Thursday, November 30, 2006

Buttered! All of Me!!!

When I was a little kid, my sister gave me a nickname that would get me all riled up! Things used to magically slip through my fingers, right out of any stronghold grasp that I could muster! Going by my track record; now that I look back upon the past years of my life and try to count the number of times I've dropped things, I realize that it's no wonder that my sister started calling me butterfingers, eons ago!!! The fingers on my hands and the toes on my feet are proving to be embarrassingly insufficient to count the number of aah, she's dropped it again! incidents!!! I wonder whether the strands of my hair will hold good for the same!

Butterfingers was I then, and butterfingered still, am I now!!! Have I lived up to the name, or what!?! Things still slip so easily out of my grasp that I can put a slab of salted butter, to shame!!! Also, surprisingly enough, just when my fingers should be at their un-buttered? best, they turn Brutus, stabbing me on the back with undisguised élan!!! I must say, a pack of nice, round eggs, are my absolute bane! They just don't seem to want my company for a few paces, let alone, a few seconds! I've had innumerable bad egg days, two among them, being the most recent and prominent.

I was visiting some friends, and the sweethearts that they are, they said they'd make me some lovely dessert! The only chore I had was to buy half a dozen eggs. Buy them I did, and managed to get them safely into the elevator too; it was while getting out of the elevator that the eggs decided that they'd been nice to me for way too long! I had two other bags with me, and while I was practicing my juggling skills, the eggs sneaked right out of my hand and woe of woes, went splat! on the floor!!! I couldn't believe the traitors!!! They'd done it again!!! What a pack of suicide bombers! There they were, seemingly grinning, even as their life yolks trickled slowly out of them! My face all ashen and sullen, I let my friends know what had transpired between me and the eggs. Needless to say, I did not hear the end of it for a long long time! Not that I still don't hear about it! The story is recounted at every available opportunity! Another time, just when I was leaving for work, I knocked over a bottle on the kitchen ledge. It did create quite a ruckus, knocking over another bottle that had dared to be in its way, and then rolled right out the open door, before thundering down the stairs! I hurriedly picked it up from where it had come to rest and placed it on the ledge, not having time to assess what all it had vanquished on its warpath! When I returned home in the evening, having, by then, forgotten all about the morning's episode, I was utterly dismayed to be greeted by a packet full of broken, oozing eggs!!! <sigh!!!> Oh! Did I forget to mention?!? I almost broke another set last evening! What else could be the germ of this post!?!

Waiting to Pop Right Out!!!

Pic Courtesy: Google

It's not just eggs that my buttery fingers wreak havoc on! My cell phone has also been on the receiving end many a time! It's a wonder that it still allows me to make and answer my calls, rather than customizing its ring tone to yell "keep your hands off me!!!", every time my buttery self goes anywhere near it!!! Come to think of it, I can't get my own self to stay put on the ground for long, too! I think I'm buttery all over; it's not just my hands!!! That'll explain all my slipping and tripping and falling, not to mention my broken arms and legs episodes! Woah!!! It's not me, you guys; I'm just ALL buttered!!! <grin!>

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

A Birthday Token...

For a very dear friend...

As another year comes to a close,
A new one rears its beautiful head,
May this year see you bloom, like a rose,
To happiness, may you be continually led!!!

With truckloads of love and many smiles,
I send you, this little birthday song,
May, in joy, you abound, for miles and miles,
And, may you happily live, forever long!!!

As I bring this birthday song to an end,
In it, my wishes for you, will forever brew,
May this token, every forlorn day, mend,
And, keep you happy, through and through!!!

Pic Courtesy: Google

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

The Light at the End of the Tunnel!!!

As I walked down the now oh so familiar pathway leading to my apartment last evening, my heart sank with every step I took. None of the shops or the houses on the way seemed to have any electricity. I knew I was plunging headfirst into a nasty power cut! To top it, I had been so looking forward to watching Full House last evening. With trepidation, I mounted the stairs to my apartment on the first floor, and slowly turned the key in the lock. So much so that I must have looked straight out of a B-grade horror flick, creating an unnecessary and predictable suspense sequence, by opening the door ever so slowly! Just like I thought, my worst fears were confirmed. There was no sign of even a flicker of light in the house! :-(

Irritated though I was, I set about changing to a comfortable nightwear, leaving the chore of deciding how to while away the time, for a few minutes after! Not that I had many choices to decide from! I could read using a candle, or one of those battery-powered lamps, or set about making my dinner using those very sources of measly light! My tummy was growling loudly and making its presence felt, too! However, I was too irritated to cook! I settled on good old, dependable reading. Page after page after page, I gobbled them all up; but, there was still no sign of His/Her Highness, and His/Her entourage of tube lights, bulbs, fans, and the like! It's a wonder how used we've become to all these things! I'm sure our forefathers managed well enough with just the sun and the moon, and there I was, going berserk at having been made to live in some minutes of darkness!!! I think, in a few years time, people will go berserk if they're made to live without even one of the millions and millions of gadgets and tools that already govern a good part of our lives, for as tiny a time frame, as a moment! On the other hand, maybe not! Now that I give some more thought to it, aren't human beings capable of adjusting to any kind of environment or situation!?! I certainly hope so; although, my fretting and fuming for a good part of last evening, must make me a very bad example!!!

