Friday, December 31, 2004

Dropping off the map

I'm dropping off the map. For a bit. See you soon.

Thursday, December 30, 2004

Another deadly poem

Jabberwock wrote these two stanzas as a response to my first poem on this blog, and I completed it. Here it is.

Through countless ruptures,
Flows an unholy gush.
His blood colours the pavement,
It’s the Devil’s paintbrush.

What’s the colour of gore?
I’m not sure any more
What’s that smeared on my car door??
Now he’s spattered across the divider,
His brains a yellow-brown goo
I had one for the road
(But then I might’ve had two.)

‘Tis the argument that did it
It’s become a routine affair
I’m sick of the squabbling
Can’t take it; I just don’t care.

I used to try once
When it mattered what I said
But none of it counts anymore
I think, as he lies there, dead.

Sense of doom

I'm sitting here in office, a warm sweater on, with shoes and socks, a computer, a cup of coffee, my cell phone and all is quiet. But there is a sense of doom, a sense of uncertainty because fresh warnings have been issued of frsh Tsunamis hitting the Andamans and Chennai. I know nothing is happening here in Delhi but it feels so ominous, like suddenly there will be water everywhere and we'll all sink. Just thinking about the poeple sitting in Chennai and Andamans makes me tremble. Imagine having to go through what they've gone through and then, when you're just trying to differentiate one limb from another, hoping you'll find some signs of loved ones, a bracelet to make out a loved wrist, a bangle... you hear of the possibilities of a fresh Tsunami wave. How does that mke them feel I wonder? I think instead of fear, most would have just given up, consigned themselves to fate and nature's fury. As we've seen in this situation, you can run but you can't hide. People have clutched on to pillars, posts and still been swept away. Someone proud of his beach house mansion must be ruing the day he decided to live so close to the sea....
It seems like you can't be safe anymore. Terrorist attacks (you could be sitting in your office and a plane could come through it), natural calamities, earthquakes, Tsunamis... which is why Art of Living is becoming so popular. I think everyone is realising that in one way, the world is shrinking, and you just don't know how long you'll be on it. One second and it could be over. So live it up. Live for the moment.
Meanwhile, read these reporter logs on BBC and get a feel of reality. It bites.

Monday, December 27, 2004

Bombay or Slumbay

Adman Prahlad Kakkar thinks if something is not done about the slum dwellers Bombay will soon be Slumbay. And it really is one big massive slum. Why can't a city which claims to have so much heart, such active and involved citizens, keep their environment clean? While I was visiting Mumbai recently and walking with a friend at the beautiful promenade at Bandstand, we were ticked off by a regular for walking on the wrong side of the road. 'Could you please walk on the left? Because that's how it's done' he told us. Wanted to shout back Bridget Jones style and tell him 'Oh, educate us please we're from Delhi, and there they don't teach you how to walk'. Also wanted to add that we have Lodhi Gardens and plenty more prettier walking spaces. Anyway... So coming back to the point, a city that's throbbing with creative people, creative jucies, should surely be cleaner. I can't imagine active fresh minds working hard in the midst of such dirt. I mean, what does it take to sweep common areas in a building? Whoever I've said this to thinks I'm nuts, and I'm contantly told 'but what do you you have to do with the common areas?' Now isn't this just so stupid? I have to walk in and out of those common areas every day; those common areas lead up to the space I will eventually call home. I understand that the outside of the bulding gets dirty because of the monsoon and 'saline content in the air' and also that since most of the owners don't live in those flats they don't really give a damn if a white building has turned grey or black or whatever. And that they won't spend a buck to either make the exterior butch stone or red stone which doesn't require painting... I can also see all of Mumbai telling me 'if you have such a problem, why are you coming here'. Then, on the other hand, I also see people in Delhi looking at me and thinking 'wow how lucky, you're going to freedom. From unsafe roads, from the fear of rapes (over 500 this year) from the need to be back home by 10, from tons of relatives and people knowing you at every other nook and corner, from autowallahas that are rude, dont agree to go, and overcharge, from public transport that sucks, from an attitude of 'where do you live, oh! Rohini, how LS! And what car do you drive?', from a city where summer sucks, saps you of energy and from a city that really has no better entertainment than a trip to a mall, a multiplex or simply to your couch. And from a city that hardly inspires any creative thinking. Think about the amount of fiction that has been written in recent times with Bombay as the city in the background; think of the number of films made with Mumbai as a major setting (and not only because of the location)... then think Delhi. Not coffee table books but books on the city. Maximum City, Love and Longing in Mumbai, Once Was Bombay, The Beauty of These Present Things.... the list is long. OK, I am not a traitor yet. This blog started with the good things about Delhi. The big, open roads, the big, open, clean, green houses, the warm hospitality, the 'i know your uncle and I am the neice of your aunt', the moving traffic, the twenty routes to one place etc...
So that's a start to my 'moving blog' and it will move with me through this phase of transition from one metro to another.


