I'm still around

We date back to when you were a little kid
With an innocent smile under which that devil hid.
We looked out for each other and kept ourselves busy
And had an incredible time doing things real silly.

A jump in the puddle or a brawl on the field
We were best buddies and always up to speed.
We had our share of contests too
But back then, I was just as big as you.

As time went by you became a young individual
One with big aspirations and dreams more factual.
But I couldn't grow along, it was not meant to be
For I am those little things in life that made you glee.

Just take a moment out of this overwhelming craze
And look around with your innocent gaze.
I'm still around and just the same
With tiny little laughs for you to claim.

I'm not some material that you can acquire
Nor some emotion you can conquer.
I'm just that simple happy moment in your busy day;
I'm still around, in every little way.


About a month back one of our team mates became a proud father of a baby boy. We being scattered all over the building and engrossed in our own little worlds didn't find the time to formally meet him as a team and share his joy. Today we finally managed to do so and had a surprise party arranged. Little did I know that there was a surprise element for all of us as well. We had a cake, a card which we had signed so long ago that some of us actually forgot if we signed it or not and a gift voucher. Those were the things I knew about. But then some people from our team (who were actually planning the whole surprise party) had more than just that. First up, they got us to fill out these sheets which asked us to share our advice for the new parent. It had sections where we had to fill up how long we have been married for, how many kids and how many nephews and nieces and such. I was kinda amused to know that I had zero experience in every section and I was the only person who actually filled a zero everywhere. But anyway, they read out each of those sheets and asked Badhri (the proud father) to guess who wrote each one of them. Once the guessing game was over the second game was unveiled, and this was a big surprise to me. It was not a surprise because of what the game was, but more because of what I experienced during the game. For this game they laid out nine tiny jars of baby food, each a different flavor with the labels ripped off. All we had to do was look at it, taste it or smell it do what ever we wanted to do with it and guess each of those flavors. Ah, this should be easy! I thought to myself. I thought that I was pretty good at this kind of stuff. As the first jar came closer I had the impression that baby food would be all fragrant and sweet tasting and all that and with that in mind I sniffed the first jar. Phew (just imagine a big hammer head hitting you and you were passing out), WHAM (written with that blast splash used in cartoon strips). I actually didn't know when the jar hit the desk and I was left staring at the roof. I couldn't believe that baby food could smell that horrible. It actually smelt like the mehendi which my sister used to mix and it totally grossed me out. All I knew about baby food till this day was cerelac, but this, this jar of baby food was like a lethal formula to get the baby sleeping with one sniff. All my thoughts of baby food being nice and sweet and fragrant were smashed so hard that I couldn't match smells anymore. Then again, this was just the first out of nine jars, and this one was green among all the yellow and orange and red coloured ones so I still had hope of the others helping in restoring my sense of smell. One by one each jar came to me and as I smelt each of them I felt sorry for all those babies who had to go through this phase of life. Oh poor little things, were you guys still developing the sense of smell or were your taste buds all hidden like your teeth that you didn't know what you were being fed. All these jars smelt so funny and some so horrible that I started feeling a little uncomfortable with those jars around the table. That's it, at that very instant I decided that if I am ever given a chance to go back in time and be a baby again, I WOULD NEVER OPT FOR IT!!!! Just to avoid eating that stuff.I wonder how many of you know the different kinds of baby food available, but if you have no idea and are in a stage where you need to start buying it, then please sniff before you buy because they could be pretty lethal. :D
And yes, while I was guessing stuff between bananas and mangos and peas there was this one guy who had written grass and feet among the other things he could figure out.

Where does this go?

