Thursday, November 27, 2008

Mumbai Massacre - Waking up to reality.

The past few days saw me driven into what I can easily call "a writing euphoria". Walking back home a hundred metres from class , gave me a thousand different thoughts to write a blog on. The traffic signs, pedestrians crossing, the stray dog, emptied parking lots, church hallways, petrol bunks, the cloudy sky, even the wind that gently bristled my "not-so-long" but definitely unkempt hair. It is another story as to why I could not convert everything into writing - maybe on the reoccurence of that euphoria I would stop whatever I was doing and get to the nearest computer to write my heart out.

For now , I have been hooked to the news channels - since a few hours. As everyone would guess , this is just another write up on the Mumbai blasts , unless you take some effort to make out that it would be a little bit different ( from whatever you have read until now ) , and fortunately continue to read on.

Most people could classify me as a news-freak., bent upon getting apprised of all the happenings in the world, and especially the country of my residence. The Mumbai blasts also saw me do the same, only that the way I viewed it was a bit off the block from the way I had viewed the previous so-many attacks in various parts of India.

To say exactly, I was bored of these "terrorist attacks - people dead and injured - two days of continuous news programming - relief from government in form of money - ministers visiting injured and getting primetime footage - a week of incessant debates on terrorism - politicians blaming each other - a week later move on to newer stories - and then forget about it" routine. I know every one of us would have seen all these unfold on every previous occurrence of a terrorist attack. Maybe it was time I told myself that I was anti-national? I asked myself that question. The answer was a firm NO. I love my country, like no other, and I'm selfish when it comes to protecting it. Then I asked myself " Or maybe it was time I(we) responded maturely to this?" . Thinking over this for less than a second, I landed up with a Bingo for an answer.

Leave aside the media , which I believe blows out of proportion the troubles of the rich and discounts the value of the lives of the poor ( which even the government does ) , let us think on our feet first. Here are a bunch of hardly 20+ guys who come into a city which is more or less the economical crux of a country which is threatening to break into the top 5 countries list of the world. They came, they shot, and they conquered us , even if it be for only a few days. They killed our loved ones, removed our prized possessions from us, mowed down the people who protect us, and spread panic all around. Fear for life non-existent, we could only see in disbelief and awe as they rummaged through our valued friends and landmarks. What do they have that we do not? What makes them so much more attacking and gutsy than the police whom we bank upon to protect us?

Will Power. Unity. Choosing your time to strike. Building up your network to inflict the maximum damage. Lack of fear. Lack of love. Commiseration with the fact that death is inevitable at all costs. Patriotism to the organization served. Clearness of achieving a goal. On the whole,Maturity in response.

Look at all the above statements. Even a little bit of a terrorist in you could hit back against them. This is our country, let us not let it go. A maturity in mind is required for us to go ahead. Let us hit them back hard, in the best way possible- by not brooking the insanities that these organizations unleash on us. This blog is not a knee jerk reaction to what may have been the worst terrorist attack ( in type ) India has ever seen. But it is an opinion built upon years of looking at fateful incidents such as the one on Nov. the 26th. Looks it is time, finally. India is waking up to reality.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Inspirational Lyrics ( Translated) of one of the best songs I have heard.

This country of yours is your motherland
And is calling out to you
This is a bond which can never break

How can you forget the scent of your earth
You can go anywhere but you'll always come back
In new paths, in every sigh
To your lost heart
Someone will say
This land of yours is your motherland

Life is telling you
You have achieved everything now what's left
Looks like happiness has been showered on you
But you're far from your home
Now come back oh crazy one
Where at least someone will call you their own
And will call out to you
That very same country
This land that is yours..

This moment has hidden in it
A whole century of life
Don't ask why, in the road
Has come a fork with two ways
You are the one who should choose the path
You should choose which direction to take
This very country

This country of yours is your motherland.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Of Manholes and Movies...

Sometimes one tends to get abstract thoughts - questioning the very existence of some things which we may as well have taken for granted. It could be anything - like for example "why are manholes round in shape? " - most of my well-informed friends would know the answer to this, but for the benefit of who do not know , manholes are round in shape because they cannot fall inside the sewer below even if wrongly placed in position on top of the hole. If it were a square or rectangle, chances are that it may fall through.

This is just one example of things taken for granted - a very pedestrian one. As is the habit of the writer of this blog, who always lives in some dreamland where he wishes that everything he writes be classified " powerful, sophisticated, yet touching"- this time I came up with a cranky thought when my statistics course was getting too mindblowing to be accommodated into one night-out.

Are we ever able to imagine a movie without the concept of "love" ? Just ask yourself - and name a few movies (be it any language) - say ten of them from the past year which you know have no love stories in them at all as the crux of the film. Chances are that you may not be able to name that many- if you did then you should either be a critic or a genius! (Does not imply all critics are fools , although I wont object to it - ;) ) I do not know from where filmmakers came up with the idea of projecting "love stories" on screen - but agreed well and good that it has worked for what I would call eternity. Of late even animation movies are having lovetracks in them to reach out to the adolescents , and garner more recognition and acceptance among a larger age group. Hollywood though has started improvising on new issues of late - documentaries are also being widely accepted by the populace.

