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Magix 'n' Curses
..the argument continues

Monday, February 27, 2006

Weirdo?


Sometimes I feel I'm a total weirdo. (Yes, only sometimes. Hey! Stop smirking!)

Quite a many friends have pointed out that I've got an emotional range of a robot with dead battery. Thanks guys, but I already know it myself! :) I pull a blank when confronted with serious situations, laugh at emotional scenes in movies and sneer at soppy, senti sms forwards I receive every morning.

However, my problem with babies takes the cake. I find it surprising how babies and young kids automatically come to me. Surprising coz I'll be busy running the other way! I get so flustered around them, not knowing how to talk to them, not knowing how to hold them, that I prefer staying a good distance away, smiling at the antics of other grown-ups making a fool of themselves, uttering complete gibberish to a kid who might be thinking "This is why I take so long to learn to speak!".

I've gotta learn how to differentiate infants. I feel they all look the same. The same puffed cheeks, the same chinky eyes, the same pout, the same head that's twice the size of the body. In fact, they kinda look like they're made outta chapathy maavu. But idha sollumbodhu, en friend en kooda sandaiku vandhuta. "Thoo! Naaya paartha cute-a theriyudhu, kozhandhaiya paartha theriyalaya?"

I love dogs, I can handle them. But babies, hmmm, I guess I'll learn at some point of time! :D And then, I'll probably understand why people fawn over and recognise facial similarities to a parent in a living lump of chapathy maavu!

Saturday, February 18, 2006

Godfather, the meejic


I admit it's certainly not upto the dizzying standards Rahman has set himself, but it's much better than most of the songs being churned out these days. Rahman has tried to please the masses for a change, and I think he just might have pulled it off with this album!

I've been bugging the guys at Odyssey ever since I saw an ad in The Hindu on wednesday saying the audio's out. It was just a large-scale false alarm! It was originally scheduled for a friday release, and that was when it eventually got released anyway. My sixth visit in three days proved fruitful as the guy at the music section promptly handed me the CD and sent me packing!

The CD cover is, hmmm, to put it mildly - lousy! I mean, this is the first Asin album I'm buying, I'd have been a lot happier with more of her pics! But seriously, it really is pathetic. Shoddy typesets, mixed up track listing, Ajith in a Bharathanatyam pose right in the front! Brrrr!

Anyways, here's what I think of the songs (in the order in which they caught my attention)

Track 6 : Thottapuram
I've been addicted to this song mainly coz of the way the kids sing the song. Sonu Kakar, the Babuji zara dheere chalo female, kadichu thuppifies thamizh. Kalpana's a lot better. But there's a lotta telugu thrown in.. Maybe it was meant to be that way. Still catchy all the same. Rahman certainly knows how to make these kids sing!

Track 8 : Theeyil vizhundha
Thalaivaaaaa! Rahman's voice is getting better and better. He's sung this with a lotta soul, and it shows.. Am glad he's exploring a lot more with his vocal range and not just sticking to the "come-cry-go" interludes :)

Track 2 : Kamma Karaiyile
He he he.. Rahman gives Deva a run for his money with galeej beats, galeejer tune and galeejest lyrics! Orae kuththu.. Dunno what got into Vairamuthu. "Kattil melae kabadi kabadi, Kaaman thaan di referee referee"! LOL! Naresh Iyer has replaced Karthik as Rahman's blue-eyed boy for the season.. He sounds exactly like Karthik when he begins..

Tracks 4, 7, and 9 : Innisai [Radio mix], Innisai [Film mix] and Innisai (the original!)
Ajith-a vechundu Bharathanatyam risk ellam thevai thaana? :( But the song's pretty good.. Naresh Iyer again, ivanukku adichurukku lucku! He accompanies Mahathi. The radio mix caught my attention though. Why wouldn't it, if a classical song is interspersed with a dappanguthu interlude? :)

Tracks 5 and 1 : Illamai and Illamai [Remix]
Certainly a chartbuster, but I found it kinda ok. Below par by Rahman's standards, but can't stop humming it. Strange! :) The original song has an interlude that sounds like a Chinese kezhavi singing. Listened to it with a very bemused expression on my face! Somehow Aslam singing "Sophia, Malikka, Fausiya, Yashika" instead of "Illamai" in the end reminds me of Chinni Jayanth! The remixed track sees Suresh Peters making a comeback. Blaaze leaves his imprint too. It's strange how remixes compulsively play around with the voices. Blaaze sounds like Donald Duck!

Track 3 : Kaatril
Utter crap. I don't wanna talk about this. I really dunno what Rahman was thinking when he added this "Hey hey Saahiba" chant. vaai-la green green-a coming!


But in all, it's a nice album. Not too ostentatious, neither too dull. But please don't compare it with Rang De Basanti. This is an Ajith movie. Indha music-ae jaasthi! :P

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

How a species was saved


Much before the first human walked the earth, another social creature made its entry into this world, vying for breathing space with the rest of the living beings. At first, a single male ant popped out of nowhere. He felt extremely lonely. "I'm supposed to be a busy creature", he lamented, "but I have nothing to do!"

