face off, kitties

The weekend that was...

Reposting an old one which i stumbled on while searching for my post on Serena W (which i didnt find/maybe didn't write!)

Originally posted by srao at The weekend that was...
CSK won the IPL finals. Dhoni proved once again, he is the captain cool who we always dreamt of, who we always wanted and who we have today.

Ideally I should be writing about the finals itself. But then there is so much of it going around everywhere.. so let me digress. It is going to be about ME. My journey in the world of cricket..

As ridiculous as it may seem I understood tennis even before I understood cricket. I saw my favorite Steffi win matches, actually realise her and my dreams for her, too - that of winning the Golden slam. I caught onto cricket only at the age of 13. When Pakistan won the cup in '92, I just watched it as a game won by the neighbouring country, who we are not exactly pally with. When we defeated Pak in '96 WC game, I watched it like a girl possessed and obsessed by cricket. Meanwhile Steffi had moved onto give the younger brigade a chance. Hingis was at her prime. But Steffi was still the best for me. I still remember the match between Steffi and Hingis, where Steffi won the finals with Hingis throwing tantrums - yes the French Open. Cricket victories still remained elusive. Be it India tour of SA during my prelims, or India tour of WI during my 10th board, I have watched it all. Just to see India struggle, lose many and win a few. '99 WC was no different. No respite. Then came 2003, where Ganguly showed that the nation could dream and even achieve as a team. We came that close to winning but lost the finals. But our team got a winners welcome. And at one point, I even thought - would we ever win the Cup? Ganguly had been the best - and yet the victory eluded us. 2007 performance was so dismal that I lost interest in cricket. When Dhoni was appointed captain, I was shocked, surprised and I laughed at the audacity of the selectors. When we won the T20 WC under Dhoni, I was again shocked, surprised and awed by him! Amidst our TrendMicro deadline, Vishal and I had taken 20 mins off to go to cafeteria and watch the last winning runs. But Dhoni didn't catch my fascination as the "awesome" captain until the 2010 IPL season. Until then I dismissed him as purely "lucky" captain.
But the 2010 season, the way he marshalled his troupe without Hayden's contribution was awesome. That I was covering IPL for emerglobal helped. I watched matches with more interest and observed captains and cricketers with a different view. There was something about this icy cool captain that one just couldn't ignore. It went beyond cricket, it went beyond his contribution, his wicket keeping- it was his ability to extract the best out of people. Being a lead for nearly 4+ yrs, I have seen how much it takes to get the best out of people especially when the situation demands. And he did it at such a BIG level with such ease. Was it really luck? How can you have luck to change someone else's destiny too? 2010 CL victory and I knew, if someone could win us the cup it had to be him. Or else I wouldnt see a WC victory in my lifetime. And it came out true. At a time, when most people are cynical about cricket, Dhoni time and again proves that with a just about average team, he can bring joy to the millions of Indians. The millions, who are starved of sporting heroes and have for the last 2 decades just idolised Tendulkar for all the "individual" records that he has broken and set in this "team" game. And now, cricket goes beyond that individual. It goes beyond me and you, it is about us. Thanks Dhoni, for showing us, that afterall we can be a good team too!

When those who witnessed 1983 WC spoke about it like a life time achievement, we could just imagine what it might have been. Though I can say I was "there" in 1983, I can't claim to have enjoyed it. But 2011, I lapped it up all.

I may not be the CEO before turning 30, but atleast I saw a WC win before that and I also saw my captain having back to back victories in IPL, proving he was no fluke, he IS for REAL!


***

Visited Banerghata National Park. The safari was a good experience - the number of tigers, white tiger, cubs, lions, including the 20 day cubs that we saw made the experience an unforgettable one.

***
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face off, kitties

Udaan

Last night while waiting for Germany-Italy to start off, i decided to watch Udaan. The toss was between working until then (and catch up on the backlog) and watch some movie on youtube (and again catch up, okay!).. Well you know what wins. I picked Udaan after i happened to read the lyrics of Azaadian. There was something in the lyrics which felt so liberating, that i had to watch the movie.

The movie just blew me away.

Someone rightly said you have to 'experience' the movie. The story is quite a simple one; its the actors who move you..The direction is absolutely no-frills and everything is paced out perfectly. The dialogue delivery is perfect and leaves you astonished. There is nothing that's over the top and yet the movie touches you in ways that can only be experienced and not penned down.

There are many poignant scenes but the one where Rohan's dad chases him and Rohan escapes.. a simple scene but the build up to the 'running' is so perfect that the 'udaan' is perfect!

And the song Azaadiyaan with the 'azaadi' reflecting in the eyes of Rohan & Arjun makes you feel so good (it was almost a personal victory for me at that point)

let me end this with this stanza

सुबह की किरनों को रोकें, जो सलाखें है कहाँ
जो खयालों पे पहरे डाले वो आँखें है कहाँ
पर खुलने की देरी है परिंदे उड़ के चूमेंगे
आसमां आसमां आसमां
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dream land diaries!

