Tuesday, April 04, 2006

The Maiden that bowled me over!

Two new, news channels were launched back to back. CNN-IBN and Times Now, though I liked IBN a lot for its sheer simplicity and sensible packaging, I thought I would never see Times now. The main reason being I do not like their newspaper. But this one news anchor, caught my attention, and till this day I am a loyal viewer to the channel, just hoping that I see her again. It was later that I realized that it had some good shows too, like Brand Equity and Foodie with Kunal Vijaykar.
Getting back to the point, I was talking about Ekta Kumar Nagpal, the brainy beauty, who clean bowled me. I am completely smitten by this beautiful petite and presumably intelligent lass. Her small but smiling eyes would speak a thousand other words, other than the news which she would read out. Her curly but elegant tresses would cascade down like an effervescent water fall. In a bid to search her photograph I used google to the optimum level, but alas, God had some other plans. She had this zing and a smile in her voice that very few girls do have, Sonali Kulkarni being one of them. Though she was made to wear that boring pink suit on the channel, I am sure she would look gorgeous in a white chudidaar even!
Please find her for me, at least a photo graph!
Until then let me sulk and pine and……..think about her…
“tu chupi hain kahaan……me tadapta yahaan…..”

Such an Unfair world!

This is about Carol Gracias’ now infamous wardrobe malfunction. As the world already knows about it, all this started in the ongoing Lakme Fashion week in Mumbai. While “Mannequining”(yes that’s what I would call it) for a designer, Bennu Sehgal’s couture accidentally the ensemble that Carol was wearing got detached and she subsequently faced an embarrassing situation. It was Carol’s thorough professionalism that saw her still complete her walk and not run back to the dressing room. It was alright until this point. Even Carol and other female models are justified in expressing their ire over designer’s lack of proper preparation and careless attitude. But today I realized how one person’s agony can be somebody else’s fun. Carol might have been disturbed alright, but she maintained her dignity by not creating hoopla about this incident. But to further stretch this issue, Mumbai police has now initiated an inquiry as to why this happened! Now how do they ascertain that it was actually a deliberate attempt to embarrass poor Carol? In fact as this presenter on CNN-IBN herself pointed out that in fashion shows abroad many such incidents like wardrobe malfunction, or tripping on the runway have actually happened but neither media has intervened nor was it made an issue of policy.

I feel modeling, that too for females is a very tough job, and once a girl decides to model, she is expected to be ready for such hardships. But my question is why don’t we as sensible nation grow up? Take this police inquiry for example, its totally absurd. Take into consideration that this inquiry begins, the questioning starts, naturally Carol will be asked several questions? Won’t it cost her further humiliation? This all may see her eventually quitting this thankless job and disappear into oblivious darkness like several models have earlier done. I would like to sum it all up in one single sentence. I don’t know how these events are organized. But definitely there should have been some guidelines and rules already. Admitting that India is such a force in the fashion circuit, such stringent measures will only see it higher up the podium.
1. The fashion association should have certain quality standards. Only after passing them the designers should be allowed to show their designs.
2. The organizers should allow only fashion aficionados and fashion designers inside the venue. As for the media part they should hire a singular media company and air all the shows after necessary editions, just like so many award shows are broadcasted.
3. No cellphones and handycams should be allowed, apart from the permitted media company’s cameras.

These are just a few guidelines which a layman like me feels should be considered. Its not just because Carol is one of my favorite models, but after all they are also hard working professionals and each one of us wants to go home contended and happy. As for the spirit and professionalism these girls and even fashion designers work with I am sure other countries are taking India seriously.

Here’s a salute to the entire Indian fashion industry.

Thanks Carol for putting up a brave effort. I wish such things never happen again to you or anybody else.

As the time slips away.....

