A slice of Zindagi- #JodeyDilonKo experience relived.

‘Hi Sumyth, we see that you attend the meets, but off late you don’t seem to share your experience with us through your blogs.’

This was what the guy, who called me to confirm my registration before the meet, told me. And this is what instigated me to write this post. And the Moto G. And my awesome 219 followers. And the Moto G.

So, here I was.

The Indiblogger meet. At good ole Leela, Mumbai. I have been to the last 8 of these & I have no plans of changing the habit anytime soon. ‘Cuz good habits die harder than Sunny Deol. And as usual, Much Fun Was HAD.

It started off just the way these things should, with some damn good grub. Good job, the cooking staff at Leela. The taste buds approve. Then, we blogger comrades….(I wonder what is female for comrade? Comradette? Hehehe…), anyways, getting back to the point,, all of us assembled in the ballroom area and held a salsa, samba & tango session. Naah, but really, we actually just grabbed the nearest seats we could. Nice seats, comfortable and all. What followed was as much fun as salsa & samba (Ok, maybe not as much fun. But pretty close. Like, 8 out of 10)

That's me. Right at the back. The one in yellow.

That’s me. Right at the back. The one in yellow.

Now, the thing is that today’s meet had a theme. Which was #JodeyDilonKe (Everything looks a lot more sillier when you put them in hashtags, doesn’t it), so I was telling ya that it was about one of those initiatives to promote cross cultural harmony through artistic means. I am all for it, the more music, movies & creative vision we can share, the better. UNITE, my fellow homo sapiens, and together we shall someday have peace!!

Speaking of unity, Mumbai & Delhi could do with some of that. I mean that in the best way possible. The two cities bring with them so many of their own unique flavours & personality, that it’s a wonder that they are in the same country. A friendly bout of one-upmanship broke out between the Mumbai & Delhi blog communities (blogummunities, anyone?) & it was a beautiful mess to watch & absorb.

 

And I don’t usually do this, but YOU. YES YOU. The Girl from Delhi, you get a special mention in my blog. Here’s why:

 

Nihaal: Which city has the more hot looking girls?

She: Delhi, cause Narendra Modi is the most powerful man in the country. (Screw logic.)

 

Renie: Which city has the better weather?

She: Delhi, cause ‘Pyaar tera Delhi ki Sardi’. (Since logic has already been taken, screw debate.)

 

I don’t really care who won, but I am glad they are as different as they are. Makes the world a cooler place, innit? I think its the same with India & Pakistan. Our peace efforts are too focused on our similarities, we should also be able to celebrate our differences. Because the world be pretty darn boring if everybody was just like everybody else. Like China.

Thoda heavy ho gaya. It happens. I am deep like that sometimes, bro. Anyways, in the middle of the rant, I forgot to tell you what this whole India-Pakistan bhai bhai was about. They are launching this awesome new channel, Zindagi. So, the idea is simple. We gave Pakistan bollywood & our saas-bahu serials. Now, they have decided to return the favour. Zindagi will broadcast TV shows conceptualised & shot in pakistan. So, yeah, Pakistani TV. Now we can root for, cry & laugh with & tear our hair over fictional characters from across the border. Yay, Whoopie!

(You can watch their Youtube channel here.)

 

To talk about the channel, this incredibly pretty man (No, I’m straight) walks in. If you listened hard enough, you could hear a collective sigh amongst all the ladies. Then he opened his mouth andUrdu-heavy words came out. People applauded. He took in Q&A’s from the audience, and was pretty composed in his responses. He even answered about Shahid Afridi’s decision to join Pollywood.

 

Q: What do you have to say about Afridi if he joins Pollywood?

A: Humaara kya hoega? Saari endorsements wohi le jaatey hain. He should stick to cricket.

(Wish someone gave that advice to Ajay Jadeja and Vinod Kambli before their foray into Bollywood.)

He smiled & took pictures. People sat down. (I might not have been as much attention as I should have during this part). Oh, and his name was Imran Abbas, if any of you wanna google him.

Told you. He's pretty!

Told you. He’s pretty!

The show’s concept was explained to us by the creator of the show. Kudos to the lady for this wonderful initiative. There should be no barriers at all between countries. The only wall which deserves to be there is Rahul Dravid, and that wonder of the world which is there in China. (Forgot the name, Great wall or something.) Ambuja cement should get excellent spots for its ads.

‘Some walls should be broken. For everything else there’s master card Ambuja cement.’

As I said earlier, much fun was had. The hosts cracked some jokes, some of which were sorta kinda funny, I think, maybe, I’ll have to get back to you on that. But it was all in good nature, and everybody seemed pretty nice, and I found my happy place (Think the food had some to do with it).

Dear Reader person, You should come to the next one. Say Hi when you see me. Tada! And a short poem celebrating India and Pakistan together, to end on a hopeful note. Cause Hope, is all we got.

