Six Tips for being the Sane Half of a Programmer!

For some of us, marrying a programmer might have been a deeply considered, well-thought-out decision, but for others it was a decree of fate. Those of us who’ve embraced a programmer as our life-partner, while in full senses, are courageous women and men, who knew exactly what they were getting into; but others, who got tossed into these turbulent waters by a quirk of fate, have learned some survival techniques through bitter experience.

Cartoon of a programmer - binary love funny -six tips - programmer jokes.

I now share some of these tips with you, and hope that you will add your own experiences to this list, and share them with others of our kind.

  1. The Bug-hunter

When you detect a roach trying to sneak in, and squeak (or scream,) “A bug…a buuuuggg!” and instead of materializing behind you as your protector, your knight in his crumpled tee and faded jeans jumps up from the sofa, shouts “where, where?” and rushes to his computer, then don’t lose heart. Don’t assume that he has lost his sense of direction or that he doesn’t love you – it’s just that he loves his programs a wee bit more.

  1. The Java-lover

When he takes that cup of coffee from you, draws in its aroma, closes his eyes and smiles – and you wait for him to say something really nice, really sweet to you; instead he sets the cup on the table, looks at the monitor, and says, “Java is awesome,” don’t ply him cups after cups of the same brew. You must learn to appreciate how one Java leads to another, and how the real turn-on is that Java which scrolls on his screen.

  1. The Bean-picker

When one morning, he finally comes unstuck from his seat, and condescends to accompany you to Mother Dairy where you look at the beans to exclaim, “Aren’t these beans looking great,” and he drops the shopping bag, grins widely, and asks, “Are they enterprise beans or session beans?” don’t surmise that he has lost his mind. He’s overawed but thrilled, because he thinks that you are finally learning to speak Codemese!

  1. The De-bugger

When he looks buggy-eyed all the time, it isn’t because he’s contracted conjunctivitis. It’s because he’s been debugging a particularly nasty piece of bug-riddled code. Debugging might sound a bit like deworming and your may wonder if it feels similar, but if you’d wait long enough, then you’ll witness a look of pure delight on his face. You will also get the opportunity to experience that Eureka moment when he fills his lungs and shouts, “I found it!” You might think that he had found a treasure trove and not a crummy bug, and you’ll want to tell him exactly that, but don’t. Just join him in his glee, and throw a party!

  1. The Code-master

When you want to find out if he still loves you and whether his love for you hasn’t been relegated to a background process, and you ask him, “Do you love me still,” but he continues to stare at the antsy-looking text called code and says, “One minute,” don’t stress yourself out wondering whether the flame of passion in your relationship was beginning to flicker. Just parse his statement, pick “one” from it, and tell yourself that zero is false and one is true, and so he still loves you!

  1. The Keyboard-Warrior

And finally, if and when you really want your keyboard warrior to come and save you, you must shout ctrl + s if he uses Windows and command + s if he works on Mac. And yes, you better find out, pronto!

7 Googling Accidents – What they wanted and what they found.

There’s a saying that an empty mind is the devil’s workshop. Yesterday, my mind was empty, and so the devil rented it for a day, set up office, and went rummaging my stats.

This is what it found:

1. madurie dik shet necked pic

Either you know what that is or you don’t. The underside of being a screen-diva is that about half the world population wants to witness you in all your “necked” glory. It doesn’t matter if the diva is now past her prime, it doesn’t matter if she now wears the highly respectable shoes of an Indian mom, all they want it to see her “necked” pic. Now why a passionate search for such “pics” of Ms. Dik shet should bring someone to my blog is beyond my comprehension. I never sketched nor painted Ms. Dik shet, and I never draw necked pics. In fact, sometimes, even the mice I draw are either wearing diapers or at least a bandolier.

2. download images of scheching in acters

Scheching in acters? What is scheching?

  • Scratching?
  • Measles?
  • A euphemism of something unspeakable?

Or could it be a euphemism for sketches? Aha. Perhaps it is. Glad I got it right. But why download such images, if not for the nefarious purpose of painting over another artist’s sketch. Over the years I’ve received odd requests. A lady wanted to “copy” my caricatures and sell them with my permission; a gentleman wanted to use a drawing to create a 3D model of the face with it, another young man wanted to use a caricature for his avatar. I come across bloggers using images of paintings that they found by googling in their blogposts – without a permission statement/declaration that it’s a free image.

3. +18 caricature stories

Now this is a 66 percent match! caricatures and stories you can find here but unfortunately the +18 stuff isn’t. (I presume +18 is the steamy stuff of the “necked” kind.) I am genuinely curious to find how that search-string was born. Do people really enjoy +18 stories drawn as caricatures? Perhaps they do. Years ago I heard of a comic that presented a certain bhabhi (elder brother’s wife,) a +18 super-woman who engaged in various +18 acts with a wide-range of men. I am not a caricaturist who does those kind of drawings. Sorry searcher. You’ve got to take your searches elsewhere.

4. pics of dirty and comedy indian people with name laxman

I’m lost again. Dirty and comedy Indian people with name Laxman? Specifically named Laxman? Huh? I know that dirty clothes can actually make you look funny (comedy) but only if the dirt tells a story. My blog isn’t about Laxman, nor about dirty and “comedy” people, and so I trust that this searcher didn’t find what he or she was looking for, at least on my blog. I wish the searcher luck and cleanliness.

5. death caricatures

What?
Are you really looking for caricatures of death? I am not sure if I’ve understood your requirement correctly. I also have a feeling that upon arriving on my blog, you felt cheated. You wanted to give me a single-star rating and tell me that you didn’t find what you had expected, and so in your opinion my blog isn’t good, while I’ll continue to wonder how a basket of fresh apples could be rotten just because you were looking for oranges.

6. pictures of ugly people cartoon drawing of a naked woman

???

Ok. Pick one of the following:

  • Ugly people drawing naked woman
  • Cartoon drawing of ugly people with naked woman
  • Cartoon drawing of naked woman watching pictures of ugly people
    Pictures of ugly people that’ve grown hands and are now animatedly drawing a naked woman
Now the clincher.
None of these options are available on this blog. Ugly and naked don’t happen here.

7. was cleopatra ugly ?

Finally. Now this is a question that only an intelligent person can ask. Cleopatra’s pedigree doesn’t matter. The fact that she was the last Pharaoh of Egypt doesn’t matter. That she could seduce both Caesar and Antony and wrap them around her pinkie doesn’t matter. All her accomplishments don’t matter. She couldn’t have become this famous by using her brains – could she? If she weren’t beautiful, then how in the world she did all that?

Good question. It is answered on this blog. Search again.

Caricature Portrait of Jimmy Fallon – the New Donald Trump.

Today is Jimmy Fallon’s Birthday. Yes, I’m talking about the new Donald Trump 🙂

Caricature Portrait of Jimmy Fallon - the Tonight show Host who is the New Donald Trump

Your Interview of Donald Trump was Fabulous.
Happy Birthday, Jimmy Fallon.

This is huuu……………..uuuuge. Isn’t it?

Blogging Neighbors make a Modern-Day Hamlet Soliloquize.

My Blogging101 Neighbors have changed me into a soliloquizing modern-day Hamlet.

In the past 10 days I’ve made some new friends and these friends have made me ask the following to-be-or-not-to-be questions:
  1. To Cook or not to torture the collective tastebuds of my family?
  2. To run or just snuggle under the sheets for a couple-of-more-hours?
  3. To buy new yoga-pants or wait until my tummy begins to jiggle?
  4. To be an Earl’s cat or a plain old boring human?
  5. To run along with ZuZu and checkout Berkshire or be a couch potato and watch Despicable Me?
  6. To fill the lives of those around me with positivity or just not bother?
  7. And finally, To be a fanatic and fly at the throats of anyone who dares disagree  even slightly with me, or respect other people’s opinions?
I know that I have missed a lot of other fantastic blogs that’ve moved me in the past few days, and consequently deprived this post of other deep and relevant questions.  I’m known to be more forgetful than that allegorical scientist who drank the glass full of bacteria-infested water.  I hope those sweet bloggers will forgive my lapse and leave me a reminder. I can and should soliloquize some more – and your reminders will make me answer more of these important, philosophical questions.
Coming back to my list of questions, here’s what I think, and regardless of what it makes you think about me, I stand (nope, lounge) by it.

