Chandramukhi in Manchester & Newcastle – UK

For the first time ever, a Tamil movie is being screened at Manchester & Newcastle.

Film name: Chandramukhi

Show Time: 14-05-2005, Saturday, 1:20 pm
Venue: UCI Cinemas, Trafford Centre, Manchester.

Show Time: 15-05-2005, Sunday, 1:30 pm
Venue: UCI Cinemas, Metro Centre, Newcastle-upon-Tyne.

Tickets are on Sale now from UCI Box Office (08700 102030).
Tickets could also be purchased online at www.uci.co.uk

Feel free to ping me if you need any clarifications and the distributor/facilitator/coordinator/screener, who reads these pages would be happy to reply back.

Blog Friends

Of late, most of whom I meet in person or talk over the phone or catch up over e-mails happen to be bloggers, about which I am really elated about. So much has changed due to blogging, which has provided a very good network of friends for me. ‘Nanganallur’ Vasanth visited me on Saturday and I not only used him royally for my culinary experiments, but also made him walk all through Bournemouth for several miles, that would have even put Vaiko to shame. It is indeed a great feeling to know someone you have never met before and have no common friends either. hmm… All this from some one, who was rubbishing the concept of e-friends not long ago.

I hate…

I hate women.

I hate women, especially old women.

I hate women, especially old women, who walk along the beach.

I hate women, especially old women, who walk along the beach – with dogs the size of a calf.

I hate women, especially old women, who walk along the beach – with dogs the size of a calf without holding the leash.

I hate women, especially old women, who walk along the beach – with dogs the size of a calf without holding the leash, that the animal scares the innocent men.

I hate women, especially old women, who walk along the beach – with dogs the size of a calf without holding the leash, that the animal scares the innocent men, who are out walking.

I hate women, especially old women, who walk along the beach – with dogs the size of a calf without holding the leash, that the animal scares the innocent men, who are out walking & make them confused.

I hate women, especially old women, who walk along the beach – with dogs the size of a calf without holding the leash, that the animal scares the innocent men, who are out walking & make them confused about whether to run or stay put at the same place.

I hate women, especially old women, who walk along the beach – with dogs the size of a calf without holding the leash, that the animal scares the innocent men, who are out walking & make them confused about whether to run or stay put at the same place, as the only direction one could run is, towards the sea.

UPDATE: I wasn’t among those “innocent men” who got scared & confused.

Tony’s Day Out

It is certainly good to end the career on a victorious note. It didn’t happen that way to Atal Behari Vajpayee (assuming that he wouldn’t be in the run again), but Tony managed to do it. This is supposedly Blair’s last election as he is expected to handover the rein to someone (Gordon Brown??) midterm. Coincidentally, Tony turns 52 today.

I was following the poll related developments until midnight. A friend of mine, who works for a leading satellite channel in UK, had to stay at work all night to keep their servers up & running. He provided me SMS updates every now & then, so that I didn’t have to stay awake. Thanks very much dude. Today morning around 6.15 am, I saw Blair address his comrades at the Party Headquarters. He was visibly pleased, but very tired and his voice had gone husky – giving an idea of how long he has been talking.

Had Chennai been in UK, posters like the below would have dotted the city today. If you could not read the below Tamil fonts, you may check out the below text in the image here. Don’t look for any logic.

ஆஙà¯?கில நாடà¯?டினà¯? அறிவாளி
கோடà¯?டை ஆளà¯?à®®à¯? கோமானà¯?
ஜாரà¯?ஜà¯? பà¯?à®·à¯?ஷினà¯? ஜாலà¯?ரா
வெஸà¯?டà¯?மினà¯?ஸà¯?டரினà¯? வேநà¯?தனà¯?
எகானமியினà¯? எஜமானà¯?
இஙà¯?கிலாநà¯?தினà¯? இடிமà¯?ழகà¯?கமà¯?
ரோஜா சினà¯?னமà¯? கொணà¯?ட ராஜா
சினà¯?ன சரà¯?சà¯?சிலà¯?
எஙà¯?களà¯? அணà¯?ணனà¯?
கொளà¯?கை செமà¯?மலà¯?
மாவீரனà¯?

டோனி பà¯?ளேரà¯? – அவரà¯?களை
வெறà¯?றி பெற செயà¯?த உளà¯?ளஙà¯?களà¯?கà¯?கà¯?
நன�றி! நன�றி!! நன�றி!!!

– டோனி பà¯?ளேரà¯? பேரவை.
————————————
லாரà¯?டà¯?ஸà¯? லபகà¯?கà¯?தாஸà¯?, செலà¯?ஸீ செலà¯?லதà¯?ரை,
லீடà¯?ஸà¯? லீலாவதி, மானà¯?சஸà¯?டரà¯? மணிகணà¯?டனà¯?, அரà¯?சனலà¯? அறிவழகனà¯?.

For those who can’t read Tamil, my apologies as the translation would spoil the fun.

Voted!

I cast my vote (ponnaana vaaku) at 7 am today, when polling booths opened across the country for general elections. I was the first person to cast the vote in our booth, which was the building next door. The polling officer said that he was part of the UK team that toured India last year to observe the general elections and went on like “We British don’t have an impressive voting machine technology like your country Sir. We still use the paper & pencil. Our elections aren’t colourful either”. By early morning tomorrow, it would be known as which party is set to cross the 324 mark.

X,Y,Z and Elections

Less than 24 hrs to go for the elections in UK. I would like to see Party Z win at the national level, but in our constituency the fight is between Party X & Party Y. In the national level, it is between Y & Z. So, I thought I would tactically vote for X, so that Y would lose here, which would help Z in the bigger picture.

