Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Say a Prayer for America

I could never have believed that the much raved about middle class Indian's dream (read America) is now falling apart at the seams. It's a story that is worse than the years of Depression that i have read about in American fiction.

No, i am not happy that American famillies are suffering but I am unhappy that President Bush said that Indians are buying up all the grocery which is why Americans have less to eat.

I am not sitting in judgment over the American economic downturn and wondering how is it even possible that American families are buying second hand clothes, skipping their favorite Starbucks coffee to pay for gasoline, gardening to grow the things they can eat, moving to parks than to Disneyland weekend trips, and worse still, losing homes and struggling to pay rent.

In contrast, the economic future does offer a ray of hope in my country that's been looked upon as a nation steeped in poverty by a majority of Indians themselves. Shopping malls in India are so crowded with people who are keen to buy branded stuff. Jewellery stores are flooded with customers. Wave, PVR and Big Cinema complexes are flooded with avid cinema goers every Friday. The snack counters in most malls are long, filled with snack food epicureans. I am surprised that Indian ordinary, middle class and upper class women, working or non working, are the key economic drivers who make businesses continue to function smoothly by being either in it themselves or being consumers of their services.

But I also request all of you to say a prayer for all famillies in America as you read a few of these heart wrenching stories:

  • http://www.allbusiness.com/society-social/families-children-family/11550302-1.html
  • http://www.allbusiness.com/food-beverage/restaurants-food-service-restaurants-fast/10292112-1.html

Sunday, January 11, 2009

So Help Me, God!

Latest news about the US President-elect Barack Obama is that he wants the following words "so help me God" to be included in his oath on Inauguration Day. This is a confirmed fact as Obama specifically requested this to the Chief Justice to have this phrase included. Interestingly, this has stirred a bee's nest as a group of atheists want to bar Chief Justice Roberts from complying with this request and including the words, "so help me God" in the oath.

The lawsuit has been filed in the U.S. District Court in which plaintiffs stated that Obama can use the words but Roberts shouldnt be the one to prompt these words as part of the oath.

The lawyers who are in the Justice Department called this whole rigmarole totally ridiculous. And you know, I think the more I read about what Obama is doing, the more I respect this amazing man. I wish we had more principle-based leaders like him in this world.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

The Nambisan novels

Every time I spot a title by Kaveri Nambisan (brilliant surgeon-turned-author), I can't even begin to describe the spear of joy that thrills my reader's heart and piques my curiosity. All i want to do is curl up on a sofa and just read the book, enter the world that is so real to my values and know what the end is like, even if it dissapoints me that nothing ends rosy. That's not the only reason why I adore and idolise this writer.

Like another writer whom I adore, Anita Desai, Kaveri Nambisan also stays far from the publicity hounds, doing her own things in a simple way, not attending the glorious, overhyped publicity stunts that new Indian writers are so prone to doing, almost like a malaise, really. She really knows her stuff and doesnt care about any other frills.

When she wrote her novel 'On Wings of Butterflies', it clearly mirrored her experiences with women as a surgeon. The novel reflected the levels of exploitation that women face in the society, physically, mentally and psycologically. Women, no matter what their financial state is, are always pushed into a corner. It was this reality that helped the author to go forward with this novel.

In one of my favorite Nambisan novels, "Scent of Pepper" takes you on a truly interesting journey into the Coorg community, where the author (being from Coorg herself) mixes some real life stories that she had heard from her grandmother to the plot.

Another of my favorites is "Mango-coloured Fish" which is about a young girl who is unsure about marriage though she is already engaged. She keeps wondering whether she should go forward with the marriage and thinks deeply about the marriages of others whom she knows.

Check out this link and wait for her much talked about novel, "The Story that must not be told. "

http://spoonfeedin.blogspot.com/2008/11/personality-kavery-nambisan.html

I have to admit, I just can't wait for my favorite writer to start writing her next novel!

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India is my Country & my Pride