A tough week just went by and i just got by. Doesn't end here and will continue into the next week. And in such moments, i always dream of all other professions i should have taken up and lived more happily ;-) But then yes, this ain't so bad. Only at times when things don't go your way.

But such tough days also end up being incredibly tiring and what follows is bizarre.. Just like last night when i was finally done with my work and was happily planning for the weekend. A trek was planned and unplanned; next movies. Dad suggested the kannada movie which is airing in Pune - Zoom. reviews were mixed and i was wondering if i should book for it OR just opt for cycling through Baner.

Thought of asking one of the twitter friends who i usually chat and check about movies. I pinged and i discussed about the movie, a lot of others stuff including soccer, politics and what not! Morning I woke up to my alarm which i usually snooze, to realise, i had pinged and fallen asleep and the rest was a dream! I hadn't chatted after all and yet it felt real.

So while i routinely carry work home; i carry movies/fun/discussions to dreams.

And that's life! Or is it?
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Mixed bag

#udta Punjab
I had a very interesting conversation on udta punjab with my manager. he wanted to know if i would watch it and what i thought about it. I hadn't read the court case verdict until then but having seen the trailer, i knew it wasn't something all would be able to stand.

i, for one, found the trailer awesome. in a nutshell, with the effective use of words, visuals and characters, it had focused on drugs, abuse and the ones who were out to make things better. And before you raise your eyebrows on how the 'cuss' words were missed in the short description above- i don't understand most of them anyway.

Would i watch it? Yes ofcourse, i would.

Trailers anyway showcase the highlights and can't be taken to be the complete movie. Swear words are common in most languages, and moresoever towards the north. So why shy away from a movie due to foul language? Or why because it shows a state in poor light? If you really can have a state which has high number of youth addicted to drugs with the government having done nothing to control or curb - then why not call it 'Udta Punjab'? I don't know if the movie does justice to the topic or is it true to it. But how do i judge it until i have watched?

I just hope better sense prevails and i get to watch the movie without cuts.


***
Watched Te3n yesterday. A thriller about an unsolved kidnapping case. The story is well told and Amitabh, Vidya and Nawaz have well etched out roles. However towards the end the story loses its sheen with some loopholes. Amitabh is excellent and holds the story together with all his mannerisms and perfect rendition of the old grandfather who has lost his dear Angela.
Overall a good watch.

***

Going to watch Goddhi Banna today. Yes, yes, Anant Nag movie ;-)

***
Came across this on twitter: The total chatterbox i am, suits me - I like people who can keep the conversation going no matter how random the topics get.

Until i watch the next movie, ciao
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potpourri

As i sat in the waiting room yesterday for the MRI scan in the medical gown, i remembered the TV serial alpviram which starred Pallavi Joshi. Strange enough more than Pallavi, it was sulabha deshpande I was reminiscing. And later last evening, i found out that she was no more.

***

I read about the girl who died at beach near Gokarna. Tagged as a selfie death initially only to be corrected later, the tragedy and the news that followed were both shocking. Just 6-8 months back, my colleague's brother met the same fate near Bangalore when he actually got off to a stream bedded with rocks to click some pics. He slipped and undermined the current of the stream which swept him away. His friends ended up being mere spectators.

***

I watched Tithi last evening with family. What started off as movie for weekend for dad and me ended up being a family outing. While dad & I loved the movie, others in the family found it boring and not so taken in by it. Each of us had our own interpretation of the movie - made me think how differently we take in the same visual shown. While I took it as a death and reactions/emotions that follow and how everything was set back as it should be, my dad was oddly left unhappy that Thamanna didn't get the land - his explanation was that if Gadappa was so detached from wordly things, he could have given up the land to Thamanna and for him, the movie ended on a negative node. My brother and his wife thought the movie lacked purpose. My mom thought it was more a TV movie - not worthwhile to be watched in theater.

In a nutshell, for me Gadappa was the star. Everything else revolved around him and his character really set the things in motion with his simple acts. Can write a review unto itself. But for a later date.

***

So my MRI scan was interpreted by the doc as mild degeneration. Much ado about nothing he claims. So now I need to get the pain diagnosed by some other doc ;-)

***

Read quite a bit on Muhammad Ali and was quite astonished to see my mom talk about him. Looks like i was the only one to know him just as 'boxer' and not the greatest one to have lived!

***

Watching French open Djokovic vs Murray. And ofcourse hoping Djokovic wins!
And the weekend ends in another 3 hrs...
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Experience diaries

The previous trek fall continues to haunt me. It got to the point where the pain became unbearable and i had to see a doctor.

The doc who is ever so benevolent in dismissing any complaints, dismissed this too with some choicest tablets. As an after thought he recommended MRI scan stating that if its a pinched nerve or some spinal damage, the x-ray wouldnt have ever detected it.

