Dec 9, 2013

While you were gone: November / December 2013

'Ask not what your country can do for you – ask what you can do for your country' - JFK.
RIP Madiba

After years of unabated corruption and an economy that is going south faster than Obama's ratings, our unemployed but immensely talented youngsters are finally taking things into their hands.

ATM heists are passe. We now have our youngsters preying on people using the ATM. Earlier this month, a 'well-built young man..' attacked a bank manager when she was using her bank's ATM. She sustained severe head trauma when he attacked her with a machete. He later robbed her and escaped. Last heard, he is still at large. What surprises me are the following -

  1. How is it that CCTV cameras are not monitored real-time?
  2. How is it that we can't nab the culprit? Are we that incompetent? Or are we that impotent?
At the wake of this atrocity, the cops in Bangalore did what they normally do when they have a situation they have no idea how to grapple - Shut Down. Thousands of ATMs across the city shuttered and if you wanted to withdraw money, you were screwed.
But then, unlike bars and discos, ATMs are not something you can keep shuttered. So they opened. And we are none the wiser. ATMs still don't have guards and the ones that have, are senile old men on the wrong side of 60 and can't wield a gun, let alone fire one.
Happy International Men's day, anyone?

Israel was in the cross-hairs again. When will we all accept the fact that blaming Israel isn't going to change anything?
But what changed was - We cancelled the VIP helicopter deal. Big Effing Deal!
O knew that his healthcare website would crash. So tell me this. Is there ANYTHING that he hasn't been briefed on?

And if you were in the Subcontinent, you wouldn't have missed the All India All Hail Sachin bhajjan. And in the great Indian tradition of sycophancy, we tripped over eachother to award Sachin the Bharat Ratna. Seriously!
Next year, the Nobel prize.
But wait, Vishwanath Anand lost to Carlson in a rather tame match. Maybe we must stone his house and ask him to retire.

In our 'Crime This Month' section, we have Jyothi's parents raised a petition to have the juve tried under harsher laws. The SC appears to relent too. Don't hold your breath, though.
Tehelka honcho Tarun Tejpal did a Phaneesh Murthy. Epic mistake.
And out tumbled the skeletons. Some really old. How can we condone 'victims' who make a complaint years after the incident?
Across the Atlantic, Rajat Gupta challenged his $13.9 million fine.
Back home, the Talwars paid the ultimate prize for being what they were - Persistent and unrelenting. Never mind the fact that the CBI once told them they were not even suspects, the SC sentenced them to life in prison. Read 'em and weep, fellas.
And Oh! In a few years, we can also watch their ordeal in 30 mm. And why not. It has all the ingredients for a potboiler - Murder, mystery, sex, incompetent authorities, determined (stone-faced) protagonists and a trial by the people.

Pratibha Patel, arguably the worst excuse for a President, returned all official gifts that she got during her infamous tenure at the Rastrapathi Bhavan. What took her so long?

CobraPost did another sting and this time, unearthed an ugly network of IT companies willing to cultivate the social network for the right price. So that explains a lot of things now.
Bitcoin prices surged past the $1000 mark. Yay!
An enterprising Chinese thief sent 11 handwritten pages of phone numbers from an iPhone that he stole to its owner. Respect!
Scotland will finally be an independent country.
And talking about scot-free, Assange may not face any charges in America. If you ask me, Snowden looks more attractive now.
Uncle Sam, the international moral cop, flexed its muscles against China.
Everytime I think about America's diplomacy with the Orient, I remember 'Beijing 2008', a provocative painting which has been the subject of much discussion.


And the people of 'by-two coffee' went gaga when Starbucks opened its signature store in Bangalore. Okay, can we all settle down, please? Blah!
Delhi and 3 other States went to the polls and the AAP and the BJP packed off the Congress in a reply fitting a stray dog waiting to be euthanized. No offense, Priyanka.

In Bollywood news, Sanjay Leela Bhansali proved that even he can make puke colorful.
Ram Leela is the most expensive (and the longest) anti-dandruff/soft-porn/anti-gun propaganda that struggles to sell the Romeo Juliet story. That the couple kill eachother in the end is the only semblance to the 'adaptation'.
The 'romance' resembles lust, carnal lust. Surely, SLB wanted to capitalize on the real-life chemistry and he sure did. But knowing how Deepika is a gold-digger, this is one (more) on-screen chemistry she will regret in the future.
And Priyanka? She really needed the cash, I guess.
Ranveer, you've got potential. Take our advice and don't waste it!
So SLB, I'd give your 'magnum opus' a generous 1 out of 10 and that's only because you've obviously spent millions on sets. Read a more detailed review of Ram Leela by our guest blogger and movie buff Suparna here.

And so its December! The month of lists.
Stay tuned for 'Ze List 3.0'
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