empire

Arundhati Roy: Public Power in the Age of Empire

i HAD to have this in my blog :)
Roy Rockz!!

Friday, February 25, 2005

vikram vikram he's our man!

Mack Daddy

Oh oh oh oh oh, oh oh...
Oh oh oh oh oh...I am Mack Daddy, looking for lady
One that can cook and clean for little ol' me
Has long black hair, eats curry
One that will be my brown beauty
Baby girl, you are brown like the chocolate
Would you like to settle down and maybe be my soulmate
I am very sorry-sorry, what's your name, where you from
Does my breath stink, miss, do you have a piece of gum
Do you cook, do you clean, you fart after eating beans
What's that smell, gee golly can you please pardon me
Girl when you smile and your eyelashes flutter
Your teeth are so yellow, can't believe it's not butter
If I braid your back-hair, shorty will you braid mine
I'll give you corn-rows even if no time
Excuse me miss, do you have any money
I'd like to call my mommy tell her that
I found my honey
Yes I might want to be your man, please don't be snotty
Let's get together shorty, drive around in my taxi
Don't you like my accent hotty, look at my steel body, ooh-ee-dee
Don't you like the way I shake my booty
I am Mack Daddy, looking for lady
One that can cook and clean for little ol' me
Has long black hair, eats curry
One that will be my brown beauty
Baby girl, you know my situation
My love is backed up like I got constipation
Stop being stubborn, just kick it with me
Who d'you know that's smoother than MC V
We can cruise around town in my yellow taxi
You know how I roam, I am always classy
CEO of 7-11, I'll make you feel like you're in slurpy heaven
Stop holding back and just gimme a try
You know you can't resist my scented fish-fry
If I could rearrange the alphabet I'd put you and I together
My little pet
Yes I might want to be your man, please don't be snotty
Let's get together shorty, drive around in my taxi
Don't you like my accent hotty, look at my steel body, ooh-ee
Don't you like the way I shake my booty
Shake my bootyI am Mack Daddy, looking for lady
One that can cook and clean for little ol' me
Has long black hair, eats curry
One that will be my brown beauty

want the mp3 lol i could give it to ya! man mc vikram rockz!


bsb?! Posted by Hello

hahahaha i found this oldddd thingie i'd done during indias tour to australia! lmao! couldn't but resist sharing this! i died laughin at myself

We are on fire
Our one desire
Is to hammer the Aussies
When we play games our natural way

But we are two worlds apart
Living down Under is Aussies Hearth
When we all say
When we play games our natural way


Tell me why
Critics are nothing but a headache
Tell me why
Their opinions are a mistake
Tell me why
I never wanna hear you say
Indians don’t know how to play

Am I your fire
Against your wild desire
Yes I know it's too late
Brett Lee I want it that way

Now I can see that you’ve fallen apart
From the way your game used to be, yeah
No matter the distance or your pace
I want you to know that
Deep down inside of me

I am on fire
Its runs I desire
I am, I am, I am, I am
Don’t wanna hear you say

Ain't nothin' but a headache
Ain't nothin' but a mistake
Whenever I hear you say
And I mean never ever hear you say
Indians don’t know how to play.



The closet door was open,
With scattered clothes here and there.
The drawers lays down,
With accessories just flowing out.
The bed lay full,
With all the toys thrown here and there.
The floor was a mess,
With a comic here and a puzzle there.

But the little girl looked desperately,
With not a skipped corner.
But alas!
The search went with out any luck.
Nowhere she could find,
The lost happiness, the joy and the energy,
That she so dearly missed.


I’d like to tell you a story,
Not of any hero’s pomp or glory.
Instead of this little girl,
Whose future… didn’t really unfurl.

She was living next door,
To a guy you shall soon learn about more,
Who always used to shy away,
From be it school, friends or play.

He always wondered what was wrong,
For her silence all day long,
The more he tried to investigate,
The more she hid behind a shut gate.

