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Thursday, 25 August 2005
Haven't seen cute guy recently
Mood:  cheeky
Now Playing: Because you loved me (Celine Dion)
Topic: Crushes
Well ... since the Sunday before ... haven't seen the cute (alright that is a bit of a stretch) guy from the OU (well - one of the better looking ones), since the Sunday before when I was in the mall ... been looking out for him ... but no such luck ... been even looking him up on the intranet ... don't know his name but was hoping by some luck I might just come across him ... no such luck. Oh well ... maybe by some miracle I'll meet an even cuter guy who I'll be able to show him up with (as if he'll really care - but this is the pathetic workings of my brain :D).

Posted by prejudice at 8:55 PM BST
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Thursday, 7 April 2005
Cute guy in cafeteria
Mood:  lazy
Now Playing: Fire and Rain (James Taylor)
Topic: Crushes
Well ... I must say this is the first time I've ever seen a cute guy in the OU - and I spied him in the cafeteria whilst I was eating my soup which I paid a 1 pound for! (did not notice they were charging more than the requisite 75p - supposingly because it was corn and chicken and noodle soup)... anyway, definitely my type, tall, with dark hair etc. looks as if he is not a student since his swipe card had a V on it, and when I was coming up the stairs just now (went to buy a twix) the mail guy had the same kind of swipe card.

Only depressing thing is that yeah he was cute ... but I didn't feel an ounce of attractiveness towards him ... not even enough curiosity to go look up staff pages and find his pic ... so ... only cute guy in OU ... and I'm not attracted to him - now that's depressive!

Will form an opinion of him later - if I ever see him again.

Posted by prejudice at 2:00 PM BST
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Thursday, 3 March 2005
Got some Aseem Merchant news!
Mood:  chatty
Now Playing: Mrs. Robinson (Simon and Garfunkel)
Topic: Crushes
Well, not really any news per se ... but found out that he has a website dedicated to himself ... definitely it was his creation and I didn't find it in any search engine ... if he expects to get any hits to his website he should really submit the URL to some search engines ... I know google says it would eventually crawl through your website ... but look at how long this has been up and it still doesn't have it on its search engine.

Well ... the only reason I found his website is because I remembered Raj Vasudeva (I had a hard time remembering his last name - but thankfully still had him on my email system) - and I remembered he had a website ... I figured that Aseem Merchant ego was big enough to have one too ... so tested it out and the website by typing his name (www.aseemmerchant.com) and it worked!

He has an email address there too (probably checking to see if he will get any fan mail) ... but it was one of those domain email addresses ... so ... I definitely think he doesn't monitor that email as regular as a personal one ... well perhaps he does ... who knows?

Anyway ... he got some pictures in his portfolio ... with him with a cigarette ... ewwww! Turned me off immediately - hope he doesn't smoke ... because that will be just one more thing to make me dislike him more ... and hope the pics was not for a cigarette company ... because ... for some reason I think that is worse than him smoking ... because if he kills himself its fine ... but promoting that other people to kill themselves ... is just not right!

By the way ... checked out Raj's website ... just for the heck of it - to see what he is up to ... supposingly he is going to act in some Bollywood movie soon - will keep a look out for him ... especially since he was supposed to be my 'famous person'! Turns out though in one of the articles or links he has on the website that he is the cousin of Shah Rukh Khan's wife Gauri. Oh my goodness ... something just occurred to me ... did I ever insult Shah Rukh in any of my emails to him .... got to go dig those up! That would have been a major faux pas!

Anyway ... in case you're wondering ... I don't think I'll be contacting Aseem ... I do know I have the tendency of writing random people on the internet ... oh well ... if the mood takes me I might ... not sure as yet.

Posted by prejudice at 4:51 PM GMT
Updated: Friday, 4 March 2005 2:16 PM GMT
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Monday, 14 February 2005
When you thought there couldn't be more Aseem!
Mood:  lazy
Now Playing: Alla Luce Del Sole (Josh Groban - love Josh Groban!)
Topic: Crushes
Well, who says any publicity is not good publicity?? Supposingly, the gossip mongers have picked up on this Iqbal and Aseem publicity argument, and the copies of the articles are proliferating around the internet! Well, that has increased his hits, plus the usual proliferation of the same two movie reviews and e-shops selling the DVDs and CDs. Well, on Friday when I left ... overall hits on Google were 636 (124 omitted) and now it is 803 (134). The day however that Looksmart decides to add one more hit to its count ... I'll know Aseem has some fame!

