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31 August, 2010

Life of Pi


Have you read/watched Robinson Crusoe? No? Cast Away (Starring Tom Hanks) at least? If you haven’t, do it. Both are wonderful and so is Life of Pi.


Author: Yann Martel Time/era of story - 1960's-1970’s Type: Adventures Journal

I wanted to read a sea adventure and that is when a friend of mine suggested me to read this book. This is a simple tell-tale about the survival of a 15 year old kid in sea for 227 days in a small life boat with some extra ordinary company of the wild animals – Richard Parker, a Tiger; a female Orangutan, a zebra and a Hyena.

The book starts of detailing his life as the son of a zoo owner in Madras, his explorations and affiliation to Christianity and Islam. Then when his family plans to move to Canada, things go awry and a sad shipwreck afflicts killing them all. Piscine Patel or “PI” manages to escape in a small boat only to find out later that he has company, dangerous company – wild animals. From here on, it is struggle for the survival, survival of the fittest.

It is a heart touching book, though the details would bore in the middle but the author manages to beautifully explain the thoughts of a person who has no option left to live and how the sole will to survive helps him surmount the extra-ordinary troubles. Yann Martel makes you step in the shoes of PI and think what you would have done? The desperate measures to survive from drinking salt water to eating the fecal matter of the Tiger definitely give you Goosebumps.

There is an interesting conversation with the two Japanese in the final part of the book. Since the book assumes the autobiographical tone of the adventures of a kid, it becomes gloomy and drab at more than one occasion, but by then you will be in the grip of the author and would move with the flow of the book.

If you are an avid reader, looking for something different, this is definitely a book to go for.

Trivia:

Yann Martel was awarded ‘Man Booker Prize’ in the year 2002 for Life of Pi. A movie is being made, based on this book with the title same as that of the bookand it is being directed by Ang Lee. (Source:IMDB). I just hope the movie turns out to be worthwhile watch.

25 August, 2010

ZeeNews-MyEarth




Zee News has come up with a wonderful Green Initiative. It is a bunch of initiatives actually. The aim: to help people realize the worth of the environment and also to increase the awareness of environmental degradation, its adverse effects and steps to prevent it.


Logon to http://www.zeenews.com/myearth and you literally enter into a green atmosphere. The various shades of green are eye catchy to say the least. The layout neat and decent. There is a carbon footprint calculator which is a very handy tool which help us keep a check on our carbon emission. Their Ideas/tips to save environment and also there is a did you know section, to increase you awareness of the state of the things.

The catchiest thing is PLANTATION DRIVE scheduled for 25th August 2010. Register here and ZEE NEWS will plant a tree for every registration.

Registration process is very simple, A small pop up form asking few personal details and on the click of submit button you are proudly responsible for planting a tree.

Please register and spread the word.

24 August, 2010

RakshaBandhan




As I was reading through the blogs, a post by Purba Ray set my grey cells ticking (no, these days they are off work. On strike actually, a rebellion against the insult done to them by the kind of mundane office work I challenge them with).

Let me give you the background first. My brother is the eldest in our generation amongst all my cousins and I am the second-in-command. So I have not had the pleasure of having an elder sister (No bhayya, I am not complaining about you). After reading Purva’s blog post, there is this question I want answered – Who would you prefer to have, given a chance – Elder or younger sister?

Let me try to list down few points
1)      You have an Elder sister and you may get a caring and loving second mom like character but you have a younger sister and in you are in the hot seat to give her fatherly care.
2)      You can always wrestle your way around with elder sister (as observed in case of my friends) but  very difficult to skip across a younger one.
3)      You easily share all your secrets with an elder sister. Do you do the same with a younger one? I ain’t sure about it.
4)      Unlike elder brothers who are strict and restricting, elder sister may be otherwise. Not very sure on this but have seen cases both to support and dispose of this argument.

One may go on queuing points to this list without an end. But all said done, elder or a younger sister, you are lucky to have one. It is an honor and responsibility alike.L ife is real fun and memorable growing up and growing old with them. I pity all those who don’t have sisters, for they have missed a very fulfilling experience.
Happy  RakshaBandhan. Love you sis JJ

19 August, 2010

TOY STORY-3

his was to be posted long back. But nevertheless, here it is back from oblivion


Who says TOY STORY-3 is a movie meant for kids and kids alone?? If you are under such a misconception, time to watch the movie and change your perception of it. Have you watched previous two versions of Toy story series? No?

Not to bother, Just catch hold of a movie ticket, get your Pepsi, pop corn, nachos or whatever you need when you watch a movie and get seated. For you are about to have two hours of total entertainment. You will not be able to figure how two hours passed by while you were watching the movie. What was it that kept you engaged … Andy, the coming-of-age kid? Woody the cow boy? Buzz Lightyear and his dementia state antics? The big small baby or the PINK Lotsa hug bear with the strawberry smell??

Running at 103 minutes long, directed by Lee Unkrich,With Tom Hanks, Tim Allen and Joan Cusack; TOY STORY-3, the latest edition in this series takes us through the adventures of the toys. First, to satisfy their urge to be played with and then, realization of their mistake and the counter measures to get back to their owner -Andy.

Whenever PIXAR is involved, there is a social message sent across and you can expect the same here. This movie brings to light the fact that how cruel we humans are. How we use things ungratefully and just forsake them later. There is a depth to the characters, taking about being faithful to the owner and to the friends. The level of distrust and disliking some develop towards others and how a single toy’s prejudices ruin it all for the rest.

