Wednesday, June 21, 2006

I misfired

Apologises for pushing starlet Rakhi Sawant to the rock bottom, ridiculing her molestation accusations as a baseless, sly publicity stunt. Being a member of the media, I should have been more discerning before passing judgments about such sensitive issues.

However, the images on Aaj Tak opened only one side of the story. They showed, over and over again in true, in-your-face Aaj Tak style, how an 'innocent' kiss at a birthday party was blown out of proportion. With only bare-bodied, gyrating moves to go for Rakhi, one was quick to belittle her.

Much later, disturbing images of the same episode was telecast on CNN-IBN. The inhuman way in which the little-known singer Mika grabbed the item girl for a long smooch is simply outrageous. No woman, dressed skimpily or otherwise, would want a man to treat her in such a filthy way.

That leads to the common notion, which is what I fell prey for as well, that women who wear revealing clothes are game for anything. It's just a 'male chauvinist' way of thinking, I admit. The way a woman dresses does not necessarily imply that they are willing to undress their values and culture.

In a society like ours, women are forced to dress in a certain manner so as not to attract any unwanted male attention. And if they are bold enough to shake away from the norms, they are immediately typecast as 'loose' women.

Does it mean that a woman in a skimpy outfit does not have the right to decide whom she wants to kiss? Looking at Mika's filthy act, in front of the media, one could well imagine how he would ogle at other women/dancers in his troupe behind the cameras. Mika should not be allowed to walk away after committing this crime. He should learn not only to sing tunes to woo women, inorder to sell his album, but learn to respect them in real life as well.

And for all the men out there, the next time you look up a girl's skirt, remember that her heels are just as sharp enough to stab as well!

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Yeh Hai Mumbai Meri Jaan

The breathtaking Marine Drive, rickety yellow taxis, congested locals, greasy vada pavs, rusty bookstalls at Churchgate, shopaholics on Linking Road and picturesque Madh Island, these are just a few images of Mumbai that will always remain etched in my memory.

Having moved to Bangalore, I am physically disconnected from the city. Now I catch glimpses of the city, which was home to me for three years, only through the TV or movie clips.

Like all non-Mumbaikars, the city seemed harsh in the beginning, but soon embraced me into its madhouse environment. With each passing day I developed a strong bond with the city. I soon enjoyed the roller-coaster Mumbai ride and valued the importance of 'living on my own terms'. I, no longer, had to worry about how I dressed or behaved in public "so as not to drawn unwanted attention". There were no more uncomfortable stares or lewd remarks. In Mumbai, it's each to his own.

Here, Shah Rukh Khan and Sanjay Dutt are not Bollywood bigwigs, they are someone you often bump into on the streets, walking their dog, eating bhelpuri, well, going about doing their own thing. They are just about as normal as you are!

Working in the media, like true Page 3 style, it was not rare to share a laugh with Akshay Khanna, Marc Robinson or even Olive's A D Singh. And at each high-funda party, you eventually end up chit-chating with one celeb or another and not stare at them in awe.

I owe a lot to this city. It taught me how to juggle hectic job schedules and yet have a mad circle of friends. At the end of each tiring day, the city infused extra energy for a quick trip down to Leos or a walk with friends on Marine Drive for a cuppa. My strenuous job never bogged me down, cause the city always introduced different ways to help me de-stress. From Jahangir art gallery to Rex theatre to Gateway of India to Strand, the city is always bustling with energy at all times of the day.

Guess that's why there's no another city in India like Mumbai!

Sunday, June 11, 2006

A new beginning

I've moved. Lugged my belongings across to RT Nagar.

Nestled in far, far away land, I suddenly find myself travelling in dirty rickshaws to work. And with escalating petrol prices, I might soon find myself in crowded buses. It's all too sudden and distant for me.

Even though Cox Town introduced me to the harsh realities of life -- villainous landlord, sneaky maids and a sleazy neighbhourhood, I still miss my Cox Town 'home'. I miss the luxury of reaching work in less than 15 minutes. I miss being so close to civilisation and I miss toilets that are easy to flush.

I've always detested change, of any kind. Once I settle in, I am happiest being in my cocoon, even if it means living in hell. Which is why I guess I was happily miserable in a bumpy relationship for nearly seven years! I take the BIG step only when pushed to the edge. Even a trip back home, sees me emotionally drop on the day I have to leave. It's not only because I will be homesick and blah, but also because it means, I have to shift back to a different routine.

For now, I sleep on the floor, on a flithy mattress with no bedcover. It's only been two days, but I find myself disconnected. When I walk in, I quickly scan the rooms, the kitchen, the bathrooms. Guess it will be a while, before I make this new apartment, my home. And I pray it will remain 'home' for a long time to come. Don't want to deal with 'sudden' changes!

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Last man "laughing"!

Pravin Mahajan might be rotting in jail, but the news of his nephew's drug overdose will definitely see the man beaming in esctasy.

Let me stress that I'm not being judgmental about druggies, but I do strongly feel that anyone who breaks the law should be punished. Money power should not disillusion anyone from walking away free.

Images of droopy-eyed Rahul being escorted to the court and back make for interesting TV viewing, but would he ever face the whip for his late-night binge? Incidents like the Apollo hospital turn-around would be repeated, no doubt. In an age where money and power can buy just about anything, I wouldn't place my bet on his execution. Fardeen Khan is a walking example of how you can snif coke and remain unharmed by the law.

I can foresee, not too far from now, images of senior police officials mumbling loop-holes in the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act and proclaiming Rahul an "innocent" man. And after that, the BJP will pick up the "honest" boy and groom him into being their next "Lakshman". He would be portrayed as the naive boy who was mislead by a few undesireable elements. The others -- three Nigerians and Sahil -- will be left to face the consequences.

Before I fast-forward, I'd like to rewind just a bit. I wonder, if it's this clout, this misuse of power and money, that irked a man to pump bullets into his brother.