October 18, 2004

The sandman's journey to hell....the legions await. pay heed to the call. Posted by Hello

Preludes and Nocturnes

People. I've waited weeks for this. On my incredibly slow internet connection I have downloaded all 75 graphic novels of neil gaiman's "sandman". I've waited so long for this. Today, it completed download. I've spent all day at work thinking about this.

And its amazing.

I've got a quart of bacardi here to help me through it. And i'm freakingout. The personification of dreams. The embodiment of death. The melding of mythos, pathos and sad, coffee stain reality.

Im going to hav very strange dreams tonight. But i dont mind.

For those of you who want in, download a torrent streamer off the net (im using sharezea) and go to zcult fm. I dont know if the stream still flows, but if it does, flow along. oh, and dont forget to share your bandwidth. We in the world of pirate media must help each other...

sweet dreams....

October 17, 2004


Im obsessed... I cant help it. I cant get enough of wikipedia. It's quite insanely addictive. This has got to be one of the most genius concepts in the history of web design. Because of the incredibly diverse bunch of people who post new articles to this encyclopaedia, you can get information on everything... A sceptic friend of mine decided to try Marina Beach, then I tried Tollywood. The later on I tried transformers, those cool robot vehicle dudes from our television past.... Go on, try it.
That fried my head.
I never even liked the transformers that much, but i was obsessed, staring away with upwards of 30 links giving you the definitive info on transformers. Obssessed, that's what i was. Very obsessed.
Still am. Th worst thing is, every article you read links into other keywords. If you're a click-happy pscycho like me, that means you'll travel from The Simpsons to The Fourth Wall of theater to Simon the Sorcerer (Rohit J, if you're reading this, this was one of the best games you ever gave me back in UC... Thanks).

Ok, just or your info, I took a little trip just now and left this post alone for about 20 minutes surfing wikipedia... It hooked me.

October 16, 2004

Ze Photoblog!

Hello peepulz! I am now having phenomenon called the photoblog! the next step in virus infected marine evolution is here! for all you not-so-informed bloggers out there, it's pretty simple. there's this cool software out there called Hello! which is a picture IM software. I've just downloaded it five minutes ago so I'm not quite sure how it goes ( but its short and its sweet and I knew it complete when i wore a younger man's clothes).... um, ah, anyway, It lets you post pitures straight to your blog! which means all my grainy cellphone snap pics can finally be shown to a worldwide audience and I can be shown for the genius I am ! Hah!! Please appreciating my first pic from my phonecam... Khan Market, Delhi... the ultimate Delhi snobspot... But still one of the more fun snobspots i've seen. Bookshops to wander, expensive lasagna's that would cover a meal for 3 at any Chinese vandi, cool shops selling exotic phoren foods like blackberry jam and cheese stuffed olives in brine... this rather nice cafe called cafe turtle where I happened to have some amazing chocolate cake for free because it had a bit of glass in it... long story, some other time maybe... Perhaps in this manner I can satisfy my insanely craving public.

Khan Market, Delhi... I dont know ow this ultracool grafitti got there Posted by Hello

August 10, 2004

Saving the Final Solution

Please take a look at this. If you think the cause is worthy, please take the five minutes required to sign. Your email address will be kept private, if you are afraid of spamming or virus harvesting.
Please send this to as many people as you know.

Message: 3Date: Sun, 08 Aug 2004 14:28:38 +0530From: Jeebesh Bagchi <jeebesh@sarai.net>
Subject: [Commons-Law] Censor Board bans documentary
To: commons-law@sarai.net
Message-ID: <4115EB3E.70105@sarai.net>
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="ISO-8859-1"; format=flowedFrom: <actindia@vsnl.com>

