Saturday, October 16, 2010

Hypocrisy thy name is politics

Especially if it is the current TN govt. This govt. is staunchly atheist. Which means they are totally anti-hinduism and according to their beliefs would love to totally eradicate that religion (just like small pox or cholera).OK, the central government is this kind of atheist too, but that's a story for another time.

The government went so far as to dictate when hindus should celebrate what festival and decided that the Tamil New year's day (which for centuries have been celebrated on the 14th April) will be celebrated on 14th January going forward. The CM claimed to know all about the religion, just, I am guessing, as he knows all about Ramayana too. (During an Interview with NDTV he claimed to have read Tulsidas Ramayana and it said that Sita and Ram were siblings *Gah*)

They did not  just stop with proclaiming a new date for New year. When people still continued to celebrate it on the 14th April, the priests in the temples were forced not to give any special poojas. The devotees were beaten up. All in all a great fun time for them.

Now the TV channels affiliated to the government have taken to calling this weekend programs as Vidumurai sirapu nigazhchi (Special programs for the Holidays). Is it because they do not believe in mentioning any Hindu festival name??? What happens when Diwali is in the offing I wonder.

But of course being a pure Hindu hating atheist, the government has spent 420 crores on renovating a temple. After so much hatred from them, this sudden change in mind, especially just an year before election, seems very suspect.

On the flip side, whatever their motive, we at least get another good place of worship

PS: Going off on a tangent, it has become fashionable nowadays to put down hinduism and especially brahminism, ironically its mostly done by brahmins themselves, who have no clue what so ever about their culture but want to sound cool. (Personally I think they end up sounding stupid and ignorant, but hey! that's just me)

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Langauge Snob

I am a language snob. More particularly an English language snob. While I dont claim to be any kind of master in the language, It drives me wild to see people use phrases and slangs without bothering to understand their meaning.

A case in point is this incident, which a friend related to me.

My friend was chatting with his colleague, who was deputed to the US, about staying late at work. In a bid to prove his mighty language skills and grasp of the slangs, the colleague concluded - "If I ever go home late, my wife would screw me".
My friend, after a stunned moment, was laughing too hard to continue with the conversation.

It is, therefore, only right that I sympathize with this author

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

65 years and going strong.

How many of you out there have long term friends, what is now a days called as BFF or Best friends forever (Personally I think this BFF thingy sounds something out of a teenage vocabulary, but thats beside the point). How many of you think this friendship would last the ravages of time and life and actually last your lifetime?

My 75 year old aunt was literally running around quite excited, last sunday. Her face was all aglow. Why? Her school friend was coming to visit. The three of them had been friends and maintained contact all through their lives. They had been aunties to each others children and were woven into the fabric of each other's families .

This friend of my aunt actually stays in another part of the country and is not very financially strong now. She does not have a phone at home and so despite regular letters to each other,she saves/keeps a little money aside so she could call her two friends atleast a few times a year.

I was so pleased to see her husband being equally supportive of their friendship and more than happy to bring her over to see my aunt, despite his age and health.

It was such a dear thing to witness but it also made me a little envious. While I have some great friends now, at 75 would I still have such friends? Would I want to visit them then and will they be coming down to see me? I definitely hope so. :-)

The Earth's concerns

It does my little heart good to be validated by a Nobel Laureate. Of course the author of this piece has written it much differently and put in a lot more effort than I have but we are getting to the same point.

The only harm that humans can do is to humans and other living creatures. But the Earth is a Survivor. (Unless of course it is possible to explode half the planet using one of those N-bombs, in which case, it will spiral out of its orbit and merge into the Sun).

When I wrote my old article, a friend commented that its not fair to think of saving the planet for a million years. Human time scale is only for a 1000 years or so. So if we can save the earth and its creatures for that time, some good might come out of it.

Being a great believer in the human will power, I know we are not going to save it for the next 10 years much less a 1000. Therefore is it not good to know that what ever harm we do today, atleast good ol' Earth is still gonna be there when we come back as a newer and hopefully better batch of creatures a million years later (Oh yes! I believe in reincarnation when it suits me :-D )

Below is an excerpt from the article By George Will. Be sure to check out the little video on the second page of the article.

"The cover of The American Scholar quarterly carries an impertinent assertion: “The Earth Doesn’t Care if You Drive a Hybrid.” The essay inside is titled “What the Earth Knows.” What it knows, according to Robert B. Laughlin, co-winner of the 1998 Nobel Prize in Physics, is this: What humans do to, and ostensibly for, the earth does not matter in the long run, and the long run is what matters to the earth. We must, Laughlin says, think about the earth’s past in terms of geologic time.
Damaging this old earth is, Laughlin says, “easier to imagine than it is to accomplish.” There have been mass volcanic explosions, meteor impacts, “and all manner of other abuses greater than anything people could inflict, and it’s still here. It’s a survivor.” [...]"

Friday, September 17, 2010

In memory of the Queen

I was not planning write anything this month. It has not been all that good a time for me. And to be honest, I could not find the time to write either.
But it truly seemed blasphemous if I did not write about the queen. Especially as yesterday was her birthday.

I consider myself honored to have lived in the same time as the musical lady trinities. And even more honored to have enjoyed a few live concerts, if not in person, at least through TV, when they were still with us.

M S Subbulakshmi (Popularly know as MS) was born on 16 September 1916 into a musical family, and went on to capture hearts world over with her mellifluous voice. She was the first Indian to win the Ramon Magsaysay Award and the then Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru said about her "Who am I , a mere Prime Minister before a Queen, a Queen of Music ". Her true Bakthi to her music showed through every line she sang and in the glow on her face as she did.

When MS was in US as a guest at someone’s house, she was coerced into singing. There was construction going on outside the house and when requested that they tone down the noise as MS was beginning to sing, the construction workers started making more noise. Ignoring them MS started singing, and slowly all the noise outside the house stopped and when she finished singing, the construction workers trooped in to apologise and tell her that though they did not understand what she was singing, it was great and would she sing some more.

There was that magic quality in her voice which had the power to pull at the listeners’ heart strings. Her voice was the true definition of Alchemy, it could turn base metal into gold.

My personal favorite of MS is her rendition of “Kurai ondrum illai”. A day that begins without hearing her sing the Venkateswara Suprabatham is no day at all. Some of my other favorite works include the Vishnu Sahasaranamam, Maithreem Bajatha and Bhaja Govindam

Almost six years after her death MS still lives on in most south Indian houses talking to God directly through her music.

PS: Edited to add link to "Kurai Ondrum Illai"

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Octopus Hands… Keep Away

Note: Any Gentlemen who have not indulged in the below activities are obviously exempt.

Men, I do not understand and hence would like you to explain what pleasure you could possibly glean from pawing, poking, nudging and otherwise pushing yourself on unsuspecting, strange, definitely uninterested girls and women you meet on the roads, theaters, malls and most importantly public transport.

Surely you must know we hate it and you? Just as I surely know you couldn’t care less.
I thought it only right to let you know, if you are under any misapprehension, we DO NOT enjoy what you are doing.

When I was walking down the road and three of your ilk, walked right into me and I could not move away as they were blocking my path, I did not find it funny or enjoy it. I did not understand what made them give hi-fis and laugh hysterically. I was just disgusted.

When I was travelling in a share-auto and another of your ilk sitting right next to me, folded his arms I did not suspect him of any wrong doing. Until he used his folded hands to paw and poke at me.

How is it that gravity works against you when there is a gal sitting next to you? When the Share auto turned and everyone was tilting to one side, how is it that you tilt in the opposite side, where there was a girl sitting? Surely you could see the girl was trying her best to get out of your range? Surely you could see she was irritated and disgusted with you, atleast when she told you to move away in that freezing tone?
When the girl got out of the auto, just to get away from you, did you not understand it was not a bid to make you follow her? Did you really require another person to literally pound the idea into you?

