Wednesday, December 11, 2019

Greetings from Tasmania!

Hello, bewdas and bewdis!

No, I’ve not moved to Tasmania (but I might, in about 2 decades or so), though I know it may seem like that, given my looooong absence from the bar. Many of you have written to me, concerned, and I could almost read between the lines — “Are you alive?”

I am, I am. And I’m super touched that you guys care enough to check on me. As you know, early this year I switched from a work-from-home arrangement (for 8 years!) to a fulltime position in the office and it has been CRAZY, to say the least. But I love it, so it’s okay. Publishing is crazy anyway, but this year has been especially cray-cray, leaving me no time to do anything other than waking up at 5:30 am to get breakfast and snack boxes and Xena ready, getting to office by 7:30 am and bolting at 5 pm so I can get to student care by 6 pm to pick her up, bolting home to get dinner ready and then after getting Xena to bed, settling down to a nice evening of... WORK! Everything that I can’t do in the limited time I have in the office is pretty much done at night, which used to be my Netflix/blogging time.

Weekends ka toh poochho hi mat. Our entire weekend is spent at the beach at inline skating lessons (I passed level 5 OMG OMG TOO EXCITED OMG but that’s a whole other post!). Hope that Xena can get her level 5 certificate soon so we can get our weekends back and move on to our next new hobby and complain again that our weekends are toh totally gone.

This Tasmanian holiday is the first proper vacation I’ve had this year. I’d forgotten how it was to expel all work-related thoughts from my head and fill it up with other random things. We did a 15-km hike on Maria Island today, with hundreds of wallabies and wombats running free around us, and it was something else.

Suddenly my head has been filled up with all sorts of other thoughts such as, “Gosh, wombat poop really is cube-shaped.” and “Hey, remember the time you used to blog?”

So here I am, not really “back” back, but kinda back, and determined to be “back” back.

Hope y’all are doing great and wrapping up a great year and looking forward to a brand new, smashing one.

Love always,

Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Home away from home

  • A sweltering 42 degrees outside
  • The first rain after the 42 degrees
  • The smell of that rain falling on the soil
  • Not having to wake up at 5:30 am
  • An avalanche of adoring relatives descending upon me (half of whom I don't know; I did not grow up there)
  • Being told that I've become too thin (Erm, my weight has stayed the same since the year 2001, except for when I was preggers)
  • Being told that Xena is too thin (you don't say!)
  • Being asked if I give her food
  • Xena being asked if I give her food
  • Getting lunch/dinner invitations from relatives on a daily basis
  • Getting lunch invitations from relatives of relatives (ok that's very sweet, but why?)
  • Mom constantly asking me what I want to eat
  • Cousins and cousins-in-law constantly getting me all the things I like to eat
  • Chicken biryani from the restaurant whose name no one knows but which is known as "the place where the owner makes the biryani himself and refuses to remove the dum until IT IS TIME, no matter how long the queue of starved patrons is
  • Mutton biryani from the above-mentioned place
  • Remembering the trauma experienced during my last visit and swearing off street food (blame it on two decades of living in super sanitised Singapore) 
  • Thinking "Ok I will only have a little bit and early enough during my trip so I don't fall sick just before the flight"
  • Roadside chicken samosas on day 2
  • Eating said chicken samosas in a parked car next to the stall, with tears streaming down my face, thanks to the freshly chopped onions that accompany the samosas
  • The driver opening his window because tears are about to roll down his eyes too
  • Roadside chicken pakodas on day 3
  • Roadside chaat on day 3
  • Telling myself that's the last of the street food, but then spotting the pani puri man
  • Trying not to think of the 'behind the scenes' as I eat the street food
  • Roadside pani puri 2 days before my flight (to my credit, I stopped myself at 6)
  • Guiltily offering roadside food to Xena and feeling relieved at her polite rejection
  • Mango season
  • Masala Thums Up
  • Egg rolls
  • Intercity drives to see more relatives who feed me and then feed me some more
  • A flabbergasted Xena looking at Virat Kohli's face on every other giant billboard, selling everything from steel to sherwanis, asking me, "Mama, when does Virat Uncle play cricket?"
  • A flabbergasted Xena counting the cows and bulls (134) spotted on the road during a single (but long) car ride 
  • Shopping, and shopping some more
  • Weighing my suitcase on a daily basis to make sure my shopping didn't exceed my baggage allowance
  • Wondering how the driver passes the time when we go on long shopping trips
  • Getting excited to see the giant bottles of Thums Up at Big Bazar
  • Kaam wali bai touching my feet! (omg she's probably the same age as me)
  • Xena refusing to touch anyone's feet, but doing a shy namaste to save her unsanskari mommy from total humiliation
  • Saas-bahu serials still going strong, which ladies now watch on their phones as they cook
  • More people to send me random WhatsApp forwards
  • More random relatives adding me on Facebook 
  • Hearing fireworks and wondering if someone is getting married or watching the World Cup
  • Kids as young as 1.5 years old swiping away on mobile phones for literally hours
  • Xena discovering in utter amazement that there is such a thing as cable TV that has channels only for children omg
  • Relatives finding out that Xena doesn't get "TV time" and "mobile phone time" and "tablet time" and asking me why I'm torturing my child
  • Trying to cross the road with vehicles coming at me from every direction
  • Trying to cross the above-mentioned road with Xena
  • The sheer affection from people 
  • The utter chaos in everything, everywhere
  • Feeling strangely old and young at the same time when I'm there (perhaps because I have spent my entire adult life in Singapore)
  • Thinking to myself, "What was I thinking? NEVER doing this in summer again!"
  • Thinking to myself, "Oh, come on."
  • Do I hate it? Do I love it? I hate it. I love it. 