And every night as he slept,
He could hear her as she wept;
He longed to hold and comfort her:
But who was he but a stranger?

The girl soon forgot what was smiling
I wonder if this is also a living.
The guy next door, still was helpless,
To find out the cause for this mess.

Days and weeks, soon became months,
She didn’t smile, not even once.
More she grew into her cocoon,
And alas! The inevitable did happen soon.

In the well they found her body lying,
Around, were friends and associates crying.
All wondering about one single clause,
‘What could have been the ultimate cause?’

The friendly neighbour was also puzzled,
Her death left him all the more muddled.
He went looking for her mother,
And found she had all but a father.

The father was not at all repentant,
But instead a slimy slithering serpent.
He was just desperate to hide,
From everyone, his evil and venomous side.

This is just one single instance,
Many’ve happened since thence.
When an innocent child did lose,
It’s life from this evil- Child Sexual Abuse.

Monday, February 21, 2005

of turning 22

The game of life is hard to play
I'm gonna lose it anyway
The losing card I'll someday lay
So this is all I have to say

Suicide is painless
It brings on many changes
And I can take or leave it if I please

hmmm not something u'd hear someone is listening to, especially on their eve of their budday! but hmm... when i'm branded a pessimistic person who borders morbidity and am soon being renamed 'all gore' hmm it doesnt sound surprisin comin from me does it :)

well what does a birthday anyway imply... another step closer to that ultimate day... or another year well lived... hmmm that you can imply according to your thinkin... half full glass half empty glass your take

but lately why am i turning into this pholisophical geek beats me... and can you believe it! this past weekend was one without partying and any of my usual weekendish activities *shocked* and even better me stayed home! whoa! isnt that something... this led me to even venturing a step further to like swear off everything indefinitely... what? you're raisin that cynical eyebrow again?! no i am not kidding :) a positive note it is? i dont know... but yes it does leave me a tad happier :)

what is the use of mary jane anyway... she doesnt get me high any more... is this some kinda nirvana in this forte? i really dont know but yes why take her when shes useless... contemplations were on to moving to higher friends to partner my misery... but i've been thru quite a few and believe it or not... i got terrified with some of them :) well it leaves me completely spooked... something like what i can only associate to watchin requiem for a dream that night all high

how long will i stay this way... how long i side with dismay... how long will in this grey i lay... well as that favorite cliche of all goes... only time can tell and hehehe just to break this serious note till then sanity can go to hell :)

Friday, February 18, 2005


men... let me specify... some of em!
such a problem aren't they? thick headed and daft... takes time for them to realise stuff...
sometimes i wonder why do we need the two genders and them being so different... but those are just naive thoughts all childlike, and these two different genders are quintessential to their counterparts' living
i dont understand why i am writing this blog even, but i shall continue to write nevertheless
these random disjointed thoughts though connected in all sum up to one question; why do i have to know the reason behind it all?!
ok i guess i have digressed completely from what i had thought of writing on... but i guessat 5 am... writing normal english with good comprehensible grammar and syntax is pardoned, irrespective of the flow of the thoughts
but i fail to understand what is the philosophy behind this naive questioning and the so-called childlike innocence...
well i agree i am inquisitive but am the least bit childlike... and i think that term is utterly overused and abused... and to top it all childlike innocence to me is unpardonably annoying!
hmm politics and philosophy do play a part in all... why that statement... i'd say as i have learnt from some of my pals its just 'arbit'... well pardon me now will you oh noble reader for my using of a non-existent word like arbit ... but again why should i ask your pardon... its just random ramblings here...
hmm have i used the work pardon a lot? i know i have eh...
but well i guess this much is just the end of pard-one of my writing... oh so you expect a part 2 of these arbit thoughts... well too bad buddy... guess it wont happen ever. why? cuz i say so!
well i just cant help to wonder if i read this all aloud i'd be easily branded delirious! but again i am delirious, like my blog says i am schizoid!
well talking of schizoid reminds me of this lecturer of mine and her teaching of virginia woolf! she actually made me fall in love with the woman's writing and thinking! woolf said we are all different people peopled into one person, and each of our identity exists independently with one persona of ours cumulatively representing us all! did that make sense? well hope it did... cuz its a beautiful explanation to our varied behaviour at various situations
ok i am bored of typing :) almost 5:30 am...
i shall be back that goes without saying! till then, thank you for reading this!

