The blurb ob by blob...

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Mother, writer and daydreamer. Also chocoholic and chick-flick lover. But mainly mommy. To two boys, at that! When not escorting my Elder One (EO) to karate class, I'm trying to get in as many cuddles as possible from my Younger One (YO). And when not doing either, I'm hard-at-work trying to maintain a steady relationship with my laptop. And as for the Man I Married (MIM), well, let’s just put it this way – even though we share a bedroom, our most meaningful conversations are held over the cell-phone!

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Miss I'm-Too-Big-For-My-Red-Carpet-Stilettos

Dear Ms. Pinto,

You are just one film old. And even then, your role was pretty blink and you'll miss it. And you weren't great even in those few stills. Let's face it, those kids could run circles around you and you'd get all dizzy and faint.

You claim you're all 'international now'? (Calcutta Times, pg.1, Feb. 26th 2009) When were you even 'national', sweetheart? And just what are you implying...that anything 'national' is not good enough for you?

So after Woody Allen, what next? Pink Panther 3?!?

Bad Men and Their Fast Cars

I read with horror about Kiran's experience with some two-bit actor who puffs his chest out and struts around under the name of Gaurav Chopra.

You worthless a#$&*^@!!! Mere words are not enough!!!

Monday, February 23, 2009

SM Did It!!

Hey, you all know that I am not the movie's biggest fan, but that doesn't mean I can't be thrilled. Did I or did I not predicted that it would 'sweep the Oscars'? But love it or hate it, I'm doing quite a happy dance. How can I not?!?

I am SUPER thrilled for A.R. Rahman! I think he's the bestest! The man is a musical genius! Ok, since I am quite good at putting a dampner on things...I don't think SM was his best work, I mean have you heard the soundtrack of Delhi-6??, but be that as it may, I am SOOOO happy he won! I was rooting for him all the way. And add to it the master poet himself, Gulzar! An award winning combination if there ever was one!

Congratulations My. Boyle, on the award! I was all teary-eyed to see the little boys playing Salim and Javed on stage, looking so sweet, innocent and handsome in their tuxedos. As for Irrfan Khan and Anil Kapoor...woo hoo! Quite the mini Mumbai on stage!

A few side notes:
I loved watching Hugh Jackman do his thing!
I loved when Kate Winslet asked her dad "to whistle or something"...and he did!
I loved the fact that Sean Penn won!
I loved watching Hugh Jackman do this thing!
I loved Queen Latifah's tribute to those who have bid the the world of cinema and cinema-lovers, adieu.
I loved the way past winners gave introduced the nominees for this year's awards in the acting categories.
I loved watching Hugh Jackman do his thing!

I got teary-eyed as I watched...
~those who got teary-eyed accept thier awards!
~Heath Ledger's family accept the award in his memory for "The Dark Knight"...truly and richly deserved!
~Azharuddin Md. Ismail and Ayush Mahesh Khedekar, young Salim and Javed respectively, on stage.
~the humanitarian side of Jerry Lewis unfold before my eyes just before he was presented with the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award.
~the tribute to those stars who shine in a different sphere now, especially Paul Newman.
~Hugh Jackman say 'good night'.

I Am an Oscar Junkie...

I LOOOOOOOOVVVVVVVVEEEEEEEEEE The Oscars! I love most award shows, well, not Filmfare, but The Oscars, The Emmy's, The Golden Globes and now, even The BAFTAs.

And I am watching The Oscars right now. Live. And Exclusive. Erm...on TV.

And right at this moment, I am watching the eminently edible Hugh Jackman do a Fred Astaire. I am sweaty all over. Rowwwwwrrrrrrr!!

Last night 'Delhi-6', this morning The Oscars. Life seems goody-goody-gumdrops!

*The title of this post is dedicated to wordjunkie, so that she doesn't kill me for stealing the luscious HJ away from her... ;)

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Snippets About My Poppets

~Snippet #1 about Poppet #1
Watching my EO play with the lovely, wooden, Chad Valley train set in Spencer's, I felt he so beautifully captured the time-old cliche of little boys and train sets.

~Snippet #2 about Poppet #1
MaaJanoni and I were talking animatedly in the car today, after picking up the EO from school. In between our conversation, I could hear my little boy singing to himself. The song? "Re Mamma, Re Mamma Re". He's learning it in school. And singing the last line about the danda, he dissolved into peals of laughter! Sigh! They don't make songs like this anymore...

