Friday, July 25, 2008

Things that....

...get my goat!
So it came to be last week that the light in my kitchen flickered, flickered some more and then went out... just like that. Now, I could have thrown a hissy fit and ranted and raved and so I did. Then, in true (wannabe) engineer style I proceeded to unscrew the shade, the holder and all was revealed. The holder was broken. No matter, we shall get a new one thought and I shelled out a whopping $7 for the same. Now come the minor issues - ensuring that the switch was off I proceeded to unscrew the wires from the broken holder and transfer them to the new holder. Simple enough - not really. The tools were ok, so can't really blame those. Can blame the shoddy wiring and the terrible holder screws that caused half the damn ceiling to fall down. Ok I exaggerate, not half, but enough.
Turned out that turning off the switch was not good enough since there were four bloody wires. Four! and one of them was still live so it proceeded to give me a minor shock and a major scare. So then I turned off the mains. Did I mention that I was doing all this at 7 pm (after getting home from work)? So I don't own a torch and blue LED on the key chain, though powerful was not enough. So efforts were put on hold till the morning.
Did the needful the next day and for some god awful reason the bulb lost all sense of switch and just stayed on! Turned things off, checked wires, found loose wire, put it back in, screwed back on as tight as I could.. no luck. Did I mention, also, that I don't own a step ladder so I was standing on a chair of questionable stability?
Finally put in a call to the electrician who came by and with brute force put the last annoying wire in and things worked like magic. He was also equipped with the right tools, a drill and a step ladder! He did applaud my efforts and say that I had done most of his job for him! However this whole rant was a digression.
What got my goat is that first off I was talking to a (male) friend and told him that the light was busted and he said 'wait till I get there, don't do anything yourself'. Why the heck not? Are you made of insulating material? Or do you have magical powers that can fix wires without touching them? I realise that the electrician that came along was a man and yes, I agree that he was able to provide that last push that I couldn't, not because I am female but because I am not strong enough!
In the same vein, it also gets my goat when women are overly thankful when their husbands cook or clean or take care of their children. Why? They're human, they need food, (some) need a clean house and its their child too!
So why glorify them as if they have made inhuman effort and why be grateful that they have given you time off?
Which brings me nicely to my final point - why are some jobs classified as male-worthy and others as female-worthy? When I pull out the ol' Swiss army knife and fix screws and bulbs why is it less acceptable than me pulling out some wipes and giving the kitchen counter a wipe down?
During my three years in Canberra I have heaved furniture, fixed appliances, clean rotten food and dirty linen and lugged groceries up the hill! I will do it if I can and I know how to. Because this is life. Life does not see male or female, life does not know if a man is in trouble or it is a woman. Life just happens and one has to deal with it whether one is male or female.
So maybe now is a good time to change the word 'handyman' to 'handyperson'.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Dark Knight

The Dark Knight was watched last weekend (and as I type that I realise that it was but obvious that the only thing needed for those words to course the veins was a movie review bah!).
The first stunner was watching Heath Ledger in action! He chilled me more than Jack Nicholson did as the Joker (Jack however did full justice to the role of the psycho in The Shining though, that was freezing!). Heath Ledger brings to the role a maniacal quality which of course Nicholson had but maybe I wasn't old enough to appreciate it. This calls for re-watching people.
Rumour has it (or is it fact now?) that Ledger prepared for this role by going into isolation, working himself up to such an extent that it caused him to have hallucinations and resulted in his death. Very very unfortunate for an actor of such calibre.
Back to the movie, well I liked it, perhaps not as much as Batman Begins but good all the same.
Felt it could have done with a tad slicker editing process.
The biggest shock of all was that Gary Oldman (of Sirus Black fame) played Inspector Gordon! Makes me wonder as to how the cast of the HP series will look by the time the seventh movie is made. Bring out the walking sticks and dentures!
While the chill of winter continues, Canberra temperatures are still oscillating between the early negatives and the false positives. So until next time I leave you with these words of wisdom by none other than the Joker himself - 'You either die a hero, or live long enough to become the villian.' Truer words have seldom been spoken.

Friday, July 11, 2008

I finished work rather late last night. Of late I don't feel like leaving home in the mornings and don't feel like leaving work in the evenings for fear of the cold. So as I got into the car in the pouring rain I suddenly had the urge to go to the Indian grocery store (which is not too near!) and pick up aamras (mango pulp) and eat it with hot rotis. So off I went in the pouring rain, bought the aforementioned mango pulp and six movies to boot. So it came to be that late into the night I watched Dor. It is a beautiful movie and it manages to be so essentially in simplicity. No gaudy make-up, no strange accents, no eccentric old men or bikini-clad women, no blaring songs and lavish sets.
It captures beautifully the inner turmoil of two women brought together by the strangest twist of fate. It delivers in that one feels empathy for the characters and their pain is real, so are their reactions.
Might I add that Mr. Kukunoor, for all his directorial skill, has not been endowed with acting talent and he sure as heck cannot pull of a 'Mr. Chopra' so in the interest of viewing pleasure he must refrain.
And most importantly it has a happy ending in the not-so-usual sense.
The dvd's sold here are the two-in-one kind and so there was also Dil Chahta Hai. This movie was a turning point in Indian movie history. It was blatant without insulting your intelligence and it was fresh in every positive sense of the word.
Anyway my thoughts elude me now so I will abruptly end this post! Enjoy!

