Posts Tagged ‘booze

09
Jun
12

Film Review: Rock Of Ages

In the last musical I watched before Rock Of Ages, Meryl Streep ran towards Pierce Brosnan holding a red piece of cloth in the wind as if flying a kite. Mamma Mia! was packed with Abba songs and seemed worse than a Bollywood movie based on a wedding. It also reminded me of the songs of an atrocity called Lal Dupatta Malmal Ka that were shown on TV channels when we were too young to understand that aunties could be made fun of for watching that kind of stuff. I spent a sizable chunk of time thinking malmal was the name of the girl the lal dupatta belonged to, only to be informed later that it means muslin.

It can be slightly perplexing to review a film like Rock Of Ages, which has the portly Alec Balwin in longish hair gyrating in his nightclub clutching a shot of something in his fat hands, and Mary J Blige thrown in the movie for no apparent reason. Baldwin has a reason to cheer, of course: it’s the best night his nightclub which hosts rock shows has ever seen, and Poison‘s Nothin’ But A Good Time is blaring from everywhere.

Rock Of Ages has songs you’ve heard before (If you’re not a fan of rock and roll, do consider getting the fuck off this webzine.) and love; songs which broadcast the spirit of rock and roll – the music that never dies. It also endeavors to sell an ordinary love story – a rather hammy effort that was perhaps necessary to justify all the singing and dancing.

Tom Cruise, as rock god Stacee Jaxx, is part Nikki Sixx (read his name), part Blackie Lawless (W.A.S.P, you idiots) and part Axl Rose (look at him). Cruise’s rockstar act is a treat, and Stacee Jaxx could teach a thing or two (or three or four) to our arse-licking, self-promoting ‘metal heroes’ that live on Facebook. Jaxx is drowning in babes and booze even though he hasn’t made a great song in years (no, you self-hawking bastards, this is not what you need to pick up – just watch the movie.), is living easily off his money and star power.

Catherine Zeta-Jones plays the mayor’s wife rallying against the ‘evil’ music. It’s obviously a shot at Tipper Gore, who made times difficult for some revered rock bands many years ago. Zeta-Jones is hilarious to look at as she dances and does the jhatkas and matkas with the other churchgoing ladies who want to put a stop to the ‘satanic’ menace of rock and roll – the music which is poisoning children.

There’s way too much singing and dancing in Rock Of Ages. Anyone unfamiliar with glam/hard rock with come out of the movie exhausted by the overdose, because there’s a song almost every two minutes, and that’s really cramming it a bit too much. But it’s easy to see why Abba fans loved Mamma Mia!… it’s all about the music, even though a sturdy plot would make a musical go a long way. Please refer to The Sound Of Music.

After over a decade of observing a scene now largely infested by pretenders, it sure feels good to hear an opening band being ordered to play three songs, no covers, and to get ready for their debut by starting their drinking session right then. Rock Of Ages is good for a few chuckles, and a few Motley Crue tracks would’ve made my day.

RATING: 2.5/5

MOVIE REVIEWS: The Grey | Men In Black 3 | Shanghai | Department | The Cabin In The Woods

20
Feb
11

The Laxmi Bar Arrests

Three nights ago, a group of young men was picked up by the local police from a bar in Andheri East, Mumbai. The reason given to them for their detainment was that the bar they were drinking at did not have a license to serve alcohol. The youths were released from police custody only the next morning, after people in high places intervened. An account of the night by Arun S Ravi:

Everyone was above the age of 21.
Date – Thursday, 17th February, 2011
People in the bar at the time of arrest – 23
Time of arrest – 11: 15 pm
Type of people at the bar –
A group of boys celebrating their friend Siddharth’s birthday including a non-drinking 21year old whose hand was in a sling because of a cricket injury.
2 casual drinkers.
A boy named Brenden celebrating the fact that he was to fly to Dubai on the 18th , with his friends.
A man named Sarfaraz who doesn’t even drink. Neither does his friend who was with him. Etc.

Ashwin and I went for band practice at Freedom Jam Room and decided to go to LP for food and a couple of drinks post practice. We met Keegan Pereira and Avil D’Souza at the bar and were engaged in conversation till 11pm when a cop truck and 2 cop cars arrived outside the bar. The police barred anyone from leaving the bar and forced people to stay inside while they performed their “rounds.” It is to be noted that the cops have been seen performing these rounds on other occasions as well while we’ve been there and it was all fun and games before, but not so much this time.

Timeline with details-
11:00pm – An empty cop van pulls up outside the bar with some 20 odd cops in another van behind it. There’s a police car with its siren lights on outside, and police officers in it. These officers enter the bar, and exit the bar. They enter again and assault a waiter who tries to make a phone call and yell Hindi curse words at him. People start talking when this happens and a cop yells (at the top of his voice) at all of us telling us to shut up. 2-3 other cops dressed in casuals very rudely ask us for our details without telling us why this is happening to anyone and asking for our cooperation. The details included name, age, religion, phone number, father’s name and full postal address.

