Women’s World Cup Cricket 2022: Hotstar(Dates: Fri, 4 Mar, 2022 – Sun, 3 Apr, 2022 )

I was taken aback when I was enlightened by wiki that Women’s World Cup Cricket (WWC) is older than Men’s World Cup Cricket. It started in 1973. Men’s started in 1975. Other infos are – India has hosted WWC, 3 times 1978, 1997, 2013. And Indian Ladies were runners up twice, 2005 and 2017.

If things go well, the way it is going now, Indian Ladies may have a shot at victory again this year. And if they win, this will be a “1983 moment” for Indian Women’s Cricket. I don’t think the team will welcome this tag. They rather have their own – 2022 moment.

And what a change in the standards of the game. In 2017 I did watch a couple of matches but the quality of the game was not that watchable. This year there is a new glow. And it’s not only India’s team, but all the teams. Significantly, the teams of Bangladesh and Pakistan are sharp and arrayed with talent.

Also, the Indian lineups top few batters average strike rate is above 90%. The bowlers, particularly the spinner economy rate is below 5. And the total scores in 50 overs are near 250.

Australians are, as usual, a cut above the rest, still, the Indian side is nothing to mess around. The class of players which now feature on the Indian team can put up a good fight. It’s refreshing to watch all teams with quality improvement in all departments – Batting, Bowling (spin, pace), and fielding.

India women are in the game with a rhythm of win-lose-win-lose. As they say, it is better to peak at the right moment. If you are old enough to recall the 1983 Men’s, India was in similar state – win some, lose some – but by quarter finals – in all those knockout matches, the Team had gelled into unbeatable “Kapil’s Devils.”

If “Mithali’s Devil’s” does the same, it will change the Women’s cricket scenario in India, in the subcontinent, and in the world.

One day, not too distant, we will see Mixed Cricket Teams, just like Mixed doubles of Tennis. What do you say?

Life After Death With Tyler Henry: Netflix

Tyler Henry can contact the dead. His app: he scribbles on a paper to connect. As he scratches the paper with pen, making haphazard lines, there comes a moment where he nabs the remnants of the soul – like, some name, or a letter, or name of a place etc.. As he speaks those tidbits, the dead’s relative sitting across him, confirms and fills in the clues.

After couple of right Q&A hits, (and they are surprisingly all correct) a trust is established between Tyler, the Soul-Mobile, and the dead’s relative. Finally, and thankfully to end the show, the relative asks one final question to the dead, to which, Tyler, the medium, receives the reply and decodes the answer in his own words. A closure, as they say, is finally achieved.

This similar ploy is repeated episode after episode, 9 times. And surprisingly, one may find himself binging on these 45 minute clones. It could be because the production and filming is classy. The girly Tyler Henry has good teeth and his hair’s like an expensive wig.

The concept of the show looks like borrowed from the movie – Ghost – where the fantabulous Whoopi Goldberg did the same role but with laughs and humor.

Anyways, the catch of the story is the story of the dead, revealed in between scribblings and dollops of false laughs. And the answers transmitted back from the dead are pretty boilerplate – the death was easy, the soul is chillaxing. Upon hearing this, dead’s relatives are solaced. The Medium gets up and walks away – almost blowing a sigh of relief. Phew!

And that’s that. Repeat.

The Living die. That’s normal. The Dead remain dead. That’s normal too. But in all religious constructs, the soul has a fate. In one case, the soul gets another life, albeit after few days of partying around. In another case, the soul claustrophobic-ally awaits the Day of Judgment to finally arise out of the soil for a ticket to heaven or hell, God-deciding.

This show constructs a – New Kind of Life After Death. The Soul continues to remain a soul. Because, the deceased relatives get to converse after years and, in some cases, decades after passing. Well, if souls really lingers on, it better be an interesting afterlife. Besides, one can imagine a very crowded Soul-World.

Tyler, the Clairvoyant, finally earns enough to open his own arts studio on whose walls he pins his A4 size pages filled with dark haphazard scribbled lines. In the business of the soul everything has value, as long as one inhabits a body and knows how to sell his scribbles.

Its doubtful whether God will call your soul, but Tyler will, relative-willing.

Bad Vegan: Netflix

The mini series – Bad Vegan – is anything but vegan. It is a story of a woman, who was doing good “strolling in the park” but one day decides to “stroll in the jungle.” But in the forest of our living we get a rude surprise:

Life is not vegan, and human life even less so.

Sarma (at first I thought she was an Indian, Sharma) has good credentials and goes into business and does well. She gets a good mentor and has goodwill which helps her raise money. But the partners she chooses spoils her show in such convoluted fashion over the years that, she, in the end, is on the run like a fugitive.