Nevertheless, after what seemed to be an interminably long period of time, the electricity board? finally seemed to smile upon me and grant the wish that I had been constantly muttering under my breath! Well, the clock on the nightstand (the top of my television doubles up as a nightstand <grin>) showed that I'd been bereft of light for a little over an hour; but, it did seem like so much longer! Now that my wish had been granted, I could no longer ignore the cacophony that my stomach had so diligently built up! I had to refuel it, and soon at that!!! In no mood to yield a ladle after an evening of prayers that took so long to be answered, and after a brief consultation with A, I promptly set about ordering something delightful to appease my starved taste buds! Needless to say, I threw all dietary cautions and eating right principles out the window, and ate to more than my heart's and tummy's, fill!!!

It was not a waste waiting for the light at the end of the tunnel, after all!!!

Monday, November 27, 2006

On the Threshold...

For B and PP...

Hearts aflutter, spirits soaring high,
With just a lil over a month to go,
The smiles on your faces do not lie,
As together, through life, you wait to row!!!

This poem is an attempt, humble though it be,
To wish you happiness, forever and more,
Joy and fun, as far as one can see,
And, may love always be at its very core!

As, on the threshold of wedlock, you stand,
Engaged in an impatient countdown of days,
For this little poem, do not me, reprimand,
Jus' thought I'd etch this time, in more than one, ways!

So, get all set to fulfill every wedding vow,
Leave all your apprehensions to rest,
Hold your hands and take a charming bow,
Here's wishing you both, all the very best!!!

Sunday, November 26, 2006

In My Good Books!!!

Jus' a tiny lil note,
To say thanks for finding it,
You're a really good boy,
And, a whiz at googling every bit!!!

But, woe betide you,
You know what's in store,
Another princess waits for you,
To be rescued from the devil's door!!!

Not my best of poems, I'm well aware,
But, I feel cranky and irritably low!
Will churn out a better one tomorrow,
But, this also in the annals, does go!!!

Friday, November 24, 2006

My Need for Speed!!!

Not many will refuse to indulge in a tryst with some of the ever popular video games!!! I was first introduced to this world of heroes and warriors, when I was at the threshold of my teens. My bosom friends, who, conveniently, were also my next door neighbours, were gifted a video game deck by their dad. Not that we hadn't played the other kind, earlier. You know, the ones that fit nicely between both our hands, and which housed hot favourites like Tetris, as also a car racing game that surprisingly, if I remember correctly, didn't have any particular name! By the time the new entrant had entered our lives in an almost never-to-leave fashion, I had mastered the art of stacking those tetris blocks quite nicely, one on top of the other, filling in the gaps, to listen to that satisfying blinnnnnnnnnnnnnnggg sound on getting a perfect line!!! <grin!!!>


With the advent of the video games that could actually be played on the television, our lives did a double take! The three of us (my friends and I) set about an hour in the evening, after our daily play of physical games (oh yes, we were not like the new age kids, who only sit in front of the computer or the idiot box!), and set about conquering worlds filled with grotesque monsters, fireball throwing plants, crab producing clouds, and the like!!! Super Mario Bros was a clear winner and a hot favourite! Although, no one wanted to be poor Luigi, the second character, when two players play; the first being, Mario himself! I was disastrous at playing it, but, one of my friends soon became a master at it, and I just loved watching him at work (at play?)! Not that much has changed now! I still can't play the very same game, without losing a life every ten paces! Also, now, A does the honours by playing it with deftness and alacrity, with me screaming in the background and pinching or hitting him, along with jumping up and down on the bed, every time he comes close to being eaten by the big, red fish that he so loves! It's a wonder my neighbours don't come banging on our doors on hearing my screams and yells! Well, he's crossed seven of the eight worlds now, and am sure that all the kings he has rescued are eternally grateful to him! Those who have played this game will know what I'm talking about when I say I wonder how silly are those kings to get transformed into dogs and penguins, in each of the seven worlds!?! We still need to rescue the princess; and come the 9th of December, we're going to do just that! Right, A?!?

Super Mario Bros

However, the game that I adore the most and also play, is undoubtedly, Need For Speed, or as it is popularly known, NFS! Not that I play this well either, what with banging the poor car on every median, every wall and even, every bump on the route; my favourite being the winding roads in the Swiss Alps (yes, you can choose from a number of routes)! All this just adds to my fun, though! I love hitting those little milestones on purpose, and doing somersaults that would put to shame, a gymnast!!! Not to mention, my heart-wrenching screams! At every turn, not only do I let out a blood curdling scream, but, also move from the right to the left and right again, withe every slight movement of the car, imitating it to perfection! Nevertheless, A says my screams are what makes playing with me fun, so, I guess, I'm not all that bad a co-player! God save him, if he ever wins, though!!! <evil grin!!!>


Pics Courtesy: Google

One game that I've really excelled at, is Legendary (not sure whether I'm spelling it correct)! It's been ages since I've set my eyes on it! I could complete all the levels/stages in that game, and I'm itching to try my hand at it again! If any of you do know where I can lay my hands on it, please do let me know. I will repay you by rescuing the captive princess!

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Those Were the Days!!! These, Are the Moments!!!

