December 5, 2014

500 Days of SALSA!!

I have a secret. I have had a debilitating phobia throughout my life. I may have done a number of brave things in life, but I have always been afraid, no, terrified of the very notion of dancing. Jump out of a flying plane at 11,000 feet? No problem. Perform on stage in front of thousands? Been there and done that in style. Shake a leg? God save my soul!! My default reaction to the topic of dance has always been to physically take a step back.

All that went for a toss one late evening, in the second half of July 2013. I was having coffee with a friend, who in the course of a free-flowing discussion, expressed her intention to learn to dance salsa, and that she needed a partner. As always, the mention of dance triggered a 'fight-or-flight' response within me, but for some reason, I chose the 'fight' option that night. Maybe it was the cold night air, maybe it was her pleasant company or maybe I was feeling particularly brave in the 'face-your-fear' kind of way. Perhaps my brain had resigned itself to the inevitable, after 3 years of half-baked promises to myself, that only ended in secretly following all dance studios in Pune. Nevertheless, something just fell in place, and thus kicked off a new chapter of my life that has proven to be quite the adventure, and changed me in many ways, some good, some arguably not-so-good, but most of them quite irreversible!

Today, I celebrate 500 days of salsa.

I celebrate the first time I stepped into the studio for my Salsa Level 1 batch.
I celebrate learning a new art form absolutely from scratch. and really, really struggling with it.
I celebrate not giving up when others did, and reaching a bare minimum level of proficiency at it.
I celebrate my instructors who put up with my obnoxious level of attention to detail and tendency to break down and analyze every single thing.
I celebrate experiencing the rush of a new obsession, and falling head-over-heels in love with the music, history and language.
I celebrate 4 international dance congresses and countless socials, where I made tons of new friends and shared numerous beautiful moments.
I celebrate my first on-stage dance performance (after kindergarten!) at an international salsa festival.
I celebrate 500 days of facing my fear and coming out on top (most of the time, at least!).
I celebrate working hard and getting better continuously, to a point where I can now inspire other people. I am humbled and honoured to be able to give back, in any small way I can.
I celebrate a studio that feels like my second home and a mad, mad gang of people who are practically my extended family now.
I celebrate going for dance lessons, and returning with life lessons.
I celebrate that I have broken through the glass ceiling, and that I will continue to work hard and grow at a brisk pace in the days to come.
I celebrate this serenity that I feel within me since the last few weeks whenever I step on the dance floor, because I no longer dance to face my fears, for there are none left.
I celebrate that I now dance for the joy of unbounded expression through being one with the music.
I celebrate that dancing gives me the same indescribable feeling inside my heart, that playing guitar does.

Today, I celebrate my next 500 days of salsa. The journey has only begun!


March 21, 2014

In today's faking news....

Two renegade dance instructors invent new dance form

Pune, 21st March 2014

Until recently, Latin dance in India has been an underground movement, only gaining mainstream traction in the last couple of years. In what is coming to be seen an a defining moment in this process, two amateur dance instructors from Pune have developed what they are claiming is the ultimate Latin dance form that will make Latin dancing more accessible to everyone.

Dikur 'Taller-Than-Thou' Anvekar and Kruti 'Pinocchio' Sulkarni are trainee Latin dance instructors at the Danda Deke Le Lega school of dance in Pune. Through an on-going collaboration over the last several months, even before blossoming into full-fledged instructors, the duo have conceived and developed a new dance form that they have christened as 'Merezumboogachangachachatalsa'. Kruti explains, 'Both of us loved dancing with each other, but it was very hard. Dikur would want to dance something else other than what I was in the mood for. So it was only natural that we started evolving an all-encompassing dance-form that allowed us both to dance together. Merezumboogachangachachatalsa draws upon the elements from all the dance forms we know. In this day and age of political correctness, everyone has a right to want to dance a non-judgemental, non-discriminatory dance form that is unbiased and accommodating by its very nature. This was exactly what we had at the foremost of our minds while creating it, because the main...".

