Monday 28 February 2005


Menka Shivdasani, poet, friend, in her column in The Daily Star, Bangladesh, writing about the recent Kala Ghoda festival.
The Literature section, co-ordinated by R Sriram, Managing Director & CEO, Crossword Bookstores Ltd, was packed with a variety of events - multilingual poetry readings as well as one by poets writing in English; a creative writing workshop, and even, for the first time, an SMS poetry competition.

As Jerry Pinto, poet and one of the judges of the SMS competition pointed out, with mobile phones having become very common and the Short Messaging Service so popular, writers needed to look at language in new ways and adapt to the times. The purists might have been horrified -- after all, when you are sending out an SMS, grammar and spelling are not priorities. The entries that came in, however, were quite remarkable -- sometimes, even haiku-like, as one of the other judges, the poet Marilyn Noronha commented. Peter Griffin, for instance, came up with this one, and ended up with first prize:

cellular creature
now part of my D.N.A.
gladden my heart: beep.

Manisha Lakhe and Annie Zaidi, first and second runners-up respectively, used SMS techniques to perfection -- though these were 'poems' you certainly would not be able to read aloud!

Check them out...

Cud v b like that *ship
Boldly c-king cvlizashuns
So v don't disturb
Old ways of life?
Let's just love and leave - Manisha Lakhe

tis d wkend;wot plans?
nt sayn d nyt's alpyn
& wintr rustls twixt d sheets.
nt sayn d windO stares insomnac,@ d hiway.
nt sayin i w8,dd u 4get?
only askn-
tis d wkend;wot plans?
- Annie Zaidi

All three winners, as it turned out, were Net-savvy members of the literary site

Sunday 27 February 2005

Making movies

Pal Sujoy Mukherjee has an interesting essay up on the movie revolution.
While the world got used to the weight and feel of a camcorder nestled in their palms, young impresarios were making other plans. A generation of young people weaned on cable television, the Internet and Sony Playstation are as comfortable with making movies, as most of us are with driving cars.
Go read the rest of The really small cinema. There's a bunch of interesting links up there too.

Tuesday 22 February 2005

A platform for short films and documentaries.

Films Anonymous has some interesting stuff brewing. Here's a few extracts:
Short Films - though neglected in comparison to full-length feature films, can be as informative as educational, as entertaining as topical as any other medium. [They] can have large appeal and substantial commercial value. We believe that it is about time there was more viewership and interest amongst Indian filmmakers and audiences as well to give short films its due credit.
Films Anonymous provides a platform for short filmmakers to come and screen their films and to have interesting and critical interactive sessions with audience consisting of people from the industry and media besides film enthusiasts.

Films Anonymous screenings happen once a month @ the most happening place.
The membership profile of the club will be as diverse as the films we show. Right from filmmakers to Celebes to musicians to the common cinebuffs! Films Anonymous is an open forum, where everybody who is anybody, is welcome to join the club.
Films will be acquired from various sources like first time Filmmakers, Ad Agencies, Film Clubs, Film Festivals, Film Students, Production Houses and also from famous and critically acclaimed filmmakers directly.

The entire content will be examined by a screening committee consisting of eminent people from all walks of the society, essentially the industry, media and academics, before the movies are finalized for screenings.
The club is open to all filmmakers, big or small, recognized or not. There is no discrimination of any sort and the atmosphere is conducive for the best creative nourishment.
At the end of every year we plan to hold a festival of the films screened and judge the best films in each category / genre and give out awards.
Contact or

The NGMA-COHO Art Poetry Walk - South Bombay, 26th February

The NGMA-COHO Art Poetry Walk - South Bombay, 26th February

This just in, via Menka Shivdasani and Janet Fine:
The NGMA-COHO Art Poetry Walk
SATURDAY FEB 26 3:00-7:00 pm

Join us for a stimulating afternoon of art, poetry and interaction

We start this time at Rampart Row for a "mini-Khala Ghoda Fest" traversing exciting exhibits to conclude at the National Gallery for Modern Art for final poetry/slam contest. Entertainment features theme of "the casting couch" so cast your own drama!

Rampart Row (next to Joss Restaurant, Khala Ghoda on Rampart Row, from Rhythm House to "Rampart Row" opposite Museum Gallery)
This exciting new party space by artistic caterer Faroukh Khambata is the site of Niti Patel's Arushi Arts special art exhibit of 75 classic paintings.
Wine and cheese and dramatic renditions by noted actress Madhuri Batia and poetry of the "Casting Couch," L'Officiel editor Sangeeta Wadwani's excerpt "The Lusty Director" and actor Gary Richardson and troupe with more excerpts of "Mad Horses of Matheran."

