Thursday, September 30, 2010

What is a Fence?

Image credit - BackyardProjects

A Wall, yet see-through
Giving a feeling of being there, but not actually in it
Creating boundaries, hence creating disputes
Barrier for movement, but safeguarding safety 
Enclosure of ownership, injecting pride
A mental hurdle, restricting thoughts.

Written for "Theme Thursday"

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

The Kill

Image courtesy - TopNews
Small stomach
Pierce micro holes
Suck human blood
Swelled red belly

Spread two wings
Ready to nap in swamp
Little did it know
Cruel man was faster

Swat – came the blow
Blood spot on the arms
Crushed body and scattered legs
Victorious smile on face

To celebrate the Kill.

Written for ABC Wednesday

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Dabangg – What a movie!

What’s new or different in Dabangg?
What made this movie a hit?
What was the need for any heroine in the movie?
How could this movie collections beat(or be on par) “3 idiots” collection?
Why has Dabangg range of spectacles not been released in market?

I could not get the answers for the above questions.

But I could answers to the questions below –
Isn’t this the age-old story of bad vs good and brother vs brother story?
If it was not Salman, would the movie run to packed houses?

But everything is not bad about the movie. Here are a few good things

Good things
Music – The songs are good. Though there is nothing different or innovative about the way they are shot.
Dabangg shirt collection is NOT released – I wonder if anybody would have bought it having seen the last scene where the shirts tears off in multiple places just by anger.

The movie is full of directorial\editing glitches. Lack of acting is something we should expect in a Sallu movie. Class actors like Anupam Kher and Vinod Khanna are wasted in the movie. At the end of the day, Salman and his family are richer by making a small budget movie.  

I hope the comparisons with 3 idiots ends with collections only. 3 Idiots was a fun + thought provoking movie. Dabangg is purely “Keep brains out of cinema” movie.

Monday, September 27, 2010


Bring him on the road
Shower with flowers
Drown with sacred hymns

My first tryst with Haiku art style of writing. It's not easy.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Pancharangi (ಪಂಚರಂಗಿ) styleಗಳು

This blog is not a review on the Kannada movie, Yogaraj Bhat's Pancharangi.
ಯೋಗರಾಜರಿಗೆ ಕಥೆ ಇಲ್ಲದೆ ಸಿನಿಮಾ ಮಾಡೋ talent ಇದೆ. ಆ ಸಿನಿಮಾ ಚೆನ್ನಾಗಿರುತ್ತೆ ಅನ್ನೋದು guarantee ಆಗಿದೆ. ಪಂಚರಂಗಿಯ inspiration ಪಡೆದು ನಮ್ಮ ಕಥೆ ಬರೆಯುವ ಒಂದು ಚಿಕ್ಕ ಪ್ರಯತ್ನ. Read this in the conversation style of Ananth Nag and Diganth in Pancharangi.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Karna's place in Hindu Calendar

Karna is one of the most admired characters of Mahabharata. He is loved by us for multiple reasons. Generosity, dedication to friend being some of them. But lot of pity him, because he lived like a "sutha putra" though he was actually a king. We lovingly call him Dhana shoora veera Karna.

Our Hindu calendar also has given this man a place.

Karna went to heaven after his death. He was treated royally there. But for food he was given only gold, pearls and precious stones. He asked for some edible stuff and the reply was surprising. "During your stay on earth, you never gave food as dhan. You always were generous enough to give gold and ornaments. Others atleast do the shraddh and give food on that day. You have not even done that. What you give on earth is what you get in heaven."

Karna explained his situation. "I never knew that food charity was most sacred. And I never knew who my parents or ancestors were. How could I perform shraddh? When I got to know my parents and ancestors, I died."

Hearing this valid argument, the authorities at heaven made an exception. They allowed Karna to go back to earth for 15 days. In these 15 days, Karna performed the shraddh of his ancestors and did anna(rice) dhana to a lot of people.

