Monday, October 30, 2006

Football Jerseys!

UPDATED - 4/11/2006

See the Khaleej Times article on the football tournament we are taking part in.

P.S. My middle name is Kishore.


UPDATED - 3/11/2006

1st Group Match:

Modern: 2
Aaron - 6'
Anish - 26

NIMS, Dubai: 0'

A decent start to the campaign, but we played the easiest team in our group. Our coach gave us a 4/10, but we still won. I guess the most we got out of this match is the confidence and morale boost which is highly important and required. Anyway, the next 2 teams we will face (Our Own, Al Warqaa & SIS) are both tough, but hey, we need only one win to go through - and we want this too much.

Thanks guys, for your support.


UPDATED - 1/11/2006 (not really, but we got our jerseys then)

Cool huh?


If you are a part of the the Dubai Modern High School's Football team for 2006-2007, you are one lucky man, and it's confirmed - at the price of Dhs. 80/- only.

Yes, the school team, for the first time in twenty years, will have a non-Ajax, non-Man-Utd, non-blue, actual school jersey, with the players' names and numbers on the flipside. The front will bear a handsome, but simple school logo, along with the word 'M O D E R N'. It was previously going to be 'DMHS', but our principal put it right - 'DMHS' sounds rubbish. All over the world, it is 'Eton', 'Winchester' - so, we will have 'Modern'. And yes sir, I totally agree. 'Modern' does sound better.

That's what our jersey will look like, but without the logos and 'Nakheel'. It will have the school logo and "MODERN' printed on it instead.

We placed in an order for the jerseys today, and they should be ready on the eve of our first match, that is on the 1st of November. We'll look cool, proud and dignified, andthese jerseys will also serve as a piece of memory of the year that was (yeah it's still to get over, but hey...let's hope it's one to remember). So enjoy them. I'm bloody excited to get mine!

Shifting to Indian inter-school football in Dubai - it's pathetic. Every year there is only one, week-long, tournament to take part in. Only one. It's so sad. The Indian sporting infrastructure is poor, and that poorness is even pervading out to places like Dubai. Anyway we love the game, and it's for this reason that when this tournament does knock on the door, we all come rushing out. The excitement levels are immense. Anticipation and nervousness, along with the hunger to prove the discouraging claims of our school of 'we suck' wrong. However, year after year, we turn out to be the losers. With shameful defeats where goal differences reach double figures, to heart-breaking losses, over the years Modern has seen the worst of the Indian football scene in Dubai.

But there have been moments of pure bliss and amazement, like when the junior team of 2004, against all odds, came back winners of the U-16 Al Diyafah Inter School Football tournament for Indian schools. That junior team is today's senior team. It's our last year in school. This is our last tournament. However shit the Indian football scene in Dubai is, this tournament means a lot to us. We want to do well. We have to do well. Let us hope that we will do well. As captain, I would like to wish the entire team good luck, and remember - we play for the love of the game. So enjoy the football, and the result, whatever it is, will take care of itself. Modern High is not known for football. In fact, majority of our school ridicules it's own school football. Damn, it'll feel good to prove them wrong.

P.S. This post is dedicated to Mr. Biswas, our ex-coach, who I want to thank for moulding our football team into one cohesive unit. He coached us to our historic and unexpeceted U-16 Al Diyafah Inter School Football Tourney victory. Thank you sir.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

My Chemical Romance - The Black Parade

Everyone has to listen to this album. It's like a fish out of water, but in a very good way. With a Mick-Jagger-ish Gerard Way on vocals accompanied by Mikey Way on bass, Bob Bryar on drums, Frank Lero on rhythm guitar and Ray Toro on the lead guitar.

From start to finish this album does not fail to impress. It just blows you away. The album starts with 'The End' - a short, but brilliant song, very different from what we normally hear today on the radio - good different. But the song that stands out the most, that everyone needs to have, is 'Welcome To The Black Parade'. It's the first single that the band has officially released from their album and it's kick-ass. It's so unique, and it's build up is just fantastic. Personally, I love the intro which is a soft build up, ultimately leading to a bigger bang (no pun intended). It's so beautifully composed, combining heavy rock, choir-like vocals, hair-standing acoustics, voice effects (not the lame-Cher-type ones, but those that actually sound classy), guitar solos, good lyrics, effective breaks, sudden and good-surprising riff changes and an overall excellent arrangement of everything. I can't stop listening to it. Get it! NOW!