Yippee! Ain't I excited? According to a survey published in one of the leading dailies, I am moving from the rudest city in the country (or at least the rudest metro) to the dirtiest one. Isn't that exciting? I think I will write a huge blog on Delhi-Mumbai, the difference between the two, behaviours, ideologies... wait for it.
As of now, too consumed by the process of moving and the nitty gritty that goes with it. Later...

Thursday, December 23, 2004

Impact of billboards

I've been meanign to blog about this for a while now, but this prompted me to write about it this morning. Seen the Bush-monkey billboard? A young artists has created a billboard which has Bush's face formed with the heads of monkeys. Now what I want to write about tis the impact of billboards on us. Doubtless, the US administration wants it removed, but private donors are ensuring it stays in public space. Why? Because billboards impact our lives more than we relaise. It's like this: if you're asked to remember a quantum physics theory you learnt in Class XI, chances are you'll ahve to click google before you can even remember a word. Yet, whn an old classic plays ont he radio, you can instantly sing along. Some of you who have brillaint memories, like my friend Prachi Bhasin, can even remember what colour shirt she and you were wearing on your first day at work. Also, I am sure if you think about your favourite film, you will be able to recall dialogues, clothes the actor/actress were wearing and possibly even the monument in the background. Why? Because some of this stays in your subconscious and you can pull it out like a rabbit from a hat whenever you like (OK not all of us can do that, bet you get what I mean). Now with billboards, if you pass through the same route every day, chances are, the billboard you are staring at is also sending hidden messages which are getting embedded in your mind, whether you are actually making an effort to remember it or not. There was an interesting artcile to this effect in The Strategist or Brand Equity recently, and I regret not having kept a cutting. Anyway, back to the point, if the Bush billboard stays in public space, it will impact far more people than if it were to be published in print, electronically, or even telecast on TV. So the next time you look out of the window when you're driving, remember what you see is what will stay in your head, maybe for years and years to come.

Wednesday, December 22, 2004

Telly Tamasha

It's been ages since I wrote a Telly Tamasha, so here's a long overdue installment.

> Spent the weekend surfing endlessly. Caught Koffee With Karan with brothers-in-arms Fardeen and Zayed Khan, who were both honest, suave, cool and amazingly sexy. Fardeen, especially, speaks very well and has this cultivated sexiness about him. He also understands where he's coming from "if you put me in the role of a village ina film I'd look like Jadoo" he said! Zayed rested rumours that he and Esha Deol were seeing each other and insisted his only love is girlfriend Mallika (which he pronounces as Malaika).

> Saw Main Hoon Na on Star Plus and have to agree with TOI film critic Nikhat Kazmi that Sushmita Sen is one of India's most underrated actresses. Not because she's sexy in a sari or any such thing; she's spontaneous, acts from the heart and looks good. Potent combination.

> MTV Immies this year (telecast on MTV on Sunday at 8 p.m.) was a let-down. For one, it lacked the stars who attended last year's IMMIES in large numbers. Most of the winners were not there to collect their prizes; the only visible stars were the performers and those who were giving out the awards. The secret was let out by Sonali Bendre who was on stage with Darius to give out an award for Best Music Film Album (Main Hoon Na). 'Farah is not here, it's her wedding reception tonight'. bendre might have added ' and that's why the rest of Bollywood is not here either'. Surprisingly Zayed (and Fardeen) were there. Zayed, having worked with farah in Main... should have been at her reception instead, I think. The saving grace of the show (the spooky theme was quite wasted, Fardeen's face was painted in such a way you could barely recognise him; they may as well have had any dancer and called him Fardeen) was the performance by Alanis Morissette. She was simply brilliant, especially since she sat on a high stooll, MTV Unplugged style and eschewed the high-voltage atmosphere for some simple heart-rending msuic. She even sang some of her numbers set to a slower tempo, accompanied by a sole guitarist.

