Whatever say I

Reading too many books, in parallel, these days. Falling behind on some, giving up on some, who knows if I will even return to them later. The Witchdoctors, The Rule of Four, The Resilient Enterprise, an Agatha Christie book that I don’t remember, and on Sunday, I bought The Golem’s Eye to add to that. Right now, totally engrossed in The Rule of Four.

Beatzo’s latest post got me thinking about the sudden spurt in pavement bookstalls in Bangalore. No, he didn’t write about that, but all his posts make me think about the weirdest of things. There are so many of them now, it’s surprising, there hasn’t been a police crackdown yet. BTM, JP Nagar, Airport Road, everywhere I see, there are at least a few around. There seems to be a sudden “reading revival” of sorts happening in Bangalore! But all these pavement wallahs seem to have the very same books though. Bar a book here, a book there, the titles are just the same. I am so sick of seeing “The Google Story”, one of these I may actually end up buying one, and then burn the damn thing. Hearsay has it “The Search” is a better book, but I haven’t found it in even one of the pavement stalls. Surprising. Or maybe not, since the former is apparently “more readable”. Books find their own audience.

The demand side economics of a pavement bookstall is not as obvious as it seems. There are of course the latest blockbusters, but there are also those unexpected ones, which materialize from nowhere, The Rule of Four being an example. Not too many people have heard of it, but with the great success of The Da Vinci Code, this book seems to have found an audience again. That’s my conjecture, at least.

Ranga Shankara’s plays are either deteriorating in quality, or maybe it’s just my luck. The last 3 plays I have seen there, each one’s been worse than the one before. Don’t watch “Big B”, even if you get a free ticket. I paid 150. Bah! 😦 I don’t understand the guys who review these plays. Every one of the newspapers, and magazines had nothing but high praise for “Big B”. Bollocks.

Last Friday, I did my own version of online scrabble in the “fun friday” game. Got really confusing, and I got some stick. But then I cut the time down to 30 seconds, and after that, it went off pretty well. I had grossly underestimated how quick people are with words. A couple of people even mailed me to say what a brilliant idea that was. At this point, I take a bow.

After an extended ten day break from tennis, first due to the rains, and then ‘cos I fell sick, I got back to playing again today. Was good. Played singles for a change, today. In 20 minutes of hitting, I was so exhausted, I decided to play a set with the guy there. That made things easier. When two lousy players square off, it’s impossible to get tired even if you play 3 sets. By some miracle, all my first serves landed in, in one game, and that was enough to won 6-3. If you watch Federer (and I suppose, the other top players as well) closesly, you can see his eye on the ball almost to the instant it hits his racquet. I have been trying to do that for a while now, it’s the most difficult thing, I must say.

From where I am sitting today, I get an awesome view of planes landing at the Blr airport. I think I will return to plane watching.


Posted on November 14, 2006, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 11 Comments.

  1. Nice to see this post after I thought I wasn’t getting updated on your life…

    Want to come to Rafiki’s performance of Woza Albert on Thurs at Ranga Shankara? They are one of my favourite groups and though there are no guarantees, I am looking forward to it. (I am going on Thursday as on Friday I am out of town.)

    I do agree with you, I have seen some very foul plays there, too…

    Let me know…

    • Difficult to catch a play on a weekday. I usually return from office, only after 8. Do let me know if the play’s good. If they are performing during the weekend, maybe I can catch it.

  2. Can you show me your Scrabble game please? And does it follow the intl’ rules, where odd, idiotic, senseless words are accepted (like yk and awa and stuff like that)? If it is common or garden Scrabble with proper English words, I would love it…

    • 🙂 oh, it’s no big deal. Proper english words only. The rules were very simple. I gave everyone the same set of 7 alpahbets, and whoever made the word with most points, wins that round. Whoever won the most rounds won the game! 🙂 Wanted to specify things like “second letter is a triple letter” etc, but it got too confusing to keep scores, so kept it very simple eventually.

  3. Pavement raddi books, hate them!The quality of the paper steals all joys of reading.

    Scrabble, love it!

    • 🙂 Well, yeah, raddi books have that lousy print quality about them. But not always. Occasionally, one gets lucky. And mostly, I do prefer to buy second hand from Blossoms, rather than the pirated ones.

      I bought a scrabble board recently. Played after ages, and realized it takes too much time! I think I should set time limits, next time I play!

  4. I bought one of de Bono’s books from the pavement recently.

    Ah, “The Google Story”. It was all over Hyd as well.

    I like the phenomenon of pavement book stalls I must admit. I imagine that it changes lives. Just one sentence from one book lighting a fire in one mind… 🙂

    • Yeah, for many, pavement bookstalls are a blessing! When did you start reading De Bono? 🙂

      Saw mail, shall reply soon.

      • I never really read De Bono’s books cover to cover…I just read them furtively for free in book shops! 🙂

        I thought tis CoRT programme/the whole idea that you can make up steps of thoughts that you can re-use to help you think really caught my fancy. Stuff like OPV (Other People’s Views) and CAF (Consider All Factors) are good starting points.

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