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OSCAR “HOUDINI” PISTORIUS: ON THE BLADES OF INFAMY!

At 3 AM in the wee hours of Valentine’s Day in 2013, Oscar Pistorius,27, – the only double amputee Paralympic and Olympic athlete in the world- had just shot his 29 year old girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp at his Pretoria home. Pistorius was subsequently arrested on murder charges.This Amul strip showcases the court trial in this tragic tale of a love gone awry.

Oscar maintains that he shot Reeva mistaking her for an intruder.He says that waking from his sleep he had gone out to move the fan in and the room being pitch dark did not realise that Reeva had ,moved into the lavatory.He heard the washroom window open and challenged the “intruder” and then shot four times through the lavatory door.When he broke open the door he saw Reeva lying in a pool of blood in the brutal aftermath of his actions.

The defence has tried its best to make a fight out of a hopeless situation & even attempting to trumpet Oscar’s willingness to conform to authority-contrary to his earlier run ins with law and his image as a flamboyant playboy who was found obscenely socialising even in the period preceding the trial.         

Pistorius was also presented as having generalised anxiety disorder, which combined with his physical vulnerability – could have affected his actions on the fateful and left him incapable of realising the wrongfulness of his actions. 

Prosecution lawyer , Gerrie Nel is seeking a conviction on premeditated murder.He contends that Pistorius killed Reeva in a fit of rage after a heated argument with her.His irresponsible actions in the past – accidentally discharging a friend’s fire arm in a restaurant and firing on a traffic light after an argument with a cop – lent credence to the notion.Pistorius also lost credibility in court and emerged as a  – “deceitful, appalling and a poor witness” and his show of remorse and grief during the trial was termed staged and fake.

However Thokozile Masipa, the judge, ripped the prosecution claims and said that it had been unable to prove beyond reasonable doubt that Pistorius murdered Reeva with an intent.Instead she found him guilty of Culpable Homicide.Pistorius had already been tried by the media and assumed guilty of murder and seemingly had no case to defend and the “Not Guilty of Murder” verdict came as a shock.

Defence lawyer,Barry Roux had achieved what he set out to and Oscar Pistorius had done a “Houdini” and escaped a life term – for now.Sentencing is due on 12 October 14.

Pistorius is an exceptional athlete who overcame extreme disability and competed with able bodied counterparts in the London Olympics in 2012.For his achievements he had had the honour of being hosted by Nelson Mandela (Madiba).His triumph over adversity was acknowledged globally and in distant India too an Amul ad commemorated his historical participation in the London Olympics.

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Then came the fall.And it was hard and devastating.

Moving on to some bizarre and fascinating facts that i came across while researching on the subject.

Police Investigators were like rampaging pachyderms at the crime scene.One of the “tuskers” even made off with a luxury watch belonging to Pistorius (probably hung around the trunk)! Shockingly enough, the watch was never found!

Fearing a repeat, the chief investigator then ordered removing the door of the lavatory cubicle (a key piece of evidence) to his office (???) as he felt that they “already had the experience of the missing watch, so we decided to take the door,” lest someone walked away with it as well!Who walks away with a blood splattered door???What good would it serve once removed from the crime scene?Interestingly the guy who ordered this,Van Rensberg, has since retired and become a sports coach (??!!!???) in a school.

Chew this now – .Photographs of the crime scene- a 4 m x 4m washroom- were taken by two Police photographers simultaneously.And they had different representations (!!) and the photographers do not even remember seeing each other!!! X Men for sure.!!!!!

Lastly, when tested in court for observation skills they could not spot the difference between two sets of their own Police tape.These dim wit cops have earned the right to be show cased in any future remake of Peter Seller’s “Pink Panther”  movies.

With Policemen of this calibre the prosecution still managed a conviction is a miracle indeed.

Judge Masipa seems to be straight out of comedy nights with Kapil.She believed a sobbing Pistorius when he said he did not think he would kill when he fired! Not her fault- after all when someone fires on a suspected intruder he does it thinking that that the weapon will “shoot” lollipops and not kill anyone!!! For this singular act of stupidity Masipa be rechristened as “Maha – Siyappa” (Grand Fiasco)!

The defence lawyer has done a good job but it could have been better.I am trying to get him to exchange notes with the defence team of a certain Lalu Prasad Yadav – accused of depriving the bovine specie of fodder (no he didnt consume it but simply duplicated receipts)- which managed to delay the verdict for 16 years and in the intervening years convinced prime witnesses and approvers to depart for their heavenly abodes!

Pistorius also lacked in his team a Shayan Munshi type “hostile witness”.Munshi has however coached Lalu’s victims – the cows- and they are soon arriving in South Africa ,as star “hostile witnesses”,in aid of the beleaguered defence team!

Coming to the Amul Ad Strip.It depicts a contrite and remorseful Pistorius receiving the verdict from Masipa.The detailing is excellent as the black suit and Oscar’s body language during the trial has been amazingly captured.The Amul Girl is there ,in all proability,as the defence lawyer.Judge Masipa is depicted in her red gown.

 The Tag line Mysterious Pistorius Verdictis a take on the verdict finding him Not Guilty of murder in the face of compelling evidence as well as seemingly erroneous logic of the Judge.The verdict was much awaited and its anti climatic announcement has been depicted very well indeed.

The Punch lineThe Final Word..is a well crafted aside on the disputed finality of the verdict and endorses the status of the Amul butter and brand as the final word when it comes to dairy products.

The truth of the fateful night is only known to Pistorius. And I am left shaking my head at the sad transformation of the “Blade Runner” in to a “Blade Gunner”.

This fracas had an unintended victim-Nike.The sports gear provider was forced to rethink on its “Just do it” slogan’.Why?Because three of its brand ambassadors -Tiger Woods,Lance Armstrong and Pistorius have stretched it a little too far- “Just do it…to hell with the consequences!” .

And a suggestion for all couples likely to argue- put a signboard outside your washrooms-“Using Toilet-Don’t Shoot” !!!

R.I.P Reeva Steenkamp (19 August 1983 – 14 February 2013).

21 October 14; Oscar Pistorius has been sentenced to 5 years in prison for culpable homicide and to 3 years for negligent discharge of a fire arm.The latter stands suspended.

The prosecution is undecided on an appeal.

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PAPA KEHTE HAIN PAPPU BADA NAAM KAREGA !

Once Rahul Gandhi had been seen as the future of a youthful India & his 129 year old Indian National Congress (INC) Party.Soon,he led his party to disaster at the hustings and mutated from the biggest hope to the biggest dope -aka Pappu! To compound issues, he was found sleeping through (oh so blissfully) a heated debate being led by his Party men on the Railway Budget to corner the Narendra Modi led NDA government.

Wwy would Rahul Gandhi ,the designated “Gladiator” of the Congress Party ,doze off in parliament & expose himself to the daggers & sarcastic barbs of his rivals?How could be he so dumb?Did it happen?

