Friday, January 13, 2012

Adzilla: HTC's Finger Ad

This is a new series where I will be analyzing ads that I liked or hated or impressed me in any other way. I hope to be the guy who makes the ads soon.

The HTC finger ad touched me immediately. Pun intended!

The ad features a girl (very cute, btw. What? I had to say it, ok...) who is followed by painted fingers. The fingers walk like a person, and they are painted to look like they are wearing clothes. In the beginning of the ad, she is clearly annoyed with the fingers, but as the ad progresses she becomes steadily amused by them but continues to play hard to get. Near the end of the ad, the fingers threaten to jump off a ledge, but finally just sit down. Flash from the fingers to the feet of a boy sitting on the ledge of a building. To his side is his mobile, and in the corner of the screen, we see a pair of feminine fingers moving towards him, and his phone beeps with the delivery of an SMS. His girlfriend has finally forgiven him.

Loved it! And the song is catchy and fits very well with the ad.

The ad is clearly aimed at the youth. The whole girlfriend-boyfriend dynamic plays perfectly to their wavelengths. It's a time of high-romance for college-goers, and these little petty fights are something they can relate to, look back at, and laugh on. Also it plays to the fact that youth are quite tech savvy and use texting as a primary mode of communication.

So let's break it down:

The good:

  • Loved the concept. You won't understand the first time what is going on, but by the end of the ad, you'll figure it out. I think it's clever and funny. I wonder how much thought went into the painting? They did a good job.
  • The song really works for the ad. Perfect fit. Has a wonderful youthful vibe to it. Nice music and lyrics.
  • The girl is great. And I don't mean she is only cute, but her expressions are spot on. I especially like the "Oh, really?" look she gives at the end when the boy threatens to jump.
  • The cinematography. I like how each time they just capture the hand, with the rest of the arm out of the frame. It is artfully done. Like when the girl is sitting at the table having lunch.
The bad:
  • The song. Personally, I knew it had a very short expiry date with me. I would not be able to stand it from the 2nd time I saw it. "Waiting waiting, sweety pie..." Shut the fuck up! God! At least it's not as bad as that fucking Airtel "Har Ek Friend" song.
  • In the links below, you will read what the professionals had to say. While the ad is nice and catchy, the message is old and the delivery can be confusing. I'm not at that level yet, so I couldn't pick this out!
Some nice comments at exchange4media. You can check the print ads also. They too are eye-catching.

Some more stuff here and here.

Monday, January 9, 2012

The Patriot Act

How many of you are patriots? I bet you all are. Except you cynical people who think it's cool to be cynical and not identify with anything. God, you pricks annoy me to know end, sitting their with that smug look on your face.

But let's talk about another thing that annoys me: patriots.

Now don't charge me with sedition just yet. "Oh, he's not patriotic, he must be anti-India!" Get off your high-horse, buddy. While you're happily shouting vande mataram, you might miss a couple of important things.

I'm annoyed by many kinds of people, but the one relevant to this topic is the kind who think they display a certain character trait (albeit a noble one) because they are from such and such a place. "We will forgive you, because we are ______ian." Ok, seriously: what the fuck? And they say it so matter-of-factly, like it's the ultimate truth. Because you are from some place, that makes you better, more forgiving, more magnanimous? Fucking bullshit. I honestly feel like slapping such people. Not figuratively, but really giving them a taste of my palm. Smack, right across their mouth. I would not even mind had they said "We will forgive you, because we are just fucking awesome." Ok, so they're noble and maybe a tad conceited. That I can abide. There is a good quality in them that they have by and of themselves, that doesn't stem from the latitude and longitude of their birthplace.

After all, there's a certain kind of people that think they are superior based on their birthplace and/or race. And historically, they have not been very popular.

Moving on to the kind of patriot that annoys me now. We have these hyperactive individuals who with fire in their eyes and a ruler straight back say, "I yam Indiyun." and they may pound their chest for effect. They are, merely by this admission, of an infallible legacy, of a royal bloodline of martyrs and kings, and torch bearers of the grand tradition of truth, justice and freedom that this great nation was built on.


