Sunday, December 27, 2009

Pop Goes The Corn..

I am not writing about anything exciting. In fact, most of the things I write about are mishaps.

Here's another one.

I recently decided to make some "white chocolate popcorn" (I made that name up). The "recipe" for it was provided by my super cool (ex) boss. Basically, here is what was to be done - get white chocolate, melt it, and pour it over the popcorn. Simple, right?



Because I was involved.

I was in a very relaxed mood that night - I just wanted to watch some tv and do nothing else. Usually I just grab a bag of chips and start munching, but that (fateful?) night I was a little ambitious. I decided to make the "white chocolate popcorn", not the regular popcorn you losers eat.



I started with the white chocolate bar. The bar was sitting in the fridge for a few days so it was as rigid as the stones used to build the Pyramids. I decided to just keep it on the counter to thaw it, but soon ran out of patience. I used my awesome (not really) knife to cut three huge blocks of that chocolate bar and almost ended up stabbing myself in the thumb.

Now was the time to melt those big boys, and so I did.

In the microwave.

For 3 minutes.

And started watching TV.

At the 2nd minute and 50th second I got up to take a gander at the inside of the microwave, and for a moment could not really comprehend the situation.

Why were there angry black bubbles blowing inside the microwave? Is white chocolate supposed to turn black after heating up? I didn't think so either. Those black bubbles made a certain sizzling sound, and I sensed that something was not right.

In fact, nothing was.

I quickly stopped the microwave (with 3 seconds still left) and opened the door to see my tupperware totally massacred! The black bubbles were made not by the chocolate but the melting plastic, when it was crying in pain, and seeking help.

I was flabbergasted. I had completely underestimated the power of the microwave. At that moment I was thinking that melted chocolate straight out of the microwave has the capability of becoming the deadiest weapon ever. A few seconds later I started thinking about the mess that was to be cleaned in my kitchen.

I then realized that those classic vessels and the stove still exist for a reason. I quietly cut three more blocks of the chocolate and put them in a vessel and melted them on low heat on the stove.

Slowly, and patiently.

And within a few minutes (15?) I was pouring some rich and smooth white chocolate over my popcorn.

The end result.

I munched away to glory watching yet another episode of "It's Always Sunny.." on the DVD. Fifteen or so minutes later I smelled something.


With the usual "Oh shit" coming out of my mouth, I leaped and ran towards the stove to see that I had kept the empty vessel on the stove without turning it off! There was just a little bit of chocolate stuck to the bottom here and there, and it was all burning and turning black.

But the damage was not a lot. I quickly washed the pot and the stains went away fairly easily. I kissed my tupperware goodbye (by throwing it in the trash can) and continued to enjoy my popcorn.

All's well that ends well (thanks Boss!).

Good Riddance To..

A lot of people know about this blog now, thanks to that goddamn Blogger application that I installed on Facebook. I didn't like the fact that some assholes who did not know earlier that this blog existed were also reading it and commenting on the "notes". I always had the urge to write about random things that kept coming to my mind but stopped at the last moment because of the reason I just mentioned.

So I uninstalled that goddamned app.

If you are reading this "note" on Facebook then I did not write it.

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Oops, I Did It Again!

A while ago I was thinking about how and where I embarrass myself, and came up with these:

The Hindu temple: I have a knack for saying or doing something that kind of irks the pandit or the people at the temple. The last time I went to the temple was around a month ago because it was an important occasion (and my mom forced me to go). That day I went to the temple wearing a green t-shirt with guitars on it, a faded blue jeans, and Chucks. When I entered the temple, I saw everyone else dressed up nicely (men in formal pants and buttoned shirts or kurta and women in sari)- and immediately felt ashamed of myself. I quickly offered my prayers and sneaked out quietly. To read more about my temple stories, click on the Temple Drama label.

During random conversations: I lose interest very quickly if the conversation is not interesting - I completely stop paying attention. My brain is always looking for opportunities to hibernate, and that is what it successfully does when I lose interest in a conversation. The two things that do not hibernate and remain active all the time though, are my head and vocal chords. So during a "lost interest already" conversation I keep nodding my head, and I keep saying "umhmm, umhmm", "yeah", "sure" and similar things just to maintain the continuity of the conversation without letting the other person know about the situation. But some people are smart - way too smart. They somehow come to know that I am not paying attention. They suddenly stop talking, and ask me, "so what did I just say?". Oops. That is when I shit bricks in my pants and grin like an idiot. I also admit defeat and say "sorry (I wasn't listening)". :D

Note: If you are talking to me and all you hear me say is one of the things I mentioned above, then you (now) know what's going on.

Social gatherings: I was telling someone recently about my "performance" when I am around other people - inconsistent. I can either be very comfortable and keep blabbering and clowning around like a buffoon , or, turn totally antisocial and just keep my mouth shut. Usually the antisocial situation occurs when either I do not know what the people are talking about, or people do not get my jokes. People not getting my jokes is more embarrassing because it's kind of awkward when I am the only one laughing like an asshole at the end of the joke. So if I am with you (and your friends) and I am acting strange, it's your fault.