Talking to a friend after a long long time definitely brings up an immediate smile. Re-living all those past moments of fun, madness and utterly crazy behaviour can light up any gloomy day! A few days back, an old friend caught me on one of the gazillion messengers that have been so in vogue for some time!!! (God bless them!!!) We had so many questions for each other that we rambled on for many a long minute! We were two in a group of six mad girls, each nuttier than the next! What fun times we've had! We even had silly nicknames for each other, which I'm not going to reproduce here, for fear of being slaughtered by those very girls!!! What was surprising was that just a few days back, me and another friend who belonged to that group (and with whom I regularly talk), were talking about the various escapades that we'd had as a gang!!! Not to mention the times we've acted like giggly, college girls, waiting to unleash ourselves on unsuspecting people! It sure was nice to think and talk about all those wild times, and some of those were really wild, trust me!!!

Aah! Nothing beats talking to an old friend about the bygone days! Though, a lot many more vie for the same position...!

The rain drops that fall on your head after a long spell of dry and sultry summer...
The hot chocolate that keeps you warm on a cold, wintry night; or, the cold chocolate that cools you down after a hard day's work...
The book that lets you curl up with it on a rainy day, or for that matter, any day!!!
The little puppy that nuzzles his snout against your leg...
The cackle of a baby; the baby talk of a toddler...
The nice letter in your mailbox that shows you're thought about...
The ringing of the phone, after an endless wait!
The nice, big slice of chocolate truffle that lets you experience absolute bliss, and is the personification of sin!

Okay, I better stop this before I drool all over this post! It'll suffice to say that if those were the days, the above, are certainly the moments!!!

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Two Leaky Cauldrons!!!

For A, who's having a bad cold, and for G, who's down with Conjunctivitis.

A leaky nose, and a watery eye,
Drip-drip-drip, so very unabated!
One looks like a tap not closed for long,
And, one out of Monster Incorporated!!!

Grumpy and growly, surly and sour,
Nerves are all strained and all haywire?!?
Oops! Am I in big big trouble or what!?!
I'm sure you're dumping me in the nearest quagmire!!!

The cold gives a nice lilt to your voice,
And, the red eye makes you look so very cute,
I can completely read the twinkle in your eyes,
It tells me you're looking to put me on mute!!!

The horrendous cold, and the monstrous eye,
Will stay with you for a very tiny, lil while,
So, bide your time, and hold your nerves,
And, when you get better, I'll run a mile!!!

All jokes aside, just wanted to make you laugh,
Turn the knob on the tap and close that eye of a goon!
I can see you fuming; and the fire come out your mouths!
You really thought I'd say, "get well soon"?!? :-D

P.S. I'd better scoooooooot now!!!

Pics Courtesy: Google

My Rocket Science!!!

For some people, doing Math is almost akin to mastering Rocket Science; for some, it's the art of managing one's taxes that displaces Rocket Science from the pedestal; but, for yours truly, using a bottle opener is Rocket Science!

I've heard the expression, "It's not rocket science", being used again and again, whenever a situation of seemingly disastrous proportions rears its ugly head! Little did I know that some things are most definitely close to actually being Rocket Science!!! Don't believe me?!? Then, tell me what you make of the following scenario!

Last evening, I was just settling down to dinner, when I noticed an untouched bottle of Coca Cola sitting quite unobtrusively on the corner of the slab in the kitchen. Armed with my new bottle opener, I almost felt like a warrior off to battle!!! Boy, did it turn out to be one too!!! Not even in my wildest dreams did I think it'd be so difficult to open a puny bottle! I pulled and pushed and heaved and twisted and turned and twirled and whirled and even stomped my foot <pant! pant!>; all to no obvious avail! That obstinate piece of metal didn't budge an inch! I decided I wasn't holding the opener right, and promptly proceeded to hold it upside down, sideways and even, diagonally! It beat me at every position! I was soon bruised and mangled, not only on the inside, but, also physically, on the outside! My poor fingers boldly display the aftermath of yesterday's battle; they sport these nice, red blisters, with a hint of raw skin peeking out at the world outside! Not to mention the beating my ego has taken! I prided on being able to bend any device, instrument, or tool; metallic or otherwise, to do my bidding! The bottle opener has stalled my good run of ages!!! It's a wonder if I don't put a curse on it!!!

Anyway, nothing was going to deter me from having that bottle of cola last night! I set off with my war relic (of defeat, of course) and marched down (with the little bit of pride that remained) to the little store near my apartment. I coyly went over to the counter and asked, if, by any chance, they were in the proud possession of a bottle opener! <grin!> They were, and I quickly handed over my prized bottle. The man at the counter opened it with so much ease, so deftly and so completely effortlessly that I felt ashamed to even look him in the eye! I mean, how shameful is it that I can't open a silly bottle with a silly bottle opener!?! It didn't look like he had any difficulty at all in maneuvering that little piece of metal!!! I mumbled a hurried thanks, smiled sheepishly and sprinted back to the safe confines of my room. The bottle opener was still sitting where I'd left it. Was it my imagination or was it actually flashing a toothy grin at me?!? My my! Triumph can go to anyone's head, eh!?!

Looks like I've found my Rocket Science!!! <Sigh!>

Pic Courtesy: Google

P.S. The countdown is finally in double figures from today!!! Woohoo!!!

Monday, November 20, 2006

Random Thoughts...

With a 100 left to go,
And, spirits sagging low,
Over life's waters, I still row,
Waiting for a light; a tiny glow...

