Down the River of Pain

At a meeting the last week at Rude Lounge(Tinder, obviously) I was with this beautiful exotic-looking specimen of the fairer sex. Though I was instantly attracted towards her, something about her appearance revolted me. It took me some time to understand this dichotomy of my reaction towards her appearance. This girl was wearing a diamond nose ring and she had each of her ears pierced in six places. She was wearing beautiful ear rings (12 of them) and was looking very ethnic in her cotton salwar. So modern yet so traditional. I wish we could go longer (atleast as long as I am in Mumbai. Long distances doesn’t work with me unfortunately).

Now I have no problem with people using their bodies as a medium of self-expression through various kinds of body art – tattoos, piercing, etc. In fact I think a tattoo or a piercing at the right place looks extremely sexy. And I thought this particular girl looked very hot because of the piercing. However, I cringed at the thought of her or anybody else inflicting such pain on their bodies. Friends inform me that the process is not at all painful and it’s just like getting injected with a big needle. The process is also very swift because these days they use a device which resembles a nail gun (a shudder just ran down my spine while writing those two words). I remember accompanying a four year old cousin to her first ear piercing some few years back. I also remember her laughing all the way back home and me having an expression of sheer terror on my face. It had taken me a month to get over the barbaric ritual I saw that day. The scene still haunts me sometimes in my dreams (I need a beer or two to calm my nerves).

I am back. Nothing is more haunting than the old memories.

Now I was a chicken when I was a child. As a kid, doctors had to face a lot of  problems  injecting me. I even winced at the sight of a large injection (and oh boy! I got many of those, me being a clumsy dolt as a kid). Even my hair cutting scenes were a lot pain for my parents as soon as I see a scissor I used to cry in a way which would put Karan Johar’s famed character to shame. But things changed with time and then came a time when I used to laugh after getting beaten because I knew I was going to beat that person to pulp later on. And yet I would never have the courage to get a tattoo or a piercing (not that I want one). Something about this whole piercing business smells of masochism. I understand how creating an image for oneself (through the clothes we wear, brands we sport, etc.) is so important these days when the first impression means everything (I would have never called the girl exotic, sexy or hot sans her piercing) and yet how far are we ready to go with this. It has to be a certain pleasure we derive from inflicting pain on ourselves which warrants such extreme (think nail gun) measures.

Personally, I am big fan of pain. Pain can do a lot of good. Its power to inspire is unmatched, and till my search for a muse remains fruitless, pain remains the acting-muse. Not that I have to go looking for someone to pain me, but there have been instances when under the effect of Bacchus’ greatest gift to mankind I have asked a few inspiring pugilists to land the real McCoy bang on my face. One chap actually obliged me and I was left with a cut an inch long inside my mouth which made eating anything impossible for the next one week. I will always remember that chap because it turned out to be a very fruitful week in which I wrote feverishly. But never would I condone the act of piercing.

Remembering the advice a friend gave a few years back –

When the day is long and the night, the night is yours alone,
When you’re sure you’ve had enough of this life, well hang on
Don’t let yourself go, everybody cries and everybody hurts sometimes

Sometimes everything is wrong. now it’s time to sing along
When your day is night alone, (hold on, hold on)
If you feel like letting go, (hold on)
When you think you’ve had too much of this life, well hang on

’cause everybody hurts. take comfort in your friends
Everybody hurts. don’t throw your hand. oh, no. don’t throw your hand
If you feel like you’re alone, no, no, no, you are not alone.

Random Videos :

 

 

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TINDER : A tryst about LEGACY

This came soon , right?

Just within 1 week of the last post, a new one is here. I even surprised myself this time. This wasn’t planned, it is circumstantial.

So as you guys already know that I left my job and I am studying Machine Learning in Mumbai. 6 months Post Graduate Specialization Program. And in a 6 months program, you don’t get weekends and holidays (even on National Holidays,if any class is planned). Actual plan was of Virtual Reality as it seemed the next logical step for a UX Designer but fate had different plans and I ended up in the Machine Learning. For the first time, having an engineering degree is useful as Computer Science Graduates usually have these subjects on face value basis(not in depth , just the introduction). So after 9  days of continuous class , I was getting frustated as the last post was already posted and I didn’t had anything to distract me from studies. So I installed Tinder and ended up doing lots of “right swipe” . Sometimes I believe in my luck and do Tinder as there is a very nice study about Tinder . Have a look on it , here.

