What the phoonk is Himesh doing?

I was casually munching benana chips and dringing hot tea in Trivandrum this weekend when I finally realized why an Indian had not written the Hitchhikers’ Guide to the Galaxy. That question had been bothering me for a while now, and I had always wondered why it had to be a tall friend of David Gilmour who advised us all to not panic. The answer, it turns out, is rather simple. If an Indian had written the book, his publisher (presumably Sultan and Sons from Darya Ganj) would have altered the title to suit the Indian market, to The Hitchhikers’ Revised Guide and Reference to the Galaxy exam, with 2000 years question papers fully solved.

If our children have a few mosquitoes of creativity hovering around them, our schools, colleges and workplaces (especially IT) will jointly invest in a extra large size Tortoise coil to kill them. But anyway, this post is not an ill-informed rant on the woes of the Indian educational system and its single-minded purpose to root out creativity in kids. I’ll leave that to more serious minded folks.This is a generally meandering post about nothing in particular.

But talking of a dearth of creativity, another thing I did over this weekend was watch Ram Gopal Varma’s Phoonk. Yes, we all understand that close ups of household decorative items (such as laughing buddhas) shown with a backing score involving C-F# type jarring chords make for good horror, but we saw that in Zee Horror Show, back in the 90s. Nothing new there. For a change, I was even mildly engrossed at the prospect of science and rationalism trumping over kaala jaadu, bhoots and assorted horrorphernalia but Mr Varma let us down again, by reinforcing what the average Indian is already fully aware of – the ability of lemons, bones, neem leaf bunches and extra eye-liner to violate the laws of physics, and simultaneously render the knowledge of trained neurologists and psychiatrists completely useless. But I must congratulate him on having the guts to at least introduce a technically correct term for Multiple Personality Disorder to the mango-people, namely Dissociative Identity Disorder, a refreshing change from Bollywood’s age-old obsession with Schizophrenia, which frankly, I was getting bored of.

And oh, I saw this poster and I just cannot wait….to read Greatbong‘s review

The first thing that struck me like a super jhankar beat was the spelling of “Vengeance”. How on earth did it get past Mr Jumaani? Perhaps he, rather ironically, went to sleep after adding the extra zz to Karz. After Aap ka Surroor – the moviee, I expected a few more vowels to be recklessly grazing around. The second thing I noticed was the hair, or to be precise, the complete lack of cap. The third thing was of course theΒ  unplugged electric guitar, but that’s trivial.

I believe the original tagline was “Vengeance is back, can the ladies are far behind?”, but it was dropped when the Times of India threatened a lawsuit citing their proprietary ownership of all bad puns in this country.

I googled around for more posters, and I eventually found this

And the first question that came to my mind was not “Did Himesh steal Paul McCartney’s hair by going back in time to 1965?”. My first question was “What mega awesome chord is Himesh playing?”. It looks like a B-minor, but nah. A close up revealed that this was nothing as basic as a B-minor. I then wondered if this was simply yet another case of keeping up Bollywood’s rich tradition of Strangely Unplayable Mystery Guitar Chords. And a quick check at GuitarChordsMagic told me that my hunch was right.

Himesh was indeed keeping up a rich tradition that harks back to Amitabh’s Capo-with-pinky-on-fret-4 mystery chord,

and Zeenat Aman’s A-majorly-off-the-fretboard

So yeah. I can’t wait to watch Karzzz when it comes out at Satyam. I propose that we put together a heckle mob of “Madrasis” to go watch this and do general rousification. Talking of Madrasis, my friend Harish has invented a wonderful generic term for the stereotypical North Indian in Chennai. He calls them amit_123 and the standard cliches are

  • amit_123 is rude to waiters
  • amit_123 hates Chennai’s weather
  • amit_123 can’t tolerate the fact that nobody understands Hindi in Chennai
  • amit_123’s first criteria for a good actor is a six pack
  • And more. No wait. amit_123 prefers lassi

So yes, if you get called a Madrasi, you know how to respond now.