Wednesday, 13 June 2012


In India we have a talent for highlighting our weaknesses and suppressing out strength. And what is our strength? To my mind our biggest strength has to be that we are a young nation. There are millions of young minds out there crying out for a place in the sun. But whether it is politics, industry or bollywood the old rule the roost. The young and the restless have to wait for another day.
The Indian political scene has to be one of the most depressing in the world. Both the ruling UPA and the opposition, be it the BJP or the Left are stacked with old timers who should be sitting at home watching television and sipping tea with Marie biscuits. I respect Dr Manmohan Singh for his invaluable contribution to the country but now the time has come when he should go. And so it is with the Advani’s and the Prakash Karat’s in the parallel universe of Indian politics.
What is it that makes old men so reluctant to leave positions of power? The question answers the dilemma. When they secure positions of importance they use these positions for longevity of life, the trappings of power and the perpetuation of status quo. Their entire energy or what remains of it is spent in these pursuits and the time to focus on running the country with clarity, determination and of course energy becomes a distant priority.
Remember the late PM, V.P. Singh? The so called Rajah who became a fakir spent the last few years of his life bleeding the country with completely free dialysis treatment in the most expensive hospitals. The question that needs to be asked is that should a five year term in office entitle old, sick men to bleed the country in perpetuity?
But why complain about the politicians alone? Look how the beginnings of old age have impacted our ageing superstars in bollywood. Most of them are heading towards the 50 mark, despite the denials, and the attempt to romance heroines one third their real age, engage in brawls and strut around in transplanted hair and God knows what else, underscores the fact that they just cannot handle old age.
No one is advocating that with growing years one has to slide into anonymity. But there is a dignity that comes with growing old. And if we violate that, then well, the only legacy that these old men would leave behind would be - that he came, he saw, he sat and sat and sat on that chair till finally he was thrown out kicking and screaming!

Tuesday, 5 June 2012


Thank you Kavita Bagga for posting on Facebook a delectable picture of a tandoori crab you ate at Gazalee. Sonu, Karan and I were so taken in by the picture that we all decided, one month after my book’s release, to have a quiet family celebratory dinner at Gazalee. We opened a bottle of Dom Perignon champagne, drank ourselves silly and nearly came around to throwing our flute glasses behind our backs as they once used to do in Czarist Russia. The joy and coziness of a family rejoicing in each other’s successes and achievements is one of the understated but high points in anyone’s life.
Sociologists often highlight the excesses and unsavory undercurrents in a family set up but I wish that there would be more talk of how big or small families come together whether in times of happiness or sorrow. This feeling is like no other in the world and the sense of tuning in and then being completely absorbed in the other’s emotional state of being is a feeling like no other. In a world that is shot with strife and chaos the sheer joy of knowing someone completely believes in you is like ballast that keeps a ship afloat.
At a time like this when a family comes together, the mind overreaches beyond the tight circle of joy and wonders at who all stood by you and those also who failed you in your personal journey or in your quest to achieve something new. And as always it is the strangers, the completely unknown entity, who bowls you over with the love and support he or she offers for your endeavors’ in life. They say you can choose your friends but not your relatives. But once you have chosen them how many of them stand by you either in your hour of need or when you have every reason to celebrate and enjoy.
One thing I have learnt in my quest and journey as a writer. There are many who will laugh and drink and make merry with you when you set sail but how many of them will stand by your side when the waves start rising is an answer blowing in the wind.

Saturday, 2 June 2012

WHAT WOMEN WANT………………………..!

‘Woman opens a beer can and tells husband, ‘Go to bed early. I have to catch a late night T20 match where Dhoni, Zaheer, Virat and all the other hunks are playing….
Your mum’s on the phone. Tell her the lift’s broken down and someone is polishing the stairs. There’s no way up to the house!”
To rewrite, ‘Gone with the wind.’ It is now the turn of Scarlett Hara to say, ‘Frankly my dear I don’t give a damn!”
And change the script in Casablanca to ‘Here’s looking at you, you idiot! I always knew what you were!”
You want a party? Go ahead and call all our friends. I am out there in the balcony reading the newspaper
The area around the pot in the bathroom to be squeaky clean and smelling of roses
To spend a relaxed Sunday afternoon with the spouse watching ‘desperate housewives’
‘Mood swing did you say husband dear? You ain’t seen anything yet!”
Woman to husband: ‘He was tall, dark and handsome, so close to me, caressing my face.’ She refers to the new Mills and Boon novel she slept with reading at bedtime.
Woman engrossed in reading the book ‘Evolution of the species’. Chapter I reads…the bite of the female anopheles mosquito is sometimes fatal but always deadly.

Friday, 1 June 2012


This is my personal wish list. Is it yours also?

Will the day ever come when I said something and the wife understood the same?
To stop having nightmares one month before the wife’s birthday. Why? Because I always forget it.
Pretend the daily 11 am call is from an ex- girlfriend. It always happens to be my mum.
Can I ever recover my stash of ‘Debonair’ magazines which my mum cleared from my study desk 35 years back?
To use the bathroom like a bathroom and not like a Victorian era drawing room – really hope the wife is not listening!
Take possession of the remote for the 11pm movie from my 19 year old son.
Not having to go for the annual executive health check up and pretend everything is fine.
Believe or rather let some expert tell me that sleeping late every night is good for health.
That someone please outsource this job given to me by my wife. And that is to call up friends and relatives to keep in touch.
To give a paper punctured with holes to my wife at the breakfast table and say there is space for no more holes!
There’s lot more I can tell but I sense that I am in trouble already with the wife. Amen!