You crossed our border. We crossed yours.

But that’s what neighbours do. So why the wars?

Have a dispute? Let’s not fight.

 

Come over, grab a drink.

And we’ll laugh over it, through the night.

 

P.S. The jokes cracked by the host were funny. Told ya. Would get back to you on that one!

 

 

 

 

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Hum Tum (Not the movie!)

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This..

Yes, this is the reason why I came to know about the Zee Connected Hum Tum meet. Normally, I am alerted by the email which Indiblogger religiously sends out (Sun may forget to rise, but doubting Indiblogger’s mailing team won’t be wise). But this time, Indiblogger’s mail was lost among tons of other emails (Mental note: Unsubscribe Naukri.com, Pepperfry, Cheeky lovers, etc etc).

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You don’t need to think twice before registering for an Indiblogger meet, which i adhered to. I was the 191st person to register among 200 seats (Lucky me!). The meet was at Leela’s (These guys always find out cool places for their meets) at 7 pm. I arrived at 7.30pm (Indian Standard Time.. I know.. I know..).

The meet had already started. My heart sank to the ground (gravity rules..) but regained its original position after I came to know that only the introduction had started (and no freebies were given out yet). Scanning the crowd for my friend (and trying to avoid You-Are-Late-You-Freak glares from the crowd), I finally found him at the back.. In the corner.. Wow.. Of all the places in the big banquet hall, he surely knows how to pick a spot. After the friendly hug, tweed-ling of thumbs, hey wassup, and the other 10637 things which two besties do when they meet after a long time, I settled down.

There was this very pretty lady sitting in front of me. A new face? Perhaps.. My heart did 720° somersault inside my rib cage, when she turned around and asked.

What do you blog about?

I was still in awe of her and I managed to utter a few words in response, which Google is still trying to decipher.

After the initial warm-up game by the team (nothing new) which I lost (nothing new), the 30 Seconds Of Fame appeared on the giant screen. My favorite part, wherein we get to know a few interesting bloggers. This was my 5th meet, And my name had never cropped up. But this time it did. And what followed was ‘The return of undecipherable language’

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My expression says it all. Was completely lost for words, since it was totally unexpected. Guess after noticing this, the Indiblogger team would ensure my name never ever flashes on the big screen.

And then we moved on to the agenda of the meet. The ‘Zee Connected Hum Tum’. We were told that the 6 women of the serial were seated amongst us! And the first to identify all of them, and get a pic with them would win. CAUGHT YOU! The pretty girl sitting in front of me, was surely one of them. After a few quick questions with her, I got to know her name. She was Pallavi Burman, 30, fashionable shopaholic, brand manager.

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I only managed to have a snap with 3 of the wonderful ladies (Forever loser), though I was able to spot all of them. The 6 wonderful ladies were Preeti Kochar, dentist, belly-dance instructor, often written about as “the dancing dentist”,  Mahima Chaudhary, struggling actress. Pallavi BurmanMadhavi Mauskar, foreign languages expert, corporate trainer, Sonal Giani, an activist, theatre producer, and Malishka Mendonca, Red FM RJ.

These women were also open to an interaction session with the audience, following which we were shown the first full episode of the series! Wow! What an honor.

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Abhay Deol, the thinking woman’s dream man is the host, and he takes us through the lives of these 6 courageous women. Courageous because it takes a hell of an effort to open up to camera 24×7. These women have dared to bare it all. Their joys, their sorrows, their confidence, their insecurities, their fears, their hopes, their EVERYTHING to the nation, in an effort to portray what is being like a women in the 21st century. Different ages, different professions, different mentalities. but united together by ZEE’s unique concept. TAKE A BOW!

There was a twitter hash tag contest being run, where we were supposed to tweet about our views on #HumTum.

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And I lost again (forever-doomed-to-be-a-loser guy). But this loss was a gain in disguise. It opened up a plethora of thoughts in my mind. About the show and what it strives to achieve in this male-dominated society. Famously said by Virginia Woolf

For most of history, Anonymous was a woman.

Since the creation of this planet, women have been living with us. But do we really know them? With the advancement in technology, we know more about outer space, than we know about women. And its not that they are behind iron veils or something. They are there . Out in the open. Waiting to be understood. But instead of hearing their cries, we pretend to ignore them.

This show will showcase the lives of the women. Giving an opportunity for everyone to really understand our mothers, our sisters, our wives, our daughters. Which will really enrich the society with strong virtues, making this world a better place to live in.

The meet ended on an excellent note (Booze and food on the house). We were also given a specially designed webcam, which opened up Skype, Google Hangout and various other options for me!

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      Indiblogger has this habit of making everybody feel a winner! So we returned home, with one thought about understanding women. CAN WE??