May 27, 2006

Review: The DaVinci Code

Da Vinci Code!

I went and saw the Da Vinci Code yesterday- 1st day 2nd show. (The bastards had already done 2snips, as far as i could detect, anyway..)
Anyway, the guy who play's Silas- Paul Bettany is really creepy! Couple of excellent jump-in-your-seat moments too- this considering that MOST of the audience, like me, had read the novel before and knew exactly what to expect, and when. I think it actually heightened the experience...coz whenever anything was to happen, i was on edge well before it actually did. Tom dada looks podgy- he's done better work before.
And i SO wish Kate Beckingsale had played Sophie, not Audrey Tautou. She was considered and lost out in Casting. You would agree it was a mistake too...see. and here. and HERE. and HERE. and HERRE. Oh BTW, Audrey Tautou's dad is a Dentist!

Trivia: Officials from Britain's Westminster Abbey refused to allow filming to take place in the Abbey, claiming that the book is "theologically unsound". Instead, the filming took place at Lincoln Cathedral in eastern England.

The whole theatre was filled with 20-somethings....and when the opening sequence to the movie started there sound of cheers & hoots was Really loud! Good stuff...especially when the girl sitting in front of you isn't wearing a bra and has a short hot-pink top cut halfway down to her belly button!!!

Monster Protest
There is going to be one BIG mother of a protest on Sunday...check this site for details:

The govt. might change its mind after all, if things go on like this.

May 26, 2006

Even more Quota thoughts

Flaws in the Mandal Commission Report:

  • Flaw1: Obsolete Figures
    • Figures on which the Mandal Commision's reports were based date back to the 1931 census(!!) report.
  • Why?
    • Because, beyond 1931, the National Census was not carried you along Caste lines. So a 1979 survey used pre-independance data.
  • So?
    • This renders the current implementation of these proposals as illogical and unreasonable.

  • Flaw2: OBC's? What OBC's!
    • The Mandal Commission mistook the Backward Classes and created an artificial group called OBC's.
  • So?
    • Despite the incompleteness of the data, the study, the analysis the commission grouped some 3700 castes as OBC's and recommended 27% reservation of educational seats and Govt. jobs.
  • Huh?
    • This unstructured and un-scientific study ended up including some of the most powerful and prosperous castes as OBS: the Yadavs of U.P & Bihar, the Meenas of Haryana & Rajasthan, the Kurmis & Koeris of U.P and, the Telugu Chettiars of A.P & Karnataka.. the Vokkaligas and Gowda's of Karnataka. (complete list here)

  • Flaw3: OBC's are WHAT percentage?!!!!
    • There is no definitive demographic evidence of the percentage that OBC's constitute.
  • What?
    • These are all official Govt. figures:
    • Mandal Commission: 52% (after a 2yr investigation: 1st Jan 1979 to 30th Dec 1980)
    • National Family & Health Survey: 29.8%
    • National Sample Survey Organization: 32%....(Latest)
  • So?
    • The latest figures (NSSO figures) show that 23.5% of all Univ. seats are already with OBC's...just 8.5% lesser than the NSSO's OBC-calculation.
  • Huh?
    • So what this means is that, all the current attempt to increase quotas will only be to compensate for the 8% left out. This would be classic over-representation.

May 24, 2006

But I felt bad??!

Things i found funny today:

The CNN IBN Rakhi Savant Interview:
Interviewer: Do you think the songs you do are vulgar?
Rakhi Sawant: NO! Jo log uss nazar sey dekhe hain unhe vulgar lagta hain. Vaise to mere costumes bahut glamorous hain.
(ok, video ho we believe you)

And then...

Manu Sharma's (Jessica Lal's now-acquitted killer) 6page hand written FRIKKING CONFESSIONAL goes like this:

"I reached Qutub Colonnade at around 11.30 pm along with Vikas Yadav, Amandeep Gill and Alok Khanna. We were already a ‘peg' down. A Thursday party was on and about 300 people were present. At around 2 am, I went to the restaurant inside and asked for more whisky"
"Malini Ramani, Jessica Lall and five to six people were standing there, they told me the whisky is finished. I felt bad. I took out my pistol and fired one bullet at the ceiling and another at Jessica Lall which hit her above her left eye. There was a great commotion. Somehow I managed to reach Tony Gill's place where Vikas Yadav and Alok Khanna were also present..."

"I felt bad".

