Nov 28, 2008

And I am back

My exams are over. The last one, the toughest of them all, happened about a couple of miles from the places were random people were being shot. The couple of hospitals under attack were part of the group of hospitals where the exam was held. Yesterday morning, when I left my apartment at dawn for the exam, I wasn't aware of any bullshit happening. Ironically Vinokur had sent me a message when I was in a rickshaw saying that there won't be any exam in Mumbai revealing that the city was under terrorist attack.

I am sorry about all this; more so that some other I suppose. Why? Because of the inane sensationalistic coverage and analysis of this going on on the tube. Reporters, citizens, celebrities, victims ranting about the spirit and resilience of the city which has been finally 'broken' through. 'Enough is Enough - India's 9/11' is NDTV's tag line. Mahesh Bhatt says 'Sometimes, tragedy helps bring people together.' One piece of analysis made me sure about who our next prime minister should be - Sourav Ganguly: the analyst wanted 'proactiv leadership' and you have to 'constantly innovate'.

Ironically, all these channels proclaim to want help change the situation - to not create panic. How about not sensationalizing? How about asking people to remain calm and go and do the things that they would do otherwise. Okay, don't head to the Taj for a seven-star dinner. But you can go out to the Juhu chowpatty to have Pani Puri right? Instead - they have closed schools, asked movie halls to shut down and cancelled cricket matches in other parts of India as well.

Yeah, that's so encouraging. Show the terrorists that we are soft. That we can be affected. That they can control us. That's such a strong message.

Nov 22, 2008

Change truly is coming

You know, I have been procrastinating about doing something about a gift for Jodi and Sumo's wedding. I've been sitting on some of the wonderful suggestions that you guys had given me. Thanks to all of you. Well, today being the wedding anniversary of my sister, I finally decided to get my ass out of the lazy-chair and do something. I recorded a little audio message from both me and Vinokur and added it along with a cover of a song that I have always meant to sing for her. I hope my sis and BIL like it.

One thing does lead to another even in my world. This time I did something even cooler. A whole package of little jokes, warm wishes, greetings and a song (a Beatles classic sung lamely by yours truly) - by arists from two continents all produced, recorded, mixed and mastered in under 45 minutes. I sent it along to Jodi and Sumo. I hope they like it.

But something was missing - a photo greeting card. And since my relationship truly symbolises the hope which is manifested in the recent victory of senator Obama, we did something on the same theme. Here it is for you analysis and comments.

Nov 20, 2008

Would you vote for me?

Look, there are kind people out there. A few of them by the name Nita, Nikhil and a lot of others put up this blog with nominations for the best posts. I am honored to be nominated *twice* for the Best Musical Post. If any of you think that my posts are worth the award, go vote for me. That would definitely cheer me up!

Here's the link!

http://avantgardebloggies.wordpress.com/2008/11/17/best-musical-post/

Nov 19, 2008

David Cook

David Cook won this year's American Idol. Amazing really - his musical influences include Our Lady Peace, Alice in Chains, Big Wreck, Pearl Jam, Chris Cornell, Switchfoot, Bon Jovi and Collective Soul. Add to that he performed U2's classic 'I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For'. Check these videos out. It's not just the singing. This guy's hot. And he performed the most incredible version of 'World I Know', a song that I love originally by the Collective Soul.

'Day Tripper' - White Snake version



'World I Know' by Collective Soul. He cries so poignantly.



'I Still Haven't Found (What I'm Looking for) by U2



'Billie Jean' Chris Cornell version



What do you guys think?

Parvathi Omanakkuttan

I was never a fan of beauty contests really. I mean, come on - most of them don't even have males competing. Well, why am I talking about it? Because a Mallu woman won it this time around at the Miss India paegeant. Yes, I am proud of Ms. Parvathy Omanakkuttan. But I am not proud of her after reading this piece of shit. Apparently she won it because of this answer.
To the question “The rate of divorce in India is on a rise. What is the cause? Is western influence the cause or something else?” Parvathy gave the best reply and it goes “Divorces are not a result of western influence. At the end of the day, it is we who decide whose (sic) worth us. Marriage is not when one completes the other but is when both share their completeness.”
Now, isn't that corny? I mean you take a word and twist it around in a sentence and suddenly it becomes chic. Even if it makes as much sense as croc-poop.

Nov 18, 2008

A bright start

I had a very good morning and nothing could have made it sweeter than this article on the frontpage of Times of India - 'Gay Israelis get surrogate baby in city'.