Tinder Experiments

It states that “the bottom 80% of men (in terms of attractiveness) are competing for the bottom 22% of women and the top 78% of women are competing for the top 20% of men.” And I am definitely not in the top 20% of the men. If given some thought I might be in bottom 20%.

But luck had helped me a lot in Bengaluru, so I tried it here and I got few “right swipes” in return and we ended up chatting and it resulted in few F2F meeting. Except for the 1, rest was typical scene : Girl meet Boy, they talk about their lives and hobbies while mentally scrutinizing each other and leave for the best of each other. But this one girl was different and we met and ended up chatting for more than 3 hours. Guess psychology students have more understandings of the worlds among us. She had a unique perspective on every thing and the best thing , she is comfortable with the fact that the world is full of idiots. She is sort of modern day Athena. I right-swiped her because of a lot of similarity to an old friend AS. Little did I knew that mentally she would be at the different level than most of us. I had never seen a girl so cute yet fierce in specs.  During our chats , in the “hi – hello” phase I shared my blog with her and she figured out most of my writing is about my issues with my legacy and we discussed about what legacy is and why I am obsessed with it and she even sent a short but deep post about it to me. Have a look on it.

It’s ok to not have a legacy.

I don’t know whether these opposing ideas are true or not but one thing is for sure , “legacy thing” is always a “+1” with me ,everywhere. And if I stopped carrying it with me, then I can be little more present in the moment. It will not be easy at first but with time , I can get rid of this emotional baggage.

Let’s see what lies ahead.

In other news, I liked a movie and that movie bombed at the Box Office. I liked the first part  but bollywood being bollywood needed to add typical bollywood masala in it.

Videos :

 

Privilege : Upbringing and Networking

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I’m a hugely privileged individual. If you’re reading this, my bet is that you are too.

I was born into a family that could afford most of the material comforts in life. I had a very happy childhood, grew up in some nice neighbourhoods. I’ve lived a big chunk of my life in some great cities and worked and met with some brilliant people who’ve influenced me more than I could ever thank them for.

I’m male. I’m straight. I’m reasonably healthy and don’t suffer from any mental problems (if you don’t count insomnia and over-thinking as a disease). I have more friends than I can keep up with and more opportunities to succeed at anything I do than I would ever care to admit. I tick all the right boxes. Almost all of the privileges and advantages that society can bestow on someone have been bestowed on me.

Many more privileges, I’ve realised, than most people want to acknowledge.

I grew up in a family where I was encouraged to read lots and lots of books, to learn and to question(one of the perks of having parents who are teachers). Because of the environment I was brought up in, I grew up to be a confident man with a high sense of self-worth and with the firm belief that my destiny lay in my very own hands.

I was given a lot of freedom to try out different things, meet interesting people, showered with love and instilled with confidence. Later, through the course of life, I happened to luck out and meet people who filled me with the sense that pretty much anything in the world is possible. I’ve had experiences and become friends with people who have opened me up to new ideas and exposed me to possibilities that I once could only have dreamed of.

Growing up in a loving family, in a decent neighbourhood with access and exposure to most things pretty early on in life adds a huge layer of hidden advantage than the more tangible one wealth provides. These things are important, and they matter much much more than what people seem to be willing to see. The safety net that your connections and your family provides makes life so much easier. They open doors for you most others may not even know exist.

And yet somehow, especially in the tech industry that I was part of and will be part of again soon, we seem to deliberately forget how privileged we really are, and seem to believe that we’re exactly the opposite.

We convince each other that we’ve made huge successes of our lives through sheer talent and intelligence and anyone else who hasn’t, has failed because they don’t ‘get’ it as we do, they’re not as smart as us and are just plain lazy or bad at math.

I understand where some of it comes from. Intelligence does play a good part in this — but I suspect that part is vastly overrated. I know that I’m reasonably intelligent by any kind of standards anyone uses — but I’ve also realised that just intelligence hasn’t been the most important thing why most things in life have worked out for me so far.

More than anything else, it’s because the world is rigged in my favour. People like me are ‘meant’ to succeed. That’s just the way society is designed.

