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Monday, May 19, 2014

Farewell, Cristina Yang!

The season finale of the tenth season of the medical drama Grey’s Anatomy was an emotional one for me. And I like to believe that it was for a lot of viewers out there. We had to bid adieu to one of the most beloved and original cast members – Sandra Oh who played the brilliant, competitive cardiothoracic surgeon Dr. Cristina Yang. You cannot help but love Cristina Yang, in spite of her sarcasm, her snide remarks, her superiority complex and her overall lack of sympathy towards emotional people. You know you love her because it was Cristina Yang who taught you to dance off the stress in your life. Let your hair loose, turn up the volume and Just Dance! The season finale was very poignant and very well directed. While it didn’t overplay the emotions of the departure of Cristina, it did just enough to remember her. After all, we couldn’t have said goodbye to our favourite BFFs without one final dance routine.

Cristina Yang broke all the stereotypes of being a woman surgeon and she proved herself to be the best in her class. You can always rely on her being truthful; she doesn’t care to try and shield the people of their feelings if the truth hurts them. Remember when she told Meredith that she was a better surgeon than her? And Meredith is her BFF! That is what I love about Cristina! Throughout her career at the hospital, she has provided countless jabs at co-workers whom she thought to be incompetent and had to be let down with her vicious words. She taught us to be never be apologetic for who you are and what you want – ‘surgeons are sharks and should never apologise’. 

She taught us that it is okay to let go of your hard exterior and reveal your emotional vulnerabilities. That made Cristina humane and we love it about her. She taught us how much friends matter to us when she says about Meredith “If I murdered someone, she’s the person I’d call to help me drag the corpse across the living room floor. She is my person.” Well, Cristina Yang, all we can say is that you are our person too.  It was a pleasure and an honour to be in the OR with you for the last ten years. Farewell, Cristina Yang!

Tuesday, May 13, 2014


I am not a big fan of animated movies. I am not sure what the exact reason is for that. As a kid, I lost myself in the world of Cartoon Network; I knew all the characters, all their stories. What is further mystifying is that after I do watch those occasional animated movies, I end up thoroughly enjoying them. So what possibly could be the reason for my not being keen on animated movies?! This question stumps me. A colleague of mine recently gave me Frozen. I had heard a lot about it, I mean one has to; Frozen won the Oscar for the best animated feature this year. He said that his one year old daughter loved it so he was sure that I would love it too. So I asked him, “Well, going with that logic, what are you trying to say? Am I like a one year old or am I like your daughter?” He just ginned.

Frozen is based on Anderson’s The Snow Queen, but it is strikingly different in its treatment of the theme. Like all the usual fairy tales, we have a kingdom – Arendelle, a king and queen and two adorable princesses - Elsa and Anna. Elsa, the older sibling harbours a dark secret – she is in fact a sorceress, having the ability to create snow and ice at will. However after a misadventure, she becomes a recluse, shutting herself out from the outside world, especially her younger sister whom she loves more than anything in the world. When Elsa comes of age she is to be coroneted the Queen, after the death of her father. However an emotional outburst on Elsa’s part leaves the kingdom of Arendelle in a perpetual winter. Terrified of doing any further damage, Elsa runs away to the mountains, where she builds herself a magnificent snow castle. But Anna is determined to bring her sister back to the kingdom, as “she belongs there.” Thus begins the adventure.  Seeking help from Kristoff, an ice man and his reindeer, Sven, and a talking snowman – Olaf, Anna sets off to bring back Elsa to Arendelle.

Elsa has been brilliantly voiced by Broadway veteran Idina Menzel. I have been a fan, ever since I saw her on Glee, and her Let it Go is the big musical number of the movie. The song won the Oscar for being the Best Original Song. Anna is voiced by Kristen Bell, Kristoff by another Broadway player Jonathan Groff. Olaf is voiced by an adorable Josh Gad who dreams of basking in the warmth of the summer sun ; In Summer is the song that you should play in the background this summer and remind yourself of the fun things you can do in summer. For me the best thing about the movie was the relationship between the two sisters. The movie incorporates the power of women when we are shown that the true love that has the power to unfreeze Anna’s heart is not that of the ‘prince charming’ but that of her sister. This is a very first time for a Disney animated flick. And perhaps this is the reason, why it appealed to all the other little ‘princesses’ in the world.

Sunday, May 4, 2014

No One Knows What it's Like...

I am one of those unfortunate souls who had to grow up without a sibling. This may sound harsh, but I don’t think I can quite forgive my parents for bringing upon me the misfortune of being an only child. What hurts me more is that both of them grew up with siblings, so I know that they will never know what it was like for me growing up. Or what it is like for me now, when I am grown up. My parents called it realistic and practical, I call it downright selfishness. I never had a ‘co’ anyone in the house when I was growing up. My parents made sure that I will never know what it feels to be a sister, to be a sister-in-law, to be an aunt. There have been a lot of heated debates regarding which are the strongest bonds in relationships – mother-child, or between siblings. I am not close with my parents, so I will go ahead and say that to me I think the sibling relationship is the strongest. Most of my friends have siblings, older or younger and I see how strong their bond is. And I know I can never know what it is like to have that kind of a bond. While I agree that not all sibling relationships are the best in the world, but not having experienced what it is like to have a sibling, I am choosing to be naïve and believe that siblings bring out the best in each other. Whenever I see a movie based on sibling relationship, be it Rachel Getting Married, Your Sister’s Keeper, You Can Count On Me, Into the Wild to a certain extent, Children of Heaven, Pride and Prejudice…the list goes on, there is this emptiness, this hollowness within me which never quite goes away even after the movie ends. There is this vacuum, which I believe will always remain inside of me. And no matter what success I achieve in life, nothing will ever replenish that vacuum within me. I know I won’t have a shoulder to fall back on when I lose a parent. There will be people who will say that they know what it is that I am going through, but I happen to disagree. They will not know what it is like to lose MY parents, because my parents were not their parents. They didn’t know what family dinner was like, what the vacation ritual was, what our typical Sunday was. If I had a sibling, only my sibling would have understood my loss. When my parents would fight, I couldn't talk to anyone about it. Not to my friends because I don't like to wash my dirty linen in public. So i had to internalise all that and I had no one to talk to about it. No, I don’t know what it is like to buy a best sister or best brother memento, or to borrow a dress from a sister without asking her, or having my boyfriend scrutinized by a brother, or having a sibling stand up for me to my parents. And I never will.