Andhadhun A Movie.

I went to a movie after three months! Not because I had better things to do but, nothing new came up that interested me. Andhadhun however has received rave reviews and a very dear friend who saw it wrote specially to me to go and see it. So, I was escorted by R and M in style yesterday and had a grand evening out. Even the traffic God was kind and we reached the venue fifteen minutes ahead of time and had to wait for the auditorium to be cleaned after the previous screening before we could go in. And the good fortune continued on the way back too and even the traffic lights were in our favour.

It is rare indeed to see a Bollywood movie in the Black Comedy genre and this one is among the blackest. There are occasions when it becomes difficult to believe that it is a comedy after all but, over all the blackness is very present and exciting. Every moment of the 2 hours and 20 minutes of the running time was well spent. Says something about the excellent editing and direction.

That the movie was made in Pune and many scenes are from places that I am familiar with, was icing on the cake..

Very much worth seeing and I give it a five star rating. Please do not miss it if you can possibly get to see it on the big screen.

Posted in Movies | Tagged , | 2 Comments

An Unforgettable Evening.

“A salon is a gathering of people under the roof of an inspiring host, held partly to amuse one another and partly to refine the taste and increase the knowledge of the participants through conversation.”

Chamber music is a form of classical music that is composed for a small group of instruments—traditionally a group that could fit in a palace chamber or a large room. Most broadly, it includes any art music that is performed by a small number of performers, with one performer to a part (in contrast to orchestral music, in which each string part is played by a number of performers). However, by convention, it usually does not include solo instrument performances.

Because of its intimate nature, chamber music has been described as “the music of friends”. For more than 100 years, chamber music was played primarily by amateur musicians in their homes, and even today, when chamber music performance has migrated from the home to the concert hall, many musicians, amateur and professional, still play chamber music for their own pleasure. Playing chamber music requires special skills, both musical and social, that differ from the skills required for playing solo or symphonic works.”

I have never been to either.

My friends Geeta and Koushik. as part of our current Vijayadashami festival, treated their friends and some members of their family to an evening of Carnatic Music and excellent food afterwards last Friday. It was a typically Indian adaptation of the Salon and Chamber Music combination called a Baithak. The performers were sitting on the floor and playing and some of the audience too did the same, though the older like me, preferred to sit on chairs.

It was two hours plus of sheer mesmerising Carnatic Music at its best. The singer Smt. Sushruti Santhanam, an accomplished artiste sound in theory as well as in rendition, introduced each piece to the audience, most of them unlike me, not comfortable with Tamil or Telugu, with English translation of the verses being sung as well as the background to each. Carnatic music is entirely devotional and often transports the performer as well as listeners to meditative states and this is exactly what Sushruti achieved with consummate ease. On two occasions I was moved to tears with her bhakti, something that has not happened to me in a long long time.

Her troupe, all amateurs, Smt. Aruna Sivaram on the violin, Sri. M.B.Harsha on the Mridangam and Smt. Sowmya Jayabharadwaj, with the Tanpura accompanying in singing, were equally brilliant and I was very impressed by the thani-avarthanam of the mridangam and the solo renderings of the violinist.

The icing on the cake was the post music session dinner of delicious South Indian cuisine. One particular item, a pickle took me back to many decades and I requested my hostess to let me have some to have at home which she gladly did.

All in all a delightful and unforgettable evening.

Posted in Food, Friendship, India, Music | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Horoscopes!

I know many people who read their daily horoscopes in the newspapers as well as the weekly ones in the end of the week issues as well as magazines. I also know many people who consult professional astrologers for just about everything in life. In India, astrologers play a very important role in finding or rejecting suitable marriage matches based on the compatibility of both horoscopes.  I personally did not when I got married and had a very fruitful and joyful married life for 40 years.  I sometimes wonder what would have happened had I consulted an astrologer before I got married!

I personally do not believe in horoscopes and do not ever read the columns in the press. I think that it is a lot of hocus-pocus. I know professional content writers who write for horoscope columns who haven’t a clue about astrology but, who are wordsmiths who can write drivel like the following three insertions for Cancer, my sun sign, in three different newspapers last Sunday.

1. Health shall improve, wear more of orange and yellow to retain your health and energy levels this week. You might also be compelled to behave in such a way as you shall see people doing and saying outrageous things, even though it might hurt them in the long run. My advise to you is to just hear what you want to hear and see things as a casual observation. You might even wake up to realise how pathetic the modern material life is. But God has blessed you with super intuition to guide you in times of crisis and you need to trust yourself through in spirt of how things might appear at any time. Sometimes you need to be a bit selfish and think of your interests and concerns first. Wear reds, pinks and maroons to improve your professional prospects.

