Monday, May 21, 2007


Thought: Sitting on the kitchen counter and eating raspberry preserves has got to be one of the best ways to start a Saturday morning.

Sunday, May 20, 2007


I must confess that I have been watching American Idol pretty steadily throughout the season. Now we are down to the finale; my favorite, Melinda, has been booted out and so I have very little interest. OversmileyChick and NonentityBoy don't quite grab my attention, though I can say with some surety that Oversmileychick will win.
The other reality show I like is the Apprentice. The Donald, with his pink ties and his much-discussed bad hair, is quite a likeable megalomaniac at the end of the day.
Of course there seems to be a reality show for everything now. Chefs, models, bikers, tatoo-artists, everyone. There was even one show on who is the more annoying member of a given couple. Eh?
A friend and I were discussing ideas for another such show, and we came up with one. It will feature another friend of ours, known for his love of the bottle. We will have this friend tottering about in various international locales, and the show will comprise events leading to him ending up three sheets to the wind. The twist would be that the locations would be out of the way, slightly weird places instead of the usual run of the mill cities that everyone's done to death. Yes. Ougadougou, anyone? And the name of the show? "WASTED." Imagine the girl from the T&L channel, in that sing-song tone of hers: "You're Watching.....WAS-ted." Quite a nice ring it has.
Then we discovered that there was some such thing already on, on some channel, called Three Sheets. Damn.

Friday, May 18, 2007

The argumentative Indian

Aid-worker friend is currently in Sri Lanka. He says that while Sri Lankans are like babies, Indians are like angst-ridden pre-pubescents. Now, he’s lived and worked in India, Guyana, Canada, parts of Africa, and of course, Sri Lanka. So I give him a fair bit of leeway when it comes to sweeping statements about peoples and nations in general. Moreover, after listening to what were, admittedly, patient and unbiased descriptions of how the visa process at the Indian embassy in Colombo works, I do not have anything intelligent to defend my country with.
This morning, at a busy intersection, the traffic lights weren’t working and there wasn’t a cop around. My auto guy drove into oncoming traffic and went left when we wanted to go right. I asked him what he thought he was doing. He said, cheerily, “Fullu jam.” OK. Meanwhile, two other cars were standing still, head-to-head, blocking about a kilometer of traffic on either side. I thought about aid-worker friend and shook my head. I really do not have anything to say.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

You want me to what?

So it occurred to me that I might not be the best bet if someone wants a mentor. Let me qualify that: this is true, if the person does not have any special interest in doing anything, and tends to treat life like a giant soap bubble party. Hmm. When I was an instructor at a coaching institute many moons ago, on some occasions I simply threw out the students who didn’t work. This left the students who did, and the purpose of holding the class was validated. Of course, this coaching was very intense and was for a very specific purpose, and the chucking out technique was openly admired by some, and secretly by the throwees out.
Now, it’s different. I cannot throw people out of anywhere. I must wear pretty white kid gloves and put on a gentle smile. Ha. No one said life is easy.

Monday, May 07, 2007

Off with his head!

Owing to nasty bout of insomnia one did not get the requisite 8 hours. Thus it happened that there was a daisy-fresh and enthusiastic phone conversation with someone at the other end of the world. It was the first time we were talking, and I doubt that they knew it was 1 A.M. in this neck of the woods. With me sounding bright and chirpy-like, doubtless they thought it was a perfectly reasonable daylight hour.
Alas, today I pay the price. Nothing pleases me, my beloved online radio included. While I am well-equipped to appreciate the musical genius and lyrical excellence of works like “Da Cops” and “Can U Werk Witdat” I would rather NOT listen to them today. (Incidentally, the 'Clean' versions of these pieces would still make my mother's ears curl.) Yet that is all my long-suffering ears have been subjected to, since I turned the thing on. Gah. Now to take the trouble of actually changing stations.

Friday, May 04, 2007

Travel type stuff

By way of travel, went on a trip to Kerala last weekend. First for a Mallu wedding. Now these weddings are so short that you have a high likelihood of missing the entire thing if you stroll in at a leisurely pace.

This is exactly what happened to our party. The girl and the boy were well and truly married, under the blinding yellow lights and the hanging strands of marigolds. We then stood under these same lights and marigolds to be photographed with the two poor, dazed sods; I spoke expertly out the side of my mouth to ask the bride in my rudimentary Malayalam how she was coping with it all. She flashed back an equally expert reply. In none of the photographs has this blasphemous conversation been captured. We look perfectly respectable, teeth showing in lady- like smiles.

The journey to Calicut was in a rented taxi, one of those biggish ugly cars favored by BPOs as pickup vehicles. Anyway, we passed through some jungle-type terrain, gloriously dark and mysterious. At about 4 am or some such hour, we stopped at a check-post that appeared to have a tea stall. The poor chap there had run out of milk though, so none of us got any tea. Back on the road, and a short time later, I opened my eyes to a whole field of mountain peaks covered in mist: the famed hills and valleys of Waynad. It was glorious.

Everyone got out and the photographers were busy at work. I touched one very expensive camera and posed gingerly for one picture because there was a group of very busy monkeys headed straight towards us. They passed us by, though; we apparently just weren’t that interesting.

The second part of the trip consisted of crashing at the grandmother’s house in Cochin. I slept a lot. Whenever I woke up (at a scandalously late hour) the cook had coffee for me. Otherwise she cooked splendid meals. My grandmother took me shopping. I read. That is the life, eh?

Now I am back to home turf. Chomping at the bit to make another, longer trip. Where, I know not. After my visa for foreign shores was so rudely turned down, I will stick to native ground.

a minor rant

I have just had my bheja fried listening to ceaseless hold-music which went like this: oolalalala-layo, oolalalala-layo - repeated, ad infinitum.
On top of which, the customer care fellow addressed me as Miss Devika. This is a famed pet peeve of mine. It reminds me of old Hindi films, where the hero was always addressed as "Mr. Vijay" or "Mr. Ajay." This was employed mostly by doctors when they had to tell Vijay or Ajay that the patient had been given the injection and would be conscious by morning.


spring dusk-
the quiet
of a white azalea.

~this here haiku swam in at twelfth place on that online contest thingy I've devoted myself to. Highly gratified.
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