Sunday, June 29, 2008

Good Bye...

How the words escaped
the teeming mind
How the world seemed
to stop short in its
never ending journey
round around
All because of
the qualms of parting
Fears looming large
Of deprivation
Of love, Of amity
Of solitude
Little does the
heart know that
Goodbye is a mirage
that ebbs away
leaving behind
The indelible,
The ever cherished,
The omnipresent,
P.S.1 : Dedicated to my Best Friends Forever.
Wherever you go
Together we shall stay
In our heart
In our Dreams

Green, Yellow, Red, the journey ahead...

A thoughtful story i read somewhere in the blogosphere....
It had been years since Siddarth took a local train back home. He had forgotten the counter at which to get a ticket, the platform to board. Everyone around him seemed to be hurrying up either out of the station or rushing to catch a train. Siddarth stood there with a ticket in his hand and staring at the display board. He finally spotted the train that would take him to his destination. His car had crashed and he dreaded taking a bus. He did not want to hang out of a crowded bus with his laptop bag and a blackberry in his pocket. He was sure a catch if he were ever robbed. He knew an auto rickshaw will cost him a lot that he could save it up for the petrol for his car. His calculative mind finally decided to take the train.
He stood at the platform looking at either side, not realizing which side the train was about to arrive. He held his laptop bag close to him and studied the watch every now and then. Everyone around him seemed to have a life that was the same, day after day. Nobody looked as anticipated as Siddarth. Nobody kept looking at the empty tracks or the train that never arrived. He was worried, not about the delay in train, but the crowd that he will have to wade through and find a place to perch. To safeguard his belongings. To get off without a crumpled shirt or someone else’s sweat all over him. He dreaded the feeling. For a moment he thought he would toss the ticket on the tracks and hire an auto rickshaw outside the station. Before he could make up his mind, the train arrived and even before he could realize, there were more people from nowhere who were thronging towards the train. All Siddarth had to do was stay close to the crowd. In few seconds he was inside the train and luckily the train was not as crowded as he had imagined. It almost seemed empty all of a sudden. He held the bar above his head as the train moved. His other hand was tightly pressed against the laptop bag. His journey home began with not much fanfare. At the next station he was able to find a place to sit beside the window. He immediately placed his laptop bag beside him so that nobody else would sit in that little space in between him and the little guy who sat next to him.
The next station was the most crowded and Siddarth did not even want to look out to see the crowd. He was happy to have found the place because his destination was the last in that trip. He kept staring at the empty tracks outside the window. It was dark and he could hardly see anything. His train began his journey again and the darkness outside was now moving.
Someone nudged his bag and he looked up to see a man standing next to him. He did not tell anything, but looked at the bag as if signaling to move it. Siddarth did not budge. He looked out of the window again and just before he was supposed to be lost in his thoughts, the man lifted his bag and sat down in that little space in between Siddarth and the little guy. Siddarth immediately pulled his bag close to him and placed it on his lap. The man must have been in his early thirties. He was wearing a white shirt and a white trouser and black shoes. He looked run down. Maybe he was drunk. Siddarth was not feeling at ease. He smelled liquor on the man, but it was just Siddarth’s imagination.
The journey resumed in silence, but not for too long.
“Comfortable?” the man asked Siddarth.
Siddarth nodded his head and turned away to look into the darkness outside the train.
“Stocks?” the man asked.
“Are you a stock broker?” the man asked.
Siddarth in a noticeably irritated tone, “No! Software engineer”
“Ah!” the man said as if to be judgmental.
It irked Siddarth and wanted to know what that “Ah!” meant. Siddarth looked at the man and read his face. It was not a happy face. The man looked tired. “Maybe that is how I look too” Siddarth thought to himself.
“Tiring day nah?” the man asked.
Siddarth decided to remain silent. He looked beyond the man and looked at the little boy who sat in silence.
“The traffic was terrible today. I was late” the man said.
Siddarth was sure that the man was not drunk but he was freaking him out. What if he was a psycho? What if he threatened him with a knife and snatched away his belongings?
“Ye..yes” Siddarth said as if he was unsure.
There was silence again.
“You know, sometimes it is very difficult to get to your destination on time. A life depends on your timing. But…” the man went into a thoughtful silence.
Siddarth looked at the man and saw tears brimming in his eyes. The man looked at the little boy who was still lost in his own world of silence.
Siddarth was hesitant to start a conversation with a man who had already freaked him out enough.
“but… people do not understand. It is the !@#$%^& traffic”, the man was now abusing the traffic and the drivers on the road.
“Who are you? A cab driver?” Siddarth asked and then thought to himself if he really wanted to prolong a conversation with a verbally abusive man.
“I’m an ambulance driver” he said.
“Ah!” Siddarth said in a judgmental tone. This time the man looked at Siddarth wanting to know the meaning of his “Ah!”.
“It is a very difficult job” the man said.
“In the traffic, next to a VIP’s convoy, it is the ambulance that gets more attention and space” Siddarth said as if the ambulance drivers were the privileged ones on the road.
“Wrong. Your perspective is wrong. I would not blame the people on the road. But on a rush hour, where is the space for an ambulance to wade through hundreds of vehicles in this city?”
“But people do respect the emergency of the people inside the ambulance and you cannot blame them at all. Even if someone wants to get home really quick, they still take a chance to leave way for the ambulance” Siddarth said in a defensive tone.
“I respect the people on the road. They pave way. Sometimes I think they are God. There are some who just follow an ambulance so that they can reach their destination quicker with the little space that an ambulance gets as a privileged vehicle on the road”
“Oh yea, I cannot deny that. What sad lives those people should have to follow the emergency of an ambulance just because they can move out of the traffic themselves”
“It is not an easy job. Very stressful. Everyday, some part of the city, someone is crying for a life. I can still hear cries of the people inside my ambulance. It is all about emergency.”
Siddarth was all of compassion for this man now. He decided to remain silent and listen to this stranger in the train.
“Sometimes I reach on time. I save a life. I save a life because I was fast, because the traffic let me move, because someone would have prayed in the road that the person inside the ambulance should live long, because the people around the patient inside the ambulance cried so loud that I just rushed on time, because there is God!” the man ranted.
“Sometimes I fail. I would not be able to help. The patient would have died even before we reached the hospital. The patient would have died just after reaching the hospital. Sometimes I blame myself that I could have been a little faster. Maybe the traffic could have been more controlled. Sometimes, during the rush hour it is chaotic and a huge ambulance does not have the space to move at all. Those are times when I really had thoughts of quitting the job.”
“You sure are a brave man” Siddarth said as if it would be consoling.
“I think so. I was a brave man. I saved lives. There were times when people would run back to me and hug me and tell me that they had saved their parents, their kids, their grand dad. They would give me money. I have also faced the wrath of the family members if someone died before we reached the hospital. They would think I was the one who killed the patient. It was not the traffic. It was not the condition of the patient. It was just me. Initially it hurt me. I got used to it later. Now I know it is part of my job. I try. I do not give up”

