Cutting the Chai has moved to a new domain:
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Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Post from the Past: Wrongfully Left In a Righteous World

[I will try to occasionally post posts that I had posted in the past which might still be relevant today. Obviously the new label/category Post from the Past will reflect the best of Cutting the Chai]

Many Windows versions ago, I discovered that the mouse settings could also be modified for left handed users. Otherwise the world in its rightful righteousness ignored the needs of us lefties.

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'RAW, Mossad, IRA join hands to bomb Pak'

The headline may sound as sensational as if it was from one of the television news channels (who are a major source of worry for the K-queen Ekta Kapoor). Though any such possibility might seem remote now (but you never know the ways of war) an Edmundian, Nitya Anand Chepuri has conjured this idea in his novel Tarbela Damned - Pakistan Tamed.

I'm yet to read the book (will go looking for it today) but the plot does sound exciting, especially for a generation who have been brought up on the idea that our 'pesky' neighbour is the reason for all our ills. Two men who studied together in school - St. Edmund's Shillong - and then went on to IIT Madras. The Hindu, Rahul Sharma joins the RAW and the Jew, Solomon Rabban, migrates to Israel and joins the Mossad. The Irish Republican Army angle is due to the influence of an Irishman, Brother Manahan, who taught them in School (St. Edmund's is run by the Christian Brothers founded by Edmund Ignatius Rice at Waterford, Ireland). They join hands in pursuit of their mission, taming Pakistan.

There might be some parallels in the story line with the author's life who had studied in St. Edmunds before passing out from the Defence Services Public School and graduating from IIT Madras. He then went on to join the army. The reviews say that "there is no off-putting jingoism and no cold-bloodedness," which is indeed welcome for a novel with a title like Tarbela Damned - Pakistan Tamed.

Tarbela Dam, built across the river Indus, is Pakistan's largest dam and is therefore of vital importance for the country. And Pakistanis on hearing of an 'imminent danger' to it are understandably worried. Anand pointed me to a Pakistani military and strategic discussion forum, where some members took the plot of the novel for real and posted interesting reactions. Here are a few samples (unedited):

* I can understand RAW and MOSSAD masterminding something but how does the Irish military come into this? Is this some troops in Afghanistan?

Anyway these dams need proper protection because RAW and MOSSAD can send mindcontrol zombies to do a suicide bombing on one of them. Dams are fragile and very hard to fix. I think its against the geneva convention to even bomb a damn during war.

* dams are not military targets, in war you are not meant to hit dams and if someone does then they will be nuked

* If the military stay in power then any such attack would be considered an act of war against pakistan. Doesn't matter who does it, Talibs or not, without dams pakistan would go down the drain. This is why we would ensure India goes down with us, meaning All nukes to indian and israeli cities. Also the factor of Indian nukes beng called a bluff, cause we're not sure if they can actually nuke us or not.

* Tell me a single time when the indian or israielies show honesty

* just imagine........
Bhakra Nangal Dam Damned, Bhangies tamed.
Ranjit Sagar Dam Damned, Bhangies tamed.
Gobind Sagar Dam Damned, Bhangies tamed.

Some comments were more realistic:
* it was just a novel by an indian writer. The West, including Israel is not interested in de-stabilizing Pakistan.

Well, I learnt another thing from the thread. Indians are referred to as Bhangies across our western border - maybe due to the still prevalent caste system in our country.

Most well-meaning Indians do not want an instable western neighbour even though we might have fought many wars, the scars of which might take long to heal. Pakistan's stability is good for India. Being surrounded by so-called failed states is a precarious situation in today's volatile times. If India has to develop into a super power that it aspires to be, there has to be political stability and economic growth in all of South East Asia. Because the ground realities here are much different from what existed in the American continents.

You can find more details about the book here.

[Tarbela Damned - Pakistan Tamed
By CN Anand
Published by Indialog Publications
198 pages
Rs 195]

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Monday, August 27, 2007

Good Riddance, Pesky Callers

For once the adholic in me was pleased to see an advertisement released by the Directorate of Audio Visual Publicity (DAVP) - who aren't exactly known for creativity in advertising. This ad was in typical DAVP style - unappealing. But the appeal was in what it said and not how it was expressed. Relased on behalf of the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) it announced the establishment of India's National Do Not Call Registry.