Think back. Men and women actually gave their lives for the freedom that you so callously enjoy with blatant disregard for everything else. Bhagat Singh laid down his life for liberation. Mahatma Gandhi dedicated his life to the freedom of India. Sarojini Naidu was there, debating and fighting. The Nehrus tried to bring a fledgling nation into a modern age of freedom and prosperity. Men like Muhammad Yunus set up schemes to help the poor in the country. Anna Hazare fasted on behalf of all us lazy assholes who want everything spoon-fed to us. If you ask me, these are the real patriots. And obviously I can't mention all such people.

Honestly, what have you (adressing the people mentioned 2 paragraphs before) done to be Indian? Nothing really. Except be born. And that's fucking easy. All you had to do was pop out. And this whole patriot-giri is just an act. Because it's in vogue at the time, it's fashionable. You've been well fed your whole life, never known struggle, and when this whole "thing" blows over, you'll go back to being content. You'll drive your big car, guzzle petrol, waste food, pollute the environment, shop in big malls, and complain about the state of the nation in the comfort of your air conditioner. Patriot indeed.

I'm not asking you to grab a rifle and go stand on the LOC and shout obscenities at those across the border. If you want to be a patriot, if you really love your country so much, stop talking and pounding your chest and do something. The freedom struggle never finished, it's just taken a new form. So don't litter. Keep your roads clean. Don't take the illegal turn because the actual turn is just 100 meters ahead. Don't bribe the cop when you get caught because you did take the illegal turn. Don't drink and drive. Don't spit on the roads and in stairwells of buildings. Don't fuel corruption "because it's just easier." Don't waste food. Give more. Donate money, donate time. Join an NGO. Build a shelter. Volunteer at a shelter. Denounce regionalism. Don't identify yourself and others by statehood, religion, caste, etc. Say 'I'm an Indian,' and leave it at that.

And don't be afraid to rock the boat. Patriotism demands that when the system that is meant to serve the people breaks down, the people must dissent.

I'm not saying do all of it. I'm not saying be a saint. I'm not saying it's easy. But shit, freedom never has been easy. And neither should be patriotism. Start small, at your home, and then work your way up. Show your patriotism, don't tell me about it. I've heard enough.

(I shall not endeavor to bore you with the other reason I dislike patriotism, regarding my damned fool idealistic notion of global unity. So boring!)

Politicians are sucking the country dry. At least the British Raj were honest about looting us. There is ever prevalent filth and breakdown of machinery. It pervades all levels of life. This is nothing new. But it's getting worse. The country is in dire need of real patriots, more so than ever before.

So be one.

Disclaimer 1: My history is extremely bad. I may not know all the stories regarding certain personalities that I have mentioned here. I have used them for representative purposes. So if any of them have done something horrible that I don't know about, it's not my fault. That was not my point in mentioning. If you disagree with my calling them patriots because of some reason, etc., you didn't get the point of this article.

Disclaimer 2: Regarding my steps to becoming a patriot, I am not saying I myself always follow them. I am no saint either. But for every one-way turn I take on the wrong side, I refuse to throw 3 pieces of trash on the road. So we all need to try and contribute in our own way.

Disclaimer 3: If you still have a problem with what I've written, I will be much obliged to bend over so can kiss my buttocks on both cheeks. You goddamn right, mutherfucker. 

Friday, January 6, 2012

Random Rant-6 : The Shoulder Block Part 3- Blindsighted

This is the last of the Shoulder Block series, and I've chosen it for last because it is the most personal, and I don't think you would have experienced the particularities unless you travel from Hinjewadi Phase 2 to your home or place of residence on the bottleneck that is, well, the road through there.

