Mumbai Diary: Sunday Dossier
The city - sliced, diced and served with a dash of sauce
Zara sambhalke, mantriji
Minister for Road Transport and Highways, Shipping and Water Resources, Nitin Gadkari negotiates a tricky step as he exits India's first sea plane after a trail run at Girgaum Chowpatty on Saturday. Pic/Bipin Kokate
What's in that book, Sanjay?
Sanjay Manjrekar's tweet about his forthcoming book, Imperfect, received a flurry of responses on social media. Among the countless looking-forward-to-reading-it messages, one user wanted to know whether the book will have a chapter on why he retired "so early." He called Manjrekar's quitting (at 33) impulsive. This diarist remembers how Manjrekar decided to announce his retirement. On Day One of the Mumbai v Railways Ranji Trophy game at Wankhede Stadium in February 1998, reserve player Rajesh Pawar came to the press box with message: "Sanjay Manjrekar wants to meet you guys after the day's play." The wise men in the box knew a retirement announcement was due while a couple of senior pros said if Manjrekar wants to meet the media, he must come to the box. That he does and speaks briefly: "I am retiring from first-class cricket. The Australia game vs Mumbai is the last. I always said that I will play till I am enjoying myself and the fire burns. I am not enjoying myself and the fire isn't burning anymore. Thanks for your support over the years." This was probably one of the shortest high profile retirement announcements in Indian cricket. And in today's world of media releases and packed press conferences, it would sound imperfect.
What would it be like to read Amitav Ghosh, Jhumpa Lahiri, Elif Shafak, Plum Sykes, Janice Pariat, Tishani Doshi, Manu Joseph, Kyung-Sook Shin, Rosalyn D'mello, and Vladimir Lucien [among others] in one book? As intoxicating as this combination sounds, a new anthology, The Dress (HarperCollins India), commemorating Vogue India's tenth anniversary is bringing together all these fine writers to discuss the art of dressing and even undressing through fiction, non-fiction, illustrated essays and poetry. The collector's edition, we hear, will stitch together a rich written fabric to remind us why a dress is more than just a dress. We can't wait to see how fashionable our literary greats will get.
Nevil Timbadia, Anup Gandhi and Sahil Timbadia
To pyajamas and happy times
It was in 2008 that Nevil and Sahil Timbadia along with Anup Gandhi launched Bonobo as they weren't too happy with the options the city had to offer. As the Bandra rooftop restobar turns 9 today, the owners are throwing a sundowner pyajama party. "Over the years, a lot of regulars consider Bonobo as their second home and that's why we thought of it," says Nevil. Looking back on the journey, he admits that like any business, they have had their share of ups and downs. "But we've stayed true to ourselves and created a bar that focuses on good music with a casual vibe. We've never tried to compete with anyone and just tried to do what we do best."
Playing with danger
YouTube superstar Sahil Khattar, of Being Indian fame, will soon be launching his own channel, aptly titled Khattarnaak. Now, Khattar will take his vox pop talent to further his own venture that is themed on all this dangerous or khatarnaak. The first episode of the channel, that will be launched soon, will see him ask people about love-bites, and one can only imagine what the innocent bystanders have coming their way. "This is my first independent venture after moving out of Being Indian and, I have named it after my last name, Khattar. Khattarnaak stands for all things dangerous and vox pops, or street interviews, will be the mainstay of my show. We shall be maintaining our Road Ka Raja image as we go around the city asking people to get chatty about love-bites. We want to engage with all things youth in a fun and light-hearted manner," he says. The channel will also feature sketches, spoofs, parodies and even original music. Now, does that make you want to press the subscribe button?
Rewarding emerging artists
A few weeks back, we were all privy to the old-world charm of James Ferreira's Khotachiwadi house as he hosted a group exhibition by Priyasri Art Gallery. The exhibition, called Archival Dialogues, was of works by young Baroda-based artists. Congratulations are in order for one of those artists, Shreya Shukla (in pic), who has won the annual Inlaks Fine Arts Awards for 2018. Shukla is currently a final year student at the MS University, Baroda, and also showed at the Students' Biennale at the third edition of the Kochi-Muziris Biennale. Her work at the Biennale has formerly won her a couple of important awards as well. We are looking forward to some exciting contributions from Shukla to the Indian art scene in the coming months.
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