The answer to all of this is a big & hilarious – YES!..and it happened while he was sitting right behind the party colleague making an impassioned case against the government! Rahul probably emulated a certain Arvind Kejriwal, that it pays to be in the news,somehow, for good or bad reasons.So he conjured a controversy! This is sacrifice in the best Indian traditions.He sacrificed himself for the Party as otherwise who would notice the 44 seat rump of the INC in a humongous 544 seat Indian Parliament. Mommy Sonia Gandhi, of Italian ascent, had sacrificed the Prime Ministership in return for a zero accountability position as the Puppeteer in the UPA dispensation headed by a mute puppet named Manmohan Singh!!!

Rahul Gandhi probably slept to escape the misery of his actual life.In his dreams “impossible is nothing”.

He dreamt that his mother had finally allowed him to chase his ambition..of being a gardener in the Parliament lawns…in a dhoti & gamcha and his Venezuelan girlfriend bringing him a spartan meal of chapatis & onion (what else would a gardner eat after the UPA government’s legacy of price rise!). He also found the secret of dealing with his nightmare Arnab Goswami, hidden in jack fruit ! In his dream, uncle Manmohan had a tongue & it was recovered from the deepest vaults of the kingdom of Psycho-fancia, ruled by an evil Queen (any guesses?). Furthermore, uncle Digvijay Singh is seen having a zip lock on his mouth which is configured to open in 9999 AD.

But in his dream he still had his bad moments.He dreamt that he was plucked from his gardening pursuits by a Robert Vadra when the latter bought the garden to develop a Pub!

Where’s sister Priyanka Gandhi?She was still campaigning in Rae Bareilly & Amethi & exhorting the people to vote out (!) her brother & mother!

How did things come to such a pass for the Gandhi scion that from “Shehzada (Crown Prince)” he transformed into “Pappu” – a disrespectful sobriquet used to describe a juvenile & incompetent nincompoop! Even the Amul ad line had earleir captured the euphoria surrounding his elevation to the post of INC Vice President and the possibility of being named as his Party’s Prime Ministerial candidate.

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Rahul turned out to be a “dud” largely on the back of his bizarre actions.In an effort to connect with the people & their distaste for a controversial government ordnance, Rahul tore the document in a press conference which had been promulgated by his lParty’s PM nominee.This immature behaviour was compounded by his inability to articulate a coherent response to his Party’s defeat in the Delhi Assembly and stressed by his confused choice of words.He gradually lost ground when he refused to take on the BJP & NDA Prime Ministerial candidate,Narendra Modi, in the build up to the elections.As the campaign progressed in comparison to a stuttering Rahul, Modi emerged better prepared,organised & focussed.

The final nail in the coffin was the interview with a famous & aggressive TV presenter,Arnab Goswammy,known for unsettling his guests.In the interview Rahul Gandhi failed to present any substantial views and vision for an emerging India.It was as if Rahul knew the questions to be asked…but it seems the interviewer changed the order & Rahul still answered in a prepared sequence! It was an unmitigated disaster and Rahul came out battered & bruised from the his first ever interview in 10 years.(Sometimes it is better to stay quiet and let the world think…we know the rest!!)Whereas Narendra Modi emerged stronger and aggressive from the same bed of burning coal in another interview with Goswamy.

These and many more incidents cemented the opinion in the country that Rahul Gandhi was just a famous name & possessed none of the abilities of his illustrious family members (Jawahar Lal Nehru,Indira Gandhi,Rajiv Gandhi). He was a political novice in the tumultuous cauldron of Indian Politics and brought nothing worthwhile to the table and was’nt coming up to the expectations of his family and party members

For his immaturity,juvenile behaviour & lack of initiation into politics in spite of 10 years in the arena he earned the sobriquet “Pappu” on the social media & his reputation was ripped & tattered mercilessly day in and day out in a net savvy India.

The featured Amul Strip is amazing to the last detail as it depictis Parliament benches and a sleeping Rahul Gandhi falling over to his right and in the spot light (denoting live TV coverage) while the Amul Girl attired in a combination symbolic of Indian politicians is making a sincere effort in a debate replete with a clutch of notes and has a bewildered and aghast expression while attempting to wake up the Party leader!!!

The Tag Line...Duty Sleep?… is a question asked (almost rebuking) and a catchy spin on the concept of sleep working towards enhancing the beauty and complexion of a person as also a pun intended on the fact that the Gandhi scion was sleeping in Parliament when he should be participating in debates and discharging his responsibilities & duties as a political leader.

The Punch Line is simplistic and simply exhorts Rahul Gandhi to wake up literally and figuratively as well as endorses the Amul Butter by exhorting the readers to wake up to its superior taste and quality and to adopt it as brand of choice.

As I sign out,Rahul Gandhi has done it again.While responding to a visual of Narendra Modi playing drums (dhol) during his Japan visit.Visiting a parliamentary constituency bereft of electricity and basic facilities he quipped to the media (as if alluding to a burning Rome & Nero) that while the backward constituency languishes, the Prime Minister is busy playing the “dhol”.It would have been a perfect sound byte by an opposition politician but for the small detail that the constituency in question was Amethi – represented by Rahul himself since 2004 (!!!!Time to wake up Pappu!!!)and which has been represented by his father and uncle since the 1980s!So how is Modi guilty?????

While this goes to print it is reliably learnt that Congressmen have secretly requisitioned the services of Leonardo di Caprio to carry out Inception in the dreamy and drowsy head of “Pappu” – to convince him to take a solo voyage to the Bermuda Triangle!

But has anyone ever made it back from the Bermuda Triangle??????  

 

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FIFA WORLD CUP 2014:GERMANY AND THE 31 DWARFS !

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Germany won the FIFA World Cup 2014 in a masterclass display of control, temperament,strategy and above all TEAMWORK! The Amul ad forming the basis of this post commemorates a famous German win ,which will be remembered for clockwork precision and flawless execution of the plans right up to the last minute of the 120 minute Championship Match!!!

Estadio Maracana, Rio de Janerio, 13th of July 2014.

The referee had just blown the final whistle of the Championship Match of the FIFA World Cup 2014  and celebrations which had been triggered in the 113th minute had now reached a crescendo which reverberated across the globe.

Mario Goetze , the man responsible for the unbridled celebrations, had been introduced as a substitue for the irrepressible Miroslav Klose in the 88th minute of the game.Within 25 minutes he had broken the deadlock between the two teams decisively.He had scored of his left foot,an audacious volley preceded by a wonderfully controlled ball on the chest which happened to find Goetze because Schuerrle conjured up a precise pass out of nowhere!

Schurlle  's magical pass to Goetze
Schuerrle’s magical pass to Goetze
Goetze gets 'the GOAL"!!!
Goetze gets ‘the GOAL”!!!

Germany had beaten Argentina in the finals of the World Cup by the slimmest of the margins;1- 0! But then in football its the number of goals that count; and mostly a single one suffices.And suffice it did!

It was a momentous occasion for more than one reason.History had been scripted against the will of Lionel Messi,arguably the best player of his generation.Fate and ability had combined to anoint the first ever European nation as Champion at a FIFA World Cup in South America.And this win was also the first ever for ‘Unified’ Germany(The previous three WorldChampionships had been won by West Germany)!