Yup, that about sums up my recent India trip.

Friday, May 03, 2019

A gif(t) that keeps on giving

This post is for you, t.

t had posted the following comment on my 'O ajnabi' post:

OMG Sayesha, I've enjoyed all these posts I've read so far! How do you make such high-quality gifs? Sometimes the actions in some gifs are too fast, but yours are perfect. Do you have a post on creating gifs? If not, at least for fan junta like me, please write one :)

I discovered the art of creating gifs last year during the A-Z blogathon when I was trying to find a way to bring across some of the ridiculousness of our Bollywood songs in a more visual manner. Once I discovered the amazing world of gifs, I stopped doing screenshots.

So here you go -- my step-by-step guide to make a gif. And since you seem to have watched endured this horrible Prem movie, I've made the tutorial on one of its songs.

I know there are plenty of sites where you can create gifs, but I personally love because it doesn't ask me to register/log in and it's very, very easy to use.

Step 1: Go to and click on 'create' on the top right.
Step 2: Enter the URL of your video in the 'Add any URL' field.

Step 3: This will bring you to this preview page. The bottom number circled in red will give you your start time so you can choose that based on where you want your gif to start. The top field circled in red gives you the number of seconds that your gif will last. I usually go for the default 4 seconds but sometimes you may need a few more seconds to capture something hilarious, so go ahead and increase it by a couple of seconds. Once you're happy with your gif (the preview will keep playing so you can play around with the two numbers to get the best gif), click on 'Continue to decorate'. 

Step 4: At this step, you can do a lot of embellishment to your gif, but I never use this feature because my amazing actors are enough and need no embellishment whatsoever. Click on 'Continue to upload'. 

Step 5: Click on 'Upload to Giphy'.

Step 6: Click on 'Embed'.

Step 7: Copy the html code and paste it in your post. 

Step 8: Let Kareena Kapoor's talent blow you away, like it has done with Hrithik.

Hope I was clear in my instructions. Please do try it out -- making gifs is easier than it sounds.

If you have any questions, drop me a note. My email address is in my profile info.

Enjoy! :) 

Tuesday, April 30, 2019

Z is for Zehreela zehreela pyaar

I'm so sorry to subject you to two Urmila songs one after the other, but there could not have been a more befitting end to the A-Z blogathon than this song from the 1997 Ram Gopal Varma movie Daud. In this movie, Sanjay Dutt and Urmila are on the run with a tiny briefcase that they think contains gold, but it actually contains a nuclear bomb. Yep, a nuclear bomb. In a briefcase.

The song starts off with Sanjay Dutt being followed in the middle of a jungle. Creepy vibes all around.

And then he spots the ghost. A sleeping ghost that lifts her ass a little too high with each breath.

Understandably, just like any normal human would do in the middle of a creepy jungle, he goes and touches the sleeping ghost. And very understandably, the sleeping ghost immediately breaks into a song about 'poisonous love'. This is already a toxic relationship for sure.

Urmila starts her usual RGV-heroine antics. Levitating bum and all, you know.

This jungle is amazing. It even has its own massage parlour.

Then they play Vikram aur Betaal for a while.

Can't quite tell who looks scarier.

Even the owl in the jungle seems creeped out by them.

Have a good fright!

Monday, April 29, 2019

Y is for Yeh khabar chhapwa do

My top choice for Y would have been 'Yara o yara' just for Sunny Paji and his out-of-order scooter. But the playback/giphy problem occured again so I had to bump that off and have this instead.

The song, from the 1997 movie Aflatoon, is a riot of colours.

Yellow yellow, dirty fellow

This is perfectly normal behaviour next to a railway track.

And this reminds me of pancakes that are flipped a little too late.

So literally everything on her is green. Even contact lenses. Matlab kuchh nahin bakhsha.

I dressed Xena up like this once because it was dress-up day at preschool and she wanted to be a tree.

Assault on the eyes

Ants in pants

And what step is this?!

I've always wondered what locals think about Bollywood actors who make complete asses of themselves when shooting abroad. Matlab seriously, kuchh bhi?

What to do -- we are like this wonly.


Saturday, April 27, 2019

X is for Mr. X

Okay, the letter for today is X so thoda cheating toh allowed hai.

Today's offering is the title song from the 2015 movie Mr. X, in which Emraan Hashmi plays an invisible vigilante. I can only imagine the discussions that led to this movie.

Emraan Hashmi - I don't want to do any more ghost movies.

Mukesh Bhatt - Errr...

Emraan Hashmi - And I'm sick of the serial kisser tag too. So no kissing either.

Mukesh Bhatt - Errr...

Emraan - I'm just very sick of doing the same old things. Let's please do something different. So no ghosts and no kissing. Okay?

Vikram Bhatt - OH. Great idea. How about you play a kissing ghost?

Emraan Hashmi - You got it.

Needless to say, the movie (which Vikram Bhatt insisted was not a copy of Hollow Man) tanked badly. Excerpts from some reviews:

Rajiv Masand: "a singularly humourless film"
Hindustan Times: "a bizarre tale of an invisible kisser"
Firstpost: "Emraan Hashmi, intelligence and talent, everything is invisible in the film".
Daily News and Analysis: "There's nothing to see, not even Emraan Hashmi."

So yeah, he's invisible. We got it.

This is him mouthing the lyrics of this bizarre song "You can call me X." while Jacqueline Fernandez Lite (aka Amyra Dastur) writhes around.

However bizarre it may be, the underwater kiss is not a new concept in Bollywood. But the underwater invisible kisser sure is!

Speaking of weird underwater behaviour, here is our heroine casually taking a bath in a bathtub, wearing all of Bappi da's jewellery.

Because why not.

Oooof so much happening in one gif, I don't know where to start the description.

