Monday, 9 June 2014

I sing the song of praise with gratitude

The song ‘nandiyode njan sthuthi paadum’ is a very popular song with the
Christian community in Kerala. A heart that is broken cannot contain the tears while hearing someone singing this song Abraham, also known as Kottayam Patinjarethalakkal Kunjumon, was
laid to rest at the Kottayam Puthanpalli crematory on 15th February 2003.While he was undergoing medical treatment, the choir of Palarivattom Orthodox Church, of which he used to be the Choir Master, sang this song with broken voices because as the song was written by him, in the first place. Then all those who were familiar with this song suddenly realized the fact that it was Abraham who wrote the words and composed the inimitable song.

This song was inspired the by the prayers that his father used to chant during the whole family was engaged in their daily prayers. The prayer was ‘praise you for your unlimited loving kindness, praise you for helping someone who never asked for help’. The song, written and composed in the year 1995, was
presented for the first time at the yearly convention of Palarivattam Church.

Rev. Father T.J Joshua said: “Kunjnjumon would have won many awards if he belonged to a church other than the Orthodox Church.” In spite of this, many awards and recognition were bestowed on to Kunjnjumon. In 1999 he was presented with the Best Song Writer award by Catholic Bava of the Parumala Seminary. In addition, Malankara Orthodox Sabha decided to give the Best Devotional Song Writer award to him. The award was scheduled to be presented to him at the Aradhana Geetha
Festival of November, 2002 November at Kotayam Mamman Mappila Hall. However, by then Abraham became sick. Later, Rev. Father M.P George visited him at his house and presented him the award. Abraham in a low and humble voice stated at the occasion: “I am not eligible for this award because I only write down and compose the songs as God directed me to.”

Abraham was bon on 25th April 1932, the eldest son of Abraham Kutty and Venkatathu Mariyamma of the Patinjarethalakkal family living on the banks of the Meenachil River, Thazhathangadi, and Kottayam. Ever since his childhood he had shown considerable  interest in music.  His parents encouraged their children to learn music.

After completing his collage studies, he got a job with the Indal factory in Kalamasseri and relocated to Aluva. At that time he learned classical music too. He had won a prize in a competition conducted by All India Radio. First he organized a music troop in Eloor Church. When he was transferred to Palarivattom, he served as the coordinator of the choir in the Palarivattom Orthodox Church.

He always used to say that it was God who sends songs to his mind and he only notes them down and composes them. Father Joshua, Director of OVBS, said that it is Abraham who helped with his songs for OVBS. He wrote many Christmas songs as well. He also wrote a host of other songs, that held spiritual insights and words that really touched the hearts of all those who heard them. He found international recognition when he was invited to Bangalore by Feba and from there he sang songs which were
broadcasted from Manila Station.

Abraham, who was an all rounder, worked in the Accounts department of Indian Aluminum Industries. In 1985, he retired as the Assistant Superintendent of the Commercial Department of the company. His abilities were not confined to music alone, but were interested in painting. He also underwent a course in Textile Printing and Designing from Delhi. He had designed bed sheets, pillow covers and lungies for Kitex, Kizhakkampalam. He had organized an exhibition of Sculpture created from discarded aluminum
sheets at the Ernakulam Park. He used to make sculpture in fiber glass and concrete too.

On 6th July 1964, Abraham married Sanju, daughter of Chengannur Ayirukkuzhi George Aipe. Sanju, after retiring from Ernakulam Bharathiya Vidya Bhavan as the Vice Principal, worked as a teacher in
Gregorian Public School. Their elder daughter Bindu is married to Payippatt Kaniyanthara and elder daughter Thanu to Kakkanad Punnakkappilli.

Till October 2002, Kunjumon served as the Choir Master of Palarivattom Church. On October 19th he had to undergone a surgery. While resting in the hospital he wrote his last song on 24th October. The song occurred to him as he heard the afternoon call to prayer from a Muslim Mosque nearby.

For the rest of the days, he was tortured by pain and sickness. Cancer brought his rich and varied life to a tragic end. But death cannot erase him from the memory of those who heard his song and knew him. It is certain sure that the song “nandiyote sthuthi paadum” will be continue to be the foremost song in the repertoire of Christian devotional songs for a long time to come.

-----Translated from Malayalam

Monday, 2 June 2014

Loser’s Night

The annual get together of losers was scheduled for a day, on which the members were not really interested in attending. However, by leaving aside all the push and pull, they took part in the function. At around 10 PM, after confirming that all the members had arrived, the association president Mr. Mathayi Chacko began his welcome speech.

