Monday, June 13, 2011

nuff already

Fuck, fuck, fuck. All I can think about is why didn’t I buy the Husain sketch?

It was going for a lakh five years back. Not a particularly pretty sketch. Just a small charcoal squiggly thing which I think one of his grandkids did at school and he signed for a lark.

I should have broken the bank and bought it.

But as usual, my middle class desire to watch my Post Office account grow at the speed of a snail shitting, dashed all my dreams.

Things could have been so different now. I could have been racing up and down the streets yelling, “he’s dead, he’s dead.” I could have been rolling in money, stuffing it into my mattress, stitching it into my shower curtains.


Then there’s the wonderful Baba Ramdev. What the fuck dude. This is embarrassing for those who do yoga and believe in it. The man wilted faster than the cabbage in the McDonalds burger.

Just about seven days and he’s in ICU. Hello, what happened to the million kapalbhathis? And years of tapasya? Gone in a wink i guess.

And finally, I prefer my news from a channel that is crisp and to the point. Which is why I would recommend catching India TV’s latest offering: Osama Sex Machine Tha.

Very informative.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011


Seriously, after spending most of my adult life wondering how to wear eye-shadow, i’m now clearly becoming a pro at it.

It’s scaring me.

Will I start to crave Louis Vuitton bags?

Will I go to Jamuna Pai for little jabs to restore my wrinkles?

Will the Kareena yoga lady be on my speed dial.

Will I only eat stir fry and shitake and teppanyaki?

Will I go for opening nites and nibble on cheese?

Will I be a dahling? Or a luv? Or a simbo?

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

tripping on videokaaran

“We’re screening a movie.”

“It’s a guerrilla style docu, about a die-hard rajni fan.”

“We’re screening it at the BMC pipeline.”

“Meet me at PikNik hotel, Saki Naka.

Dude, I don’t know about you. But that was it. I mean the only thing missing was the smugglers and the on-off lights.

This had all the promise of an adventure.

So Z and I hoofed it all the way from Parel to Santacruz and then while pleading with our auto driver to cut lanes and lights, to Saki Naka. We were late. By about an hour.

But P kept saying, “It’s cool. We haven’t yet started. People are still finding their way.”

Finally we reach Saki Naka. And yeah, never have I so looked forward to Saki Naka. Ten minutes of getting lost, asking for directions and we make it to PikNik.

P emerges from what looks like an interesting beer bar, and leads the way. Around the corner, a really short walk, a sudden turn, a short flight of steps. And now I know why they haven’t started as yet. It’ll take a guide to get here.

And thank god. Because it’s amazing. What looks like movie-set caught in a time-warp. A single track unused railway line. Silent tin and brick shanties on one side. Neat and tidy, with plastic buckets and folded clothes hung over doorways.

We stand on a brick platform, the railway line running alongside. The road is above us. In the distance we hear traffic, a car goes by. Here, the only light is from the single bulb of a tea stall. A woman pours strong, sweet tea. People talk, some laughter, cigarettes are lit, introductions made. And Z looks at me with a big grin. The evening is turning out far better than we ever imaged it to.

Then, we start to walk. Under a bridge, water dripping down the stone walls. Bright colours on walls. We walk past houses, women making rotis, kids hunched in front of computers in the community centre, men just returned from work, washing their feet. We walk on the living, breathing track.

And I start to think how appropriate all this is. The docu, on an eccentric, wildly intelligent, unconventional hero. Sagai. Part owner of a tamil video parlour in the shanties of Chembur. Film lover, rajni devotee, astute and devious in his observations of the cops, the ‘system’, with mad opinions on blue films, reading women and slasher films.

And his story, his love for films set here.

We reach the BMC playground. Chairs, a projector and a white screen. We all settle down. Some on the floor, some on chairs. The barbed wire of the playground reflects on the screen, and then the docu starts.

