Wednesday, February 27, 2008

To Sir, With Love

Those who have seen this awesome movie, must be remembering this awesome song, sung by Lulu. Of course, if you have read the original awesome autobiographical book by E. R. Braithwaite, it is a triple whammy for you.

If you haven't heard of any - my suggestion would be to find the best route - go for the movie.

The original film poster was very funny and naughty, though. The punch line goes like this - "A story as fresh as the girls in their minis...and as cool as their teacher had to be!"

Enjoy the lyrics.

Those schoolgirl days, of telling tales and biting nails are gone,
But in my mind,
I know they will still live on and on,
But how do you thank someone,
Who has taken you from crayons to perfume?
It isn't easy, but I'll try,

If you wanted the sky I would write across the sky in letters,
That would soar a thousand feet high,
To Sir, with Love

The time has come,
For closing books and long last looks must end,
And as I leave,
I know that I am leaving my best friend,
A friend who taught me right from wrong,
And weak from strong,
That's a lot to learn,
What, what can I give you in return?

If you wanted the moon I would try to make a start,
But I would rather you let me give my heart,
To Sir, with Love

You can listen to this song, with a wonderful slide show of the movie, over here.

I first heard of the book when I saw an excerpt of it - as a comprehension passage - in my Standard IX English text book called Bagchi Test Papers. It was the boxing scene between the teacher and the pupil. Then, I remember Hemant telling me something about it.

In a quick, related and lucky chain of events, the movie suddenly appeared on Doordarshan. It tugged my heart, and the nostaligia is so very fresh and overbearing.

The complete book I read much later. I had a lot of spare time at IIT, unlike others, you see :-) Incidentally, courtesy an offbeat movie secretary at the IIT, who took a lot of pains to search for rare classics, I could see this movie again. I would love to see it again and again. Its a collector's item. It was this secy, through him I discovered the other classics like The Scent Of A Woman, The Diary of a Hitman etc.

Sidney Portier, the lead actor looked tailor made for the job. I still remember some of the other names like Suzy Kendall, Lulu, the singer, who also played a small part, and this song was rated the top chartbuster for that year.

I am not sure if this was the effect from this movie, but respect for one of my teachers increased tremendously, roughly at the same time. I have previoulsy done a full post on her.

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Saturday, February 23, 2008

Easy Targets

Post liberalisation and post Indira, poor Som Mittal wouldn't have imagined a day like this one.

But this is a strange country. Here, the real perpretors of the crime may not get a punishment in the end, worse still, he or she may be making laws for you, but yes when it boils down to picking out easy targets, be it for publicity or something else, you always have a Amitabh Bachhan, Sania Mirza, Narayan Murthy, Rani Mukherjee readily available.

One reason, perhaps, is the widely accepted belief that making good money for oneself is, apart from being a cause of envy, a guilt of sorts. Therefore, you are suppose to stand out for special treatement.

It was sad that those ladies in Bangalore and Pune lost dignity and life in most unfortunate manner. I, and indeed most of us, felt like killing those brutes with our bare hands. But in reality, both will escape death, after much litigation, from the same courts who charged Som Mittal.

However, the honourable Supreme Court of India took upon itself to make Som Mittal an example. Justice shall and will prevail upon him.

Taking a cue, Pune's own never-to-be-left-behind-publicity-seeker Vishwas Nagre Patil, SP - Pune Rural, has trained his guns on Azim Premzi, Wipro's chief. He has asked his department to check on the legalities involved. He was the same person who created a lot of moralisic furore against the outsiders over last years rave party.

How I wonder, why is he not telling his incompetent colleagues in Nasik to take suo moto action against Raj Thackray as well. After all, going by same logic, and even stronger so, Raj Thackray is the person responsible for the death of that unfortunate HAL employee. His 'sorry' statement can be taken as clinching evidence because it means he too feels the same.

Meanwhile, Raj Thackrey has moved court to allow him and his people start public gatherings again, which essentially means that he wants distribute more swords, beat more vendors, damage more property and kill more people.

Going by the action against Som Mittal who knows courts may grant his wish.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Or Is It Just Me ?

Is there any divine conspiracy, or is it just me ? Have a look at the most interseting series of events which have happened with me for past one year.