Recently a few of us colleagues decided to watch a football (american football) game in one of the most advanced and expensive stadiums ever built (The new Dallas Cowboys Stadium). We had watched a couple of games on TV since the start of the season but didn't quite understand what was happening. All we could see was a team which at one instant would be pushing, pulling, pouncing and pounding the other team would land up in a dog pile over the guy who had the ball in the very next instant and keep doing the same thing repeatedly for about three hours. But thanks to the internet, we got to know the rules that put method in that chaos. With that covered, we bought tickets for the next game to be played in that stadium and were looking forward to witness what made the game and the stadium so special.
The stadium was about thirty miles away from where we lived and in territories we had never ventured in before so one of us took directions and the rest made copies of the same and hit the road. After going some distance we realized that the directions we got along were taking us more into residential localities than major expressways. Something was wrong. The destination was the same but the route was way too complicated. But since we didn't have much of a choice we went along with it. To add to the complications of the route, we were getting misguided by road names that had north or south tagged to them. At one point we realized that we went about five miles in the wrong direction and had to do ten miles in the opposite direction. But then, amidst all this confusion, we came across this road which had a really startling name. On reading it the first time all of us were like "What the hell!!!". The guy who was driving started cursing the road naming convention big time but at the same time was thankful that we didn't have such roads on our route :). You must be wondering how bad could the name be. Well, i'll give it to you, but you will have to leave a comment with the first thing that crosses your mind after reading it. Ready?. The road was named "North Great South West Parkway". Yup, the only direction missing there was East :P. How i wish there was something to do with east in that name :P. Now don't act too smart and try to explain what that name means. I figured that out already :) But just for kicks, do let me know the first thing that crossed your mind :). I was truly concerned about the plight of people with poor direction sense making their way though a town filled with such roads. Would they be able to make it to their destination without correcting their route? I can only imagine.
Oh, by the way, the game was good fun even though we got seats on the top most row from where the players and cheerleaders looked like tiny lego blocks moving around :). We were more than content watching a screen 180 ft wide by 72 ft tall suspended directly above the field with HD quality picture showing us every detail of the game. Just being part of such an electric atmosphere with about 95000 people and witnessing a screen that big, made the whole experience worthwhile. And of course, I don't think i will ever forget North Grand South West Parkway ;)

A tube addict

So here I am, in a new place, a few known faces and a new beginning of what I think could be size changing for me :) But as things are going two weeks from when I set foot here, I have done nothing but being a tube addict. What began as a 'I don't know anyone around so lets just kill time watching something' has actually taken the better of me and believe it or not, I know just as many people as I knew when I reached here, not one more; I have kind of started to feel disgusted of sitting around and watching episodes or movies without any definite reason and I think i am killing the whole plan of the size changing experience.
If you ever move into a new environment with new people and nothing to do, do anything else but sitting in one place and watching the tube. IT IS NOT HEALTHY!

Now when the hell did I write this! :S

I have no clue when I wrote this post, but then, there it was sitting in my archives. Anyway, read it, found it weird so what happens then... IT COMES ON TO THE BLOG :P
Blue solution in a flask, something else in a long pipe. Add a few drops of what ever is in the pipe to the flask, shake… :( nothing, add a few more…. hey! something happened, but not for long :(, who cares… add another… ah… now the colour changed. Aim achieved; smile on my face :). This is the only part of chemistry that interests me and troubles me too. Now smiles aren’t the end result of any chemistry experiment… I still cannot stand the experiment where we get the rotten egg smell as the end result.

Change. No clue what happened, but now there’s something new in front of me. What caused all this change??? The composition of the blue solution changed.

Human beings are similar to the blue solution, fiddle around and you will find them change. Change in colour is possible too… beat them up… they go black and blue, get them angry and they go red, get them to blush… uuuuh pink!! J But these changes aren’t permanent. What I am more concerned about are the changes that are more permanent or let me say long lasting.

Random thoughts

A seasoned driver.
You might have driven different vehicles with different regulations around the world. But you are not a seasoned driver if you haven't driven a car safely back home during peak hour traffic in any of the busy cities in India.

Weight donation camp.
When we can donate blood, eyes, kidney, heart and what not, why hasn't anyone thought of weight donation? Wouldn't that be like a win win situation?

A traffic junction.
Is a place where two busy roads meet.
A cop's whistle is greatly humbled by blaring horns.
A signal where red means you have three more seconds to pull off your daring stunt of crossing the junction.
The most probable place to get bad road so you will have to crawl across. This means instead of 300 vehicles that are supposed to cross a junction only 100 make it through thus adding to traffic woes.

