Saturday, January 27, 2007


last week i saw 'babel'. and liked it very much. it was intensely rivetting.and exquisitely performed.directed by alejanetro gonzalez innarito,the story is about a married american couple richard(brad pitt) and susan(cate blanchett) who travel to morocco on a holiday.susan is accidentally shot by an arabian boy while they are travelling in a bus through the interiors of morocco.the arabian boy's father tends goats and in order to protect the goats,the boy's father buys the boy and his brother a gun. susan,who is bleeding profusely and is badly injured,is rushed to the nearest village where the local doctor gives first aid,removes the bullet and tries to reduce the pain.all this is taking a lot of time and susan loses lot of blood.the incident thoroughly shakes up richard and he tries very hard to save the marriage which was not going too well.meanwhile, the copassengers are getting agitated and want to leave without any further delay.

a deaf and mute teenage girl in tokyo called chieko realises that due to her handicap she does not get any attention from boys. she craves for love and along with her friend she indulges in heavy partying and disco-dancing.she also resorts to sexually provocative behaviour with a police officer who is investigating her father's arms dealings.her mother had committed suicide by falling off from an apartment in a mutistoreyed building.she is close to her father who is very protective of her.

amelia,nanny for the children of richard and susan heads for mexico to attend her brother's wedding. though she is refused leave, she decides to go. she has no choice but to take the children along with her.her brother escorts her but on their return her drunken brother gets into a brawl with the immigration officer and fails to show proper immigration papers of his sister.she is arrested for illegal entry into usa.

this is an interconnected story involving the struggles of the characters in three continents and six languages.the ensemble of different backgrounds and languages -morocco,mexico,japan and usa makes the film lively.each character is facing a serious problem and has to find a way out of the seemingly hopeless situation he or she is in.

we live in troubled times.though the world has shrunk and become a global village,we fail to speak out frankly and our mutual communications are weak and ineffective at a basic built the tower of babel to reach paradise and become god.god became upset,destroyed the structure and pushed the people back to earth,scattered them all over and made them speak different languages. we have different religions,different languages,different communities.relationships between father and son,father and daughter,husband and wife,brother and sister are complicated.

'babel' shows how an accidental crime affects the lives of people in three continents.all these events are shown brilliantly by the director ably supported by guillermo ariaga who reels out a crisp script. and he keeps the audience spellbound till the end. an excellent story directed excecptionally well with sombre music in the background.very good cinematography by rodrigo prieto,and music by gustavo is a snapshot of our troubled times sensitively narrated by the director.babel is a moving marvel and a likely winner in the 'oscar' for the 'best picture of the year' award.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Toronto in Mumbai

the premier of ontario,dalton mcguinty,is in india on a business visit and is also leading a 70 member strong business delegation. i attended a gala reception at the ncpa lawn on thursday night in his honour. david malone the high commissioner to india was the host. in cooperation with the toronto international film festival, a film called "away from her" was screened at the jamshed bhabha theatre. bollywood actor rahul bose was the master of the ceremony. in continuation, yesterday i saw "saint ralph".on the concluding day i.e. today two more films are being shown."la neuvaine" and "a simple curve". i shall post brief reviews of some of these movies soon.

the canadian leaders stressed how ontario is now a state having a muticultural society and that toronto alone has a population of half a million indians.mcguinty mentioned that the premiere of the "guru" at toronto indicated the tremendous interest that bollywood generated in toronto and that india and bollywood occupy an important place in their country.he said that toronto is canada's business engine and financial capital.and that the toronto film festival is the world's largest public film festival.he hoped that such interactions will futher improve bilateral relations and strengthen the bond between canada and india.he was very hopeful that just as india could gain from canada's expertise in modern technology,canada could also benefit from india software strengths. he gave an example of how 'blackberry', a product of canada , has revolutionised communications by turning imagination into innovation.there are about seven million users of 'blackberry' throughout the world he said. rahul bose did a competent job and introduced the visitors to all of us.

it was an enjoyable evening with plenty of wine and delicious snacks. we were presented with a cd containing songs of loreena mckennitt.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

solapur, the ex-manchester of the east

last week i had some work at solapur,a town about 400 kms away from mumbai. i took the siddheshwari express which leaves cst at 10.35 pm aand reaches solapur at 7 am and left the same night by the same train reaching cst at 6 was a productive visit.the whole morining was spent in various discussions and there was some free time in the late afternoon and evening to take a look around this city which was vibrant many years ago.

