The Roommates unlike any other

permanent-roommates

The second season of the popular web series Permanent Roommates concluded earlier this year. Like its predecessor, it was welcomed with roaring applause, and “Tankesh” became an adorable, familiar name. With 2 seasons finished, it is important to know what made Permanent Roommates different from everything else that we have seen so far.

 

-> Permanent Roommates is love as we have seen

Love, in today’s world, has been mingled with a lot of negativity. It seems like a popular perception, that love cannot exist without a jealous ex, a vindictive secret lover, or a family that will oppose till the end of times. But, is it really the case?

For some, perhaps. However, in the urban centers, relationships have taken a much more mature outlook. For today’s youth, the priority is to take care of the relationship itself. They are not perfect, just like Tanya and Mikesh. They make mistakes, but they don’t give up because of family or society or due to a third person. They realize that their relationships are exclusively their own, much like the problems, responsibilities and decisions that come along with it. Mikesh and Tanya face a lot of problems, from trivial ones to something truly horrible. But they don’t turn it into a drama. They keep it real, and anyone who watched them would attest to it.

 

-> Permanent Roommates is love as it ought to be.

A lot has been said about how love should be. Should it be platonic? Or obsessive? Or authoritarian? No, it should be like what Tankesh have between them. They recognize each other’s flaws. And they accept them, even if they are not completely okay with them. Sure, Mikesh at times take Tanya for granted; but when need be, he becomes the rock on which Tanya can shed her burden. And sure, Tanya can get exasperated over Mikky’s silly demeanors. But it is also her who pampers him, make him feel special and take care of his needs. Because love is more about giving then asking. Whatever Mikesh and Tanya do for each other, it is not for the sake of doing, it is not charity; rather, it is the willingness to keep your partner smiling even in the darkest of days.

 

-> Permanent Roommates breaks a lot of stereotypes.

The USP of the show is that it is progressive. Like a breath of fresh air, it gives you a glimpse at a world that is still not perfect, but far better than the one we live in. So what if Tankesh were in a live-in? So what if they got pregnant before marriage? Nobody got a heart attack (except, maybe, Daddu), nobody cried over their now-tarnished reputation in the society. Not only we get to meet two amazing lovers, we also get a glimpse of their adorable families; families that are not perfect, but they are admirable for the understanding they have.

While we were talking about stereotypes, let’s not forget the small ones. Like when Mr. Nagpal decides to get re-married- something that is frowned upon in today’s “modern” society. Or when the fathers appear more supportive than the mothers. A society where we don’t adhere to fixed rules set by imperfect past, this is what Permanent Roommates shows us.

 

-> Permanent Roommates changes the dynamics of male-female relationship.

Yes, the show achieves that. How? Very subtly.

The man is not always the protector and provider. The woman is not always the caretaker and the emotional one.

Mikesh is partly silly, partly eccentric. But behind all that humor, is an attempt to keep people around him happy -Tanya being the most important of them. He doesn’t shy away from crying, or from passing the responsibilities to Tanya. But He respects her decisions, right from getting married to becoming parents.

Tanya doesn’t seek protection from Mikesh, or expect him to take care of her. She is the more mature one, the one who makes critical decisions. She is a woman who doesn’t shy away from proposing her love. But it is not against her ego to find solace in Mikesh when she can’t do it anymore, and he takes care of her like no one could, being her Knight in Shining Armor whenever she needs him.

 

So yes, Permanent Roommates achieved what decades of Television industry hardly could- connecting to the youth, converting the screen into a mirror where they could find their own reflection. We could hardly wait for season 3.

Khwooollll!!!

Your Intro To Virtual Reality

We live in a world that, maybe unfortunately, is lazy enough. We want to have a lot of experiences, but not the hard work that they entail. And this is how technology have progressed over the past centuries.

Someone wanted to talk with a distant friend, but without visiting him: There came the Telephone. Someone wanted to talk with a friend again, but without getting confined to a stationary object: There came the Cell Phones. Someone wanted to talk AND see his friend, but still without visiting him: There came Video Calling.

In the latest edition of such human endeavors bound by laziness, someone wanted to experience new horizons, without visiting them: And there came in, Virtual Reality.

Virtual Reality, or VR,is a computer technology that uses software-generated realistic images, sounds and other sensations to replicate a real or artificial environment.

Sounds cool, eh? That’s precisely what it is.

So, why is VR such a buzz word? Or, more ignorantly, why do we need it?

Well, obviously, because of the aforementioned human laziness. There is a huge amount of blissful scenarios the world has to offer, and even more that can be perceived by human imagination. VR brings those dreams to reality. You can stand at the top of Everest, or on the surface of Mars, all from the comforts of your couch. This, is the most exciting part.