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This German team had come together after the first round debacle in the 2004 European Championships when the federation decided to invest in youth.After ten years of labour and some near misses the Germans had finally arrived.They were easily ‘the Best Team’ at the FIFA 2014 World Cup.As it has been said that Brazil had Neymar,Argentina had Messi but Germany had a team! Many feel that the Golden Ball award should have gone to a German rather than the losing finalist, Lionel Messi. But in a perverse sense it could be successfully argued that its a tribute to the team effort of the Germans that none won the Golden Ball .But their goal keeper Neur won the Golden Glove for keeping the German bastion invictus and contributing to the overall aim of the Team.

Germans atop Mt Glory!
Germans atop Mt Glory!

For their effort the Germans got the 38 cm long 24 carat gold trophy named after Jules Rimet.

The highest peak in world football had been scaled.In their pursuit of the ultimate football glory,the Germans easily dwarfed the remaining 31 contenders (or pretenders) masquerading as opposition at the FIFA 2014 World Cup.

Argentina , the losing finalists, played a good match. Raul Gonsalez,former Spain skipper says “(you) dont deserve to win if you miss chances”.Argentina missed three and Germany converted one. Difference between a lifetime of either haunting or pleasing memories.You are spot on Messi when you say “nothing can console me”.And as yet for Argentina there remains only one Diego Maradona or El Diego who could get them. The World Cup single handedly!

Well its not  all “Hail Germany” that i am going to talk about.There are some of these dwarfs who need to be spoken of too..though briefly :)

The Brazilians showcased their unique team work too.Thiago Silva & David Luiz proved they were true buddies in the the third place play off match against Netherlands when they had displayed their own unique brand of team work..

Buddies & Buffaloes!
Buddies & Buffaloes!

Silva had not been part of the mauling at Salvador.Within three minutes in the match he expressed solidarity with his team by handing a penalty to the Dutch in one of the most oafish infringement (of Arjen Robben) at the World Cup.And good buddy and Head Buffalo,David Luiz, (see Brazil!O Brazil! Its still a beautiful game!) took his Captains worries and embarassment by giving the best possible back pass to the Dutch to score (they did too)! Teamwork,right?Unique….absolutely right!!!

Neymar couldnt stay out of the news himself.

Neymar Jr crying at presser
Neymar Jr crying at presser

He snivelled at pressers and worked up emotional frenzy while making childish assertions of supporting arch rivals Argentina to avenge the loss to Germany (???).During his medical break he went on to bleech himself three shades closer to being some colour other than black (read up on the net about his penchant for whitening his skin) and In the process he ended up bleeching his underwear too and obscured the brand tags of his sponsors.This was much to the delight of the rival sponsor company.. Neymar’s underwear sponsors never got to know of this “breach in contract” as Neymar is not supposed to bend over and show the label after his back injury.Our very own Arvind Kejriwal will probably sniff a Colombian drug cartel conspiracy as the genesis of back injury to Neymar with the cartel colluding with the rival underwear to render Neymar incapable of endorsing the rival brand!.

An underwear to remember!!!
An underwear to remember!!!

So did Brazil lose because of underwear? (! )Wouldn’t it have been better that Neymar didn’t wear any at all? Who knows maybe the FIFA 2014 would have had a different end !Did it really come down to underwear..well… Wonder what Garrincha,  Pele, Socrates and Zico have to say about this!!!

There were tremendous protests preceding the hosting of the “Carniball” in Brazil and too many slippages in schedule too.To add to the spice there was an illegal ticket sale scandal to.Reminds us of of our own Common Wealth Games in New Delhi in 2010 (CWG 2010).And then Sheila Dixit, the Chief Minister of Delhi NCR, had taken the fall for the fiasco and now it was the  turn of the Brazilian President , Dilma Rousseff and now her only hope, the Selecao, too had exited unceremoniously. Like Dixit, Dilma too is probably going to lose the elections later this year.So reportedly she got in touch with Sheila Dixit to take rehab tips.

Dilma Rosseff and her Cup of Woes
Dilma Rosseff and her Cup of Woes!

But Sheila wasn’t able to help as she herself is on the run and is being shunted around in India!. Damn you Neymar and damn your underwear! Why would anyone wear them for a football match especially since this means Dilma Rousseff gets to be in the wilderness (no not in the wilderness of an underwear but the political type)because Neymar couldn’t decide what to wear down under!

By the way when does India get to be at the World Cup with its present FIFA ranking of 157 out of189 nations??Probably when we have another Joao Havelange raising the number of teams that can participate in the World Cup to 128 from its present 32.Such is our pathetic state that when Prime Minister Narendra Modi travelled to Brazil he had to issue a public statement that he wasnt there to attend the World Cup Finals but the BRICS summit which was coinciding with the dying moments of the “Carniball”.

Increasing the number of participating teams may be lucky turn for the “Selecao” (Brazilian football team) as I have my doubts whether Brazil will figure in the 32 in 2018 at Russia,with buffaloes representing them instead of footballers!

Coming to the Amul ad.

It depicts the victorious German team celerating the famous win at the WorldCup.The figure holding the trophy aloft is doing it just like,Phillip Lahm,the German skipper did.The bearded man in the front row depicts Mario Goetze and the Amul Girl is lovingly on his shoulders as Goetze shouldered the hopes of the entire German nation during the finals.In the background are the outstretched hands of a goal keeper depicting the imposing figure of Manuel Neur as he has been captured in the photos of that magical night.

The Tag Line..Germania…is a take on the word Alemania used by the Germans to describe their unified nation and also a clever play on the German mania that gripped the World after the imposing performance of the German Team – the Die Mannschaft.

The Punch Line….Bonn To Win…is underscoring the fact that its unified Germany that has won the Wrld Cup and stresses that by bringing to fore Bonn – the capital city of unified Germany.It also conveys that both the German team ad the Amul products are born to win by cleverly playing on the phonetics of the words.

In the end when all the dwarfs have disappeared what stays in memory is the planning excellence of Joachim Loew , the amazing performances by Thomas Mueller & Miroslav Klose as strikers,Bastian Schweinsteiger & Phillip Lahm as medios, Manuel Neur as the unscalable wall and the amazing chemistry between the likes of Sami Kheidira ,Christoph Kramer & Mesut Ozil while blending youth with experience.And above all the beautiful world beating tango by Andreas Schuerrle & Mario Goetze!!!

Germania indeed!!!

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BUDGET 2014; OF ELEPHANTS,LAPTOPS & BACK ACHES

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The maiden annual budget by the newly elected Narendra Modi led National Democratic Alliance dispensation was an obvious choice for the Amul ad.Partly for the significance of the event and partly for the balancing act the Finance Minister (FM) was required to do (as depicted in the caricature above).In the process there were some nuggets of humour embedded for us- Aam Admi -the common people!

The Union Budget for 2014-15 was due two days after the shocker of a semi final –Brazil vs Germany-  at the FIFA 2014 World Cup.Similar expectations were there from the Union Budget being presented by the FM, Arun Jaitely.Not so much for the bitter pill that was promised by the Prime Minister (PM) but for the fact that the previous government of the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) had been comatose for so long that nothing other than a jump start can revive the Indian economy.  