In hindsight, I entered the tech industry by sheer luck and coincidence. Initially I was fixated on Mechanical Engineering at first , then on Electrical Engineering and finally ended up in Computer Science and Engineering. Then I fell in love with English and games. What happened then was a lot of Game Design and Writing (as a freelancer). Then suddenly I switched to UX and right now I am studying Data Science leaving my job suddenly. Data Science wasn’t planned , VR was planned. In a short period of time, I had worked in more domains and with more tech stacks than most people in their entire career.Coincidence only even made possible because of my privilege.

I worked on some really cool products simply by being in the right place at the right time and because some people were kind enough to give me a chance. I dated some really nice girls and made some amazing friends because I ticked all the right boxes. I’ve had access to some great job opportunities and I get to hang around some brilliant people because they see me as a ‘peer’.

Much like network effects, our privilege is all-encompassing, ever-protective, self-perpetuating yet invisible. So much of the privilege is hidden into the system that you cannot even see it.

That, in the end then is the most important thing to know.

However intelligent and smart you consider yourself to be, you’ll never really know what life is like for other people. You won’t really know their pain and problems, how hard things are for them.

I’ll never really know what it is to be poor. Even if I do — I’ll be poor knowing that I have a family that will always support me, that I’ll never have to worry about a roof over my head or food to eat, and that I have the education, experience and connections that will invariably help me out.

Wealthy people will never know what it’s really like to be poor. Straight men will never know what it’s like to be gay. Men will never really know what it’s like to be a woman. Able-bodied people will never know what it feels like to be differently abled.

There are a few things that we’d do well to remember and remember often: that we are deeply privileged and very lucky.

Do we struggle? Yes, we do.

But perhaps a lot less than those who didn’t hit some kind of cosmic lottery that we did. And when we’re a wee bit more humble, we might just get a little bit better at imagining what it’s like to be someone else. What it is to truly be in someone else’s shoes.

Some of life’s greatest lessons come from comic books and Uncle Ben was right on the money when he said: with great power comes great responsibility.

Do we have power?

Yes.

Maybe not as much as we’d like, but we still have it.

And we have to be better at this.

This is important.

There are people out there who are asking you to listen.

  • Listen to them. Try and understand them. More importantly, believe them. It is possible that you think that the stories you hear are implausible. What’s more likely is that you don’t realise your advantages and it hurts your fragile ego to be told that.
  • Use your abundant imagination and walk a mile in someone’s uncomfortable shoes. It’s not that hard to do.
  • Open up.
  • Confirm and confront your biases as best as you can.
  • Have the humility to recognise that while we can try to imagine what it is like for the others, we’ll never really know.
  • Remember your position of privilege.
  • Know how to not talk like you already have all the answers. To shut up and listen.
  • Most importantly, be kind to everyone that you encounter.

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Now some songs on which I am tripping now a days.

 

 

Demonic Voices

Ah!!! 

So again this happened. I had decided and reminded myself again and again that I have to write twice a month and if in any case I can’t, at least one post should be out. But life took a bizarre turn (again) and I didn’t respected my decision of writing also. It is very common for me to not respect others whenever there is a clash of ideologies between us. I am not proud of it and also not ashamed of it. 

Life took a bizarre turn and all my plans went to the drain(again) and I have to make some new plans as per the new context. And my closed ones will get to know about it soon.


Someone rightly said, Life has its own way of finding its way.


So after stepping out of the cocoon and some experiences(good and bad), I have come to this understanding of life and how to live in it.


There is a trap that we fall into as to what possibilities in life could have emerged if I had done some things a certain way. But I think it’s always a wise approach to take life as it comes through and always optimising for the process that you follow rather than the goal you set out to be.


I have lots to write but don’t want to write them. 


Somethings are better left unsaid.


I had read this poem somewhere sometime back and I don’t remember the exact lines but I do remember the context of it and right now I am feeling the same, so I tried to reproduce it and let me know how is it.



Demonic Voices


The voices in my head just told me –
You are never coming back

We spent some good times together
You and me, me and you.

But the voices drove you crazy
And so you went far away.

Far away into the void of nothingness
Where your own imagination

Does not revolt and bite you in the ass.
Where the phantoms of your dead neurons

Don’t trouble you in the middle of night
While you are fighting the minions

Of the ancient gods of Valhalla.
Damn! Damn these voices.

I should have drowned them long back
In a small puddle of creative fungus

Which is now so cheaply available,
In large cans made of tin at the mart.

I should have gone away with you
And left this comfortable numbness behind.

No one would have wept
I assure you, except a few

They would have written an obituary,
Not for me, but for those wretched voices.

