Monday, February 28, 2005

Thermal and a Quarter

NPR certainly seems to be enamoured with India. After Friday's feature on Bollywood, today's All Things Considered profiled the music of Bangalore-based bandThermal and a Quarter. I am headed out of town for a conference, and heard it a few minutes ago on the drive to the airport. I have not yet checked out their website, but will be certainly doing so once I am back. But whatever I heard during the feature certainly sounded quite promising.

Friday, February 25, 2005

Bollywood ... finally here!

A few minutes ago, on the drive to work was a feature on NPR's morning edition on Bollywood and its charm and nostalgia. The page has links to the audio version from the Morning Edition program, as well as additional pics and info. It also includes links to bollywood related books and collections on, and even a link to for listening to hindi movie songs. Songs included in the feature were "Aaja Aaja" by Asha Bhonsle, from Teesri Manzil (why they had to use a remixed version, i have no clue - i suspect they didnt know it was a remixed version), "Yeh Shaam Mastani" by Kishore Kumar, from Kati Patang, "Addictive" by Truth Hurts (samples "Thoda Resham" by Lata Mangeshkar, from Jyoti - to showcase Bollywood's growing charm in the US), and ofcourse the mother of them all "Choli ke Peechey" by Ila Arun and Alka Yagnik, from Khalnayak - which concluded the feature with the cheesy sentence "behind every rain soaked sari, there is a heart!" (it was hilarious! listen to it to enjoy it ...).

the release of bride and prejudice in the US was ofcourse talked about. gurinder chaddha and aishwarya rai seem to have become the spokespersons and the face of bollywood respectively in the western world. what with ms. rai being called at the oscars to hand out the award. needless to say, the dialogues in the NPR feature included one of ash in devdas (as well as gabbar screaming "yeh haath mujhe de de thakur"!) ...

looks like bollywood has finally arrived ....

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Special on India .... the new knowledge superpower has a special in its current issue on India: The new knowledge superpower.

It deals with a host of topics from IT, space and nuclear technology, genetically modified crops, education, mobile phones and networks, as well as genetically modified crops and low cost vaccines and pharmaceuticals. The online compendium includes prior articles on electronic voting machines, gujarat riots, the reversal of the brain drain and tiger conservation, among others. some of the articles come under premium content, available only to subscribers.

i would suggest stopping by at your neighbourhood barnes and noble, and checking out the print edition.

Monday, February 21, 2005

This is a pretty old pic ... found it while cleaning up some files on my PC ... its pretty hilarious i think!

Sunday, February 20, 2005

Superbowl coverage in India

ToI's preview to the superbowl ....

ofcourse, the SoI was interested in page 3 type of news - who's throwing the parties, who's performing at halftime, etc.

Needless to add, I did get up early to watch the game, but not from 4.30. with the steelers crashing out in the previous round, it didnt matter who won .... and it was obvious who was going to win

Recognition of the common man

A lot of my posts in the immediate future will be based on stories that were news when i was in india in the past month .... part of it will be showcasing what is actually covered as news in india ... it turns out that what we see as news on websites is often quite different from the way it looks in print. i will try to show the latter, esp for those who are in the US and do not get a chance to pick up a newspaper and read the goings-on in India.

The Republic Day awards were announced and one richly deserved Padma Vibhushan went to R.K.Laxman, one of india's greatest, most renowned (esp if you do not count bal thackrey as a cartoonist!)and respected cartoonists, whose works have been adorning the Times of India for more than fifty years. Today, Laxman's mention brings to mind the common man, a perennial presence in every one of his cartoons, and who has been a common factor in every event that shapes india. Laxman's cartoons continue to be a bright spot in the daily ToI issue, even as it degenerates into a first rate tabloid, the Slimes of India.

Here is the ToI news article that announced the award for Laxman, and this cartoon of himself with the common man is in itself a masterpiece, showcasing Laxman's ability to draw superb cartoons of all subjects, including himself.

The statue of the Common Man at the Symbiosis Institute in Pune is an honor to Laxman, who is on their board of trustees. Although it seemed a little short on the legs, the statue certainly is an excellent rendition of Laxman's creation, one im sure RKL was satisfied with.

Hopefully, we will continue to see the common man and Laxman for several more years ....

Saturday, February 19, 2005

The Slimes of India goof-up (again) ....

So whats new ... but this one atleast is amusing. This article, about Musharraf being seventh amongst the world's worst dictators, says:
He is followed by Saparmurat Niyazov of Turkmenistan, Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe and Teodoro Obiang Nguema of Equatorial Guinea. President Fidel Castro of Cuba and King Mswati III of Switzerland had been among the ten worst dictators in the world last year but they are considered better than the 10 Worst this year
King Mswati III is actually the dictator of Swaziland. I saw this originally in the print edition of the ToI, which had an article on the adjoining page about King Mswati III (this correctly of Swaziland) buying some very expensive cars for his many wives, while his nation languished in poverty. Needless to say, the head honchos in washington wont ever bother to take him out of office, to restore freedom to the people of Swaziland.

blog visits .... accelerated by Madhuri

one particular post on this blog has got a large number of hits: the post titled "For all Madhuri Dixit fans ...." has been attracting a large number of visitors who seem to be attracted to the photo in that post (i am including it below).

i am not sure where Madhuri Dixit ranks in the google image search, but there is no doubt that a large number still search for her photos on the web ... and in that search, this photo shows up on page 6 (atleast it does it if you search for it today) - and i think the fact that it is a non standard non movie photo seems to attract attention, and subsequently increments on the page visit counter.

back ...!

i am back from india ... and looking forward to resuming blogging on a regular basis. the pittsburgh steelers had a stellar regular season under rookie Ben Roethlisberger ... but the two playoff games proved too much of a burden for big Ben - a kicking gaffe allowed the steelers to scrape through against the jets, while the Patriots proved why they are the best team in modern football as Ben turned over the ball costing the steelers the chance at the championship. so much for waking up at 5 in the morning in Mumbai to watch the AFC championship game - what to do, old loyalties die hard!!

and so much for BusineesWeek Online predictions ...