VR is not a new word. For past many decades, there have been attempts to simulate real environment with the help of computers.The first success, which started this era, would undoubtedly be Morton Heilig’s Sensorama, made in the 1950s.

sensorama-main-bwHowever, after a long gap without much success, new attempts were made in this field since the 90s.

So, yes, this sounds fascinating; but how does it actually works?Well, VR is based on our senses: It’s basic idea is to sync with all of our senses so well, that our brain cannot differentiate between the reality and the virtual world (Inception, yeah!).
A VR experience, in general, should include:

  • Three-dimensional images that appear to be life-sized from the perspective of the user
  • The ability to track a user’s motions, particularly his head and eye movements, and correspondingly adjust the images on the user’s display to reflect the change in perspective

The biggest player in the market right now, is undoubtedly Oculas Rift. With constant up-gradations that are in pace with consumer expectations, the Rift has started to create a big consumer market for VR enthusiasts.

cardboardoculus-rift-vr-headset-1200x698

This market was further expanded by the advent of Google Cardboard, with one clear aim: To provide cheap access to every individual to the VR tech.
Many VR enthusiasts have argued, and we have to agree with them, that Google Cardboard is not a “true” VR, with it’s 360-degree video “only the tip of the iceberg” that VR actually is.
However, Google Cardboard has done what it aimed to: It introduced everyone to the VR tech, converting the VR community from a cult to huge consumer base. And this is why Google Cardboard is as crucial -if not more- as Oculas Rift, for the future of Virtual Reality.

As the demand grew, other giants have started to jump in the VR market, most notable Samsung Gear, HTC Vive and Playstation VR. With such brands investing hugely in the VR industry, we can only assume that soon, we would be able to live our dreams with open-eyes.

The Battle of the SitCom Giants

SitComs are fun-They mostly are. They introduce to us situations that may have already have happened to a lot of us, and make us realize how hilarious they could be. Which is why SitCom is one of the most cliched genre of all time.
Countless shows came and went, giving us a few laughs, and quickly fading away from the memory. But, for the most part, two shows remained.

FRIENDS and HIMYM have a huge fan-base, which normally does not intersect, and is usually at odds with each other.The reason is simple: Both fans want their shows to be titled “The BEST SITCOM EVER”. But, there is only one crown. Who will claim it?

Here is my detailed analysis of the two shows.

himym

HIMYM- Pros:

  • HIMYM has Barney Stinson. Period.
    One of the best crafted character in SitComs, and arguably in all the genres, Barney Stinson is what we might call “awesome”. He is charming, funny, witty, sarcastic, a certain level of sociopath, with a good heart and a lot of tricks under his bag. No wonder the creators shifted the storyline later on to focus on him.
  • HIMYM has a narrator.
    Some might say it isn’t a big deal, but it was. Having Ted Mosby as a narrator gave audience a sense of direction; that the show was indeed moving along a path even if the storyline at times sounded like stretched.
  • HIMYM teaches you life lessons.
    Yes, many other sitcoms do that too. But HIMYM does that explicitly. You have Ted Mosby, the narrrator, who would keep reminding you about the important life lessons, instead of the audience to figure out on it’s own.
  • HIMYM has some amazing theories.
    YES! I  said it. The Lemon Law, the Three-Day rule, the 1-year rule, these made-up theories really had some real-life application. I am not the only one who found that.
  • The Music.
    Yes, the music is amazing. The producers were very cautious about that, and they did it right. Be it a proposal, a breakup, an estrangement; the music was always spot-on!

HIMYM-Cons:

  • HIMYM was never about Friendship
    Okay, don’t sue me for saying this. But, this is the truth. Friendship is an integral part of anyone’s life, and hence, friendship was always in the backdrop of the show. But let’s face it: HIMYM is all about love. Lily and Marshall were a couple; Ted and Robin’s friendship was nothing was their hidden love, Barney and Robin were more often a couple than friends. The ones who did have friendship: Marshall/Ted/Barney or Lily/Robin, never expressed it strongly enough to match their expressions for Lovers.
  • HIMYM goes over-the-top at times with “situations”.
    SitComs are, more than anything, about the comical turns in everyday situations. However, at times it felt like HIMYM was forcibly creating situations in order to bring humour; be it the extravagant life and apartment of Barney Stinson, or the fact that impossible things could happen at McLaren’s Pub.
  • Robin and Ted.
    The Big Blow is here. Yes, I said “Robin and Ted”, and not “Ted and Robin”, for a reason. Ted truly showcased his unconditional love for Robin. However, this was never the other way round. In spite of all the suger-coating the writers could do in the end, the damage was done, and the ugly truth was this: Robin was never worthy of Ted’s love.