If tomorrow never comes,
Not a day more, I see,
All of life, to this, it sums,
Evermore, will I always love thee...

Not one to stay down and out,
Lift me up, leave me in no doubt,
Over the rooftops, let me shout,
This is, but a passing bout...

A note of sadness, this poem may bring,
But, the day is not away for long,
With happiness, life will ever ring,
And, in the heart, a lovely song...

Friday, November 17, 2006

Alice in Dreamland!!!

I've been dreaming an awful lot these past few days! Contrary to my usually not being able to remember my dreams, I have managed to remember a fair bit of the last two dreams. In one, I was fighting with my sister. (Well, thats an oft occurring reality!!! We fight like kids, even though we don't stay in the same house anymore, and are miles apart now! I really don't think a dream was necessary to reinforce this fact of life!!!) Oh well!!! The second dream had me believing that A had come home for the weekend. This particular dream turned out to be quite hilarious, to say the least!

I had gone to bed a trifle earlier than my usual hour. A called to wish me a good night's sleep, little knowing what lay in store for him! I answered the call in my dream induced state, and demanded to know why he was calling me when he was right beside me!!! The sweet thing that he is, A played right along, assuring me that he was indeed beside me, and that he was just playing the fool by calling me! I did apparently say a lot more silly things, which I don't care to write about and be made a further laughing stock of!!! I do wonder why I mumble so much when I'm dreaming!!! We sure had fun talking about this dream the next morning, though!

I have a friend who has the weirdest of dreams (nightmares?) I have ever heard of! I dare not recount them here, lest she decides to kill me for the same! I want to be alive to be able to dream a lot more!! <grin!> The same friend also told me that she remembers her dreams by sitting on her bed for a few minutes every morning (of course, if it's a morning that follows a night of dreams/nightmares), and thinking about the dream that she's had! She says that this act almost always helps her retain every tiny detail of her dream! I must try this technique one of these days! Like I said, I have quite a tough time recalling my dreams!

I wonder what all these dreams mean. I have a recurring dream (more than a dream, it's a feeling) that I'm going to fall off, most often, from my bed! My body even jerks slightly, as if falling forward, at such moments. I call it a feeling because I'm very aware that I'm dreaming! Apparently, this kind of dreaming is called lucid dreaming, in which a person has quite a bit of control over his or her dream! I know a lot has been written about interpreting dreams and the like, and I've read a little about the subject too; but, I'm quite skeptical about these interpretations. Wonder whether they really hold any amount of truth!?!

Another question that plagues me quite a bit is whether we dream in colour, or in black and white! On this point too, the opinion seems to be very divided. While some claim that they dream in lots of vivid colours, many others say that their dreams are often colourless, and that the colours are a part of our imagination, when we relive the dream, or recount it to others. Interesting! As far as I can remember, my dreams have no particular colour scheme! They're just moving images, which at the point when I'm dreaming, seem to be so startlingly real and true to life! Also, methinks, if my dreams were in colour, they'd be in shades of soft pink! A nice, pink hue over the moving images; now, there's a thought!!!

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Logic; Beyond Reasoning!!!

I saw this news report today morning that really got me wild and bothered! In a college in Bhopal, they've asked all the girl students to leave the college and go someplace else! The reason?!? They were made the butt of teasing by some boys, studying in the same college! Apparently, the girls distract the boys, and give rise to what is conveniently called "eve teasing"!!! How do the girls distract the otherwise, oh so diligent boys?!? By their very presence!!! Logical reasoning at its very best!!!

How much longer are victims going to be victimized further!?! The euphemism "eve teasing" has been used unscrupulously, long enough!!! Calling such hideous acts of harassment by such a mild term is sacrilegious, to say the very least! It's so unfair that the girls who are at the receiving end of such acts, are themselves blamed! It is a widely accepted idea that the girls bring it on to themselves! How many times have we heard people talk about these acts of violations being done unto girls who don't dress decently enough, or who don't get home before the onset of the dark night! Almost always, the real issue gets clouded over by these, what can only be termed as meaningless and prejudiced, explanations! Do such acts of crime deserve to be defended; let alone by curbing the freedom of a few human beings, only because they are girls/ladies/women, call them what you will!??!

A lot has been done, and is still being done, to stop these acts of harassment of women (like i said, eve teasing is too mild a term, and makes it seem like some harmless, childish prank; which, believe me, it is not even close to!), but, a long path still remains to be charted. From a post in a blog that I regularly haunt (, I learnt about this group of women who have started something called the Blank Noise Project. These women work to curb the spread of these acts of harassment, both through their blog (, as also by taking their cause onto the streets. Please do check their blog for more information about the wonderful work they do.

Curb not her freedom, curb not her right,
Not every man, for his life, has so hard, to fight!
Don't hold her in, don't rein her in, oh so very tight!!
Eve teasing is harassment, not a term, so light!!!

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Sixth Sense?!? Or, a Mare's Nest?!?

Intuitions! Wonder how they work!?! I've had intuitions about a lot of things in my life. Surprisingly enough, many of them have come true. I've been having one for the last few days, and I so hope that it comes true! So, just thought I'd send up a prayer to better my chances!!!

I close my eyes, and bow my head,
And, join my hands in prayer,
Wishful thinking, let it not be said
Nor, the nest of a mare!!!

