10 must read books from 2015 for novel lovers.

Last year was a great one for book lovers. There was something for all sorts of genre lovers – right from drama to romance to biographies to thrillers. As we enter into another 365 days journey of new year, the worm in us is already hungry for more titles and many stories. And like the previous year, 2015 too looks quite promising when it comes to the kind of books that will be available on the shelf. The low-down on the books we look forward to this year, and one should not miss…

Happy Are the Happy by Yasmina Reza


A short advance excerpt from Yasmina Reza’s new novel fairly crackles with electric wit and precise comedic timing. Her award-winning talent as a playwright coupled with a lively prose style lends particular promise to Happy Are the Happy. Be prepared to spend an enjoyable winter’s evening with this tantalising little book.

Almost Famous Women by Megan Mayhew Bergman
There’s so much talk about this title, you’d think it’s on shelves already — that’s how excited people are about Almost Famous Women. And it’s with good reason; Megan Mayhew Bergman’s second collection, all about women on the fringes of history, is gutsy and expertly written. Sometimes books published in January fall off the radar when we think back on the year in reading: Mark my words that this beautiful collection won’t be one of them.


Binary Star by Sarah Gerard
Sarah Gerard’s lyrical prose is like nothing you’ve ever read — and that’s the case with the arresting Binary Star, too. If you listen to the murmur in the literary community, you’ll hear Gerard’s name everywhere: no one can get their hands on this book soon enough. Binary Star follows a young woman battling an eating disorder who takes a road trip with her alcoholic, long-distance boyfriend. Through their desperation, the very lost pair happen upon vegananarchism — what they think will give them some meaning.


The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins
It’s about time for another great can’t-put-‘er-down thriller, right? All our marbles on are on The Girl on the Train, which is already so buzzy, There’s a swarm of bees attached to the book. Hawkins’ book, which is already optioned for a film, follows a young girl who gets caught up in a murder mystery due to something she sees on her daily commute. It’s the kind of page-turner you’re glued to until the climax — can’t wait!


The Buried Giant by Kazuo Ishiguro
The author of Never Let Me Go is finally coming out with a new novel and… what’s that?Book lovers have already marked it as ‘To-Read’ in Goodreads? No one is entirely sure what this one is about except for “lost memories, love, revenge and war,” but it’s Ishiguro… so does it matter?

The Story of My Teeth by Valeria Luiselli
Gustavo ‘Turnpike’ Sánchez is a man with a mission: He is planning to replace every last one of his unsightly teeth. He has a few skills that might help him on his way: he can imitate Janis Joplin after two rums, he can interpret Chinese fortune cookies, he can stand an egg upright on a table, and he can float on his back. Written with elegance, wit and exhilarating boldness, Valeria Luiselli takes us on an idiosyncratic and hugely enjoyable journey that offers an insightful meditation on value, worth and creation, and the points at which they overlap.

A Spool of Blue Thread by Anne Tyler
After completing 19 novels, Pulitzer Prize winner Tyler is back with another book that promises to be masterful, too. “It was a beautiful, breezy, yellow-and-green afternoon.” This is the way Abby Whitshank always begins the story of how she fell in love with Red that day in July 1959. The whole family is on the porch, listening contentedly as Abby tells the tale they have heard so many times before. Brimming with the luminous insight, humour, and compassion that are Anne Tyler’s hallmarks, this capacious novel takes us across three generations of the Whitshanks, their shared stories and long-held secrets, all the unguarded and richly lived moments that combine to define who and what they are as a family.

An Untamed State by Roxane Gay
Daughter of one of Haiti’s richest men, Mireille is kidnapped, tortured, gang-raped and held for ransom. As Mireille waits silently to be set free, it soon becomes apparent that her ransom isn’t being paid. On the other side of the fence, her adoring husband pleads with her father to bring her home. Brutal, powerful and riveting, this book will have you on the edge of your seat.

Hausfrau by Jill Alexander Essbaum
This is an emotional tale that will hit home for many. Meet Anna, wife to Bruno. They live what appears to be a picture-perfect existence, but look closer and the cracks become visible. With an emotionally void husband, Anna reaches out for more meaning in her life and when language classes come up short she grabs hold of a warm hand and warm body. But once you cross that line is there any going back? Riveting and shocking.

The Possibilities by Kaui Hart Hemmings
From the author of The Descendants comes a remarkable tale of loss and love and a twist that will completely sideline you (in a good way). Sarah St John has lost her beloved 22-year-old son Cully in an avalanche and all she wants is to be left alone. Instead she gets just the opposite as her father, best friend and Cully’s father (with whom she has separated) storm into her life. Then if that wasn’t enough, enter Kit – who uproots this story even further. A read so good it’s already been optioned to be made into a Hollywood movie. Book list source : quora.