"Yes, yes, equality FTW.", Dikur interjects, rolling his eyes. "By the way, although it might sound derivative of various pre-existing Latin dance forms, Merezumboogachangachachatalsa is infact an original concept due to the amalgamation of the styles. Chaos in order, order in chaos", he expounds, in a spouting of yet another one of the wise-sounding, philosophical but meaningless statements that we are told Dikur frequently utters. "During our instructor training, we were exposed to a variety of Latin dance styles, much against our objection that it would confuse us. But our instructor Koonruta 'Step-Step-Step' Sothadia insisted that it would broaden our hearts and lengthen our.... minds. Yes, minds it is.", says Dikur, giving a bit more perspective. "I guess mommy knows best", he adds absentmindedly, with a fond faraway look in his eyes.

But how is this sudden development being seen by their dancing seniors? The top bosses of Danda Deke Le Lega are full of praise for the upcoming dance prodigies. Shavin 'Quick-Quick-Slow' Bukla, Artistic Director and co-founder of the school says 'I couldn't be happier. This will enable us to open up the system, bring in fresh blood and create women empowerment. Not to mention the new simplified time-tables. No more keeping track of batch timings for salsa, bachata, boogaloo, zumba etc. Now every batch is a Merezumboogachangachachatalsa batch!" The managing Director and co-founder of the school, Parti 'Never-Seen' Andey, could not be contacted for comment. We are told this is a common phenomenon and that half the current staff has never met her in person, due to her work commitments with management of tight-fitting fibers. We don't exactly understand what that means either, but it is heartening to see young talent in the country not only dare to try something original, but also get applauded for it. We wish these two foot-tappers all the very best!

Apologies to anyone outside the select circle of people who can understand what this was about! The next post shall bring things back to normalcy, or whatever passes for normalcy around here :P


June 3, 2013

The prodigal blogger returns...

... with a faux-pensive looking photo of himself. :P

It seems like another life when I wrote my last blogpost. In an earlier post, I have expounded at length upon blogging after long time-gaps. So I'll just say that one can not hold back something when its trying to make its way out of the jelly-like mess trapped inside your cranial cavity. So here I am, sitting on my bed in darkness, at half past two in the night, with the laptop propped up on my lap, and all I'm thinking is, "Maybe it wasn't such a bad idea after all, to buy the back-lit keys on the laptop..". Honest. Anyway, here goes:

"Live today as if it were your last day on earth" they say. The irony of that idea is that its probably not gonna be your last day on earth, and you will live tomorrow. But tomorrow is exactly when the transgressions that you might be tempted to commit today if you are naive enough to believe in and act upon such truisms will catch up with you. And after you have paid your debt in full, and some more, you might die. At the end of the day, tomorrow. 

My father, in his infinite wisdom, often asserts, 'There is no afterlife. No heaven, no hell. You shall pay all your dues before you exit this life". I must admit I'm only beginning to understand. Its not the death in your sleep that you need to plan for. Its not death that's the problem. Its life. You wont be in trouble if you die. The most peaceful man in the world is a dead man. But if you lead all your life as if death is soon imminent, and the motherf*cking Grim Reaper just doesn't show up, you live just long enough to see the consequences of your actions manifest themselves upon you, and those you love, and more importantly upon those who love you. He probably didn't mean it in this context when Albert Schweitzer wrote "The tragedy of life is what dies inside a man while he lives.", but turns out the statement could have another dark side.

The flipside to the argument could be that this could very well be the excuse that you let hold you back from dreaming of, going after, achieving and living a glorious life beyond your wildest imagination. But then it really isn't the flipside as long as the "Live today as if it were your last day on earth" statement is concerned. If today really was my last day on earth, I don't think I would go for some kind of immortal legendary ending. I would simply want to spend my day making the people I love smile. Immortality is over-rated, really. You own today. Its tomorrow that owns you.

Inject your thoughts as drugs into my freshly flowing veins of blogger-blood. I will love you for it.


June 11, 2011

Happy Birthday to ME !!

Today has been a fantastic build-up to a birthday. Multiple good news throughout the day really made me feel like God was giving me my birthday presents a day in advance. I know that I continue to be the blessed man that I have always been. :)

A warm thank you to all the folks who have wished or are wishing me right now or will wish me within the next 24 hours! I love you all!! (Yeah, even the ones I hate.. :P)


June 10, 2011

An interesting twist to FRIDAY !