Accent: It doesn't happen anymore but it used to when I came to the US a few years ago - I obviously had problems understanding the accent. If somebody said something and I didn't understand, I would just reply back keeping in mind the tone of their speech, and go, "yes", or "yeah" or "oh yeah? ha ha ha". I am sure everybody thought I was a jackass.

Note: It still happens once in a while ;-).

I think I am going to embarrass myself even more now. I am not happy about the fact that this post is going to show up on Facebook.


Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Quick Update

It's time to give this old blog of mine some well deserved attention. Blogging has always been fun, and not writing on a regular basis makes me sad. The sister blog should be getting some love from me too.

I will be blogging on ctrl+alt+startup's blog too on a fairly regular basis. So far, I have been doing what I do best - procrastinate. I finally posted something there last night. I hope I made Web Ninja, Code Monkey and Chief Operating Babe proud. Read more about ctrl+alt+startup here.

I also started a new picture blog around an hour ago. I will post some pictures there that I take with my SLR. The idea is to learn and perhaps let others learn. As of now I don't think I would be discussing too much technical jargon, but i hope i do in the near future.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Women And Motor Cycles

A strange question popped up in my mind a few days ago, and the question is - "What are the similarities between women and motor cycles?"

Here are some of the answers I have come up with:
  • They both look good in red or black.
  • They make a lot of noise.
  • You can ride both of them.
  • They can be high maintenance.
  • If you take care of them they make sure that your ride is smooth (no pun intended).
  • Mishandling them may land you in a world of hurt (both emotional and physical).
  • They both look most beautiful when they are just standing in a corner without indulging in any kind of verbal/noise emanating activity.
  • Most of us do not like to share them, but some of us are okay with sharing them with others - on a fairly regular basis.
  • Riding them for too long may cause body (back?) pain.
  • Sometimes you look at somebody else's and instantly wish that you had theirs.
  • If treated well, they both would stay with us for the rest of our lives.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Dream On..

I have been seriously thinking about a lot of things.

Not many people know about it, but when I was a kid I wanted to become a musician. However, growing up in India really meant that I was to focus my energy on my studies. Also, my parents never really encouraged me to learn a musical instrument (they did want me to learn classical music when I was very little, but I refused). I think one of the reasons why they did not encourage me was because they could not have afforded the lessons, the instruments and the works. And again, like I mentioned earlier, they wanted me to focus on my education. 

Since the last few days I am thinking about making my dream come true (I know it sounds very dramatic, but I am seriously thinking about it). I want to be a musician. I am not planning to be in a band and cut an album and tour and all that. I just want to learn a certain instrument very well (guitar?), get some recording gizmo, and make an MP3. That's all I am planning to do. The day I make my mp3, I will smile. My heart would smile. But now the problem is this - I know how to play the guitar, but I don't know how to play the guitar. I mean, I can strum some chords, do a little bit of picking here and there etc., but when it comes to the technicalities of it - I fail. I fail because I do not know most of the stuff associated with good guitar playing. If you ask me to tune down my guitar half a step I wouldn't know how to do it. So my plan is:

Learn to "really" play the guitar: I had ordered a set of "Learn Rock Guitar" DVDs around 8 - 9 months ago. I did do a few lessons from it but lost interest later. It's time to relearn those lessons and learn new ones.

Record stuff: I don't know how to record. I looked up recorders and mixers and stuff on and got totally lost and confused. None of the jargon used to explain the functionalities of those gizmos made any sense to me. So I ordered this. I would learn what the things do first, and then order stuff and learn to use them.

Create MP3 and distribute it for free.

Sounds simple, no?

Another dream of mine has always been to learn photography - like really learn stuff and click amazing pictures using the technalities involved in photography, and not just click pictures with my point and shoot randomly without knowing what is really going on in those pictures. For that I would require an SLR.

I looked up some cool SLRs online today, and instantly shat my pants. Those cameras are not cheap - even the ones for beginners are around 500 bucks. I checked Amazon, and BeachCamera. And then I checked Best Buy. I had almost given up hopes of buying an SLR when a certain offer grabbed my attention on Best Buy's website - "no interest on orders of 499 and up if paid in full in 18 months."


So I applied for their credit card...

And got it instantly!

At that very moment I ordered the Canon Rebel XS, and went to the store to pick it up, with a smile on my face of course! I picked it up, came back home,  and opened the box only to find out that they had actually given me the Rebel XSi, and not the XS, which is a lot more expensive and has better features! I looked at my clock and realized that the store was about to close in 10 minutes. I called them to let them know of the mistake they had made, but they did not answer. I tried again. Same thing. Then I emailed the store general manager explaining the entire situation. I wrote that I want what I paid for, and that I would return it tomorrow and get the XS. The XSi is now sitting in my room inside its box, doing nothing.

But atleast I am glad that I have started chasing dream # 2. I am hoping to learn a few tricks quickly and click some nice pictures.

Oh and ofcourse, dream # 1 should hopefully see the light of the day some time soon too :-).

And yes, as of now, my parents' dream of me getting married soon can go to hell :-).

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

I just wish I had spent some more time with a few people I did not spend so much time with.

