Thursday, July 27, 2006

Kabhi confused ho jaana

Soon releasing,

Hazy Dreamz Productions'
Kabhi Confused Ho Jaana (2006)
Director, Writer : Devdatta Gangal
Super star hero : Devdatta Gangal

Director's Note-
There are three kinds of people in the world. First, whose careers are arranged. I've never understood that, and I am sure they also never know what they're doing. Then there are those who fall for their hearts and marry the careers they love - to success or to failure, but till death. These select few, I believe, are the most fortunate people in the world. And lastly, there are those who become engineers for their parents, or for money, or play it safe and go to IIT. These are the most unfortunate ones in the world... and they don't even know it. Until one day, riding the fast train of life they run into the mirror, and are faced with the toughest fact of all. "I am 24". What do you do when you are set into a career which the society forced into you. What do you do when you realise that - this is not what I wanted to do. And worse when you dont know what you really want to do. And you keep asking yourself - What should I do? What should I do?

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Freedom with my 'four-stroke' past midnight

They say 'youth never turns back' and I am sure IIT days don't come back either.

With a tinge of sadness, I remember those wonderful days at IIT where 2:32 am did not indicate that it was too late in the night. It is 2:32 am right now, and I am in my office in West End of Richmond, very sure that in a 1 mile radius around me no one other than the cops is awake. Things were not the same 1 year ago.

A long bike ride to almost anywhere in Bombay was just 4 phone calls and 20 rupees away. Friends were abundant, different types of friends. Department friends, Mood Indigo friends, hostel friends, PAF friends, some special friends. Money for the fifth year DD was abundant. And more abundant were our spirits.

We always loved this freedom. Freedom to go out for a coffee at Hiranandani, freedom to visit Cafe Mocha at Juhu or Bandra.
  • Distance - was never an issue.
  • Money - plenty
  • Drunken driving - DUI is for the US, buddy! For those who drank this was the best time to drink and drive freely over the unusually empty Bombay flyovers and sea-fronts.
  • Helmets - was never a compulsion.
  • Driver's license - always a way to tackle that
  • Safety - It's 'Amchi Mumbai' for you. Always safe.
  • Speed limit - Uh? What's that?

We bitched the dean when he wanted to ban the bike. What about our freedom? - we asked him.

We ridiculed the watchmen when they asked for entry. You fool - we laughed at them.

We hated the Mumbai Police when they stopped us. Pain in the @$$ - we quietly grumbled.

But never ever, never ever did we treasure this freedom. Never ever did we thank the people who got us this freedom. Never ever did we feel happy about the constitution that allowed us this freedom. Never ever did we bless the Mumbai Police who dispensed us this freedom at an unearthly hour at 2:32am. We never valued the money which our parents made available and we never wore helmets and we never drove below 55 kmph. Those who did (like me), were pecked at and had to digest the repeated insult of reaching IIT gates whole 10 minutes after everyone else.

We lost a sweet chap called Sachin Garg on the roads. Had the dean been successful in imposing his bike ban, Sachin would have been amongst us.

We lost a Rohit Bansal under a truck. Had he followed simple rules like wearing a helmet (as it is strictly followed in the US), and driving under the speed limit he would have been saved.

Is it too difficult to understand this? or realize this? NO. But still we all do what we want to do, just because 'we want to do what we want to do'.

I have had my share of freedom and now my brother is having his. Just one year ago, I had the privilege 'to do what I want to do' and today I an stiff scared of how foolhardy I was 12 months ago - because today whenever anyone says 'I want to do what I want to do', my brother could be driving on the roads.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Raigadcha shetkari?

Why this name?

because my best and my oldest friends Mihir, Rahul and Jaideep call me with that name....

Does it have any more significance?

On the face of it, NO. But if I go a bit deeper, YES. It all started an hour ago, where I discovered that my dear brother Shantanu has been writing blogs for over months now, and some of his blogs disturbed me. Or maybe relieved me.

They all spoke about something that any human being or animal treasures the most... freedom!

Freedom? Yes, something that we got at birth, without much fight.. but not only that, this is about a greater freedom, freedom of thought, and freedom to think independently of others - friends, siblings, parents, society, etc. That my brother (and some of his really good and extremely intelligent friends) - who form the creamiest of the cream of the intellectual world, crave for their freedom, crave to break free from shackles of expectations and pre-defined rules, disturbs me. And with a 5 minutes deep thought, it comforts me, because I realize that they are growing and more importantly maturing. They have been working too hard all their life to get into the shady Maharashtra merit, then the exciting Olympiads, and then the most important exam of them all - the JEE. They deserve to wander a bit, it will help them, only if they are cautious not to lose too much in the bargain.

But why 'Raigadcha Shetkari'?

because I have also wandered in the past, and am still wandering. I am definitely not born 'Raigadcha Shetkari' - a farmer from the region Raigad in Maharashtra, nor do I suppose any of my ancestors (who were teaching Brahmins) were farmers ever, but an unsophisticated, rustic and crass person that I am, and have always been, the names sticks.. because my best and closest friends thought it appropriate.

Myself - being too much orthrodox on most of the matters of the world, and 'seemingly' a strong opponent of the incorrect influence of Western culture, have always been ridiculed both by good and not so good friends alike. Being a person who has always despised people who do things just for the heck of appearing 'pseud' or because 'others do it', I often come across as a old and rigid 'Maratha Manus' unfit to be a 23 yr old in the new hep and 'cool' era called as the 21st century.

And as so many 'Raigadcha shetkari' would have been lost in the wilderness of the busy Mumbai when they set foot there in the 1940s, I similarly feel lost in this wilderness of this concept called 'modern life'. It doesn't help whether I am in Bombay or in my Richmond apt. or whether I am touristing the wonderful cities of Chicago, Boston or New York.

I shall remain the lost 'Raigadcha Shetkari'