You were the only one, who knew me,
Who had peeled all the lairs and found me

Buried deep within myself. My own voice
Muffled by those who wanted to reign supreme.

You were the only one who heard me and my voices.
But you have now gone far away,

I remember everything about you
But will never see you awake.

Only in the land of dreams
Did you appear before me.

I remember your every curve
But I know you are not coming back

The voices drove you away
They wanted me for themselves.

They have won,
And we have lost.


Videos :


The Times They Are A-Changin

I don’t remember where and when I heard this song for the first time but the tune and the words got stuck in my mind. At that time, I didn’t knew it was Bob Dylan’s. Later on in college, I discovered it and since then I became a fan of him.

No, this post is not about that song. It is just the title. And the title needs to be clear. The song is used as a metaphor to depict the changes which are going on around me, which I am going to tell you in the coming paragraphs.

It’s been a while and by while I mean about last 3 months. Things were tough. Lots of things were happening at the office and I was at my wit’s end to comprehend what was happening and in that moment, lots of things were taking place simultaneously and it was just impossible for me to keep a tab on all of it. But those times hopefully have ended and I resigned from Cognizant few weeks back. There were two options in front of me then. I was in final stages of my company change and simultaneously was in the process of getting admitted in a post graduate program. It isn’t a two year or one year program but a 6 month program and it is a joint venture between a popular game engine company and a renowned MBA college. I applied there and after 2-3 rounds of interviews and tests, I was waiting for the results. And the results came back positive. And now there is 80% chance that I am going to join the program as I wanted a substantial background to enter a game/ design studio and the folks at home wanted me to go for further study. So this is a good option for me and my folks. Everyone will be happy. And who knows, after this, I may actually go for a full time program. But who knows, what lies on the other end of the road. This abrupt decision has one big implication : I was planning to get myself a normal and decent second hand 150cc bike this year and next year, a Triumph Street Triple. I am in love with this bike and this is the only bike which I hadn’t crashed till now. That’s a nice thing because I am very good at crashing things especially bikes.


Triumph Street Triple


I don’t have much to write this time. Because nothing exciting happened which can be put down to words. There were lots of running here and there, office work load was at it’s peak and at the same time I was interviewing at startups and product companies. I planned to change the direction of my career this January only and I realized apart from good bonuses and good times, I wasn’t going anywhere in my career. When you have are over 35, you may want to settle down a bit and take things lightly but when you have just started working and if you have some support, then you can take some risks and you must take it. Because if the chicken will not cross the road, the chicken will never know what lies on that side of the road. And the other side of the road for me is a startup or a product company. I wished to join a fast pace work environment where I believe I would be trusted to try out my ideas on User Experience. By the way, I suck at Visual Design because I just don’t get (understand) colors like my peers. And that thing could only happen at startups and product companies. For that thing to happen in a service company, you really need a lot of good lucks on your side. And on the other hand, it is very difficult to teach people that Visual Design is just a small part of UX Design. Okay, last line was little bit out of the context.


Visual Design is a part of User Experience Design.

UI is not same as UX.


The last two lines are also out of the context.


So, I spent 2.8 years at Cognizant and this being my first company wasn’t what I expected my first job to be but still first time is always invaluable in one’s life. Generally it happens that you are hired for one particular role and you end up doing that only but with me, things got crazy than usual and I ended up working on different technologies in different domains and with every new assignment there was a complete unknown terrain for me to learn, fail and succeed. Sometimes, it got very frustrating but sometimes those experiences came in handy to tackle various situations.


There were good times and bad times. There were lots of good people and horrible people. But the thing that worked out in my favor was whoever person I met and worked taught me a lots of lessons. So you can say that a lot of people mentored me on life. Some in a good way and some in a bad way.

Now a new journey is about to start and let’s see where life will take me. The details be on the Facebook and Twitter at the right time from the right place.


So, at last I will share few of my favorite Bob Dylan songs. 


https://youtu.be/PYF8Y47qZQY

Linear Progression yet Natural

Happy New Year guys…

 

Hope that this year brings you : new people, new opportunities and new experiences.

You may know how all these things are interconnected but I would like to tell again, bear me on that, please.

