Dec 31, 2014

3 Most Awesome Incidents @2014

Now coming to the awesome experiences pertaining to the incidents of 2014, according to me, there is a competition. But below three are the best chosen. 

#1 - Modi as the PM of India and CBN as the CM of AP

I'd not been a big follower of Indian Politics although Politics interest me. But surprising to me even, I followed the news on the Indian General Election 2014 day in and day out. To add to my interest, the Assembly polls of Andhra Pradesh were conducted along with the General Election. That made the occasion more than deserving to follow. Especially after all the protests and issue with the state division, this election became particularly important for both the states, AP and Telangana. A record polling of around 80 % was observed and all it hoped was for good. Curtailing down all the misconceptions, and proving the exit polls right, the BJP almost clean swiped at the central with record majorities at some constituencies. At state, Chandrababu Naidu (CBN) and his party (TDP) rocked the results. After a long gap of ten years, they have come out as a wining side. All that CBN did for Hyderabad and the IT sector did not go in vain. Another capital city can only be built by CBS was the major driving factor. And of course the unforgivable corruption scandles (alleged) of the opposition party added the extra votes required for a clear majority. After a long day of watching TV, I was in all freshness and positive energy at the end of the day, I still remember. It was one of the awesome feelings. Hope to see both these leaders live up to their promises in the coming year. 

#2 - Mars Orbiter Mission

The MoM's successful launch in the last year itself was one of the highlights that I chose to write about at the end of the year 2013. Now, this calender year has yet again seen an awesome and exciting moments later to the successful reach of the MoM into the Orbit of Mars. The scientists of the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) have been hailed across the globe for the successful attempt they made. They truly deserved the applause not just for the efforts but also for the design accuracy that they could achieve which played major role in letting the MoM enter the targeted orbit. Prime Minster statement after the success of MoM, "MoM never disappoints", will be remembered long. Hope to see some of the key members of the project get bestowed with the high civilian honors of India. It's just a beginning. A lot more is yet to be delivered by them in 2015 and in the later years too. A lot more is definitely getting expected from the team ISRO in the upcoming years. They must hire, they must encourage the young India and cash in the enthusiasm. I wish them all the best for all the attempts they make. Space is the only place about which no significant wars have been envisaged. I just hope the peace about the space will continue to prolong. 

#3 - Interstellar, a technical marvel

'Interstellar' is the only film that I watched twice in theaters in this decade. Too good it was for me and it interested me more than ever. The scenes just lingered all around me in my thoughts after I watched the movie. Even after a week or so, I could feel the same awe as that of what I had on the day I watched the movie. I did a lot of reading from internet, probably the highest ever after watching a movie, that I prepared myself very thoroughly, I guess, for watching it again. And the next time, I did not miss out on concentrating on the subtitles. I was very much impressed with the taking, the script, the background score and the technological explanation. For a director or a story/script writer to think that way it was thought for this movie, it was a great risk taken I believe. It could have gone wrong too but the technical adviser did his best in conceptualizing the balckhole, wormhole etc. I was stunned to watch such a marvel. You need imagination, you need dedication, you need brains, you need interest, you need risk-taking and you need all these together to make such movies, that's what I feel. This movie has its own dark sides or say unanswered questions but it was never either said that this movie was going to be exceptional. No movie can be exceptional. After all, it's a movie and entertainment is the main aim. According to me, this movie is yet another Oscar-block buster. I just hope the Academy awards in 2015 will bring smiles on the faces of the case and crew of 'Interstellar'. 

Hope to write even longer post next year end on the topic of awesome experiences! That's all for this year 2014. 

3 Most Awful Incidents @2014

Another year passed. We are in the final hours of 2014, the year that has left a mix of awful and awesome experiences. In this post, I wish to write down about the awful experiences I've had with the things happened around the world. Although I was not personally involved in any of those, they pinched me a lot and will keep doing so every time I recollect them. They are purely my choice. I'm not downgrading anything else that's not mentioned here. Here I go.

#1 - Flight MH370 disappearance

The major question that comes to my mind, every time I think about the disappearance of the Malaysian Airlines' flight MH370, is how come a flight gets disappeared in the ongoing times of the much advanced technology! Human  made machines have landed on moon, have orbited a comet and have set the course to orbit Mars. Yet, a Boeing flight gets disappeared with 239 on board and after almost ten months, we are clueless about its whereabouts. Better to forget for now what would have happened in the cockpit. It might need a lot more time than we all can anticipate to unravel the unfortunate moments happened on that plane's last flight. At least some information, a clue, a sign of its presence on earth could have ended 2014 on much lighter note than now.

