Sunday, December 17, 2006


Only the good die young. The rest probably remain undead and get hired to think up catchy headlines for the ToI city supplements.
Like this total gem that caught my eye on a recent glance at the Google News page:

Aishwarya takes an elephant ride

What next?

Aishwarya takes a snap. (...of herself during scenes so that she can work on her facial expressions)

Aishwarya takes acting lessons. (hoo boy now that would be something!)

Aishwarya takes a bath. (Perhaps in lurid detail!)

If your enthusiasm isn't already in the dumps after reading the creative headline, the article too makes as much sense. It starts of by throwing light onto the recent excise scandal the actress got into. Then it quickly moves on to her being in Jaipur with Hritik Roshan, for a movie production, and then nosedives into nothingness.
And plus the Mistress of Scheiße has been credited with a few juvenile (and apt) "quips" between those copious giggles that the crummy journos stuff into their sentences as often as prepositions. Do read that thing and assure the 4 year olds around you that they could have an instant shot at a lucrative career.

Saturday, May 20, 2006

Kapeesh has made a list of the gems of knowledge he has gained from 9 years of dedicated PT reading. Do read his tribute to PT on its 9th anniversary.

Friday, May 12, 2006

PTOI turns a special number which the computer can decode!

One of our favourite wastes of wood pulp has turned nine. This blog has gone seemingly quiet over the last year. The principal reason seems to have been the exit of the previous editor who unintentionally was a Khashoggi-like most favoured provider of ammunition, but it also coincided with contributors to this blog moving on to actual news sources and a lack of new things to laugh about.

However, in celebrating their ninth anniversary, the purveyors of puerile celluloid and other celebrity chatter have got us interested once more. A 70-odd page set of anniversary specials marks the occasion with their editor Robin Roy saying the following:

The sun rises in the East. And our city is also known as the Oxford of the East. So, it was not difficult to decide on the theme for the 9th anniversary issue - PUNE RISING.
Commentary: So far, so good (barely - the causality of the Orient was a little tenuous, but we let that pass for more imminent goodies)

When we say RISING, we certainly do not mean tall futuristic buildings, cement, steel, deep pockets and only investments. We, instead, talk of the sensitivity, the tolerance level and the acceptability, hence we feel PUNE is RISING - Dil se.
(if only A.R.Rahman had scored for a film called "Pune" - the trilogy would have been complete)

Nine is a special number. Even the computer can decode numbers between 0 and 9. Emperor Akbar also had Navratnas to adorn his sabha.
(ROTFLMAO with resulting acute stomach pain. Getting a free tech lesson was not anticipated. I thought Akbar had a darbar, but he was multicultural enough to have a sabha, I guess.)

So this is also a special anniversary issue, which depicts Pune's yesterday, today and

We salute the spirit of Pune, the city which believes in Kal Ho and not in
Kal ho na ho.

(in the same way that we believed in Kuch Kuch and not the hota hai part, and will go bonkers over kabhi alvida rather than than the insiduous na kehna, in time for the tenth
anniv. bash)

Thank you, PTOI. The feature is the usual items-between-ads offering, with a college-magazine style sprinkling of quotes as space fillers, along with images and interviews and upbeat stories.

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Times of India(?)

Haven't posted on this blog for quite some time now. In fact it's been almost a year. Anyways better late than never.
A recent visit to TOI's website proved to be quite enlightening. I didn't know Tara Reid was Indian. Nor did I know that India had annexed Pakistan (finally). And while I was unaware prostitution, nudity and sleaze had become the primary sources of news about India. It's true. If you don't believe me, kripaya TOI ki website access karne ki cheshtaa karein!
A newspaper that calls itself The Times of India has absolutely no space for Indian news in it. And when it is about India, most of it is about people who one doesn't care about. Here is a glimpse of what I saw one fine day on their site:
  • Tara Reid got a separate room to house her shoes.
  • Three women were held in Delhi for prostitution.
  • NRI mansions for Rs. 300 per month.
  • Top 10 prettiest Pakistanis.
  • Bollywood's tragic star lives.
  • Naked web chat a rage in China.
Are these the times of India. I wonder...

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Finally, a quiz covered by PT

Quizzing and Page 3 just don't go together.
When Symbiosis Institute of Telecom Management (SITM) conducts the Telecom Grandmasters Quiz, promotion of quizzing is not as important as the promotion of their event as they get PT to cover their event especially with the chief guests being Diana Hayden and Abhay Deol.

