Friday, December 30, 2005
Tuesday, December 27, 2005
Recognise some familiar faces? Familiar places? Go ahead and check out possiblymaybeprobablynot's lomo adventures here. And here to know more about Lomography. So who is possiblymaybeprobablynot is? That's for me to know and you to find out. I could tell you, but should i? Possiblymaybeprobablynot. Come over to coffee house.
Saturday, December 24, 2005
The Karthik landed up later while Soans was doing Rob Roy at Tavern. Guruji was there too. So too was a certain Rajan. And it goes without saying that the furniture was all there. In its place. Blame it on the nostalgia, but even No Excuses was ignored, and sing-a-long happened only to James Blunt’s Beautiful. Legendary stories of legendary classmates were told and retold. Jokes were shared and people said they cared. And amidst all this, a lot of dirt was dug up on yours truly by his friends(?), and an old friendship renewed and reaffirmed.
Soon the gang split. Karthik went home. A raan, a full grilled chicken, chicken kabab and a curd rice later (all parcel), the two left-over prashanths (TKV having split earlier) and the shenoy headed off to my place. Old cupboards were broken open, secrets shared, old photos which had not seen the light for ages were gazed upon. Soon, it was almost dawn. And the Gadda-man split, not before we found a friend of his on the road when we were looking for an auto and also bumped into my first. Anyway. Dawn broke…and sleep came..and here I am typing it all out in the office. Bah!
Great evening. The only pissing off incident was when a certain somebody let some things slip. So to those out there, please start thinking for yourself. Or else keep that vohpinyon of yours with you, in a place where the sun don’t shine. Sieg heil!
Friday, December 23, 2005
Mostly in touch was the one known as the Beatzophrenic, (looks a bit like gollum from the LOTR movies, doesn't he?) who while not bussssy sssseducing women and buying books/CDs DVDs, went to become one of Bangalore’s resident comics freak/experts. The precioussss Beatzo was also spotted going on a Graphic Rampage at KQA’s first comics quiz, and giving away CDs and DVDs full of scanned comics. Last seen complaining to mommy about how the angst in his pangst hurts and explaining to the world what ret-con (in comics) is in excruciating detail, accompanied by interesting details, interspersed by a war dance, a war whoop, a yodel, a yabadabadoo and a tippity tappity tap, in that order.
Thursday, December 22, 2005
Take these guys. Mallus from Cochin. Phugg, they’re good. They’re called Avial and the song is called Nada Nada. It’s an out and out rock number. And it’s in Malayalam! It matters not whether their other stuff is in English and if it is good or not, this song kicks some serious ass, and this is what all the phuggers out there who want Indian influences or western sounds (or whatever combination) should be aiming for and trying to go one better. Avial’s Nada Nada – great song, and a good video to boot. Go ahead, take a look and have a listen. The video is by Poor Man Productions, Chennai and it’s available fo download from their site. Click and choose from hi-quality (512 kbps/19 Mb), med-quality (350 kbps/12.9 Mb) or lo-quality (150 kbps/5.7 Mb). Of course, there are other great musicians and good bands who've done this (and for the most part ignored by the english-o-phile elitists amongst us). But for now, and since this is so damned convenient, Nada Nada by Avial will do.
And here to give his opinion(s) on Avial’s Nada Nada, please welcome Ajay Menon, hard-boiled mallu, music lover, great copy writer, old monker and general leprechaun-hunter-at-large.
Ajay Menon: “Indian rock. There’s always a little negativity in the air when listening to one of them. Because it’s detached, metropolitan music experienced by the few brown Indians trying to sing the white man’s music. This white noise runs through all… but a few select bands in India.
But somehow Avial manages to evade this by playing to the song with Nada Nada. A steady act with some eager rock. And the mallu vocals just add to this. The song simply stands out as an Indian act without going overboard in any department. A balance difficult to replicate but a gem of a rock song.
The same goes to the video which is brilliantly produced. The only complaint: could have done without the mallu-boy-beaten-exercising-and-getting-back. But then as the song says, “walk on” … it will play in your head.