Roaming around in cyber-space, I just ran into something extremely intriguing. And what better day than today, to publish this?


THE ANALYSIS (unedited, NOT mine)

Rebecca Black’s song Friday is a work of unparalleled genius. Of course you retards don't see it you may never see it but I'm telling the truth. This is not a troll or whatever the kick you think it is. No. This song and its accompanying video represent one of the greatest works of musical art I've ever seen. ranking right alongside anything Radiohead. Neutral Milk Hotel etc has ever done.

Why do I say this? Because underneath its bubbly. faux-happy surface is a seething cauldron of existential dread and despair. You've all missed the forest for the trees, and while you've been busy mocking it you've missed its brilliance. So let me take you through the video step by step and maybe at least a couple of you will begin to see.

Remember that these are just my own observations. after only a few viewings: this video is so multi-layered that unraveling its symbolism and meaning would take years of careful examination

We open with a production card and some building synths. As the music continues. we see a sort of calendar with flipping pages. Before we get to the lyrics. there's a couple things in this sequence worth pointing out. because they set the tone for the rest of the video and establish its overarching motifs.

Firstly. Black appears here as a hideous moving drawing on the pages. moaning "yeah. yeah" in robotic. auto-tuned cadence. This startling image of the singer — and her voice -- both lie snugly in the very nadir of the uncanny valley. Ostensibly we are looking at a human. but it isn't close enough to what we recognize as human to inspire anything other than revulsion.

I think the director was trying to create a vision of the ''hyperreal" here. Like a sports drink with a flavor such as "blue mountain ice berry" that doesn't exist in nature. Black is a simulacra of something that never existed in the first place. Like so many American teens. she is attempting to live up to an ideal that's impossible to attain — outwardly succeeding in many respects. but never achieving self-actualization in any meaningful way. always feeling like an imposter. mired in a cycle of materialism and futile competition that serves no purpose She doesn't feel "rear and so in these opening frames she is presented as just that: an unreal monster. a horrible. ugly outside creation. 

The artificiality of the music itself plays into this theme as well — I don't think there's a single real instrument in the entire song

Secondly on the pages of the calendar we see some words that we are supposed to assume Black wrote there. On the page for Thursday, she has written "I am Thursday's Child. :(" This is a very clever reference to a nursery rhyme that ascribes personality traits to people born on certain days of the week. The line for Thursday reads, 'Thursdays child has far to go."

There are multiple things going on here. As a young girl Black has far to go before reaching adulthood and the (largely mythical) freedoms she ascribes to it. She also has 'far to go' before she can accept herself for who she is. 

She has 'far to go` before she can be the person everyone around her expects her to be -- very. very far -- and she will never get there. These are the main conflicts that are present throughout the song.

Finally, the lyrics start. The monstrous drawing of Black gives way to the flesh-and-blood Black, just waking up with her alarm clock. Her eyes snap open and she starts out of bed instantly, almost mechanically.

>7 AM waking up in the morning >Gotta be fresh gotta go downstairs 'Gotta have my bowl
>Gotta have cereal
Gotta She has no choice. She HAS to do these things As Black sings these lines, she gives a disdainful look to her alarm, obviously wishing she could sleep some more. but dutifully she throws her covers off (does this represent her urge to throw off the comforting but ultimately cloying shackles of childhood? Perhaps.) and we cut to her standing downstairs, dressed and ready to go, where she finishes the verse.
In the downstairs section she stands stone-still. her facial features unmco,ing as she tells us that she must have a bowl of cereal. This is her routine- to break it would be a horrible transgression. And what exactly happens if she breaks her routine? Well. nothing -- but she doesn't know that and she's too terrified to find out. She wants freedom but she isn't strong enough to give it to herself

>Seeing everything
>The time is going. ticking on and on And everybody's rushing
Behind Black, her family goes through their own daily routine in fast-forward. No one has time anymore_ it seems to her, and by extension to the viewer. Everyone's day is firmly regimented planned out months in advance and there isn't any room to allow oneself a peaceful moment. For success we have traded in our very identities Black is disgusted with her family and more importantly with herself