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

I Ain't Got No Money, Honey..

Common sense finally prevailed.

I did not buy the Streamium or the iPod dock, and I don't plan to buy any of those in the near future. I bought a vacuum cleaner instead, and I am glad I did. I brought it home and used it for like 2 minutes, just to test it, and it did wonders! After turning it off I saw the amount of dust it had in its dust compartment or whatever it's called, and I was both amazed and ashamed at the same time. Amazed because of the power and efficiency it managed to display, and ashamed because in just two minutes I realized that I have been living with filth around me for a very long period of time. The last I had vacuumed with my older crappy vacuum cleaner was about four months ago (maybe more, I don't know).

And I bought a 16 piece dinner set, because my folks are coming over for around a month, and I really did not have any decent plates,bowls and spoons to serve food to them in.

And then..

..I bid on two tickets to U2's concert in Chicago [the bitch]. I had to bid on them because obviously the show is sold out, and I have been thinking that this might be my only chance to see them ever, since they are getting older and may not tour in the future. Of course, there are more reasons that defy common sense, but what the hell, you only live once. Just last night I found out that Snow Patrol is opening for them, so that kind of motivated me all the more to get those tickets, although secretly I am hoping to be outbid/ sniped by somebody else.

And I am going to Normal this weekend because a couple of my friends are graduating, and then to Champaign to meet a good old friend of mine, and I am pretty sure that I would end up spending quite a substantial amount of money when I am there. 

And I got my car serviced this month, so spent a little bit on that.

Oh of course, how can I forget my bills - I have not yet paid them, and I hate paying them. So I have to still make way for a few hundreds of dollars. I sometimes feel that access to electricity, Internet and car insurance should be our birth right and we should not really pay for these man made necessary evils, but then that's just me I guess.

I am pretty sure that I will go broke by the 10th of this month.

So here's my plan.

I recently used a few amazing coupons and got a 5 lbs bag of potatoes for 88c (which is usually around 4 - 5 bucks). I also bought a loaf of bread for 38c (original retail price - $1.18). Now, my plan is to survive on just potatoes and bread until my parents come here. No Chinese, no Indian, no Pizza, no nothing. I will be a caveman for the next 15 days or so and try my best to survive. I think I will buy more bread because I am pretty sure that the loaf I have right now would vanish in the next 2-3 days. 

Hopefully a potato a day would keep the doctor away.

Monday, May 04, 2009

Incidental Expenses Are So Heavy..

Just this morning I was telling my best friend about how I do not know what I spend my money on, and we both agreed that it is almost certainly impossible to save money, however hard(ly?) we try. He asked me if I bought something new, and I said no, which is true. I have not bought a single interesting gizmo in the last so many months.

After talking to him and a few cups of chai later, something made me go to Amazon's website. Since I was already there I decided to look for some cool electronics stuff. Since I now have an iPod, I decided to look for docking stations for it, convincing myself that I really need one just because they can so conveniently connect the iPod to my stereo, play music and charge it at the same time. I did like one, and almost decided to buy it when my eyes managed to spot one of those ultra cool Streamiums that I had always wanted but could not really get it because they are so expensive. Anyway, I forgot about the dock and started exploring the Streamiums. Philips launched a really cool Streamium last december called the NP2900/37, which I fell totally in love with. The biggest advantage of that player is that I can log in to my Rhapsody account through it and play songs  - without the computer. It only needs an Internet connection - wired or wireless. It can also wirelessly connect to the computer and play songs from the hard drive. And oh yeah, it has Internet radio, which means that I can possibly listen to a gazillion Internet radio stations from around the world. I almost decided to buy it, but something kept stopping me. Then I did a feasibility study. 

I already have a Philips micro system that connects to my computer and plays music that exists on my hard drive. If my computer is turned on then I can access any music website that exists on the Internet and play music, including Rhapsody,, and Pandora to name a few. If I want Internet radio, I can always use Winamp or go to any other random website that has Internet radio stations. The only disadvantage, if at all it is one, is that there is a USB cable dangling between my computer and the stereo, whereas with the new Streamium it would all be done wirelessly. So, after around 10 hours of thinking and debating, I decided not to spend $230 on something that would really not add value to my experience. Oh, and I decided not to spend $140 on the dock also. I will continue to use the RCA cable that I have to connect my iPod to the stereo, for which I paid $3 around a year ago.

But you know what I really want? A vacuum cleaner. Seriously, I want one really bad. The one I have is really crappy and just doesn't do anything. For me, vacuuming with that vacuum cleaner means literally (hand) picking stuff from the floor and breaking my back. 

But again, something always stops me. I feel that I just should not spend too much on a vacuum cleaner.

I know I am wrong.

And of course like I always say, I know how good my bad luck is. While Amazoning today my computer's power adaptor died, and my computer's got like 50 minutes of power left in it. Now I will really really have to buy a power adaptor. This is something I cannot avoid. The adaptor had died two years ago also, and I had paid 90 bucks back then to get a new one. 

Oh fudge.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Deja Vu..

