Tuesday, December 04, 2007


In the year and half since I was last here Ahmedabad has become cluttered with enormous buildings that look like alien spaceships have decided to colonize Gujarat. Triple-decker monstrosities, sometimes up to 450,000 square feet, with huge glass windows and bigger air-conditioning bills, provide a respite from the sun and heat. At the weekends traffic is high, but purchases remain thin. The same brands here as the next mall. I hope the street hawkers, main street stores and stalls don't disappear by the next time I'm here. Billboards and stories from the rebranded consumer-age Times of India proclaim 'Ahmedabad Next', hyping this growth and real estate looting/speculation. Is this what Führer Modi means by successful economic development?

Porter Wagoner gives the Gang of Four a run for its money with this classic about reification:


And here's one for the Amdavadis hoping to get a piece of that international brand action. I just finished a rewrite of an essay on The Smiths so it seems doubly appropriate:

THE SMITHS -- Shoplifters of the world unite

Downstairs for stationery, haberdashery.... kerrching... I love the kerrching sound in pop tunes. Twas there in Three Times Dope's old skool classic 'Funky Dividends', in 'Ker-ching!' by Lady Sovereign, and alongside the clickback of the automatic pistol in M.I.A.'s 'Paper Planes'. But before all that was Grace Brothers:

RONNIE HAZELHURST -- Are you being served? (film version)

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