The beauty of this album is that My Chemical Romance have dared to be different. They have chucked the verse-chorus-verse-chorus-bridge-chorus formula and mounted on to a more anticipating approach to arranging music. They have combined different aspects, and experimented with a lot of different effects and combinations. They have emerged from among the ordinary, with something unique, just like Queen did when they took the world by storm with their mega-hit 'Bohemian Rhapsody', while everyone else seemed addicted to basic hard-core rock. Almost all songs on the album are worth a mention. 'Cancer', 'Mama', 'Sleep' and 'The Sharpest Lives' are all part of my 'listen-to-me-more-than-once' group.

This album is My Chemical Romance's third album. The first two were moderate hits. A song to listen to from their older album is 'Helena' - their biggest hit before 'Welcome To The Black Parade'. Anyway I am majorly in love with this album, and especially with that hell of a song. If you don't like it the first time, hear it again, give it some time - it'll grow on you, even though it's not a grows-on-song. It's just mind-blowingly brilliant.

Final Verdict: 9/10
It's an absolutely, brilliantly fantastic album, which is a must have for any rocker, or any person who likes the 'rock' genre of music. Enjoy it's uniqueness, and drift away into oblivion...

P.S. The last track is well, a 'hidden track'. It's really short and they have really messed around with it. They have given it a '40s feel to it. It's pretty cool - again brilliant. It's quite funny too. Have a listen... (hope I haven't over-praised the album - but hey, I am really enjoying it)

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

The 6th 007...

Well this is somewhat like a preview, in addition to my venting of the anticipation I have to watch Daniel Craig, leaving all homosexual feelings aside. Doesn't it excite everyone to see a heavily battered and initially criticized blonde dude actaully go against all odds and finally end up with the prospect of being of one the best Bonds ever?

Yes, the critics, as in the ones that mainly criticize everything, have actually framed Daniel Craig to be the best Bond since Connery, after intitally writing him off completely. Hypocrites. Quoting ANI, "Craig makes Brosnan look a bit girlie in comparison. " Really? I was quite a fan of Pierce (Brosnan).(Read this ANI article) Apparently, Craig portrays a much more Ian Flemming-envisioned Bond: strong, aggressive, gritty and really really cool. The trailer for Casino Royale is half-impressive - not bad. It leaves you full of anticipation. (watch trailer above)

Daniel's husky voice, good looks, blue eyes, one hell of a built frame and apparently his ability to kiss(don't ask - just read this) should leave all you girls drooling, especially after he kicks some bad-guy ass. There is this one shot, which is also there in the trailer, where he walks out of the sea in his skimpy underwear, exposing his this hunky body (similar to Halle Berry's infamous orange-bikini 'Die Another Day' shot). Dream on girls.

Anyway, keeping all that aside, personally I can't wait for Casino Royale to hit the theaters. For us guys, this year's Bond-Babe is Eva Green. She is pretty hot. See below:

But hey, I am still more excited about Daniel Craig. :P

And for all you people living in Dubai, check this out: Casino Royale is releasing in Dubai before worldwide release. Can you believe that? Brilliant.

Casino Royale Release Date - UAE - 16th November, 2006
Casino Royale Release Date - Worldwide - 17th November, 2006

P.S. Our school exams start on the 16th of November, 2006. Damn.

Monday, October 23, 2006

"Nupur's Party" Into Video Fun!

Diwali/Eid time - everyone is invited to some family friends' house or the other. We reluctant 'grown' up kids are forced to go there with our parents. If our dad's family friends have a hot son or daughter, we get a little excited. But normally that is never how it is. Anyway we go, enjoy some hearty fake laughs, have some fake, boring conversations and then go home ASAP. Well I was invited to one of these, actually my father was - and as mum wasn't around I had to go, "to give my dad company". It was at my dad's doctor-friends place - a very cool orthopedic doc who has helped fixing my bones many times, and I respect him. He has 2 daughters - one in 9th (I think) and one in 12th.