My friends often complain to me about how their parents are always digging their noses in to everything, and that they are so interfering and annoying that my friends just want to move to a different city so that they could stay away from their parents and live in peace and enjoy the freedom, do whatever they feel like, and most important of all, not be annoyed by illogical and irrelevant arguments.

That kind of always bugged me, and to be honest, I felt really bad - not for my friends, but for their parents because (until a week ago) I had not seen my parents in three years, and in the last three to four months or so, was getting a little homesick. In the last three years, I missed them a lot, and always yearned for their love and comfort they have given me. That is the only reason why I could not comprehend the fact that my friends were trying to run away from their parents.

My parents came here a week ago.

Like I said earlier, I saw them after three years, and obviously, was totally thrilled. I totally loved their presence around me. I love my mom and was very very glad to see her.

However, it's been just one week, and I am beginning to remember my days of freedom that I have enjoyed in the last few years. I have started to understand why my friends are trying to run away from their folks. I have realized that kids change, but parents don't.

Don't get me wrong though. I love my parents - to the bone. But there are so many things that are somewhat annoying me, and when I look back, I realize that this is how it's been right form the beginning...

My dad loves politics, which essentially means that he loves to discuss politics with whoever is around him. Unfortunately, I am the one who ends up around him these days, and he asks me random questions. Now seriously, I have no problems answering his questions, but he has a certain answer in his mind which defies all kinds of logic, and he expects my answer to be as close to his answer as possible.

I think my dad has a problem accepting technology and the amazing things it can let you do. My sister goes to work and usually I am either on the computer, or on my phone - Facebooking. My dad is always intrigued - he keeps wondering why I keep punching buttons on my phone all the time. I don't tell him that I Facebook - explaining the entire phenomenon to him would be another daunting task that I am not sure I can handle very well. Plus, I would have to tell him the pros and cons of social networking, and listen to his theories about how technology is killing the beautiful art of letter writing.

He also thinks that there is a reason for everything - and that he is supposed to know all those reasons. He wonders why the person living downstairs smokes so many cigarettes, why there is a doormat at the entrance (duh, right?), why my sister and I grocery shop like the world's going to end tomorrow, etc. My sister and I more often than not fail to answer his questions. Even if we provide an answer, I am sure it does not meet his expectations.

My mom always wants me to eat. If I am sitting idle (read Faceooking on phone) she thinks I am hungry and instantly asks me to eat something - like repeatedly. She also cannot comprehend why we buy so many items when we grocery shop. 

Just yesterday all of us went to my sister's boss's house for dinner. Now, to be honest, I have changed a lot in the last so many years. I mean, my sense of humor, the way I talk, the way I smile and all that jazz has definitely changed, and I myself can feel it. There was a time when I would totally get a panic attack when someone talked to me about cigarettes or booze in front of my parents, but not anymore. Last night I cracked a few booze jokes at my sister's boss's house and we all were laughing like cute donkeys. Well, not sure if we all were laughing - I forgot to see my dad's reaction. He is totally against alcohol and cigarettes and meat and all that jazz, and I am pretty sure that after last night my dad thinks that I am an asshole.

My mom was surprised by how outspoken and "stylish" I was. She probably thought that I am an asshole when it comes to socializing and all that, but I surprised her. She thought I have an american accent though. My sister and I think I don't, and that is absolutely correct.

So anyway, a few shockers here and there have been experienced, and memories from childhood have been brought back - in just one week. It is amazing how parents don't change one bit. They are as stubborn as mules, and so are the kids. However, it is kind of fun when we all argue about immaterial things, trying to prove that the rest of the gang is absolutely wrong. All of us in my family have different personalities - my dad and sister are the kind of annoying ones with their unlimited questions and Hitlerism whereas my mom and I are the patient ones, who keep their cool all (most?) of the time. 

Being with family is both fun and unfun.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

A Lesson Unlearnt..

Andre now knows very well that he cannot learn lessons from the past. He has been through this before - three times to be precise, and every time, he had prayed to get out of it and had promised himself that he would never again get into a similar situation. That he would use his brains, and that he would not let his heart take any decisions.

But here he is, doing the same thing, going through the same thing. Cannot think about anything else, and cannot do anything else. Uncertainty is a part of the game, yet he always dives into it, knowing that he may be utterly disappointed in the end, or perhaps, right at the beginning. But there is something that keeps encouraging him, and provokes him to go forward. Something that gives him confidence and courage, something that keeps him moving. Something that puts words in his mouth, and something that doesn't stop him from expressing himself. 

It is not something normal, but rather weird. It doesn't happen to him very frequently, but when it does happen, it just makes him do crazy things. It makes him go and achieve it. It makes him give it everything he got, because he feels it is so beautiful.

He is going to do it again. We do not know what it has in store for him, but he will do it anyway. Just like always.

And no, he is not listening to his brain.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Your Samosa Makes Me..

It's amazing how people come up with something so interesting that it immediately catches your attention and before you even know it, becomes a part of your life. 

One such amazing concept, or let's jusy say a website, is It is a site where people from all over the world post amazingly ridiculuously hideously uncreative logos that represent local or perhaps national businesses. The idea of a logo I guess is to tell people what the business it is associated with does. The prettier the logo, the more impressed customers would be, maybe resulting in an increased clientele in the future. But what if the logo is crappy? Such a logo perhaps tells the customers that the business is as bland and unimaginative as the logo itself, and that going to that business may only result in murder.