With absolutely no information about the plane after it went missing from the radar screens ten months back, it's difficult to believe that we are all aging in the times of the advanced technology! We are not. We are not yet there still. If the disappearance was unscripted, this is the most unfortunate flight accident so far. If, by any chance, the disappearance was scripted by someone, this will remain as the most mysterious man-made flight mishandle so far in the history of aviation. Hope 2015 brings in some news, a positive one being the whereabouts of the wreckage, about this mystery. 

#2 - Death of Philip Hughes

How much a cricket buff I used to be is known to many of my friends. I always enjoyed watching cricket, following the news about cricketers since early age. Cricket always made me happy, despite of few tears here and there. In the wildest of the wild dreams also I never thought something sad about cricket except in the one that I had the night before the death of Philip Hughes. This is for the first time i'm talking about it. It was a day before the night that Hughes was struck with bouncer, in a dream, I read a statement from Google News page saying "Doctors confirm the death of Philip Hughes". The experience in the dream itself was awful. When I woke up the next morning and especially when I heard the news about his death, my feelings turned uncontrollably awful. 

Extremely unfortunate incident it was. It appears even more unfortunate, as it has happened to an young yet talented cricketer. I watched the live telecast of his funeral in all tears. The messages read by his family and friends was the most touching part of it. His smile and the news about his death, both could not be taken away from my mind for longer time. I finally did a post on Facebook with a hope that I will be free from those thoughts and that worked luckily. Philip Hughes will be remembered always for his play and for his untimely death. 

#3 - Peshawar school massacre

16th December has not been good since last two years. Two devastating acts by humans make me think what for the technology advancement to be made when people can turn such cruel at times and in moments they can destroy the fellow people. The Delhi Gang Rape happened on December 16th of 2012 still cannot be forgotten. Another December 16th has seen the Taliban attack on the military school in Peshawar killing 145 people and injuring at least 130 people. School children were the victims of the cruel minds  and their bullets. Unimaginable stint was that, but few people made us realize that it was very much possible! Whether that could have been avoided or not, I'm not sure. But henceforth such incidents shall be avoided under any circumstances. 

The Government of Pakistan has definitely shown some progress in the form of reciprocation. But how efficient all that has been will be understood in the coming year. Hope it gets proved as very efficient. All country meets and hence an united stand is required in handling the cases such as terrorism. It;s not the problem of any single country. It's a common problem. An united voice and acts can only lead all of us towards solutions and not country-ego! Hope to see some strategical and constructive approach towards tackling this matter in the coming year. 

So, that's all for this year. And that's more. Sincerely hoping for a smaller post at the end of 2015. May this year bring on new challenges and that they be handled in a better way. 

Choose battles... Take Home #365

Among the whole lot of battles that we face every day, worthy are only few. Choose them thoughtfully and carefully. Be strategical in getting ready to face them and then go for them in full spirits. Battling is nothing wrong, especially there where you must battle. 

A foggy morning to end 2014!

The below shown picture is evident enough that fog has surrounded all this place in Pune. A day just before the calender turns to 2015, it's the first foggy morning that's probably saying goodbye to the running year. Apart from the fog that's captured in the shot, the location shown has many a memories of mine attached to it. This is the view from the top floor of our office where we usually stand in the early morning sun after breakfast. I've been standing that way since many years now. Many a partners have changed but the freshness that comes to my mind every morning has remained the same, fortunately. 

I miss too many of my friends almost every morning when I stand there. The moments spent with them, the words shared, the gossips lingered, the smiles, the laughs, the debates, are all stored in my memory preciously. Every time I stand here and look at the building captured in the click, I remember all those good moments spent and cherished. 

Meeting and missing
Is what life is all about! 
Memories remain intact. 
So as the moments lived. 

Dec 30, 2014

Dhoni retires from test cricket; surprising and unimpressive!

MS Dhoni, famously known as 'Captain Cool', 'MSD' and 'Dhanadhan Dhoni', has retired from the test cricket. He will continue to play the one day cricket and T20s. He was the captain of Indian cricket team this morning and now a former Indian test player and captain of course. How quickly times moves! How surprisingly people decide and declare! All in all, I'm not much impressed with this decision of MSD. I've not been a person who is a fan of his expressions or statements. However, I've always followed the news about him. Being the captain of the Indian cricket team, he has of course driven the team to victories in many tests. He is, as per the stats, the best winning captain so far. But I've my own doubts if he is the best person to captain the Indian side ever. 

