IPL, Money Mania

We’ve all been fretting and fuming about the IPL. I’ve been wanting to write some nasty posts about Lalit Modi, the strategy break and so on… but haven’t found the time. Thankfully, cricinfo’s new Page 2 has some irate cricket fans, who also have time to write such stuff:

Let’s take a moment (or 75) – A nice spoof of the strategy break (as though all the other money was never enough)


1. The Dog-Running-Onto-The-Ground Break
After some six overs of the first game, the first dog – second only to rain as cricket’s constant companion – arrived. The advertisements during the ensuing break apparently took care of the salaries of half the Chennai team.

2. The Injury-Break Break
One player is nominated during each match to fake an injury. The cameras then move away from the action, and television viewers are treated to a whole cycle of advertisements. The time is not important, timing is.

Money, money, money – Songs on Lalit Modi’s Ipod


1. “For the Love of Money”, The O-Jays
Donald Trump took the 1974 No. 9 hit from soul/R&B group the O-Jays and made it into an anthem of sorts on his smash reality show The Apprentice. You can almost picture Modi hitting “repeat” for this catchy tune. Especially when he gets out of one of those fancy imported cars, entourage in tow.

2. “Money”, Pink Floyd
The definitive money song, complete with cash register and coin sound effects. A must on Modi’s list of beats to play in the office, while travelling, on the treadmill, before business meetings, and during power naps. Cha-ching.

Commentary Humour [sic]:

“You talk of Citi Moments of Success, but when you get five wickets in four overs like that, that’s very special indeed.”
Robin Jackman describes how unique Anil Kumble’s feat on day one is, failing to account for the inconvenient fact that normal human beings do not, in fact, actually talk of Citi Moments of Success

Rules from hell:

Any team owner or official who even casually mentions any sum of money less than US$100,000 will have to pay a fine of one million dollars. As further punishment, the sum mentioned will be enforced as a salary cap for that team for the next IPL season.

Any words that contain the three letters IPL in sequence, such as “triplet”, “gripless” and “whiplash”, cannot be used in any form, printed or in verbal communication, without paying royalties to the IPL.

Mocking at the IPL Hype:

Lalit Modi, at the opening ceremony: “As I stand here before this excited, committed and [following phrase delivered in a shriek] sold out crowd in one of cricket’s most spectacular arenas for our opening day of Season 2009 of the DLF Indian Premier League , I feel joy, humility, pride and gratitude.” Joy, no doubt yes, but humility? Surely you jest, Mr Commissioner?

GQ magazine, India: Columnist Prashant Agarwal has seen the future and is suitably impressed. “Mark my words: in 2020, the most expensive commercial spot in the world will be a 30-second ad screened during IPL footage.”
[For heaven’s sake, I hope this doesn’t come true]


1. IPL = ICL + Money (+ Money + Money ..) + BCCI roping in Indian cricketers

2. Lalit Modi

3. Who the hell is BCCI to declare ICL illegal?

Of course, that doesn’t stop me from watching IPL 😦 (only on cricinfo, of course!)


TATA Star Bazaar — good, but obnoxious

Been putting off writing this post for four months now. Better late than never, huh?


Being a Sunday morning, we had planned to go out to Forum. Too early to eat at Gramin (wanted to post about this lovely restaurant too), we walked around a bit. Croma, the electronics store near forum had already caught my eye, and so did Star Bazaar. Though I am a big fan of TATA’s vis-à-vis Reliance (there’s a smart Reliance Mart that has come up on Bannerghatta Road (abt 2km past IIMB), that I liked a little better), what put me off (or drove me out) of this Bazaar was the obnoxious smell of meat cooking in the open. I have already seen my dose of non-vegetarianism in Bangalore and seen how it’s catching up across various quarters of India, but this was too much to put up with. It was even worse than walking across the Marry Brown corridor in Ispahani Centre (Nungambakkam, Chennai). Grrrr, why don’t people remember that there are still some (many?) vegetarians left behind in this nation? One thing the smell did was to drive me out, at least from the ground floor, which had a lot of provisions and groceries, to the first, which stocked more of clothing, as well as applicances and stuff. The clothing variety was good, but I would put Reliance Mart ahead, where you get decent looking polo T-shirts for 200 rupees! To give the devil it’s due, I did really like the way stuff was laid out in the first floor — and if I recall right, there was even a Landmark. But the moment I got back to the ground floor, the smell easily chased me out! All in all, I would not recommend STAR Bazaar, more as a retaliation, in principle, to their lack of respect for vegetarians!

