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Showing posts from May, 2011

Must read - A book of laughter and forgetting

Tamina in "A book of Laughter .." is so loney in life. She does not have anyone and she is a foreign country working as as a waitress. Her husband's memory is her only link to her past or even to her life. To rejuvenate that memory she wants her note books from Czechoslovokia. When she is finally convinced that she will not get it, she is dead and a zombie.
    But her stay in Children's island and the events there I did not understand. It must be symbolic. But what is the symbol I do not know. Nor did I like the story of Jan.
   But on the whole it is a very good book

We have a word in kannada and hindi also -  paradesi (para - other des - country) . A person from another country. In kannada, it almost means an orphan. When we leave our country, we lose our identity. We become orphans. Why? We are surrounded by strange people, talking strange language. They do not recognize us. They are hostile to us. And we are so far away from our safe nests. Life is difficult in…

Maid's magic

This post will be more relavant my fellow bloggers from our sub-continent. We are the ones who are fortunate enough to keep a domestic help to help us in our busy schedules (???) and still keep grumbling about them.
   My maid is really awesome.  If I am with her she will take around 15 minutes to sweep and mop the entire house. But if I am in the kitchen, she finishes the work in 2 minutes. Today I was grinding chutney, in the mixer. Before my chutney is ready she had finished washing 5 clothes. I would have taken atleast 20-25 minutes for the work. That makes her 5 times faster than me. What is she? Some kind of a robot? Or does she know some magic spells?  Wish I knew these magic. With all my gadgets I spend too much  time in the kitchen -( almost two hours a day !!!) . May be if I use her magic or whatever, I can cook much faster (and tastier??)
   And she is so innovative in finding reasons for taking leave, though it will invariably be death of someone. One day her uncle's s…

Games people play

Board games - how many of them did you buy for your children( which they will never use)? TV does not let them. I used to buy for my son  25 in 1 games, 10 in 1games  and so on, chess board, ludo etc. from 1-2-3 rial shops in Muscat. (rial is the currency in Oman and 1 rial was around 90 Rs then) May be some of them are lying still there in the atta somewhere.
   But what we did we play in our childhood? To give an example,  we used to play some kind of pagade which will be something like this. You do not have to buy the board. as we could draw it on the floor. The floor was red oxide at the most, so we can draw these using chalk. And we did not even used to buy dice, mom used to split tamarind seeds in half. So 4 of them can be thrown. Face down is one and face up is zero. And each person will have 4 pieces on the board. These pieces would be broken bangle pieces (different color for each ) or something similar. Then my grand father has made a real board called chennemane from carpen…

Life is tight rope walk - kagga

ತಲೆ ಕೊಡವ ತಳೆದಿರಲು, ಕೈ ಕತ್ತಿ ಪಿಡಿದಿರಲು  ಬಳುಕು ಹಗ್ಗದ ಮೇಲೆ ತಾನಡಿಯನಿಡುತ  ಕೆಲ ಬಲಕೆ ಬೀಳದೆ ಮುನ್ನೆಡವ ಡೊಂಬನುಪಾಯ  ಕಲೆಯೇ ಜೀವನ ಯೋಗ ಮಂಕುತಿಮ್ಮ

A very good book by Kundera

We want to write books because our children don't want to listen to our stories. We tell our stories to unknown audience because our wives close their ears to our stories. That is what Milan Kundera says in his book. And he also says that graphomaniac people  - the people who are obsessed with writing are isolated and don't have struggle for daily bread and hence have time to idle away and they are from a country where nothing notable happens. He quotes that France produces twenty one times as many writers as Israel. Is that point true? At least writers put their 100% effort in writing and they have something to say. What about us , bloggers? As I read somewhere it is the lowest form of writing. ( well, if you do not consider tweeting and messaging ;-\ )
    May be if you are in a place where your very existence is threatened, where you can not talk freely, where you live in constant apprehension of things that may happen any moment, creativity will completely dry off. Or you…

Some TV shows

I like some of the soaps coming in Zee cafe. One of them is Make it or break it, which is a story about 4 teenage athletes striving to enter Olympics. Well the story is about the difficulties they face and how they overcome it. When I saw it last, Emily, one girl who is not having rich parents, who is not even continuing her school as she can not afford it, who in fact is supporting her family, comes to know that she is pregnant. She leaves the town, her dream to go to her godmother to give birth her child. I felt terribly sad. Success is not possible for those who do not have fat purses? Then this world is a cruel place.
   The middle is one comedy serial about middle aged parents, trying to bring up their not so talented three children. The youngest kid in second grade is so smart that he will always be in the library. The librarian is upset about him because he does not read silly fairy tales but reads serious books. The daughter has no ambitions what so ever and accepted her plain…