I like this site not only because I get to see the best worst logos, but also because the people who post them write hilarious descriptions, which obviously adds to the super unawesomness of the logo.  I used to check this website a few times a week, but I just realized recently that I check this website atleast once a day now - just  like Facebook. I appreciate humor in my life, and does an awesome job in supplying humor to me on a daily basis.

Another awesome site that I really like is called, which is as interesting as the name itself. It targets desis around the world and encourages them to post news articles about India, original blogs, stories, and tweets on the various forums on that site. Extremely simple yet easy to use, YoSamosa lets you do unlimited things in YoSamosa land in various groups and forums. Still in its early stages, YoSamosa is yet another site that I see myself totally hooked on to in the coming days.

What I like about this site is that it has some really smart people on it who post smart articles, unlike other sites like Humsurfer and Indianpad, where all you see is junky articles and videos that are posted by their users just for heck of it. 

I see YoSamosa as a meeting point for students who want to discuss and exchange project materials, people belonging to certain communities who want to organize an event in their local areas, and for normal users like me (and you?) who are interested in reading interesting stuff and exchanging ideas. 

There are very few things that catch my attention, and yourlogomakesmebarf and yosamosa are two of them. I expect to see a lot of action from these sites in the future. Stick around!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Thanks For Reading, Dear..

The thing that really really annoys me is when I am addressed as "Dear" by someone. For example, If I get an email or a message that starts with "Hi Dear" or How are you dear" -  I freak out. I freak out even more when the email or message ends with "take care dear" or "bye dear". It is the worst end to a usually awesome email. And the funny thing is that only Indians seem to do this. Even guys. Okay, I can understand when a message from a girl comes with an extra coating of dearness - they are generally affectionate, and loving, and caring, and many (some?) of them believe in displaying their qualities with no or minimal subtleties.

But when guys do the same thing, I start to make faces, because that really disgusts me. I don't like it when guys go "ok take care dear, bbye!" or "Hey, remember me dear?", and like I said, for some reason unknown to me, or perhaps to mankind, only Indian folks do it. I don't know how it got in to their (our?) system, but it is devastating. The word makes me queasy for atleast four minutes, after which I promise myself that I would never use that word in a sentence ever. 

Another thing that annoys me is the bunch of emails with cute little puppies, kitties, babies, or very pretty flowers with the message "Good morning" or "have a great day", or something utterly similar and cliched and stupid. I mean, why in the world do you think your email would add goodness to my morning or greatness to my day? Do you think I would be pleased by looking at those animals and flowers so pretty that they are not at all seen in the real world, but only in emails sent by you awesomely brain dead imbeciles who think cuteness in an email somehow adds value to a certain someone's day? Oh and yeah, have you ever noticed how these emails are sent by the same assholes again and again, on a fairly regular basis?

It's just amazing how people keep doing the same thing for years as if it were their moral responsibility. Ask them to lend you some money, and they won't.  Try to borrow their video game or DVD for a day or two, and they would flatly refuse. But they would most certainly forward you those sickening emails that only make your day worse, even if you told them that they should stop those forwards with immediate effect. 

The worst part is when you notice that your name is the first in the huge "To" list on that email. 


Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Hey Pig Piggy Pig Pig Pig..

Summer has not even approached and tragedy has struck already. 

Trent Reznor had announced last year that his 2009 tour would perhaps be the last tour ever, and after that tour NIN would retire. So I had decided that I would see them for sure this year, come what may. But then things can never be easy in my life, right? 

My folks would be with me when NIN comes to Chicago to perform, and I don't think a good son would leave his parents alone and drive 400 miles to watch a concert (I have saved that idea for the Coldplay concert though, since it's only in Des Moines and I would be back the same night!). So I checked their tour dates again and found out that they are performing in Tampa on May 9th. I said swell, and almost made plans of going there to see NIN. But that very night a friend of mine called me and invited me to his graduation ceremony at Illinois State, which, as luck would have it, is on May 9th. 

I just couldn't say no.

A tear dropped from my left eye as I thought about how I would never be able to see NIN ever in my life again.

Okay, a tear did not drop, but I was a little sad. NIN does not and perhaps never will come to India to perform. I had a chance to see them, and lost it. But it's okay. It's really not a big deal. I will have fun at the graduation ceremony anyway. It's so much fun to watch the ceremony, especially when you don't have to work at the venue from 7:00AM to 4:00PM 3 times a year, like I did :-(. 

Boy, how I hated those saturdays!

I hope Trent Reznor changes his retirement plans.
Sometimes I feel that I am way too honest and open on this blog. I probably should think twice before posting just about anything here simply because I don't want some people to know about what's going on in my life. 

Because they are assholes. 

Monday, March 30, 2009


I finally decided to retire my favorite pair of shorts, after five fine years.

