Failed Impression

Life doesn’t always give people ample chances to express themselves. Sometimes, that could be catastrophic for the person whose emotions are unexpressed when the water is already under the bridge.

Ankur always wanted to live a life full of extremes. He was a day-dreamer. He lived in a posh colony. His parents were the kind of people, as all parents are, somewhat uninterested in his small stories. Stories which were beautiful only when you see it through a child’s eyes. Like most of the kids, he became happy & sad with small things. He was always an expressive person, he needed a person to share those seemingly trivial anecdotes. Richa, the garrulous girl who lived just a few blocks away and used to come to the park to play slowly became interested in Ankur’s stories. Richa cycled on her ladybird everyday to sit with Ankur & listen to all his stories. Richa’s banter always enthused Ankur to share each of his stories as & when they happened. Their friendship survived the test of teenage and went to adulthood.

Ankur started to deal with his adulthood. His parents were all ears to him but there was an artificial wall between them which only Ankur could see. He still maintained the same protocol of telling everything to Richa. Richa had also grown up and used to fill Ankur with all her crushes. She used to describe about all the guys she crushed upon in detail. Ankur always had that smirk to hide his true emotions. Each passing day started becoming more gruesome for Ankur.

“Hey! You know there’s this cute guy in my office who blushes in my presence”, Richa says in the middle of a long silence. “Hmmmm, something’s brewing!” exclaimed Ankur. Albeit, Ankur’s heart started churning and all he wanted to do was cry. He wanted to sob with all his energy and take his lungs & heart out.

“I don’t know what to do, Ankur. He is a bit shy and never takes any steps to break the ice between us”

“Richa, I think sometimes women should take the first step. It looks special” puts in Ankur

Years passed, Richa’s heart had fallen for yet another guy which was like a quarterly routine for her. Ankur was in cognizance of this and he did his best to listen to all what Richa had to say. However, during the last few years Ankur had lost a friend. The friend who used to listen to all of his stories. The friend who never judged his stories. The friend who did her best to comfort Ankur when she was the only way Ankur could find solace. So much unsettling this was for Ankur, but he kept all those emotions inside him. There was a reason behind it. Now, he was not that same 10 year old kid. He was a grown man with his matured stories. Almost all those stories had Richa in it. The Richa, who was a beautiful young lady. The Richa, who could make Ankur’s worries go away with a smile. The Richa, in whose presence Ankur lived with tranquility. Alas, he was afraid to say all this to Richa.

He had loved Richa all those years. Now, he wanted to express that love with his stories but Richa never gave Ankur the confidence which he needed to spill the beans out. Ankur & Richa kept on meeting each other. However, there developed an invisible wall between him & Richa.

His life became a brutal maze in which every night he reached the same nadir of hopelessness of unrequited love. Ankur cried himself to sleep every night. This went on for few weeks. He finally decided that he is going to express himself. He had had his share of wallowing in fear of rejection. He brushed up all the stories safely stacked up in his heart. He could almost feel his heart pounding. He had a childlike innocent confidence that Richa would accept his proposal. He put on his best clothes, checked his smell and marched on his way to a mission. There was a minor worry in his mind though. He didn’t meet Richa last evening & his calls went unanswered late last night. But, sanity prevailed over him and he assured himself that she might have fallen asleep.

He presses the buzzer outside Richa’s flat. But, it was pointless as he realised that quite a lot of people are coming in & out of her flat. He asked one of them, “Bhai, what’s the reason for this flux of people?” “Dude, the girl left her body for heavenly abode last night. Peaceful death, family members only realised it in the morning. Doctors say it was a cardiac arrest. Strange thing!” replied the young boy shattering Ankur’s world forever.
Hoping against hope he asks, “Richa?” The guy replies , “Yes of course, Richa. She was the only girl in the house.”

Ankur went inside Richa’s flat. Waved a goodbye and strolled back towards his home without shedding a drop of tear. His life was transformed. He got lost in a different maze. A maze which had so many hints to get out of it. Alas, he never wanted to come out of it. Richa was the reason he was trying to find a way out of the earlier maze. His emotions remained forever unexpressed. He failed. He had failed to put across a proper impression. His failed impression would haunt him forever.