>Gotta get down to the bus stop >Gotta catch my bus
More gottas. Again. Black has no choice in what she does with her time We cut to her at the bus stop where suddenly she notices something off-screen and gives a painfully faked smile: ei sea my inenda
Her smile isn't real. As the camera reveals her 'friends' pulling up in a late-model car neither are theirs She cannot stand these people. Like her they're imposters, trying to live up to some abstract version of what a perfect teenager should be. and she hates them for it. But on the other hand they are nothing less than a mirror into her own empty soul — all the more reason to despise them

>Kicking in the front seat >Sitting in the back seat >Gotta make my mind up >Which seat can I take'
A verse absolutely pregnant with meaning. It's gotten a lot of derision. and that's a shame because it's one of the great little moments in this song.

Black surmises the car. Her friends are motioning for her to join them. Why would she do that instead of taking the bus? It's obvious that her friends aren't going to school today. And as she looks at them she realizes that she has to make up her mind: will she continue the daily routine that has become her own personal prison, or will she break free. skip school and taste independence?

Which seat can she take? Will she sit in the back, a passive bystander to her own life? Or will she sit in the front — wrest control of her own destiny and decide for herself what she wants to do?

>It's Friday. Friday
>Gotta get down on Friday
We cut to Black in the car with her friends. But she's in the back After all that turmoil, she's still a slave to others, doing not what she wants, but what is suggested to her by her peers. She may have rebelled against the tyranny of schooling but she's still imprisoned and acting without will
"Gotta get down on Friday? Not 'wanna get down on Friday: or "gonna get down on Friday: or any of a number of lines that may have worked Its another -gotta? She is as much under the control of society as ever. In fact, her minor rebellion may itself be part of the act she's been putting on her whole life. What teenager doesn't skip school?

>Everybody's looking forward to the weekend
>Partying. partying. yeah! >Partying. partying. yeah! >Fun, fun. hin
>Looking forward to the weekend
Horrible. No one in the car is happy. They bob their heads and smile through gritted teeth as they lie about how much fun they're having, but they all look so desperate, so pained. They look OLD. like world-weary soldiers. Their refrains of 'yeah' are delivered with unenthusiastic fist pumps. the veil on their false joy wearing alarmingly thin. 

Black chants 'fun, fun, fun' not like someone who is enjoying themselves but like a Nazi in a concentration camp. She is ordering herself to have fun, as if simply saying the words will make it so. But its not so. and she knows it This isn't fun. This is hell.

>7.45. we're driving on the highway >Crusing so fast,
>I want time to fly
12 hours have passed in an instant. We cut to Black in a completely different car. wearing a completely different outfit with a completely different group of people What happened in the interim? That's left to the viewer's imagination but there is some imagery here that strongly implies Black lost her virginity at some point in the time gap.

Firstly, all the people in her company are noticeably older than the original group of friends She is with adults now, not children This suggests that she too is an adult she has stepped into womanhood.
Secondly in the morning she was wearing a bright purple shirt. symbolic of youth and innocence. Now she wears all black, symbolic of impurity -- and mourning. She has lost her innocence- and she regrets it The car, too. has gone from white to black — pure to impure.

Whatever the case. it's clear Black has had quite the day. But still she sits in the back seat — through it all. she is still not in control.

Why does she vvant time to fly? Isn't she having 'fun. in fun'? Of course not This has been the worst day of her short life and she wants it to be over as soon as possible. This is probably the only time she directly betrays her true emotions in the entire song. Her self-loathing over giving up her virginity — and over myriad other things — bubbles to the surface in that fleeting instant before she tamps it all back down again and continues the pathetic charade of enjoying herself

,Fun fun >Think about fun

Again. ordering herself to have fun. This is reminiscent of lie back and think about England,' the advice given to Victorian-era brides on how to deal with being raped by their husbands. Was her loss of virginity willing? Or did she 'grin and bear it' as part of the ritual she felt she had to endure to cross the rubicon into adulthood?
Now that she has crossed that rubicon. and nothing has changed. she is deeply ashamed Yet still she lies to herself, still she pretends to be having fun.

,You know what it IS'
>I gat this. you got this >My friend is by my right >I gat this. you got this >Now you know it

She smiles, but her eyes tell a different story. They're pleading with you to understand her, her plight. She wants you to understand why she's done this. and to forgive her. But she really wants something else. She wants to forgive herself of what has happened today.
Maybe she never will.