Gratitude to Hamish, Rahul and Robbie for introducing the band to us."
Wednesday, December 21, 2005
Monday, December 19, 2005
Chief among his foes is the super villain (or Maha Paapi) Kaptaan Amreeka. How this came about is an interesting story. Laal Khopdi, being the master of time and space, once transported himself back in time to fight a menace plaguing his country. A villainous traitor called MahatMan G, who had hatched a nefarious plot to mass hypnotise the masses to do his bidding. MahatMan, a maha paapi, had used his powers of starvation to great effect, in tandem with his sidekick Child Lover Man. To combat him, and to be of assistance to the super group known as The Freedom Fighters, prominent among whom was Bose Man, Laal Khopdi landed up in the 30s. However, in the intermediate state that separates eras and eons – known as the Lekin – Laal Khopdi was overtaken by a sub-human intelligence, a creature of the sea of nothingness known only as Mussel Man, who with his Army of His God, managed to overpower Laal Khopdi. Mortally wounded, Laal Khopdi managed to find his way out of the Lekin, but the pathways in the Lekin were too much for even our hero. So although he landed up in the 30s, he landed up in another country (which explains why MahatMan G got away with what he did) with a severe loss of memory. Were it not for the genius of The Leader, Laal Khopdi would have surely perished. The Leader took Laal Khopdi under his wing and saw to it that he was brought back to full health. His memory not fully recovered yet, Laal Khopdi nevertheless undertook to help The Leader and this is what brought him in direct confrontation with Kaptaan Amreeka. Many battles later (details soon), Laal Khopdi soon found himself in the Lekin again, and finally found his way back to his time with both his missions left unfulfilled. Laal Khopdi, any decade now, is all set to set his failures right. But for now let’s get back to a few other details about Laal Khopdi.
Some other enemies of Laal Khopdi include Da Wooden Man, Congress Man, and all Jeevan J Kang creations. He currently lives in Sillycon City.
So that’s that for now. Further details on Laal Khopdi and more stories soon. Look out especially for the story of Laal Khopdi and the Second Hand Man.
Friday, December 16, 2005
Thursday, December 15, 2005
Tuesday, December 13, 2005
But when the melancholy fit shall fall
Sudden from heaven like a weeping cloud
That fosters the droop-headed flowers all
And hides the green hill in an April shroud
Then glut thy sorrow on a morning rose
Or on the rainbow of the salt sand-wave
Or on the wealth of globèd peonies
Or if thy mistress some rich anger shows
Emprison her soft hand, and let her rave
And feed deep, deep upon her peerless eyes.
to see: de Chirico. to read: Keats.
Thank you for the illuminated darkness.
Monday, December 12, 2005
Tuesday, December 06, 2005
The art is hypnotic, surreal, creepy, sensual, psychedelic and hallucinatory – sometimes all at the same time. It’s in black and white, but that only serves to add so much more colour to the narrative. The emotions, the reactions, the dreams and the nightmares, deformities, the fear and the loathing. This book captures it all, and throws at you so many questions, most of which the book does not even try to answer. And the ending just heightens this feeling. There may or may not be a moral and a message to this story. The Bug may be a metonym for AIDS or it may be not. It just might be a coming-of-age-story, or the usual teenager’s story about wanting to be yourself and to be popular and to fit in, but then it could be neither. It’s for you to decide if you want to give it an ulterior motive or look at it as just a damn good story. I would suggest, sit back and just enjoy the experience. Get ready to be sucked into the Black Hole.
