Saturday, February 28, 2009


During the summer afternoons in the sleepy village of Mau, life slows down. Unbearable heat rises up in waves, enveloping all. Hot humid air from which only the homes protected by dripping jute provide protection. The sun beats down merciless and unyielding on the vast, arid, flat plains. Humanity retires from work, seeking respite in the intoxication of sleep. So it has been for centuries. So it was on that dusty afternoon.

Prasad lay under the dense banyan tree, half reclining,half sitting. Beside him lay a steel tumbler and an earthen pot containing the only kind of cool water known to him. In a distance only a restless crow cawed restlessly. As Prasad was slipping away in blessed drowsiness, the hot air wafted a heavy smell towards him. Dense and rotten. He cursed at this extra hand of work, conjecturing that he would probably have to dispose of a dead rodent. Usually, the hawks found in the vicinity would have done it for him, only his field was thick with unripened grain. Walking on for a few feet, he sighted something far larger than a rodent. Reaching the corpse, he surveyed it disinterestedly.

(to be continued)

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

A Debt.

Congratulations, Rahman. This was a credit due for 17 years.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Billu Barber

Id still go with the old title, even if I have to fear for my life,or worse, my money,in case the hairdresser down my street decides to sue me. I always classify movies on the basis of the repeat value it has for me. I'm no less a sucker for thriller or action than any other fan, yet I wouldn't put any suspense- packed thriller down on my list of favorites if I'm not going to watch it again.(which I usually don't, given that the suspense expires in a single watch). Favorite for me is evergreen, much like Rishi Kapoor in main shair to nahin which looked so fresh even in Hum Tum.

Its nothing much really. Just a simple story endearingly told.And a type that you can watch anytime you feel like going far from the madding crowd. And its a Priyadarshan movie. And its got SRK who actually repeats a dialogue from LBC. Well okay, not verbatim, but close enough. I think He's the only one who can get away with it and even sound better the second time round.And its a feel good movie so you wouldnt be compelled to look beyond whats shown on the screen.And its a movie which you can enjoy with a gang or without.

If you don't remember the last time you left a movie hall feeling warm in spite of the air-conditioning, go watch Billu.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Back to books.

See how fast I renege on my resolutions???? :D But Ive been doing what I like best- reading.With the deathly hallows went out a small part of my life and two sunday mornings back, I suddenly realised that almost for 3 years Ive read no book that has absolutely enthralled me. So I dug out this old old list of books Ive been meaning to read since the donkey's years (and please dont ask me how could I still be in possesion of such an old old list) and set out on a quest to beg,borrow, steal and scour gariahat for them. Once in possesion of them I read them like the one possesed.

ANGELS AND DEMONS.- The only one of Dan Brown I hadnt read so far and shall I say the best?
Especially the parts with the absolutely wonderful rhetoric on science Vs God. Slick, modern, shocking( Im making it sound like a sci-fi movie, and its got a hidden motive- to make you read.) This book has made me put Italy on my list of places to visit and no, this list is not dictated by the monetary concerns other sensible people might find prudent to include. My bro finished this book with indecent speed and I simply refuse to believe that he read it cover to cover( he's the type who'll watch a movie on a computer backwards. My personal opinion is that he can't stand the suspense), though in his defense, he does read with insane speed.
I just hope they dont decide to make a movie out of it.

BOYHOOD DAYS- Arguably the best of the lot. chelebela is entirely my type of a book. I find such charm in colonial india( contribute it to my lack of knowledge on the bengal famine, black hole etc etc, though I did see Bhagat singh). Ive always known, and known particularly that translations can at times, be as ruining as movie adaptations but inept and inarticulate that I am in bengali this is the closest I'll get to tagore. He never disaapoints. My earlier trysts with him include reading some of his letters, translations of few verses of geetanjali and the Valmiki Pratibha.

A TRAIN TO PAKISTAN- Quite similar to what Ive heard from my grandmum about those worst of times. All through the book I pictured it on the lines of the godhra riots. Not the type of book id like to read just before sleeping. But perfectly fine all other times of the day. Especially if you get an unexpected day off because of a bandh and you don't( for a change) have exams breathing down your neck. Id say Kushwant Singh is losing his touch. Or maybe its just the constriants of a weekly coloumn. With my limited capabilities in being able to write, Im in no position to comment.

THE GOD OF SMALL THINGS- Depressing to say the very least. Its too dark, too gloomy, and too real. Well ok, even A train to pakistan is too real but this book has a kind of heavy pessimism that I completely disliked. Id say what ive perhaps never said for any book before,no matter how disliked( not that there were many anyways) : I wish I hadnt read it.

UNACUSTOMED EARTH- the latest addition to my list. Not good . Not bad. Readable but nothing beyond that. I expected better from the author of namesake.

None of the books enchanted me as I remember even the mystery Enid Blytons used to.
Maybe i was looking in the wrong places.
Or maybe, Ive just grown up.

P.S Not at all related to the post here but speaking of Enid Blyton made me remember Spiderman and my favorite line from my favorite part (part 1).

"With great power comes great responsibility"