Well ... you know how I was on the verge of hating Aseem a couple of days ago ... well at the beginning of the day was not too pleased when he said this about Iqbal Khan when asked about Iqbal's accusation:
"Who is Iqbal Khan? Am I supposed to give him any importance?"
Sounded way too arrogant ... I was seriously thinking of thumping him down my list (good bit down - like maybe off the list) ... and promoting Abhishek back to number one ... but then ... I began to feel quite cordial towards him ... it could be my looking at some pictures ... and still thinking he was good-looking - that soften my heart a bit (pity the people who don't have good looks - everything will go against them!).

Anyway, found some chat transcripts of him at chatinterviews.indiatimes.com which he did in October, 2002 and November, 2004. He spoke so warmly of his daughter ... and I really can't hate a person who love his children ... becomes hard too ... no matter how you try. He mentioned his failed (reckon divorcees just wince at that word!) marriage and said
"In short I guess it wasn't meant to be."
- sounds painful ... but then I am feeling cordial to him so willing to think good of him (must be the position of the moon and the stars!) ... and he goes on to say
"Family I believe is the most important ingredient of life and topped with love would (it) be heaven."
Can't fault a person for thinking family is top priority ... its one of my top priority ... see it is not easy to not like someone when you dig up some evidence that supports your view (this is my reflexivity - yeah I know not a very ethnographic account so far - but thought I would throw that word in to remember I am supposed to be doing that!) He did say something that I think his past girlfriends may feel hurt about, he said
"Not found true love yet."
Probably, looking too hard to find something that doesn't exist (yep ... might be feeling a bit cynical today - since it is Valentine's Day :D) - and not accepting what he has right there and making the best of it.

Posted by prejudice at 3:29 PM GMT
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Wednesday, 9 February 2005
More on the Aseem Research
Mood:  lazy
Topic: Crushes
Well, the Bullet movie has not been getting good reviews so far!! Well, there has been only two reviews I've come across, but even before it is released one article said:
"As for the third release, "Bullet: Ek Dhamaka" this week, why do they even bother?"
That certainly did not bore well for the movie!The second review was very scathing:
"Slickness when not treated properly becomes a sickness. Efforts to bring in a kind of compelling thrill into the plot are perpetually cut down by a monstrous amateurishness that leaves us -- and the characters -- gasping for breath.....Even an eight-year old Internet student would have come up with better results....Then there are the girls... lots of them. Regrettably, the skin thing is largely down market...The 'actors' don't seem to know or care which way the script is heading."
Well, I guess Aseem's big break is not coming from this film, well the hits on the search engine are not climbing the way I expect it too ... I think this film and Aseem might sink into oblivion, unless they do a heck of a publicity stunt. Possibly, if they target a young and rural men and showcase some of the action, they might do better!

It seems that Aseem is being selfish and arrogant also, at least according to an Iqbal Khan article in which he says:
" Aseem organised a press conference a few days before Bullet released, but he did not have the courtesy to invite me. He thought I would steal the limelight from him. He also instructed the lead actress Rosy to misinform the media that she's cast opposite Arjun Singh, not me."
According to Iqbal, Aseem is trying to be a villain in real life also! I can confirm that there was a publicity stunt in which Iqbal Khan was not present. I won't be surprised that Iqbal's story contains some amount of truth, since "the filmmakers must return the favour by projecting Aseem on all publicity hoardings". The favour being him helping the film.

On the plus side (???), a political party called the RJD, are using posters that are similar to Bullet, which the article claimed were a rip off from Matrix first. However, the article does go on to say that Bullet is a rural Bihar's favorite film ... not sure if this was a sarcastic statement or indeed true!

Posted by prejudice at 2:54 PM GMT
Updated: Wednesday, 9 February 2005 2:59 PM GMT
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Saturday, 5 February 2005
And yet again Aseem Merchant!
Mood:  lazy
Topic: Crushes
So, I've updated the nos. on the hits for today ... but if I wanted to be scientifically correct, I should have done it at the same time every day ... but never mind that! This is a qualitative research (maybe!) and that shouldn't be too much of a trouble - plus his numbers are not going up drastically.