Friday, February 11, 2005

wokay nothin new but yes still new

hmmm we had a short story writing comp at work... and yeh not many entries turned up for it... extension of deadlines happened without saying! but in the meanwhile ... just to get another number up in the entry and for an amusing tea break ... i did a complete unoriginal original story hehehe
the idea was in my mind alright but the thought was rekindled after watching page 3...
so with the reusing of my own poetry that i did write earlier... i came up with a story which did churn out prettty interesting yet predictable...
here goes it :):)

Creeps – a naked encounter with reality…

An eerie feeling crept in as the fogged images cleared only to be replaced by something more definite. Realization dawned on what lay ahead as I took the road leading to perdition…
Yes I get prosaic, and when I do, a prozac can’t help out, as Monday morn blues leave me with no excuse.

I reach office. I still have the weekend hangover. All I can think of is, my weedie blues can beat my Monday morn blues anyday. I start chuckling over this, and suddenly I get poetic. I needed something to amuse myself. So random musings and thoughts I start penning down.

a cup of coffee

a book to read
a sudden spark
give my thought a lead
i begin writing
with an excited tone
to get cut off thought
by a ringing phone
oh! is this boredom
or something more
i really dont know
but my minds gone obscure
i write and writeto my greatest delight
i rhyme and rhyme
with all my might
a sudden whiff of aromas
from the canteen side
make my thoughts go vary
and my writing goes for a ride
joyous and merry
i head canteen-wards
oh look oh look oh look
i'm actually coining new english words!
i get back to see
what more can i pen
confused i cant recall
my thought process went haywire when
so i decide this is enough
i should put a full stop
as scratching the head for the lost idea
should not make me go over the top!

I stand there admiring my poetic genius self, and cannot help but imagine why I landed up in a mundane job like this where there’s a threat to my mad intellect.
I read and I cry inside, why does life have to be so cruel? Why do the politics of gender have to be so harsh? Why couldn’t I do what I want?
TRING TRING! The phone rings… I pick it with dreaded hesitation. Not again! I get reprimanded for walking in late by 2 minutes… why do they have to pick on me? Is it my fault I was born this way? This is the 21st century and they have a problem with my sexuality. Yes I am a eunuch! You heard that right! What? You are now going to hesitate and take that handshake of yours back?
Go ahead… I am used to it. I have no problem with the same. If you choose to ignore my credits of topping my mass communication course and being an all India champion quizzer, and ignore me for my physical appearance, you can very well do it.

There my goes my day… the same ol’ way…

I switch on my favorite mp3 and hum along the lines.


Stained the floor lies
With blood off the wrist
The delicate veins lie cut
The knife found it’s ultimate match
Powerful as much as it may be
The delicate veins proved to be a shade better
By submitting to the jagged edge of the knife
The duel was won by the vein.
History and myths have shown
The weak yet courageousHave always conquered the over-whelming
David triumpheth over Goliath again
The floor now seems covered
Covered by victory
Covered by ecstasy
Covered by triumphant megalomania
Has man conquered death?
Or was it destiny that wrote this chapter?
Confusion lies hazy in the background
But human spirit prevails nonetheless
Freedom attained amongst irony.
Quite symbolic of life itself
Irony that free from the womb you come alive
To be trapped in the life and then die
To release the self to eternal freedom and bliss

I get more depressed … I find myself opening my private folder and looking at my poetry.

