Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Ek Katora Khoon

There was a wallpaper in the hall. It had a small picture of Amitabh Bachhan in one corner. And almost the rest of the wallpaper had a picture of a man with the words scrolled over, “Amitabh Bachhan is alive today because of me.”  Apparently the blood given to AB during his recent stomach infection was his. Guess they could not find the person who gave blood to AB when he was hurt during  Coolie. Then there would have been a picture of that man and the caption, “Abhishek Bachhan is alive today because of me.”  I began wondering where my blood will go.  A poster in front of me said that my blood might save the life of 4 different people. Below that something was written in Greek. Actually it was English only, but medical science (allopathy) which had its origin in Greece , is still so infatuated with the language of its mother place, that anything related to it sounds like Greek , even if it is English. So I went to the first person who could understand Greek i.e. the doctor and she told me that my blood will go to a man, a woman, a child and a dog. DOG??? She shrugged and said that the dog can be excluded if he does not belong to the family. But if otherwise, be prepared for the dog kind’s ultimate reply to Dharam Paaji , “ Look who is drinking whose blood now?????”    Okkk , I made up that last bit, Dharam Paaji .  You can rest peacefully - Gabbar is long dead and dogs do not reply.  
                          There were reasons I did not want to write this post. One, I had decided that I would henceforth not write any personal post, as my personal life is as boring as watching dry paint get wet and peel off during rains, and therefore so will be my blog. Secondly this post has the ability to make my only reader -my friend Nivesh baulk off of the idea of visiting my blog anytime soon. But this is for “The Bigger Cause”. Just like blogging about tigers will somehow help to increase their numbers, blogging about blood donation will also help the cause. How?? I don’t know. And I doubt anybody knows either. But still.....
                               So, I went to donate my blood. It was under a campaign titled in a very cheesy manner called, “Hum tumhein khoon denge,Tum humein DCE do.”  DCE happens to be our college which has been converted into a university in an even more cheesy fashion. So , a lot of things have been going around. Politics, playing with politics –both inside and outside, playing politics-both inside and outside, trying to get oneself made PC, trying to get a friend made PC, trying to get an enemy stopped from being made PC and shedding blood , tears and swaet, obviously among other things. For the uninitiated, PC stands for placement coordinator. Strangely, it also stands for Political coordinator.  Politics and blood always go hand in hand. But the good thing has been that this time blood has been ours and not others , and it has not been wasted even if the movement comes to a standstill.
                                                                                So, where will my blood go?  I sincerely wish and pray that my blood is never needed by anybody. Not that I am infected by HIV AIDS or the likes. It will be nice if I get  a picture with Sachin with myself being projected as the star. But that will mean that I will have to wish that Sachin gets through a tragedy grave enough to require blood.  That cannot happen. Wouldn’t it be nice if my blood comes back to me when I  need that?  Like a bank, where you deposit money when you do not need that and take it away when you are in need. But in a bank, you lend money to the bank, whereas in a blood bank, you donate  blood. Guess, therein lies the difference.
                    Inside there was another poster which said that only 5%of all eligible Indians donate  blood. Sordid fact , for sure. But what is the eligibility? Any person who weighs more than 45 Kg and has not suffered from diseases like typhoid or jaundice in the last 3 months can donate. That makes around  70-75% of Indians eligible to donate. But only 5% do so.  Another chart inside told me of the things I ought to do after having donated. I should not carry heavy weights for the next 24 hours.  Now, that makes around  40% of Indians who sustain their families through daily labour-intensive jobs ineligible to donate. That chart also advised me to take a lot of liquid food within the next 24 hours. Now around 55-60% of Indians cannot afford any sort of liquid food other than water. And about 65%of Indians do not have access to clean drinking water. Wonder how much does the eligibility of such people count. One of my friend there collapsed after giving blood because he had not had any solid food since morning. So, I guess that must be criteria as well. Now, I assume that around 40% of Indians are not quite acquainted with the idea of “Breakfast” and they have their first meal of the day as lunch at noon at around 12-1 pm. And the blood bank opens till 4 in evening.  Now, I do not remember set theory, terms like union and intersection etc.  I also am not trying to prove anything, nor am I trying to make a statement. I am just trying to look at things a little differently. Now each one of those people- one who is a labourer, one who does not have access to clean drinking water and cannot have the luxury having breakfast , might need blood in their  life at one stage or other, without being eligible per se.  That is why blood bank is not strictly a bank, more a trust , with each one of Indian who has got the luxury in monetary terms, has the luxury in terms of time, has the luxury in terms of health, has the luxury to be strictly eligible , as one of it trustee. And that is why everyone should donate. Also they give you a pack of Tropicana juice of your choice. Guess, that should be reason enough.
             Also, I will have to break the news to my mother. Donating blood is still a taboo in majority of middle-class households. She will create a scene at home and send me its commentary on phone. Some of my friends also face the same problem. But, mothers are like that only. She will understand.