P.S. Please do come true!!!

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

To Be a Child Again!!!

Today, Children's Day is being celebrated in India. It marks the day of birth of the first Indian Prime Minister, Jawaharlal Nehru. Chacha Nehru, as he was popularly called by children, doted on the little ones! Thus, it came to be that his birthday was declared to be Children's Day!!!

What is surprising is the fact that all around the world, a particular day has been reserved for children; for celebrating the joy that each child is!!! While in India, it is the 14th of November, in Argentina, it is celebrated on the second Sunday of the month of August! While, in Brazil, Children's Day falls on the 12th of October.

There is also something called "International Children's Day", which is usually celebrated on the 1st of June, although, not always. Many countries accept this date to signify Children's Day; a case in point being Germany and China.

Additionally, UNESCO celebrates Universal Children's Day on the 20th of November. This day signifies the promotion of the welfare of all the children inhabiting this world!

Here are the dates on which Children's Day is celebrated in some countries:

Japan - 5th of May
Mexico - 30th of April
Nigeria - 27th of May
Paraguay - 16th of August
South Korea - 5th of May
Singapore - 1st of October
Sri Lanka - 1st of October
Taiwan - 4th of April
Turkey - 23rd of April

So, if you do know any children residing in these parts of the world, do wish them on their special day!!!

Children's Day is, in most countries, marked by numerous celebrations in schools and other educational institutions. When I was in school, this day was one of the most eagerly awaited days of the year! Our teachers would perform these little skits for us, and sing and dance their way into our hearts! Of course, we repayed the gesture by singing and dancing for them on Teacher's Day (celebrated on the 5th of September in India)!!! After the performance by the teachers, we would be handed out lovely goodies and other treats, all of which are guaranteed to bring a smile on any child's face! However, the most fascinating aspect of this day, was most certainly the fact that no classes were held! A day full of fun, frolic, candies, songs and dances; what more could a little mind crave for!?! Bliss in its most perfect form!!!

Amid the chaos all around,
Two, tiny feet make their way,
Of destruction and doom, the growing mound,
Deters not the tiny feet, nay, nay!!!

Is this the world, to them, we leave?
A world where wars and sorrows abound!
Through muck and dirt, the feet do weave,
Yet, not a word, nor makes a sound!!!

Innocent faces, heartwarming smiles,
Wonders, can a child's touch do,
Lets live in love, unite the warring miles,
Give them something to smile about too!!!

Make every day a day to behold,
Let not the tiny feet walk in dirt anymore,
With love and joy, we'll each child, mould,
Every day, Children's Day, at its core!!!

Fill their lives with peace and joy,
Of hope and happiness, open the door,
For every little girl, and every little boy,
Aah! To be a child once more!!!

Pic Courtesy: Google

Monday, November 13, 2006


Not long ago, on innocent Wednesday last,
Well past the morning, and into the dreary afternoon,
All shame aside, did I hesitatingly cast,
And, forlornly, hopelessly; did I truly swoon!!!

Lined up beautifully and deliciously, on a lovely tray,
They seemed to beckon, with wide and open arms,
Calling out to the hunter, was the poor, oblivious prey,
A hunter, who was slowly losing all her earthly qualms!!!

A social do at work, it loudly proclaimed to be,
A perfect chance to meet the new and bright young uns,
But, my eyes unabashedly did only, and only, see,
A tray full of tempatations; tons and tons and tons!!!

Let's take a group photo; obediently, did all stand still,
While, my tummy slowly and loudly rumbled steadily on,
"Stop fiddling with the lens, please shoot what you will!",
Click! went the blinding flash; of all shame was I still shorn!!!

Made a beeline for the trays, did each, all and sundry,
Nor was I one to be left alone and solitary behind,
It looked like all the supplies of the entire country,
Had decided to wreak havoc on my sinful mind!!!

I picked one up, tentatively; fearful of the hold it'd have on me,
A hold that'd make me crave for more, ever so persuasively,
A small lick here, a tiny bite there; doomed was I for all to see,
In a whiff did it cease to be; and, another opened its arms beckoningly!!!

Try as I did, my mind tugged till the leash snapped free,
Overcome with temptation; and blinded by plain and simple gluttony, was I,
Overlooked and forgotten, was each of the Almighty's decree,
Put a magician to shame, my sleight of hand; and one more, in me, did slowly die!!!

Finally, halfway through the cone, on me, realization dawned!
Doomed was I; a sure path to damnation had I laid,
Over one of the seven deadly sins, had I shamelessly fawned,
A spurious glutton of me, had two ice cream cones made!!! <Burp!!!>

The Culprits!!!

Saturday, November 11, 2006

A Look Back!

