I am not at all surprised that this book won the Man Booker Award.
The Author Julian Barnes is just three years younger than I am. In other words, my brother Barath’s age.
In this book, I could relate to many of the things that he writes about from his school and college days as well as his retirement days and the story itself is so plausible that as soon as I finished reading it, I rang up Barath in London and asked him to read it. More than my relating to the events, he having lived most of his life in the UK would be better able to.
It is a mystery or a thriller of sorts, and a book that I could not put down once I had started to read. The characterisations is brilliant and the story unfolds to a remarkable crescendo.
I understand that the book is being made into a film and I look forward to seeing that too when it is released. It will be interesting to see how this so heavily people and monologue oriented story will be adapted to a film.
Ps. I have just read that Paul Beatty’s The Sellout has won the Man Booker Prize for this year. From all accounts another very unusual work. Shall get a copy soon and read.
As my readers know, I am a great fan of Lee Child and particularly like his hero Jack Reacher. Throw in Tom Cruise into a mixture as Jack Reacher in a movie, and how could I not go to see it?
Due to illness, I was not able to see the first Jack Reacher movie when it was screened here and this time around I had no intention of missing it for any reason and so off I went earlier this afternoon to see it and thoroughly enjoyed the experience.
Tom Cruise effortlessly portrays Reacher and is ably supported by Cobie Smulders. It is a fast paced action movie and has one glued to one’s seat from the start to the finish.
If you are a fan of Jack Reacher, or like action movies and are willing to spend about two hours in a movie hall, I recommend that you go and see this film.
My brother Arvind and I had not spoken to each other for a couple of weeks and so I called him up to enquire how things were with him. While chatting about various things we came to discussing our sons and their careers.
Arvind’s son Deepak has recently relocated to Dubai to set up a branch for his employers. He is a much sought after professional in his field and while discussing his career Arvind mentioned that he could have done better had he taken up another offer that he had received earlier in his career.
He however commented that he was neither asked for nor offered any advice in the matter and pontified that neither he nor I would have either asked for or taken advice from our parents at that age. I also shared the information that my son Ranjan neither seeks nor takes my advice on his career and I don’t mind. I also said that the so called generation gap is nothing but a memory gap!
All the children in India and the two Rajgopaul boys in the UK have settled down to good careers and their parents are quite happy that they have all turned out as they have. There is no need for us to worry about them.
Anxieties of parents outrun actual experiences of children!
A friend and I were chatting on whatsapp recently when this little bit was part of the exchange. The context was about transformation of personalities, which however is irrelevant for this post.
Young Friend: Sir, do you find good memory a blessing or a curse?
Yours Truly: A blessing for me. I don’t have many bad ones in my life to handle. I know some good friends who had many unpleasantnesses in their growing up who wish they had poorer memories.
I often wish that I had a poorer memory when some thoughts of the past, not necessarily negative, but of pain like the death of a loved one, or a couple of lost opportunities due to prior commitments come up. Overwhelmingly however, I have pleasant memories to cheer me up like the many good things that have happened in my life, and continue to happen.
Memory however is now not necessarily a great asset as just about everything can be stored away somewhere called the cloud and recalled at need. I wonder if people will therefore stop using their memories in the future like my generation did and do now. I see some examples like when I go shopping, when I do not need a calculator to total up a list of figures, whereas much younger assistants do.
Every once in a while a movie comes along that surprises you with its twists and turns and leaves you totally unsatisfied. I wanted the movie to continue even after curtains as, much more could be said about the characters in the story and the subtext of autism that plays out in the narrative.
There is enough action to keep the adrenalin pumping, naturally with Ben Affleck, but also an amazing narrative brought alive very capably by everyone concerned with the movie.
I can do no better than leave you to judge for yourself the quality of this film. I shall just leave you with the link to the movie in Wikipedia to give you an idea about what happens in it.
I strongly recommend you to see it if you can.
We have an Indian Olympic Association. We have also established the SAI for broad basing and bringing excellence in sports across India with nine Regional Centers. Both have at their disposal, huge annual budgets paid for by the gullible Indian tax payer. Besides these two giants, we have any number of other minnow bodies with geriatric officials clinging on to their posts and enjoying life long tenures without producing results.
We produce world beating cricket teams, tennis players like Sania Mirza an Indian professional tennis player who is currently ranked No. 1 in the women’s doubles rankings, and other Tennis and Badminton players. We have internationally successful boxers and golf players amongst us as we have hugely successful league games in cricket, kabaddi etc where players make good living as professionals.
Only 1 of 27 Indian sports associations has an athlete as its President.
The Indian sports management either through private bodies like the BCCI or the government has just proved to be corrupt, inefficient and serve only to provide careers and perks to its own officials and politicians.
We are a nation of 1.35 Billion people. The Indian contingent of 117 members to the Rio Olympics returned with one silver and one bronze medal. That places us at 67th place on the medals list.
If you ask me, for India, Olympics for India should be a No No. At least until our politicos and bureaucrats change.
Today’s topic for the weekly Friday LBC blog posts was suggested by Shackman immediately after the conclusion of the Rio Olympics. It would be interesting to see what his take will be on it. Pravin the other LBC blogger from India may well come up with a different take on the subject. Please do visit both to see for yourselves.