Well, only found one review so far, and the review wasn't too good about the movie ... gave it only one *. So, I am wondering if it will make any effect at all, considering it is opening together with Shabd (although that didn't get as good reviews either - but stronger cast) and Black (a better review - good cast and it is Sanjay Bhansali!). The reviewer says that he does:
"Aseem Merchant does an able job. He looks the character he's portraying. However, he needs to go easy on his expressions at times. His villainous laugh at the interval point mainly is quite irritating."
I think the reviewer may be right on the villainous laugh- I've seen the promos, the laugh is stereotypical of a bollywood villain (although in the b4u interview - they sort of claim he wasn't but he sort of looks it - except this time the villain is youngish, slim and trim!). I think the reviewer was probably more impressed with Iqbal Khan, since he claims that Iqbal did "quite well".

So, probably fame is elusive right now ... but he may get a female following, which may carry up his ratings. Supposingly, at a distribution of Bullet cassettes, the females were screaming their heads off, because of him. Well, this should send his ego up a bit, because he had taken part in a model show, in which the models had to show their chest (sounds a bit cheesy!), and the females there were more crazy about Dino Morea (I think it was him).

Well found some more facts about him, it is putting him into more context now, and setting a scene a bit ... well, he is part of the revive bombay campaign (at least in 2003)and took part as a model in a fund raising activity for Children in Pain (CHIP)-(but that could just be contractual obligations rather than be a humanitarian). As more data (notice my use of data! ... textual data I should add too) become available I will add.

I also have an interview from his ex-wife, Mamta, in 1998 (well at that time she was his wife) - I wonder if taking different views from people - can be considered a triangulation of data? In that case, interviews from his wife, and document reviews etc. are triangulation! Well, this is the story how she met Aseem, and I'll quote her from the interview,
"I was at the disco with my boyfriend when Aseem met me. He immediately developed a crush on me......The first time we met he said, `I love you. Will you marry me?' I said, `Hang on. You do not even know my surname'."
Seems, terribly romantic doesn't it ... like straight out of a romance novel ... but remember a couple of years down the road ... they did get divorce!! And if you want to get more romance novelish even, they did attempt a reconciliation ... but nothing romantic happen either! What I do note however, is at the time she had a boyfriend ... but yet still he made a pass at her ... now to me (my reflexivity coming in again) ... with my terrible good sense of feeling what is right and wrong (will come back to this later)... will have thought it in terrible taste (an ungentlemanly!) to break up a relationship ... but then she didn't seem to mind too much now, did she?

There seems to be some contradiction (or misinterpretation on my part) - as to something that Mamta said or the info provided in the article. She claims that "he used to come with me to the fashion shows and he was discovered." In the article, with this interview, the author claims "after a few months of wooing her, the Romeo got his Juliet when she was just 21". Yet still, in another article just a couple of days ago, another author claimed that Aseem started modelling when he was 19 ... if that is the case at 19 ... he was dating a 21 yr old ... and mighty sure of himself too ... but I've done the math ... and it does seem to work out ... if indeed he is 31 now, and she was 27 in 1998. So no contradiction, just misinterpretation on my part.

Oh yeah, let me come back to what my sense of right and wrong is ... yep ... had some misgivings with myself for actually doing this ... ethics have come into play! But given it is public information I am using ... in that sense I'm not intruding into people's privacy (and how much people will actually read this!) ... but ethically, if he is indeed the person I'm observing ... I should at least hide his identity (still struggling with that). His ex-wife is also a public figure ... so don't feel too bad including her comments ... but she looks to have fallen out of the limelight ... and so I kind of want to safeguard her privacy ... his I don't mind ... since he is looking for fame (why else go into acting!). I want to include his name here only for one reason (or probably got more and not telling :D)- it is to get feedback and comments (if anyone really have time to read this) ... to triangulate my data ... I am struggling how not to include his daughter ... I don't want to (think about the ethical issues arising there! Besides children should be left out of this ... since this is marginally sleaze/research ... to some extent in my mind) ... but there may be articles or interviews about him talking about his daughter ... so might have to include that ... but I'll minimize the content, so it will be from his interaction, and nothing about her ... I'll have to work on that (note my use of methodological notes!).

