Mumbai Diary: Friday Dossier
Tackle trolls, Vir Das style
We wish we were as witty as actor-comedian Vir Das, to shut up the negative folk around us with a sarcastic clap back. Das, who recently appeared on The Conan O'Brien Show for the second time, is busy promoting his show at the Tribeca Centre in New York.
While encouraging his followers to buy tickets through his tweets, one sore member from twitterati wrote, "I'd rather watch paint dry." Das retorted with, "I'd rather you did too. Keeps you off the streets. Cheers." Can we have a 'how to tackle trolls workshop', Mr Das, please?
It's interesting how the smartphone has come to define not just how we consume content but also what it looks like. Earlier this year, American singer Selena Gomez popularised the vertical video format when she released a music video, shot vertically on the front camera of a phone.
And now, singer Anirudh Ravichander, who shot to fame with the song Kolaveri Di, is coming out with a single, which is being called India's first vertical video. Titled Bewajah, the new-age love ballad has also been written and composed by Ravichander.
"Vertical is the new cool. Today's on-the-go generation needs something that is convenient and with this vertical concept, they really don't even have to tilt their phones," he told this diarist.
Sorabh's got a flying accountant
A proud Sorabh Pant revealed the result of five years of labour, his new novel, Pawan: The Flying Accountant. Currently on a pre-order status, the book is about Arjun Singh, an accountant by day and a demigod by night.
"How many people actually know their accountants? Accountants can work in anonymity and hide from the rest of the world," Pant told this diarist. He covers a range of issues in his book - from Indo-China relations, existential issues (the lead is constantly trying to kill himself) and an India with five prime ministers.
"The coalition government has reached such a point that they can't pick a majority and the country is in disarray," he admits. We'll wait to see how this accountant keeps his books in order.
Rock the talk
Royalty came a calling at Raj Bhavan yesterday as the Governor of Maharashtra CH Vidyasagar Rao received King Philippe and Queen Mathilde of Belgium at the breathtaking Walkeshwar venue.
The King was accompanied by a large ministerial and business delegation, while apne waalay log comprised Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, Chief Secretary Sumit Mullick and others. Rocks dominated the meeting; no, we aren't talking about boulders, or even something on the rocks (a bit too early in the day for that).
When it's Belgium, rocks mean diamonds. King Philippe said diamond trade overwhelmingly dominated Indo-Belgian commerce. Fadnavis added that the state government has given the nod to the idea of setting up a university to offer courses centred on the diamond industry. He sought the cooperation of Belgium in setting up the university. That's what we call rock-solid support.
Leave it to the expert
Chef Ranveer Brar seems unimpressed by TV actors Rithvik Dhanjani and Ragini Khanna's cooking skills at the launch of a new show.
Sweet 17 at Union Park
Bandra's iconic Olive Bar and Kitchen is turning 17, and they are celebrating by shaking things up all the way. Staring with the food, chef Rishim Sachdeva will be playing with traditional preservation methods such as pickling and fermenting, combining classic flavours and modern European trends and techniques - think roast chicken soup made with onion dashi, kefir, fermented onion, and onion seed oil; and lamb ribs served with charred asparagus salsa.
Restaurateur AD Singh
If you love nursing drinks in the midst of their laid-back white interiors, you'll like the new beverage menu.It makes use of house-made infusions, cordials, seasonal shrubs made with herbs from Olive's kitchen garden. A special cheese menu will feature locally sourced versions from across the country.
Interior and product designer Shweta Kaushik (with Olive's design director and Singh's wife Sabina Singh) is sticking to their familiar blue door and white walls. But you will now see a full kitchen garden (greenery will be the overriding theme here), a pickle bar and an all-new revamped bar. There will also be sliding partitions for more privacy while dining al-fresco —celebs will surely be pleased by this addition.