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Preview: First Drafts

First Drafts

First Drafts -

Last Build Date: Thu, 05 Mar 2009 08:42:07 GMT


Thermal And A Quarter - One Small Love

Thu, 05 Mar 2009 08:42:07 GMT
In our small, tired world, there's too little space for anything. And then we cram in terrorism, recession, traffic jams, politicians, elections, pink slips, pink chaddis, climate change, crop failure...

Where do we draw the line?

Stop, for one small moment...
Think one small thought...
Do one small deed...
Say one small word...

Draw the line. And put the smile back on the face of your day.

One Small Love. Go on, spread it around.

Quick Tales - The shortlist

Sat, 01 Nov 2008 03:22:24 GMT

Quick Tales, the LiveJournal-Caferati flash fiction contest, was about writing a short story in 500 words or less. The theme was one word: journal.

From over a thousand entries, 100 made the short-list. My story is one.

If you know me well, you'll know that it's partly based on a true incident. The rest is pure imagination.

Please read, and if you can, rate it. But mostly, please read.

The link is here:

On Madame President and a celebrity jailbird

Wed, 08 Aug 2007 14:14:09 GMT

Over at IBNLive, the wife and I have posted blogs - she on the President of India and I on Munnabhai.


Tue, 16 Jan 2007 08:49:46 GMT

in midsong
a note trails
hangs still
as if waiting
for an omen to pass

thus augured
my song descends
to her willing ear

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Cities and boondocks

Thu, 16 Nov 2006 07:56:17 GMT

"You have to leave the city of your comfort and go into the wilderness of your intuition. You can't get there by bus, only by hard work and risk and by not quite knowing what you're doing."

~ Alan Alda
Actor, Screenwriter, Director

Thanks to Don the Idea Guy's Blog

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God is in the details, yes?

Wed, 15 Nov 2006 09:03:24 GMT

Just when the rest of you thought God's army is making a comeback, trust Scientific American to sort us out. The ancient Evolution v. Creationism argument makes a comeback, and the score is 1-0 in favour of the Darwinists.

Here are the big Creationist arguments dissed by SciAm:

1. Evolution is only a theory. It is not a fact or a scientific law.
2. Natural selection is based on circular reasoning: the fittest are those who survive, and those who survive are deemed fittest.
3. Evolution is unscientific, because it is not testable or
falsifiable. It makes claims about events that were not observed and
can never be re-created.

4. Increasingly, scientists doubt the truth of evolution.
5. The disagreements among even evolutionary biologists show how little solid science supports evolution.
6. If humans descended from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?
7. Evolution cannot explain how life first appeared on earth.

8. Mathematically, it is inconceivable that anything as complex as a
protein, let alone a living cell or a human, could spring up by chance.
9. The Second Law of Thermodynamics says that systems must become
more disordered over time. Living cells therefore could not have
evolved from inanimate chemicals, and multicellular life could not have
evolved from protozoa.
10. Mutations are essential to evolution theory, but mutations can only eliminate traits. They cannot produce new features.
11. Natural selection might explain microevolution, but it cannot explain the origin of new species and higher orders of life.
12. Nobody has ever seen a new species evolve.
13. Evolutionists cannot point to any transitional fossils--creatures that are half reptile and half bird, for instance.
14. Living things have fantastically intricate features--at the
anatomical, cellular and molecular levels--that could not function if
they were any less complex or sophisticated. The only prudent
conclusion is that they are the products of intelligent design, not
15. Recent discoveries prove that even at the microscopic level,
life has a quality of complexity that could not have come about through

This recent article, titled 15 Answers to Creationist Nonsense, lists the big reasons why some of the most 'scientific' arguments raised against Darwinists are a bunch of a-baloney.

Please excuse the pun - I thought that was a very good one. And while you're at that, excuse the bad rhyme.

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The future - here?

Wed, 08 Nov 2006 17:08:03 GMT

I ponder this question everyday through the traffic snarls in this newly rechristened city, which in the not-so-distant future will doubtless be promoted as commodity.

What do traffic jams augur?

The speed of the present caught up in itself trying to get to the future, or the future come to a standstill?

To say whether the future bodes ill or well is not a matter of idle prophesy but of determined and concerted action.

How much are we willing to change India? Or, better still, be the change that will goad India to take the leap into the future.

Sometimes we argue that the future is already here. Far from it. The future is what we create of our present. Before we pin down these opportunities to 'create wealth', we must look at how much these very opportunities, and maybe the wealth we hope to create, can bridge the impoverished and the wealthy.

Because the future is a place where we must all coexist, and inequity has no place in it.

Blogs and YouTube: An electoral weapon for India

Wed, 08 Nov 2006 14:18:56 GMT

If IT works right for this country - not merely in the "creation of wealth" that ails us all in Namma Bengalooru, but in creating opportunities for those it has consistently pushed aside -- the eyewash known as the Great Indian Election will be a different kind of charade. One more pleasant, surely.