friends

FRIENDS- Pros

  • The Ensemble characters.
    FRIENDS had an amazing set of central characters, where each one complimented everyone else. Any two characters had the strength to pull off a great comic stunt, such was their dynamics.
  • The Guest stars.
    Guest stars are way too common in sitcoms. However, FRIENDS dealt with them like no one else. There was no hype created around “ooooo, here comes Brad Pitt” or “wow! Goerge Clooney is just wow!”. Every guest star played the character they were supposed to play with perfection. Trust me, because I never recognized half of the guest stars until I saw their names on the end-credits.
  • Everybody’s Life.
    FRIENDS does that perfectly. No elaborate stunts, no sci-fi backdrop. Their life was one we all had- Rachel’s struggle with career, Ross’s hopeless love, Monica’s obsession with perfection, Chandler’s frustration with a dead-end job, Pheobe’s ignorance of “normal life goals”, and Joey’s repeated rise-and-fall from fame. Every one of us could relate to at least one of them.
  • The Legacy
    Maybe because most of us grew up watching it, or maybe some other X-factor; but FRIENDS left behind a legacy that is unmatched. Like “The Godfather”, FRIENDS became the benchmark against which every attempt in that genre was compared. Speaks volumes about it.
  • It’s all about Friendship
    Yes, friendship was always the central theme in FRIENDS. Joey & Chandler became what every pair of friends aspired to be, much like Rachel & Monica & Pheobe. Even Joey and Rachel, even though they fell in love for a time, remained essentially the best of friends for most of the part.

FRIENDS-Cons

  • Lack of sentimental value
    This may be argued upon, but FRIENDS underplayed the emotions that do not fall under the categories of “friendship” or “love”, be it career, parents or relatives. The last few seasons did try to score at parenthood, though.
  • Lack of diversity
    Yes, this is the one everyone talked about. Although it matters not, as far the the comic element is concerned, but FRIENDS offers no cultural or ethnic diversity at all. We had six, white, hetrosexual American friends, who were assisted with similar supporting cast members. In a city which is noted for it’s vast ethnic diversity, it seemed like FRIENDS intentionally wanted to remain conservative.

So, the analysis is complete, and we have the result in hand.

The winner is FRIENDS.

Not because it was more comical than HIMYM; both shows have the ability to crack your ribs laughing. It was a close call, a very close one. And judging only by the weight of Pros and Cons, I would have to say, it’s all about FRIENDS.

The Mob always wins..!

angry_mobDuring the recent developments in the Indian political and social scenarios, we have witnessed a new superpower. No, it is not a state. Or a community. Or an
ethnicity. It is way, way more simpler than that.

There is an old classic novel, Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. It has Dr. Jekyll as the central character, a normal man with good morals, amiable, just
the type of nice person you might happen to meet any day. But deep inside, is his alter-ego, Mr. Hyde, which represents the darkest of his virtues.

A common man, in India, closely resembles Dr. Jekyll. He is a nobody, he is busy about in his life, achieving his day-to-day goals for survival. He is oppressed,
he is helpless, or so he claims to be. And then, he meets others like him. And when the opportunity presents itself, Mr. Hyde rises inside each of them.

The 2015 Dimapur Mob Lynching case is perhaps the ugliest example of this. A mob of about 7-8k people, dragged the alleged rapist on a motorcycle for about 7km,
resulting in his death. Even after that, his body was hung up to be displayed on a clock tower’s railings. The victim was later declared to be clear of any rape
charges.

The recent Jat protests and Patel protests, resulted in a cumulative property loss of billions of USD. All of them started as non-violent protests, but
turned violent with a small spark.

Another infamous example was the 2015 Dadri mob lynching, where a group of people assaulted a Muslim family and killed a man, over claims of beef-
eating.

All these examples, lead to one inevitable conclusion: No matter how morally high we claim to be, no matter how much we condemn politicians and celebrities over
their “scandals”; there is a monster within each of us.

And it asks only one question before raising it’s head:

“Will I be able to get away with it?”

The people at Dimapur knew full well, what is the consequence of murdering a man. They still did it anyway. Because they we not alone, they had innumerable
people beside them, a mob, and a mob does not have a face.

This is not a question of Law and Order. We cannot expect our law enforcement to tag and identify each person when a crowd of thousands decide to snap their
moral compass. The question, which no body dares to ask, is this:
“Why do we stoop so low?”