If Batman fought Wolverine

To decide who would win the fight between Batman and Wolverine, we must analyse the battle from their perspectives and then proceed to the final judgement.
However, we must keep in mind that theenvironment would play an important factor in deciding who would win.

For that we’d take two scenes of battles, first in a close space, say inside a building; and second, in an open space say, an open field.

STAGE 1 : BUILDING

BATMAN (thinking): The walls and door show claw marks, indicating the opponent will be using claws as a weapon. So, the opponent is either a beast or a mutated human. Keeping a distance from the opponent would be necessary. Long range attacks are helpful. Must keep in mind that the beast might have acute senses. So darkness won’t be much in my favour.
WOLVERINE (thinking): Whatever his armour is made of, I must make sure I rip them off. What powers can he possess?

*Wolverine draws his claws*
BATMAN: They’re not bones, they seem to be made of metal. My kevlar won’t be a strong defense.

Wolverine advances towards Batman ready to rip his suit and the flesh beneath it.
However Batman dodges it as a reflex and uses his Grapple to move away from him. Wolverine slashes a pillar of the house.

WOLVERINE: Damn, he is agile enough to dodge me. But he hasn’t shown his powers yet. He used a grapple to get away. And the belt. Sort of gadget holding utility device. *turns around* Where did he go?
BATMAN: That was close. The way the pillar was cut, it can’t be any usual metal. Oracle (in the radio), help me find a weak spot. I can’t hide for long.

*Oracle in the Bat cave gathers information on Wolverine*

A moment of silence in the room as Batman waits for Oracle to gather information on his opponent as Wolverine looks around for his counterpart. The silence makes his senses more acute as he tries to listen any small decibel of noise his opponent can create.

ORACLE (to Batman): You’re fighting against a mutant, who possesses animal-keen senses, enhanced physical capabilities, and powerful regenerative ability. His claws are covered with an unknown metal, Adamantium. It is almost indestructible. You can—–

Batman lowers his heartbeat as he listens to the information. But he is too late.
WOLVERINE: I can hear your heartbeat going low. But that’s not going to help!!
*Wolverine breaks the pillar and kicks Batman, who falls and hits the wall. His radio transmitter is broken*

Wolverine holds up Batman and draws back his claws to punch him in the face. Batman’s cowl holds some of his punches but it starts to wear down from the continuous attack of Adamantium-strengthened punches. Batman starts to bleed.

WOLVERINE: WHO ARE YOUU??!! YOU HAVE NO SUPERPOWERS AND YET YOU STAND AGAINST ME!!! YOU HAVE COME TO SEE YOUR END!

*Wolverine draws his claws and it pierces through the shoulders of the combatant*

Batman groans and loosens his fist. But not as a sign of giving up, instead he threw some grenades to the ground.
WOLVERINE: Whaa—

Before he could say anything the grenades flash and blind Wolverine. The noise and the flash from the three flash grenades distracts him and he releases Batman to the ground.

Wolverine comes to his senses to find himself alone. He can no longer sense any vital signs of Batman, meaning he is outside his radius. Angrily he turns around to move out of the house when he sees two missiles incoming. Before he could do anything, the house is blown up, with him inside.
Batman is seen getting out of his Batmobile to see if anything is left to destroy. He sees the house turned to ash as he gets back to his vehicle. But it’s not an easy win.

His systems in the vehicles show there’s movement inside the rubble. He looks outside through the windshield to see a someone walking out of the house. He appears burned but slowly his body heals, as his face show an emotion of wrath dawned upon it.
Leaving no other choice, Batman sends a code through his vehicle to send one of his strongest suits from the Watchtower: Hellbat.

STAGE 2: OPEN GROUND

Batman leaves the Batmobile and waits for the berserk samurai to join him in the final battlefield. The angry mutant draws his claws and runs towards the dark knight. But Batman stuns him by throwing electric batarangs at him. It slows Wolverine down, but not for long. The suit is taking it’s time to reach it’s destination. Batman has to stall him till then.

BATMAN: You have been killing people. You have shown no mercy. What good does it do to you?

You’re a human, not an animal.
WOLVERINE: WRONG! I am the Wolverine!
Wolverine hits Batman with his claws and injures him. Perhaps he has broken his ribs. The suit would be arriving any moment now..

The HELLBAT arrives and both of them could see it at a distance. Batman uses another smoke grenade to stun him. When the smoke is gone, Wolverine finds Batman at a distance but not in his suit. What was his plan then?

