Friday, November 18, 2005

Back in HYD, Indian Cricket's Jigsaw Puzzle and other stories

So I had a nice festival time in Delhi. Celebrated the festivals of Diwali and Bhai dooj with lots of fervor and gaiety... ,-) sounding soo essayish aint I ?

The trip was very nice, much needed and on the whole faantaastic. Was nice to be in my own city.. among my gang of friends.. in the numerous family gatherings...

Was hard coming back to HYD.. the first few days were really painfully getting back into the daily grind..

Though I took quite a few pics around this time and also some short videos... unfortunately they all reside on my PC in delhi.. so cant really upload em here...

Coming back, the last 2 weeks just flew by like a blitz.. Loads of work to take care of..
N number of household things to take care of.. :(
For beginners, I had my telephone line dead when I got back.. then it went dead once again within a week.. Right now my car batteries are all cold and stoned..

Moreover we are starting to look around for a decent apartment which we can purchase... squeezing every penny we have made or intend to make or even dream to make... thats exactly like it.. but seems looking at the projects around here, thats not really enough...

Ohk.. coming to some positives now.. well the Indian cricket, the enigma its always been is yet again in the eye of the storm.. This time its not blowing up the Indian team, but it tormented apart Lankans like there was no tomorrow..

My notes from the concluded series:

1. Chappell is a man of action. He doesnt give you wonderful quotes but does what he has been hired to do.

2. The start of it all was the camp he organised at Bangalore. That was what really started the ball rolling.. And over there he had a thorough routine set up for all of the boys in blue. They hit the ground running against the Lankans for a change. From match #1, you could see the sting in the bowling and the zest in the fielding.

3. Strategy. Well, Alls well that ends well.. but then I would credit Team India for atleast trying to try out some strategies. The best of it was the variable no. 3 batsman. I think the idea rocks. Allow lower order folks to come up the order, by rotation or as per demand. That way all of the line up is match fit and have been in the middle when the actual need arises. In the past, Kaif would go without taking guard for matches in a row, when the top order fired. And when it didnt he hadnt touched a ball for ages and you couldnt blame him then.

4. Youngsters. Well, that really uncovered some real young blooded boys who took the opportunity with both thier hands. We tried out RP Singh (ok it was his second series, so what), S Sreesanth, S Raina, MS Dhoni (again he has played before for a while).
* RP Singh: A tall left hand seamer. Bowls real straight and has a knack of picking wickets. Good action.
* Sreesanth: Well, is a nice rythmic bowler, but dont like his action. Has a flingy kinda action. Dont see him in the team for too long.
* S Raina: Looked uneasy in Zim, but here he is finding his feet. Is lightening fast on the field and between the wickets and very very fluent with the bat. The kind of batsman to have at 6/7.
* MS Dhoni: Enough has been said/ written about him. I spotted him when he hadnt hit it this big, and what had struck me about him was not his blazing bat, but his attitude on the field. He is one fella who looks like having fun in there. Lot of the big folks seem like going through a treatment in there. He seems like having he is partying in there. Someone compared his swagger with that of Viv Richards. His batting seems quite unorthodox, and I have yet to make my mind if I like it or not. But he is effective. What I think right now about him is that he has his own style alltogether and though he looks shaky and really all over the place, he has his basics right. And he somewhat knows how to play as per the situation. I think he is getting too much media adulation all too soon. Lets just wait and watch.

5. Good bowling. I think that really served us well this time round. Pathan was bowling real well. But seeing him bowl, I realise he needs to get some work done for his bowling when there is no assistance from the deck. He looks plain average then. Needs a good yorker and some reverse swing soon. Agarkar, for a change was bowling well within himself.. read less erratic as what he can be. I have always liked him and his bowling. There is no doubt he is the most talented bowler of his generation, only if he was focused enough.

6. Sachin. The master is back. And the icing is we dont rely on his for every match. And the topping, he is trying to play his natural game, not just navigate through the day. Good luck to him.

