Thursday, July 28, 2005

FW: You've got Mail

Forwarding mails has become a popular medium to remain in touch with friends. More so, with people that one occasionally thinks of, but not enough to write a mail specially addressed to them.

Apparently, Aishwarya Rai knows this, why else would she put up her application form for a Reliance phone connection on a forward? Obviously to remain in touch with her fans.

Anyway, if she's aware of such an email doing rounds, I'm sure she's denying the credibility of it. (Between, I can't wait for TOI to publish an Alec Smart, referring to Ms. Rai that could go something like this: No phone for me please, I'm too phony!)

I received the above clipping in a forward, and keeping up the spam chain, I forwarded it to other people. I was slenderly amused to receive the following reply from one of the addressees:

"Is this true? Have you tried calling her!!!"

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Am I a Geek, God?

I have never thought of myself as someone who has an odd personality, nor have I ever noticed myself doing disgusting acts at a carnival performance, then why did my girlfriend tell me that there are a few things I say that sound too "geeky"?

I was telling her about the Gurgaon incident (which is quite a bloggable story, by the way). Like a good girlfriend she is, she expressed surprise and happiness at the fact that I happened to know a lot about the story in subject. Filled with pride (imagine the look on my face, with my head held high and my chest upright), I told her that I collected my facts by doing some research on the Internet (and I had to say that with an accent).

"Research? You mean you read up about it? Research sounds too geeky?", came her innocent reply.

Friday, July 15, 2005

Let there be light

Last evening, Radhika and I, went to see Dus (yes ladies, Abhishek Bachchan has acted well and does look alright in the movie). Anyway..before the movie began and after a whole lot of HP Club and Kingfisher ads had been screened, the preview for Maine Pyar 'Kyun' Kiya was played. Maine Pyar Kyun Kiya stars Salman Khan, Sushmita Sen (yeah baby!) and Katrina Kaif (have mercy!). While watching the preview only I received an SMS from Manhattan Credit Cards, offering me the tickets to a weekend screening of the same movie (i have a feeling, technology had little to do with this coincidence). We immediately decided that we'll come and watch the movie for sure, the preview looks good, star-cast is impressive and who minds a li'l bit of Katrina.

At about the same time, when Radhika and I were moving and shaking (nope, it's not what you think) to 'Dus Bahane', Hindustan Times (HT), a Delhi-based popular English daily released, to the rest of the world, a cassette recording that had "a Salman Khan-Aishwarya Rai telephonic conversation" from the past (sometime in 2001).

The timing of such a tape couldn't have been worse for Salman. His new movie - MPKK - had it's premier last night, which he could not obviously attend. According to the reports today, succumbed under the pressure from Bajrang Dal and VHP, many theaters have agreed not to screen his movie. It's a pity! that political groups find motivation in anything that's controversial, somehow they feel it's an obligation to give things a religious shape.

On the other hand, the timing of such a release couldn't have been better for HT. Their much awaited launch in Mumbai took place only yesterday (i'll leave it to you guys to establish a link there). Vir Sanghvi, the Editorial Director of HT, was all over the news yesterday confirming the authentication of the tape and commenting on the underworld-bollywood relationship.

The debate is not whether Salman Khan is what he is. The argument is:

  • why didn't anybody, including the police did anything about it four years back?
  • why has the tape been released on the day of Salman's biggest movie this year?
  • and, why has the tape been released by HT on the day of their esteemed launch in the city of Mumbai?

In an attempt to answer the above questions, I tend to forget about the issue here, but am I to be blamed for it? If one reads the transcript, one will find it extremely hard to care about it. The fact that this has come out in the darkness of such an ambiguous evening, only makes me wonder if I'm being purposely misled.

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Time to move on!

Undoubtedly, Apple Mac has been a revolutionary concept. And Windows may have, as many claim, copied the idea to build an experience called PC. But, isn't it about time that Mac supporters stop cursing Bill Gates for it.
Read this post by Olga Kharif, where the main motivation behind the article seems - to bitch about Windows.

Consumers want music phones

Read this article by Sinead Carew.
It's a classic expample of how advent of new technology results into creating a need for more engineering conceptions.