There comes this voice calling me

Is it from down below
Or is it someone from above
I fail to find out each time
But one things for sure
It is not from a place known or seen
Not from this world it seems.
Beckoning me to a place
A world that’s far from all I know
All I can imagine.
It does not assure me happiness
Nor does it show signs of pain
But this enticing place sure does reach out within
Speaking to a part of me I never knew existed.
Come closer it calls
To what seems a place more welcoming than home
This scares me, terrifies me,
Yet at the same time
Stimulates within me an excitement,
An eagerness that only exclaims,
“Death! Here I come!”

I am a coward… I know… I can only write … I can’t act… and sit there editing yet another story of a cheesy socialite gaining publicity thru being ‘socially aware’

Thursday, February 03, 2005


been trippin on Led Zep lately... heres some gyaan on the band :)

Led Zeppelin was the definitive heavy metal band. It wasn't just their crushingly loud interpretation of the blues — it was how they incorporated mythology, mysticism, and a variety of other genres (most notably world music and British folk) — into their sound. Led Zeppelin had mystique. They rarely gave interviews, since the music press detested the band. Consequently, the only connection the audience had with the band was through the records and the concerts. More than any other band, Led Zeppelin established the concept of album-oriented rock, refusing to release popular songs from their albums as singles. In doing so, they established the dominant format for heavy metal, as well as the genre's actual sound.

Led Zeppelin formed out of the ashes of the Yardbirds. Jimmy Page had joined the band in its final days, playing a pivotal role on their final album, 1967's Little Games, which also featured string arrangements from John Paul Jones. During 1967, the Yardbirds were fairly inactive. While the Yardbirds decided their future, Page returned to session work in 1967. In the spring of 1968, he played on Jones' arrangement of Donovan's "Hurdy Gurdy Man." During the sessions, Jones requested to be part of any future project Page would develop. Page would have to assemble a band sooner than he had planned. In the summer of 1968, the Yardbirds' Keith Relf and James McCarty left the band, leaving Page and bassist Chris Dreja with the rights to the name, as well as the obligation of fulfilling an upcoming fall tour. Page set out to find a replacement vocalist and drummer. Initially, he wanted to enlist singer Terry Reid and Procol Harum's drummer B.J. Wilson, but neither musician was able to join the group. Reid suggested that Page contact Robert Plant, who was singing with a band called Hobbstweedle.

After hearing him sing, Page asked Plant to join the band in August of 1968, the same month Chris Dreja dropped out of the new project. Following Dreja's departure, John Paul Jones joined the group as its bassist. Plant recommended that Page hire John Bonham, the drummer for Plant's old band, the Band of Joy. Bonham had to be persuaded to join the group, as he was being courted by other artists who offered the drummer considerably more money. By September, Bonham agreed to join the band. Performing under the name the New Yardbirds, the band fulfilled the Yardbirds' previously booked engagements in late September 1968. The following month, they recorded their debut album in just under 30 hours. Also in October, the group switched their name to Led Zeppelin. The band secured a contract with Atlantic Records in the United States before the end of the year.

Early in 1969, Led Zeppelin set out on their first American tour, which helped set the stage for the January release of their eponymous debut album. Two months after its release, Led Zeppelin had climbed into the U.S. Top Ten. Throughout 1969, the band toured relentlessly, playing dates in America and England. While they were on the road, they recorded their second album, Led Zeppelin II, which was released in October of 1969. Like its predecessor, Led Zeppelin II was an immediate hit, topping the American charts two months after its release and spending seven weeks at number one. The album helped establish Led Zeppelin as an international concert attraction, and for the next year, the group continued to tour relentlessly. Led Zeppelin's sound began to deepen with Led Zeppelin III. Released in October of 1970, the album featured an overt British folk influence.