“People at the traffic too have their own responsibility” Siddarth said.
“Not all know about it. Tell me, you too drive your car don’t you. During those peak hours, honking like crazy, talking over the phone…” the man said. He folded his hands and waited for Siddarth to speak.
“Yes, but that has become the way of life. I used to take the train earlier when I was at college. Then when I got to work, I took my office bus. Then I had a bike. As I walked up the corporate ladder, I kept changing my mode of transportation too” Siddarth said.
“Signs of prosperity”
“Precisely” Siddarth snapped. He did not like that part of the conversation.
“A selfish self-obsessed software engineer who cannot think beyond the US dollars, an apartment, the monthly EMIs, sophisticated cars, bank balance, client meetings, sub-ordinates who report…” the man went on.
Siddarth did not stop him. Here was a man who summarized Siddarth’s life in just about 15 minutes.
“… weekends at the beach. Or maybe to a 2 hours movie, but the time you spend to get to the theater is more than the movie time itself. Annual vacation outside the country. Frequent business travels….”
“and?” Siddarth now smiled at the man.
“It is like a race right?”
“Yes!” Siddarth said in an affirmative tone.
“Sad life right?”
Siddarth smiled and looked out of the window. It was still dark and he had not realized how many stations had passed by then.
“So what is a happy life according to you?” Siddarth asked the man.
“I don’t know. I cannot define it. I save a life. I’m happy. I don’t get there on time and help save a life, I’m still happy, because I tried. Although mine is a simple life, it is still a race. A race to save someone else’s life. A race literally on the road, to beat everyone on the road, to wade through the traffic and reach there on time. Just that I race for others, not my own.”
“Hmm… makes sense. I race for myself. For those luxuries in life. My clients who would not understand the delays at work, but I race for myself so that I can save my ass from firing. I run from home to work during the wee hours to just catch up on a video conference. End of the day, I just save my work. My life”
“We almost lived the same life. I save lives by driving them to their safety zone. You race to get yourself to the safety zone.”
“You think it won’t continue anymore?” Siddarth asked.
The man smiled at Siddarth with a raised eyebrow.
Silence fell upon their journey again. After a while Siddarth turned around to see the man ruffling the hair of the little boy who was seated next to him.
The man looked at Siddarth.
“This little boy was on my ambulance. I tried very hard. I raced through the rush hour madness. The traffic was notorious.”
“Oh! He is safe now. You must have done a brilliant job. But how come you both are on this train now”
“I still can hear his mother’s shrill cries. I was not able to concentrate on my driving. It was as if my mind had already departed. I wanted this boy to live. To reach the hospital before he gave up. Just as I was close to the hospital, this little boy gave up. His last breath was in my ambulance and his mother cried aloud. I lost my control and the ambulance ran over the pavement and toppled over a few times. The red siren was all that remained of the ambulance. It kept raising the alarm until people came running for help. The same red siren, that helped me save many lives, didn’t help my life”
Siddarth’s face drained. He was motionless and kept listening to the man.
“I saw someone pull out this boy’s mother. She seemed to be walking. They put her in an auto rickshaw and I saw it disappear into the cloud of dust. I saw someone run to me. I saw more people running towards me. I closed my eyes. I was in pain. I gave up too”
Siddarth closed his eyes for a moment to recollect what had really happened.
He was rushing to his office as he had a videoconference with his client. He was on the phone giving instructions to his subordinates on what needs to be completed before the conference call. As he had taken a quick left, he saw a flash of light hit him. Before he could realize he saw an ambulance roll by his side and he was rolling inside his car the other way. He remembered seeing a woman being pulled out of the ambulance. He remembered someone running towards him. He remembered jetting out of the door himself. He was in pain and he gave up. He fell flat on this face, his laptop bag still hugging to him and his communicator was still on.
Siddarth opened his eyes quickly and looked out of the window. There was still darkness outside. The darkness will never cease. He turned around to look at the man and the little boy. They were lost in silence. A long journey was ahead.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Who am I ???

