Dec 23, 2007

My XMMS shuffle played Sunday Bloody Sunday today, and I realized, it is sunday. For a person who often forget which day he is living, it comes as a nice surprise at times to find out which day it is. The song had these lines:
"When fact is fiction and tv reality" (full lyrics)

and it made me think of the movie I watched last night called Wag the Dog. It started with a silly question of why does the dog wag its tail or something... and it finished all of a sudden but in between it was total amusement and grins. A president is accused of improper sexual behavior by a girl just 11 days short of the election and its upto Robert De Niro to save him. He takes the help of Dustin Hoffman and his colleagues who work in hollywood to stage a distraction for the public. The distraction in the form of a ghost war with Albania takes the heat of the issue of sexual allegations.

This movie was made in 1997, but watching De Niro and Hoffman plot the war will make you feel like this is where they got the idea for the Iraq war and the last threat on Iran. I see from IMDB the movie is based on a book. The movie is a political satire, and made me laugh. But there is also a hint of a feeling of desparation as I feel that this is how the world works these days in the age of high powered media.

Also starring: Woody Harrelson, Anne Heche, and Willie Nelson!

Posted on Sunday, December 23, 2007

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Pimped water? Bling H2O? you are a unique snowflake.. yes you are!

Posted on Sunday, December 23, 2007

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Nov 24, 2007

Just found out another 'day' is out there. It was started in Canada as a day to raise awareness about over consumption, or over-consumerism~

The Horse's Mouth

Posted on Saturday, November 24, 2007

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Nov 20, 2007

I envy those who write
Write so well
Even if no one else reads it, it is there for themselves to look at. Later
The instruments are the pen and paper and things stay once put out
I wish I could make the music stay
Between my fingers and the strings, the things that come out flutter
Then its gone.
Later I struggle to remember, that chord, that note, the pull, that slide and the strum, and the beat that was in my head
A recorder could be my paper
But it isn't as white
And not as inviting

Posted on Tuesday, November 20, 2007

2 comments

Nov 13, 2007

Posted on Tuesday, November 13, 2007

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Nov 11, 2007

Equal opportunities is a big deal. The awareness however outside the seminars and talk shows are probably not so high. I guess so, since this happened -

Female equality ombudsman gets lower pay than male predecessor


Of course, it could also be bad timing... and she joined right in the time of budget cuts.

Posted on Sunday, November 11, 2007

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Nov 7, 2007

It was one of those nights, when I had the sincerest intention to go to sleep early, and then the movie channel that almost never plays any good movies starts playing that movie I have been planning to see one more time. Crash. It is such a brilliant film, and takes you through a whole range of emotions - sadness, anger, triumph, hope, happiness. It is also a beautiful film, especially near the ending with the burning car. Brilliant.

Posted on Wednesday, November 07, 2007

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Oct 30, 2007

Not everyone's stories are told. Some have their stories told over and over again.

www.picturebalata.net/

Posted on Tuesday, October 30, 2007

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Oct 23, 2007

Aha

'Aha' is an expression in bangla that is used to express sadness. When someone says that so and so had an accident, you can make a face and say 'aha'. Enamul Karim Nirjhar's film is titled 'Aha!'.

This is not a mainstream movie, thus, those who don't like 'slow' movies can just exclude yourselves. For those who can take the right mood to this movie, it will be enjoyable. It has good characters, and a marvelous old house in Old Dhaka whose history is now forever tied to this movie. It was demolished soon after the shooting of the movie was complete. It would have been destroyed sooner otherwise. The only two characters that didn't sit well with me is Ruba, the daughter of the owner of the house (played by Tariq Anam) and Asif, a distant nephew of the Tariq Anam's character played by Dhaliwood film star Ferdous. It is poor casting anytime this guy is put in movies like this. I fear though it has to do with promoting the movie to the usual movie goers or calcutta audiences (It could even be that my personal dislike for him is causing me to speculate too much :) ). Fazlur Rahman Babu played his part as Soleiman, the caretaker of the house, with extreme accuracy. He portrayed the simply complicated nature of interactions that a majority of our countrymen display. Maybe the fine moment was when he refuses to let a bunch of architecture students (interested in the old architecture of the house) to enter the house. Humayun Faridi was brilliant also as Kisslu (or Kissy Kissy Kisslu), a middle aged man who spends his days doing nothing, and has an underwear collection of bright colors.

