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But I will be blogging here from now on.

Thanks for keeping me company over the years :)

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Filed under 2008

This tagging business again

The Cynical one has tagged me and I am duty bound to write this. So without further ado..a recap of what this year has meant for little ‘ol me. 

1. Became a full fledged stoner. I thought I was being ridiculous last year, but fuck me I’ve graduated into a stoner now

2. Grew up. At home, I’ve become more approachable, more likely to sit down and have a chat with family than I’ve been in a long time. If ever I get caught at home for smoking marijuana, I am going to say, “Look it’s because of this I became friendlier! *smiles* See?”

3. Made my peace with Hinduism to the extent of buying some books on the subject. Might as well educate myself on the shit I never understood, eh? Never going to practice it though. If I get caught for smoking marijuana, I am going to point to this and say, “Look, I am becoming more religious because of this thing!”

4. Realized I am good at this corporate whore thing. I might not look it – ruffled hair and pubby goatee – and there are times when the lazy-bastard-who-wants-nothing-but-solitude-to-read-smoke up-and-listen-to-music in me wants to scream and run away, but it pays the bills and the people at work are some of the most down to earth individuals I’ve come across. And they mostly seem to possess warped sense of humour. That always helps <no marijuna inset here, sorry>.

5. Bought more books than CDs. Priorities you see. If ever I get caught for smoking marijuana, I am going to say, “Look this plant makes me want to read alot more. What’s so bad about that?”

6. Higher education isn’t working :( If I get caught for smoking marijuana, I’d be fucked

7. Today marks three years between a certain lady and I. Incredible when you think my previous ‘record’ was three months. Marijuana has played no part in this, you’ll be happy to hear

8. I can’t still drive. And I have no desire to rectify this situation. My dad is getting worried; in desperation, I think, he said he’d buy me a car a year after I receive the licence in an effort to motivate me. Didn’t work. But circumstances now are such that I might as well. Who knows, maybe I’ll actually enjoy this driving shit. If I do get caught smoking marijuana, I will say…no, fucked again

9. Got chicken pox. I could have used some marijuana during those insufferably long three weeks


Filed under 2008

Machan: A Review



Reviewing the Coen brothers’ film Fargo Roger Ebert wrote, ‘films like Fargo are why I love the movies’. While watching Uberto Pasolini’s brilliant Machan I understood why Ebert, usually so stoic in his reviews, let his guard down in reviewing that film. Fargo was a movie for the ages – a brilliant parable about people resorting to the far-fetched and absurd when they find themselves cornered and utterly helpless. With Machan, Pasolini and writer Ruwanthie De Chickera tackle similar themes in the Sri Lankan context, more precisely the lengths some Sri Lankans would go to in order to migrate to Europe in search of greener pastures. 

Pasolini produced Full Monty, a movie that made me laugh so hard my family thought I had finally gone insane. Indeed watching Machan’s first act unfold, it was hard not to notice the parallels: like Gaz and his buddy Dave in Full Monty, Stanley and Manoj are out of luck, regularly getting rejected at the embassies of nations they long to work in. Both sets of men then chance upon a scheme that, they believe, can’t fail: Gaz and Dave turn to the exotic world of male stripping, Stanley and Manoj turn to handball. What is handball, I hear you ask. In Stanley’s words: “Nobody fucking knows!” In reality it seems like basketball and football’s illegitimate child. 

The script has an old world charm, an almost Chaplin-esque sense of comedy and timing that is all too rare in this day and age of toilet humor and vomit jokes. It is also unabashedly Sri Lanka and audiences will leave the theater with a newfound vocabulary. I had no idea that so many synonyms existed for the word ‘fuck’ in the Sinhala lexicon. Parents, ye be warned. 

But what really raises this script from good to almost great is De Chickera’s complete mastery of giving each character a voice and presence regardless of their significance in the narrative. A scene involving a grave digger may go down as my favorite of the year. The scene swings from hilarious to deeply melancholic with such ease that I had to restrain myself from clapping at what De Chickera had just achieved.