But what was going to be in it for me and the common masses?All that I was interested in knowing was how much was the tax slab reduced by and what became expensive and what got cheaper.Somehow by whatever amount the tax gets reduced I have never felt the extra wad of notes in my wallet? Have you?And when cigarettes become expensive and matches become cheaper – well that’s what has happened – I am inclined to think that the black humour iinstincts of the FM are now firmly out in the open – at our expense!!!

You know how the economy functions? I dont either except for the very obvious And thats how it is for most of our politicians.The criticism & the accolades ,by political figures, for the budget are on party lines & not based on an objective assessment & turn out to be an exercise in hilarity. Without going into the merits and demerits of the budget i would like to take on what probaby went on through the minds of the regular opposition.Though most of it is a work of fiction yet the theme is based on the reactions of these leaders to the Budget Proposals of the Narendra Modi government.

Starting with the Indian National Congress (INC/ Cong (I)).

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They have been asleep for a long time, overtaken by a thought paralysis (why else would they project Rahul Gandhi as their choice for PM!!!).They never understood the budget process when in power so the prospects dimmed further, now that they are all but wiped out at the hustings.After the hiding in the General Elections 2014 ,Congressmen have been hoping that the next five years would be like a dream and they would want to continue with their slumber.However, sleeping pills haven’t formed part of the free medicine package being unveiled by the Government and will get more expensive.Now the worst nightmare of  the Congressman will come true – Rahul Gandhi will stay awake and make sure that the INC doesn’t remain a force to reckon with within its own office premises let alone anywhere outside its confies!!!Hence its a bad budget for the INC and they have stated as much.Some of the Congressman have come under the scrutiny of their High Command for pitching for a waste management plant in the Congress Head Quarters!Any guesses why???

Other than the Cong (I) a certain Mr Arvind Kejriwal was expecting a few concessions of his own as well.

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He was expecting that the Government would cap lawyer fees and make them affordable for him to hire for his numerous litigations.That didn’t happen.He was also expecting property rentals to come down so he could rent one now that he is out of the Government alloted residence.That didnt happen either.He was expecting victims of ink splattering , shoe throwing and slapping to be elligible for added tax exemptions.That too didnt happen.By the way, secretly Mr Kejriwal had pitched for an income tax waiver for the top 10 individuals who can make the most vacuous claims and get away with it.He of course bags the first five ranks amongst the ten!!!Overall a poor budget for Kejri dear.

Coming to a very lonely and unusually quiet certain Ms Mayawati.

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In the run up to the Union Budget she had canvassed for a hefty allocation of funds for the conservation of wild life!!!Wait a sec…why his turn around in Ms Mayawati’s portfoilo especially as she authored the infamous Taj Corridor Plan which would have ruined the ecology of the area.It’s likely because the Elephant (the BSP’s electoral symbol) is nearly extinct in the political jungle of Uttar Pradesh! Reports also came in of an elephant being held illegaly at Mayawati’s residence. BJP MP, Maneka Gandhi wasnt too amused about this and ordered confiscation of the tusker. When the inspectors reached Mayawati’s residence they realised that she had none and was now herself wearing a costume to look like one!!!!The extent that people can go to for their political fortunes!!!

Spare a thought for the senior members of the BSP forming the hind legs of the dummy elephant.Wonder if they are expected to produce elephant shit too..same colour,volume and stink as well!!! So a bad budget for her too and a horrific one for her party colleagues.

Akhilesh Yadav of UP is not amused with the budget as well.

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This inspite of heavy allocation by the NDA government in his pet projects such as the Metro Rail & Ganga Action Plan.Though Akhilesh too has been decimated in the General Elections 2014 he is not pitching for a special cycle factory to revive his political fortunes.He had expected massive financial concessions and grants as well for states having inefficient Chief Ministers (CM), lawlessness and Jail Ministers themselves being claimants of life imprisonent! This didnt happen as other states too would have immediately replaced their CMs with inefficient ones and rushed to meet the criterion as well.( Infact the INC was supporting Akhilesh’s demand as in Haryana they already had met the first two conditions).When Yadav saw none of his demands being met, he made a call to the FM,Arun Jaitely to atleast grant him enough funds to buy a lap top so he could play his favourite games since there wasnt anything much he could do while in office!!! I believe even this was turned down.Bad budget indeed.

Similarly other political outfits too have spoken against the budget provisions and if their contentions are anywhere near the ones listed above then we might as well skip them.The Left Parties and the likes of Sita Ram Yechury are in agreement with me as what they had to say they themselves couldnt bear to hear!!!Jayalalitha has come out in support of the Budget as ,though not known to many,there were embedded provisions for research & development of a machine which turns your political adversaries into whatever you want them to turn into (Alagiri into an Ostrich and Stalin into a raven- and Karunanidhi..well thats classifed!!!). 

Coming to the Amul Ad.

It depicts a very portly individual seated on a desk (typically seen in government offices with green velvet cloth stuck on them).The gentleman is balding and is wearing a kurta-pyjama along with a sleevless jacket.He has a briefcase on to his left and is poring over some documents.The brief case is synonymous with FMs as when they enter the Parliament House on budget day they show the brief case to the waiting media as it ios supposed to have the future of the country locked in it.The portly man depicts India’s FM,Arun Jaitely and the Amul Girl is shown depicting a bureaucrat getting some documents signed.The scene is typical of budget days when FMs are shown leaving their offices and signing last minute documents.Its a scene that most of us can relate too.

The Tag Line…Budget utterly bujaitely delicious hoga?..is a spin on the Amul tag line of ‘Utterly Butterly Delicious’ used for years to describe the Amul Butter.The ‘Butterly’ has been replaced by ‘bujaitely’ to factor in the FM’s name.The tag line asks a simple question that will the budget live up to the pre budget expectations & be delicious enough for investors to bite into it??? (Luis Suarez, dont get interested please!!!)

The Punch Line..Bank on it !…pitches the credibility of the Amul product line against the budget and emphatically established the reliable credentials of the brand on which millions of Indians can bank for its quality products.

Not-with-standing-the above,the Union Budget 2014 has been a balanced budget with the Government laying equal focus on growth, fiscal discipline and reigning in inflation.The middle class being encouraged to save as well as spend more by enhancing returns on savings as well raising tax slabs.The manufacturing and infrastructure sectors have been given due concessions and certain policy measures have been put in place to reduce government and increase governance.There was much more that could have been accomplished but then this budget was saddled by the previously presented Interim Budget of the UPA and the state of the economy.

Well the FM was the first ever to take a break on account of a backache while delivering his speech!!!If preparing the budget broke his back then whats going to be the fate of he people carrying its burden?Hope its all just the fault of the speech writer of the FM & not associated with the provisions of the budget.

