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Archive for August, 2011

PASCHIMBANGA!


Way back in the early noughties of this century (obviously!) I asked a friend by name Bose, ” West Bengal is West of what?”.

He was not happy about the question, leave alone wanting to give an explanation. However, i used to keep telling him that he hailed from the East of India, but called himself a WEST BENGALI. During one of those fibbing sessions, a Punjabi friend joined in and said, ” see, we from East Punjab and Patiala renamed our state as PUNJAB. But you guys in West Bengal still keep moping about the PARTITION OF BENGAL, and call your state as if Dakha is still the epicentre of Bengali culture.”

This got the goat of my Bengali friend, who said something which I am yet to recover from:

SEE, MY DEAR FRIEND, IN OUR COUNTRY THERE ARE VERY FEW CULTURES WHICH  ALSO FALL OUTSIDE OUR COUNTRY.

THE MOST DOMINANT OF THOSE CULTURES ARE THE TAMIL CULTURES, BENGALI CULTURE AND THE PUNJABI CULTURE.

IF ONE GOES BY THE POPULATION OF THE BENGALIS, BANGLADESH HAS 14 CRORE BENGALI SPEAKING PEOPLE, WHEREAS WEST BENGAL HAS JUST HALF THAT NUMBER. IF YOU LOOK AT THE PUNJABI CULTURE, 45% OF PAKISTANIS ARE PUNJABIS, THEREFORE THERE ARE AROUND 8 CRORE PUNJABIS IN PAKISTAN WHEREAS PUNJAB HAS HARDLY 3 CRORE  PUNJABI SPEAKING PEOPLE. SO ESSENTIALLY, NEITHER CALCUTTA NOR AMRITSAR FORM THE CORE OF THE BENGALI OR THE PUNJABI CULTURE POPULATION-WISE.

THE EPICENTRE OF BENGALI CULTURE IS STILL DAKHA AND THE EPICENTRE OF PUNJABI CULTURE IS LAHORE. SO WHAT IS THE POINT? YOU PUNJABIS HAVE TRIED TO HIJACK THE INDIAN HINDI CINEMA IN A PUNJABI WAY. BUT THAT ALONE WOULDN’T BE SUFFICIENT TO MAKE UP FOR THE NUMBERS. THE QUICKER YOU RECONCILE WITH THE REALITIES, THE QUICKER YOU WOULD ACCEPT YOUR SMALNESS AND STOP PLAYING THESE CULTURAL BULL-S**T! ONLY THE TAMIL CULTURE HAS ITS EPICENTRE IN TAMIL NADU AND THERE IS NO POSSIBILITY OF CULTURAL INVASION.

SECONDLY BOTH OUR (BENGALI AND PUNJABI) CULTURES ARE DIVIDED ACROSS THE RELIGIOUS LINES WHEREAS TAMIL CULTURE IS ASSURED OF ITS RELIGIOUS INTEGRITY. EVEN MOST OF THE EXPATRIATE POPULATION ARE HINDUS AND I DO NOT SEE THE MALAYSIAN, SINGAPOREAN, SRI LANKAN TAMILIANS (!) converting themselves into muslims or christians or buddhist.”

I was stunned at the analysis based on the ethnic demographics of  the Bengali, Punjabi and Tamil cultures. His point was that when the economic strength of these neighbouring countries rose, automatically, their cultural expressions are likely to rise and make their cultural expressions dominant.

So in effect Bose believed that there was nothing wrong in calling WEST BENGAL as WESTERN PART OF BENGAL CULTURE. If that were to be the deep rooted belief, then there is nothing wrong in naming WEST BENGAL as PASCHIMBANGA!

Good luck to didi!

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TALENT & SKILL!


I had read a long time ago, as a kid, that Charlie Chaplin appeared for a CHARLIE CHAPLIN LOOK ALIKE CONTEST and came THIRD!

I used to wonder then, why did the Judges then miss the original for the fake. But today, i have no such doubts.

I will come to my explanation later, but before that i’d like to give another example. For the last 25 years one song which has held my attention  is LOCOMOTIVE BREATH by the group Jethro Tull. I had listened to the song first in my friend Sanjay’s  room at Christian Medical College, Vellore. I used to replay the song a hundred times, that Sanjay used to leave me behind in the room for me to “get soaked in the stupid lyrics and exuberance of the mad man Ian Anderson”. That was in the 80’s , then after a gap of more than 20 years when i listened to Ian Anderson from YOUTUBE i was disappointed- to say the least. Firstly, the enunciation was slurred; secondly the singing did not match the VOICE i had heard; thirdly Ian had lost a wee bit of the punch he had packed in the original RECORDING.

The easiest answer would be that AGE HAS TAKEN ITS TOLL, and therefore the song is not CRISP as  his ORIGINAL RECORDING. But i refuse to take that as a sufficient reason to slake my doubts.

