Thursday, June 19, 2008

Elloyen Dioyen... Lord's

The last Indian to score a century at the 'home of cricket' is Ajit Agarkar. An imposing board in the Visitors' dressing room informs. In fact, there are two boards - one for centurions and another for 5/10 wicket hauls.
The genial host, who takes you around the grounds for a tour, points out that there are only two names that appear on both lists - Gary Sobers and Vinoo Mankad. He also says that several deserving names missing on the two boards. Sachin Tendulkar and Brian Lara on the batsmen's list. Dennis Lillee and Shane Warne on the bowlers'.
He wonders aloud if Mr Warne may be persuaded to return for next year's Ashes Test to break the jinx. "You can't put anything beyond him..."

There are only three people on the centurions' list who did so on their debuts. The first two names escape me. The third name is S Ganguly, 131, 1996.
"Quite a character, eh? Twirled his jersey in the air and ran down the Long Room, thumping the tables as he went past them. A few members would have choked on their sherry...", the host chuckles about the NatWest victory. He remembers that much better than the century and you can't blame him!

Also, you get to see the bench on which he stood while doing the famous twirl. Photography is prohibited in the dressing room but I sneak in a snap anyway. My son refused to take off his jersey, though!

And from the other end of the ground, you get a full view of the dressing room balcony. In another week, it will be 25 years since one Mr Kapil Dev lifted a Cup there.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Elloyen Dioyen... Pointless Ramblings

British humour could well be one of the prime reasons for tourism to the country... ranking right up there with the Buckingham Palace and London Eye!

On a sight-seeing tour of London, these gems were heard:

"This is the home of the second Queen of England. However, you won't get to see him because Elton John is in LA at the moment."

"The inventor of the crossword is buried in this cemetery. To find him, you have to go 4 down and 3 across."

On the same sight-seeing tour, a completely piegon-less Trafalgar Square had me speechless. What will Amrish Puri do when he is reminiscing about getting back to mere Punjab ko? Bloody hell, how would Americans feel if somebody sunk the Titanic?
I know, I know... nobody needs to sink the damn ship but don't be pedantic. You are getting what I am driving at, right?

And for this monstrosity, there is this apology of a sign.

Does the Mayor realise that his tourism economy would collapse if Yash Chopra shifts his shooting for Rab Ne Bana De Jodi?

Yeh Tag Kab Bujhegi?

Diligent Candy has passed on a tag to me, which I was proposing to cry off because I had done it before. But then, Book Tags (also called Took Bags) are my perennial favourites and this one about the book you are reading is one I can do every week!

The book I have just started to read is Devil May Care, purported to be written by Ian Fleming.
Instead of a blurb, there is a tantalising line on the back cover - 'Come in, 007,' said M. 'Its good to see you back.'
And the 5 lines starting from the 4th on page 123 are:
The only real difference he could see was that where Scarlett had deep brown eyes, Poppy's were a lighter hazel, flecked with green.
'Poppy,' he said gently, placing a hand on hers. He felt it twitch beneath his grasp. 'What do you want me to do?' The girl looked deep into his eyes. 'Kill Gorner,' she said.

For James Bond fans, I don't think there can be a better advertisement than this extract as plots and praise have never been the basis of selling a Bond book or film.

In fact, my biggest grouse against the forthcoming Bond film is the name, which has words more suitable in Jane Austen novels.
QUANTUM OF SOLACE? What were they thinking of when they came up with that one? Unless Solace is the name of the heroine and Quantum the name of the nuclear bomb which will drop on London, the name is a strict no-no!

The only times Bond films can have words with more than one syllable is when it is the name of a gizmo (Moonraker) or a babe (Octopussy). And of course, if like the latter, you can make a slightly risque reference, then you get bonus points.

After Die Another Day and Tomorrow Never Dies, Quantum of Solace will be very difficult to digest. More so, since the first film of the franchise was Dr No!

Whom do I pass on the tag to?
Udayan would be the natural choice as this would help him break his self-imposed exile from the blogsphere.