The one who lived............

(This was written around 3 years back- a few months after my grandmother passed away. This is probably my only post I will not fuss about  if it is not read-it is a bit too personal. It is just that one of reasons I am posting it here is that I do not want to lose this piece. Frequent breaking down of my laptop has brought about a sense of loss which acquired a entirely new perspective when I somehow came across this piece.)
                                                 It brought  flushing inside me memories of my own grandmother, dadima to us. Sometimes it seems that  she is just beside me , sometimes it seems it had been  ages since she called my name .  The funny thing that death is , gives every moment of introspection a dual personality.
                                          Dadima was a deeply religious person , as all the woman of her age generally are.  She never had a very happy life- getting widowed at an age of 29. But still she had an amazing rock of belief in Almighty. But what amazes me even more is that why I was able to see these things only after she died. She was so religious that once we tried to tell her that man has reached moon , she said that God lives there and flatly refused to believe that any mortal can intrude his abode. Life was going on and she was just like any other member of my family like my parents or my sister. I did not share any special bonding with her as a lot of people do with their grandparents. But then , she died. Dadima  just passed away.
                                                         Is was not as if she died all of a sudden . She had been suffering from cancer for 2 years . But somehow it made the inevitability of death strike me . And ironically , life around me changed its meaning for me . The notion of having life around me became special from being routine. Earlier, my parents were too by the way for me , they were there because they were meant to be there, but now they are a gift , because they are with me . Funnily enough it took a death to realise me that. Earlier a seat in bus was too precious ; Now every lady is like dadima. Earlier if a friend broke my heart, I wouldn’t have given a damn , now it cries for reversal of time . Probably,  that feeling of loss is etched upon. Saying sorry has become easier , because I have realised that there are far more important things in life than one’s ego and certainly far worse thngs than having it damaged.    Earlier friends were routine , they were there because they probably needed me. Now every moment with them is to be cherished , because  at some other time , they might not be there. The feeling of being with loved ones has changed its complexion , because tomorrow I might be far away , left with only memories and , memories never suffice.  Loss is inevitable , just that notion of bidding adieu has changed. And I thank my dadima for that.
                  Sonetimes , I think that how crass I have been for a death to make me realise that. But come to think of it, if instead my neighbour’s aunt would have died , would that have made any difference to me ?  Never , though I would readily pray hundred times a day for my dadima to make her come back if I could. It just makes me realise that though I never stopped to think of whether I loved her , I probably did, a lot actually, enough to make me love everyone with life . If she is reading this somehow, from any where Dadima, probably , she would understand a lot of things left unsaid. Because that was what she always was. Ethereal in life , larger than life in death . My Dadima.    

(I do not remember what it was. There have been so many events which remind me of her, that it is difficult to pinpoint one. Moreover, I have changed a lot since, but trying to change back to those days.)

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Flays Of IPL3

The IPL completed 10 days on 22nd. And here is my collection of my IPL moments so far, called Flays of IPL3.
The Mascot:-  

Shilpa Shetty watched IPL 1 from the confines of her or Raj Kundra’s  bedroom. Rajasthan Royals won.  For the subsequent season, she decided to take the plunge from the bedroom to the boardroom. Result:- RR finished 6th. And in the third season, they are currently challenging KXi of Punjab for the last spot. That is some good luck. But did somebody say Preity Jinta now????

