I am the alpha and the omega
January 27, 2004
My law of Chance
At Saarang, it is highly improbable that two people who expect to meet each other do meet.
Its corollary
On the other hand, two people who do not expect to meet each other, can and do meet.

People, I warn you, this is going to be a very long post. Beware. It is an account of all my last Saarang experiences, divided, of course into various parts. Take your time reading it. It will be on display for atleast a week, I guess. I took about 3 hours typing this and it has a total of about 17200 characters.
  1. The Udit Narayan Show
  2. Saarang Day 3
  3. Rocking hard
  4. Saarang Day 4
  5. Saarang Day 5
  6. Jamming the Jam
  7. Bhakra Bonkers

The Udit Narayan Show (Day 2 - Thursday)
The last time, I left you off when I was going to the Udit Narayan's Show. I thought it would be pretty enjoyable, but they soon proved me wrong. The organisers literally put one of my nitemares into a pro-show and made me pay Rs70 to watch it. (Does anybody remember that line from Friends?). First of all, the show started late - which is not unexpected, so to speak, but it does tell a lot about the organisation here. It started at around 8:30 pm, an hour later than the scheduled time.
The organiser (somebody named Shakil) went on toasting to the greatness that was Udit Narayan - you can read all about it. God, I just hated that. But the most important reason that I was pissed off was because he played Hindi songs - all but 2. Agreed that Hindi is the national language and that everybody needs to know Hindi and Blah Blah blah, but the songs that were played were songs for the older generation, none of the heart stopping pop popping beats of today. Just one Tamil song - which he bungled up and one Telugu song (I had no heart by that time to appreciate any song played). To top all that, the bass in the speaker system was too high, and all the heavy drumming got to my chest which starting thumping - gave quite an uneasy feeling to me. And I got a head-splitting headache that lasted the entire nite after that.
The Shankar Mahadevan show the last Saarang was much better, so to speak. (If I remember rite, even drummer Sivamani came down to the stage to lend a hand at drumming.) Those were the good old days.

Saarang Day 3 (Friday)
The sleepy head of mine awoke at around 7:30 am. As I rushed to get my breakfast, my mind kept wandering over how irritating yesterday's show was. Argh.
Getting dressed up, I wandered over to the main venue of Saarang. Strolled over to the Main Quiz Semifinals, suppoesed to be at 9 am, but started at 10, no 10:30 am (Surprising isnt it, not to me though.). The two rounds in that went on till about 1 pm, after which I had a measly meal of chappati and dosa, but did fill my tummy. With nothing else to do, I was Aimlessly wandering about (as mentioned in the previous post) with a couple of my friends, rolling about from the Power Chord Western Music through the three informals stalls and then finally to the Entertainment Quiz Prelims (which just ended). I must sya that the informals did put up quite a good show - with three stalls competing for the most energetic group of people : E-serve, Hutch and the informals of our college. They all managed to gather a crowd of dance crazy-frenzy people in a huge gumbal about them. It was when I was waiting outside after that, that archs & laks managed to catch up with me. Chatted for some time.
A friend of mine suggested that we go fro Scrabble prelims that day. It must be noted that he had no fundaes on what Scrabble, and for the first half of the prelims, I was teaching him what scrabble is and how to play it, not that I am extremely good at it either. Finally, we did end up cracking some problems not related to scrabble, but more towards word power, although it was not enough to get through to the finals - Obvious isnt it.
I moved on to the hostel after that to get my ticket for the rock show - Pin Drop Violence and Mother Jane. You can read a review about it. (There's somebody in that photo looks suspiciously like me, but isnt.). I will discuss what rock is in the next part. One good thing was that, I did get to meet my cowsin Sujatha (who did say that she reads it sometimes) and also a Karthik. Both of them had come with their own gang of friends, I must say.
One another good news today. For about 20 days till today, a guy from the opposite wing was sleeping in my room because the rooms were being renovated. It was ok with me, but I did get the feeling that somebody was always intruding on my privacy. It is very difficult for two poeple to live in a small room that it is. But now, I am happy: the renovation work was completed and he was shifting. Yippee, a small room all to myself (God know how I managed my first year - where we were put up 3 to a room, albeit a bigger room.)

