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Sunday, March 27, 2011

Corita Kent Rules

Rules : http://hi-and-low.typepad.com/my_weblog/2008/01/a-new-year.html

Rule 1
FIND A PLACE YOU TRUST AND THEN TRY TRUSTING IT FOR A WHILE.

Rule 2
GENERAL DUTIES OF A STUDENT: PULL EVERYTHING OUT OF YOUR TEACHER. PULL EVERYTHING OUT OF YOUR FELLOW STUDENTS.

Rule 3
GENERAL DUTIES OF A TEACHER: PULL EVERYTHING OUT OF YOUR STUDENTS.

Rule 4
CONSIDER EVERYTHING AN EXPERIMENT.

Rule 5
BE SELF DISCIPLINED. THIS MEANS FINDING SOMEONE WISE OR SMART AND CHOOSING TO FOLLOW THEM.
TO BE DISCIPLINED IS TO FOLLOW IN A GOOD WAY.
TO BE SELF DISCIPLINED IS TO FOLLOW IN A BETTER WAY.

Rule 6
NOTHING IS A MISTAKE. THERE'S NO WIN AND NO FAIL. THERE'S ONLY MAKE

Rule 7
THE ONLY RULE IS WORK.
IF YOU WORK IT WILL LEAD TO SOMETHING. IT'S THE PEOPLE WHO DO ALL THE WORK ALL THE TIME WHO EVENTUALLY CATCH ON TO THINGS.

Rule 8
DONT TRY TO CREATE AND ANALYSE AT THE SAME TIME. THEY'RE DIFFERENT PROCESSES.

Rule 9
BE HAPPY WHENEVER YOU CAN MANAGE IT. ENJOY YOURSELF. IT'S LIGHTER THAN YOUR THINK.

Rule 10
"WE'RE BREAKING ALL OF THE RULES. EVEN OUR OWN RULES AND HOW DO WE DO THAT? BY LEAVING PLENTY OF ROOM FOR X QUANTITIES": JOHN CAGE.

HELPFUL HINTS: ALWAYS BE AROUND. COME OR GO TO EVERYTHING. ALWAYS GO TO CLASSED. READY ANYTHING YOU CAN GET YOUR HANDS ON. LOOK AT MOVIES CAREFULLY OFTEN. SAVE EVERYTHING - IT MIGHT COME IN HANDY LATER.

THERE SHOULD BE NEW RULES NEXT WEEK.

Weekend Mar 18-20, 2011

What a weekend was last weekend. A good enough weekend to make 5 blog posts. But i am lazy :)

So, after writing the last life-in series, i realized that nothing interesting had happened for over a month. On top of that it was raining badly in Bay area and it was going to continue like this. So i decided to act, take my life in my own hands and lets make it a great weekend.

Mar 18, Friday evening, 7pm-
Went to see Peninsula symphony orchestra's performance of Beethoven's Fifth concerto and a virtuoso debut. Link: http://www.yelp.com/events/san-mateo-peninsula-symphony-orchestra-presents-beethovens-fifth . The concert was preceded by a lecture for people like me who had no idea about the technical details of concert. Lecture highlighted on some of the Beethoven's techniques and how one piece ends and how another begins. A very insightful lecture which made the concert more interesting. Btw, Beethoven's fifth is jut awesome!

Mar 19, Saturday morning, 8:30 am.
I woke up early (6 am) and its been 2 hrs plus of mindless net surfing and i was getting hungry. So i decided to do something creative. It was raining outside, and what better thing to make in rain but pakodas. But it has to be something that i have not made it yet. And there it was stuffed bread pakoda. Yes, i have made bread pakoda couple of times in past but stuffed ones were a new height to climb. It took three trials before the besan's liquidity was in correct composition. Any how it was 10 am and the stuffed bread pakoda's were looking the best ever.