Anyway, the party began. I was late - you know why. There were 8 girls, one 6th grade boy from our school (who I personally love, but hell how much time can you spend with him?), their parents, and me. 8 girls? Well 8 much younger girls, so NO, its not as exciting as you think it is. Even trying to make conversation gets boring. So as the evening became more and more draggy, everyone was trying to think of something to do. I was just looking at my watch. Then it struck me - I have a bunch of excited girls who will listen to me if we do something fun - that's it! It's time to do what we do best - make videos!

"Let's make a video!" Now that was greeted with great joy. The excitement turned to over-excitement, and finally, I started enjoying. We thought of a story line, and in about 2 hours we finished shooting the video. They had an okay camera and a room which we could use. What else do you need?

The end product:

Okay, okay - the lighting was really bad, the camera resolution isn't too good. The story-line is really lame and "wannabe" - but hey it was for fun in the end, and we all did have fun that evening, so big shit! I enjoyed making the video. After so long I got a chance to edit a video for fun, and really mess around with it! Also the kids in the video loved it and are well quite thankful - so that's also cool!

So for a party where my dad said, "Anish you can leave by 10:30 PM", I ended up leaving at 1:00 AM. :P

Conclusions: All family friend party's are not boring. All you need is a camera. Shoot on!

P.S. Happy Diwali and Eid Mubarak to everyone!

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Monalisa - The Confused, Obsessive Chick

Explain to me the beauty of this painting. Is it because it is actually, genuinely beautiful? Or is it because it has so much hype around it that the world has been convinced to think that the painting rocks! Whatever it is, I don't really care. I don't care if she is laughing or smiling, or whether 'she' is a portrait of Da Vinci himself, or how her stare follows you everywhere. I personally don't see anything great in it (believers of the contrary please convince me). But then, I am no art expert.

But what's interesting is the world's obsession with this painting. I came across a TIME article with regards to this, and just read how the world goes bezerk over her:
  1. Monalisa Smile: "A Dutch emotion-recognition program determined that her non-grin is just 83% happy. She is also 9% disgusted, 6% fearful and 2% angry." **okay...**
  2. Speak Up: "A Japanese forsenics expert claims that by analyzing her skeletal structure, he can accurately re-create her voice, which he said was low for a woman." **what? how?**
  3. Smokin': Italian researchers say Leonardo used a blurring technique called sfumato, employing microscopic dots to create the smoky shadows near her eyes and mouth that make her stare so enigmatic." **what the hell!**
  4. Mona Mia: "A Harvard symblolgist uncovered an anagram scrawled in invisible ink across the painting's face, which led to the discovery of a secret society..." **yeah, you've read a book about it...**
Note: The above information was taken from TIME magazine.

Can you believe the amount of research done on this chick? Wait, she is not even good-looking! I guess it is the enigma and controversy that surrounds the painting that makes it what it is. Christianity, Leonardo Da Vinci and the Illuminati are all very fascinating aspects. But so much hype? Really? But then again, imagine a world without the Monalisa...

P.S. Any other fascinating facts that have eluded me?

Bad Days

Today was one. We all have them and it is so annoying. Nothing, literally nothing seems to be going your way. But then that's being self centered, yeah? Ok fine, nothing seems to be going the right way? But then what is the right way? Your way, yeah?

Nevermind, it happens, and yes it so annoying. You keep trying to justify yourself when you shouldn't - some things are just too obvious. Egos clash and the worse part about it is when people get a wrong impression. But then do we really care? Yeah - at leastI do. If the people I care about start feeling the wrong way, then there is reason to worry. But then they deserve to feel that way about me. Don't they?

Contradicting myself is a very good sign of two things - I am confused and I have had a bad day. So what do I do about it? Move on, and let time handle itself, but at the same time make a constant, effective effort to correct all my perceptions of the "wrongs" I have done.

So for all you bad-day-havers: yes , life does suck and there's nothing you can do about it. But you can look at the postives of life, and move on, accepting the fact that today was a bad day.
Contradictory statements? - Yeah, well, that's the day...

P.S. The obvious song to listen to: Daniel Powter - Bad Day.