i have passed by solapur many times on my way to madras as it is the first stop in the early hours of the morning of a night train.young and energetic boys welcomed you with a cup of garam chai.once referred to as the manchester of the east,i was not surprised when after leaving the railway station i could see so many chimneys in the distant horizon. a familiar sight of a textile town.solapur was well known for both powerlooms and handlooms.some of the big textile mills have closed down because of unviability.bad days seem to have fallen on this the same time there are some mills making value added products like terrytowels and exporting them. solapur chaddars and towels are still very popular in the country.

bidi industry is now a leading industry in solapur. there are 15 large and small industries and about 1 lac pople are involved in bidi rolling.the workers are mostly females.they work 14 to 16 hours per day and roll about 1000-1200 bidis and earn about rs 50 per day.there is a small amount of tobacco in the a result,bidi workers suffer from respiratory problems.and there have been cases of some workers suffering from cancer too. after passing of the anti-smoking legislation in 2003 the bidi industry also has been affected. recently one of the wellknown builders of solapur constructed 10,000 houses for bidi workers on 400 acres of land given by the government. prime minister manmohan singh inaugurated the township last june. the construction cost was subsidised by the state and central governments. the same builder is also engaged in building prefabricated houses for tsunami affected people at andaman & nicobar islands.

in the 1930s solapur made history by declaring independence from the british raj; it was shortlived. only for three days.the bold rebellion was put down with an iron fist.also solapur has the distinction of its civic body being the first one in india to hoist the national tricolour .otherwise a peaceful city, recently solapur was in the news for dalit violence.

in 1938 during the second sino-japanese war, dr dwarkanath kotnis,who hails from solapur, served in china selflessly as a member of the indian medical mission. he had studied medicine at the grant medical college. he had an attack of epilepsy and died in china. there is a wellread book written on him. "and one who did not return" by ka abbas and v shantaram produced "dr kotnis ki amar kahani", after reading abbas's book. though there is a memorial in his name in china and a hospital too, sadly there is no memorial of kotnis at solapur. known as 'pinyin' in china. his grave was covered completely in flowers during the last 'quingning' festival. the chinese observe this day to commemorate their ancestors. dr kotnis continues to live in chinese hearts.

located close to the andhra and karnataka borders, people of this city speak three languages.marathi,kannada and telugu.and they are clearly polarised.but generally they live redeeming feature for the solapurites is that sushil kumar shinde currently minister for power at the centre is from solapur.he has grown from very humble beginnings and was in the police service before he entered politics. his closeness to madame sg and being a dalit may help him to get the numero uno position in the country. he appears to be a favourite candidate for the post of the president of india, hopefully then, solapur will become a better and brighter place to live in. a memorial for dr kotnis, better roads,better sanitation,more industries and even revival of the textile industry. that could change solapur's face and fortunes. and make it a happening and vibrant city once again.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007


makar sankranti is the time when one sees thousands of kites up in the sky.though kite flying is not very popular in south india,in the north and west it is 'de rigeur' during this period. particularly in cities like ahmedabad,surat and baroda.i was therefore a bit surprised when i read that the religious head of the jains had given a call to desist from kite flying.he said nature should not be harmed or disturbed.please give up kites and save birds he added. on uttarayan this year there were many who heeded to his advice

'prayas' an ngo' in surat has been spreading this message and advising people on how the killer manjha or thread kills birds.the ngo has done simple sums.there are 2 lakhs jains in surat.even if 5% refrain from kite flying,10,000 persons will not go up to their terraces and hundreds of birds would be saved.should there be cruelty in such an auspicious festival they ask. "paap no patang? naa baaba naa".

Sunday, January 14, 2007

CASINO ROYALE (License To Kill & License To Thrill)

in novemeber last year when i was in london,one of the books that my daughter was reading was 'casino royale'. initially,the book didn't interest me as i thought it was one of those fiction novels. when i read the name of the author, ian fleming,the creator of 007 james bond,i asked my daughter to pass the book on to me after she had completed reading. she and her husband have relocated to mumbai now and the book is on board the ship coming with all their bag and baggage. my interest having been aroused and having read a few reviews of 'casino royale', i decided to watch the movie. it was a very enjoyable action film. exhilarating. you are sitting on the edge all the time. never a dull moment.good storyline,excellent cinematography,pleasing music and the oustanding acting of daniel craig overshadows everything else. wow,what a movie!!