But you two-wheeler-walas will no doubt understand that basic premise. During the monsoons, precipitation tends to collect on the visor of your helmet (of law abiding citizens who dare to wear a helmet, that is). This is expected and not a wholly irritating phenomenon. However, these little drops of water have the propensity to capture a ray of light and scatter it. And they all do this individually. Also it is the habit of the great Indian populace (baboons!) to ride at night with their high beams on. So not only do their headlights flash right in your eyes, the light-scattering droplets fill your helmet with a beautiful glow that shields your eyes from everything else.

Certainly a frightening situation.

So during the monsoons, when the road gets wet (and mind you, in Pune sometimes it doesn't rain, it just drizzles which serves only to make the road mucky and dangerous without being pleasant at all, but that's another rant), traffic invariable grinds to a halt, and proceeds from then on at a snail's pace. And while leaving the large commercial complex that is IT Park, this can mean encountering A SHITLOAD OF TRAFFIC in the aforementioned bottleneck.

Well, we twowheeler guys are damned if we're sitting through that bullshit. The main road has going and coming lanes separated by a divider which has gaps in it at certain points so a vehicle can turn around without having to traverse the whole stretch. So we cross the gap and go from the other side which is mostly empty. So much for law abiding citizens. But it cuts down travel time to a fraction of what it would be! And trudging through the traffic in a minor drizzle is a pain in the ass! Heavier rain is far better, believe me!

But the worst thing that can happen is you miss the gap. Because if you should, god forbid, you are in for about a kilometer of traffic, all the while roasting in your raincoat, slowly getting damp on the inside with aerosol-rain and sweat, feet getting muddy, and temper growing short. Combine this with the phenomenon of the glowing helmet and you'll see where I'm going.

You plan turn. You gdt blinded by fucking high beams and bastard rain droplets on visor. Bam. You miss turn. You screwed. Fuck.

There is no better way to explain this than a rage. My first. A new trend for a new year.

A New Year, A New Hope

Hope is a dangerous thing. Drive a man insane. It's got no place here. Better get used to the idea. 

Story of my life. My prison is my mind. My "Great Depression" is my life. Yes,  now I'm mashing disparate movies together.

2012. A brand new year. In the grand scheme of things, Jan 1st is just another day. If you stop thinking of years graphically as clusters of 12 blocks, and think of them contiguously linked together, you will see December melting into January so that the effect is less jarring. Well, that's how I think of it. And if you believe those pesky Myans, it's all going to end this year. God forbid. I'm hoping my life will begin this year.

Oops. There it is. I said the "h-word." Hope is a dangerous thing. And boy, don't I know it. The quintessential human emotion- simultaneously the source of our greatest strength and our greatest weakness (I did the movie thing again).

Let me tell you why hope is a dangerous thing. Because it gives you hope. Rather it gets your hopes up. Damn it, what am I saying... The point is, you deal with a lot of bullshit hoping that something will happen. But life ain't like the damn movies. When that thing doesn't happen, you're just left with a lot of bullshit, a confused look on your face, and nowhere to go. And such has been the case with me far too many times (yes, allow me to whine. This is my blog, after all). And that's fucking boring. It really is. That's right. For once I'd like to know the opposite feeling of having your hopes come crumbling down and being left with nothing and nowhere to go. Not only are you left in the pit surrounded by broken bones, you have no drive behind you to keep you going. And I'm fucking bored of that.

And like a child that never learns his lesson, I still keep hoping, after all that. Idiotic!

But look sharp! All is not so bad. I ended 2011 with river rafting and began 2012 with bungee jumping. Not a bad way to kick things off. And there are plenty of good things that I can do this year, what with MICAT looming. I just have to work really hard. Really hard. And I fucking better. Do, or do not. There is no try. Not anymore. Except it seems that I don't need to try to find suitable movie quotes.

Yup. Although finding the whole "holiday" spirit this year was a very difficult and trying task, I think I can still feel a bit of the old "new year hope." Why not. I just hope I have a little help this year, in more area than one. Right from home on up. I feel another quote coming on.

Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things, and no good thing ever dies.

Andy Dufrane, fucker...

P.S. I haven't bothered to make a resolution this year. Maybe my resolution is to get into MICA. Oh, and pick up the guitar again. *groan*