Saturday, December 31, 2011

Buh-bye 2011....hiya 2012!



I’m writing the last post of 2011 in its last hour. And I’m clueless on what to write..let me see… 2011 was a year of sorts- the only year where I spent the first few months at school and the rest at college.  Now that it’s gonna be over soon, let’s think about 2012- the year the Mayans thought would spell doom for humanity. Well, I don’t think so! No offence Mr.Nostradamus but I think the ultimate end would take us by surprise and not after we have watched destruction films like ‘2012’ and ‘Independence day’




You would have probably finished making your “resolutions 2012” list. Mine goes like this- Learn to drive, Be more active, Read one book a month- alternating between fiction and non-fiction,  …(I’m watching ‘Inception’ right now..Darn good…It’s distracting me).., Spend more time for prayer, Concentrate on studies the coming semester atleast, write meaningful stuff on this blog (lol.. and my mom wants to ‘add drink milk every night’ to this list!)  

I hope 2011 ended on a high note (no, I’m not referring to the notes of “Why this kolaveri di?”) I wish everyone all the happiness and success this new year….and quoting a friend, “PoSiTiViTy” is all that counts!!

Happy New Year 2012!!!

Monday, November 7, 2011

Velayudham - a review


I got to watch this movie, Vijay’s 52nd release, only yesterday- a good 11 days after it hit the theatres. After some 2 and half odd hours, I tried to recall something of the film’s story or the characters. But all I could remember was Vijay, Vijay and Vijay. The movie makes a God out of him!

The film made at a cost of a whopping 40 crores is loosely based on the Telugu flick "Azad".

The  story….

Bharathi (Genelia) a freelance journalist tries making a difference in the society by laying bare its villainous side. In the process, she gets hounded by goons who kill her aides. Minutes later, a grievously wounded Bharathi finds her attackers killed in an accident. Seizing the opportunity, she holds a fictitious hero named Velayudham responsible for the goons’ death and leaves a warning that Velayudham would continue his actions against such criminals.



Around the same time, a villager called Velayudham (Vijay)  happens to be in town to collect the chit fund money he’d deposited for his sister’s (Charanya Mohan) wedding. He inadvertently prevents a few mishaps and is mistaken for his superficial namesake. He tries to evade his destiny but a tragedy forces him to don the hat and he ends up joining league with Bharathi to bring the goons and their bosses, a Home minister with a bad Tamil lip sync and an Afghan terrorist who speaks grammatically-correct Tamil, to justice.




I lost count of the number of comedians cast alongside Vijay. The main track is by Santhanam who like always, makes his comedy click with his mocking dialect and poker-face expressions.

Genelia is a misfit for the serious role of Bharathi and is clearly overshadowed by the second female lead. Her performance is quite mature though.

And then there’s our chinna kushboo Hansika Motwani in the guise of a village belle ‘Vaidehi’ (?!) who vies for the attention of her “maama”. Though she doesn’t come across as a Tamil village girl at all, she’s adorable and sizzles on-screen in the sets of the beat-thumping “Chillax” song!

The climax is sprinkled liberally with huge doses of Vijay heroics.  The director Raja could have underplayed some of the violence and gore in the innumerous fight sequences. But what’s a Vijay movie without all the adrenaline pumping action??? The train sequence does more than justice to his action hero image!

Music director Vijay Antony’s “Mayam Seidhayo” and “Mulachu Moonu” are thoroughly hummable and visually appealing too.

Velayudham is an out and out Vijay’s film- where the hero is given more importance than the screenplay. So the movie is a clear winner when it comes to his fans. 
If I were to rate “Velayudham”, I’d give 3 stars out of five, purely for the extravaganza and fanfare!


Saturday, October 15, 2011

All it takes is a Week....!


It was an incredible week for the people of Coimbatore.  The city witnessed such an assortment of events – some good, some bad; but quite hard to miss.  

Evenings were marked by heavy downpours and thundershowers, resulting in felled trees and traffic-disrupting water logs. They laid bare the flaws left undetected by the Corporation.  My college bus was one among the listless vehicles stranded 2 days back and I had to sit tired and famished for nearly 4 hours!!

With the local body elections around the corner, campaigning by several political parties is on full-swing.  My house alone was visited by 7 ‘hopeful’ female candidates (our ward is reserved for female presidency and it’s no surprise wives of former presidents are normally fielded in…) CM was here yesterday and traffic had to be diverted to clear her route (no wonder).

