Showing posts from 2022

Smallville – drama series

I’ve always been fascinated by superman comics. Especially his big bulk, ability to fly, superhuman strength amongst all his special abilities. The famous catch phrase that is mentioned at the beginning of every episode – “It’s a bird, It’s a plane…Its SUPERMAN” followed by the “ of steel” song is something hard to miss. The success of the comics lies in the fact that, while every sci-fi writer has majorly demonized aliens or made them into a childlike character, the makers of Superman Seigel/Shuster, gave it a human look and feel. Even though the character has superhuman strengths and abilities, the restraint shown by that character in abusing or exploiting its powers makes it more alien. Major part of the comics is dedicated to Superman fighting foreign monsters, but his most famous villain is Lex Luthor – a human. If one comes to think of it, Lex can be seen as someone who is as worried as the next person about the dangers involved in living with someone who has destruc

Why everybody (should) love Raymond

Of all the drama series I’ve watched, this one is very close to my heart. There it is. I’ve made the glorification intention crystal with the very first line. I saw this series for the first time when I was abroad and was immediately smitten. It was one series that was so different from the rest that I had seen and was so alike to the ones at home. Even though the genre was comedy, the situations involved couldn’t be of more drama and the easy way in which they show the resolution will work only in sitcoms and not in real life. Yet, the intention of the series and the eventual positivity that they want to convey was hard to miss. You’ve a typical joint family setup, even though the parents along with the elder sibling stays in a different house, just opposite to theirs, Raymond, and Debra along with their kids would feel they are all living together as a tightly coupled joint family like the ones they show in Vikaraman and Visu movies, for their neighbors on the opposite house are almo

When past and present collide

Recently I happened to visit Bangalore after almost a decade and a half. A city that occupies forever fresh place in my memories that are as lush green with nostalgia as the city used to be at that time. The purpose of the visit co-incidentally happened to be the very reason why I left it at first. Curiously, the same place where I had begun my tryst with Bangalore happened to be the place of visit this time as well. The differences couldn’t be starker between what it was then and now with one constant factor being the swirling storms of mosquitoes sharp at 6 every evening. Considering that they outlived Jurassic era to give us Jurassic park movie, guess you can safely assume a span of decade is hardly blink of an eye timeline for them. What we had estimated as a 6-hour journey overall became inflated by 50% with the overall duration of one-way trip hitting close to 10 hours, with a good part of the last 2 hours spent on standstill traffic, somewhere between Hosur and Marathahalli. Wit

Mandatory year end post

This year has been a whirlwind of sorts with the previous December seeing a meltdown of sorts on the official front reaching a calm state in the middle, seeing off further turmoil and finally accepting the reality and somewhat trying to settle down. On personal front it couldn’t have been a faster year with robotic monotony and assembly line precision with which the days whizzed past. It would’ve put Groundhog day to shame with the kind of repetitive days that went through this year. I had fewer movie review posts even though I saw quite a lot of movies and posted fewer book reviews despite count wise it being the same as any other year. I want to branch out and try different authors in the same genre and with the attention span getting reduced much quicker than sands in any riverbed of TN, I am finding it increasingly difficult to read anything worthwhile or new. I am looking for some new course or alternate branch of study that would keep me more engaged in coming year(s). Learning a

Of time and relations

Recently my circle of known people got reduced by passing away of 2 people. One my blood relation and other person being someone my entire family holds in very high esteem. I was present on the funerals of both and happened to see some common traits that disturbed me to write this post. My uncle passed away last week due to multiple cardiac arrests in Bangalore. After a gap of 14 years, having left that city due to the untimely demise of my dad, the reason why I visited the city remained the same. What I witnessed and my emotions on the city will possibly need a post of its own. His son was on a foreign land and there were multiple parallels in the way in which this situation reached him. There were too many overlapping incidents and memories that I thought had long forgotten got rekindled. The blankness with which people went through the motions and the emotionless cadence with which things proceeded were baffling and sad at the same time. Sad because of the stark reality associated w

Of being human and other things

Repeating the correct pattern Solving a simple equation Identifying number of buses or boats or signal posts Self-authorizing  Can you guess the correlation between the 4 points mentioned above. Having already encountered one of them or the other daily, you might’ve realized already that these are nothing, but system checks to verify if the end user is a human being or not. There used to be a measure called as “Turing test” which evaluated a machine’s capability to replicate human responses. Key point being the evaluator was human, who must figure out which of his conversation partner was a system and which one is human. The results from those tests didn’t just border on right or wrong response but how closely the responses mimicked human behavior. Ironically, the machines are doing this verification nowadays to determine which of their users are human beings!! And more worrisome fact being, humans are mimicking machine-like responses. For example, couple of weeks back, there was a gru

