Mumbai Diary: Sunday Dossier
The city - sliced, diced and served with a dash of sauce
Actor Rajkummar Rao gives garba queen Falguni Pathak company as Mouni Roy looks on indulgently at the Garba Raas 2019 at the Pramod Mahajan Complex in Borivli West. Pic/ Sameer Markande
Big Mountain to strike back
If you are a 90s kid, you have to know Big Mountain and their super hit Ooh baby, I love your way. Well, they are still alive and kicking, and are performing in India this December at the Orange Festival in Dambuk, Arunachal Pradesh. But along with hearing their 1994 hit, you will also get to hear their twist on Bollywood. The band put up a video of them rehearsing AR Rahman's Maa Tujhe Salaam, announcing that they will be performing the same at the festival too. In the video, they seem to be enjoying singing in their reggae tones. But, is it good enough to trek to Dambuk? That's for you to decide!
Hit the nail on the head
Ritu and Surya Singh of Wolf Jaipur have created a sensory exploration of the ocean's magic, with their Ultramarine series of works. By reusing materials, mainly scrap, sustainability has been key. When this diarist caught up with Surya, he said, "Wolf has always worked towards creating experiences that encourage people to think about all the things they discard." On display in the city this month, the show comes here from Houston just as Mumbai is battling its own fight to save the environment.
Cricket, the best ad for 'Anything is Possible'
India may enjoy the edge in the opening cricket Test against South Africa in Visakhapatnam, but the fact is the Proteas surprised the hosts with their 431-run response to Virat Kohli & Co's first innings score of 502-7 declared.
The three-figure efforts from Dean Elgar (160) and Quinton de Kock (111) to thwart the Indian bowling attack, to some pundits was a near-unbelievable performance.
The Indian team witnessed an unbelievable occurrence 40 Octobers ago as well—in 1979 against the Australians in Kanpur.
Sunil Gavaskar and Chetan Chauhan put on a century stand for the first wicket and the latter was working away to sizeable partnership with one-drop Dilip Vengsarkar. But Rodney Hogg trapped Vengsarkar leg before and India lost their next eight wickets for 70 runs (201 for one to 271 all out) with pacemen Geoff Dymock and Rodney Hogg sharing nine wickets between them. Amazingly, 44 of those 70 runs came off the blade of Gundappa Viswanath and he was the last man out.
Despite getting a 33-run first innings lead, the Australians couldn't conquer their hosts. In fact, India ended up with a comfortable victory at Green Park which moved the Melbourne Herald's Rod Nicholson to write, "Australia lowered her colours in an alarming fashion, succumbing for 125."
Like Ashwin on Saturday, Queenslander Dymock claimed a seven-wicket haul and Indian fans will be hoping that the master offie's efforts won't go in vain. However, one just cannot rule out the unpredictable factor in the willow game.
With love, from India
US-based Afghan activist and writer Nemat Sadat is overwhelmed with the love his novel, The Carpet Weaver, has been receiving in India. The book, a coming-of-age queer love story set in conflict-torn Kabul, was rejected by over 450 agents in the US and UK, before it was picked up by Kanishka Gupta of The Writer's Side. This week, the novel went in for a second print run, as copies have been selling out. Sadat also found a new fan in actor Sonali Bendre, who selected it for her book club. "The idea of how Indian readers would react to my book didn't cross my mind... definitely not in the decade I spent in writing The Carpet Weaver," Sadat said. It was only after his book got picked up by Gupta that he realised there was something "Zeitgeist in India that found the novel irresistible, while the US and UK found it reprehensible because it challenged the dominant Anglo-American narrative."
An unapologetic drag queen
In 2017, American drag queen and burlesque performer, Violet Chachki was the first to perform at restaurateur Keshav Suri's nightclub Kitty Su in Delhi as part of the brand's sixth anniversary celebrations. Chachki has collaborated with The LaLiT once again in a new video as part of the group's attempt to smash gender stereotypes. Here, we see Chachki marching through the hotel's lobby, making her way to the legacy suite and ultimately revealing herself in drag. "Violet's performance two years ago marked a new beginning for equality. It brought drag into the mainstream. She has performed with us a couple of times, including my wedding. In fact, she also introduced me [on stage], when I debuted as #Kitcyphrenia and did drag for the first time. Violet is family," said Suri.
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