i have seen sean connery, pierce brosnan and others playing the role of james bond. sean is my old favourite but i must give credit to daniel craig for a super performance. when he steps out of the sea in swimming trunks he looks stunning. costars eva green and caterina murino are raving about his liplock style.and he has been crowned the "best bond since sean connery"

there were many misgivings whether daniel craig was the right person to play the world's most famous spy.too short,too blond and too northern. now his critics are eating their words. even 'hate craig' sites and chat rooms had sprung over the internet. he was being criticised from his blond hair to his blue eyes. et al. in one stroke he has silenced them the sheer force of his acting.

there has also been an advertising blitzkreig of the top of the line product brands in this film.which appears to be a trend these days. walther p99 and walther ppk,spirit 54 yacht,aston matin db5, armani,brioni roma and turnbull and asser.not to forget his swimsuit and the lingerie of all his girl friends from la perla.and to top it all the omega seamaster professional.sleek stainless steel case,a unidirectional rotating bezel,helium escape valve and a unique blue dial with applied luminous hour markers .omega,the classic omega.

500 prints have hit indian theatres and james bond is speaking in hindi,tamil and telugu. seems it may earn the tag of "highest earner of any bond movie". it is the 21st james bond 007 film. 007 has made daniel craig the most famous actor in the world.

what is the story about? james bond is sent on a mission to prague primarily to kill an m16 section chief, dryden, who has sold british secrets. his mission is also to kill both dryden's associate fisher and then the section chief.he kills fisher in the men's room and then dryden in his office. having earned his colours for the daring double killing,he gets the 007 tag and is despatched to madagascar in the hot chase of of an international bombmaker,mollakka.the scene from the time he spots him and the chase right upto the nanbutu embassy has been brilliantly picturised.he not only kills the bombmaker he also blows up part of the embassy to escape.

the main villain of the film is le unscrupulous financier of terrorists. 007 is now despatched by m16 to montenegro to bankrupt le chiffre who is a high-stakes poker player. before he leaves for montenegro,a microchip transmitter is implanted in his arm which is actually a tracking device. now his boss 'm' would know everything regarding his movements. vesper lynd(eva green), the beautiful woman enters the scene. she is supposed to assist him,courtesy 'm'. they fall in love. and during a rest break in the poker game, bond is poisoned by le chiffre. bond gets a heart attack but is saved by instructions on the cell from hq. three cheers to the fillibrator. eventually james bond wins the high stakes. but then he is waylaid and tortured by le chiffre to reveal the password of his swiss bank account by which he could get access to the game's winnings. meanwhile vesper has been pretty quick.she knows the password, takes the money to a mysterious organisation. james bond gives her a chase and sees her and several of the group's men hiding in a building. a gun battle ensures.the building in which they are located is undergoing reconstruction. bond shoots and ruptures the floating devices which are supporting the structure and foundation. the building collapses. vesper commits suicide by locking herself in the white is shown walking away with the briefcase containing $10 million. bond feels absolutely betrayed.he learns that vesper had a french-algerian boyfriend who was kidnapped by this organisation. to save her boyfriend's life, vesper had negotiated with the terrorist outfit. in her cellphone, she leaves behind mr white's name and cell no for bond. bond tracks mr white and shoots him in the leg. when mr white asks him who he is, he replies in the trademark james bond manner. " 007. the name is bond. james bond".

the film is based on ian fleming's first novel. there is an aura of danger and unpredictability all the time throughout the film. the locales chosen are exotic and bond moves only with beautiful and scantily clad women. catrina murino is one of them. directed competently by martin campbell, this high-octane action film with sizzling female fatalles is a winner all the way.

Friday, January 12, 2007

ven pongal and sakkara pongal

this is the month of margashirsha. and sadly it will end very soon. in the 'bhagavad gita' lord krishna says that among the twelve months,margashirsha is his favourite. in the south and particularly among the vaishnavite community,devout srivaishnavites chant the thirty paasurams(verses) called thiruppavai every morning in the early hours. composed by sri aandal,one of the twelve mystic saints- azhwars(deeply immersed in the love of the lord). besides chanting all the thirty, the first verse is sung at the end of the recital on the first day and the second one on the second day and so on and so forth. ven pongal(white pongal) is offerd to lord vishnu at home at the the end of the chanting. on the 27th day ,as per tradition, sakkara pongal(sweet pongal) is offered and on the 28th day,thayir saadam(curd rice) is offered. and pooran poli on the day of 'bhogi', a day precedimg pongal or makar sankranti. the sweetness in sakkara pongal comes from the jaggery.and the sweetness that oozes out of the sp is heavenly.