I’m hooked. It doesn’t just bring alive Sagai, it brings out everything that pushes me to understand that he’s probably so much better versed in his understanding of films, because of his love of the medium. He leaves critics, the world movie buffs, the hindi movie retro tripping yuppies far far behind This is rare because it is so genuine.

And I laugh at all his radical ideas, his friends, their trippy conversations. Their reading, their interpretations. And I feel sad. For the video parlours that are closing. For folks who love the movies, but find it increasingly difficult to afford them. And finally, like Sagai, I’m left hopeful.

And somewhere through the docu, Z turns to me and says, “this is the most perfect evening.”

And I realise yep, it is.

Thank you Projector Friday. Thank you Jagan. And yeah, thank you Sagai.

(PS: The movie is so worth your while. Call jagan the director, beg, borrow, steal a copy or a screening. And watch the trailer here.

Also if you live in Mumbai, catch the awesome Projector Fridays for the most fun, the most out-of-the box stuff. You can check them out here.)

Thursday, April 7, 2011

no men were harmed in the making of this post

Okay, I’m back.

And thank you anon, for your concern. But no I’m not dead.

So on to more interesting matters. Like my morbid attachment to reality shows. In fact the worse they are, the more I’m addicted to them.

And my deep insightful research has thrown up some interesting things. Like how, at the moment, they all seem rather preoccupied with the male genitals. No, make that preoccupied with causing damage to the male genitals.

Take vela boys. Where they have three guys, in their early twenties dressed in school uniforms. They each stand facing a line of giggling school boys of around six. When the anchor hysterically blows his whistle, a giggling school boy flies at one of the boys and kicks him hard in the groin. The guy lets out a muffled “oiteri”, jumps two feet in the air, doubles up in pain and then stands manfully, awaiting the next kick.

This continues till it looks like their eyes will pop and they will most certainly need the services of an ambulance if not undertaker.

Of course the little kids are slowing warming up to the task and throwing themselves into it with well aimed kicks and little shrieks of joy.

Oddly entertaining it is.

Then there is Roadies. Where they subjected the boys to a Brazilian wax. Worse, the Brazilian wax was performed on them while they were standing. Imagine, legs apart, can’t see shit because your head is sticking out of a little wooden hole. And suddenly you feel a knife with hot wax start to slide around your inner thigh.

Oh yeah, pardon me while I throw up my dinner. And faint in front of the TV now.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

a chance to work in your chaddis


i'm so fucked at work.

and you can help me.

i'm looking for someone to manage a facebook page. the person needs to know how to use social media, and more importantly facebook. so how do you create tabs, tags, engagement, involvement. and keep the page fresh and zingy.

you can work full time at rickshaw.

or you can freelance for us. and thereby work in your chaddis.

get in touch with me at and we'll take it from there.

till then i'm going back to slowly dying, under a mountain of work.


Monday, January 24, 2011

modern talking


Preschool in a grumpy lady’s living room. Which overlooks my office kitchen window.

Eh Tanay?

New bag men?

What your mother is getting too rich or what?


Clothes store. Two accented women.


Buy it.

But my arms look fat?


Yes or no?


Shit, I really like it.

Then buy it.

But I look fat.

No, no, you don’t.

You sure?



La Senza Trial Room, girl on phone.

Giggle. Idiot. Giggle.

What will you tell your mother, why am I there?


Oh god. Then she’s going to knAdd Imageow for sure what we’re up to.

Giggle. Idiot. Giggle.

And by the way, does anyone apart from me remember modern talking. okay, i do. because i thought they were really cool. i obviously had very little knowledge in the cool department, because i spent a lot of time singing cheri cheri lady and brother louie. and actually thought you're my heart, you're my soul was the coolest song anyone could ever put on a mix tape for me.

i was a cool, cool girl.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

alpha calling beta

“ We’re moving to Hasimara.”

And in twenty days the house was boxed up. The carpets were rolled and wrapped in sack cloth and tied. Dad stencilled our name and destination over the large wooden crates, including the one that held our prized possession, the fridge.

