Sunday, March 31, 2013

Game of Thrones Memes: House Stark

House Stark.

Don't mess with us.

Love, The Lannisters

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Game of Thrones Memes: Ser Jorah the Man-servant

Ser Jorah Mormont - Previously worked at Brave Knights Inc.
                    Presently employed as man-servant/flunky.

Game of Thrones Memes: Dragon Eggs

Previously : Dragon eggs, precursors to the most fearsome creatures in the realm

Presently: Decorative stones

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Getting Old at 24

To some people, the age of 24 years might seem as far away from being termed old as it could possibly be. But getting old is more of a mental state of being than a physical one. You could still be able to walk miles at a stretch and not feel tired, but even as you walk, the past and future haunt you even as the present seems uncertain. 

And not so long ago, I found the whole concept of a Mid-life crisis a bit vague and out of place.

I guess I am beginning to enter that age when nothing on Facebook seems interesting anymore. My friends keep requesting me to get out there and solve some criminal cases, perhaps play some Poker, but I guess I am too old for games now...maybe in a few months my Facebook Timeline will look like that of all the other "old people" who maintain Facebook pages for God knows what reason!

Instead, all I ever seem to want on a weekend is a good book to read and a nice, peaceful nap that goes on and on.

It doesn't hit you like a brickbat, mind you. It creeps up onto you and before you realize  you are introduced as "uncle" to small kids, and addressed similarly by certain ladies with a distorted sense of the passage of time.

It occurs around the time you file your first Income Tax Return. Your family starts taking you seriously and your advice on financial and social matters is eagerly sought and duly noted, instead of being brushed off as immature as should have been the rule before having filed said return.

Money matters take the first hit. Unlike earlier, when money would have at best been associated with a smartphone or laptop budget, you start contemplating your investment portfolio and devising tax-saving schemes to save some hard-earned money from ending up in government coffers.

Then come fairly small, almost unnoticeable things. One day you miss an eagerly awaited cricket match due to work, and the next thing you know, you have lost all interest in such childish pursuits. I do not even remember the last time I watched a cricket match on Television or even cared to turn to the Sports page at the end of the newspaper.

It is the time when you contemplate life-altering decisions while walking to office eating an apple, standing in the shower, waiting for your Burger at Mc Donald’s (on second thoughts, they have a pretty decent service and plenty of distractions (:P) around so let us count that out). You no longer care about the stares from the onlookers while you stare straight ahead of you deep in thought like a perpetual visionary.

Well, to be fair, I have always been a bit out of place for my age group. My idea of "Aaj Kuch Toofani karte hain" (Let's do something rash today!) still involves reaching the Bus Stop 5 minutes earlier instead of the standard waiting time of 15 minutes. Minus all the Harry Potter, Disney and Batman movies, I am a pretty intense character.

It is just that for the first time in my life I am missing the innocence of my childhood. Back then, life was pretty simple, you do your homework on time, watch Disney Hour, write your exams, and play for 1 hour in the evening.

But now, there are such a large number of variables involved in my life, I can’t comprehend the order of the differential equation that shall solve my woes! And all this when the most potent complexity (or so I have been told), the Female conundrum is yet to hit me!

I hope that this complex, uncertain phase ends as quickly as it began. But for now, it seems like a particularly long wait!

Saturday, March 16, 2013

The Star Wars Conundrum

The Star Wars movie series is widely believed to be one of the greatest movie franchises ever created. So, when in my Third year of Engineering I finally decided to give it a shot, I was faced with a rather awkward question: Where do I start from?

For the uninitiated, George Lucas, the creative “Force” behind the Star Wars released the movies in two installments of three movies each over a period of 2 decades, with the last three movies serving as a prelude to the once released in the mid-80s.

The films in chronological order of their respective releases are:

Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope                                       May 25, 1977
Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back                     May 21, 1980
Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi                               May 25, 1983
Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace                           May 19, 1999
Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones                            May 16, 2002
Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith                             May 19, 2005

So, for someone beginning a decade too late, this question becomes a bit difficult to answer.

The people who watched the movies in their intended order, who should now be in their mid-thirties are obviously biased towards the 80s movies that they grew up around. Though low on the technology front by today’s standards, the old Star Wars movies must have been visual marvels in their time.

But for all of their originality, these movies had a very simplistic and predictable narrative, out of tune with the complex, multi-dimensional stories of movies like Inception and The Dark Knight.

The relatively younger crowd, of which I am a part as well, that saw the last three movies released in the 21st century first and watched the so-called “sequels” only out of curiousity, we are obviously enamoured by the superior use of technology and better, more complex narrative in the recent movies, which are almost unanimously panned by the older generation.

Having made my preference towards the recent movies clear, I shall give you an example that will help you in your choice for the sequence of Star Wars movies you wish to see.

For doing that, I shall make an assumption. That you have already seen another one of the greatest movie franchises of all time: the Harry Potter series. The next assumption is that you liked them and are a crazy fan like me.

Now, suppose, after 10-15 years, Warner Brothers comes out with a movie franchise that traces the childhood and life of Tom Riddle until the time he turns into Lord Voldemort. The movies, with the strength of hindsight and superior technology, shall obviously boast of a stellar, more intelligent and complex narrative and a visual extravaganza.

Now, for people like us, who have already been witness to Lord Voldemort’s cruelty and have had our childhoods and adolescence years filled with happy memories of Harry Potter’s adventures, many of us might still prefer the original Harry Potter series, and shall obviously recommend them to be seen first to a beginner.

But would it not still be awesome for the stranger to find out for himself how a seemingly innocent kid first discovers magic and then turns into a fearsome Dark Lord, before moving on to, out of curiousity of course, what happens next, when a similar kid endeavours to bring him down.

Now, you have to choose, what you would rather see first in such a circumstance and apply the same logic to Star Wars. Believe it or not, you will find the analogy strangely similar.

A word of caution: The Star Wars movie series is going to blow your mind, whichever way you watch it!