Another important and much loved person arrived with less pomp and for a nobler cause.  Former Prez-Abdul Kalam made his way through several institutions across the city to sow his vision for a glorious India in the minds of the city youth.

The legal fraternity had their share in halting the city roads as well! Nearly 1000 lawyers staged a road roko and formed a human chain along the city roads protesting the alleged attack on a fellow lawyer by policemen following a verbal duel.

When will all these deadlocks come to an end? I wonder….

Saturday, September 10, 2011

luv u 2 - a mobile story



The mobile rang once again. She hit the silence button.
‘Why doesn’t he ever stop?'

No answer again. He puts his phone down, frustrated and hopeless.
‘If at all she answers my call, I’m going to tell her I hate her.’

Ths isn’t d right time 2 talk”, she texts him.
“I hate u”, came the reply.

She frowned. ‘He’s mad..But what option do I have?’

                Pallavi looks at the mobile Srikanth got her the last time they met. It wasn’t a gift; rather a necessity. That black 899 phone was their only means of communication. She slid it under the table and looked up. The Chemistry lecturer was giving the class, notes which least interested her. Good thing she was sitting in a place seldom noticed.  

*****
                But  Sahana did. She noticed the way the girl beside her kept staring at her mobile from time to time. ‘Definitely it’s some boy thing’, she thought. Lunch break, tea break or any other spare time were always spent with a solemn Pallavi and her nasty little mobile. When they first met, Sahana considered Pallavi her ideal pal- they were about the same height, shared the same complexion, were fans of the same actor (Vijay) and even lived in the same locality. But ever since that cellphone arrived (not more than a month), Pallavi has never been the same… much to the dismay of Sahana. Her job is now to keep an eye for Pallavi – to warn her if anyone notices her texting during class. Even worse, she feels guilty to leave her alone and go with others to the canteen. She stays behind, filled with resentment.

‘I had said such wonderful things about her to my mom but she doesn’t give me a minute’s thought. What a selfish thing!’
*****
Srikanth’s mom seemed troubled. “He’s spending more time on his mobile these days. He doesn’t talk to me anymore,” she whined to the old lady next door.   “Yesterday, his father found him whispering over the phone in the dead of the night. When asked for an explanation, he snapped it was a friend in trouble and asked him to keep his nose to himself. He has never ever said such things to his father! I’m so worried over this boy. He used to study extremely well but now...I’m not sure whether he’ll clear his arrear exams. I can only find him with his so called “touchscreen” mobile and never with his textbook. Oh, May God save him!”
The old woman nodded in agreement but had nothing to say since her frail ears could pick up just half the words spoken.
*****
The Samsung Galaxy i5700 smartphone gave a beep. Srikanth’s hands got hold of it in what seemed like less than a second. Atlast, the ‘SMS’ was from her.

‘Sri…?’
His fingers moved artistically over the touchpad.
‘Don tlk 2 me. I hate u’
He waited for five minutes. No reply…. Anxiety followed by restlessness.
Don tlk 2 me. I hate u’ he sent it again.
This time there was a beep.
 ‘k fine’

No, this wasn’t what he expected. ‘Fine huh? Well let’s see how long it lasts….’

No SMS came from Pallavi that night. He wanted to talk to her so badly. ‘How I longed to meet her and break the news!  She wouldn’t even receive my calls.  I have finally passed my arrears just to make her happy... I did this for her! For her! And she…these girls just never understand‘

 *****
Raghav looked at the black mobile he had snatched from Pallavi and gritted his teeth.  


‘How dare he! I should have wondered why he dropped in so many times. Well, it was only to see her and not me. I shouldn’t have encouraged him. Where will I hide my face once my parents find out this @$#%?! She must be crying now. Let her! I don’t think she will ever face him again considering the kind of threat I pose. Wretched ones.. Those two have made me grumble like the guy who plays the heroine’s brother in that cricket movie?!’

“What makes you talk to yourself? Have you gone mad?”
His father’s arrival made Raghav flinch while his hands hastened to hide his sister’s phone.
“What’s that in your hand?”
“Nothing Appa…”
“Hey .. Is that a cellphone da?”
“Um….Yes.  My friend’s phone. He wanted me to give it for repair.”
“You say there’s no time to go pay the electricity bill but you have all the time in the world for this friend of yours” Raghav’s father shook his head as he left the room.
Blame it on fate!” sighed Raghav looking at the black mobile.  “I’ll throw this thing at his face and give that Srikanth guy such a bashing that he’ll never forget!”