I am, but a shattered dream
A scratched wound
A lost hope for some
Life for another
I am a prayer in silence
A cry in despair
I am a painful memory
An unfulfilled wish
I am, but a longing for love
A confession of feelings
A petal in some book of past
A budding flower of spring
A dried leaf floating aloof
Going where breeze takes it
I am, but an admiration
In the eyes of a loved one
A disturbed thought
In the mind of some person
A truth in disguise
A secret kept in the vault of the heart
A smile on the lips of a woman…
I am... merely a thought!

If Death Takes Me Away

Sometimes I think -

What in the world would change if death takes me away?
Who would shed a tear and who would just walk away?

Would anyone still sit besides me even when I am long ago gone?
Would anyone still try to see my face through the stone;
The face so much still and at peace
And would anyone try to listen what I had to say
Without saying anything at all?

Would anyone feel lonely for I was a good company once?
Would anyone remember me and all that I wrote once?
Would the days pass by without memories of me?
Or would someone remember me?

An insane boy who spoke of feelings
This is what I call myself when I look into the mirror of past
Would ever anyone search for the truth in my silliness?
And understand me in the true sense?

IF death takes me away
Would anyone say, "I wish he could stay!" (?)

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Small Wonder - Solar Powered Cell Phone Charger

No power? No problem... the sun is there!No power? No problem... the sun is there!
The new, compact portable solar cell phone charger from Japan's Strapya World is without a doubt, the right product at the right time. With "eco" the trendy buzzword of the moment in Japan, this lightweight (40gm, or less than 2 ounces) power source absolutely fills the bill. Clean, environmentally friendly power from the sun... now, at last, you CAN take it with you!

The 2.16 inch (5.5 cm) tall charger comes in black or white, and there are two versions available depending on what type of Japanese cell phone you own. That's right, "Japanese" cell phone - the charger is compatible with either FOMA/SoftBank3G or AU/CDMA phones; there's a complete model listing at the Strapya product page.

This revolutionary new portable power source will absorb its maximum amount of solar energy in 6 to 10 hours, perfect for a day at the beach. If you don't have that amount of time or it's a cloudy day, just attach it to an AC adaptor and fill it up in only 3 hours. It takes roughly 15 to 25 minutes to charge up a dead cell phone and once charged, you've got 40 minutes of talking time.

Strapya and Tokyo Coil Engineering have partnered on the development of this very cool little device, and you can be sure that upcoming versions will not only be compatible with foreign cell phones, but other personal electronic devices like mp3 players. Pricing, at least for the current model solar charger, is surprisingly cheap at just 1,995 yen ($19.75). Free power, low initial cost and never needing to buy a cell phone battery again? Priceless!

Friday, June 13, 2008

My encounter with music....

Some of the tortures my mother put me through in the tender years of my life were Hindi and Music classes. But it was music that I loathed learning the most.

My folks brought home this carnatic singer cum violinist whom my dad endorsed after year long consultations with his fellows whoz kids were put to test as well. Finally one vijayadasami day this man came home. Initially i was very reluctant to join my bro and my twin sister who were very eager to start their formal course. As they were looking forward to it. I was asked to join them by force. Though i actually thought i would be only an hindrance in their pursuit for knowledge they took me wrong and wanted me to join them. However another reason for this is that this would hamper the only free time i had for doing my so called research (those who knew my childhood advendures would exactly know what am i talking of )

And so began my encounters with the 7 swaras at a tender age! There I sat in my shorts, cross-legged before this man who seemed hippy-like compared to my 4 feet height ! Shaven, shoulder length oil dripping hair bawled in front, a red beetle nut coated tongue and wearing a filthy white shirt, he resembled a gardener more than a guru. Before I could make more assessments regarding his appearance, he made a huge slap to his thigh in sync with his harmonium and crooned "Saaa, paaa, sollu paakalam"

And the smart-ass that I was,asked, pointing to his thigh - "Apdi adikanuma ?" (Well come on at that age, I was ignorant of the very existance of the concept of taalam!) He let out a guffaw and said - "Aama thambi" ! I looked back at my mother who gave me a Do-what-he-asks-you-to look. So started my encounter with singing while the other two smarties made remarkable progress in days i was seriously clambering raga to raga such began my saga... Especially when my brother accompanys my sisters harmonica with his violin, they ask me to sing the geethams in sync (Yes i've completed singing those swara varisais so called sarali varisais, janta varisais and so on...) Gosh its hard to cope up with.