>Kicking in the front seat >Sitting in the back seat 'Gotta make my mind up 'Which seat can I take?
We come full circle. She knows that to become a truly free agent she will have to disavow her false friends and live for herself Will she be able to take this step? Will she summon the courage to strike out on her own? Immediately she answers for herself: she hugs her two 'friends' closer. She isn't ready to be her own person yet Not even the loss of her innocence could imbue her with the courage to move forward. She will be a slave to others for the foreseeable future.

>It's Friday, Friday
'Gotta get down on Friday
'Everybody's looking forward to the weekend, weekend
Black arrives at a party and waves to a boy about her age. He glances salaciously at her backside — perhaps this is the boy who took her virginity? The party is outdoors and it's pitch black except for the headlights from the cars there. Without her friends. without her peers Black would be in dark_ completely lost. The meaning is obvious.
Again, she's -gotta ° get down. The line has now acquired a disturbing sexual connotation given what has transpired, but its basic meaning is essentially the same.

-Friday Frets.
>Getting down an Friday
Watch closely here, this is around 1:50. Her smile completely drops for an instant as she says the second line. She hates herself

>Everybody's looking forward to the weekend
The boy from before walks up behind Black and makes an inappropriate sexually-charged grab at her. She swirls around in shock. but then fakes a smile at him. She cannot bring herself to admit how disgusting she finds him.

>Partying. partying yeah' >Partying. partying. yeah! >Fun, fun. fun
>Loolong forward to the weekend
Black walks backwards here. It's easy to read into that. She's not improving herself, but regressing. For all her bluster and pretending. she's worse off tonight than she was this morning. More of her false friends make unconvincing fist pumps. Once again, no one is happy.

'Yesterday was Thursday. Thursday 'Today it is Friday, Friday
We see Black again as the drawing-monster from the beginning. She recites the progression of the days of the week. 

Yesterday was Thursday, today is Friday. This transformation and these lyrics validate the suggestion that her rebellions today have been nothing more than yet another piece in the larger act she's been putting on. of being the perfect teenager. The days of the week are set in stone. they always come in the same order. And Black's rebelliousness was equally predictable. It wasn't spontaneous at all.

>We, we, we so excited
'We so excited
'We gonna have a ball today
Black talks in broken English, but it's just an affectation, like everything she's done today. Talking like a stereotypical 'urban" (read: black) person is supposed to be °edgy " for this young white suburban girl, but it's not edgy if everyone in her peer group is doing it. just fired and cliched She's no bohemian or free-thinker or even common punk. she's a mindless drone doing what all the others do.

>Tomorrow is Saturday
And Sunday comes afterwards
The predictability of her actions are again hammered home as Black is shown directly turning from the moving drawing into her real life counterpart. The drawing-monster and Black are the same entity: a horrendous, unreal abomination, revolting yet pitiable.
.dorit want this weekend to end
But she does. She trembles with this lie and has to say it with an open-mouthed gape, as if forcing it out of herself. 

How long can she go on like this before she cracks?

>RB Rebecca Black
>So chillin' in the front side
A grown man begins to rap. cutting into Rebecca's lyrics (symbolizing her powerlessness?) He calls her by name, then looks down at his crotch as he says the second line. More sexual connotations abound. Has this adult man victimized the young Black?

>In the backseat ›I'm drrving cruising
These lines have caused confusion. but it makes sense if you consider 'So chillin' in the front side, in the backseat' to refer to Black. and -I'm driving, cruising' as referring to himself. He's having sex with her (Black is 'so chillin' in the front sides ie being penetrated). but largely against her will (she is still in the back seat) Rather. 

