Showing posts from April, 2007

Varma & the Milkmaid

Ravivarma’s pantings have always fascinated me. I remember many a print on the walls of our house & various relative’s houses, especially the Pooja rooms. His paintings mostly reminds one of buxom healthy women and various Indian epics… I had seen many originals in the Shree Chitra Gallery in Trivandrum, but they were when I was not old enough to appreciate art. Since then I read about his interesting life. My interest has not waned, like his paintings have not either, in the public mind.

My favorite – the Milkmaid watercolor

Obviously this picture has a huge fan following and two of them apparently are Sunil Babu (Cine art director) & Santhosh Sivan (the famed cine photographer). They got Kavya Madhavan to pose like the original in the song 'Pinakkamano' for the movie Anathabhadram - a song which portrays five or so of Ravi Varma’s famous paintings.

But, who is that girl (as the Madonna song goes)? The model above is said to be Sugunabai, a lady of Goan Marathi backgr…

The Delectable Dosa

You know how the world is today. If in doubt, enter the word on the Google search bar and hit enter. Imagine the horror of an American teenager trying to find out what his new Indian (ABCD perhaps) origin girlfriend meant when she said ‘I ate dosa’ i.e. when he lands up on one of the first results - that the dosa is a Korean dog (actually called Tosa)…and well, in Korea they did eat dogs..

Some other hits - Hanina Ben Dosa was a Jewsih healer much before Christ (1st century) But for management & IT professionals it means something totally different, it is an acronym that stands for Discussion-Oriented Organizational Self-Assessment. Or it turns out to be a designer clothier. While these dosa specialists have dosa sessions of the verbose kind, we South Indians believe in the culinary kind of dosa session. As for me, I can call myself a dosa connoisseur and am pretty adept at making them.

There are dosa places everywhere today, preparing open dosa, closed dosa, paper dosa, ghee roast…

Oh! our beloved SM street

My mother in law was surprised at our ignorance of world happenings – she is like many others in Kerala, one who do not start the day without digesting every word in the newspaper they subscribe to - she asked my wife – are you telling me you did not hear about the fire in SM street (Sweet meat street in Calicut)? Well, in the remote reaches of California, a place like Calicut (the biryani capital for malayalis) is quite an unheard part of the world. But the news was not good and we quickly checked out the details on the web, with great sadness. It was big fire on MP road actually, a road that runs perpendicular to SM Street. There is talk of sabotage, rising numbers of terrorist elements in the area and short circuits.. Sajitha K also has a nice & heartfelt blog up, about the tragedy.

And like an idiot I made a wisecrack to my wife, ‘at least now they will rebuild SM Street’ effectively destroying the rest of the evening’s joys with a sulking partner glowering at me. You see, Kozh…

Quality time and mushrooms

As you settle down to live in places like the US or UK, you start hearing people mention about a commodity called ‘quality time’. It took me a while to figure it out. I had initially thought that it meant, as Americans put it, Jackshit (if u did not know what it meant, it is – bowel movement of a donkey). You hear guys say, I am gonna take a vacation and spend some quality time with my children, or I am taking off with my wife and we will spend some quality time together. There is even a nice definition to it in Wikipedia.

Here I am, sitting in the departure concourse for Southwest airlines at the Las Vegas Mc Carren international airport (LAS) waiting for the boarding call and I wondered, so in all these great economies, over 90% of your time spent everyday is not quality time? What kind of a life is this when we spend all our time for our employers? As I ruminated on all this, I remembered a friend who lives in Switzerland and spends some of his quality time together with his Swiss p…