It all was very hard for me.. suddenly i had no time to do my homeworks (yes, i'll always do them in the morn in the hurry-burry time after playing all evening. Something which i enjoyed than my brother who always used to study) More harder are the days he comes in the evening... He'll be having so much time to censure. i became very much frustrated. Somehow i've completed those geethams and graduated to sing varnams while the other two were singing keethanaas by now.. I stare at them when they laugh while i still struggle to sing varnams. Every class from then onwards, I was taken dutifully by my mother coaxed and cajoled in the false hope that, it would be my last class. Somehow the kind soul thought he would elevate my spirits by teaching me some keerthanas so that i could stand with them. Then he realized what a mistake it was.... Yes i made him realize that very day...

Irritated with this he had decided to talk to my dad in his office. While my dad could'nt take this. how can my son be such a moron ??? And then they've decided to fix a day especially for me to review my progress. Finally the D-Day comes as he began testing the things i've learnt so far, began the test of my time. He asked me to stick to the kaalam (Tempo) which i could hardly cope with (shruthi as well). He grew impatient as he kept telling this no. of times. And then left-out a loud cry "Theruvila Naay aadu maadu laam thaan oodum nee yenna naaya??? soldrathu puriyala... motham abashwaram" (its only the dogs, cows, and goats that runs in roads... are you a dog ??? can't you understand what im saying. Fully out of swaram) Tears were ready to fall from my eyes... but i didn't let them ( I've never cried so mean. Not even during when they sent in four c-like injections to my spine marrow during my dingue illness. Believe me i was the first to be alive in my home town as the disease hit our town).

Sensing this he felt uneasy and claimed some excuse as if he had a class somewhere. Drunk his Coffe as usual with his BP tablet. Just when he was on his way out nearing the gate i blasted out... cried-out loud saying "Pooda Vazhukka manda.... Naan appudithaanda paaduven" (hey bawled head... i'll sing like that only....) All of them were shocked hearing this. My dad was awestruck. Couldn't digest his son saying those words... Slowly I turned waiting for the repercussion of my act of bravery... But he left the gate and plied in his dabba car as usual as if he haven't heard anything ( i still think hez half-deaf) or hez undeterred as i thought he obviously must've seen so many seens like this....

But it all was understandable. from the next class i was not asked to sit with them, neither he asked why im not joining.... and they asked me to do namaskaarams for him after that... such ended my encounter with the classical music.

But since then i began listening to music verymuch, practicing all the geethams, varnams and keethanaiz... i began learning every keerthanais my bro and sis learns from him... i'll sing with them while they do the sadagam daily... Learnt quite a bit of Keyboard and violin to an extent i can play keerthanais. But when he comes for his class.. i'll abscond, hiding myself in my room keeping myself busy with those experiments :)

Today, I'm so grateful to those days, for instilling such a deeply rooted love for music. Now i love music in every form. listen to lot of carnatic musics across genre. Hear Hinustani, Pop, Rap, Rock, and what not... May be they've missed the big picture constraining themselves to virtual boundaries of carnatic music. For the world out there is so colorful.

WOW What a Ride...

Maybe this explains why i always drive at an average of 80's.......

"Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming – 'WOW-- What a Ride!'" - Anonymous

Thursday, June 12, 2008

UFOs (Flying Saucers) - How They Fly

The existence of World War Two German field propulsion flying saucers is a topic which is denied by virtually every reputable authority in aviation history. It is also denied by many researchers studying German saucers. The problem is that in the years immediately following the Second World War the earth's skies suddenly began to be populated by flying craft which did some remarkable things. They flew at unheard of speeds. They made very sharp turns, seemingly non-aerodynamic turns, even at this extreme speed. They lacked the glowing tail of jets or rockets but they glowed or gave off light at night from their periphery or from the whole craft. They were silent or almost silent. Sometimes they gave off sounds that an electric generator or motor might make. Sometimes vehicles with electrically based ignition systems ceased to operate in the presence of these saucers. No government claimed these flying craft, yet they were seen all over the world. Interview with Author of "Space Aliens from the Pentagon".

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Are you an Evangelist ?