As you know, the Censor Board of India recently banned Rakesh Sharma'sinternationally-acclaimed documentary - Final Solution. An onlinepetition has been created by Anand Patwardhan to protest against theban. The petition asks Central Government to intervene and revoke theban immediately. As you may already know, under clause 6 and 9 of theCinematograph Act, the Central Government is empowered to overturn anydecision/ recommendation by the Censor Board.People who have already signed the petition include Shabana Azmi,Nandita Das, Vijay Tendulkar, Shyam Benegal, Javed Akhtar, Aparna Sen,Karan Johar, Ashutosh Gowarikar, Farhan Akhtar, Rahul Bose, VishalBhardwaj, Arundhati Nag, Sanjana Kapoor, MS Sathyu, Lekh Tandon,Yogendra Yadav and Teesta Setalvad among others.Please extend your support by signing the petition online by clickingthe following link:http://www.PetitionOnline.com/FilmBan/petition.htmlPlease forward the petition details to people in your mailing listasking them to sign and circulate the petition widely.Final Solution ( India; 2004; Digital Video format - miniDV; 209/148minutes).Final Solution is a study of the politics of hate. Set in Gujaratduring the period Feb/March 2002 - July 2003, the film graphicallydocuments the changing face of right-wing politics in India through astudy of the 2002 genocide of Moslems in Gujarat. The film documentsthe Assembly elections held in Gujarat in late 2002 and records indetail the exploitation of the Godhra incident (in which 58 Hinduswere burnt alive) by the right-wing propaganda machinery for electoralgains. It studies the situation after the storm and its impact onHindus and Moslems - ghettoisation in cities and villages, segregationin schools, the call for economic boycott of Moslems and continuingacts of violence more than a year after the carnage.Final Solution is anti-hate/ violence as "those who forget history arecondemned to relive it".Awards :Wolfgang Staudte award and Special Jury Award (Netpac), BerlinInternational film festival.Humanitarian Award for Outstanding Documentary, HongKong Internationalfilm festival.Silver Dhow ( Best Doc category), Zanzibar International film festivalSpecial Jury Mention, Munich Dokfest.Special Award instituted and given by NRIs for a Secular and HarmoniousIndia (NRI-SAHI), NY-NJ, USA.Festivals : Berlinale ( International premiere; Feb 2004), HongKong,Fribourg, 3 continents filmfest (South Africa), Hot Docs (Canada),Vancouver, Zanzibar, Durban, Commonwealth film festival (UK), Oneworld filmfest (Prague), Voces Contra el Silencio (Mexico), Istanbul1001fest, Singapore, Flanders (Belgium), World Social Forum (Mumbai;Indian premiere), Vikalp (Mumbai filmfest organised by Campaignagainst Censorship), Films for Freedom, Bangalore and several otherfilmfests

July 12, 2004

My kingdom for bengali rock

When people speak of the ghost of things past, you can never figure them out until they haunt you.

My ghosts are mostly aural in nature. The sound of mock screams mixed with mirthful laughter, the sweet cacophony of eminem, lynyrd skynyrd, bhangra and led zeppelin all playing from four different corners at max volume. The random screaming of totally unrelated words for the pure shock value. Hour long discussions about whether if you swallow half a kilo of spinach, your crap'll be green the next day.

I miss my hostel. I miss all the chaos, all the pointles ennui, all the cameraderie born out of pure mutual joblessness.

The place was an experience.Curse and scream all you want those who are in there, and heave huge sighs of relief if youre out. But you cant deny it. We had a blast.