~Snippet #3 about Poppet #1
Lying down on the bed, reading. I hear my EO softly singing a Bengali song that I used to sing when I was a little girl. "Ai Tobey Shohochuri". I immediately started to sing it and his eyes just lit up with sheer joy. He came and stood next to me as we sang our duet together; mant words forgotten, some skipped over, large bits of it just hummed, but the music of the heart played clear and strong in my bedroom today.
~Snippet #1 about Poppet #2
I was trying to get in a ten-minute snooze, when I felt my eyelids being pried open by a pair of very insistent hands. My YO peered seriously into my eyes, saying as sweetly as possible, "Mamma, chok kholo, kholo." (Mamma, open your eyes). As if I had a choice! But we soon turned this into a fun albeit slightly painful (for me) game for the next few minutes.

~Snippet #2 about Poppet #2
My normally undemonstrative little YO came running into my room where I was still trying to doze and threw his arms around my neck. He cuddled into me saying, "My Mamma! My Mamma!" My heart did a big happy dance and I held him really close to me. Of course, I found out soon enough that the little mite was trying to protect himself after giving his his elder brother a bit of a bashing! Ah well! did get some free hugs!

Monday, February 16, 2009

Such is Life,

full of up moments and down. One minute you're floating above the clouds, starry-eyed and all strawberry shortcake. The next, you're free-falling like an ugly bird, shot through the heart and headed straight for the sewers.

The day before. Sweet, oldish lady I was meeting for the first time. "So my dear, which college are you studying in?"
My mental response, "I love you! Can I adopt you as my grandmom?"

Yesterday. Man-friend I was meeting after two months. "Ho-ho! So are we expecting baby number three?"
My mental response, "Miserable vermin, you should talk. You look like you're the living Arnold Schwarzenneger Junior experiment!"
This morning I experienced two more blow-me-up-like-a-balloon-only-to-let-out-the-fart-sounds moments again. I seem to be on a roll...

After dropping my EO off to school, I took my Daddy Dearest to the market for fish hunting and vegetable picking. Yes, I use those words on purpose for that is what the retired Bengali male does...he hunts for the perfect specimen of fish to lovingly hand over to his wedded wife who will, in return, lovingly turn the offering into the famous maacher jhol that the whole of India seems to associate with the Bengali palate. He also spends whole minutes ruminating over the colour, size, firmness and smell of each and every piece of vegetable that he picks up. Wars will start and end, but a retired Bengali man's vegetable choosing will go on for lifetimes.

Besides the point. So, I walked like a good daughter along with him to help him pick and choose and carry, and also to shorten the entire process, if possible. I had a baby waiting for me back home, not to mention a husband who needed to be cajoled out of bed so that he could go out and earn a living. From one side, I heard someone calling out to me to come and inspect his wares..."Oh didi!" Elder sister.
Good, good. Really good. Normally reserved for college going girls and unmarried PYTs. Yes, I felt two inches taller and 20 ks lighter!
A few steps later, another sobji-wallah calls out. "Oh boudi!!" Bhaabi.
Bad, bad. All bad. Usually reserved for fat aunty types with rolls of fat, trying to negotiate their way through the slippery, fish-scale strewn floor, theila in one hand and sari pleats in the other. I felt 2 feet shorter and 20 kgs heavier!

There's no escaping it. Jeans or not; sari or not, I am a fat auntyji. A boudi type!

Friday, February 13, 2009

Nari Shakti Zindabad!!

I think I may have sent out a wrong signal in yesterdays post. From many of the comments, I feel I've put myself across as someone who doesn't believe in the Pink Chaddi Campaign anymore.

Nothing could be further than the truth.

I have and still am, shouting myself hoarse about this merry band of forward women. I got a cousin SIL to join and have had animated discussions a-plenty with anybody willing to listen...and even not listen. I know for a fact, that thanks to my closest and bestest friend, my chaddi was deposited safe, sound and simmering with all the intentions of letting hell loose, at the Bangalore collection spot.

I was just worrying aloud about whether this will make a difference to Muthalik and his goons. I was worried about how he would retaliate. And I am thrilled to say that I think I have been worrying needlessly. I've been getting/reading lots of reports, all good, from all over the country. I don't want to jinx anything yet by shouting 'Hurrah' and doing a victory dance wearing, what else but, pink chaddies! (in the privacy of my bedroom folks! Even the bathroom mirror shall be spared the horror of that sight!!), but can I safely say, Round 1...the Consortium?

But, I still wouldn't let go of that belan!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

The Belan Brigade

When I first heard about the Mangalore pub incident, I was outraged. I wanted to pull someone's hair out, slap some perv faces and basically have the shit beaten out of the hoodlums. I'm sorry, but that is how I feel.

I get very militant when I hear about these kinds of injustices meted out...especially to the 'weaker sex'. I want to scream, lash out, morph into Jhansi ki Rani or Devi Chaudhrani and attack the scumbags.