When someone asked me if I was an evangelist back then during my school days, my pathetic vocabulary skills proudly returned a null. I stared back with a quizzical look on my face. An evangelist is a person who passionately pursues what he likes the most, or simply a person who spreads joy.
There I stood, with the world spinning around me, introspecting whether my presence made any significant changes or was I just another being who meant nothing to the ones around him ? I've always believed and sworn to the fact that the world will show you its beautiful backside if you are the snobbish, moody, every-sighing soul.
Are you the types who lead a mundane, moribund, mechanical life doing things that you wished you could change/alter ? Do you go to your workplace/college/school every morning wondering -"Why the hell am I here?" But then have you ever thought of it this way ? People who see that ugly constipated contorted look on your face every morning, tend to lose their little spark of enthusiasm that they had preciously obtained after an introspection like mine? ;) Negative aura spreads quickly, but positive thoughts are more infectious.
Go back to that point of time in your life when we wanted to become astronauts, pilots, soldiers, superheroes, painters and even poets!! Where did all that enthusiasm go ? Are we afraid of people who snicker at our dreams ? Disappointments and fear flourish in our heart & minds.
Yes, I am an evangelist! Of course I do have my mood-swings, hard days and downfalls, but then who doesn't?
Go enroll for those arts classes, eat those extra pieces of chocolate, find time to talk, enjoy the sunshine, listen to some soul-enriching music, read a good word, feel good about yourself!
And please burn your to-do lists. :D
Am I more special than you ? Yes, because I've found my cause !

Back Home - Mixed Feelings !!

Anirudh looked out of the little window on his left. He could see only clouds. He shifted restlessly in his seat and reclined back as he closed his eyes.
He was returning home after almost 3 years and was looking forward to meet all his loved ones. He was no homesick person, but the 3 year gap had left him feeling totally disconnected with everyone back home. He thought of his mother and her lip-smacking rasam, the early morning jogging with his dad, the back-slapping moments with his mates, the aimless bike rides, the night-outs at the beach...
He looked out again and saw the familiar blue of the Marina. A smile crossed his face. It was about time. The slim air hostesses prepared the cabin crew for landing. The aircraft dropped a few feet and met heavy turbulence. They circled for a few minutes until the plane got clearance for landing. Those minutes seemed longer than the 3 years. As the flight touched ground and sped along the runway,
Anirudh already had his seat belt off and was urging to grab his backpack and scoot out. He was met with a huge queue for immigration. He kept counting heads and when his turn came, he was too glad to thrust out his passport to the immigration officer. Baggage claiming tested his patience more than anything else. Every third suitcase seemed like his and when he finally spotted his, the rickety conveyor belt seemed to take ages to transport it to him.
He couldn't hold his feet once he had his luggage on the trolley. He searched the sea of faces until his eyes settled on his parents standing amidst the crowd. When he made his way out and reached where they were standing, his father pulled him into a rib cracking hug. And suddenly he felt all the years melting into nothingness. This is where he belonged. He was home at last !

Your eyes says it all ....

"Every time you look at me, a part of me dies, I know there's something else, I can see it in your eyes."
As for this post, the above lines say it all ! Some people in the world try to hide their inner feelings in their heart, but then, they forget that their eyes talk a lot more than they actually do.
Brown, Green, Hazel, Blue, Amber. Dark or light be it, eyes definitely reflect the true spirit of the inner soul. Lighting up with a sparkle on an affectionate touch, wrinkling at the corners with grace, coyly winking at a cute face, glaring with hatred, pelting a cold stare, brimming with tears or just blinking away every day! The first of each emotion churning out of you is first seen in the eyes. You could have a control on your tongue, but you can never stop an eye from talking. If you have a dream in your heart, it most certainly shows in your eyes. Why? Even the most complex of all emotions - Love is associated with the eyes - "Love at first sight"! We've never heard of a love at first smell !!
In an eye, you the see the beauty of a simple person, the majesty, the sophistication, the ruthlessness and the power !
As Ludlum casts in his Ambler Warning where Hal Ambler judges everyone with their reflex emotions especially eyes.... Gives you a rough idea as to how much a man can know from your eyes... There are ppl who talk to your eyes... They keep a constant vigil on your eye as they talk to you. Simply studying your from your eyes. One such a human is my boss... For i know he knows everything thatz in our mind as he reads (as if its all there out open). And as he fixes his eyes on you he'll be getting all the informations he wants as if connecting to a network. I can see him probing my eyes as he talks (or atleast thatz what i think).
I had seem lot of people doing these.. As if mesmerizing you as they talk to you... But equally difficult for them is to hide that they are actually reading you. Atleast thatz all i read from them. For im not good at the same all i know when i meet such a person is that hez reading my mind loud and clear.
Well enough rambling... i'll finish this with the crux of this post
No matter how many words you have or hide, Your eyes says it all !

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Unsolved Puzzle...

Oh Earth! How huge are you?
So beautiful in every view
From space you look so blue
Who made you?
We have no clue !

Nostalgia !!! Gone are the days Will they ever come back....