7. Captaincy. Well, Dravid took over fulltime captaincy for the first time. He is doing a fair job as of now. Didnt really need to do too much with the guys doing their best generally. But will be interesting to see how he fares on two counts: Blooding youngsters and managing under performing seniors. That will decide if Dravid-Chappell practise what they preach or it was just a ploy to push off Ganguly Da.

Well, somehow I dont feel sorry for dada. I used to like him and they way he led India in the last 5 years. He seemed to really back his younger fellas and was aggresive. But I kind of think Chappell didnt write horse-crap about dada in his confidential mail to the board. Dada hadnt been in form for the good part of 1.5 yrs (dont thrust statistics plz.. scratching a 50 doesnt show up any different from a fighting 50 on the scorecard!!!). And in the last 5-6 months you could feel that he wasnt just the same captain anymore. And he would once accept that he was off form. I think the board actually preserved his ego by not firing him right after the Dada-Chappell stand off. They allowed him his breathing space and then did what they needed to.

So, I think dada is all but gone. We might just see him back for the test matches, but I dont think he is gonna really return into the fold. That wouldnt help.

So is the case with VVS Laxman, Kumble and Nehra. For one, I never counted Nehra as a cricketer. He was just a bowler. Someone who would frown continuously and scrape through bowling 6-7-8 overs if he was lucky. He couldnt bat at all and forget his fielding. Now you cant afford that kind of 1 dimensional players in world cricket. Unless you want to start your own league or something.

I think Zaheer might just come back in. He always had the guts and the heart of a fast bowler. And if Dra-pell (:-)) truly intend to have the best 11/12, they would have him back sooner than later.

So its been a looong post. Lemme stop now..
Hope to write back soon and maybe some snaps...



Monday, October 10, 2005

Oscars.. le entree' de Inde..

Ohk ok.. my french sucks.. pardonne moi..

So the FFI or whatever the film body is called.. who cares, decided that the Official Indian entry to 2006 Oscars would be PAHELI.

Well, most of the time people roll off their opinion about such matters without having seen all of the other movies also in the fray.. me too, but for once I have actually watched ALL of the movies that were in the top bracket and were in contention. So thereby I derive my right to opinionate on the said matter.

First all the movies that were in contention.. Ok the hindi ones only:

Paheli, Hazaaron Khwaishein Aisi, Page 3, Black and Iqbal.


Lets start with the what was the favorite to reach LA. Sanjay Bhansali walked away with all the critical acclaim and public hysteria over this hard hitting, gritty tale of a blind-deaf girl and her teacher.
The pros:
- A different movie. Good to see people like SLB moving away from mush and back to the what appeals his own heart.
- Amazing cinematography. Real amazing camera work. The blacks, the grays.. the shadows.. the works..
- The little girl who plays the young Michelle. She rocks..
SLB went truly overboard here. He is a very talented director and very intricate in his homework. That shows here, but his script which demands people to be shocked at the young child's plight is manipulative. Close camera shots, violent shrills and loud scenes marr the otherwise amazing screenplay. AB, the most versatile indian actor, overacts more than what would have sufficed. On the whole, the film wants to manipulate you to be shocked.. to be sucked up into a wave of sympathy .. towards the movie.. more than what you feel for the girl and her teacher.

It wouldnt have made the cut at the Oscars.. Too loud for their taste. And they can see through the manipulations. Simplicity is the key. Also the added issue of being called a copy of The Miracle Worker didnt help its cause.


Nagesh Kukunoor at helm. Expect a story well told. This one is..
Simplicity is the key here.. A touching tale of a deaf/ dumb boy who dreams to play for the Indian cricket team (unless Saurav has a problem with him). A nice lilting story, without too many sub plots and really well told. The peripheral characters are all well chosen. Girish Karnad, Naseer, Iqbal's younger sister.. everyone. Quality product.
But its just not the right choice for the Oscars. Its centred around cricket a wee too much. The story is quite predictable.. I mean everyone knows the kid is gonna make it. A terrific watch.. but I would pack it for the Oscars. BTW, if you havnt watched Nagesh Kukunoor's Teen Deewarien.