                                                               *****
 Pallavi blamed it on herself.

 ‘Now I’ve let Raghav know. That ruffian will never let us meet each other anymore.  But what if all that he said was true? Did he really have two girlfriends before me? I’m confused. I shouldn’t have said yes to the first boy who set eyes on me. But it was Raghav’s mistake as well. He was the one who let Srikanth in and gave him so much importance.   
But now Raghav has threatened to show the mobile to my father if I ever talk to him again. And father would kill me if he knows. What should I do? Oh, this is all a mistake, a terrible mistake!’

She tried to calm herself.

‘Let things sort out by themselves. I’m not going to try talk to him. It is the best I can do’

  *****

Sahana received a beep on her mobile. She gulped the last morsel of idli left on her plate and reached for, guess what, her mobile. ‘Unknown number?’ she shrugged.

Who’s ths?’
‘Sahana?’
‘S..pls say who’s dis?’
‘I m Pallavi’s frnd’
‘God! Who’s this?’ Sahana’s heart began to race.
‘Pardon?’

This chat extended for another hour or so until Sahana finally realized who it was...

 *****

“Kohlrausch’s law of dissociation. Take down the notes….” 

Pallavi promptly took her pen and wrote it down. She nudged her friend to start writing. Apparently Sahana had better things to do. Her fingers crept into the front zip of her bag kept underneath and out came a cellphone.
Pallavi couldn’t help being smug-faced. “She doesn’t have a brother….Good for her.”

Liitle did Pallavi know that Sahana was texting the same guy she broke up with a little while ago.

 *****

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Do I see a friend in her?



My first week as a college student was quite…eventful. New faces, new people and a totally new atmosphere. A week is all that it takes to judge a person – outwardly. You can tell who’s who of the lot- a person loaded with attitude, a person who’s shy and reserved, a person who’s neither here nor there and a person who tries so hard to fit in that it shows.

There are 45 girls in our class and no one is alike. Each girl has a story of her own. You can almost see the longing to be accepted in some faces and there are some, quite unhappy with the people they share their desk with. Some look so detached but when you go ahead and talk to them, you realize they’re completely opposite to their reserved selves. I’m hoping to unearth more from such introverts.

It all depends on the person. If you like the environment, you are happy. If you don’t, you just accept it. I am pretty much happy. I’ve got great people to talk to and met some who share my ideas.

 It’s virtually impossible to get to know all 45 girls of my class in a week. So I’m looking forward to get acquainted with all of them. Wish me luck!




*Belated Friendship day wishes

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Who's the better foe - Karraps or Corrupts?




Q. What is the similarity between Karraps (Cockroaches) and Corrupts? A. Neither of them likes to be kicked out of the closet. Q. And the difference? A. Karraps terrorize young children (and ladies) while the other sect threaten the whole nation. Q. Few examples..? A.  Various types of Karraps include Silver roach, German etc. And some of the recently discovered species of Corrupts include A. Raja, Kanimozhi, Suresh Kalmadi etc. Q. How can they be eradicated? A. The former can be eliminated by the use of roach sprays, chalks and the like whereas the latter can be exterminated with the help of social activisits like Anna Hazare or millionaire-sadhus like Baba Ramdev, provided they are supported by huge chunks of the civil society. Total eradication is unlikely in both the cases.


I’ve had enough of roaches (just minutes ago, I made a vain effort to shoo them off my table). But none seem to have enough of all those corrupt officials who squander public money or those in power who misuse their status for personal gain.  The media plays the largest role in unearthing their misdeeds. But not all emerge dirt-faced for their mis(sed)deeds. Some lost more than they gained (Ramalinga Raju) and some gained more than they lost (Baba Ramdev).

In India, it is rare to find a case where a culprit is nabbed as soon as the crime takes place. Lalit Modi made IPL a phenomenon and was caught in a web only after the first two seasons. Suresh Kalmadi had organized many national sports events earlier but it was the Commonwealth games which spelt doom for him. And in the case of A.Raja, it was a long time after the spectrum allocation that the CAG smelt something fishy. Now the ‘spot’light is on Dayanidhi Maran who was the telecom minister aeons ago. Some popular magazines and news channels carry out sting operations, get hold of phone tapes (remember Nira Radia?) and confidential letters inorder to sensationalize and scandalize an otherwise solvable issue.