1. To cook or not to torture the collective tastebuds of my family?

I cook, but each time I cook, the same dish ends up tasting different! Why? Because I can’t follow recipes. I admit that the kitchen reminds me of a Chemistry Lab, and the recipes remind me of those chemistry experiments that I disliked and even feared. Measure, pour, heat, add something else; let it simmer; when the color changes or when there’s a distinctive smell, do something else! It’s erringly similar to a Chemistry Lab experiment. So to make myself feel positive about the kitchen and cooking, I think of myself as a kitchen-witch who brews magic potions – but that’s a different story and needs a different post.

2. To Run or just snuggle under the sheets?

Is that even a logical question to ask? If your whole family is into running, then I understand that you must – or how will you be together? Imagine breakfast time in a family of runners. Dad has already run 500 yards, son is at 250 yards mark, mom tosses the sandwich and the OJ to Dad at 50 yds/second to get it to him in 10 seconds. Can’t imagine all that action! It makes me run (no, amble) for cover! The thought of all that action makes me exhausted – but kudos to our runner mom – I can only doff my hat to her.

3. To buy new yoga-pants or wait until my tummy begins to jiggle?

It jiggles a bit, alright. But getting into those yoga pants is something that I haven’t yet made up my mind on. Sorry Yoga Guru. First my boss who is now in Canada started organizing Yoga classes in our office and asked if I wanted to join. I checked my then hourglass figure in the mirror, and snickered at the idea. Later mom and dad watched me getting chubbier and slower; they tried to train me in yoga but failed. Now, I’ve begun to wonder whether I should’ve heeded their advice. BTW, Yoga is for people of all shapes and sizes. But what about those yoga-pants? I don’t want to look like a stuffed pillow, and doing yoga without yoga-pants isn’t my cup of green tea.

4. To be an Earl’s cat or a plain old boring human?

Is this even a question?
Of course I want to be an Earl’s cat. Why? Because then I’d speak Elizabethan English, purr a lot, and while purring, I’d casually remark upon who the Countess may or may not hoist her tail for. As a human, if I did that, I am sure the Earl would have me captured and flogged to correct the error of my ways. Earl’s cat – for sure.

5. To run along with ZuZu and checkout Berkshire or be a couch potato and watch Despicable Me?

Is this, too, even a question?
ZuZu… wait for me! Just allow me a few minutes to brew myself a cup of Felinosca potion and turn into a cat. A chubby woman scampering behind you on all fours will attract the eyes of entire Berkshire, and then you may have to drop your adventuring like a hot pot of boiling milk.

6. To fill the lives of those around me with positivity, or shutter myself in?

As I grow older, I cement my views and opinions, and I become unwilling to change. What I often forget is that even the unwillingness to embrace change is a choice.    Do I want to shutter myself in, is a question that I ask myself, especially when meet someone as cool  as these two bloggers.
 I know I’ll try to remember this all, but then I can’t really trust the absent-minded kitchen-witch whose idea of a perfect day is a quiet afternoon with a Wilbur Smith novel. She travels at the speed of thought and sees the world through the words of her favorite authors…and now…bloggers!
And finally,

7. To be a fanatic and fly at the throat of anyone who dares disagree  even slightly with me, or respect other people’s opinions?

As I said before, if possible, I’d like to live in a world sans fanatics. I don’t like fanaticism. And so I’ll set aside the only unpleasant experience in the blogosphere, and continue to Draw to Smile!
Feeling blessed - a pen and ink drawing - shafali's art. Artists and Commissions.

Feeling frazzled but blessed!

Happy Blogging 🙂 and thanks Blogging101!

5 Sure Ways to Awaken the Dragon in a Woman!

Did you know that every woman has a dragon hidden in her belly?  She keeps that dragon drugged and chained, but men (and other women too) are capable of rousing that beast from its slumber.
Cartoon Caricature Funny images of a Woman screaming shouting at a man - angry woman.

Pen and Ink Drawing – Inspired by the Poster of “The Proposal” (Sandra Bullock & Ryan Reynolds.)

Important Note:
I’ve listed the 5 ways here for easy reference. Please feel free to print them out for your soft board. If you need additional counseling on specific matters, or if you’ve already awakened a dragon and need some help in taming it, my email id is plastered over nearly every image that you see on this blog.
If I were a Management Guru, I’d have called these ways, “The 5 M‘s of Bringing out the Monster in a Woman,” or some other such mnemonic thing, but I am not that creative with words, so I’ll stay with numbered lists.
  1. Misunderstand
  2. Mistreat
  3. Manhandle
  4. Mistake
  5. Miscalculate
1. Misunderstand:
When you misunderstand women, you make them see the reddest of reds. Women aren’t easy to understand, I grant you that. Hey, they aren’t just deliciously enigmatic, they are super-mysterious. I mean who knows what a woman actually even looks like. Those layers of makeup – they are the veils of mystery that are lifted only be the select few they decide to share their lives with. So don’t berate yourself if you’ve been guilty of misunderstanding women. However, be prepared for the fire-spewing dragon to wake up anytime you unwittingly commit this error. Trust me, you will know when you’ve crossed the line.
Examples?
Of course.
  • The most common example comes from your making a specific rule generic. You’ve learned that when a woman says “NO” she doesn’t mean “YES.” This rule applies to all your amorous advances – this rule, rules the physical domain of the man-woman relationships; but for your own sake, don’t apply it on everything. So, when you ask a woman whether she’d like some ice cream and she says, “No, I’m watching my figure,” don’t use that outdated corny line “so am I…hee…hee” and return that wallet back to your pocket! The volcano won’t erupt yet, but Smaug is just beginning to turn in the belly of the mountain (er…the woman.)
  • When she’s given her face three coats of foundation, colored her eyelids every color of a peacock feather, and her lips look like she’s just returned from a vampire-party, and she asks you “how do I look?” trust me, she doesn’t want to hear the truth. Don’t tell her the truth. Not if you want the beast to stay happily asleep.
Mistreat: 
This, as you can surmise, is a graver crime than the one that we’ve just discussed. Unfortunately, the term “mistreat” has an expanding range of meanings – starting from not-behaving-in-a-socially-acceptable manner to being downright abusive. Being abusive is terrible and I am sure that most religions in this world would classify being abusive as a sin. Whatever enters the realm of religion, exits the realm of this caricaturist’s satire, and so I am definitely not talking about that kind of mistreatment. Instead, I am talking about simpler stuff.
Examples?
Here they are:
  • Praising another woman in front of a woman (this is any woman vs. any woman.)
  • Looking ravenously at a curvaceous woman who walks past, when you are in company of a woman you’ve supposedly pledged your heart to.
  • Not being totally tuned in when a woman talks about stuff that she believes really matters (doesn’t matter if you hold diametrically opposite views on what really matters!)
  • Not noticing her new hairdo, or nail-color.
All these are examples of Mistreatment. Note that Mistreatment is a slow-acting poison. It may not wake the beast up immediately, but it when the beast does wake up, it’ll roast your insides and feast on them.
Manhandle:
This one too has Satan’s sign on it. The worst of manhandling is domestic violence of the physical kind. That is serious matter and anyone who engages in that kind of thing should be behind bars, not surfing the Internet and visiting the blogs of crazy caricaturists. The manhandling bit I am talking about is the one that hurts the heart more than it hurts the body.
Examples?
Ok.
  • Clasp in an iron-grip, the soft hand offered to you in handshake.
  • Clap your hand over a woman’s shoulder to turn her around.
  • Throw a fake-roach or a fake-lizard, watch her scream, then roll on the ground laughing.
Terrible stuff…all of it. Tchah!
Mistake:
Never, never, never do a mistake in any of the personal stats of a woman – certainly don’t err on the…well, unsavory side. Better still, manipulate the data to her advantage. This one’s rather simple, but if you still want me to illustrate…
here are a few
examples…
  • Her birthday, your anniversary, your children’s birthdays (at least of the kids you two had together,) the date of your first meeting, the place of your first meeting, the earrings that you gifted her 10 years ago, but she never wore them until today… you’ve got to recognize them right away!
  • And then there’s data that you know by heart, but that you must never present in its raw form. In fact, some basic math could be very helpful. So if she’s 51, train yourself to remember that she’s merely 45, and then train yourself some more to tell her that she looks better than all those women in their thirties. If she measures 40 inches at waist, you never noticed it – you still remember the data that you had stored when you had first begun dating. You never overwrote any of it. She still measures 26 at her waist – and when she disagrees, tell her that you don’t feel the difference, because you love her so much.
Miscalculate:
Men often miscalculate everything about women. Sometimes, only sometimes, women deliberately lead them into such miscalculations; but more often than not, it’s something that men train themselves to believe. What looks small and fragile, must be small and fragile. Women can pack quite a punch when they want to – but usually they don’t want to. They prefer to keep the notion of fragility alive. I mean who doesn’t want to be pampered and who wouldn’t want to have someone else do some work that they wouldn’t do unless their superiority complex was awakened.
For men, it’s a good idea to realize that women aren’t weak and most women are smarter than they are. I’ve seen women in my own and my -iL family twist the men of the family around their little fingers – in fact, if these couples are like two wheels of a motorcycle, the women wheels are the ones connected to the steering wheel.
Examples?
Sure.
  • Never threaten to leave her – She is adaptable, she’ll survive; the question is – will you?
  • The money? You blew it and then tried hoodwinking her? She’ll know. If that fuse blows, you must know it did, not because you blew the money, but because you insulted her intelligence.
And now, I must stop spilling these secrets. Most women I’ve known in my life don’t really like me… but then the US Government doesn’t like Julian Assange either!

