The benefits of flamewars(or the perils of being Amrita Rajan).

This is not my fist flamewar. I love them. I hate the fact that it ruins the trip of good siteowners and moderators, but give me a good cause, give me an opponent whos as unrelenting as me and give me the power of passion and Im there.

This is something a chick called Amrita rajan picked up with me on Bharadwaj rangan’s site. Rangan is a well known indian critic who has a comments section where sundry people usually post the benefit of their opinion.

Ms rajan and I clashed on the subject of the film ishquiya. I thought it wasn’t worthy of analysis, she thought (after it was over,)I was a condescending prick who had poor social skills, unwashed balls and was clueless about nettiquite and could learn from her well mening advice.

She’s apparently an out of work blogger who was in a writing program in new york and s now posting from Bangalore.

This is the link to the thread on Rangan’s site from which the posts of the two of us have been abstracted. This is Ms Rajan’s site, Amrita, please knock yourself out giving me advice on this thread. this is for you to vent spleen about my poor social skills and everything else you blamed your father for.

Enjoy.

  • Amrita Says:
  • Well, “burn with little smoke and no flame” is a good description yes. I actually wondered if Khalu was impotent. The way it was structured, with Babban being his polar opposite and humping everything in sight – even if Khalu wasn’t written as such, I think Naseer played him thus. God, I love Naseer! AB fans can clutch the scenery chewing to their bosoms.

  • Re: deeper meanings – you’re on to something about Ishqiya not owning up to its Western roots. I don’t know a genre more suited to philosophizing while entertaining. But I think VB & Co. are actively on the hunt for a commercial adult formula that would bring in the moolah. Or else, VB is on a genre writing kick with Kaminey and this one. All writers should have problems like his!

    PS – do I get a star?

  • Ramesh Says:
    give her a star she’ll stop talking.terrible film …not atall deserving of all this analysis.

    naseer didn’t respond because he was OLD.old people dont jump younger girls if this is to be romance. she should do the hard work and it turned out she din’t have to work very hard to get laid.

    To the film’s credit, they left it unresolved whether naseer gets another shot at her or if arshad warsi got to feel all possessive because he hit her first…

  • Amrita Says:
    @ Ramesh – naseer didn’t respond because he was OLD.old people dont jump younger girls if this is to be romance. Right. Jeff Bridges and the Oscar he’s about to win will be really interested to know this.
  • ramesh Says:
    um hollywood doesn’t do age, bollywood does. everyone in hollywood has done intergenerational relationships(even in films, they have positive depictions of 65 year old men doing 20 year old women).In tamil and hindi cinema, however, age is never acknowledged for heroes (when, say a 70 year old rajinikanth is romancing a 24 year old shriya saran) but when it IS(like in naseer’s case in ishkiya), the charecters are never given the power to make a sexual advance at a younger woman unless it be a sleezy one.Simply the grammar of indian cinema.

    but I recognise that your quip was merely a parthian shot ,and you didn’t really mean for it to be taken or addressed seriously.

  • Amrita Says:
    @ Ramesh – aww, thanks for knowing what I meant better than I did. All these years on the internet and it’s still SUCH a novelty when a man wants me to shut up and says he knows my business better than I do! I look forward to you completing the trifecta in your next post. (Don’t worry if you don’t know what trifecta I’m talking about – your kind never do, but I assure you, you will hit it!)Meanwhile, much as I hesitate to counter your all-knowing, all-encompassing wisdom, perhaps you could spare a moment of time from better educating me on what I mean and consider the following:

    1. This is a movie written by Vishal Bhardwaj who’s been playing with the “grammar of [Hindi[ cinema” for a while now.

    2. The grammar of Indian cinema is not a static entity. It is constantly evolving.

    3. There is a difference between Bollywood and Hindi cinema much as people like to lump it together in one category and despite its overlap. Ishqiya is Hindi cinema, not Bollywood.