- My electric juicer stopped functioning within 15 months of the purchase. I tried getting it fixed with all my might. Three different mechanic shops, including the company couldn't resurrect it. Each one giving the same answer: Saab Yeh Nahin Theek Ho Sakta!

- Next in line was my Philip DVD player, which was gifted to me by my dear friend Nandan 2.5 years back. It stopped functioning after 2 years and just wouldn't play. Different mechanics, this time, but same answer. Nahin ban sakta. My plain query of - Aisa Kya Ho Gaya Hai Jo Nahin Ban Sakta - earned no response.

- I recently shifted to a new rented apartment, barely 400 meters away from my previous one. So I needed to change my address for my gas connection - Bharat Gas. The concerned franchise refused to do so stating that area doesn't come under their coverage, passing the buck to another agency much farther located.

By mere chance of cross checking at my neighbourhood, I found they were serving in that building since eternity. Confronting with this new information, and reminding them of my previous action against them made them change their mind.

- This shifting also involved my informing YouTelecom, my broadband service provider. Since they have a big advertisement board, bang inside my current society, I confidently approached them for the address change. While I signed the form for my changed address, the clerk returned with termination form explaning there is no service in my society.

I elaborated in detail about the advertisement board etc, and that it is on main road etc but of no avail. Yet another lady came from inside with a changed version, that there is some signal problem there, and that they have recently terminated the services of all the customers there.

I reluctantly signed the termination letter, only to know a week later that the very flat below mine has a full and flourishing Youtele connection!

Now, even if one, for a moment, happens to agree with Raj Thackrey, then Mumbai will also start facing this Pune like situation, where service provider doesn't think twice about the customer because the business is so much in abundance, hence he or she will always earn good money.

I am really mighty frustrated.



Thursday, February 14, 2008

Quotes From Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

When you have eliminated the impossible, that which remains, however improbable, must be the truth.

Mediocrity does not see higher than itself. But talent instantly recognizes the genius.

I never guess. It is a capital mistake to theorize before one has data. Insensibly one begins to twist facts to suit theories, instead of theories to suit facts.

It is not really difficult to construct a series of inferences, each dependent upon its predecessor and each simple in itself. If, after doing so, one simply knocks out all the central inferences and presents one's audience with the starting-point and the conclusion, one may produce a startling, though perhaps a meretricious, effect.

The chief proof of man's real greatness lies in his perception of his own smallness.

You see, but you do not observe.

It has long been an axiom of mine that the little things are infinitely the most important.

It is a great thing to start life with a small number of really good books which are your very own.



Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Much to our relief, there is no riot or rampage by Amitabh Bachhan's fans, if they exist as such. I shudder to imagine the scenario when you replace him by a Rajinikant, Chiranjeevi or late Rajkumar.

Monday, February 04, 2008

Amar Singhs and Jaya Bachhans will do well to refrain from responding to Raj Thackray's verbal convulsions, because then they will serve their precise intended purpose - to provoke hatred.

These are just handful individuals who have nothing but vote polarisation in their minds. They don't really mean what they say because nobody is taking anyone's bread and butter - least of all Marathi people's bread and butter - for they are doing quite handsomely well for themself, despite of us. In fact, a common Marathi manus doesn't even thinks this way.

Raj Thackray is no common Marathi manus, though. He is a politician, whose brand of politics has always bred one propogation of hatred. He claims he is more a nationalist than a Hindu.

That's why he is so much concerned about Maharashtra, and not the country. That's why his party's name is Maharasthtra Navnirman Sena. That's why he is so concerned why Amitabh Bachhan didn't open a school in Maharashtra, being a national icon that latter is, instead of Uttar Pradesh( I learned in Geography that both the aforementioned states are in India).

Its another matter that even a greater national icon Lata Mangeshkar has mercifully escaped his wrath for opening a hospital in Pune, Maharashtra, rather than somewhere else.

Therefore, it is surely not nationalism. It is, as I mentioned earlier, vote politics.

Meanwhile, instead of mouthing counter productive rhetorics Amar Singh, Mulayam Singh, Mayawati and Lalu Prasad will serve much better to their haplsess brethen, who are getting flogged and ridiculed in every part of the country, by creating some real employment opportunities in their home states.