Some interesting trivia.This was the second longest speech by an FM while presenting the budget.It generated 119000 tweets in a single day, surpassing the 84000 on the day of the results for the General Elections 2014. The FM used the word ‘I’ once in 81 words, up from once in 55 times for his predecessor P Chidambaram (no wonder there wasnt much else in his specches).And the FM ended up allocating the same IIM to two states.To Maharashtra in the English version of the Speech and to Rajasthan in the Hindi version.Smart thinking for sure! Kill two birds with one stone!And this was the first time that a FM finished his speech sitting!!!

Keeping in mind that there were suggestions galore after the Budget the FM should seriously consider allocating funds for a National Institue for Suggestions, where flights of fancy could be turned into reality such as turning Rajnikant into an un-sinkable air craft carrier!

By the way the FM treated himself to a Chicken Curry and Roti lunch after the Budget speech.Well, Mr Jaitely not the right kind of dietary discipline for your health condition (bad back).Hope you are more disciplined when it comes to the finances of the nation!!!And next time don’t forget to provide concessions to the spinal pain relief industry so you can complete the speech standing!!!!

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BRAZIL…O BRAZIL!!! IT’S STILL A BEAUTIFUL GAME!

Brazil vs Germany, first semi final of FIFA 2014 , was bound to trigger a response from the Amul ad line.But it would be to commemorate a 7 – 1 win for the Germans over Brazil (!!!) was unthinkable & inconceivable to say the least!

 Brazil – 5 time World Champions &the ‘eternal & sentimental’ favourites’  (hosts of the FIFA World Cup 2014) were taking on the ‘ruthlessly clinical ‘ Germans in the third ever meeting between the two nations at the World Cup.  Brazil had won on both occasions, with the most recent being the 2 – 0 win over Germany in the FIFA 2002  World Cup Final.

Current form was in favour of Germany as they had been efficient in swatting away all opposition.And Brazil had been scrappy & were coming through after two emotionally draining matches against continental rivals & were without their talisman Neymar (injured) & stellar defender & Captain,Thiago Silva (suspension).

The hosts were  the underdogs in ‘The Game’ of the tournament so far.

By this time, Lalu Yadav, an innovative Indian, had already set sail with a milion buffalos ,specially trained, to storm the pitch if things did not go in Brazil’s favour.

Armed with the knowledge of the buffalo contingent being available to shore up flagging fortunes,Luis Felipe Scolari, Manager of the Brazilian Team set into motion his strategy.He realised that the buffaloes,once on the pitch, will need guidance to execute their task so he included two Brazilian buffaloes in the starting line up – namely Fred & Hulk.Both these bovine clones behaved like clowns on the pitch for 90 minutes & simply waited for the buffaloes to arrive!!!

What about football???Well,the Germans were playing football isn’t it?Within the first 15 minutes they had scored their first goal! Thomas Muller scored the fifth of this tournament & 10th in 12 World Cup matches!

Scolari now asked for the buffaloes to be brought in.He was politely informed that the ship carrying the Indian Buffaloes had not even made it past Indian customs! This had an unnerving influence on Scolari & the Brazil players. They immediately anointed David Luiz & Marcello as the buffaloes in charge for storming the pitch!!!

Now with four bovines on the pitch Brazil was seemingly in control & would surely restore the situation by running around aimlessly & waiting for a miracle to happen.But my friends,buffaloes don’t play football!Now Brazil were left to play with 7 against the German Wehrmacht! Even out of these seven,six decided to enjoy the German grace & their mechanical precision as they had the best seats in the stadium & left the football to Julio Cesar,the Brazil goal keeper!!!Wish someone had discussed with him as well :)

Cesar played football for the full 90 minutes.But he doesn’t have any recollection of what transpired between minutes 23 & 29 in the game.He refuses to believe the television replays showing four goals being scored by the Germans in a Blitzkrieg 6 minutes!It all began with the goal in the 23′ which perched Miroslav Klose at the top of list for the the all time goal scorer in the World Cup.

Cesar also disputes the fourth goal.He claims its a replay of the third goal (both scored by Kroos) & that the Germans need to play & score & not rely on TV graphics!!!

By the 29th minute the German draw of lots had thrown up the name of the defender Kheidra to score next & he obliged immediately, leaving the four buffaloes & six player cum spectators with nothing to do other than give bemused looks! It would have been better had they ‘moooed’ together.That would have been the only teamwork demonstrated by Brazil other than putting to shame their rich football legacy & break millions of Brazilian hearts.

Till sometime back Scolari could be seen bearing a caption which read        ” Brace yourself – The 6th is coming!” (alluding to the quest for the 6th World Cup win).Again no one told this to Cesar & the 6th did come ,but a goal,thumped in mercilessly into the back of the Brazilian net by the German substitute Schurrle in the 69th minute.

He seemingly did not like his own effort & bettered it by scoring the 7th goal of the match in the 79th minute!History had been made.It was the biggest victory margin for any team in the semi finals of the FIFA World Cup!And after this the ignominy & misery of the Brazilian spectators was complete.And to compound things they started chanting “Ole” at each completed German pass!

Now i was a German too & fervently wished for an 8th goal.It did happen but was made by the Brazilians when they finally pulled one back through Oscar.

It is this sequence of events which has inspired the Amul ad strip.It shows a reeling goal keeper lying in the back of his own posts with seven footballs around him.The silver – grey dress & # 12 on the keeper are depicting the Brazil gloveman Julio Cesar & the seven balls around him are for the number of goals scored by the Germans.

The Tag LineArre O Samba, Kitne Goal Thhe?is a creators delight.The line simply translates into a man named Samba(depicted by the hapless goal keeper) is being asked by the Amul Girl as to how may goals were scored? Its inspired from the plight of the Brazilians who are from the land of the Samba.And also appealsto Indian movie / Bollywood buffs who have grown up on the famous lines of the villain Gabbar Singh  (Amjad Khan) from the movie ‘Sholay’ asking his henchman- Sambha (Mac Mohan)-  the same question,but about his adversaries & not goals !!!

The Punch Line..Hum Ek-Saath Haindepicts the final score line of the match; 1-7 as ‘ek’ is 1  & ‘saath’ depicts ‘saat’ which means 7 in Hindi! The hyphen in the phrase has been intelligently placed to give it a score like look.The line itself is again based on a Bollywood title -Hum Saath Saath Hain !

This was Brazil’s first loss at home in 12 years.Its first loss at home in a competitive match in 39 years.Its biggest defeat in FIFA World Cup ever.Its biggest defeat since 1920 when Brazil lost to Uruguay 6 -0.And of course the biggest victory margin for a winning team in a FIFA World Cup semi final match.

The Germans had their numbers too.They scored more goals than their last 6 semi final appearances.They scored more goals than England has in its last two FIFA World Cup campaigns.They have now scored a total of 223 goals at the World Cup,more than any other team.

The defeat has been a disaster & the semi final turned out to be a humiliating fiasco for Brazil.They missed Thiago Silva in defence & Neymar in attack,They also started with bovine equivalents rather than footballers.Substitutes Willian,Paulhino & Ramires came in the second half & provided respectability to the Brazillian game.They should have started the match as the first 11 & not substitutes.Fred & Hulk should have been locked up in the nearest cowshed or their kidnapping organised through the good offices of the Al Qaeda & ISIS.David Luiz,,well he doesn’t need to explain his idiotic display as NASA is doing him a favour by attempting to decode his preposterous performance.And as for Marcello, he has been awarded honorary German citizenship for his role in assisting the Germans in securing 5-0 first half lead.Some of the current players will never recover from this defeat & some will never feature in the canary yellow jersey again!