    4. The next time you put out a blanket statement like “old people dont jump younger girls if this is to be romance. she should do the hard work and it turned out she din’t have to work very hard to get laid.” maybe you should add the qualifiers where necessary? Some of us aren’t given to extrapolating meaning outside the text as a matter of basic etiquette. You probably missed that childhood lesson coz you were busy being suckled by wolves on top of Mt. Olympus. Perfectly understandable.

  •  
  • Ramesh Says:
    yenna sarsollara ivo? onnum puriyalai.Amrita, youre welcome.Im glad i stood still long enough for you to paint that target on my back and use me for feminist target practice. you must have a lot of practice doing this because that was SMOOTHLY DONE.

    to unhijack the topic back from the feminist agenda of blaming patriarcal me for all the people that raped women, yes i DO presume to understand what you said. my arrogant presumption comes from a certain loophole in the english language that stipulates, rather unwaveringly, im afraid, that words have commonly understood meanings(gasp! can it be that you lose ownership of the meaning to the world once you have said something?) which i am allowed to “presume”. after all a one line dismissal is hardly an attempt to engage…

    coming to ‘vishal bharadwaj being no ordinary filmmmaker” sorry to not drink the cool aid, but vb is BORINGLY CONVENTIONAL when it comes to many bollywood(gasp can it be! bollywood IS indian cinema too!) conventions of storrytelling and scripting. ishkiya(boring film) is no exception.

    next, text/extrapolation…rich coming from someone who just extrapolated a feminist chargesheet of historical patriarchal crimes against me from my text above, but i guess i understand, we are forgiving of our own sins much more than we are of the patriarchy’s(after all we need to blame someone for the sexual emotional castration we suffered. the female eunuch’s rant is forgiven.

    The point being, your feminist blinkers are wasted in this instance. neither is a bad film justifiable just because you looked at it in a feminist frame, nor is your one size fis all “youre all patriarchal rapist dogs” style criticism meaningful in my, or the film’s context. i roundly reject your attemt to endow vishal bharadwaj or anybody else with majical powers, unless people make good film they will not be appreciated by the critic. give up the lame attempt of finding value outside of the actual text of the film.

  • Amrita Says:
    @Ramesh – TRIFECTA!!!! Attaboy there! Well done! See, I had faith in you. In fact you exceeded it! I have to say I much prefer “the female eunuch” to the usual “feminist lesbian bitch” which is so Noughties, don’t you think?1. The “one word dismissal” was not a failure to engage: it was a one sentence riposte to an asinine universal declaration about the nature of ageist romance on film that failed on three counts:
    a. actual text – in the movie, Krishna is not looking to get laid. She’s using sex to achieve her means.
    b. actual cast – Naseer might be old, but he’s definitely not OLD. (I’ll give you the benefit of this one – your commenting netiquette is so terrible, maybe you don’t know about the significance of capital letters on the internet)
    c. actual issue – given the universality of the original comment, it was an attempt to remind you that reality strongly suggests otherwise.

    Pardon me if I didn’t write it out in great detail as befitting a commenter of your status. I had the temerity to wonder if the Sixteen-yr-Old-Troll vibe of the comment was an indication of you having an off day and didn’t want to respond in like snide tone. Yes! I was actually trying to be nice. I wasn’t aware at the time you were a “patriarchal rapist dog” (I wouldn’t puff that around if I were you btw – as proud as you might be to be one, it’s not a nice thing to be).

    2. Someone as committed to “unwavering” rules of the English language should know by now that we use quotes to denote actual words of the person quoted. Therefore, use of “vishal bharadwaj being no ordinary filmmmaker” is wrong besides being grammatically incorrect.

    However, it’s true – I don’t think VB belongs to the Bollywood at Large crowd. I think he’s attempting to experiment within the Indian system and as such he has my admiration. He is also an excellent composer and from the days of Satya, he’s had a deft touch at dialogue. And I find his movies entertaining, which is a definite plus.

    Just because you don’t like his work or because he’s not a modern day Truffaut, doesn’t mean his work is either worthless or “not atall deserving of all this analysis” (note: correct use of quotes). You’re welcome not to. The rest of us are free to do what we please. Including (horrors!) liking a movie that you don’t and analyzing it to hell and back.