"I felt bad"?????
"I felt bad"!!!!!!!

After reading that, i had a good laugh.
Then- i felt bad.

Today i carved a great amalgam! Ridge/Fossa/Cusp/Groove...all there.

May 21, 2006

More Quota thoughts

The quota-debate will never bacome a national movement. Coz there's a distinct difference between the North & South.

Why? Well according to me...
  • Coz the South has learned to live with quotas, and has made its peace with them.
  • Coz the ‘Hartal’ culture is not really a part of the protest-process in the South.
  • Coz the Supply-Demand equations (as far as seats are concerned) are much more favourable in the South.
  • Coz the OBC’s are not as marginalized in mainstream society as in the North.
  • Coz caste-politics is far more active and more of an issue in the North.

To reserve or not to reserve?

Am I For or Against the changes in the reservation policy?

I sat down to answer to myself where I stood on this issue, after watching 2 debates on CNN IBN (moderated horribly by that damn Sagarika Ghose woman) and another on Headlines Today.

I’ve been feeling a bit muddled in my head about where I actually stand, and so I decided to make up my mind on an issue that not only is bound to affect my education in the future, but also in the immediate present is an important issue.

The fact that I am a Merit student in a Govt. institution makes it all the more necessary to crystallize my views on the subject. And then on top of all that, I am a member of the Medical-fraternity that is leading the protests. And that too in a college that is actively involved in the whole thing.

While thinking about where I would stand, I realized I had some ideals that I was not willing to compromise on, namely:
  • The country must progress at all costs.
  • It is not progress if it remains concentrated to a section of society.
  • Although uniform progress for all is a utopian ideal, it is not unreasonable to expect that SOME progress must be felt amongst all, no matter what magnitude the change may be to different sections of society.
  • No one section must be unfavourabely depreived of the chance to improve according to their potential, no matter which end of the spectrum they come from.
Im still thinking about it...

Room 7 Woes

I’m posted in Prosthodontics…Department 7 in Govt. Dental College, Fort, Bangalore.

Alternate mailing address: The Fires Of Hell, Fort, Bangalore. And kindly address all fan mail to Dr. P, the HOD and Slave-driver-of-the-month.

When students meet each other, they’ll usually ask each other where they’ve been posted.

So a typical conversation would go like this:

“Hey, where you posted?”

“Oh, I’m in 2. You?”

“I’m in 5. So how’s it going?”

“Cool. Hey, we saw a really interesting case today…”

“Really, what case?”

(Conversation continues)

But this is what happens to me nowadays:

X: “Hey, where you posted?”

ME: “I’m in 7.”

X: “Oh.”


X: “uhh…Till when.”

ME: “16th of May.”

X: “Hmm…”

X: “Okay, Best of luck man. I gotta go.”

X” “Bye.”

ME: “Bye.”

The department is that hard.

Well, the work is pretty okay as such. But it’s long, intricate and physically very demanding. Get past that and you can learn to appreciate the subject- as long as the work turns out OK. Coz, make the slightest error and your end up FUBAR’ed instantly.

Vaseline won’t work …you will get rogered, you will learn to take it like a man, and you will weep like a little girl (If & when you are told to start all over). But its all good in the end…I haven’t known another situation where the saying “The finest steel passes through the hottest fires” rings more true. It’s sounds really corny, but at the end of the posting, as a Dentist, you will be better in many ways.

(am no longer posted in 7..i’m just posting this entry late)

PG Exams

A Post-Graduate...or PG-exam is the like the Eco-Challenge. It’s an extreme event...literally!

You have to undergo grueling training for months.

When it starts you have to be in great shape…mentally and physically.

You sometimes have to suffer through the night to reach a Pit stop.

You ­need your team to be with you every step of the way.

There’s a lot of luck involved.

Towards the end it just seems to go on and on.

And when it’s over you wonder how you did it.

Rajiv Gandhi University just got done with its PG examinations. Phew! How do those P.G’s do it??? A practical examination that lasts for 3 days and ends in a Spanish-inquisition-meets-Clinton-impeachment-hearing-style-grand-viva where you defend your Thesis. Oof!

As a worker-ant, I got sent to collect the grub for the examiners-lunch from a nice hotel. The PG-student who appeared for the examination was a nice guy, who helped us Undergrad’s a lot, so I was more than happy to oblige.

He passed with flying colors. Examiners are nice-guys when their bellies are full, you know!