I came to know of the abundant money in the Indian economy through telecallers, who would have even offered me a loan for the purchase of new chaddies. Now that I've changed my number and the new one hasn't reached the unscrupulous - but nevertheless enterprising - people out there. Now it's only my mobile service provider who irritates me with those midnight messages asking me to subscribe for a Himesh Reshammiya caller tone. Not a bad idea though, it might just act as a repellant for people who call me up at uncomfortable hours.

In an act of desperation, they had replaced human callers with recorded voices. "Darling..." the voice from the other end said. I was a little taken aback. No one calls me that and that too in a wannabe seductive tone. I disconnected on hearing the next few sentences, disappointed, it was just a recorded voice. My do-not-disturb requests to the service provider have till date gone unheeded.

Hope this National Do Not Call Registry will go some way in restoring my peace with my mobile phone. Here's what the ad said:

(The original - see image above - was in all caps and gawky fonts, I've changed the case and the rest is verbatim)

Telephone users not wanting commercial calls/unwanted calls may now register request with their telephone operator

* For registering contact your telecom operator through phone-customer care-SAM-online-through letter
* Telecom operators have allotted specific numbers for registering your request through phone and SMS
* Telecom operators after verifying your request will intimate registration number within 10 days
* 45 days after registration no commercial calls/unwanted calls will come on your registered phone number
* Even after 45 days if you receive unwanted calls/SMS from telemarketers, you can lodge complaint with your telecom operator giving details from where call/SMS received along with phone number
* Telecom operator will register your complaint for taking suitable action
* No extra charge will be levied by telecom operator for availing this service

For more details visit:

Though the process can tale up to 55 days (10+45), it might be worth the wait. But TRAI should try to cut down the processing time, in the US it is about 31 days, but that too in today's e-era seems too long a time.

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Sunday, August 26, 2007

Indian Express recommends Cutting the Chai

In a blatant act of self-promotion if I were to highlight a blurb on the side panels of this blog, then this does sound good:

"We recommend this tea" - The Sunday Indian Express
Since I don't intend to be very clamant about this, but at the same time being unable to hide my glee, I'm posting a post instead.

This blog was reviewed in today's edition of The Sunday Indian Express and they had some good things to say and I'm pleased. I couldn't find the same posted on their website (where many links on the home page lead to dead ends), but they do have it in the epaper.
A lowdown on the top-ranking Indian blogs


It's a pitch black screen with bright yellow strips and a silhouette of the Red Fort which fails to mitigate the starkness. Visually, the site rightfully reflects its contents. For, Cutting the Chai is an explosion, a riot of thought, videos and downloads, For Soumyadip, the creator, this blog is a tribute to Indian advertising talent: from the black-and-white prints of the 1940s to the recent controversial Amul underwear ad.

Though this blog has a large repository of amusing and entertaining ads, a running commentary on each picture makes the entire experience hilarious. The author fully exploits the blog platform by providing videos of each TV ad he picks. In some cases, ringtone downloads are also added so that the reader can hear his favourite jingle every time the phone rings. This Chai has other flavours as well: movie reviews, mobile phone releases, among others. We recommend this tea.
Just a small correction, the ads featured on this blog date back not only to the 1940s but to the 19th century.

Incidentally, Cutting the Chai is also the featured blog at India Blogs' list of top Indian blogs (August 25, 2007). There's some illustrious company that I share the space with. It's humbling.

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Thursday, August 23, 2007

Drop Down Label Feed for New Blogger

Many readers of this blog might not be interested in all the assorted rubbish that I post here; they might have a liking for only some specific kind of crap. Someone who looks forward to my comics post might not necessarily have a liking for sexy Indian ads (an unlikely likelihood though). Or why should I bother someone with a genuine interest in vintage Indian advertising with some shoddy film reviews. Therefore I decided to include feeds for categories (aka labels, tags) for choosy readers and that too in an easy drop down format.

The PurpleMoggy had quite sometime back put up a post about adding label feeds to your Blogger (then in beta) template. But since, my list of categories is a long one and following that hack will mean eating up a lot of space on the sidebars, I needed the categories feed listing to be sorted in a drop down format. But then things weren't that easy for me, a little googling didn't help much, therefore I set on the difficult terrain on my own (I understand very little of the codes) and came up with what you can see in the Subscribe section on the right panel.