Enjoy the title track of Mr. X.

PS: Apparently the "You can call me X" part of the song was sung by Mahesh Bhatt.
PPS: Apparently, the movie also stars Tanmay Bhat as Hashmi's friend Popo.
PPPS: Okay, I really think we should all watch this movie right away. 

Friday, April 26, 2019

W is for Why not Jimmy?

Okay, so my gif woes will not end. My first choice for W was this song called 'Why not Jimmy' from the 2008 movie Jimmy, starring Mithun Da's son Mahaaaaakshay Chakraborty (also known as Mimoh). But like what happened before, Shemaroo will not allow playback on other sites so I can't generate gifs. Normally, I'd just pick another song in a case like this and I did consider some options, including 'What is your style number?' but I couldn't do it.

'Why not Jimmy' is that amazing.

(Though I have to say I'm still wondering if it's supposed to be 'Why not Jimmy?' or 'Why not, Jimmy?')

Anyway, for this song, I decided to make do with screenshots instead of gifs. Though I'm heartbroken because the gifs would have been kickass. You'll know what I mean when you see the full video.

The song starts off with Mimoh trying to be Keanu Reeves from The Matrix.

Except that this Neo has only one fan backing him up -- literally. And that's daddy Mithun.

This reminds me a conditioner ad. With Mimoh showing the 'before'.

Let's take a closer look. Bad hair day for Mimoh? Or bad heir day for Mithun?

And now it's only fair that we also see some post-conditioner photos.



And oh, btw, he's also a dancer like daddy. In fact, when he dances, sparks fly. Off his shoes. Like, really.

All I can say at the end of this song is 'Why, Jimmy, why?'

Check it out.

Thursday, April 25, 2019

V is for Vada pav

This is like a sequel to the Batata vada song.

This movie Daal mein kuchh kala hai is actually from 2012, but it has a very dated look. In fact, when I first saw the song, I thought it was a movie from the late 80s or early 90s.

This is the plot of the movie according to Wikipedia (warning: your head will hurt after reading this):

Daal Mein Kuch Kaala Hai is a tale of a budding actress (Veena Malik) who is over motivated to become a successful in Bollywood. The story starts with Mr. Dabu who is a middle aged man in his forties, a total loser absconded and is being left unaccompanied in life. All of a sudden he gets rich after hitting a roll-over prize of birthright, and then decides to walk off to this actress to share his destiny and his future in the company of her. The starlet gets surprised and shocked after witnessing so much of wealth with him in cash. She initially agrees what his boyfriend had planned out to con Mr. Dabu, but is totally puzzled on what to carry out. They both sooner or later travel to the mysterious island, which is further followed by her boyfriend and a couple of unknown friends. The entire journey is filled with full humor, enjoyment and entertainment.

Aside from vada pav, the song also features some other highlights.

You know how some Bollywood movies have hero ka duplicate? This song has duplicate ka bhi duplicate. Check out "Anil Kapoor".

OMG. Bhai is going to have a fit if he sees this. And the guy on the right looks like Nawaz's duplicate (or maybe Nawaz himself before he became a superstar?) but I'm not too sure.

And here comes "Mr. Bachchan". Parampara, pratishtha aur pav.

And who is this supposed to be?!! Govinda????!!!! Chichi has become chhee chhee!

The worst part about this song? It has made me crave vada pav. At 10:13 pm.

PS: Oh, Judwaa 2 also has a song called 'Vada pav' that goes something like 'Pav mein vada, vada mein pav, chutney laga ke sabko khilao, maza nai aaya toh bhaad mein jao'.

U is for Ui amma ui amma

This is kinda sad. My original choice for U was 'Ulfat Ulfat' from Nanhe Jaisalmer. It's a song in which Bobby Deol (who plays actor Bobby Deol) is dancing badly to Himesh singing badly. In other words, a total treat for Bolly fans. Last night, wouldn't load so I couldn't do the post and today when giphy is loading, it tells me that Eros will not allow playback on giphy so I can't generate  the gifs.


So I have no choice but to use another song, which is SUCH a cringe-fest that it actually makes me feel less bad about all my wasted efforts on Ulfat ulfat (I'd written all the text and was just waiting to generate the gifs).

The David Dhawan-Govinda-Karisma-Shakti Kapoor-Purnima combination is SO predictable and SO horrible! Raja Babu from 1994 is only one such example.

The song starts with Govinda peeing on a tree and wiping his hands on sidekick Shakti Kapoor's towel. Because this is a Govinda movie and so why not.

Enter Karisma Kapoor on an elephant and under a flower shower. Because this is a Karisma movie and so why not.

And then she jumps off the elephant...
...straight into his arms.
Because this is a... ok you get the picture.

What the..?!

Hawwwww! Shraddha, dekh tere papa kya kar rahe hain!

Choreography ftw.

Here you go!

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Rukaawat ke liye khed hai

Sorry, folks. I'm working on this song 'Ulfar ulfat' from Nanhe Jaisalmer for my U post, but is acting up so I can't create any gifs. Might have to move the U post to tomorrow. 

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

T is for Towel mein baahar jaaogi

Contrary to her innocent-looking face, Juhi Chawla sure has done a lot of crass stuff.

This song, from the 1994 movie Eena Meena Deeka is one of them (though not as bad as some others).

The songs starts off with her emerging from behind a curtain wearing nothing but a knotted top and a *gasp* TOWEL!

Except that the towel doesn't really look like a towel. Heroine hai aakhir, thoda embellishment toh mangta hai.

Rishi Kapoor seems to be wearing what was formerly her skirt.

He's also trying to stop her from going out because 'towel mein baahar jaaogi toh halla mach jaayega'.

And sure enough, halla has been machaoed amongst the (uniformed) mawalis.