Most of the time (doesn’t matter whether you are an introvert, an extrovert or an ambivert) we live in a closed shell of ourselves. We have a created a shell based upon our comfort and bias around us. This shell keeps us safe from the harsh realities of the world. For sometime, it is good for us. Let’s take an example : When you are in middle school and high school , our parents creates it for us to protect us because they know to learn anything completely, you need to be ready. And your parents know when you are ready to take the dive because they have seen the world and they guess the right age for you to go out and take the dive. It is going to be waste : if you learn it early before time or you learn it late after time because you need to have some maturity to learn to walk on the grey side of the complexities of life.  You don’t want your class 1 going child to ask you about sex. If you are an over enthusiastic parent, you may feel your child is on fast track and you are very  proud of his inquisitiveness, but boy, you are going to get a great wall hit on your head in the next 5 years. Get ready for that. Inquisitiveness is good but not before right time.

Okay, so how all the above mentioned three things are connected. They are actually not connected, but they are the natural linear progression of how things work.

 

New people :

When you meet new people, you actually let your comfort and bias wall down to be open to new events. We don’t always have best thoughts so we need new people. They brings new perspectives to our viewpoint of seeing things. We don’t realise it but we are actually the sum total average of our 5 close peoples who influences you. If you want to learn how to meet new people, I can give you the contact details of one friend , he is the best at it.

 

New opportunities :

If you don’t leave your shell, and not meet new peoples, then how are you going to see what is happening around you? Please clarify me on this. Okay, you can tell me you read blogs(don’t stop reading mine or I will find you and beat you to pulp ) and news but bro they aren’t everything. You may know what is happening at the global level but you are operating at the local level and only people around you can tell that because they are there. Bill Gates can only tell you where the trend is going but only at the local level, you can learn how it is going.

Demonization is still a lot of hoo-hallah for last 2 months and will continue to be for the next 2-3 months , but in reality it is a complete failure and Modi is just acting like a child who always wants to be in attention and limelight. Just take the example of his 31st December 2016 address to the people. He could have done it in the morning and whatever he had told in it, that content is more suitable for the budget sessions, not for a new year addressal. He just wanted to be on our minds at the New Year eve. Maybe, we were all wrong about him and he is just a Politician, only keeping tabs on his vote bank. It may be, it may be not. Who knows???

 

Okay, I got deviated. My bad.

When you meet new people, you talk, you converse and you both get to know about each other and there will be somethings in that, which will open up new opportunities for you. And it is completely up to you if you want to take it up or not, no body can force it as one ( I don’t know who) said, ” a man has to go his own way”.

 

New experiences :

Okay, now you have met new people, found out an opportunity to pursue and you start to go down that path, then welcome experience. Every path we go down has only extreme solutions : it will go extremely good or it will go very bad. In either case, you are going to have an experience and a story to tell others. Though not many people shares their stories. Misers. But we doesn’t try to think that our past experiences decides how are we going to react to the similar events in the future. Some people are smart and they start to put up shields in case again the events go in downward spiral but some people are like, who just again take a dive without any caution of what could and would happen. But this approach has a hidden advantage and that is we know the risks but our focus is on to reap rewards. This is quite ambiguous and in depth explanation requires case studies (which is not a blog post meant for).

 

So, here is to a new chapter in our life’s book.

New People, New Opportunities, New Experiences.

 

Adieu 2016! 

Okay, again we are in the month : December.

Time for all the New Year resolutions to be revisited to see how many points decided by us is actually done by us. Some guys will have all the points taken care by them, some will have partial and then some who hadn’t done anything. Those people are my people and we all comprises the group Procrastinators. We are sometimes ran over by the world and sometimes we run over the world. Okay, enough of this shit chat.

I don’t know about your 2016 but I hope it was equally exciting like my 2016. On the hindsight, it was ying-yang year for me.  Lots of good things happened , but I have seen the worst of things too.

Year started on a good note, will end on a good note most probably but in the middle it was a bumpy ride. If you are a regular here, you would know if you don’t, then let me ask you What the fuck are you doing here? Never mind, you and me, we both are incorrigible. Animal instincts, may be.

So now let’s count good things:

  1. Star Wars Rogue One.

  2. Inkaar.

  3. Billions.

  4. Batman v superman ultimate edition.

  5. Suicide Squad.

  6. Sultan.

  7. Fan.

  8. Dear Zindagi.

The bad things :

  1. Batman v superman theatrical cut

  2. Dengue

  3. Leg fracture

Those are the main things, important things which are accounted. There are definitely lots of things which aren’t accounted but exists.

