Mdeii Life - Anand Krishnamoorthi's blog
Friday, March 30, 2007
To Protect the Child
When I was a kid, there were consolation prizes in school contests. Until we understood the appallingly patronising semantics, we saw it as the legitimate last rung in the hierarchy of awards. Then there were middle-school debates that were sanctimoniously labelled "academic" (euphemism for "rigged at the time of deciding the topic") lest our sensitive minds be exposed to acrimony and disagreement.
Not too many years ago, kids versions of television contest (mostly singing talent shows) never announced winners—every participant took home the same crummy gift-hamper.
Now apparently, this Super Singer Junior reality show on Vijay TV has pictures of kids being rejected (they have candy I suppose), also of kids behaving like little spoilt divas, and also of kids singing really well and winning.
Then I came across this (via). Now I may not entirely agree with a dogmatic view about "good competition", but I do see in my line of work that a system of incentives (and disincentives) really produces results, if the system is deemed to be even nominally "just" by its members.
Kids, I have seen, have a terrific sense of morality, fairness and "right".
Monday, March 26, 2007
I could use some beer money!
As CC says, we are taking bookings. Price, sizes available etc. will be announced shortly.
Sunday, March 25, 2007
Now let's enjoy some Cricket
Now that India is well, almost out (and Woolmer's murder makes it difficult for a possible match-fixing syndicate to pay Bangladesh to lose) we can finally get to watch some real cricket featuring real cricket teams, real cricket players, and some real analysts and commentators.
Goodbye Mandira Bedi. Goodbye Charu Sharma. Goodbye 'Ritambara'. Goodbye terrible motorcycle adverts. Goodbye idiot journalists.
Update: India is out, so we can start looking at other debates rightaway.
Tuesday, March 20, 2007
Money and Sport
Viviana Zelizer talks about why we want to believe that money and intimacy do not go together. It does not take much to extend the discussion to include questions on why we also think (note: not necessarily act on our beliefs) that glorious and "patriotic" activities like sports suffer when money is involved.
It was interesting to see quite a few people dissing India's incredibly inane performance against the Bangladeshis by referring to the "obscene" amounts of money our chaps make in endorsements. (On that thought, I'd like to see the UPA run the Indian Cricket team—should be so much fun).
We sometimes get bad cricket not because our chaps are well-paid, but because Cricket enjoys a rather screwy monopoly. Or rather, the Indian Cricket team enjoys a monopoly status. (click here for some sports-economics juvenilia) Should I stretch the argument to say that it is because of the money that Indian cricket has better talent (and therefore the monopoly) than say Indian Football?
It is therefore nice to read newsreports that go: (linkthanks my boss)
We in India tend to rush out with tri-colours and wrap the dutiful nationalistic sentiment around every sporting achievement and be coy about money matters. Step into Sagroli village, and you won't grudge sportsmen the money they earn. Now, parroting the patriotic theme is common to Sagroli too. Teenaged runners from this arid, non-descript village in the Nanded district of eastern Maharashtra will voice their desire to represent the country at the next Olympics, and even bring home the gold. Once on the beaten, narrow state highway though, these trainees of the Sagroli Sunrise Project line up at the starting grid, keeping paper-chits in their pockets, which bear the amount they will earn if they cross the target-timing to complete a 7 km-daily route. "Trophies, certificates are all fine they make you happy for a day or a week. We want to be realistic theres no better incentive than money," says project convener Deepak Kanegaokar, who hands out cash in multiples of thousand. (very sic)
Saturday, March 17, 2007
Since when have the Irish relished cricket?
Meanwhile it's a good day to be a Bengali.
Also Mandira Bedi has been highly unimpressive this year.
Friday, March 16, 2007
A little education puts a lot of 'notions' into our heads. But pray tell me how can the screen accommodate anything other than pictures and sounds?
Monday, March 05, 2007
Can you define?
Just to revive an old discussion (for which I cannot be bothered to dig up permalinks from the archives), what do you think are the differences between:
1. what a screenwriter does, and what a director does?
2. what a director does, and what a producer does?
Not too many people in 'the industry' seem to know the answers, especially those who think they do. And while on the topic of wholesome ignoramuses, please stop calling production managers, production designers. That does not sound cool, that is merely being stupid!
Saturday, March 03, 2007
A desk-top I desperately need
Seen something similar twice before: one a video of some Canadian (I think) college guys demonstrating a lab project, second in Spielberg's Minority Report.
Now, Brian Lam at Gizmodo might be right when he points to "the inverse relationship of proper ergonomics and proper viewing distance on such a setup", but in my line of work, this sort of a thing would be a godsend. So much for geeky wowdroolmultitouchwanking.
I spent a good part of last week snipping, labelling, taping, ordering, re-labelling, matching, tagging, checking, and arranging strips of paper to schedule 11-member crews (from a list of 29 persons) to work over three weeks to make 20 short films. Sometimes all that jugglery and anal attention to detail can be pretty fulfilling, Zen even; but most of the time you really feel that your desk could do with some 'memory', that you don't have to take down every little permutation down to cross-reference or reconstruct later.
This work is licensed under aCreative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.5 License.