Sunset Boulevard ( 9 ) : ” A Streetcar Named Ambassador “


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MUMBAI – MAHARASHTRA – INDIA           JUNE 17, 2014           00.20 A.M.

AMBASSADOR

1958 – 25 May 2014

It pains me a lot and saddens me to no end as I write this blog about the demise of Ambassador car. It was owner’s pride once upon a time. It was a car of power once upon a time. It was object of desire once upon a time. People of my generation affectionately used to call it ” Amby “, a streetcar named “Amby”. And it is sad to know that my ” Amby ” now ceases to exist . Today, while I am writing this blog, I am grief-stricken and numb.

But I have now become immune. It is the 9th blog about vanishing objects of my younger days, my growing years, my formative period. My first blog in the Sunset Boulevard section was about ” Bajaj Scooter “. I wrote it on December 28, 2009. One fine morning I read in the news paper that HAMARA BAJAJ wont be manufactured any more. The year was 2009. Within 5 years [ from 2009 to 2014 ] , 08 more objects of my growing years left me for ever, leaving a flood of sweet-sour memories to remember and mourn. They just cease to exist now. After ” HAMARA BAJAJ ” it was the turn of ” FAMILY PHOTO ALBUM “. Then it was the turn was of ” VANISHING GRAVES “, ” CASSETTE WALKMAN “, ” KAMALISTAN STUDIO “, ” CHAVANNI “, ” ROAD MILESTONES ” and ” LAKSHMI TALKIES “, a cinema hall of Allahabad.

Now I know that anything will disappear any time and will cease to exist. Ambassador car is the 9th to walk into the sunset but certainly it is not going to be the last one. Few more things of my younger years will vanish soon and will become memory and history. One day I myself will walk into the sunset boulevard. But as long as I am alive, it hurts me as I find that a particular object of my life, a part of my being, an integral paraphernalia of my younger days will be no more with me. Ambassador is the 9th but definitely not the last one. With Ambassador, a part of my life is gone forever.

Ambassador - The Symbol 0f Power

Ambassador – The Symbol of Power

 

The Ambassador was a car manufactured by Hindustan Motors of India. It has been in production since 1958 with few improvements or changes and is based on the Morris Oxford III model, first made by the Morris Motors Limited at Cowley, Oxford in the United Kingdom from 1956 to 1959.

Despite its British origins, the Ambassador is considered as a definitive Indian car and is fondly called “The grand old lady of Indian roads”. The automobile is manufactured by Hindustan Motors at its Uttarpara plant near Kolkata, West Bengal. All the prominent Indian politicians of yore used the Ambassador. Some like  Sonia Gandhi, used the Ambassador till now.

As of 25 May 2014, the Hindustan Motors has suspended the production of the Ambassador

Decline & Fall of Ambassador

Decline & Fall of Ambassador

My father was fond of Chevrolet cars. So we never possessed the Ambassador in Deoria. But I do remember the red-beacon fitted Amby of the ruling class of my generation, which used to inspire awe and admiration in me. Years have passed. Ambassador slowly lost the glory and power attached to it. It, in its later avatar , became popular as a taxi. What a sad fall of the grand old Ambassador! And now it passes into oblivion. Its journey is complete.

 

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On behalf of all the students and staff of VIDUR Acting Institute , I mourn the death of my Amby.

VIDUR Editing Studio , VIDUR Club and VIDUR Merchandise would also like to join in mourning.

RIP ! my Amby. Your enviable fortune got changed in the changing times. Alas ! Time is cruel.

 

[ I have quoted some facts about Ambassador from Wikipedia. I am indebted. ]

 

VIDUR

MUMBAI – MAHARASHTRA – INDIA

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Yes , I Am Acting Tutor , Not Acting Trainer


MUMBAI – MAHARASHTRA – INDIA           OCTOBER 12 , 2012           00.45 A.M.

IF IGNORANCE IS BLISS , THEN IT IS FOOLISH TO BE WISE ; A Proverb

My country has unique quality . Here you will find people who claim that they know everything . Without reading literature , they can teach literature . Without watching old classic films , they can endlessly give sermon on films . Without meeting a single film legend , they boast about being in touch of all the legends of cinema . They can claim that they are polyglot and can write and speak impeccable English . It is another thing that their knowledge of language is limited and their spelling is horribly wrong .

When it comes to languages I am puritan . I did my Post Graduation in English Literature from Allahabad University , which is known as Oxford of the East . Therefore when I see a wrong spelling or a wrong sentence I squirm . I admire and try to follow Queen’s English .