The cops, inside the Cooper Hospital premises.

11:30pm – All of us (23) are forced to enter a police van that seats 10. The interiors of the bus are filled with cop uniforms hung on railings near the windows, riot shields, chairs and the whole bus just generally fucking stunk. We still aren’t told why this is happening to us and are asked for our cooperation, but very rudely. The way you would ask murderers to cooperate. People start asking why this is happening but we’re told to wait for 15 minutes and they’ll let us go. They said we would be taken to a hospital for a medical checkup. They didn’t tell us what for. We were brought to Cooper Hospital in Juhu in a police van, paraded around the city like criminals and escorted by other police vans. We had 1 armed guard with an assault rifle and a Kevlar vest in our bus and 2 other cops.

12:00pm – We arrive at the hospital and are escorted by armed policemen to the MI room where the medical checkup was to happen. They called out our names one by one and the following is how the checkup took place –
Doctor – Is there any problem with you?
Person – No.
Doctor – Lift up your shirt…. Ok. Now turn around.
This comprehensive checkup was done for all 23 of us and we were forced back into the police van and were escorted to the Andheri East Police Station.

"Celebrating" their friend's birthday in police custody.

1:00am – Upon arriving at the station, all of us are forced into a room and are locked inside it. The room had railings we could look through and communicate with the pigs. We didn’t have any food or water and then we realized that we still had Siddharth’s birthday cake. All of us sang for his birthday and shared his cake behind bars and got to know each other better. The police officer outside, very rudely, told us to shut up. One of the boys yelled back at him. He got up and had his guards open the door so they could give him “special treatment” in some other room. When they came to take him away, all of us pushed him back into the crowd and didn’t allow the officers to touch him. They withdrew and locked the doors. 2 cops then entered with forms that said ARREST/COURT SURRENDER FORM  (Avil D’Souza stole a copy of this form) and they forced us to fill these forms as “standard procedure.” None of us said we would and they left the room.

1:45am – People start calling their friends and relatives who could get us out of this mess. The 3 star police officer enters and tells us to shut up. When asked why we were brought here and treated like absolute shit, his response was “You were drinking in a bar without a liquor permit.”

The manager of Laxmi Bar.

“Why the fuck aren’t the bar owners in this room then?” asked someone to which we never got a clean response, ever.
A relative of one of the boys happened to be the leader of the Youth Congress in south Mumbai . He tried to talk the cops out of it by asking them how we were supposed to know about liquor permit. He said “I have been to LP for over 30 years and this has never happened before.” But the cops didn’t budge. They didn’t even do a breath analyzer test or any concrete medical test to even have any evidence to put us behind bars. It turned out that the lifting-shirt-up fiasco was the check for signs of assault. They said they would have to have us fill the forms only then they could let us go. They also wanted to use us as an example and have us testify in court that the bar we were at didn’t have a liquor permit to scare all the other bars doing the same thing to apply for one, or shut down. They wanted us, desperately to do this, hence we were forced to fill the forms, even if it meant detaining us without any grounds for arrest. When asked why we were locked up the police officer said “They are not locked up, they are in a room.”

4:00am – Tired, everyone finally agrees to fill the forms because we’ve been confined in this shady room with barely any water, no food, and no permission to go to the toilet. Manoj Vishwakarma has a 1 year old boy and his wife waiting for him at home without any clue about what’s really going on. Everyone else had similar stories and it got to a point where we were desperate to leave. We decided to fill up the forms but not sign them. The 2 constables reappeared with the forms and everyone filled them. We were then loaded back into the police truck to be taken back to Cooper hospital in Juhu for a breath-analyzer test.

DEAD DRUNK: The Wasted Constable

5:30am – We reach Cooper hospital after the forms are filled. Again, we are taken there with an escort. Passersby stare as we go by them and everyone looks at us like we’re some criminals. The same armed guard is in the van with 2 constables. The van was stopped outside cooper hospital. Some 40 police constables were outside the hospital waiting for us. The bus stopped at the drive in and we were asked to remain inside the vehicle. After a few minutes we realized we can’t be treated this way. We asked them nicely if we could stand outside the bus, without running away. Just a request. Then a cop yelled at us and told us to be inside. (All the cops were armed with lathis). All of us yelled back at them and took a stand. Everyone would get out of this vehicle NOW. We decided that if they had to hit us, they could do it, but we weren’t fucking staying inside the bus. All of us rushed out of the bus yelling. Everyone was insulting the police, calling them names. Shouting at them at their face. A very emotional Suhail yelled (in Hindi) “TELL US WHY HAVE YOU DETAINED US YOU FUCKING MOTHERFUCKERS!!!! IT’S BEEN 6 FUCKING HOURS!!!! WHAT THE FUCK HAVE YOU DONE!!! WHAT THE FUCK ARE YOU DOING WITH US YOU MOTHERFUCKING PIECES OF FUCKING SHIT!!! WE HAVEN’T EATEN WE HAVEN’T HAD ANYTHING TO DRINK !!! OUR FAMILIES ARE WONDERING WHERE WE ARE!!!! WHAT THE FUCK DO WE TELL THEM!!!!!!!” The cops charged to beat him up but we pushed them away and pulled back Suhail and held him back. He was still yelling. Others started yelling too. Then Ashwin Dutt pointed out a drunk constable standing on the cops side. ALL attention went to him. We pulled him to the forefront and took photographs of him. “WE ARE CITIZENS, YOU ARE PUBLIC SERVANTS AND YOU’RE DRINKING ON THE JOB AND ARRESTING US!!!???” someone yelled. “ALL THE COPS SHOULD BE PUT BEHIND BARS AND WE SHOULD BE LET GO!!!.” The drunk constable tries to sneak away but Avil and Ashwin run after him and grab him by his collar and bring him back.