If you cannot explain, then at least keep away. We just want to move around in peace and not wish you had been born in Middle east where your hands and other parts of anatomy would be severed for what you are doing

To Die For

Have you ever thought about how and when you would like to die? After all it is the ultimate goal of every living being. Something we are all inevitably pushed towards. I have been hearing about a lot of deaths and seeing a lot of sick people and this has been a topic that has been running around in my head for sometime now.

As a drunk Prakash Raj pontificating about the goodness of vellai poondu (white garlic) in the movie Mozhi, says (about his grandfather and I paraphrase) Kulichitu vandharu, thunda otharinaru, oru thumal potaru, poitaru ( Came out of his bath, flicked his towel, sneezed once and died)

No Pain, a simple death, preferably while asleep. That is what I would like. And according to our religion only the most lucky/pious get this kind of death.

Do you know there is a sloka (that I am yet to learn) on saying which one’s death will be very peaceful and painless. My g’pa was said to have said it everyday. And do you know what? He did die in his sleep. Needless to say, my people obviously believe that sloka works well.

Is it not equally important to know when one dies?
Personally, I don’t want to live a long life, just a healthy one. I think one of the most miserable way of living is, when one is unable to take care of their basic needs and is dependent on others for it. It’s a misery for oneself and for the person taking care of one. The day I become too sick or debilitated to be able to take care of myself ever, is the day I would like to die. Age no bar.


Friday, August 20, 2010

The Slave's Dream - H W Longfellow

I was able to dig out the other poem I was talking in my last post after all. I read this poem in someone's school book and since then its beauty has stuck to my mind and refused to let go.

Beside the ungathered rice he lay,
His sickle in his hand;
His breast was bare, his matted hair
Was buried in the sand.
Again, in the mist and shadow of sleep,
He saw his Native Land.

Wide through the landscape of his dreams
The lordly Niger flowed;
Beneath the palm-trees on the plain
Once more a king he strode;
And heard the tinkling caravans
Descend the mountain-road.

He saw once more his dark-eyed queen
Among her children stand;
They clasped his neck, they kissed his cheeks,
They held him by the hand!--
A tear burst from the sleeper's lids
And fell into the sand.

And then at furious speed he rode
Along the Niger's bank;
His bridle-reins were golden chains,
And, with a martial clank,
At each leap he could feel his scabbard of steel
Smiting his stallion's flank.

Before him, like a blood-red flag,
The bright flamingoes flew;
From morn till night he followed their flight,
O'er plains where the tamarind grew,
Till he saw the roofs of Caffre huts,
And the ocean rose to view.

At night he heard the lion roar,
And the hyena scream,
And the river-horse, as he crushed the reeds
Beside some hidden stream;
And it passed, like a glorious roll of drums,
Through the triumph of his dream.

The forests, with their myriad tongues,
Shouted of liberty;
And the Blast of the Desert cried aloud,
With a voice so wild and free,
That he started in his sleep and smiled
At their tempestuous glee.

He did not feel the driver's whip,
Nor the burning heat of day;
For Death had illumined the Land of Sleep,
And his lifeless body lay
A worn-out fetter, that the soul
Had broken and thrown away!

My heart leaps up

MY heart leaps up when I behold
A rainbow in the sky:
So was it when my life began,
So is it now I am a man,
So be it when I shall grow old
Or let me die!
The child is father of the man:
And I could wish my days to be
Bound each to each by natural piety
- William Wordsworth
The beauty of poems according to me is that, while the poet might have meant anything while writing it, but its the meaning that the reader puts to it, that is most apt to it. Like a painting it can talk to different people differently.  In fact, I have read atleast two different perceptions of  the above immortal lines by William Wordsworth. One says that the child represents Jesus, who was considered the father of Man and the other says it means what we are when young gives shape and, in a sense, gives birth to what we are when grown.
I once read a beautiful poem about the dream of an african slave. Unfortunately though, while the essence stayed with me, I forget the lines or even the poet. I shall post it if I can get my hands on it again.
Meanwhile I shall leave you with the below poem by David Diop.  I love the last stanza for its simple dignity and pride

Africa my Africa

Africa my Africa
Africa of proud warriors in ancestral savannahs
Africa of whom my grandmother sings
On the banks of the distant river
I have never known you
But your blood flows in my veins
Your beautiful black blood that irrigates the fields
The blood of your sweat
The sweat of your work
The work of your slavery
The slavery of your children.
Africa, tell me Africa
Is this your back that is unbent
This back that never breaks under the weight of humiliation
This back trembling with red scars
And saying no to the whip under the midday sun.
But a grave voice answers me
Impetuous child that tree, young and strong
That tree over there
Splendidly alone amidst white and faded flowers
That is your Africa springing up anew
Springing up patiently, obstinately
Whose fruit bit by bit acquires
The bitter taste of liberty.


A state of mind than a physical situation, that is either dreadful or Joyful

There was a time when I had to spend a weekend alone in my apartment. I was new to the place and having never been alone before, was frightened and bored out of my wits. I did not step out of my studio for almost 24 hours and became so claustrophobic I was climbing walls. The loneliness was killing me.

A few months later, my two room mates went out for a weekend and I had the whole apartment to myself. What bliss!!!! I had movies to see, books to read, friends to chat, dreams to dream, fantasies to weave and always places to go, if I wanted to. But I was home alone and loved every minute of it.

The two situations were essentially the same, but what different reactions.

A school friend once told me that she used to talk to her bedroom walls when she was feeling lonely. She was an only child to yuppy parents.

Have you ever felt the bite of loneliness? A feeling you are alone ... even in a crowd, even amongst friends, parents or relatives. Not being sure that if you share with your best friend will they empathize or say some callous statement and brush you off. Not being sure if you want to even share with anyone at all. Wondering if someone would understand what you are feeling . Would screaming help? Feel like you are in a bubble and see no way of breaking out? Feel like everyone is passing you by but no one is able to see you?

On the flip side, Have you felt the beauty of solitude? A time just for you. Someplace/time no one else can impinge on. Where you can fill your lungs with fresh air along with the beauty of life. Listening to music, thinking deep thoughts , reminiscing happy memories , reading, writing or just plain lounging.
I just love the clear night sky, when I have the lights all switched off and just have to tilt my head to see, out of the window, the moon waiting to wish me good night.

मै और मेरी तन्हाई अक्सर ये बातें करते ... मै और मेरी तन्हाई

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Problem with NO

My problem with no is that I have a problem saying no. I am like the Chinese language, which I am told does not have any word equivalent for NO.

I get this really guilty feeling if I am even thinking of saying no. It causes me no end of trouble with friends and relatives, but think of what I get into when it comes to work.

However busy I am, I cannot say no when someone comes to me for help. I might qualify it by saying I shall do it later, but I almost always end up doing quite a bit of their work.
And I do get surprised and yes!.. shocked, even insulted when I am told no.

When I asked a colleague to help out another, he said NO, and I was shocked and insulted. The colleague snapped at me saying that he had a right to say no. Logically I know that to be true, but in his place, I might have said sorry, I am busy or Sorry, I don’t know or most probably helped the person out. Even in the few cases I say no, I always qualify it with a reason or an alternative, but I can never just say NO

Sigh! I must gird myself to say the dreaded word and not feel anything but relief

Friday, August 13, 2010

It was Friday and I was planning all the goodies for the evening and weekend, when I get a message asking me to check my mail. I have a meeting until 7.30 in the evening and I have also been given some .. ok, loads of extra work. There went my good mood. Cursing and grumbling under my breath I get ready for work and come out of home and BAM. I literally walk out into this wall of Heat. High humidity and higher temperature. *Phew*

Miserable all around I sit in the share auto squeezed next to other equally miserable folks heading to their offices when I see this woman sitting on the platform. She has a baby, of perhaps a few months, lying on a rag next to her and she is gesticulating to someone.

Curious I peak out of the window and I see a little girl and a little boy with tin cans in their arms begging. The woman was directing the kids. The little girl, maybe 6 or 7 years old was clearly frightened to get down from the safety of the platform and get down amidst the huge vehicles waiting for the signal to fall. But at the screams from the woman, I could see her literally gritting her teeth in determination and getting down to walk in between the vehicles.