HE is the one in control — HE is in the front seat. driving 'Cruising" here takes on its sexual meaning as well as its more literal one -- he is cruising for underaged girls to abuse

>Fast lanes. sratching lanes >With a car on my side
>Passing by is a school bus >In front of me
>Makes me tick tack. tick lock >VVanna scream
Chilling. This man is a pedophile and the children aboard the school bus arouse him. But let's look closer. The fact that they're on a school bus is very meaningful indeed. Because if Black had followed her usual routine and gone to school, had failed to rebel — she may still have not escaped the fate that befell her tonight. Eventually she would have been sullied by the horrors of the adult world. For her, there is no escape, and there can never be

'Check my time. it's Friday
>It's a weekend
'We gonna have fun 'Come on. come on
The man looks in the rearview mirror but the position of the camera makes it appear as if he's looking directly at the viewer. And he says we gonna have fun: not "I'm gonna have fun.' This is an accusation, a recrimination. We are all complicit in the crimes this man commits. By forcing the image of perfection upon young girls. by sexualizing them, by turning a blind eye to their cries for help. WE are responsible for the -fun' this man has. We are no better than him.

>It's Friday. Friday
>Gotta get down on Friday
>Everybody's looking forward to the weekend weekend >Friday. Friday
>Getting down an Friday
>Everybody's looking forward to the weekend

We cut back to Black performing in front of a large crowd. This is really what she's been doing her entire life. of course: performing. None of them seem that interested even as she sways and smiles and shouts about how great everything is What's more. we continually see cuts to Black standing alone in a bizarre darkened room full of strange glowing smoke. where she moans in protest — at one point (around 2:55) yelling out "n00000" as the Black performing in front of an audience announces that everyone is looking forward to the weekend.

This is Black's inner dialogue_ and likely it's been going on for the entirety of the day — this is just our glimpse at it. Outwardly_ she's happy and ebullient but in her mind she's shouting out in horrible pain trapped in a fevered hellscape of her own creation

>Everybody's looking forward to the weekend >Partying. partying. yeah!
>Partying. partying. yeah!
>Fun. fun. km
>Looking forward to the weekend
>It's Friday. Friday
>Gotta get down an Friday
>Everybody's looking forward to the weekend. weekend >Friday, Friday
>Getting down on Friday
'Everybody's looking forward to the weekend
As the song draws to a close, we cut back and forth like this — the projection Black gives of herself and the torment within. Finally her inner self isn't even attempting to speak intelligibly. instead just yelling as loud as she can. 

eyes wrenched closed. fists balled up. But in the real world she forges on singing and dancing for the crowd_ and the pedophile from before looks on approvingly his prey's spirit fully broken.

And when she stops singing, she looks down at everyone before her embarrassed, disgusted_ kill of nothing but despair. 

Now that her performance is done. the crowd will disperse and forget about her and for everything she's endured she will have gained nothing. She has literally become the -poor player that struts and frets her hour upon the stage.' 

She has realized that her life is a futile mockery of real happiness a hollow. meaningless simulation.
As Black's day draws to a close, she has stared into the abyss -- and the abyss has stared back.

One might be tempted to cursorily dismiss this is some kinda over-the-top analysis, and maybe it partially is, but parts of it sure made me go "Holy crap! I didn't notice that before!"
What do you think?? Is it really a song about existential crisis??


May 10, 2011

Tere Bin Laden....

Disclaimer: People incapable of impartially reading something without getting their opinions in the way are encouraged to NOT READ the following. Any angered/impassioned lambasting of my existence shall be met with the rudest retorts that my meandering mind can generate. Whether or not it coincides with yours, you can NOT boo me for having an opinion!
For the last few days since Osama Bin Laden was killed, I have been debating with myself whether I really want to write and publish this blogpost. I was not sure if my own thoughts were clear enough and whether such blatant opinions need to be made public at all. Today, I read something that convinced me I should. So here goes..


I have never really hated Osama Bin Laden. Since I saw the live footage of the WTC twin towers and Pentagon burning, to this very moment, I have never felt that surge of anger that a lot of people feel or have felt against him at some point of time. I could never see 'evil' on his face. I could never bring myself to blindly believe all the labels and adjectives that were attributed to him. If anything, I almost admired Osama Bin Laden. I always thought that born under better circumstances, he would have made such a great scientist, sociologist or philosopher. There's good reason why I say so. While my opinion about his motives and the means of accomplishing them has wavered over time, there was and is no denying the tremendous genius of the man who stood right in the face of 'the greatest nation on earth'. The ten years gone by during which the US relentlessly pursued him and yet ended up with just dead ends have only served to prove this. I have often wondered how he managed to walk with titanium balls that big.