Of dreams and other things

Have you ever had a dream so vivid that you wanted to sleep a bit more only to see what happens next? I’ve had quite a few, which excite me as much as watching a thriller story unfold, to the extent that mid-dream I feel so refreshed I wake up ☹ !! And often, the same dream repeats itself a couple of times that it almost becomes familiar!!! Off late in one such dream, that I remember from midway, I happen to travel in a lift that would put Harry potter to shame!! It goes upwards and sidewards, almost like a share auto on busy street, using either of its wheel to balance on the pavement. I’ve a ticket with a 4-digit code written on it, supposedly an account number or something. The doors open vertically for that lift, and I enter a gargantuan hall resembling Connemara library, filled with desks, documents and clerks. I reach a table and the person sitting on that desk has one look at the code and take me to some vault kind of a place, before which he checks in a system for my details an

Of stories and screenplays

If there is an industry that (supposedly) thrives by defying conventional logic, movie industry would be it. Even the famed casinos of Las Vegas pale in comparison to the sheer volume of bets that is witnessed every Friday in the tinsel town. Scores and scores of new talents, old talent, forgotten talent, long lost talent and all kinds of other talents fight it out for a wiggle room on the box office. Those who are already strongly entrenched, try to cement their temporary places for as long as possible. Eventually the one who manages to bring back people in waves, to spend their hard-earned leisure time of 120+minutes and money manage to compete in another Friday in foreseeable future. Those who fail at the first hurdle either vanish without a trace or banished to the end of the long queue for the start line. At times, movie industry operations resemble MLM, where someone comes up with a product and the earliest seller escapes with the slightest of losses with the last buyer set for t

Monica o my darling – movie review

There are some movies that grab your attention from scene 1 and very rarely do we get movies that sustain that attention till the end rolls. This movie is right up there. When I saw in the reviews that it is an adaptation of a Keigo Higashino novel, I wanted to watch the movie as soon as possible. And even before that I wanted to get that book all the more eagerly. I still haven’t managed to get that book but landed with 2 other works of the master (yay!!). But with, the movie adaptation being quite decent, the expectation on the book has grown manifold. The story starts with a guy telling his friend about his successful wedding proposal to his girlfriend. That friend of him, immediately kills him, for he had his eyes on her. Right after that the movie takes off on a different direction with the hero being introduced as a board member cum fiancé of the CEO’s daughter, of the very same company where the murder in the first scene happens. From then onwards, it’s all rumble and tumble of

Of moving on and lingering

There is always this one question that is the hardest to answer and yet the easiest on paper. It is a single big word – WHEN. When to react and when not to? When to speak and when silent? When to move on and when to linger till things are settled? I am always stumped for an answer to these basic questions for my response to all of them have always been unidirectional and as a set template. I react almost always. I speak out almost always. I rarely move on and linger around what happened and how it should have happened and take things personally. Whenever people advise that we should let things go and not take it personally, I find it to be fake and even if I could see them practice what they preach, to me it feels very phony and not being true. But even after being at the wrong receiving end of several such instances, I continue with my bull-headed approach. Recently I almost got into a quarrel when someone several levels higher up was accusing me for something that I didn’t do. Enrage

Was Thanos the real hero?

Over population has always been a topic of debate for a long time. In fact, during my school days in one of the subjects, it was mentioned as a critical area to be focused on coming years. Population has always been a ticking time bomb that has been largely unprioritized. I would use the term specifically as unprioritized because even though it has been touched upon briefly time and again, it has never been addressed on a war footing, simply because, it is not an issue that can be managed without raising ethical, cultural, and religious ramifications. People world over have always been divided in opinion over birth control. While there are increasing instances of fertility clinics and orphanages and people displaced due to natural/man-made calamities, the rate of increase in population has been so high that, it has outgrown and is rapidly overcompensating for any deficit that can be claimed by such disasters. No way I am stating that wiping out entire populations as a reasonable respon

Milestone post

Another attempt at shameless self peethals of India. Apdi ipdi nu oru vazhia have posted 1300 times in this space. Ithanaikum moola,thiruvona,pooratathi matrum inna pala natchathira Karanam, thalai Ramesh, for continuously encouraging and supporting the contents with his comments. His comments carry more weight and meaning than the actual posts is my thozhil ragasiyam that is known to all. Aduthabadia Athivasi madam. Tamizhla poorvakudi nu solra mathiri intha blogspotoda poorva kudi ivanga thaan. Blogspot thondri wordpress thondra kaalam munne, post poata moothha kudiyai sernthavanga. Ivanga solra pala karuthukalal dark theme posts kooda velupaaga marina vishayam naam arinthathay. Aprum triple g enapadum g3. Eppo kedaikum epdi kedaikum nu signal kedaikatha spectrum 3G pola, epo comment poduvanga epo padikaranga nu theriatiyum appo appo ullen aiya solli comment sectionsa karai ethara puniyavangalil ivarum oruvar. Aprum mister mages. Avar theerthadanam poraro illaio, inga attendance podr