I have already started dreaming about the same day in my life. It seems so distant now. Then again, every dream needs to be distant to be enjoyed when it comes true.

It's such a pleasant coincidence that the first thing that I saw today morning was the interview with my friend and fellow blogger on NDTV 24X7. He was giving his views about 'Dostana' and how it helped him come out to his sister. A few other friends of mine were in the background. One of them was supposed to be closeted and it was so poignant that he and his boyfriend were caught looking into each others eyes in the video.

(Picture courtesy TimesOfIndia.com)

Nov 16, 2008

Sound theory

You can't imagine how boring it is to seclude yourself to studying everyday. My seclusion has extended a few notches further with me minimising the conversations that I have with friends and going out as less as I can. Hell, it's been four days since I 'talked' to Vinokur. I don't know why I feel like I would do better by staying off contact. Just 10 more days before I can re-calibrate my life.

Anyway, to convert those boring low-productivity afternoons into something meaningful, I've taken up a little side-business. I am trying to figure out some songs and trying to figure why they sound so beautiful and interesting. For someone who doesn't understand music theory, this might sound weird. But this is actually fun.

To make things a little easier to understand, I'm figuring out the little motifs that are found in popular music and trying to figure out why they sound 'good'. Of course, most of music is not intentionally written to sound this way. But those songs we end up liking usually are weirdly interlinked. What do I get out of this? Some harmless, recreational, educative fun. Weird combination of words I suppose. Finally though, I hope to incorporate some of this knowledge into writing songs.

Nov 14, 2008

A cheap wedding gift

Jodi is getting married to Sumo in a little over a week's time. Considering the kind of fiscal situation that the entire band is in, I don't think that they are expecing any gifts. But it is a life-changeing event, something that I would love to experience myself. I'm wondering if I could get something rather special and cheap. If anyone of you has any idea, it would prove to be helpful.

Nov 13, 2008

Another deadline

The other day, after plenty of drama from their side, we had a one-on-one meeting with the record label chief. This is after a lot of shit; it took about 20 unanswered/unreturned calls and a few unanswered SMSes and three previous meetings when he didn't turn up before we had the balls to inform his sub-ordinate that we have had enough and we were looking at other options. Our record label makes the Indian sarkari office system look like a state of the art infrastructure streamlined for efficiency and productivity.

A concise report from Rob about this little meeting which was not too dissimilar to that between a husband and wife about infidelity revealed that the little affair between the band and the label will be extended for another week. At the end of the week, if we don't see them some of the 'promised' money, we would officially start looking for newer options.

Honestly, the future of Noise Market looks bleak either way. I don't see them keeping to this deadline. And if they don't, it would mean us walking out into the bizarre world of the music industry which seems to be an even more daunting task.

Nov 11, 2008

Music & Money

For a change, I'm studying well for my practical exam on the 26th of this month. Somehow, I'm being able to forget the miserable time that I had at the theory part of the exams. Just one more exam and it might be all over; in the good or the bad way.

On the musical front, we have finally talked to our record label and have informed them that we are looking for other options. In the last week, we came to know from different sources about the improbabilities in the future of this record label. We don't know what we will end up with but again, there is not much chance sitting back.

A few months back, we got an opportunity to make some money playing with a Pakistani artist as a back up band. Something like that might be coming up with a new and up-coming singer/songwriter (who also happens to be a model/actress as well) in the next few weeks. I hope I make some money to repay some debts.

Nov 9, 2008

Gays coming out: Is it Criminal? - video from IBN Live

To break this recent spate of self-loathing and sarcasm, I'm posting this video from IBN live.com which features a 30 minute video about Gay life in India. On a personal note, I would just like to say that Professor X looks gorgeous in this (the part which he is in).



(PS: I was sarcastic in my last post for those who didn't get it.)

Nov 8, 2008

Why I am an asshole

The few readers of my blog take precious moments from their wonderful lives to give me insight on why I'm a loser and an asshole. I think I am depressed enough to post a list of such abomiable qualities in me.
  • I am not passionate about most of the things that I do. Especially being a doctor, being a musician and being a lover.
  • I never plan for what lies ahead and even if I do I hide behind excuses to not carry out the plan.
  • I suck because I don't see the wondrous joy that life provides us with.
  • I am ungrateful and graceless in my friendships. I don't really care about what my friends do to make me feel better.
  • I don't have the drive to do well in life.
  • I don't try hard enough find a job and lead a life.
  • I am very selfish and self-centred.
That wasn't all that hard. It was quite easy because of I get this almost everyday in the comments section. Wow, it feels so wonderful being an asshole. I'm looking forward to new additions to the list.