It's been a year! Yes, I've been in Bangalore for a year now! I must say, it's been a fruitful year of sorts! For one, it feels great to have finally moved out of my parents house and set up an abode of my own! Living alone certainly comes with its own set of perks! This past year has brought myriad changes into my life. Here's my attempt at listing them down:
  • Living alone; certainly, the biggest change! My, has it taught me a truckload of things!!!
  • Setting up a home, not a house; I was clear that I wanted a place I could look forward to coming back to, after a long day's work. I didn't want my studio apartment to turn into one of those hovels that you return to, just to hit the bed! Boy, am I glad that it has turned out just as I wanted it!
  • Cooking <ahem!>; well, I do make my own food, and if I may so, enjoy making it at most times! I've finally learnt why cooking is said to be therapeutic in many ways! Not that I make anything out of the ordinary, but, I'm certainly proud of how much I know in the kitchen now! Also, I've discovered that I enjoy cooking for others a lot; cooking for myself sometimes gets too dreary! <sigh!>
  • Washing clothes; aarrgh! This really gets on my nerves. What with my left arm acting up everytime I wash a bunch of clothes, this is not one chore I look forward to! A few more months, and I'm getting a washing machine!
  • Paying the bills; I don't have a problem with this, but, the tension of making sure that I pay the bills on time, sometimes drives me up the wall!!! I loathe being late, just as vehemently as I hate others being late!
  • Sweeping and mopping the floor; when I get down to cleaning my home, I get down to doing it with a vengeance! I am armed with a mission then! The mission being, to hunt down every last speck of dust and dirt!
  • Eating alone; I don't enjoy this at all! I just don't!
  • Sleeping alone; no problem with this too, but, I can't watch horror movies! I keep thinking some grotesque monster or devilish creature is going to spring right out from somewhere!
  • Budgeting; I guess I do this pretty well; not that that stops me from perpetually worrying that I'm spending too much!
  • Waiting for A; certainly, my biggest task of all! Not that I've been doing this for only the past year, but, the yearning has certainly intensified! Well, it's just a few more days, and I intend to grit my teeth and fight it out. Till then, the weekends on which we meet will remain eagerly awaited! That brings us to the most pertinent question of all! A, you're coming this weekend, or the next, right?!?

In all, it has been quite a nice year! Here's to a few more months of solitary living!!!

Friday, November 10, 2006

Wedding Bells!!!

Two days back, I attended a colleague's wedding. Having never been to a Kannadiga wedding earlier, I was very excited at the prospect of seeing how the entire ceremony will be conducted. Although it looked similar to the other Hindu marriages, there were, of course, a few subtle differences. For a start, the bride and the groom had, what looked like little crowns or tiaras tied around their foreheads. The tiaras seemed to be made of some gold and silver coloured paper and ribbons, with little colourful bits sewn all over them. Maybe, the bride and groom are meant to feel akin to a queen and king on the most important day of their lives!!!

The Resplendent Tiaras!!!

For a better part of the wedding, the couple were made to stand facing each other; not, sitting beside each other, like in the above picture. There was the customary chanting of a whole load of mantras, by a semi-clad priest, as is wont in most Hindu marriages. The groom himself, wore, what is called a panche, in Kannada. It is a long piece of cloth that is typically tied around one's waist. However, the groom had even wound it to cover his upper torso. On the other hand, the bride had another saree wrapped around her shoulders, presumably given to her by the groom and his family, in addition to the saree that she had already draped over herself.

Holding Hands...

Soon after we were well into the ceremony, the couple were made to sit beside each other; for the remainder of the ceremony. After the chanting of some more mantras, and amid the music emanating from dozens of myriad instruments, the groom tied the mangalsutra, or as it is more commonly known in South India, the thaali. Being the most important part of a Hindu wedding ceremony, this gold chain, or sometimes, yellow thread, tied around the bride's neck, can be thought to be similar to the wedding band (ring) that is so much a part of many wedding ceremonies, the world over.

As is common to almost all South Indian weddings, the wedding feast was served on plantain leaves. It boasted of a wide variety of dishes, many of which I was tasting for the first time! The dessert, in particular, was something I'd not heard of before! It was a sweet called "peni", which basically consisted of an enormous swirl of vermicelli, liberally doused with large spoonfuls of milk that had been sweetened and topped with pistachios and almonds. Eating the peni was a trifle messy, and what with all of us having tucked nicely into our meals by then, we couldn't take a picture of the enticing dessert!

The Feast (Dessert Missing!)

The highlight of the ceremony, was, of course, the small mementoes that were given to every guest. In addition to the traditional coconuts and sweets that are usually handed out when the guests leave, we were also given small figurines and other delightful artificats, made out of paper and varied decorative sequins, spangles and beads. Obviously, I picked out a cute, pink doll! :-D In the picture here, you also see a basket of flowers and a mini mandap, or the stage on which Indian wedding ceremonies are usually held.

My Doll on the Far Left!

All in all, a delightful wedding ceremony! :-)

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Magic?!? Or, Hogwash!?!

I watched this amazing show on television last night. Highly intriguing, it was called "The Secrets of the Street Magicians". How many times have you watched a magicain perform and wished that you knew how he did what he did!?! I know I have! Innumerable times, at last count!!! ;-) Boy, was I delighted when I chanced upon this show while boredly surfing through the million or so channels!

I must admit that I was more than a little surprised at learning that almost every magic trick has a pretty solid and logical reasoning behind it! Although, at first glance, there seem to be no wires, magnets, or other paraphernalia at work (play?), believe me, there almost always is some scientific knick knack aiding the magician perform his magic! It's funny, I can't even write "magic" without italicizing it any more! Quite a sceptic I seem to have become!