In olden days , standard of education was so high in India that even a wood-cutter could speak impeccable Sanskrit . Let me tell a story . Raja Bhoj , who is known for his erudition and knowledge , was roaming around in a forest . He saw an old wood-cutter . That old wood-cutter was walking with difficulty because of the woods he was carrying on his shoulder . Raja Bhoj thought of helping him . He asked the wood-cutter , ” किं स्कन्धं बाधति ? ” [ Is your shoulder paining ? ] As per Sanskrit grammar , the verb should have been बाधते and not बाधति . Old wood-cutter looked at the king and answered back , ” स्कन्धं न बाधते राजन , यथा बाधति बाधते ” [ My shoulder is not paining but the use of wrong word बाधति is definitely painful. ]

But this is an old story . This kind of knowledge and education is a thing of past . Much water has flown down the holy Ganga . So wrong sentences and wrong spellings are order of the day .

Let me come to the point . Recently I was made aware that I am just a tutor and not the trainer of acting . Acerbic tone of the statement made it clear that it is a gibe and not a genuine praise . Gentleman who made the barb does not know the real meaning of Trainer . Just look at the meaning of trainer given in the dictionary :

TRAINER

==========

noun.

1. a staff member on an athletic team who gives first aid and therapy to injured players.

2. a person who trains athletes; coach.

3. a person who trains racehorses or other animals for contests, shows, or performances.

4. an airplane or a simulated aircraft used in training crew members, especially pilots.

I don’t find any reference of acting or fine arts here . Word Trainer is used for the coach of animals , machines or athletes .

Now look at the meaning of tutor :

TUTOR

=========

noun.

1. a person employed to instruct another in some branch or branches of learning, especially a private instructor.

2. a teacher of academic rank in some American universities and colleges.

3. a teacher without institutional connection who assists students in preparing for examinations.

4. (especially at Oxford and Cambridge) a university officer, usually a fellow, responsible for teaching and supervising a number of undergraduates.

5. the guardian of a boy or girl below the age of puberty or majority.

-v.t.

6. to act as a tutor to; teach or instruct, especially privately.

7. to have the guardianship, instruction, or care of.

8. to instruct under handedly; coach: to tutor a witness before he testifies.

9. Archaic.
a. to train, school, or discipline.
b. to admonish or reprove.

-v.i.
10. to act as a tutor or private instructor.
11. to study privately with a tutor.

Trainer is associated with animals and tutor is associated with study , knowledge and fine arts . We can find first reference of a tutor in 1631 . You can see the photograph of Prince Charles Louis with his Tutor posted below .

English: Painting: Prince Charles Louis with h...

Prince Charles Louis with his Tutor (1631) by Jan Lievens (1607-1674), Dutch painter (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Almost 240 years later we find another eminent tutor of Oxford University . You can see the photograph posted below .

Mandell Creighton, Oxford tutor in 1870, a yea...

Mandell Creighton, Oxford tutor in 1870, a year before he met Louise. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Peter Neumann, British mathematician and Senio...

Peter Neumann, British mathematician and Senior tutor at The Queen’s College, Oxford (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

There was another tutor of repute in that era . I am posting portrait of Vilém Gabler (1821 – 1897), Czech teacher, who was private tutor in rich families .

Portrait of Vilém Gabler (1821 - 1897), Czech ...

Portrait of Vilém Gabler (1821 – 1897), Czech teacher, private tutor in rich families, long-time director of high school for girls in Prague and author of textbooks and travelogues. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Now go through the following synonyms of tutor :

Synonyms of Tutor :

====================

coach, direct, discipline, drill, drum into, edify, educate, guide, instruct, lay it out for, lecture, let in on, ready, school, train, update

So it is amply clear that in the field of art , fine arts and acting , there could only be a tutor and not trainer . I don’t know how and when it started but these days the word Acting Trainer is in vogue . I have no problem with the word Acting Trainer . But Tutor is not derogatory . On the contrary Tutor is the right and most appropriate word for an acting coach .

But as I have written in the beginning :

IF IGNORANCE IS BLISS , THEN IT IS FOOLISH TO BE WISE ; A Proverb

There are Acting Trainers of Mumbai , Acting Trainers of India . Some Bollywood Acting Trainers use the title Acting Guru also . All the reputed and not so reputed Acting Schools of Mumbai and Acting Schools of India take pride in the fact that they have employed Acting Trainers of repute . Let them take the cake .

I state with all the humility that I am the one and only Acting Tutor of India . I am fully satisfied with my life as an Acting Tutor . If people think that being tutor is inferior than a trainer , it is their complexes . It is their limited knowledge of Queen’s English .

But as I have stated in the beginning :

IF IGNORANCE IS BLISS , THEN IT IS FOOLISH TO BE WISE ; A Proverb

VIDUR

MUMBAI – MAHARASHTRA – INDIA

www.vidur.co.in

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