> The show clashed with the Ayur Mrs World (there are two now; one is the Gladrags one and this is the other one) and sicne a very close friend was part of the backstage crew (makeup) she had been giving me dope on the contestants, who looks how without makeup, during my recent trip to Mumbai, so I curiously watched the show. Oh God, what a lsoer I felt like. Not because these women were on the ramp and I was on the couch. But because they were all mothers, had fantastic bodies, and most were professionals, balancing carrers, kids, home and still had the zeal to participate in such a contest. Three or four of around 21 were doctors, one was a four-degree black belt in unarmed combat (I can't forget it) and some had written books too! My God!

> Watched a BBC documentary yesterday at the Council called Harry Potter and Me; it's JK Rowling's first-ever proper interview where she clears the air, rests some myths, tells us how terrified she was, a penniless, single mom believing in herself and her book and her created world of Harry Potter. She visited on camera the houses and cafes where she wrote, the school she went to.... very inspiring and engrossing. Watch it on BBC on Christmas Day.

Monday, December 20, 2004

emotion in motion (to borrow a song title)

I think it was the last vodka that did it,
Could feel my head spinning as I reached for the keys
Why didn't I just say no?
Why didn't I walk out to catch the breeze?

It's all well in hindsight, she says
Talking to herself in the dark
Forgotten all the blood on the street?
As you hit the woman near the park?

She got into the car, she remembers
Turning on the ignition
Inhaling the night air as the car revs into acceleration
Is she all there? Can she manage? Of course, what's the consternation?

Stupid, stupid girl
What were you thinking?
Would it have hurt you if you'd asked for help?
Said you'd been too much drinking?

She thought she was cruising
But her eyes grew heavy
She doesn't know when it happened
But she heard her bang against the Chevy

Why didn't I see her
Walking along the kerb?
I could have slowed down
I could have stopped her getting hurt

There was blood all over the car
She lay senseless on the road
And in a flash of a second she saw, her face
Splashed all over the place

Why did I run, she thinks
Instead of stopping to see
If I've killed the woman lying there
Or if there's some hope for me

She slowed, then panicked, then revved
Running the hell out of there
Rushing home to get into bed
Under the covers, there's no fear

What was the point of it all, she thinks
Sitting now in her prison cell
I killed one life, but lost two
And gained a conscience which will never forgive, or forget.

Tuesday, December 14, 2004

Musafir film review

OK, before I start this review, anyone who remotely knows me knows that I am a Sanjay Dutt fan, but after seeing Musafir, I want to slap him. OK, extreme yes, but not because he was bad but because (sorry went out for lunch and just got back, so will try and regain the train of thought). What I was saying is that I'm feeling terribly let-down by resident hearth-throb Sanjay because I saw so little of him in the movie. Thank God I didn't pay for the movie (hell hath no fury like a woman scorned). Why was Sanjay just wildly shaking the knife in his hand and showing us how nimble his wrist is and singing Tez Dhar while puffing on his Cohiba? Agreed he's having a ball, with his outlandish costumes which are self-designed, his studded jeans, overcoats, the hooded trenchcoat, his own Harley that he's riding into the Goa sunset but even though I know there are enough people who argue that substance need not override (pardon the pun) style, and Jabberwock is one of them, a movie needs a story. I mean Sanjay Gupta has done a fantastic job of stringing together -- that's what the women are wearing anyway -- several music videos. So while it has some hot numbers, well stylized shots with even a simple highway and a petrol pump acquiring a sexy sepia and blue tone hue, the film just doesn't have a gripping narrative, a given when one sets out to make a thriller. It isn't racy and loses steam... in fact you're just waiting for the action to hot up and Namrata Joshi is right when she says in her review in this week's Outlook that Sanjay Dutt says towards the end (picture khatam aane ko aayee audience ko action mangta) or some such, and this pretty much sums up the film. Dutt has enjoyed singing again (you can see him experimenting with the vocals in Tez Dhar) and he slips into the mafioso role with ease, but you're just waiting to see more of him. I even forget he's in the film. Anil Kapoor could have shaved at least once (we're not used to so much consistency Mr Gupta), and Koena Mitra got a big 'Introducing' in the credits, but her dialogue delivery is so poor, she ought to perfect the item girl routine and stay there. Sameera Reddy has potential -- but if this is the toned Sameera, I shudder to think what the flabby Sameera was) and Mahesh Manjrekar should reconcile to the fact that he's a brilliant actor. I say reconcile because he's said he won't act again and wants to return to directing etc, but he was great as Bali in Kaante and is even better as Luca, a Goan who has lusted after and married his sister in law after his wife catches him trying to rape the sis and dies (commits suicide?) in an accident. This story with its different versions of reality told to Anil could have been exploited and handled much better, but what initially seems like an episode in the overall plot ends up cannibalising the film. You feel this is just incident in Anil's chaotic race against time but realise that this is the entire film. Shakti Kapoor and Aditya Panscholi (yes he seems to have added an s) are completely wasted in their roles. Aditya's looking good and can make a comeback even as his wife Zarina Wahab does her role well in Zee's Tumhari Disha. And in case you even remember, this is the film that conducted that massive Item Bomb hunt across the country. The winner Tatsiana, a Russian, was supposed to do a number with Dutt, but you just see a few seconds of her, dancing alone -- I swear she is not even with Dutt in one frame -- at the end when the credits are rolling. The song? A repeat of Tez Dhar. So while Aditya and Skakti had a good time checking out T&A across the country as judges for the contest, and the entire hunt got the film enough publicity, the poor winner has definitely been given a raw deal.
Other good songs: O Saki... and Ishq Kabhi Kariyo Na

