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In my office, the moment I get real close to somebody that person would either get a transfer or quit. I have seen this happen so many times – with Yashwanth, Ravi, Jimmy, Senior, Chaina, Gambhir, Anshul, Shruthi, Sharat, Kajal, Sajeev, Johny, Kumz, Jose, Venky…Last month the curse crossed the road…Srini, a friend who works in an office near mine quit. This post is dedicated to him (and of course, to all the friends listed above).

It was Srini who introduced me to the world of ‘inspired posters’. And posters kept me going, perhaps more than anything else, through 2009. It also took up more time than anything else in 2009 – I became am IMPA addict, downloaded 15 years worth of posters, spent hours peering at thumbnails trying to identify ‘stuff that looks like other stuff’ (that explains the glasses), man, did I have a good time…

One of Srini’s early posts was about art-inspired posters. That sent me scurrying to my art books collection. I did find a few (perhaps farfetched) similarities…

Archimboldo

David Brinkley

William Hogarth

I also stumbled upon a painting by Degas, Spartan Girls Provoking Boys. Bingo! Doesnt that look like Goya’s famous massacre painting.


Edgar Degas. Spartan Girls Provoking Boys. c.1860-62


Francisco Goya. The Third of May. 1814. (flipped for comparison)

Googling for Goya brought me to the blind flaneur who had posted on Goya. I left a comment about the apparent similarities in composition, and the flaneur (love him) wrote on his site – “Babu has a discerning eye, and his website documents many resonances in contemporary visual rhetoric”. Wow, that sounds much better than ‘stuff looks like other stuff’.

So here goes…




Jai Shree Ram!
Adios Amigo!!

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Remember reading in the Reader’s Digest when I was 16 an article on the ‘power of goals’, about a guy who made a list of things he wanted to accomplish in his life and how he went about blah blah blah typical inspirational stuff…Anyway, it inspired me to make a list of my own, don’t remember much about that list except that Brooke Shields was in it, and for some strange reason ‘run a marathon’.

A few days after this, my neighbour Pookka asked me if I wanted to jog with him in the mornings. (Detour: Pookka is 13 years senior to me, he has two brothers – Aakka, who is my age, and Ani, 10 years younger to me. Many years later, when I told a friend about the age-gap between the brothers, his response was ‘the fun never ends in Pookka’s house’, sung to the tune of the Black Thunder jingle)

I bought a new pair of shoes, wrote 42195 on one shoe and 2:8:13 on the other (marathon distance in metres and the then world-record time of Alberto Salazar respectively) and started my marathon quest. Within a few months we were doing about 5 km with coupla breaks and in real good time – then I moved to REC, quickly build a reputation for being physically uncoordinated and had to stay off the track to protect my rep. But even today I keep track of the marathon scene, and am sure that one day I will run a marathon, even if it takes 14 hours, 24 minutes and 36 seconds, like the Maruti Suzuki K Series engine.

Maruti Marathon

TV Ad. Check out the display on the finish clock when the ‘sprinter who can win the marathon’ finally does it.

Joel print version.indd

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