Ponniyin selvan – review

“Did you know WHO has mentioned about Chola era spreading!! “ “Moodevi…adhu cholera spreading nu concern post. WHO edhukuda Ponniyin selvan padatha pathi pesaporaanga!!” Ever since that movie was in the making, Ponniyin selvan has been the talk of the town. Adhukaga Cholera va chola era nu padikara alavuku makkal aagirupangannu I didn’t realize!! The book being the boon of Book fairs and possibly the one sure shot super hit sale item on every book fair ever since such fairs have been in existence, has vertically split the movie watching group into those who had read the book and those who hadn’t. Obviously, when a book, that too as famous as Kalki’s creation, is being made into a movie, there would be lot of criticism on whether the movie adaption has justified the written version. Harry Potter had its moments and personally I consider Lord of the Rings as the best movie ever, adapted from a book. Ponniyin selvan as a book itself is quite voluminous running into 5 parts. The essence of

Of languages and limitations

Ever since Junior started learning tamil in school, it has been a tough time and home. While consciously or otherwise, we are particular in knowing the right spelling and at times even the pronunciation of the English language, tamil being the mother tongue is taken for granted. And worse of the list being, the way it is being taught in school. During his first standard, his tamil teacher did her absolute best in ensuring the essence of the language was destroyed in its bud and the language was introduced more as a fractal symbol and shape rather than actual alphabets. The immediate challenge for us at that time was to unlearn the way in which we were writing the Uyir and Mei ezhuthukkal and adapt to how it was being taught, which was actually the correct way of writing those alphabets. When they moved on to words the challenge became multifold with pronunciations coming into the picture. Tamil, a language that is so close to my heart that it pains to type this sentence, for want of be

Of stories and tales

Junior has been given a holiday assignment in school – to write a small story of their own. Ever since he could understand, he has been fascinated by Ganesha, especially the story of his birth. He has literally read and re-read that Amar Chitra katha book into shreds. I believe his own devotion level love for his mother stems from the story!! When he talked about the assignment, I gave him suggestions to come up with a mokka story about dinosaurs or the “megabaratha” play of us. He had already made up his mind on the topic. They were to write a 2-page story in their 3 lined notebook. Junior sat and wrote an 8 pager in under half hour and showed it to us for proof correction. Except for few spellings, we didn’t touch the story at all. I’ve posted the same verbatim as presented by Junior.  Possibly the one post am super proud of amongst the 1296 posted in this space 😊 😊 😊 Ganesha’s birth – Authored by Junior When Parvati was going to bath she had told nandi to not let any of shiva gan

Of gratitude and learnings

I recently posted in LinkedIn on what happened to be hashtag world gratitude day. The moment I saw that tag, thought will post about the first person who came to mind in office, for if I think for a moment more, I would end up scrutinizing and will be left with none. I had posted about someone from office, who has been really supportive and always gives a patient listen to my rants. More than the response, the time she gives in listening to the concerns was heartening and at times, while voicing out the problem, some solutions also pop up. She is one person who is truly trusted within the org and the opinion shared by me was unanimously agreed and welcomed. Of all the shares and posts that I’ve made on that SM site, this one had maximum likes and views. Not just from my colleagues, even those who were not part of my connections had posted their endorsement. At the time of writing this post, that story had about 2000 plus like and more than 30-40 likes and other emoji’s!! She was overwh

Of trainings and outcomes

Recently I attended the “7 Habits” training session. As many of you might know already, 7 Habits is a famous book/concept/program by Stephen Covey. I’ve expressed my disinterest on self help books multiple times in this space, the reason for which I am not very clear about. They all sound overtly simple and something which is already familiar with most of us, but somehow the relatively known and simple information, when packaged as a process, seems to be a super hit in literary circles. Also, the way the presenters conduct themselves during their seminars, as if they’ve discovered the true meaning of everything and have attained enlightenment, being gracious enough to share their “knowledge” with fellow human beings, was kind of off putting. The presenters themselves keep saying throughout such sessions that the content is nothing new but is something that requires discipline and practice. But the packaging, presents the same as if, all this while we’ve been leading a life of waste (un

