Sunday, December 15, 2013

if only I were writing with a fountain pen...

then a precursor to me writing after such a long time would have been cleaning the pen (which in the past meant taking out the 13 different components of the Chinese made Hero Fountain pen, and washing them with water, blowing the water out of each part and finally drying with a soft cloth) and filling and draining royal blue Chelpark ink atleast two three times to make sure all the water comes out and there is only ink, and then finally giving the pen a couple of jerks to make the ink flow....and after this extended hour long activity, I'd be too tired to write, and so would postpone it to next time I am in the mood of writing, at which time I'd repeat the exercise again. 
Thanks God for the internet, and for blogs, but well, not really...typing on a screen can never be the same as writing in a leather bound notebook with your favourite gifted pen. 

good start to the post..."scripturient" is the word for 'having a consuming passion to write', as per Word Porn on Facebook, and I have been inching to write since weeks now. Without really knowing what to write about. :)

something about vacations...there are so many different kinds, the touristy vacation...go to a place, see all tourist spots that you read about in the innumerable tourist guides or heard from fellow tourists, visit some family, friends if you have them, take some family pics and be back...neither feeling relaxed, nor carrying a lot of memories, but just ensuring that you can claim LTA for that year...I don't like those conversations, you can list down all the touristy spots you have been too, but you can never make conversations about them...

why am I writing about this...ado n me are planning a trip to a couple of cities, and although they quite a number of 'touristy things to see' in the cities, they are not really tourist spots, they are just cities...but like any number of Indian (and foreign) cities, they have a soul of their own, and we just like to understand that soul, feel that vibe, live the place. But a lot of folks have been questioning that, why go to Benaras and Luckhnow, waha par to kya hi dekhoge...3 din main to bore ho jaoge....and so on and so fort. So well I, and we, just like living a city, instead of looking at dead buildings, we like seeing the life around those buildings...

anyways, was that a rant, not really, just my way of cleaning the pen I think...

AAP and its victory in Delhi, I am, politically, quite passive...its one of a very few topics that doesn't interest me, and my view is that most, if not all politicians are pretty useless. And frankly, am not sure if I think of AAP folks any differently. Well actually have no opinion...the only thing I would like to comment on, or maybe debate is whether their win in Delhi was because of their capability, or the junta's frustration with corruption? Is the Indian public so frustrated with the lack of governance and with corruption that they would support a novice political party... guess so. 
I do respect what AAP stands for, their stance against corruption is inspiring...whether they will be able to run a government, questionable, but then, am sure, they will learn. gonna stop now, the words are not flowing. 
I will however publish this instead of letting it rot in my drafts, because one of advices I give to people stuck in mental blocks is to just keep on trying things and wait for the flow to come...and so I should follow my own advice.

ciao...till the next time. 

Sunday, August 25, 2013

jobs...n apple post jobs

the blog is not really a review, the movie, jobs is really just a trigger to something I have wanted to write about for a some time. 
I have written about Apple before, couple of times before hand, and well Apple is one of those things I have been passionate about since the first time I held an iPhone in my hands. But I kinda realize now that I was really passionate about what Jobs created, and not really Apple, because, sadly, Apple without Jobs is not the same. As much as he tried to make a company which would stand on its own, doesn't seem he succeeded, and as someone recently said, we have seen this before, when Jobs left (or kicked out) last time around. 

anyways, the movie first, I had read the unflattering reviews, and well was not too keen on watching it, but then, not watching it was a thought which an ardent Apple fan(boy) would never get. And that really why I have become the Apple fanboy instead of just an Apple fan, reminds me of a cartoon someone sent me long time back, of a fanboy chanting Apple in the face of all evidence...well more about that later. 

Jobs the movie, one thing is for sure, Jobs the person wouldn't have let Jobs the movie out if he were alive. Kutcher, well he tried really hard, and almost fooled you in the first couple of scenes. For the first few seconds, I was amazed of how well he portrayed Jobs, but then he opens his mouth, and there is that unmistakable Kutcher accent n style, and slowly you start recognizing the Kutcher in Jobs in almost every scene. Lets be fair here, if this was a biopic about anyone else, and I would have said that Kutcher has done a brilliant job, but then for someone as demanding of perfection as Jobs, perfection was required from Kutcher. One of the things that might have also happened is that the first few scenes raised expectations so much that the rest of the movies you just noticed the differences (and exaggerations in the gait). Anyways, he did do a good job, and so did most of the case. I think casting Kutcher for jobs was a really good job, Kutcher is young, is invested in Technology in the Valley, and so understands the business and people. Casting as a whole was great. 

As for the movie, well don't think any movie can do justice to Jobs's story, As I was telling ado, for some people who have lived such full lives, multi part television series would have been more appropriate. In any case  the movie tried to capture how big an asshole he could be, and how he was a genius in the true sense, his complications and his contradictions, but well it didn't do a really good job. Issacson's book on the other hand, lays it out so well, and in such details, that if you have read the book, then the movie just seems incomplete. I also think that one of the reasons you can't really judge Jobs, one of the reasons you can't really make him a villain or a hero, one of the reasons you sympathize with him even when you hate him for the things he has done is because he was very random, and there many times might not have been any reasons, thought out reasons, behind a lot of his actions. They might just be spur of moment reactions, to which he had to stick because of his arrogance. Lisa I think was one of those. 

