Skip to main content

Reality Check: Danny Boyle style

There's been a lot of chest beating over Slumdog Millionaire.

"Oh they have shown slums and not our malls", "oh they have shown shit and not our granite five star loos", "oh they have shown begging as a profession and not our software coders", "oh they have shown riots", "of they have shown hookers", "oh they chose a has been and not our super stars", "oh the West loves to mock us".

My question is, is there anything shown which is not true? And who will remind us of this reality? We will even forget that the streets of India exist left to the Karan Johars and Yah Raj's of the world. Forget the reality of Indian streets.

Someone had to wake us up. Sadly enough it had to be an Irish man.

We can exult saying that we are the next super power. By saying China beware.

But somewhere we need to get real. Our politicians, our roads, our public transport, our concern for others, our concern for the environment... the list of areas where we trail the developed nations is huge.

Somewhere we need to realise that a lot has to be done back home and something seems to tell me that others won't do it for us.

We can exult in an Obama and revel in him. But the reality is that he is not our President. We are still stuck with amazing set of politicians ever. Most of whom should be in old age homes. The other should be in jails.

Guess I need a stiff drink.

When I last heard Indian culture is fine with men who drink.

8 comments

Popular posts from this blog

The importance of being 'Nyaka'

'Nyaka' is a Bengali term which beats translation. It could mean coy, coquettish, scheming, la di da. There is no one word which captures it. The term is used in a pejorative context and has a sarcastic tone to it. Used a bit more for women than for men. Has a feminine context when used for men.I posed the challenge of translating 'nyaka' into English to fellow Bengalis in Facebook. Here's a sample of the answers that I got.I have removed the names and kept the statuese as is, hope it's not too difficult to read

Bong man 1Coy.....but that does capture the essence
14 December at 14:37 ·

Me
No ...not entirely. A colleague just suggested precocious. Maybe its too intrinsic a Bong trait to be translated :)
14 December at 14:50 ·

Bong woman 1kol-lan, difficult to get a english / hindi word for nyaka.
14 December at 15:11 ·

me
that's the point
14 December at 15:15 ·

Bong woman 2
oh, i think the essence of the word 'nyaka' will be lost in translation. just like gettin…

Where will you be twenty years from now?

A taste of Mumbai
It struck me the other day that it has been about twenty years since the time I took my first steps, albeit unwittingly, towards moving into Mumbai.
I had been recruited by a market research agency in Kolkata from campus back then. I joined my new office once the MBA course was over. We were then sent to Mumbai for a training programme in August 1997. Once the course was over, my colleagues from Kolkata returned home. I was slated to stay back for a 2 month training programme in Mumbai which then stretched on for close to 6 months. I was put up at a PG in Bandra by my office then.
Such  a long journey
This was the first time that I was living away from home. All I wanted to do then was to get back to Kolkata as soon as I could. Go back and build a successful career in market research hopefully. Move to an apartment in a posher part of Kolkata than where we lived. At Ballygunge for example. 
I thought it would be cool one day have a club membership given to me by offic…

Queue-spreading because its spelling is the least of our problem with queues

Scene 1:

I had gone to pay local taxes at a government office in Bandra a few days back.

I was directed to a table where there was no-one else waiting. I went up to the officer at the desk and submitted our papers. He keyed in the details in to his computer. The results flashed immediately. I gave our cheque, so far so good.

Then the officer pointed out that the cheque was Rs 12 (twelve) more than what was due. We looked at each other and tried to figure out what has to be done. Suddenly an elderly corpulent gentleman came and sidled up and stood beside me. I waited a for a couple of seconds. I thought he might have a question for the officer. I looked at the encroacher. He smiled at me. There was no-one behind me and yet he stood beside me.

I looked at him and said, 'do you mind standing behind me? We are discussing something here.' He smiled at me and said, 'no problem, I will wait.'

I drew my breath and said, 'can you please stand in the queue while we finish.&…