Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Niel Pert, Rush and the Buddha

Niel Pert of Rush had picked up Harish Johari's painting 'Leela, The Game of Self Knowledge' as cover art for their new album Snakes and Arrows.

Leela (Hindi for 'the game') was at least 2,000 years old, and had been created by Buddhist saints and sages as a game of karma-like many games, a metaphor for life...The Leela player rolls a single die, said to be affected by his or her karma, and moves around the board. Each square on the grid represents a stage of consciousness or existence, and the player is raised to higher levels by arrows, and brought low by snakes.

The children's game 'Snakes and Ladders' (sometimes called 'Chutes and Ladders') was adapted from Leela by the British during the 19th century Colonial period. After that, the original game almost disappeared-apparently only two gameboards existed in India when scholar Harish Johari revived the game and brought it to America in the 1970s.

Talking about the album itself "this disc is really an instruction manual for how one conducts themselves with grace and hope through unendurable pain and the vagaries of life". Well, ive had two to three listens so far....seeming to quite like it.

Monday, September 24, 2007

GMR Sucks!!

Iam a hard core patriot! Not exaggerating, but one of the reasons i took up this Dubai job was because i thought here was an Indian company in foreign soil doing business - much like how a Brit might have felt working for East India Company! So, this note is more a " feel bad" thing.

Now to the point - was in Delhi recently on a business visit. Ya, things are getting better and there is a emerging Indian, middle class is growing, shopping malls everywhere and all that! But god damn it - i was still taking a damn Cycle Rickshaw to travel from my Guest House to the Office everyday for the 4 days i stayed there - off delhi in Ghaziabad.

Now to the real point!! That's the state of our infrastucture and particularly the Indra Gandhi International airport, Delhi. It sucks big time! Was early to the flight ( 5 hours instead of the regular 3 before the flight; my eagerness to get home i guess). Dint find a place to sit at the lobby - no chairs - dint bother me - so drew a luggage trolly and sat on it in a corner - next to a garbage can - we are like this only. (PS: The garbage can was because that was the only calm clearing around, in case you were wondering "weirdo"!) Was reading a book when this guy come near close and plonks a sandwhich into the bin and says it loud "shit - its fucking terrible" - a whiteman - obviously not liking the Coffee Day sandwich.

Looking around then did i realise what the airport was- a museum of 1970's collection plastic tables and televisions, a shop selling coffee , a medical shop that will not have benedryl, a kashmiri handicrafts store that also carries about 12 second hand books ( thats your book shop by the way), a few other completely useless things like a Yo China food place that just serves just pepsi, and loud boarding announcements for entertaintment, maybe a few roaches to kill if the boarding annoucements bored you. Truthfully, post immigration, maybe its a little betterm but then what with the immigration ques, youre not going to get there untill half hour before youre flight.

And what got me was the lousy advertsing/banners ( id kill that agency that did it) of GMR that said cute things like "better lighting coming up"; "bigger smiles coming up". I had looked up Wiki and this is what they had to say " Delhi Airport has been going through major upgrades since Fraport, Airport Authority of India, Eraman Malaysia, and GMR Infra. have been granted the contract to manage and build the airport over a 35 year time". 35 years pal; hear that "35 years" - i guess GMR is on schedule!!

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Cows in the Middle East

Would not do this but this is a gem ...its a lift from http://xnegvx.wordpress.com/tag/dubai/ !

The cow system in Middle East

You have two cows. You create a website for them and advertise them in all magazines. You create a Cow City or Milk Town for them. You sell off their milk before the cows have even been milked to both legitimate and shady investors who hope to sell the non-existent milk for a 100% profit in two years time. You bring Tiger Woods to milk the cows first to attract attention.

You have two cows. They’ve been sitting there for decades and no one realizes that cows can produce milk. You see what Dubai is doing; you go crazy and start milking the heck out of the cows in the shortest time possible. Then you realize no one wanted the milk in the first place.

You have two cows. Some high government official steals one, milks it, sells the milk and pockets the profit. The government tells you there is just one cow and not enough milk for the people. The people riot and scream death to the government and carry Iranian flags. The Parliament, after thinking for 11 months, decides to employ ten Bahrainis to milk the cow at the same time to cut back on unemployment.

KUWAIT SYSTEM:They do not have cows. Milk is imported since no locals can or would milk a cow.

Since milking the cow involves nipples the government decides to ban all cows in public. The only method to milk a cow is to have a cow on one side of the curtain and the guy milking the cow on the other.

You have two cows. After a huge public speech in which you declare cow milking as a landmark initiative and appointing a new government body in charge of cow milking. You first spend a year doing nothing, then you spend 1 year on planning to milk them properly and safely, another one year to get the proper ministry approvals to milk them. By the time you actually get around to milking the cows, the cows are dead.


This is what the Lambo MURCIÉLAGO looks like! What with its Carbon Fibre and Steel body, 12 Cylinder, 6 litre, 420 bhp, 330 kmph top speed - it will put you back by at least $350,000!

And, if you happen to be driving it in Dubai, this is what it can look like!!!

Sunday, September 9, 2007

experiments in film

A collection of my pictures of people - called Portraits. Put them together with Window movie maker and added Right here right now by Van Halen (though would have liked something more poignant) - results quite pleasing for a first timer!