Who is more irritating?
A person who irritates you sparingly throughout the day or someone you feel like killing inside of ten minutes.

Still awake!

Today or rather tonight is one of those nights when I just can’t get any sleep.

What’s keeping me awake? If I knew, I would be doing something to stop it from keeping me awake rather than typing this post.

So anyway, it is not because I had a short nap in the afternoon as I would then keep wriggling in bed till my blanket looked more like a python around me and eventually fall asleep. Or do I strangle myself to sleep? Hmm good question :P

It is not because I had too much for dinner and I cannot digest it now, If that was the reason then I would be a zero control burp machine for about an hour or two and get tired burping and fall asleep.

It is not because I had coffee after dinner. I don’t think coffee can keep me away from sleep this long.

It is not because my mind is working on inventing something new. I don’t think I need to give a reason for this. :P

It is also not because I felt like posting something today!

Then what on earth is it!!!

Is there something I am missing out here?

Current time: 3:45 AM IST.

The light bulb needs a change!

I hope all of you have come across at least one of the many "light bulb" jokes that have been floating around for many years now. For the benefit of those who have not, the basic idea behind these jokes is to highlight certain characteristics of groups of people or communities. Here are a few of them just to get you on par for the ones which actually got me to type this post :)

Q: How many Software Engineers does it take to change a light bulb?

A: None. If you ask them, they’ll say it’s a hardware problem.

Q: How many Hardware Engineers does it take to change a light bulb?

A: None. If you ask them, they’ll say it’s a software problem.

Q: How many Psychiatrists does it take to change a light bulb?

A: Only one, but the bulb has got to really WANT to change.

So now, hoping that you have understood what the light bulb jokes are all about, here are some of the crazy and hilarious replies I got for some of the questions I posed to one of my colleagues.

Q: How many robbers does it take to change a light bulb?

A: Only one, but even the fused light bulb will be taken.

Q: How many Indian cops does it take to change a light bulb?

A: No point, the cop will come only once everything is over.

Q: How many US cops does it take to change a light bulb?

A: No point counting. One to receive the 911 call, all the cops in the vicinity to respond to it, one ambulance, one fire brigade, loads of yellow tape to mark the area of action, one cop to run around with a video camera to show this incident on TV some day, one special agent to boss around, and if nothing happens in 10 minutes, one chopper and a million media personnel.

Q: How many terrorists does it take to change a light bulb?

This got my colleague confused. "You need to be specific!" she said and then came these replies,

A: If it is Taliban: Ten. Because ten of them set out on the mission, three die in combat at the border, three more die during the mission, three kill each other in some internal confrontation, and finally one changes it but then he gets arrested.

A: If it is LTTE: One. He just shows up and then blows up. No wall remains, no socket remains hence no need of a light bulb.

A: If it is ULFA: Doesn’t matter. Because after all the hard work of planning it and getting all the men involved, they will ultimately realize that they changed the wrong one.

Take it... And go!