There are many conflicts in this movie, and not all of them wrap up in the end, and the story survives as long as the house is standing. Within that time however, portraits of everyday life issues are painted.






@IMDB

Posted on Tuesday, October 23, 2007

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Oct 19, 2007

We nearly hit a rickshaw, and in the aftermath nearly hit a curb. The hired hand behind the wheel still speeds on. I don't say anything. How often do I get to speed home like this? Its after the holidays. Its always a bit different after this holiday. Things will be back to normal right after this weekend. Even the wind feels cool and fresh thanks to the recent rainfall.

Posted on Friday, October 19, 2007

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Oct 17, 2007

Summer Camp Teaches U.S. Teens To Fight Israeli Style

Nigeria fights Pfizer in court

PS. Saw a wonderful movie last night, called Man of the Year starring Robin Williams and Christopher Walken. A summary would be that a comedian runs for the presidency. Its surreal, sure, but if you are an idealist, you'll see the ironies.

Posted on Wednesday, October 17, 2007

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Oct 8, 2007

Just came back from the embassy for the dreamland, land of oppurtunities and whatnot. Our mother-ship there wanted some of us to go there to be part of a few conferences she is arranging. But it is not to be. For some arcane cosmic reasons, its not happening TODAY! thats what the lady at the counter told me and two of my colleagues. The word "today" is interesting cause it suggests that maybe we picked the wrong day to apply! Maybe tomorrow would work?

We got handed to us a piece of paper listing reasons for which our visa applications may have been rejected. None of which make sense considering the amount of paperwork we took with us. That is still okay. What is not okay, is being told "Its very hard to get a visa to the USA". That really doesn't work as an official reply! Is this some kind of rule? I am sure it makes sense in their heads, but in mine, it doesn't! :)

All I want to say is that, i don't want to deny them the right to reject these applications, but i wish i could deny them the right to treat us like fools. Give me a valid reason or just don't say anything! dandy!

Posted on Monday, October 08, 2007

2 comments

Oct 4, 2007

Or, Things that make you ummmmmm.....

Crackdown on internet users in Bangladesh

Posted on Thursday, October 04, 2007

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Sep 19, 2007

Posted on Wednesday, September 19, 2007

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Sep 12, 2007

Military-Industrial-Media Complex
Came across this term in an article in alternet.org.

Posted on Wednesday, September 12, 2007

2 comments

Sep 10, 2007

When I first heard of this event, I was really skeptical and wholeheartedly believed that the winner will some spinoff of the great bands of the mid 90s: LRB, Nogor Baul, Winning, Miles or such.

The surprise came at the moment of the winner being announced. Two standing finalists on stage were Powersurge and Radioactive. Both had 55/60 from the panel of judges, and the rest of their 40 will be achieved through sms-es from the users of DJuice, who launched this whole competition. Even at this point, i thot popularity will definitely be with Radioactive. Their music is straight up rock, a vocalist that sometimes sound like Hasan (of Ark fame), and sometimes (astoundingly) like Sebastian Bach (not the classical composer, but the singer of the rock band Skid Row from USA). They have the general likability factor, unlike Powersurge who is definitely aptly named and follows the thrash/speed metal bands and in that way, they also put up killer performances with headbanging and great loud guitar solos and growling.
So it was a great surprise and a happy moment when the winner turned out to be the latter! Congratulations to the winners Powersurge.

Posted on Monday, September 10, 2007

1 comment

Sep 3, 2007

Found a page listing the variety of open source and free software that one can use, e.g - Sun's Star Office is very reliable if you are looking for a free alternative to something like Microsoft's Office (Word processing, spreadsheets etc.); or one could use Gimp for graphics tasks instead of something like Photoshop and if the needs are for 3D, there is Blender which personal friends of mine highly recommend.

See list here, courtesy of John Hopkins University.

Posted on Monday, September 03, 2007

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Aug 20, 2007



And were an epitaph to be my story I'd have a short one ready for my own.

I
would have written of me on my stone:

I had a lover's quarrel with the world.

