Tuesday, January 27, 2009

A little bit of modern art

Picture courtesy: Miequa Litas

Friday, January 16, 2009

The middle class dreams

A reaction to the 'Slumdog Millionaire'.

Movies, books and the other stuff that dreams are made of either focus on the very rich or the very poor.. It might be that I have not come across such a book, but not many are there that talk about the middling middle class.

Brings me to the mediocre existance of middle class.. No.. Wrong there.. For they are not mediocre. Their lives also have a fair share of disappointments, hopes, aspirations and a lot of hard work. You zoom in on an average middle class family in one of the metro suburbs. Father and mother often employed (earlier with a government job, great if there were chances of a bribe... now private sector jobs that just seem to go on and on,despite the HR's best efforts of arranging colorful birthday parties...), children studying the best private sector school that the parents can afford (often confused these children are... many of their friends from the upper classes have gizmos way cooool and way beyond their reach; and yet travelling back home they see the poverty on the streets, slums, the servant maid that comes to clean their house and in the thrift and pettiness of their parents trying to save that one rupee...) grandparents in a comfortable old home or far away in some 'native' place...
Now you ask me where are the dreams?? where are the aspirations???
This home has all the trappings of aspiration.. A better washing machine. a bigger tv.. no, make that an lcd or home theatre (but where will we hang that thing in such a small house??).. better school for the kids (do you know that last year 8 kids from their maths group cracked iit-jee??)
a small plot of land on the suburbs of the suburb (land in my name, with a house of my own built from a loan with XYZ bank.. the emis are screwing my happiness)..

hmm.. these are the aspirations and alas they look so common.. every other middle class bugger seems to have them. probably why that they are not the stuff of dreams.. but dreams nonetheless.

(picture courtesy - Slumdog Millionaire)

Friday, January 02, 2009

Welcome 2009!

New year resolution - to read more books and watch more moies than last year! (other than doing daily exercise and staying away from Subway sandwiches)

Actually on account of more spare time, had read a few books towards the end of last year - a few Agatha Christies, the White Tiger, Crab Walk, Sons and Lovers and Chomsky For Beginners. Lovely books all of them - though still figuring out Chomsky.

Picked up one of Chomsky's original books - and found out that I could not make head or tail of it. So properly chastened, I picked up Chomsky For Beginners. Felt rather like picking up the Idiots guide to Chomksy - but it was worth the effort. The book by David Cogswell, illustrated by Paul Gordon was a treat. Elemental Chomsky - insightful and simple. Yet difficult to integrate into our thoughts. Guess his ideas are a way of thinking - scientific enquiry like - not accepting all that is told and asking questions. One important insight, though a little personal, was that my world viewing lens (news channels, newspapers, Internet sites etc) was rather limited and narrow. Yet another New Year resolution - to visit more websites and possibly read a few more magzines.

As for movies - Dark Knight, Madagascar II, 300, Catch me if you can and a few other very forgetable ones like Jaane tu Jaane Nah. Hmm.. The list itself is depressing (need to strenghten the resolution to watch more movies). Actually only Dark Knight and Madagascar II are 2008 releases - so really need to strenghten that movie watching resolution.

Not particularly looking forward to any particular book this year - will enjoy a change maybe with some more books of non-fiction. As for movies - the idea is to see as many comedies as possible.