Sunday, February 24, 2013

And more movies...

Hey... sorry, I have been gone long. But it has been a hectic 3 weeks... I spent the last 3 weekends in Delhi for one reason or the other. KC is here this weekend. So, its been busy.. busy... with no time to blog.
I have not eaten right at all... despite trying. Everyday I think tomorrow I am going to start working out and stop eating unhealthy but it does not happen. I am hoping to start from tomorrow. Writing it here should help me do it. I should just buy a very expensive dress of a smaller size to motivate me to try and fit into it. What say?
I am going to quit Jazz... have not been to class for a month now. Its too crowded and I am not enjoying myself. Why pay so much money? I may try and find something else instead. How are Shiamak Dawar's classes? The difference between Danceworx and Shiamak Dawar's is that D has 20 mins Jazz and 60 mins of technique... while it is the other way round for SD. I do prefer the former but I might give the latter a try.
By next weekend I would have unpacked completely and settled in Mumbai. I finally bought the much needed book shelf and it will be delivered on Saturday. I am unpack 3 cartons of books and clear out the 2nd room.
I have watched quite a few movies in the last few weeks. Here are my views:
- Lincoln:
  An awesome movie about the US civil war and Lincoln's dilemma. It isn't a fun movie... it feels more like a documentary. Daniel Day Lewis is awesome. Loved his measured acting. There are scenes where he is just sitting and looking and even that is done so well. A must watch.

- Special 26:
   Another superb movie by Neeraj Pandey. A superb movie with superb acting. Manoj Bajpai looks so lean ... very different from Gangs of Wasseypur. He has really worked on his look. Akshay is awesome... nice to see him "act" instead of ham in a movie. Anupam Kher is a natural... Jimmy Shergill is another good actor who needs a good role to prove himself. A must watch.

- Zero Dark Thirty:
   A movie about Osama's death. When I read about the USA mission and Osama's death in the papers the next day I could not believe it. After all, where is the proof? How can we believe USA? Who knows who got killed. This movie killed all doubts. Sure... its an American movie so there is always the exaggeration of certain things... like the heroine's obsession with the mission and Osama. But thats a minor flaw. Another must watch.

- Kai Po Che:
  There are 2 sets of people- those who has read Chetan Bhagat's books and those who haven't. The former will love this movie... 'coz it is 100 times better than the book (the book is pretty much crap)... the latter will be disappointed. What is the movie about??? Friendship, Gujarat riots, Cricket? It touches everything without delving too much and thats only 'coz the book is like that. Abhhishek Kapoor has made a fabulous film (considering the crappy book it is based on). I loved the authentic setting and liberal use of Gujarati. Gujju is very easy to understand and using it is not a problem. The new actors are very good. My favorite is Raj Kumar Yadav. He starred in Love, Sex aur Dokha. It is nice to see new actors getting a good break... am so tired of star kids who have to make the effort to lose oodles of weight and get a makeover done to join movies (Alia Bhatt, Arjun Kapoor, Parineeti Chopra, Sonakshi Sinha). Also, loved Amrita Puri. She is another brilliant actress.

I also watched Vagina Monologues with my brother again. Great. I just wish the ticket prices were not so high so that more people could watch it. It should also be screened for college kids. 

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

2013 Sale

The sales are  almost over... this weekend is the last one. I want to give some gyaan and my view of this year's sale.
Rules of shopping in the sale:

  • Always visit the store in the first weekend, preferably the 1st day. It will be chaos but you will be able to pick the best pieces
  • Visit the same store in the 2nd or 3rd week again. Stores like Zara and Promod slash prices further on the leftover stock. I always find good pieces in the 3rd week at amazing prices. Last year I bought a skirt for 500 bucks in Promod (regular prices are Rs 2400 and above)
  • Always go on a weekday. If that is not possible visit the store in the morning on a weekend. It is less crowded. 
  • Visit from than 1 store. Every store has different sizes and different range. 
And here is a store wise review:
  • Promod: I love this brand... the clothes are good quality and classy. Unlike other sales I do not come across crap stuff here. The merchandising even during sale is good. It is easy to shop around. The discounts are great. I do find loads of good stuff in the 3rd week at amazing prices. This year though the quantity was less. I did not find much in the 3rd week- neither in Delhi nor Mumbai. They have good shoes and purses as well. I visited 4 stores (Saket, Promenade, Pune, Kurla) this year and found my size of amazing shoes in one of them. So, always visit more than 1 store
  • Zara: I have stopped shopping here due to recent incidents of damaged clothes. I will write a separate post on this. I came across many damaged clothes in the store during the sale. I even confronted the store manager on this and he had no answer. Sarojini Nagar has better quality clothes. I bought only 1 dress in the sale and even that had a tear. Not shopping here again... not until they improve their quality. 
  • Mango: I hate this store during the sale... it is filled with crap... the quality is bad. Most clothes are not retailed in their stores regularly. Sure, you might find some good stuff... but its like searching for a needle in a hay stack. I never shop from here during the sale
  • Wills Lifestyle: I love this brand... I wish they had more variety, lower prices, more trendy clothes. Their quality is great. Every piece from this store has lasted me 2-3 years. I don't generally buy at regular prices but during a sale I don't think twice. 
  • Shoppers Stop: I hate this store. I visited the Mulund store and it looked like a Big Bazaar. I wanted to buy a patiala and they had discount on the black color and not on the white color. What kind of a sale is this? The footwear were strewn in bins. Who is going to buy shoes from a bin? 
  • Lifestyle: I managed to pick up a few good pieces from this store. I think Lifestyle has some good stuff. 
  • UCB: Hate this store... it is pricey, clothes are not trendy. Sale sucks. 
  • Vero Moda: Hated the merchandising. I can't shop when the clothes are not well merchandised specially in a premium store. I understand if its a Big Bazaar but am I expected to spend 1k and more on something on which the store has not even put the effort to hang it properly on a hanger? No ways. 
Thats it. I did not visit any more stores. Swear!!!