“Dear members, we shall now get on with our get-together, as we do every year. As the President of the sole  association of all  losers inhabiting this globe, I extend a hearty welcome to all of you who are present at this unique event. It is not germane to ask why we are losers. Losers like us, with our hearts filled with the feelings of failure and bouts of weeping, would be laughingstocks in the eyes of others. Never mind. I would like to say something, to all those who feel that I am repeating these same words year after year: The intention of this gathering is to remind and reminisce the fact that our feeling for failure has not declined even by an inch. We succumb to it unto death. I am frightened by the sorrows that have accumulated in my heart. I feel like crying, as if my heart is about to stop beating with all the sorrows that bear it down.”

Mathayi swept the audience with sodden eyes and continued: “Dears, I do not wish to spoil the greatness of this night with a long speech. I’ll finish my speech after spelling out two things: firstly, all that happened within our association last year. I regret to inform you of the deaths of three of our members. Mr.Prakash whose business failed and he hanged himself as a result. Mr.Antony who failed in love died in an accident and Mr.Shihab who failed to find a job abroad died in unusual circumstances. Let their souls rest in peace eternally.

Secondly, I want to introduce the new members of the association. We have five new losers here. Ms.Ramya, who failed in her family life; Mr.Shaju who failed in examinations; Ashok who failed to maintain his high-level job; retired school teacher Mr. Damodar who was betrayed by his own children and Ms.Rosamma Varghese who does not wish to disclose her failure right now. It is my pleasure to welcome them all to our association. Now, as an act of consolation, Mr. Valsan Kozhippetta, the failed poet will read a poem to us.

Thus said, he handed over the mike to Valsan Kozhippetta. At that time, Ashok who was observing the scene with some uneasiness, was  struck at the sight of Ramya. She wore skin-hugging jeans that revealed her well crafted thighs and a T-shirt matching the color of her jeans. She looked so beautiful in that cross-legged position of hers,  so he mused in appreciation. When he realized that the retired school teacher Mr. Damodaran caught him avidly scanning the person of Ramya, he turned his face in acute embarrassment.

Valsan read his poem:

We are losers
Losers forever
We build pyramids-
Of sadness
Our souls are filled with
Waves of failure

We are Losers
Hard face covers of
People of failure

We search for faces
To hide ours….

Ashok was getting bored with the poem. He knew now why Valsan remained a failed poet. He ambled towards a corner with a feeling of numbness pervading his system.  He observed that the losers were not listening to the poem and were busy discussing things. He reached the corner from where he could find a better view of Ramya. He looked around and heaved a sigh of relief as none else could notice that he was ogling at Ramya from there, in a most lurid manner. Thinking about her failure in married life, he lit a cigarette. Smoke flew out of his nose like the screams of losers.

A sudden silence grabbed the hall when Valsan finished reading his poem. It seemed that the members were desperate with the blackout. Those who were known to each other began discussions where they left off. The new members looked around with the stupefaction that arouse with the insecurity feeling. At that time Mathayi took over the mike and tried to make the atmosphere thin.

“Dear members, now we shall meet the new members one by one. Mr. Damodaran will start with his sad story of failure….Mr. Damodaran?”

Mr. Damodaran was a man in his seventies. He might be leading a disciplined life, Ashok thought. Other than the difficulties of old age, he did not look like having any health problems. May be because of the ongoing tensions in his mind, a hesitant expression arose in his face.

At his surprise, Ramya got up from her seat. Her full anatomy was revealed to him. She was really flourishing in her skinny jeans. Her thighs were beautiful as the creation of evil. Her buttocks were turned with the T-shirt glued to her flat abdomen with tenderness. He could not read anymore from her anatomy. He just judged that she was not a failure in her beautifulness.

She looked around and walked towards Ashok causing him much embarrassment and feeling of guilt.

“You are Mr. Ashok, right?” She asked.

“Yes…and you are Ramya?”

“Yes. Ever since the beginning of this meeting I have been watching you. You look too young to be a loser, so why are you here in this club? Pardon me if you feel that I am peeping into your personal affairs.”

“Nothing like that Ramya. After all, are here to share everything.”

A dull smile appeared on her visage.

“Why don’t we go out and talk for a while? It is so suffocating in here.”

While talking, he saw her breasts heave up and down making him nervous.

“Why? I was also toying with the idea of going out, for some time.”

Together they went out of the hall. There was a small garden in the premises. The yellow light from the sodium street lamp was spread over the garden. They walked a while through the lawn. The sound from the hall melted down. They stood there embraced like two aliens.

“I wanted to come out because….if you don’t mind can you give me a cigarette?” Ramya asked.

“Sure…” Ashok offered the cigarette packet to her. She, with her long and thin fingers, picked a cigarette. He helped her to light it. When he lit the lighter, the cigarette came alive between her bow-like beautiful lips.

“Can I ask you something, if you don’t’ mind?” He asked.