The result of the quiz was reported (understandably on pg. 3), with the title 'Matching wits at the biz quiz'. But perhaps due to the glitter involved in the quiz, the reporter Ms. Kharade (or the editor) forgot to write the most important part: news about the quiz, for the article told us everything about the forgotten and the upcoming films of the 2 celebs, what they wore and their experiences of the Mumbai floods.
So I'll do the PT guys the favour by reporting the stuff they missed.
  • The name of the 'renowned business school of the city' is Symbiosis Institute of Telecom Management.
  • The name of the quiz was the Telecom Grandmasters Quiz, not the National Grandmasters Quiz.
  • There were 5 teams, not 4. There were corporate and college teams.
  • The winning team of Harshavardhan and Arnab (names mentioned thankfully) are from VIT. They were the only undergraduate college team and beat the other teams by a huge margin. Symbiosis Institute of Management Sciences (SIMS) came 2nd. Some more details here.
Yes we know, shortage of space, when there's more to print such as Karisma's marraige debacle.

Yet I'd agree on one bit from the article.
The list of guests included the who's who of the city including Akhilesh Agarwal, Anand Agarwal, Sulakshana Patankar, Deepak Natnani and Sudarsan Natu.
Who's who indeed, as after reading their names you're bound to wonder who's who?

Monday, July 04, 2005


A comment left as part of this post informs us that there have been some "edits" at the Pune Times.

Friday, June 10, 2005

The thing about the PTOI is that apart from being party-peepers, their film stories usually get their trivia wrong in large patches. Apart from writing pseudo-intimate stuff about stars and using a lot of "we think" sub-phrases to indicate a close orbit, they have stuff like the following that appeared in today's PTOI (last page, if you're that motivated):

REMEMBER the bearded guy who made his debut into Hindi films with Ram Gopal Varma’s first underworld saga: Satya? He was Chakravarty. Although he did not become a popular Bollywood actor, he has his own fan following down South.

Now anyone who has watched the RGV canon will instantly notice the massive gaffe - in that, Chakravarthy (with the South Indian *h* I'm sure) was around in Shiva. Plus the usual "blah blah down South". I wonder if any Malayali or Tamil would pick Chakravarthy over their other local options to be fans of. Not that J.D.C doesn't deserve it.

Sunday, June 05, 2005

Disposable paper crisis

One reason for the relative quiet surrounding PT-barbs is because the supplement is half of what of used to be. Perhaps they took the advice of some of the star-nutritionists featured on the pages too far. Take today's PTOI for instance - it has just 4 pages. The inner pages are all ads & multiplex schedules & events & cartoons. The back page is the usual cut-paste glamour snippets.

After having been repeatedly told that "Punekars love to Party", we see no evidence of the same. Perhaps this is the off-season.

There has been a lesser waste of forests these last few months - how and why? Pretty soon, this blog will have to be shut down - Help!

Sunday, May 29, 2005

Lo siento, ¿Que?

Every so often, the Pune Times feels the urge to report trends that they see in Pune. Sometimes they get such feelings when no trends exist. What, then, do they do? Write a report on Spanglish catching on among young Puneites.

Spanish is rapidly becoming en vogue all over the world. (...) Influx off Spanish words began from the US and has made its way to India and Pune too. (...) It is an upcoming language and has already become the third official language for many countries which makes it the next important language to learn.

It is interesting to see the things people have said in this article. One young lady says that Spanish is becoming vogue all over the world, and that she needs to learn it. Yes, she would, considering she's a friggin airhostess! Another says that speaking Spanish is now a fashion statement. Yeah. Sure.

Also interesting are the Spanish words they say are taking over the English language. the Pune Times thinks that the appearance of words like macho, patio, jalapeno, rodeo, taco and suave are evidence of the Hispanisation of Punekars. And I thought these were English words now. Adding insult to injury is that many of the Spanish words in the article are misspelled or grammatically incorrect. So, muchachos, I shall help you out. Its not "Muchos Gratias", its "Muchas Gracias". And its not "No Problema", its "No Problemo". Get it right.

So basically, nothing in the article supports the implied conclusion: that Spanish is now a popular language in Pune. It is not. Nor does the article support the conclusion that more Spanish words are spoken by Puneites in their everyday speech. This, too is untrue. What could be said is that US english is slowly absorbing Spanish words, and this is reflected in the English Punekars speak. As American words. That's all.

Perhaps the next time they could write about how Chinese is becoming the new French. Don't we all use words like chop-suey and chow mien?

You there, write something about blogging!

Thats probably what the editor of the Pune Times said to one of his reporters. And the result was this. An article on how blogs affect buying behaviour.

How is that? Well, a number of bloggers are keying in their personal experiences with the products used. Sometimes its good and sometimes bad. "Because its absolutely frank and non-biased, I pay attention what is written on blog-sites (sic)", says.....

The article then goes on to suggest that many people make consumption choices based on the experiences of others they read on blogs.

Here's my take on things. People who post their experiences on products on the net are not particularly popular bloggers. Therefore it follows that most of the people who read such blogs are those who know the bloggers in real life. So here's the thing. If your friend has a bad/good experience with a product and blogs about it, chances are that he/she's told you about it already. So why credit blogs with changing consumer behaviour? The article seems like a contrived effort to write something about blogging, the new "in" thing over at the Mainstream Media.

My advice to the Pune Times: Seriously guys, stick to the parties. Leave the serious reporting to the proffessionals.