The acting is top class. Some of the most storied names in Sinhala cinema and theater – Irangani Serasinghe and Malini Fonseka among them – along with their counterparts from Tamil and English theater, come together to form the ensemble. They are uniformly excellent. There is also a tangible lack of ego in the casting for this movie: the bigger, better known members of the cast occupy smaller roles while the relative new comers take on the bigger roles. Dharmapriya Dias steals the show with his portrayal as the dim-witted Stanley. 

Even the peripheral characters – the policemen, the “foreign cattle”, and Stanley’s carefree, race horse-betting aunts (Serasinghe is absolutely brilliant as one of them: she dismisses her nephew’s complaints about the suddenly missing roof by saying, ‘But now I can see the stars and it is cooler too!’) are beautifully fleshed out. If I had to nitpick, I’d just say that Gihan De Chickera wasn’t the most suitable choice for Manoj. While his performance was solid, he wasn’t as convincing as the rest of the cast. 

None of this would have been as effective if the film was shot in some swanky studio set. Pasolini instead opts for the most realistic setting and you are left with moments of intense humor juxtaposed with silent social commentary on the rampant poverty that drives people to such audacious scheming. Therein lies Machan’s brilliance: It is at once a feel good story, a laugh out loud comedy and a social commentary, and remarkably scores high on each of those counts. 

To the cast and crew behind Machan: a sincere thank you.


Filed under 2008, film, review

Desktop Screenshot

I’ve been quiet for sometime as far as blogging goes, but decided to write post today on account of Cerno’s desktop screenshot festival. I don’t know if it’s the surpressed geek in me or if I have cyber voyeuristic tendencies, but I love looking at desktop screenshots. Weird fascination right there.

Anyhoo, me desktop in all its glory:


Filed under 2008, Musing about the mundane

More George Carlin

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Filed under 2008, Musing about the mundane

George Carlin 1937-2008

A shitty way to begin a week: George Carlin, comedian extraordinaire, satirist and social critic passed away due to heart failure. Rather than mourn his death, I am going to share this little gem:

The most unfair thing about life is the way it ends. I mean, life is tough. It takes up a lot of your time. What do you get at the end of it? A Death! What’s that, a bonus? I think the life cycle is all backwards. You should die first, get it out of the way. Then you live in an old age home. You get kicked out when you’re too young, you get a gold watch, you go to work. You work forty years until you’re young enough to enjoy your retirement. You do drugs, alcohol, you party, you get ready for high school. You go to grade school, you become a kid, you play, you have no responsibilities, you become a little baby, you go back into the womb, you spend your last nine months floating…

…and you finish off as an orgasm.

Aye, brilliant.


Filed under 2008

Tag :o)

I was tagged by Dili so here are ten things that make me happy.

1. Music – Ambient/atmospheric black metal/death metal/technical death metal/jazz fusion/folk/neo folk/acid folk/hard rock/carnatic/romantic/baroque/’world music’. Sorry for the list and all, but I am a genre nerd. Discovering new artists in these genres is always a pleasure.

2. My favourite writers and poets – Willy Shakespeare, Anthony Burgess, George Orwell, Arthur C Clarke, Mark Danielewski, Toby Litt, Martin Amiss and many many more.

3. Brian Lara taking guard makes me disturbingly giggly and excited. Imagine, if you will, how I react when he plays that awe inspiring cover drive of his or when he charges down the wicket. My world stops spinning when Lara is batting.

4. A certain Cynic. Enough said.

5. Friends – From the guys in school to the Cynic and Pissu Perera Gang, and the buggers in 891. Love ’em all.

6. Nick Drake – For Pink Moon: saved my sanity (and probably a lot more) when I was on the verge of losing it

7. John McLaughlin – For Shakti and short-circuiting my mind with his guitar playing.

8. Wolves in the Throne Room – For Diadem of 12 Stars. What I would do to relive that moment when I first heard this album.

9. Roger Wootton – For penning those amazing lyrics on First Utterance.

10. Sanath Jayasuriya’s (now sadly infrequent) moments of madness when he becomes a freight train without a break.


Filed under 2008, Musing about the mundane