Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Wait..why so happy?

I find it insanely funny when most people, once every year, scream their lungs out for something so trivial that happens every day. Strike of the clock at midnight! I was watching CNN this morning and amazed myself for the umpteenth time, at the amount of hulla-gulla thats being created for the imminent new year celebrations. In the simplest of perspectives, it's just another day. Yet, people jump around as if the earth would come to a stop if they dont. 

I would have received a minimum of 50 emails in the last 2 days wishing for New Year - I wonder how many of those people really wish I have a PROSPEROUS new year. 

On a different note, life of humans thrive in this planet just because of plain vanilla belief on various things. People believe without thinking, because if they do, they would clearly know its just a make-belief. People make themselves believe that a party is a mandatory activity for new year. They never wonder if the movement of the calendar (invented by ancient humans) to the next cycle become a good enough reason to shed some dollars and drink/dance the night away. 

And even if its just the calendar movement, New year for most countries does not fall on January 1st. Yet people celebrate on Jan 1st. Maybe people just need excuses to get away from mundanity. 

We do things just because everybody does, don't we?! 

I'm amazed by us!

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Curious case of Benjamin Button...

...Amazes. Moves.

An ideal example of how to select a totally unbelievable story and film in such a way to make the viewer believe it, as if the story was a believable one in the first place. Unbelievable! 

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Seven Pounds...

A heart wrenching, thought provoking, sympathy evoking and a serious movie.

All these to teach one heck of a moral : Do not type emails in Blakberry while driving. Else one would be killed by a Jelly fish in a bath tub. (Sure. No spoilers!)

Monday, December 22, 2008

Yes man...

Jim Carrey could be funnier. A lot lot funnier.

Zoey Deschanel was cute though!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Doppelgänger - III

Continued from here.

Carl did not know it was going to be the longest night he has ever seen in his life. 

He climbed down the stairs as fast as he could and when he reached Aunt Natasha's room, he stopped. The living room to his left looked eerily silent and unperturbed. So did the hallway. Absolute Silence. He held his breath for a moment and he could hear nothing but his pounding heart beat. He was not sure if he should knock the door. 

He heard something behind him in the stairs. In the spur of the moment, he pushed open Aunt Natasha's room and stormed inside. Aunt Natasha was not there in her bed. 

Utterly panicked, he looked around the room. Finding no movement but for the swinging ghostly drapes, he thoughtfully made his move. He knocked the door to the bathroom and called out for Aunt Natasha in his shaken voice. Receiving no response, he slowly opened the door. The lights were ON, but he did not see what he half-expected. The bathroom was as tidy as it could be.

He quickly turned around and walked towards the closet. He examined the closet doors one by one, when he noticed the third closet door left slightly ajar.

Scared and bewildered, he opened the closet door as slowly as he could. He saw her there. Aunt Natasha looked pale and her eyes were wide open. Her hair was awfully disheveled and blood was still oozing out of her head on the right side. Aunt Natasha was dead. Carl screamed and felt his head spinning. 

He ran to the living room and lifted the phone to call his mom. He heard somebody walking down the stairs. Carl slowly kept the phone receiver down and remained silent. In a moment, he saw his own image walking down the stairs slowly looking directly at him. The image increased its pace and hurried towards Carl. 

His senses urged him to run, but he could not respond. His legs refused to cooperate. His brain was numb. He knew he would be killed. He was out of tears. He realized he was totally helpless. 

The image kept walking towards Carl. 

The next 10 seconds seemed unceasing. The image took every step cautiously. There was no mercy left in it. No sign of love. No smile. Carl suddenly thought of his piano, his only obsession and desire in life. He wished he played his piano one last time before dying. He could not figure out why he thought so. The image almost neared him. Carl hated the image, oblivious of the fact that it’s his own. 

In seconds, the image came close enough to touch Carl, but stopped. Carl closed his eyes. He waited. He waited for pain. He waited for death to beckon. But nothing happened. 

Carl opened his eyes and saw the image still standing at the same position. He raised his eye-brows. So did the image. He raised his hands. So did the image. He smiled slowly. So did the image. 

He suddenly heard his mom shouting "What the hell are you doing at the bathroom for so long?! It’s getting late for school!"


The author, being inspired by Manoj 'Night' Shyamalan attempts (vainly) at writing horror stories. And dreams of being called Arun 'Day' Sundar. 

Monday, December 15, 2008

The day the Earth stood still...

One wishes it really happens, instead of having to watch this movie. 


Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Being Prodigal - a good deed

I read about the falling US economy in more than one daily. There is not a single news channel that does not mention the job losses and the "financial down-spiral" in the US, as the experts call it. As much as I wish for people's happiness, there is pretty much nothing I can do to save the economy.