2011 witnessed a fight against corruption on a very big scale. When a little known civil activist staged a demonstration in Jantar Mantar, nobody from the Centre took him seriously until civilians from all walks of life joined the movement and turned Hazare a hero. So began the efforts for the distant Lokpal Bill. In jumped Baba Ramdev. When three Union ministers sought to change his mind on arrival at the Delhi airport, we understood that the Centre gave Baba some thought. But it turned out to be little less than a joke after the midnight ruckus involving a scared Sadhu and his harassed protestors.





Que sera, sera. Will the Lokpal dream eventually come true? The Centre says ‘yes, but in our way not yours’. Team Anna (that’s how his group has been dubbed) says ‘then we’ll fast and fast unless we have our way fast’. When a  section of the society was invited to be a part of the drafting process of the bill for the first time, high hopes were raised. Later on, it was termed as ‘a mistake’.
I do not know whether the Lokpal bill is the ideal solution to the ‘corrupts’ problem but I’m sure that the Parliament when it commences its monsoon session has more than enough to debate on. No amount of PAC’s or JPC’s can provide a fitting solution to the rampant corruption since they find it hard to agree upon anything at all.

Anna Hazare has scheduled his fast on August 16. Voices against corruption will certainly be strong that day as many youngsters and politicians are expected to throng the venue. I wish their campaign against ‘corrupts’ good luck. As for now, I’m off to try my luck with those annoying ‘karraps’ that have resurfaced below the table. 



Friday, June 3, 2011

Dreams In Prussian Blue - a review...



Dreams in Prussian Blue


     When I came across the book with the blue cover and orange rimmed pages, little did it seem like it came from Penguin.  One look at the cover, I was convinced it must be Chetan Bhagat-ish . Even the author’s bio struck a chord… IIT..IISc..engineer… Dreams in Prussian Blue by Paritosh Uttam is one of the first books from the Penguin metro reads series. Colours can be quite tricky. I soon found that out after reading the first few chapters. No, I won’t be calling anything Chetan Bhagat-ish anymore. The day I completed the last chapter of the book was…quite gloomy. It’s my fault. A more mature mind would have found the end classy… 







    Naina, a first year student of Fine Arts College, Mumbai falls for her senior Michael Agnelo (or Michaelangelo?).  She doesn’t think twice to drop out of college and live in with him. It’s rather late when she realizes he’s a heartless snob who likes to have it the easy way while she slogs it out to make ends meet. When she does make her mind to move out, an accident leaves the budding (?) artist blind and everything turns obscure as before. Naina is made to play puppet by many which drives her to lie.. a lie which changes everything. 


   I was really impressed with the narration. The author reads the female mind quite well though we might feel a persistent irritation towards the protagonist and her inability to let go off her problems. It’s not exactly a page turner but nevertheless a good read.  


Note : I love the title of the book… 

Sunday, May 15, 2011

A Quick Take...


·        It’s Amma to the fore again. It was a total sweep! I was, for once, surprised. I didn’t think it would be such a victory given DMK’s penchant for media and outright advertising. Even the pre-election polls weren’t clear. I was under the impression that there would be no clear lead. Ms.JJ proved me wrong. And the mere thought of Mr.Vijayakanth (captain!)…. the leader of opposition…..! I wish the new government and also, the people of Tamil Nadu all the very best!


·        Osama’s death and subsequent burial (or drowning?!) in the seas of Pakistan ensures Obama’s second term as US Prez. I cannot make head or tail of what’s going to be the future of global terrorism and what’s Osama’s death got to do with it. All I wish is that no one names Osama a martyr. (It could’ve been better if Osama had met his end like Saddam Hussain.)

·        IPL IV is pretty boring, even with an additional 2 teams. The absence of either Lalit Modi or any other major scandal may be quite the reason. No harm, I still support CSK (but with rather little fizz).

·        I had been to the newly opened restaurant in town, Alepanos (named after a Mexican chilly). They served what was rather different to my taste buds which were largely used to Sampoorna’s biriyani and Annapoorna’s Sambar (which are by no means, hugely delectable!) The food was quite high in content and so was the bill.

·        But this has been the most affecting one of the month – my 12th exam results! I got 1154/1200. My parents were happy and so am I. But to a student who is going to take up engineering, cut-off marks mean everything. And let’s just say I got something above 193 and I’ve got some 15000 ahead of me! God give a seat! Till then my fingers remain crossed….

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Vacation Booked!



My recent visit to Karur to see my aunt and grandparents was very enjoyable. It also had something else in store for me – my aunt’s long kept book “The Power Of Positive Thinking” by Norman Vincent Peale.  I initially borrowed it for a few days but as was my nature, I forgot to return it and brought it back with me to Coimbatore (Sorry Chithi!) I usually skim self-help books but I couldn’t help reading every line of this brilliant book.