These 15 days are known as pitru paksh in the Indian calendar. This is the period when Hindus perform special functions as a tribute to their ancestors.
Karna's place in calendar is etched for times to come.

PS- Pitru Paksh will start in 3 days from now. It will end with Mahalaya Amavasya.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Sky-catchers of India

India is home to plenty of big tall buildings. Unlike other nations, these big tall ones were built in an ancient era. Wonderful to view, these places are a pleasure to visit. I don't call them skyscrapers, they are some of the sky-catchers of India.
Time to plan your vacations!

When Kempe Gowda established Bangalore, he built four towers across the city. This one is today in Lalbagh (a botanical garden) in the heart of Bangalore.
 The Vijaya Vittala temple in on the Bangalore-Tumkur National highway. This place also has an indoor statue of the Vishwaroopa darshan of Lord Krishna.

The St Philomina church of Mysore is a regular on the tourist visits. This massive structure resembles the Spanish church in Barcelona.

 The Jayachamarajendra Wodeyar statue is one of the symbols of Mysore, Karnataka. The golden color top with the majestic Wodeyar at the centre is a prominent place of the city.

 Chamundeshwari temple of Mysore, Karnataka is a must see when you visit this beautiful city. To sit and watch the city from the hill is a pleasant experience. 

The rich and marvelous Mysore palace is unimaginably vast. It's a visual treat to watch this during Dussehra. Lights and cultural events make the palace special during this time. I have not seen a richer palace than this anywhere else.

On the way to Mysore from Bangalore, there is a place called Sangam. This place is where Kaveri meets one of her tributaries - Lokapavani. This temple is at the junction. A thrilling boat ride (called locally as theppa) will entertain you here.

Srirangapatna is a small town on the way to Mysore from Bangalore. This was the capital of the HyderAli and Tipu-Sultan during their reign of Mysore. Their tomb is a major attraction of the place. The wooden palace and the Sriranganatha swamy temple are a pleasant watch.
Coorg, in Karnataka is the birthplace of the famous river - Kaveri. There is a small Tibetian settlement nearby called Bylakuppe. The monastery here is famous. This is the entrance to the Golden temple there. Visit the place when the monks start their prayer and get amazed at the music they create.

Close the hill station of Chickamagalur, Karnataka - there is this small and beautiful temple in the place called Heremagalur. The priest recites the mantras and shlokas that are translated to Kannada.

The towering Murudeshwara temple in coastal Karnataka stands right on the edge of the Arabian Sea. This is the tallest gopuram in Karnataka (if not in India). This was under construction when we caught it in our camera. Murudeshwara also has a huge Shiva statue. The sea-side restaurant is a pleasant eatery. 
  The main temple in Murudeshwara has the smaller gopuram, painted in gold.

The massive Madurai Meenakshi temple in Tamil Nadu is a treat to watch. It's hard to believe but true that we need a guide to roam inside the temple.
Srirangam is an island formed by river Kaveri, in Trichy (Tamil nadu). This populous land is the home to a big temple. This sky catcher is the main entrance to the temple.
The Brihadeshwara temple of Tanjavur, Tamil Nadu is famous for its massive Lingam and the big bull. There is a special significance to the gopuram here. If I remember right, the shadow of the gopuram does not fall on the ground. Be careful about the temperatures and burning hot stones in the courtyard.
Tiruavanamalai in Tamil Nadu is a unique place on special days. People visit the temple but also take a walking tour around the malai(hill) on special days.
The Bhandsagar Jain temple is a famous temple in Bikaner, Rajasthan. When I reached the place at around 1pm, I caught this snap.

Ranakpura Jain temple (in Rajasthan) is a massive marble temple. The sculptures are great and you can easily spend half a day out there.
The towering Jaisalmer fort(in Rajasthan) is a treat to watch. This is a living fort with houses and shops within the fort. A walking tour is recommended.

The Gadisagar lake of Jaisalmer(in Rajasthan) was almost dry when I went. But the center tomb, which was the kings, summer retreat was a treat to watch. The black fishes are amazing in this lake.
Jaswant Thada, in Jaisalmer is the place to watch the sunset. Here we capture the moon rise over the place.

