Saturday, June 8, 2013

Chip of the old block

When the offspring inherits the qualities of the parents; it is often seen as something that confirms the identity of the progeny.We celebrate it,see it as passing of the proverbial torch in terms of virtues.

Yet when the kid matures all the same attributes that are causes of happiness bring about a sense of monotonicity. Somehow he must be creative,have original ideas and be special by himself.He goes to school, gets trained in the same disciplines as lacs of others who do the same.For Earths population close to six billion,it is close to impossible that everyone must be unique per se. Yet the scores of lectures for originality must go on.Somehow the neighbors son raises the bar for the homeboi. It is spiteful to even think that Raju is better than "Padous ka SharmaJi ka Beta" .This fictitious character is the bane of all kids of GenX.No one beats the neighbors son.In fact he is so good,that he will probably get the Nobel Prize someday.The neighbors kid is the symbol of envy,the topmost bar of success scales.He is the modern day super-boys kryptonite. He will have all the goods life has on offer while apna Raju struggles with getting the filth away from his own shirt.All the auntyji's sing his name-the Ramavatar in terms of being a scion.

Why cant you be more like him? 

Raju reluctantly gives up arguing,knowing it wont make sense.He is put up to match an illusion,a supposed character without flaws.An amalgam of the all the good features someone should have.Problem for him is humans are imperfect.Because that is what makes us human.Yet we are bred in the same pool of knowledge , the same ambiance of society and the same metrics of performance.So how can two persons be judged when they have so much in variance?Yet society keeps Raju in the metaphorical treadmill of  "career paths".

Here i quote my oft used lines:

"Here in a country like ours ...

  • The competitiveness has risen geometrically to cut-throat levels.
  • The competitiveness has risen as such , so much so that one could implement Charles Darwin's Theories of Evolution.

To satire or not to satire... 
  •  Imitation is a feature one should not have.(Even if the kid is actually good at it.)
  •  We are only cheap rip offs of our fathers.(I forgot the name of the Hero who said that. ;-) )

Life is meant to be fulfilling,it is no wonder homeboi loses his path,frustrated and confused about his place in the world.The scales are ruthless,there is no room for compromise.As he hits puberty ,he finds competition and also distractions in terms of of the birds and bees.The opposite gender gives him more competition,and also distracts him from his primary mission of being successful.College gives him freedom but also piggybacks the additional overheads of responsibilities.He picks up an instrument,like many others and in trying to forge his non-academic talents goes through a media of challenges.His taste in music varies.Pop gives way to Rock et al. He tastes the different kinds "beverages" and implements different types of recreations.He keeps up with his other unique buds in terms of style and brand know how.He must tattoo the fore of his crack-because that's what the cool kids do.He gets a job,and like scores of others has his thing planned.A post graduate degree to boot. Everybody does it,but hey, he must be different,right?
Le unique dude gets his first car.Also more responsibilities.A partner to share his life with(Well honestly,mostly wealth!!!).He keeps running the rat race,uniqueness notwithstanding.That is until he has his progeny do the same.

From cradle to the grave-
He is spoon fed the idea of fighting the competition.Like the popular soap ad that says:

"Dont Stop!"

He follows it - that is until he kicks the bucket.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Mythological Mashups..

Just how many times have we heard of it?
Krishna being the Hindu equivalent of Cupid.
Buddha's teaching were implied as seminal
to birth of Christian beliefs.
One reckons if it were not just one of many
legends that have been shaped and forged by varying and eternally evolving cultures,we would have one singular mythological mold of "legends" that gave birth to the various religions and sects coming into the fore through the ages.Mythological tales have traversed through lands,languages.
They have been conformed,twisted,reformed and retold over and over again.
Its like watching spin offs of the same movie.
Its not just a thing of ancient or medieval times,its also been here
in the present.Modern modes of entertainment and hackneyed
story lines have ensured that mythological mash ups exist here and now.
We hear about such caricatures,don't we?
Movies and makers face censorship every time somebody crosses the line.
While its a hard one to advocate,one must always ensure that
celebrating the revered has its downside of hurting vulnerable sentiments.