My auto-wallah meanwhile had started to scream at the woman, and he was being ignored by her and her kids as so much back ground noise.

A movement by my side caught my attention and I turned. It was the woman's 4th kid. A toddler , who had not yet mastered walking. She was trying hard to maintain her balance but was imitating her brother and sister perfectly. The child had not even learnt to walk yet but she had learnt to beg and to whine in that pathetic way of beggars.

I have never claimed to be a bleeding heart nor am I a very socio-aware person and I have surely seen kids beg before, so why did these children affect me so profoundly. I am not sure.

But I still had this weird cauldron of emotions bubbling inside me. Helplessness for not being able to do anything, gratitude, for but for a chance of birth, it could have been me on the other side seeing in, Anger and a lot more.

It’s really a frightening world out there. :-(


Monday, August 09, 2010

On Movies, Books and Blahs

Alright! Its 10.30 AM and I am at office, wondering what next. I have been in here for all of 10 minutes and already bored. Its especially painful, since I am generally loaded to my gills and this sudden let down is making me crazy. I have books and movies and so many interesting things beckoning at home, but I had to come to office, which is ever so sad.

This weekend was pretty eventful, guess that explains the extreme case of blues and blahs I am having now.

I got my hands on a copy of the “Palace of Illusions” AT LAST. I have been searching for that book for sometime now and found a copy in my library on Saturday. I kept seeing similarities between Penelopiad by Margaret Atwood and this book. Maybe just coz both showed off the women as having some substance rather than these vague somewhat insubstantial figures or maybe its all in the perspective. But I loved the way Devakaruni has written the book and have decided to get one of my own.

Saw 3 Idiots again and liked it better this time. Why did I not like it the first time I saw it on theatre? I don’t really remember. I think it had something to do with Airbrushing Aamir to look half his age and the All Iz well mantra. (God!!! Did u hear, Vijay is going to act in the role of Aamir in the Tamil Version of this movie. Gah!!!).
Saw “I hate luv story” and I can totally understand why Imran hates them if love stories are made the way this one was. :-(

How could I forget to mention Madaraspatinam. Wow!!! Arya rocked and he has built a great bod for the movie and it was a pleasure to watch . Oh! And the movie was great too. Hehehe. Pretty clean stuff with a cute heroine doing a good job, especially considering that it’s her first movie. The gang sitting behind us who were re-enacting their college days added to the fun (some!). Despite my friends’ feelings that the story had lots of dangling thread, I enjoyed the movie. (I don’t really give any importance to stuff like that as long as I like the movie). It started slow, and the first song was ghastly, but the movie was definitely worth a watch.For those who are yet to watch it, its Titanic and Lagaan meet at Chennai Central

I saw Thillalangadi too.. A complete waste of one hour!
Oh! And trailers of Enthiran. Everytime I see Rajini, I am totally awed by the power of cosmetics and plastic surgery. Talk about Dr Jekyll and Mr.Hyde.

I have “The Myth” with me. In Chinese. Without subtitles. Its very difficult to see a Chinese movie in Chinese, trust me!!!

Hmm! It sure looks like I have been seeing a lot of movies Huh?! You ain’t seen nothin yet buddy!

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

Random thoughts!

=> I was planning to write only about Amar Prem but got too many things in mind. Borrowed the DVD from a buddy and was watching it en famille and silently tearing up. My mom staring at me now n then like I had grown a second head. What music!!! Sigh! you just don’t get music like that any more. Wow!!! and SD Burman's voice. Love it!! Its such a feel good movie.. Pushpaaaa! I haaate tears. (And PSR, I am still in shock about your views on this classic!!!)
=> Well then, I come to office to find that my work has already been completed by a great guy at onsite, leaving me free. Woweee!!! Until I see another mail asking the whole lot of us to stay back for a meeting with the client's head honcho LATE in the EVENING!!! NOT FAIR!!! I am borrreeedddddd, stuck at office, with nothing to do. *SULK*

=> What an absolutely lovely weekend I had, I was able to get 60-70 movies from my friend, some of which I had been dying to watch. Needless to say I have not been getting any sleep. :-(

=> Oh! And I can vouch that the Tanishq has a great variety of ear studs and drops. :-D

=> Was reading yet another blog about the gender stereotyping and became all introspective. I sometimes feel I have moved from moderately tomboyish to downright feminine. Used to love climbing tress. Catching squirrels with brothers was so much more fun than playing with dolls. I used to hate shopping, but now love it. Love dressing up, but think nail paint is too high maintenance, as I don’t like chipped enamel and am too lazy to remove it properly everytime. Still hate cooking. Love to clean, but can live with mess (for a little while at least).

=> I need a vacation. Preferably for about 1 month. In which I get to sleep, Read books, see movies, lounge in bed and just do nothing more strenuous than a walk to/on the beach. Oh! And some DBC now and then and Pasta. Some chocolate fudge. Sighhhh!!!!

The Charge of the Light Brigade

Have you seen the movie The Blind side? Since I saw the movie, it has made me, all the more, appreciate this poem

by Alfred, Lord Tennyson
Memorializing Events in the Battle of Balaclava, October 25, 1854
Written 1854

Half a league half a league,
Half a league onward,
All in the valley of Death
Rode the six hundred:
'Forward, the Light Brigade!
Charge for the guns' he said:
Into the valley of Death
Rode the six hundred.

'Forward, the Light Brigade!'
Was there a man dismay'd ?
Not tho' the soldier knew
Some one had blunder'd:
Theirs not to make reply,
Theirs not to reason why,
Theirs but to do & die,
Into the valley of Death
Rode the six hundred.

Cannon to right of them,
Cannon to left of them,
Cannon in front of them
Volley'd & thunder'd;
Storm'd at with shot and shell,
Boldly they rode and well,
Into the jaws of Death,
Into the mouth of Hell
Rode the six hundred.

Flash'd all their sabres bare,
Flash'd as they turn'd in air
Sabring the gunners there,
Charging an army while
All the world wonder'd:
Plunged in the battery-smoke
Right thro' the line they broke;
Cossack & Russian
Reel'd from the sabre-stroke,
Shatter'd & sunder'd.
Then they rode back, but not
Not the six hundred.

Cannon to right of them,
Cannon to left of them,
Cannon behind them
Volley'd and thunder'd;
Storm'd at with shot and shell,
While horse & hero fell,
They that had fought so well
Came thro' the jaws of Death,
Back from the mouth of Hell,
All that was left of them,
Left of six hundred.

When can their glory fade?
O the wild charge they made!
All the world wonder'd.
Honour the charge they made!
Honour the Light Brigade,
Noble six hundred!

Friday, July 30, 2010

Murals in Singara Chennai

Have you yet seen the walls of RajBhavan? They are all getting painted with Murals depicting Tamil culture and places of interest in TamilNadu.Its beautiful. There is just this one oldish guy mixing paints every morning, I cross by that area.
Every morning and evening I look with great eagerness for the progress he has made. The guy is truly talented. Some of his paintings have this 3D effect, that you feel like you can walk into it.
The best part is ofcourse that no one would be sticking posters or painting graffiti over something that beautiful and It helps that they are a pure visual pleasure.

I understand our government got the idea from Bangalore. And it has been implemented all over Chennai.

Speaking of graffiti, there is a whole slew of walls on the Five furlong road, that connects from vellachery bypass to guindy, that contains paintings of a politician. While that painter is no doubt talented too, there is a particular painting of this politician with his mouth open and right beside a painting of a snarling leopard. While I am sure we are supposed to understand that the idiot is like a snarling leopard or whatever, the painting never fails to crack me up.

I wish the Raj Bhavan guy would finish here soon and paint up that wall next.

PS: Hmm!!! I really need to take some photos of those murals.

