Ring out the old, with those year-end rankings

New Year’s is a harmless annual institution, of no particular use to anybody save as a scapegoat for promiscuous drunks, and friendly calls and humbug resolutions. Mark Twain. With columnists and bloggers such as yours truly, it almost seems an article of faith that as the dawn of a new year approaches, we are honour bound …

Where have all the greeting cards gone?

It is that time of the year again. Whether we want to or not, whether we mean it or not, whether we have any genuine feelings for a particular individual or not, we feel obliged to send out all manner of overly cheerful and at times, even soppy messages of good cheer as the last …

No sex please, we’re Customs

Sex toys hit city Customs barrier, end up in godown. The Times of India. Honestly, I am fed up to the back teeth with our newspapers these days. All they ever talk about is the pandemic, border skirmishes, petrol prices, Modi and Putin bear-hugging, Sidhu, Channi and the Captain squaring off in Punjab, and some …

The Great Indian Debate

The art of debating was actively encouraged when most of us were still in our early teens. In its barest essentials, the way we defined a debate as practised in schools and college campuses was roughly on the following lines. The House proposed a motion, as in ‘This House believes that bullying in schools should …

‘Clicket, rovery clicket!’*

*The title of this piece provides an Oriental twist to the memorable calypso, ‘Cricket, lovely cricket’ by Lord Beginner, celebrating the West Indies’ first ever Test victory over England in 1950 at Lord’s. The game of cricket and its pundits are spread out like a rash. They are everywhere. Well, perhaps not in North Korea …

  Deepavali and Diwali.  India’s ‘son et lumière.’

Preface: This is not my usual weekly blog, which is generally slated for Sundays. It being Deepavali (or Diwali), I am reproducing, out of turn, a piece I wrote on this festival a few years ago. Some of you may have read it (you are free to re-read it or skip it), many of you probably …