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Horticulture goes the Ferrari way in Bangalore

A picture from the Victorian Walk

The Horticulture Department in red, "overshadows" the Mayo Hall building on MG Road in Bangalore. Posted by Picasa

Can't Shop, Won't Shop!

A picture from the Victorian Walk

A massive shopping arena sitting on the remains of Victoria Hotel, a famous British time building. Posted by Picasa

Anybody home?

A pitcure from the Victorian Walk

A house constructed at the time of Britisher's stands abandoned on MG Road in Bangalore. Surrounded by corporate buildings it is not long before the house collapses under peer pressure. Posted by Picasa

South Parade

A picture from the Victorian Walk

A distant view of the Mahatma Gandhi Road from inside the Holy Trinity Church. MG Road was known as South Parade at the time of British, so called because it was to the south of the Parade Ground. Posted by Picasa

Monday, July 04, 2005

The Victorian Walk

"He being Dead, yet Speaketh." [1870]
A quote read from an inscription in Trinity Church, Bangalore.

So many times I have imagined how a place would look like in near future. The growing infrastructure of cities in India often leads me into fantasizing the look of tomorrow. Moreover, the kind of profession that I am in is very ulterior in nature. And, there's always a Star Wars engine running in my head that is producing thoughts that pertain to 2000 years in future. More than often we allow ourselves to live for what is to come. On the other hand, I seldom sit together with people to talk about the times that were. However, this Sunday, I spent 4 hours discovering the past of where I currently live.

Bangalore is not an ordinary city. Apparently, as I learnt yesterday, it's never been an ordinary city. It had a huge significance at the time of British India and, as most of us would recognise, even after 50-odd years of independence people from all over the world continue to get "Bangalored".

A friend of a friend, invited me and a few others for a Heritage Walk on MG Road in Bangalore. Heritage Walk is a very common concept in most famous cities around the world. This was the first time I was going for a heritage walk. The itinerary had us start from the Trinity Church on MG Road and walk 2 kms till we hit Cubbon Park. As planned, we started off early on Sunday morning aiming to complete the walk in 2 hrs. Arun, an informed man and our guide narrated us the history and significance of various historic spots and buildings we visited on our way to the Cubbon Park.

We were a group of 13 people, young and middle-aged professionals, all enthusiastic about the history of Bangalore. We walked around for about 3 hours, stopping every 200 meters and discussing the history of each place where we made a stop, talking about British India and Britisher's presence in Bangalore at that time. Arun spoke of various facts and stories from all the places that we stopped at. I'm not going to talk about those stories because they are Arun's selling points. However, I barely hesitate to talk about my feelings of the event and the concept in general.

The short Victoria Walk was gripping in portions. Arun's excellent narration kept me interested for most of the time. To our advantage, we had an historian with us in our group who always had something to add to what Arun said. I now know which renowned English figure, who later went on to become the PM of Britain, was a member of Bangalore club. I now know how Tamilians ended up owning most of the prime Bangalore. I also know that there is a stronger than an average chance for me to become a cricketer if I played at the St. Joseph High School park. Last but not the least, I have found another more meaningful reason to not take my girlfriend to Bangalore Central for shopping.

In spite of, the whole experience being so amazing in so many ways, I hate to admit that I had little to take away from the walk. I have learnt that MG Road was a residence to many British officers, however, I can only rely on my imagination to know the kind of houses they lived in. Out of the 3 houses that we saw from outside, I could explore or photograph none from inside. The Mayo Hall, that was brought to my notice by Arun, looks nothing but like an old worthless building from outside, but I probably would have had a different opinion, if I could look at it from inside. I, for myself, have never before focused on places and the history attached to them. But people, who have lived and learnt in more historically rich places, like Delhi or Calcutta, will find little to satisfy their history appetite from this walk.

Arun, appears to me - a high spirited man, who is rediscovering Bangalore and has taken it upon himself to generate awareness about this beautiful Garden City. His efforts are worth an applause, but he probably needs to get more data or, as we call them in IT, artifacts together. Undoubtedly, the Victorian Walk was an experience that I would have hated to let go. I would strongly recommend it for people who travel to Bangalore for business or holiday reasons.

[Watch this space for pictures from yesterday's event.]