Is it the failure of the system? Yes, the system has failed us so many times. But, even God does not listen to our each and every prayer, does that mean we stop
believing in him?

Is it the desire to have some power, some control, after repeated claims of how helpless a common man is? If it is so, then how pathetic we are. Murdering
someone, destroying property, this is not how someone claims power. This is how someone betrays his nation, and his soul.

Or, is it because we, fundamentally, are evil inside, with the good only being a mask we hide our self behind? I refuse to believe so. Life gives you a chance to
be evil at every turn. The fact the world still stands, and we could still live in harmony, is a proof that goodness is our inherent trait.

The Judiciary, the Legislature, the Executive- in short, the System- is the foundation on which our country stands. We can hope to change it, yes. But to
abandon it, for becoming monsters, is a sin.

Hiding behind a mask to commit crime is the act of cowards. A mask of mob, a group of people with similar feeling as ours, does not make our righteous. It just makes us even more dangerous- for our self, for each-other, and for the society.

Why “No-Religion” is better than “Your Religion”

Religion has been ever one of the biggest factors in the evolution of humanity.
Religion could be defined as

“the belief in and worship of a superhuman controlling power, especially a personal God or gods.”

And there itself, lies it’s fundamental flaws.

When you start believing and worshiping something superhuman or supernatural, everything in your life would seem trivial. This ideology, while being effective at large in solving human woes, have also resulted in some of the biggest blunders of mankind. Let us understand why.

When your base your belief on the supernatural, whatever you do or commit in this life would hold little effect on you, cos you aim at the life awaiting after death. Things get even worse when you get yourself a personal God, whose ideologies you adopt as your own, often without even completely understanding them.
So, the result of it turns out in certain cases(as evident from history), that you could massacre innocents if you are convinced they are ‘infidels’, morph your lifestyle in accordance to your religion, and may even sacrifice all you have, with just one belief- that you will be rewarded after death. And we cant comment on that, cos no one so far have been able to confirm it.

Another reason why religion is flawed, is ‘cos it leads people to “inertia”; they stop trying to solve their own problems, and instead reach out to the divine to solve their problems for them. And a society that stops being industrious, would soon collapse.

So, what is ‘No-Religion”, and why is it better than the religion we know of?
‘No-Religion” simply stands for the beliefs that are different from the conventional forms of religion. Here, a people get choices to have their own ideologies, instead of the one they were born with.

They can either believe in God , or not.
Even believing in a God is different, as we dont get our personal gods. We can believe in an entity that exists not through a particular set of sacred texts or the miracles claimed in them, but in a Supreme Entity that is so complex, that no one can be able to understand anything about it (Directly ruling out the claims of people seeing, feeling or talking to God).
In “No-Religion”, a person’s own life experiences morph into his beliefs, not what his parents or priest tells him to believe.
We are free to refuse the existence of God, or to abhor the malpractices made in the name of religion. We have the liberty to serve the nature and natural order, or to serve the human race and the ethical values of humanity.
We are free to base our conclusions on reason and logic, instead of blindly following something we never saw or understood.
Most of all, all these “No-Religions” are based on one thing- Reason. So, you could always reason with another person over your beliefs, instead of taking out swords.

The “Modi” Issue

For the past few days, the opposition parties
are having a blast, with a beautiful irony-
They are targetting one Modi through
another.
Lalit Modi is not a new name to an average
Indian. Even before the corruption charges,
He was the Commisioner of IPL, which is
dubbed as a “National Festival” of India.
The current controversy started with the
revealing of Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj
*helping* out Lalit Modi (hereafter refereed
to as ‘the wanted, attained fugitive’ by
Congress).
Let’s begin from the beginning. Lalit Modi
fled from India , on the grounds of
threats, towards him and his family. This was
confirmed when in March 2009, a hitman of
Chota Shakeel confessed of the plan to
assasinate Modi, and further claims of Mldi
regarding his security compromised by the
UPA government.
For years hence, Lalit Modi had been in-
and-out of the news, until recently.

In 2014, Modi wanted to go to Portugal,
ostensibly to visit wife hospitalised there.
Sushma Swaraj wrote to UK government,
requesting for letter of passage for Modi. Two
months later, the same hospital group,
Champalimaud, signed an MoU with
Rajasthan government.
Meanwhile, Delhi High Court had set aside
Modi’s passport revocation.
Coincidentely, at the same time another
sensation arrived, with the news of
Vasundhara Raje helping out Modi back in
2011, aroudnthe time he was already a
fugitive.
The documents were provided by Modi’s
lawyers, and hold no solid evidence that they
were indeed sanctioned by Raje. Yet, the
opposition is having a feast, with relentless
calls for resignations.