    3. Yes, Bollywood, Hindi cinema, Tamil, Malayalam, etc, are all examples of Indian cinema. Bollywood is a subset of Hindi cinema. All and each of these have their own conventions, their quirks and their markets. However, each of these is identifiable by a certain cultural similarity which is inevitable.

    How does this prove that their grammar is static? So you don’t like Ishqiya – therefore it is impossible for audiences to see anything other than what you have detected in it? Who died and left you Ebert?

    4. I didn’t find values outside of text – I based my theory (and it is a theory, not a certain fact, which is a cornerstone of all criticism unless the author himself is holding forth, in which case it is canon) on Khalu as per the structure of the film and the characters’ behavior. I didn’t say I looked at him and had a dream about him being impotent. Or that I once saw Naseer play an impotent character and his acting reminded me of the same here. It might help your cause considerably if you actually knew what you were talking about, you know. Verbosity can only take you thus far.

    5. I am not a critic. I’m a film buff. As are most people on this site, including you unless you’re working for some publication I’m not aware of. However, all audiences when confronted by a series of visual images will read meaning into it. Each person’s take on this is unique, because it is a reflection of their taste, experiences and opinion.

    You don’t have to agree with mine. I didn’t ask you to. I was having a conversation with BR and you poked your nose into it – in an uncouth manner.

    I still held off. You upped the asshattery. You don’t want to have targets painted on your back, maybe you shouldn’t walk around with a bucket of paint and a sign begging for some kind stranger to do it for you. Just because Mommy didn’t breastfeed you or whatever your sad story is, doesn’t mean you get to be a dick with impunity.

    Pity. This could have been an actual conversation. But for that to happen you’d have to be better than a snide asshole who’s a total FAIL in commenting skillz.

  • ramesh Says:
    Oh sorry, shut the crap up you female lesbian bitch (slap slap)..hope you got off on that.didnt know what they call it these days.

    longer response coming….if it doesnt feel like rape to you.

  • ramesh Says:
    BTW a female eunuch has nothing to do with either lesbian or bitch…dunno what state feminist theory is , in India.“1. The “one word dismissal” was not a failure to engage:”

    liar.

    “an asinine universal declaration ”

    you matriarchal (you sound like my mother) rapist

    ” ageist romance ”

    huh?! there was nothing ageist about the romance.

    “Krishna is not looking to get laid. She’s using sex to achieve her means”

    She is too. clear as blessed day to me.

    “Naseer might be old, but he’s definitely not OLD”

    your opinion. look at the film in the relevent scenes, when vidya balan comes on to him, you can see age, then exhustion and finally regret in his eyes, and you can see vidya respond to all three with a “Oh …ji” (like “you will do, really!”)

    “I’ll give you the benefit of this one – your commenting netiquette is so terrible, maybe you don’t know about the significance of capital letters on the internet)”

    and “Pardon me if I didn’t write it out in great detail as befitting a commenter of your status. I had the temerity to wonder if the Sixteen-yr-Old-Troll vibe of the comment was an indication of you having an off …etc”

    yeah yeah shut the crap up you lesbian feminist bitch

    “Someone as committed to “unwavering” rules of the English language should know by now that we use quotes to denote actual words of the person quoted. Therefore, use of “vishal bharadwaj being no ordinary filmmmaker” is wrong besides being grammatically incorrect. ”

    now we are moving from the irrelevnt to the seriously frivolous. the reason they employ you may be because of your copy editing skills, considering you suck at everythig else(ok that was unfair, youre opinionated and concieted but you are an efficient parrot of your learning) although I need not dazzle anyone with my compositional brilliance.

    “However, it’s true – I don’t think VB belongs to the Bollywood at Large crowd”

    I do I think hes as mainstream bollywood as they come.

    “He is also an excellent composer and from the days of Satya, he’s had a deft touch at dialogue.”

    I agree.