My mom says that I’m very pessimistic. My mouth always gets me into trouble. Once she asked me “why don’t you learn tailoring Swetha?”

“I don’t think I’m capable of doing anything with that. It’ll be waste,” I replied.

And…. You already know what must’ve happened after that.

When my struggle with ‘I can’t..’s, ‘But..’s, ‘What if…’s and ‘Oh no!’s never seemed to end,  “The Power of…” came as a blessing.  It is a very peaceful book. It revolves around ideas that can lead to a positive state of mind. The book applies Christian principles to suppress despondency. Believing in a higher power relieves us of constant worries of day-to-day life. Through faith, any type of problem can be tackled via our minds.




Nowadays when I wake up, nothing adverse rams up my thoughts. On the contrary, I feel fresh, smell the sunshine and assure myself that the day is going to be the best of my life and that of my loved ones, thanks to Dr. Peale!





                                                *************************************

The other book I read this week was Tamil lyricist Vairamuthu’s poetic workThaneer Desam (Water Country). On a visit to my house, a friend stumbled upon this book and tried to recite the lines to improve her Tamil. Her funny recitation was the reason why I began reading it. But it kept me so engrossed that I finished it in a single sitting. The most gifted poet Vairamuthu reveals his scientific side in this book, largely about the Ocean (Indian).  The mysterious ways of the ocean are depicted very beautifully in this work. The journey of a serious young man and his sea sick lover through troubled waters (literally) forms the crux of this book.  A very interestingly woven story in the form of verse, it has actually helped me to discover the beauty of Tamil poetry.

                                                *************************************
A (good) vacation is really meant to be spent with (good) people and with (good) books…..


Saturday, April 9, 2011

Vote For a Day!


April 13, the day to vote in Tamil Nadu. As always, the battle is set between the two mammoths, the ruling DMK and opp. ADMK.  I support neither and I’m of no use either since I turn 18 only next year.  Both the parties have offered a slew of freebies in their manifestos. I’m excited at this prospect, excited to witness the fulfillment (or half-fillment) of the promises by whichever party that comes to power.


The Election Commission(ers) are now seen as the most annoying  after the Income Tax people. Everyone’s complaining from the DMK chief to the bank official who had his ATM money seized inorder to curb the “cash-for-votes” exploits. Transactions have been severely affected between mill owners and the like due to the order imposed by the EC to seize any unaccounted cash of more than a lakh. EC have been on a rampage seizing any dosh found via random checkposts. But 5 crore rupees seized from an omni bus??!  Whew!

Coimbatore is seeing busy days too. The PM was here yesterday canvassing and days before, ADMK supremo Jayalalitha and her allies including Sitaram Yechuri held a meeting at VOC grounds.

Just three days to go, all I can hope is people vote sensibly and elect the better candidate. But first of all, they should turn up to vote, right?? 

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Never say adieu



Flashes of joy, Flashes of pain
Seem to surround my mind in vain
Never have I felt such a feeling strong
To say goodbye is mighty wrong

I am reluctant to let it pass
To part with you is the real cause
Till we meet again, I try to say
If you ask how, I see no way

All these years, together we spent
Missing moments, so much to repent
Anyway, I hope you get the cue
And never say adieu….
 
 Dedicated to my school friends and all school, college pass-outs...

Thursday, March 24, 2011

School's over...Life starts...

My exams are finally over. Phew!

Back to blogging after a three month hiatus. I’ve resolved to read as much as possible this month (not lessons, books). Will really miss my folks back at school. Can’t believe my 14 years of school life has come to an end. We were quite an unlucky set. Exam fever, cricket fever, election fever and ordinary fever- all hitting us at same moment when Japan was hit by devastating waves. (oh Wikileaks fever began to hit the parliament too).


But what hit us most was the unnerving news of death of two persons close to us. One was our classmate and friend dear Harsha’s dad’s death ( I’m set to write a tribute to him) and my friend Asha’s unfortunate death. Asha studied with me 2 years ago and was an extremely talented girl. On the eve of her final physics exam, the girl had a fatal fall from the third floor of her apartment with the physics book still in hand. My heart goes out to her grieved parents. She doesn’t deserve this at all. Rest in peace, Asha.

I’ve got no more to say. Let me come up with a post tomorrow. Bonne nuit.