This pair was gifted to me by my sister when I had come here for the first time in May 2004. They were so darn comfortable and nice that I wore them almost everyday. But age and more than normal wear and tear started taking a toll on their health, and the poor shorts started showing signs of ill health and sadness. I still wore them, thanking them and appreciating their ruggedness. But alas, all good things must come to an end, and so did my shorts.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Are You THE Marcus Fenix? The One That Fought At Asho Fields?

Finished it today. I know I am a wee bit late, but I am glad I got a chance to play it. I think GOW is the best game I have played till date. The story line lacked flow (not a big deal), but then we are all just grunts, right? We do as we are told, and that is all that matters. It is actually not a very lengthy game. I think I finished it within a month, playing around one hour every day. I really want to play GOW2 now, but I don't think I am willing to spend 60 bucks on a game. Or maybe I will buy a used disc for half the price. 

Finishing this game was on my mind for a few days now, and I finally did it. I think I will now relax for some time, before starting a new game. I do have an unfinished NFS Pro Street to take care of, but I just feel that racing games are not fun anymore. Would see what NFS Shift has in store for us. I did see the preview on Xbox Live, and I wasn't really impressed. The last NFS game that I liked was Most Wanted - Carbon and Pro Street are kind of sucky to some extent.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Andre's Adventure

I did not know what was in store for me. The sun was gone, and darkness had crept in. It did not come alone, though. It brought with it its friend and my nemesis - the wind. I still walked towards the orifice and got sucked in immediately. The moment of lightnessness ended in a few seconds, and I saw a dingy corridor. I walked a few steps and found myself right outside the power chamber. 

I entered the chamber and saw a red light emanating from the corner, which instantly vanished when I turned on my flashlight. I stood there and observed - snakes resting in a corner, books untouched and unread, grotesque art hanging on the wall, and a mirror powered by electrons. The mirror lit up when I touched it, and it showed me the map. 

I studied it for hours and realized that it had missing information. Suddenly I became nervous. I knew that the only way to get the missing information was to stare at it without blinking. 

When I stared at it for a  few minutes I noticed new lines developing on the map. I continued to stare, and the lines continued to develop. After a while I got tired. I decided to come back some other time to complete the map. I realized that the bovine army might discover and seal the orifice, but decided to take my chances anyway. I was completely drained.

I walked out of the power chamber to reach the orifice. I was sucked in again, only to be thrown out in the open. I walked up to my chariot, and climbed up. With the full moon shining on me, and a cool breeze slapping me in the face, I roamed the city in my worthy vehicle, like a satisfied man. 

One Of Those Days..

What a day it has been.

 When work load is a little high and there is a deadline to be met, people generally slog like donkeys and try to be as productive as possible. But it's just the opposite in my case. 

I had 5 cups of coffee in the first two hours of the day (was kind of grossed out by the time I finished half of the fifth cup), and then facebooked the entire rest of the day. I did feel guilty at regular intervals, but hell, it was not enough make me feel ashamed of myself and get me back to work. I even stayed back a little bit today. Well, that sounds stupid and bizarre, considering the fact that I was not at all productive today. I actually stayed back because I had started a stupid "It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia"  trivia session on Facebook, and I was hell bent on getting atleast 2000 points. 

I finished with 2100.

Well, it's a friday, so my actions are somewhat justified. I think.

Now I am thinking that my boss would see this post and fire me immediately, just like the girl who got fired even before she started her work at Cisco.

Oh well.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Wounds & Cables..

I did not go running today. Instead, I saved myself 50 bucks by doing something that I had been wanting to do for a long time.

I spent hours today and finally, after a couple of knife and screw driver stabs in my left hand, I successfully managed to connect my XBox to my home theater.

In case you are wondering why/how I got hurt trying to make some cable connections, you should read this article. I basically did it to save $50. So I guess a little bleeding and a couple of wounds are okay when it comes to saving a lot of money.

My sunday afternoon in pictures:

Just Do It..

Oh wow.

Okay, I think I should quickly type something here and push the "Publish post" button before I get bored and save this post as a "draft" and just forget about it. February was a weird month - in terms of blogging, that is. I started many posts, but got bored writing them (in minutes) and never finished and posted any of them.

So, I started my day today (at 11) by looking out of my bedroom window and noticing how sunny and beautiful it was outside. After a while, made myself a few cups of tea, and bought some music on Amazon - not full length albums, but a few selected songs of Rabbi Shergill and The Dandy Warhols.

I have plans of going out to run. It really is very nice outside, and after a traumatic winter (like every year) , I would not let myself spend a day like today in the confinement of my dingy apartment. By the way, I always wanted a partner who would run/exercise with me but could never find one. But just this morning my sister told me that she has started exercising - for like 20 minutes everyday. Now, that was delightful news for me, and I too plan to exercise every (other?) day at home, and of course, run too. We'll see how that goes.

Today, for some reason, I am very relaxed. I think it's the weather outside. Like I said, I plan to go run sometime in the noon, and then go get a book from the library. Maybe I should get "The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test" again. I had brought it last month too, but had to return it without reading.

Okay, this post is good to go. I shall push the Publish Post button now.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

The more I drink coffee, the more I yawn.