Knowing me, from the day I started earning I have been excessively extravagant. As a matter of fact, a stronger adjective than 'excessive' would fit the above sentence better. I always say to myself "There is only one life - I might as well live it the way I like it!" And saying so, I try to master the art of spending and strive to become the 'Lavish Lord of Philadelphia'.

Having said that, I revisit the first paragraph to say "As much as I wish for people's happiness, there must be something I can do to save the economy." That's right.

I spend more and attempt to save the economy.

By virtue of expending more, I'm left with not just a bank balance that's hitting the floor, but also a great mental satisfaction of uplifting the economy (?!). I can explain. The much-needed cash is put into churning the economy. I travel more, I gas up my car more, I buy a lot of clothes, I watch many movies, I buy a lot of electronics. You think I'm doing all these for myself? Not one bit!

All for the economy.

I tell people they should travel more often than they normally do. They should travel by flight and avoid buses and trains. I ask people to periodically change their mobile phones to the latest and expensive ones. I ask people to upgrade their laptops every year. I ask people to stop cooking at home and eat out everyday. I ask them to stop walking and take cabs, even for short commutes.

And by indulging in such activities, people spend more. Because of more money being put to use, more services are needed in turn. More people are employed. More job opportunities. More cash inflow. Increased spending. Increased Rate of exchange. Higher GDP. Saved economy.

My dad always tells my mom "Your son is unbelievably prodigal. He should be more calculative." My mom expectantly replies "Not so true. He is always right. If he does something, there would be some good in it!" I smile.

Being prodigal is indeed a good deed!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Doppelgänger - II

Continued from here.

Carl thought he saw something moving at the last moment, but he was too scared to turn back. Instead, he started running. Suddenly, something held his legs and he tripped. He fell flat on the floor. His nose hurt. He couldn't breathe with ease. With the heart rate refusing to go below 120 bpm, he looked back at what made him trip and fall.

The carpet edges were worn off and were folded up. Could the carpet have tripped him? He wasn't sure. He quickly got to his foot and raced towards Rachel's room. He switched on the lights and almost called her out, but only to find she wasn't there in the bed. Puzzled and confused, he looked around in the big room. The room was silent and untroubled - he was not sure what he is to do next.

Rachel must have gone to the restroom, he said to himself. Someone touched him at his shoulder. He jerked heavily and almost screamed. But out of reflex, he turned back. Deep inside, he was expecting Rachel. But he was aghast at the sight he saw. It wasn’t her. He choked for a moment and his body started shivering tremendously. What he saw made him gasp for breath. He saw was his own image staring right at him, quite diabolically. He couldn’t believe he is seeing himself standing right in front of him.

He cried out for help, but words wouldn’t come out. He was trembling and the tears were already rolling out of his eyes. He couldn’t process any thoughts. As he was shaking, he felt one more touch at his shoulder from behind. He turned back and this time, it was Rachel. Carl turned back once again, but the image was gone. Rachel asked "Carl, what are you doing here? I thought you were asleep. And why are you crying?" with all concern and mild panic. Carl talked for the first time in the last couple of hours. He said "I'm scared Rach…"

Rachel was about to say something and Aunt Natasha came. "Aren't you kids supposed to be sleeping now? Carl, what happened? Why do you look so pale?" Rachel pitched in "No Aunt Natasha, he was going to the restroom and he tripped. I heard the noise and came to see him. He is ok". Aunt Natasha wasn't convinced, she looked at Carl, who was still trembling "Carl, are you alright?" "I...I should be ok", Carl said. "Ok kids, go back to sleep. This is close to midnight and it’s not healthy to be up!" After Aunt Natasha went, Rachel looked inquiringly yet empathetically at Carl. Carl slowly asked "Can I sleep in your room today?" Rachel nodded without second thought.

Rachel had the reading lights on. Carl could not sleep. He could not understand. Fear was more apparent than anything else. In about 20 minutes, Rachel dozed off. Carl still couldn't sleep. As much as he tried to shut the thought of the image out, he couldn't. He still heard the crackling of the glass windows. He rolled over to lie on his chest, his face buried tight inside the pillows. He heard nothing for 10 seconds. Silence. This is better, he thought.

Suddenly, he felt someone jerking his legs in one fast motion.

He quickly turned over to saw all the lights switched on. Windows and doors were wide open. Not being able to understand a single bit of what's happening, he turned his face to Rachel. Rachel was lying in a pool of blood with her neck split open. There was not a sign of motion. There was no sound. His heart stopped for a moment. He felt like screaming at the top of his voice, but his senses did not cooperate. He felt numb.

He shook and got up from the bed to run towards Aunt Natasha's room. The image appeared behind him, smiled and followed.

Carl did not know it was going to be the longest night he has ever had in his life.

Continued here