Senior Inspector Bhalerao

6:15am – We are forced again to do the medical test. But we took a stand and said that the wasted constable should be check first. On insisting, the same 3 star officer said “You don’t need to check him, He’s got a family.” Hearing this everyone broke out into anger, yelling at the police for assuming all of us are street orphans! We finally did and completed the test. All of us were loaded back into the armed van and taken back to the police station at Andheri East.

7:30am – The police call it as a bad joke and let us go after they verify whether or not we’ve filled the “Arrest” forms.

PS – Just found out that the name of the police officer is Sr. Police Inspector Bhalerao.

Arun S Ravi also has videos for further proof.

RECOMMENDED READS:

City Youth Paint A Wall Even As Mumbai Beaches Get Destroyed

Drunk Policemen Dance Outside All-Night Bar In Andheri East

Bars In Mumbai Allow Patrons To Smoke Despite Ban

Mumbai’s Rickshaw And Taxi Problems

Alcohol Prohibition In Gujarat

Auto-Thrash Mumbai

Laxmi Bar Review

27
May
10

Beer Review: Carlsberg

Jaipur, Rajasthan 2008

Not sure if it was 2008 or 2009 when I saw an ad outside a liquor store saying Carlsberg beer had arrived in India, but that was when I immediately agreed with my then girlfriend’s idea of her catching up on a girlie movie because she was sick of me being horny all the time.  That left me free to do something else (other manly stuff, of course). I dropped her home and on my way to wherever, picked up two 650 ml bottles of Carlsberg, in the hope of finding a brew extraordinaire. How predictable.

There is much to be said about guzzling beer hurriedly in an autorickshaw. It needs to be kept out of sight of policemen, and a pint of Carlsberg looks like a bottle of Sprite, but I have two big bottles of this import from Denmark. The beer also must be kept chilled; Carlsberg is an ordinary lager, okay to drink when chilled, with a faint rose-like flavour showing up as it gets warmer.

Carlsberg’s promotional slogan says it is “probably the best lager in the world”, a claim which I rubbish as I point you to Tuborg Green – another Danish brew, and one you’ll enjoy drinking.

10
May
10

Lager Than Life

Everything seems to have gone dry since I stopped drinking over a month ago. Even three litres of water a day seem inadequate this summer and it’s so bloody hot even at night. Fuck the sun. And the moon. I should churn out another dozen beer reviews and then start writing about whiskies. No, that’s a joke. Like Sanchal Malhar, who would’ve won a bottle of scotch if his estrogen levels hadn’t been overflowing. Hemant ‘T2’ Rao won the 3rd contest by directly asking for it. Here’s T2 giving a lesson in manliness (with the unopened bottle).

09
May
10

Who Wants A Cold One?

30
Apr
10

Beer Review: Foster’s

By far the worst of all the beers popular in India, Foster’s has been around for a long time now, since before alcohol advertising was banned. The cool commercials with the ‘Australian for beer’ slogan stuck, and the unknowing Indian was fooled into thinking he was opting for a quality brew everytime he asked the wine shop owner for a Foster’s. I’m not sure if a beer can be called ‘bland’, but this watery excuse for beer lacks the bite I expect from a lager that has nothing else going for it. Neither the bottled stuff nor the draught are worth drinking, and when I attend parties which has Foster’s as one of the sponsors (making Foster’s the only beer available), I either drink whisky or stick to water. Here’s raising an empty mug to people who drink Foster’s and praise its ‘drinkability’. I doubt anyone in Australia drinks this weak, poor lager they export to us. And Foster’s is drinkable, but so is piss.

07
Apr
10

Win A Bottle Of Scotch

While the whole world wants to either take your money or fuck your girlfriend, here’s something to cheer about: you have the rest of this month to win a bottle of Seagram’s 100 Pipers. That’s right, cheapskates – I’m going to pick one lucky person who leaves comments here in April and give him/her the blended scotch whisky in the first week of May. There’s no catch – there’s no contest – just leave a comment anywhere on this blog. You can say anything you want, even if your opinions are half-assed or completely pointless like your existence. I know the world has been sucking your blood all your life so here’s your chance at getting something back!



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