Rocking hard
More that 10000 watts of blazing power, of deep bassy drums and bases, fastly pulled strings, 5000 people jumping in a mad frenzy, jumping and shouting and singing in the passion that is rock - hard rockers rock hard...
Rock, as a genre of music is something that is appreciated by only a few many people. But to those who do get influenced by it - it is like a cobra swaying to the tune of (snake music?). They are rockers, who have to go headbanging everytime they hear some of their favorite compositions, who have to have long hair and wierd beards (and possibly girlfriends to accompany them), who have to have a smoke in one hand and a pepsi in the other. You can see them attracted to a rock show like flies to the light. And for the most famous ones, they will literally bombard the venue.
For me, though, I am not that moved by rock. Hard rock, the likes of Black Sabbeth, Guns n Roses, Led Zeppelin are too much to me. I do like listening to Linkin Park (though some may argue that that is not hard rock). I prefer soft rock - the likes of Californication, U2 and others. Mostly pop though. But, I did enjoy this one because it was a welcome change from the melange of Hindi songs that I did hear yesterday. I too did go jumping up and down, but it turned out that I did not have much energy for that.
Pin Drop Violence was not that good, too many of their own compositions and they seem to have left in a very short time. But Mother Jane came up and made up for it, with good tracks from Iron Maiden and Black Sabbeth. Good going.
I liked it.

Saarang Day 4 (Saturday)
The time of 7:30 (again) found me sleeping in my hostel. After the hurried breakfast of (not exactly delicious) idlis, I cycled over to the Saarang venue. The entertainment quiz finals was about to start, and I went in; It was my folly that I didnt know about 90% of what was asked there. Instead of showing blank ignorant faces at everybody, I decided to do something more worthwile. The first thing that did strike my eyes was pencil shading competition. My only earlier experienc of pencil shading was in my 7th standard (grade), but not too much; today, I was going to compete with the professionals. The starting was not to my expectation - the coordinators had run out of pencils for the event as they had an unexpected number of unexpected participants. But I did start. The topics given were
  1. Mona Lisa
  2. Wonder of the world
  3. Youth

What could I possibly draw on.... My eyes fell on a drawing of headaches in an Supplement to a paper that was supplied to us to keep as a base while shading. Voila - a bulb lit in my head. I copied it and titled it "The burden of Youth". Very cheeky of me, isnt it. You would say wrong and that I would be punished for it; Well, I didnt get any prize for pencil shading. The other submissions were way better than mine - students from professional arts colleges take a hand at this, how am I to compete.
Later, I landed up at the finals of an event called "Whats the good word", an event based on the mind power over words. It was nice, but I had to leave half-way because the Cleudo prelims were starting, and I wanted to participate in it, which I did. Nice tough nut-cracker questions and a lot more interactive than previous Cleudo's that I have been to, but my detective skills werent enough to crack the cases. Guess I am not Sherlock Holmes material.
Later, I went on to the Light Music Group Finals. Six colleges were participating in it. I managed to see the first five; I had to leave early to go home. (I ran out of dresses to wear and enthu to wash.) I did hear that Sri Venkateshwara College of Engineering won. Good for them. I missed the Decibels - Rock competition though.

Saarang Day 5 (Sunday)
I was at my uncles place - not at my home - for the mourning. Today was supposed to be the 16-th day and had to go to temple to perform auspicious rite. Did that and came and was feeling extremely sleepy. (I had a programming assignment to be submitted on Tuesday and was working late in the nite - to end up just completing one-third of it. I also installed AOM. Its an amazing game. You have to try it out.
There was Just A Minute finals and Choreo and Main Quiz finals - event that I could not afford to miss. So I decided to go for it. I reached college by 2 pm - when Dramatics was going on. The hall was fully crowded and I managed to squeeze in. To my surprise, I just bumped into Taruni and Pleo. Enjoyed the last few minutes of the dramatics - it was quite nice.. to bad to have missed it. I stayed on for the JAM finals (which got delayed by an hour). So I sat there doing my assignment - some hard coding in C; kept me occupied. I will discuss about JAM in the next part.
The JAM event started at 4 and ended at around 7 pm. I decided to head over to Choreo. To my surprise, they didnt allow any body inside and the security ended up lathi charging people. I guess there were just too many people, too few seats to be takes. I must say that more than double the capacity of the Open Air Theatre (where the show was taking place) was waiting outside. Many friends of mine, cowsins and bloggers alike came up to me and asked me if they could get inside. I just gave back blank faces. They were not allowing even me inside. No amount of pleading with Sai, who was the Personal Relations Coord helped. Even he was helpless. I wandered over to the food stall to have grub. I managed to meet archs, laks and Harini who were in the same plight as me. If you are reading this, did you people manage to get in?
It was literally madness out there. Whenever somebody saw that a person was trying to enter the OAT, there was one huge stampede; easily about 50 persons were seen running towards them and then police driving them backwards. I slinked away to the other side of OAT to watch the show from the back - which atleast satisfied me. At around 10 pm (following an agonising 2 1/2 hour wait), they let some people in, and I joined them. I came inside and sat to watch the last 4 colleges performing. I just missed what was the largest and my last Choreo program. I heard that others students had put more fight than me to get in. Two of my classmated had waited outside for a long while, then they acted as security volunteers for about one and half hour and then a coord let them in - around the same time I got it.
A nice surprise followed that - a live MTV Bhakhra, which I will discuss shortly. Following the Choreo event was the Main Quiz Finals at the OAT, which started at the unearthly hour of 12:30 am Jan 26th (one and half hours behind schedule - I must say. Apparently, one of the quiz coord forgot that the previous event had ended.) I wanted to stay the whole nite, but the lack of previous nites sleep (2 and half hours) and lots of roaming together pulled my eyelids quite strongly. No amount of water ever ressurected me after that. So I went back to hostel to sleep again (only to get up 3 and half hours later at 6 am to go to my uncles place where I stayed on the day that was 26th, missing the reality show and the Unity Concert and a medley of other events.) The quiz (of 90 Q's) ended at around 6:15 am. I am sure that the Don would have stayed fully.