Recently on my trip to Mangalore I got acquainted with a rather unusual diet that my cousin had adopted. Unusual because I had never heard of it before, not that I follow the latest in diets and such, and also because this one was totally opposite to my limited understanding of diets for weight loss!
Actually I had to work my way through the list of stuff my cousin couldn't eat to figure out what his diet was. This is how the deduction went...
So, weight loss diet eh! What have you been restricted from?
And there the list began.
No rice and anything related to it. No crispy dosa, no soft idly, etc.
Fair enough I thought.
No wheat, its cousins and anything related to them!
Hun! Strange! But anyway, OK.
No sweets.
Yup! No one suggests sweets on a weight loss diet.
No milk in any form.
Slowly his list was getting bigger and my mind was running wild trying to figure out what was left. For a minute I thought that it would have been easier if he had just told us what he could eat, but then this way was more interesting as kept the suspense alive :)
No sugar in any form.
You already mentioned that right...
He smiled and said... No fruits because it is a source of sugar, no carrots, no beetroot for the same reason.
What! You are kidding me right!
Now I got really impatient. What the hell is left dude! You just threw the entire fiber family out of the window!
With a grin on his face he said “Meat, fish, eggs, pulses and greens.”
It was only then I realized that I had never considered meat all this while. May be because I took it for granted that meat is always the very first thing a dietician would ask you to stay away from while on weight loss.
It took me a while to realize what he said and actually make sense of it.
So let me get this straight. You ate meat all your life and became what you are today, and now the dietician is making you eat the same thing. A complete protein diet! Strange, very strange! It's like the doc punished you for eating meat all these years.
Just imagine the doc looking at him with eyes of fury, rage in his voice, biting his teeth and screaming out "You like meat eh! And don’t like eating anything else! Want to become a pig? Here, now you eat only meat. I'll whack you if you touch anything else!" “This is your diet from now on. Take it... and go!"
I bet my cousin would have been guessing if the dietician was serious or plain sarcastic :) but then it turned out that he was actually putting him on a high protein diet.
My cousin found it weird in the beginning but then has actually followed it religiously for about three months now. Knowing this, my next obvious question was, “How much did you loose?”
About nineteen kilos he said.
Woooah! This time I was caught staring at him, trying to see what a person who has just lost nineteen kilos in three months looks like :) And here am I, trying to burn it out in the gym with almost no reduction in flab content :(
It took a while for me to understand how this whole thing works and sure enough, a high protein diet proves to be a quick weight loss one.
Coming to think of it, following this diet may make you get so fed up of having only meat for such a long time that you will eventually have lesser of it once you are off the diet :P
So now that you too have learnt a new way to reduce weight, I ask this question to all meat lovers reading this post. "Are you game to follow such a diet if you had to?"

Tagged! One picture, Many memories.

Ah! So it had to be a snap from my Birthday!
After being tagged by Stargazer I had to spend a while trying to get to a snap I could write about. So after a lot of legal permutations and combinations, this is the sixth snap from the sixth folder :P

Well quite a few records broken on this day I must say. Let me just list out a couple of them.

I turned 25!

So now I could legally drive an SUV in the US, my long time craving :) But guess what! even though I crossed 25 and really wanted to get the feel of driving an SUV I didn’t even get close to sitting in one.

This was my first birthday outside home!

Yes! For 24 years my parents looked at me grow upwards, but this lateral growth was only for me to see. :)

The first time I blew candles for a lifetime!

Some ill effects of being a prankster of a group is that your birthday is when it all comes back to you! I was not allowed to touch any of the candles and I had to blow each one of them out completely. It would be simple but only if these freaking tiny little candles didn’t light up again with a spark! This snap was taken just then… the moment when the fun element of the candles igniting again was slowly dying out and becoming more of an annoyance :)

The first time I got a double doze of cake smearing and birthday bumps!

The cake smearing part was still OK… but the birthday bumps :’( Oh My God! You might have heard of obscenity censored, but this was a special censored version of ruthless hitting with what ever one could find… my butt was so soar at the end of it all that I felt, oh sorry, I didn’t feel a thing. Even if a truck came and rammed me on my backside, I wouldn’t know a thing.

My first birthday when I popped champagne!
For the few months that I had been among new faces in the US, I got to be known as a person who enjoyed his wine! So, surprise surprise… there came the bottle of champagne! I guess they got it to try and help reduce the pain I was going to endure later during the night :)

And as one last addition… The amazing cake!
I was kind of curious when my friend said that he had to think a lot as to what kind of cake he wanted to order for me and that he finally struck gold. So all evening was spent in walking around my house and trying to figure out what could be on the cake. I couldn't really figure out what it could be. Then at night the cake was revealed… and yes, I turned from an inquisitive 25 year old guy to a giggly 4 year old kid :) I had least expected to see what I saw. And what amazed me more was that it was actually done by hand and not mechanized. Well, I just couldn’t stop myself from posting this snap as well, so here you go…the top view of my cake, with one of my all time favorite characters in animation :)

I'm not sure if i have enough people to tag, but anyway, I now tag Anish, Supriya and Avishek.
And what exactly you need to be doing? Pick out the sixth photograph from the sixth photograph folder and write along!