'margashirsha' is also called as the shunya(nil) maasa(month).shunya in sanskrit means no auspicious things are started during this month. no marriages,no gruha pravehsa(house warming),no upanayanams(sacred thread ceremony). one is expected to observe fast in the morning till completion of the chanting. and partake of the pongal after that. this is the month when you try to think of the lord all the time.

the 27th verse says : "vanquisher of foes,o supreme one, govinda;let these be our rewards for singing and praising and serving you,presents appreciated by the world;jewels for the wrists and shoulders,earrings and ear-flowers;anklets also; we all will wear new clothes and would then huddle together.sit comfortably and partake of rice cooked with milk overflowing with ghee that would drip down our elbows".

sakkarapongal is essentially a rice pudding made from rice milk and jaggery.there are some interesting legends on the origin of the pongal which i shall write on a separate posting on pongal day but here i will briefly give the recipe for those who want to try their hand at this delectable pudding.

take moong dal,rice,ghee,milk and jaggery. saute moong dal and rice in a few spoons of ghee. then boil them in a mixture of milk and water. take half a glass of water in another container and boil it. add jaggery in it and make a thick paste of it and boil it again. mix the moong dal and rice which was cooked earlier to this paste and then boil the whole stuff for ten minutes.
voila,sakkara pongal is now ready to be served! you might ask what on earth happened to the ven pongal. carried away by the sweetness of sp i just forgot about it. a quick recipe is given below.

take some cummin seeds and peppercorn and powder them coarsely. set it aside. roast the rice and green gram dal separately.mix together, wash well and add the turmeric powder and water. pressure cook and keep it separately. heat the ghee,oil,in the frying pan. add cumminseeds,peppercorns,asfoetida powder,grated ginger and curry leaves.add the cooked rice and dhal and mix well. add salt. add the grated coconut and some water if required. garnish with fried cashewnuts. serve hot with chutney or spicey tamarind kuzhambu.or with brinjal masiyal or sambhar.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

jalebi and gaathia

we are having a mild winter in mumbai these days.continuous blowing of the cold wind.some woolens have come out of the closet. many people have been affected by sore throat and cough. surely,telltale signs of winter. and when i feel a tingling sensation in my throat, i could think of no better remedy than my favourite jalebi with gaathia. a small indulgence which really titilliates the taste buds.

jalebi and fafda gaathia is a fantastic combination. the last time i had it was last month when i was driving down from raipur to titilagarh. i stopped in a wayside gujerati teashop in khariar road and had this combination. the true marks of a good jalebi are its thinness and orange colour.eaten with the yellow coloured gaathia and sometimes green chutney, it is a heavenly feeling when the succulent jalebi enters your mouth. i have a friend who goes to the mafatlal swimming pool at chowpatty every morning come rain or sunshine. for a swim. and enjoys his well earned jalebis alongwith the yellow fafda after the swim.

so wake up and smell the jalebi. do some exercise and come back and have it. your conscience will not prick.

Monday, January 08, 2007

veg vindaloo

i lived in goa for three years.being a vegetarian i missed out the famous goan vindaloo and fish curry. i used to take generous helpings of bebinca at the end of a meal. till a friend of mine told me how many eggs go into its making. after that i have hardly ever eaten bebinca.

i was under the impression that vindaloo goes only with mutton or pork till sometime back. suddenly my curiosity arose one day and i started surfing the net for veg vindaloo. and lo and behold i came across a quick fire recipe for the hot and fiery veg vindaloo by maya kaimal.

"prepare a hot and sour curry made with black pepper and coriander tempered by tangy tamarind and coconut milk. a perfect sauce for spicing up vegetables.heat the sauce in a pan with boiled vegetables,simmer and serve".

i surfed for a more detailed recipe. luckily i got one. thank you john for your help.


"The searing heat and intensely spiced flavors of vindaloo, a distinguished dish of southern India, is not just for carnivores. Gari is a vegetarian vindaloo in which sweet summer vegetables are cooked in a rich, tart, tamarind-based sauce. Substitutions for the various vegetables based on seasonal variations are acceptable, as long as the substitutes are sweet and firm and not sour and leafy. Serve with plain rice and raita.