It was then he found the suit attaching itself to his body. But why would Batman do that? Wolverine tried to rip off the pieces from his body but he cannot hold it for long.
Soon he is inside the suit and he finds himself weakening.
Yes, the suit absorbs the body’s metabolism to use it in the fight and prolonged effect can lead to death.
Batman must have accelerated the absorbing rate of the machine. But this doesn’t stop Wolverine, the derived energy is released as blasts from the suit. As he cannot control the suit, the blasts are sprayed everywhere and Batman has to dodge it. After some time the machine calms down as it has derived all energy from Wolverine, leaving him to an old, vulnerable form. Any moment, his body recovers, the machine absorbs the energy, leaving the beast in it’s cage.

(For representation purpose)
Batman moves close to the suit, holding it’s prisoner.
BATMAN: You underestimated my superpower. You ignored my only superpower I have. I never give up.
Post was written by : Suman Kumar Behra on Quora.com

 

10 famous but egoistic celebrities

Quite often celebrities lose their tamper and do crazy egoistic stuffs. Here are 10 famous but egoistic celebrities :-

 

1) Katrina Kaif:


She’s known for arrogance and attitude. Not behaving well with the airport authorities. Not treating her fellow passengers nicely. She has an ego problem. Being too proud of the movies she makes.

2) Jennifer Aniston:


Yes,our beloved Rachel as we know her. Jennifer Aniston is too self-centred. There was an article about her saying that David Schwimmer has broken his friendship with her because she didn’t remember the name of his fiancée. She didn’t help Matthew Perry with his Tv show and apparently expects to be treated like a diva. Plus she was always late on the set of Friends for which the cast of the sitcom held an intervention for her.

3) Katy Perry:


The very popular pop singer katy perry. She is rude and obnoxious. She is rude to her staff and treats them like shit.

4) Kanye West:


He is not very talented and he constantly compares himself to Jesus or a god. disrespectful and narcissistic.Most conceded people at least have reason to justify their attitude. Kanye is an exception. Despite a complete lack of talent he still has a massive ego and even has the audacity to call himself an artist.

5)Jennifer Lopez:


Jennifer Lopez has a gig ego problem. She would never talk to people directly. Whatever she wants would be told to her manager and her manager has to convey the message. If someone tries to talk to her she loses her mind and behaves rudely.

6)Nicki Minaj:


Rude behaviour with her staff and sometimes her fans. Her songs are meaningless and don’t make any sense. Stardom has struck her so hard that she can’t even behave properly to the people around her.

7) Shahrukh Khan

The self-proclaimed ‘Badshah of Bollywood’ is also known for his tantrums and excessive ego. From abusing pitch curators at Wankhede to slapping his best friend’s spouse, the list is almost endless. He has however managed to raise a band of mediocre associates, who rule the roost in India’s largest film Industry.
Shahrukh khan is also known for having an opinion on almost all phenomenons of life; even things he is not even remotely aware of; Politics, Cricket, International Relations and so on…
8) Aamir Khan
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Mr. Perfectionist as known in the industry is known both for his top-notch acting and uncanny promotion skills. From showing his egoistic and ruthless behaviours towards Shahrukh Khan by calling his dog SRK to speaking up against tolerant nation and instead of apologizing calling the nation intolerant again. Looks like Aamir has his own share of egoism.
9) Salman Khan
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Salman Khan is the least egoistic person in this list but yet he is in. From committing multiple prison worthy crime to bashing out on boyfriends of your ex. Salman Khan has done it all. He could have stayed humble but his ego of being a big star came in and some how ruined some good part of his life.
10) Kim Kardashian
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Well no doubt she deserves a spot in this list She’s a Kardashian, you can expect this from her. The Kardashians are the last ladies standing in reality TV because they’ve simply always believed they were celebrities – endlessly amused with themselves, endlessly oblivious to one another.

 

Was Ravana father of Sita?

Ravana is considered to be the evil and his death is signified as victory of good over evil. Very few know Ravana not only was a genius who worked with prisms to create his 10 heads but also was/could be the father of Sita. Surprised? The Ramayana (Hindu epic) is one of the most significant narratives that have shaped Indian culture and there are many versions of Ramayana. Each showcasing slightly different tales. As the culture changes from one location to the other, some ambiguities are created which leads to change in the mythology. Though this is hard to say which mythology or the history is correct but non of them could be neglected before understanding each one of them.

Same with Sita’s birth, it has been depicted differently in different versions of Ramayana. In Valmiki’s Ramayana, Sita is said to have been discovered by the Mithila king Janaka in a furrow while he was ploughing the drought hit lands of his country, and for that reason is regarded as a daughter of Bhoomi Devi (the goddess earth), she was then adopted and brought up by the Mithila Naresh Janaka and his wife Sunayana.