In his tenure, he got some players in their best of the forms. Form is a state of mind as Dhoni rightly quoted few days back. Viru, Yuvi, Sachin, Raina and Kohli have been the pillars in many of the famous test victories of Team India. I do not deny the fact that Dhoni has always been a qualitative finisher, probably the best! But in the position that he bats for India, he could not have done more in terms of runs. The attitude of his batting is evident enough almost always to finish on winning note. However, there were number of occasions when he failed to bat along with the tail-end players. There were number of occasions he failed to prove himself as a strong middle order batsmen. Well, not in all matches a player can play well. But looking at the number of matches he has played, and the way he used to drag the innings until the very end of the overs, although he is famous for hitting the sixes including the winning six in the world cup final on the home soil, he could have done much better considering the chances he got to prove as a batsmen. 

As a captain, yes, he has proven himself. Although it was because of the great play of some of his teammates in his tenure, driving the young team to victory in his first T20 world cup and driving the team to many victories at home and hence to the top spot in the test rankings are some of the contributions he has made. Many young players have been lucky enough to get the Indian cap. Equally, many quality players had to leave the team and are still away from the team! Sehwag and Gambhir have been great openers and cannot be seen now at all in any of the tours. Agree or not, there was a cold-war kind sensed among these players and their captain. Eventually or incidentally, Viru and Gambhir were thrown out! Of course they lost their form. But if form is just a state of mind, as Mr Ex- Test Captain quotes, Sehwag and Gambhir should have been given the chance too! A debate on this might never end. So I choose to cut this short. 

Retirement is a player's personal decision. I agree and fully respect Dhoni's views on it. But the timing is appearing to be not correct and hence his decision is unimpressive, to me. He could have waited for some more time! At least until the world cup is played! Anyway there are  no tests planned before world cup, as much as I'm aware of it, except the remaining Sydney test.   This decision could be a savior from much of the criticism for the series defeat down under. But I'm sure he is stronger enough to handle it and he always did. Well, I just hope the decision was taken in as genuine interest of the team as it is appearing to be. Kohli is the next option that BCCI have. But Kohli lags a lot in terms of emotional quotient which is one of the stronger points of MSD. Kohli must adapt his former captain's good sense of humor with media by not being straight forward as he is now. Its a good opportunity for Kohli at this age. He needs to prove himself, now. Because of IPL, Indian team now has many players with captaincy experience including Rohit Sharma. Kohli could as well bag some. I just hope the age group that Kohli belong to does not lead to any 'Gang War' in the team! 

Best wishes to Kohli and co. I think we will get to hear Dhoni's decision about retiring from all forms of cricket from the Down Under, probably after the world cup! It will not surprise me even if he announces his retirement before the world cup. Be ready Kohli! 

Dec 29, 2014

Movie: UGLY - Nothing else could have been a better choice for the title!

Movie making is almost like launching a fight against perceptional views of wide number of audience. What you like might not be liked by me. What you think about a particular scene or story line might not be thought in the similar way by me. What you want to watch might or might not be there in the plot. What you expect based on either the director's or hero's last stint might not be fulfilled by his latest pie. No questions asked about the expectations or wishes of the audience. Everyone who watches the movie has the very deserving right to be hopeful of an entertaining or thoughtful one coming their way. This is the very reason why movie making is nothing less than launching the fight as mentioned earlier. Director might be very much clear about the plot and script. But if he forgets the fact that the success of his attempt largely depends upon how the audience will receive it, he will not be able to maintain his self-confidence for a longer time. If success and failure impact him, they do obviously, and if he cannot accept certain facts then he will not be able to be consistent in presenting his thoughts and ideas. Anurag Kashyap might have had his good and bad times with his presentation skills. 'Black Friday' bagged all the best possible ratings. 'Gangs of Wasseypur' was an award winning series, but that did not reach the class audience. And now, Anurag Kashyap is back with his next film 'UGLY'. 

'Ugly' is yet another movie based on true incidents. Living up to its name, the movie depicted the ugly side of the misconceptions and misunderstandings that exists among people even though they are bonded in as stronger relationship as wife and husband or they are two good friends who share almost everything in their daily lives. Heights of police interrogation and investigation is excellently shown in this movie. What happens when a responsible police office himself drives the case in a different direction instead of going for the facts, only based on his experiences with someone whom he eventually accuse, is narrated in a good way. The script and narration should have been more entertaining rather than giving an ugly feeling. How much better it could have been, I cannot comment as I have no idea of what could have been went through by the director and his team. 

