Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Trying to put your arms around the world

On US-2, on the way to Lake Chelan.

This photo reminded me of Eddie Vedder’s brilliant cover of “Hard Sun”

A world full of possibilities. A big hard sun, and an even bigger sky. I wonder what Montana, Big Sky Country must be like.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Seen around Seattle

An open mind and a keen eye yields interesting observations:

- Graffiti on the embankment of the canal below the Montlake Bridge - “God of War” “May your hammer be mighty!” Que?

- Outside the Montlake Bike shop, a guy was loading a bike onto the bike rack on the back of his car. A common enough sight, except the car in question was a Porsche Boxster.

- Ever notice how, in this most germophobic of nations, people think nothing of smoking from the same joint? I’m simply aghast. Do weed smokers carry a bottle of mouthwash around to wash their mouth after sharing  a joint? Maybe dealers should sell a combo pack. I remember a smoker friend in India mentioning that 1 cigarette + 1 Menthol was a standard combo you got at paan shops.

- Bike rack in my apartment building parking lot: What’s a stroller doing there? Saw this not once, but twice. Does a couple actually ‘park’ the stroller there and carry the baby upstairs?

- Next to recycle bin for my apartment building: A pair of crutches. I’m sure a hospital or a Goodwill would have found some use for these. What a waste.

- Queen Sheeba in Capitol Hill. Ethiopian Restaurant. On a saturday night, four tables are occupied. All by Indians. Wow.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Top That

The Doctor Who revival 4 years back began promisingly enough. A joie de vivre marked the proceedings, and Christopher Eccleston made a fine Doctor. Everything about him was fun. He was rough around the edges without being too annoying. He was dashing in his own way in his leather jacket. And he had a great way of saying "fantastic!" that endeared him in my heart forever.

The show was something else. The revival worked wonders for the franchise because it was really well-written - first by Russell T. Davies and then a bevy of writers coming in to do individual stories. The acting was good - Eccleston was great,and Billie Piper as the Doctor's companion was quite competent. And, this is the clincher: Doctor Who has the capacity to regenerate, which gives the show flexibility in terms of changing out the actors.

After the first season, for whatever reason, they decided to do that, replacing Eccleston with David Tennant.

I was aghast. It seemed like change just for the sake of change, or for a contract dispute or for no good reason whatsoever. Eccleston was good! Why bother changing him?

However, I was proven wrong. David Tennant's acting is so sublime that it elevated the series to a completely different level altogether. His face and his whole body covey glee when things are at their most chaotic. And when things get serious, his mood and that of the whole episode changes on a dime. He is fierce and fearsome, and you don't want to be on the receiving end of that wrath. Sartorially, he defines new creative heights - canvas shoes (Chucks, no less) with a full suit and waistcoat. 

Again now, changes are afoot. There’s a new Doctor in the wings who’ll be unveiled at the end of this year. He’s younger, definitely not ginger and looks a bit too boyish to me.

Is he going to look credible staring down the Daleks and stopping whole armies of marauding aliens in their tracks? Will he continue the trend of rising stakes – better acting, better sartorial style and yes, more fun? I sure hope so.