Let’s try to remember them chronologically.

  • Got chance to work with 2 brilliant clients. Met some interesting people there. Some were terrifically brilliant and some, terribly stupid. But it was an experience working with them.
  • Saw some brilliant Series this year. Billions. House MD. Incorporated (ongoing). Bulls (ongoing).
  • Met some wonderful peoples. Made some friends. Made some enemies. This year, new enemies outnumbered new friends. Woah!, this is a bad thing. Hoping that 2017 will bring a different situation.
  • Rekindled some old friendships. Hero and Gillu shifted to Bangalore. Scientist shifted to Hyderabad but is coming back in January ‘17. Selfie switched to Wipro.
  • Khiru is now an Auditor at C&AG. Finally, he found something he will enjoy doing.
  • 1 hair cut in entire year and that too because I got dengue and needed to go to Jamshedpur and folks at home don’t like long hairs. Will try for 2 in 2017.
  • Due to on-off hospital visits, no trips this year.
  • Some pics I took this year of which I am proud of. You can have a quick look at them if you want.

    This slideshow requires JavaScript.

  • One plus one got retired in early August. Today there was news of Cyanogen Inc shutting down.
  • Two friends bought DSLR ‘s and I liked their photography pages on Facebook. One is a brilliant photographer, other I don’t understand what does he wants to do other than attention seeking.

On the blogging side :

25 posts. (Target of posting twice a month achieved.)

1145 visitors. (Last year it was 850)

12000 views.  (Last year it was ~9000)
These figures are disappointing considering the points that not even the people present in my friendlist (both Facebook and Twitter) reads them. Only 2-3 reads them and I know it thanks to WordPress comprehensive stats system. So when your friend circle doesn’t read it, then how it will reach to more people because they have to react to it so that it may reach to more (different) people from their respective friendlists. But they don’t read it and if they are reading it, they need to react on it. I have around 320 people in my Facebook friendlist and only 65 accepted Page-like request.
This year’s biggest lesson :

You need to have a vehicle to gain and maintain friends if you don’t have good looks.

I don’t know how to ride and drive and I am definitely not decent looking. So that explains all.
Fuck you guys! May you all rot in hell.

A pretty insignificant year, I think.

This time, there isn’t a video section, instead there is my Saavn playlist for the year 2016.
http://www.saavn.com/s/playlist/02acb047777c6ee678a77a3e6271f10e/Starred_Songs/ELH-1RQHV4s_?referrer=svn_source=share&svn_medium=com.twitter.android


Atlast , Happy New Year fellas ! 

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Inkaar

Everytime once in a while , you come across a movie which you end up watching more than 7 times in a week. Many times , the situation is you are in love with a character . This happens with DC IPs , Marvel IPs and some movie series . But when this happens with a simple experimental movie ,with no major starcast and marketing , it becomes an experience which screams to told and shared.

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Inkaar came out in 2013. I didn’t saw it that time with Preetam because I had different taste at that time and life was hellfire then. Now when I look back at those times, I feel I was stupid then. But who knows, maybe I am stupid now and was wise then. Leave it , once what is done, is done; lamenting isn’t going change anything, I assume.

 

Inkaar was a movie with Rashomon story telling technique. It has multiple interpretations . This is my version. You may have different. And different versions breeds discussions which can lead to a wonderful evening of talks. Siddhant, are you listening?

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Sudhir Mishra is a gifted film maker with an uncanny knack of making movies which can force you to think about the subject. His movie Inkaar is a treatise on corporate life, office politics , love and Sexual Harassment. While preparing for this movie , he was, I assume, in awe of the series Mad Men. He ended up writing a fan fiction account of Don Draper and Peggy Olsen.

 

Mishra and his team had done a brilliant work in setting up the characters.

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He chose Arjun Rampal to play Rahul Verma , proverbial Don Draper. Smart , Charismatic and Arrogant, a small town boy who is not shy to let this achievements speaks for him. He is shown to worked on his attitude to shake off his small town complex and compete with the bullies from the metros. He is feared by the Upper Management as he is the brand of the agency KK & Doyle and loved by the subordinates for his support and grooming of talent by putting them at the right place at right time.