You may call this as my prime weakness, may be everybody has it, making plans, expecting they materialize as soon as possible, and when they don’t keep thinking about what exactly went wrong. As for my long pending plans the planet of Shani is to be blamed (this theory is being sold by my astrologer, and has been conveniently bought by my parents and to some extent, me too). Anyways, this is all about my long awaited transfer to Baroda. Ullas had once said that it was strange the way life was coming a full circle for me, but wait, the course of my life still meanders like Sepang formula 1 circuit.
Within a month of arriving in Navsari I got this offer of mutual transfer and then I was so happy. I had already made big plans of resuming my tennis and cricket practice, joining the new “Gold” gym which has opened close by, and doing so many things altogether. But it has been more than 6 months since the agreement was signed, and still no signs of progress appear. All my plans have died down, and now I am just praying to all the Gods in this world, to let me be home, before this academic year begins. It has all been dramatic and so very expected of the bureaucratic machinery that I am a part of, we all call it Railways.
First on, the application is not accepted because it is not in the desirable format, then once I put up the file, it takes three months for an officer to sign it, and then when all the things are ready for the actual order to be released the entire bunch of my files goes missing. Ridiculous! The concerned Babu, tells me to present few papers again. I rush to Mumbai and get them to him as early as possible, only to learn from him only that some Godly “third party” has already given him all the papers and now I need not worry, the orders will be out soon. It has been fifteen days since then, enough for me to decide that I will screw that babu’s life once the orders are in my hand, but no, I will not do anything about him, because I will always need him, even to get my one day leave sanctioned. Why the hell is life so confusing? Bhagwaan ke office me bhi apni file itni thokare khaakar baahar nikli hogi?

Funny, but slowly I have learnt to deal with such delays, after all nothing is in our hands. And as my dad says, this is just the beginning!

I am not a Fidayeen!????

The courtyard of my home is oft trodden by gunmen,
With fingers on the triggers and blood oozing through their eyes like rock,
The thud of homely willow bat has given way to rattle of the heavy rifles as of now.
The barbed wire fence and the rusted Iron Gate are as unfriendly as winter’s spine chilling winds, which dry out all our hopes.

The fear of death still lurks as The Sun relinquishes for another ordeal called “night”.
Slumber is orphaned only to walk barefoot, with weeping restless eyes, through the night of agony and turmoil. Ours are not ours and hopes are not often bestowed.
Faces marred with lines of anguish,
And Lotuses in the Dal are sad, for no one admires them.
No more could they be, for love of life, no more exists.

My home is not mine, like Gul Mohamed’s shikara was never his own.
I am not a fidayeen as I only know music.
I have a bleeding heart for fourteen years, so long.
All friends lost, just the paths acknowledge.
The childhood cheers and hurrahs echo in the near by deodar woods, to take me back in time.
For all those who are happy popping those grenades, I can sigh and appeal, let me in, it’s my home, my Kashmir!
I am not a fidayeen, I only know music,
And I am scared to say, I am a Kashmiri Pandit!

Best of luck, li’l sis!

It was the greatest feeling of satisfaction and relief, when my sister broke the news about her industrial training being confirmed. There were quite a few tensions over this issue prior to this announcement. She is a hotel management student, and as per hotel industry norms she has to undergo through training at a luxury hotel anywhere in India. There was some tension because of her principal’s whimsical attitude. Apparently he would only help students from influential and affluent families. And it was pretty obvious that she would be placed somewhere in Baroda itself. Now given that Baroda is not such a big hotspot in the hospitality industry scenario, it was more than a concern for us all. If she would train in Baroda, she would get the future jobs keeping that in mind. And actually, Baroda has got hotels you can count on your fingers. Thought my parents were reluctant to send her away, I had briefed them up, about the pros and cons, keeping her bright future in mind. Hotel industry is witnessing a boom, off late. And this training seemed like a good stepping stone for her. After a fortnight of restlessness, she let us all know that, she has been recommended to one of Taj’s oldest heritage properties, Taj Rambagh Palace hotel at Jaipur. It has 90 luxurious suite rooms with one night rent beginning in excess of Rs. 50000, going upto Rs. One lac plus for the best suite. It was an erstwhile maharaja’s palace, and was taken over by The Taj group in 1925. On 29th april, coincidentally, its her birthday also she will take her baby steps in this industry of immense hard work. I am also going to Jaipur to relieve her.