PS : Work of fiction

My Atthani : 'Haider' Movie review

Rating : 9.0/10
Reasons to spend your money : Shahid Kapoor's marvellous acting & Picturesque Locations
You can stay at home if : You can wait for the DVD 
You would like it if you like :  You need an escapist cinema which involves you for more than 2 hrs
You would hate it if you dislike : Movies which entertain you less and make you think more

'Haider' is an engrossing movie which does its job of keeping your woes out of the theatre pretty well for the entire stretch of movie. It's one of those rare examples of Hindi cinema which doesn't stutter post-interval. Haider as a movie comes out of the envelope completely only after the intermission. Shahid Kapoor is the star of the movie and rest all support his performance. It's not that others would not impress you but Shahid as 'Haider' is that special dish which stands out on the dinner table; even though other dishes are equally well prepared by your mom.


My Atthani : 'Finding Fanny' Movie review

Rating : 7.0/10
Reasons to spend your money : Naseeruddin Shah, Pankaj Kapur & Deepika Padukone
You can stay at home if : You don't like slow-paced movies 
You would like it if you like :  Red Wine (Yes!) - The experience of watching this movie is similar
You would hate it if you dislike : English interspersed in a Hindi Movie

'Finding Fanny' is a story about five lonely & quirky people whose lives have come to a halt because of different reasons. This inertia is suddenly disturbed when all these people set out on a journey to find Naseeruddin Shah's love interest of yore. 'Finding Fanny' is just a different movie after the interval. I won't say it suffers from the 'curse of second half'. However, there was not much to tell in the later stages of the movie so it meanders along the scenes when Deepika & Arjun Kapoor get cosy & Pankaj Kapur paints an overtly outrageous nude of Dimple Kapadia.

I have no regrets of watching this movie as it is pleasant and even you won't dissatisfied.

My Atthani : '2 States' Movie review

Rating : 8.0/10
Reasons to spend your money : Alia Bhatt, 2 States (Novel), 'Feel-good experience'
You can stay at home if : You would rather buy a DVD 
You would like it if you like :  Chetan Bhagat, Alia Bhatt & Rom-coms with happy ending
You would hate it if you dislike : Chetan Bhagat, Alia Bhatt & Rom-coms [Same as above, yes!]

'2 States' the movie is slightly overstretched in order to accommodate almost everything written in the novel. Nevertheless, it doesn't put you off, just tests your patience.  Barring that, this movie is like a cool breeze you need this summer to ease your mind. It skips the non-sense & highly contrived Bollywood depiction of 'chase for a romantic relationship'. It presents how modern day couples get into a romantic liaison. The only part which could bother you is the 'emotional attyachar' of their parents.

If you seek my word, go for this movie & you'll come out with a smile. 

Interview with Amrit Vatsa : Co-Founder of Shaadigrapher

Amrit Vatsa, an IIT Chennai Alumnus who left his well paying job for pursuing his passion spoke to me over e-mail about his venture 'Shaadigrapher'. Its business is in providing candid wedding photography and cinematic wedding films.

1. How difficult it is to run a website based wedding photography business in India?

It is just like running any start-up. It's not easy. It's not entirely impossible to turn photography in to a profitable venture. We are talking about a service industry where there is very weak entry barrier. And that means there is no control of competition. The internet is thus, full of websites of photographers, some offering individual services, others running bigger groups. Personally, I think, it's easy to get into this but to sustain over time, one continuously needs to asses the value that he / she is bringing to a client, relative to his / her competitors. Easiest option looks like offering the same service for a lower fee, but that would not be very wise. Reason being, the number of photographers out there offering "good" photographs from your wedding at low price is way larger than the number of photographers offering "stunning" photographs at a much higher price. But then, to each his / her own strategy. To sum it up, to run a website wedding photography business is just like running any other start-up with the advantage of a low entry barrier.

2. On an average, how many client requests can you take in a month? 

Average would be 2 to 3 clients per month (per photographer). Max would be 10. Minimum has been zero.