Yes, I know it is not like me to wax eloquent on subjects serious - after all, I am cut out to obsess myself with love and longing and such trifles. But here I digress...

It started with reading this brilliant story in The New York Times about how blogs and YouTube are taking the lead in election reporting - particularly about problems with electronic voting and other shams. Imagine the impact that something like this would have on the election scene in India, where shenanigans are the only real currency beside election-time homilies from the netas.

Imagine videos of booth capturing and other electioneering tricks being consumed as they happen. It would give grassrots regional language reporting such a boost.

The Times is exercising its voice this election, because this time there is a government to vote out, a government that will not carry on the dismal precedent it has set. On Sunday, it carried an excellent opinion piece titled The Difference Two Years Made, in which it said: Republican leaders, particularly in the House, have developed toxic symptoms of an overconfident majority that has been too long in power. They methodically shut the opposition — and even the more moderate members of their own party — out of any role in the legislative process. Their only mission seems to be self-perpetuation.

Lessons to learn for our celebrity-obsessed media.

Well, how much can you muzzle democracy, anyway?

No Subject

Mon, 16 Oct 2006 14:16:12 GMT


so i know you are breathing
inhale a particle of me
let me suffer your osmosis

and then i shall know
the way around your love


Mon, 16 Oct 2006 14:06:09 GMT

my books are infested
with words i do not know
in pictures

unfamiliar secrets
like half-exposed film rolls
burning in the sudden angry light
of doors swinging ajar

my sneeze rings
lurking in the fog of my ear
like the body's violated exclamation
to the air

my nose protests to smell
olfactory rebellion
from the downtrodden rising
in unanimous assault

for grief

Sat, 07 Oct 2006 03:58:47 GMT

is my good luck charm
my tainted sacrifice
my superstitious keepsake
for some promised morrow

and sorrow
if it follows grief
drinks from the shards
of some happy memory
to cough up a particle
of unalloyed elation

my spasmodic withdrawal
from happiness
means I am prepared
to confront my muse again

and conceal,
versified and brief,
my essential truths
in cryptic grief

TAAQ - live at Madras Christian College, Chennai - Sept. 30

Mon, 02 Oct 2006 12:03:54 GMT

This is Galacktiqua, from the third album Plan B.

The world's most overrated band - you too?

Fri, 29 Sep 2006 12:13:23 GMT


If it was just about the music, U2 would be just another band. Sadly, it ain't so.

U2 is more than that because of one man - the 46-year-old Paul David Hewson. And oh yes, you and I know him as Bono.

After The Joshua Tree, I don't know if U2 has really made any music. Well, a lot of average stuff, but when you're that glam, how does your music matter? All it takes to be keep your place is to relentlessly schmooze and have your picture taken with the President of Burundi, link pinkies with the Pope and the Archbishop of Canterbury, and mull over the future of war and peace on this planet with a smorgasbord of glitterati ranging from Kofi Annan to George Dubya.

And then there's this kind of crap that rankles, courtesy Rolling Stone.

And if you want to redeem yourself, try this

A different 9/11

Sun, 24 Sep 2006 08:48:05 GMT


On 9/11, a different set of twin towers.
To mark one year of being lawfully wedded, Anitha and I drove off to Pondicherry, and thereon to Mahabalipuram, where this picture was taken. Smothered by sunlight, the shore temple stands weathered and sentinel-like on the beach, its eastern boundary barricaded with rocks that are being continuously licked away by the sea's salty tongue. The structure, remarkably well preserved despite the erosive action of the sea, dates back to the reign of the Pallava King Rajasimha (c. 700 - 728).

More photos here

Gelato galata

Sun, 24 Sep 2006 07:43:49 GMT

Gelato is causing galata galore in this gastropolis (note the alliteration).

Appetite and curiosity whetted by a review in The Hindu (that review was for DeLuca's Gelato Italiano), we tried Da Vinci something-something, a gelato place in Koramangala's Raheja Arcade. We picked Tiramisu and Peach (single scoops Rs. 28 each).

The stuff's better than conventional ice-cream - not as pasty, and the flavours are richer. But I'm dying to try DeLuca's.

Viva gelato! (Actually, I'll take Nutramul.)