Parties are now targetting the undecided voters on the last day of the campaign. Party X placed me in that category and called me up this morning seeking my votes. I could have kept quiet. Instead, I questioned about one of their policies that would directly affect me, if they come to power (that is not possible, anyway). Within minutes, the candidate of party X (most likely, he would be our MP) called me up, sought my vote again and defended that policy telling some stories. I remain unconvinced. If I vote for X, that would mean endorsing his policy, which I am against. If I vote for Z, one of the anti-Y vote is getting diverted. Ours is one of the very closely fought constituencies, where the victory margin was around few hundred votes last time. So, every vote is important. I have got time to decide till I get the ballot paper.

Career Decisions – Part 1 of 3

One of my early career ambitions started when I was in Class IV. I, along with few other friends thought that being a bus driver would be the best thing to happen to anyone. They were our heroes then and I was even angry with my father that he worked for a bank instead of being a bus driver. One of my friends managed to tear a page from the Atlas he had and everyday, we religiously devoted time to discuss about the routes we would ply and new stops, fare we would charge etc until his mom found out about the torn page in the atlas. My friends & I used to drive the imaginary bus along the streets of Kumbakonam and vowed to become a real driver when we grew big. Good people would become bus drivers and the great would become ‘Thiruvalluvar’ (for uninitiated, that was the name of the bus corporation plying intercity express buses in TN, named after a saint-poet) bus drivers, so we thought.

Couple of years later, when we shifted to a different place and actually when I realised that bus drivers don’t actually get to own the bus, I decided that it wouldn’t be that great an idea to become a bus driver. Lessons in Civics were getting interesting at school and overnight I revised my ambition. i.e., I wanted to become the President of India. It was at that time when Presidential elections were held and R.Venkataraman moved into Rashtrapathi Bhavan. For the next two years, I was querying all and sundry about the qualifications one needed to gain to become a President, but none of the answers were convincing. I couldn’t buy the argument that one need to be ‘something’ to become the President. After all, when there is some sort of study – M.B.B.S to be called a doctor, B.E to become an Engineer, there must be some course/degree that trains one to be the President. Just that no one around me seems to know.

Later on, I learnt that President actually didn’t have any powers but only the Prime Minister did. I thought that it is a terrible insult to the President, who is occupying the highest office in the land. Not wanting to settle for some post that didn’t have enough powers, I started losing interest on occupying Rashtrapathi Bhavan. For quite sometime, I didn’t have any real ambition. Think that was the best period in my life. Out of peer pressure or something, I wanted to become ‘something’ and decided that being an Electrical Engineer would be great. My uncle was one and coz of that he got to work at ‘far away’ places like Haryana & Uttar Pradesh. That profession also had added benefits – we would never have to worry about powercut while Ramayan or ‘Oliyum Oliyum’ was being telecast. How could life get any better?

Catching up with Guru

Guruprasad – one of my classmates during my school days at Thiruvallikeni was very well known throughout the school coz he used to represent the school at almost any competition held anywhere in the city and bagged a prize or two. If inter-school competitions used to be such a cakewalk for him, his domination in intra-school competitions needn’t be emphasised. Though he couldn’t do full justice to studies due to the above, he still managed to be in the cream de la creme of the class, which we in the second rung used to look at with a bit of stomach burn.

After my school days at Triplicane in 1993, our family moved to Trichy and I lost touch with most of my school mates including Guru. After completing my degree in 1996, I came to Chennai without being sure of the next step to take – to look for job or study further or what not. One day, I was standing at a bus stop in Ice House area when someone came running and said “hi”. For a moment, I couldn’t recognise him. It was Guru – the short fellow was still short, but his face had undergone a sea change during the college days that I was able to identify him only through his voice. He had seen me from a distance and came running to catch me before I boarded the bus. We travelled for about 20 minutes in the same bus and talked whatever we could during that time.

If one short meeting could turn one’s life, it happened that way in my life and that was precisely the meeting with Guru that day. During the course of conversation, he passed me on the contact number of a person who at that time looking for candidates for a temporary testing assignment in Ramco. Subsequently I met that person, went to Ramco for a temporary assignment, got absorbed there as an employee and ended up staying there for 7.5 years, which gave me a great head start to my career. I have no doubt that the chance meeting that I had Guru on that eventual day shaped up my career. I was lucky & that was my day. I know it more when it took more than couple of years for some of my friends to land in a decent job. I might sound sentimental, but I constantly used to think about that day and used to wonder how God has his own strange ways of showing his presence. With no e-mails at that time and no phone connections at either of our houses, we lost touch with each other after the brief bus journey, as Guru went to Pondy to pursue his Masters.

Close to nine years after the incident, Guru & I were reading each other’s blogs without knowing who is who before recognising each other – this time, the link being Renga a.k.a Dubukku, whose blogroll contained both our links – about which I blogged about few months back. Guru is now happily married to Subhashree/Nisha – another blogger and has a year old kid Sriram. I know that it is just a matter of time before we met and eventually that happened during this long weekend, when Guru & his family visited Bournemouth. For most part of two days, we caught up with our life & times of the last 12 years and the gossips of the schooldays, while Nisha prepared yummy yummy Bisi Bela Bath. If meeting a friend with similar wavelength after such a long time wasn’t enough, it was nice to discover that Guru hasn’t changed much from our schooldays – though for some strange reasons, prefers to add chocolate over French fries. Heard anyone do that?