 

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Then there is Chitrangada Singh as Maya Luthra, proverbial Peggy Olsen. Small town girl, ambitious , talented and bit-too-emotional. Don’t take quoted emotional in negative sense , it is an asset when your day job is to sell things to masses.
This is a story revolving around them which can be summarized as : “At a leading ad agency, the battle for the top job between Rahul Verma, the advertising CEO, and Maya Luthra, his ambitious protégée, takes an ugly turn when Maya files a sexual harassment complaint against Rahul.”

 
But is it that simple ?
No , it isn’t. It is a movie about the dark side of corporate culture. The corporate world is more or less like a black hole which sucks an individual into it with such force that an escape becomes impossible. As the individual is sucked deeper it becomes more and more difficult for him/her to lead a normal life. The relationships suffer as one fails to attend to the needs of the loved ones. And by the time one realizes that he/she is surrounded by more strangers than friends ,it’s too late.

 

The greatest challenge is to draw the line between flirtation and harassment. Once that is taken care of the next challenge is to fathom the reality that, contrary to the popular belief, both the sexes are equally prone to sexual harassment.
And that’s where the subjective element comes into the picture.

Who’s the victim? Who’s the accused?

The movie starts with the proceedings of the committee formed by the agency to sort out the matter internally without drawing much outside attention. As the hearing progresses, it becomes more and more difficult to discern who is speaking the truth and who is not. While the versions of Maya and Rahul only differ slightly there is enough deviation to perplex the most astute of minds.
The manner of proceedings, though completely alien to Indian cinema, is strikingly similar to Japanese filmmaker Akira Kurosawa’s groundbreaking masterpiece Rashomon (1950), which is widely regarded as a cinematic treatise on the subjectivity of truth. In Rashomon, Kurosawa had highlighted, for the first time in cinema, that discrepancies can actually exist among the different versions of the same event (as narrated from the perspective of the different parties). These discrepancies testify the subjective nature of truth. This is sometimes also referred to as “The Rashomon Effect”. In Inkaar, Misha succeeds at several fronts (mostly from the cinematic point of view), but he fails miserably in one regard. Inkaar fails to remain true to its core theme, that of sexual exploitation. The typical Indian film audiences are not accustomed to shocks and surprises. They want to be spoon-fed and are easily agitated by a filmmaker who tries to test them in any manner. Maybe this is the reason why movie is not mainstream among audiences.

I am not going to write down the entire story here. Get up and see it . You will not regret it. If you regret it, tell me as that will be the time to talk about the future of our friendship or any relationship we have.

The lead actors get good support from the supporting cast.

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Deepti Naval cameo is a major highlight of the movie.

 

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Vipin Sharma’s Guptaji is a person who can be found around us very easily.

 

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Kaizaad Kotwal shines as KK, a spineless named partner of the agency who is shit scared of the current happenings in the agency.

Inkaar is a movie for people who watches movies to broaden their perspectives.

Video Section:

 

Potpourri! 

Life is a bliss since last post (sort of).

Office Blues

Not in a fixed project, so have the power of going to and coming from office at anytime I desire but with one condition : Fortnightly average should be 9 hours. Cognizant was a good place to be at when I joined back in 2014 but with recent hiring of Infosys’ guys, it is becoming a Nazi Concentration camp,  month by month. That’s not good. You can’t just change your culture for the sake of some good for nothing MBA’s hired from a company which I have hated since childhood. I kinda liked Wipro but Infosys was a big no – no.

Kindle Unlimited

Amazon’s and Flipkart’s annual sale ended few weeks back.  Didn’t found anything worth buying. But got a very good deal for Kindle Unlimited. 50% discount for all the Kindle Unlimited subscription plan.The Kindle Unlimited library has 10 millions + books. Thanks to the deal, I ended up reading a lots of books in just 2 weeks. Average would be 1 book in a day. That’s cool even for my reading speed standard. 

Kindle Unlimited is a nice online library sort of service. You can go to the Kindle  Unlimited catalog to select the books and at max, you can take only 10 books to read and after that return one to get a new one. Just hoping Amazon to give me a nice deal when my subscription ends next October.

Here is the complete list of all the books which I consumed so far.