Hacked Nude Celebrity Photos are more Viral than Ebola says CBS.

There’s no denying that Ebola‘s accelerating spread is a huge concern for humanity, and yet, there’s another virus in the air, one that’s been multiplying at a rate that is exponentially greater than that of Ebola. It’s called the Celebrity Nudes Virus (CNV).

According to CBS*,

The Celebrity Nudes Virus has by now spread to all the countries of the world, and the number of people infected by this virus doubles every hour. Accordingly to statistics that have been laboriously collected, classified and sifted, every man infected by this virus can potentially infect 6 others, in a matter of seconds. It has also been reported that 5 out of 6 people who get infected, are males.

Symptoms of the Celebrity Nudes Viral (CNV) Infection include:

  1. Lolling tongues and galloping heartbeats.
  2. A strong tendency to find isolated spots.
  3. A strong tendency to look over the shoulder while checking emails.
  4. Heightened creativity resulting in Celebrity Nudes Search words.
  5. Shortened attention-spans.
  6. A heartfelt feeling of gratitude for the man who started it all, affectionately called the hacker.

The man who unleashed this virus on the Internet claims that he did it for money. And yet, the poor devil, the man with a zillion dreams of a billion dollars got a measly $120 for his labors…and if we should believe him…for his investment.

This man, who CBS* has nicknamed “Father of the Celeb-nude Virus” has hacked into the iCloud accounts of 100 celebrities, including Rihanna, Kristen Dunst, and Selena Gomez, and despite the financial setback, he has no intentions of stopping. “The FBI,” he says, “is a minor inconvenience.”

Search Strings that are being used to find those Hacked Celebrity Nudes.

Following are some of the search-strings that the infected group of people have so creatively come up with.

  • where are the hacked nude pictures on the web
  • icloud nude celeb images posted
  • stolen nude celebrity pics
  • view stolen celebrity icloud photos online
  • nude celebrity photos stolen online
  • posted stolen celeb photos
  • hacked nude celebrity pictures
  • hacked cloud accounts nude pictures
  • i want to see icloud hacked nude pic 2014
  • leaked 100 celebrities nude  images on internet
  • and so on…
  • and so forth!

Search terms such as these abound, despite the celebrities issuing statements on moral grounds. They’ve been condemning people who view these leaked pictures as participating thieves, because they are viewing stolen goods. CBS* spokeswoman Shafali says:

“I understand their concern. Hacking nude celebrity pictures is akin to plagiarism in the art/literary circles. The person who created the content must be fairly compensated for its use. Now that those nudes are already out there, nobody is going to want to pay to view them – so what could’ve been on the front-page of Rolling Stone or GQ and would’ve justly made the celebs and their retinues some moolah, has now resulted in $1.20 per celeb for the hacker. It’s terribly unfair to the celebrities, I suppose; but what hurts me more, is the erosion of  the value of those pictures, which in fact, is also an insult to the celebrities in question.”

Most celebrities aren’t ticked off because their nudes went online – they’d love to have those pictures on the covers or the center-spreads of magazines. Just click the following link to view some nude celebrity pictures that have been shared with totally value-driven willingness, and hence puts the viewer on the right side of the ethics debate. In fact, the latest celeb to go nude for GQ is Kim Kardashian!

Miley Cyrus on Rolling Stones, Jake and Anne on Entertainment Weekly,Katy Perry on Esquire, Kim Kardashian on W, Johnny Depp on GQ (well, not exactly, but the link has him on.

The Online Media Chooses: Celebrity Nudes Virus vs. Ebola – A Google Search Infographic.

(No prizes for guessing the right answer.)

The Celebrity Nudes Virus is indubitably more contagious of the two viruses. Even Google works faster to find Celeb Nude Photos than it does to find pages that talk about Ebola. Please check the encircled statistics.

hacked celebrity nude pictures vitality info graphic for google searches.

I rest my case.

In another, unrelated, unsourced news byte, CBS* has come under heavy criticism for attempting to milk the celebrity nudes scandal for their blog. The CBS spokeswoman made the following statement:

“We are in the business of creating caricatures and exaggerating deviations. We believe that the ridiculousness of the celebrity nude pictures hacking scandal has to be recorded for posterity. We are just a tiny spoke, a small blog in the scandal-mongering hinterlands of the World Wide Web. We believe that we are doing the right thing.”

CBS*: Caricatures by Shafali

Caricature-Cartoon Jeff Bezos: Amazon’s Brilliant CEO who now owns The Washington Post.

Now that I think of it, I don’t really caricature business-people for fun. I did a couple of Mark Zuckerberg‘s, one of the Automattic CEO Matt Mullenweg‘s, and that is about it. Oh, I also did a commemorative caricature of Steve Jobs for a business magazine long ago, but I didn’t post it here. I did Zuckerberg’s and Steve Jobs‘ as commissions, and Matt Mullenweg’s as a Thank You Note for building WordPress. Today, I drew/painted (it’s a partly painted sketch) Bezos, because I received David Farland’s Daily Kick in my mailbox and it mentioned the Hachette/Amazon battle. I saw Bezos’ name in the email and was suddenly reminded of his face, which is actually quite funny. He doesn’t look like a businessman at all.

So, what do businessmen look like?
Typically, they looked like the furniture they own. They look like the stuffed but polished leather chair they sit upon, they look like the rich and lustrous tables that they sit behind, they look like the steel skyscrapers that they have their offices in; in short, they look stuffy, rich, and absolutely unreachable. Bezos looks like none of these. He looks like he’s bubbly bottle of soda, a cotton-candy, a merry-go-round; in short, he looks like he’s tons of fun.

Here’s what I painted.

Caricature, Cartoon, Sketch of Jeff Bezos - The Founder and CEO of Amazon, and now owner of The Washington Post.

The Next Big Idea?

