Monday, January 23, 2012

Time for a change

Location, location, location. In this global economy where business is driven by the perpetually connected using a laptop + data card / wi-fi crowd, the golden location rule might not really apply too much but in good old fashioned retail its still all about location. Companies are jostling for advertising space and are becoming increasingly innovative in the spots they capture.

Just last week I noticed that Life Insurance Corporation (LIC) of India (for the benefit of the gazillions of readers from across the world, LIC is the largest provider of insurance in our country and a behemoth that has long considered to be a bit behind the curve in terms of being aggressive and cutting edge) had advertised on the back of the drivers and passengers seats in Bangalore's most popular chain of cabs. Surprisingly smart, extremely effective and yet ever so simple. However it isnt all good news though.

Last week I had gone to LifeStyle, one of big city India's more popular retail chains to make full use of the half yearly sale (blame my Indian roots on this mentality) and had picked up a few trousers given that my wardrobe can accomodate no more shirts. Off I went to the trial room optimistically hoping that I could squeeze myself into size 32 trousers and not the size 34 ones (which is my correct size, shhh dont tell anyone). I placed the pieces I wanted to try out on the stool and dropped my pants when I realised there was someone else in the same trial room with me! With a fright, in my half naked state, I turned around and there in all his glory was the gentleman in the picture below. It took me a second to realise that it was just a full size print advertisement of an apparel retailer that was placed on the back of the door of each individual trial room but the person in charge of advertising and marketing at this company must be one sadistic sonovagun.

Seriously, who would ever place such an uncanilly realistic picture inside a trial room in which 3 sides have full length mirrors (which only serves to makes things worse because from whatever angle you look in the trial room, you can always see the guy)? Jittery, I went to another set of trial rooms where I was afraid to remove my shirt given the way the guy on the back of this door was looking at me (picture below). I almost wanted to ask him 'Why so serious?'.
Needless to say this time I ended up buying clothes without really trying any of it so I will have to put on or lose weight if I have to fit into 2012s shopping. All because of that twisted, demented advertising head .....

This reminds me of a Jay Leno classic - " According to a new survey, women say they feel more comfortable undressing in front of men than they do undressing in front of other women. They say that women are too judgmental, where, of course, men are just grateful"

Monday, January 09, 2012

Wish you a smoldering 2012

I might have missed the date by a bit but then again it never is too late to wish all you troglodytes and hermaphrodites a very happy and prosperous new year. Now I've never been too much of a New Year eve person and true to form I had a sound night’s sleep as the world sweated and drank their way to 2012. I’m not really sure what there is to celebrate, January 1st is just the same as all the other days except that most people would have a massive hangover and not much recollection of the previous night's revelries unlike the remaining 364 days of the year.

Nothing changed overnight. The Indian cricket team is still getting a butt whipping the likes of which would make any self respecting cricket fan switch channels and start following golf. Or snooker. Anna Hazare is still in the news for his protests but still most people don’t know what he is fighting against. The condition of roads in Bangalore which has always been on the verge of going from bad to worse is still unchanged for the most part but it is inching perilously close to the worse zone.

I've never been too much of a New Year resolution person either because my resolutions last a month at most and then get consigned to the history bin never to be brought up again. This time I’ve got a longer list than usual and I do hope that i can carry forward my good form into February. And March. And April. I've got two books to write (that explains the lack of too much writing on this blog, apologies to all faithful readers, yes all two of you) and while one of them is shaping up nicely (39k words and counting) the second one is a different story. It is something I know I definitely should write and I've received guidance from an anonymous person who has helped shaped some of the most crucial characters. I’ve got the story in my head but all I’ve managed to write is one page. A perfect case of writers block if there ever was one.

I’ve also decided to reawaken the guitar maestro that has enjoyed a really long slumber in me and I am on the guitar (the best Christmas gift I’ve given myself) for anything between an hour and two every day and I’m thoroughly enjoying myself. The only flipside is that the fingers on my left hand are terribly sore at the end of it and I have a torrid time typing once I’m in office. Exploring Bangalore's theatre scene is another item on my list for 2012. All thanks to Cyrus Broacha's incredible performance in the hilarious play One Out of Six that I saw in December. In Cochin. Who would've thought that? The bustling metro in the making staging some really good plays.

And finally, after years of watching MMA bouts and becoming a black belt arm chair expert I’ve decided to go sign up for martial arts classes. I recently bought 4 MMA training books and I’m looking out for martial arts training centres in Bangalore. Good luck to all those who want to mess with me 6 months down the line.

I firmly believe that a new year should always start with a good movie and I began 2011 with the hilarious Bheja Fry which remains one of my favourite Indian movies to date. 2012 deserved as good a start as last year and I decided to try something different with Disney's take on the Rapunzel story - Tangled and I was pleasantly surprised by how good it was. For years I’ve been successfully using my melt even the coldest of women's hearts with my sad look that I was never able to christen. Tangled has the hero pulling off the exact same look which he calls the smolder. Perfect name.

Have a great 2012!