Mar 19, Saturday morning 11:30 am.
The mindless surfing between 6 - 8 am was to figure out what to do today. Having lived in SF for 2+ years now, it is quite sad that i had not visited most of the local museums. So it was museum day. After eating the hearty breakfast, i quickly left home to visit the Contemporary Jewish museum. Link: http://www.thecjm.org/ . I arrived at the museum at about 12:45, knowing the fact that there is a tour of museum at 1pm. I have no idea about jewish culture, little knowledge that i have are from films and we all know how truthful films are towards reality. I am the only one for the tour, very few people have turned out on that rainy day and my tour guide is a wonderful retired lady who is volunteering there. She starts be giving an overview of the architecture of the museum which is very interesting as the walls are slanting. The building itself has many hidden symbolisms in its design, had she not told me i would not have even noticed it. The tour was wonderful, it was supposed to be an interactive tour but since i was the only audience, i had little to offer.
The CJM is an awesome museum. Many things fascinated me. There are no permanent exhibits, every exhibit changes with time. Currently they had an exhibit of
(a) The Secret Musical History of Black-Jewish Relations http://www.thecjm.org/index.php?option=com_ccevents&scope=exbt&task=detail&oid=51 The music room was awesome. Some of my fav songs that i listened were - Hava nagila by harry belafonte and Eli eli by john mathis.
(b) Jewish religious text is called Torah and it is considered a very spiritual journey to write a torah. There are many rules on how to write a Torah and one of them is that women can't write it. Being a contemporary jewish museum, they have an exhibit going on where a scribe is writing the Torah and that scribe is a woman. It is called Project 304,805 because Torah has that many characters. It was great to know more about the Torah and the effort needed to write it. They were also showing a small documentary on how the woman scribe learn to write the Torah's language (because women are not allowed in such schools). Nice documentary. The scribe's name is
(c) Classification on Torah. Again going by its Contemporary theme, someone applied a classification on all of Torah's rules. Classification was based on labels such as Rules which apply to man, rules which apply to woman, rules for priests, positive rule, negative rule, rules inside Israel only etc. It was cool to see classification of religious text. Great idea for Indian religious texts.
(d) Participated in People's torah project - http://www.peoplestorah.org where you scan your hand the scanned image is converted to a character in Torah. For my hand it is י (Yud) which is located in Genesis 15:8.

Mar 19, Saturday 3 pm -
After coming out of theCJM, i was feeling hungry. There was a Papa Beard pastry shop right there and i decided to give it a try. Awesome cream puffs and desserts.

Mar 19, Saturday 3:30 pm -
The day was still not over and i had time. There was a teeny museum opposite to theCJM called Museum of craft and folk art. Link: http://www.mocfa.org/ . What a good decision to go that museum. They were having an exhibition by Corita Kent. Corita was a very talented artist and her art works displayed were awesome. She was initially a nun but later on she renounced that and became a full time artist. Her artwork is mostly colorful description of words. A good link to know about her life - http://weekendamerica.publicradio.org/programs/2007/03/03/sister_corita.html . She was also a teacher at Immaculate Heart college and this was her rules - http://hi-and-low.typepad.com/my_weblog/2008/01/a-new-year.html. There is going to be another blog post on this one. I ended up buying a book by her called Learning by heart. Haven't read it yet.

Mar 20, Sunday, 10 am
After the eventful Saturday, the weekend was only half over and i was in my full spirits. Sunday was the day of this month's camera cinema club screening. How awesome! The movie screened was The Women Chaser. It is a parody of noir genre. The movie was released in 1999 and it was a big flop but it was recently rediscovered by a film critic and since then it is re-released and gathering quite a bit of attention. I didn't like this movie particularly. Parody movies are usually a hard sell on me. But a very different movie overall.

Mar 20, Sunday 2pm.
The rain had stopped momentarily. So i decided to go for a run/walk on Steven's Creek trail behind my house. It was awesome weather, sunlight coming in between clouds, trees loaded with dew and a stream that is overflowing. The trail was closed because water had come over the trail.

Mar 20, Sun 4 pm -
Sufi cafe. Sitting at the back of Sufi cafe listening to Roja's songs, reading The Idiot by Dostoyevsky, enjoying rain and coffee. What could be better than this. A brief thass with Rathi, gurshi. The evening was spent in reading The Idiot. More on that book later.


That was one hell of a weekend to remember. I have clicked photos but while organizing them into an album, i accidentally deleted the album. I have to do the exercise again. So will upload them later.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Life in Feb 5 - Mar 18

The smallest month of the year is over. The previous line is a fact. I do not have any opinion about that fact.

I feel little bit in this way about this life in series. Overall, the fact is that time passed. And i do not have many opinions about it.

But on a general level, this period was quite sad. Many things that were supposed to happen didn't happen. To start with, my running schedule was broken and that led to all sorts of issues in my life. Very important for me to run these days, else i will get more krankier :)

I didn't had any hiking, so weekend were generally spent in waking up late. Part of the blame goes to Indian Cricket matches happening over weekend which start at 1 am in night.

And my book reading was also non-existent, i need to get back to my books.

But what are the things that did happen ?

Watched the play jisne lahore nahin dekhya woh janmya nahin. See review in previous post.

Cooking, yes from no where cooking came and every weekend has been a new experiment. So far i have made Gol gappe (and yes, they were awesome!), egg curry, Methi palak, sambhar (typical south indian style), seviyan and kadhi at Gurshi's place. In the process somewhere was a burnt carrot cake :)


Knitting continues at full speed, my rug is 70% complete. Also, went to stitches' west in Feb and bought one big yarn for 130$, and spending a total amount of 180$

There was a streak of movies, see previous blog posts.

I was ill for a week in between.

It rained nicely in California. Hurray!