    “Just because you don’t like his work or because he’s not a modern day Truffaut, doesn’t mean his work is either worthless or “not atall deserving of all this analysis” (note: correct use of quotes). You’re welcome not to. The rest of us are free to do what we please. Including (horrors!) liking a movie that you don’t and analyzing it to hell and back. ”

    first I didnt like this movie and thought it wasnt worthy of analysis and said as much second, stop reelling against me Im not (or even old enough to be) your father. all this “just because you dont like I doesnt mean I shouldnt say it” crap is all something you dreamed up as a straw man to conduct and win your own argument without my participation.

    “Bollywood is a subset of Hindi cinema.”

    wrong. bollywood is indian cinema – tamil malayalam art commercial.

    “How does this prove that their grammar is static? So you don’t like Ishqiya – therefore it is impossible for audiences to see anything other than what you have detected in it? Who died and left you Ebert?”

    there you go again rebelling against me! dont you have a dad you can lash out at? hehe as regards grammar.It is (IMO- I have to say this or my adopted daughter will rebel again) NONEXISTENT AND ORGANICALLY DITERMINED by each filmmaker for himself. however, genre theory confirms that the discovered conventions are like strange attractor and are pretty much identifiable, and in indian cinema, even if say vishal bharadwaj strays from them sometimes(and he DIDNT in ishqiya(he did in Kaminay, when priyanka slept with shahid, but came running back, panting to them in the next scene when priyanka, all cuteness, like a matrimonial AD , went and seduced shahid into ma mamarrying her).

    ” I didn’t find values outside of text”

    nope you did. there is NO indication in the script that naseer’s charecter was impotant, you brought your sixtyfour dollar(frigid lesbian bitch..was it?) dogma into this..isnt a castration fantasy a millitant feminist cornerstone?

    ” Verbosity can only take you thus far.”

    daddy. not me.

    ” I am not a critic. I’m a film buff.”

    IMO theres no difference.

    “However, all audiences when confronted by a series of visual images will read meaning into it. Each person’s take on this is unique, because it is a reflection of their taste, experiences and opinion.

    You don’t have to agree with mine. I didn’t ask you to.

    I have no disagreement with this.

    “I was having a conversation with BR and you poked your nose into it – in an uncouth manner. ”

    you want to have a conversation with BR? pick up the phone or email him. hes a nice enough person . If you post in a comments section, be prepared to have to have your opinions examined. and dont cry “trifecta” when someone disagrees with you.Its like youre living the same argumen over repeatedly with people that you wouldnt listen to anything other than the familiar(trifecta) patterns.

    “I still held off. You upped the asshattery. You don’t want to have targets painted on your back, maybe you shouldn’t walk around with a bucket of paint and a sign begging for some kind stranger to do it for you. Just because Mommy didn’t breastfeed you or whatever your sad story is, doesn’t mean you get to be a dick with impunity.”

    hehe shut the crap up you ..what was that?asinine lesbian bitch?…no I should desist. mi mum taught me better …

    “Pity. This could have been an actual conversation. ”

    emtirely your fault my dear. I dindt bring up lesbian bitches or fathers or assholes. you did. misdirected hostility will not serve you too well.

    you want to like an ordinary film, pl do so by all means. Just dont get all hostile and cry trifects because someone had the temerity to challenge your ideas or deology.

    and I would never have an actual conversation with you , young lady, unless you learn to behave better. (slap slap).

    did that thrill?

  • ramesh Says:
    The female eunuchhttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Female_Eunuch
  • Amrita Says:
    BR – i’m sorry for taking this out on your comment field, dude Apparently Ramesh feels the same. So… it’s off now. Breathe easy.
  • brangan Says:
    Amrita/ramesh: Oh thank heavens. It was fun and all for a while to be at the sidelines and watch two extremely articulate opponents slug it out — but enough’s enough. I was going to ask you both to stand up on the bench and write “I will not fight in class” 50 times,” but I guess that’s not needed nowFuture altercations, if needed, can continue at ramesh’s (per his instructions).
  • ramesh Says:
    Naanga avvalave dhooram poha vittuduvoma.(remember I battled an angry mob of your thondargal when we were introduced by some mahanubava…)one only posts on your blog as long as it is fun B ,
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    About rameshram