Thursday, July 22, 2010


These insults are from an era before the English language boiled down to
4-letter words. Got it as a forward. Couldn't resist putting it up here:-)

The exchange between Churchill & Lady Astor:
She said, “If you were my husband I’d give you poison.”
He said, “If you were my wife, I’d drink it.”
A Member of Parliament to Disraeli: “Sir, you will either die on the
gallows or of some unspeakable disease.”
“That depends, Sir,” said Disraeli, “whether I embrace your policies or
your mistress.”
“He has all the virtues I dislike and none of the vices I admire.” -
Winston Churchill
“I have never killed a man, but I have read many obituaries with great
pleasure.” Clarence Darrow
“He has never been known to use a word that might send a reader to the
dictionary.” - William Faulkner (about Ernest Hemingway).
“Thank you for sending me a copy of your book; I’ll waste no time reading
it.” - Moses Hadas
“I didn’t attend the funeral, but I sent a nice letter saying I approved
of it.” - Mark Twain
“He has no enemies, but is intensely disliked by his friends.” - Oscar
“I am enclosing two tickets to the first night of my new play; bring a
friend … if you have one.” - George Bernard Shaw to Winston Churchill
“Cannot possibly attend first night, will attend second … if there is
one.” - Winston Churchill, in response.
“I feel so miserable without you; it’s almost like having you here.” -
Stephen Bishop
“He is a self-made man and worships his creator.” - John Bright
“I’ve just learned about his illness. Let’s hope it’s nothing trivial.”
- Irvin S. Cobb
“He is not only dull himself; he is the cause of dullness in others.” -
Samuel Johnson
“He is simply a shiver looking for a spine to run up.” - Paul Keating
“In order to avoid being called a flirt, she always yielded easily.” -
Charles, Count Talleyrand
Why do you sit there looking like an envelope without any address on it?”
- Mark Twain
“His mother should have thrown him away and kept the stork.” - Mae West
“Some cause happiness wherever they go; others, whenever they go.” -
Oscar Wilde
“He uses statistics as a drunken man uses lamp-posts … for support rather
than illumination.” - Andrew Lang (1844 – 1912)
“He has Van Gogh’s ear for music.” - Billy Wilder
“I’ve had a perfectly wonderful evening. But this wasn’t it.” - Groucho

Weird news

We humans are such weird creatures

=> This guy's pet tarantula (why would any sane man want to have a pet giant spider is beyond me) threw some hair like mist at his face in a natural defense mechanism and he now has eye problems. The doctors have suggested that all people with pet tarantulas use protective eye gear when they are near it.

=> This person was adviced that his pet python????????????? was getting ready to have him for dinner.

=> This dog was choking and they found human fingers in his throat.

=> This one is really weird. This guy buys a cactus for hundreds of dollars and then pays a few more hundred at the customs, and when he finally gets it home, it starts shivering. There were .. *music* 100s of tarantulas or some such spiders growing inside the cactii getting ready to burst out and kill..

=> This lady sold 2 ghosts and made a mint. She had caught the ghosts of an old man and young girl and stuffed them in two vials. A company actually bought it and are now wondering what to do with it.. hmm!!!! talk about bottled spirits.

=> Beware of cute litle dogs that follow you, when u go to any sea shore during your vacation. This is most probably a huge rat, that you mistook for a dog.


Thursday, July 01, 2010

Mahabharath meets God Father

I know! I know! I have always maintained never to write about movies or books, coz lets face it I really suck at it.

But I could not resist.
In the last couple of days I saw Rajneeti and Singam (or should I say asingam *smirk*)

Yep. Rajneeti was the Mahabharath meets God Father. I have not liked Ranbir kapoor in any of his romantic avatars so far. He just rubs me wrong. (Am I going to be shot for this blasphemy?)

Anyways as an arrogant, know-it-all, strong, silent, manipulative user he comes across so naturally in this movie. I really liked him.
And once the movie was done, I rushed to get my copy of the God father to read it again. It was such a nostalgic pull to read about Michael Corleone
Katrina's character was kinda vague and slightly spineless. I loved Nana patekar though. So calm and collected and always smiling, whether he is encouraging one nephew to kill another or throwing his sister's baby into the river.

Despite my predisposition to find it boring, Rajneeti was a surprisingly interesting movie.

On the other hand, Singam!!!! what a movie!!!
When I fast forwarded the songs, the fight sequences and the so-called comedy (its sad to see how pathetic Vivek has become), the actual movie lasted about 20 minutes.

Small town police man comes to Chennai to clean the dirty polluted city and kill the bad man, played quite predictably by Prakash Raj.

Now and then I had to stare at Surya just to make sure I was not seeing Vijay.

You could literally see Surya and Prakash Raj yawn through the whole movie. It was such an insult to their talent. Wonder why they agreed to it. Hmm! maybe it as an easy means of making money and not have to work too hard histrionically.

But can we blame them? I have not seen any movies under the Sun Pictures and their cousins’ banners that are worth writing home about. The heroines change and the hero remains or the hero changes and the heroines are constant. But whatever changes or remains, the story line (for the lack of a better word) is always the same. Sigh!!!


Tuesday, June 29, 2010


I am soooo angry I could chew someone off.

I get up in the morning and see that the trees near the gate have been chopped ruthlessly to half their size.I am a proud tree hugger.

Turns out the school next door did not get enough light coz of the trees, so they sent a man early in the morning to chop them off. No permission, no information, nothing. My dad had seen the deed and hadn't seen fit to stop the atrocity.

I cannot even go scream at the school officials coz my dad had seen it and had not stopped the murderer from maiming my trees, giving an implicit permission.

AAAAArrrgh! I am in a cold war with father, but doesn't seem to have an effect.
I have to rant somewhere before I burst with frustration. *waahhhh*

Monday, June 21, 2010

Monday Blues

Sigh! I cannot believe it is monday already. I have so much more to do over the weekend. Get more sleep, read more books, see some movies. Its Monday morning and I have just come to office and already yearning for Friday evening and feeling blue ... :-) Sigh!!!!!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Walking with Doordarshan

Join me on a nostalgic walk down the memory lane with DD

1. Mile sur mera

2. Desh Raag

3. Old DD unity

4.Ek anek ektha

5. Jungle book title song

6. Cadbury ad 1

7. Cadbury ad 2

8. Hamara Bajaj

9. Jalebee

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Phir mile sur mera tumhara

It was colourful, peppy and quite entertaining. It had almost all the bollywood and other "wood" stars, and a few artists too. Just so you dont blame them, at the veryyyyyy end some sports persons and military folks were shown. Right when the song was gasping to its end.

I quite liked the idea of having the children of the maestros who sang/played in the original, sing/play with them now.

I absolutely adored Salman's sign language with the kids. Awesome!!!

But I just wish it was not some supposed wacky version of "Mile sur". It looked like a movie promo with all the other artistes and sports personnel left hanging by their nails at the very end. But then this is something A R Rahman is quite famous for: Taking something that is or almost is a classic and changing it until you wince everytime you hear it.

I remember running to TV, as a kid,every time they used to put the original "Mile sur mere" on TV. Every Time!!!!

The original has not been telecast in ages and I understand it has been 22 years since it was created....Today my mom, my cousins and I were able to sing the whole song. Every line and every language.

Its extremely doubtful if the new version would have a miniscule percentage of the impact that the original one had.

An absolute let down!!!!

Friday, June 11, 2010

Teacher, I am NOT!

I am not a teacher. NOT NOT NOT!!! I never signed in or aspired to be one ... EVER. Despite my aunt's feelings that it is the most gentle and feminine occupation, I have never liked it.

So why, when I am already loaded down with work, am I being forced to teach a gal fresh out of college the ins and outs of the work. Especially when I cannot ditch delegate her to someone else.

If she had had some experience she can fill in the blanks between what I am saying, but she is so new that I have to literally draw lines between point A and B and then take her hand and walk her down the two points.

I am told to empathise and remember that I was a fresher once too. I dont remember how I felt then, but i do know I was not stowed upon some overworked lead and made to learn.
To boot, the gal gives me the most wounded puppy looks when I snap at her for not doing something I ask her to do.

No, it does not evoke any sympathy in me. Call me hard hearted but I just dont have the time.
God! the gal can nod her head. Ask her anything and she nods. Do u understand *nod*, do u Not understand *nod* , Are u ever going to ask any questions if you have any doubts *nod*, are you trying to drive me crazy *nod*...