This loss for Brazil will rankle for decades to come just like their loss to Uruguay at the Maracana in the 1950 World Cup Finals is still talked about, only this disaster unfolded a match earlier in the tournament.The Brazil players were overawed & unnerved by the weight of the expectations & proved easy picking for the Germans.The Manager, Scolari erred in selecting the correct combination & overlookin experienced Robinho & Kaka.

The game at Belo Horizonte will be remembered for the day football died in Brazil The day when the Die Maanschaft inflicted the ‘Shame of Shames’ on the Selecao!

After the loss at the Maracana in 1950 the Brazilians had even ditched their all white gear to do away with any reminder of that painful loss to Uruguay.

One can only hope that Brazillian football will recover from this loss or else they will find themselves in wilderness for a long time to come.Brazil’s President Dilma Rouseff sums it up well

” Like every Brazilian,I am very,very sad about this defeat.I am immensely sorry for all of us.Fans & our players.”

In the end I thank the Germans for reminding us through their display in winning 7 – 1, that football remains a beautiful game. 

Last heard , the buffaloes have started their journey & are presently swimming across to Brazil with Lalu Yadav in tow!

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WHEN MARIA SHARAPOVA MET GOD !

maria-sharapova-sachin Had Maria Sharapova not asked the question in the picture above, we would have never had the ‘delectable’ Amul ad featuring Sachin Tendulkar and Maria Sharapova together!

There have been occasions when I have wondered what it is like to be Maria Sharapova – a 27 year old gorgeous 6ft plus blonde who has the tennis world at her feet with 5 Grand Slam wins to include a Career Grand Slam, who is also the richest sportswoman in the world and owns a delicious sounding candy brand ! I am sure the answer is as if ‘you are on top of the world’.

Also, for the record I am not a cross dresser or a drag artist wanting to unleash the woman within!!! I have wondered this about Federer, Ronaldo, Nadal and yes ..yes…wait .. Sachin Tendulkar .(The last name has saved my Twitter & Facebook account from crashing within 5 minutes of my posting this!!! )

Coming back to Maria Sharapova.

She  had her world turned upside down between 28 June  & 03 July 14 when she lost in the Wimbledon fourth round & also found herself on the receiving end of the wrath of India’s net savvy & cricket mad netizens. images-7

And from being on  top of the world she found herself under a heap of  cricket bats , balls & stumps!!!To top it all, no amount of high decibel screeching (and when Maria screeches all the night owls of the world listen in awe…and her opponents are left in shock!) was going to get her out of the mess she found herself in (did she find Ness there? He’s in a mess too😎 ; read my earlier post ‘A Preity -Nessy Affair ?)

Sharapova’s travails began as an outcome of an innocuous query asked by a journo during the post match press interaction after her third round win at Wimbledon on 28th of June 14.The match had been witnessed by a number of famous sports personalities including David Beckham (English Premier League, La Liga & England Football star),Andrew Strauss (cricket) & a third idividual about whom the journo simply asked that;

‘Sachin Tendulkar was the other person who came in at the same time as David. Do you know who Sachin is?’

And Sharapova came up with a harmless ‘I dont’!!! images-9

Just as she said it,the world came to a stand still in a mythical land named India..where tigers roam free and play cricket!

8For my non Asian friends (it should be non SAARC readers actually)I wrote what I meant .I did not mean ‘play with crickets’..yes..cricket is a game too..no..not played by insects or not about insects! Do you not want an Indian visa ever that you don’t know this most important virtue of Indian-ness?!!!( Ness again..This time I am not promoting my blog 😎) Wonder if cricket forms part of the test on British way of life that immigrants in the UK have to undergo..especially with the Britishers having invented the game! David Cameron..hope you are paying attention !!)

Okay ,we were at the world having come to a stand still.And when it moved again Sharapova was directly behind the after burner of an Indian backlash! Her mesmerising beauty counted for not even the cheapest cricket ball in India. When she said she did not know Sachin Tendulkar she had lived a part of her life for ever.From here on Sharapova will refer to her life story in two parts..Before I Knew Sachin Tendulkar. ..and… After I Knew Sachin Tendulkar !!! images-15

How could you do this Maria?Even my smart phone knows him !!! The moment I type ‘Ten’ it fills the rest with ‘Tendulkar’!!And don’t even try misspelling Tendulkar as the damn set shuts down on its own and doesn’t rev up till I have recounted Tendulkar’s feats at least ten times over!!! The immediate reaction from the land of 17.5% of the world population was one of utter disbelief. Sharapova doesn’t know Sachin Tendulkar??? Sachin Tendulkar??? Sachin Tendulkar – The God of Cricket??? So she must pay for it! The high priest of the temples of Tendulkar had thus ordained that Maria Sharapova be taught a lesson for her sacrilegious ignorance.She was to be put on a rake for being an atheist as she did not know God!!! She was condemned to a life in hell!! images-8

Angry supporters of Tendulkar, indignant at their God being a non entity for Sharapova, trashed her Twitter & Facebook pages with the choicest of abuses & insults. It came in such torrents that her page was swamped by 50000 messages in three days, castigating her for such blasphemous ignorance!!!

The storm did settled down, but not after Sharapova begged for mercy ,but when the social media buffs in India found another serious topic to lavish their attention on.And thankfully for Sharapova this time it was the speculation of Tiger Shroff ( a new comer Bollywood hero) being none other than Priyanka Gandhi (daughter of late Rajiv Gandhi) and the ambush marketing tactics of Neymar in favour of the makers of his underwear! (Did you think they were going to talk about the Union budget or women’s safety!!!)

A flip side to all this was the heightened sale of Sharapova posters (so these could be burnt during processions😎) and the possibility of Sachin Tendulkar being nominated for the Nobel Prize for Chemistry, Physics, Neuro Science, Biology and whatever else.This way the world would come to know of the game of cricket and it’s God!!! And being Indians we have been reasonable as we haven’t demanded the Nobel Prize for Sports , which doesnt exist and also for English and Peace as the former is the sign of slavery and has British origins (never mind that Cricket is a British invention too)and the latter will be opposed by Vladimir Putin as he is the main contender for it on account of the peaceful disintegration  of Ukraine! (A certain George Bush and Tony Blair have all the reasons to be miffed as their efforts in the unravelling of Iraq have gone unnoticed by the Nobel Committee!)

All in all the incident was quite a hilarious example of the reach and ‘over reach’ of the social media and the netizens in general. The ‘over the top’ reaction of the Indians did not factor in the fact that cricket is not part of the sporting culture of Russia and even Sachin Tendulkar will not know the name of the all time great of Russian Ice Hockey, a game followed with as much passion in Russia as cricket in India.