 

Sita as Daughter of Ravana-

Now as I wrote earlier that there could be many versions of a story. Likewise there are some versions of Ramayana which mentions Sita as daughter Ravana.
Vedavati(An Avtar of Goddess Lakshmi), a pious brahmin woman wanted to marry Vishnu. She was living in an ashram on a riverbank. Once while Vedavati was meditating on the riverbank, Ravana happened to see her. He was enamored by her beauty and tried to violate her. To escape from Ravana she jumped into a fire pit created for Yajna. Before dying she cursed Ravana that in her next birth she will be responsible for his death.

Representational purpose : Ravana trying to violate Vadavati. In second Vedavati in the fire to save her dignity.
Representational purpose : Ravana trying to violate Vadavati. In second Vedavati in the fire to save her dignity.


In her next birth, Vedavati was born as Ravana and Mandodhari’s daughter. Astrologers predicted that the baby will be responsible for her father’s death. To save his life, Ravana threw the little girl child into the sea. The child fell on the lap of sea-goddess Varuni. Goddess Varuni took the girl child to the shores and gave her to Bhoomi Devi. Goddess Bhoomi then gave her to King Janaka while ploughing a field.It won’t be wrong to say Vedavati was reincarnated as Sita.

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King Janaka ploughed Mithila farms to fight back drought. In later he finds bhoomi putri Sita in the grounds.

Uttara Purana-

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According to Uttara Purana, Ravana had bad intentions for Manivati the princess of Alkapuri. Manivati pledged to take revenge on Ravana. Later she was reborn as the daughter of Ravana and Mandodari. But the astrologers predicted that the child would destroy his lineage. So, Ravana ordered his servant to kill the child. However the servant did not kill the girl and instead buried her in Mithila where she was found by Janaka.

 

Jaina Ramayana portraits Ravana’s love towards Sita the other way round


According to Jaina Ramayana, Sita was born as daughter of Ravana. However the astrologers predicted that the first child of Ravana would be responsible for his death. Therefore Ravana ordered his servants to take the child to some distant lands and bury her there. Thus, she was found and adopted by Janaka.
It appears in Jaina Ramayana that Ravana was in love with Sita but only as a father loves his daughter. Though Ravana ordered his servants to bury her in a distant land, he kept a check on Sita’s whereabouts. He was overjoyed to find that Sita was adopted by a Janaka. He also attended Sita’s swayamvara ceremony to see her get married.

(Mithila painting) Ravana kidnapping Sita from forrest.
(Mithila painting) Ravana kidnapping Sita from forrest.

He was happy to see that Sita got married to Raghuvamshi Rama. All was well until Ram was sent to exile for 14 years.
He didn’t want his daughter to suffer in forest and wanted to put an end to the misery. So he abducted her and brought her to Lanka.

 

There are many explanations for a single story. It is upon the readers to consider which theory they like. Ravana was a genius Brahmin, the mightiest worshippper of Lord Shiva who always knew what will be the outcome of his next step. He always knew the fate of provoking war against Rama. Even the evils have a paltry of good in them, the voice deep down under which led to the victory of good over evil.

Why people like Game of Thrones. Explained

Game of thrones falls in the perfect niche. It has something everyone likes. It has so many elements to it that somehow, it caters to everyone’s imagination of a great fantasy show.

 

  • Magic and Mystery
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    The key element in any fantasy show is maintaining an element of magic and mystery. No contemporary TV show can top game of thrones in this department. While being central to the show, magic is quite tasteful and minimalistic.

  • Magical beasts
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    ​Realistic graphics and great storytelling have brought these haunting creatures to life. Also, who doesn’t like dragons!

  • Politics and Corruption
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    As the name suggests, this show is all about the games the highborn play to acquire the throne. This display of gruesome politics and rampant corruption is strangely appealing to watch.

  • Action and Violence
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    The portrayal of action in this show is flamboyant, while managing to stay in the realms of reality. That is a commendable achievement in itself. The scenes, be it wars or individual battles, are beautifully portrayed.

  • Sex
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    ​ This show has become synonymous with TV nudity. But these scenes, although more than most of the shows surprisingly don’t feel out of place. In fact, most of them are crucial to the plot of the overall story. This is a huge win.

  • Scenery
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    The beautiful castles, the marching armies, green rolling fields are a real treat to our eyes which are accustomed to seeing random buildings and skyscrapers. The show visually transports us to the beautiful lands and surroundings of medieval Europe.

 

 

  • Depth
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    The directors have made an exceptional attempt to bring the immense depth and complexity of this story to life. The number of characters and past events stretching back thousands of years which influence the current happenings is alarming. At the same time, it gives the viewers a chance to marvel at this well thought out fictional universe.

  • Distinct lack of stereotypes
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​ This is not the usual good-vs-evil story where we get a clear idea of the good and bad guys, right from the first episode. Every character has multiple shades to his/her personality. This gives the individual characters a new level of depth, lacking in other shows. This makes them human.