Autumn Spring - Czech film

This Czech film is about an aged couple. The husband is seventy six, fun loving and completely irresponsible. Wife is managing the complete household expenses also saving for their funerals. He loves good life style and needs money for that. He borrows money, he cheats people to get his little fun. He and his friend spend the entire days like this.
  They have a son with his own problems. His ex-wife with kids has come to live in his house. His current wife and ex-wife always bicker with each other.  He plans to keep in his parent's house and arranges his parents stay in an old age home. Mother sides with son for his happiness. He does not want to move out of the house. He pulls a prank. He goes to his friends' house and makes his friend tell the wife and son that he has died of heart attack. They come with a coffin.
    The movie continues like this. But some of the scenes are really touching. His wife takes him to the grave son has bought for both of them. He says he does n…

Thank you

Normally we tend to blame the rulers for all kinds of ills in the country. We never bother to look inside. Our government which is largest democratic government is not really that bad. Today I felt very happy about our government. Or should I say our judiciary?
   In today's Times of India there is a news that our Supreme Court said that those who plan to perpetrate honor killings must know that gallows await them. Bravo! This was one step in moving our country forward and helping the young people who seek police protection fearing the wrath of their elders.
 Those who are new to the term, honor killings are done by the parents/husbands or family of a girl usually when they feel that she has done something which is a disgraceful act. This practice is rampant in Pakistan. It is present in India too. Well, let us hope this statement by the court make them think twice before killing their daughters.


This book by Milan Kundera is a good read. He says he wanted to write a light book without a single serious word in it. But the book is not trivial. He tries to explain the concept of public figures who want to be idolized by masses and calls them dancers. He also says that our generation searches for speed, in order to forget everything because we are all sick of ourselves.
  One of the characters Pontevan I think, is explaining this concept of dancers to his friend and follower. Then another friend with a lady arrive there. Suddenly Pontevan tries to insult his follower and also tries to make some comments about his girl friend. This Pontevan again is an attention seeker but not of invisible masses but of opposite sex.
   Is there a dancer in each one of us? How many of our tasks we do for audience?

 There is also a story of Czech scientist who feels he is great because he was condemned to manual labor in communist regime. But the fact was it was his cowardice which caused him to l…

New generation

I thought enough is enough. I am no longer going to hide under the four walls and keep telling "mugilu haridu beeluttade (sky is going to fall down). So I got up and got dressed and headed to.... library. But there are lot of hurdles in the path .. to anywhere. Literal hurdles. I saw that Mysore road is overflowing with vehicles. Took a U turn and started going in small lane. But I am not the only one who wants to avoid Mysore road traffic jam. The small, really small lane is having its own traffic jam. A big truck is trying to emit out of a some-what ten feet wide road. And we on the opposite lane are kept waiting. I kept moving my vehicle at the rate of somewhat one kmph and kept climbing down and climbing up the pot holes as there was no place to avoid them. And really there was nothing to worry, because even if I fell down (how will I fall down, I am using 4 feet, two of my own and two wheels), I will not fall to ground and get hurt. I will just fall on the next vehicle. So I…

So he is finally dead

The most hated may be even most adored terrorist is dead. Or that is what we are all supposed to believe. Wasn't it too easy? And if it was too easy, why did US of A take so much time for catching this person who terrorized the entire world and more particularly USA?    If you look at his photo, you can not stop feeling he must be a saint. Such calm eyes. So much charisma. And I feel there is somewhat similarity between his face and sri sri's face. One used his charisma to take people to jihad and the other uses it to take them to breathing exercises.     Religious fundamentalists like Bin Laden, will they really believe in what they preach to the world? Do they really think that fighting for the cause of their God (?) and dying will take them straight to heaven and make them martyrs ? If he believed that he would not have been in the hide out for all these years.   What a life and what a death? He who led millions of muslims all over the world, now is somewhere in the bottom of…

Stop attack on Libya

Why are NATO forces attacking Libya? This kind of attacks do not achieve anything good which fact can be clearly seen from the case of Iraq. May be the situation is different here. The Libyans are fighting for democracy. But killing Gaddafi's son and grand children will not help this purpose anyway. There must be a better way than military solution.
Our generation has never seen freedom struggle. But we can understand how terrible the life can be in an autocratic country.  But attacking and meddling in the internal matters of a country, should not be done.
  Since 40 days of starting attack on Libya, how many civilians have been killed in Libya. Now latest to the list is son and grand children of Gaddafi. The NATO action is supposed to protect the civilians of Libya. Is it doing that?