Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Who is Your True Friend?

A few days back, I was just having a casual discussion with one of my friends and the topic of friendship came about. The question in the minds of both of us was “How many true friends do we have”. We were of the opinion that in today’s world you rarely find friends. I have experienced this enough in my life to know that most of the relationships are strictly professional. And in some cases its pure business. Its like, I have to get some work done from this guy, so let’s be friendly with him. I hate to say this but it is the truth in many cases. If you consider the work culture today, you don’t have much time for socializing other than in office. So most of the people you hang out with will be from your office. But come to think of it, how many of them are your true friends, and how many of those are just colleagues whom you would no longer be in touch with after you have left your current job.

Amidst all these thoughts going through my mind, this past weekend, after a long time, I met my best friend. We have been friends since our junior college days. We had joined the same coaching classes for our 12th board exams. Since then, we have been the best of friends. I have always wondered what the definition of a “best friend” is. I believe that a person, whom you can trust the most, above anybody else in this world, is your best friend. Some people might argue that it is someone you like to be with, or someone whom you mostly hang out with. I wouldn’t agree on this point. My best friend lives in Thane, the same place as I do. His house is about 1.5 kms away from mine. Even so we do not meet for days or months. We don’t even speak on phone for weeks. But, whenever there is something I need to get out of my heart, I can only think of one person. My life is an open book for him and vice versa. The level of understanding I share with him is unmatched.. I still do not know whether he considers me to be his best friend, but it doesn’t matter. I consider myself lucky to have a friend like him.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Adieu CR7!!!!!

I still remember the day when Cristiano Ronaldo was first revealed as a Manchester United Player. It was the summer of 2003 when Manchester United played a friendly against Sporting Lisbon and was thrashed 3-0. It was all thanks to a virtually unknown 18 year old, who, as time has revealed would go on to become one of the best players in the world.

His arrival at Manchester was a relatively low-key affair. Not many people might have expected him to become as good a player as he is now. But Sir Alex had such confidence in him that despite Ronaldo’s reluctance, he almost forced him to wear the famous No.7 jersey for Manchester United. Yes, the No.7 which had previously been worn by legends such as George Best, Bryan Robson, Eric Cantona and David Beckham.

The next six years have been nothing short of spectacular for both the club and the player. The initial stages of his career at United were not glittered with silverware and also his play was all about the little step-over and mostly individual brilliance rather than playing with the team. This is where the influence of Sir Alex Fergusson comes into the picture. He is in many ways responsible for transforming a player with extraordinary potential into the Best player in the world within 3 seasons. The big turning point of Ronaldo’s career was the infamous wink incident at the 2006 world cup. He very well knew that he would be a hated figure in England and therefore wanted to move to Spain. That was the first time that the Real Madrid talk happened. Fortunately for Manchester United Fans, and also for Cristiano, he got talked out of that decision by Carlos Queiroz (then Assistant Coach at Manchester United). The rest as they say is history. Manchester United winning the EPL for the next 3 seasons along with one Champions league. And not to forget, they reached the semi-finals in 2007 and finals in 2009.

There have been many highs for Cristiano at Manchester. The biggest personal achievement would definitely be winning the Ballon d'Or and the World Player of the Year award in 2008. Some would say the greatest achievement as a team is winning the Champions League in 2008. But, as per me it is winning the Premier League in 2007 after Chelsea completely dominated it for 2 years prior to that. As far as individual brilliance is concerned, there are far too many to be mentioning it here. The latest being the amazing 40 yard winner he scored against Porto to lead his team to the champions league semi-finals.

To sum it up, Cristiano Ronaldo has definitely left a lasting impression on all the Manchester United fans. Will he be counted in the same league as some of the Manchester United legends like Eric Cantona, Ryan Giggs, Roy Keane, etc? Well, my take on this is, due to the imminent and consistent desire he showed of playing for Real Madrid, he will miss out on this honor. So Cristiano Ronaldo will always be remembered as a great player for Manchester United, but one who fell just short of being counted among the all time legends of this great football club. Let us all wish him luck for his career ahead at Real Madrid.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

No Oscar For Good Films????

I am completely bemused by the way the Oscar Jury Works on selecting the "Best Film Of The Year". I am quite ok about the other categories. I believe they do a pretty good job with those. But, they screw up big time when it comes to the Best Film.The nominations are decided by the votes of a little less than 6000 members of the Academy Of Motion Pictures Arts and Science. I would love to meet them and understand their point of view in selecting the best film.
This year, the Award went to Slumdog Millionaire, which according to me was at best an average film. The western audiences must have found it somewhat different and a bit amusing, but for us Indians it was a kind of a run of the mill entertainer. As per me, the film which deserved the award did not even get nominated. For me there was only one winner "The Dark Knight". I mean the film had everything...High Voltage Drama, Emotions, Mind Boggling Action, Superb Special Effects , Awesome Screenplay, Great Performances and some Everlasting Dialogues. How could the jury miss out on it? It is a complete disgarce that the film did not even get nominated. In the end this film got only 2 Oscars. I was beginning to wonder, had Heath Ledger been alive, would they have given him the award?
I was already dissappointed with the awardee of this year. Then, a few days back i saw the awardee from last year "No Country For Old men". The film is bad and i mean really bad. I believe the first criteria for a film to be termed as "good" should be that it entertains the audience. I was bored to death while watching this movie. I watched the entire film with a hope that there would be something in the end that would raise it to another level. But, just like that the film got over(with a bizarre ending). I fail to understand how this film deserved an Oscar????? I can understand if the award goes to a non-commercial film, but how it could be given to a bad film like this is completely beyond me.
I have now decided to stay away from Oscar Nominated Films. I would much rather watch an entertaining film with minor technical flaws, than a technically brillant film which does not offer much entertainment.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

The Beautiful Game

Me being a die hard football fan, can't help but choose the biggest controversy surrounding the Football world today to comment upon.

Were Chelsea robbed of a Champions League Finals Berth?

There are theories going on that the referee did it intentionally because UEFA did not want another All English Final. I think that is bullshit. I agree that the referee made mistakes and it is not something new. We have seen it all before.
Now coming to the match itself, i thought there was only one team playing Football and that was Barcelona. I was amazed by the way Chelsea played, especially in the first leg. Coming on the back of the quarter final match against Liverpool(in which Chelsea were outstanding), this was really shocking. I believe if you really get on the face of Barcelona, you can give them some problems. This we saw in some brief spells of attacking football which Chelsea played at Stamford Bridge. I think they will be ruing the fact that they did not pressurize the Barcelona defense often enough. Especially, after Barcelona were down to 10 men in the 65th minute. It was more a question of intent rather than if they would have been able to do it. And then they paid the price as a magnificent goal by Andres Iniesta sealed their fate. I would like to say here that no one deserves it more than Iniesta. He has been outstanding this season.
After the match, there was this bullying of the referee by the Chelsea players, especially Didier Drogba. I feel UEFA should be handling this matter a bit leniently here. After all, they were booted out of the Champions league final and it becomes really difficult for anyone to control his emotions.
Finally, answering the question of whether Chelsea were robbed? The Chelsea fans would believe they were robbed, but in the end justice has been done. The team which played positive football went through. This proves that everyone loves The Beautiful Game, including "Lady Luck".