Cine list - recentTune from Il Postino playing in my head

Sun, 24 Sep 2006 06:51:30 GMT

For the longest time, circumstance and tardiness procrastinated my catchup with movies. My attitude to reviews is pretty much on the same street as for reviews of any kind, except product reviews (those I trust). And if a movie is highly recommended, particularly by The Slimes of India, I never watch it until unless serendipity or disaster brings it my way. However, however, however... the good spouse has been instrumental in my acquaintance with film over the last year that we've been, well, espoused. Cable television has been banished - instead, we have a TV hooked to a DVD player.So, here's the beef in order of remembrance (Reviews in parentheses - of course, these are solely documents of my pleasure and not recommendations of any kind) Legend: ***** - excellent **** - very good *** - good ** - decent * - watchableNegative reviews are indicated with a minus sign and as many stars as deserved FILM DIRECTOR REVIEW Nuovo Cinema Paradiso Giuseppe Tornatore ***** Brilliant. Brilliant. Brilliant. Philip Noiret is the best. Still reeling from watching it last night. Tokyo Story Yasujiro Ozu ****1/2 Amazing visual language. Very subtle. Butterfly Effect Eric Bress, J. Mackye Gruber -*** The only thing uglier than Ashton Kutcher is the movie. Shattered Glass Billy Ray ***Very watchable with good performances and a nice soundtrack - but then, I'm a sucker for journo flicks. All About my Mother Pedro Almodóvar *****Incredible journey. How Pedro Almodóvar makes worlds collide! Airplane Jim Abrahams, David Zucker ***Funny, but with a little staid American-ness Starsky & Hutch Todd Philips ****Riotously funny. When the DVD froze half-way through, I downloaded a codec and watched it on my PC. The Last Temptation of Christ Martin Scorsese ****1/2A must-see for every bigot. Very watchable. But the canvas of the film is narrower than I expected - and Willem Dafoe isn't completely convincing The Skeleton Key Iain Softley **1/2Awfully contrived ending. Gena Rowlands is good. Peter Sarsgaard is loathsome. Of course, he redeemed himself in Shattered Glass. Dr. Strangelove Stanley Kubrick *****Kubrick was born speaking cinema, though Space Odyssey was a mindf**k. And what a stupendous script! The Color of Paradise Majid Majidi *****Haunting. And violently moving. Syriana Stephen Gaghan ****A little plodding, but enjoyable. I like George Clooney podgy. In these disturbing times, I'll root for anything that's not Amerijingoistic. The Motorcycle Diaries Walter Salles *****Loved it, though not quite an epic. Can't believe Salles also directed Dark Water. Maria Full of Grace Joshua Marston *****Eerie and wrenching. Il Postino Michael Radford *****Beautiful, poetic, heartrending.The true story of Massimo Troisi makes this movie unb[...]

Keep dogs out of Sultanpur

Sun, 24 Sep 2006 04:21:07 GMT
A campaign video to keep dogs out of Sultanpur Bird Sanctuary

Comeback... or some suchAni Di Franco - Swing

Fri, 22 Sep 2006 13:43:39 GMT

Been away very long. I don't know if I live here anymore.

But this post isn't about that. Or me. It's about... a little bare-it-all honesty.

No skin. Absolutely none.

I stopped blogging... rather LJing... because blogging had become a rash all over the virtual planet. Also because I hold (and have always held) the not-so-secret opinion that bloggers are shameless exhibitionists. I used to be one. And this blog is testimony to it. I lived virtually for four years or so - and in my cyberlife I became acquainted with many strangers. Eventually, I married one. But that's the happy part.

Back to my rant.

Bloggers don't blog because they want to blog, they do because blogging makes them think they are a Somebody. Or a Somebody Else. Ambitious, ambiguous surname, that. Every once in a way, I amuse myself by running down bloggers and the blogging community in general. Obviously, I don't do it on a blog. Or an LJ.

But I miss the attention, doting missus notwithstanding.

My friend and colleague through two jobs, a celebrity blogger, snapped at my insolence. "After all, you used to whine on your LJ for many years," she said. "What right have you to criticise bloggers?"

None whatsoever. I'm a traitor and an infidel. Occasionally, a bigot. That leaves me reasonably satisfied.

So I'm back here for a sabbatical. To find out if blogging can redeem me.

Sun, 14 May 2006 16:33:48 GMT

The parting of waters
at the edges of reason
blood and brotherhood slain by blindness

now will the songs be true?
who are friends?
who are followers?

Green with ennui

Sun, 14 May 2006 13:13:10 GMT

The Green Ogre is alive

Wed, 16 Nov 2005 13:44:46 GMT

I can't write when she is sitting on my lap.

No, I can.

She won't look towards the screen. She has seen all of this before, and yet it is not the me I know.

"That's because I want to read it on the blog, silly!"

Correction. This is not a blog.

It's a scrap-journal. To salt away my pains.

Do I want to visit them again? I have no reason to. I have no heartache to soothe.

She believes she can help. Oh, no no no no! Not that.

I have kept myself away from here because I could not return to my ruins. My career of historical neglect could use some brambles around the edicts, a flutter-by of swifts, a chittering horde of day-groggy bats.

Welcome me again, please.

Sat, 05 Nov 2005 05:42:38 GMT

my face
is a wall
waiting for graffiti