Catch of the IPL:-

I am tempted to give this to my friend who went to stadium in  that match, in which flies were flying  faster and in a larger number than sixes. So my friend thought  “Lucky Break” and caught  25 of them. Last heard he was being approached by Allout people after the original Allout man’s contract expired. Tap..Tap...Tap..
         But it has to be given to the man who cannot be denied- The DADA. Just like crime master GOGO- “Ab aaya hoon to kuch to lekar hi jaaonga.”  This season he has batted as if Greg Chappel is after him with a chappal  in his one hand and with his other hand showing the most venerable of gestures with which he even obliged Kolkata people once. He has fielded as if he has fixed the game and  has not bowled at all for fears of making matters worse. Sachin’s  batting yesterday might have brought the feeling that he has rolled back the years. BUT......what Dada did, one cannot say even that. Coz, he had never done even nearly the same earlier, ever. It came from a man who throughout his playing career treated fielding with as much respect as Pakistan treats India’s requests to hand over Hafiz Sayeed. But here he stretched his right hand, jumped in the air as if he was participating in a jalebi race  with Nagma not jalebis hanging from the rope above, then he caught the ball ‘s’ , thudded down on the ground and gave a sheepish smile as if his wife has watched all this and also his thought process.  Disarmed , was I ? Ohhhh...... Absolutely.

Team of the IPL:- Well....KKR will always remain one of the top dogs for this, with their golden stripes over purple uniform  giving stiff competition to old hindi proverb “Ek to karela aur upar se neem chadha” . Aur uske upar se Shahrukh chadha. But this time they are beaten , by the commentary team of Set Max.  A team comprising of the likes of Danny “mujhko dekho”  Morrison, whose only claim to fame are his BUTTon HOLE shaped eyes, which are used to frighten kids back home and who makes me and them sing,
“Ye kaali kaali ankhen,
Ye gore gore gaal,
Suna hai jo tujhko Morrison,
Hua hai bura haaaaaaahl.”

And then there is LSR, which is out there to obliterate every good memory of Lady Shriram Collge and Love , Sex and Dhokha and putting each one of Lord Lakshman, Shiva, Ram and Krishna to absolute shame by his abject inarticulateness and hyperbole. The only saving grace is Harsha , who might be feeling like Sachin on his tours to Australia and South Africa as captain in late nineties. I sympathise with you Harsha, I really do.

Debut of IPL:-
I just wonder why all the innovations in cricket happen only for the batsmen? Powerplay, free hit, reverse sweep, switch hit, Dilscoop and now mongoose. Batting with it must have felt like playing a facebook game. Take two , three trials and then if you are good enough, you can break a lot of records. And Hayden is more than mere good. The exact count of no of sixes he hit after he made the mongoose debut, is something I do not remember. But what I remember is the sight of a man who used to murder his opponents using a SMG instead given a sniper rifle and a license. Accurate & deadly. But why do they call it mongoose? It kills balls not snake.  Pun strictly not intended. 

Stat of the IPL:-
I was tempted to give this to the number or non-number, Infinity. That has been the average of Jaques Kallis so far, but that also has been the no of times orgasmic commentators have screamed city moment of success and  Karbon Kamal  catch .
             But the Set Max told me KXIP won against CSK. By 9 wickets. In the super over. Well, a team whose owner happens to be Ness-Less Patty Auntie and which consists of hamara khaata-peeta bachha Yuvvvraj  who after the match could go straight to Kake Da Dhabba to advertise their aaloo ke paranthe with butter , could have won by nine wickets, the only way had to be a huge gaffe. And Set Max happily obliged. For the uninitiated, in the Super Over, you only win , not by some number of  wickets. 

IPL  Man of the Moment:-
Nobody deserves this award more than Arun Lal. Nobody lives in the moment more than him. He does not know what happened earlier and he looks like he lives in perennial fear of being sacked the very next moment. So he prefers to live in present.  Oblivious to what happened earlier, incongruous to what is going to happen. Watching him in extra inning opposite Gaurav Kapoor is the broadcasting equivalent of a bowler facing Hayden batting on 55 of 31 balls, with a mongoose in hand and killer instinct in mind. Fabulous sight...both. 