The Umaid Singh palace of Jodhpur, Rajasthan is now a star hotel. This massive structure was built to create employment when the place had a drought.

Uff!!! - You know that you have a lot to cover in India. And damn sure that this is just the tip of the Iceberg.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Clarity or No clarity

Clarity on shadow

Clarity on Insect

There are 2 snaps here. Both were taken with the intention of capturing the insect that accidentally sat on my watch. Both were taken with a normal digital camera. The first one accidentally caught the shadow of the tree above me. And the second captured the actual insect.  I have no great photography skills, but still interested to get the technical details on why this happened. (focal length, exposure blah blah).

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Management lessons from a Bee

A bee stayed at his jam packed home happily. One day it went out to fectch some nectar to prepare honey.

It entered a beautiful garden.
Without looking at all the available possibilities(in his case flowers), first it entered the yellow flowers at the enterance.

After having sucked most of the nectar and half tummy filled, it went to the next not so nice creamish pink colour. It was a wrong choice as the flower was dry and had very little nectar. The bee wasted time and energy to suck out the remaining nectar from the dry flower.

After this, still without exploring - the bee went on to a slightly more attractive looking pinkish flower. There happily it fed and got its stomach full.

As the bee took off to return to its home, it saw the most bright & attractive flower at the end of the garden. It was tempted to taste the nextar of this attractive flower. So it landed on this flower and sucked the nectar.

As the bee drank too much of it, the stomach burst open and the bee collapsed dead.

Moral of the story -
  • The good things may not be the first things of life.
  • Make the right choices, else you will waste your resources.
  • Once you are content, control your temptation and greed.


 PS - As I am selected as a featured subscriber to the photo & travel blog - Pixellicious Photos, I would try to compile photo blogs for this week! 

Monday, September 13, 2010

Hand-made Ganesh idols

After watching a movie, we decided to have a drink – Tender Coconut water (TCW). As the roadside vendor chopped the coconuts, we saw some very peculiar Ganesh idols behind him.
Ganeshas on the stone bench

Sitting on a stone slab, these Ganeshas were designed & colored differently. The rat was separated from the Ganesh idol. The idol itself did not have the usual shape. The colors used were not the traditional ones. At first look, it was like a Ganapathi made from clay. Curiously we asked the TCW vendor about the Ganesha.
He said that he prepared them in his free time (not for sale). He used the thin sand + "clay like mud", that he found around to prepare the idols. He used tomatoes for decoration.
The artist, his creation & his profession

This very creative & shy road-side vendor has set an example for everybody. I hear complaints about the cost of the idol going up and becoming unaffordable. So be creative and create your own idols.
There are schools & posters which educate about the use of non-painted Ganesha idols. Schools can learn from this man and start teaching children making Ganesh idols in their craft classes.

This guy is @ Big bazaar road and Water tank road junction, Katriguppe, Banashankari 3rd stage, Bangalore - 560085

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Silver screen is Gold

Finally the big Kannada film stars have entered the small screen. Bollywood stars are and were part of the small screen since some-time. Amitabh (Big B) started with KBC. Soon a lot of stars followed him. Salman Khan, Akshay Kumar, Shah Rukh Khan were seen on the small screen hosting small shows. The acceptance level of each of them were varied. Now ladies are entering the small screen arena with Priyanka Chopra’s entry into a adventure reality show.

Amitabh hit a big mine by taking to small screen. His financial problems got solved and he became a big star even among people who are not keen on movies. His big screen ventures increased after this break.

Seeing some benefits, Kannada movie stars are making a beeline to the small screen. Shivrajkumar is the latest to make an entry with the show – Naan iruvude nimagagi.
Earlier Ramesh Arvind started a chat show. Now he is hosting a game show on one of the many Kannada channels. Kichha Sudeep hosted a reality show in which girls from city stay in village. The reverse version (village guys in city) is being hosted by two time “best actress” winner – Radhika Pandit.