The group's infatuation with folk and mythology would reach a fruition on the group's untitled fourth album, which was released in November of 1971. Led Zeppelin IV was the band's most musically diverse effort to date, featuring everything from the crunching rock of "Black Dog" to the folk of "The Battle of Evermore," as well as "Stairway to Heaven," which found the bridge between the two genres. "Stairway to Heaven" was an immediate radio hit, eventually becoming the most played song in the history of album-oriented radio; the song was never released as a single. Despite the fact that the album never reached number one in America, Led Zeppelin IV was their biggest album ever, selling well over 16 million copies over the next two and a half decades.

Led Zeppelin did tour to support both Led Zeppelin III and Led Zeppelin IV, but they played fewer shows than they did on their previous tours. Instead, they concentrated on only playing larger venues. After completing their 1972 tour, the band retreated from the spotlight and recorded their fifth album. Released in the spring of 1973, Houses of the Holy continued the band's musical experimentation, featuring touches of funk and reggae among their trademark rock and folk. Houses of the Holy debuted at number one in both America and Britain, setting the stage for a record-breaking American tour. Throughout their 1973 tour, Led Zeppelin broke box-office records — most of which were previously held by the Beatles — across America. The group's concert at Madison Square Garden in July was filmed for use in the feature film The Song Remains the Same, which was released three years later.

After their 1973 tour, Led Zeppelin spent a quiet year during 1974, releasing no new material and performing no concerts. They did, however, establish their own record label, Swan Song, which released all of Led Zeppelin's subsequent albums, as well as records by Dave Edmunds, Bad Company, the Pretty Things, and several others. Physical Graffiti, a double album released in February of 1975, was the band's first release on Swan Song. The album was an immediate success, topping the charts in both America and England. Led Zeppelin planned to launch a large American tour in the late summer of 1975 when Robert Plant and his wife suffered a serious car crash while vacationing in Greece. Plans for the tour were cancelled and Plant spent the rest of the year recuperating from the accident.

Led Zeppelin returned to action in the spring of 1976 with Presence. Although the album debuted at number one in both America and England, the reviews for the album were lukewarm, as was the reception to the live concert film The Song Remains the Same, which appeared in the fall of 1976. The band finally returned to tour America in the Spring of 1977. A couple of months into the tour, Plant's six-year-old son Karac died of a stomach infection. Led Zeppelin immediately cancelled the tour and offered no word whether or not it would be rescheduled, causing widespread speculation about the band's future. For a while, it did appear that Led Zeppelin was finished. Robert Plant spent the latter half of 1977 and the better part of 1978 in seclusion. The group didn't begin work on a new album until late in the summer of 1978, when they began recording at ABBA's Polar studios in Sweden. A year later, the band played a short European tour, performing in Switzerland, Germany, Holland, Belgium, and Austria. In August of 1979, Led Zeppelin played two large concerts at Knebworth; the shows would be their last English performances.

In Through the Out Door, the band's much-delayed eighth studio album, was finally released in September of 1979. The album entered the charts at number one in both America and England. In May of 1980, Led Zeppelin embarked on their final European tour. In September, Led Zeppelin began rehearsing at Jimmy Page's house in preparation for an American tour. On September 25, John Bonham was found dead in his bed — following an all-day drinking binge, he had passed out and choked on his own vomit. In December of 1980, Led Zeppelin announced they were disbanding, since they could not continue without Bonham.

