What do you do when insanity hits you?

Main Entry:
in·san·i·ty           Listen to the pronunciation of insanity
Inflected Form(s):
plural in·san·i·ties
1: a deranged state of the mind usually occurring as a specific disorder (as schizophrenia)
: such unsoundness of mind or lack of understanding as prevents one from having the mental capacity required by law to enter into a particular relationship, status, or transaction or as removes one from criminal or civil responsibility
3 a
: extreme folly or unreasonableness b: something utterly foolish or unreasonable

RajuBen: Gripping Drama

I have been following the very interesting episodic tele-film which I thought I should share with all! Shilpa Shukla, yes the 'Chak De' tough nut, is extremely GOOD! I really wish Shahrukh focussed on her to promote instead of those bimbo girls.. but then, :-) :D I guess Shilpa wouldn't want to be dancing around trees, would she???? [ Shahrukh, if you be reading this, please ponder! ]
Monday, 10.00 pm, Sony TV
Kshama Rao Posted: Mar 20, 2009 at 1242 hrs IST
It’s an experiment, alright. Specials @ 10 on Sony is a 12-episode series presented by directors Anurag Kashyap, Vikram Bhatt, Mahesh Manjrekar and Madhur Bhandarkar. For viewers weaned on endless, mindless episode after-episode of prime time sagas, you need a different palate for Specials. But rest assured, Kashyap’s Rajuben, is just what the doctors recommended.
So we will first look at her. Her journey from Rajashree, (Shilpa Shukla) born to a Gandhian father (K K Raina) to Rajuben, the widow who takes over the reins of her husband Rohit’s (Rajesh Shringarpure) underworld gang. It’s only two episodes-old but Rajuben has already told us the story of 20. Shot like a film, the story moves back and forth, taking viewers through Raju’s pre-marriage, sepia-tinted days to her short-lived married life and her coming to terms with her gangster husband, to her taking over the underworld, her rise in the gang and finally to the present time when she is now an MLA and contesting an election. Witnessing her rise and fall, her trials and tribulations and even accompanying her on her sonography visits when she is pregnant with her twins, is Tabrez, her husband’s close aide and confidante. There is Joshi (Harsh Chaya) too, the seniormost member of the gang, who grudges Rajuben’s rise in the party, plots and ploys against her and her two grown up children. The children, a boy and a girl have got their first taste of their mother’s clout and nature of job as the boy gets kidnapped and the girl sees her mother manipulating the system, the media as she uses the incident to her advantage, especially with the elections around the corner. Rajuben makes for an interesting, gripping watch. One can’t afford to chop vegetables while the series is on because it constantly commands your attention as a viewer. Secondly, since we assume it’s shot in sync sound, one has to strain one’s ears to hear the dialogues. It’s a wee bit difficult to go back and forth to the three different eras in which the story is set but it’s a marvel to be part of this roller coaster ride - the nervous energy, the tension, the drama, the love (Raju and Rohit’s courtship days over a glass of sugarcane juice are tender) and the power games, there is everything. Shilpa Shukla as Raju, Rajesh as Rohit, Raina as her idealist father and Chaya as Joshi pitch in with near-perfect performances and the supporting cast Raj Arun who plays Tabrez and Neeraj Kumarwho plays Melwyn are first rate. One teeny-weeny complaint is only if they could go easy on the make-up especially that overdone but unconvincing effort to make Raju and Joshi look old and haggard with their wrinkles, crow’s feet etc. However, Rajuben makes for a refreshing viewing alternative. Lalit Marathe (he’s the director), take a bow!
Verdict: Isko dekho.

American Socialism?

I have been extremely busy last few weeks and coming weeks also look the same. Blogging will likely be considerably reduced. Anyways, I am waiting for elections to be over and results to be declared, then the fun part of Indian Political Circus will start !!!
In the meanwhile, I saw this amusing news item.
AIG 2008 bonuses spawned 73 millionaires: Cuomo
By Grant McCool
NEW YORK (Reuters) - American International Group Inc, which has received $180 billion in taxpayer money to stay in business, created 73 millionaires with bonuses of $1 million or more in 2008, New York's top legal officer said on Tuesday. New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo, releasing details of a probe into payments at the insurer, said the top bonus recipient was paid more than $6.4 million, and the top 10 received a total of $42 million. "These payments were all made to individuals in the subsidiary whose performance led to crushing losses and the near failure of AIG," Cuomo wrote in a letter to Barney Frank, chairman of the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Financial Services, "Thus, last week, AIG made more than 73 millionaires in the unit which lost so much money that it brought the firm to its knees, forcing a taxpayer bailout," Cuomo wrote. Cuomo offered the details to Frank before a committee hearing in Washington on Wednesday. AIG did not immediately return a call seeking comment. Cuomo said in the letter, which he released to the media, that his office had obtained the contracts under which AIG made the payments. It said most bonuses were locked in at 2007 levels "despite obvious signs that 2008 performance would be disastrous." Cuomo is investigating whether the bonuses were paid fraudulently under New York law and has asked for the names and amounts and details of contracts. AIG has argued that its hands were tied contractually over $165 million in bonuses it paid to AIG employees on Sunday. Eleven employees who received retention bonuses of $1 million or more no longer work for AIG, Cuomo wrote. He said AIG would not disclose the names of people who received retention payments. "My office will continue to seek an explanation for why each one of these individuals was so crucial to keep aboard that they were paid handsomely despite the unit's disastrous performance," the letter said. On Monday, Cuomo said he was going to issue subpoenas to AIG, whose executive pay plans have drawn the wrath of President Barack Obama. A U.S. Treasury official said the government will modify a planned $30 billion capital injection for the company to try to recoup hundreds of millions of dollars in controversial bonuses.
(Additional reporting by Jonathan Stempel; editing by Toni Reinhold and John Wallace)