Social mores

The things that are nice to know.

Print Edition: September 19, 2010

Bat Street Boy

From Batman's wicked arsenal to the real world's roads, this fantasy toy is a speedy way to make heads turn

While his country cousins were busy replicating spiders or flying around like birds, Batman chose to stay cool with his whacky tech toys. Pankaj Shah, a US-based motorcycle rider and Dark Knight fan, decided to emulate him and got Chopper City US to design him a PS-Pod bike, in the style of Batman's Batpod from the 2009 movie. Mounted within the custom-made frame of the all-metal bike is the drive train of an Aprilia Mana 850. Scaled down to make it street legal, the 850-cc PS-Pod may lack the cannons and machine guns of Dark Knight's bike but it has a wheelbase more appropriate for a pickup truck, a levered handlebar system, a shaft drive and oodles of sheer style. For $100,000 (Rs. 46.6 lakh), you can get your own.

Eau de Clone Just when you think you've smelt them all, comes a new 'celebrity' fragrance that can only be described as out of this world. The Star Wars Slave Leia perfume is one of two limited edition scents that were launched at the Star Wars Celebration V in August. With notes of white peach, lily, bergamot, heliotrope, jasmine and musk, the fragrance comes in a bottle that's adorned with a chain, reminiscent of the ones Carrie Fisher wore (with her bikini) when she was imprisoned by Jabba the Hutt. The other scent, for men, is Eau Lando, a tribute to the Lando Calrissian character played by Billy Dee Williams. Word in the market is there are more aromas to come. Wonder what R2-D2 would smell like.

Rolling Palette

You can't always get what you want, unless, perhaps, you're Rolling Stones' Ronnie Wood. Slide guitaring, cartooning, song writing, record producing, painting: he does whatever his heart desires, letting his imagination run away with him. Wood has been painting and drawing since he was a child and studied at Ealing College of Art in London before taking to music. Often doing portraits of friends, family and the musicians he jams with, Wood's work has been exhibited around the world. Come September, he makes his debut in the US where 60 paintings, drawings and mixed media pieces will be on display at the Butler Institute of American Art in Youngstown, Ohio for eight weeks. Look out for the honky tonk women at the show.

6 things to do this month

FASHIONABLE WEEKEND: Trendsetters and trendlovers can come to London's Somerset House from September 23 to 26 to frolic in fashionista paradise, aka London Fashion Weekend. Shop for designer brands at discount prices, book trendy haircuts, get beauty advice or just chill with a champagne cocktail. Website: www.londonfashionweekend.co.uk

LIFE IN B&W: View Madhavi Swarup's abstract art as she uses black and white images to highlight the duality of existence in her solo show, titled Duality, of some 24 life sized photographs, at Visual Arts Gallery, India Habitat Centre, from September 4 to 13. The photographs were taken in Swarup's travels around the world. Contact: 011-41504521 (IHC)

STAIRWAY TO HEAVENLY ART: The Art Institute of Chicago is hosting a sitespecific installation by Jitish Kallat that connects two historic moments: Swami Vivekananda's speech on religious tolerance at the First World Parliament of Religions in Chicago on September 11, 1893, and the attack on the World Trade Center in New York on that very date, 108 years later. Kallat's work, Public Notice 3, is a commentary on the evolution, or devolution, of religious tolerance in the 20th and 21st centuries. The show opens on September 11. Website: www.artinstituteofchicago.org

HIGHER CALLING: September is probably one of the best times to explore the Nanda Devi Sanctuary that surrounds India's second highest mountain. Entry to the inner sanctuary is banned to conserve the fragile biosphere of the place but you can easily do the 10-day trek of the outer sanctuary and get dramatic views of the mighty range. Website: www.greatindianoutdoors.com

BUDDHA BECKONS: Visit the backwater district of Kottayam in Kerala to attend the Neelamperoor Padayani festival which dates back to almost 1,500 years. It is the only festival in Kerala that reflects the state's Buddhist past. Website: http://neelamperoorpadayani. faithweb.com/main.htm

URBAN FEST: The International Urban Theatre Festival is held at the Giardino degli Aranci in Rome and draws top playwrights and actors from around the world. This year, it runs from September 9 to 13. Website: http://www.romeculture. com/Events/Urban-theatre-festival.html

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