And here's Rishi Kappor, channeling his inner Govinda more than Govinda himself channels his inner Govinda.

He also attempts to channel his inner Rajnikanth.

Yes, cows being milked is part of the beats in the song.

Juhi, I have no words for the choreography you were subjected to.

And then it's time for the annual sports day, featuring a very interesting tug of war.

Oh, at some point he actually pulls her towel-skirt off. Like, totally off her. I've spared you the gif. You're welcome.

Awww look, he's trying to protect her modesty by covering her towel... with HIS towel. (At least hers LOOKED like a skirt, you dhakkan.)

Very good. Marad towels are totally decent outerwear, no?

You guys go and watch this; I'm throwing in the towel.

Monday, April 22, 2019

S is for sawan ka mahina shaadi bina

Ohhhh this song makes me mad.

It had barely been a year since the Akshay-Raveena chartbuster 'Tu cheez badi hai mast mast' had released. Say what you will about that song, the costumes, the lyrics or the dance moves, but you gotta admit that it was one of a kind.

So it makes me mad to see this extremely poor copy from the 1995 movie called Hulchul, starring Ajay Devgan (before he turned Devgn) and Kajol. Wearing similar (but more horrible) outfits, singing a similar (but more horrible) song and showing similar (but more horrible) moves amidst similar (but more horrible) background dancers.

Take a look at this!

Ajay's lyrics go:
Saawan ka maheena
Shaadi bina mushkil hai jeena
We want girl beautiful beautiful 
Charming tip top beautiful beautiful (or is it dutiful dutiful??)
We want girl beautiful beautiful
Charming tip top beautiful beautiful 
Julie, Noori, Bobby ya phir
Julie, Noori, Bobby ya phir
Chalegi apni gali ki Meena

Kajol's lyrics are no better:
Saawan ka maheena
Shaadi bina mushkil hai jeena
We want boy handsome handsome
Dashing He-Man Superman Phantom
We want boy handsome handsome
Dashing He-Man Superman Phantom
Rocky, Hero, Chaliya ya phir
Rocky, Hero, Chaliya ya phir
Chalega apni gali ka Bheema

Yes, they have legit punditjis on stage. Doing this.

I have no words for the choreography.

Watch this trainwreck of a song and cringe cringe cringe.

Saturday, April 20, 2019

R is for Rabba luck barsa

Does anyone remember the time when Lucky Ali made his debut with 'O sanam'? Not only were we totally blown away by the song, we were also fascinated to know that the veiled mystery woman in the video was his real wife. The camera alternated between him in a headdress, and his wife in a veil (and we never got to see her face at all).

This was in 1996.

Cut to 2010. Himesh Reshammiya decided to recreate the whole thing in his movie Kajraare, but in classic Himesh style. He decided to play the roles of both Lucky Ali AND his wife.

Except that when the "veil" comes off, this is not what you expect to see.

The song goes 'Rabba, luck barsa' as Himesh looks up to the heavens. But all he sees are two birds (though I can think of one very interesting kind of luck that they can barsao over his head).

Think of all the songs we have seen where the scantily-clad heroine is running around in a desert for no good reason. How refreshing it is to see an overclothed hero do so.

Is it me or does the camel seem to be enjoying the beat?

Just like our desert heroine, Himeshbhai also insists on multiple costume changes. At least 5 or 6 in this song.

And he also does shit like this.

He does 'cheers' with traditional drinks. Until the locals are also laughing at him.

Our celebrity also tries to hide his face lest the junta recognises and mobs him. To his shock (and our amusement), no one gives a shit.

Please watch at your own risk.

Friday, April 19, 2019

Q is for Qayamat ho

Does anyone remember Doordarshan's Baingan Raja from the late 80s? (Gaaah, I feel old even talking about it.)

When I saw Abhishek Bachchan in this song from the movie Tera Jadoo Chal Gaya (2000), my very first thought was 'OMG BAINGAN RAJA!'

See for yourselves!

Baingan Raja also has magical powers. Check out the levitating leg.

It's so refreshing to see a thumka from the hero for once, even though the heroine is right there dressed in a thumka-friendly outfit.

Baingan Raja undergoes several costume changes in the song. Including this outfit that he borrowed from Daler Mehendi. And when you wear a Daler Mehendi oufit, you gotta do some tunak tunak. It's mandatory.

Imagining the wedding photoshoot? Check out how her outfit pales in comparison to his.

Presenting once again, the green to shame all greens.

Check it out.

Thursday, April 18, 2019

P is for Paas woh aane lage zara zara

Oh man!

I had the perfect P song -- 'Pagal hua' from the 1999 movie Kohram. Where Nana Patekar and Tabu (playing an army officer and a police officer respectively) are doing amazing dance steps in amazing outfits.

One leeetle problem, however. The video owner has disabled playback on other sites so I cannot gif the heck out of this mindblowing song. So here it is -- bonus P song. Please watch it -- you will never look at Nana Patekar or Tabu the same way again.

Today's actual P song is 'Paas woh aane lage' from the 1994 movie Main Khiladi Tu Anari.

Now I did watch the movie when I was a kid but I couldn't remember much so I went to Wikipedia, where I read this very simple one-sentence synopsis that makes total sense.

"While Karan and Basanti fall in love with each other, Deepak falls in love with Karan's sister, Shivangi, which makes Karan mad and he tries to get rid of Deepak Kumar, for which Deepak Kumar reminds Karan that he wanted to hang around with him because he wanted to learn what it is like being a cop, and apologises for loving his sister Shivangi, which makes Karan guilty and tries to win back Deepak Kumar for his sister and Mother-in-Law."

So the song is an instructional video on pain management at home. It starts off with Saif and Rageshwari suffering from chronic lower back pain and trying to find various treatments for it.