I understand that she is new to the system. But please god! not me! not now!


Back to School :-(

When I was in school and lugging around the huge bags, wearing the drab school uniform and same old shoes, taking tests after tests, I used to look with great envy at my Mom and sisters. One was working and the others in college. They could wear beautiful colour dresses, jewels and shoes and most importantly a small fashionable bag was all they took with them.

What plans I had for when I was all grown up and going to work! sighhh!!!!!

After more than half a decade of working .. I seem to have returned to my school days.
I am given a laptop, that I have to lug around whereever I go. (which also brings me at the perpertual beck and call of the powers that be) AND I have mandatory tests that I have to take (with pass percentage of 85, which I am failing brilliantly of course).

Now I look at the school kids and envy them so... They have summer holidays of more than a month. Friends to play or hang out with after school. The seemingly inexhaustible energy bursting from them.

vicious cycle!!! When did I get so old?

Friday, May 28, 2010

The palace of illusions

This book by Chitra Lekha Divakaruni Banerjee had been creating quite the hullobullo in the blogging world a few months back.

Since I have been in the alternate world as far as books are concerned, this caught my attention only now and I have been wanting to get my hands on a copy of the book. I already have 4 or 5 different Mahabaratha versions, including the 3 volumes comics by Amar Chitra Katha.
Its one of the most fascinating story(ies) ever produced. It has something for everyone and shows a new facet during every read.

Its even more powerful than Ramayan because of the lack of clarity on right and wrong, on good and evil. The story basically revels in gray.

But my all time favourite character in Mahabharatha is Karna.

In all the different versions of the book that I have read, none of the authors were able to put him in a box and label him. For an evil guy who had joined hands with the kauravas, he advices them to face the pandavas in a battle rather than win through cunning. For a guy who is said to be a very wicked person, his name is the cornerstone for charity.

When Krishna and Kunti, both though knowing the truth about his birth, come to see him only before the beginning of the war, to tempt him to the side of Pandavas, his loyalty shines through.

Be it C.Rajagopalachari's classic or Amar chitra katha's comics Karna begins his unlucky life as an obscure character who then gains importance through his friendship with Duryodhana. But from that point he is deemed evil and all his actions are seen with jaundiced eye. There are quite a few mentions about the Evil Karna peppered through the book.

But after Karna gives away his armour and earrings in charity and refuses to join the Pandavas, despite the temptations from Krishna and emotional blackmail from Kunti, he is suddenly the epitome of charity and goodness, though somewhat misled by unwanted loyalty.He then becomes the noble Karna. (well Duh uh)

Bheeshma who insults him at every turn and at every opportunity, suddenly becomes all sacchrine sweet at his death bed.

Karna is a man who is hounded by ill-luck until his very death, and even that through cunning and not on a face to face battle.

I have always been curious about the relationship between Karna and Draupadi and I hear this book deals with that part in detail.
So more after I get my hands on the book.


Eye Candy

My friends and i have been discussing this for sometime now.
The absolute dearth of eye candy in office. Its so depressing

Its not like we are asking for someone with loads of intelligence and adonis good looks and who is loving and caring with whom we can spend all our lives. (I mean we are talking reality here not someone's fantasy)

Just some eye candy we can spend time sighing upon whenever we see.

Is that so much to ask for?

Someone to pass time on. Just one.

There used to be such an adonis at school. He was a senior, a whole year elder to us. He was also rumoured to have had fought a girl's family for her love and been hurt too.
So not only was he good looking but was also a star crossed lover and a tragic hero. Needless to say my BFF and I spent a whole year having loads of fun discreetly ogling and sighing over him.

The next year he completed school and left, breaking our hearts for almost a week.

So here we are back.. dreaming of an eye candy .. someone to take our minds off our work load now and then.

Wat say gals?

Thursday, May 27, 2010


I have cribbed and ranted about my time in the purgatory of my old company.Infact even hearing some of those names used to make my blood boil and blow my top off.Thinking back on those experiences even used to bring me to tears (which I absolutely hate)

But after almost 6 months of being incommunicado from them, I got to meet an old colleague from whom I heard news about all the folks out there.

It was so weird. Where, once I used to have a morbid curiousity on who is doing what and wondering if they had a chance to suffer atleast a little of what I underwent.. Now, I just dont care. I have to think hard to even put faces to the names and news about them holds absolutely no interest to me.

Well!!! No, I dont want to get in touch with them and I couldnt care less what happens to them, But no more does thinking of them cause a knot in my stomach either.
The experiences seems to have glossed over with time.

Yayy!!! I am liberated!

When they said time heals. I guess the old people knew what they were talking about huh?!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Value of human life

Today morning my friend and I caught an auto to office, as usual. But what was not usual was that this auto-wallah did not even bargain, he asked for a nominal price and we got in.We had hardly gone a kilometer or so, when he got a call.

His wife had gone into labour and the baby was breach. The hospital was refusing to do anything until he paid them 6000 bucks.The man had been driving all day yesterday and all night too and still had earned only 3000 Rs. and the way the situation stood, he would probably be losing his wife and child.

The man could hardly drive, he was trembling and crying and screaming into the phone to somehow save his wife, even at the cost of the baby.

My friend and I gave him what money we had in our hand and asked him to go the hospital and told him not to worry and that our prayers were with him. (Trite, but thats what we could think of at that time)
Even at this time of crisis, the man was not willing to take charity. He promised to drive us for free next time he came that way.
He sounded so dejected and frightened, that his words are still sounding in my ears.

If my friend and I, who were only hearing his story as third parties, felt such sympathy, how can the hospital folks, actually, seeing the woman suffer not have an ounce of humanity? The sheer callousness of these people makes my blood boil and I am helpless to do anything about it.

The value of two lives is 3000 Rs a piece. hmph!

PS: I have been kicking myself. He wanted only another 3K. I could have stopped at an ATM and got him the money. It just didnt strike me at that time :-(

Wednesday, April 28, 2010


If there is anything more delibitating than tears then I dont know what it is.
Especially in a professional environmental.. Aaarrrggh!!!!

I have been soooo angry for the last few days. Was getting blamed for everything and no one to help or complain to. So when my manager came in today.. took him to a meeting room and poured out all my angst and anger

But wouldn't you know just when I reach the peak of anger, my darned eyes start watering...My manager got all soothing and that irritated me even more. I kept telling him please ignore my tears.. they are an irritating by product of anger.

But would he listen .. NOOOOOOO
I got all kinds of advice on professionalism and not to get emotional,depressed or lose sleep over something like this and to come to him for any issues...

oooh!! I just wanted the earth to open and swallow me.

Atleast I am no more angry.. I am busy banging my head, that its too rattled to hold on to any emotions.


Thursday, April 22, 2010

Good day!!!

Its a great day!! and I feel this way after so long, I cant remember when I was this happy last.I am not sure why I feel this way. But I do know something will come along to spoil it soon enough. But let me savour it while it lasts.

I have been feeling like I was in a Soap opera and I was the only one without a script. I still feel that way but I just can't seem to care.
Listening to Mukesh's songs.. God! that guy sure can croon and cry.
I actually listened to a guy talk about his unborn baby!!!
I voluntarily agreed to work over the weekend
OMG!! something really is wrong with me .. hehehe

Friday, April 09, 2010

Rock a by baby

There are a few things more miserable than a friday post lunch session at office. After a really heavy meal, all windows curtained tight and the whole office speaking in low voices that sound like lullaby and you sit right in front of your manager who has one eye on you and you cannot seista.

I am desperately trying to keep my eyes propped open and not really successful. I just now read in Yahoo that corporate India is perpetually sleep deprived. I think it is only fair that being part of it, I must do my bit and go home and catch up on my sleep.

But do these people understand my altruistic tendencies.. NOOOOOO

I have to attend a meeting later in the evening and got to prepare for it now.. *waaaahhhh*

In Canada, the third week of February is celebrated as Family day. While I was not able to google any particular reason for it, an aquaintance in Canada told me that it was given by the government coz there are no holidays after January for a long time.True or false, I like the explanation.