Monday, December 05, 2005
One of the unwritten rules to quizzing is that the quizmaster is always right. But this could mean two things (1) It means that participants have to agree to whatever the quizmaster says. You cannot challenge the answers. Shut the fuck up, don’t crib. (2) It puts a hell of a lot of pressure on the quizmaster to get his questions and their respective answers right. It should not be challengeable by the participants and the audience, and if challenged the quizmaster should have his facts straight and provide valid, relevant substantiation. Some of the best quizmasters around choose to go with (2). But unfortunately not every quizmaster thinks so. While I do not approve of raising doubts about the quizmaster’s choice of questions, or their content and relative ease (or otherwise) – it’s the quizmaster’s prerogative – I do think I have a valid point to make when the quizmaster awards points to the wrong answer. You don’t want to give the right answer the points, at least don’t give it to the wrong answer. If the “wrong answer” was to have been awarded the points, change the bloody question; structure it around the answer you want. Change the words. Go back and look at the facts. Or just scrap the question. That’s what a good quizmaster does.
Why the vitriolic outburst you ask? This was sparked off by an incident at the quiz I was yesterday, or specifically one of the more contentious questions. Or is it, contentious answer? Whatever. What follows should not be construed as casting aspersions about the quality of the quiz – which was quite decent actually, I quite learnt a lot – this one question in question stuck in my throat. And since the quizmasters kept saying put fundaes, I guess I will.
While I forget the exact phrasing of the question, here are the basic words that made it up “English archers. Longbow. Battle of Agincourt. Loss of index and middle fingers.” So what present-day practice comes from this? I did this to the quizmaster.
Now, I did not meant to say ‘up yours’ to the quizmasters. That was the answer. It’s an offensive gesture, analogous to giving someone the middle finger if you were in England. How you ask? This is the answer I gave – This is a british sign ‘pluck yew’ which has its origins in the fact that up to the Battle of Agincourt in 1415, captured English archers, who were otherwise quite lethal with their longbows, had their index and middle fingers cut off by the French so that they could never ever draw their bows again. But once the English started winning, they gave them the ‘Pluck Yew’. Urban legend maybe, but it is so much part of the folklore that I thought this was the right answer. No matter the nonsensical pseudo-academic tripe that Scopes (the site) came up with. Our answer had all the right words – Agincourt, the exact fingers – but sorry wrong answer!!
What! No amount of protests could get us the points. Fine ok. Maybe I did give the wrong answer, I thought, and let it go. The whole team did. But then came the best part. After passing for a while, during which many gestures (read answers) were made at the quizmasters, we finally arrived at the right answer, which was this:
What?!! Ok so my answer may be wrong, but this, sir, is definitely not the right answer. I know this because the “Horned Hand” gesture familiar to millions of rock fans. It has nothing whatsoever to do with only the middle and index fingers, and definitely not with English archers or Agincourt. So what are its origins? Although most rock fans use this symbol, I knew it was satanic, so to speak, as someone had told me that if you look carefully, this gesture makes three 6s. That’s 666. Ergo, it’s satanic. Most likely concocted. But having recently read the Satanic Bible by Anton LaVey, leader and founder of the Church of Satan, I have at least a basic idea of what the gesture is all about. Having followed general trails, I came upon this. Over to the Satanic Bible.
Horned Hand or The Mano Cornuto:
This gesture is the satanic salute, a sign of recognition between and allegiance of members of Satanism or other unholy groups. The first image represents the horned god of witchcraft, Pan or Cernunnos. Note the thumb under the fingers and given by the right hand. The next image is a sign of recognition between those in the Occult. When pointed at someone it is meant to place a curse. Note the thumb over the fingers and given by the left hand.
This gesture was also used to ward off the evil eye. There’s also a cuckold connection. For more interesting things, including the Dio connection, please go here.
And here's our very own Rjanikanth doing this:
Very similar to the Horned Hand, but here the thumb supports the middle and ring fingers and is actually the Mriga (Or Mrigi) Mudra which is symbolic of deer.
So there goes. Total fundaes. Interesting fundaes. Funda-full fundaes. From almost all angles. But unfortunately nothing to do with the key words in the question for which this gesture was the answer. No archers. No Agincourt.
What this proves, at least to me, is that the Horned Hand gesture was the wrong answer. I’m not saying my answer was right, even though it covered everything and was the most satisfactory. Maybe the quizmaster was right. I am also willing (given enough valid reasons) to say I gave the wrong answer. Till then, Pluck Yew stands. That's my gesture.