Bridges to past

Operation London bridge Possibly the most (in)famous operation that had worldwide coverage this month. The queen is dead long live the king would’ve been the new catch phrase that people world wide would’ve started to adapt. Someone who was in the psyche of 3 generations as queen, whose face was plastered across multiple major world currencies, some one who (as a positional head) was revered across multiple countries, someone whose reign saw the demise of once a major empire, someone whose personal life saw so much of turmoil, that was gobbled up by public as tabloid news unlike any of her predecessors who didn’t have to live through the level of public scrutiny like her, someone who saw major deviations in Royal household be it on the people who made it to her inner circle by way of relations or her own blood relatives who had a fall out. In a nut shell, Queen Elizabeth’s reign and time would’ve been possibly the most drastic and different one ever in the life and times of British Mon

Of trends and trendy

There was a Malayalam movie that was widely publicized even before it came on Netflix that it was possibly the biggest and most eagerly awaited movie of the year, having set the mollywood BO’s on fire during its theatrical release. Thallumala – meaning chain of fights (ubayam Wiki) was touted as the next big thing to come out of Mollywood, as a spoof or satirical take on present day society. I tried my best to watch the movie and despite forwarding at least a couple of dozen times, couldn’t even cross the first half and by the time the interval came, was wondering why I was watching and what has happened till that point. It was a mind numbing experience and considering Tovino Thomas whose movies are a big time favorite of mine, I was not just deeply disappointed but was almost in a comatose state wondering what in the world had I witnessed. May be the movie was layered and had lot of meta physical and symbolism that was too much for the little grey cells of mine to decipher. Every now

The 70’s show – the drama behind the drama series

Of all the series that I had seen, this one has a bit of a backstory. For a very long time, we never had any cable TV at home. Star World ruled the roost at that time and there were many famous shows across Sony, Star and other channels that had caught everyone’s attention. Boogey Woogey (?) was one show that was hosted by Javed Jaffrey I guess. Not sure if I recollected correctly but it used to run in Sony. Zee had its Saregamapa which churned out so many fantastic singers, some of whom ruled the playback world for a decent bit. Star World was the premier one of the lot with its marquee programs like KBC and many famous English series. Around the time when KBC early seasons were aired, the famous theme music can be heard across every household having a cable across the streets. Amitabh and later SRK ensured the show had its bumper opening in India as well. Some of my friends had found many inventive ways to have a crack at the cable on the loose, for the charges were quite heavy at th

Of teachers and languages

Sep 5. Teachers day.  Was wondering about the teachers I had in school and college. The only 2 who I remember very vividly are the tamil miss from my secondary school and my tamil sir from college. Rest of them are all a blur and possibly because of my affinity towards the subjects they taught. There are few whom I remember for all the negative reasons, which I would avoid in this post. Coming back to the language teachers, the reason why I remember the secondary school miss being the innovative way in which she taught the language, grammar in her class. She would split the class into three groups, A, B and C. We were seated in 3 columns of desks and each column became a group. She would ask quiz kind of questions basis the lesson being taught that day or at times general questions too. I might not have understood the grammar very well but still remember the way she taught them and it has got ingrained on the conscious. Same goes for the way she taught poetry, where in she will make us

The great box office debate

Off late the hot topic on moviewood across India is, why are the megastars of Bollywood flopping big time, whereas relatively small scale superstars from Tollywood and down under are raking in the moolah. Possibly “Pan Indian” would be the word of the year on movie world, which in turn could arguably be one of the most confusing term as well. What is pan Indian? One which is acceptable to people all over India is the direct meaning right? If a telugu or tamil movie dubbed or made in hindi as bi-lingual, how come hindi movies are never termed so? Is it accepted by default that hindi is defacto pan india language? If that is the case, I fail to understand why all the noise over common language for India by the very same group, who have no problem in accepting their creations being labeled as Pan India, only after they are made in hindi!! “Hindi theriyathu poda” “hindi pesatha tamizhan” nu tee shirt poatukitu pose kudupom aana hindi la release panra padatha thaan pan India padam nu sonna