At times i wonder if i could live atleast a minute of those days... How precious they are now... all we have is the memories of those days which atleast fills our thoughts.

Gone are the days, but not the memories.

Gone are the days
When the school reopened in June, and we settled in our dusty desks and chairs.

Gone are the days
When we queued up in the book depot, and got our new books and notebooks.

Gone are the days
When we chased one another in the corridors during Interval, and rushed back before the next class commenced.

Gone are the days
When we had lunch in classrooms, corridors, playgrounds, under the trees and the unforgettable canteens.

Gone are the days
When a single Games period in the week's Time Table, was awaited more eagerly than the monsoons.

Gone are the days
Of Sports Day, and the annual School Day, and the one-month long preparations for them.

Gone are the days
Of the stressful Quarterly, Half Yearly and Annual Exams, and the most enjoyed holidays following them.

Gone are the days
Of fights but no conspiracies, Of Competitions but seldom jealousy.

we enjoyed, we played, we won, we lost, we laughed, we cried, we fought, we thought (We learnt ???)

Gone are the days, but not the memories, of our most cherished school days which will linger in our hearts for ever and ever.

Clear the BLUES

So here's an effort to cheer up my spirits and probably yours too....

There may be days when you get up in the morning and things aren't the way you had hoped they would be. That's when you have to reassure yourself that things will get better soon.

There will be times when people will disappoint you and let you down. But those are the times when you must learn to trust your own judgements and opinions.

There will be challenges to face and several changes to adapt to, and it is upto you to accept them.

Constantly keep yourself headed in the right direction, for it may not be easy at times, but in those tough times of struggle, you'll find a stronger sense of who you are.

So, when the days come that are filled with frustration & unexpected responsibilities, remember to believe in yourself and all that you want your life to be.

Because challenges & changes will only help you find your goals that you know are meant to come true for you.

The higher the goal,
The harder the climb.
But taken each day one step at a time;
The goal is accomplished.
The dream is attained.
And the prizes??
The Wisdom and Strength that are gained.

As Rascal Flatts puts it in Stand.....

You feel like a candle in a hurricane
Just like a picture with a broken frame
Alone and helpless
Like you've lost your fight
But you'll be alright, you'll be alright

Cause when push comes to shove
You taste what you're made of
You might bend, till you break
Cause its all you can take
On your knees you look up
Decide you've had enough
You get mad you get strong
Wipe your hands shake it off
Then you Stand, Then you stand
Life's like a novel
With the end ripped out
The edge of a canyon
With only one way down
Take what you're given before its gone
Start holding on, keep holding on

Everytime you get up
And get back in the race
One more small piece of you
Starts to fall into place

Memories of the past.... Still reminiscing those good old days....

In memory of all those students who were waiting for the bell to ring.....

The brain is such a complex thing to understand.
It functions 365 days in a year
7 days a week
24 hours everyday
stops functioning the moment we enter the examination hall.

Cricket: Indian Premier League 2008: Bowling Stats

Data Source: Cricinfo

• UI Credits: Google Motion Chart Gadget

  • Bowlers with no averages are assigned a default average of 5 more than the highest.
  • The other variation of visualizing the same data is here.
    There are some features of that API that are absent in Google Motion Chart and would be very useful here.
  • Currently, the data for this motion chart has to be manually updated in the Google Spreadsheet. (Google Docs API may be able to automate this).
    I will do my best to update it daily.

    I have access to data from 07 May 2008 only. If you how to get the data from Cricinfo as of a particular previous date, please let me know.

Cricket: Indian Premier League 2008: Batting Stats

Data Source: Cricinfo
UI Credits: Google Motion Chart Gadget

  • The other variation of visualizing the same data is here.
    There are some features of that API that are absent in Google Motion Chart and would be very useful here.
  • Currently, the data for this motion chart has to be manually updated in the Google Spreadsheet. (Google Docs API may be able to automate this). I will do my best to update it daily
  • I have access to data from 07 May 2008 only. If you know how to get the data from Cricinfo as of a particular previous date, please let me know.

Intel® 2008 Awards: Teen Winners Make Amazing Contributions To Their Fields!

The three young women who won top awards for their "science projects" for the 2008 Intel® Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF) each won $50,000 scholarships from the Intel Foundation as part of their awards. They are already at the level of Eve Curie! Take a look at their "science projects!"

1. Sana Raoof (left) contributed mathematics research that assists in solving classic biochemistry problems.

Raoof's research provided new insight into how a better understanding of mathematical knot theory could help resolve classic biochemical problems. Specifically, her work focused on the Alexander-Conway polynomial invariant for chord diagrams to help prove how to classify molecules on a structural basis.

Sana Raoof, 17, is from Muttontown, NY.

2. Yi-Han Su (center) identified a way to make methanol convert to hydrogen with greater efficiency.

Su was awarded for her efforts to identify a high-activity catalyst that could improve methanol reforming reactions in order to generate hydrogen more efficiently.