UPDATED (17/10/2006): Arsenal lost against CSKA Moscow today, 1-0. I did not get to watch it because I had not checked up the fact that it was an early kick-off. 85th minute - Henry scored, but the goal was disallowed for no visible reason. Henry was yellow-carded for a suspect handball, but replays show otherwise. Soccernet called it 'harsh'. Whatever.

Friday, October 13, 2006

FIFA 07 - A Footie Gamer's Review

That's just the trailer, watch the next video to be blown away!

When it come to computer games, I play only, and literally only, football (soccer) games! Basically, that means I am passionately follow my passion. Since 1999, I have had and mastered each and every EA Sports' "Fifa" gaming franchise. I just had to get my hands on their latest release - Fifa 07, because hell yeah, "This Is The Season"!

The Game: One thing constant about Fifa games is improvement, and this year it's the same. Improvement doesn't necessarily mean the game is awesome. Fifa 06 wasn't that good. I prefer Pro Evolution Soccer 4 to that.

Fifa 07 for irregular game players/newcomers/new football fans: Brilliant - you need to have/play this game to take your understanding of football to the next level and guess what, you can do it in fun way. It's very arcady, very easy and with enough realism to enjoy the world game that is football. It is fast-paced action with enough opportunities to score beautiful goals, from a 30-yard scorcher, to a 17-passes tap-in. Good background music with tunes from 'Keane' and more - you are entertained whilst making your squad and so on. A great online infrastructure only improves the playability of the game. Buy this game, it's fun to play - and you'll definitely enjoy it. Just check out what shit you can do (see video below) - it's brilliant! (Not that I can do any of it in the game - but what is possible)

Now wasn't that just brilliant? But hey don't ask me how to do that kind off stuff. Figure it out and tell me!

STOP! Only proceed if you are a veteran of the EA Sports' Fifa franchise...

Yes! Finally! EA Sports has improved the previously-shitty-irritating shooting system. This system has a much more realistic feel to it - at professional level anyway. The gameplay - it's pretty decent when it comes to skill level:Professional - very enjoyable. But when you switch to World Class, supernormal goal-keepers of the past versions return, and so do supernormal goals. You just wonder how a real footballer would do that in real life? As usual it gets too annoying because the computer-controlled team just has to equalize in the 90th minute. The whistle just won't blow until the computer scores. In that sense, the Pro Evolution Series is far superior, far more realistic. However the game does provide plenty of excitement. The crossing, shooting, passing and dribbling, yes the dribbling system especially, has improved. It's way more realistic and fun. You can actually go on mazy runs! The shooting-fakes is a good add on. Otherwise, the manager mode is pretty much the same. The transfer market system is very very poor. You only have 3 turns to finalize deals between seasons? Why EA Sports? Why? Why do you do things like that? The background music is good. The graphics are ordinary - Pro Evolution's is much better. Sound effects are good. Commentary is crap as usual, it has been for the past 5 years. I find that Fifa 99 had the best commentary.

But hey, the game is still addictive, and if you are a football buff, you NEED to have it. It's very arcady and very fun to play.

Final Verdict: - "A Good Game" - 8/10
  • Graphics - 6/10
  • Playability - 9/10
  • Sound FX - 9/10
  • Commentary - 5/10
  • Gameplay - 8/10

P.S. It was high time that I shifted from serious grounds onto something more ordinary - so, what you get is this! Also, Fifa 07 players' feedback on the game is requested.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

From Here, Where?

Everyone asks himself - what do I want to do with my life? As in, professionally. Amidst all the university rat races, all the football and all the "studies", I asked myself that same question. And it struck me immediately! My passion is football. I try to breathe it, and I know I love it! So what? Do I try and become a professional footballer? Honestly, no - it's too late for that. Then what?

If you ever ask me what my realistic dream is - it is to be Arsenal Football Club's Football Manager! Far-fetched? Indeed. But, so what? It's my dream. Why not attempt to come at least close to it? Who knows what will happen, but at least it's worth my time for I know it's something I desire, something I am hungry for. So I refuse to be over-safe, and over-protective about my career. I am going to hunt that dream down like it's my inherent destiny. Or more directly, I have decided on my major - Sports Management. It's a start. I'm following my heart. Will I enjoy it? I don't know - but it's highly likely. Will I struggle? Maybe. Will I want to quit? Maybe. Will I conquer my ambition? Maybe - and that's the 'maybe' that counts.