But why such a move by the big screen stars?

Financial benefits are the key – There is relatively easy money in this business. Easy and big money. Bollywood stars command crores for an episode.

Scheduling is easier - There are no major date problems.  4-5 episodes can be shot in studio on one day. On the contrary, a 3 hr movie shoot would take more than a month to shoot.

Connect with the people – With TV reaching majority of the houses, this is the easiest way to stay connected with the people.

Build a sagging carrier – Big B is a big example for this. Kannada movies are not doing so well, these days. By becoming a hero among the masses (helping them on the show), there is a very good chance to gain back the popularity, which is what the stars want.

Retirement benefits – Many stars who are retired(semi-retired) see this as a benefit to keep themselves engaged. Srinath hosted a couple show for a long time. Lakshmi & Kushboo also host talk shows on the small screen. The channels also gain by the star value they command.

All in all, it’s a welcome move to see big stars on the small screen.

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Monkey story - Every story

*Click on the pictures to view it bigger
Protection - As the humans converge, the mom pulls back the baby
Security - The scared monkey protects its child, holding it tight
Attack - Mom turns aggressive and tries to shoo away the onlookers
Safe heaven - When you are secure and have food, life is bliss

The pictures were taken in Yercaud. As the people flocked around the monkey family...these pics were shot by me and my wife. The pictures show a story...Story of everybody.

Saturday, September 04, 2010


This post has been published by me as a part of the Blog-a-Ton 14; the fourteenth edition of the online marathon of Bloggers; where we decide and we write. To be part of the next edition, visit and start following Blog-a-Ton.
The smart school kids (or smartly dressed school kids) in their skirts and shorts were curious. Some of them were analyzing the brownish horse he rode. Some were curious to understand the dressing sense of his. The on-lookers were pointing fingers towards him. They were thinking that it’s a movie shoot. Or perhaps a new ad campaign by one of the upcoming big brands. Some of them were too busy in chewing their bread, wrapped in silver foils as they jogged towards their morning office bus.

The guy on the horse was equally curious. He saw the onlookers. “Why are they so poor? Why are they wearing clothes that do not cover the body? Don’t they have homes to sit and eat food?” he thought. He was now getting used to the surprises.

Kempe Gowda, horseman had returned in the night. Returned to the land he was fond off, after a long long time. The land he was born in and land he had formed - Bengaluru. He had permission to visit his land for one day from the God of heaven.

He expected the jungle to be dark in the night. But surprises started there. It was not night. It was bright and well lit. And where is the jungle? The jungle which had trees, animals and lakes had given way to big forts. These were not the stone forts that he once built. These forts were of glass and something which the Kempe Gowda had never seen – hard mud, he imagined.

The paths were very broad. Being from a battle background, Gowda imagined that the people were mostly at war here. And to move their armies the paths are wide.

Gowda saw several boards but in languages he never understood. A few were in Kannada his mother-tongue. Even the boards in his mother tongue were actually not Kannada. He did not understand what Nike, Reebok etc meant. He imagined that the language had grown now and there were more words joining the vocabulary.

He wanted to move towards the place – Kora - mangala. He had fondly named this place after his lovely daughter. As he moved along the brightly lit broad ways, he realized that he had no idea about the direction to take. Kempe Gowda knew that he can reach Kora-mangala if he reaches one of the 4 watch towers he had built. But how to reach the watch tower was his problem. Few steps ahead, he found a board which had depicted the tower he had built with an arrow. He rode on the direction shown in the board.

Finally saw the tower he had built. It was now painted in yellow. It was on the same rock which he once built. There was a beautiful garden around the tower. He read the name as Lal-bagh. He did not understand what it meant. And there was the lake inside the garden. He left the horse to drink the water there. And he laid down to take some rest on the grass around.

It was morning, when Gowda woke up. He saw lot of people standing in a circle & laughing loudly. He thought that the people are very happy. He also saw people walking with dogs tied to their hands. He thought that the dogs are also part of the army now. There were no horses around…which was a big surprise for him. Gowda took bath in the lake and mounted his horse to move towards Kora-mangala.