A Little about Jeff Bezos:

Bezos was born in 1964, which makes him about half-a-century old. He was a smart kid who liked to dissemble and assemble stuff. Bezos comes from a Richie-rich background. His maternal grandfather owned about 10,000 square km of land, but in my opinion Grand-dad was somewhat stingy, because despite having such huge tracks of land, he started Amazon.com from his “garage.”

But the lack of space didn’t deter Jeff and he ended up making Amazon.com what it is today – you know what it is. It’s the online paradise of shoppers, it’s the answer to the prayers of self-published authors, it’s a company with a market capitalization of 146.37B!

According to Forbes (http://www.forbes.com/profile/jeff-bezos/) in 2013 alone Jeff Bezos became richer by $13 Billion! In November 2013, he sold just 1% of Amazon’s stock and got 260 Million for it. So, this cute, deliberately bald, funny looking gentleman is one of the richest men on the planet (#12 on Forbes 400 list.)

Bezos is a libertarian (please do not confuse the term with libertine…though some who search for “Jeff Bezos Creepy” would only be too happy to accept the latter meaning.) His personality leaks from the first name he thought up for Amazon (relentless.com.) His biological dad John Jorgensen discovered that he fathered a billionaire quite late in life. Bezos is considered to be a micro-manager…oh, and his awesome laughter? He inherited it from his biological dad. (source: http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/10-things-you-didnt-know-649386)

Bezos is here because…well, I guess I love oddballs; and also because without Amazon, I wouldn’t have published “Evolution of a Caricaturist“.

How to Draw Caricatures - Evolution of a Caricaturist - by Shafali Anand - Click to Download from Kindle.

Click to View the Book on Amazon.

 

5 Professions that Gandalf could’ve followed in the Modern Real World: A Caricature of Gandalf the Grey.

Here’s a grey caricature of Gandalf the Grey that I did a couple of weeks ago. Just some sketching in Photoshop. As I said earlier, I don’t do a lot of digital sketching…but every once in a while, when I want to take a short break, digital sketching comes in handy.

A Caricature, Cartoon, Sketch, Portrait of Gandalf the Grey - The Wizard the Middle Earth - Lord of the Rings - JRR Tolkien

Gandalf the Grey – Without his hat, because he’s unable to decide which grey hat goes with his new grey robe.

Gandalf is a wizard of the Middle Earth. We first see him in The Hobbit (well, the chronology of the movies in which Gandalf’s character is played by Ian Mckellen, is different from the fictional chronology of the Lord of the Rings saga.) In fact, we see him almost right at the beginning of the book – when he meets Bilbo Baggins the short-statured but totally lovable hobbit, who is persuaded by Gandalf to join a group of dwarves who desperately needed his help to open a door guarded by the dragon.

Among all the characters that populate this famous trilogy (which gets rather verbose and on-the-verge-of-tears boring, at times,) I like Gandalf the best. He is multi-skilled and his personality multi-faceted.

In fact, if he was a real person instead, he could have chosen any of the following five highly remunerative and rewarding professions.

1. Gandalf the CEO of a Megabucks Corporation:

The guy is smart and sensible; on the inside he’s quite like the CEOs of today who specialize in getting others to do things that themselves couldn’t accomplish in ten lifetimes. Here’s an example.

He tries to recruit Bilbo for the team; when he doesn’t succeed, he sends the dwarves to Bilbo’s hole, and then attempts to get him onboard. Later, when he’s sure that Bilbo is sub-consciously sold on the idea, Gandalf leaves with the dwarves. When Bilbo joins them later, he thinks of it as his own decision. That’s exactly what CEOs do. They make us believe that we are the ones making our choices, when actually, they’ve already made the choice for us. Trust the judgment of a cynical caricaturist: a highly successful CEO of today lurks behind that grey beard and grayer robe.

2. Gandalf the Politician:

In today’s world, Gandalf would be a politician par-excellence. He understands the need to create a persona…thus the hat (not seen in this caricature, though), the robe, the muffler, and the gnarled stick. He is a slick talker and has the knack to disappear from the scene just when things begin to heat up. Remember the time when the dwarves and Bilbo meet those three trolls who’d have enjoyed a dwarves-roast, had Bilbo the blundering underdog of the story not blathered to save them? Where was Gandalf then? Guess what – He was away…working, sweating, finding information – for them…not for himself. Gandalf doesn’t do anything for himself does he? It’s all for the people he represents. And we are always expected to take his word for it.

While I don’t see his robe sweeping across the Eagle Rug in the Oval Office, I think he could’ve mentored Mitt Romney and Barack Obama and helped them burnish their political acumen.

If you don’t remember Mitt Romney, here’s the gentleman doing just the thing that Gandalf would’ve advised him against.

Mitt Romney's Gaffes - A Visual Interpretation - A Caricature, Cartoon, and Sketch of Mitt Romney, the Republican Presidential Candidate in the 2012 US Elections.

3. Gandalf the Consultant:

Gandalf would’ve really made his parents proud, had he chosen to work as a consultant. He comes across as an extremely risk-averse guy. You never see him putting a single penny of his into the adventures. He just rides along. He guides the adventurers with his knowledge and uses his contacts to ferret out useful information, but do you see him creating or manufacturing anything?

For a moment, assume that those adventurers didn’t have Gandalf to consult with; then what? Would they not reach their goal at all? Would they all sit like morons and do nothing. I don’t think so. In the good old times that existed before the now-ubiquitous-consultants arrived on the scene, the world was doing well. In fact, consultants are needed only when people and organizations get into businesses that they know nothing about, so thinks the caricaturist.

4. Gandalf the Shrink:

In this world of ours, Gandalf could’ve been a psychologist with a roaring practice. The LoR trilogy presents ample examples where Gandalf attempts to soothe crushed egos and bleeding hearts. (OK, not just a shrink, an agony aunt too.) He understands how the human mind works. In fact, he also understands how elves, dwarves, trolls, orcs, dragons and all the other creatures of the middle earth think. In fact, if he were real and he lived today, Sigmund Freud might’ve been his disciple – after all Freud could only claim that he knew about the machinations of the human mind, and especially how every mundane human act was powered by sexual desires.

I request those with a keen sense of observation, to compare the expressions of Sigmund Freud below to those of Gandalf’s above. You’ll see what I mean when I say that Gandalf could’ve been the coolest shrink ever.

Cartoon, Caricature, Drawing, Portrait, Sketch of Sigmund Freud the man who gave us the Oedipus complex and the freudian slip.

I know what you are thinking.

5. Gandalf the Internet:

And yet, we couldn’t have an LoR without him, because he’s the guy who knows – and in the days of the yore, in the times of the middle earth, a man with knowledge was indeed handy. He was the middle earth counterpart of the Internet. The adventurers of the LoR trilogy had to just spit out a search-string and Gandalfoogle would whirr into action – spitting out results.

 

Ben Affleck as Batman – A Caricature of Ben Affleck vs. A Caricature of Batman.

As a woman I not expected to talk about Batman, but as a caricaturist I couldn’t care less about what I am expected to do, so here are my two cents about the recent controversy about Ben Affleck playing Batman.

I admit that I’ve never caricatured Ben Affleck, but I may put him on my hit-list when he becomes the Batman, because then I’ll just have to draw him as-is – and voila, I’ll have a caricature of Ben Affleck AND Batman – two characters rolled into one 🙂
Let me be honest. I think that the Batman costume is enough to transform even the manliest of men into…ah…well…BATS!

Why Batman’s Costume freaks me out?

The costume creeps me out for three reasons:
  1. It’s black and gold. In my opinion, this combination can look good only on a fair-complexioned woman. I understand the logic – bats are black – Granted.  But then why is the utility belt all golden?  Do bats wear golden belts?
  2. It’s got those two cat-ears jutting up – why? What purpose do they serve, except making Batman look like more like a Catman than a Batman? Check out the ears of a bat here, and those of a cat here. I mean, just because they didn’t want Batman look like a gremlin, they twisted the ears sideways.
  3. The gaping hole in the cap (or head-shroud or whatever else it’s called.) Remember the only hole in the costume where Batman’s mouth fits in. Now if Spiderman can talk through the spandex costume that he wears, why did Batman need this wide hole that exposes his cheeks, chin, nose, and jaw? I think it was designed to make it easier for him to kiss women, when he wasn’t fighting the Joker. (Actually, that makes me wonder whether his costume has a zipper camouflaged with a black fly? What if he has to take a leak at a time when he’s trying save his city from the Joker’s wrath?)
But then these things don’t matter. What matters is that the selection of Batman has historically never gone down well with his fans.