There isn't much to say about this movie, frankly. Cast selection did not surprise me, it did not need much better actors and all of the actors have almost justified their selection. Only the narration is the draw back in making this movie reaching the masses. One really needs to be thoughtful enough, and that too after the movie ends, to get the feel of what 'UGLY' really meant! I strongly feel that a voice over could have done well rather than leaving it out to the audience to think over. Conveying the message is important, but I think conveying it in a reachable manner is further important as after making such a full length movie and you leave it on to the audience and you sit back believing that they will get what you wanted them to understand, is according to me not a good ending scripted for such a tiresome effort put in while making the movie. Well, I could understand the message what the director wanted to communicate or I only suppose I understood as I could not be entirely right. Anyway, it was a boring watch on a long weekend, realistic and thoughtful movie to summarize! 

Dec 28, 2014

Love at first sight!

I was watching a Telugu movie named "Toli Prema", translates to 'First Love", a couple of days back and once again wondered  about the concept of love at first sight. I've always been a person who has not fully succeeded in understanding the emotions surrounding the 'Love at first sight' frames shown in many a movies in India. Although I do not understand it yet, I do not turn down the truth and the lovely emotions the 'love at first sight' concept might have with it. I will keep thinking of it and hopefully one day I might understand the strength it causes and the motivation it injects into someone who falls for it. Leaving that there, I'd like to share an experience I had yesterday in a shopping mall, which is not much difference from that of what I used to have almost every time I had shopped. But then, only yesterday I realized something. The thought that I had about the 'love at first sight' might have been the reason. 

From the experience that I've from all the years of shopping, I know that if I like something on my first look at it, there have been very few occasions when I do not purchase it. Even yesterday, I went to the shopping mall with as usual aspiration for some good stuff to buy. A hand bag was what I basically wanted to buy. I entered the shop and quickly turned around to the corner where the hand bags were kept. A medium sized bag in purple colour appeared just in front of me. After a few seconds I grabbed it with my hand to see the inner portion of it. But something from within encouraged me to look at the inner space with a wish to become the owner of that bag. Obviously, I liked the inner separations. I then of course turned again towards the bag racks and tried to manage my body language as if I wanted something more. I knew in my deep senses that I had already got what I wanted. It seemed to me as if the sales boy had handled many women earlier and understood my amature emotions that I was only trying to portray in front of him. Then I told myself, "let's go", as I did not want to further enlarge the experience of that sales person with women shoppers. I paid and stepped out of the shop.

The actual subject of this post 'love at first sight' means about the love between people and not with things. But to some extent I strongly believe that be it people or things, the concept of liking someone at the first sight remains the same. The mind knows that it can get further better stuff than what we have just seen, but the heart or whatever, it does not allow us to look for something more. This is probably the only place where we humans do get satisfied with what we have got, for that moment and for a few more moments. This is also probably the only thing that we heart fully own up all ourselves. Amazing all this is by looking at it. Surprising yet lovable to its core. I will keep thinking about the 'love at first sight' to understand it better and better going forward. 

Dec 26, 2014

Movie: PK - A theatrical question bank with all logics!

Director: Rajkumar Hirani

Strange enough to me, I entered into the theater without much expectations on "PK". Although there had been many posts from friends on Facebook claiming that Aamir Khan did a fantastic job, I could somehow manage to keep myself away from all sort of expectations on this Aamir Khan's latest Christmas release. Once the movie started and until it ended I did not have time to think about anything else, including the next scene of the movie. The script was so entertaining and equally thought provoking that I barely had time to think about the upcoming scenes! 

'Bhojpuri' troubled me a little, by leaving me understanding the meaning of a few dialogues after few seconds of completion. However, the expressions of Aamir and Anushkha enabled me to follow the flow. Anushkha Sharma's hairdo didn't impress me to be honest. It indeed was successful in justifying the nature of the character she portrayed. Boman Irani did not have much scope though. But the hit combination of '3 idiots' has once again proved a lot rhythmic together.  

The spaceship in the first scene of the movie seriously surprised me. I only hoped for the best, to be very frank. It reminded me of a comment a friend made on his Facebook timeline, that PK had reminded him of "Koi Mil Gaya". I did not pay much attention to that particular comment as I was damn sure that Aamir Khan would never ever touch a script which was kind of a copy of another film of his contemporaries. But the spaceship surprised me for a second. Once Aamir Khan came out of it in normal human form and of course with abnormal human expressions in his eyes, I was a bit relaxed thinking the scene might be a dream of Aamir himself or another character of the movie. But proving me wrong, the film had certainly taken the movie making to its new heights. A sci-fic thought combined with the emotional moments and logical thinking power of a human are the basic pillars of this movie. 