    Name : Ramesh Ram... Email Address : Cdrakenc@gmail.com (don't even ask) Blog: (never updated) http://ramesh.journalspace.com Height/ Weight: 6'1 175 (varies between 160 and 185) Color of hair/ eyes black/ brown Bald? Nope (not yet, but give me 20 years.) Interests: Film (Bollywood/international indie), Travel (Germany/Japan/Central America/Sout/east/west Asia/ Northern Africa), Gizmo geek, Clubbing... What do I like in a good movie?: Women, Music, Auters, Special effects, Style. What do I like in a bad movie?: Women, Music, Auters, Special effects, Style. Favorite Critic: International: Bazin Domestic: J Hobermann Indian : me. (noone else comes close ...India or here..) Best quality: Humility. Outspokenness. Warmth Worst quality: Intolerence Favorite color : Yellow Black Blue Favorite Perfume : men: Grey Flannel(Geoffery Beene) Women: Celine dion: Obsession Boxers / briefs : Boxers Did I inhale: And how! Author: Marquiz, Rushdie, Murakami, Jong Last Book: The Ethical Slut by Dossie Easton, Catherine A. Liszt Music : Patricia Kass, Alejandro Sanz,Nina Simone, Amir Diab Sports person: uh..me? What am I usually in : White briefs and tees. Chianti or Burgandy: Chianti Food: French Japanese(street/fast food). Saw and liked: No Country for old men, Lust Caution Saw and disliked: Nishabd Didnt see: Aaja Nach le. Call me: Write me first.
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    8 Responses to The benefits of flamewars(or the perils of being Amrita Rajan).

    1. rameshram says:

      had a brief email exchange with dudess who seems to be under the delusion that I’m a crazy angry lonely dude that’s stalking her because, presumably she’s wonderful and stalk worthy.

      saying this seriously and not at all with a view to irritating you…

      a. Tell youselfwhatever you want to get through the lonliness of middle age.
      b. If you’re really frightened go to the police. I’m easily enough found.

    2. rameshram says:

      oh an she also sez to say that wikipedia was written by a bunch of patriarchal rapist dogs andshe’ll lose respect an never go out with anyone consulting that patriarchal manifesto to read about feminism.

      oh an an I(ramesh) don’ know canon from crit.

    3. anonymusketeer says:

      um… i actually read that thread, though i don’t know either of you in person.

      you do indeed come off as a complete asshat. no one with any sort of a fulfilling life (not least amrita) would actually make an effort to continue conversation with you after the ridiculously bad behaviour you showed on that thread.

      if you believe you have the right to comment on someone else’s opinion, learn to respect it as an opinion as well.

      but seriously? do everyone a favour and quit the blogosphere entirely.

    4. rameshram says:

      thank you for your comments.

      please feel free to look around and visit again. ..or not…

    5. rameshram says:

      to take your criticism, if not your advice seriously_ the’blogosphere’ is not a social contract I made with anyone, not the least Ms. Rajan. The raison ditre of my blog is not because I wanted link exchanges with people. Comments I post on other peoples blogs is not an invitation to people that they try to find common ground with me. They can or they need not.

      if good behaveor is what the blogosphere prizes then I would never have entered it. I believe( and I say this because I feel like sharing, and not at all that I need to justify myself to anyone) that my response was at least as valid as amritas_ indeed I know how to respond in more socially acceptable sophistication, and have done so when I have felt like it. I didn’t feel like it this time.

      I like the way this post turned out, and would do this again if I had a chance.

      sorry to come off as even more of an asshat, but I’d be lying if I said anything else..

    6. Sivaramakrishnan says:

      Came here to look out for any further vitriol from both sides. Unfortunately you haven’t put up the mail conversation even though i was shamelessly looking for it. This is what happens when one is out of a job. looking for vambu.

    7. Sivaramakrishnan says:

      And i would like to add that according to me she started it and so in a sense i won’t blame u. But still the language was shocking. I just shudder to picture the conversation in tamil or hindi. Now that wud be something.

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