Update on Trailblazer

Hi folks,

I have temporarily quit personal blogging. Now I am onto technology blogging, and I do offer personal opinions once in a while at Trailblazer.

Do visit my technology blog - Internet Simplified. It consists of the simplest tips for regular internet users.

Also, follow me on Twitter - @trailblazr. I am very active on the microblogging site.

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A Thought

Ramachandra Guha writes in The Telegraph:

In this narration, I have skipped one item, number three, in part because I think it the most important, and hence best dealt with last. This pertained to a visit to the Mahatma by the ministers of the new government of West Bengal. What Gandhi said to them is summarized in the Collected Works.But there is a slightly longer, and somewhat more vivid, account in Manu Gandhi’s book The Miracle of Calcutta. This informs us that when the Bengal ministers sought his blessings, Gandhi told them, “Today, you have worn on your heads a crown of thorns. The seat of power is a nasty thing. You have to remain ever wakeful on that seat. You have to be more truthful, more non-violent, more humble and more forbearing. You had been put to test during the British regime. But in a way it was no test at all. But now there will be no end to your being tested. Do not fall a prey to the lure of wealth. May God help you! You are there to serve the villages and the poor.” [The Telegraph]

The words of Gandhi - a gentle reminder to people in national service.

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Kambakht Ishq - Not for kids, adults or aliens

Kambakht Ishq.

Just like all previous purposeful mistakes I've made in my life, I added one more to the list when I landed in a cinema hall (albeit on a social outing with family) to watch Kambakht Ishq. And this is what happened.




Not everyday do you get to know what it feels like to be punched by Evander Holyfield and Mike Tyson in a one-on-two match. Even worse, I'm way too weak and vulnerable already.

So how is Kambakht Ishq, you may ask. How does it feel like to see a dog have his bowels emptied, the excreta picked up and packaged into a double-cheese burger and given to you as your 'junk meal'?

Yes. That bad. And add the dog's 'soft-drink' to complete the package.

The ringa-ringa-roses begin in a church, where even God was pitiably forced to witness the testament of a failed wedding, Kareena Kapoor's in-your-face non-acting and stuntman Akshay Kumar's attempts to save the men of the world from evil women. I pity you, God. I do.

Before the 'I do' is completed and poor old Aftab Shivdasani (who apparently still exists to give goofy smiles and fill the 'chaprasi-disguised-as-supporting-actor' roles) is completely deprived of any sex life with beau Amrita Arora, you have a failed wedding with cakes being hurled in all directions for no purpose whatsoever when they should have seriously considered donating them to thousands of engineering students who could use it as cannon fodder.

As life goes on (and so does the dog-b***h claptrap), Kareena amazingly drops her ringtone-watch while doing her first surgery EVER into Akshay's stomach. The visuals pop up in an x-ray and Kareena decides that she must fake love to retrieve the watch while Akshay apparently ends up falling in love, sacrificing all the principles on which his life was based in the movie.

In between, you have Hollywood icons Sylvester Stallone and Denise Richards do cameos. Javed Jaffery and Kirron Kher waste their talents in poorly-scripted roles. Shivdasani and Arora are just plain fillers, while Akshay's wacky sidekick is a hyper-lame imitation of many other previously successful Bollywood sidekicks.

Add to this, Kapoor's questionable and self-righteous attitude towards people who watch movies clearly speaks volumes about the escalated power that Bollywood brokers in the country today. A day doesn't seem to be far off where the 'stars' hardly bother about pleasing fans, but impose themselves in a rather Orwellian way of doing things.

Make movies. Make better movies. Let the people decide.

And as far as this one goes - avoidable. Completely.

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Keep the Faith

After a rather painful and completely unexpected Super Eight elimination in the ICC World Twenty20 Championships, the bits, pieces and a meaningless match against champions-elect South Africa are the only sources of minimum redemption and face-saving hope that Mahendra Singh Dhoni and his fallen heroes can pick up. The barrage of criticism that has followed the exit of the Indian cricket team from the prestigious event in England is, not to say the least, shocking.

The media, in particular, has again demonstrated typical opportunism and singled out Dhoni for the utter failure of the defending champions. Undoubtedly, Dhoni has made errors not suited to his cricketing brain but to lambast a man, who has sacrificed his entire batting career for the thankless job of the Indian cricket captain, for defeats in two matches (one by a close three runs) is shameful to say the least. The media is clearly still nursing the wounds of that clash with Dhoni regarding team spirit and Virender Sehwag. In the wake of that ugly confrontation, they have been presented with a roaring opportunity to get even with the Ranchi cricketer. And boy have they have made use of it.

TV channels are running amok with excessive replays of specific errors made by Dhoni in the key defeat against the West Indies and experts from all spheres of life are castigating him for tactical errors. How unfair. To single out Dhoni and give a clean chit to the likes of Suresh Raina and Gautam Gambhir is extremely unjust and what is even more ridiculous is that this inevitably makes captaincy in cricket indirectly or even directly responsible for the poor form of other players. And this even defies logic.

As expected, opinion polls are waiting breathlessly at the end of the tunnel of Dhoni’s journey with many fans and news websites pondering whether sacking Dhoni could pave the way for a new era in Indian cricket. Whether India are better off without his ultra-cool demeanors on field and excessive rotations of the batting order.

Well, the simple answer is No.

To pass a judgment on the career of Dhoni based on a single tournament smacks of rhetorical nonsense of the worst kind and there is clearly no single stand-out successor to Dhoni in Indian cricket’s current scenario. The likes of Virender Sehwag and Yuvraj Singh are better off captaining their respective IPL teams while the leader in a Rohit Sharma or a Suresh Raina is clearly an infant who needs time to blossom.

If Mahendra Singh Dhoni is fast becoming the problem, then he is also the only solution. In him lies the brain to intellectually sort out the wrongs of the current Indian set-up and it is he who has the calmness to realize his and the team’s mistakes and rise out of the ashes. And mind you, it’s only his first major failure. The immediate apology offered by him at the end of the game speaks volumes about Dhoni’s level-headed nature and mental toughness and he is one man who knows and feels the pain of an early exit and collective failure. And what it means to a billion people.

Keep the faith. This isn’t the end of ends. This is a new beginning.

[Posted on Wordpress]

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