I suggest you don’t miss it. You will walk out of the theatre happy and satisfied. There are hardly any movies being made worth the time and money we spend on them and this one in particular is total paisa vasool.

15 August, 2010

Common Wealth Games -Road Ahead






First of all, hearty wishes on the 64th Independence Day. A peculiar thing I have observed is that, rather than Independence day, all over the media the hot topic being discussed is CWG 2010.

Yes, I totally concur with all those who say that CWG is in a big time mess and No, I don’t agree that we must give up organising CWG. Despite all said and done, everything is not lost. Some patches here and there and we will be able to pull out a decent show at least and save our face. I try to list down the DO s for the road ahead with CWG           

1)      First and foremost, we are being watched by the entire world and history is being written. Let’s all have an optimistic outlook and go ahead and give our best.
2)      Our Honourable Prime Minister Mr. ManMohan Singh must intervene and try to touchbase with all the concerned people and stop the media from pulling the panic button.
3)      The Media has a great role to play. Going ahead with the point one, the media must help build a positive attitude and atmosphere and build the spirit among all Indians.
4)      Despite all the proclivities, all the concerned ministries must take action and a central investigating committee must be set up. The sporadic investigations must culminate into a single big investigation directly under PMO’s supervisation.
5)      It will be foolish to replace Mr.Kalmadi with less than 50 days to go.Rather, put someone else along with him with equal powers as Mr Kalmadi and make them both divide and speed up the progress and ramp up the team with extra resources from different ministries to get things moving Ed Pronto.
6)      The vision for organising CWG in India has to be revisited. The aim was to help build other sports and games (apart from cricket) in India. We have to have that vision in sight and a separate team from sport ministries to be set up to carry on with this goal as we move ahead with the CWG preparations.

Reading the cover story of newspapers today, I feel, Mr Prime Minister has already started breathing oxygen and resuscitating the merely surviving CWG games and It’s our task now to help build the positive atmosphere.
Let’s hope we dance to the tunes that will make the world applaud our efforts.

Jai Hind.

11 August, 2010

After The Funeral

Author: Agatha Christie

Lead Character: Hercule M. Poirot

Genre: Fiction, Crime Thriller, Murder Mystery

Q) What happens when a rich man dies with no proper heir to his property?
Ans)Bequeathing of property and some crime associated with it.

Think of it and atleast a dozen bollywood movies and few Hollywood movies flash in front of your eyes. This is my first Agatha Christie Novel and above description is exactly what I went through after learning about the plot- Hollywood bollywood movies flashing away. But then I was in for a surprise.This book was written even before the ideas of these movies had had their inception in the minds of the people who made them and is defintely much better than most of the movies based on this premise.

Agatha Christie takes this posthumous family drama plot of rich man and brews a wonderful crime story around it. The characterization of the family, their relationship with the dead man, their appearances and their nature has been very well sketched in the book.

It all begins with a comment made by Aunt Cora at Uncle Richard Abernethie’s funeral. Richard has no heir to his property and thus everyone in relation wants to stake his/her claim. Aunt Cora comments that her brother Richard was murdered for his property. No one gives second thoughts to her comments as she has the fame of being demented. But things stir when she is murdered with Hatchet.

It is now that our gentlemanly and chivalrous Hercule M. Poirot is involved in the case. The book has some interesting top notch twists and turns and as one of my friend has put it “And really, After the Funeral (refers to the book) is a mystery that latches onto you a few paragraphs in from the first page. Latches on and refuses to let go.”

You will find yourself immersed in the book and will enjoy reading it. Although Agatha Christie has her usual biases in selecting the murderer and sometimes she goes very detail in the descriptive, the plot and the end of the trail make up for it. But then, that’s the style of Agatha Christie right? So if you love her writes and if you love detective stories, you definitely don’t want to miss this one.

Trivia:

There is a movie based on this novel. It is directed by Maurice Phillips with David Suchet portraying Hercule M.Poirot . More details @IMDB. Click Here for more details.

06 August, 2010

Flies!! - Flash Fiction 300

It was over coffee that we decided to write a flash fiction story (<300 words) with the line 'A housefly was hovering at the bakery'  in it. However, the line need not verbatim as suggested. It will suffice if it conveys the meaning and this is the best I could come up with

A lone housefly was hovering at the bakery. This was his first posting and far away from his homeland. Born and brought up at the sewers that were full of deteriorating waste and degrading feces, he found this neat and clean bakery to his gentlemanly distaste. But nevertheless, it was his first posting and he had a point to prove. He was a guard now. A scout and a sleeper who will find out and inform about newer sources of food to survive, for the growing population to be supported, to help his kind to flourish and establish the world rule. He would be famous, history would record his most important contribution in establishing a world dominion of the flies and he will be their hero. All possible medals of Honor and valor (that could be awarded) would adore his chest. With this thought, he zoomed around. Then he smelt fresh baked bread. Probably some human or other sane living form would have taken an eternity to let the smell go. But the fly found it repelling; being the connoisseur he was of rich and exuberant pungent odor of the sewers, he resented the smell of the bread. He noticed that there was a source of infinite light from where the smell originated. Out of curiosity, it flew towards the light. Blindfolded, it crashed into the source and was electrocuted bhuzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.

Sitting in a deep dark corner near the switch board. A mega housefly was muttering in its hands free.

Experiment AZ3235 has also failed. Call a meeting of the head of all our clans. Our nemesis, the light source has arrived.”

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03 August, 2010

Batman Movie Survey

01 August, 2010

Celebrating Friendship Day