Before I proceed to the hack let me give credit to another place where it is due. The great help Ramani and the first Blogger Beta hack. And do remember to keep a backup of your template, just in case things go wrong. I don't want anyone cursing me.

Log in to your Blogger account -> Go to Layout -> Add a Page Element -> Add the Label element to your blog

Edit HTML -> Click the Expand Widget Templates check box

And look for this code:

<b:widget id='Label1' locked='false' title='Labels' type='Label'>
<b:includable id='main'>
<b:if cond='data:title'>
<div class='widget-content'>
<b:loop values='data:labels' var='label'>
<b:if cond='data:blog.url == data:label.url'>
<a expr:href='data:label.url'><></a>

<b:include name='quickedit'/>
In case you have already added a label widget to your template, it will be named
<b:widget id='Label2' locked='false' title='Labels' type='Label'>
and in case you have multiple label widgets (like an additional tag cloud), it'll be this:
<b:widget id='Label3' locked='false' title='Labels' type='Label'>
Not much of a difference, only the numeral in the widget id progresses (as no two widgets can share the same id).

Now replace the section in the code (above) in red, with this:

<select onchange='location=this.options[this.selectedIndex].value;' style='width:145px'>
<option>Category feed</option>
<b:loop values='data:labels' var='label'>
<option expr:value='data:post.url + "/feeds/posts/default/-/" +'><>
In case, you also want to display the number of posts under each label, replace the portions of code in bold with this instead of the one above:

<select onchange='location=this.options[this.selectedIndex].value;' style='width:145px'>
<option>Category feed</option>
<b:loop values='data:labels' var='label'>
<option expr:value='data:post.url + "/feeds/posts/default/-/" +'><>
You can customise your drop down list by changing the text in
<option>Category feed</option>
<option>Your customised text</option>
Even the width of the drop down list can be changed to suit your template. The default in this is
You may change the width specifications to say 120px or whatever or even remove this block of code altogether.

After you are done with your customisation bit, get a preview. Just to see if it is displaying right, check the functionality only on the live blog. It wouldn't work in preview given the relative nature of the paths.

You can also rename or unname the widget from the Page Elements page.

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Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Happiness in the Gutter

This is the best in Radio Mirchi's Mirchi sunnewale always khush campaign. Simple concept, beautiful execution, high recall value.

Man working inside a sewage pipe, singing on the top of his voice.

"Yeh suhana mausam, yeh khula aasmaan, kho gaye hum yaahan, haye, kho gaye hum yaahan..."

A passerby (obviously a babu in a safari suit) inquisitively looks inside the manhole.

The contrast - of the working environment and the song the man's singing - is enhanced by the top of voice rendition. Our manhole singer might just make it to the next talent hunt on TV (but he'll face stiff competition from me).

This ad will also make a wonderful ringtone for your mobile or even a caller tone.


Download [MP3 156 KB 00:00:19 64kbps Mono 64 kHz]
Right click and Save Link As/Save Target As

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Saturday, August 18, 2007

Dangerously Low - The Full Version

In an earlier post I had posted two images, featuring six babes, from the Levi's Low Rise Jeans advertisement that came in the papers sometime in the early 2000s. I discovered the complete ad amongst my newspaper clippings from that era. Here's the complete ad - in one piece - featuring all ten beauties.

[Click on image for a larger view]

Levi's Low Rise Jeans. Dangerously Low
Agency: JWT

And can you name all the girls in the ad?

Click here for the complete post...

Friday, August 17, 2007

My Blog's Being Pimped and I Didn't Even Know

A few days back I had put up a post on sponsored blogging and my take on the practice. Today, I find this blog featured on SponsoredReviews and the displayed rate to 'buy' a review on this blog is $100 [Click on image for a bigger view].

Though in their FAQ section says that bloggers "are paid to write in-depth, honest reviews" and the "constructive criticism is not only appreciated, it is expected," they didn't ask me to be a part of their game. In fact they might be involved in deceptive display of non-member bogs to lure customers in.

SponsoredReviews jumped into the pay-per-post bandwagon early this year and perhaps in their eagerness to get a bigger share of the PPP pie they're getting a little overboard. Meanwhile, I've informed them that this blog didn't ever volunteer to be a part of their network and requested for removal.

I also happened to discover Sonia Falerio's blog being sold at the same price as mine [Click on image for a bigger view].