I said bye to all my friends. And the trees in our backyard. Jamun, Guava, Ber, Imli, Mango, Lemon. Specially the guava tree with its white smooth limbs, and roomy perches between branches. I sat on it every day through my summer holidays, pretending it was a tree house.

I even went to the corner of the garden, the spot we always avoided. It contained a huge mound with a number of holes under the banyan tree. The cobra family lived there.

They were pretty peacefull, apart from having bitten and killed the poor tailor who had been cycling home at night. But then his cycle tyre ran over one of them. And after he got bitten, his relatives took him away to the village outside, where they made him lie in a mud pit and poured milk and ghee over him. Obviously not very effective in treating cobra bites.

Sometimes I would see a cobra slithering away towards the dense bougainvillea hedge we had around the house. Sometimes they would sun themselves on the steps behind our bathroom door. And since my mom insisted that after a bath, we must open the back door to dry out the bathroom, it was always a bit of an adventure. I usually unbolted the latch with a noise loud enough to wake up the dead, and then stamped around for a good five minutes, before flinging open the door and running in the opposite direction.

The cobras must have laughed their heads off.

My friends, three boys who lived in my lane, decided that they’ll give me a farewell gift. Four of us were the Mystery Solvers of Kalaikunda. Yeah, that’s what we called ourselves. And we wore raincoats as disguises, and constantly chewed on blades of grass while we discussed what new mystery we could solve. And we spent our time shadowing unsuspecting people on our cycles. Which was always a bit of a letdown because sooner or later they would realise four kids on cycles, wearing mismatched raincoats in peak summer, were trailing them. Also, the shadowing invariably ended on a rather sad note, at the puncture repair shop. I don’t know if it was the roads of Kalaikunda or our second hand cycles.

Anyway, so my goodbye gift was a grand old British bunker. Actually it was an abandoned old British bunker which had been discovered by one of the boys while cycling back from school. It was on one end of a huge parade ground. And covered with mud, stones and thorny bushes growing inside and outside it. And now that I think about it, probably many cobra families as well.

So on my last day, we cycled to the abandoned bunker and I was allowed to enter it first. We spent a happy hour fighting our way through the thorns and undergrowth to go into a dark, damp bunker that smelled strangely like the entrance to the kalaikunda sewage. After reassuring ourselves that nobody had stashed dead bodies in there, and there was no foul play, just a foul smell, we emerged, donned our raincoats and trailed a lady with a kid in the pram. We were sure it was a chopped body she was carrying in the pram.

When she turned around and waved to us, and asked if we’d like to see the baby, we fled in disgust. It was the best farewell I ever had.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

some days i'm a hipster

i should have been a milliner.

some people loves shoes. some love make up. me, i love headgear.

Friday, January 7, 2011

read the signs shyamalam

The year holds promise.

Seven days have gone by.

And on third day as I sat at Salt Water Cafe waiting for someone, a kindly waiter gave me my tea and croissants. Then he gave him his kitchen order pad and asked for my number. I thought it was for Wi-Fi security measures. Then he said, “Please your name also.”

Something about the way he said it made me ask him why.

“Because I want to make friandship with you. You are very pretty.”

On the fifth day I discovered a marvellous invention by Gmail labs. In case you are kind who loves to mail when drunk, it is the perfect application for you. It makes you to solve math problems before you can hit the send button.

Of course for someone like me, that might mean never being able to send a single mail.

Now if only someone would do the same for drunk messaging.

On the seventh day, I opened the Mumbai Times. And I saw a profile shot of Amitabh Bachchan in swimming trunks and a life jacket. I stared at his spindly wrinkly legs and white saggy bottom.

Some poor guy at TOI is in so much shit. Maybe he’ll follow it up with a bald picture.

I’m telling you it’s going to be a great year. Happy new year all you guys.