The holdup

It was an early morning where the air was all misty and the sun just managed to touch the ground. The breeze was very soft, it tickled my feet, and the chill it carried crawled up to my knees and shook me awake. Everything was so beautiful, so calm, nothing could be more peaceful than what I was experiencing right then and just at that moment... "Wake up!" "Where do you think you are?" "This is no fairy tale land." Damn it! What was I thinking of, where do I think I am. Any more of this behavior and they will shoot me in the head or leave me paralyzed. Hurriedly I woke up, scrambled around for my belongings, waited to have what was being served, the only good food I would have for the day. We had our share and then in a rush were sent to the loading area. With droopy and tired eyes I could faintly see the lights come closer. Oh no! Not another day of misery, what did I do that these people are treating me this way? Oh crap... Wait... Stop shoving me in... There is hardly any place in there, I will die of suffocation or be squeezed to death. Oh just wait! Let me at least get a grip onto something. But no, these ruthless people have to have their way; we are not here for your comfort they say, and keep moving along. Oh God! Thank you for small mercies! Thank you for giving me sufficient time to take a nap, to complete my share of sleep that these people snatched away from me. It will take a while to reach the other end of hell, let me dream good thoughts till then. But then I guess my share of mercy ran out as well, the bumpy ride didn't let me rest my eyes, it threw me awake each and every time. Damn you! And damn this guy who is driving. Is he high on something? But he is not allowed to! Then why this recklessness? May be it is part of the plan to make our existence around here a pain so that we give up on our own rather than they having to bring us down. Sadists! We reached in a half dead state just to know that from now on there is no merry time for the rest of the day. We literally have to slog our asses off if we want to stay alive. But how is that possible, I was not built for this. I was a simple guy with a simple well paying job. Why did you take me into captivity? What wrong did I do? Is it my fault if everything went wrong everywhere else? Stop hounding me! They make me sign a register everyday; they check my belongings, like I have something so deadly that it is a threat to them. Don't they realize that they are the ones threatening me? Now they split us up into batches each of us tied together so that we do not run away. A dozen more people walk around just to make sure we are not lazing around. All day long we live at the tip of their gun, hoping that it doesn't have a reason to go ballistic. After a long exhausting period they place some slop on the table. Green slop, yellow slop, and some other assortment of slop. We ate the slop they served and we got back to the crap they made us do. I don't even know what I am doing or even why I am doing it. But in this place I have no say! I'm just their slave in their freaking world! I am tired you see, I have done my share of work for today, please let me go, I plead. But there isn't anyone to answer my cry. It just me and that weird looking guard who says that I haven't completed my term yet. Get back to work you worthless lump! Make yourself useful for the rest of the day. You are in captivity for as long you are with us! Don't get too smart. Oh no! What now! How can I get back to doing something when I don't really have anything to do? Real sadists these guys! But then what can I do. After all they are the ones keeping me alive. The world outside is barren and there is no hope to live. Ok boss you win. Finally my day is over, they let me out of their holding they made me a free man again of some sorts, but just till the next morning when reality strikes back again!

Just Instrumental

What's more important when it comes to listening to music? Is it the lyrics, the delivery or the instrumental? Everyone would agree that all these play an equally important role in making a song a chart buster . But then what about just instrumental? There are no words, there is no style of delivery but it still can be catchy or can elevate you into a totally different world. It is true that lyrics give depth to a song, but in a way it gives that song just that one dimension which is subject to ones interpretation. Being a regular listner of just instrumental I have begun to believe that music without lyrics is like a book which reads different every time it is read. It has it's own characters each speaking out something throughout the piece. A little wierd but yes sometimes has it's own lyrics. Well, now I don't mean that lyrics are absolutely not required, but I'm just trying to bring out the vastness of how simple tunes with no lyrics can be interpreted. I'm not sure how many of you have felt this but if you haven't or if you have really not considered tuning into instrumental then I suggest that you give it a try.

Just typing...

Well, it’s not that I have stopped blogging and not that I don’t know what to write about... but more often than not I am just bored for no reason or caught with a blank on my face! I do the things that I did these years, umm... not really, I have them all but it still feels weird with me just sitting... not knowing how days go by, and there, again stuck not knowing what to write. Just sitting, staring at some characters in black.

I think I need some quiet time.