(...Inshallah, I shall take part in the Eco Challenge too one day!)…(or is ‘one day too’ more correct?)

BSNL - Aggro is just a call away.

(Ok...I decided that the next best thing to do when your internet connection is down is to spend the bore-time getting up to speed with your blog material.)

A couple of days back my telephone-line went dead....BSNL, naturally. So no broadband.

Now you all know that the Dataone-service has a separate Data-line that accompanies the Voice-line...a 'line pair' (that’s what I was told). Naturally I didn’t know that; I’m a Dentist after all. Within 48hours my voice-line was restored and all I thought all was fine...until I turned my modem on and stared stupidly at it for 5mins wondering why the correct lights weren't coming on.

It turns out, the BSNL guys these days don’t actually fix a broken wire and shit, when a phone conks out....they just assign a new wire to the line and the phone is brought back to life (that’s what I was told). Now, if your have a broadband connection, your data-line should accompany your voice-line when it gets reassigned...that is, if the BSNL linemen actually realize that you have a Dataone connection. They didn’t. (That’s what I was told). So I had a new voice-line and the old (and still dead) data-line arriving at my home. So while my landline was functional, my internet connection remained dead.

Naturally I didn’t know this; I’m a dentist after all. So for the next 3-4 days I kept turning on my PC and staring stupidly at my modem for around 5mins each time, till I finally had the sense to call up BSNL and lodge a complaint. My complaint was duly noted, I was given a docket number, promised repair within 36 hours, made to feel (a) generally pleased, and (b) to answer a prompt "YES….NO" when asked if I was "satisfied with the interaction, and was there anything else I could be assisted with?"

Time travel 3 days forward and my response to the same question has now changed to

“NO! …YES!”, since I am NOT satisfied with the interaction and YESS I can be assisted with something else. This is because, INSPITE of duly noting my complaint, giving me a docket number, promising me repair within 36 hours, and even making me feel generally pleased…my Dataone connection is still flat lining. Aaaarrrrgh!!!

I submitted this one to the RSI monthly-club-newsletter...will print prolly by july or august. It had to be an Army theme naturally since its an army-club. zogger!

Army Fairy Tales

I’m an Army-Brat. I’ve grown up in Army-stations, and, as with most army-kids, I spent the early parts of my childhood in remote stations…read lots of wildlife, jungle, and plenty of places to go exploring. In other words, every fauji-mother’s worst nightmare.

These were situations that few civilians would face. They were unique to the Defence-janta...and they prompted unique solutions from the maternal care-giver.

What resulted from this innate tendency of mine to disappear in to the nearest patch of shrubbery and my mother’s innate tendency to prevent me from doing so, was a particularly humorous version of reality that my mother wove for me. The warp of fairy-tales and the weft of parental caution were skillfully meshed to create a fabric that was draped around my malleable mind. Protect and steer me it did, and it was very successful too, at keeping my tireless feet from carrying me off in the direction of trouble.

These stories took firm root in my dreamy mind and I considered them gospel truth.

So, the small mud path on the way home from school, that lead towards the jungle, suddenly became the home of a grumpy wolf who hated children. And naturally there was a teensy little shark who lived in the pond beyond the colony. Of course, after the monsoons, snakes used to secretly meet each other behind the big Banyan tree and didn’t want anyone to know of their headquarters. And I knew perfectly well that the monkeys that used to visit our bungalow had a king far away in the jungle who turned little boys into monkeys.

It wasn’t all bogeymen and monsters either. For when the power would go, hundreds of little soldiers would come out of the nooks to guard my room. And if brushed my teeth at night the Tooth-fairy would give me a small gift when the time came for the teeth to fall off.

As time passed, I outgrew these home-spun fairy-tales. I recognized them as cock-and-bull stories; traded them for Enid Blytons and Hardy Boys, and then even forgot quite a few. But I don’t regret them one bit. I still look back on the few that I do remember and have a good laugh. To a fauji-mother, they brought peace of mind and a few extra moments of rest. To a wee-sized brat, they brought hours and hours of wonder and amazement. And they continue to figure in my adult life- bringing humor and laughter.

I’m sure anyone who grew up in wild-cantonnments will have similar stories to tell. They say, Necessity is the mother of Invention. If that be the case, then I owe the Army for living a fairy-tale in my childhood

Corny will get printed...ask Jackie Collins. :)

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