Best of Weekender: Meet Tom Alter's son, Jamie, find out about ace cricketer Varun Aaron, and learn how to bake a batch of banana bread

This week as the COVID-19 lockdown continues, learn how to stay fit, find out which books can enrich your life and how to party with your friends online

Best of Weekender: Meet Tom Alter's son, Jamie, find out about ace cricketer Varun Aaron, and learn how to bake a batch of banana bread

Sunday April 19, 2020,

8 min Read

The IPL may have taken a back seat due to the COVID-19 lockdown, but that has not prevented cricketers from staying fit and recuperating indoors.

Varun Aaron

Varun Aaron

Cricketer Varun Aaron, who came into the spotlight when he bowled at 153 kmph in the 2011 Vijay Hazare trophy finals, has delighted the hearts of many cricket fans across the world.

At a time when Indian cricket needed a pace spearhead who could lead the attack, Varun burst on the scene and made his presence felt. He has represented a number of teams in the Indian Premier League (IPL), such as Kolkata Knight Riders, Delhi Dare Devils, Kings XI Punjab, Bangalore Royal Challengers and now, Rajasthan Royals.

During the lockdown, Varun has been working to keep himself fit. He feels that this period of social distancing has given sportspeople an opportunity to take some time off to recuperate, and work on areas which they would otherwise not be able to if they were on the road.

Don’t miss an exciting interview with this well-known cricketer.

Jamie Alter

Jamie Alter

Most of us remember the late Tom Alter, who was awarded the Padma Shri for his contributions to the field of arts and cinema. His son, Jamie Alter, is a multi-faceted sports journalist, YouTuber and actor. What’s more, he is also a pucca desi despite his skin colour and American heritage.

Today, Jamie wears many hats - first as a sports journalist, and, now, as an actor. He will soon be seen in Afsos, a web series that will stream on Amazon Prime Video.

As a sports journalist, Jamie spent 15 years covering multiple Cricket World Cups and other sporting events, across platforms like Cricinfo, Cricbuzz, and more. In an exclusive and insightful interview Jamie talks about his fascination with 90s Bollywood, acting with his father, his childhood in Mussoorie, and his best memories of his dad.

Read all about Jamie's unique life, his Indian identity, growing up as Tom Alter’s son, and his latest brush with acting in a web series.


Kirti Kulhari

For decades now, the Indian film industry has been stereotyping women into a caricature on screen with a one-dimensional image, incapable of being anything other than a foil to the larger-than-life heroes. Either she is a devoted homemaker, or a cut-throat businesswoman, guided singularly by her ambition. There are no in-betweens in Bollywood.

Four More Shots Please actor, Kirti Kulhari has plenty to say about this blockbuster formula. According to her, other than the artsy films and projects, women were always a means to the storyline, and not the story itself. This is a trend that is unfair on so many levels.

Kirti has a bunch of big-ticket films to her credit, including Mission Mangal, Uri: The Surgical Strike, Pink, and Shaitaan.

Read all about this talented actor’s views on the role of women in the movies, how it is changing now, the importance of layered storytelling, and much more.

Pillow trend


Why are 30,000 people wearing pillows suddenly? How did this look go viral?

In the times of coronavirus, wearing a pillow has become the latest world-wide trend on Instagram. As the world goes through an indefinite lockdown, people are finding hilarious ways to stay occupied, stylish, and creative. From bingeing YouTube videos, to participating in TikTok trends, social media is lit with new and bizarre trends.

One of these trends that is going viral and taking over Instagram is the #QuarantinePillowChallenge.

The bizarre social media challenge sees people wearing a pillow as kind of a mini dress, with a belt cinching at the waist, keeping everything in place. While many have chosen to style their 'mini pillow dresses' with designer accessories, including sunglasses, heels, and handbags, as well as full make-up done, others have chosen a more low-key look, with cosy head towels, eye masks, and slippers. Babies and pets also take part in the pillow challenge.