To NALSAR. And all the good times. Vive la Bengali Rock

July 06, 2004

Welcome my son... Welcome. To the Machine

Money. Its a gas. Have a cigar, boy, you're gonna go far. If any of you floydians out there think this article is about an over publicised band whi cant even stick to what they write by, then you can all go to hell. I'm merely using some rather appropriate lines to methaphorise my life. Yes indeedy,ladies, gentlemen and sundry eunuchs, I have sold out, so to speak. I have sacrified my values, my beliefs and most of my free time to the altar of Mammon. I have got what is referred to in the trade parlance as A JOB.
To tell you the truth, its not so bad. It's actually pretty fun, life is pretty enjoyable, alcohol flows rather freely and, well, generally, things are ok. Except for the fact that i have had anda real freetime to spend on this here blog. Thats ok. I've used most of it to finish STAR WARS: KNIGHTS OF THE OLD REPUBLIC. AAaah... escapism. You gotta love it. A dream is a wish your heart makes... when youre fast asleep... In a dream you can leave your heartaches... Whatever you wish for you keep.
Sorry, a little stream of consciousness writing over there. Hey, James Joyce gets away with it. Why not me?
I saw some really interesting stuff on another guys blog called found poetry. Never heard of it until now. It involves poetry composed of words you see around you. Only. I am now prepared to torture you with some.

Aim Aim.
Do not.
Philips do not.
Finished when off.
Pump. Choice of new generation.
Fridge the internet baby.
That sucked.

That last line wasnt part of the poetry by the way.

June 13, 2004

The Golden Age of Game

There's something vaguely satisfying about being at the start of a revolution. its brilliant to look at all the poor suckers tryng desperately to catch up and getting very excited about some concept which you've gone way past, man. Like, far out.
Oh, yeah, im satisfied. I'm seeing a revolution happening right in front of me. It's happening at the bookstores, in Pallika Bazaar and Richie Street, on the desktops of people between 6 and 26. The new age of interactive entertainment. Say goodbye to tv, chuck the feelms, the Golden Age of Game is coming.
Its impossible to ignore, the new age of interactive entertainment. Admittedly, games can't claim to compete actively with tv or the flicks yet, but a number of factors are going to make all of that go away.
1. computers are getting cheaper and cheaper every 6 months.
2. More and more people are becoming computer literate, or realise the pressing need to be so.
3. Games are becoming more and more realistic every day.
4. The themes games deal with are becoming much more relateable to the average ajay.

Most people would outright deny this ridiculous contention, citing the absolute lack of people who really play games. Not so true any more.Even now, hundreds of thousands of people interact with each other, build strong alliances, develop intense hatreds, fall in love and exploit each other on MMORGs(Massively Multiplayer Online Roleplaying Games) such as World of Warcraft, or Ultima Online. Even more just go online or hit the LAN for the express purpose of machine gunning, flaming or cunningly left flanking their good friends on multilayer enabled games like Counterstrike or Starcraft. For people who dont think lots of blood is their thing, any amount of good old fashioned legalised psychological violence is possible while playing the Sims, where ironically, you escape from reality by simulating it.

Another concept that is getting blown out of the water is that games are for kids and nerds, and not for "normal people". Give that one a rest, please. The number of people obsessed with the NFS franchise, or cricket 200andsomethingortheother puts that one to rest immediately. Besides, the one about games being for kids... Well, has anyone seen the covers for games like any of the Resident Evil series or even Deus Ex? They're marked M, for sale to Adults only. And its not the gore that puts these labels on the games. Software and hardware today is competent enough to allow games to deal with issues as complex as any "soap opera conundrum". In Deus Ex 2, you are faced with complex political choices, like the one between security and material wealth and inner happiness and spiritual satisfaction.(You may also have to help a gay cultural affairs minister to hook up with a guy he' been keeping an eye on).

Affordability used to be a major factor with games priced at ridiculous rates like Rs. 1600 (about $40 in 1996) per game and people in most 3rd world countries, capable of affording a cheap movie at Rs. 1o per tape or Rs. 30 per vcd (for rent) would never imagine getting a game at these prices. (Hey, I once bought Dangerous Dave for Rs. 200). Today, thanks to our fine eyepatched buddies, the software "pirates" everyone in a majoor city has access to a game at the rate of about Rs. 100 per game. And comps arent so bad anymore either. You can buy one thats rudimentarily game enabled for about Rs. 20,000.