What about Bollywood and the other Indian regional film industries ?

Amitabh loves a 16 yr old (Nishabd) - Rajnikanth still runs around trees with women less than half his age ( I'm a Rajni fan but have to be little unbiased out here ) - Chiranjeevi and Balakrishna still fight goons and have more than one woman singing and dancing around them.

Love is the best feeling even when in excess , but that doesn't mean any kind of an overdose of it is acceptable.

High time filmmakers wake up to creating meaningful cinema.

P.S.- I started this blog entry thinking of writing about manholes alone for the day. Alas- perfection avoids those setting out to achieve it.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

One of those songs which makes me speechless.

Following are the lyrics of one song which literally made me go speechless. Sorry for the tamil and the occasional CAPS lock, people. But this song was just too beautiful to omit from being posted on my blog. Amazing tune, wonderful lyrics - (estranged lovers will love it!).

nenjE nenjE marandhu vidu..
ninaivinai kadandhu vidu..
nenjE nenjE urangi vidu
nijangaLai thurandhu vidu
kaNgaLai vitruththan Oviyamaa…
venneeril meengaL thoongumaa
kaNNeeril kaadhal vaazhumaa (nenjE nenjE)

peNNE peNNE unn vaLaiyal
yenakkoru vilangallavO
kaatrukku sirai yennavO
thanmaanaththin thalaiyai vitru
kaadhalin vaaL vaangavO
kaNmoodi naan vaazhavO..
unnai yeNNi muL viriththu
padukkavum pazhagik koNdEn
yennil yaarum kallerindhaal
sirikkavum pazhagik koNdEn
uLLaththai maraiththEn uyir vali poruththEn yen
suyaththai yedhuvO suttadhadi vandhEn….

nenjE nenjE nerungi vidu
nigazhndhadhai marandhu vidu
nenjE nenjE negizhndhu vidu
nijangaLil kalandhu vidu
kaththi vaiththa kaatrE vandhu vidu
kaigaL reNdai yEndhinEn..
kaadhal pichchai kEtkirEn…
nenjE nenjE nenjE nenjE..nenjE nenjE..

anbE anbE nee prinidhaal
kaNgaLil mazhai varumE.
kaatrenai kai vidumE
vidhai azhiththu sedi varumE
sippigaL udaiththa pinnE muththukkaL kai varumE
kaadhal raajaa.. ondrai koduththaal
innondril uyir varumE
unnai konjam vittu koduththaal
kaadhalil sugam varumE
asthamanan yellaam nirandharam alla
mErkil vidhaithaal kizhakkinil muLaikkum..

Movie : Ratchagan
Music: A.R.Rahman
Singers : Yesudas , Sadhana Sargam

If you haven't listened to it, please do. Its a gem.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Its (Y)our Life :)

This piece of writing out here took me what I would say, a lifetime in experience to explain out. Probably the best way to put it would be that I took a lifetime to realise it ( what a dumber! )

There are millions of people you come across all your life- at work, study, on the roads, or be it anywhere you are. Chances are that you may not remember 99.99% even if you see them again. The remaining 0.01% ( or even less than that if people are shy-natured ) keeps changing as you pass through different stages of life.

You go to kindergarten, make friends there - and before you know to link the name with the person you're out of it. With it goes your memory of the people there ( there might be exceptions here , take me for instance - I still remember two people from my kindergarten!! But that I would reject as a highly insignificant number) Next up comes schooling where you get to grow as you learn, and make friends with all sorts of people. The uniqueness of schooling lies in the fact that you get to gel as a unit- you identify who's who as your age has crossed that level at which you could not remember things. Day in day out, you spend eight hours in class and other events in the school. For people changing schools often, they would have experienced how different each school and the students in it are. They would know how the people in the life changed as they changed schools and got to know new individuals. School grows into college where a completely new set of comrades take over as your "buddies" and "best friends" - invariably this is where one would find his/her best friends and wellwishers who would swear by him/her. ( I'm trying to imply that i'm not gender-biased ;) ) At this age I would say you are best equipped to choose the friends you want to, and actually decide whom you want to keep in life. Boyfriends/Girlfriends normally happen at this stage, and invariably with that clause comes breakups as an add-on. Wondering why I'm beating so much around the bush? Well all these factors point to the truth that the people in your life keep changing as life takes you places. Noone is permanent, the exeunt in the play can happen anytime. I just pointed out a few key exit points in the transitions from kindergarten to school and to college. What do you do when you realise noone is permanently embossed in the pattern of your life , and ultimately it is just going to be YOU and YOU alone who would be left?

At this stage, the pessimist would say - Since noone is permanent in your life, why make friends at all ?

The optimist would say - Since you know that noone is going to be around for you all your life, take your chances- have fun, optimize on every opportunity to be around for them- and most importantly, LIVE YOUR LIFE. Live this moment, and this second as though it is the last time they would be there with you.

Whether you choose to be the pessimist or optimist, lies in your hands.