Posted on Monday, August 20, 2007

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Aug 16, 2007

Posted on Thursday, August 16, 2007

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Aug 15, 2007

So it has happened again. The waters have risen to make the lives of some people really difficult, with houses submerged and people made homeless, and without the basics. Diarrhea is widespread.

Dhaka till now has been spared and a lot of people has taken this opportunity to raise money to help out in these matters. The money can be sent out in different channels, I am laying out here before you some of the options I am aware of:

The Prothom Alo Fund
http://www.prothom-alo.com/issues/flood-2007/

The Chief Advisor's Fund
http://www.bangladesh.gov.bd/
http://www.sonaliexchange.com/
http://www.thedailystar.net/2007/08/10/d7081001097.htm

Hunger Project
http://www.thp.org/flood
Financial Statement

Bandhan
http://www.badhan.org/flood.html
Past Activites

The Music Fest that is going to be held this weekend (17 and 18) in Ashulia, will also donate from their earnings to this cause.

Posted on Wednesday, August 15, 2007

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Aug 13, 2007

''For 30 years under the Borgias, they had warfare, terror, murder and bloodshed, but they produced Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci and the Renaissance. In Switzerland, they had brotherly love and 500 years of democracy and peace, and what did that produce? The cuckoo clock.''

Posted on Monday, August 13, 2007

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Aug 12, 2007

March in protest
A keen view of protest marches, if it is a useful tool today, and if not, how could it be?

Article by Matt Taibbi

That of course is talking about the situation in USA. Bangladesh has a totally different culture of protest marches. Its mostly the political parties, their followers and their hired followers who march around (and break things). The citizen will usually stay away from it all, the issues, and the politics. Unless its talking about it over a cup of tea.

Sing in protestFrom the Guerilla News Network, via Save the Internet, it is known that a webcast of Pearl Jam's concert underwent some censorship in the hands of AT&T. It was however, not any profane slang as such, but the words: ‘George Bush, leave this world alone’ and ‘George Bush find yourself another home’

Link to Save the Internet article

Posted on Sunday, August 12, 2007

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Jun 20, 2007

Arrow of Time

http://zonezero.com/magazine/essays/diegotime/time.html


" ... every year, the family goes through a private ritual... "

Posted on Wednesday, June 20, 2007

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Jun 1, 2007

"The title came to me in the shower, which is where most of my ideas come to me. That’s why I’m so clean."
- Christopher Hitchens, Author.

[Source]

Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007

1 comment

May 26, 2007

I woke up this morning, and while my eyes browsed some news of cricket, I realized I don't know who won the world cup this year!

But aaaanywaay.... Reading the news is always such a chore. Its fun sometimes tho. Not 'fun' as in haha, being on a merry go round feeling happy way... but in a desparate, sarcastic way. The news most of the time gives me the impression that something is really wrong with the world, and it just surpasses common logic and thus appears 'funny'.

Of course there is nothing funny about war, and people dying of forced circumstances, but there is something funny about people reinforcing those circumstances, and defending those circumstances. There is nothing funny in hearing that Suu Kyi's house arrest has been extended.
And that the champions of democracy are really not too bothered about her. Lack of 'interests' you see.

It is definitely a chore when there is nothing funny, just the deaths and the violence. And you see countries put up against countries on those headlines. Israel - Palestine - USA - North Korea - Iran - Syria - Lebanon - Afghanistan. Its not funny. An entire country feeling hostile against another? Or is it just the government, and the ignorant or selfish portion of a population? I wish that a distinction could be made as such, but its next to impossible, unless the portion opposed to the atrocities, or plain outrageous 'circumstances', come out on the streets, on the blogosphere, the media to show their opposition or disgust.

Last night I read something funny.

The US govt. is now fearing the growing military powers of China! Thus, the pentagon calls for greater transparency from the Chinese govt. on that matter! How now brown cow?
And who remembers the US spy plane that was caught flying over China's airspace?
I am fondly taken back to childhood memories of being concerned if a friend had a better matchbox model than me.

The bbc report states that they have missiles with ranges that cover the entire United States, and submarines that carry nuclear weapons.

The US govt. has always had a fear of China. The govt. of Nixon in 1971 hesitated to acknowledge Bangladesh as a free country due to political reasons to not make Pakistan .... unhappy. "Kill as many as you like ... We are friends" says Mr. Burns. They considered Pakistan to be the one that was preventing China from being more boisterous in that region at the time.