 

  • Dialogues
    when-you-play-the-game-of-thrones-you-win-or-you-die-there-is-no-middle-ground-quote-1 game-thrones

    Finally, the part which appeals to every viewer are the crisp and ground breaking dialogues this show has to offer. One can not help but be amazed at the creative genius of George R.R. Martin.

 

  • And of course :- Tyrion Lannister

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Tyrion Lannister, a dwarf from the Lannister family is the only loved character from the Lannisters. everyone enjoys his presence on the screen. He’s one of the reasons to watch Game of Thrones for.

 

There are many more reasons to love Game of Thrones. Let us know yours and if you do not watch this show then this is the time to re think where your life is going.

10 south Indian movies to watch for if you liked Drishyam

Did you like Drishyam? The Ajay Devgann starer movie is a hindi version of the Malyalam movie with the same name. South Indian movies are rich in story and proper scripting. There are few other south Indian movies which you will love to watch and despite having a language barrier you will appreciate these great south Indian flicks.

 

1. Manichithrathazhu (Malayalam)

 

 

This film is such a classic in Kerala that there is no point in asking a Keralite or ‘Malayalee’, “have you watched Manichithrathazhu?“. The question must be like “How many times?” This is an excerpt from Wikipedia page of the film.

 

“Twenty years after its release it has been screened more than 12 times a year on average on Kerala’s leading TV channel, Asianet. This film has received the maximum TRP rating on every screening; TRP ratings have increased every year. This is a rare record for a movie produced in Kerala.”


This film was remade in Tamil and Telugu as Chandramukhi, in Hindi as Bhool Bhulaiyaa, in Kannada as Apthamitra and in Bengali as Rajmohol.

I have watched the Tamil and Hindi versions. Tamil version had much changes in the storyline as compared to the original Manichithrathazhu. In Hindi, however the changes to the core storyline was comparatively less. You, being a North Indian, must have seen Bhool Bhulaiyaa. But I strongly recommend you to watch this one since it is , in my opinion, is one of the best psycho-thrillers ever produced in Indian Cinema.

2. Kannathil Muthamittaal (Tamil)

 


This Mani Ratnam movie is the story of Amudha, a nine year old girl, going in search of her parents. As the film progresses, the journey of Amudha elevates from being just a story of a nine year old girl to the geopolitics of this part of South Asia. It’s a beautifully crafted film which will leave us in the middle of many emotional, moral and political questions. I do watch some of the scenes from this movie in youtube even now, especially the climax scenes which are undoubtedly some of the best performances happened in Indian Cinema.

3. Anbe Sivam (Tamil)

 


Anbe Sivam is noted for one of the best performances ever made by Kamal Hasan and it should be. Kamal showed an extra ordinary brilliance in portraying his character in this movie. He was very well supported by R Madhavan. If you see the story of this film, we see regular Tamil romantic-masala stories if taken individually one by one, but on a collective sense it transforms to something extra ordinary and man, what a climax!

4. Iruvar (Tamil)

 


For me, this is the movie where the acting skills of Mohanlal was exploited to the maximum and if someone asks me which is the best movie of Mohanlal till date(I might be starting a non ending debate here), I will say Iruvar, without any hesitation. And particularly this scene in the picture took my breath away! How effortlessly is he acting!

I was really sad to know that this film bombed in the box office. For me, this was the masterpiece of Mani Ratnam. The film showed absolute class, in every aspects, whether it be the music, casting, cinematography, acting, or any other possible aspect.

5. Kaazhcha (Malayalam)

 


It’s about a boy who happens to be a Gujrat earthquake victim reaching Kerala and meeting a film operator named Madhavan. Film was noted for it’s script and the performance of Mammootty as Madhavan.

6. Traffic (Malayalam)

 


This movie was a trend-setter in Malayalam. The treatment and pace of the movie was pretty new to Malayalam. I was really impressed by the screenplay which is said to be inspired from an incident happened in Chennai. This movie was remade into Tamil and the Hindi remake of the same is happening.

7. Pithamagan(Tamil)

 

 

This gentleman you see in the mirror is Vikram, the same person you saw in Raavan(Hindi) as the police officer. Vikram did a splendid job in the film(for which he got the national award for best actor) along with Suriya(Rakthacharithra fame) who also was stunning in my opinion.

8. Mumbai Police(Malayalam)

 


This one is an absolutely stunning crime thriller which had Prithviraj(you might have seen him in Aiyya and Aurangzeb) and is noted as one among the best roles portrayed by Prithviraj in his whole career. The screenplay was amazing and if you are interested in thriller genre movies, don’t miss this one.

9. Aadukalam(Tamil)

 


Aadukalam portrays the politics of human relationships and emotions, and that too in a careful and precise manner. The film absolutely stunned me, both by performance and by the beauty of story telling.

