Wednesday, June 29, 2005

In Dire Straits, and out of it.

I went to a Mark Knopfler concert yesterday the the Radio City Auditorium in NY city. Amazing fun!!! Check out my pics at Yahoo photos. And the clips I could manage to capture on my camera (more on my camera later) - Clip 1, Clip 2, Clip 3. (Please dont sue me...). For the ones interested in more details ones check out dalal's blog entry. Its was some "dream come true" moment for him. The last time he had a "dream come true" moment, we had 14 cars backing out and just 6 cars racing on the Indianapolis speedway. So I was really really wary going in there.

The ambience was good, the music was great, though the place seemed too formal for a rock concert. He played famous numbers like Romeo and Juliet, Sultans of Swing, So Far Away, Telegraph Road, Money for Nothing with the exception of Tunnel of Love. Had a nice dinner at Bubba-Gump Shrimp at Times Square on the way back. It's a nice place set in Forrest Gump style with all of Forrest's and Bubba's and Lieutenant Dan's and Jenny's and Mom's favorite drinks and dishes. A real nice marketing strategy. And it works too...


Tennis update: Federer killed Gonzalez in 3......
Prediction: Semis, Federer kills Hewitt. Finals, Federer kills Roddick playing at 75% of his usual self. 3rd Wimbledon in a row. Then US open.... then French within the next 3 years......then 15 Grand Slams in all, within the next 6/7 years. The only one who can stop Roger is Roger himself.

Monday, June 27, 2005

Ekki - The Indian magician

The great Indian cricket player of the 70s Eknath Solkar passed away yesterday at the age of 57. He was the only Indian player I know of, who was known more for his fielding ability than anything else. He was the Jonty Rhodes of the 70s, at a time when specialized fielders was a concept unheard of in cricket. His catch to dismiss Alan Knott, which he took diving full stretch forward, in The Oval Test in 1971 is one of greatest fielding pieces ever, which helped India turn the match around and then go on to win its first test series in England. Needless to say, he was a pakka Mumbai-ite like yours truly and a fighter to the core. He was the son of the groundsman at the PJ Hindu Gymkhana. He later went on to play for the Gymkhana, the then Bombay (Mumbai) Ranji trophy team and finally for the national side.

Sunday, June 26, 2005

You talking to me???

On every street in every city, there's a nobody who dreams of being a somebody. He's a lonely forgotten man desperate to prove that he's alive.

Another classic, another Martin Scorcese-Robert DeNiro combo, Taxi Driver. A darkish movie about a loner taxi driver from the mean streets of New York city. It features 14 year old Jodie Foster in her film debut as a 12 and 1/2 year old prostitute . It recieved Oscars for the best picture, best actor(DeNiro), best supporting actress (Foster) and best original music score. Nothing more to say. Must see, but not for the mushy types.

Saturday, June 25, 2005

Raging Bull

I remember those cheers
They still ring in my ears
And for years they'll remain in my thoughts
Cuz one night I took off my robe
And what'd I do
I forgot to wear shorts.
I recall every fall, every hook, every jab
The worst way a guy could get rid of his flab
As you know, my life was a jab...
Though I'd rather hear you cheer
When I delve into Shakespeare
"A Horse, a Horse, my Kingdom for a Horse,"
I haven't had a winner in six months...
I know I'm no Olivier
But if he fought Sugar Ray
He would say
That the thing ain't the ring
It's the play.
So gimme a stage
Where this bull here can rage
And though I can fight
I'd much rather recite
That's entertainment!
That's entertainment.

Caught an old classic movie the other day - Raging Bull. It is based on the life of Jake LaMotta, "a temperamental and paranoid but tenacious boxer" who alienates himself from his friends and family. Directed by Martin Scorcese, it stars Robert DeNiro as Jake LaMotta and Joe Pesci as his brother. Brilliant direction and cast, the Italian brigade pulls off another classic.

One of my favorite actors, Robert DeNiro has five movies in the Time Magazine top 100 movies of all time - Godfather 2, Taxi Driver, Raging Bull, Brazil, and Goodfellas. The variety of roles he can portray is amazing. You can find his detailed bio here.