Jamming the JAM
JAM stands for Just a Minute, where 8 speakers are given a chance to try to speak for a minute on a given topic, grammatically. Sounds easy - the longest amount of time that a speaker has managed to speak continuously was about 3 seconds.
There are a host of rules involved in it : No starting with a gerund, no direct speech, no post-qualification (wherein you describe the noun after you mention it), no slurring, no speech defect, no late starts and so on and on. Any mistake, and people are trigger happy; they just buzz and if they give a correct objection for the buzzing, they get a chance to speech. A good round of JAM for 60 seconds, with a good round of JAMmers lasts for 15-30 minutes. Of course, a good moderator is a necessity. We had a guy from IIM (A or B, I dunno) The moderator has to be funny, witty, keep the crowd engaged, be fair (to the fairer sex perhaps !?) and keep the competitors from literally clawing themselves. And of course, the topics have to be funny too.
At Saarang, last year, the JAM was a crowd puller. Near the end of it, the venue was bursting at its seams with people. I just managed to squeeze myself in. This time, the crowd was even more overwhelming. The moderator was very dunny and witty, and so were the JAMmers. But 4 rounds into the game, many had lost the enthu, and the crowd started dwindling. The final stages had about one-third the initial crowd. But the last part was the funniest; truly many people had missed that.
That was the end of my last JAMming session.

Bhakhra Bonkers
Did I mention the special MTV bhakhra before. Well, it was a nice surprise when after the Choreo event, the coordinators asked us to stay back and announced that they were doing a live Bhakhra, for the first time in IIT M. They were showing it on the screen there.
A second year student security volunter was asked to go into a room with an MTV VJ (I forgot her name), where there were a lot of cameras hidden around. This guy obviously didnt have a clue on what was happening. They were just chit-chatting for a while, when she recieves a phone call from her "boy friend Rahul", who just mentions to her, that due to heavy workload, he was going to dump her after a "three year long relationship". She immediately starts "crying". Rahul asks her not to cry, but thats of no use. She just wails louder than ever. He then asks if anybody was sitting next to her, and she replies that there IS a guy sitting there; Rahul then asks her to hand over the phone to him and then asks him to ask her to stop crying - that too is of no use. She just doesnt give up.
All the while, all of us outside viewing it, laugh aloud. The coord asks us to quiten down as the bhakhra was taking place in a room close to the OAT where we were sitting.
Hearing the cries, a "policeman" arrives in the scene and starts threatening the student; he asks the student why she was crying, whether had done anything, what college he was in, and that he would call the Dean of Students to take action against him. Sure enough, after the "policeman" leaves, the Dean of Students of our college comes over (Notice this time, there are no quotes; he was our real Dean.) He too starts barraging the student with lot of questions and threats and that student is literally on the verge of crying, trying very hard to explain what had happened and that he was not at fault. He was seriously shocked at the Dean's threat of being expelled from the college. The Cultural Secretary and the Security Coord also join them in this drama and start to put the fear of such acts into his mind - that guy was terribly shocked. I am sure that he could not have taken more.
Meanwhile, the VJ slips out and announces that they are playing a BHakhra on that student. The two coordinators then bring extremely shocked and terrified student vol up to the stage and explain that a prank was played on him. I just cannot imagine how he would be feeling then. A mixture of relief, shock, happiness, (pride?, envy?)...
It was just very funny.. If they ever telecast it, dont miss it.

Have a nice day And respect the 54th year of the forming of the Constitution.

Posted by satosphere at 7:25 AM


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