Given my next trek plans, i thought it was better to get the MRI scan done. Unfortunately the scan centre was closed for maintenance and instead i decided to take the tablets. What followed was a near-drugged experience and I don't recollect much of what i did that day. The dizzy and incoherent feeling continued into the next couple of days. Well i didn't take the tablets again. MRI seemed a safer bet to diagnose than pop random pills and get stoned.

So today was the day of the scan! First, i didn't google to find out what it was all about. I was asked thrice by the folks at the centre as to why I needed a scan. Well given that I look quite fit, i am sure it didn't seem necessary ;-) And as i explained to each person, i was wondering if I really needed a scan!

Anyway, as i lay on the scan table, the attendant doled out instructions - stay calm, don't move for 15 mins, hold this and press it incase of panic or any problem. Stuff cotton into your ears and ignore the sound, it might be too much. (me thinks in my head - i should have googled this, why does it sound so omnious). As i entered the dome, i felt my hair strand on the eyes and it irritated me. I pressed the bulb like contraption to get his attention but the attendant was gone. Did his panic button work at all??

Inside the dome, there was constant mechanical sounds which went on for 15 mins and well I had no problems. i can sleep with any kind of noise. So i was at peace, reflecting on all that's gone by and nearly fell asleep. And suddenly there were flashes of my fall in the trek. Not only of this one which hurt my neck but all other ones which were potentially more dangerous but I got away with nothing. And this innocuous one had cost me so much. Thoughts crowded my mind.. Of lost concentrations and how it could lead to this and so on.

And well, what if nothing comes of it. And then how do I cure this damned-pain.. and do i enroll for the next trek?

And then the 15 mins ended, i was out.

Well this and more. Until i get reports.
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(no subject)

As i start this post, i have nothing to write about. But I want to write. So here i am. Random ramblings begins!

The week began on shaky premises. My parents traveled to Mangalore and the 3 of us were left to take care of the house - which isn't exactly a happy thing. While the husband-wife duo are a tad better at it (or atleast pretend to be - i guess all couples are supposed to act that way), i live up to everyone's expectations of being the lazy-good-for-nothing. While we did a good job for the first few days, i fell sick. Gave ample opportunity for all amateurs to try out all they could on me until i eventually got back to being okay and well my parents are back and I am good too!

***

On a different note, this week marked couple of events. One of them being that 1 year went by quickly.

***

They say what doesn't kill you makes you stronger. I say it also leaves you scarred with memories.

***

No new movies this weekend too. And well, i might as well pick GoT, 4th one?

***

Not watched much of IPL, except followed Kohli's super innings. yes, he is the best thing to have happened to cricket - someone to dwarf Tendulkar totally!


***

Watched Breakfast Club. I was searching for the Bridge on River Kwai and then remembered the Breakfast Club, that i had read about recently and decided to check if that's online. And well, it was. Being a short movie, i breezed through this simple and nice movie on 5 teenagers with different backgrounds and teen issues and how they end up bonding over detention and cannabis!

***

ciao. should get back. to reading.
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Civil War

After DC's Batman vs Superman, this offering from Marvel comics was the much awaited superhero(es) movie.

And well as expected there was a mad rush to watch it too. Tickets were booked in advance and bookmyshow threw me out multiple times until i managed to book for Sunday evening.

The main story line is more or less the same as B vs S. The do-good-ers have done a lot of collateral damage in their pursuit of bad guys and there is a serious thought on having a governing body now take over for regulating the actions.

The avengers are however divided in their take on if this is a good or bad thing to sign up for. While Iron Man strongly advocates the governing body, Captain America thinks otherwise. There is a lot of discussions around this with everyone having their reasons for doing one thing against the other.

As the plot thickens, Bucky Barnes from Winter Soldier fame becomes the center piece around whom the story revolves. Or you think so. As both sides garner support, there are short and sweet character introductions (including that of Spidey - which is the best undoubtedly) which lead up to the showdown between the two parties.

The fight (where you want no one to lose) is a remarkably well executed one with each character (there are 12, mind you!) showing/living up to their individual strengths and not without the banter and witty on-liners which make for good laughter all through. Each encounter shown is brilliant and frankly by then i had forgotten what was the real cause of this confrontation. So the gala action show is finally cut down when Black Widow decides to let Cap and Bucky go ahead with their plans to stop the 'villain'.

Without delving into more spoilers and details, what follows is a much-ado-for-nothing kind of a villain with a super sensitive story hidden in his armour which causes the 2 friend turned foes turned friend into foes again.

And there is a fresh round of action sequences. Only to end in a no-one's-wiser-after-this just-more-injured-and-incapacitated fight. It ends on a sad note. You have watched a bloody fight, all are alive and you wonder.

The highlights of the movie for me -
Tony Stark rocks. as always.
Spidey is cool. his cameo is very refreshing and a welcome addition.
Ant-Man antics in the avengers vs avengers battle.

A watch worthy movie and wipes out the dark memories of the recent Batman vs Superman!