3. Apart from the services mentioned on the website, do you also offer customized services?
If there are more related things (like say setting up a photo-booth), we often help our clients by being the single point of contact, and we in turn outsource such things. But we don't sell such ideas ourselves. It makes more sense to stick to candid photography and cinematic films. For everything else, there are a million people out there who would get the job done anyway. So being a facilitator is good enough, and helps offer "customized" services to the client.

4. What are your future plans?
Shifting from wedding to documentary film-making is what I am personally looking at. To be frank expanding "wedding photograpy" as a business had never been the idea. was something which helped me finance my job-free life. I still dont' regard this as a business venture. I am sure there are better business ideas that I can implement and make those start-ups to bigger companies. But that doesn't align to my personal goals in life, which revolve more around traveling, being free (without any work pressure) and creating stories in various forms.

5. It would be a huge favor if you could share any exclusive content / tips / suggestions for the readers of this blog?
Well I have recently embarked upon the idea of creating 3 minute movies on good real stories and if any of your readers might have a story to be told (of following their passion, a cause they want to be know etc.) - they should check out

Wishing Amrit & his team of 'candid wedding photographers' at Shaadigrapher good luck for future endeavors!  

Salary : 'safety trap'

A steady stream of cash at the end of the month known as 'salary' is the biggest deterrent to entrepreneurship. It may seem that it provides a safety net for founders who are not necessarily sure about their business model/execution plans but it is actually a 'safety trap'.

Just take the plunge. Leave your job. Spring up your bum from the cozy cushion you have been gifted by the company for working 10 hrs overtime last year. Ideas flow in ether. Grab any idea, execute it with your heart and leave the rest of the part to the market/customer. As market decides the winner.
After all, customer is the king! Hai naa?  

My Atthani : Queen

Rating : 7.5/10
Reasons to spend your money : Kangana Ranaut
You can stay at home if : You are not a fan of breakup movies 
You would like it if you like :  English Vinglish
You would hate it if you dislike : Not so crisp editing

The movie is about a girl who has been dumped by her fiancee just a day before the marriage. It deals with how the woman ultimately realises that self love is better than any other form of romantic or for that matter sexual involvement. You have to watch this movie if your heart has recently been broken or take your friend who has been dumped by their significant others. You would spend the time watching the movie with a heavy heart and curdled up emotions. After a while, cheering for every achievement of Queen (Rani) becomes an effortless task.

I missed a flight

I know you must be thinking: "Who misses a flight?" , "How can someone miss a flight?" , ... But I missed one. My tryst with flight journeys have always been paralleled by emotional turmoils in my life. Yes!

So I had to board this flight from T1 Airport of Delhi (the old one). And, I was late by 10 minutes. Only explanation I can think of is "bad karma" as I was caught up in a highly unlikely traffic jam. Thinking about bad karma, this trip marks a lot of changes in my growing up. I am more than 25 years of age but I still need to mature a lot. I have to learn to deal with romantic pursuits in a better & sane manner. Yes, I did face troubles in my love life, yet again!

But this time, I was lucky enough to have a superb support system in the form of family and few very special friends. I would categorically like to thank this person I respect a lot for the time which she took out to free up my mind from the overhang. In this way, I discovered that there are always people who care for you, may be different sets of people at different times. Important aspect is that there are always people who like you. You just need to keep your senses receptive enough to feel it. Or else what is the difference between us, sentient beings and robots?

My Atthani : Dedh Ishqiya

Rating : 8.0/10
Reasons to spend your money : Arshad Warsi, Huma Qureshi & Classy dialogues
You can stay at home if : You have to watch this movie!
You would like it if you like :  Intelligent dialogues, Suspense & Madhuri Dixit
You would hate it if you dislike : Urdu diction & subtitles for understanding them

There are two types of films which leave a lasting impression on your mind. One, the movie which keeps you wanting for more and the other, which has just the correct duration of cinema for offering. Dedh Ishqiya belongs to the latter type. Dedh Ishqiya starts with bothering you too much with its Urdu but after the interval this movie is a real delight to watch. Don't miss this one!