But all was not wrong with the discovery. Finding my blog to be priced higher than many of the others (that I randomly checked) was an ego booster. And I also got a couple of referral hits from their site (but I didn't link back to their site on purpose).

Update: Jarrod from SponsoredReviews has responded (both via email and as a comment to this post):

We apologize that your site was added without your approval. We have suspended the blogger who added you to their account. We are not sure what they were hoping to gain, as they would have not been able to get paid.

Once again we apologize for the inconvenience.

Click here for the complete post...

Thursday, August 16, 2007

What's Your Flavour of the Night?

The airing of these ads during the ICC Champions Trophy had upset both the Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI) and the Censor Board. The complaint on the ASCI website reads:

Visuals of "a woman sensually and orally enjoying the flavours of fruits." are obscene and vulgar because they imply promotion of 'XXX Flavoured Dotted Condoms' for oral sex. Also, running these Ads during cricket matches, which has large proportion of minors and children watching, violates prevailing standards of decency.

The ASCI in its decision said:
Ads violate prevailing standards of decency as relevant to this vulnerable age group. The time of airing and the programme during which the Ads were shown, were not suitable for viewing by children and minors.

The ads are back on TV but on the late night slot. Though DKT India officials denied promoting oral sex through the ads, the suggestive visuals give a different impression. Nothing wrong with that, though.


DKT XXX Flavoured Dotted Condoms - Chocolate

To share/embed this video click here
Download video [00:00:19 FLV 538 KB]

DKT XXX Flavoured Dotted Condoms - Grape

To share/embed this video click here
Download video [00:00:19 FLV 741 KB]

DKT XXX Flavoured Dotted Condoms - Strawberry

To share/embed this video click here
Download video [00:00:19 FLV 558 KB]


DKT XXX Flavoured Dotted Condoms - Chocolate

DKT XXX Flavoured Dotted Condoms - Grape

DKT XXX Flavoured Dotted Condoms - Strawberry

Agency: M:Ideas

Addition [November 24, 2007]: The man behind this ad is Vivek Agnihotri, whose filmography includes Dhan Dhana Dhan Goal and Chocolate.

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Wednesday, August 15, 2007

I-Day Isspecial

Had planned for a special isspecial on Independence Day. But now have to do with this kamchalau one. Anyway here are some advertisements which were published exactly sixty years back on (or around) August 15, 1947.

The following were published on the front page of The Times of India, Bombay on I-Day.


Baliwalla & Homi Ltd., 355 Hornby Rd Etc., Bombay

It Happened in Brooklyn starring Frank Sinatra and playing at Metro

These are sourced from The Indian Express (who have digitally altered the text, thereby killing the real feel) who in turn got the original from the Nehru Memorial Museum and Library, New Delhi.

MS Subbulakshmi's special Independence Day broadcast on AIR Madras and Trichy

Parle's Gluco & Monaco biscuits

GEC Radio

Prem Nath Motors Ltd, Scindia House, New Delhi

Kopran White toothpaste

Kanan Devi in Lux ad

Dalmia Cement

Gandhi & Stalin by Louis Fischer

And a few wallpapers in 1024x768 resolution (reflecting the mood of the hour) for your desktops [To save the wallpapers right click and Save Link As (Firefox) or Save Target As (IE)]

Click here for the complete post...

Outlook Attacked, Nothing New

The Outlook office in Mumbai was vandalised by 'suspected' Shiv Sainiks. Nothing new, nothing unexpected. My copy of the magazine, which was purportedly the reason behind the ruckus, landed on my doorstep this morning (the liabilities of being a subscriber, copies always arrive late). Though not as enjoyable a 60th Year of Independence edition as I would have expected, not too bad either. In comparison India Today's special issue which had come out in late June (Issue dated July 2, 2007) was a trivia treat.

Outlook's India at 60 I-Day Special carried a list of 60 heroes from the last six decades and 14 villains from the same era. Ideally it should've been a list of an equivalent number of rogues but then anniversaries are about celebrating the good things. The rogue list included the following: Nathuram Godse, Gaya Ram, the faceless terrorist, Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale, Sanjay Gandhi, Narenda Modi, Mohammed Azharuddin, HKL Bhagat, Sajjan Kumar, Jagdish Tytler, Dawood Ibrahim, Beant Singh, Satwant Singh and of course Bal Keshav Thackeray.