Nov 7, 2008

Sweetness at Powai

I admit that I rarely sing laurels about my band mates. Not because they aren't bad, just because they aren't just my type. They are different in various ways and somehow or the other, I feel uncomfortable when I'm hanging out with them especially not while jamming.

I will at least have to change that stance today. My band mate from Noise Market Jodi and his fiance Sumo threw a little house party at their apartment at Powai. It was also supposed to be a meeting about the future of Noise Market. It was a very very nice gesture. There was nice juicy chocolate cake and home made chicken and paani puri along with some alcohol.

But one thing stood the way it was; the way I felt uncomfortable being with the gang having 'fun'. The jokes weren't all that cool. The things they were enjoying (like the movie "Deewaar"), I wasn't really enjoying. Half the time, I wanted to get back h ome and spend some time with Vinokur. I guess it's natural.

Here are some photos.




Nov 6, 2008

This time, last year

This time last year, I was at a great restaurant in Bandra having a party with almost the who's-who of my life then. Life was great. Vibrant, full of hopes and expectations. My friends Dr. R., Sandy, E-boi, Xander, Parry, his girlfriend - all took turns to wish Vinokur his birthday.

Tonight, I sit at my computer trying to wonder what really went wrong. I feel like run-down by a train - a train of responsibilities and challenges that I was not able to keep up with.

Today's exam was the worst ever in my life. Apart from being reporting about half an hour late for the exam thanks to a slow wrist watch, I couldn't answer even one question out of the 9 ones with any semblance of quality. I think any of you (non-medicos) would have fared equally with me in this test. Needless to admit, but my confidence and self-esteem, upto the barest of minimums, has been deflated. Anyone, any fucking person in this world can defeat me now.

As expected, the only fun of this month has passed. It was the gig at Not Just Jazz by the Bay - Shoonyas gig, that is. These are a few pics.

Nov 5, 2008

Fucked up, more than ever

After two days of exams, I have come to realize that I don't even have the kind of knowledge that is required for an undergraduate to pass the graduation exam. I could not remember anything significant for today's exam. Halfway through the exam, I felt like tearing up the answer sheet and screaming out of the exam hall.

I have lost all the confidence that I had. Now, I'm sure that I will not pass this time. And this means almost an end to my medical career. Looking back, I guess I have only myself to blame. And I guess I'll suffer the consequences.

Nov 2, 2008

Exam dates announced

Finally, a day before the exam started, the university has published the dates. The written exams start on Monday and go on till Thursday. I finally have the hall ticket and a 'renewed' ID card for the exams. During the trip to the hospital, I got hold of some of the prepared notes for the theory exams. These are the crtical stuff for the exams. I had been trying to get a set of notes for myself. But because the Xerox copies amount upto a couple of grand rupees, I couldn't.

I begged one of my juniors to lend me his copy just for the exams. Now, I am hell bent on covering the notes (once more after the last exams). That's all I'm going to read. Not the text books that I have been reading, rather unsuccesfully, all these days.

It's incredible really. I'm practicing and playing a gig right in the middle of the most important exam of my life. But that's what happens when you work and study. And besides, that gig is the only 'fun' thing coming up in the next month!

Nov 1, 2008

Tremulousness

I had a dream. I had a dream of settling down with the man of my life having a career in music by the time I was 29 years of age. I dreamt of earning enough to live happily with him enjoying the little pleasures of life. I dreamt of learning something new; like a language - Vinokur is an expert in Spanish; a new art like photography - Vinokur is a professional photographer; the history of art - Vinokur is also an expert on this.

As is widely known, that dream has crashed. I'm going to turn 29 in a week's time. And my life couldn't have been more worrying. I guess it's easy to push you down when you are already dead.

Vinokur is showing signs and symptoms of Parkinsonism. He is loosing his expressiveness on his face. He is have akathesia and tremors. His posture and gait are also suggesting the onset. It's probably drug induced as he's on antipsychotic medications which induced such a syndrome. His psychopharmacologist is aware of it and trying to workout a away to at least minimize the damages.

That leaves me with my pipe-dream flushed down the toilet.

(PS: Just to make sure that no one misunderstands me. I love Vinokur!)