This boy’s night

Perhaps the worst nightmare happened for this little toddler that cannot be erased from his childhood memory.

We remember the image of a drowned Syrian baby that shook the world; now we have another one; as if that was not enough.

The shocked Syrian boy
Victim of a war torn night

His plain reaction sums up the horror, an uncanny encounter in the wee hours of this boy’s usual night. Children love falling asleep and even wake up with a whimper, but this night when this infant was awaken by destructive missiles, he didn’t dare to shed a tear. He looked in disbelief, to see people alarmed and hustled to help him and his family into life again. Sitting in apprehension, he remembered his mom kissing him a good night’s sleep; it wasn’t. As mystified as he was, I have no idea to explain his pain in words. He didn’t cry—though at that moment, to him, everything felt unacquainted; the ambulance, the foreign faces around him, the noise, and his own bloodied face—but a subtle reaction disturbed us all.

The missile took his sleep, peace, and the strength to cry. I couldn’t complete the drawing with his face; I left it there. What a place the world has become.

May be, if you show this picture to him when he grows up, even he may cry.

Messi’s return normalizes expectation

I once read a quote that said “If you win once, people might call it luck, but if you win twice you may prove them wrong.” On the other hand, losing has also got equal and opposite impact. What adverse effect would happen by continuously losing on a big stage? Subsequent losses have proved be traumatizing for a player’s career; we have a recent story.

Setting aside the debate in the context of Ronaldo and Messi—where I have a sincere consent that both of them have enormous talent and conquered indefinite glory—I still believe that Messi as a footballer who would never do something very silly on the pitch. I always enjoyed watching Messi, who I perceived synonymous to the word ‘simplicity’. He did things that look like no-big-deal; what I mean is that he wouldn’t script a moment to make it dramatic. To me, he was plain.

The day after The Copa America finals was about just one thing; “Messi retires”. I tried to contemplate over the shocking news that followed the defeat for Argentines. It all made sense—understanding the intensity of frustration inside the player’s mind—though it made me smirk. I thought it was a genuine feeling that sounded like “I couldn’t let my nation down anymore”. He readily shrugged off the baton of expectations in order to save the disappointment from his fans; for real good. It had a sense of credibility but looked naive as well.

The decision might have shocked every one of us but we all knew that it’s not going to last for long time. We were right; and now we have him back, sooner than expected. This time, the decision—yet seemingly laughable—will do more good than harm. Earlier, he was expected to win every single match—which is reasonable for a player of such high caliber and—having your team perform so well and making it to the finals for three times in three major tournaments over the last 3 years; unbelievable. But now, these expectations surrounding Messi are normalized. We know the potential inside this player but also we understand what to expect of him. He had already proved everyone of his individual brilliance but in the scale of triumphs how much would a national team trophy weigh?

Messi might have taken the upper cut criticism straight in his face but he wanted to give a good fight again. The question is how many rounds will he last? Looking forward.

 

Quotes of optimism

There are plenty of them, the quotes, that always struck a chord in my conscious thoughts. The wise words, no matter who said it, always made sense and grabbed some of my time to ponder, activating my neurons. I’m not going to list few and leave it there without sharing my thoughts. So I thought to pick one and write about it. It’s a quote said in one of the top class movies, The Godfather.  The quote is,

Difficult. Not impossible.―Rocco Lampone, The Godfather part II.

That’s one of my favorite quotes of all time. Though, inappropriately, Rocco said this to Michael when asked what he thinks of killing Hyman Roth—one of the antagonists—the reaction was subtle. To get a flavor of it, i’m linking the short scene from the movie so that you may watch it here.

It’s difficult to do a complicated task, but not impossible. There is still room for possibility by any meansscientifically or mathematically or causallyWe’ve reached planetary boundaries—from landing in Moon to picturing Pluto—and other unviable exploration, which once we thought as impossible. How? Because we thought we can. We need to first believe that we can do, in order to make it happen.

Next time when someone tells you that it’s impossible. Tell them “Difficult. Not impossible“.

An authentic human being, Dr.Kalam.

A Scientist, Poet, Teacher, Writer-turned-people’s President just breathed his last.

In my impression, he’s been the most-authentic human being who remained unaffected with fame and authority. He lived as a simple man with thoughtful mind until his last; never complacent at what he did, even after miracles.

The only leader who woke everyday with an agenda to inspire the whole generation, especially the children. Reaching unattainable fame and recognition, he still took time to remember his teachers and honored few with his visit in person. He submitted his life towards social uplifting and touching lives through many of his visits to schools and colleges, even the death angel couldn’t find a better place to visit him for one last time.

I’m proud he is a native speaker of my mother language, Tamil. It’s a shame there is only one Dr.Kalam.

“Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power” – Abraham Lincoln.

I think he withstood both, genuinely.

OK Kanmani, a refreshing love story !