If you still dont buy all my word of mouth bullshit, just perfom following simple exercise: Head to the nearest rel;iance webworld, or satyam gamezone or whatever: there are multiplayer tournaments happening in India for games like counterstrike and quake III arena. A bit outdated admittedly, but still, happening. Its gonna take some time before the revolution shows us people playing starcraft for millions of dollars like in Korea, but that day isnt too far off. So, addicted gamers of the subcontinent, unite, our day will come, and when it does, I know whose back is gonna be up against the wall first...

March 24, 2004

The Return of the Things

somthing I find hard to understand about people. The automatic rejection of any theme which professes to deal with the larger-than-life. Larger than life images, larger that life themes, larger than life worlds. Of course, if a medium does'nt outright profess to be larger thatn life, but manages to stretch the boundaries of imagination and reality in its own establishment way, noone seems to care. This is how you end up with scenarios where people dismiss fantasy and sience fiction and comics as kid's fare, but are more than happy to see Clive Cussler's "Dirk Pitt" rappell off an airplane, on to a zeppelin, kill all the neo nazis on the zeppelin with a tuning fork, then jump off and detonate the zeppelin with abovementioned tuning fork.
Well, watch out Dirk Boy, fantasy and science fiction are making a comeback. The Lord of the Rings movies and the Matrix trilogy (okay, please dont make me go into the actual quality of the latter) are making people open up their eyes to the inherent metaphor within the "absurd". I mean, after seeing the matrix, people are actually starting to ask, "what if?". Some of them are even trying philosophy. This is why, leaving aside the actual quality of the matrix trilogy, I mark it down as something of an influence.
As for comics, as you can see, most of the marvel heroes are at last getting their turn on the limelight (and also, in the case of Daredevil, getting totally raped by it), and raking in huge bucks by the look of it. And soon , it'll be the turn of Dark Horse's Hellboy to enter the fray. Now, if there's one movie I've been meaning to watch, it would be Hellboy. What a brilliant concept, the antichrist as the saviour of mankind, ragnarok betrayed, metaphor extreme.

Of course, it is possible that all this commercialisation of fantasy and science fiction will destroy its earlier purity and beauty and pulpify it for mass consumption (as one of my friends argues about everything from computer games to art, basically doesnt like sharing). I dont deny the possibility that the return to public consumption for fantasy/sf could change its shape, but who are the elite to say what shape it should take? the purpose of fantasy/sf is to provide to use the world, unadulterated and undiluted, through its own fractured lens, so we may see the beauty and the horror of that which happens around us with that much clearer an eye.
If that be the strange fruit of this union, then so be it borne.

pop philosophy? maybe. But its still food for thought.

January 02, 2004

Really cool unusual blog

When I set up this weblog, I had no idea what the hell I was doing ( a fact you will find amply evident from my first entry).

Now, about 3 months and innumerable template tweaks into this experiment, I can confidently say that I still dont know what the hell I'm doing, I'm just doing it with a bit more panache.

But Ms Belle Du Jour certianly has a pretty clear picture of what she's doing. I chanced upon this site while checking out the Guardian's 3 best written blogs. It's a brilliant, offbeat and in places quite hilarious look at the soft and slightly ticklish underbelly of the prostitution racket (kinda cool, cause the prostitution business itself is supposed to be a bit of a soft underbelly itself, isnt it, so what wer'e looking at is an underbelly's underbelly, and... ok, i digress). Not only do you get rather witty photo quality word sketches of London life, you get the inside stuff on hair removal, golden showers and the Jennicam. What I love most is this person's frank and impassive look at sexual 'perversions' de jour, from an insider's perspective. oh, by the way, dont go if you dont appreciate comic accounts of threesomes or bikini lin waxing, cause if that isnt your thing, then this definitely isnt your thing. The links lead to some of Belle du Jour's sisterbloggers, but again be warned, these are raher more raunchy than the rather plain and simple blle du jour's site.
At any rate, for a witty insider's perspective on one of the really old professions (isnt it supposed to be the oldest?), please take a look at belle du jour