That brings me to the whole issue of vegetarianism, an issue that requires much more discussion than I now have time for. I write this being provoked by the stupidest of Tamil magazines, which appears to be running a debate on whether vegetables are vegetarian [sic]?! The Indian concept of vegetarianism is quite different, from the Western viewpoint; it’s not just about animals and animal products. Food is only classified as saattvic, raajasic or taamasic — thus, while milk is classifed as a saattvic food, meat is classified as taamasic, as are onions, garlics or mushrooms (not that I even intend to equate anything with the himsa involved in producing meat). To add a point here, one must look back [and deep] into the rich tradition of our ancestors of atonement for killing (of microbes and tiny living beings, presumably) at the five places such as the cooking vessel, grinder/mixer, mincer etc (ammi, aattukkal, jalapatram etc) by the performance of the pancha mahayagnyas, and the vaishvadeva, to account for the ‘living’ vegetables etc. I am just giving a sketchy picture from the little I know here — do ask your [grand]parents for more fundaes :). Ok, have digressed enough. May vegetarianism be revived!

Another silly quip is the fact that they seal the plastic covers, as you leave the store! That’s disgusting, because it defeats the purpose of re-using plastic bags (postponing recycling or junking them outright), if you have to tear the sealed bag open when you get back home. Reliance was far better, using plastic wires to knot the bags.

Disclaimer: I am a bit intolerant towards molecules noxious to my olfactory system, but I believe this was too much. Nevertheless, pay a visit to STAR Bazaar — I hope they have improved, for their own good — and take your pick!


Hehe, just close on the heels of yesterday’s post ridiculing Pratibha, here we have Dr Kalam handing over the BrahMos to the army. Read the Hindu article here. Let’s hope for a miracle to have Kalam at the helm for another term!


For once, I agree with Jayalalithaa, who happens to be heading to Delhi today to see what strings she can pull!


And as Alexandre Dumas once put it, “Wait and Hope”.



New Delhi, June 21 (PTI)


President A P J Abdul Kalam today suggested that the country should move ahead with developing a “hypersonic” version of the supersonic cruise missile Brahmos to maintain supremacy in force levels. “Time has come for BrahMos Aerospace to work on Mark-II version of Brahmos,” Kalam, himself a missile scientist, said adding it would enable India to be a market leader in hypersonic cruise missiles.

Turning Brahmos into a hypersonic missile entails incorporating scramjet technology, on which Indian defence scientists are already working to give it capability to attain Mach 8 speeds and to enhance its range considerably Inducting the surface-to-surface version of missile into the army, Kalam, who is the Supreme Commander of the armed forces, suggested to scientists to develop re-usable class of cruise missiles.

“I visualise long range hypersonic cruise missiles not only delivering pay loads, but also returning to base after the mission,” Kalam said while handing over a replica of the missile to the Army Chief General J J Singh.

India, he said, should within next decade develop re-usable missiles emphasising that the three services should work as a team to evolve the Qualitative requirements for such a system in a time bound manner.

Supporting the idea of export of Brahmos missiles, the President called for aggressive marketing of this world class product saying it was must as the missile only had a short shelf life of five years. He warned that otherwise there would be competitors who would be developing contemporary products.




The Presidential Joke

As the hunt to fill in Kalam’s shoes is on, I just thought I might write some of my views on one of the sadder jokes in Indian politics. Last time we had a certain Lakshmi Sahgal contesting alongside Kalam. If her credentials were dubious (versus Kalam), now we have yet another joke (post-quotas :D) that’s being played by the ill-humoured UPA (I’m apolitical mostly, I’d criticse NDA and UNPA any day too), who is backing a certain Pratibha Patil (who did not even have a wikipedia article in her name until it was put forth by UPA).

Considering especially that it’s Kalam’s shoes that need to be filled, it’s hilarious to see such names doing the rounds. I write this post hurriedly, for if I wait a fortnight, I might be guilty of throwing eggs at the National President (which is orthogonal to our culture: to see what I mean, you could google for miserable failure :D). Kalam is indeed the favourite of the masses, but unfortunately, the so-called representatives of the masses have different ideas!

Kalam had enough of confrontations with Sonia, and to hope for Sonia to be an all-forgiving saint wiping out the Prime-Minister fiasco (remember Tyaag Divas?) and the office of profit bill from her memory would tantamount to hoping that Australia would stop sledging from their next test (forgive me, cricket has to figure in every post i write).

For five years, we’ve been proud to have a renowned scientist and more than that, a great human being as our President. But, don’t they say “Pride goes before a fall?

To sum it, I think Cho has a nice cartoon in today’s Tughlaq (his tamizh magazine):


For the benefit of those who can’t read tamil, it goes thus:
Rabri: In what way am I inferior to that lady? Why did you not propose my name for president?
Laloo: That lady has only been a minister, whereas you have been a chief minister! Won’t [Sonia] be scared that you would know a few things?! That’s why I hesitated.

Jai Hind!

Kalam flies on the Sukhoi

This is nothing surprising, given his indomitable appetite for breaking conventions and making firsts; yet again, we see a great man, cut above the rest, probably the only pride of this nation, when it comes to politics.

Jai Hind!