Likewise, we have our own answer to Saint Valentine's Day-
(although not remotely related in anyway) Saraswati Puja.
A day that is primarily celebrated to propitiate the Hindu Goddess of
knowledge,has somehow been sheared into a day of romance for the yuppie clan.
Its no big an issue, people have their reasons to celebrate, but somehow one gets the
feeling that its the Occident that keeps devouring our society as a form of cultural imperialism.
The idea that must resonate that while cultures may evolve, mythologies translated,there must not be a mash up of the two.Its just not good-neither for them nor for us.

Thursday, March 8, 2012


My first i-thingy!!!
A new day..a new hope...a new ...well you get the point...nonetheless
I was very very happy...for the first time i got hold a device my
buds dont have...some do...but then buds here are reference to the
people at the nearest carom club.Heh...phaaadu cheeez achhey bhai...
....chaal dekha!!!
As them dudes check it out while it is synced...i go to the folder thats
the header of this music folder...woah! Kinda wierd feeling..
What must i put in?

After five frustrating minutes i still had no clue..

The first angrezi tune i had heard was "Backstreets back...alright!!"
That was ...Millenium..i mean the beginning of 2000's
That was a long time ago...I had not met the puberty bunny as yet.
I grew up with the pulsating music of Linkin park in my teens.
Hamlet cacu calls me jhaanu maal since then.
Like i could care less.Ever felt the condescension for the urban hippy
who blasted x ecutioners feat. LP "Its going down" in his faatichar
nokai phone??
"Man i heard it so long ago.."

Nevertheless my taste in music has varied so much more
than a Cubbys phone number(the hole never maintains
one for more than a month)
Its been one ride from Livin la vida loca to the groovy music
of The black eyed peas.For rockers,headbangers
, metalheads,i am no wuss.
From trash can banging by Marilyn Manson to the DMMs of
Dreamtheater and Porcupine tree to AC/ mind tells me-
been here heard that.Truth is i dont care about genres as long as it
is there to be enjoyed.There are exceptions though, songs i enjoy
even after playing them close to a bazillion times.

Perhaps thats why i have not picked up an instrument.
I picked up an i-touch!
I am to lazy to create.I have no restrictions with regards to taste.
Adhunik gaan?Hemanta?Sandhya Mukherjee?
Kolaveri?Bhojogaurango?Apoddi pode?

Bring it on...

I like my i-touch.
I like to enjoy.
What else could a geek want more?

Monday, October 10, 2011

The league of the extraordinary managers..

The life of a manager of a top premier league team is tough.Each have their qualities,but the common goal of winning comes to a select few,and that too after a load of hard work.The big four of the Premier league no longer exists,its more of a top six now.And while we wait,we all see the wile and guile of the team managers.

Arsene Wenger is having a tough time since that League Cup final loss to Birmingham.The dreams of a quadruple faded in the rubble that was caused by knockout defeats to Barca and United in the CL and FA Cup,the season began with important players like Nari,Fabregas and Clichy leaving,and Wenger was listless to get replacements that ended up in them getting hammered 8-2 to a powerful United side.They bought players of unproven talent rather than tried and tested due to their financial constraints.They
barely managed to scrape through to the CL group stages,courtesy to a wasteful Udinese side.Wenger has a lot to prove and ponder upon this season.

The other London club also have seen a lot.Eliminated by United in the CL and Everton in the FA cup.Chelsea took out the trash with firing the listless Ancelotti and getting in the colorful Andre Villas Boas.Out went the deadwood.In came Romeu,Mata, Meireles and Lukaku,and a blossoming Sturridge.Fernando Torres needed direction and Villas Boas looked just the man having won the treble with Porto.Although it will take time for him to make the pride of London champions again.

Now with the team that has seen it all-the brink of administration,board trouble,revolving door of managers,lack of funds,controversial transfers,swindling ownership to transformation to a top side again,they found stability with Kenny Dalglish up front-again as manager.He is not one for tactics or analysis,he is more better as a man manager,and his future shall ride much with the expensive commodities
in Downing,Carroll,Suarez and of course Stevie G.He has a good team but we need to see how far can King Kenny go with his colorful squad.