“Oh yes, you want to know about my married life, right?”


“Ok. I’ll tell you…I got married two years back. It was a love marriage. A really short love affair, it was fine in the beginning…but after marriage things began to go wrong.”


“It was like he lost his charm after marriage, he was like a lunatic. Always disturbed sort of. To be frank, I felt as if he was even afraid to kiss me.”


“He was shivering like anything as I slept with my body close to his.Even my presence was disturbing him…for how long can I …? Do you know, we never went anywhere after marriage…he was scared…I don’t know what for….but at the same time he always kept an eye on me….as if I am going to run away…”

“Yes…I understand.”

“Ok. What about you…failed at this young age?”

“I am an Architect. I worked for a big company in a good position. Later I resigned the job to start my own business with a friend as partner. Everything went along smoothly at first. But before long, the business started to decline and he took everything he got and vanished.”

“I see. So what are you doing now?”

“Surviving doing petty jobs. But to tell the truth, that was not my real failure.”


“I was in love with a girl when I had a good job. I wished to marry her and duly proposed to her. She was also interested. Within a few months we became so attached that one could not live without the other.”


As Ashok went on with his story, Mathayi came into the garden, breaking their conversation with a fake seriousness stuck to his face.

“Kids, you may not be aware of it as are you are new here, but as per the regulations of our association, members are not allowed have private chats during get-togethers. You have to share everything with others too, so don’t just stand here all by yourselves but go into the hall, for our friends are sharing their failures of the last year with everyone.”

Shaking her shoulders in response and Ramya walked towards the hall. Ashok followed her slowly. She looked so beautiful in the yellow light, he thought. Her wind like hair glittered. Mathayi followed them with his hands behind his back.

Mr. Damodaran was sharing his sorrows there in the hall. Sobbing and wiping his tears, he talked very slowly.

“Oh. If I only knew that we have to do this also…” She said in an anguished tone.

“Why?” Ashok asked.

“I didn’t know that this kind of things went on here. If I’d known I would have come with another story”. She smiled.

“That’s why I made a story of business failure.”

“So, what was the real reason?”

“I told you about my love affair.”

“Okay, okay. Then what happened to her?”

At that time Mathayi approached them, as if he did not want Ramya to know the story of Ashok.

“You guys go and sit there on the chairs. After the sharing of the stories of failure, we can have a buffet dinner in the other room. Now everybody should listen to the failure stories as that is mandatory.”

Ramya and Ashok walked in and sat down on chairs. Mr. Damodaran was obviously fatigued by the profound sorrow from all his tales of failure. At length, he handed over the mike to Mathayi as if he was unable to talk anymore.

“Poor man,” Ashok said. Ramya did not respond. For all he knew, she might be concocting a story to present on stage, so he thought it is better to keep quiet and not disturb her. Still he kept a watchful eye on her. He had a feeling that she had already captured a big chunk of his heart.

When Ramya’s turn came, she walked up the stage and told a trumped up story with a straight face without any loop holes. He followed suit and related his story of business failure with ease. After the last of them had presented her case in the shape of a fat woman, the members moved to the dining hall.

As Ashok continued to keep company with Ramya, Mathayi intervened like the proverbial pain in the neck, reminding of the regulations once again. As she left him for a moment in search of something, he asked Mathayi, “Is it against rules if two members marry each other?”

 “But of course and their membership will be cancelled fothwith. Isn’t it a victory for love if they marry? They can come back whenever their married life fails and resume membership.”

“I see, ” Ashok replied seeing nothing.

However, Mathayi’s explanation was not  quite genuine. He was worried about the decline  of members in the association as well as the sarcastic comments by those who have left the association, whenever they turned out to be a success. He wished everyone to be a failure and the reputation of the association spread across the world.

There was no particular program after dinner. They sat and shared other sorrows and worries and prayed for  the losers. It was very late, when Mathayi announced at last that the get-together was over. One by one everybody left the hall.

When Ramya walked to her Scooty, Ashok followed her.

“Ramya, can I ask you something?”


“I like you very much and we both are losers. Why don’t we..”

“I too was thinking about it Ashok for I like you too. But  my first marriage was a failure and right now  I am not daring enough to try another one.”

“Now don’t think like that. We will discuss it in detail, some other time.”

“Can I offer you a lift?”

He nodded eagerly and she pressed the self-starter of her scooter. He sat behind her as she drove away.

Mathayi, who was watching and listening to everything fell into a deep evacuating feeling of failure. Their decision was something which can break the very foundation of the association.


Ashok was lying on bed. Ramya, toweling her wet hair, emerged from the bathroom. He seemed to be impatient waiting for her. As she paused before him, he pulled her down onto the bed and kissed her. She only had a towel draped around her torso, tried in vain to resist his advances, but not for long. She fell into him, ignoring the towel that slipped down to the floor, she kissed him.