Kolai kolaiya munthirikka -7

“Dei Ram..keezha paaru..athennada anga anga..karuppa… round shape la irukku?  Namma oorla maadulaam karuppu colour la thaan saani podutha?” asked Anil “Aama veyil jaasthi athaan…podaangu…pudhusa road potrukaangada.” replied Ram. “Konjama thaar potrukaanga sollu..road potrukaangannu sollatha. Ennada ithu thammathundu thaar sinthi iruku..idha poi road nu solra!!” “Corporationa solliyum kutham illada…night time la than road poda varaanga. Makkal ellarum road a parking lot pola use panni vandilaam velila niruthina..avanga epdi road poda mudiyum. Adhaan…vandi niruthinathu poga engalam edam iruko anga mattum road podranga!!” “Idhu uchakatta kodumaida. Roaduku macham vacha pola iruku paatha, andha macham thaan road nu solra.” “Idhula mazhai vandha thanni thengama enna pannum. Appo kooda paaru..water wash selavu micham nu vandilam velila niruthitu poiduvanga” “Ipolam risk edukarathilla. Mazhai vellam vanthu vandiye kaanama poiduthu. Singaara Chennai Sink aagara Chennai aaitu varuthu” “Nammakku

Fast and Furious

This is one franchise I’ve been avoiding for a really long time for I was always under the impression that they were nothing but car game/races shown at different setting. I happened to saw the trailer of one of the movies from that franchise where space, satellite and things were being shown. Was wondering how come a series that made its name on car races is now dealing with space and that curiosity dragged me into watching the same. I am not able to put a word, whether it was surprise, shock, funny ( as in gabtun vijaykanth/ balayya movies sense), but they actually were driving car in space, crashing it on an enemy satellite and even getting rescued by a team floating around on a pod!!! That one scene was proof of pudding about the franchise, where it showed the extent to which they take car and their care about the prime USP of the franchise!! I saw a couple of movies out of the 9 or 10 that has been churned out of that factory line and there is not one impossible sequence that you

Of manners and mischief

The fact that junior addresses me or anyone at home as “vaadaa..podaa” has always been a subject of debate. He addresses anyone outside of the immediate family as “neenga vaanga” and even within the family, even though he may call them in singular, the “da” part is respectfully mine for getting addressed. Seeing that it is becoming a eye-brow raising topic amongst guests and other people, wifey is embarrassed at best and would be at beetroot red boiling angry in such situations, on me not on junior, for never discouraging him to use a respectful way of addressing. Even though there is absolute merit what the lady says like every other thing she says, I find it funny and never really bothered about it. Last week was a “vedham pudidu” moment that resulted in this post. We had visited my cousin’s and junior was so happy that he had an amazing variety of new toys to play along with kids his age. For the next 5 hours, he hardly came near us and was constantly on the run, creating their own

Jaya he

As India celebrates its 75th I Day, just realized this space has seen 16 of that special day!! I am an unabashed nationalist who doesn’t have any inhibition in saying my nation is the greatest. It is probably one of the most defining mis-statement ever, applicable for any country. But no nationalist, in their true sense would shy away from saying the same. Of course, they know in their heart as well as any other next person that, the statement is light years away from truth. But the intent behind the statement being, some day as in certain very niche and micro areas, how the nation has always surpassed its peers, it may grow into the greatest across majority of spheres. It is a forward looking statement, full of positivity about the country and not to be taken at face value or in literal sense. I belong to that group of individuals who would cheer for India, across any game be it goli, gilli or ludo. During my school days we used to play a dumbed down version of battleship and there wo

Of travels and company

 I am not a big fan of travelling and this space has seen much of my travails that accompany my travels. Getting into any transportation, be it airplane/train or bus, makes me queasy for it is a deviation from my daily routine that requires extra attention. I need to be mindful of the date of travel, timings, duration of stay, place of stay, things to carry and things to safeguard..too much of responsibility. As a family we rarely travelled when I was a kid and all these inhibitions could’ve been extra flavor of my laziness. And throw in a bit of travel sickness, you got your perfect recipe ready to avoid any travel. I used to have lot of nauseating sensation whenever the travel involves train. That stench from toilet or even the pantry car for that matter would be revolting to say the least. Ditto for flight travel especially on long distance ones where the stewardess roll in the food cart. Within that closed confines of circulated air that stench would be unbearable. But ever since j

Of exams and results

Couple of months back, wifey had actually registered for some exams related to her work. There were 3 papers that she had to take in one go, with individual pass mark of 45 and overall pass mark of 50. Her colleagues and friends who had taken those exams prior had warned her of the difficulty level and extent of preparation needed, alongside mentioning about the pass percentage of people who clear the exam in the first attempt. Just like justice, the more delayed more denied, information related exams also, should be relegated under same category. If not provided timely they only serve the purpose of putting the fear of god in people, making them doubt if they would be able to clear the exams. Had those trivia about those exams been told to her much earlier, chances of her not taking them would’ve been bit high. But having already registered, that too with just a month to go, she had no choice but to give it an honest try and honest try it was!! In between we had a temple run long dela