Now, China is one of the big boys in the "market place" (aka. The world as we know it), and they are one of the nuclear powers.
N u c l e a r
This is again another one of those 'funny' areas. Who shall have some? Who shall not? Who shall decide? And, Who shall not be allowed to care of others' opinions? The only way I see fit to balance things is to either to all have it, or all not-have-it. What about the one country that has already used it? Shouldn't they be definitely not allowed? "You had your fun boy, now gimme that" ? There is also the no-first-use treaty. What can I say, my face is breaking into a smile already! Maybe its just me, when I think about our defense budgets, our gun makers, I cant help but smile in disbelief. 'Funny' is definitely the wrong word here.

Posted on Saturday, May 26, 2007

3 comments

May 16, 2007

Khaleda will go to S'pore for treatment
BNP discloses formally, seeks govt permission for 15 leaders to see her off

Posted on Wednesday, May 16, 2007

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I have been using someone's poetry as a signature on my emails since when I first opened my first email account. And till today, i never bothered looking up where I found those lines, and always put [unknown] as credits for it. Today I took the initiative to find the author, and it is one R S Thomas, who lived between 1913 - 2000, and is Welsh. I found one similarity with him, both our dads were sea captains, and needless to say, lots of differences - he was a priest and also nominated for the nobel prize! meanwhile, I am I [another stolen phrase, credit Queensryche].

Here

I am a man now.
Pass your hand over my brow.
You can feel the place where the brains grow.

I am like a tree,
From my top boughs I can see
The footprints that led up to me.

There is blood in my veins
That has run clear of the stain
Contracted in so many loins.

Why, then, are my hands red
With the blood of so many dead?
Is this where I was misled?

Why are my hands this way
That they will not do as I say?
Does no God hear when I pray?

I have no where to go
The swift satellites show
The clock of my whole being is slow,

It is too late to start
For destinations not of the heart.
I must stay here with my hurt.

Poetry and facts lifted from Poem Hunter dot com

Posted on Wednesday, May 16, 2007

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May 9, 2007

3SE635-91 was not spared.
Beth was. For the moment.

Posted on Wednesday, May 09, 2007

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Apr 20, 2007





What is it you hoped to find here?

Posted on Friday, April 20, 2007

1 comment

Apr 15, 2007

Go to Flickr.com and search everyone's photos using "wtf".

Posted on Sunday, April 15, 2007

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Apr 9, 2007

Well, for those who missed the game last night, or any other nights... i found this website hosting some of the highlights of Bangladesh's plays from World Cup Cricket.

Posted on Monday, April 09, 2007

1 comment

Mar 30, 2007



Lebanon, originally uploaded by AnomalousNYC.

I usually write/rave on about music a lot.
So, this is not about the Stone Roses, or The Rolling Stones, and not about the Guns n' Roses either.

Click on the pic and check out the work of AnamalousNYC, and read. Check out his photography, which i think is absolutely sweet!


Related:

Posted on Friday, March 30, 2007

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Mar 27, 2007

tft

Posted on Tuesday, March 27, 2007

2 comments

Mar 20, 2007

I have a predilection for crime and punishment on tv.


Firstly, I don't mean a show by the name of Crime and Punishment. Just the theme of Crime and Punishment. Shows like CSI, Law and Order and all that. But recently I have also been tiring of them, mostly because of the USA bravado on display in these shows. What was interesting about CSI to begin with, however, was their simulated show of events happening. Like any crime novel character, they also describe what they think happened, but thanks to the cgi available today, they dont have to settle for showing the detective walking up and down describing his theory, let the animation do the talking. Having watched that for a long time, I developed a condition whereby I also ran simulations in my head when for example I would hit my knee on the corner of a table ... I would imagine in my head the corner of the table creating a dent on the surface of my knee cap in slow motion. I actually stopped watching CSI once to get rid of this condition!