Actors who’ve played Batman in the past – through my Distorted Lenses.

  • Remember Michael Keaton? If he could be Batman with the Koala face that he borrowed from Sheldon and never returned, what’s wrong with Affleck?
  • Remember Val Kilmer as Batman? He could’ve been the coolest Batman – and everyone was cool about his becoming Batman,  but it didn’t work out at all, did it?
  • Then you had George Clooney filling in the shoes? George Clooney?!! Really?  Ten years from now or even five, Ben Affleck would have mutated completely into George Clooney – so if GC has been the Batman – what’s wrong with Ben Affleck?
  • Oh, and then came Christian Bale. There are horror tales of people tearing up the seats in the halls so that they may use the sponge to stopper their ears. They hated his voice. Now look. Who’s swooning, drooling, and dribbling all over Mr. Bale?
(Actually, there were three others who also played Batman, but they belonged to another era. They were:
  • Robert Lowrey (I’ve no idea…honestly.)
  • Adam West (the Batman who batted the longest.)
  • Lewis G Wilson (the first Batman who was short and stocky.)
 (info garnered from where else but the DenofGeek.)

So what’s wrong with Ben Affleck?

  • True, he looks more like a banker than a storehouse of steroids, but then Michael Keaton has that used-car-salesman look about him – yet he did okay.
  • True, he doesn’t look athletic, but then Clooney didn’t either. And honestly, there’s nothing that can’t be handled through CG effects. In fact, I’ve not been spotted yet, or I could be Batman.
  • True, his voice has the Boston Accent (I wish I knew what that sounded like – but I am tone-deaf.) But then Bale’s voice had an alien bass, and now we’re drooling all over him – wondering why he threw the offer of $50M (Gosh!)
 
I think we get used to seeing them – the way they make us see them. I know the Ben Affleck will look like this unreal, batty character when he dons that suit – but then that’s what we expect from Batman, don’t we? 

Cartoon of a Delhi Girl… all buttoned up!

I always thought that my fashion sense left a lot to be desired, but then this lady who entertained the whole male and the cartoonist female population of the Delhi Metro about a week ago, gave me a superiority complex.

Now anyone who knows anything about EZs (erogenous zones) would not have designed those trousers, unless they were meant to do a specific job, which is flag down people looking for a specific kind of…should we say, gratification? While a tiny pattern on the fly would be a subtle use of EZs, those three huge Mother-of-Pearl buttons glowed like a neon signboard that screamed for attention. “Look here. NOW!”

Here’s the lady whose buttons forced me to draw her. Note that the exaggerations are minimal.

cartoon pen and ink drawing of delhi girl with huge buttons on her fly - texting away on the metro.

All Buttoned up!

The story of these EZ-flaunting dresses begins with those aesthetics-challenged dress-designers who bunked their fashion design classes, and who let their erogenous designs loose on Janpath (the fashion-mecca for exploding lower middle class of Delhi.) These EZ-highlighting designs are then picked up by the young girls who’ve just arrived in the city of their dreams, and who want to get that hep Delhi Girl look asap.

This lady, however, has only worn a pair of trousers that would make men get fixated on her…well, buttons. I’d put it only a notch above tight belly button displaying tank-tops, or the low-rise, edge-of-panty on display, denims. In fact, I found myself appreciating this lady’s no-nonsense, direct, and to-the-point approach of directing the viewer’s attention to stuff that really matters.

Another lady whose cartoon will not be published here (because this is a family blog,) would win the “Accident-Causers of Delhi crown” without batting an eyelash. She too made me think better of myself. You see, I am very, very, very absent-minded – but I’ve never gone shopping without wearing a lower garment!

50 pairs of eyes that were anchored to their delectable target, had helped me spot this lady in one of the busiest markets in Delhi. Men of all ages and callings had their eyes fixed on the rump of a young woman wearing a canary yellow shirt that barely covered her posterior assets. As she swung her hips, a flash of black confirmed that she had her panties on (I confess, I had my doubts.)

I saw people slowing down their bikes and cars to get a better look; I saw even women doing a double-take because they couldn’t believe their eyes, and to put the icing on the cake, I also saw the happy-as-a-pup-with-an-icecream-tub guard who had the opportunity to get a close-up view because the absent-minded lady who had forgotten her lower garment home, decided to go into a shop that was on the first floor. May God bless that yellow canary whose bottom brought so much happiness to everyone in that market.

But then there’s an underside to everything – a dark cloud with every silver lining. That day, people did bump into one another and I suppose some bikers did too. I’m sure that if our canary had displayed her assets on a busy road, she’d have dispatched a few to their permanent abodes in heaven.

Delhi indeed is a dangerous city!

– Reporting from Delhi,

The Caricaturist.

Please join me in welcoming Oglers Inc.

Oglers Inc. is about 2000 words and Free – two good reasons for you to click the following icon and download it from SmashWords.

Oglers Inc. - Caricatures of Six kinds of Oglers by Shafali.

Click the image to Download Oglers Inc. in a format of your choice.

The caricatures in the book are done using color-pencils on Executive Bond paper – just in case, you wanted to know 🙂 If you like the book, leave a rating/comment. If you are a guy AND, an ogler , reflect upon how important you are for the general well-being of woman-kind, and appreciate the fact that your efforts don’t go un-noticed 🙂

Writers often provide what they call, teasers of their books on their blogs. Their books, however, aren’t as tiny as mine – they run into tens of thousands of words – so a teaser ends up looking meaty and delicious. My book’s teaser would bear an underfed, emaciated sort of look…but I must do the writer thing the right way – and so here are six types of oglers…I hope they whet your appetite 🙂

  1. The Curious Adolescent Ogler
  2. The Exploring Young Ogler
  3. The Recently Hitched/Married Surreptitious Ogler
  4. The Satiated Disinterested Ogler
  5. The Returning Middle-Age Crisis Experiencing Ogler
  6. The Geriatric Wrinkle-protected Ogler

Interested?

Click here.

PS:

Ladies, I am banking on you!

News! First Neanderthal baby cloned from the toe-bone of a Neanderthal! They will walk the Earth once again!

Governments and Research Establishments have been known to keep their discoveries under wraps.

  • They’ve got aliens in glass-jars, God knows where, but they do.
  • They’ve also got tiny dinosaurs skipping away merrily in some obscure national park, nobody knows which park, but they do.
  • Now they’ve got cute little baby neanderthals in their labs, crawling on their cute rotund little tummies; nobody known where those labs are, but they do.

When I learned about this, I was shocked. Our dear planet earth is already groaning under the ever-growing population of humans. Do we really need the crop of para-humans on this earth? They weren’t smart enough, so we survived and they didn’t. But then smartness isn’t a measure of the resources one consumes. We may be able to keep them under control for a few centuries, but then they’ll start demanding equal rights. And then, we’ll have to look at their viewpoint too. Think about it. It’s time for the homo-sapiens to protest against the cloning of Neanderthals.

Let us protest.

Let us put up a Facebook page “Stop Cloning Neanderthals” and get a twitter handle “@keepthejobswithhomosapiens“!

Read the full story at the Washington Post site.

A caricature or cartoon about Perceptions - Neanderthals vs. Homo Sapiens

PS: Please don’t misunderstand me. I am not being rude to the Neanderthals.If they came as aliens from another planet, I’d welcome them with open arms. I’d even become their spokesperson and business liaison to help them engage in trade with Earthlings.