Friday, December 10, 2004

poor preity

have you heard this? Jaipal reddy, Minister for Information and Broadcasting called preity Zinta, Preetha Jindha......... this is so sad it's not even funny. And that too onstage at the closing ceremoney for the IIFIs. And he apologised saying he's not a movie buff, but surely Mr Minister, when are Minister for Information and Broadcasting you should at least know the name of the celeb you have invited to give out prizes at the IIFIs.

Haven't felt like writing

I'm beginning to understand why journalists and other professional writers do not manage to spend time writing freely what they actually feel. When you're in the rut of writing for a living and you're mentally caught up, you can't write, which is why authors are reclusive, and tend to isolate themselves to write. When I switched jobs, and had free time to write and write and write, I wrote and wrote and wrote. And now that I'm more involved with work and have some other pressing matters in my head, I am barely writing... Really admire people who are able to carry on a dual life (write at work and then blog). Two such people are Jabberwock and Kamakaze...
But I'm going to put all that out of my mind now and write about something that's left a lasting impression on my mind.
The other day I was driving to work and at two traffic lights before office, I looked to my right, stuck as I was at the light, and noticed a family of what looked like ragpickers or beggars. They had obviously made the pavement their home, and had chosen a tree as anchor. Possibly, it served as a landmark for friends. Where do you stay? By the tree at the traffic light on xy road. Why am I saying 'to friends' you wonder? Do these people have friends? I suspect they do. Do these people actually go visiting? I suspect they do. They do have a life beyond the bare neccessities, a life that doesn't just revolve around food, clothing and shelter. And why do I say this? Because that morning as I looked outside, I saw the man lovingly painting the fingernails of the woman, while she shyly tried to withdraw her hand. She withdrew, he persisted. I watched, fascinated. She then opened up a small plastic box which was full of nail paints, lipsticks and other such cosmetic accessories. I had never imagined that someone who looked like they hadn't bathed or changed clothes in years would have some amount of vanity, and would actually collect cosmetics. I know I have a huge amount of cosmetics that I never have used and never will use, but it shames me to say that I have never dreamt of going up to a beggar on the road and handing out a Clinique or a L'Oreal lipstick. Even as I think of it now, I can imagine it being flung back on my face. I would have always thought of donating sweaters and food and clothes and blankets (essentials) to these people while the cosmetics would go to a maid (someone obviously in a better position than a beggar, and thereby in my mind, 'allowed' her share of vanity). Or of course to a niece or cousin to play with, to spoil, to paint their faces and feel 'grown up'.
What utter rubbish. Who am I or you or anyone to decide what amount of vanity is fair? And what strata of society is allowed vanity? I know I learnt my lesson on this fairly early in life, and it was a harsh lesson. But I don't know if I can talk about it. Maybe when I am not ashamed of it anymore, I will.