So Jobs the movie was, if not a disaster, surely not something Jobs would have approved off, lets hope the Aaron Sorkin one is better. They are sitting on it, it seems which is good, because one of the things i have learnt from Jobs is not to release something till you love it, and are proud of it to the point that you dream about it. Ofcourse, many times waiting so long just makes a product irrelevant, but then Apple usually released products which didn't exist, and so could set both the times and playing rules.  
Guess am losing focus, another thing Jobs won't approve of. 
On a side note, since the name Jobs was already taken, am wondering if it will be named iSteve or iJobs. 

So Apple, since I have written so much bull about Jobs, lets keep Apple short. 
When Jobs suddenly departed, I was hopeful, he must have left a vision for next three years, and surely Apple has a host of other brilliant people. Surely the company will not just survive, but will be as brilliant. And I kept that faith till just a few months back, till the time iOS 6 was announced. To tell the truth, my reaction to iOS 6.0 was of looked fresh, and well secretly, Apple finally released something new, but then over a period of time I realized, I had become on of those MS fans, who boasted about features which have been present in Apple products for ages. In this case, most of the stuff in iOS 6.0 was already present in Android for atleast 2-3 versions. And then I realized, one of the reasons I loved Apple was because they were different, yes the skeuomorphic design was a bit too much, and many times unnoticeable, but then it was different. And it was like those really expensive rugs which looked like they were bought from a road side shop, but then you realized that they were a hundred years old or were make with an 1000 knots per square inch where as your norman rug was just 50. The value of the product was in knowing that someone somewhere had spent a lot of resources and time to get it perfect, to make their vision of it become reality. As Jobs used to say, the value was because you knew it was as beautiful inside as it was on the outside. Android doesn't have that, no one has spent hours and hours making it perfect, it is a work of iterations, released because of market pressure. Apple products are not and thats what set them apart, made them superior. The feel of the product, in addition to of course the product itself. 
and that is why I think Apple without Jobs won't be the same, is not the same. It has brilliant people, but so does everyone, what it had was a person who was so passionate about his vision that he didn't even realized he was becoming an asshole defending it, a person who was defined by his products and not by who he was personally, a person who was arrogant enough to follow his vision to the hilt, who didn't care about what people thought of him. That takes balls, or as in this case, complete ignorance, which was the case with Jobs. 

And thats why one of my regrets, and there are many, will be that I never saw him in person, because I have never met someone like that, someone who lives life on his terms. Some people have come close, all of them have made a name for themselves, but none have gone to the heights as Jobs, maybe because none was so pure in his vision. and frankly Jobs was not a 100% either, but as much as there has been till now. 

and to all those who think I finally have given up on Apple, well, just because they are not as brilliant doesn't mean they are still not better then your product, be it android or windows. Just take a look at the new Mac Pro if you need an example. 


PS - unreviewed posting, might review later...too sleepy today. (thinking at the back of mind that Jobs would never have posted this today, unreviewed. :) )

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

love, lust n power...

the most irrational, lust n power

Couldn't have found a worse title for a blog on such a good movie, but this was my comment to ado post watching the movie...and it sounded cool. :)
the most irrational, lust n power. One was quite obvious, and if u let ur rationale think a bit more, a hint of the second, and if you just let it run wild, maybe lust as well.
Lootera was a not a movie which belongs to today, or yesterday...people praised it for the 1950's look, but frankly, the movie was from the decades bygone not just because of the sets n the setup, but because of its simplicity  its sparseness.
At the end of the movie I was left wanting because I don't like sad endings, I don't like unfinished stories...this one wasn't mind you, but I was left wondering what would happen to Pakhi, abandoned again with just memories, and a leaf. but also because of the sparseness of the movie, the ending felt sudden when it ended...but as the story, n the emotions settled in, as the thoughts flowed, I realized how complete the movie was. 
the movie was like a chocolate which slowly melts in your mouth, so slowly that you roll your tongue around to find the taste and which after it has ended, leaves traces of itself, which you can taste for the longest of times..and which leaves you wanting some more. 
we today are so used to so much happening in the movies we watch, so used to fast paced full masala movies, that such sparse movies instantly become 'slow'. But that sparseness gave the movie its flavor  gave the space for such subtle emotions, n expressions. 
Sonakshi as Pakhi was a revelation, I have not seen any actress of the modern era act so well, you could feel her longing, you could feel her joy. Everyone else was great, all muted to go along with the movie. The settings beautiful. It almost seems you need to put a bengali flavor to a movie to make it look classique n beautiful. Bongs are the french of Indian Cinema. 
this was a directors movie, it comes from the anurag kashyap camp, who thankfully expects the same quality from moves he produces as from the ones he directs. everything in the movie was just right, a good indicator of  that is that nothing really stood out, everything just blended into the story...
and the way he directed the emotions, the long shots of sonakshi, so that you can just absorb her emotions  the muted jokes, the build up, you almost feel the irony behind that last joke, you almost know its not gonna end well for them, but stil smile with them on that love seat...
Am sure people will like the ending, what I didn't like is the pain Pakhi will live through  go through a life with few memories n a leaf, as romantic as it sounds, its a tough life, and maybe at some point, maybe on your death bed, you ask what did I get out of it, the dead are gone, and I lived a dead life. Your suffering might get celebrated after the fact, as was devdas's, but you will not be alive to see it. 
collateral damage, something which always comes when men pursue their ambitions, family n friends, and most of all, the one you love, suffer the most. And the men feel the pain more then anyone else, and maybe that is why maybe even their failure counts for more then not trying, because even for that failure, they gave up so much, and felt the pain of what others gave up. but ambition should direct a man, power should lead to irrationality, because if it wouldn't have, we would not be here, we wouldn't have progressed. 
leaving behind a clip of one of my fav songs from the movie. as with the movie, the song was also not from today, or yesterday...