Hawaaron Khwaishien Aisi

HKA, made by Sudhir Mishra, the one of the art house realm, is a very complex movie. The kinds you need to watch multiple times to uncover its many layers and nuances. Its something to dissect over many a screenings.. pref watching alone. A portral of 3 friends coming and going apart during the Emergency. Its more about relationships than is evident. Again well directed, gritty and morose. Its highly unpredictable the way it moves swifting around the 3 major characters. My personal opinion is that I didnt connect with either of the three characters to really feel for them. All of them are very complex beings and although very real, they dont really bond too well with the viewer. I know its meant to be that way. But just that donest make it love this movie. It must have been a strong contender for the jury and I dont know their reasons why they could not select it. I too wouldnt have..


Well so this one won. Ok let me start with the vibes it generated before its release. Amol Palekar, core art house guy directing a film with SRK-Rani and co. on a Rajasthani folk tale. Sounded too good to be true. A mix of both the worlds. Perfect. Thats the reason I still watched it after hearing its horrible reviews. Maybe I wanted to find out by myself, what went wrong if it did. Well, SRK won. It isnt best of both the worlds. He just swung the scales on his side. Amol doesnt infuse any life into this one. There are no layers to uncover here. A straight forward tale of a ghost falling in love with a village girl. The folk tale was supposed to be about how this girl gets to choose about her life for the very first time. But, we dont see Rani like a helpless poor woman. She looks soo lavish, so independent, soo much in command throughout that this tag line flops. Maybe this one told 30 years ago would have connected better with people. The cinematography is very slick.. too slick to my liking for a folk take. The screen play is just too cooked up and altered to what could have been really worthwhile. I know Amol realises that himlself and he is probably as surprised about the jury decision as all of us.
The Jury chose this as it is a folk take, something the Amreeks relate to us Indians. And with a masala camel race thrown in the middle the jury dreamt maybe they could pull it off. Sorry, but this one is gonna miss the cut there in round 1.

Page 3

You must have guessed by now. I kept it away for last, because its my choice for the Oscars. Its one compelling movie well told. Madhur Bhandarkar of Preetii Jaiin fame, directed this take on the the glamour world. This is a satire on the cosmetic lives of the 100 famous people who live to show off in the next big bash. Perfectly timed with what is happening all over the world today, what with wannabes like Mallika Sherwat and Co willing to go all the way to become celibrities. Moreover its a global phenomenon, with US right at the top. Being a celibrity is like an ambition quite a few people nurture. This is a hard hitting take on the concept, and there is never a dull moment. Bhandarkar is not the one with cinematographic visions. His strength is compelling stories about Human weaknesses... He captures it perfectly. Good strong acting from everyone. No major starring roles in this one. Its a commentary on the sordid state with a pinch of salt. Dark humour for us indians alien to the concept. I would liked to see this off to the Academy awards. They like a compelling story well told. Its both.. and to top it all, it connects with people across national boundaries.

So until next time, lets hope the Academy goofs up and we see the Stuttering Khan waving the Golden statuette.



Mom-Dad here... = nice weekend !

Mom came in here last monday nite. And Dad came in friday nite and its been a rocking time since. Truly marvellous to have them here.. Just incredible.. or like the Yankees roll out all the time "AWESOME.." ,-)

So I had a nice weekend. Showed (off) dad and mom around the new MS Campus.. and both of them were mightly impressed.. well, the campus is for sure an eye opener :D

It is nice of MS to let you get your parents to work. You can show them around the place peacefully.. and no one minds..

Sunday, we also went to the Birla Mandir and Charminar.
Now Birla Mandir is one nice place here in HYD. Atop a small hillock overlooking the entire city, its a peaceful and nice temple devoted to Lord Vinayak. The wite marble all over the place remains soo cool even if its a little on the sunnier side. I love to sit on the white marble after the visit to the main temple and just rest around there.

Charminar was like it always is.. crowded... brimming with people. But its a different place and you have to have that kind of sensibilities to enjoy its environment. In short, not the kind of palce everyone would enjoy. For a change I didnt... Just too congested that day for me.