Posted by prejudice at 12:23 PM GMT
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Friday, 4 February 2005
More Aseem Merchant
Mood:  chatty
Now Playing: Mere Sapno Ke Rajkumar (Jaanwar)
Topic: Crushes
So, realised this morning that Aseem Merchant could also be spelled Asseem Merchant ... so went ahead and did those searches as well, and got some hits etc. I've decided to record the hits in an excel file for about 4-5 search engines. Not sure how long this will last, reckon as my interest fades in him, so will my counting the hits ... but it makes a good ethnographic (doubt Martyn will agree with me) sort of project. So, as part of that I am also recording the interviews he gave in chronological order ... I am thinking of looking at it as how people change with fame (hopefully he gets some or this is a pointless study) ... or something like that ... Anyway, obviously this is from a complete observer point of view (heck when will I ever get to interact with him!) ... so this is going to be an internet ethnographic survey (I can just see the purists turning over in their graves). Great things about this, is that I can get transcribed transcripts already, however, there will be high amount of reactivity, since the questions are directive. Oh well, at least having a star crush might have some use.

So, anything new to report there ... well got some new interviews from him ... he's talking about how he was always interesting in acting, and this is different from modelling because he no longer is "wearing one expression throughout". Well, at least he realises that! Sometimes I reluctantly admire him ... and it irks me! Because he actually went to acting and dancing classes - so, obviously was trying to break into movies and said he was waiting for the right movie script. Well, here is more reason why ... he's got a brown belt in something (don't know what!), he has made something of himself other than modelling ... he has an "event management company" (to me it sounds like a fancy word for I have a nightclub and will you like to book some events when its free?) and he goes further to show that modelling is not his life since he states:
"[if] somebody asks me to model and is willing to pay my price. Other than that I am not out looking for modelling assignments."
Well, you know me (this is my reflexivity coming into play) I'm not too keen on people being models and letting it be their begin and end all - so was prepared to have better thoughts about him. But at times he can be quite arrogant ... "I am here to stay" - that is what he say about him being in the film industry ... alrighty then!

Oh well, let me add something more to his life ... he has a daughter .. with his 1st wife (he's only has one wife so far) ... they briefly reconciled(not sure how briefly - or if they actually even did) in 2002 ... I am guessing probably for the sake of his daughter, but he sounds as if he still cares for his wife in the 2002 interview,
"In fact, until very recently, my doctor would ask me to imagine a drastic situation like a war or riots or famine and then tell me to close my eyes and name the one woman who I would look for to run away with and I invariably always thought of Mamta"
... so, is it a case of friends but not lovers? (Hmm, I liking my analysis and deductions and questions I am raising ... feeling more like an ethnographer more and more ... or just a plain gossip!)

Posted by prejudice at 4:43 PM GMT
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Thursday, 3 February 2005
More Assem Merchant
Mood:  a-ok
Topic: Crushes
So, I came up with a grand idea yesterday ... why not track the hits on google about Aseem Merchant? Just to check how hits increase, as the movie is released .. should have really started last week ... nevertheless ... sometime last week it was 433 ... and today its 450 ... but google narrowed it down to 91 (when taken out the repeated results)... so, might track it for a week ... (heck can even write a paper on it ... if it looks interesting). Anyway, found something new today .. an interview he had yesterday on his breakup with Priyanka Chopra.

Get this, he says he is not in a relationship right now ... he's concentrating on his career ... but he did admit sometime ago, that he did get close (not sure how close is close!) to the Ms. Bulgaria who is acting in the Bullet movie.

Also, got the impression he broke up with Priyanka because of her family pressure (probably asking him for marriage???) ... oh well, sounds as if he might still be carrying a torch for her, but who knows??

Anyway, yesterday I was not too kind in my thoughts to him, read that in some article that he financially bailed the Bullet movie out, and in turn has asked for himself to be promoted in the film rather than the real 'star'. Seems a bit exploitive to me, I think someone should bail a movie out because it was a good film and a sound investment not to get career mileage. So, irked with that. Probably the reason why he was on the B4U channel anyhow ... trying to get mileage ... probably trying to buy his career rather than work at it ... he supposingly tried a bit of acting on some show in 2001 that was suppose to resemble Baywatch called Breakwater Reef (article) - although found somewhere else it is referred to Breakwater - not sure how successful that was - since I can't seem to find it on the net (then again I have not done an exhaustive search).