PS2: Remind me to take this post off my blog in another 15 years. By that time, the cute little Neanderthal babies would’ve grown up and they’ll consider this post “speciest” (biased against another species.)

Source of Inspiration:

“Scientists in Germany say that they have completed the genome sequence of a Neanderthal, and are making the entire sequence available to the scientific community for research.” Source: http://www.clevelandleader.com/node/20578

Icon Caricature Peter Criss.

Color Caricature/Cartoon – Peter Criss: The American Spectator Inspires the Caricaturist to Paint.

If you’ve known this caricaturist for a while, you know that when left to her own devices, she picks up a pencil and draws black-and-white caricatures. She then expects people to swoon over her black and white drawings, conveniently forgetting that the world loves colors. (She obviously won’t let go of this opportunity to compare herself with the Great Mr. Henry Ford who was happy making black cars, telling people that they could have any color as long as it was black.)

So when on February 5th, she opened her mailbox to find an email from the American Spectator, asking her to paint the color-caricatures of  three famous rock stars of the twentieth century, she looked at the deadline and moaned. Three color caricatures in five-and-a-half days…and of rock-stars (I am tone-deaf, remember?)

The good news is – I did it 🙂 The short and succinct “looks great!” from the other side of the world, kept me fueled up.

Here’s Mr. Peter Criss a.k.a. the Catman. He was the drummer of the Rock band KISS. The caricature accompanies an article “Rock and Roll is (Mostly) Noise Pollution.

Caricature/Cartoon of Peter Criss Painted for the American Spectator Magazine.

The concept asked for Peter Criss (in his Catman costume) checking out the thesaurus, as the article is an interesting review of the mad-rush of rock-star autobiographies.

The text “Makeup? or… Breakup?” twists the title of his autobiography “Makeup to Breakup,” to build a connection with his checking out the thesaurus. I left the sticks on the ground – unattended…for now, because the autobiography takes up his attention.

What I loved painting the most?

That white face and those gloved hands…getting those highlights right was fun…and of course, it was a novel experience. You don’t paint a Catman every day.

The Color-scheme

You could look at it from a distance of 10 feet and figure out that the caricature plays out a complementary color-theme. I didn’t think about it then, but as you’ll see in the other caricatures too – they all turned out to follow the complementary color-theme. I guess it was an intuitive need to balance the colors.

Guess that’s all for now 🙂

(Note: I know that many of my visitors arrive here to read my verbal-caricatures. If I’ve disappointed you, I am sorry – but I’d recommend that you pick up a copy of The American Spectator and read “Rock and Roll is (Mostly) Noise Pollution.” I don’t have the nerve to write anything after reading that :))

icon-caricature-cartoon-color-drawing-portrait-singer-justin-bieber-and-his-hair

Caricature/Cartoon of the Teen Sensation Justin Bieber… and of his Hair!

I’d like to begin by apologizing for my long absence from blogging. While I could write unbelievable yet true stories about my being abducted to Atlantis or my journey into and out (no, not that way,) of a polar bear’s belly, but I have changed. I have transformed into a serious, good-for-nothing, dreamy-eyed artist, and so I must tell you the truth. I was busy, and I still am, but I was so ashamed of my tardiness that I decided it was time that I made this post about Just-in Bee-burr!

If you are below 18, you may try to scratch my eyes out for caricaturing your heart throb, the oh-so-cute Bee-burr, but the adults of this world, the ones who really count (in my opinion,) will appreciate my ability to recognize, and then remember this young boy with diamond earrings and…well, a thatch of golden hair that keeps changing its direction. You see, at my age, all kids begin to look-alike.

Here’s his caricature with his golden hackles up!

Justin Bieber - Caricature, Cartoon, Painting, Digitally Colored drawing of the Teen Sensation.

Don’t get me wrong. I love the boy. He’s neat and clean, and cute, and he’s even finished High School in order to please his mom (who’s quite young herself.) I’d say that his achievement of becoming a multi-millionaire at this tender age is dwarfed by these other important achievements. I mean, kids his age try their best to look as shabby as a porcupine that’s been out all night, and they compete to find the most effective method to make their parents unhappy. But Bee-burr isn’t like all other kids and moms would be mighty pleased to see their kids emulate him.

A Quick Bio of the Teen-Icon Justin Bieber

Just-in burst upon the American music scene when he was barely thirteen! Moms, tune in…this is how it happened. Justin’s mom made YouTube video of her son’s performance in a local singing competition. Now, there’s this particular African-American genre of music that originated in the 40s called Rhythm and Blues (lazily called R&B), and young Bieber sang in this genre. Now a gentleman called Mr. Scooter Braun discovered one of his videos and figured that the boy had talent, and so he found him out and then scooted him away to Atlanta. The rest is…as I’d say, recent history, and full of mind-boggling details too! So, if you’d like to boggle your mind, tap the mother lode of all information here.

Oh…I forgot to mention. He was born on March 01, 1994, in Canada, and his middle name is Drew.

Interesting Bites about Bee-burr!

  • Bieber’s hairstyles have been as famous as he is. (In fact, I found an online game that gives you the opportunity to cut Justin Bieber’s hair. I don’t know if they have Bieber’s permission to play with his magical locks.) His first hairstyle made him look like he was going up at -g (Check out Alfred E. Neuman with a Justin Bieber Hairstyle here.) and then second makes him look like he is going down at g. I am sure that all this means nothing really, because his career continues to climb.
  • Bieber doesn’t want US citizenship (if that slot is free, I’ll be happy to take it,) and he’s happy being a Canadian. (Come to think of it, if I were a Canadian, I’d be happy too. I mean a grand total of 35 Million people living on 9,985,000 km² would mean that only about three (two?)-and-a-half men (oops! Corrected – people,) live on a square kilometer. With that kind of space, nobody from the neighborhood would bother complaining about a young boy who practices singing at odd hours in the night.)
  • Justin gifted a song to his mom.
  • Justin is going steady with another singer Selena Gomez, two years his senior. Good boy. It’s time to tell the world that a woman can be a man’s senior and they could still share a great relationship.
  • And for the Justin-crazy lot…if you aren’t already there (fat chance, I know,) here’s Bieber’s Facebook page, and here’s his Twitter handle (He had 26,872,932 followers when I checked his page and he gets a new one every second, so don’t blame me if the number has changed.)

Those forgotten caricatures…

Dear Friends of this crazy caricaturist,

My guilty conscience is arm-twisting me into making this post, but then just as what you say when a gun is being held to your temple is always the truth, so is this statement of apology, and the contents therein.

I’ve got those caricatures (Keira Knightley etc.) sketched and ready to be launched remorselessly on my poor unsuspecting visitor, but I haven’t posted them yet. Why? Because this caricaturist isn’t happy being a caricaturist, she wants her caricatures to tell stories. So when she draws this caricature of Robert De Niro or this caricature of Stalin, she isn’t happy. She wants to create something like this caricature of Morgan Freeman or this caricature of Hitler!

Shhhh…listen up. Someone’s whispering bad-somethings about the caricaturist.

Alter-Kreacher: Nasty, nasty caricaturist… with tons of gender-bias! She isn’t bothered about her male visitors at all or she’d also mention this caricature of Pamela Anderson – the only one she’s made that can make a feeble attempt of tickling her male visitor’s fantasies.

Shafali the Caricaturist: Disappear, you snake! Go sink your poisonous fangs somewhere else, or the caricaturist will use an 8B to blacken them out! This caricaturist is completely aware of the viewing needs of her male visitors! She has drawn another caricature that’s bound to make the male visitors do a double-take, though she’d advise caution. Remember the caricature of Sarah Palin?! Now go kill yourself.

Alter-Kreacher: <shuffles away mumbling.>

(I’d like to thank Ms. JK Rowling for creating Kreacher and Warner Brothers for making the movie “Harry Potter and the Order of Phoenix“, which I watched yesterday, and which inspired Alter-Kreacher.)

