Mumbai Diary: Monday Dossier

The city — sliced, diced and served with a dash of sauce

Arvind Kejriwal and Anna Hazare
Arvind Kejriwal and Anna Hazare

Of exes and lies
Recently, Twitter was abuzz with a tweet by a user: “Spoke to my ex after 10 years. ‘Miss or Mrs?’ He asks. Dr I said.” The post quickly went viral; at last count it had about 3,45,000 likes.

This, like most other things on Twitter divided users into two camps - those who called the user out for plagiarising a tweet and spreading lies (there were screenshots showing her working at an office, and not the hospital she mentioned), and those that decided to make fun of it.

The Viral Fever tweeted ‘Met my ex after 10 years. She still doesn’t know I exist’ while comedian Atul Khatri had an inclusive one: ‘Met my ex after 10 years. He was good looking. Yes I experimented back in college.’ Our favourite though came from the team of Aisi Taisi Democracy who shared an image of Arvind Kejriwal and Anna Hazare with the caption, ‘Spoke to my ex after 10 years. Actually no, we hate each other now.’


Pic/Nimesh Dave

The spring in her step
They aren’t called Valia for nothing. The camaraderie between co-stars and friends Varun Dhawan and Alia Bhatt was evident at the launch of a song from their upcoming film, over the weekend.

Valentine’s Day, the enabler
For many residents of cosmopolitan cities like Mumbai, Valentine’s Day bears connotations of mush and blatant consumerism. But, a recent column by consumer researcher Satyam Viswanathan (in pic), who is also one of the company directors of Junoon, a city-based movement to take the arts to people, put things into perspective.

He wrote about India’s discomfort with individuals choosing their own life partners, and how our society denies its youth the opportunity to cultivate healthy relationships. However, Valentine’s Day that is celebrated throughout the country, he said, offers that rare window, where people can express love in a meaningful manner. Valid point.

Not-so-green station?
For its 56th annual Vegetable, Fruit and Flower Show organised over the weekend, the National Society of the Friends of the Trees wanted to institute an award.

The aim was to give away a rolling cup for the greenest police station in Mumbai, and the organisation approached the police commissioner’s office. But the plan had to be scrapped before it could take off with no response in sight.

Most police stations in the city are not in the best of shape. With the criteria for the award being a station with green, well-maintained surroundings and a garden, we wonder if this is what kept the response from coming.

When gentlemen argue
Harsha Bhogle and VVS Laxman are both Hyderabadis and hard-core ones at that. We got a taste of this over the weekend when the two engaged in a repartee on the evergreen topic of whose school was better. “Agree with most things that @VVSLaxman281 says but VVS, whatever your feelings Little Flower isn’t the best school, #HPS is!” said Bhogle, praising his alma mater, Hyderabad Public School.

(Left) VVS Laxman; Harsha Bhogle
(Left) VVS Laxman; Harsha Bhogle

But it was after all a banter between two of the most decent people in Indian cricket, and Bhogle was lost for words when Laxman replied, “OK @bhogleharsha My school taught me not to publicly disagree with people I respect #littleflower.” Bhogle ended the argument on this sweet note: “I should have guessed you would be so disarmingly correct!”

Design hurrahs for urban heritage
There’s another feather in the cap of conservation architect Vikas Dilawari. At the recently announced HUDCO Design Awards 2016, his project for the Garib Zarthostiona Rehethan Fund Community Housing in Mumbai Central bagged the second prize in the Conservation of Heritage category.

Garib Zarthostiona Rehethan Fund Community HousingGarib Zarthostiona Rehethan Fund Community Housing

The complex was built by Khan Bahadur Muncherji Cowasji Murzban, an engineer with the Public Works Department in 1890 for less privileged members of the community. The same locality had won an Award of Merit at UNESCO’s Asia Pacific Awards last September.

Vikas DilawariVikas Dilawari

This Parsi charity residential complex underwent repair and restoration by Dilawari and his team. Work began in 2010, and Dilawari recalls that it continued without moving people out of their homes. One can almost hear the celebrations in these quaint structures that dot this precious jewel on Gilder Lane.

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