Tuesday, 30 December 2014

And Off Went The Beard!

It was truly a sad moment for him

In his 35 years of marriage, he had never even thought about it

A venerable, lovely trademark

But alas, it has to be done

He remembered the frightened face of his five year old granddaughter

Sighing deeply, he dragged the razor upwards

And off went the beard.

This post is a part of #WillYouShave activity at BlogAdda in association with Gillette.

I have written this post acknowledging the tag of Surbhi .

Saturday, 27 December 2014

To Lie Or Not To Lie!

Lying, nowadays, has become an art (just like copying in exams) and most of us are able to do it flawlessly with no misguided facial expressions. Some people even do it as sort of their profession and keep doing it for the rest of their lives - be it in their personal or social life - to the extent that they can't speak the truth ever again without their knowing, even for small matters. It becomes a part of their life. Some don't even realise that they are lying. Such has become its prevalence just like swearing in social media.

Many a time, users post statuses/ share pictures saying one team has been raped by the rival team. It just means that the rival team has defeated the other team in an outrageously great way, What was considered as an offensive word in the dictionary has now just become "cool" to use it, in order to gain attention. Lying too has achieved a similar level of supposed coolness over the years. Lying in the most creative and deceptive ways to parents, teachers, friends, girlfriends and boyfriends has become a norm.

That being said, there are always exceptions - lying for a good cause or lying for the greater good. Sometimes, lying to the concerned person is necessary for his own benefit. A doctor can't really choose to become a Harichandra to announce a sad news to a sensitive wife or mother or husband about his/her beloved's early-to-be demise. It is like destroying their beliefs, hope and confidence. And close family members cannot really give their true account on what they witnessed on an unintentional murder of a rapist or serial killer.

For me, lying has not come easy. One reason: I know I will ultimately fail to lie effectively. My facial expressions will give me away easily. Moreover, I have not felt the necessity to lie. Yes, some problems could have been solved easily and shortly if I had lied in the first place. It is really difficult for me to lie to my parents. Some of my earliest attempts at lying was when I had failed in some exams at school.

And by the way, I think not telling the truth at the right moment and procrastinating it is also a form of a lie. Even choosing to leave out some finer details in the "truth" is also a lie. However small it may be, if it affects the concerned party in a very negative way, a lie is a lie.

The following is a short memory of mine of a failed attempt in efforts to lie. I ended up telling the truth. It was in my ninth grade and I was in my peak of academic performance. That day, our class' social studies answer sheets for the mid term were being distributed. I had scored a good 98 percent in it. When I did my re-totalling, I was shocked to find that my mark had been totalled wrong. There was an extra 4 mark. I checked again and again. Despite my friends' protests, I decided to go against them and confront the teacher. She was surprised but continued to deduct the four marks and returned the paper, smiling. There were 2-3 similar incidents like this, and I clearly remember one of them turn to be in my favour - the teacher decided to leave it as it is, appreciating my honesty. I would not deny a selfish motive to gain a good image in the teacher's mind. So it is not completely a pure deed.

But there is no way, I would do that now. If there is an accidental increase in marks, I would avoid going to the professor. It is their duty to evaluate the answer papers correctly :P.

Thursday, 25 December 2014

Thoughts On The Shiva Trilogy!

I can't believe that I had missed out on this series for four whole years. Sure, I have heard of the trilogy being talked about all around me, but seems, only now I had the time to read this fascinating series. This series has most of my favourite elements in a book - fantasy (not entirely), drama, mythology, history etc; I managed to finish the whole trilogy within a month, a feat at that, since I take more than a month to finish a single book itself. The author Amish has created an amazing world of Shiva, one of the most revered Gods in India. The series talks about how Shiva, a Tibetan barbarian residing by the lake Manasarovar beside the Mount Kailash, becomes the chosen one with a peculiar blue throat (Neelkanth) to fight against evil.

Rather than portraying Shiva as the God we all know, the author has went on to show him as a normal human being, who becomes a God, because of the deeds he did to greatly improve his good karma.

The book starts at a leisurely pace, laying the groundwork in establishing the traits of the different characters. I was intrigued when I found that Shiva does possess the general human characteristics in the good sense, not as the Godly image we usually pray.

Shiva is like one of those believable super-heroes like Batman, our own version of superhero, who achieves it by the immense physical and mental power. He is charismatic, inspiring, terrifying yet calm, daunting, frank, hilarious, flirtatious and most important of all FAIR in all things (unbiased). Sadly in the battle scenes, he has little action compared to other characters like Sati, Shiva's wife. I was hoping for some divine magic scenes - for example the eternal cosmic Tandava dance of Shiva.
Nevertheless, there were extensive battle scenes described in an interesting way. The titles given for the three books have very little significant relevance to the content of the book - it is more of a generalised title.

One great disappointment from the series was the climax in the final book where I was really hoping for a confrontation between an enemy and Shiva, I was put off from the very different and sad climax.

In the initial parts of the series, the narration though fluid, the language was very bland to my taste and repetitive. But it changed drastically as the series progressed. One aspect I liked was the different terms used by the characters for exclamation, like - "By the Holy Lake", "In Lord Ram's name" - something similar to - "Blimey","Merlin's beard" (HP).

In some parts, the book does get a little bit preachy, especially those conversations with the different pandits. At times, it went on dragging for several pages that it became irritating until the scene transferred to the issue at hand. The trilogy is also a testimony to the evil things people do for their own purposes which in turn affects the entire society in large. Some repeatedly talked about issues such as environmental pollution and stigma on immoral practices are beautifully woven into the story.

With its vast number of characters, kingdoms, ideologies that we as citizens of India can very much relate to, the Shiva trilogy is one that describes Shiva as our own Superhero. I heard that movies are going to be made based on the trilogy. I just hope the transformation into celluloid is as gripping as the book and I pray they change the climax into an awesome, happy ending.

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To digress from the main post, three days back I had watched a Tamil movie - Pisasu (Ghost in english) which was very different from the ones I have seen so far. Though primarily belonging to the horror genre, the movie also had elements of drama. One must definitely watch this movie.

The movie starts with an accident scene and by the end one will notice that the entire story is like an accident. There are a lot of fine details given by the director, some of which I couldn't understand - one of them being the frame in which an intimidating old lady stares fiercely at the hero for a long time.

I sign off this post by wishing you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! :)


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