Following the breakup, the remaining members all began solo careers. John Paul Jones returned to producing and arranging, finally releasing his solo debut Zooma in 1999. After recording the soundtrack for Death Wish II, Jimmy Page compiled the Zeppelin outtakes collection, Coda, which was released at the end of 1982. That same year, Robert Plant began a solo career with the Pictures at Eleven album. In 1984, Plant and Page briefly reunited in the all-star oldies band the Honeydrippers. After recording one EP with the Honeydrippers, Plant returned to his solo career and Page formed the Firm with former Bad Company singer Paul Rogers. In 1985, Led Zeppelin reunited to play Live Aid, sparking off a flurry of reunion rumors; the reunion never materialized. In 1988, the band re-formed to play Atlantic's 25th Anniversary Concert. During 1989, Page remastered the band's catalog for release on the 1990 box set, Led Zeppelin. The four-disc set became the biggest selling multi-disc box set of all time, which was followed up 3 years later by another boxset, the mammoth 10 disc set 'The Complete Studio Recordings.'
In 1994, Jimmy Page and Robert Plant reunited to record a segment for MTV Unplugged, which was released as Unledded in the fall of 1994. Although the album went platinum, the sales were disappointing considering the anticipation of a Zeppelin reunion. The following year, Page and Plant embarked on a successful international tour, which eventually led to an all new studio recording in '98 — the Steve Albini-produced 'Walking into Clarksdale.' Surprisingly, the album was met with a cool reception by the record buying public, as Page and Plant ended their union shortly thereafter, once again going their separate ways (Page would go on to tour with the Black Crowes, while Plant would resume his solo career). Further Zeppelin compilation releases saw the light of day in the late-90s, including 97's stellar double disc 'BBC Sessions,' plus Zep's first true 'best of' collections — 99's 'Early Days: The Best of Vol. 1' and 2000s 'Latter Days: The Best of Vol. 2.'. — Stephen Thomas Erlewine & Greg Prato

1969 Led Zeppelin
1969 Led Zeppelin II
1970 Led Zeppelin III
1971 Led Zeppelin IV
1973 Houses of the Holy
1975 Physical Graffiti
1976 The Song Remains the Same [live]
1976 Presence
1979 In Through the Out Door

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Lit Reviews

Ulysses (Fiction)
By James Joyce

Touted as one of the 5 best books in the twentieth century and one of the best books of all times, James Joyce’s Ulysses is one book always regarded with awe by any book critic. The novel, which at first is a seemingly difficult book to read, is one book which when read is always liked by everybody. Written in the complex stream of consciousness style (i.e. a style where the writer chooses to write in a pattern similar to the human thought process, using free associations and no orderly thoughts), this book has had rave reviews by every critic.

Joyce's masterpiece describes the events of a single day, June 16, 1904 (the day Joyce met his wife-to-be), in the life of two primary characters, Leopold Bloom and Stephen Dedalus (with a significant offstage role played by Bloom's wife Molly, who only takes center stage in the final chapter), in Dublin.

Stylistically brilliant, the book plays with the English language like no book ever has before. There are a whole lot of narrative styles, and an umpteen number of literary associations. Usually it is highly recommended that one does have a glossary with the references in mind when reading this timeless literary classic.

Heart of Darkness (Fiction)
Joseph Conrad

Heart of Darkness written by Joseph Conrad is a novella of the turn of the 20th Century (1902) and has been one of the biggest topics of discussion ever since. Set in the peak of imperialism, this book has gone ahead to illustrate the dark facets of imperialists through the exploration of the human mind.

Heart of Darkness centers around Marlow, an introspective sailor, and his journey up the Congo River to meet Kurtz, reputed to be an idealistic man of great abilities. Marlow takes a job as a riverboat captain with the Company. As he travels inside Africa and up the Congo, Marlow encounters widespread inefficiency and brutality in the Company’s stations. The native inhabitants of the region have been forced into the Company’s service, and they suffer terribly from overwork and ill treatment at the hands of the Company’s agents. Marlow finally meets Kurtz, he sees Mistah Kurtz, megalomaniac, imperialist, power-hungry and savage, a total contrast to the idealist Kurtz visualized by Marlow. This contrasted image of a dying man screaming ‘The Horror! The Horror!’, when compared to the build-up of a Kurtz who was noble and idealistic, is a stark naked encounter with the extreme side of imperialism where the horrors of this system lie directly in front of our eyes.

