Monday, September 5

Who needs a Hazare when there is a Pandey?

Today I m in a feisty mood. Maybe its from the sugar rush of eating the wet chocolate cake last night. Or maybe its the Pandey factor! The girl has finally stripped for the failing cricket team, and the nation finally has something new to look forward to than watch Arnav blabber night after night on Annadom.  Anna Hazare and Poonam Pandey, are the heroes of the day! Both are relentlessly fighting the autocracy of the Bourgeoise class - one, of the nation and the other, of the cricket world. If one is shedding kilos, and the other is shedding clothes..just to motivate the people of the nation!

Many thanks to Team India for losing their mojo in the English soil, we finally see Miss Pandey coloring the silver lining in nude. Twitterati has gone amok with her posing semi-nude to cheer up our fallen players on the pitch. One look at that pic, and you wilI know she has given a whole new meaning to 'deep mid wicket' . She plans to post more of such delights for every match the team wins. Now thats quite a 'motivational surprise', not just for the 'chosen 11' but for all the men in the entire nation and the world at large. The girl knows her shit well. Who is the donkey now, Mr. Hussain? Will your English ladies ever dare to bare for the team? 

I don't know if our 'Robinhood Pandeys on field' will be able to make magic happen hereafter, but  Miss 'dis-robin Pandey' has surely opened quite few magical doors for herself! Her nymphomaniacal behavior might make it to the Harvard Case Studies (if not Hollywood), wherein it will be studied and discussed with grave brevity, on how it can inspire and eventually lead to greater good(sic!) Who knows, in future she might even give therapeutical "Nude Motivation" classes in A-class corporates, so that the already sleep-derived zombiefied employees are pushed further to yield more results. Her IIM dreams might have fallen flat on her face, but now that she bared and dared to dream beyond the IIMs , she might soon be co-authoring books about her motivational skills with our egg-hatcher guru. 

Long story short, both Anna and Poonam are superstar material. No matter how bizarre their respective Modus operandi is, they truly understands the mob psychology and can make it work for their benefit. 

Can you do a Poonam Pandey or an Anna Hazare for your country?

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Thursday, September 1

Tweaking my memories on 'The Blue Mug'

This is a much delayed post, building a home in my blog kittybag for long time. Thanks to work, fatigue, fever, answering emails, packing and re-packing...its been a no fun blog-less journey for sometime!

If colors were to be associated with days of week, my last Saturday was truly blue - first it was the play, The Blue Mug, and  then my turquoise silk dress (more on that later!)

Fair warning, this post will not be my usual onion of criticism or a mud pie of gossipy disapproval of the play The Blue Mug. Mostly because it was an experimental play and due to my inexperience in such theatre, there were bits I didn't understand. But I love live performance art - in any form. Whether it was the German Philharmonic Orchestra I saw long back in Kolkata or Marina Abramović's "The Artist is Present" at MoMA(New York) last year, there is something about live art that strikes a chord in me.

The Blue Mug boasts of big billboard names - Rajat Kapoor, Vinay Pathak, Ranvir Shorey, Sheeba Chadha, Munish Bharadwaj and Shipra Singh. No wonder the tickets sold like 'hot momos'. I was lucky to get two best seats in the house - second row and center, ftw!  Based on Oliver Sacks' essay on case histories of patients who suffer in bizzare situations due to memory loss, the play was a juxtaposition of the memories of all the actors who played themselves. So if your are going there to watch one particular story with a perfect start and ending, forget it! Enjoy the company of the brilliant cast ensemble, their joie de vivre on recounting strange memories and the excellent comic timing. There was such an easy flow to Atul Kumar's direction that it will blur your mind's eye - whether this was staged play or an  au naturel rendezvous of a bunch of old friends. And as the actors connected, their shadows along with the lively background music made sure that this play stays in our memory for a long time.

Speaking of the cast, I will give personal review on each as they made their signature moves intelligently through 75 mins of monologues. 

Lets start with Rajat Kapoor. Until that evening, I was sure I didn't suffer from the Hefner effect, but this "Mahesh uncle" from DCH made me think otherwise.  Standing just few away, he seemed like the 'man-wine' - getting better with age. Something my mom could never understand as she grilled the 'starry-eyed' me afterwards- "Aren't you half his age!?" But despite his jaw-dropping good looks, there was monotony in his script - the sad middle-aged loner reminiscing his past turned out to be a familiar ho-hum affair.  

But let me assure you there was never a dull moment when you have Vinay Pathak on stage. The whole stage lits up to his Falstaffian gusto for life. A natural comic, he did what he always does the best - exhibiting his man-child innocence. His "Dance of the Pervert" with Sheeba was so well played that I laughed till I had tears in my eyes. 

Sheeba, Munish and Shipra are three actors whose respective work I have not witnessed before, and now regret it - 'coz they are absolutely amazing!! Sheeba's artistic expressions and champion monologue delivery left me, mouth agape. Whether it was her monastic chants of 'We are what we forget' or the bottle feeding fetishization of her 13 year old self, she was like a fresh breath of acting. Munish bagged the some of the funniest scenes from the script and he did justice to them. Shipra proved a good substitute to Konkona Sen Sharma, who plays the concerned doctor to Ranvir Shorey's character.

But the showstopper of the evening was Mr. Shorey, and he re-defined the meaning of "versatility" to a whole new level. He outdid himself playing the middle-aged amnesiac with long term memories. In his mind he was stuck to his 21 year old self, and as he connected with the audience with his rustic Punjabi, you can feel his contradictory emotions with the confusion of time. Gave a total bittersweet angle to this play!

I had a great time experiencing and soaking in this excellent journey with the actors. But I was damn disappointed with the crowd. Its a courtesy that one gives standing ovation at the end of such brilliant act, but the city's crowd thought it to be otherwise. This was something I realized after standing all alone and clapping my heart out, only to be joined a little later by few hesitant audiences. No wonder the actors got pissed (I am sure!) and they didn't come out during the requested encore. And I didn't get a chance to meet them after the play. *sob, sob*

But being a terminally optimist, I just couldn't let that dampen my mood for the evening. I glamed up for the play in my new silk dress, something I did last year when I went for a Broadway show. Yes, I do have my "super-girly doll up" phases and I indulge in them shamelessly.  They totally compliment the hours I have religiously put in the gym everyday, besides being a good break from my usual casual-formal attire(sic!). 

Overall, this whole episode is sure to last as I connected with the play at some point and few narratives did tweak my memory to exclaim, "Ah that happened to me!"

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I did it my way by Tongue-Fu Lady is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 2.5 India License.