Read on, the rediff article below…

Had no time to be nervous on flight: Kalam
Last Updated: June 08, 2006 13:08 IST

(from http://www.rediff.com/news/2006/jun/08kalam.htm)

President A P J Abdul Kalam, supreme commander of the armed forces, undertook a historic sortie in the Sukhoi-30 MKI, Indian Air Force's state-of-the-art supersonic fighter aircraft, which took off from Lohegaon airbase in Pune at 10.25 am on Thursday and landed around 40 minutes later.Wing Commander Ajay Rathore, Commanding Officer of the SU-30 MKI squadron, flew the President at a speed of 15,000 km per hour to a height of about 25,000 feet"I was not at all nervous, there was no time to be nervous," President Kalam told this correspondent soon after landing back at the airbase. "Rathore guided me well."
"After flying this sortie, I know realise that India is in safe hands, our borders are safe. We have such good pilots, and good defence personnel."

As the fighter plane was expected to fly at supersonic speeds, Kalam donned a G-suit before boarding the aircraft. He was also briefed by senior Air Force officials ahead of the 30-minute sortie.

Kalam is the first Indian President to fly in the all-weather, air-dominance supersonic fighter aircraft. Previously, in February, he had undertaken a submarine voyage.

Two Sukhois accompanied Kalam's flight during which he was shown how targets are located both in mid-air and on the ground with the radar's help, Air Commodore M Banerjee, told reporters.

Kalam, who is on a two-day visit to Pune, entered the airbase at 09.15 hours, and was received by Air Marshal Ajit Bhavnani, Vice chief of Air Staff; Air Marshal P K Mehta, Air Officer Commanding in-Chief, South Western Air Command; and Air Commodore M Banerjee, Air Officer Commanding, Air Force Base, Pune. Air Warriors of the airbase presented a ceremonial guard of honour to the President at the lightning squadron tarmac.

Sachin at Kukke Subramanya

Little-known till a couple of days ago, all of a sudden lakhs of people now want to visit – or at least know more about – the temple town of Kukke Subramanya, 105 km from  Bangalore. Their inspiration: Sachin!


Sachin Tendulkar's two-day pilgrimage to the Kukke Sri Subramanya temple drew scores of fans. It also had them sourcing details from a website on the town.

As a result, the website saw over 17 lakh hits till 1.30 pm on Monday, leading to a server crash. The pilgrimage by Tendulkar, his wife Anjali, and his siblings Ajit, Nitin and Savitha, resulted in a massive 17,50,200 hits over Sunday and Monday on www.kukkesubramanya.com. The website received traffic from all over the world, while the town attracted scores of fans. Many e-mails and telephonic enquiries were received at the temple's reception office at Kukke Subramanya in Dakshina Kanara district.

"It was never like this in the past," said a source at the website. "Though VIPs from all parts of the country visit the Kukke Sri Subramanya temple, Tendulkar's visit has led to a deluge of enquiries about the pujas here." At the temple, Lord Subramanya is worshipped as a snake.


Tendulkar, wife Anjali, brothers Ajith and Nithin, and sister Savitha spent Sunday and Monday at Kukke Subramanya, performing rituals aimed at helping him overcome sarpa dosha – perhaps one of the factors behind his nagging injuries.


"He performed sarpa samskara on Sunday, and ashlesha bali and nagapratishte on Monday," said the source. "These rituals were recommended by a family friend, VS Nayak, living in Bangalore."


To fans eager to shake hands with him, Tendulkar said, "I've pain in my shoulders. Please don't disturb me."

Young achievers – Sachin


Check out http://specials.rediff.com/sports/2006/may/15sld7.htm 

No story about the power of youth, the power of sheer genius and the power of sport can be complete without mentioning Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar.

If ever there was a prodigy, Tendulkar is one. If ever there was a sportsman who inspired generations, Tendulkar is one. And if ever there was a sportsman who transcended the game to become a symbol of national pride, Sachin is one.

His was what is called baptism by storm — against Pakistan, in Pakistan, against Imran Khan, Wasim Akram and Waqar Younis firing on all cylinders. And Sachin stood the sledges, the 'perfume' balls and a knock to his head.

The world had seen its first glimpse of The Tendulkar resolve.

In the years that have followed, commentators have gobbled up dictionaries to find superlative adjectives to describe his batting, his dedication to the game and his keen interest in everything cricket. Myriad records have come crashing, myriad egos have been deflated — remember Henry Olonga, anyone? – and myriad greats have doffed their hat to the Bombay Blaster.

And we have seen a master at work. We are lucky.

"Main khelunga", said a young boy, all of 16, struck on the nose by a perfume ball and bleeding. With Sidhu on the other end thinking a stretcher would need to be summoned, the world saw the arrival of the young man, who was to rule cricket for several years thereafter. Sachin struck a masterful half-century in that innings. The meek boy with a girlish voice had transitioned into a man…