10. Thanmathra(Malayalam)

 


A beautiful script backed by some beautiful performances. Thanmathra talks about Alzheimer’s disease, but what I found interesting is that it not just the portrayal of the disease, it’s about family, love and relationships.

 

The list comprises of Tamil and Malayalam movies only. If you are done seeing this list, we will love to compile another list with such great regional movies in India. Source : Friends and Quora.

Sports and terrorism : The show must go on

The show must go on”, that’s what International Olympic Committee (IOC) president Avery Brundage had said in 1972 a day after the Black September massacre. He was castigated by many for saying so. How could the IOC president let the showpiece event in Munich continue and not take stock of what had happened? How could he not be sensitive to lives lost to terror?

May be history would have judged him more kindly. May be he was not wrong after all. By doing what he did, by not giving in to terror and using sport to stand up to it, he created a template that is still being followed by people from across the world.

PIC : Julian Herbert / Allsport / Getty
PIC : Julian Herbert / Allsport / Getty

Can sport really do it? Does it have any power in the face of serious political adversity? Does the fact that England and France played at Wembley in the aftermath of the Paris attacks with fans singing the French national anthem have any real significance? Does sport really have the power to bring people together in the aftermath of atrocities like the Paris massacre?

 

It was just days after the 26/11 attacks that the English team came back to India to play two Test matches. In the words of Sachin Tendulkar, “It was extremely difficult to focus on cricket after all that had happened. May be that’s why the win was so significant. It was as if we were able to do a little to bring the country back to normalcy. While nothing can ever make up for the grief people had suffered, we felt we had at least been able to bring a smile to people’s faces for a few seconds.” That’s the whole point. Sport has the power to captivate, to enable people to forget their sorrows and disappointments and for a few seconds and join in a celebration of sorts. Why else the French national anthem at the Wembley?

The fact that the French team had travelled to England, that they took the field braving all that had happened in Paris some days ago, English and French fans filling the galleries signalled the power of sport. Interestingly, this isn’t the first time sport has been used in this way.

And clearly it will not be the last. The Olympics, as many will agree, is a peace symbol first and then a sporting event. The Olympic flame is a symbol of harmony and celebrates cultural plurality and togetherness.

Sri Lankan cricket team leaving the cricket ground after terrorists attacked Sri Lankan teams bus on their way to the ground in Pakistan.
Sri Lankan cricket team leaving the cricket ground after terrorists attacked Sri Lankan teams bus on their way to the ground in Pakistan.

Cricket too has been used many a time to combat terror. Take the 1996 World Cup for example. When Australia and the West Indies refused to travel to an LTTE ravaged Sri Lanka, there was every threat the island will be declared a terrorist state. At the behest of Jagmohan Dalmiya a joint India Pakistan team travelled to Sri Lanka and played what was far more than a cricket match. It allowed Sri Lankans a fresh lease of life and the fact that Arjuna Ranatunga’s team went on to script history is perhaps a fitting riposte to all that had happened. So what role can we ascribe to sport in the near future in our attempt to combat terror? Was it the right call to send the French team to England?

The answer is a resounding yes. As I have mentioned elsewhere, sport is far more than medals won and records broken. As the popular saying goes in Olympic academic circles, ‘Take sports out of the Olympics and you still have the movement to fall back on’. While this is certainly an exaggeration, it is time to accept sport is never only about sportspeople. Rather, it is meant as a mechanism to garner mass support in the poorest of countries, among men and women who will make it to a sports contest.

Helicopter evacuating olympic players after terrorist attack
Helicopter evacuating olympic players after terrorist attack

Sport, and its relevant records and statistics, are important for the way in which they can affect societies surrounding them. Thus, when the Puerto Ricans march in the Olympic opening ceremony even when they don’t have a representative in the United Nations, or when an Indian hockey team wins gold after defeating its former colonial masters in 1948 and finally when an England stadium sings the French anthem the significance of such acts stretches far beyond the narrow confines of sport.

Written by a sports enthusiast Nitesh Kumar for pikapost.com

How to impress girls, explained by a girl

Are you having trouble impressing a girl? are you shy enough to know what and how to talk to a girl? Is it that you have good money and gadgets but still fail to impress girls?

Is this how you feel when you see your crush?

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These things might worry you a lot, these things are troublesome and decreases your social status. When look handsome is not enough, you need to be impressive and flattery. Worry not, I will be your guide when it comes to impress girls!

1. Intelligence and competency

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(regardless of what field you are in). I like smart guys who are really good at what they do.

2. A strong sense of humor.

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Unexpected jokes. Never missing a beat. (See “intelligence”)

3. Generosity and kindness.

smart3

This relates to you being competent and successful in your work so you can afford to treat your lady (and everyone else in life) well. Again, see point 1.

