Sunday, November 30, 2008

BOMBay Calling

On Thursday morning, I made some calls to my friends in Bombay. You know, the usual, I-hope-your-ass’s-safe? calls we are so used to making every two month or so nowadays. Great way of keeping in touch. Pardon my sarcasm, but how exactly is one supposed to react? I can’t think of any other, because getting angry and sulking and licking our wounds is all we’ve been forced to do forever. Just 2 months back, I wrote my post on the Delhi attack, and I was sure I will not write another on this one, because what purpose does it solve anyway? It will be another one of those ‘me too’ posts, and I hate that. And moreover I have forever hated terms like the spirit of this and that people talk about everywhere, on TV, on the streets, at home, offices, and their blogs. To fucking hell with that. People don’t go back to their work and their life as they used to be because of some god damn spirit, but for the compulsion of commerce. In thse times, a Babu who goes to MNCs is as insecure about his daily bread as a rickshaw puller. So there, so much for the spirit of ‘humankind’. I have said and I still do, that there is nothing heroic about being an asshole in the line of fire. But this time, it’s different. It’s not a military attack. It’s war against India. Everybody’s calling it India’s 9/11. Yeah, true! Let’s see how we follow up on this attack. Americans, once it was established that it was Al Qaeda after the attacks on US soil, made sure they ‘smoked them out’, as Bush would put it. But here, our political babus are busy playing it out in public again.

But we’ve had enough of you guys taking us for granted and promising people ‘compensation’ for their life and yet another promise of a ‘committee’ or some such shit. Vanita sent me a piece, which so rightly expresses the mood of the people and thank God for that! Here it is…

Hi all,
Fathers, brothers, mothers, sisters, all of them. I know we would all like to honour their memory and respect the sacrifice of those who died in the line of duty.
So if anyone suggests a 'peace march' or a candle in the window, or a human chain, or a message wall celebrating the city's resilience… tell them to F*%K OFF. Our city has had enough! No more candles, no more marches, no more resilience. People don't go back to work bravely facing down the terrorists – they go back to work DESPITE their fear and terror because they need to feed their families! Don't accept the insulting insinuation that we're somehow equipped to deal with this – we're not! And someone needs to do something about this fact – we want action.
The Police aren't equipped to deal with this – not all of them we're armed, and most of them that were, had antique .303 rifles. 3 of Mumbai's best cops were taken out – how easy will be to replace their wealth of experience and leadership?
And of course, the Delhi flock of vultures has descended to meet victims at hospitals and in one case, give a rabble-rousing speech in front of a still-untaken hotel. Tell them to f*%k off. Now they will talk about whose fault it is and why it happened despite 'intelligence alerts'. BTW, where is Raj Thackeray? We should've sent him and his goons in FIRST to protect 'aamchi Mumbai'. Why the silence? Or is he only good for bashing up labourers and taxi-drivers, and is content for the real fighting and dying to be done by soldiers from all over India?
In memory of those who were killed, injured & maimed, I beg you – DO NOT accept platitudes. DO NOT accept bland assurances. DEMAND action. Tomorrow, God forbid, it could be you.

We have to give some spine to our effort in combating terrorism. AND FAST! More and more fanatical youths are being trained to wage a war against us while we wait for our phone calls from Bombay checking if our asses are safe this time.

Friday, November 21, 2008


That’s how you go again and again when you watch the latest candy-floss offering from the house of Dharma. Like all Dharma Productions, its full of fun, frolic and rose tinted vision of the world, and nothing wrong with that. Taran Adarsh calls it a pathbreaking film and all that jackshit about it being a great ‘gay’ film but believe me this is not a film about gays, this is a film on gay jokes. And I say again, nothing wrong with that. And the thing is that if you have followed american sitcoms like Friends and Seinfeld, you have heard all the gay jokes. All they have done is put the jokes in hindi and some jokes which they can’t put in hindi, they’ve simply kept them as is in english. The film is funny as a whole and hilarious in parts though it tends to drag in the second half. While watching the film, I realised that the biggest achievement Karan Johar and Co. have is making some very western concepts homogenised and acceptabe to the Indian audience ( ‘Homo’ genised and acceptable to Indians, ironically funny, no!?). I mean the same Pammi Aunties and their children who watch Balika Badhu and never EVER switch on a Star World or such ‘english’ channels were laughing their heads off at all the ‘situations’. The film is set in Miami where a hot shot photographer (John Abraham) and a hairy male nurse (Abhishek Bachchan) end up pretending to be gay partner, to share an apartment with bhartiya sanskaaron wali ‘baby’ (Priyanka Chopra). And then what happens is full of those awwww…moments, happy shiny people, song and dance thrown in and some more awwww…moments which continues for some time till you start wondering if the film is at all going anywhere. First- time director Tarun Mansukhani has done his job well, and he more than enough pays his homage to his mentor, what with the movie full of Karan Johar movie references used in such ‘gay’ abundance that at times it looks like a home made video for Karan Johar. Of the cast, Abhishek Bachchan is really good with his comic timing, Priyanka looks hot. Period. John Abraham plays an eye-toffee who portrays 8 basic emotions and more with ‘equal’ ease, a sample here…

Kiron Kher’s role is something she has done before, that of a loud punjabi mother, only a lot louder this time. And Boman Irani gets all the parts which Anupam Kher used to get at one time. And Sushmita Mukherjee, who is supposed to be a sindhi but strangely speaks a weird accent which to me sounded more like a cliched bengali accent, I don’t know what exactly to call it. Singali, maybe. And then there is this firang guy in a small wee bit of a role, as officer Xavier whose acting is more balanced than many people with bigger role. And yeah, Bobby Deol is also there in the movie. To sum up, Dostana is a fairy tale love story Karan Johar never had. Wink-wink.