Museum Gallery (next to Jehangir Art Gallery, Max Mueller Bhavan opp Rampart Row)
A visit to the major retrospective exhibition of Bose Krishnamachari, a talk by the artist and special entertainment.
A quick visit to Jehangir Art Gallery where more of his work is showing.

National Gallery of Modern Art (opposite Prince of Wales Museum, near Regal Cinema).
The walk ends at the NGMA with NGMA's ground-breaking "Beyond Borders" exhibit of Pakistan art.
A reading by Gary Richardson, Tee Jay, Chandan and Millie of US Trade Commissioner Richard Rothman's new story "The Bollywood Casting Couch", Madhuri Batia's dramatic poetry readings and contest finale.
Tea and special refreshments served.

The generous support of Godfrey Philips Four Square, Sula Vineyards and Lion Brahmbhatt has enhanced this event.

For More Information:
Mr. RR Puranik Tel: 22881969/70

Sunday 20 February 2005


The dream behind the Web is of a common information space in which we communicate by sharing information. Its universality is essential: the fact that a hypertext link can point to anything, be it personal, local or global, be it draft or highly polished. There was a second part of the dream, too, dependent on the Web being so generally used that it became a realistic mirror (or in fact the primary embodiment) of the ways in which we work and play and socialize. That was that once the state of our interactions was on line, we could then use computers to help us analyse it, make sense of what we are doing, where we individually fit in, and how we can better work together.
Just stumbled on The World Wide Web: A very short personal history by da man who invented it.

Thursday 17 February 2005

i need this

Ta-da List
Ta-da makes it easy to...

Keep track of all the little things you need to get done
Make lists for other people (co-workers, friends, family)
Share lists with the world ('My favorite movies of 2004')
Subscribe to your lists in RSS so you're always on track
...and more!
And the price is right. It's free.

Link via Evhead.

Wednesday 16 February 2005

Listen up, pack... The Law of the Blogger in the style of aapro Rudybaba. An extract:
NOW this is the Law of the Blogger - as old and as true as the sky;
And the blogger that keeps it may prosper, but the blogger that breaks it must die.

As the visits that pump up the hit count, the Law runneth forward and back --
For the strength of the Blogs is the Blogger that never cuts anyone slack.

Blog daily from news-tip and hat-tip; blog long, but blog not too deep;
And remember the Pundit's for linking, and forget not that he has to sleep.

Tuesday 15 February 2005

Writing contest

Just noticed this one. The Sulekha/Penguin Global Writing Contest - India Smiles
Ever dreamed of getting published by Penguin or making an easy lakh! Well, the opportunity is at hand.

The easiest and shortest way to get your writing published by the most distinguished publisher in the world and gain fame on the most popular online community/network in the world is by entering the global Sulekha-Penguin 'India Smiles' contest.

Write and submit an original humorous short story (word limit: 1500 words). Hurry...deadline is Feb 28, 2005.
The contest is judged by an eminent jury, which will include Khushwant Singh, Farouque Sheikh, Ruskin Bond, Geetha Doctor, Anita Nair, Ashok Mahadevan, Sushila Ravindranath.

Monday 14 February 2005

When you have nothing to say, yet...

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipisicing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

In Delhi, it is spring, and raining blogs.

And since we're on the subject of literate journos, time to send felicitations to our pals in Delhi, them precocious young brats, Samit Basu and Jaiarjun Singh, who are both on their way to becoming big wheels on the media machine. Senor Basu will start a new column, and Singh, Esq, is now Da Man at Business Standard, the bloke who decides if your book gets reviewed or not.

And buddy Nilanjana S Roy has finally bowed to pressure from the blogsphere and begun archiving her columns. Yay.

And Annie Zaidi still hasn't found the time to guestblog here, because, besides turning out reams of lovely poetry, she's also been writing up a storm at Known Turf.

For the lovelorn

We thought we knew all the journos in Bombay that actually read (Hi Nina! Hey there, Naresh! Jerry? Amy? Meenakshi? Naah, they don't slum it in Blogsville), so we were pleasantly surprised to see this in Mid-Day, of all places. Words that heal, by Alpana Lath Sawai, takes lonely hearts letters and gets great literature to play Agony Aunt. Some excerpts:
There’s a girl I see at the bus stop every day – I love her a lot. I have even started going to college earlier than my timings because that’s the only way to see her. I don’t know where she lives. I cannot think of anything else.
Every night I go to bed in a hurry because I know that when I wake up, I will see her soon. I used to hate mornings, but now each day is filled with the anticipation. She never looks at me but I am sure she will love me too. I have lost interest in everything else, nothing matters except that she should love me.