4. A positive attitude.

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Being able to roll with the punches, forgive easily, maintain your cool even under pressure. Being polite, patient, that kind of thing.

5. Dependability.

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You show up when you say you will; can call when you say will call, etc… You can be counted on to get to work on time, get yourself home in one piece (not drunk), stay on top of things. You take responsibility for your life. You don’t blame your parents or everyone else in the world for your problems.

6. Smelling nice, looking good, and being dressed appropriately.

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You are smart enough to understand the value of proper personal hygiene, grooming, nutrition and exercise, and you have decent taste in clothes. I put this last because it’s superficial stuff. But it helps!

 

7. Love kids

Barney-Stinson-Baby

Chics dig it when guys like and admire kids. So why don’t you get close to your nephews if not then her nephews.

Aside from that, it’s a matter of chemistry. Notice these are attributes, not random acts of heroism. You can’t trick me into being impressed by you with some crazy antics (however amusing they may be). You are either quality man meat, or you are not. The rest is just gravy.

I know this answer is far from the most impressive so far – and probably not what you were looking for – but it just happens to be true. For me anyway. Then again, I’m not that young. 15-year-old me would have said “be hot and be able to play the guitar”. Which just goes to show…

Haunted Stories : Shaniwar Wada fort, Pune

Shaniwar wada fort in Pune was built by the Peshwas in the 18th century and is the poster boy of tourism in Pune. The sheer architectural brilliance was lost to the British empire in 1818. Later the fort was sustained back by the Maratha empire but it went under a fire which damaged the heritage and the major part was a waste. Though the remains of the fort remain open for the general public. The cause of the fire is still unknown and it is believed this is from where the spooky and haunted activities started in this fort. It is believed that the level of supernatural activity is on its zenith on every full moon night. Got spooky already?

 

The locals say that Shaniwar Wada is haunted. The ghost of young Peshwa, Narayanrao supposedly still haunts the structure. The story behind this rumor sent a shiver down my spine. This place is a layer of secrets and a token of royal power struggle. Here is one of the most engaging bits of history that many of us have no clue about.

Nanashaheb had three sons, Vishwasrao, Madhavrao and Narayanrao. Vishwasrao perished in the third battle of Panipat which was waged between the Marathas and a triumvirate of King Ahmad Shah Durrani of Afghanistan, the Rohilla Afghans of Doab, and Shuja ud Daula, the Nawab of Awadh. After Nanashaheb died, Madhavrao being the elder one succeeded the throne. During the third war of Panipat, Madhavrao was a chief strategist, but some of his strategies backfired and he considered himself to be responsible for his elder brother Vishwasrao’s death. Madhavrao plunged into constant depression and died due to deteriorating health soon after. Young Narayanrao hence became the Peshwa at the age of roughly sixteen. Narayanrao’s uncle, Nanasheb’s brother Raghunathrao also known as Raghoba was appointed the regent who had to bear the responsibilities of administration till the time Narayanrao was a minor.

Raghoba and his wife Anandibai were not happy with this development. They had a hunger for power and they couldn’t bear to see a boy become the Peshwa. Add to that Narayanrao was believed to be arrogant and very impulsive. He was aware of the bitter relations his elder brother Madhavrao had with his uncle and it was believed that an unsuccessful assassination attempt on Madhavrao was hatched by Raghoba himself. Things started becoming ugly when both Narayanrao and Raghoba were fed ill feelings for each other by their closest advisers. Narayanrao in a fit of rage ordered Raghoba to be taken under house arrest.

Anandibai became furious. Her desire to end this power struggle and win the throne once and for all reached its zenith. She plotted her husband’s escape. Narayanrao had been in strife with a hunting tribe called Gardi who were originally Bheels from Central India. Raghoba sent a signed letter to Sumer Singh Gardi, the chief of the Gardis which read “Narayanrao la dhara” (Capture Narayanrao). Anandibai saw opportunity in that moment and changed just one alphabet of that letter and made it read “Narayanrao la mara” (Kill Narayanrao).

The Gardis, highly trained assassins, scaled the fort in the cover of night and ambushed the palace. They made way to the chamber of a sleeping Narayanrao, eliminating all obstacles in their way. Narayanrao on seeing the Gardis baying for his blood began running for his life. He ran towards his uncle Raghoba’s chambers screaming “Kaaka! Maala vaachva!” (Uncle, save me!). The assassins caught hold of Narayanrao and hacked him to pieces with swords.