Well, I've realised last night that maybe the reason he was looking fidgety and was trying for nonchalance in the B4U interview, is perhaps he wanted to show that he didn't care for this film - that it was not imperative to him - but indeed it is - he is trying to break into movies. I mean although right now I'm ambivalent towards him i.e. one hand think he is good looking etc. and on the other a bit of a scumbag (because trying to buy his fame mileage - must have been right on my first look at him) ... I can't help but admired him somewhat because he is taking a rather unconventional take into movies ... rather than doing the Bollywood stuff (and I am sure he can get some offers there since he is part of the scene)... he is doing a bit of stuff unbollywood ... I'll even call it independent Bollywood (won't go so far and say independent films - because I think of them as being artsy) because he is doing an English film albeit on an Indian and an Hinglish film (hate that word Hinglish ... might come around to it as I did with Bollywood). So, in a sense he is working and concentrating on his acting career and making it happened for him, rather than waiting around for it -so reluctantly have to admire him.

Anyway, I'll end here, because a TMA beckons me! By the way found out he was at least 31 on one of those modelling websites (not sure how up to date those things are!)

Posted by prejudice at 10:29 AM GMT
Updated: Thursday, 3 February 2005 10:34 AM GMT
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Monday, 31 January 2005
Aseem Merchant
Mood:  flirty
Topic: Crushes
So, was flipping through the channels sometime last week and landed on an interview on B4U music, and there was Aseem Merchant - first time ever saw him - but he was decidingly good looking, and deciding why not watch him!!

So, I think since then I've had a huge crush on him ... well, a star crush at least ... he's all set to release a film this Friday ... called Bullet - ek Dhamaka ... reckon once that is released his fame will sky-rocket ... because at the moment hardly anything on the net about him (yup I googled him - alright I can't help myself!). He looked kind of nervous ... well not nervous exactly but fidgety in the interview - I think he was aiming at being nonchalant.

So, short bio ... hmmm ... he's a model ... a divorcee and ex-boyfriend of Priyanka Chopra. Supposingly had a very tragic life ... well ... I consider it tragic, when one has lost his family (parents and brother)! Don't know how I would cope if my family passed away ... anyway, he's standing on his two feet ... so he must have good resilience ... he has a quite brooding quality ... he's not classically good-looking and if you look at him in the first instance you might think of him as being too slick ... must be the model in him coming out ... but then ... you kind of like him all the same. Got some pics here and here of him at this website. Same pics - but different website! Was going to include it in the blog, but figured it might just be a bit too tacky :D.

Oh well, I guess by after Friday ... his bio will be all over the place ... and tonnes of pics ... but then again ... he doesn't look so great in the film - he's playing the villain and got facial hair that really makes him look like a scumball (I think the look he was trying for)... so who knows??

Oh well, we'll just wait and see ... by the way he has slipped into first for my bollywood guys list, with Abhishek Bachchan moving down to second (could you believe it!! I've replaced him - shocker!), third is Arjun Ramphal (but getting increasingly annoyed with him for losing so much weight). Not sure who comes in the 4th place, but got to have some ties then let's see, John Abraham (imagine he used to be no. 1 at one point!! but that was 5-6 years ago - before he decided to do movies), maybe Akshay Kumar (at one point never on my list but he has grown on me!), Akshaye Khanna (just so sweet can't help but putting him on the list) ... and if we are going for sweet looking might as well add Aftab Shivadansi. But that's it ... the list terminates there. Ooooooh ... but if we are going for guys I like might as well slot in Milind Soman ... but I think he is higher than John but lower that Arjun ... so he must be 4th and the rest tied for 5th. Hmm ... but Vivek Oberoi has been growing on me ... but don't think he's on the list quite yet! Good thing this wasn't a list on acting ability ... since some of them might have been thrown out completely!!

Posted by prejudice at 4:25 PM GMT
Updated: Tuesday, 1 February 2005 4:41 PM GMT
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