Friday, February 13, 2009

A Messed Up World

"I have seen a lot - more than you can imagine. I find myself dealing with tough situations all the time. For me, the sky has never been blue. The air has never been fresh. My life smells like rancid milk. But I perhaps shouldn't complain too much, because things are getting better. Slightly.

I like my work. I enjoy going to my office everyday. I have made some really good friends at my workplace, and I cherish their friendship. My life has been tough right from the beginning, but I have started to enjoy it. At least that is what I would like to claim, and for that I thank the bunch of dear friends I have. I have started to believe that life is beautiful.

But perhaps I am one of those who can never be happy. I mean, I am not supposed to be.

I was sexually assaulted by someone I know very well today. Just because I am a woman and just because I had a few drinks with him made him think that he could do anything. With Me.
To me.

My life is shattered. I am disappointed. I can't tell anyone about it, and I don't want to take this secret to my grave. I want justice but don't know where to get it. I want justice but don't know how to get it. I want happiness but don't see it anywhere in vicinity. I want happiness but by now I am pretty sure it is not meant for me.

Misery is my best friend, and that doesn't make me too happy.

Did someone say I can buy happiness? I am sure they will run out of it by the time I reach the store.

This is something I can't forget for the rest of my life. A scar has been made on my body that will never go away. I am an educated and independent woman, but still very susceptible to exploitation by evil men.

I just hope this incident would not bother me too much. I have cried enough, and now I want to live my life with my head and chin held up high. I know I am a strong woman, but if this happens again, I honestly wouldn't know what to do."

Friday, February 06, 2009

I Promise I Will Eat Only At Home..

I am on a mission this month.

I am trying to see how good I am - at not eating outside. At all.

At the beginning of this month, I decided to give it a shot. Well, actually, there is a reason why I am doing it. Looking at all the layoffs happening around the world, I thought, "What if this happens to me one day?". Being a single guy I know that I have the liberty to eat outside whenever I want to. Not that I don't cook - I do, but if you read my previous posts, you would know that I am kind of getting tired of cooking everyday. Well, again, assuming that I get laid off in the near future, eating out frequently would not be such a good idea. So, I thought I would do a "dress rehearsal", if you will. I promised myself that I would not eat outside at all this entire month, and see how I take it. I am not trying to be frugal, or whatever, but I just want to see if I can do it or not.

So, on 1st February, I brought loads of grocery items, and decided to finish all the dals and other sundry stuff that's sitting in my kitchen cabinet for months before going again to the grocery store.

Today is day 6 of the month. I hope I keep my promise to myself.

Thank God it's not a leap year ;-).

Monday, February 02, 2009

Why Me?

I am just wondering why there is always a newspaper in one of the stalls in the bathroom when I just go to pee, but none when I go to crap? Don't I have the right to relax while crapping? Or was I born to live without privileges?

Friday, January 30, 2009

What Is The Probability Of..?

Would definitely like to read this book someday. I wish this book was available when I was a student. Not that I did not grasp the concepts when I was in school - Dr. Chaudhury made sure that I did, but perhaps I would have scored an A instead of the usual B had I read this book.

Just a thought.

Update on 10/25/2010: I had to increase the size of the image because I am trying a new feature called Stipple It ( that lets you add comments and descriptive information about the object(s) in the picture. For example, if you move your pointer over to the dot on the picture displayed above, you will see a window pop up with two icons - shopping cart and more info. You can buy the buy by just clicking on the Stipple It dot! Sadly Stipple It does not work on images less than 200 X 400 :-(.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Please Vote For Me..

Just finished watching an independent film called "Please Vote For Me" on PBS which is about holding elections for the first time in an elementary school in China (Guhan) to elect the class monitor. After watching this movie my evergrowing fascination for China went further north, but for a moment I thanked God that my childhood was not spent in China.

The story is about 3 candidates - Xu Xaiofei, a girl; Cheng Cheng, perhaps the naughtiest boy in the class; and Lou Lei, the current class monitor (also a boy). The selection process starts with a talent show (which I missed), and goes on to a debate round in which all the three candidates confront each other on a one on one basis. Cheng Cheng and Xu are first, and Cheng totally insults her. He tells her that she cries, and lacks confidence. He also tells her that she is a slow eater to which she replies back saying that it's a personal habit. Cheng cleverly tells her that she should be setting examples for other students if she becomes the class monitor. If she eats slowly, then how does she expect the other kids to eat fast?

After the debate, Cheng tells Xu that she should have been prepared. She runs away from the camera - crying.

Lou and Cheng - Cheng tells Lou that he is a dictator, and a fascist! He also goes on to say that if elected, he would be a manager, and not a dictator. He would treat everyone equal, and that he would not pull anyone's clothes. Lou defends by saying that he is strict because if he is not then the other kids won't listen to him. "Parents beat their children when they misbehave" is what he adds, to which Cheng quickly says, " You are not an adult".

I should perhaps not divulge more details about this fascinating story about 8 year olds and the adults in their lives, all pushing the little kids to extremes, telling them about their failures, about what they would do when they grow up if they give up now; the speeches, the giving of "gifts" to influence votes, and the "quick thinking" of those little kids that always keeps them in the competition.

