Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Here comes the sun

One downside of going the full tonsure is your scalp fights a lost battle against the sun. Stepping out for lunch turns into an excessively perspiring expedition unless you have protection of a cap/hat, which doesn't give you that naked feeling on top.

Ri-baldry apart Bangalore has turned quite into an oven over the last couple of weeks. And its only February! Climate change is here and its on your (at least my) head. When was the last February night you remember having turned the fan on full blast, apart from the last two weeks? Never in my living memory! An Uncle of mine mentioned of how they hadn't even installed a fan when they initially settled in Bangalore some 30 years back. Air conditioning is the norm now.

I have always hated the heat. Even though I was born in Madras and root around Trichur in Kerala. Summer holidays were never as romantic as in Enid Blyton stories. A month would be spent half naked fakir like in Trichur, gulping down coconut water by the dozen from the decently endowed garden in my grandfathers house. Sweet mangoes would be decimated after lunch, only to lead to further discomfort with their strange ability to increase gastronomic combustion. Just as we were getting comfortable with the frying pan we would be shunted right into the fire, a moist one at that, to Madras. A city known for its wide variety of weather conditions- hot, hotter, hottest. I would invariably land up around the peak of the last option. The evenings would provide some respite, from the sea breeze, but you would still look like you have just emerged from a sauna right after a shower. I never found much reason to having a shower in Madras. The only right thing would be stay under it-forever. In hindsight, despite the flak against heat, those days were enjoyable-they were after all the summer holidays, a time when you had absolutely no responsibilities, no deadlines, no bosses, no most things that irk me now.

What is happening to all this solar energy anyway? Apart from making us and other natural entities we share this planet with tick, what does it do? Oh, it makes a lot shiny panels generate electricity which is then used to cook food, heat water and an assortment of such nice stuff. What happens to the rest of it? I am sure there is a lot which is wasted, being absorbed by the earth to bake one hell of a huge pie. What are the scientists and other knowledgeable characters in such matters doing? Can't all this energy be tapped to run- more air conditioners? There's also the catch, the more we use such equipment, the more chemicals released into the air, blocking the sun's rays from escaping back into the upper zones of the atmosphere and leaving us hot (not just under the collar).

If things are so hot why doesn't it melt all the fat stored under my skin? Just imagine the possibilities, eat, drink, lead a merry life in say Manali or Ladakh and come down to Chennai for therapy. At the rate Bangalore's temperatures are soaring, we could heat up the competition. After reading news bits about melting ice caps and glaziers, increasing sea levels and becoming a victim of a burnt scalp I have resigned to my fate and decided to wait and marginally increase the waistline of a polar bear:

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Jahaan Pyaar Hota Hai Vyapaar Bankar

But for the bomb blasts at German Bakery, Pune, the media would have been quite happily covering the sappy story of how Valentine's Day is being celebrated across the nation. While Arnab Goswami might have been quizzing Muthalik on why he suddenly feels democracy has been kidnapped by gundas in the background of his face blackening at a chat show discussing the much debated V Day, he will now focus on internal security lapses or how David Headley could be connected to the blasts and where will the diplomatic talks with Pakistan now lead. Bigger issues at the heart of it, more research and fleshing out of details for journalists following the story, negotiation scripts to be redrafted for the Indo-Pak diplomats and on a lesser note, lesser stupid cupid stories thankfully on the news.

Now this is not a rant from an embittered soul who has minimal experience in the what a close friend calls "complicated human emotion that has done so much destruction rather than construction of good faith between people" department apart from the unrequited and familial variety. This is more a rant against what shenoy refers to as the Love Day Cabal- A group of money-minded publicity-hungry companies that seek to make money from unsuspecting suckers on the great Day of Love. So while restaurants exhort that food and wine is the right way to your darlings heart (what if she has a bad case of indigestion?) and multiplexes proclaim to spend a few cozy hours, hands clasped around each others stargazing at what must be the most creatively titled rom-com till date Valentine's Day, I spent a quiet afternoon (for lack of anything more exciting) scanning the TV.

You are not spared much on the idiot box too. While The Wedding Singer clears his throat on WB, Ashton Kutcher and Brittany Murphy have Just Married on Star Movies. World Movies redeemed Cable TV itself by showing Fran├žois Truffaut's Jules et Jim. What arrested me for the next couple of hours however was Doordarshan which has a series on Sunday's titled Film Utsav. The programmer must have presumably undergone what I was going through (though mine was more of a self pitying nature) and decided to wreak hell on the big V Day with- Guru Dutt's Pyaasa. For all the venom and vitriol I attempt at venting, not just on the V Day itself but other larger issues, it will remain a rant on this digitised diary. Which brings me to my moment of realisation brought on me care of Messers Sahir Ludhianvi, Mohammad Rafi, S.D.Burman and Guru Dutt and thebollywoodfan (for the translation):