And as always, the Sena supremo's followers took offence at the 119-word description of their leader which was accompanied by a cartoon (see accompanying image) which I think the cartoonist inside Thackeray (if it still exists) would've applauded. But in a democracy like ours, where you can get away with many a serious offence, offence naturally becomes the best mode of defence even on the slightest of pretexts. And the Sena is a veteran in these tactics.

In March 2005, the India Today office in Nariman Point was similarly attacked. India Today, rather it's sister publication Business Today 'transgressed' by inviting Mani Shankar Aiyar to preside over an award ceremony organised by the magazine. Aiyar had some comments on Veer Savarkar which the Sena and its allies found unsavoury. Marathi daily Mahanagar, which had been critical of the Sena was also the subject of its ire.

It's not that the Shiv Sainiks have a special liking for the press as targets; they also show an unbiased wrath towards BCCI offices, cricket pitches, hospitals, films, Pakistani singers, couples amongst innumerable others. This attack on Outlook is not an attack on freedom of expression, it is an attack in retaliation of a sacrilege. An unpardonable behaviour. And hence entirely justified. And this will continue till the day everybody toes the Sena line, however crooked that may be.

Thank god that Dawood hasn't yet taken offence...

Interestingly, Outlook didn't carry the illustration credits in this issue, something that they usually do.

Image courtesy: Outlook

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Sunday, August 12, 2007

Sponsored Blogging: Am I Game?

Technorati currently tracks 97.2 million blogs. That's about one blog for every 68 people on this planet (67.924 to be precise - if the population of the world as per July 2007 estimates is 6,602,224,175). Then blogs must be really popular. But these figures show another angle to the blog story, there might just be more blog creators than there are regular blog readers.

Whatever the facts might be, the potential of the blog as a mode to further commercial interests has not escaped most aware entrepreneurs. Many bloggers have been lured (including me) to the world of contextual pay-per-click advertising and the more popular ones carry advertising of the non-contextual variety as well.

There's no harm in making money, after all we all need a good life to live and that often costs some dough. With monetary benefits attached to a task the performance usually turns to be better (the Indian cricket team might be treated as an exception to the rule). But sponsored posts are different.

Here you get paid to write about something in your blog (in a manner controlled by your paymaster). It might seem fine from a different point of view. But when I get offers for sponsored blogging, my mind wanders to the purpose behind my blogging. Name, fame and money - the eternal wants of the insatiable humankind. This blog might have increased the number of people who know me (or my name) by a few hundred (at the best). So name and fame via blogging doesn't do much (for the kinds of my kind). Money, though I wish my take-home salary would be atleast treble of what lands in my bank account at the end of every month, I don't care too much for money (coz money didn't buy me love).

But again, money does matter. So would I compromise my sole reason for blogging - satisfaction - for a few dollars (they talk in dollars not rupees)? I thought of emulating the advertorial model, wherein the readers know which is what. But the wannabe paymasters would beg to differ - the content should look authentic. You should pretend to suck up to people (and products) as though the suction is emanating from core of your heart. Many mainstream media organisations might do that, but I being the Managing Editor of this one-man venture can afford to put my foot down. Google takes care of my costs and I try to pay them back by the revenue shared via Adsense (a pittance though). In the meanwhile I can derive some satisfaction (From what? That I'm yet to figure out).

Some wannabe bloggerminators like to accuse bloggers as the type who are frantically making efforts through their blogs to catch the eye of some deep pocketed publisher, who would then hand them a hefty advance for their blook. My 'dreams of a publisher taking notice of me' was fulfilled when a Calcutta-based publishing concern sent me an email with the subject "Publication proposal." I didn't reply to that mail as I didn't have any publication-worthy stuff on me. I wish I had, I might just have been the next Zoe Margolis.

Fantasies apart, blogging with money on mind is not much fun. Blogging for me is unbridled - I wish to let it remain that way as long as possible. Whenever I get offers for sponsored posts (some from people mailing from GMail ids. They want to play safe, it seems - with the things that bloggers post about anyone and anything), I give them a counter offer. That they let me know of topics and ideas that would interest me and I would post about them for free. But it seems that they don't like their work done for free. Strange, isn't it?