His movies are like summer rain that are enjoyed thoroughly; The movies from the renowned film director, Mani Ratnam. He is well known for his subtle screenplay and portrayal of natural stories with precision. One of the few aspects that I admire in Mani’s movie is that the whole crew of the movie know their expectation in their roles and exhibit sublime quality of acting.

O Kadhal Kanmani (English: Oh Love, Apple of my Eye), also known as OK Kanmani, is another romantic movie, written, directed and produced by Mani Ratnam.

The plot goes like this:

The hero of the movie, Adi, a strikingly vibrant youngster, is a developer of computer games. He lives with an elderly couple Mr.Ganapathy, a retired Bank employee and his wife Mrs.Bhavani, an Alzheimer patient. Thara, a charming young girl, is an architect living in a hostel accommodation.

The story starts with, like-minded, youngsters, Adi and Thara, meeting accidentally and falling in quick acquaintances and becoming closer in relation, faster than the time taken by a shooting star to appear and disappear. They both are like-minded in their perspectives on live-in relationship on contrast to getting married. Soon they realize they fall in love.

I couldn’t fathom out with the desperation of the strangers and their pace of getting along so quickly. It was like a quick uphill in the roller coaster and little I know that there is soon a transition in the movie. And then I waited.

Adi and Thara decide to live together and then Adi approaches Mr.Ganapathy and request him to approve the stay of Thara with him. Initially Ganapathy doesn’t approve but then gets touched by Thara’s musical skill that soothes his wife having mutual passionate interest in music. Bhavani was a famous carnatic singer. That’s when the plot twists with Ganapathy’s decision to allow Adi and Thara to live together. The love blends in and lest we understand the movie has a parallel, matured love story trailed by that of the naive youngsters’. The elderly couple, Ganapathy and Bhavani are the supporting pillars of the movie and the director has placed a gently stream of love flowing between them. There is an unconditional love exhibited between Ganapathy and Bhavani. The interesting but funny story of Ganapathy’s love encounter with the then Carnatic star Bhavani was like an icing on the cake.

“The right moment and the right person dont come in life at all times, but when they do, you have to grab them”, says Ganapathy about his love marriage with Bhavani.

Adi and Thara slowly understand the intense love and dedication existing between Mr.Ganapathy and his wife, Bhavani. They understand that marriage is not a commitment shackling one’s freedom but is about falling in love again and again during hardships and stand for the love of life, forever. Marriage is like a perennial river carrying love and flows throughout the life.

I also liked the natural casting of Adi’s brother and his wife. They are like the fillers in finer crests and troughs in the story that gave a smooth progression.

Notable scenes include the Bhavani sitting under a tree getting drenched in rain. And When Adi and Thara rushed to her, she naively responded that she forgot her way back home. In another scene when Bhavani disappeared from home and Thara and Adi went in search of her. The search was carefully utilized and the director ploys and brings out the intense love of the amateur youngsters and the frenzy of the story kept me on the edge of my seat.

The movie ends with Adi and Thara getting married and then Adi flying to the Americas to pursue his job.

I left the seat with refreshing sense of joy that I fail to explain because the words got lost between my head and the computer keypad, may be because of a sense of happiness.

Valentine’s day and Love? Are you sure?

If you think Valentine’s day is celebrated for a fairy tale happy-ending love story or a symbol of romance and love, you’re living in the days of ignorance and deception. It has no trivial connection with Layla and Majnun or the tragic love of Romeo and Juliet. Valentine’s day is nowhere near Love, in fact.

I’ve an intensely inquisitive mind towards blind following of rituals or mainstream customary practices without actually knowing the sensible cause or history of it. Valentine’s day is approaching and I became nosy about the subject.

According to the Christian literature of biographies of lives of saints in the primitive times, Valentine was a saint who lived sometime in 4th century or earlier than that. There were more than one saint with the same mention of the name as well.

The plot, according to popular hagiography, goes back to the timeline when he was imprisoned for performing weddings for soldiers who were forbidden to marry. [This event at least stands close in connection with love]. And in other recordings, he was heading the Christians who were persecuted under the Roman Empire and then detained in jail for the aforementioned cause. During his imprisonment, he healed the daughter of his jailer, Asterius (no mention of any further detail). An exaggerated decoration to this story states that before his execution he wrote her a letter signed “Your Valentine” as a farewell. Poets are known for these kind of exaggeration.

Another history states that numerous early Christian martyrs were named Valentine. Followed by the death of the saint, the day was associated with romantic love and also the feast day of St.Valentine is also given in the calendar of the Saints.

Although the authenticity of the biography of St.Valentine is not clear, February 14, actually has remarkable connection to martyr-hood and bravery than love, I would say.

So if you are content with the celebration of Valentine’s day with your loved one, you are remembering the death of an ancient Roman saint, whose biography doesn’t have an authentic recording of the actual event. The media and business corporations created the blend of romantic love and February 14. If you want to celebrate love with your loved one, you don’t have to wait for any particular day. Love is 24 x 7 for 365 days, isn’t it? 

And before you intend to ask someone “will you be my Valentine“, think and know what you wish for.

source: wikipedia.org