Body still hurting? Try this champi method.

No results? Then try reiki.

Rolling on the grass has a massaging effect, which can help get rid of body aches and pains. You can even use your full body weight to massage a fellow sufferer.

If nothing is working, do not lose heart. Aquatherapy has proven effective for many people.

If the pain has spread to the face, you can consider applying some soothing petals or embarking on heat therapy by bringing your face in close contact with a lit candle.

Once you're rid of your pains, remember that prevention is better than cure. Exercise daily and make sure you do your stretches properly.

For the full video showing all treatment options, see below.

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

O is for O ajnabi

In general, I intensely dislike most Kareena Kapoor movies.

But Main Prem Ki Deewani Hoon (2003) I dislike with a vengeance. IT.IS.BAD. Every actor does a terrible job and there is a CGI parrot in the movie.

So this song starts with Hrithik Roshan doing what I find myself doing sometimes when trying to get dressed for a party.

Though I'm curious about why he's throwing his clothes out of a moving train, I can't get myself to watch this movie. Again. No can do.

Look what they have reduced an otherwise decent actor to.

So we gather that he's heartbroken because his sweetheart is getting engaged to his boss.

Here is said sweetheart, so dramatically heartbroken that she almost breaks her friend's shoulder.

Why does this give me Koi Mil Gaya vibes?

Abhishek Bachchan is the only sane person in the song who is not overacting.

Mainly because he has played 'the guy who's about to get married to girl who loves another guy' 8785403725804 times in his career, so he can just sleepwalk through this role.

Meanwhile, Hrithik is still doing his 'Mirror mirror on the wall, who can weep the best of all' routine.

The engagement is supposedly on a boat. Called LOVE BOAT. Yes.

Kareena Kapoor's brief said 'Look distraught.' Methinks she read it as 'Look disgusted'.

I'm quite amazed that no one in the whole damned LOVE BOAT has noticed that the dulhan-to-be doesn't exactly look happy.

In fact, she's not just unhappy. She's furious. Oh wait, wrong brief again?

Even her mom seems totally oblivious.

She's waiting for Hrithik but he's not done throwing his clothes from the train yet.

Enjoy this cryfest.

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

N is for Neal n Nikki

'Neal n Nikki' from 2005 is the kind of movie I STRONGLY SUPPORT.

Such movies need to be made from time to time to showcase Bollywood's nepotism ki dukaan so that wealthy producers watch and learn from it and then tell their kids, "Nahin beta, isse achha tu engineer hi ban ja."

The song starts with producer da puttar Uday Chopra and Kajol's baby sister Tanisha Mukherjee (who actually started dating when shooting for this movie) talking about their first crushes.

So Neal was 4 and this was his first crush. Pray tell me which 4-year-old girl dresses like this.

Don't let his silly dance moves undermine the meaningful lyrics of the song:

I'm the Neal
I'm the man

Now it's Nikki's turn. Her story is about to unravel. Along with some of her clothes.

So she says she was 9 and fell in love when she saw George Michael on TV.

And he breaks the news to her that he was gay. Like this.

She's so upset about it that she rips her top off.

Her lyrics are no better.

Nikki Bakshi
Sweet and sexy
Full-on rocking
Hot and happening

Meanwhile, he's now talking about his next crush when he was in high school. A hot algebra teacher. Nothing wrong with that except what is written on the board.

2x1 = 2
2x2 = 4
2x3 = 6
and so on.

Speaking of alge-bra, Nikki's wardrobe malfunction continues. (Apparently,  her role was offered to Ayesha Takia who turned it down. One can only guess why.)

Uday's future may not be bright, but his lipstick sure is.

And then they have the audacity to do this. NO. NEAL N NIKKI, YOU DON'T.

Watch the song. And then watch the movie. Because it has an amazing rating of 3.3 on IMDB.

Monday, April 15, 2019

M is for Mana abhi ho kamsin

I don't think anyone can deny that Neelam was one of the cutest actors of her time. In fact, she was the very definition of 'cute'.

Now imagine someone out-cute-ing Neelam!

That, my friends, was Karan Shah.

Gaaaaah. He was SO cute that Neelam paled in comparison!

This song is from the 1984 movie Jawaani (yes, the movie with that very catchy song 'Tu rootha toh main ro doongi sanam'). It was the debut movie of both these cuties.

Karan is telling Neelam, 'Mana abhi ho kamsin'. 'Kamsin' means 'juvenile'. And guess how old Neelam was when she did this movie? 15 (some sites and videos say 14)!

And now let's get down to the actual song. The choreographer had called in sick that morning... they used the bagal ke studio ka aerobics instructor.

...who, looking at Neelam in this gif, obviously teaches swimming on the side too.

I have... words. Literally.

Oh, look! There's a bit of yoga in the mix as well.

This reminds me of the 'Modi on a rock' memes.

This gives me anxiety.

And why this shot had to begin at her crotch is beyond me.

Seriously now, how lazy was this choreographer??!! Yeh kya step hai??!!

Watch it. The two cuties will make you forgive everything.

Saturday, April 13, 2019

L is for Lucky lips

Did anyone watch this Salman Khan movie from 2005 called 'Lucky - No Time For Love'? Though quite a forgettable movie by itself, it was much talked about because of the leading lady bachi Sneha Ullal's strong resemblance to Aishwarya Rai. The makers thought they had hit the jackpot because Bhai and Ash had broken up so the audiences would lap up Ash Lite. Unfortunately, the audience found her just as wooden as the original version.

Oh oh oh! I just recognised Meher Vij from Bajrangi Bhaijaan and Secret Superstar. She played the mom in both. I had no idea she was a part of these bathroom antics!