Yi-Han Su, 17, is from Chinese Tapei.

3. Natalie Sarange Omattage developed a biosensor to screen for contamination in foods.

Omattage developed a more efficient and less expensive way to screen for food additive contaminants, including those responsible for the recent deaths of many pets. By developing biosensors based on quartz crystal microbalance (QCM), Omattage's research provides a new way for ports and warehouses to more thoroughly screen for food additives and other contaminants that could be found in food imported into the United States.

Natalie Sarange Omattage, 17, is from Cleveland, MS

Wow! It's hard to believe that these women are still in high-school and I'm reporting the winners of the ISEF and not of the Nobel Prize!

Congratulations to Raoof, Su, and Omattage for your accomplishments and thank you for setting the bar high for teens who aspire to the ISEF. There were 500 other ISEF winners in grade school, middle school, and high school categories; congratulations to you all!

press release

Picture it - thousands of Mickey Mouse heads floating over Orlando, Florida. That is the plan for later this month when Walt Disney Co. uses a new invention to promote Disney World. Now picture the Nike logo or the Apple Logo or even your logo taking to the air. How? Flogos!

What is a Flogo? It's lighter than air foam, made from proprietary surfactant (fancy word for soap), and pressed into the shape of a logo.

Source: WTPOP News

Flogos have a life expectancy of minutes to an hour or more, depending on wind speed and direction. They travel slowly, can go twenty to thirty miles in distance and as high as twenty-thousand feet in the air.

Source: ABC News

First conceived of in the 1990s by Francisco Guerra and Brian Glover, two international special effects inventors, it takes about ten days for the in-house Flogo art department to create your Flogo stencil, then a certified Flogo tech will place a Flogo generator in the optimum location, and Presto, Flogo! Sky trash or innovative ads that really soar?

Source: Armageddon

One great thing is they are a Green product, 100% environmentally safe. Currently available in white, in 2009 they will launch a line of colored Flogos. Maybe one day, they'll even figure out how to write messages in the foam.

Source: MSNBC

Flogos come in 24-inch and 36-inch models, but a new 48-inch generator is in development. While the most intricate design I could find was the Olympic circles (picture unavailable) the possibilties seem endless.

What do you think of these innovative soap bubble ads?

Sources: The Denver Post and Flogos

Engineers Build First Self-Replicating 3D Machine

As biologists are busy working on cloning living organisms, engineers are working on a mechanical counterpart - creating non-living things that can replicate themselves.

Recently, more than 100 researchers from around the world have been working on a project called RepRap (Replicating Rapid-prototyper), which started in 2004. At the Cheltenham Science Festival in the UK, the team displayed their creation: the world's first 3D printer than can print pieces which can be assembled by hand to make an exact copy of the original printer.

The replica is no mule, either - it can also print another copy of itself.

So far, RepRap can only reproduce its plastic parts, and not its metal or electronics. It takes a human a few hours to assemble the copied pieces into another printer.

Nevertheless, RepRap is the first 3D printer that can reproduce its own components. And, with its pieces costing around $600, the printer is much less expensive than other 3D printers (which cost around $50,000). Besides replicating itself, it can also print plastic 3D objects including coat hooks, water-filter insects, children's sandals, and much more.

The RepRap collaborators hope that the printer can be useful for reproducing plastic objects of just about any shape, especially for hobbyists and communities in the developing world.

People already "run their own CD burners, printing presses and photographic laboratories", said Adrian Bowyer, the University of Bath mechanical engineer who launched the RepRap project. "There's no reason they shouldn't run their own factories as well."

At , you can find more information, including instructions for building your own replicating RepRap printer.

via: New Scientist

The real heroines of Indian History...

IT was a real pleasure to go through the profiles of women like Dr. Lakshmi Sehgal, who was a medical graduate way back in 1938 and who joined the Indian National Army; Dr. Muthulakshmi Reddy, who took a stand against child marriage and the abhorrent devdasi system, then widely prevalent; K.P. Janaki, the “Amma” of the poor; Mallu Swarajyam, the brave leader of the Telangana armed struggle; Ahilya Rangnekar, one of the founders of the All Indian Democratic Women’s Association; Suseela Gopalan, once tipped to be the Chief Minister of Kerala; K.R. Gouri Amma, the longest serving member in the Kerala Assembly; and Mrinal Gore, fondly called “Paniwali Bai” (Cover Story, June 6).

These women, who carved out a space for themselves in the public sphere at a time when it was much more difficult for women to do so than it is today, are the real heroines of our country.

Frontline has really made a mark by unearthing these stories of the real heroines of india...

Read about The Pioneers:
Dr. Lakshmi Sehgal
Dr. Muthulakshmi Reddy
K.P. Janaki
Mallu Swarajyam
Ahilya Rangnekar
Suseela Gopalan
K.R. Gouri Amma
Mrinal Gore

Monday, June 09, 2008

Image trouble - PINKY ANAND

Can the police go public with “evidence” when an investigation is still incomplete?