And lets just say, work was both good, bad and sometimes road to nowhere.

jisne lahore nahin dekhya woh janmya hi kya

Saw the play Jisne Lahore nahin dekhya woh janmya nahin
Link- http://www.artsopolis.com/event/detail/441101705/Jis_Lahore_Nai_Dekhya_O_Jamyai_Nai_Hindi_Play_with_English_Supertitles

Play was by nataak theatre a Sunnyvale based theater company. The play was written by Ashgar Wajahat and i had seen it before at India Habitat Center when it was performed by Naya theatre and Habib Tanvir was alive and in the play. Seen i had seen it before, naturally i was bound to compare but good news is that i do not remember Habib's play in detail (All i remember is that i was blown away by it and i had loved theater since then). But watching this one, it was a wonderful delight.

One things that stood out was people using thet punjabi in the play. Multani punjabi sunne ko bahut kam milti hai. Stage decor was quite good, what was missing was a background score. Habib ji's plays always had music in them. Acting was quite good and it was later only i realized that the actors where actually from a local theater group in Sunnyvale and they were all Indians settled in US. After the play, those very people were speaking english in a manner that they were out of some British movie, quite interesting to watch the contrast.

The theme of play is so strong, the lines are very well written and based on partition, homeland, home and underlying humanity in the play is so good. This play is a timeless classic and there will be many groups performing it. I will not reveal the story here.

The other interesting thing that the organizers did was to organize an informal stage after the play where they invited people from audience to share the stories of partition. Two people came to stage, one was 8 and other was 6 and half when partition happened. Their stories were quite sad and listening to first hand experience was very interesting to me.
As the organizers described their motive behind this - stories about partition are never written in books, they are not told to children, people do not talk about it, slowly and slowly this is fading from the minds of people and the newer generation have very little idea of this tragic incident. This is quite true and indeed sad.

More links -
http://www.naatak.com/current_event.html
http://www.facebook.com/Naatak
http://jis-lahore.blogspot.com/

chhai chappa chhai

छई छप्पा छई छप्पा के छई
पानियों में छीटें उड़ाती हुई लड़की
देखी है हमने
आती हुई लहरों पे जाती हुई लड़की

छई छप्पा छई छप्पा के छई
कभी कभी बातें तेरी अच्छी लगती है
फिर से कहना
आती हुई लहरों पे जाती हुई लड़की

ढूंडा करेंगे तुम्हें सारी रोंतें हम
रेगते ही पैरों के मोहरे न छोड़ना
नहीं
ढूंडा करेंगे तुम्हें सारी रोंतें हम
रेगते ही पैरों के मोहरे न छोड़ना

सारा दिन लेटे लेटे सोचेगा समुन्दर
आते जाते लोगों से पूछेगा समुन्दर
साहिब रुकिए ज़रा
अरे देखी किसी ने
आती हुई लहरों पे जाती हुई लड़की

छई छप्पा छई छप्पा के छई
कभी कभी बातें तेरी अच्छी लगती है

लिखते रहें हैं तुम्हें रोज़ ही मगर
ख्वाइशों के ख़त कभी भेजे ही नहीं,
नहीं
लिखते रहें हैं तुम्हें रोज़ ही मगर
ख्वाइशों के ख़त कभी भेजे ही नहीं,

ऐनक लगा के कभी पढ़ना वोह छिटियाँ
आँखों के पानी में रखना वोह छिटियाँ
तैरती नज़र आएगी जनाब

ओह देखा
आती हुई लहरों पे जाती हुई लड़की

छई छप्पा छई छप्पा के छई
पानियों में छीटें उड़ाती हुई लड़की
देखी है हमने
आती हुई लहरों पे जाती हुई लड़की

छई छप्पा छई छप्पा के छई
कभी कभी बातें तेरी अच्छी लगती है






Its been a long time since Gulzaar sahab appeared on this blog. I was really missing him. And then yesterday while eating dinner at Chat House, they were playing chhai chappa chaai. And after that, it was humming in my ears for the entire night, even while sleeping. And so here i am, sitting at 6:20 am writing lyrics for this song. Music is by Vishal Bhardwaj and it is somehow very difficult to imagine this song without his music. aur us par lata ji ki shararat waali awaz, she is so playful in this song. And look how cleverly Vishal uses the pause at "nahin" in second and third stanzas. And in between the lyrics, there is the Rahman-ish use of non meaningful words such as lara lara lara.

par jitna bhi bol lo, gaane ke bol ki baat hi kuch aur hai. gaur farmaiye

lete lete sochega samundar
and after listening to this line, mind visualizes the sea and yes woh leta hua hai. and you smile.

aur khwaishon ke khat kabhi bheje hi nahin. kya baat hai! Again in a blog with title Hazarron khwaishien aisi, khwaishon ke khat makes so much sense and gives so much joy to read this line, to listen this line.


Bahut khoob Gulzar sahab!!