Now that Alter-Kreacher has gotten his much-deserved kick-in-the-butt, let me assure you that Ms. Keira Knightley’s caricature will be here soon, and so will be some others. It’s just that I am usually working on about 10 projects at a time, of which 2 are the food-on-the-table variety, and I end up giving priority to those projects. I know…foolish, foolish me. Did I learn nothing from Van Gogh? His methods couldn’t make him famous and rich when he was alive, but at least they made many others rich and Van Gogh famous, after he died. Wondering what I am talking about? Read, “The 4 Types of Artists – Starving, Dying, Dead, and Rich!

I’ll return soon…

 

 

 

 

 

Sinister-handed Lefties are the Smarter Lot – A Case for the Left-handers!

The Boon of Left-handedness

Left-handedness is a trait that makes you special. Among the right-handers, a left-hander is the center of everyone’s attention. Secretly, every right-handed person wishes for the boon of left-handedness, because it makes one special…in whichever way.

So, if you were born left-handed, rejoice. Because people around you envy the fact that to look different, all you need to do is be yourself. Those right-handers also envy you because you are smarter, more creative, and infinitely more interesting than them, but then this too is something that they’d never confess to you, ever.

The data-squirrels have sacks full of data suggesting that the lefties are:

Yet, the left-handers of the world have been called names. They’ve been called sinister-handed, southpaw,  cack/cacky-handed (clumsy) Why? Because every damn thing ever made was made for the right-handed people, and the lefties appeared obviously “clumsy” when they used them. I wish there were a place where everything was made for the left-handed people, and then a few right-handed, “dexterous” people were let loose in it. I’d like to see how they continue to remain dexterous!

Nevertheless, the left-handed people do a good job with these right-handed instruments, because they have better visual sense and the ability to analyze space. I agree that it’s a freaking pain to cut fabric using the scissors manufactured for the “dexterous” majority (and, trust me, it’s a bigger pain trying to find a pair of scissors for the left-handed,) yet the lefties will give you a straighter cut than most of your right-ies.

Some of the lefties are ambidextrous, which means that they are able to use both their hands with equal efficacy (well, according to this link, ambidextrous also means – deceitful and bisexual – do you see how the right-ies try to bring us down at every available opportunity?) The ambidextrous appear magical to the normal, rightly-gifted lot…and magic is more often feared than revered. This makes the ambidextrous lot angry, but there isn’t much they can do about it. So they go into their shells to save themselves from those wide-eyed, crazy looks that they get, and they hide themselves from the world.

The fact that I can draw with both hands at the same time, the fact that I can write in reverse without ever practicing it, could’ve been a normal thing for me; but when I was in seventh grade and  stupid enough to demonstrate it in front of my friends, I lost them because their parents thought that I was a witch. And so I kept it hidden, but every once in a while when I get lost in an idea, I start using both my hands to draw it out. Yet the moment I catch myself in the unspeakable act of allowing my sinistrality (note that it isn’t even a proper word) to work together with my dexterity, I stop to look around and check whether anyone’s watching me. Wonder why people don’t give that funny look to themselves when they type with both hands, or when they swim using all their limbs.

I spent a long time worrying about hiding my weird writing and drawing habits, and now I’ve reached a point where I don’t care anymore, especially because these sinister abilities didn’t harm me in any way.

Here’s something for people who worry about their kids being left-handed/mirror-writers.

I survived and I survived well.

Without going into irrelevant details, here are some facts about this woman who masquerades as the caricaturist:

  • I’m good at Math and Physics. I studied Engineering and then worked as an engineer.
  • I successfully competed in many national entrance exams, and I even topped one of them.
  • I can read, write, and speak two languages, and I can learn the script of any language almost overnight.
  • I can draw better than many and I am not clumsy at all (but don’t put me behind the steering wheel or I’ll drive you right into the oncoming traffic).

Yet,

  • I can’t understand or appreciate music at all, nor can I recognize voices beyond those of my family members. (I don’t really miss it.)
  • I wad probably born left-handed, but I learned to write and eat with my right hand. (Not bad. Righties may try doing the opposite and see how easy it is.)
  • I am less practical than about 90% of the human race. (That’s what makes me an artist :-))
  • I am straight. (not a great loss, I think. Read this.)

Do you see?
If you are a lefty or a parent of a lefty, there’s no reason for you to worry. You (or your child) are gifted.

Before I end this post, here’s a quote that I read on a t-shirt (and so I don’t know who wrote it, but whoever did – thanks. I also found a link with many more quotes about left-handedness and added it here.)
“”Everyone is born right-handed…but only the greatest overcome it.

and yes, there’s a World Left-Hander Day. It’s August 13th (and no, it’s not a Friday.)

icon-caricature-cartoon-tom-cruise-katie-holmes-divorce-on-scientology-hollywood-actor-finds-his-soulmate1

Caricature/Cartoon Tom Cruise – The Caricaturist undertakes Mission Impossible to play the Matchmaker!

With Katie Holmes leaving Tom Cruise, we’ll once again have a 50-year old eligible bachelor looking for a wife who’d stick to him no matter what.

The caricaturist has found the right bride for Tom Cruise – one who’d never leave him especially because he wants to follow his religion. She won’t be mad because he’d want their kids to follow Scientology.

Caricature, Cartoon, color drawing of Tom Cruise and his fourth wife, as Katie Holmes files for divorce due to Tom's insistence of Suri joining the Scientology Church

Tom Cruise, the Hollywood actor who has successfully completed four Impossible Missions has recently been handed the divorce papers by his most recent wife’s attorney. Tom’s been trying very hard to stay married. His first marriage to Mimi Rogers who was 7 years his senior, lasted about two years. He then married the nose of Hollywood, Nicole Kidman, stayed married for 10 long years, then they got separated in 2001. In 2006 he married Katie Holmes, who’s now asking for a divorce.

The reason that Katie’s lawyer wants to cite as grounds for divorce, drove me to draw this caricature. Believe it or not, Katie wants a divorce because Tom Cruise is a very religious man, and he wants to instil the same neat values in their daughter Suri. He wants Katie to join the Church of Scientology so that she may grow up to become a hardcore scientologist. Shame on you, Katie! In this crazy world of today, you are a lucky woman to have found a religious thetan-fearing husband. Well, Holmes doesn’t want her daughter to grow up with the right scientological values.On the other hand, Tom Cruise, a strict follower of his religion, is unable to come to terms with the fact that most people in this world don’t even consider his religion a proper religion. He’s constantly trying to communicate with his thetans!

Tom Cruise’s Problem – A Serious Analysis

Ron Hubbard, the pulp fiction writer who started the Scientology religion, says that millions of years ago, a guy called Xenu (who perhaps was the President of a Galactic federation made of many planets) faced the same problem that humans are facing today – the problem of overpopulation. He decided that the best way to get rid of the extra people was to blow them up and send their spirits to earth. These alien spirits are called Thetans and they are responsible for all human miseries, including the ones that Tom is currently experiencing. I am sure that Tom has done everything in his capacity to ensure that his Thetans don’t bother him, yet…he’s not tried the one thing that could bring happiness and peace to everyone.

Tom must marry an alien from the same Galactic Federation. His Thetans will then develop the right sort of connection with the bride’s Thetan, and all Thetans will then live happily ever after!

BTW, it was Mimi Rogers, his least permanent wife, who had introduced Tom to Scientology. She however decided that Scientology wasn’t her cup of tea and stopped following it. Smart girl.

Caricature/Cartoon – Robert De Niro – One of the Greatest Actors of all times asks, “You talkin’ to me?”

Robert De Niro is a fabulous actor, but an equally difficult subject for a caricature. I disagree with my dear blog-friend and fantasy writer Barb‘s opinion that it must be easy to make his caricature. It isn’t. At least, it wasn’t for me – despite the fact that usually it’s quite easy for me to caricature most people.