3/4 C peanut or sunflower oil
1 1/4 to 1 1/2 lbs onions, peeled and thinly slice
6 medium garlic cloves, peeled and slivered
3/4 to 1 lb new potatoes, unpeeled, cut into 1-inch cubes
1 lb mixed vegetables: zucchini, carrots, green pepper, cauliflower, etc.
1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp turmeric
1 tsp fenugreek seeds
1 1/2 TBS minced fresh ginger
1/2 tsp salt, or to taste
2 hot green chiles, trimmed and chopped, seeds included (about 1/4 C)
2/3 C water
1 tsp tamarind concentrate (or substitute 1 TBS lime juice & 1 tsp molasses)
1 1/2 tsp garam masala (recipe follows)
1/2 tsp whole cardamom seeds, de-podded
1/8 tsp ground cloves
1/4 tsp cayenne (or more to taste)
1 TBS shredded unsweetened coconut
1/3 C fresh or frozen peas
1 heaping TBS cilantro, chopped

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large, deep skillet, add the onion and garlic, and lower the heat to medium. Fry at medium-high heat until the onion starts to brown (about 10 minutes). Set aside, off the heat. Drop the potatoes in the boiling water and boil 10 minutes. Drain and set aside.

Meanwhile, slice the vegetables about 1/2 inch thick. Place the skillet with the onion back on low heat and add paprika, turmeric, fenugreek, ginger, salt, and green chiles. Reheat until sizzling a little and add 2/3 C water. Stir in the vegetables (except the peas) and the potatoes. Simmer 20 minutes, covered.

Remove about 1/2 C of hot liquid from the pot, place in a deep bowl, and add the tamarind concentrate, stirring fiercely to dissolve it and pressing it against the sides of the bowl. Pour the mixture back into the pot, increase the heat to high, bring liquid to boil and reduce it until the sauce is very thick (about 5 minutes).

Stir in the garam masala, cardamom, cloves, cayenne, and coconut, lower heat and simmer uncovered for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, cook peas separately in boiling water until just tender (2-3 minutes), checking frequently. Cool them under cold running water and reserve. Just before serving, add the peas to the mixture, cook them just long enough to warm them and serve the dish garnished with cilantro. Makes 3-4 servings."

sounds yummy. i must try it soon. and then i can tell the world that there is veg vindaloo too!

the stage is now set for a gastronomic attack. what if i were to add garlic- soaked wine and vinegar on the bed of aromatic basmati rice and spicy and chilli vindaloo curry.

maybe the mutton vindaloo afficionados would have a change of heart and opt for a veg vindaloo .

Friday, January 05, 2007

the city on three rivers

during my visit to germany in november,i went to a beautiful village called takes about 20 minutes by car from paassau.the countryside scenery is gorgeous.greenery everwhere,and the farmhouses are so beautiful.i have been visiting passau and buchelberg on an average atleast once a year for the last ten years. i like buchelberg for its simple village charm.i would love to stay there but as i normally reach passau rather late in the evening there is no suitable train connection. i generally stay at 'holiday inn' at is very conveniently located. a few minutes walk from the hauptbahnof(main railway station).when i was returning from buchelberg to passau i met a very interesting taxidriver. he was from iraq.he was so well informed about international politics.and he knew and understood indian politics and of course he reeled out the names of our many prime ministers and was full of praise for amitabh bacchan whom he considered better than many hollywood greats.

passau is a very lively modern has plenty of is located near the austrian and czech border.once i tried to get into the czech side and luckily got off with a brief reprimand! passau is a cultutal and artistic centre. its famous festival is called "europaische wochen" (european weeks) and there are any number of exhibitions in the numerous art galleries and museums of the town.

the old town has a history of about 7000 years. the rivers danube,inn and ilz meet here. the spectacle is so very natural and breathtaking. some of the important places in this historic city are: veste oberhaus built in 1219 having gothic,renaissance and baroque architecture. the magnificent st steven's cathedral. it was burnt down in 1662 by a massive fire. rebuilt by the famous baroque architect carlo lurago,its stucco works and frescoes were done by italian artists. the church organ has 17974 organ pipes,233 stops and 4 carilons. it is the world's largest cathedral organ. then the museum of the treasure of the cathedral, glass museum(bohemian glass),museum of modern art and the town hall. the roman museum 'kastell boiotro' was discovered in 1974. the excavations give a glimpse of the roman civilisation during the years 250 to 400 ad.

there is so much to see in this beautiful city of Baveria that i have decided to take a holiday when i am here later this year and soak in the natural beauty of this wonderful town. visit as many museums and art galleries as possible. and of course the fantastic st stven's cathedral renowned for possesing the world's largest organ.

As the Bavarian author Ludwig Ganghofer wrote "those whom the lord favours,he sends to live here".