When Ian Anderson along with his troupe recorded the song, he must have been inspired by his TALENT. The source of one’s TALENT is difficult to identify. It is a byproduct of the confluence of one’s experience and imagination or it is a sudden inspiration born for which no explicable reason can be adduced. But when he started repeating the song, again and again, in different fora, he was REPRODUCING the sounds out of his SKILL. A SKILL developed to match an existing PATTERN.

watch?v=wRqnAEN_lEE&feature=related

I am sure there must be some troupe which could perform LOCOMOTIVE BREATH better than today’s performance of Ian Anderson. That is simple, today’s performers have memorized the tune of the original recording of the song and have over time thru practice honed their SKILLS to match the originals.

Yet, i’d rather watch GOOD TALENT gone OLD than FRESH SKILL imitating TALENT.

TALENT……………..watch?v=gWubhw8SoBE&feature=related

Nyanthara & Hinduism!


Nyanthara, quite popular in the Thamizh filmdom, has got herself reconverted to Hinduism. “RECONVERTED”? Yes, reconverted. That is what the Law presumes regarding persons of other Faiths who get converted to Hinduism.

I ain’t bothered about Nyanthara’s conversion or reconversion to this FAITH or that FAITH. I am bothered about how the LAW would treat her upon her embracing (!) Hinduism.

When a Scheduled Caste person gets converted to any other religion, he loses his status as a Scheduled Caste person. He is treated as a BACKWARD CASTE person. He would not be eligible to avail of the “quota benefits”, which he was availing of as a Hindu. The reason forwarded has been that as a Hindu, there is space for CASTE in its institutionalized form in Hinduism, and therefore as a member of the SC, he was SOCIALLY DISCRIMINATED. But once he leaves the fold of Hinduism, he goes into a FAITH which does not RECOGNIZE caste, therefore he is not under the BURDEN of SOCIAL DISCRIMINATION.

Well, well well….. that is the OSTENSIBLE LOGIC.

 But political consideration, goes deeper into the unborn future. C P RAMASAMY IYER, the then Dewan of Travancore state under Sri Chithirai Thirunal REALIZED that Hindus in the Travancore state during the early part of the last century got themselves converted to Buddhism, Christianity and Islam to AVOID SOCIAL DISCRIMINATION. So he is supposed to have convinced Sri Chithirai Thirunal with the help of the Census statistics and promulgated the TEMPLE ENTRY PROCLAMATION.

Be that as it may. When i was taking my School leaving certificate, each student was asked to provide proof of his COMMUNITY. I did not understand what COMMUNITY meant. I was not particularly a bright student, not that there  has been much change for the better after i stopped being a student. ANY ways, dutifully i reported to my parents that i was asked to present proof of my COMMUNITY. My dad pulled out a dog eared certificate and gave it to me to present it before the school authorities the next day, with the strict instructions that i  bring it back  the next day straight back from school without going for my evening round of cricket. Done, i go under the head CSI formerly SIUC of Kaniyakumari District, with an addition NADAR CHRISTIAN.

I did not get the hang of it then. Neither do i now. I can understand CSI formerly SIUC of KK District, but i cannot understand why this “NADAR” was added to my caste. Nadars were attending to palmyra climbing and eking out their livelihood, out of the produce of palmyra palm.

By hindsight, i have understood that i was BORN a NADAR, but that my forebears who were  HINDU NADARS somewhere down the line got converted to Christianity and therefore I remain a NADAR. There was logic. My forebears who got converted could not have been in any position to change their profession, so for the sake of convenience, born of their ILLITERACY, had to call themselves as CHRISTIAN NADARS. So here i stand befor you, the reader of my blog, as a CHRISTIAN NADAR. I carry the vestiges of the HINDU CASTE system tagged along with the FAITH i practice. NADARS, both Hindu and Christian are classed together in the social hierarchy, so there is no special treatment meted out to a HINDU NADAR unlike Scheduled Caste Christians.

Now, to return to our main theme- Nyanthara, “was” a Syrian Christian. Myth has it that Syrian Christians of Kerala were originally converted to Christianity from a few Brahmin families. So, if Nyanthara has been RECONVERTED to Hinduism, she should become a Brahmin Hindu!

There was this Syrian Christian colleague who used to pride himself on the fact that he comes from the BRAHMIN stock. It became a joke in the office- behind his back- that he was called a BRAHMIN CHRISTIAN. Now that Nyanthara has got herself RECONVERTED to Hinduism, she has become pure BRAHMIN!

By the way, Nyanthara has a tattoo in her body which is PRABHU DEVA. Translation of Prabhu Deva is LORD GOD! Hope she makes him her LORD and MASTER. Good luck to the Brahmin girl.

Now i understand why one has to carry one’s caste tag even after conversion- just in case someone gets RECONVERTED to HINDUISM, he wouldn’t be left CASTELESS! Good for India.

ENDORSEMENT CRICKET!


Fraud by Ian Bell & Indians lacking the balls to enforce a FACT- all for endorsement goodwill

This morning i read a news item by Vijay Kumr Bobilli in THE TIMES OF INDIA (03/07/2011) and was not the least surprised that it was our Sachin Tendulkar who had put pressure on M S Dhoni to recall the batsman IAN BELL. Great. Sachin may be the greatest batsman India had ever seen and enjoys an enormous good will with the cricketing public, has a massive fan following and behaves decently on and off the field.