We also went to the HussainSagar Lake in the evening. Now thats something to wonder about. For a big time change, a placid nice lake has been developed by the government to something much more than its potential.. and it feels good to think that an Indian state government dint screw it as most of you expect them to..
They have a nice well done roads all round the lake, which lights up in the evennigs and is apty called the Necklace road.. maybe a picture of it here someday. And on one side of the lake they have developed an elongated Promenade.. entwined between lawns and foilage. Beyond it, there is a food court, which overlooks the lake. Truly faaantaaastic...
.. if only the people around can resist from getting rid of their waste right there on the walkways...

So, in all a nice loong weekend.. the kinds that stretches into the Monday and just refuses to let go.. :(



Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Bz WeeKs

Have been having some bz weeks...
Quite a lot of things to do or fix.. and not entirely fun things..
Anyway thats how starts are.. so be it..

Meanwhile, weekends have been mostly fine lately.. mostly relaxing.
Caught up on a few movies past weeks..
A quick round-up :

Really nice and touching movie. Makes you realise how awfully good Nagesh Kukunoor is. Simple straight forward story told really really well. Top class acting.. and the young kid (who plays Iqbal) rocks.. Naseer is solid as ever.. and So is Girish Karnad. Old timers at their best. The best part is the uplifting spirit is enduces. And specially in these times of Ganguly-Chappel feuds, makes you realise cricket was meant to be about passion not politics..

Good story.. Average screenplay... Bad direction.
Ok I dont like this chap.. Emraan Hashmi.. but heard this one had a nice story. The dir ruined the movie with patchy editing and really awful ending. Features two girls : Udita Goswami, Shamita Shetty. Neither can act. PERIOD.
Demonstrates how a catchy storyline can engage you inspite bad acting.
PS: A couple of really nice soulful songs..

Overhyped.. Cmon, this is was just a masala flick which dint even pretend to scratch the surface of live-in relationships. Just a fun-frolic-masala flick. Amazing locations and sights captured on film. That was the best part. But plzzzzz dont go to watch it for its storyline.

Anyway moving away from movies, Mom is coming over on Monday. so am all kicked up about it. Dying to see her.. been a looooong time.

So watch out for my next post. Hopefully should have lotsa travel news.. lotsa pics and stuff.


Sunday, August 21, 2005

Settled in HYD.. finally....

Hi to all my fans and friends...

Ohk Hi all my friends...

So finally am quite a bit settled and comfortable in HYD.. My home is all setup.. and so is things at office..
So you all can now start pouring in at HYD.. ohk.. one at a time plz... :-)

My home is in a place called YELL-a-Reddy-Guda... no its not a Dial-Reddy kinda service... just plain Telugu typa name...

Ohk.. well the place is quite a decent and green.. Green as in greenery and foilage..
So its quite a nice and peaceful sight to look from the balcony..
Its a 3 BHK place but I managed to convert it a 2 BHK + Sitout...
well, actually its a proper bedroom but since it is attached with the balcony and that too only with some huge windows and all, it looks more a part of the balcony.. and thats how we treat it as..

Maybe some pics of the place might clear things a bit.. dont expect em tomorrow... am supposed to be BZ..

Well, life in Hyd has been so far so good.. nice smallish city.. with too many people ...
Really, on weekends its hard to think of a place we can visit to generally hang-out or so.. We end up mostly in a mall called Hyderabad Central, which is just 10 mins away.. Its a typical mall where I mostly come out with my wallet a lot lighter... and my hands heavier...

One more interesting thing... which is absolutely non-interesting is the traffic...
It seems absolutely chaotic and is really inspirational to someone actually interested in Comp Sc to study Random functions..
Seriosuly, I am scared to drive around the place and the 2 scratches and 1 dent on my ZEN can vouch for that... and remember how much I prided myself on my smooth driving back in Delhi...

On the office front things are quite better... We had the MS IDC 7th Year anniversary celebrations on Saturday.. and it was actually fun.. The beer helped the matter IMO.... But the rock band was nice and so were a few presentations by IDC folks....