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Six Weird Things About Me and Books-Meme

thanks to lotus reads whose enlightning blogposts i regularly read,here i am posting on the abovementioned title.

1) i do not like the book that i read to be soiled,torn or must be as good as 'fresh from the printer's'.

2) i read several books at a time and the more interest a particular book generates it gets completed first.

3) for sure, i will go to sleep in a jiffy if i were to lie down and read.

4) bookstores fascinate me no end. and i just keep buying books.the rate of purchase is many times more than the rate of completion of reading.

5) when i pick up magazines to read,i read from last page to first page in that order.

6) while travelling by train or in an aircraft,i have this habit of peeping into the book that my neighbour is reading.

i will be sending emails to six of my friends and will request them to contribute on "six weird things about me and books".

The Rules: Each player of this game starts with the “6 weird things about you”. People who get tagged need to write a blog of their own 6 weird things as well as state this rule clearly. In the end, you need to choose 6 people to be tagged and list their names. Don’t forget to leave a comment that says “you are tagged” in their comments and tell them to read your blog.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

'odoru maharaja'

shivaji rao gaekwad, a maharashtrian, was a bus conductor with karnataka road transport corporation(ksrtc) in bangalore in the late 60s. he used to participate in dramas organised by the employees' association and showed promise of a great acting career.on the persuasion of some of his friends and wellwishers he moved to madras seeking pastures in the madras filmworld.he was spotted by k balachander who found great talent in the youngster. soon he became the darling of the cinegoers. and was competing with the likes of gemini ganeshan, kamal hasan and sivaji ganeshan. today he reigns supreme in the film firmament.his latest film 'chandramukhi' is considered to be a superhit. he mesmerises the audience with his machismo and panache. he is none other than rajnikant.

you would have justifiably thought that the highest paid movie star in india is the' big b' or srk the new anchor for kbc. you are absolutely off the mark. rajnikant gets the highest paycheck in indian filmdom and his fans are delirious.the under-production film 'sivaji',the budgeted cost of which is rs 70 crores, has fetched him rs 16 crores.the film will be released simultaneously in chennai and tokyo. after jackie chan,he becomes the second highest paid movie star. in 2005 'chandramukhi' became indian cinema's biggest grosser. the tamilian star- struck fans who refer to him as "thalaivar"(head) get their bang for their bucks when they see a rajni movie.big b and srk may be well known in the middle east but they are not well known in japan. the only indian star popular and admired by the youth and elderly in japan is rajnikant. the movie called 'muthu' got him japanese glory. it was rechristened 'odoru maharaja' (the dancing maharaja) and it grosssed $3million, the highest for any indian movie. that is a unique distinction for the southern superstar.he has also acted in several hindi films. 'andha kaanoon' was a superhit.

in his recent visit to japan,prime minister manmohan singh warmly referred to rajnikant,the dancing king, and the positive impact it has had on indo-japanese relations while addressing the japanese diet(parliament). the applause he received was deafening.( he also mentioned how 'sushi' and 'tempura' were becoming popular in indian cities.that brought more applause from the members of the diet.)

rajnikant's role in the japanese film 'odoru maharaja' is that of a coachman who sings"kaiyil konjam kaasu irundaal,nee dhaan adhirku ejamaanan,kazhuthu varikkum kaasu irundaal,adhu daan unakku ejamaanan". what it means is that if you have a little cash in you hands,you are its boss. if you are upto your neck in money,that becomes your boss.after the burst of the internet bubble,that appeared to be an apt message for the japs.

Monday, January 01, 2007

"buddy on demand"

he is a boon for women motorists who drive alone at night.

a survey conducted by a car insurance for females company in australia revealed that 82% of women feel less nervous about driving at night with someone sitting in the car beside them and nearly 50% don't like driving in the dark. what is the solution? the company came out with an ingenious idea. an inflatable man. a blow up passenger. call him what you like. he may not be the panacea for all the fears but can lessen the psychological burden on the female driver by providing the silhouette of a couple and make journeys in the dark less fearful. he appears at the flick of a switch. and when she has done with him she has to only pull a plug and he deflates and can be fitted in the glove box. he is "buddy on demand".

"sheila wheels" is an australian company launched one year ago to address all concerns of female car drivers in australia. it also designs and makes products which enhance value for female car drivers. australians refer to all women as sheilas. hence the name.and the idea seems to have found some nervous would be buyers. it is a prototype and is not available for sale yet.