G C Lichtenberg: “It is as if our languages were confounded: when we want a thought, they bring us a word; when we ask for a word, they give us a dash; and when we expect a dash, there comes a piece of bawdy.”

W H Auden: "But in my arms till break of day / Let the living creature lie. / Mortal, guilty, but to me/ The entirely beautiful."

Will Self: “To attempt to write seriously is always, I feel, to fail – the disjunction between my beautifully sonorous, accurate and painfully affecting mental content, and the leaden, halting sentences on the page always seems a dreadful falling short. It is this failure – a ceaseless threnody keening through the writing mind – that dominates my working life, just as an overweening sense of not having loved with enough depth or recklessness or tenderness dominates my personal one.”

John Gray: "Unlike Schopenhauer, who lamented the human lot, Leopardi believed that the best response to life is laughter. What fascinated Schopenhauer, along with many later writers, was Leopardi’s insistence that illusion is necessary to human happiness."

Art Spiegelman: "You know words in a way are hitting you on the left side of your brain, music and visual arts hit on the right side of the brain, so the idea is to pummel you, to send you from left brain to right brain and back until you're as unbalanced as I am."

विलास सारंग: "संदर्भ कुठलेही असोत, संस्कृत, इंग्रजी, बुद्धिवादी, तांत्रिक, इतिहासाचे, खगोलशास्त्राचे, आधुनिक पदार्थविज्ञानाचे, शिवकालीन व पेशवाईतील बखरीचे, अगणित ज्ञानक्षेत्रांचे, अशा वैविध्यपूर्ण ज्ञानावर लेखन- विशेषत: कवितालेखन- उभं राहत."

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

मी: "अंजु, किती गरम चहा ओतलायस ? जीभ भाजली ना..."

I, Aniruddha G. kulkarni, was heard shouting at my wife on Friday March 11 2011 afternoon watching BBC / CNN:

"Anju, how hot have you poured tea? Tongue is torched..."



(Open the picture in another browser window to get a clearer view of the news in the Marathi broadsheet* held by HIM.)

Artist: Vasant Sarwate (वसंत सरवटे), 1968

* the broadsheet he is reading has these news-items: "A quake in Iran kills 5,000 and injures thousands", "floods in Gujarat killing hundreds", "Boat capsizes" etc!

Aah! Tamil films

Business Standard on Saturday Oct 2 2010:

"Rajini fells all records with sci-fi entertainer Endhiran...The year’s biggest box-office event, Endhiran’s first day, first show, kept its date. On Friday, the big-budget, multi-lingual Rajinikanth starrer, with an ‘official’ budget of Rs 162 crore and ‘unofficial’ budget based on market rumour of Rs 250-300 crore, opened to packed houses, with tickets sold out days in advance...

# Biggest budget for any movie in Indian film industry
# To be shown on 2,250 screens worldwide, including in China
# First Tamil film album in iTunes World Album Top 10
# First Indian sci-fi movie with 1,500 graphical shots"

गोविंदराव टेंबे: "नवीन काहीतरी करावं हे धारिष्ट्यच आपल्या सिनेमावाल्या लोकांत नाही , त्यामुळे आणि त्यामुळेच त्यांची अशी दुर्दशा झाली आहे."

['सांस्कृतिक महाराष्ट्राचे शिल्पकार : गोविंदराव टेंबे', 2006 लेखक: डॉ. सौ. चारुशीला दिवेकर]

(Govindrao Tembe: "Thers is no courage among our cinema people to do something bold and because of that and that alone they are in terrible shape."

from "Sanskritik Maharashtrache Shilpkar : Govindrao Tembe", 2006 by Dr. Mrs. Charusheela Divekar)


'Enthiran The Robot' was shown on Sony TV on the evening of March 13 2011. I couldn't see it because I wanted to watch the live coverage of the last day of Yonex All England Badminton Championships.

Rajinikanth's (Shivaji Rao Gaekwad, शिवाजीराव गायकवाड) first language is Marathi and he still speaks the language with some relish and certainly much 'better'- for my ears at any rate- than many Marathi 'celebrities'.

Earlier I wrote a post on Marathi films on Dec 18 2007. Read it here Ugh! Marathi Films.

Since then I have seen parts of both 'Mee Shivaji raje Bhosale boltoy' (मी शिवाजी राजे भोसले बोलतोय) and Natrang (नटरंग).

I did not like the former at all and found the latter OK.

But frankly 'Natrang' is not close to many Marathi films of the past, especially a few of those starring Nilu Phule (नीळू फुले), Arun Sarnaik (अरुण सरनाईक), Ganpat Patil (गणपत पाटील), Ramesh Deo (रमेश देव), Jayshree Gadkar (जयश्री गडकर), Usha Chavan (उषा चव्हाण), Leela Gandhi(लीला गांधी)- (has a Marathi speaking woman ever danced better than her?)...

[The other day I watched 'Mumbaicha Jawai' (मुंबईचा जावई) . What a wonderful film with some brilliant acting by Sharad Talwalkar (शरद तळवलकर) and others!]

I have already quoted following earlier.

Suhas Palshikar: "...preferential treatment to locals is always an easy and attractive policy proposal. What is wrong with it? It is wrong simply because it creates an untenable category of “local”. In administrative parlance it becomes “domicile” – meaning resident for 15 years. This strategy practically abandons diversity. Apart from raising issues of definition of the local, such a policy encourages inbreeding and denies its beneficiaries he advantage of greater exposure and competition. It produces ghettoisation at schools, colleges and at workplaces – resulting in non-diverse social universes –hostels, localities and cities...."

More than anything else, I feel, this ghettoisation affects Marathi culture deeply.

Almost no Marathi cultural program shown on TV is complete without talking about "outsiders". For them, not just Hindi, but any other language or its native speaker is a fair game.

Even the devastating floods of 2009 in North Karnataka- where lacs of Marathi speakers live- were NOT covered in any depth by most Marathi media. (btw- They are covering March 2011 Japanese quakes in great depth!)

Like Vilas Sarang (विलास सारंग) says about Marathi literary world, this Marathi media world too is afflicted with "inbreeding".

As I have said earlier, Namdev is arguably the greatest bilingual Indian writer because apart from his enormous talent, his vision was worldly and heart large. (Where was he domiciled? Maharashtra or Punjab?)

If Marathi has to assert itself on India and the world stage, her 'lovers' need to do some serious re-thinking on how to get there.

Returning to Endhiran, look at the picture below.


Artist: Alan Dunn, The New Yorker, July 17 1937

"I dread the day when I'll have to tell him about sex."

Maybe. But what about telling him what happens after the sex?

In Enthiran, like '3 Idiots' in 2009, robot Chitti manages a complex child delivery successfully.


p.s. We as a nation are obsessed with producing babies!