Yes, this is exactly why girls go to the bathroom together.

These girls are on a mission — to teach the world this amazing dance step. And they will go to great lengths to do it.

Target spotted — random motorists at the traffic light...

Wedding parties...

Even children are not spared.

They board buses full of sailors and randomly start dancing.

You're not alone in cringing at this step.

Look at these men. They have died on the inside after watching the girls dance.

Budget Aishwarya's paltan is undeterred though. They have got the full junta on their side.


Friday, April 12, 2019

K is for Kyun phool khilte hain

Remember the era when Shilpa Shetty used to look and behave like this?

And Saif Ali Khan used to look and behave like this?

Remember the era when heroines chose the gaudiest colours for their outfits and make-up?

The era when the only competition to the colours on her were the colours on him?

Remember the era when heroines would wear full-blast lehengas simply to go for a stroll in the park, but the hero would be in regular (well, almost) clothes?

Remember why people all over the world laugh at us Indians and ask if we really dance around trees?

Remember the era when scriptwriters used to go a little overboard with the 'chulbuli' heroine, until she got a little psycho? (Tell me she's not freaking you out now.)

Remember the era when heroines wore more jewellery than Bappi da?

Remember the era when the hero and heroine were always running?


Remember the era with songs like this?

Thursday, April 11, 2019

J is for Jaate ho jaane jana

What comes to mind when you think of Shabana Azmi?

A sari-clad, serious, elegant, no-nonsense lady?

This song by itself is nothing to write home about, but what makes it so much more interesting is Shabana Azmi of all people indulging in a bit of nonsensical comedy.

The song, from the 1977 movie Parvarish,  starts off with Neetu Singh and Shabana Azmi pretending to jump off a bridge, but then Amitabh Bachchan and Vinod Khanna come riding along.

The girls think that their knights on shining motorbikes are here to rescue them.

But uh oh, that's not the case. The guys are literally saying "Kthxbai." Bhaav nahin dene ka.

Neetu Singh can do this kinda comic stuff in her sleep, but coming from Shabana Azmi, it's quite a pleasant surprise.

Oh, the sheer amount of fabric used up by the four pairs of pants! (Also, is anyone else bothered by that weird fold in Shabana's pants?)

The two girls are trying to motivate each other to convince the men that they are going to end it all. They try various ways — lying down on railway tracks with nary a train in sight...

...attempting to set themselves alight...

...when they are incapable of setting even a matchstick alight.

The men then gallantly come forward. And offer them lighters.

They also set up a bonfire right under the tree the girls are perched on. Methinks joke's gone a bit too far maybe?

The girls then climb up a building under construction. The guys are already stationed in their 'Need a push?' positions.

Finally, the girls realise that their plot's not working and apologise.

Here's the full song.

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

I is for In the night no control

This song is a cringe-fest.

I have no problem with Akki and Rekha being together in this song, but I have a big problem with what they are doing together.

Okay, I'm just hoping that's ketchup on his face and not blood. Because she licks it. Yes, they show her licking it. (I spared you guys the gif. You're welcome.)

Quiz time - what has more hair, Akki's chest or Rekha's head?

Lyrics for your reading pleasure:
Even the naughty girls need love, hai na?
Dhak dhak dhak dhak dhak dhak dil dhadke
Love me love me love me, yeh bole

Meri zulfon se, saason se
Meri aankhon se, hothon se
Zulfon se, saason se, aankhon se, hothon se
Jaayega bachke kahan?

That was the harmless part of the lyrics. Here comes the real killer:

In the night, no control
Kya karoon, kuchh toh bol
Tod de yeh badan
Take my love, take my soul

So he places a slice of cheese on the back of his hand, drizzles chocolate sauce over it and feeds it to her.

If you thought that was YUCK, try this.

Yep, that is Akki. Not a body double.

Just double bodies.

Slithering around in the mud.

Bas yehi dekhna baki reh gaya tha. This is how you drag Bollywood's good name through the mud. Literally.

Okay, that's enough Internet for the day. Bye.

Dekh lo but don't say later that I didn't warn you. You WILL need a bath after watching this song.

Tuesday, April 09, 2019

H is for Hum tumse muhabbat karte hain

Some of you may remember Fardeen Khan and Meghna's Kothari's disastrous debut Prem Aggan (written, produced and directed by Daddy Dearest). The movie tanked but somehow, Fardeen got the Filmfare Best Debut award (bought, purchased and acquired by Daddy Dearest?).

Most people today who know of this movie do so thanks to Kanan and Biswa's hilarious review.

I had featured another song from this movie in the April challenge last year, but this movie is a gift that keeps on giving. For I have another song this year, which is just as uhhh... [insert suitable choice words].

So the song starts off with the two lovebirds on the top of a mountain. They slowly turn.

They have run away from their homes and are going to take the plunge. Like, literally.

WHAT?! Noooo, surely you guys are not going to...

Oh yes, we are.

Oh, you gullible reader, how worried you got for their safety. Just look at her, casually waving as if she's just bumped into an old friend at the mall. "Eh hiii, tu yahan kar raha hai??"

Oho what dancing. Aha what dancing.

Oho what shorts. Aha what steps. You will see more of these shorts later. In different colours.

I can imagine the props guy calling Firoz Khan from the shop.

PG - Hello, sir?
FK - Arre kahan hai tu??
PG - Sir, heroine ki shorts lene ke liye gaya tha.
FK - Aur?
PG - Sir, sale lagi hai, sir. Rainbow colours ka full set.
FK - Full set? Really?! Haan toh lekar aa na!
PG - Ok, sir!

The answer to every girl's "Bhaiya, koi aur colour nahin hai?" question.

Seriously, yeh kya hai? I am not sure whom to fault — the choreographer or the dancers.