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Thursday, August 09, 2007

The Consequences of Being a Gandhi

Gandhi, My Father (2007)
Director: Feroz Abbas Khan
Producer: Anil Kapoor
Cinematography: David MacDonals
Editing: Sreekar Prasad
Production Design: Nitin Chandrakant Desai
Sound: Resul Pookutty
Make-up: Penny Smith
Cast: Darshan Jariwala (Mahatma Gandhi), Akshaye Khanna (Harilal Gandhi),
Shefali Shah (Kasturba Gandhi), Bhumika Chawla (Gulab Gandhi)

Being the biggest celebrity that this nation has ever seen in its modern existence is indeed a tough job. And the immense responsibility that comes with the status makes it more difficult to maintain the balance between the different aspects of life. The Father of the Nation, Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, didn't perhaps fit into the role of an ideal parent especially for his eldest son, Harilal Mohandas Gandhi.

Gandhi, My Father is about this turbulent relationship between the Mahatma and his son, who felt his surname to be a disadvantage. But didn't shy away from flaunting it when the need arose.

"He is the greatest father that you can have... but he is one father I wish I didn't have" - Harilal Gandhi

"In your laboratory experiments, unfortunately I am the one truth that has gone wrong"

Feroz Abbas Khan, who also directed the much-talked-about play Mahatma vs Gandhi, does a good job of the film, but shies away from highlighting the subtle moments and emotions in a father-son relationships. Everything is then and there, things don't exactly evolve. But David MacDonald's helps hide many such blemishes with his competent cinematography.

There's also humour in the film, I found myself and my companion smiling, if not laughing, especially during the first half. Akshaye Khanna is a fine actor and plays his role well, though not to the hilt. The best performance though comes from Shefali Shah as Kasturba Gandhi.

The film doesn't bore, but also doesn't engross. Ideally, one would have expected better from a director who has handled the subject before. The script, I felt, actually goes against the title. It should've been called Harilal, My Son - but then Gandhi sells, so even Mahatma, My Father was out of the question. Though the promos would like you to believe otherwise, the movie leaves the impact that Harilal the undeserving son and the Mahatma wasn't exactly a failed father.

If I'm not mistaken, I noticed the Hero Cycle's 'H' on the front some of the cycles used in the movie but Hero Cycles came into being about eight years after where the story of the film ends. There's not much drama, not much of a story either. Ignore my nitpicking and watch the movie for its authentic feel.

Watch the trailer:

To share/embed this video click here
Download video [00:02:13 FLV 2.69 MB]

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Wednesday, August 08, 2007


Meghna Girohtra, from Bombay, has collected 243 vintage Indian print advertisements (on the last count) on Flickr. A collection which she intends to keep growing and wants to create an online archive of vintage ads. It does feel good to know that I'm not alone in my endeavour.

Through my blog I've met many a ad aficionados, but rarely have I interacted with a collector. And I couldn't resist borrowing a few ads from her collection.

Here are some additions to Sexy Indian Advertisements (courtesy Meghna):

Liril (1982)
[Come alive with freshness
Totally different LIRIL. Rippled green with the
exciting freshness of limes. Tangy, tingling LIRIL
...makes a fresh new woman of you.
Liril the freshness soap
with the exciting freshness of limes
A quality product of Hindustan Lever]

Agency: Lintas

Ultrx Luxury Towels from Bombay Dyeing (1989)
[Ultrx Luxury Towels - in a variety of vibrant colours. Made with superior Japanese technology to give you a towel that is comparale to the finest in the world.
Softer, super-absorbent and with an ultra-rich pile. In 100% pure cotton.
Available as single towels or sets. Also in a special luxury large size.]

...featuring a teenaged Lisa Ray. Probably the hottest import from Canada that ever arrived on Indian shores.
Well, it seems that I had been too smitten by Lisa and mistook someone else for her. Meghna (the source of these ads) tells me that according to her friend Salil it ain't Lisa but Aliya Knightley.
Agency: Lintas

More Liril freshness from 1989
[Come alive with Liril freshness
With the exciting freshness of limes
Liril the freshness soap]
Agency: Lintas

Yet more Liril, girl and the waterfall.
Agency: Lintas

Bombay Dyeing (1983)
[The ultimate in bedwear
Polycot -
Polyester blended deluxe sheets
Beaucale and Supercale -
Luxurious pure cotton sheets
Bombay Dyeing
The difference shows]