When the Consortium of Pub-going, Loose and Forward Women first came into existence, I yelled out a 'Hallelujah!' and joined with great gusto. I am a proud sister and am glad I'm part of this motley crew of creative, intelligent women (and yes, some men too, I believe!)
Then, they came out with the brilliant Pink Chaddi Campaign. With a war cry, I signed up. I thought the campaign was cute, cheeky, creative and oh-so-unique. I still do. But, at the same time, and over the past 48-hours more than ever, I feel that it is not enough.

Mystic Margarita and Emancipation of Eve's JB have put into words, brilliantly, my other feelings about this campaign.
Like Mystic, I am wondering about whether these illiterate dolts will get the sarcasm and spirit of our message? Will they wither at our outrage? Will they change their worthless ways? And most importantly, will they care?

I'm afraid not. They have already started collecting saris as a counter-attack. They are using our underwear as fuel for thier hateful fire and ire and using it to show their supporters that we are the cause for the morality spiralling downwards in this country.

And I love the points JB has raised as well. We have to fight back. We can not let them squeeze our breasts and 'get off', all in the name of protecting 'our' culture. 'Our' culture talks of protecting women, their freedom, their dignity, their femininity. We can not let them tear at our clothes and maul us, saying that they are doing it for the good of Bharat Mata. It is a symbolic rape of the daughters of the very Mata you are trying to keep chaste.

On the day of the pub-bharo andolan, I think along with our pink chaddis and Scotch on the Rocks, we should turn ourselves into a 'Belan Brigade' and arm ourselves with belans. Symbolic weapons of protest and protection. You so much as point a finger in our direction, I will break said bloody finger, even the whole hand, in self-defence.

To all my sisters ready for battle in the upcoming pubcrawls, remember ours is an act of defiance. But these goons have already shown that they will not think even once before slapping a woman or pulling her by her hair. Protect yourself and others too.

I raise a toast to you, your bravery and your wicked sense of humour! I will be with you in spirit, hopefully in some bar/pub in Kolkata, drinking my share of the bubbly and saying a prayer for your safety and the success of the campaign. May it be peaceful, may it be overwhelming, may it be successful!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Pretty in Pink...Undies!

Pink chaddis. They can be very feminine. In a totally sex kitten kind of a way. Or in an innocent, baby-doll kind of a way. They can tell us what kind of a mood you're in, naughty, raunchy, caught up with domesticity, blah, experimental, trendy...and rebellious.

Today, thanks to the initiative of some very cool, creative and outraged women, the pink chaddi has taken on new meaning. It has come to symbolise women asserting their individual right to freedom as citizens of this country. It is a symbol of our rage, our disgust. It is our voice, dressed up in a pretty colour and stitched into an intimate garment that expresses us in a unique and sit-up-and-take-note-you-bastards! kind of manner.

Join the Pink Chaddi Campaign. Today.

We are not airing our dirty underwear in public. We are hurtling our strong, worthy statements at those who are trying to carry out the equivalent of castration on the 'weaker' sex!

Take that, you neanderthal! And that, and that....

Fellow sisters in thongs, granny-pants and and other assortments of lingerie...
Bohemian Rhapsody
The Mad Momma
Anindita Sengupta
Indian Home Maker

Sunday, February 8, 2009

M4 and the MIM...

...have successfully survived the seven-year itch!

Well husband, eight years, two brats and a gazillion fights later, here we...still together, still going strong, still making it and not faking it!

Happy anniversary, MIM!

*walks towards him, arms outstretched to envelop him in a bear hug, crooning "Looks like we made it!"*

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Slumdog Millionaire

This one is going to sweep the Oscars. Undoubtedly! Technically brilliant, fast-paced, action-packed, never a dull moment and a fantastic soundtrack! And those kids! Where did they find them? Their performances were beyond startling! They can act the expensive pants off India's best and brightest any day!

And yet, I came out of the movie shaking with anger. I'm sorry, and I know many of you will not agree with me, but this movie definitely shows India in a poor light (yes, use the word both ways). This movie was made for the Western audiences and Western audiences only. They will lap up something like this...the crowds, the cheats, the poverty, the dirt, flies, shit, sewers, slums, torture, cruelty...oh, I could go on! The movie doesn't portray anything about our country in a positive manner. NOTHING! Even the shot of the Taj Mahal, one of the most beautiful and romantic architectural structures in the world, is not spared. The angle of the shot shows a half-dried and stinky, dirty Yamuna struggling by. WTF?!?

Reality. That is what this movie touts. Hmph! And I'm not going to raise a trivial point like 'KBC not being live' and nitpick. I do believe in poetic licence and creative stretch-of-the-imagination. But what makes me sad is that this is the only kind of 'reality' that the West will believe of us. Why is it that a 'Mother India', a 'Salaam Bombay', now a 'Slumdog Millionaire', (and yes, I'll admit it even though it's one of my fave movies by my most favouritest director in the world), a 'Pather Panchali' win rave reviews abroad. Why did three out of the above mentioned four, get a nod at the Oscars? What was so unworthy of 'Taare Zameen Par'? Didn't that portray a slice of reality too? For that matter, I found 'Fashion' to be utterly believable and realistic as well.