I think Indian government should also make it compulsary to make fridays half working days...

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Monster Marauding Mickey Mouse and Me

Wow! I do have a way with alliterations, don't I?

I was jerked out of deep sleep and some really nice dream early in the morning. As I sat blearily staring at my clock trying to make out the time, I heard these tiny scratching noises.

Curious I walked to the bathroom door and put my ears to it and , true enough, thats where the sounds were coming from. With thoughts of monster cockroaches and what not, I dramatically put on the lights and swung open the bathroom door and THERE stood this evil mousey waving its paws nonchalantly at me.

Being the brave metropoliton girl that I am , I courageously eyeballed the monster, locked the door and did the smart thing. Ran to wake up mom and then climbed up the bay window so that I may get an uninterrupted view of the happenings.

Hmm! Now I am wondering how a mouse could have made entry into my bathroom and what to barricade to stop a repeat performance.


Friday, March 12, 2010

@ Lunch

This was the conversation that happened today at lunch between me and a lady who was my friend's friend. I had just been introduced to her about 20 minutes ago.

Lady: (Suddenly turning to me) Are you married?
Me: Hmm! No
Lady: Are you iyer or iyengar ?
Me: uh! why?
Lady: Would be interested in marrying my brother?
Me: ohhh! hmmm! Ahhh! How did you know I was a Brahmin?

After my extremely witty repartee, I changed the subject. :-D

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Women's day again

I keep telling myself not to get worked up about this day but end up ranting anyway.

Statistics shows that for every 1014 men there are 1000 Women in the world, we are talking about roughly 50-50%. So what is a complete half of the world's human population celebrating?
The few answers I have got so far are

1. Its a day for men to laugh about and wish that they had a men's day too
2. Its a day when a few channels show women oriented movies
3. Shops make great money
4. I waste time glaring at the mails I get (which thankfully have gone down in the years) wishing me a Happy Women's day.

Do you know that even the Indian Laws have unequal rules for women and men.
In a country that loves reservations, it has taken 14 years to pass a bill allowing 33% reservation for women in politics.

'Neeya Naana" (You or Me) a program telecast in Vijay TV discuss controversial topics and the topic that was discussed last week was "Women who earn more than their husband".

The husbands all make it plain that their wives should be atleast one step below them in everything or it is a danger to their manhood, self esteem, confidence and ego. A guy actually said that if his wife earns more than him then he cannot up his collar and call himself a man.

Another said that now his wife earns more he does, she would not leave her job when he orders her to. (ORDERS????)

One man feels that if a woman sits with her leg crossed when he is around, she shows disrespect.

In another episode the topic was "should wives work". The consensus was that if the woman can take care of her husband without him having any complaints, then she can go to work too. I can understanding taking care of a baby, why should you take care of your husband? Is he not old enough to take care of himself?

When married women in IT companies travel abroad, the comments that they and their husbands have to hear are totally unparliamentary.

Aw heck!! This is a country where married women cannot call their husbands by their name as that would be a disrespect to their manhood.

I feel like I am banging my head on a hard rock wall, everytime I write/think about this. My head hurts and the wall stays implacable.

I do not know the significance of this day to others, but to me the significance of the day/week is that I get to attend some good presentations by ladies in the know.


Monday, March 08, 2010


I am off ranting again and why not.. there is so much @#$#$ happening around and I am just not happy with it.
=> It starts with my new work place. I have already explained where it is and I come in early on this monday morning (which should be abolished) so that I am in early (trust me that was tough) before all my bosses and THEY DONT COME IN AT ALL.

=> There is a meeting for all leads and they have forgotten to send me the invite. I am sitting here glaring at the monitor, especially as I have no work to do.

=> A much junior person with much less experience has been chosen for promotion, while I am trying to get out but seem to be stuck like in a quick sand. But that is not why I am jealous of the junior guy.. He got the window seat.. WAAAAhhhh

=> I was just catching up on my blog reading and one of the blogs written by an american father. Talks about alternate medicine. The idiot says that when there is a plague in India or Tibet, they kick their grandmas and run to the nearest Red Cross TENT. Yes people!, we poverty stricken, uncouth savages do not have hospitals, just some medical tents that Red cross was good enough to set up in a few places. We walk bare foot to it to so that they can take pity on us and stick some capsules down our throat. Hmph!I dont understand how the world's most dumbest, ignorant and arrogant people all joined together to form the worlds most powerful nation.

=> While I dont believe in Women's day and all that @#$@. I have never claimed to be anything but mercenary and happily so. The project that sits next to mine has given all their lady colleagues flowers and cards and I WANT ONE TOOOOOO. :-P

=> Despite not having any work (and thanks to my new work place location and Indian Work culture) I am expected to come to office early and leave late despite having not much in the way of work. And even harder is trying to act busy. I cannot even read any books without people sticking their noses into it.. Aaarrrggghhh!!!

*Phew* I think I have got it out of my system. So until next time ... Ate Mais

Friday, March 05, 2010

Sit with me!!!

Just like last bench is the most fun place to be in school, the corner seat furthest from your boss is the best place to sit at work.
No one to poke their long nose into the monitor and ask what you are doing. No one to keep asking for status. You are at your own leisure.

By the same rule, the room next to the staff room or the front bench is the most horrible place to be (unless you are a nerd) Almost as bad as sitting right next to your boss and his boss AND HIS boss too.

It just now stuck me with all the subtlety of a hammer on my head that that is exactly where I am sitting now. My lead sits to my right, my lead's boss sits to my left and my lead's boss' boss sits right in front of me

Now I have to answer to three men from having to answer to no one.

My cup of joy runneth full ! I cannot stand this anymore.. WAHHHH!!!!!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Oh God!!!

Reading Acts of Faith again, put a bee in my bonnet. There is so much destruction and mayhem being done in the name of religion and god. How did it all come about? Did the stone man have a god? How did he decide; ok let me worship this tree, storm, sun, ocean, river or supreme being and I shall successfully hunt, mate and live to see another day.

As Calvin tells Hobbes (and I paraphrase), Who looked at a cow first and said lets squeeze this and drink whatever comes out of it" :-).

So where did it all start?

From what little I researched, the concept of religion budded in the Middle Paleolithic age ( about 60,000 years ago) when the Homo Neanderthals had just started living in tribes and bands and having social connections with each other. They did not want their dead to be forgotten and hence started burying them with grave goods. This, as Philip Lieberman suggests, is considered the earliest detectable forms of religious practice since it may signify a "concern for the dead that transcends daily life”. The different rituals came in to being as a means of strengthening social bonding and group cohesion.

Then came the animal worship, though I was able to find lots of information on what animals were worshiped (funnily the animals that were worshipped were also sacrificed at their own altar) I was not able to find why they felt the necessity to worship them at all. What made them think, if I worship the bear, I will have good hunting season?

The upper Paleolithic and later the Neolithic showed an abundance of female imagery such as Venus figurines, which led some to believe that societies had a female-centered religion and a female-dominated society then. (I like that.. I surely do!!! :-)). It was during this time that humans started believing in polytheism or existence of many gods. (According to Vincent W. Fallio) by this time special rituals and ancestor worship were being used by the elites in the society to solidify control over their societies, by convincing their subjects that they possessed a link to the spirit world that also gave them control over the earthly realm.

This was handed down to the later Neolithic age, Bronze and Iron ages by when the religions , rituals and symbols were further trimmed down and become more specific to the regions. Sun, Moon, water, air and the planets started taking on mythical and religious significance. Great works of art and literature sprang from them until religions as we know them now evolved.

Basically what started as respect for the dead and an opportunity to bond with other members of the species has grown uncontrollably into a mega money making destructive machine that is running around the world amok.

While I have delusions of becoming agnostic when frustrated, my upbringing precludes me from that. Too, I have to say that I love my religion and my Gods, however they came in being. Sigh!! Just not their tendency to exacerbate fanatics and violence.