She has a dream of setting up an eatery where every man could dine and go home satisfied; I am her joint partner in this dream!
May my Baby sister’s wishes and dreams all come true, and every footstep of hers bring her great fortune and luck!

The Stranger on the Pavement......

I was walking on a bustling street in Jalalpore,
One of the endless evening walks had just begun,
My broken chappal was giving me few concerns
and it felt that she would occupy all my time this evening.
Like a miser I bargained with the cobbler and got it mended for
Two rupees. Two chilled glasses of tangy butter milk were enough to keep me going on the deserted road beyond Jalalpore.
As I passed the railway chawl, a lost looking gentleman called me, to talk to him. I was a stranger myself here, and then why would anybody call me. I avoided him, I knew, what he wanted from me.

He sat on a rather filthy pavement, colored with oblong guthka stains. “bhaaisaahab, oh bhaaisaahab”, and I was out of his firing range. But then my walk had just begun.
This man kept talking to me throughout that evening.
And why is that, I didn’t wait to listen what he had to say.
Money was all he wanted, from me, and had I talked to him, I may have given him, something nevertheless, but I knew, as I have been through this earlier as well.

What brings this well dressed, educated looking, well mannered man down to beg for alms from strangers passing by? It could be his father’s closed textile mill, or his mother’s impending dialysis, and may be even his sister long awaited marriage. What makes him lose his dignity, and sit down on a pavement like a lost soldier? Does he see a God in every approaching man and woman, and a demon once they are past him?

Or should I have seen myself, crouching besides him and listening to his worldly sorrows, and get up offering nothing. I would still have been an indifferent passer by to him. And then how do I know, what he really had wanted of me. Every evening walk of mine has such snippets of thoughts lying obscurely in my way.

After a very long time....!

Due apologies to my non-existent readers, or if at all there are any, for not having posted anything for so long. But this craving to speak out about few things about myself shows up its head every few days. This time may be a large number of blogs will be posted at once because I have been thinking on so many things at a time, and now I have decided to spew out everything. This blog is about one ordinary situation that I faced and given that I am such a difficult individual to deal with, this was bound to happen. But sanity always overtakes silly, mad and disturbing thoughts.

To begin with, I remember I always used to score good marks in essays, in all the three languages I studied in school. That was may be because I would write everything that I felt about the concerned issue. My essays would be regularly published in the school magazine and even couple of my poems (that’s what we used to call those few words, then) were published in a express publication called “wee wonder”. The junior college days were quite memorable, as I wrote about many different things, and actually discovered how effective and enjoyable writing could be, thanks to my English professor, Mr. Tushar Anande. After a very long time, I discovered this practice of writing accounts on the net that is Blog. In between I would purchase costly diaries, and pen down few things, and then they were left to bite dust. I would show them to my poor friends, who would out of no way, appreciate those silly works.
Recently during a casual phone call, I asked my friend Ullas, who I look upto for his sheer élan at writing, about my writing skills, the flaws, the goods, in fact I allowed him to comment, about what he felt. Being a frank and intelligent person, that he is, he pointed out few things. He felt that may be I was forcing myself into writing and it was not coming naturally, it appeared as if I was trying to make an impression through my written words.
The after thoughts disturbed me. But eventually, I came down to few conclusions. I discovered that writing does not come as naturally to me as it comes to him, being in the industry that he is; he constantly comes across, many scenarios, many issues, and even so many ideas on the whole. Given the scenario and conditions I am in, I would confess, that the flow of my thoughts is bound to be haltered. And just not to lose whatever control I have over them I tend to write about things, and would continue. I wonder whether I had any flamboyance or anything good about my writing at all. Anyways, this was just an incident I felt writing about, and because I know no one apart from ullas reads it, thanks buddy, you have always been a great guide to me.