Saturday, March 25, 2006

Sania Mirza - Miles to go...

We Indians have a long history of celebrating mediocrity.Unlike the Japanese who pursue excellence we pursue "averages".Sania Mirza is another example of the nation rejoicing in mediocre achievements.I agree Sania has done a lot for Indian tennis.She has many "firsts" to her credit but in terms of achievement she has miles to go .
Sania deserves the accolades that she has got but giving her the Padma Shri is going overboard.The advertising agencies across India have grabbed the opportunity with both hands.That she is young ,successful and pretty makes her the perfect"model" to sell products.But the fact remains that after her initial triumphs Sania has struggled on the courts.Whats even more worrying is that she looks plump and out of shape.She has needlessly got into controversies off the court and they seem to be distracting her.
WTA's best newcomer award has further boosted Sania mania in the country but her defeat to a 1000 odd ranked wildcard in the Miami Open has made it evident that Sania Mirza is fast on the decline or she was never the world beater we all made her to be.Sania Mirza is another case of a mediocre player being given god like status.Its high time Sania pulled up her socks and concentrated on her game or else the same media which has made her a queen will rip her apart..if she doesn't believe me she can always call the erstwhile God of Indian sports ,Sachin Tendulkar and get some advice.

Friday, March 24, 2006

Mallika Sherawat - An Inflexion Point in Indian Cinema

Mallika Sherawat has changed the way movies are made in Bollywood.If flowers and bushes in Hindi movies have become extinct, she is the culprit.For years audiences in cinemas across the length and breadth of the country had been dying to see onscreen kissing.But all they got was two flowers bumping into each other or the shaking of bushes.Then Mallika happened.
Nowadays "bold"scenes have become as common as songs in Hindi movies.Every heroine in Bollywood is in a kissing frenzy.The industry is overflowing with wannabe Mallikas and the quality of cinema has fallen a level.The lines demarcating good and the really bad movies have blurred.Nowadays 99% movies are bad with wafer thin story lines and minimistically clad heroines.The "Ghar ki izzat","sati savitri" image of heroines has gone for the proverbial toss.INdian cinema at its all time crassy lowest.One day when analysts sit down and analyze how the great Indian film empire collapsed,the first point they will write down would be "Mallika Sherawat"and her"Kissa kiss ka".

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Quotes from Ayn Rand's Fountainhead

Here are some of my favourite quotes from the best book ever written.
Keating: "How do you always manage to decide?"
Roark: "How can you let others decide for you?"

" I can accept anything, except what seems to be the easiest for most people: the half-way, thealmost, the just-about, the in- between."

Roark: "Independence is the only gauge of human virtue and value.What a man is and makes of himself-- not what he has orhasn't done for others."

"Civilization is the progress toward a society of privacy. The savage's whole existence is public, ruled by the laws of his tribe. Civilization is the process of setting man free from men."

"Kill reverence and you've killed the hero in man."

"It had to be said: the world is perishing from an orgy of self-sacrifice."

"Man's ego is the fountainhead of human progress."

"Great men can't be ruled."

"I do not recognize anyone's right to one minute of my life."

"Self-sacrifice?... It is precisely the self that can not and must not be sacrificed."

"Don't work for my happiness, my brothers--show me yours--show me that it is possible--show me your achievement--and the knowledge will give me courage for mine."

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Ricky Ponting - The God of Sad Things

It was a One day but provided two miracles.South Africa chased down an improbable target of 434 to down the Aussies and win the ODI series at the Bull Ring.Ricky Ponting is a great batsmen probably the greatest at present but as a captain he has many dubious records,Sunday was just another addition to his long list.

He became the first captain whose team couldnt chase the lowest total in test cricket(103 aginst India in Mumbai ).

  • First Aussie captain to lose the Ashes in the last decade and a half.
  • First Aussie captain to lose to Bangladesh in an ODI.
  • He couldnt bowl out SouthAfrica in over 130 odd overs , first time it has happened to an Australian team in the last 20 years.
  • Couldnt defend 331 against New Zealand and 434 against South Africa.
  • First captain to lose a ODI series to South Africa.

The way things are going he may become the first captain to lose a test series to the Proteas and who knows maybe even a test to Bangladesh.

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Cricket and Racism

The recent South African tour to Australia has revealed the ugly side of racism.The Proteas had a torrid time facing the racial taunts hurled at them.To many it may have come as a surprise but I am very sure that racism is very much a part of the cricketing world.
Take County cricket for example.The world has seen great colored batsmen from Weekes to Lara but there are very few top class batsmen in County cricket.The reason - The age old feeling that a black man can only bowl fast,hence you have the Devon Malcoms and Chris Lewis' reperesenting England as bowlers but no black batsmen.At the grass root level itself the divisions are made,if you are from the subcontinent then you are suited for batting or spin bowling ,if you are colored then fast bowling and if you are fair skinned well you can do whatever you want.
Take the case of match referres ,the Chris Broads and the Mike Dennes' of this world suspend the likes of Ganguly and Ranatunga for "excessive" appealing whereas the likes of McGrath get away even after finger wagging and mouthing profanities.
The crowds in Australia have once again proved the hypocrisy of the country.The Aussies always preach something but do just the opposite.Hence we have the Aussies accusing Chinese swimmers of using performance enhancing drugs and claiming to be on a moral high ground .But when Shane Warne tests positive all he gets is an year's ban and no one says a thing.The abuse hurled at Muralitharan is another example of the underlying racist currents in Oz.Racism is a monster that is slowly but surely dividing the cricketing world.

Monday, March 06, 2006

The New Marketing Mix

For decades McCarthy's marketing mix - the 4 Ps(Product,Price, Promotion and Place) have ruled the roost .The first thing an MBA learns in marketing are the 4 Ps.The entire marketing fraternity swears by these time tested fundas. But now these concepts have come under severe criticism.
Management guru Prof Jagdish Seth has not only questioned the relevance of the marketing mix in this age but has also come up with the 4 A s of marketing - acceptability, affordability, accessibility and awareness.According to Prof Seth marketing today has more to do with what customers actually require rather than the product-centric world that companies think they require. "The consumers' is gaining power. There is excess supply and it has become the buyer's market."
In this cutomer centric world the 4 Ps may soon become extinct.

Saturday, March 04, 2006

The Empire Strikes Back

The brilliant performance by the Englishmen has left the Indians shell shocked.As in Pakistan,Rahul Dravid's captaincy left much to be desired.He is turning out to be the Ricky Ponting school of capataincy rather than the Steve Waughish school to which Sourav Ganguly belonged.I am very sure that India will lose this series and after my previous post where I predicted a 3 -0 sweep for the Indians will have to eat my words.It is really disappointing to see India wilt away the way they have.Kudos to the Englishmen for proving crictics like me wrong.