Okay, maybe the choreographer because even diggaj dancers CANNOT make this step look normal.

Actually, I take my words back. It's the dancers. For sure.


Monday, April 08, 2019

G is for Gajar ne kiya hai ishara

A long long time ago, this song from the 1989 movie Tridev was a popular choice when you needed a song starting with the letter 'ga' in antakshari.  Except that I used to think it was 'gazar' and never bothered to find out what 'gazar' meant. It was only now when I YouTubed the song and watched it in detail that I realised that the word is actualy 'gajar'!

So I googled and landed on this hilarious thread where people are trying to figure out what 'gajar' in this song could possibly mean. Some people jump in and very seriously state that 'gajar' means 'carrot'. I'm dying of laughter here because I am imagining a carrot making isharas.

Anyway, I googled 'gajar meaning' and got 'समय-समय पर बजनेवाला घंटा'. Finally the universe makes sense.

So many Hindi movies from the 80s had this cliched song sequence! The heroines are being forced to dance in the den of the villain Bhujang (Amrish Puri suffering from a Mogambo hangover). Strangely, it looks like the villain already had all the supplies for the ladies, including coordinated costumes, jewellery and make-up. And not only are they well-rehearsed, they even have a song ready that is exactly suited for the situation. The essence of the song, in every movie, is always, "Ok fine we will dance but wait till our marads get here and then you see how they whoop yo ass."

The gajar and the trideviyan start the performance.

Check out our three fully-decked Christmas trees.

Two tortured fathers have been jailed and now have to watch their little girls nacho in front of the kuttas.

Oh look, Guran from Lagaan was also there!

Omg what step is this? How they didn't die laughing when shooting this song is beyond me.

Has anyone here actually watched the movie? The story is so convoluted that I just tried to recap it on Wiki and now my head hurts a little bit.

It's also one of those movies where young police officers were known just by their first names ("Inspector Karan"), while their bosses had names like "Commissioner Mathur".

The marads are in a jail at a different location and they stage a fight to escape.

Check out the urgency on the faces of the Hindustani police. Arre aisi urgency useful kaamon mein dikhao.

To be fair, the policemen are also extremely fair. If three jailbirds are trying to escape, they will be attacked by no more than three policemen at a time. Only when said policemen are horizontal will the next set of three come forward.

They are literally singing "Yeh din aakhri hai tumhara" ("It's your last day on earth.") to his face, but look how happy Amrish Puri is.

Omg I feel like watching this movie now!


Saturday, April 06, 2019

F is for From Chandni Chowk to China

I have a vague memory of not being able to force myself to finish watching the 2009 movie From Chandni Chowk to China, but I've been told that I did myself a favour.

This is how Wikipedia describes the movie — "The film revolves around a vegetable cutter from Chandni Chowk in Delhi who finds himself on an adventure in China after the residents of an oppressed village deem him to be the reincarnation of a slain Chinese revolutionary." Fortunately for me, I remember nothing much of the movie but I imagine it to be a racist version of Kung Fu Panda.

The movie's title song shows several hapless Asian guys at the back, led by a braid-flaunting Akshay Kumar.

The lyrics go something like this:

From Chandni Chowk to China
Jaane kaun hoon samajh aaye na

Doesn't Akshay Kumar's enthu dancing remind you of his moves from Bholi bhaali ladki? If you don't know what I'm talking about, you're too young for this post.

How is slipping on a banana peel still a thing in movies? How?!

Enter Deepika. She's supposed to be Indian-Chinese. With an evil twin sister. Called Meow Meow.

Her lyrics go like this:

From Chandni Chowk to China
Dekha kabhi hai tuney aaina?

Ranvir Shorey plays a conman. Called Chopstick.

Were they really supposed to throw three of those things at him, or was it a mistake and they just decided it was not worth a retake?

Now I understand why cheongsams have such deep slits. These moves wouldn't be possible otherwise.

Just when you think you know what the song is all about...

... they introduce time travel!

(To be fair, this is all part of a dream sequence. One man's dream is full junta's nightmare.)

Now some interesting trivia: This was Warner Bros. Pictures' first Hindi film. It was the third highest-grossing film of the year at the Indian Box Office. Wow.

Now let's read some reviews of the film by non-Indians:

The Philadelphia Inquirer - "Chandni Chowk is entertainingly goofy for about 30 minutes. And then, for the next two hours-plus, it's agony."
The Onion - "crass, schizophrenic, culturally insensitive, horribly paced, and shameless in its pandering to the lowest common denominator"
Entertainment Weekly - "This galumphing elephant of a chopsocky revenge-of-the-nerd quasi-musical lacks the lyrical choreographic beauty that has marked such stateside Bollywood releases as the gorgeous Lagaan". (OMG did Shashi Tharoor write this??)

Dekh lo.

Friday, April 05, 2019

E is for Ek din kahin hum do mile

"This was shot near Mala Towers!" I must have heard this from Viv more than a dozen times.

He spent a few of his childhood years in Bombay and apparently there was some sort of a bridge near his building Mala Towers, where they shot many Bollywood movies and music videos.

I always go "Grrrr..." when he mentions Mala Towers. Mainly because I have no Mala Towers in my life. I grew up in too many places because of Dad's job, many of them primarily in Bihar/Jharkhand where no one shot movies and music videos. They just shot one another. (I was once in a bus that got shot at by highway robbers. A bullet grazed the driver's forehead but he just kept on driving with blood dripping down his face. What a dude. As filmi as it sounds, it's a true story.)

So yes, I have no Mala Towers in my life. The one place that I finally found stability in was Singapore when I moved here 20 years ago. Singapore is my home and my Mala Towers. So there!