PS: Did you know that that Eve or the first woman (called Mitochondrial Eve) lived almost 50,000 - 80,000 years before Adam or the first man (called Y-chomosomal Adam). So we can trace back matrilineally much longer than patrilineally.

Note: Mitochondrial Eve is defined as the woman who is the matrilineal most recent common ancestor for all living humans. Passed down from mother to offspring, all mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) in every living person is directly descended from hers. Mitochondrial Eve is the female counterpart of Y-chromosomal Adam, the patrilineal most recent common ancestor, although they lived thousands of years apart.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Acts of Faith

It feels like all my favourite authors are dropping dead. It was just a few months back that I went on mourning for Michael Crichton, and now (well actually, a month ago) Erich Segal passed away at 72, owing to a heart attack.

His "Love Story" (which actually made me cry, my only consolation then was that my rather stoic brother had tears in his eyes at the end of the book too) was my first book and it had me hooked.

The next book of his, that I got my hands on, was "The Doctor". The summary on the jacket of the book said it was about two friends who fall in love. Being in school and quite a romantic (whose parents had strictly forbidden romance books until college) I was quite happy to devour it. Only to find that the book was more about their lives before they fall in love and marry, which was almost at the end of the book. Quite disappointing!!!

What I didnt realise then, was that it took a little more maturity, than what I had then, to enjoy his books.

I have since then read and enjoyed almost all his books and found them to be introspective, something you can read, think and read some more.

I have to mention his "Acts of Faith" as it remains my all time favourite. God Knows! I must have read that book some 15-20 times. But every time I read it, I find one more facet to enjoy and think upon. And everytime I read this book, I find myself living with the characters and sharing their agony, their love, confusion and happiness.

I shall not say any more, as I am no good at putting my feelings into words, especially when they pertain to books (one of the main reasons why I never write reviews on books)

But I have to say that Erich Segal was a great author and he goes right into my Personal Hall of fame!!! RIP!!!


Friday, February 19, 2010

Video Shoot and me

What can I say! the only time I had ever had a video camera pointed at me (not counting the stuff we do over vactions ofcourse) was during a training I took on interviewing. It was done quite professionally. There was a camera man with this big video camera and the room was rigged with lights and the whole set up was making me nervous as hell. And all this only to play the video back to me and give me the feedbacks on my interviewing skills.

So when two days back a colleague came to me and asked me to speak for a minute or so on a given set of topics for a video, I told him hell NO. Infact so uninterested was I, that loads of pressure from the powers-that-be had to be brought on until I had to capitualte.
Armed with advices on what to speak, what to wear (that grated hmph!) cursing them, I took all of 20 minutes to prepare some haphazard stuff.

But lets be honest, I still had that greasy nervous feeling at the bottom of my stomach at the thought of facing a video camera and also a bit of excitement. I had been told to speak slowly and that each sentence would be taken as a separate shot so that only part of my speech could be used if they so wished, editing, mixing and matching yada yada

Next day I was all made up and armed with a few lines that I had prepared when this organiser comes to let me know they are ready, and I postpone it. I postpone it, until my make up is all gone and I look tired as hell.
Then with no more excuses left , I follow the man to the location, with thoughts of those bright lights and huge camera,... only to enter this tiny conference room, containing just one other colleague with his canon digital camera to shoot the video and a mobile fone to record the audio and no hot bright lights.

hehe.. was not sure if I should laugh or cry. And after the 'shooting" was all done, I was told that after editing, my words might or might not be included in the final video. It all depended on the powers that be.
Anyways spent a day pretty excited over nothing and that was fun in its own way :-)

PS: I dont think I looked any good in the video, but when I asked them to reshoot it, the guy refused saying I was looking quite casual and that was what he wanted (like I care) ... hmph! trust me when I say, I am soo NOT looking forward for this video to come out.

PPS: They reshot the thing again. I dont think this was any better.. But my friend in the next seat begs to differ. I forgot all the lovely phrases and stuff I had written down in the original when I spoke this time :-(... Thats OK, coz I am still not looking forward to the video.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Oh Joy! Another meeting

My company loves acronyms. Absolutely adores them, so much so, that even the most mundane of things are shortened to some acronym or other.

So we had this meeting for the full team of 50 or so folks to discuss PMT on PSN for GDC, which will incorporate PQA, and can be found in PMSS and PTD.By the second acronym I was already in ozone.

The room was nicely darkened and I went in eagerly with the idea of finding a good place right at the back of the conference room and rest my poor eyes.

Since I have always been lucky in such things, all the seats were already taken and it was SRO (hehehe sorry! force of habit.. Standing Room only.. ). So my friends and I perched our small behinds in the little place available on the computer desks to listen to the lady drone.And who comes to stand right next to me , but my boss' boss. Darn! cannot even comfortably whisper and snicker. sigh!

Since time flies when you are having fun, the clock was ticking ever so slowly and my legs were starting to ache, thanks to my awkward perching, and I was squirming all over. A faint smell of sweaty socks was wafting in the closed room, just to make us feel even better.

At last the presentation wound to an end and I jumped off the desk in great relief... when aaargh!!! there were people in the room who had actually been listening to the BS going on and they had questions to ask.. hmph!

Anyways after a clear understanding Einsteins theory of relativity (you know, the one about sitting on a hot stove for a minute, feeling like an hour), I am back at my seat, still feeling dazed and sleepy and cursing fate, for I have another meeting to attend later in the evening.

Friday, February 05, 2010

Obituary: Chivalry and Manners

It’s with great regret that I am writing about the death of manners and chivalry.

Just yesterday, travelling in the public bus, I saw men rushing towards any empty seats, lest any of the women standing might sit in it. But what shocked me was when this guy in his 30s pushed this fragile looking old lady to take an empty seat. She almost fell and he did not even give her a second look… He had got a place to sit and that’s all mattered.
What pushed me right over though was when I got up to give my seat to this hugely pregnant woman, carrying a toddler, and this hale and hearty woman walks in and coolly sits in my seat and refuses to get up. Some people really ought to be tarred in honey and tied to an ant hole.

Most of the mails I get officially lack a “Please” or “Thank you”. Even when it is asking me if I could help out someone and do some work, it comes with a “Can you do….”
I hold the door open for someone coming behind me and they just breeze by me. Hello! Do I look like the automatic door opener here?
One person was actually surprised when I said I would not do the work he wants me to , if he does not send a proper mail to me. He feels that I am being too sensitive. Hmph!
While such people grate on me like a nail scraped on glass, every one else seems fine with it?
Do you also get irritated with such manner less folks? How do you handle it?

Thursday, February 04, 2010

Random Thoughts

=> I told my friend this morning that it was great to be misunderstood as long as the misunderstander has only good things to say about you. My friend gawked at me and asked what I had had for breakfast.. hehe
But seriously, some one told me today that I would make a good mother, since it was really all about love. Now! I dont know if I would be or not but hey it was a really sweet thing to say. What say?!

=> Why do we get angry when we get frightened? Or is that just me?

=> I dont want to go back to school, but I miss my school friends. I am still in touch with most of them, but somewhere down the line they have become intimate acquaintances from best friends. I am still puzzling out how that came to be.

=> My parents make a lot of sense and I seem to be agreeing with them on most issues nowadays.. Oh my God! I must be growing old!!!

=> Speaking of parents, it just stuck me that I wouldn't like to have a kid just like me. My mom has the patience of Job. Hehe

=> Have been reading about all these world travellers and I am SOOO Jealous. I wanna go too. There is this guy who has travelled to 40 countries and I have been to 4 :-(
Thats it! I am going to quit my job and become a World Traveller. Next on Agenda.. Egypt!!! Anyone out there wants to sponsor me? I will send you photos of the sphinx. :-)

=> Why is it OK to say one can do a bit of work, even if they cannot and do not. But Not OK to say its not possible to finish it by the time line given, at the outset. Have you come across such a situation? I have and it always confuses me. It does not show one's reluctance to work, just the lack of resources to complete it. Y'all get it, right?

=> Will I be ostracized if I say I have never seen "The Sound of Music". Heard the songs, seen some posters but never seen the movie. hmm! thats next on Agenda.


