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Wednesday, August 25, 2010

The Name is Bond. Ruskin Bond.

20 Aug 2010: : As a kid, The Rain in the Mountains is one of the first books of Ruskin Bond which I gobbled up during a Summer vacation. Then came the Train to Deoli, One Night at Shaamli, The Room on the Roof …and ever since I devoured these, it has been a childhood dream to meet this Man who writes this beautiful. And when I met him in his fair flesh and blood at the Vodafone Crossword Awards 2009, I was thrilllllllled. His ever-smiling face, the rotund belly, the gentle persona makes him even cuter. As the chief guest and judge, his presence completely awed the daylights out of me.

It’s not just his books which get me to love him, but the fact that its his inspirational soulful writing which kindled the passion for writing in me. And today, I am a writer. If Gandhi was the Father of our Nation, I hold Bond as the Father of Writing. His simple smoothie style, the play of words, and the disarming humour he manifests in his style make his works simply yummy. Till date I have never hurried to get a celeb autograph in my life – nope, not even Aamir, when I was younger. But it is Ruskin who is the real Bond. So then from the last rows of NCPA where I was seated, I rushed towards the stage, almost ignoring the other people smiling at me, as they walked by…I approached him amidst the other eager fansm handed him my little handmade paper diary and thankfully he obliged. Wish he could have struskin bond0001ayed longer, and the people accompanying him were a wee lesser possessive of him :) But what matters is those two words he scribbled in my book which I shall treasure all my life – Ruskin Bond’ 

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Blogging for Change

The IndiMum blogger meet today did well for us. For bloggers, un-bloggers alike. The agenda could have been tighter involving more people to talk, but the debate about ‘blogging for the next level’ brought some meat.

The good thing about blogging is that it has comfortably slipped in line as a new dissemination medium. We recognise blogs and bloggers and their written word. We take us seriously. The debatable issue about ‘blogging versus journalism’ is quite like that endless Indian law trial, so we choose to leave it at that. What’s important is now taking this phenomenon of blogging to its rightful cadre – as a powerful medium of change.

Blogging as 3 advantages to it:

a) It is a youthful medium, the medium of tomorrow

b) It travels lightning fast, without commercial influence

c) The written word is more powerful and permanent

So, as a blogger community, keeping aside the journalistic tendencies, I believe we have the power to influence people at an individual level, then at a society level. It is a medium of interactive conversations, debates, opiniating – thus INVOLVEMENT of the reader. And if the reader is involved in forming the opinion, he/she might as well be the evangelist.

Most importantly, whatever we write about, we mean to influence readers. We mean to make perceptions, form opinions. So as a blogger if you are empowered to do so, why not use it for a positive change? Writing about relevant issues and translating these into ACTION down the line.

Feel for the Bhopal Victims? Well, blog about it, create a community and fight for justice with your readers’ support. Mad about CWG? Post your opinion, garner support and send out your letters to the Ministry. Maybe go meet them. Hate those potholed roads? Talk to those car owners, pedestrian friends and other spirited friends through your blog and unify them through an offline campaign targetting the administration.

The power of blogging is immense. As responsible, tired and frustrated citizens, its time we channelise the energy into Action through our words. And the first step is blogging about it. So, my dear blogger friends - Keep Blogging.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Peoplee Live

A good watch on the eve of Independence Day. Peepli Live, is a lash of heavy sarcasm on the people of India. On her junta, her politicians, her media and their myopic materialism which leaves the nation in shreds.

The plight of an Indian farmer expressed through the lens of fitting humour. The plot contains the self evinced suicidal plans of a farmer, in lieu of compensation, which catch the fancy of the political and media clowns. Thus emerges a circus of overdramatic journos, bureacratic babus and pathetic police people being used by the narcissistic netas for vested interests.  The naivety of a meagre land owner – Natthu - who has almost lost his land owing to debt, stands out bizarre as the conniving opportunists try to make hay as well as get the sun to shine, where the hay is the benefits of TRPs and vote banks, and the sun is the suicide. The over sensationalising of everything – right from Natthu’s shit to his suicide is used as a breaking news story and to pass the buck.

There is technically nothing wrong with the film – a heavily sarcastic treatment of the common problem of India – over-materialism, politics and mass corruption, using the background of farmers’ suicide. Good actors, simple storyline, a plug in of humour makes the film an interesting watch.

Though, it fails to re-create a Lagaan or Rang De Basanti – both films with a greater purpose. Peepli too had the potential to strike a bigger message home, to put fire under our asses, to inspire us enough to act on it – but somehow it ends a bit bland and less dramatic. But yes it does provoke us to think what kind of a nation we are, what kind of people we are.

Just hope that we all take back something more than just a few giggles on funny situations. Farmer suicides are not a joke, mind you.

Reporting for Peepli Live. Over.

3on5 for this film.

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