And that is why I'm always very curious about any Hindi movies that are shot here. And quite a few are. Usually, they are complete disasters but it's always fun to see how they portray my city.

The 1997 movie Aur Pyaar Ho Gaya is an example. I did not actually watch the movie, but from what I read, they shot it in Singapore but tried to pass it off as Switzerland. I was SO offended. Singapore is NOT Diet Switzerland! Singapore is not Budget Switzerland. Singapore is Singapore and it's awesome on its own. Grrrr!

Anyway, the song starts with Bobby Deol (what a cutie he was when he debuted!) flipping open a magazine and the first page features Aishwarya and a horse and the words 'UNUSUAL GIFT'. And that's it. There is no product name, no logo, no context. We don't even know if she's the gift or the ghoda is the gift.

After mulling over the 'ad' for some time, I have concluded that she is a dulhan and the dulha went absconding so she decided to drop the baraat ki ghodi home.

And then starts Bobby Deol's dance. I've always been fascinated by his dancing. As I mentioned in this post, when Bobby Deol is dancing, I can never make up my mind about whether he's really good or really bad. All I know is that I can't look away.

No, seriously. Just look at him go.

Oh, look! He was taking selfies way before they even existed!

Coming up next is our famous Fountain of Wealth as the backdrop. It is the ugliest waterfall in the world, but because it's also the largest, every producer wants to feature it in his/her movie and Singaporeans can't understand why.

I've heard that waterfalls can make you wanna pee, and Bobby proves that it's true.


Gosh, this guy really needs to pee! Why can't he find a frikkin' toilet?? This is Singapore. We have public toilets everywhere and they are so clean that the first World Toilet Summit (yes, there is such a thing) was held here.

Will you just go and pee already?? Even the merlion looks aghast.

Pray who is the choreographer of this move?! Stab-stab-pose-bum-bum-gun and Bob(by)'s your uncle!


Thursday, April 04, 2019

D is for Danger hai Laila

This is a sizzling song.

In case it wasn't obvious, here is some sizzling text to convince you.

Aap convince ho gaye ya main aur sizzle karoon?

Arre ek toh it's already difficult to take Daisy Shah seriously after Race 3. Then I find out she was in a 2013 movie called Bloody Isshq.

Oh look! This is where Priyanka Chopra got the inspiration for her wedding veil!

What on earth..?!

Salman Khan should stop some of his charity cases. He's being inhuman. To the audience.

The hero (?!) is so bored he's looking at his watch ki yeh tamasha kab khatam hoga.

But Miss Daisy is not done driving us nuts.

The amazing lyrics are yet to come.

Danger hai Laila
Majnu dil ka maila
Aaj kal hawa mein
Viral hai faila

(Side note: Urdu experts, shouldn't it be 'phaila' instead of 'faila'? Though the first four letters of their version do describe this song very well.)

But I shouldn't make fun of her song.

After all, her song is her song. None of my song.

Wednesday, April 03, 2019

C is for Chocolate, lime juice

In the year 1994, a phenomenal wedding video released.

It almost felt like a movie.

I admit it — I loved everything about Hum Aapke Hain Koun...! Salman, Madhuri, Mohnish Behl, Renuka Shahane, the full extended singing-dancing family, the naukar-chaakar, the kutta, everything! The only thing that bothered me a little bit was the title. Why was 'kaun' spelt as 'koun' (I think I hear it in SPB's voice) and why was there an exclamation mark at the end of the title? It's not a question — hum aapke hain koun? It's a reprimand — hum aapke hain koun!

The movie had some insanely popular chartbusters and I think even today I can sing all the mukhdas and antaras of every song from that movie. I got the audio cassette after watching the movie in the theatre. Which is why I felt extremely cheated when I heard the song 'Chocolate lime juice' on the cassette but had no recollection of it being in the movie at all.

It turns out that the soundtrack had a whopping 14 songs (though Wikipedia was quick to jump and remind me that "it is actually 15 if you count the sad version of Mujhse juda hokar". Okay fine. I thought the un-sad version sounded pretty sad by itself, no?) so maybe the Barjatyas sacrificed the chocolate song because the movie was getting to be approximately 376249723650834 hours long. 

The song starts off with Madhuri Dixit brushing her teeth. YUCK. Did I ever mention that the sight of a person brushing their teeth makes me gag, especially if they try to talk in between? I thought I was the only one but I have met others who have the exact same thing, so phew! Hollywood movies tend to have this A LOT — two characters brushing their teeth together in the bathroom and then both of them spitting into the washbasin with nary a rinse afterwards. BLEAAARGHHH!

Ok I think I might actually throw up now so let's move on to the next gif.

Please take a moment to appreciate the yellowness in her life — toothbrush, washbasin, door frames, photo frames, ribbon, furniture, table fan, clothes, towels, you name it, she has it in yellow.

She sings about how she's no longer interested in chocolate, lime juice, ice-cream and toffees because now there is a bwoy in her life.

To drive the point home about how much the gal used to like her desserts before said bwoy entered her life, there is a bigass poster at the back that you should totally check out

How one can diss chocolate like that or imply that it is age-related is beyond me. I've always had a fondness for chocolate, just that now it's moved on to the dark and bitter kind. Just like my mood when I stumble upon Bollywood remixes.

Here's how to instantly kill your goldfish — keep them in murky water and feed them 3294930274 times their body weight.

Awww, girl is in love. She keeps seeing him everywhere. But while seeing him like this is okay...

...seeing him like THIS is most definitely not. In the words of the inimitable Phoebe, "MY EYES! MY EYES!"

Hmmm... I wonder what colour roses he got for her that will totally go with ALL her outfits...

Lagta hai mata chadh gayi hai, for there is no other way to explain this behaviour.

Enjoy this sweet offering.