Jo in Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
"Go and eat your dinner; you’ll feel better after it. Men always croak when they’re hungry."

My colleague, his name is Karan, has been asking me out. I said no the first few times because I didn’t want to get mixed up in these things. But he keeps saying we should just go out for a casual coffee.
But I don’t drink coffee and I don’t want to start socialising with people from work outside office hours because you end up talking about work everywhere. However, he’s quite sweet, and he seems very gentle. I sensed that he was interested in me a while ago, but he only asked me out recently… What should I do?

Miss Steele in Sense & Sensibility by Jane Austen:
"…perhaps you young ladies may not care about the beaux, and had as lief be without them as with them. For my part, I think they are vastly agreeable, provided they dress smart and behave civil. But I can’t bear them dirty and nasty"
Way to go, Ms Sawai. (A word in your ear, though, m'dear. It's "advises" not "advices.")

Animal Passions

Alas, the hapless porcupine, his heart really bleeds, poor chap.
The quills on his fair valentine turned metaphor into a mishap.

Pity the poor mantis, when he’s in his Valentine’s embrace.
When the lady says "Oh God!" she’s merely saying grace.

On Valentine’s Day, in the water sport the hippopotami.
It’s the only way to support their entwined anatomy.

Snails are strange creatures; hermaphrodites every one.
On Valentine’s Day, the bastards have twice the fun.

St Valentine’s day massacre

Can i use your heart for my Valentine?
(Signed) Doctor Victor Frankenstein.

Would you mind awfully if should poke a
Little hole in your neck and sip? - B Stoker.

I sit here, holding her hand in mine—
A souvenir from my chopped-up Valentine.

Wednesday 9 February 2005

St Valentine's day massacre...

...and other beastial tales. All my own work. Yenjoy.

Can i use your heart for my Valentine?
(Signed) Doctor Victor Frankenstein.


Would you mind awfully if should poke a
Little hole in your neck and sip? - B Stoker.


I sit here, holding her hand in mine -
A souvenir from my chopped-up Valentine.


Alas, the hapless porcupine, his heart really bleeds, poor chap.
The quills on his fair valentine turned metaphor into a mishap.


Pity the poor mantis, when he's in his Valentine's embrace.
When the lady says "Oh God!" she's merely saying grace.


On Valentine's Day, in the water sport the hippopotami.
It's the only way to support their combined anatomy.


Snails are strange creatures; hermaphrodites every one.
On Valentine's Day, the bastards have twice the fun


Got more? Come share the love in the comments section.

So you know what i did last summer... er, October

Just found that Outlook Traveller actually has one of my articles on the site archive.

Rumination over poetry on a blog, as a deadline goes whooshing by

Who reads poetry?
Other poets, mainly.
(Of varying levels
Of taste and fame and skill.)

Who reads blogs?
Just bloggers, usually.
(Net-addicted souls
With lots of time to kill.)

So who's reading this:
Blogging poets only?
(i'd better go write copy;
Got to pay my internet bill.)

Cross posted on Caferati

Why you should always carry beer when you're in snow country

You can pee your way out of an avalanche.

Saturday 5 February 2005

Bloggers unite

The Pro-Bloggers Association
— An organization that is working to get the development and writing of blogs the professional recognition and respect it deserves
— An international organization of professional bloggers and consultants who are committed to developing ethical standards for this growing career opportunity
— a new and exciting group of bloggers dedicated to the challenges and opportunities facing this new, growing path of writing and consulting: business blogging, marketing blogging, and consulting on blog development.
Media Bloggers Association (MBA) a non-partisan organization dedicated to promoting MBA members and their blogs, educating bloggers, and promoting the explosion of citizen's media.

Thursday 3 February 2005

Tuesday 1 February 2005

And you will see the light

Now here's some sneaky missionaries preying on clumsy typists. The folk at the Mega site of Bible studies and information use the URL So if you're typing out a blogspot blog URL, and you miss a letter, you land up on their page. Go ahead. Go see the gospel according to St Hurree, St MarginAlien, St Samit, St Jabberwock, or even the Acts of Caferati. Hallelujah.

[Thanks Les]