Now to Manchester.First the City.Almost spending half a billion in players since coming in,the mega rich side with Roberto Mancini leading them has shown that money still rules the game.Mancini's Italian grounding is seen with his teams stubborn defense,although new buys of Aguero and Nasri may make them a deadly front in attack,although they still lack a cohesive unity as seen when Bayern dismantled them in Munich.Mancini has an expensive squad ,but in no way will the road be easy for him.

His main challenge will be from none other than the legendary SAF-the imperialistic Scot who has fulfilled his word when he toppled Liverpool with their league win last season.Although the Barcelona side got them into submission in Europe for the second time in three years,The Scotsman is now making a squad that will challenge not just in England but also in Europe.No trophy is safe from his clutches while he still manages the Red Devils.

Finally,back to London,where the gambling,bumbling and oft fumbling Harry Redknapp.Having tasted European pinnacle in Champions league, Real Madrid
attached a ball and chain when they were cruising in their orbits.Having beaten the two Milan sides in engaging contests,the European adventure took a toll,which is why they failed to get in to the top four.Although losing badly to the Manchester sides may have caused doubts whether they can get back into the top four,buys and loans of Scott Parker and Adebayor have made sure they will have a say in who wins the league,and with arch rivals Arsenal faltering,Harry has a battle in hand to fight off Liverpool for the last CL spot.Although with the influential Modric staying,
Harry just might get 'lukay'...

The battle rages on...

New kids of the continental block..

Apparently after a world cup performance in which no other team from South America could go even to the semis,Uruguay held guard.If not for Diego Forlans bad luck it might have been Uruguay versus Spain rather than the Dutch-Spanish brawl.

Truly out-shined in the number and quality of stars from the big boys-Brazil and Argentina,Uruguay had a modest few in Suarez,Forlan and Cavani.Unlike Argentina who have an embarrassment of riches up front and Brazil having a number of stars,it was the smaller teams from the Latin continent that shone.The Brazilian trident of Pato ,Neymar and Ganso fell flat,while Messi showed he had not exorcised his demons in playing for his country.In fact just how Argentina fail again and again in spite of producing some of the best ball players of the 21st century is amazing to say the least.Nonetheless Uruguay had discipline and that separated them from the others.While Chile and Paraguay relied on team spirit and fans.Uruguay mixed technique with discipline.Muslera had his defense to thank-a unit comprising of Lugano,Caceres ,Coates ,Godin and Fucile aptly distributed the possession to the midfield.The likes of Gargano and Peirera maintained the balance between attack and defense perfectly.Up front the holy trident made sure the opponent were never at ease.While you never know how good you are if you beat the best,they showed their class with beating sides like Argentina and the tenacious Peru side.A wise coach in Oscar Tabarez,the forwards marauded the opponents with Forlans immaculate skill and vision,Luis Suarez hard work ,and the power of the demonic Edinson Cavani.
Forlan sacrificed his position to more of a play-maker and let loose the rockets from midfield.He had championship inheritance it seemed ,as both his father and grandfather won the title previously,Luis Suarez was undoubtedly the champion who helped his country to victory.
It was one victory the small South American side could cherish for some time when the game was dominated by the two giants.The underdogs strikes back!

The Super Marios

One is a much maligned and underrated goal poacher.Another was the co-architect of Borussia Dortmunds league glory.Another is the enfant terrible of Italian football.All three have somehow or the other raised their status as future greats.
The super Marios.

While Mario Gomez is not really young,he is one of those late bloomers who hit their peaks in their late twenties.He is a goal hungry panther whose goals come in multiples rather than consistently.He was almost regarded as a flop after his arrival to Bayern and was about to be offloaded to Liverpool before his sale was cancelled and given another chance.And boy did he grab his chance.A Bayern side faltering after missing its two champions Ribery and Robben,they found inspiration in this lethal weapon that scored more freely than Messi or Ronaldo.He doesn't have turf burning pace like C.Ronaldo,nor does he have the physical presence to intimidate defenders like Drogba,but he scores like there will be no tomorrow.A staggering 42 goals single-handedly carried FC Hollywood to a champions league spot.In the current season he has already scored 18.How Liverpool must be ruing that they missed out on him.