Check out all the details of the Pillow challenge in our article on this exciting new trend.


Enjoy an online party

Are you missing hanging out with your friends? Do you have no plans for the weekend? Take heart, everyone is in the same boat. But here’s how people across the world have been staying in touch, despite the lockdown, and keeping the fun alive.

From book clubs to beer parties, there are many fun activities that are hot and happening now. You could chill with a Netflix Party, join an online book club, take part in dance classes or join a study group. From games on Discord and Housparty to beer parties on Zoom, there are plenty of ways to spend time with your friends.

Read all about the new online party and gaming trends that have emerged during the coronavirus lockdown.


Bake bread at home during the lockdown

Do you love the fragrance of bread baking in an oven? Would you like to try your hand at making different kinds of bread?

If so, you can join the many bread lovers across the world who have turned to baking during the coronavirus lockdown. From kneading dough to waiting for the dough to rise and get a warm brown crust, they find that there is nothing quite as calming as making bread.

You could try making breads like Swiss sourdough, garlic pull apart buns or double chocolate banana bread, and you will find that this is an activity that can give you several hours of serenity and fun.

Check out some bread recipes you can follow, and find out how to bake a beautiful batch of bread this weekend.

Emma Watson

Emma Watson

Known for playing Hermione Granger in the Harry Potter films, Sam in Perks of Being a Wallflower, and Belle in Beauty and the Beast, Emma Watson is much loved for her contribution to both American and English cinema.

She celebrated her birthday this week, and it was a good time to remember this talented young star. Ever since she skyrocketed to fame as Hermione Granger in the popular Harry Potter film series, she has become a well-respected actress and an inspiration for many young girls.

A women’s rights activist, she advocates for feminism, gender equality, and right to education. In 2014 she was appointed as one of UN’ s goodwill ambassadors. Emma is a graduate of Brown University, specializing in English Literature, and she has always stressed on the importance of pursuing an education. Her most recent films include Regression, Circle, and Little Women.

Don’t miss our compilation of some of the famous quotes from of the characters played by Emma, as well as from the talented actress herself.

classic books

Old classics can enrich your life

During this period of uncertainty and social distancing our pace of life has become a lot slower, and with more time on our hands, it is a good idea to rekindle our love for reading.

Books can provide food for thought, be a catalyst for inspiration, and offer new perspectives that could change the way we look at things forever.

From books like Meditations by Marcus Aurelius, Iacocca: An Autobiography by Lee Iacocca, and William Novak, The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg, there are many classics out there that can change your life.

Check out all our suggestions of books that can enrich your days during the lockdown.


There are many online fitness videos that you can follow

There are some positive changes during these challenging times of the COVID-19 lockdown. The world is coming together in many ways. People are realising how resilient they can be during these deeply stressful times.

It is a good time to change your workout too. Try doing the Surya namaskar, skipping rope, free weights, zumba and yoga online, and you will discover that they can do you a world of good.

Check out all the fitness moves you can do at home, as suggested by our nutritionist.

Saily Laid

Saily Lad

Would you like to be competent in Mathematics, especially when it comes to dealing with logic and variables? Is your greatest extravagance your pets? Do you own a number of dogs, birds and fish? Do you feel that that your family is your most treasured possession? If so, you would find a soulmate in Saily Lad, director of Volksara Pvt Ltd and Krystal Group of Companies. She, along with her team at Volksara, work on providing comprehensive security and safety solutions.

Apart from work, Saily is a voracious reader, who loves indulging in a vast variety of genres like fiction, autobiographies, religion and non-fiction, and she is an avid traveller too. Her maxim for life is “Don’t give up, don’t wait to seek approval, and believe in yourself’, and she believe this is the best way to forge a path to success.

Don’t miss her responses to our Proust questionnaire where she talks about her greatest heroes, loves, regrets, journeys and much more.

Edited by Aparajita Saxena