Agency: Ulka

Thums Up (1986)
[Thums Up makes it great
The refreshing cola]

Before the thunder struck it was babes in bikinis cooling off with what was once India's favourite aerated drink

Bombay Dyeing sarees
[Five metres can be a lot of mischief
Bombay Dyeing
100% polyester sarees
Polyester Georgette sarees]

Indeed the five metres can do wonders to a woman (and also the ogling men)

Well I have another adholic in the family, my one-and-a-half-year old nephew Aahan aka Aarohan (more pics here). He likes watching TV, particularly advertisements. In fact he wouldn't have his food unless there's an ad playing before him. My brother and sis-in-law keep the remote handy, as soon as the commercial ends on one channel they have to switch to another. Aahan especially has a liking for bike and cycle ads. And does recall his Chachu (ie me) whenever the Sunny Deol Lux Cozy ad is on air (I don't fancy myself as Sunny though).

Click here for the complete post...

Monday, August 06, 2007

The Maruti 800 Pick-up

Car modification is a craze for many and a booming business for some. I have seen some vehicles transmogrify into altogether something else. But here's one that I really liked. Not much done, only a little sawing and adding the beams. The erstwhile bestseller on Indian roads - the Maruti 800 (recently overtaken by its much younger sibling Alto) is also a pick-up van.

Saw it parked outside the office yesterday and took a few quick snaps. It seemed to be modified from an older variant of the 800. Interestingly it didn't have any number plate.

Click here for the complete post...

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Wear the Ware

[As promised here's the second in the possibly unending series on sexy Indian advertisements]

From sandals and shoes to bathroom accessories seems like an unlikely business expansion. Diversification being the catchphrase of business today, everyone can venture into anything. Liberty, known for its footwear, has ventured into the vitreous world with Liberty Whiteware. From wear to ware. Here's some sizzle that's on TV now:

Beach bathroom products and accessories from Liberty Whitewear
To share/embed this video click here
Download video [00:00:43 FLV 1.07 MB]

And some stills:

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Thursday, August 02, 2007

My Latest Adventures with Tintin

Tintin and his loveable whisky-loving and faithful fox terrier friend Snowy kept me in adventurous company during many a rainy afternoon. I owned very few of Tintin comics, the price was a big deterrent, but read almost all of them thanks to the comic exchange programme that we friends practiced. One which I missed was the very first one, published in 1929, Tintin in the Land of the Soviets (the other was the last but semi-complete - Tintin and Alph-Art).

Wilfing on the Internet the other day, I accidentally discovered Tintin in the Land of the Soviets on Scribd. Though the artwork in Tintin's first adventure is a far cry from the ones later ones which carried our young reporter (though he's rarely seen doing what reporters usually do) and his four legged friend to different parts of the world (including India, particularly the kingdom of Gaipajama, complete with all the stereotypes of fakirs and the Indian Rope Trick).

The comic book though meant for children is also a critique on different existing political systems. Be it the coup curry of Latin America or the Japanese interference in China. Hergé or Georges Remi (this was a favourite question of quizzards during our time as the name Hergé is a result of transposition of Georges Remi's initials) did support monarchy as depicted by Tintin's friendship with the Maharaja of Gaipyjama or his help for King Muskar XII of Syldavia in King Ottokar's Sceptre. Tintin in the Land of the Soviets shows the Bolsheviks in a very poor light (very unlike what we were taught in the school texts during our time) and this was perhaps the reason why the comic was not available in India. A few examples:

Tintin had inspired a number of people to produce unofficial comic books - one being Tintin in Thailand where Tintin goes on a 'sex holiday' to Thailand (it also features almost all of the major characters) - and I too produced one. I was 14 and in Class VIII when I put my very own Tintin adventure on paper (with pencils, a black Pilot pen and Camlin sketch pens), titling my work Tintin in Shilliont, keeping alive Hergé's tradition of fictitious lands based on real places. Shilliont was Shillong. But unfortunately, I lost that comic. If I remember right, Kisholay Ray (now a budding photographer), a good school pal, who had a much better hand at drawing than me also had his own version.

Though an animated series on the Adventures of Tintin had appeared on television, which I rarely missed (now I'm again rerunning them on my mobile), nothing beats the experience of the comic book in paper.

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