Hey, its been ages since I clicked anything.. with a camera offcourse...
My last outing was to the Charminar.. and trust me its truly elegant...
So to end this looong post, here are some pics of the place...


#1 : A Diagonal view of Cminar..

the most dominant color in that area is black… black of burqas the women put on there… in the BG you see amazing clouds.. almost make it look unreal..

#3: Jyothi.

#4: Prototype view...
Must have seen this view in so many magazines and journals...

#5: Cminar, and the roadside ‘thelas’ …. Quite a colorful view…

#6: Minars
Magnificient.. all of em..

#7 : the mosque..

#8 : Charminar in chains..

So its been a long time since I have been out with my camera..
Looking forward to chance to give my camera a workout..

anyway, feel free to write back ur comments.. fan mail... and watever else you might want... :D



Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Am a Microsoftie now..

Yeah.. joined MS on 11th July, Monday..
Am one of those in the Evil Dark empire... ,-)

Is a great campus btw..
Actually a campus.. not to mention a spanking new building.. Yankee style..

and no restrictions on timings/ security/ ......
do what you want is the mantra...

still exploring the place really.. so dont really have a final opinion about the place.. will keep writing as and when i discover this new place..

HYD is actually a nice place.. contrary to my believe that people must have been wrong when they claimed it to be one...
Not big enough.. not small ..
nice simple people you can actually talk to..

Again, still discovering the place..

So sigining off for now,

Monday, July 04, 2005

My last days here..

I end my period with ST tomorrow i.e. 5th July, Tuesday. After 2 year 7 months...
Somehow I aint all that nostalgic or emotional.. i knew it was around the corner for a while..
So I was kind of mentally prepared..

The only thing I will miss for sure is my group.. had some real nice people in my group and will miss them.. Hope to keep contact with them.. and considering I belong here in Delhi, I hope to see them sometimes too..

For now, am busy taking the necessary clearances from various departments.. before they can relieve me.. A big time boring activity.. specially on your last few working hours...

Signing off,


Saturday, July 02, 2005


Skyline of metropolitan Delhi..

One of those rare evenings in Delhi where the moon and the colors of the sky actually shows..
Took this one from the terrace of my apartment.. not the best possible shot.. but still liked it..
Some touch-up on the comp as well..

aaaaarghhh... there is alooooong way to go for me to really get some eye-catching stuff...
till then will have to do with mediocre stuff like this ...

Signin' off,


Friday, July 01, 2005

Lemme check the date again... O ho.. Its 21st Century here... REALLY ????


been a name quite in news here for a while.. The mother of 5 who was raped by her father-in-law..
The religious clerics of 'Dar-ul-Uloom Deoband' allegedly issued a fatwa on her instructing her to separate from her Husband..
Yeah you read that Right...
And now today there is a news piece claiming that the organisation never really issued such a fatwa..

read on here 'No fatwa in Imrana rape case: Deoband' !!!
Also read what Amit Varma writes at India Uncut about this..

Sometimes I wonder if the entire of India lives in the same Time Zone..
No one has cared to speak about the father-in-law in question.. while the poor woman has been dubbed 'haraaam' (forbidden)... aaargh..

It still is 11th Century in some parts of India... so much for India Shining !!

Signing off for now,

A new beginning...


So here it is.. a new beginning. A new blog..
Not my first.. but then almost my first.. Starting afresh after a break of nearly an year...

26 Married

Am still in Delhi.. my last few days here.. as I wind up my work and other activites from here..
Quite hectic.. but am loving it..
a nice change from the dredgery of my job.. never really pushed me enough..

Anyway you ll read more about it as I write on.. which hopefully I shall...

Ahaa.. forget to write .. I am gonna post pictures here often..
Am quite hooked on photography.. still learning.. and enjoying it..

So here is a start...


As per traditional Indian customs, Ganesha is known to bring good luck for starting a new activity.
Not that I am a hard core traditionalist.. but then I still chose this one... to start with..

Till we meet again !!
Signing off,