Staying on the topic of Italian-Americans, did u know that Nicolas Cage was born Nicholas Kim Coppola, and is a nephew of Francis Ford Copolla. He changed his name to make it in the film world on his own, without using his uncle's reputation.

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

My man - Roger Federer

Roger Federer is, in my opinion, the best player to ever play the game of tennis. Here is a clip of a superb backhand lob against Agassi that even suprised Federer at Dubai '05. There is no point extolling his greatness or iterating his myriad records, there are thousands of sites on the net which do so. I will let four of the greatest players of all time tell you what they think of Roger:
  • "Oh, I would be honoured to even be compared to Roger. He is such an unbelievable talent, and is capable of anything. Roger could be the greatest tennis player of all time." - Rod Laver, winner of 11 Grand Slams, considered by some the greatest player to ever play the game of tennis.

  • "I think he can dominate tennis for as long as I did...We have the same temperament and like me, he makes playing look easy...He can do just about anything he wants with a racquet and he dominates everybody as I did several years before." - Pete Sampras, winner of record 14 Grand Slams. Federer beat Sampras in their only meeting - at Wimbledon in 2001.

  • "He's the most gifted player that I've ever seen in my life. I've seen a lot of people play. I've seen the (Rod) Lavers, I played against some of the great players - the Samprases, Beckers, Connors', Borgs, you name it. This guy could be the greatest of all time. That, to me, says it all." - John McEnroe, winner of 7 Grand Slams.

  • "Roger Federer is the only guy I watch for his strokes. He is just beautiful. He can hit every single shot you could ever think of. John [McEnroe] and Ilie [Nastase] were very talented but you always knew there were some shots they couldn't hit. Not with Federer. I would go and watch him practise, he's so good." - Ivan Lendl, winner of 8 Grand Slams.
Here are some of the links you can check out:
The official site
A very informative fan-blog
The omniscient Wikipedia entry
Wikiquote entry

Monday, June 13, 2005

The Godfather

Don't you think that The Godfather (Parts 1 & 2) movies are the best movies ever? The impact which the movie delivers from time to time is just unique. Amazing music to add to the effect. Every time I see the movie, I am more in awe of the genius. One of the best pieces of filmmaking ever. Hats off Mr Francis Ford Coppola.

Here are some of the impactful quotes from the movies. Writing them down is a really an injustice to their greatness. They can really only be enjoyed while watching the movies:

The Godfather (Part 1):

Some day, and that day may never come, I'll call upon you to do a service for me. Until that day, accept this justice as a gift on my daughters wedding day".
Vito Corleone

"No Sicilian can refuse any request on his daughter's wedding day".
Tom Hagan

"I'm gonna make him an offer he can't refuse".
Vito Corleone

"But I'm a superstitious man. And if some unlucky accident should befall him - If he should get shot in the head by a police officer, or if he should hang himself in his jail cell - or if he's struck by a bolt of lightning, them I'm going to blame some of the people in this room, and that I do not forgive. But, that aside, let me say that I swear, on the souls of my grandchildren, that I will not be the one to break the peace we've made here today."
Vito Corleone

"Sonofabitch! Do you know who I am? I'm Moe Greene! I made my bones when you were going out with cheerleaders!"
Moe Green

"Fredo. You're my older brother, and I love you. But don't ever take sides with anyone against the Family again. Ever. "
Michael Corleone

You're finished. I'm putting you on a plane to Vegas . I want you to stay there. Understand? Only don't tell me you're innocent. Because it insults my intelligence, and makes me very angry".
Michael Corleone

The Godfather (Part 2):

"Keep your friends close, but your enemies closer"
Michael Corleone

"I know it was you Fredo. You broke my heart"
Michael Corleone

"Taken care of me! You're my kid brother and you're gonna take care of me!"
Fredo Corleone

"Fredo. You're nothing to me now. You're not brother, you're not a friend. I don't wanna know you or what you do".
Michael Corleone

"If anything in this life is certain; If history has taught us anything. It say's you can kill anyone".
Michael Corleone

You can find the full listing here.