In a canteen, there are two categories of people: People having their food in groups and people having their food alone. The latter category, I call lone-eaters. Lone-eaters are always by choice and not by circumstances or force. That is, if you have to have food alone because you could not join your friends due to some meeting, then you are not a lone-eater.

Even though I have been in both the categories, on the inside, I am a lone-eater.

Both the options have their own positives and negatives, of which I will discuss the positives.

Positives having lunch in a group:

1. Stress-relieving gossip:
The gossip during lunch, covering a variety of topics like other office colleagues, project manager, trips, TV shows, movies, traffic, etc. acts as a great stress-reliever for many.

2. Movie reviews:
Group lunch on a Monday has this added advantage. Your friends who’ve watched a movie on the weekend are sure to share their experience. A small glitch here is that some of them may reveal the spoilers too.

3. Work-related issues:
This advantage applies when your manager is also a part of your lunch group. If there are work-related problems, which otherwise could invoke a strong reaction from your manager, you can discuss them during lunch. He is likely to respond in a more subdued manner.

Positives of having lunch alone:

1. Simple:
Eating alone is a very simple process. Get up from your desk, go to the canteen, take the food, find a nearest empty chair, finish food and back to your desk. Eating in a group involves a lot of sub-processes:

  • Calling everybody to start for lunch and gathering at a place
  • Deciding upon which canteen to go to (if there are conflicting views, going by the majority decision)
  • Looking out for the required number of seats that can accommodate the entire group together
  • Once the seats are found, shooing away others who are eyeing those ‘reserved’ seats.
  • Waiting for everybody to get food
  • Waiting for everybody to finish the food

2. Canteen of choice:
You can go to the canteen of your choice, keep going to different canteens every day, or even go to a nearby fast-food joint if you feel like.

3. Timing:
You can have food when you are actually hungry, and not when the majority decides that it’s time to hit the canteen.

4. Listening skills:
In a group lunch, we speak a lot; so much so that we forget to ‘listen’. Eating food alone offers a great opportunity to eavesdrop into conversations of other groups sitting around you. It gives a great insight into the issues and opinions of others – about their projects, about their managers, the company, market scenario, or even TV serials.

Edited to add:

5. Health benefits:
My Mom suggested this one after reading this post. Talking while eating is not good for health. Hence, if you are having your food alone, the talking is minimum and hence this is a ‘healthier’ option.

PS: No offence meant to the non-lone-eaters category 🙂

Movie review – Gulaal

If you thought that the most intense movie on student politics was Yuva, Gulaal is going to shock you. Apart from Yuva, I also co-related it a bit with Omkara. I am not saying that the story or any scene is common among these. It is just that the overall political backdrop which is used in the plot is similar.

Gulaal is a great movie performance-wise. KK is simply great. His portrayal of Bana is simply fluent. It is his character that creates a pressure in the entire movie. Performance of all the other actors was also splendid. The credit for this goes to all the actors as well as Anurag Kashyap for extracting such amazing performances. I will not give out the story of the movie, but will just say that it deals with issues like ragging, student politics, provinces of Rajasthan, fight for power and a lot of violence.

The lyrics of most of the songs were good and quite thought provoking. The only song I found a bit irritating was the second song picturized on Mahie Gill. Speaking about Mahie Gill, the role given to her was very short, but she performed it very effectively.

I read some reviews, which say that the use of expletives was unwanted. But I think the language used in the movie and the violence depicted kind-of teleports the viewer inside the screen, and audience goes through the same stress as the characters.

This movie is not recommended to be watched with your parents. Nor it is recommended to be watched on a date. Go and watch RNBDJ instead (if it is still showing somewhere, that is). My wife was desperately waiting for the interval (I guess, that’s because she hates politics and violence, which are the core components of the movie).

I suggest critics should shortlist KK for an award for best performance (in supporting role, if not the lead role).

Final rating: ****

Best Bollywood movie scenes in 2008

When I was watching an award show yesterday, I kind-of tried to recollect some of the movie-scenes in 2008, which were very touching, and which I enjoyed the most. Since, I had missed out watching certain movies, their scenes might not be there in this list. I know, it’s a bit late to write about 2008 movies, but nonetheless, here is the list.(Spoiler Alert: May contain spoilers]

1. Mumbai meri jaan
The scene where Paresh Rawal, during his retirement party with a few colleagues, confesses that even though he has been a cop all through his life, he has not nabbed a single terrorist or even a thief. He says he will get this satisfaction once he goes back to his village and catch a fox, which has been troubling the villagers since long. Though all his other colleagues were laughing at this joke, there was one of them, who got the underlying meaning.
[Too good. When a person introspects on his past career and compares it with the expectations he had at the start.]

2. Kismat Konnection
The scene where Shahid Kapoor is attempting an impossible billiards shot, when Vidya Balan pushes him to spoil the shot, but eventually the shot is successful.
[It’s a pleasant surprise when a person is told he is lucky, when he is daily fighting with his luck.]

3. Rock-On
The scene where Prachi comes back home to see Farhan and his friends practice music in their living room.
[When your spouse breaks the typecast and looks a completely different person pursuing his/her interests.]

4. Jaane tu ya Jaane na
The scene where Imran Khan assaults Genelia’s fiancé at his house on discovering that he had hit her.
[Great scene. You have to watch the movie to enjoy it.]

5. A Wednesday
The scene where three of the terrorists get killed.
[Would not reveal anything more, in the interest of readers who have still not seen this movie.]

6. Mumbai meri jaan
The scene where KK discovers that the muslim youth, whom he had been suspecting for an involvement in bomb blasts, was actually missing as he had gone to Shirdi.
[A very touching scene. We often see people with a pre-conceived notion; and when we see the true picture, we realize that we had been wrong all the way.]

7. Sarkaar Raj
The scene where Amitabh shows Dilip Prabhavalkar that he has killed his nephew.
[Great scene. Again, you will have to watch the movie to enjoy it.]

8. Welcome to Sajjanpur
The scene where Shreyas Talpade, while reading a letter from Amrita Rao’s husband, discovers that he is planning to sell his kidney to purchase a small slum-dwelling in Mumbai so that she can shift with him.
[Very touching scene]

9. Shaurya
The climax scene row between Rahul Bose and KK. I admit it is copy-paste from Tom Cruise starrer A Few Good Men, but the scene was executed very well.

10. Rab ne bana di jodi
The scene where Anushka Sharma, leaving her grief and confinement, comes out to greet guests at Shahrukh’s place.
[A very pleasant scene]


I am just like you;
only that I am black.
I go away when it’s dark;
in the light, I am back.

Sometimes I’m taller than you;
but sometimes am shorter.
On the land, I like to lie;
like to ripple with the water.

If you do something wrong, I cry.
But you do not notice me.
I feel I want to leave you there,
then go away and be free.

But then I come to face the truth,
that things do not work that way;
that I’ll have to be with you,
always and come what may.