There’s a good saying, often overlooked by the gullible – Avoid bad company like poisonous snakes. I will rephrase it – Avoid company of people against who, you cannot control yourself. This is not “controlling others” but “controlling oneself against ill designs by others.”

Easier said than done.

The 4 Episodes will make you ask several questions, primarily – How can the cons happen, similarly and repeatedly? Is she not getting aware? And, if she knows, why doesn’t she call for help?

Nothing is new under the sky (or over it), except the painters mixing of the palette.

The story evokes many questions still one premise is key. That is, if “her-self” was in control in the first place, the con wouldn’t have sprouted at all. But once the germ is lodged, it will germinate, for the con will tend it and any disruption by others in the form of help or advice will be repelled, by the conned – and also by the con.

The methods employed by the con maybe old, still, the deployment of the con could be unique and idiosyncratic and will be a novelty to an unwary mind.

Also, there could be an alternate theory. What if, it was Sarma who initiated the con? She, with the accomplice can be alleged to have cheated the investors. But my question to that is – where is the glory? Sarma, in the end, was scraping the bottom. I would agree that, initially, when she was in debt, but not a debtor, she may have been affected by the word “debt” and this may have made her take a decision which was a subterfuge – that is – make relationship for money.

There is saying, probably true (I don’t know) that – If you marry for money, you will be made to earn every penny.

The story is exciting for the way it is narrated and unraveled. As Sarma narrates the show with her very easy and precise voice, more then her, the audience gets vary of the con. At every juncture of the con, the viewer will tend to scream out and hit their heads in pure obviousness of their disbelief. (Yes, I know, the words don’t make sense.) So, does the happenings in the story.

You will shout – Are you an idiot – on your TV screen. Sarma will unlisten you.

The word Secular does not pack a punch.

Rammohan Roy was one among several social reformers who rose to prominence with the coming of the British. He reached his peak performance with the coming of Lord Bentinck. With elaborate lobbying (probably, I guess), Rammohan got “Sati” outlawed in the jurisdiction of wherever The East India Company occupied Indian territory. Bengal Sati Regulation XVII of 1829.

I don’t think that Lord Bentinck would have asked if – Sati – was essential to Hindu Religion. The silent fact is – If its Religion, its essential. So why bother asking. If religious essentiality was the case, then, we would still be burning widows.

The above regulation casts some shadow on the present predicament. Is Hijab essential to Muslim religion? The answer should be – why bother?

Since when did the judges of India become Mullahs?

Why is the High Court judgement on Hijab discussing and passing opinions on whether the cloth is essential or not to Islam? Do they intend to interpret or amend the Koran?

The Hijab episode has cast some doubt on how the judgement of the land is derived. In the end, the judgement upheld the Hijab-Ban, but it could have arrived at the same place with head held high. Instead, the judgement chose evasion.

Some portion of the intelligentsia have been busy pointing out the deterioration of our justice system. This is the first time, I confess, such abjectness has hit me. The Judgement seemed atrocious even to a layman like me.

I find the word – Secular – problematic. The word is truly “neutral” so much so that its meaning and the connotations falls in-between stools. The word Secular is bland, thus directionless. It should mean – middle of the road – but it means – nothing.

For the people of India, we need a word which conveys the meaning of Secular, with some spice.

Secular in Hindi means – Panth Nir-Peksha. Meaning Religion Neutral. Meaning – one is free to practice whatever one wants, so long it does not interfere with non-religious matters.

This can be elaborated further. Panth Nir-Peksha means neither the government will use religion, nor the people will use religion – except where religion-specific needs are to be fulfilled -like religious places.

Indian Constitution English Preamble should be amended, replacing the word – Secular with Religion-Neutral. Then our intentions as a nation will be clearer.

In the recent ensuing Hijab incident some unusual divide happened. The court admitted, discussed and passed judgement on religion. After the High Court ruling – the ruling which, in my opinion is completely out of whack – it will be now challenged in the Supreme Court. If there is any wise judge there – this challenge should be thrown out of court, first day first show.

Navjot Singh Sidhu turned out to be a better comedian than Bhagwant Mann. If our Supreme Court ever sits on this judgement on the essentiality of religious practice, then, the Supreme Court will be even better comedian than NSS.

The “Slipper of Religion” should not be admitted to any secular institutions of India. Meaning – except where necessary for religious duties – in all other public places, aggressive and overt identification of any religion should be discouraged.

The Hijab case is a poor show of mediocrity, not expected from people sitting at high places of judgement.