The show blew the cover off so many commonly performed tricks that the commercials irritated me no end!!! I couldn't wait to see the street magician bring another trick to light! For instance, he depicted how he could make a matchstick move and stand almost upright, with the use of a hidden magnet, concealed safely in his arm! Or, the way he made a card rise up, right out of the pack he was holding in his hand, again, with the help of a tiny magnet!!! It is incredible how the number of things that seem so fabulously miraculous at first sight, can be so easily explained with a dollop of science!!! Apparently, these magicians also take the help of many natural phenomena. The magician in the show made many onlookers, including the television audience, believe that he could tear the head off a poor dove's neck, and then fix it back! So much so that there wasn't a trace of the bird's head ever having been ripped off!!! The explanation given for the wondrous illusion was alarmingly simple and straightforward! Some of you may know that some species of birds can comfortably duck their heads under their wings, without so much as feeling even the slightest tinge of pain. The magician just aided the bird do something that came quite naturally to it; hide its head under its wing!!! He then used a plastic lookalike head to fool the audience by making them think that he'd actually ripped the head off the bird's neck!!! Add to that, some of the traditional mumbo jumbo that so characterizes, and is so a part of every magic show; and voilà, you have the severed head of a bird in your hands! To fix the head back onto the neck, he only had to release his grip so that the dove could bring his head out from under his wing again!!! Charming, isn't it?!? Or, take for instance, the trick of getting a housefly to fall asleep by placing it in a cold freezer, and then reincarnating it by placing it in the palm of your hand and giving it some warmth in the bargain!!! ;-) The fly awakens from a deep slumber, only to find that it is apparently a rebirth for him/her!!!

However, the icing on the cake was surely the answer to the levitation trick, a trick that has baffled and befuddled many, for way too long! The magician only creates an illusion that he is rising above the ground. All he does is stand with his back to the crowd of onlookers, place his right heel a trifle in front of his left, lift only his right foot and left heel off the ground, leaving the front part of his left foot firmly planted on steady land! This gives the impression that the person is actually rising upward! With the aid of the natural darkness of the night and some special lighting, the magician creates a more dramatic impact! Of course, it is but natural that a live audience is much more harder to fool, than a television audience. So what does our dear magician and his magical troupe do to create a greater effect on the television audience?!? Well, after the crowd disperses, a member of the crew, wearing a jacket/shirt/coat similar to the onlooker who had been standing at the edge of the crowd, poses as that very onlooker, while, with the help of those oft-suspected wires (yes, wires!!!), the magician is lifted off the ground, not one or two inches, but, a solid twelve!!!

The last words of the narrator of the show rang in my ears for long after I'd put out the lights and gone under the covers. He said, and I quote from memory, "..the next time you think someone is actually doing magic, think again! But, if you're really convinced that it is indeed magic, give us a call, we'd like to meet him too!!!"

Here's where you can watch some videos of the show on the net:

Er, care for a magic show anyone?!?

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Look Who's Here!!!

A nip in the air,
The breeze blows cool,
Chapped lips, skin tear
Aah! Nature's rule!

Woollens are out,
Mittens everywhere,
South goes the trout,
And, sleep, does the bear!

Balmy are the nights,
Bare trees adorn the land,
Partake of nature's sights,
While stays the icy hand!

Short are the days,
Darkness grows longer,
True to the Lord's ways,
The chill grows stronger!

A pale shadow, the sun is,
Hidden behind clouds, in fear,
Seal it with a goodbye kiss,
Good ol' Winter is here!!!

I'm Gonna Pull a Ross!!!

What's in a degree, you ask!?! A lot, going by the way I've been studying for 2 of them, and that too, simultaneously!!! Yes, I'm gleefully and gloatingly (if i may!), on my way to becoming an M.Phil and an MBA!
Well, I'm almost an M.Phil, with just my thesis left to pass the acid test. I must say, even thinking about facing a whole hoard of literary laureates, while standing on an icy, unwelcome dias, makes me break out in cold sweat! How will I defend my viewpoint when I clam up even at the thought of facing the volley of questions that such an audience is capable of throwing at me!?! However, I do have a few months to prepare my stand, and I'm hoping I'll do a good job of it! I'll surely put up a brave front, no matter the number of butterflies that will be fluttering around in my tummy!!! Time will tell, I know, but, I'm determined to get a Dr. attached to the beginning of my name, and I know I'm going to go all out to achieve that end!!! No stops, nay! No deviating from that goal, that much, I'm certain!

This preoccupation of mine with getting a PhD reminds me of none other than, Dr. Ross Geller, PhD, of F.R.I.E.N.D.S fame!!! Remember that episode where Rachel's father is in the hospital, and she chides Ross for using his title of "Doctor" without any discretion!!! She says, "Ross, that actually means something here!" That episode has me in splits everytime I see it; but, hey, I still do want a PhD!!! I promise I won't make a fool of myself like Ross does, though!!! There is one more episode where Ross's paleontology degree is used in a hilarious context! Charlie, Ross's one-time girlfriend, tries to intrigue him by calling him "...Dr. Geller", and Ross goes, "Stop it!!!!" Charlie then says, "PhD", in a slow, seductive drawl!!! Ross's gleeful face on hearing that is absolutely worth watching!

Anyway, it'll be some time before I can grin gleefully at someone calling me "Doctor", but, I know it's going to be truly worth the wait!

Pic Courtesy: Google

Monday, November 06, 2006

In a Few Pages...

