>> We have known his parents Jackie and Ayesha Shroff separately and for Yonkers. After all, both lived down the road, a stone’s throw from our home. And given Mumbai’s interlaced, concentric circles of ubiquity and acquaintance, we have been hearing about their young son, the enigmatically named Tiger for a few years now.
Talk of his prowess as a football player has only been second to news of his much awaited film debut, his gruelling fitness regime, his cover feature in Men’s Health and his six (or were they eight?) packs.
And now with his proud mom Ayesha’s posting of a short clip of the young cub’s extraordinary gymnastic talent — the Tiger’s putative legend just got stronger.
Displaying an extraordinary agility for back flips, mid-air rolls and handstands like his mentor Bruce Lee, the star son with the Belgian, Turkish and Gujarati genes appears to be a scene stealer from the word go!
>> The older we get, the harder we miss departed friends. And this evening, when we gather at the NCPA to pay tribute to our dear friend Vinod Doshi, the noted industrialist, chairman of Walchand automobiles, philanthropist and savant, once again we shall feel his loss. Vinod was that rare individual, who combined professional acumen with a great warmth and zest for life.
His airy, art filled home was filled as much with business leaders as with actors, directors and performers (we met Rudolf Nureyev there!) Befitting his memory, his family, wife Saryu, son Maitreya and daughter-in-law Rohita have organised a performance of Girish Karnad’s Flowers. But before that there will be cocktails and memories. And that’s when we will miss Vinod most: he used to fix us the meanest Blue Margaritas. Where do they disappear all these dear, old friends? We hope it’s to the best blue Margarita bar in the sky!
>> In certain circles guess what is regarded as the surest way to ruin a promising professional’s career? Membership to its most exclusive business fraternity. Or so the billionaire boys believe. As one said to us the other day, “It’s been noticed that ever since a few prominent bankers, management whizzes and IT sharks have enrolled – all their time and energy goes in keeping up with the Jones. And if that means buying art, sending their wives on expensive fraternal holidays and entertaining in style – then it’s only natural that they take their eyes off the ball. A professional will never be able to cope with the required lifestyle!” Oh dear. Is that why a few of them seem especially stressed? Or is this just an airing of a nuanced class divide?
Salve’s fan club
>> Only recently we reported on his hitherto hidden musical talent, unusual in a legal eagle of his calibre, especially one in Delhi. And yesterday, our mutual friend Namita Panjabi wrote in from London with another instance of his growing eminence, by sharing a mail Harish Salve received from an unknown fan, a 70-year-old Parsi lady. “Sir, I am a 70-year-old Parsi lady, who is an ardent admirer of the kind of person you are. I never miss a chance to hear your views and opinions on TV shows, said his fan (name withheld). “I wish every Indian had a ‘little bit of you’ in them without which I see a grim future for this country. You have made every mother wish for a son like you, I am sure! Good luck and God bless!” And she hasn’t even heard him sing Evergreen yet, was our dry comment!
>> The second installment of the IISS Oberoi lectures launched last year by the International Institute for Strategic Studies and PRS Oberoi will be delivered this evening by Dr Heizo Takenaka, economic advisor to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe of Japan at the Trident. Dr Takenaka will be speaking on ‘Abenomics and the Resurgence of Japan’s Economy’. The lecture series aimed at affording Mumbaikars an opportunity to hear international figures speak on current topics of global interest, first featured de Klaus Regling, CEO, European Financial Stability Facility, on ‘The future of the Euro’, followed by Kevin Rudd, former prime minister of Australia, on ‘China’s New Leadership and the Future of China’.
What makes it all the more appealing is that our friend and former editor Dr Sanjaya Baru, former editor of The Economic Times, Business Standard and The Financial Express who held the brief as official spokesman and media advisor to the prime minister of India from 2004 until 2008 is driving the initiative. “Given Japan’s importance to India and the world and your own interest in understanding world affairs I am sure you will find this lecture stimulating and informative.” We like!
>> A slice of Mumbai’s choicest 40 somethings were in Istanbul this week to celebrate Radhika Ruia’s 40th birthday. According to a friend, it was four days of celebration in a style that reflected the values fostered by her parents Madhu and Ravi Ruia. “About 70 people in all, including Poonam Bhagat Shroff, lots of YEOs, the younger Rahejas along with many close friends of the Ruia siblings were all there.”
What about the mandatory film stars and international performer, the two standard facets of celebrations of this nature, we enquired? “Are you kidding? That’s not the family’s style at all. They are pretty understated and low key-and extremely close knit,” we were informed. Incidentally, with this along with Ravi and his son’s outings in diary items this past week, it’s now only the Ruia family matriarch and the birthday girl’s mom the charming Madhu, who hasn’t been featured!