But why should he put pressure on MSD to recall Ian Bell?

To my mind, these are fall out of ENDORSEMENTS. Remember Tiger Woods, who when had to face allegations of gallivanting with all types of women and the unquenchable ire of Elin Nordegren, the first endorser to dump Tiger was the consulting firm ACCENTURE. Why? Tiger “WOULD lose his sheen and that should not spill over to the product endorsed by Tiger” , simple.

So, after all Trent Bridge is in England and we need new gestures of goodwill to find new markets and recruit new fans to our aging cricketers. So “FACTS” and “TRUTHS” could be given the short shrift and ‘go’ with the crowd ‘for’ the crowd. A kind of democracy in cricket.

From the footage specially recovered from the net to sustain my hypothesis, IAN BELL “assumed” that the ball had hit the boundary board. Should his mistaken belief deprive Indians an opportunity to enforce a rule? NAY. So appealed thrice and sustained by the Umpire, Bell is shown the door.

But the DRESSING ROOMS have their own dramas and machinations which brought back Ian Bell (lucky he added only 22 to his tally!). So whose VOICE turned the CRICKET MATCH INTO AN ENDORSEMENT GROUND? SACHIN TENDULKAR, that is what Vijay Kumar Bobilli says. I am very much inclined to believe that. Sachin may have a squeaky voice, but time has shown that he has been wise in getting neat packages in ENDORSEMENTS. Not that a squeaky voiced persons should not be wise- but a general presumption is there subliminally, that such people are not aggressive in pushing their point of view. Yet they could gently persuade a junior colleague, presently in command, to resile from his earlier decision. Indians have won the BRITISH hearts, but have lost the MATCH! That is the pith and marrow of that game.

Sachin, enjoy the good fortune in the staid pitches laid out by our groundsmen and organizers for your centuries, but SPARE INDIAN CRICKET from the rapacious and ruthless endorsement purveying advisers. THERE IS TOO MUCH OF CONFLICT OF INTEREST IN SACHIN’S CRICKET AND HIS ENDORSEMENTS FOR ME TO GIVE HIM THE BENEFIT OF DOUBT!

And if possible show some aggression in playing on difficult pitches! Good luck to u too.

IAN BELL – the paid recall!


In the Second Test at Trent Bridge India gets smothered tight and right.

I am of the opinion that it was not that the “tiredness” of our cricketers which did them in, but their lack of practice in hard bouncy swinging pitches. We prepare pitches to suit our staid batsmen. The COPY BOOK did not descend from above that the ball should take the expected course of Indian batsmen, newer methods and strategies are going to be invented from time to time both by our opponent bowlers as well as host nations and we Indians should develop the adaptability to rise to ANY OCCASION and if not win, at least have the skills to SAVE a test match.

Alas! we have bred them with nice pitches to keep us entertained for long. It is time we shed all these puerile “manipulative strategies” and make half of the pitches in India hard, bouncy and swingy. Else, our cricketers would end up as BACKYARD CRICKETERS in the world stage, performing well at home and whenever we go abroad, tag the Laxmans along to save our day.

The most DISGUSTING part of the Trent Bridge test was not the Indian loss or the way and margin of the loss, but the way an APPEAL was made when Ian Bell sauntered to the other end of the wicket believing that that was the last ball before tea break. All this talk of “GENTLEMANLY” game of cricket is a load of BULL S**T!

I distinctly remember that Bob Taylor was given out for a ball which was not snicked by him. G R Vishwanath recalled him IMMEDIATELY, as he was in the slips and did know for a fact that Bob Taylor was given out as a MISTAKE OF FACT by the UMPIRE. Bob Taylor did not contribute to him being given out. But in the instant case, IAN BELL even without ascertaining from the umpire,  saunters down the pitch, as if the RULE BOOKS did not exist in Cricket.

The worst part is that there can be  no comparison between Vishwanath and Dhoni. Vishwanath did not get to the dressing room to receive calls from his sponsors and other media managers advising Vishwanath stating that, RECALLING BOB TAYLOR WOULD ENHANCE HIS IMAGE AND GET HIM HUGER ADVERTISING REVENUES  or THAT A RECALL WOULD GO WELL WITH THE CROWD!

G R Vishwanath’s response was SPONTANEOUS. That is GENTLEMANLY behaviour. Not after one gets to the dressing room and hear about the CROWD RESENTMANT etc. etc. and get back and recall to please an OPINION of some people, which could also bring pecuniary gains through GOODWILL in England.

I am sorry Dhoni, you may be the captain of Chennai Super Kings and the Captain of My Country, but your delayed response to an unhelpable decision of the THIRD UMPIRE, takes away all the Goodness of the deed. In any case you have shown that you are a COMMERCIAL POLITICIAN.

Good luck to you for the rest of your stay in England. Please work further on your popularity in England too!

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