I cannot recall the first time the name Jerry Pinto captured my attention. Back in high-school days, I had asked the paperwallah to deliver Sunday Times — because I wanted to improve my language, and English reading (yes, believe it or not, back then the now much maligned TOI, and especially its Sunday edition, with glossy yet quality supplement, was pretty much a big deal). Problem was, the paper would be delivered Sunday afternoon, as it would be printed only in Mumbai back then (explaining its quality, my Mumbaikar wife may add), and by the time it reached my hometown, it was half a day gone. And yet, I would wait with anticipation for the afternoon delivery — my only other window back then to the ‘other’ world (apart from the iconic The World This Week — from the same NDTV productions that’s enjoying the same fate of empty success).
Jerry Pinto, was pretty much a part of that other world. The world that I did not share with my peers, and neighbors. And although I don’t recall when I got hooked on to his articles, I recall one particular article that I had (yes — we used to do that in those days) cut-up and filed in one of my binders. Sadly the binder’s lost now, and so is the article (and I tried googling but alas, I still haven’t found it). In it, Pinto shred to pieces two of the biggest bollywood hits of the time DDLJ and HAHK. Hang on. Not for they being meaningless entertainment, but because they seemed to be harbingers of (and I may be off the mark on this, this is 18 years or so back memory) an age that had renounced rebellion for conformity. Okay, maybe that’s what I read from the article, because that’s pretty much what I wanted to read from it, but that’s not the point. Pinto had become one of my idols. Continue reading
We live on, embracing the reassuring banality of existence …
So yes, I watched my first film in theaters after four years. Or five, maybe. The last one was Quantum Of Solace, which I watched thanks to my wife’s cousins who wanted to watch a movie. Any movie. It fit the requirement quite well — and that’s about it. Today, it was thanks to my wife — one of the biggest SRK fans. I went in with a lot of trepidation. How does one tolerate three hours of one Mr. Shetty — who makes David Dhawan look like a quality film maker, and one Mr. Khan — who given such directors, is like a maniac on steroids.
Power of ‘common man’. The common man is in front with the hot girl. In the background are all the uncommon species.
But, my fears were proved entirely unwarranted. Not that the movie wasn’t everything I feared it to be (it was more!). But after first few minutes, the fear kind of became irrelevant. And what got me really excited was the mouth-watering prospect that this was a critics movie.
Yes, you heard it right. This is no movie for the masses, mind you. This is a movie made for the critics. In first few minutes you’d have those fun hating snobs salivating at their mouths at the prospect of a perfect 10 — for reviewing the film, that is.
Or is Emily Matchar reading challanged?
I cannot thank Emily Matchar enough for making me take up Michael Pollan’s Cooked for immediate reading. Of course, I’d have picked it up sooner, rather than later, as I’m an unabashed Pollan fan. But Matchar’s piece in Salon (actually the headline), really made me take notice of the book.
Matchar’s piece, is of course, not about Cooked. But it’s timing is curious. Just within week or so of the book’s publication comes the sensational headline. What’s more, lot of quotations used by Matchar (selectively and incompletely at that, but we’ll get to that), are from Pollan’s older New York Times piece “Out of the Kitchen, Onto the Couch” — which, incidentally is one of the originating material for Cooked.
Enough about Matchar. For now, at least. Continue reading
what we call courage
is just hardheadedness
in hindsight Continue reading
When a movie cast boasts of the classy Meryl Streep, and at the heart of the movie is cooking, no third reason is required to watch a movie for me. And I wasn’t at all disappointed. Quite the contrary.
Julia Child, played in the movie by Meryl Streep — an awesome performance — for those who don’t know much about her, was an iconic figure in the gastronomical world; author and television host of a show that’s supposed to have really ‘brought’ french cooking to Americans.
The story beings with Julie Powell (played by Amy Adams), who moves to Queens with her husband, and is generally unhappy about her life — a failed writer with half-finished novel, and a job in a call-center for 9/11 victim. One thing that is saving grace for her is her love for cooking, and in-turn for Julia. Continue reading
“What’s you name”, asks a fifty-sixty-something aunty living in my building to my kid as we get into the elevator. Never known to talk to strangers, he lets us do the talking.
“Rehaan”, says my wife.
Fifty-sixty-something aunty has an animated expression on her face — wonder concealing surprise, and the effort needed for that is not concealed — probably because no effort is made to conceal the effort.
“Isn’t that a muslim name?”, she asks, quite sure that we don’t look muslim. Continue reading
Let’s aim for eternity
and we should be good
for the lifetime
we did not
waste our breaths
on subsequent lifetimes Continue reading
traitor, he bellowed
emphasizing each syllable
words need our support
to stand out
in themselves Continue reading
So looks like we’ve moved on from Kasab’s hanging. Not that I had a doubt we would be hung up on it for too long, for in India there is always something else to beat to death (pardon the double-entrandre: that wasn’t intended, but seemed apt once it came out like that (being hung up on a hanging, is also a good mixed half-metaphor, isn’t it?), especially given our media, and our obsession with it. Continue reading