Didn't know people still write poetry... publicly (Read this). Apart from established poets of course. Me? If you ask me to show you my poetry or early writings, I think I'd just squirm and die. Feels like opening up a raw wound. No, it's not like I used poetry as a tool to escape from some dark, abusive past or any such thing, but I'm just embarrassed. Of what? I don't know. Maybe the way it was written, maybe the thoughts, I really don't know. Haven't confronted that thought yet. Amazingly, when I go back to those scribbled pieces of writing and the notebook, I am unable to read all of it myself. Do others have these thoughts too? On poetry, would love to attend a performance poetry session we are having this evening with Patrick Neate. But go to rush for a reception, so will miss what should be a "mesmerising" session (as said by someone who has heard him when he visited India earlier in the year).

Tuesday, December 07, 2004

Film reviews

Wrote this as a comment to Jabberwock's blog on a particular site, and then realised it's a blog in itself. So here's what I wrote as a response to why film critics started going online and reading other critics' work before writing their own reviews. This has ultimately created a culture of plagiarism and now almost whole chunks of reviews from Chicago Sun Times etc are being lifted by big critics and represented in national dailies here.

My comment:
I can't really say for sure how this culture developed, not having been around that long (10-15 years as you put it), but I think many critics started going on to the Internet not merely to check cast, crew and other such details as you have suggested, but to also to read what established critics 'abroad' have said so that they could reaffirm their stand. Check if they were thinking along the same lines, because as much as we like to think that a critic can watch a movie and say exactly what s/he thinks, there is always an underlying, let's say apprehension, that you may get it all wrong. I know this opens up another debate (no review is right or wrong), but if you go to town bitching about a movie and it's a blockbuster, and this happens more than once, your credibility is corroded. So before you write you do want to 'check' if you are on the right path, because then that can always work as an alibi. 'Look he/she said so too'.Plus, if you're with a national daily, and not a niche product, then your reviews are for the masses and you must have a pulse or feel of what the audience will like and judge it somewhat by those standards. Now if you are unsure of what the audience likes because you are sitting in your high-brow chair then you need corroboration. Plus, remember, going to a first-day, first-show or just to the hall, whenever, is an excellent indicator because you are now getting first-hand audience reaction, but now most critics sit with other critics in Mahadev Road halls and are therefore almost cut off from the real world when watching and reviewing. Which is why they need to reassure themselves of their own opinion.

Monday, December 06, 2004

This and that...

> Scary story on Guardian on how most of England's prisons house several mentally unfit people and how the numbers are spiralling. Also, how most of the prison staff is not skilled at handling such inmates...

Zee's scored two points
> Managed to catch the grand finale of the Zee TV India's Best Cinestars Ki Khoj, and while I have not, several people have been following the 44-episode show, including Brij Mohan Munjal, the head of the Hero Honda empire, whichw as one of the pirnciple sponsors of the show. On stage, standing alongside Hrithik Roshan (he endorses Hero Honda's Karizma bike) Munjal specifically cited examples of how the winners Sarvar Ahuja and Aditi Sharma were nervous, raw amateurs when they started out and how he has seen them, as a viewer, grow with each episode. He then went on to say that prior to shows like this only people like Hrithik whose parents are in this line could aspire to become actors (Hrithik smiled and hung his head in shame while the crowd booed and hooted) but now anyone can try. He aslo quoted from Zee's new ad for its show Business Baazigar where Subhash Chandra strolls along the beach and says he started out Rs 17 in his pocket from Hissar, and applauded Chandra for giving back to the nation. Quite surprising to see an industry stalwart following a show so closely... On the Chandra ad, it's quite nice. I can only wonder why Zee has not tried to promote its channel using Chandra's 'dare to dream' mantra earlier. In a simple kurta pyjama while kids make a sand castle, he talks about how he went from rs 17 to Rs 17000 to 17 lakh to 17 crore to 1700 crore and so on (the sand castle is washed and he helps them reconstruct it, in the meantime). It's about the power of dreams and if you have one, Zee will now finance it. This show sounds promising; after all India is the land of dreams. And, on another note, Sahara, it seems, was just waiting for Zee to complete its run; it has now started advertising its own talent show for filmstars called Mr & Miss Bollywood; however it has already made 9 short films with the finalists and viewers will be asked to judge them on the basis of that.

Koffee with Karan
> Finally caught one full episode of Koffee with Karan. Upbeat music, straight out of a nightclub, posh settings and of course A-list celebs. Plus, Karan has this agony aunt streak; everyone seems to confide in him and talks to him about everything. I think it comes from the confidence that he has control over his life. And while the chat with Saif revealed that karan will be able to handle people he's not so close to, still Saif has been in his movie. How he will warm up to complete strangers is going to be the acid test. This week should be interesting on that account: director Sanjay Leela Bhansali and his muse Aishwarya Rai will be on.