Heart of Darkness has been considered for most of this century not only as a literary classic, but as a powerful indictment of the evils of imperialism. It reflects the savage repressions carried out in the Congo by the Belgians in one of the largest acts of genocide committed up to that time.

Five Point Someone (Fiction)
Chetan Bhagat

IIT! Don’t those three syllables bring in a sense of distancing – an aura of studiousness, slogging, detachment from the normal world and most importantly, a detachment from life – which makes us automatically brand these ‘people’ as ‘one of them’.

Five Point Someone written by Chetan Bhagat (an ex-IITian and ex-IIM-A – whoa! a double ‘one of thems’) is one of Rupa’s latest fiction publication. This novel, set in IIT-Delhi, traces the story of three friends. Another story aiming to inspire people with the success stories of 3 young adults who made it big you infer; that is where Chetan Bhagat surprisingly and pleasantly impresses his critics.

Hari, Ryan and Alok meet on their first day at IIT during a ragging session in Kumaon hostel. From this day begin their escapades, more aptly misadventures. From dating the Head of the Department’s daughter to tripping on Pink Floyd over vodka and joints, from watching every sci-fi at Priya Cinema to suspension, these friends go through all this and more in their ‘eventful’ years in IIT. The catch is these three friends are ‘five point someones’ (students who have GPAs of 5 point something, the lowest rung of students in IIT). Will these friends succeed with their ‘Operation Pendulums’ and ‘C2Ds’? This is what this book seeks to answer.

With simple English and a generous helping of expletives and colloquialisms, integral lessons outside curriculum in IIT, Chetan Bhagat definitely deserves two thumbs up for his maiden novel. Extremely realistic characterizations – be it the 3 friends, the confused miss goody-two-shoes meets I-want-to-be-a-rebel girlfriend Neha, the dynamic Professor Veera or the Hitler-incarnate Professor Cherian – make this book a start to finish affair. Glimpses in this book make readers relate to their student lives at some point or the other.

A must read for every IITian as well as the non-IITians, this book has won national acclaim fast. It also is soon to be a major film directed by Ritesh Sinha. The USP of the book definitely is the more unconventional depiction of IIT.

Pick up a copy today if you want to go on a trip down memory lane and just laugh at the misadventures of these three friends where somewhere within them lies a part of every one of us!

Death of a Salesman (Fiction – Drama)
By Arthur Miller

One must find out the true oneself in order to lead a successful life. This philosophy can aptly summarize the play Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller, speculatively called by many as one of the most popular plays of the twentieth century.

Any man can have as great a fall and be as great a tragedy as a king or some other famous person. Just because people are common does not mean that their falls are to them less steep. This is what this play, written in the period of existentialism and modernism, tries to tell its audience.

The story is about Willy Loman, representative of any average American middle-class man, who is a salesman by profession. With a wife and two kids, a house and a car, he has all the bare necessities that an average American man dreams for. But this does not lead to complete contentment, as Willy would have ideally wished for. Underneath this surface of superficial familial functioning, lies dysfunction and disillusion. Willy, 63 year old, suddenly goes down a trip through his lifetime, in search of that single moment of truth which has made his life take the wrong turn in life, and shape up this way.

Literary critic, Christopher Bigsby aptly says if Willy’s is an American dream, it is also a dream shared by all those who are aware of the gap between what they might have been and what they are.

The Catcher in the Rye (Fiction)
By J. D. Salinger

The Catcher in the Rye, a book describing a nervous breakdown, gained notoriety and media attention when police found the book in his possession upon apprehending the psychologically disturbed Chapman. John Lennon's assassin, Mark Chapman, asked the former Beatle to sign a copy of the book earlier in the morning of the day that he murdered Lennon. But this is not the reason this book is regarded as one of the top bestsellers of the twentieth century.