Mathayi woke with a frisson. He tried to keep the dream together, all in one piece A patina of sweat burst forth from his bald head. He started to pray with a broken heart.

He prayed for the eternity of their feeling for failure.

Holy book of losers – 22-33

Oh mother of losers
Take care of your children
Take away all the hindrances in the path of losers
Let failure the aim of life
Bring back the losers who go away
Don’t fill their mind with the thought of optimism
Let your world happen, let the heaven and hell fill with losers….

After praying, he was in a dilemma as he thought of losing all his cherished goals.

One day Ramya and Ashok came to meet him. They informed him that they had decided to get married  and will never forget that night that provided them the occasion to meet each other. Mathayi wished them with a swollen heart. And he explained to them the predicament of all losers on the earth:

“Once a person  becomes a loser, he/she cannot go back to their old life. The world of hope is a gift given by Satan. Satan tries to take all the losers to the world of cheaters and burglars. Once they become losers, they will never wish to go back. Losers love losers. They pray for their failure. Those who win everything will be held in contempt  by losers.  But, listen to me, only a loser is able to understand life. Winners loose themselves in their victories and they won’t know even when they are dead.

After listening to everything, Ramya and Ashok said good bye to Mathayi.

The next day Ashok came alone to meet Mathayi.

On the following day Ramya alson came alone to meet Mathayi.

Ashok told Mathayi, “Sir you were right. If I had married her, it would have made my life a living hell. Now I’d like to live the life of a loser.”

Ramya in turn quoth thus to Mathayi: “I trusted him at first. But his real face is so horrible. Now I want to hug failure close to my chest and live the life of a loser.”

Mathayi’s eyes turned heavenward. “Oh God, you heard my prayers. Your miracles are indeed incredible.

However, it did not end there. In the next very meeting, the members of the general body of the society began to criticize Mathayi mercilessly. They concluded by stating that Mathayi is no more eligible to continue as the president of the association because he refrained from allowing Ashok and Ramya to marry and eventually taste the sourness of life.


Rules & Regulations of losers association – 1:51:A

When a loser prays for another loser’s failure, and the latter fails, it will be considered as a victory and the former will be considered a winner for all intents and purposes and punished for action against the association.

Sunday, 1 June 2014

Cinema, animation, career etc..

Cinema is a medium that usually makes its viewers curious and happy. There may be only a few who never had experienced and enjoyed the magical world of cinema. Presently, cinema is a popular medium capable of entertaining people from all ages and different walks of life. It can show a drama, a period of time or a thought in a short span of time with more perfection.
Moreover, as a multimillion industry with a huge market, cinema provides a lot of career opportunities like acting. In earlier days, the job options were limited to a few options like acting or directing; however as technology grows, it is imperative to pursue perfection. Hence many other professions like sound design, special effects, make-up etc. have developed. Apart from monetary benefits, it brings in work satisfaction as well. So, a job in film industry provides not only a handsome source of income, but can be enjoyed as an artistic passion.

Film can be made in different ways. At present around 90% of the movies make use of the advantages of visual effects. Movies like Titanic, Avatar,  Spiderman etc. have well explored the greater possibilities of visual effects. These movies marked a paradigm shift in film industry. They propelled a new trend set. The success and profit of these movies inspired many film makers to make similar movies resulting in creating more job opportunities in the industry. The opportunities are open to those who are expertise at 3D software like Maya, Houdini etc. Despite the challenges and hardships involved in these kinds of jobs, the immense joy and satisfaction of working are really immeasurable. Animation, modeling, texturing, visual effects, programming, shading etc. are some of the professions in the 3D animation industry. One has the option to choose the profession according to one’s interest and build up a glittering career and life. There are many institutes provide training in visual effects. It is advisable to select an institute with good background and history to lean visual effects.

Animation is also an industry that provides many job opportunities. Completely animated movies like Happyfeet, Finding Nemo, Shrek etc. have created land mark in the history of cinema. Many Indian artists have worked in these movies. Other than just making visual effects, these movies are completely made with the use of computers. Hence, the job opportunities are more. More opportunities are expected in the future. It is good for children to try animation as a hobby; it helps them to build a strong platform to choose the suitable process when they grow up. Later they can progress through professional training and find a promising career in animation companies. Other than animation, modeling, texturing, visual effects and programming are other possibilities in animation industry. Processes like sound design, editing etc. also have a great future. Choosing the right process and getting trained from a good institute will definitely help to build a good career in the animation industry.

And of course, as in the case of any profession, interest, dedication and hard work are the trigger pulling factors for a successful career in animation too.