At first I was a little upset when I saw the parents discussing the election with their kids, preparing speeches, and making the kids memorize them("Watch your tone and expressions"), and getting annoyed when the kids did not listen. If I were a 8 year old in China, I probably would have ran away from my house. But, we as Indians are not new to pressure. We have been asked to meet our parents' demands all the times, and we have always tried to fulfill them - how many times we succeeded (or failed, in my case) is a different story.

I am just amazed at the so many things that cultural differences have taught me.

Here's a preview of "Please Vote For Me":

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Not Again!

First there was "I am a Mac", and then came "I am a PC" (after Jerry Seinfeld and Bill Gates totally sucked ass on the pointless MS commercials). Now, there's "I am an IBMer". The IBM commercials, however, are not about making fun of the competition, but more about CSR and innovation in technology that would help the planet. It's kind of fun to watch these commercials, but when all the folks go "I am an IBMer", I go, "seriously?". I mean, couldn't they really come up with something truly unique, something that would make IBM stand out from the rest of them, and that would make an IBMer proud? Hearing them go "I am an IBMer" on TV just makes me think that Apple is indeed a great company for having started a trend (yet again). Cheers to Apple's creativity, and boo to IBM's "let's just use their's" tactic ( or the lack of effort in coming up with something really nice and IBMish). Or did IBM hire the same ad agency that made the "I am a Mac" commercial? Whatever the case may be, the new IBM commercials are cool, but "I am an IBMer" somehow sounds a little lame.

Btw, Circuit City going out of business was a total shock to me. The company shut down overnight, and immediately released majority of its 34,000 workforce.


Wednesday, January 14, 2009

So Long, vsrao!

"Our records indicate you have left Illinois State University. You will lose electronic access in 1 days as described below.If you are a student, register for at least one class before January 15th, 2009 to avoid losing electronic access.On January 15th, 2009, your email account will be permanently removed. If you have an email forward set up, it will stop forwarding your email on this date.On January 15th, 2009, your ULID account will be permanently removed, and you will lose access to all ULID services, such as email, iCampus, Datastore01, Milner Library, etc.For more information, refer to . You may deactivate your ULID account before January 15th, 2009 by going to .Questions about this message may be directed to the University Computer Help Desk at 309-438-HELP (4357).Thank you,Computer Infrastructure Support Services"

My last link with Illinois State would break tomorrow. The Ulid vsrao would be permanently disabled, and my ilstu identity would cease to exist.

I am sad.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Wrongness in the Right..

I think I am at that stage of my life where I have to explain to everyone about why I am the way I am. Explanations were not really a part of my life around a few years ago because I was surrounded by people who knew me inside out, and vice versa. Living with roommates also was not really a problem because in three years even they got a general idea of what I was. But now I am surrounded by people who I don't know very well, and when I do or propose to do something - they question. They either ask "why" questions, or they think that I shouldn't be doing what I plan to do at all. Some of them think that I am a really sweet guy (which I guess I am, to some extent), but I always have to tell them that in my younger days I have had my share of fun. I have done a few extreme things that I am not really proud of, but I am not ashamed of them either. Indulging in such things is a part of growing up after all.

So anyway, justifying my actions is slowly becoming a way of life, which to be honest, is annoying. I sometimes miss my friends a lot, simply because I am sure I would have been a totally different person (my usual self, if you will) if they were around me.

I have mellowed down a lot (I think) which is perhaps both good and bad. Good because it suits my age, and bad because I don't want it to suit my age. I want to be a wild animal like before, but miss the people who would help me become one.

I want catalysts who would bring my wild self back to life.

Monday, January 05, 2009

Are You Serious?

I am slightly irritated right since morning. I spoke to my mom this morning and what she told me came as a total shock. She wants me to get married. It was one of those "enough already" talks. Suddenly. My mom thinks this is the right time to get married. I asked what happened to the deal that we had about me not getting married for 2 years (one year is gone, btw). She said we would have to start looking now - it is a tedious process apparently. I told my sister about my chat with mom, and she also seconds mom's sentiment. She wants to talk to me in detail about all this.

So now I have no support whatsoever. I used to look at my single friends and kind of sympathised with them when they said that their parents are pressuring them to get married. I am one of them now I guess. Well, my parents are not really pressuring me, but it might just start - you never know.

Mom also said that I should reduce/quit smoking and drinking if I haven't already. I said I have quit smoking. She said she was glad I said that. She also told me that I should change my lifestyle and that I should be more accomodating and all that.

Man, it's a very strange and awkward feeling. My life would totally change if I get married. I cannot see myself doing things that I normally do, with another person. It's so weird.

My brain has not been functioning since morning. I have been thinking about this. Oh God!

Thursday, January 01, 2009

Happy New Year!

Here's wishing a very happy new year to one and all. I hope this year brings cheer and happiness to all of us. The global recession is a bitch, but I just hope our lives are not affected too much by it. 

May peace and prosperity reign this year. 


The Thin Black Line..

You know what else I  hate?

I hate butt cracks of men taking a sneak peek at me when their pants  slide down a little bit. It's just so damn gross. 

Especially when it's hairy.