The story, which is in the tone of a monologue, told by our protagonist, Holden Caulfield, is set in New York. It is about his journey away from reality, when he gets thrown out again from a school for poor performance academically. Depressed and disillusioned, our protagonist decides to take a vacation away from the people he knows. The book describes Holden's thoughts and activities over these few days, during which he describes a developing nervous breakdown, where he faces bouts of unexplained depression, impulsive spending and generally odd, erratic behavior, prior to his eventual nervous collapse.

The book is definitely an essential must read for anyone who is interested in knowing about the workings of the human psyche. Written in an exceptionally simple manner, Salinger definitely has penned a masterpiece.

English, August (Fiction)
Upamanyu Chatterjee

English, August has become a cult name in the field of Indian Writing in English. One of Upamanyu Chatterjee’s first works, this novel is meant as a quest through life, its nothingness, meaning and purpose.

Set in the town of Madna, a typical small town where just like any dysfunctional Indian government office, there exists the town’s administrative office. And over there for his training enters Agastya (August) Sen, an ambitious and idealist youngster, unaware of the systems and of the world beyond the metros. Here begin his escapades with the system, its upholders (?) and rural India (where he has nothing much to do except smoke marijuana endlessly and fantasize about women, because of the lack of them and be content with himself).

Chatterjee has done to an extent with Madna what R. K. Narayan has done with Malgudi; made the town fictitious town come alive in almost every Indian readers mind. Structure-wise he has began the trend of using the now famous ‘Hinglish’ in the Indian fiction scene, which is seen right from the very expletive first line which to a large extent sets the tone of the novel and shows the reader what to expect of it.

Written in a humorous tone, this novel succeeds exceedingly well in doing a spoof of the Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officers and their lives as the emperors of these small towns like Madna. Witty would be the understatement when it comes to the caricatures built of the characters in the novel by Chatterjee. Thus, that he is successful is no doubt.

Marijuana, masturbation, mundane daydreams, and Marcus Aurelius' Meditations, this is the life of Agastya Sen, known better as August. Pick up your copy of this book today if you want to know whether August survives finally in Madna with such a lifestyle or does he decide against staying in the Indian Administrative Services.

Tuesday, February 01, 2005

...I wanna be noticed too!!

Page 3 - *** and a 1/2*

Madhur Bhandarkar...
He sure is one of those filmmakers that comes to our mind when we talk new-age Indian alternate cinema. And for a movie nerd like moi who always says - mere to teen ma hai, ek maa, ek durgaa maa aur teesra cinema... he would count among those local deities, who is rising to fame a la matajis or babas (no offence to any religious fanatics... oops was i harsh?!)
Page 3 is one of his latest offerings...
Reminiscent of his debut venture Chandni Bar, this film is deals with the life of Madhvi Sharma, an idealist journalist (deja vu?) and her tryst with reality. (bah! i sound so constrained hehe)
With a very predictable plot, but a free flowing screenplay... the story does seem to strike that 'i can see myself in their shoes' note with the viewers. Nothing is left untouched, from child abuse to casting couches, from swapping of partners to homosexuality... every contemporary as well as conventional issue is handled, and with delicate finesse.
Konkana Sen steals the show without doubt, in her role as Madhvi Sharma... smart, idealist, naive, intelligent... she's a real character alright... and none better than Konkana could delivered this all! There are good performances by the rest of the cast, that goes without saying, but you wonder at times whether the talent and calibre of an acting genius like Atul Kulkarni, especially after his top notch performance in Bhandarkar's own Chandni Bar, should be wasted on a trivial front seat pleasing role like this... you heart does stop to feel with him. But on the other hand, Rehan Engineer proves his acting prowess once again in the 'different' roles. After winning more than just accolades in his debut film Everybody Says I'm Fine... he delivers a winning performance in the role of a helpless homosexual, who is manipulative as well. That was what was best of Bhandarkar, all his characters were nearly rounded and had shades of grey, unlike the cliched black and white prototypes.
A must watch I'd say... don't miss out on this sincere effort :)