2. This is an excellent moment for business transactions and negotiations. You are disciplined and your critical faculties are sharp. You are open to divergent views. Ego drives are high and you attract arguments and altercations but, you manage to get your way in the end.

3. It is a useful moment for all ambitious crabs and if you are pursuing a professional goal, or increased status in your community, go for it. Maternal type relations are seen to be the most significant, and it looks as if you could benefit from people who come forward to protect you.

Can any of my readers make any sense of any of the drivel that the three have dished out for me? I could not.  That is why I would rather call it HORRORSCOPE.

I had suggested this topic as a lark for our weekly Friday 2 on 1 posts. Please go along to Shackman’s blog to see what he has to say on the same topic.

Posted in Blogging, Humor, India, Sociology | Tagged , , | 26 Comments

Three Faces.

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How Not To Be Popular.

If yesterday was all about being a social butterfly, today, we take another look at a remarkably popular phenomenon.

Posted in Blogging, Humor | Tagged , | 6 Comments

Butterfly!

Shackman and I exchanged views on my post on Accidental Connections. I think that the question and response opens up a very profound thought process calling for introspection.

Shackman: “You are a regular social butterfly, my friend.”

I: “Sometimes I wonder if I am the butterfly or the flower on which butterflies land!”

While mulling over the matter, I remembered another great saying.  Let me simply add that I am happy.  I shall now leave the matter in the very capable hands of Shackman and look forward to his comments.

 

Posted in Blogging, Friendship, Sociology | Tagged , | 3 Comments

Accidental Connections.

As my readers know, I am a strong believer in this adage as well as synchronicity. Here is another story to illustrate this phenomenon.

I am a member of a WhatsApp group which has many younger members who for some strange reason either use assumed names or just their initials to identify themselves. Many do not even bother and use just their phone numbers.

One frequent participant uses his initials MKG. I had even joked a couple of times that he does not sound like his namesake, Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi. One day last week, I decided to call him up to ask him his name so that I could put a name to the set of initials. I chose the phone number from the list of members and called but he did not answer.

Thinking that he was just being safe not answering a strange phone number, I sent him a text message introducing myself and asking him to call me back. He was perhaps driving and texted me later to say that he would call soon which he did after some time.

On receiving his call, I asked him what his initials stood for and he was puzzled. He said that he was not MKG and I realised that I had chosen a wrong number from the list and apologised. He went further and sent me a text message giving MKG’s phone number which I used to make friends with MKG who was delighted to make my acquaintance over the phone and said that he would come over to meet me after his travels which he was currently on.

A little later, I got a call from the first wrong number introducing himself and wanting to know somethings about me based on my caller tune which is the RSS anthem. He too wanted to come over to meet me and we had fixed up last Saturday which I had to cancel due to my not feeling well at all recovering from a bad attack of viral fever. He has assured me that he would come over next week end.

One case of curiosity has led me to make two new young friends. I look forward to meeting and getting to know both. I have no doubts whatsoever that these two connections are meant to develop and await with interest how the relationships develop.

Posted in Friendship, WhatsApp | Tagged | 16 Comments

Grudges.

This is the most challenging topic that I have so far attempted to write on for the weekly Friday 2 on 1 blog posts where Shackman and I write on the same topic. Please go over to his blog to see what he has to say on the topic that he has suggested.

grudge
ɡrʌdʒ/Submit
noun
plural noun: grudges
1.
a persistent feeling of ill will or resentment resulting from a past insult or injury.
“I’ve never been one to hold a grudge”
synonyms: grievance; More
verb
3rd person present: grudges
1.
be resentfully unwilling to give or allow (something).
“he grudged the work and time that the meeting involved”
synonyms: begrudge, resent, feel aggrieved/bitter about, be annoyed about, be angry about, be displeased about, be resentful of, mind, object to, take exception to, regret; More

It is most challenging for me for the simple reason that for the world of it, I cannot think of even one grudge that I ever had leave alone grudges. And, I am serious.  I can neither think of the noun nor the verb to come up with any thing that I can write up on.  Perhaps I have just been very fortunate or simply that I am made that way.  I do not know and now at the age of 75 I do not want to speculate on why I have been so fortunate.

My apologies Shackman, I hope that I have not disappointed you.

Posted in Blogging | 33 Comments

Upbringing.

Posted in Family, Humor | Tagged | 19 Comments

Adult Situations.

Thank you Sandeep.

Posted in Family, Humor | Tagged | 12 Comments