Anyway, last night I was watching a show about law, and the lawyers and the cases they fight. A neighboring woman of one family stole their son and put him in her car's behind (where the spare tire stays, I can't recall what this part of a car is called!) where he died. Now, lawyers are fighting for each party.. the grieving family, and the accused woman. But what is amazing about these kind of shows is how they show the lawyers fighting the cases. It has all gotten refined to strategies. You do a serious crime, then you "go for the insanity defense", and da da da.. some jargon I can't remember. Or, you "go to the press" with your case, in an attempt to fight the case "outside the courtroom" by manipulating public opinion or something of the sort. Guess, its kind of a game (only in the tv as people might correct me).

A Strategy is an important thing I suppose. I guess everybody wants to win, or be on the winning side. On "60 Minutes" a news-kind-of show was showing how terrorists (need i say islamic/muslim/fundamentalist) are using the power of the internet to further their cause of (here comes the rhetoric for me westerners) Jihad and fighting the USA, trying to get more people in on it. To discuss it all they had a loud mouth, eager-as-a-buffy-workout-guy trying to sell gym machines on tv, general of the usa army. He was totally excited (seemed to me in the wrong way) about the websites and their methods. But what really made me say "ummm?" was his closing statement "Its a war of perceptions, they understand it, and USA needs to understand it". Really?!


On a similar note, here is Tool with Vicarious:
Eye on the TV
Cause tragedy thrills me
Whatever flavor
It happens to be

Like:
"Killed by the husband"
"Drowned by the ocean"
"Shot by his own son"
"She used a poison and in his tea
and kissed him goodbye"
That's my kind of story.
It's no fun 'til someone dies

Don't look at me like
I am a monster
Frown out your one face
But with the other
Stare like a junkie
Into the TV
Stare like a zombie
While the mother holds her child,
Watches him [dying;]

Hands to the sky crying,
"Why, oh why?!"

Cause I need to watch things die
From a distance
Vicariously, I
Live while the whole world dies
You all need it too - don't lie.

Why can't we just admit it?
Why can't we just admit,
We won't give pause until the blood is flowin'
Neither the brave nor bold
Will write as the stories told

We won't give pause until the blood is flowin'

Blood like rain, come down
Drawn on grave and ground

Part vampire
Part warrior
Carnivore and voyeur
Stare at the transmitter
Synched to the death rattle...

La, la, la, la, la, la, la-lie (x4)

Credulous at best
Your desire to believe in
Angels in the hearts of men.
Pull your head on out
Your head please and give a listen,
Shouldn't have to say it all again.

The universe is hostile
So impersonal
Devour to survive
So it is, so it's always been ...

We all feed on tragedy
It's like blood to a vampire

Vicariously, I
Live while the whole world dies
Much better you than I.

[ Lyrics found on http://www.metrolyrics.com ]

Posted on Tuesday, March 20, 2007

No comments

Mar 16, 2007

For all deshis who are missing some Made In Bangladesh music being outside ... Bangladesh's newest radio station by the name of Radio Foorti has released their online version:
http://www.proshikanet.com/radiofoorti/index.html

(The website is full of non-working links and
I could only get the Low Speed-version of the radio to work )

Posted on Friday, March 16, 2007

No comments

Feb 26, 2007

While shuffling through the channels I suddenly thought of the movie The Hurricane. I remember watching it years ago, it had a good soundtrack and style. Strangely, it was on in one of the channels. And hence stopped by browsing. I watched it again. I think I have to move this movie to my favorites list. Or one of those movies I can watch over and over again. Among those ranks are also High Fidelity, School of Rock and Fight Club.

Featured in The Hurricane soundtrack is this song by Gil Scott-Heron:



The Revolution Will Not Be Televized
1972

You will not be able to stay home, brother.
You will not be able to plug in, turn on and cop out.
You will not be able to lose yourself on skag and skip,
Skip out for beer during commercials,
Because the revolution will not be televised.
The revolution will not be televised.

The revolution will not be brought to you by Xerox

In 4 parts without commercial interruptions.

The revolution will not show you pictures of Nixon
blowing a bugle and leading a charge by John
Mitchell, General Abrams and Spiro Agnew to eat
hog maws confiscated from a Harlem sanctuary.

The revolution will not be televised.

The revolution will not be brought to you by the
Schaefer Award Theatre and will not star Natalie
Woods and Steve McQueen or Bullwinkle and Julia.

The revolution will not give your mouth sex appeal.

