Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Decomposed Idea

You can kill a man but you can't kill an Idea.

I caught these words in movie 'Ben Hur'. Immortal words.
But what happens when an Idea is killed?

To understand this, let me explain what I have here.
Idea is born in one's mind, but in order to survive it has to feed on other people's thoughts. It is nurtured by other people's thinking, given shape by action, watered by the fluidity of the mind. The more you think of it, the more an IDEA grows.

So what causes the death of an IDEA? The absence of thought and action. And when an idea dies, there's no loss of life or even a whimper of a loss of any tangible object. The IDEA survives only as long as it exists in your mind, even one will do.

When does it start decomposing? The IDEA stays in your mind long after it is forgotten, under the dust of other thoughts, hard pressed against the walls of your intelligence under the weight of other priorities. But it starts to decay when it sees no sunlight of discussion, or a ray of Deja Vu. It is covered in darkness and begins to crumble brick by brick.

And when it decomposes, you will know that the IDEA is gone forever because you will feel a sudden emptiness in your heart; that of losing a companion you yearned for but never had, a lump in your throat like that for a movie scene that played out in front of your eyes but you didn't act in that scene. While days carry on, you feel the burden of a decayed idea in your head, not knowing where to burn it or bury. Heart feels heavier, mind wanders looking for even a small grain of the IDEA in case any survives.

If you wake up with a heavy heart or wandering mind, then you will know an IDEA lies deep inside you, decaying and rotting. If you aren't lucky enough to see it then the rot reeks into all your senses and affects your very being.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Hamara Bajaj kahan gaya?

The captivating ad jingle for Hamara Bajaj went off air maybe a year ago, but what was more disheartening was to learn that Bajaj was also winding up its scooter business after ruling the roost in India for as long as I can remember.

What happened to the ‘Buland Bharat ki buland tasveer’ (part of the lyrics of the Bajaj scooter’s ad jingle which means – ‘a fortifying image of a strong nation’) which we had all come to believe in?

For decades Bajaj was a synonym for scooter in India just as Colgate had become a synonym for toothpaste. Of course there were other brands such as Hero Honda, TVS, and maybe a few more but mention the word scooter and it would always be a Bajaj Scooter that one would recall.

It struck me yesterday that there are no scooters to be seen on the roads of Bangalore (the city where I live now) leave alone a Bajaj scooter. There was a pang of sadness when I realized that one of the trademark products which lined my childhood will soon be erased from the real world and will reside only in my memories of yester years.

One of the earliest memories I have is that of my Dad’s scooter which he bought after a waiting period of 4 years since its booking, in Chandigarh. It was a yellow scooter which he purchased through the Army’s special booking quota in 1976, a year before I was born.
Our family of four (including my younger sister) would go for long rides on the scooter. I would stand in the front holding on to the arms of the scooter while my sister would be seated between my dad and my mom. Catching breeze in my hair I would enjoy the unrestricted view of the road ahead.
My dad was among the few who had a vehicle of his own and so it came as a rude shock when one day the scooter was stolen from our open garage which was supposedly ‘protected’ as we stayed within the army cantonment area. The loss was inconsolable and our colony was abuzz with the news of this theft.

Dad was particularly broken hearted. I think it was after 6 months or so that he bought another scooter, a Bajaj Super, steel grey colour. This scooter served us well from 1983 to 1998 (while I was still doing my B.E.). The scooter added more special memories. We never really missed having a car but now it wasn’t possible for all four of us to sit at one go, so dad would make round trips to pick up in batches.

I remember how Dad and I explored Bangalore city soon after he was posted here, on the scooter. We must’ve done 40 Kms that day as Dad drove from central Bangalore to the eastern parts and back.

My dad enjoys traveling a lot and most of the time he would take off without informing my mom, causing quite a flutter back home since there were no mobile phones those days to keep track of your missing husband. He enjoys riding a 2-wheeler more than a 4-wheeler, proof of which is apparent from his sun burnt face just below the rim of the helmet, and badly tanned arms.

In 1998 we sold my TVS Luna and dad’s Bajaj scooter since we got a TVS scooty, a gearless scooter, besides having a car. But from there on Dad and I didn’t go around painting the town red the old way.

I asked him how he felt on hearing that Bajaj isn’t making scooters anymore. He wasn’t in a melancholic mood unlike me. In fact he looked at it practically and said good old scooters were anyways long dead. “It’s a good thing,” he said, “bikes and power scooters are anyways what people are buying now.”

Taking solace from his point of view I said to myself, “Some things don’t last forever… pity we all have to grow up some time.”

Monday, November 16, 2009

This is it!

I must first admit that I am not a huge Michael Jackson fan, I don’t know all his songs or albums or even lyrics to most of his popular songs. But I loved the guy and his music.

I am using 'love' in the sense to express those times when we have all grooved to his music and thanked him for some great tunes and videos.

So before the weekend got over I wanted to catch “This is It” the latest docu-feature on MJ’s final curtain call. My husband, who is a devoted fan (read his blog post) had bought tickets a month ago for the first day’s show of “This is it” but due to some compelling work we had to miss the movie and couldn’t even pawn off the tickets to someone else.Nevertheless, we didn’t miss the movie as we caught it right before it was taken off.

Right from the first frame, tears welled up in my eyes and I thought it wouldn’t stop. Amid loud cheers from the audience in the hall, we sat with hands clasped tightly in silence, watching the Man make some amazing moves which he is so famous for.

It took quite some time for me to fight back my tears and applaud. Applause came spontaneous and unrelenting from the audience for the whole of 2 hours of the movie.
It was surprising to see how charged up MJ looked, he was on top of the things – lighting, music arrangement, choreography, stage set, props and video – he had full control over everything. It brought a smile to see his ways of making a suggestion or expressing his discontent at some of the arrangements, it was all so humble.

For instance there was this music composer who just wasn’t getting the rhythm right for a song. Michael told him simply its just not the same speed as what he composed for the album. And when the composer said “I can add some booty if you want” MJ simply said, “Oh that’s funny” suggesting (I thought) that he didn’t need booty for his music.

The movie shook off the post-death image that media had created. MJ was jumping, rolling on the floor, doing the moonwalk, and leading the pack of professional dancers – nothing to suggest that he was weak or unhealthy. We went home wondering what really killed Michael then? This 50-year old man was as good as a 35 year old MJ working his magic.

The movie is shot and edited very well, no unnecessary interviews, no boring details of his profile. It was straight forward and didn’t waver off from the prime subject – Michael Jackson’s preparation for his last concert tour.

But most of all, the movie reminds you that the legend is no more and that’s the heart breaking reality.