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Countdown for the 2008 Durga Puja begins

By on Sep 29, 2008 in On A Whim | 15 comments

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Am thinking of covering a bit more of Durga Puja stuff this year than general; because I do feel that people might be interested in it. Beyond lo-res short videos too and a few photographs. That is, if I / anyone can even walk in CR Park during that time as there’s hardly any place left to walk in most cases. One week to go, with the Mahalaya happening today. Frankly, I don’t even know what it’s about apart from the fact that corporate fat cats are ready to pay top dollar for sponsorship rights during live telecasts done at the crack of dawn. Translates into mom getting up bleary-eyed at 5am and watching the aforementioned live telecasts being broadcast from multiple paras in Kolkata. More information about the Mahalaya online? Hmm, should make interesting reading. Clueless-Bong-Writing-About-Some-Event-He-Doesn’t-Really-Quite-Get.



15 Comments

  1. Espèra

    September 29, 2008

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    Er, your Flickr link doesn’t seem to work.
    When exactly are the pujas beginning?

  2. Espèra

    September 29, 2008

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    Um, isn’t the Mahalaya thing exactly the same story? So what’s new about watching it every year round? I mean, there isn’t ANYthing appetizing about watching garishly made-up actors and actresses dance around among a load of horrible special effects.
    (I didn’t realize they were showing that today until I woke up for school and found it playing on the TV. :/ )

  3. Ankur

    September 30, 2008

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    @Espera: Eh, Flickr link not working? :-s Just check right now, does work. The page uses Flash…so dunno, maybe that’s the issue.

    You really won’t believe the sort of cheesy effects most Bong shows have (I happen to catch glimpses of them if I walk into the drawing room perchance; of course, I stick my head into a sand pit to save my sanity as soon as I see it’s a Bong show.) During the Puja, most local cable networks around CR Park also carry live feeds from multiple locations, and the sort of effects they use (multiple picture-in-picture…argh!) would make even Ekta Kapoor blush.

  4. Ankur

    September 30, 2008

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    @Espera: Oh, it starts today (30th September). I think. I mean, ‘technically’. But right now everything is low-key, the main celebrations start 3-4 days before Dusshera.

  5. Prateek Vijayavargia

    September 30, 2008

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    @ Ankur – Could you just elaborate as to what exactly “Mahalaya” is? – Is it the first day of the 10-day long Durja Pujo celebrations?
    Happy Mahalaya to all!

  6. Ankur

    September 30, 2008

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    @Prateek: Yes, Mahalaya marks the beginning of the 10 day Durga Pujo celebrations. Technically, that is, because in some cases even most Pujo pandals don’t get properly set up until the 6th day. That’s when the main celebrations start. The Mahalaya is held at dawn on beginning of the 10 day period, and is marked by cultural programs being held of people singing songs and stuff.

  7. Espèra

    October 1, 2008

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    Tell me, why would you want to watch such Bong shows? (No, I know YOU wouldn’t. But why would ANYONE? Because if they didn’t watch them, they wouldn’t have existed, right?)
    Apne ghar mein nobody really watches them. TV usually means the news or some movie. But yeah, sometimes you do come across them while channel-surfing and if the special effects are as bad as on some of the other regional language channels, well … Ekta Kapoor doesn’t seem so bad.

    You are right. The problem with Flickr (or not) is probably cuz I don’t have Flash. Sigh. I thought I did. Must have expired.

  8. Ankur

    October 1, 2008

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    @Espera: Flash ‘expired’? Anyway, try out this link – http://www.flickr.com/photos/greatquizzard/tags/thetenavatarsofgoddessdurga/ – this one doesn’t need Flash to view the slideshow.

    I think the reason those crazy special effects in those shows exist is a) because the content they’re showing can get a tad boring at times (more on THAT in some other post on the music concerts during Durga Pujo) and b) the people who edit the shows learned editing in the 80s and still think that constant zoom in-zoom out is a neat idea.

  9. Espèra

    October 2, 2008

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    That’s funny.
    The slideshow application from that link worked (i.e., when I did View As Slideshow from the pics in that link).
    Er, did anyone tell you, you look like a typical Bong? Well, you do. Noticeably enough.

  10. Ankur

    October 3, 2008

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    @Espera: I do? Oh yes, I do. I’ve got that one quite a few times. Surprising thing, because in most other things my Bong-ness is generally suspect. I grew up in Delhi, my family’s basically been in Delhi for the past few decades, and (“horror of horrors”, according to my relatives), I’m a vegetarian.

  11. Prateek Vijayavargia

    October 3, 2008

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    @ Ankur – You are a VEGGIE? That comes as a pleasant surprise…Becoz Bong and Vegetarian dont really go hand in hand….!

  12. Archie

    October 4, 2008

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    Ankur is a different kind of bong. I felt wierd sitting in front of him in Kolkata during the CBQC thing and chucking chicken sandwiches down my pipe. I had offered him but he just said that he was vegetarian and that didnt go down quite that well. Anyways the trip was fun wasnt it Ankur?

  13. Ankur

    October 5, 2008

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    @Prateek: Yup. Vegetarian. I know the sort of response THAT gets generally. ;)

    @Archie: Yeah dude, that trip was totally fun. :D

  14. SB

    November 10, 2008

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    Bro u sound frustrated with ur cultural identity!!! I am neither a bong nor a culturist in any sense of the term but if you are so ashamed to be a bong or watever why don’t u just chuck dt banrjee out of your name?

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