The above sentiments apart, unlike so many people in so many parts of the world, I am still in no mood to celebrate Osama Bin Laden's death, for multiple reasons:


1) What's glorious about the willful killing of a fellow human being, no matter who they are and what they did?

2) Its all a big game of perception management. In the media, we are mostly fed only one side of the story, which follows the golden rule: 'He who has the gold makes the rules!'. But sitting in the cozy safety of our homes, its genuinely difficult to appreciate what the people in some other part of the world are really facing on a daily basis. Try listening to this:

Makes 'One man's terrorist is another man's martyr' make some sense, doesn't it?

3) As the real happenings of 'Operation Geronimo' emerge as the White House 'revises' several key details, it is becoming increasingly clear that this was a planned political assassination. No attempt was made to capture the target alive. Keep in mind that there was no 'firefight', as Osama Bin Laden was unarmed, and also that he did not use any woman as a human shield. Obama's speech was just perception management eyewash.

4) The entire operation also stands in multiple breach of elementary norms of international law. Whats there to celebrate about the blatant breach of the sovereignty of any country by another? And who's to say that this will not happen to mine in the future? The US will undoubtedly get away with it too, simply because there IS no one to stand up to them. The disbalance of power only makes me worried, not gleeful.

The following assume the Osama was 'evil':

5) The vengeful repercussions of Osama's killing are bound to show up sooner or later, and your guess is just as good as mine as to what form they will show up in. Given the brilliant mind that he was, I'm willing to bet that he'd already chalked out a plan of action to be followed post his death.

6) Osama managed to pull the US into a dead-end ground war on multiple fronts, which cost thousands of lives and trillions of dollars. The hits taken by the US economy ever since George W. Bush declared a 'war on terrorism' show that it is a pyrrhic victory for the US, if at all a victory. Now with the death of Osama, the americans feel a sense of closure, and the war between the most powerful country in the world and a handful of terrorists, after ten years, can only truthfully be said to have ended on a draw. Really seems like a victory for Osama, if you ask me.

7) For a while now, Osama was being seen as more and more of a symbolic figurehead representing the multi-pronged extremism across the globe, with minimal direct operational command of Al Qaida. The world's most wanted and most dangerous terrorist, captured alive and kept rotting in a jail would have been symbolic victory to the US. The US could not have gifted a more 'glorious' and 'inspirational' end to Osama by killing him and making him a martyr dying for his cause.

And in closing, a quote from Noam Chomsky: "If this world believes in the Nuremberg Principles on which the Nazis were taken to trial for its crime against humanity through their tyranny post-world war II, all American presidents should be taken to trial  following the same principles."

Tell me what you think.


May 7, 2011


Learn to live in the moment, they say. Without being weighed down by your past, or being pulled too fast by your future. Every once in a while, I have a moment in my life, which seems to have more life in the moment than usual. While the feelings possibly experienced in such moments encompass the full spectrum of human emotions, I believe what is common is that they irreversibly change the way you look at something. Such moments tend to stick out in your memory like bookmarks in your life. I call such moments Points Of Paradigm Shift, or POPS. Quite the appropriate onomatopoeia, eh?

So this is a song about a moment in time, when on a relatively secluded beach in Konkan, albeit in unthoughtful jest, I was down on one knee, holding a fused light-bulb and looking into eyes that were suddenly filled with a haunting blend of unexpected emotions.


I've never been the kind
Who go around searching for love
I've never believed love's blind
Or that happiness comes from above..

I've never believed in fate
Or that destiny is real
And all this talk of a soul-mate
Has always felt so surreal..

All my life, I've lived an illusion
And never dared to face my fears..
But I've broken free of this delusion
In this moment with you, right here...

Now I'm on my knees
And I can suddenly see things right
I'm begging baby, please
Say, you'll be the light... of my life...

Much as I would love to, I can't really elucidate upon 'see things right'. Not as a matter of intent, but as a matter of ability. Someday, I hope to be able to write in words expressive enough to really encompass the beauty of the moment and the depth of the realizations within it. Maybe then, I could call it an apology. From naiveté to hurt feelings.