> Ads
Remember the blog about the buzzwords. One case of a buzzword used wrongly or incorrectly is IOC petrol pumps promising to give you a jaddoo ki jhappi. The image this conjured up in my mind was a petrol pump executive (if I can call them that) giving me a jhappi, and this totally creeped me out. What IOC meant by JKJ (jadoo ki...) was that they were giving out prizes to customers; now why convolute something simple to make it confusing and perhaps, negative?

> Have I seen a great ad in a long time, an ad that I can't turn off? Not that I can remember... have you? But what I have ntoiced is that while designer are cryign themselves hoarse that boot cut jeans and trousers are out, Levi's (always a step ahead) has already gone ahead and launched 'slim' jeans. They have Bipasha (I think it's her) sprawled out sporting slim jeans and a pink T-shirt slashed across the front like Esha Deol's in Dhoom. Now some time ago (September) this acquaintance was shifting to the UK and she was hopping mad searhcing for straight cut jeans (having been a fashion correspondent she told me boot cuts were so out), but apparently no store was stcoking anything but boot cuts. Levi's has of course, reacted quick and early, and withing two months they've moved to slim, and I can guarantee their stores now hardly have any boot cuts (but knowing India, boot cuts will continue to be popular for a long, long time).

Thursday, December 02, 2004

an interview with tatsiana

read it here


OK so I wasn't the only who thought of it. Mid-Day even went and morphed it. Ambanis and Deewar. Take a look. Only I thought Anil should be Shahshi and Mukesh Amitabh. Anyway it's quite funny. See it here.

Blog has become 'the' term for 2004. Read this.

Wednesday, December 01, 2004

Farooque and family
> Did everyone miss it or did it happen earlier and did I miss it? I'm talking about the photographs of Farooque Abdullah sitting with his daughter Sara and son-in-law Sachin, for fashion designer Ayesha Depala's show. When did they kiss and makeup? Did I miss it? As far as I remember, Farooque and his family did not attend their wedding. As far as I know, it was all a political sham; everyone knew they were OK with it, considering the Abdullahs are not new to having non-Muslim spouses in the house. But no one seems to have commented on it, even in a caption... That's how poor public memory is. And with the other public squabble hogging the limelight... where's the space mentally or in newsprint?

Item girls
> Mumait Khan. heard of her? She's the flavour of the Item season; forget Shefali Zariwala, forget Deepal Shaw. It's Mumait. She starred in Dekh Le (Munnabhai) and is coming in some other videos, including one with Enrique Iglesias. She was recently featured in Sunday Express' Booty Call and was also on We The People, where Barkha Dutt was talking about censorship. And Mumait proudly stood up, displaying her mini skirt, and said 'look at me. This is how girls my age dress. Tomorrow if your daughter wnats tow ear this skirt and go out, what will you say. Plus, if I am OK with it, who is anyone else to decide'. Thundering applause. And then Barkha asked her to what she would go and she said any lengths. 'So pornography, nudity is it OK with you?', asks Barkha. And Mumait says: 'ya, as long as I feel it's OK, I will do it.' And when Barkha told the audience that she was going to star in an Enrique video, Pooja Bhat came to the girl's rescue and said 'it is unfair to haul up this lady here and put her under scrutiny because pornography is a $10 billion industry. And just becase she's doing a video with Enrique it's OK, but if she was doing the same thing in a video with some poor hero here, it's not Ok?'
The girl's got her dad's motormouth genes alright!

> The latest one
Byt the way, mark my words, the next item girl scorcher will be Belarus-born stunner Tatsiana Bokhan. She is the winner of the Musafir Item Bomb hunt. And not only does she very closely resemble Yana, her name too (Tatsiana, which was spelt Tatsiyana by the way, during the contest) is very similar to the Russian model cum item girl. Tatsiana will do her jig with Sanjay Dutt, but goign by her stunning looks and dancing skills she will definitely be an Item Girl to reckon with. Helen must be quite surprsied to see what a big deal is being made of a genre that she once monopolised and while it was then called the vamp, now it's the Item Girl. Also, Item Girls, once they make their mark, are unwilling to do Item numbers. Koena Mitra, for once, wants to do 'meaningful cinema'.