So Sharapova dear, don’t lose heart as your spat with ‘Soldiers of God (Sachin Tendulkar)’ in India or the ‘Mujahideen’ (literal translation) or should I say with the ‘Indian Mujahideen’ 😎😎😎 hasn’t made you lose fans instead it has earned you millions more! How? Well, your supposed ignorance has been splashed on the front pages all over India even in the vernacular press.That’s the segment which out numbers the netizens & the English speaking people by millions and millions! So stop wasting time and close down your ‘Sugarpova’ outlet at Wimbledon and open hundreds of them in India & a business tip that will surely work is to wrap the candy in Sachin Tendulkar’s visage based wrappers and give a free cricket ball as an incentive too.This way you would have atoned for your ‘sins’ as well as made money too! (Hire me Maria..hire me!!) images-32

The incident was controversial enough to find favour with the Amul ad line & important enough to feature in the midst of the FIFA 2014 / World Cup 2014.

It depicts a tennis player, a pretty blonde, sitting with her racquet and scratching her head to desperately figure out who the gentleman is who is trying to introduce himself to her.The girl has the face of the Amul Girl but her hair style, pink dress, with matching shoes depicts the style of Maria Sharapova. The gentleman talking to her is in a black suit and shirt & tie & holding a poster of a cricket player in India colours with Sachin printed on it.The man is depicting Sachin Tendulkar, his body structure,  hair style & his dress is the same as was worn by the original the day he sat next to David Beckham while witnessing Sharapova’s 3rd round match.Details have been well picked up by the creator. IMG-20140704-WA0002 The Tag Line…Maria , Share-a-poah with Sachin..is a wonderful take on the name of the tennis star Maria Sharapova & has combined it with the name of a delicacy of Maharashtra (the home state of Sachin Tendulkar) -Poha- is asking Maria Sharapova to share a Poha with Sachin Tendulkar & to get to know him better😁

The Punch Line…Known Everywhere…is once again establishing the universal appeal (in India) of the Amul Butter & takes a dig at the unseemly controversy about Sachin Tendulkar not be in known everywhere!!! I still feel that the winner is Sharapova as she is better recognised in India now than what Sachin would be in Russia as I wonder if the Russian press devoted any worthwhile space on the matter.

Lastly, this incident has come as a shot in the arm for the beleaguered intellectual capabilities of Alia Bhatt who has bettered Maria Sharapova as the former knows Sachin Tendulkar & the latter didn’t!!

As of right now the two protagonists of the strip are yet to comment on the controversy.And in the ‘After I Got to know Sachin Tendulkar’  phase of her life Maria Sharapova is bound to see better days as a celebrity in India & better sales of her candy product line! For her too ‘Achche din aayenge’ & she has Sachin Tendulkar to thank for it.God tussi great Ho! !! Really! images-41

My advise to the social media buffs is that India is not the centre of the universe or the earth and claim to the ‘Middle Kingdom’ tag is of the Chinese! And don’t mess with the Chinese for they are better & meaner at computer games😎

Leaving you with the best memes on the Sachin Tendulkar -Maria Sharapova  (needless) controversy.

Sorry Sachin Tendulkar, Sharapova has put you & me in the same league.She doesn’t know both of us & I play cricket too !!! Bro0WY0CAAEbHS-  sharapova-meme-7 images-26BrlkYfaCUAAVEF9

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CASILLAS….CASILLAS….HAD A GREAT FALL!!!

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It is these two iconic images from the game between the current champions Spain and the  Netherlands in the ongoing  FIFA WORLD CUP 2014 which have formed the theme of the strip.The strip celebrates the extraordinary performance by the ‘Flying Dutchman’ and the disastrous  sinking of the ‘Spanish Armada’ during the game.

June 13,2014,Arena Fonte Nova,Salvador.

Spain ,the defending World Champions, are lined up in their opening encounter against the Netherlands, the team they humbled at Johannesburg to win the crown in 2010.Current form and the fact that 7 of the 2010 squad in South Africa form part of the present Spanish team under manager Vincent Del Bosque makes the Spanish team an overwhelming favourite to win the match ‘hands down’.

90 minutes later… The Spanish Armada has been sunk!

Mercilessly pounded by the Dutch and mauled beyond recognition of their world beating aura the Spanish football team was decimated.  The final scoreline ,5-1 for Netherlands, was the worst result for a defending Champion in FIFA World Cups.Its all over for the Spanish and the team seems to have lost its midas touch and worse still their claim on retaining the World Cup at FIFA 2014. The entire Spanish team failed but it was one man, their Captain and talismanic goal keeper Iker Casillas ,who took the biggest fall at the biggest stage of world football.

And this piece is all about him…he was the biggest success for the world beating Spanish teams from 2008 onwards and on this fateful day he was more responsible than the others for debacle at Salvador.He.was.most certainly The Humpty Dumpty equivalent in the match…who too had a great fall in the iconic nursery rhyme.

At the start of the game, fresh from  a Champions League victory,  Casillas would have been smug in the knowledge that he had already ‘thumped’ most of his European opponents many times over.But it was going to be ‘a Eureka moment’  night for him when at the end he would be acknowledging to himself that he was better off being a baker or a grocer rather than a ‘keeper’ with Spain ‘s all conquering football team and that after almost 15 years of top flight football!

Before the Netherlands scored its first goal Casillas was 44 minutes away from bettering Walter Zenga’s record of not conceding a goal for 528 minutes at the World Cup. And prophetically at the stroke of 44 minutes into the match, Dutchman Robin van Persie scored and shattered the first of the many illusions that Casillas may have harboured for the game (he was denied the record by 44′). And from here on started Casillas’ s very own and customised ‘nightmare at Elms street’.

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In fact such was the helplessness of Casillas after the first goal that his immediate reaction may have been to applaud and congratulate the striker as there wasn’t anything else that he could do.He would have probably done that had he secured his grocer’s job in Madrid prior to coming for the World Cup at Brazil!!!

After Arjen Robben had blitzed past Casillas in the 53rd minute to  score the second goal for Netherlands a strange stupor seems to have set into Casillas.It seemed he suddenly had a vision that Robben was actually Frank Rjikaard from the 90s and that they had conspired to do the unthinkable ie score against the ‘unparalleled’ San Casillas!

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It is now that Casillas realised that Robben and Persie were the very characters his mother had told him about in the bed time stories way back as a kid! His fears were back!

He seemed to have lost his confidence and thereon  he was easy picking for the mischievous elves of Scandinavia who had descended in hordes, wearing blue, on the hapless Casillas on a night which was supposed to bring him glory and not accursed luck. He failed to parry a simple chance offered by de Vrij in the 65th minute and Spain were trailing 1-3!

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The transformation of Casillas from ‘keeper’ to ‘shocker’ was about to be completed when he lost the ball during a regulation backpass and saw van Persie (the one whom he knew from the stories as a child😎) steal the ball and make it  1-4.