Here there are two interpretations of the legend. One was that Raghoba believed that Narayanrao was just being taken captive, as Anantibai had intercepted Narayanrao and his screams were considered by Raghoba to be just a boy being captured. Another was that the young boy was slaughtered mercilessly in front of a mute, emotionless Raghoba as the boy kept on wailing “Kaka, maala vaachva”. Legend says that the boy was hacked into so many pieces that his remains had to be carried out in a vessel. This vessel was taken to the nearest river and the pieces were dumped there.

Even today, the locals say that on a full moon night, one can hear a young boy screaming “Kaka, maala vaachva”.

There are many locals who actually camp at night on the fort grounds just to hear the little boy’s scream.
It is preferable to visit the fort during day hours since the fort is deserted at night except for maybe a caretaker. Visit this place at your own risk as this would definitely be the scariest place in Pune. factual sources : Quora

Life lessons to learn from Rahul Dravid – The Wall

Rahul Dravid, the wall of Indian cricket has given us a lot of memories while playing for the nation. He is an acting role model for many Indian cricketers and players like Ajinkya Rahane and Pujara themselves go and meet the man to get some advice. We very well know how these kids perform under the influence of Dravid. Here are some interesting lessons to be learnt from Rahul Dravid, written by Mohit singh on Quora

1. Deliver despite the odds :

Well everyone remembers India’s Historic Win over Mighty Aussies in Eden Garden in 2001 . A win that’s only heard in fairy tales . And featuring that win was a splendid knock of 281 by VVS Laxman and a beautiful display of bowling by Harbhajan Singh .
Lesser number of people remember Dravid’s 180 not out in the same match. And many less remember that Dravid was unwell during the knock and was on antibiotics.
He was dropped to No. 6 in the batting order, severely criticised for failing against Steve Waugh’s mighty Australians, and was suffering cramps and dehydration. The innings was one best described as effort and toil personified.And the innings proved that

” An achiever needs to be resourceful. When going gets tough, tough gets going. Find solutions to the odd situations to turn them into your favour.”

2. It’s the team that comes first :


Well he is probably the finest example of a remarkable team player . Whatever role was demanded of him, he did it for his team’s cause.
Quoting from an article of Harsha Bhogle
There were two things Dravid didn’t really love in cricket: opening the batting and keeping wicket. He was asked to do both at various times, and I asked him if he ever contemplated saying no. He didn’t enjoy it, he said, but took it as a challenge, to see how good he could be. This acceptance of challenges is what has defined his cricket and made him one of the finest team players there has been. A challenge, he said, allowed him to understand himself better, it gave him a reason to play sport. If he shied away, he would never know how good he could be. He kept wicket in about 70 one-day internationals, never most convincingly, but he allowed himself to look bad for the team to look good. It was always the team for him “

3. Patience :


” In an era of instant gratification, we settle for short trees, but patience has its own rewards.”

Well there was a reason why he was so successful batsman in Test Cricket and it was his patience . He never hurried through his innings , he was willing to bide his time, leave alone the good deliveries and patiently wait to punish the bad one. At times, he was willing to aggressively defend. He always had the larger interests of the team in mind. Once playing, he was neither afraid of the hardship, nor tempted by personal glory.

There are the Sachins, the Sehwags, the Laxmans and the Dhonis, but when it comes to playing the sheet anchor’s role, and giving the innings the required solidity from one end (so that the batsman at the other end can play his strokes), the Indian team think-tank doesn’t look beyond Rahul Dravid. He just makes the bowlers so tired with his speculate defence allowing his team mates to cash on runs. This has been a tale all these years.

And I suppose that’s what earned him the title of “THE WALL ” .

4. Temperament and Consistent Hard work :


As Navjot Singh Sidhu Quoted about Dravid :Some succeeded because they are destined to, but he succeeded because he was Determined to”

He is the man who has grown by hard work and willpower, a sheer determination to rise above. Despite the number of runs and centuries that Rahul Dravid scored in international cricket, his pre-match preparation had a routine that visualizing himself scoring runs on the pitch to be used for the forthcoming match. Great sportsmen don’t play for money or glory. They play for a feeling that is something beyond.

5. Playing it the Gentlemen’s way :


Off the field, Dravid is remarkably shy, but carrying himself with a good deal of grace and humility. The respect he has earned is not merely due to his cricketing exploits alone; opponents have praised him for carrying the same conduct on to the field and remaining modest despite being a run-scoring colossus in the international cricketing arena. It, therefore, came as no surprise when he was selected to deliver the ninth Bradman Oration at Canberra in December 2011, becoming the first non-Australian cricketer to do so.

Currently, Rahul Dravid is working with India Under-19 cricket team. With Dravid’s commitment towards the game and team’s hardwork they recently won a tri-series in and against Bangladesh with the third being Afghanistan. We wish Rahul Dravid keeps on serving for the cricket in one way or the another and always be the role model we deserve, both on and off the field.