Thursday, July 10, 2008


The movie Jaane Tu ya Jaane Na seems to be more than a blip on the radar and everywhere I read, people seem to be about it.
I haven't seen it yet. Although I did watch the lead actress, Genelia is it?, in Mere Baap Pehle Aap and very surprisingly she did not annoy me! She has all the makings of annoyance, the hyper activity, the voice and the general disposition and potential to be annoying but she falls short.
Word has it that the movie is about the age old, done and exhausted concept of two best friends falling in love (or rather realising that they are meant for each other or some such...). Exciting stuff. However, since it starts Aamir Khan's nephew and is produced by Aamir Khan himself, it warrants a watch.
Incidentally, has anyone watched Tashan. If so, would anyone care to explain to be what the bleep it was all about? If the producers had money and the directors had time to squander, why not channel it towards a cause like world peace or poverty or world hunger? Although, I do think that they managed a tiny bit of population control because I'm willing to bet that it caused mass suicide somewhere!
I have been watching hindi movies for as long as I can remember but no movie has managed to do to me what Tashan did. Believe you me when I say that there were times when I had to rewind dialogues and scenes to hear them again, just to be sure that I wasn't hallucinating. Reviews of this atrocity claim that it was Bollywood's masala answer to Tarantino's Kill Bill. Well for one Kill Bill was a far superior effort which showed exquisite planning and execution and for another Kill Bill was far a far superior effort which showed exquisite planning and execution. Tashan is found seriously lacking in... well just about everything! It borders on the bizarre and hopes to cash in on crap like 'Dil Dance Maare re' and a size-zero, bikini clad Kareena.
Call me over critical, I mean it is a hindi movie after all and one is rightfully expected to leave their brains behind in a safe place for the three odd hours of 'entertainment'. And even though I did, I could feel my abandoned brain writhing and threatening to die and early death if I continued to watch.
However, on to bigger and better things as we always are, once I had washed out the remnants of Tashan from the mind I able to function again, and more than merely thankful for the same!

Monday, July 07, 2008

For the love of the game

A few moments define history and any tennis fan will tell you that the Wimbledon final of last night will go down in tennis history.
I am still getting over it all. The excitement, the pulsating energy and finally the disappointment. Being a fan of the Fed-man myself I think I speak for Fed fans world over when I say - 'what a game' and 'Darn you Rafa'! But to give the devil its due Rafael Nadal has done the unthinkable and what some deemed, the impossible.
Newspapers, sports channels and journalists world over have waxed hoarse about the game and so it will suffice to say that the quality of tennis was second to none. No one feels that it is time to start writing Federer off. Or maybe they feel it but don't want to say it. It is reminiscent of the time Sampras lost to Hewitt. These turn-overs are 'normal' and 'expected'. But Federer has never been normal and has always surprised us with the unexpected.
To me last night's game was a test of experience against age. But the loss hasn't sunk in and I will leave with the same words I told my friend's father at the Aussie Open this year
'You all came to watch the tennis, I came to watch Federer'.

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Disjointed thoughts

My thoughts are disjointed. So will this post be. If you look at the comment to the last post you will see the one that tells me to keep my chin up. That's my mother for you. Recovering herself, she's up and about and asking me to keep my chin up no less!
If only I had half her spunk... actually I'm' going to stop this rant about 'If only I had half the...'. If I want 'half the..' then I should go get 'half the..'. Or 'all of the...'. Wow! punctuating that was hard!
The 'show and tell' went of grandly yesterday and all the tension was unnecessary.
In other happenings I am so exhausted that I cannot open my eyes before nine am each morning. It helps that the supervisor is away all of this week but it does not help as he is coming back and I need to be in for Monday morning meetings!
Canberra weather is freezing as usual and so is the water in my bathroom! Somehow between 8 and 10 each morning the water heating system seems to take a break and pour out cold water! Is there anything worse than a cold shower on a cold morning. I think not! Actually, there is something worse - the house-agent doing nothing about it!
Does anyone else suffer from really cold hands and feet? How do you get by - it's a mystery!

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

In fifteen minutes I have to gather my troop here and head off to meet two visitors for lunch. I'm not usually nervous about speaking to people or speaking in front of people or speaking in general but of late (read last three years) a certain uncertainty sets in at the wrong times and I find myself fumbling with the smallest details. I forget words and names and the words aaaaaaaaargh come rushing to mind!
Oh and I'm also nervous about eating around unknown people in a formal environment. Wish me luck!