Player of IPL:-
I want my fake IPl player back.  No one is remotely as interesting.  Not even Chris Gayle wrapped in  baingan aur sona  , a black bandana and a beautiful smile. And they are not even playing Sreesanth this year. Not that he is worried. After all he is going to be the icon player of Kocchi next year. If that happens , he will surely be my player of the IPL4. For now , I will go straight and offer this to Sachin.  Kallis has scored more runs , but for a lot of Indians including me , Sachin not only makes runs, he makes your insides go upside down. He makes our days instead,  not only runs. Kallis can never do that. Period.

Ball of the IPl:-
A ball comes up and then it comes down. And is caught and for a change nobody blares Karbonn Kamal Catch. Coz the ball is pink in colour and is going to be scribbled on by somebody who they simply don’t know. And for the people who catch it, they are happy coz they have got a ball for their sons to play, though it has been dirtied by somebody by scribbling across it. They will go home and erase that using some spirit lest somebody comes to them and asks why Mitchell Marsh and Moise Henriques is written on it and they are left with a face redder than the ball when they do not know who these people happen to be. 

And finally shot of the IPL:-
It has not been played yet. It will be when somebody will hit that giant screen flashing “Eligible for the Strategic Timeout”. Till then let’s wait. Huh...bloody cheek .

Monday, March 15, 2010


 “Mohini! Mohini! Mohini! Mohini!  Ho Ho Ho”

“Namaskar! Namaskar!”

“Kahiye, kya sunenge aap?”

“Aarey pehle yeh kahiye, Kaha thi aap?”

“Main .. Main kar rahi thi kissi ka intezaar”
“Kaun hai woh?”

“Woh .. jisse karti hoon pyaar”


“Aaur.. jisse karti hoon minnate bar-bar”


“Aise ...”

“Ek do teen, char paanch che saath aath nau, dus gyarah, barah tera........
The counting can go to 750,000 and some more if you are Bond or Kemar Roach not some club dancer Mohini. Actually it depends on how one takes it. Whether it is number of days for the auction to begin that you wait or how much you expect yourself to be raffled off in. Raffle it is coz may be no other term can reason for the fact that Kieron Pollard goes for the sum he may not ever know the number of zeroes in if it is converted in Indian rupees wheras Ricky Ponting had his contract bought out. And shall we talk about Paris Hilton of cricket? The  fresh peacock(MORTAAZA) who is as fresh as a seawater fish you might find in Leh. Khao Piyo aish karo mitron ...and you have a multi-millionaire who is there to pay for you who does not happen to be you. If I would have been CEO of Colors, the first thing I would have done is to contract him for Bigg Boss. In two years, he must have become an expert on how to just doze around and make people talk about you. Whatte fun it is when at the back of you is a man who thinks that $650,000 are like paanch rupaiya , barah aana and whatte fun it is for that man when at the back of him is somebody all dubious. Khao piyo aish karo mitron, dil bhi kisika dukhaya to hota hai kya. But I just sometime wonder whether ever any of them feels like what Rani Mukherjee from Mangal Pandey did in that single most remarkable moment from the movie when she was about to be auctioned off. Utha kar dikhaoon kya?? I wonder whether any of them have been unfortunate enough to have actually seen the movie.

                                   But for me the million dollar question remains whether “The Don” can keep it interesting enough when the opponents are going as far as to have their protagonists killed. Last season SRK offered to sleep with his players to get them to scratch. Now we have graphic evidence that “The Godfather” cannot do the same since he is not so inclined. So will he convince “SRKrishna” to do the honours  if need be? Can the thrills and spills “Gay”le and Mah-Linga prove sufficient enough for a relatively straight audience over inane and perceivably cute Balika Vadhu , laliya , chamiya and a Mahajan uncharacteristically charitable with his pervert and debauched giggles, specially so when a DTH provider is around with ads which show not such charitable consequences like single burnt toast if you do not let your wife have her daily share of Saas, Bahu , aansoon and Saazish. 
                                  Also recently I read a prominent stakeholder from Rajasthan Royals say that he expects a 300% increase in ticket sales this season. 300%!!! Not taking into account NRIPL2, that means that the sales of tickets in IPL1 were 1/3rd of what they expect now.  Now since it is BCCI the likelihood of them having increased seating capacity threefold in 2 years is as likely as this post getting more than 10 views , it means that IPL 1 was a big flop for RR with only 1/3rd of seat occupation. Since IPL is IPl, we know that is not true so, 300% increase!!!! They must have figures out a way like teaching birds and monkeys cricket. We have intelligent people here mate for IPL!!!! Like people who claim that organising a test match gives more returns than a T20 coz a test collects eyeballs for 5 days whereas a T20 for 3 hours or a bit more if you add Extra Innings with Mandira Bedi in it!!!! Isn’t it a bit like saying I can score 100% in an examination if I score 20% in 5 different subjects? Due to the intelligence of the same like-minded people I suppose we are going to have 2 tests in the same time that we are going to have 2 IPLs. See the equation . Equal isn’t it ?