Mario Goetze is the other super mario from Bundesliga.A young Bundesliga side based on German discipline,the young playmaking forward.Together with the more defensive minded Sahin he formed a midfield that reeked of quality.Aptly supporting the other stars in Shinji Kagawa ,Nuri Sahin ,Lucas Barrios.At his teens ,he has a better record than the contempory greats when at their age in C.Ronaldo and Lio Messi.In his last season he has scored 8 goles and racked up 16 assists.Dortmund must nurture his genius rather than let him be poached by an Arsenal or a Bayern Munich before he reaches his peak.At 5'7" ,he has at lot of growing up to do both in terms of physical attribute and game vision.

Finally its the Super Mario in Manchester.Although he is known more for the frequent faux pas and controversy,Mario Balotelli's talents are undoubted.He is a maverick genius,who gets carded after scoring a hat-trick due to his overzealous spirit.He his one who bites more than he can chew,and gets under the opponents skin too often.He is a future talisman for the mega rich club in Manchester,although he may require to control his emotions on the field to render his game to flourish.A forward who has all the qualities-pace height power and technical skill,he needs to work on his game for the long term good,by knuckling down and work hard.

End of an era..

When Tendulkar and Ganguly opened the one day innings much to the delight of a billion fans,how many fancied the scrawny no.3 to be their idols??

The answer is shamefully simple.No one.
Everybody loved Ganguly ruling the spinners and dominating the off side.Tendulkar's genius was second to none.But how many matches has this no.3 won for the country?
No one cares.Because he is not flashy.He does not have a strike rate of 150+.He is your test match player.Not suited to the pace of the shorter version of the game.
But now that this no.3 retired,why are the pundits worried about the fragile batting lineup?

Its because that's what the team shall miss now on - the sense of security and calm when this no.3 batsman-probably the best ever is gone.
The man who lived in the shadow of the above named.The man who saw through tough times and tight games.The man who bowled,kept wickets and took some incredible catches.The man known as Rahul Dravid.

His ODI retirement was no surprise considering his age.But then age was never under consideration when a batsman of 35+ is called over and over again to protect a fragile batting lineup.His call ups to the champions trophy and the abysmal England tour can lay proof to that idea.Whenever our opening Gods-Sachin ,Sehwag and Ganguly failed,Dravid stood up and saw through the innings.In fact his calming influence helped them to play with freedom.He held on while it was the yuvrajs and dhonis who took the chances.He was the concrete wall who milked and frustrated the opponent bowling attack.He always was there to save the day.

We talk about the number of centuries from Sachin Sehwag and Ganguly.While Rahul hasn't scored many,his innings should be measured with respect to the circumstances.He rarely faced the new ball,which has more bounce and easier to go after.The number of times he has finished the game is astonishing.The greatest team of the decade-the aussies,hated bowling to him because of his stubborn defense.Very irritating if the batsman you were bowling in the opening session where you dismantled the top order,and yet he is still there with the tail.
His partnerships with another underrated great Laxman have been magical.Its like magic when those two bat.One perfectly suits the others game.The perfect foil.The ying to the yang.

His one day stats do not reveal the hard work he put in every kind of surface.Whether its pace ,bounce ,slow or low ,turning or seaming , no pitch could unravel him.His technique was such he was immune to the malevolent nature of the pitch.Whether its concrete strip in Perth or a coal mine at Kanpur.Critics slammed him for his strike rate.While 'notable' cricket experts like Sanjay Majrekar could rebuke the other batting greats for no getting the job done,Dravid was teflon,his consistency was an incredible riposte.His centuries were rare,due to his batting attributes that marked him a test specialist.But they always came in important situations.Together with the other batting greats,he was one of the pillars of Fabulous five that gave India many priceless moments in the modern age of cricket.He was a batting plinth
- the architecture that defined the greatness of this current team.He was a rare gem and his value was more to the opponents he defied than the fans.