The revolution will not get rid of the nubs.
The revolution will not make you look five pounds
thinner, because the revolution will not be televised, Brother.

There will be no pictures of you and Willie May
pushing that shopping cart down the block on the dead run,
or trying to slide that color television into a stolen ambulance.

NBC will not be able predict the winner at 8:32
or report from 29 districts.

The revolution will not be televised.

There will be no pictures of pigs shooting down
brothers in the instant replay.
There will be no pictures of pigs shooting down
brothers in the instant replay.

There will be no pictures of Whitney Young being
run out of Harlem on a rail with a brand new process.

There will be no slow motion or still life of Roy
Wilkens strolling through Watts in a Red, Black and
Green liberation jumpsuit that he had been saving
For just the proper occasion.

Green Acres, The Beverly Hillbillies, and Hooterville
Junction will no longer be so damned relevant, and
women will not care if Dick finally gets down with
Jane on Search for Tomorrow because Black people
will be in the street looking for a brighter day.

The revolution will not be televised.

There will be no highlights on the eleven o'clock
news and no pictures of hairy armed women
liberationists and Jackie Onassis blowing her nose.
The theme song will not be written by Jim Webb,
Francis Scott Key, nor sung by Glen Campbell, Tom
Jones, Johnny Cash, Englebert Humperdink, or the Rare Earth.

The revolution will not be televised.

The revolution will not be right back after a message
about a white tornado, white lightning, or white people.

You will not have to worry about a dove in your
bedroom, a tiger in your tank, or the giant in your toilet bowl.

The revolution will not go better with Coke.
The revolution will not fight the germs that may cause bad breath.

The revolution will put you in the driver's seat.

The revolution will not be televised, will not be televised,
will not be televised, will not be televised.
The revolution will be no re-run brothers;

The revolution will be live.

Posted on Monday, February 26, 2007

No comments

Feb 12, 2007

[via The 3rd World View]

"Bangla is a language of 230 million people. Of which about 140 million people reside in Bangladesh and almost all the rest resides in the state of West Bengal of India. Being a neighboring country the language and the culture are similar between West Bengal and Bangladesh. But sadly the cultural exchanges are diminishing to an alarming extent. ..."

Link to Post

Link to News [in Bangla]

Posted on Monday, February 12, 2007

No comments

Feb 6, 2007



Clip from the documentary "Before the Music Dies"

Posted on Tuesday, February 06, 2007

1 comment

Feb 5, 2007

I have been thinking about the walls of Dhaka and how they were spread with posters (which i dont mind) and also messages praising some political leader or some bullshit religious message (one once saying something about 'beporda' imams on tv channels being hellbound or something). While that was inspiring me to some acts I wont detail here, I came across this artist during some class discussion that i can't remember. Later on I saw some further presentation of his works during the ARS Electronica festival in Austria last summer. Well, instead of talking further, i'd like to present the url to his website, so the interested can take a look.
Website

Related

Posted on Monday, February 05, 2007

No comments

Feb 2, 2007

Posted on Friday, February 02, 2007

1 comment

Jan 21, 2007

This is not from a tag of a t-shirt at some market in USA or UK, or anywhere else in the market. Its the name of a movie recently released in Bangladesh. The protagonitst of the story played by Zahidur Rahman repeatedly uses the phrase when introducing himself to others in the movie. The first quarter of the film holds not indication of what the story will to turn out to be.

The movie seemed to me to be a tribute to all things bangali when it comes to nationalism and politics. Zahidur Rahman's character reveals a long list of demands he would like the government to fulfill for the betterment of everyone's lives, and that leads to the other characters, who happens to be all people of position that deal with policies and issues, to stand up and praise him and make suggestions, even though they are his captives.

A lot of the wrongs of our politics is displayed in this satire, though i cannot yet envision any politician seeing the movie and making any amendments to his ways. The movie hopefully will make more people aware of the wrongs that we all have in our own ways. Especially the ability to not only say, but to listen as well, and to say not just for the sake of saying something, but to think before saying it. The two arguing politicians from two parties (ruling and opposition) in the movie display this point very well. What appears comical and produces a smile in this movie is to me ironically also a point to be embarrassed about.

Posted on Sunday, January 21, 2007

1 comment