I like reading mythology. I don't believe in it like other mortals. Mahabharata is my favorite since its so different with many twists and turns... also, it is very unorthodox. A woman with 5 husbands? Wow. 5 kids out of wedlock. Wow!!!
My least favorite is Ramayana. It is so MCP. Dumping your wife 'coz you think she is not pure??? Seriously!!!
Mythology is very different from regular books... the same rules don't apply... and anything can happen. A man can have 10 heads... another guy can give up a kingdom and live in forests for 14 years... so different from regular, normal life.

I picked up Asura - Tale of the Vanquished more than a month back. The frequent travelling to Delhi gives me hours to read and I finished the book on my last trip. The author is Anand Neelakantan. The story is about Ravana... he is the hero of the book and Rama is the villain. In the end Ravana dies. I don't know if it follows the original story (since I have only watched it on TV) but its a different take on it.
I don't know if this is true (most likely it is) but Ravana was an Asura. In Asura culture, women were free... they could sleep with who ever they wanted... marry how many ever times. There were no restrictions. While in Deva culture (Rama's land), women had to follow traditions and rules. And in the book Sita is Ravana's daughter... thats why he kidnapped her. Think about it, why did Ravana kidnap Sita? My impression (until now) was that Ravana wanted to sleep with her. But he didn't do that, right? If he was a bad man, why didn't he? There has to be some other purpose behind the kidnapping.
Worth a read. 

Monday, February 4, 2013

4th shopping expedition to Sarojini Nagar

I was in Delhi over the weekend. Since KC was working on Friday I decided to head to my favorite shopping place- Sarojini Nagar. I will not post pics of my purchase 'coz I bought some 13 pieces for less than 3k. Everytime I go to SR (once in 6 months) I need to remember a few rules. Below are the shopping rules...

  • Timing is very important. Markets like SR are generally very crowded. Avoid them on weekends as much as possible. If weekday shopping is not an option, go in the morning... around 11 or 12. 
  • Carry a large bag... specially if you are travelling by metro. The small stalls only give white polythene which can tear easily. Or you can buy a big, ugly bag for less than 100 bucks. I would suggest carrying a bag.
  • SR does have parking but I think metro is extremely comfortable. It costs 20-30 bucks by auto from the station 
  • SR is a confusing place... even marking landmarks don't help. This time I started shopping from the Denizen store and came across 2-3 stores of the same. The first time it will be confusing... the 4th time is much better. Just keep walking. 
  • Avoid footwear and purses. Even footwear bought from the shops have not lasted very long and I paid 700 bucks for a pair. Not all of them are bad... but I am not happy. The purses' quality also isn't good. My last purchase broke the 1st time I used it. Stick to clothes. 
  • SR is basically a market with factory seconds or rejects. Most companies like Zara, H&M, Atmosphere, Mango etc manufacture in India. The rejects (mostly with minor defects) are sold off (illegally). They end up in SR. Check before you purchase. I have not come across major defects and the quality is pretty good. Minor issues can be resolved at the local tailor. Some of my purchases have been better than mall stuff. 
  • Size can be an issue. The first time I went to SR I bought shorts with size 32. On coming home I realized they are low waist and 34 would have been better. Thankfully, I lost inches and they fit very well now. But... always buy a size larger. You can get it altered easily. Don't believe the vendors... they are just trying to sell off their stuff and will not hesitate to tell you that it is the right size. Another thing vendors do is stretch the top or dress or pants (if they have elastic) and make you buy a smaller size. You don't want the elastic stretching itself and biting into your flesh. 
  • Bargain... I am always a little shy initially. Always start at 50% of the price quoted by a vendor. Don't budge from your rate... the vendor will come around... 9 out of 10 times. Not kidding. I got everything at the rate I quoted
  • In case a vendor does not come around, bargaining won't help. You cannot have an ego while shopping. I generally walk away and if he does not call me back I return after sometime to buy it at the vendor's price. 
  • Carry enough cash. There are only 2 ATMs in SR and there is always a queue. I keep around 2k in my wallet 'coz I am generally tempted to use all the money. 
  • Wash the clothes at home. They are generally hung outside and maybe have mud and dirt on them
  • SR generally has trends... most stalls will have a similar trend. They don't all have same clothes (like Lokhandwala in Mumbai). Example, last time it was pallazzo pants... they were everywhere. This time it was animal, funky prints. 
Happy shopping!!!