He roamed around looking for something to do. He walked from one end of the earth to the other, looking for company. Never resting, never looking back to see how far he'd walked, he carried on braving the harsh weather and the threat of being trampled upon by creatures far bigger than he was. He was frustrated with life, frustrated with God for having abandoned him so. He walked back to where he started from, and received a pleasant surprise.

He saw a female ant standing a little distance away. He'd never seen a more beautiful sight in his life. The female ant pouted her mandibles, and performed as close an imitation to a cat-walk as can be performed on six legs. To humans, her strut might have resembled a careening truck steered by a drunken driver, but to the solitary male ant, it was the confluence of Ash dancing to Khajre Re, of Yana Gupta walking down the ramp in all her glory, of Angelina Jolie doing what she does best, of.. oh, never mind.. It was the most beautiful sight he'd seen.

"Where were you all this while, oh fair maiden?", he enquired. It didn't matter to him that she was blacker than the night. He'd rehearsed this dialogue all through his cross-continental trek, and was desperately hoping to get a chance to say it out loud. "I was right here all along, my fair Prince", she cooed. Ants had a thing for the word 'fair'. Crazy creatures.

The little cog in the little wheel in the little brain of the little ant turned a little. "You mean you saw me looking down in the dumps, feeling bored out of my mind, before I embarked on my journey?", he asked, his eyes narrowing. She giggled and nodded her head, her antennae making swishing sounds reminiscent of the sound effect that accompanies every movement of Rajnikanth's hand. The little cog turned a little more. "And you didn't call out to me? You didn't care to stop me?", he growled, his voice taking on as much of a menacing inflection as his little squeak would permit.

"I'm sorry!", the female ant cried, "I thought you were just going out for a stroll. While you were gone, I ate this grain of rice that had been marked 'FORBIDDEN', and from that moment onwards, the indicator needle in my mind went from Crush to Love to I-Can't-Wait-Anymore! Come here, tiger!"

"To hell with you", the male ant retorted. "Now I know where I stand. I'm just a plaything to be used when needed, and discarded when you're satisfied." The female ant gaped at him, horrified. She hadn't expected him to react this way. She had been given instructions from Up Above that she was the Queen and that every male ant would obey her command without a word. But here was the only male ant in the world, standing her up even though she was literally pleading.

She recollected the contract she'd seen before being despatched to Earth. It had clearly mentioned seducing the male ant and building a colony. The entire future of the ant species rested on her shoulders, or perhaps a little further down! Panic started to creep in. She begged, she threatened, she cried, she joked, she performed a little belly-dance.. nothing worked. "Why won't you cooperate, oh great warrior?", she wailed, "Don't you realise the consequences? We'd probably be the first, and the last ants ever to walk the face of the Earth!" The male ant was unmoved. He walked off in a huff, leaving the Queen high and dry.

The Queen spent the next few days trying to sweet-talk him into giving in. She even tried sneaking the forbidden grain in his lunch, but he found out. The countdown timer in her body-clock started flashing warning lights and sirens rang in her head. But he was stubborn in his stand. The countdown timer went into the critical zone. 10.. 9.. 8.. 7.. 6.. 5.. 4.. 3.. She knew it was now or never. She accosted him on his way to collect grains.

"I'm committing suicide", she said grimly.
"Wh.. wh.. what???", he stuttered, dropping his grain in the process.
"I'm committing suicide", she reiterated, "It makes no difference whether I die today, or later. We've failed in our mission. If we don't make an effort to build a colony within the next two days, we'd never get a chance to again. And with us, our entire species will die a premature death. You are way too stubborn for your own good. It was nice knowing you, err.. I don't even know your name."
"I'm Adam", he mumbled, "and I'm sorry, I don't know yours either."
"I'm Eve", she replied, "Goodbye."
She turned around, and started walking with great grace. "Goodbye cruel world", she said softly.

The aforementioned cog began to turn again. "WAIT", he screamed. "Wait, I'm ready!"
The Queen turned her head in slow motion. "What did you say?", she asked, her frown easing into a relieved smile. "I said I'm ready. Let's do it!", he replied, grinning broadly.

Both of them ran towards each other in ultra-slo-mo. Wings fluttered, and they took off, consummating their relationship midflight.

A few days later, their efforts bore fruit as she shed her wings and laid her eggs. "Our babies", she whispered, "Aren't they lovely?" "They are...", he replied in a low voice, "And I almost screwed up." "No you didn't, you screwed me!", she laughed. "I'm really sorry, Princess. I shouldn't have been so stubborn. I gave you such a hard time. I'm such an obstinate prat."

"Oh, don't be silly", she said, "it isn't your fault that you're Adam-Ant".

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Transformation


"Such intense eyes. I'd do anything to make him act in my play!"

Rajiv could only smile at Anu's statement. "So are you gonna try asking him?", he enquired. "Of course man! He's just the kind of character I need. A brooding demeanour, intense intense eyes, overwhelming aloofness. Abhishek's perfect for the role!"