Observations:

  1. India has surely come a long way since Chetan Bhagat and Durjoy Dutta days. Ravi Subramanian and Vish Dhamija are leading the pack. Their writing is a goal for the all the aspiring writers. Ravi Subramanian and Vish Dhamija are the only contenders to be the India’s John Grisham. Very detailed and absolutely no plot loopholes.
  2. Self-help books are shit books. They aren’t useful. Main thing is to listen to your heart but take a step forward by consulting your brain only. Your heart can take you to the drainage of your locality.
  3. Trying out new authors can be a tricky situation as most of the books are bound to be shit like the Sachin Garg’s, ” Come on Inner Peace! I don’t have all day!”. The worst book I have read in my life so far. I thought maybe this book is bad but when I inquired some of my friends about Sachin Garg’s other books, reviews were quite similar to mine observation. His books are shit. He just writes to capitalize on the recent trends. Above mentioned book is a capitalisation on Breaking Bad. Inshort, Sachin Garg is worse than Chetan Bhagat. Rest you can figure out if you have ever read books apart from courseworks.

 

Why do I write? 

Somewhere down the line I realized that complete strangers were frequenting my blog and sharing their views with me. I started receiving mails from people who sometimes agreed with me whole heartedly and sometimes were at loggerheads with me. This was fun. Blogging had suddenly become a means for intellectualization, for debate, for arguments and for agreements. But somewhere around this point things started going wrong. Vanity they say is the Devil’s favorite sin. I started getting a kick out of the fact that my blog was receiving around 100 unique hits daily. Checking the site meter and net traffic records became an obsession. The simple reason for which I had started my blog was lost. I just wanted to share my life, my views and my thoughts with my friends. But I will not give up blogging. My blog, since it is essentially about my life, might seem like an exercise in ego-feeding to some but to me it is the only way of communication with my friends. So I will continue blogging in the same way I have been for the last 16 months. No site-meter, no net traffic records, just blogging. I have enjoyed the discussions that resulted from my blog and I hope my writing inspires further discussions. In all of these, I noticed a strange thing. Strangers are more interested in talking about my posts than my known people. They just ignore whatever I write. I don’t know the reason.

The reasons may be on these possible observations:

  • they are too primitive to understand these things.
  •  they actually have a life which I know they don’t. Suckers.
  • Some are too busy in their ego-feeding and false superior thinking that they just can’t appreciate some original thinking. (Jealous Assholes)

 

Better to ignore them and carry on blogging, amigo. May the force be with you!

One thing good has happened in all these blogging years and I am quite happy about it.Thoughts are getting converted to words more easily these days and there is a new clarity in my thinking.

 

 

The First

She had made fun of me the first time we met.

The acerbic words, the colourful and often (more like always) hurtful diatribes I am now known for were missing in my repertoire back then. It was a time, when once I had found out that the female of the species Canis Familiaris is called a ‘bitch’, had found it exceedingly funny and decided to christen everything I met on my way back from school by the same name, my mom had put a little red chilly powder on my tongue and warned me that if I ever called a woman that she’d disown me.

She had made fun of me and I had remained silent.

I was four years old and she was about three years older and four fingers taller than me. She could have easily taken me.

She had made fun of me and I would have done the same if I were in her position.

You see, I still hadn’t mastered the subtle art of tying my shoelaces. I never really understood the whole ‘one little bunny goes over the bridge, hides below the hedge and is then pulled out by the evil witch’ bit. What the hell was a bunny doing on my shoes anyway?

She had made fun of me and then gone ahead and tied my shoelaces.

We had become friends instantly. And we were inseparable. We were together when I lost my first tooth, when she and I learnt to ride a bicycle, when her parents split, when she had her first period (the oddest day of my life so far), when Jurassic Park came to the theatres, when she was asked out on her first date …

And then my parents decided to move to a different city.

We were sitting on top of the water tank on my terrace (our favourite place). We had not spoken for over an hour. We just sat there looking at the houses around us, the play ground where we had learnt to climb trees together and our old school in the distance. We didn’t look at each other. We didn’t want to cry.

My mom called out from the driveway. They were ready to leave. I said I’ll be down in a few minutes.

I looked at her. And did something I had never expected to do. I kissed her, kissed her for the longest possible time. But something was amiss. She wasn’t responding. Her lips weren’t moving. I kissed her harder, pulled her closer to me. Nothing. I only withdrew when I felt her tears on my cheek. Her face was expressionless. She didn’t say anything.

My mom called again. I stood up in a daze. Said goodbye. She still didn’t say anything. I stood there for a moment and then climbed down the stairs.

On the way to the railway station I did not speak to anyone. All I could think about was her. Had I done something wrong? Had I destroyed the only friendship which meant anything to me? Had I …

I was fourteen years old. And that was my first kiss?