Wednesday, January 20, 2010


=>Is there anything worser than sitting at office when u have truckload of new
books sitting at home beckoning slyly at you. if there is I sure dont know. So here I am sitting at office, not able to concentrate on my work and not able to read the books either.. Wahhhh!!!

=> Heard of Transport Jinxes? For some reason yesterday, all my means of transport got jinxed. Wanted to take the metro bus for a change and got into one after 15 minutes of wait. The bus was soooo crowded that I got stomped, groped, screamed at, even had a guy doing some heavy breathing down my neck (ohhhhh! yuck!!!!) and the bus was crawling so slowly, that it took 40 minutes to reach two stops away (my office being 15 or so stops from home). Disgusted, I got down the bus and got into an Auto (for an atrocious amount) which broke down after going some 2/3rd of the distance. My luck was holding good and I could not get any other means of transportation from that place. So had to walk half a mile to the nearest railway station to get a share auto to office. What takes me generally 20 minutes took 1.45 hours and I literally had to drag myself up to my office to flop tiredly. (I shan't even start on how I came back home .. *phew*)

=> Its bad enough being underutilized. but it really gets my goat, when these folks talk intelligibly (read stupidly) on stuff they have no idea about and expect us to take their word as gospel.

=> Well! whaddya know, I seem to have got a following at office. I wouldn't mind it so much if these guys were single too.. hmph!!!!

Saturday, January 09, 2010

3 idiots

I am not a movie buff, I can take or leave it and most of the times I leave it. Hence I had this mild curiousity towards 3 idiots. It had Aamir and was getting all these rave reviews and Chetan Bhagat was upset because his mom cried when he did not get enough credits for the movie and that made "the people" upset. (I actually know one of these upset people too :-O).

So anyways when my team were planning to go to this movie, I snapped up the opportunity to see it.
And I was mildly...hmm! dissatisfied?!

If you are the kind of person who goes to a movie with expectations of depth in the story then this is not the movie for you.

It was 3 hours of laughter riot (with lots of jokes taken from internet and mail forwards) but no real depth.

I don't know how many of you saw the movie Santhosh Subramaniam. In this movie Genelia was supposed to be this really cutesy bubbly naive innocent blah blah character and she ended up acting like a slightly mentally challenged person.

In some scenes in 3 idiots I felt Aamir was doing a Genelia from SS. His wide eyed, over bright expressions were mildly annoying. And oh yeah! whatever Glycerine was left out after Kabhi Kushi Kabhi Ghum was used up in this movie.

I have this aversion to Kareena Kapoor, especially since I had the misfortune to see Kambaqt Ishq, but she had surprisingly done a decent job here.

Anyways if you want to ditch all your worries and laugh and have fun for 3 hours , then be sure to check out 3 idiots.

PS: The last movie I saw was "Achamundu Achamundu", a movie on child abuse taken by an NRI, which was surprisingly tastefully told and got its point across very well. I came back with the satisfaction of having seen a good movie and more ....wanting to do something to change the situation. Wanted to write a separate post on this movie, but somehow never got around to doing it.

Humanity.. where can we buy it?

Its pathetic how inhuman we humans have become. A dying man does not get help, but everyone around him takes great glee in taking photos and video of his suffering until he dies.
Two recent bits of news has disturbed me greatly.

One of the Sub Inspector who was brutally murdered in front of 2 ministers and their entourage which consisted of many of the dying man's own brethren and not a soul to help. The ministers even refused to come near the wounded. There was a great big crowd of people, one guy taking photos of the man bleeding and crying pitiably for help and moaning in pain and not one person felt the need to help. There was another taking a video of the whole thing, which is now being put up as breaking news in all the new channels to pour oil in the political in fighting.
It was only when the Collector came to the site that he called for an ambulance, by which time the police man had died. The ministers find nothing wrong in not helping and the government has promised to pay 7 lakhs and a job to the dead man's family. So the case is closed and everyone is happy. Especially the news channels for some days as they can use this to increase their TRP.

Then there was this other case that happened couple of months back in AIMS Delhi. Our puppet Prime Minister was visiting the hospital for God Knows what, when a man in critical condition was being rushed in. The PM's security refused to let the man in (because despite his critical condition, what if he got up and shot the puppet) and he died just a stone's throw away from help. The PMO dutifully sent across a press release that they were sorry for the man's demise, with which they washed their hands off any responsibility and the man is ofcourse just another road kill.

I dont understand how people are going to "save the environment" when they cannot be bothered to save their own brethren and be absolutely callous about it too... :-(

Friday, January 08, 2010


I am not sure what there is about a swing, that brings out the kid in every person who comes across it.

I dusted out the old swing, that my grand pa used to swing on, from the loft and had it hung in the hall. Since then it has become the central point of interest to all our guests and visitors.

Its cute to see my friends' eyes light up when they see it hanging out there. They dont wanna sit on a chair or sofa. Its almost a compulsion to sit on the swing and give it a couple of mighty pushes.

I was really amused when my dads friend, a sexagenarian if not older, got so excited seeing it. Owing to some leg problem, he even had trouble walking, but he absolutely had to sit on the swing and reminiscence on his childhood and his father who had a similar swing for sleeping.

A swing is almost always a representation of care free times and sweet memories. Swinging in parks, with one person standing and the other sitting. Swinging so high that you feel you can almost touch the sky and the downward swing brings ur stomach rushing up into your throat and you want to stop, until the next swing upwards. The dizziness after a good time swinging.

But the children of today somehow do not seem too excited about swings and other simple pleasures of lives. Poor things, dont know what they are missing

PS: Hey waddya know .. I complete 150 Posts with this one :-).

Saturday, January 02, 2010

2 states

I had been hearing so many raving reviews about the latest book by Chetan Bhagat, that I just had to read it. I had read his first two books with some difficulty, but found the third one was beyond me. After I read this book, though my eyes were opened in many ways.
First, I guess I am too mature to read books like this. It felt like some of these gossipy, schmaltzy stories you get to read in women's magazine. (I am glad to say, most of my friends felt this way too)
I had thought apartheid was over and done with. I didnt realise it was still prevalent in the north indian mindset. I hadn't realised being fair was such a great honour and they thought south indians were blackies.. (i guess, thats like saying all north indians are dumb show offs)
The worst part was the judgemental snobish writing that sneers at the Tamil people's interest. Why should tamils enjoy the same way that Punjabis do? where does it say that you have to be totally out there and scream your enjoyment, your love and every emotion. It seems childish to rate one culture with another culture as yardstick or write about something one has no idea of. For God's sake, since when has a love for knowledge become a bad thing?
If kissing in the middle of a crowded shop is the contemperory fun thing to do, I am not sure we will find many such people in Chennai and thank you god for that.

I have an unfortunate habit of finishing any book I start, which I did with this one too and felt disgusted with myself for having wasted my time on it. (and I am now wasting a few more minutes ranting about it.. coz someone triggered me about that book again.)

My Grandma's Tales....

(Happy New Year 2010!!!! :-) )

It was a hot summer night. The night was heavy with the humidity and smell of ripe mangoes and the grandchildren had come down to visit her. They were a joy and she had been looking forward to this time all through the year. But no one could disagree that her four little joys were also four little tail-less monkeys. They had run her ragged throughout the day and had still not wound down. She could hear them screaming and running and it was dinner time, something she was surely not looking forward to.

Looking out the kitchen balcony she could see the beautiful moon rising out from behind the palm trees when it stuck her.

Armed with mixed rice in a vessel, she called down to her monkeys to come up to the terrace for dinner and she would tell them stories that she had had heard from her mother and they could make it a picnic under a beautiful moon...

(The above URL takes you to my new blog, which contains stories mostly from mythology and folklore that I had heard from my Grandma. An erudite lady who has the knack of making her stories so very interesting that she could hold even us terrors, bent on mischief, spellbound. I have always felt sad that people even of my age (leave alone the next gen) do not really know these lovely old stories and hence decided to do something about it and so here goes... )