22-May-2009

Evolution of a facebook user

Sit out the Facebook revolution for several years.

Listen to friends indicate that you are a dinosaur and may be left off the ship earthlings will use to emigrate to the outer worlds when apocalypse hits.

One fine evening, sign up

Cautiously accept pending invites (and wonder how one can get invites even before one even has a Facebook account. This is so Big Brother)

Start responding to messages.

--------

Realise on one slow day that office gives you access to Facebook.

Start commenting on everyone’s pages.

Invite a few friends

---------

Notice number of friends all your friends have and realize you look like the class loser with a pathetically low score.

Get competitive

Start inviting half of your batch from college and B School

--------

Realise you are getting updates on Dinesh Daswani’s life frequently

Realise you have not exchanged more than two words with Dinesh in your entire 2 years at B-School

Realise you are not interested in Dinesh’s life at all.

Spend time contemplating between de-friending Dinesh, abandoning Facebook and turning to Yoga to remove competitive streak in self.

---------

Figure out tools for seeing updates only of ‘close friends’ and feel like an international diplomat bringing smooth solutions to conflict-torn areas.

Realise this is the kind of meaningless work you were worried Facebook would thrust on you.

Kick yourself for succumbing to peer pressure to get a Facebook account and make a mental note that you don’t want to be on the emigration ship. Esp if it has Dinesh Daswani.
-------------

19-May-2009

It is always a pleasure to take in a good movie and a halfway decent play in one weekend.

Edge of heaven

Screened as a part of NDTV Lumiere’s Cannes Festival selection at PVR, the hall contained a handful of people. Luckily the quorum was sufficient for the movie to be screened (unlike the last time I went to Sterling with a friend and was told that Turtles Can Fly wont be screened since we were the only two people who had booked tickets)

The movie itself is a nicely wrapped slice of the lives of its six lead characters. The story switches between Turkey and Germany and traces the blip of passion, love, lust and beliefs that registers in each of these characters before the world settles back into rhythm.

The story telling tight, the crossing of paths of the characters, unknownest to themselves is nicely done and the symbolic beginnings and ends don’t feel too clich├ęd. The movie also encompasses in the periphery a larger vision of lives of Turks in both Turkey and Germany.

An interesting view of a different world.


Don’t Look Now

It is difficult to pull off spooky movies. It is even more so with spooky plays. But ‘Don’t Look Now’ manages fairly successfully with a well-written script, believable cast and wonderful settings. Aparna and Sanjay are a typical upper middle class urban couple who lose their daughter Nitya at the beginning of the play. Trying to find peace, they visit Shanti Niketan – a conscious effort to dwell on better times as the couple had met there. The duo bump into two sisters dressed in black and looking quite witch-like. One of the sisters is psychic and warns them to leave Shanti Niketan. Aparna is wont to believe them but Sanjay finds the whole set up ridiculously fraudulent and superstitious. Things begin to get weirder and weirder for Sanjay who battles between his veneer of logic and his instinct and gradually realizes that some forces are beyond normal reasoning.

The play handles the mystical elements well. The central point is the big banyan tree, imaginatively designed to give a great atmosphere. The lighting works beautifully, especially when Sanjay has nightmares. Add to that the excellent mannerisms of each individual character (except perhaps for the witch sisters who appear a bit one-dimensional) and the villagers entering and exiting the scene adding a naturalness seldom found in the sparsely populated plays one sees at NCPA. On the whole, the play is definitely worth a watch.