Rajiv eyed Anu suspiciously. "So why are you telling me all this? Why don't you just go ahead and ask him?". He wasn't able to conceal his grin. He knew Anu felt a bit intimidated by Abhishek's pensive disposition.

"Err.. you're such a good friend of his, Rajiv. I was kinda hoping you'd talk him into it", Anu simpered. "You know, you're such a sweet fellow, you go outta the way to help your friends in need and all. Won't you do this little favour for poor little me?". She was batting her eyelashes furiously. "Please? Pretty please? With sugar on it please? Come on, what more do you expect me to do? Kneel and beg? If we weren't sitting in the canteen, I'd do that too!"

Rajiv waved his hand dismissively. "Nice try, Anu. But no can do. You know how he is. I think it's better if you do the asking yourself."

Anu realised she was fighting a losing battle. "Ok, at least tell me what kind of a person he is. I've ummm.. heard strange things about him..."

Rajiv remained silent for a while. Taking a deep breath, he said, "Hmmm.. Yeah. He does have a kinda fragile ego. He's extremely self conscious. Doesn't like to be teased, doesn't like to be proved wrong. He might snap if you unwittingly offend him. So be careful while talking to him. He can nurse a grudge for years! Oru vaati prestige problem nu he didnt talk to me for an entire semester. I had to apologise profusely to get back to talking terms. He's not talking to me again coz of some silly spat we had."

Anu looked at Abhishek who was sitting in a corner with his book. His unkempt hair, neglected stubble and his crazy looking moustache made him just perfect for the role of a drug addict trying to reform. She paused a moment, pulled herself up to full height and started to walk briskly towards him.

She mustered all her courage and said, "Abhishek?". Abhishek turned so quickly that he cricked his neck. He regarded her for a minute before he massaged his neck and replied in a disinterested, dull voice, "Yes?"

Bloody hell! His voice is perfect too! Why am I getting so excited about a nerdy-looking guy? It's just a proposal for a role. Calm down before people start giving you weird looks!

"Excuse me?" Abhishek interrupted Anu's frantic thoughts.

"Oh, sorry! I'm Anu. Rajiv's friend. We've met.", she twaddled as she extended her hand. Abhishek threw her a contemptuous glance, and she withdrew her hand immediately. "Listen, I direct plays and I have this role I've auditioned a lotta people for. But you fit the bill perfectly, would you like to do it? Please?"

His glare softened a bit, and Anu took it that he wanted her to go on. "It's a role of a drug addict. I believe you're perfect for the role!"

DAMN! Congrats Ms. Blabbermouth, you effed it up.

Abhishek growled, "So you mean to say I look like a drug addict?" Anu stammered before she regained her composure and rattled on, "Hey, sorry! No offense meant! I got a bit carried away thinking of all the make-up money I could save. Ha ha. That was just a joke. Err.. Sorry.. Ayyo, what am I blabbering?"

"Rajiv!", she hollered across the room, "Back me up!"

Rajiv smiled, showed her a thumbs-up sign and walked out of the canteen.

"Shit! I'm sorry Abhi.. Can I call you Abhi? Please accept the role! I'm begging you! I don't think anyone else will do justice to it. Your eyes, they're so intense, they speak for themselves. Please please please!!! Or at least hear me out, please?"

She was certain it wasn't a trick of light. Abhishek's face showed a faint trace of a smile.

YESSSS!

She looked at him, eyes pleading his to consider her offer. He nodded. She performed a little celebratory jig. In her mind, of course. She quickly briefed him about the role. She stepped out of the canteen, her heart soaring with delight. She let out a whoop of joy, startling the errand boy, as the plates in his hands flew in all directions.

The next day, Anu was busy with the Art Director when a handsome looking man came up to her and said hello. Anu couldn't place him initially and then it hit her. A clean shaven Abhishek was smiling back at her. "Oh no! Now we need to pay for the make up! Why did you do this, you idiot? But hey, you're looking good."

She expected him to snap back, but he continued to smile. She raised her eyebrow and handed him his copy of the script. "We'll rehearse Scene II now. You make an entry later in the scene. Don't forget your lines!" Abhishek nodded and walked to a corner to mug up his lines.

Rajiv dropped in to check on how Abhishek and Anu were doing when he noticed the transformation in his friend. He couldn't believe his eyes. No beard, no moustache, no shifty eyes, no droop in shoulders, this wasn't the Abhi he knew. He approached him apprehensively, knowing Abhishek wouldn't have forgotten the silly fight. "How're you da?", Abhi said warmly. Rajiv was taken aback. "I.. I thought you wouldn't talk to me.."

"Free-a vidu machi.. Past is past"
"Aagaa.. enna da aachu unakku? Is this my friend Abhishek?"
"He he.. no more prestige problem for me da. I literally felt my ego deflate when I shaved today."
"Adhukkum idhukkum enna da sambandham?"
"Simple. Inume meesaila mann ottara problem-ae illa."

Friday, February 03, 2006

007


I'm bored.
Dead bored.