                                                  Simply put, I do not feel right when Dravid’s captaincy is snatched to give it to a stud because he did not do a Lambu Atta to a Malla,Maalya, tune mujhe paise diye hain. Mujhe chod de, main tere liye bh*rw*a ban jaoonga. Main Tujhe chaukke-chakke supply karoonga aur tu maje lena . Aur agar main aisa nahi kar paaya to mujhe fire mat karna , mujhe cheel-chaal kar chakka bana de, tujhe chahiye to chakke hi.” Disgusting!!!! And I do not feel right when a P Dogra almost becomes a bigger star than Sachin coz in a match he smashes a G Satish for 2 sixes and 2 fours in an over in which Sachin score just 17. I do not  feel right coz it makes my favourite player VVS forget that he has got a joint between his arms and palms called wrists and that he is playing cricket not golf. I do not feel right when after having his eyeballs popped out on seeing the huge prices plyers went for in IPL auction one of my uncles exclaimed to his pregnant wife,” Main apne bête ko cricketer banoonga.” Hope he grows to be a Ranchod Das. I do not feel right coz it makes the end the be all and the end all.   I do not feel right coz it makes people like Lalit Modi believe that they can make a baseball-ized form of cricket popular in America. And I do not feel right coz may be he will. That for me will be the second time cricket will die. The first will be obviously when Sachin retires.
                                   Can Ipl be like premier league as is envisaged by Modi? I doubt that will happen till the time Sachin retires form IPL. Coz he is one man who is greater than the game in India. Sample this , in a game last year , everybody save one in my hostel common room was cheering Malinga when he was up facing Rajat Bhatia last season . And my college is in Delhi. Do I need tell anyone why? When Rooney left Everton for Man Utd, I doubt if any of Everton supporter started cheering Man Utd in a Mu-Everton match. In BPL, there are clubs, here there are players. Secondly , suppose I come from Bihar, what team do I cheer for? In Uk, every Tom , Dumb and Harry has a team to cry hoarse for. And “Don” thinks that he will rectify that by creating new teams like Bihari Baboos and UP’s Bhaiyaas. But he will make me hate it even more for the reasons stated above.

                                But Ipl is not a can of worms. It gives a 22 year old rookie player an opportunity to have an apartment in a locality in one year in which Sachin took ten to have one. No one should grudge him that. If Rooney can be a multi-millionaire at 21, it gives at least them a chance to feel that India is not a third-world country anymore. Because of this may be a player who is good enough for only U-19 or so and not at par to be selected for national team will not commit suicide. Cricket is a religion in India and there are droves of youngsters who follow it like none other exists. And there are only 15 spots up for grabs . National or Ranji.. It can kindle the hope into a lot of youngsters from cricketing backwaters that someday they can make the graduation from bat-ball khela to cricket game. What Ipl does is not only it provides them hope for good money but also good opportunity.  Few industries in India do so. And that is what pains me – Cricket is fast turning into an industry. But that gives rise to a multi-million dollar question- How will a bread infected with fungus taste to you if you have not eaten anything for 10 days? Will you go for taste or your life? And it gives rise to a billion dollar question- Why did we allow to come things to this?

                   So here I am, I might hate it , but can’t ignore it. I might feel that a plenty of matches are fixed given the way DC crumpled against KKR with their batsmen suddenly starting to play tennis instead of cricket. Will they have played the same shots if they had turned out in their national colours? There are doubts aplenty , but that does not stop me to have a peep inside the common room whenever I cross by. And invariably it is IPL playing. I wish I could say Let the magic begin,  but I will have to settle for Let the Tamasha begin.