Once it was the perception of royally decked elephants, dancing girls with flowers in their hair and knowledgeable of all the 64 arts of the Kamasutra and half-naked fakirs with mystical, mythical powers that the West believed to be our reality. Stereotypical! And now, its dirt, dust and the dirty that they believe to be uniquely ours. Outrageously stereotypical!

And so pathetic.

Another Shit Stain on the Government's Cap

Looks like the government is going all out to disappoint us in one way or another this new year. Not just the government at the helm of affairs in Delhi, but all the various state governments as well. I'm not going to draw up a list now, it will go on endlessly, but you all know what the major goof-ups have been so far.

Another one has been brought to my attention by Pseudo Intellectual. This brilliantly written post of hers had me shaking my head in shame, shaking with anger and sputtering in outrage. But am I really surprised anymore?

The link is my post for the day, because I think more people should know. Head on over. Read. And be ashamed.

And Mary Kom. I am so, SO sorry. You deserved much, MUCH, so very much more.

(Sigh. At this rate I'll never get started on those Andaman posts!!)

Monday, February 2, 2009

Someone Please Shut the Dutt Up Already!

No. This is not about Mr. and Mrs. Sanjay Dutt. That their views are disgusting, has been established for all the world to see, read and hear. If they want to keep making statements that are appropriate for the caveman era, they are welcome to. We will not buy into it. Goofy Mumma is doing a superb job to spread the word.

The Dutt in question here happens to be a very 'respected' journalist. Someone young girls looked up to as a role model. Someone whom I admired very greatly.

But not anymore.

It's so sad when an idol/icon/role model turns out to have feet of muck and heart of stinky poop. You feel a deep sense of betrayal and of being let down. Et tu, Barkha?

I'm not going to dwell on this too long, because so many bloggers have already done it and so much better than me. Read this post of the Mad Momma's where she has already done all the linking up of other bloggers who have shared their very worthy and intelligent points of view.

This is what I have to say to her...
(as you read the following, you will come across:-
* --> this term I picked up from a link on Bohemian Rhapsody's blog,
** --> and this term was first used by the Mad Momma in her post)

Ms. Dutt,
Shame on you. There is no doubt in my mind that that little reproach of mine will have zero effect on you. I do not expect you to blush, bite your lower lip and hang your head like a chastised child. For I now know that you are incapable of feeling anything that requires you to possess a modicum of decency, a smidgen of a conscience, a smattering of integrity.

This kind of behaviour that you have shown, in shutting up a man's voice and right to express his opinion has left us all horror struck and speechless! But that's what you want, isn't it? To rob us of our speech?

This blatant (mis)use of power of position and status we have come to expect of many of our politicians, for they have let us down time and again. But you? The champion of the down-trodden? The voice of the voiceless? The one who puts a face to all the untold misery and suffering happening in places beyond our reach and serves it to us for tea with a slice of sponge cake and chocolate chip cookies. You?

You have resorted to big, mean bully tactics and quashed a man's RIGHT TO FREEDOM OF SPEECH? His freedom of expression?!? The very right which is the basis of YOUR profession!! A right which you live by; swear by; earn your bread, butter and pate from -- you decide to take THAT very right away from a man who was just expressing his opinions?

The bitter irony of it all is just so gut-wrenchingly hilarious that it is beyond all shade of sarcasm. It is painful and it is pathetic.

That you do not have a high regard for bloggers is a fact that you have never bothered to hide. You do not consider us relevant or legitimate. To you, our writings are random jottings of bored, idle minds with no literary value, political depth of heavy weight. I am not going to trouble myself in defending this wonderful community of free thinking, intelligent and intellectual spirits, but I can't help but wonder what kind of blogs you've been hopping through. If we are so insignificant to you, so 'random',* then why come down on just one 'random bloke' * who was expressing a not-at-all unique opinion? There are many, and I do mean huge numbers of many, who thought that your coverage of the Bombay blasts and the subsequent rescue operations was less than bad.

But dismiss us as much as you'd like, Ms. Dutt, you can not shut us up. We, the bloggers,** will not fade into the dark recesses of internet oblivion. We will not go down without a fight. We will not shut down our comps and stop these fingers from typing. So take that in your mike and shove it!

Are you thinking of joining politics now? Cause I think you'll fit in quite nicely. And if this country needs another Emergency, well then, yo've already had some practice by now, haven't you?!

Shame on you. Shame, shame, SHAME! You give journalists a bad, BAD name.


An outraged blogger,
Mamma Mia! Me a Mamma?!?
(This fabulous logo has been designed by the immensely talented MayG.)