Let me explain. De Niro’s eyes have a sparkle that make them look like he were making fun of you – and if you want to draw the real De Niro, this look has to be combined with the over-all maturity of his personality. It isn’t easy. You need to really walk a tightrope. A little more of this and he begins to look like a clown, a little more of that, you turn him into someone who’s never smiled in his life.

My favorite De Niro performances are in the roles of Max Cady and Vito Corleone. Yet I chose to caricature a not-so-young-not-so-old De Niro, because I wanted the caricature to be a visual bridge between his past and present looks.

Okay, it’s time to unveil the drawing 🙂

The caricature, cartoon, sketch, drawing of Robert De Niro, the Hollywood actor who played young don corleone in the Godfather.

When an actor transform himself into the character that he has to portray for his role the Robert De Niro does, you begin to feel that those characters and their descriptions are closer to his biography than his real life’s story. So, in a daring move, the Caricaturist breaks away from the established tradition of beginning the post with a short biography. Instead, she talks about the characters that he played.

The Most Memorable Characters played by Robert De Niro

Vito Corleone:

In the movie, The Godfather II, he portrays the young self of Don Corleone played by Marlon Brando. He won an academy award for his performance in the movie and yes, he had traveled to Sicily and stayed there to “become” a Sicilian for the movie.

Max Cady:

In Cape Fear, he plays the revengeful, tattooed psychopath, Max Cady, who makes you sit at the edge of your seat, ready to take off if he stepped out of the screen and lunged towards you.

Neil McCauley:

In Heat, he starred opposite Al Pacino (another titan of Hollywood, who I must sketch soon.) In this movie he played the role of Neil McCauley, a psychologically disturbed bank-robber and a medium-gray character.

And finally,

Travis Bickle:

Travis Bickle the Taxi Driver is a social misfit. Travis begins to fantasize about cleaning the “filth on the streets.” In the role of Travis Bickle, he immortalized the lines, “You talkin’ to me?

Now a quick snap-shot of his life.

Robert De Niro’s Biography

He was born on August 17, 1943. His parents were both artists. His dad, true to his artistic persona, had a colorful lifestyle (why do you think artists become artists – it’s the glamor of the creative license, more than anything else, which leads them to recklessly plunge into the artistic waters!) This perhaps drove a wedge between his mom and dad – yet Bobby remained close to his dad. He caught the acting bug when he was quite young (that’s the time you catch most bugs – I too remember catching the drawing bug when I was quite young.) One thing led to another and then he got that memorable role, which established him as the one and only Godfather of Hollywood – He became the younger self of Don Corleone. You know the rest.

Read more about Robert De Niro at the following links:

List of Robert De Niro’s Best Movies from Rotten Tomatoes (Primarily for my own reference :))

1. GoodFellas — 96%
2. The Godfather, Part II — 96%
3. Taxi Driver — 93%
4. Heat — 92%
5. Raging Bull — 92%
6. Once Upon a Time in America — 92%
7. Casino — 91%
8. The Deer Hunter — 91%
9. Brazil — 89%
10. A Bronx Tale — 89%
(Source: Rotten Tomatoes.)

Toony Pretzels – Flint: Feeling Flinty? Find some Steel!

Most of us have our highs and lows, and for most of us neither the highs nor the lows define our normal states. But then there are those of us who feel depressed and unhappy all the time. They say, they need the spark; they are the Mr. (and Ms.?) Flints who are looking for some steel that they could interact with and produce that spark. This post is about flint and steel.

A Toony Pretzels Cartoon - A depressed, sad, unhappy man looking for inspiration - Flint and Steel.

Flint and Steel

Here are some Flints looking for some steel.

Generally,

  • An artist trying to find inspiration.
  • A writer struggling against writer’s block.
  • A man who has lost sight of his purpose.
  • A woman who wants to get out of her daily rut.

and more specifically!

The Time Machine: Hagar the Horrible by Richard Arthur Browne

Time Machine Icon for the History of Comic Strips Posts

I’ve been reading Hagar the Horrible strip for a very long time. In fact, when I had first chanced upon Hagar’s not-so-horrible-and-a-bit-loveable character, I would barely understand half of what transpired in the Hagar the Horrible cartoons.

Last night when I got into the time-machine, I set the dial to arrive in the year 1975, which was a couple of years after Hagar the Horrible went into circulation.

Here’s a quick biographical sketch of Hagar’s dad/creator, Dik Browne (or Richard Arthur Browne).

About Dik Browne

Browne was born on August 19, 1917 and his first comic strip was Jinny Jeep, which he created for the engineering unit of the US Army. Until the mid-fifties, he worked worked as an illustrator for magazines and advertising agencies, but in 1954, he got together with Mort Walker (Yes, Mort Walker of the Beatle Bailey fame,) to create Hi and Lois. The Browne and the Walker family still work together on that strip. (It never ceases to amaze me how the sons of these famous cartoonists are able to carry on their fathers’ legacies…especially as these particular legacies require exceptional drawing/writing skills. As I always say, genes are important…very very important!)

Any way, as it always happens with any smart and intelligent cartoonist, Browne too began to feel some spiritual unrest. He wanted to create his own strip. One that would be built around his ideas. So in 1973, Hagar the Horrible was born with a shaggy beard, a beaten horned helmet, a shield and a spear, and the comic strip was syndicated by King Features Syndicate in newspapers and magazines world-wide.

Dik Browne died on 6th Jun 1989. His two sons, Chris Browne and Chance Browne now write and illustrate Hagar the Horrible.

About Hagar the Horrible and Other Characters in the Strip

Hagar the Horrible is syndicated to 1900 newspapers (including The Times of India) in 58 countries and is also translated in 13 languages.

Some of the important characters in this comic strip are:

Hagar the Horrible

Hagar the Horrible is a Viking warrior who induces fear in the hearts of his enemies, but at the same time, he loves his family and his dog. Hagar is fat and had a slovenly appearance (he doesn’t like baths and avoids them.) At times he’s smart (for instance, he knows how to flatter his wife when she’s angry with him,) but more often he’s not.

Lucky Eddie – friend

Hagar has a friend – a thin, reed-like unlucky (!) character who’s called Lucky Eddie. Eddie is educated but he doesn’t appear to possess common-sense and hence his character is that of a gangly, awkward, unvikinglike viking.

Helga – wife

Hagar’s wife Helga is a huge woman, who is the matron of Hagar’s household. Helga is fussy about hygiene and is always found nagging Hagar for his not-so-clean ways. Helga wants her daughter Honi to grow up with traditional values, but quite like the modern day teenager, Honi has a mind of her own.

Honi – daughter

Honi, Hagar’s daughter doesn’t consider feminity a virtue. She’s tomboyish and prefers to wield a spear and not a ladle. This of course is not appreciated by Helga and so Helga and Honi are often shown having mother-daughter disagreements. Honi wears a winged helmet and she can be quite intimidating when she wants to.

Hamlet – Son

Hamlet loves to read. He is quiet and studious and unlike his sister, completely disinterested in being what he was born to become, a Viking. Hagar wants the boy to become a Viking, and he feels ashamed that his son should not want to follow the Viking order.

Snert – dog

This “v”oofing dog wears a tiny Viking helmet, does nothing, and lazes around. Hagar loves him and is seen trying to make the dog obey is commands.

 

What is the Secret behind the Popularity of Hagar the Horrible?

(The Caricaturist’s Opinion – Don’t use it for submitting Assignments, and if you do, be warned that I shall accept no responsibility for your getting a D…or even an F!)

I think that this comic strip appeals to a lot of people because of the following three reasons:

1. Hagar’s family is enveloped in a sense of timelessness, and the fact that everyday family humor is presented through a family that lived in another age, adds to its timelessness.

2. The characters in Hagar are the kind of people that you find in the real world, yet their characteristics have been exaggerated at times to build the contrast. Compare the character of Honi with Hamlet’s, and that of Hagar with Lucky Eddie’s.

3. The humor is simple. It doesn’t make you think. For every person who loves doing crosswords, there are perhaps 10 who have neither the time nor the inclination to tire out their gray cells…

🙂