I've been reading a collection of short stories by Jeffrey Archer. I am not overtly fond of short stories, preferring a nice, big, fat novel any day, to a story that lasts only a few pages!!! However, this book, The Collected Short Stories, has left me craving for more of these "few-page" delights! The book hosts a total of 36 tales, each so amazingly different from the rest! The author has written them in a nice conversational tone, bereft of any unnecessary decorations of language. Many of these stories are laden with the proverbial twist in the tale! While this fact can be misconstrued to be very stereotypical and clichéd, the twists take you so completely by surprise that you keep hoping that the next story too has a nice twist!!! Another thing that strikes almost immediately, is the fact that the stories are just the right length. The author seems to have an extraordinary insight into what will grip a reader and make the book "unputdownable", and what will border on the boring!!!

I'm not completely through with the book, having read about a dozen stories or so. However, these handful of stories have made so much of an impact on me that I can't wait to get home and curl up with the book, every night! So much so that I thought there could be no better time to write this post.

This collection is a must read for every book lover. You may not be a great fan of Jeffery Archer's writings, or even like reading short stories, but, this book will make you fond of both, at least, for the little time that you read it!!! As for those who swear by the brevity of a tale, you'll wonder how this book slipped your hands!

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Birthday Boy!!!

Pic courtesy: Google
By the way, Happy Birthday, Shahrukh!!!

Selective Re-christening!!!

What is it with me and accidents? When I was a kid, I kept falling all over the place. Bruised knees, stubbed toes, bleeding fingers; all were a customary part of my growing up years. Many parts of my face and body have been stitched up at various times in my life! If at one time, it was my forehead that split open like a fish's mouth after having been successfully banged on a water pump, it was soon my chin that took to a needle and thread, like a piranha takes to water!!! However, I guess, getting hurt all the time is true of most children. Also, no one made a big deal of it. I would fall, quickly scamper on to my feet, dust the limb I'd scratched or bruised and get on with my playing! Reminds me of that episode in F.R.I.E.N.D.S where Joey wonders why Rachel has to baby proof the entire apartment! He says "Baby-proofing? Why is it such a big deal now? You know, when I was a kid, it was, "Whoops, Joey fell down the stairs! Whoops, Joey electrocuted himself again!" :-D

However, in my case, I didn't outgrow any of these "getting hurt episodes"! Bruised knees, stubbed toes and bleeding fingers are still very much a part of my daily existence! In fact, I have become even more prone to getting hurt! So much so that now the accident prone tag has become synonymous with my name, nay, has woe of woes, become my middle name!!! Thus it is that I fell on my honeymoon, and consequently, broke my left hand. That one was a veritable nightmare, I must say! One moment I was all happy and dandy, ready to get out of the hotel and explore beautiful Goa, and the next moment, I found myself on the floor, cradling a broken hand and yelping and screaming with excruciating pain! All because I foolishly decided to race A on the hotel corridor!!! <Sigh!> The next thing I knew I was on a hospital stretcher, listening to my death warrant being read out! The doctor declared in no uncertain terms that I had to have a surgery within a few hours if I ever wanted to enjoy the privilege of using my left hand again! Horror of horrors!!! A surgery?!? My worst nightmare was coming true! I have, as a rule, been terrified of surgeries! Even listening to people's stories about the surgeries they've undergone sends cold shivers down my spine!!! Anyway, as is evident, I survived the surgery. However, to top it all, the lugging around of a heavy cast on my hand for an interminably large number of weeks, made me vehemently vow never to be in another accident! I wonder why I thought it was in my hands to be or not be in another accident!!! I mean, it would have made sense if I'd vowed to be more careful in future, or something similar!!!

Smile Before the Fall!!!

As luck would have it, it was not long before I successfully plopped right into the midst of another accident! Three of us (my dad, my nephew, me) were travelling in an autorickshaw, which promptly collided with another vehicle and nicely toppled over! I'm sure it knew I was inside it and didn't want to let me not earn my middle name!!! I had been sitting in the centre, safely cocooned from either side, by my dad and nephew, but wonder of wonders, only I got hurt! <grin> At first glance, when, after in true-blue movie style, we managed to clamber out of the vehicle; I thought none of us had been injured. To prove me wrong right at that very moment, a searing pain shot through my thigh at the same time that I felt something damp burn against the skin of my right knee! I looked down in alarm, only to find a gaping hole in my pants where a nice piece of cloth should have been covering my poor knee! Not to mention, they were my favourite pair of pants too! Anyway, I was bleeding profusely and was taken to a hospital yet again!!! I walked around with a limp for the next one month, coupled with the painful change of dressing that I had to undergo every second day!

However, with undisguised trepidation, I must say that I've not really landed into any more major mishaps after the knee incident! Well, there have been repeated bangs and knocking over(s), but they are so much a part of me now that they no longer bother me; nope, not even a wee little bit! :-D In fact, if I don't see a nice, big, black and blue (sometimes, purple) bruise on some or the other limb, I feel something is amiss!!! What then, prompted this post today?!? Well, er, ummm, I sort of almost fell down the stairs today! I regained my balance almost immediately, but the lurching of my heart brought all these memories flooding back!!!

So, here's to a day void of any bangs, slips, thuds, thumps or doinks!!! On second thought, make that many, many, many, many, and some more, days!!!!

A selective re-christening have I had,

Other than that, it's all totally rad!

A silent prayer up to God, I send,

Please keep me from tripping, at the next bend!!!