As he exited the garden, Gowda saw a new Bengaluru. Kids in skirts, shorts, men and women in long trousers – Sometimes he could not figure the gender by looking at the person. But he also saw lot of weapons which made lot of weird noises. Some of these weapons had 2 wheels and some 4 and bigger ones had more. People were on these weapons and used the broad paths to move. He imagined that if he had such weapons during his days, he would have conquered the Mysore region. The weapons blew out smoke, flashed red lights and blew ear piercing horns. Gowda realized that these were the kind of artillery the new war-men used to attack enemies. He also realized that in this fast paced weapon collection, the horse would not be suitable.

As he moved along, he saw big pictures of men and women on clothes or some thick material. He thought – “People have no clothes to wear, but to make drawings they use such big clothes…What foolishness?”. There were also garlands on these big pictures – Some of these pictures were of men carrying swords, with blood on it. Gowda thought these were some war-heros or the new age Gods!

As he managed to move along the new age weapons, Gowda knew that he had lost way. He entered a big plain ground. There were some men dressed in whites. Some were covered from head to toe. Legs were covered, they had covered their faces with thick hats. A couple had some thick sticks in their hands. Round stone like objects were thrown at them and they defended and hit them. Quickly Gowda realized that it was a war game. He sat and watched the game for sometime. In the mean time, the horse fed on the lush grass on the side of the ground.

As evening dawned, Kempe Gowda’s hopes of seeing Kora-mangala had faded. He was disappointed. As he approached a junction of broad paths, he saw red, yellow and green lights. He continued to ride the horse when the other weapons had stopped at the junction. All of a sudden a big 6 wheeler weapon, hit him and the horse - hard. Gowda fell and started bleeding. People surrounded him and he heard lot of noises. He thought that he would die for the second time, this time he was ill-equipped to face the massive weapon. He was put on another weapon which went with some music and great speed. As the weapon moved, he saw a big black statue of himself on the way. This was also garlanded with beautiful flowers. Little did anybody else realize that the same Kempe Gowda was alive between them now.

Gowda was being treated for his injuries by other warriors. These warriors were in an uniform – white, like the ones on the big ground. He thought that they would ask him to play the battle now on the ground. Soon he slept.

When he woke up, he was back in heaven. His return to Bangalore\Bengaluru had shown him that he was no-body now in the place he created. He was not sure if he was happy or sad.

KempeGowda was the ruler of Yelahanka(now part of Bangalore) was & is believed to be the creator of Bangalore. He built 4 towers in the 4 corners of the place and named it as the boundary of the place. He died in 1569. This small satire is a imaginary view of his, if he was to visit the city today.
The fellow Blog-a-Tonics who took part in this Blog-a-Ton and links to their respective posts can be checked here. To be part of the next edition, visit and start following Blog-a-Ton.

Thursday, September 02, 2010

Indian connection to Pak match fixing

Amir, Salman & Asif (Getty Images)
The 5 Why's is a very good management tool to find the root cause of a problem.

Thinking about the latest controversy surrounding Pakistan cricket, I did a RCA (root cause analysis) using the 5 Why's technique.

Not surprisingly I found an Indian connection.

Why? – Why did Pak cricketers indulged in match\spot fixing?
Because Pak cricketers are in huge debt.
Why? – Why are they in huge debt?
Because they invested money thinking that they can earn enough  from IPL
Why? – Why dint they earn enough from IPL?
Because Pak cricketers were not allowed to participate in IPL
Why? – Why were they not allowed to play in IPL?
Because Indians think that Pak was behind 26/11 attack on Mumbai. Pak does not acknowledge its role.
Why? – Why did Pak terrorists attack India?
Because they cannot see India prosper. They cannot see a peaceful India. They are jealous of Indian growth.

So after these 5 whys – we know the Indian connection to the Pakistan's match fixing.