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Lying sprawled and cringing  within, all that Casillas could do was probably admire the shoes that Persie was wearing and being thankful for the soft turf under his body for after this he was only going to be between  rock and a hard place when it came to his future with Spain and it’s football team.Some say that it’s at this point that Casillas started looking for a safe exit route from the stadium, one which would skirt the change room of the Spanish football team ,and lost his composure!

Having lost his focus (and preoccupied with the thoughts of escape and re employment) Casillas allowed himself to be fooled by Robben and found himself wrong footed while the Dutch striker fired into an empty goal…

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With this the meltdown of Casillas was complete and he could only sink to his knees to feel the soft turf( watching Robben celebrate) and to give one last look to confirm the alternate exit route which happened to be a hole in the earth beneath his very feet!!!

The ‘sank-on-his-knees’ look made for a terrific selfie but as ‘San Casual’was busy getting busted the entire world’s media lent him a hand (or a shutter) in immortalising the moment. 

Casillas had now realised that the chill going down his spine was nothing else but the fear of tackling his girlfriend Sara Carbonero. No naughty thoughts please (we are Indians) , Iker was feeling performance pressure (yes!! ) but of a different kind . Carbonero , an attractive sideline sports commentator, (also voted the sexiest in the world) had once left Casillas tongue tied after Spain’s opening game defeat to Switzerland during the  FIFA World Cup 2010 in South Africa.Well, Cassy baby it’s time to answer the same question again (and she is not going to be asking about marrying her) which she posed way back in 2010, “How did you muck it up?”

And to help you out with what you said back then “I don’t know if this defeat will have consequences. The dressing room is fed up. “

You are lucky Casillas you know what she is going to ask you and better still you know what to answer as well.(Wish you’d had even a slice of this luck in the game though)

Casillas was candid in the post match media interaction when he said that “I am the first one to ask for forgiveness”.Was it that he actually realised his game was up (for sale😎…buyers ??) or had hit up on a PR campaign idea to start on a massive dollop of public sympathy for his re employment bid once he was thrown out of the team or guillotined for sinking Spanish hopes at FIFA 2014.

Admittedly ,Casillas had had a tough and lack lustre 2014 where he had not been the #1  keeper for Real Madrid and had been a famous member of the bench during the course of the La Liga.( Had he spent that time acquiring vocational skills his situation may have been redeemed while he sank on his knees on June 13th).But he had been the  “Special One’ when it came to the Copa Del Ray, the Champions League and even the Confederation Cup with the National team.So nothing that had happened in the years gone by had suggested the dismantling of the invictus Casillas Castle in such a humbling manner.

The fall from grace is even greater when seen in perspective of Casillas ‘ career. He had been a part of the Spanish teams which had won the UEFA European Under 16 Championships in 1997 and the FIFA World Youth Championship in 1999.He became the youngest ever player to play in the Champions League finals when he played for Real Madrid in May 2000.Soon after he broke into Spain’s senior football team.

In his first four years he helped his  club win two league titles, two Spanish Super Cups, one UEFA Super Cup and the final of the Champions League against Bayern Leverkusen in 2002.He was instrumental in ensuring back to back league titles for Real Madrid in 2007 and 2008.He won another Spanish Super Cup title in 2008 as well.And starting 2007 he figured in the UEFA Team of the Year for six straight years. He went on to win another league title Spanish Super Cup in 2012 and a famous ‘Decima’ for Real  Madrid in 2014 just before the ‘Carniball’   ( FIFA World Cup  2014) in Brazil.

With the Spanish national team he played a stellar role in their 2002 and 2006 FIFA World Cup campaigns.Was handed over the captaincy after the 2006 World Cup and helped in ending the major title drought for the  ‘La Roja’ by winning the 2008 European Championships and following it up with the victory in 2010 FIFA World Cup and successfully defending the title in the 2012 European Championships.

So in spite of Casillas losing his place in the Real Madrid starting line up pist 2012 partly due to a fractured finger and partly due to a fractured relationship with Jose Mourihno his past record suggested that he was the ‘go to’ man for the Spaniards in a major tournament such as the FIFA 2014.His penalty saves against Italy and Portugal in 2008 and 2012  European Championships and his breathtaking saves to thwart Arjen Robben and Netherlands in the FIFA 2010 championship and 10 consequetive clean slates in knock out matches were testimony to his big match temperament. 

And then on June 13th,2014 he ran into Robin van Persie and and Arjen Robben who ended his dreams and destroyed his legacy as an all time great.

It is on account of the iconic status of Casillas, the Spanish football team- the La Roja- and the spectacular effort of the Dutch team in dethroning the Spaniards from there high pedestal that the Amul strip features their collective saga.

The strip shows two caricatures, both Amul girls, pitched against each other with the one in blue leaping and scoring over a bamboozled goal keeper in fluorescent green. The caricatures depict the iconic images of van Persie and Casillas respectively from the Spain vs Netherlands game in FIFA 2014.

The tag line…Dutch ke rehna re baba! ..is a taken on the popular Bollywood number ‘Bach ke rehna re baba’…simply implying be safe and  beware – there is danger lurking!And it was lurking for Casillas in the form of the Dutch duo of Persie and Robben.

The Punch Line… Truly Breadtaking.. is a tribute to the breathtaking goal and display by the Dutch players in particular van Persie for his extreme athleticism in scoring the acrobatic equaliser for Netherlands.The impact of that strike was such that it threw the ‘La Roja’ and Casillas in such disarray that thereafter they conceded a goal every ten minutes – 44′,53′,65′,72′ & 80! Breathtaking display indeed.

After this game many predicted the end of the era of several magnificent players from Spain including Casillas. Heeding the advise of the millions of analysts ,including his girlfriend Sara, Casillas has already posted his CV in numerous job portals with his credentials for having ‘safe hands’ being highlighted. After this match only those who do not follow football will fall for that one…and there aren’t many of that tribe!Particularly so in Real Madrid who have already started looking beyond Casillas. 

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So it’s curtains for you Iker. Don’t forget to roll over to break the fall!

And who’s that we see you walking into the sunset with..Arjen Robben. .The Elf …all I can say is …Dutch ke rehna re baba !!!

As a young boy I was fortunate to have my father tell me about the history of the world and about the events as they unfolded.This was based on what I would glean out of conversations,news papers and the dear ol' 9pm news on Doordarshan. Today I have a Son, Ayenesh,And I too want to be able to tell him about his queries especially about the times he grew up in. And my endeavour is being aided by the 'Amul Ad Campaign'. The topical issues covered in those innocuous cartoons are precious nuggets of history being created,while I am living through those events today! So,Ayenesh,this is for you my son.I don't want you to miss out on the events while you were busy growing up.I shall narrate to you what the ad portrays as and when it is featured. I have compiled my musings on the ads from 2012 onwards and here I intend to record my observations for the ones being featured now as well as attempt to hive the ones already reflected upon by way of careful jottings on the subject.Eventually when you grow up, you will have this Blog to fall back upon for your own private treasure trove of history, the basis for which would be the ads of a company which has butter as it's marquee product ! Wish you a wonderful life ahead and happy reading too. The views stated in the posts are my own and are based on the various articles posted on the internet and in no way represent the views or official line of the ad company or the Amul product line.

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