Shushant Singh Rajput's smile did express the love that he had for 'Jaggu' character. Its a guest role but he definitely did what he had to do on the screen. Sanjay Dutt character's length could have been a little more. But that's understandable. Sanjay Dutt is one of the finest actors of the Bollywood. He definitely has maintained his consistency and charisma throughout the length of his role. The director's selection of the artists as the parents of Anushkha Sharma was not impressive. That could have been done better or may be that's negligible before the thoughtful movie that Hirani has once again proudly presented! 

One cannot confront the questions, that have been asked by the Alien character of the movie, in logical terms unless by taking the aid from the 'blind beliefs caused by the so called diverse culture of India'. In all possible terms, the director is correct in claiming all that he has claimed. The 'wrong number' stint was the best idea of its kind that had kept the audience in its grip starting to the end. Particularly, one of the last dialogues of the film still makes me laugh at myself. 'I love chicken', 'I love fish' does not mean that these human actually love chicken and fish, but that they actually like the curry of chicken and fish. This was not an easy dialogue to write. I started heavily laughing in the theater after the first few words of this dialogue by Aamir Khan. I could not control it even after I stepped out of the theater! 

Very well, "PK" is the latest and probably the last super duper hit of 2014. December has once again proved to be great for Aamir Khan and his director friend. Raju Hirani has delivered one of the finest comedies with logical questioning for this year and so far. Well done to the entire cast and crew of "PK". Be ready to attend the award functions and grab a few yourselves!

PS: Awaiting the sequel with Aamir Khan and Ranbir Kapoor!!!

Dec 16, 2014

The toughest problem... Take Home #364

The toughest the problem that we handle is the deep and long-term the learning is going to be. Be in full spirits and put forward your best feet. Nevermind the toughness of the problem or the roughness of the road. Strive to resolve the matters. That's the best way!

Dec 12, 2014

Turning around... Take Home #363

Tough going can be turned around not by going away but by settling the matters being right there and fully involved in the situations. 

PS: Going away might work in some cases. Although it's nothing wrong from the perspective of the person who's involved, it's not a worthy benchmark. 

Dec 11, 2014

Being assertive... Take Home #362

Being assertively open and frank with our loved ones will make sure we are understood enough, if not immediately but within some time. Our love in being so will also be reciprocated. 

Relationships are not meant for hiding our wishes and hence suffering. Instead, a committed relationship always gives chance to express ourselves, or wishes, our fears either to fulfill of to overcome together. 

Interstellar... A two time watch!!

In this decade, Interstellar is the only movie I have watched twice in theatres. Not that I could not wait for its blue ray print to get released and that someone would download it for me. I just could not wait until all that happen. Also the visual effects and the back ground score are the major motivational factors that made me watch the movie for the second time. I watched the movie another time after a gap of one week. By doing that I allowed myself to be up to date about the scientific script which is the main thing to be understood and appreciated about the movie. I had gone through all the possible and available webpages to know the script better. With couple of doubts still remaining after all that home work, I had gone to the movie for the second time with a clear mind to watch few scenes with the maximum possible concentration. I could succeed!!!

Christopher Nolan's Dark Knight series was the main motivating factor behind me going to watch this movie on the first day of its where. Full marks to Nolan according to me. His selection of the scientific advisor is world wide complemented. And I second everyone in supporting that. I especially loved the back ground score at some scenes although not in all the scenes. When I watched it for the first time I thought this was a must watch. But when I watched it again, I was sure that it was a two time watch. Or one should know the script, do enough study and then go for watching it, but that will be the worst spoiler one can afford of. 

Just like the ending of the Inception, this movie too had a paradoxical ending. Leaving that, the rest of the movie is clean to be understood both scientifically and emotionally. The father-daughter sentiment is the emotional plus point for the movie along with the motive of the crew of the interstellar travel to do so for the human species and not for any particular person. The wormhole and the gravitational relativity of time are the scientific advantages which have just matched to the script. Hats off to the story writer, director and especially the scientific advisor.

All in all this movie is a marvel came my way in the recent years. It's been almost three weeks I watched the movie for the second time yet I can still manage to get lost into the thoughts of the movie whenever I want to. That's the impact it probably had on me. Needless to say that I'm eagerly waiting for the blue ray print of this movie get released in the internet, if I may say so here! If you haven't watched it yet, please do so first. And if you have already watched, do let me know what's your experience with the movie. Before I close this post, I would like to mention they I'm eagerly waiting to know how many Oscar awards this movie will have in its kitty. All the best to the team Interstellar.