There is nothing like uniting your avocation and vocation! (thank you for that Mr. Frost) There is nothing like chasing your dreams. There is nothing like enjoying what you do. There is nothing like being satisfied. Hey, you are not guaranteed satisfaction, but it's worth a try - otherwise all you are left with is regret.

So what's you dream? Let me rephrase that, what's your realistic dream? Forget your inhibitions. Forget consequences. Forget parent and peer pressure. Realize your dream, or at least try to. Common, throw in all those wacky combinations!

P.S. Forgive me for anything that sounds cliched.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

University Rat Race

It's time! Everyone desires to get into the best possible university with full scholarship. Everybody wants to know every single thing about every single university in the world (i.e. UK & USA). Everyone's "researching", getting recommendations, asking for career assistance, deciding on futures, doing social work, getting more extra-curriculars in, smooth-talking (i.e. sucking up) potential good-recommendation-givers, giving their SATs, SAT IIs, TOEFL, this, that - everyone wants everything.

The best part is when you hear stuff like, "Oh my God, he has already applied here and it's only October! Wow, he is so sure about his career!" and "Oh my God, he has been accepted here and there and has got scholarship!", when actually what that person has got is this irrelevant chain mail. However, this then spreads, and everyone goes "oooooh, aaaaaah" and "shit man, screwed!".

Everyone's trying to out do the other, get better recommendations, apply to more colleges and 'show', if not actually prove, their hunger to prepare themselves for the world stage. Everyone tries to show everyone else that they know the most about universities and its application processes. But then there are people who believe that 'life is like a leaf', and don't worry much about their future. Obviously these leafy people have moments of alarm when they realise they have no clue as to where their future lies, but then this 'alarm' subsides more quickly than 'everyone' else's does, and they return back to where they were - examining leaves. Everyone panics, momentarily, and then everyone's back to doing what they want, but at least 'everyone' gets some work done.

My point - nothing at all. I'm not trying to prove anything, just observing. It's fun to see the competitive nature, the worry, the genuine work and the moments of pure fake-ness. The funniest thing is when people get into IIT, or some high-funda college in the U.S. or U.K., but then suddenly, next year, you find them in the American University of Dubai, because, apparently, "IIT is difficult, you know."

I just want to enjoy this rat race, and be an integral part of it too. You know, be hypocritical. I'm learning from certain local educational institutions.

P.S. This 'everyone' refers to all Grade 12 students, yearning to get into universities. And hell, this is somewhat similar to the 'prefect' situation we had in Grade 11!

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Lagey Raho Bollywood!

I know this is a little late, but Lagey Raho Munnabhai was one hell of a movie. You know how much I hate Bollywood, but this movie made me proud of India, Bollywood and Gandhi!

The story was unbelievably well crafted. Almost everything made sense, and in the end it did not leave the audience (and me) with an unrealistic feel. It was hysterically hilarious and the acting was brilliant. Arshad Warsi almost overshadowed Sanjay Dutt with his overly humorous portrayal of 'Circuit'. However Sanjay Dutt was not bad, pretty good actually, but 'Circuit' just had much better lines.

But what was most brilliant about this movie was that it delivered a strong, very strong message in the end about the Gandhian principles of patience, non-violence, truth and persistence. I feel there was no better way to bring out such a meaningful message. It hits you, hits you hard, in the end, and you really start wondering how can you take on the principles Gandhigiri. I mean what better way to bring out this message than making one of the most lovable 'gangster' characters of the recent past, a Gandhian believer.

It was brilliant, and for the first time in a long time I thoroughly enjoyed a Hindi movie. The last movie I saw was Krrish, and it was very poorly made, cliched and fake - and the response it got - that was shocking! It has been so over-rated. I did not even laugh at its fake-ness, I was embarrassed.

However, Bollywood has been brightened up by this sequel of Munnabhai M.B.B.S. I hope this film gets the due recognition it needs and I also hope that Bollywood learns from this film, and comes up with better movies, with better story lines in the future.

Final Verdict for Lagey Raho Munnabhai: Simply brilliant, a must see!