The character is like a tree and reputation like its shadow. The shadow is what we think of; the tree is the real thing”. Abraham Lincoln

Though the investigation in the Aarushi murder is still ongoing, the investigating agency has not done much to generate faith in their ability to discover the truth. The over anxiety to speak to the press and to bring every possible “evidence” to public knowledge appears hopelessly misplaced.

But this is not what this is about. Whatever may happen with the investigation or trial, the image of the teenager, the victim of this bizarre double murder, has been tarnished. The investigating agency has made public the “preposterous story” of the “objectionable position of the girl with the servant” without any basis.
Legal angle
Should the investigating agency have made public this allegation without any apparent basis? The National Commission for Women has rightly insisted that they would serve a notice upon Uttar Pradesh Police for using language that shows ‘disrespect’ towards women. The dead cannot deny or contradict these remarks. Reason and prudence demand that the investigating authorities should scrupulously abstain from making statements that amount to character assassination of a minor dead girl. Sections 499 (defamation) and 509 (insulting modesty of a woman) of IPC prescribe offences for defamatory statements. The Press Council of India has provisions barring use of “such” personalised statements specifically when a person is dead.

The laws of the country and the Supreme Court hold that the identity of a girl should not be disclosed. The Supreme Court dealing with a case of rape in State of Punjab vs Gurmit Singh (1996) said, “The courts should, as far as possible, avoid disclosing the name of the prosecutrix in their orders to save further embarrassment to the victim of (a) sex crime.”

Obviously, this confidentiality is meant to preserve the dignity of the victim and not to expose her to public shame. Strict adherence to high standards of ethical behaviour by the police is what the time demands. But, in this case, the 14-year-old girl, a minor now dead, suffers repeated character assassination by the police.

Trite though it is, even a perfunctory look shows that, when the victim is a girl, aspersions are frequently cast on her character as in the case of Hetal Parekh, the 16-year-old raped and murdered by Dhananjay Chatterji, who was ultimately sentenced to death.

This brings us to the question what should we do? Should the police be at liberty to make “evidence” public when investigation is not complete? Are the police governed by a code of conduct restraining them from maligning the character of a woman? Can the victim’s personal life be subject to public discussion because of such “disclosures”? Are the investigating agencies answerable for the character assassination of a minor victim? Do we need guidelines?

The writer is a senior practicing advocate, Supreme Court of India
Courtesy: The Hindu - Magazine

Its now Lalu's turn to start blogging ...

Off late blogging virus has hit many celebrities. Be it Amitabh Bachchan, Amir Khan or Salman Khan. But now it started hitting politicians too. Our own Lalu Prasad Yadav started blogging in .Lalu intend to post every week at his blog.

To visit his blog clickhere.

It is not new for politician to start blogging. Omar Abdulla already blogs. But when Laluji blogs it creates lot of interest because it is definitely going to very humorous and funny to read. However Lalu’s first post was very political and he targeted Vasundhara Raje for Gujjar Agitation and said that the agitation reached this level because of mishandling by Vasundhara Raje Government. He also raised his concern on Gujjars demand and showed is displeasure at loses to railways and passengers due to agaitation.

We may see Lalu using this blog as a tool for targetting his political rivals or to his own political advantage. Nevertheless in coming days the blog will be in news both for humour as well as controversies. Lalu knows best what to strike, when to strike and whom to strike and what else other than blog can provide him a another big platform. To visit his blog clickhere.

Sunday, June 08, 2008

Madhukar Sabnavis: How mature is India?

Social influencers need to recognise India is a teenager.

A recent life insurance commercial shows a wife returning home and finding her husband sitting in the balcony ‘still'. She fears the worst only to realise in the end that he is resting and the advertisement ends with the message ‘dangers can happen anytime'

A mobile phone commercial shows a young teenager being harangued by his father. He shuts his father off by quietly listening to music on his phone.

In a mobile service commercial a young girl hoodwinks her parents to get permission to go out of town for a picnic with her boy friends. She gives her parents an impression that she may be swinging the wrong way.

All three commercials are interesting and engaging. The first one is provocative while the other two are both charming and entertaining. The life insurance ad touches upon the most basic need — protection in the case of eventuality. The mobile ads reflect what most of us have personally experienced in our youth — parents are people who have to be outsmarted. They are real. There is nothing particularly wrong in any of these executions .This is not a judgement on either their effectiveness to connect with the desired audience or actually make a sale. But it does beget the question: Is Indian society ready for such reality?

In the last decade, Indian society has seen some interesting changes. Much has been written about the austere, conservative, mild, satisfied, non-materialistic, idealistic, family-oriented, boisterous and emotional Indian giving way to the optimistic, confident, "can-do" spirited, competitive and almost "hedonistic" consumerist new Indian. However, alongside this, there are two other significant changes — and it's beyond the superficial western cultural invasion that many media talk about and that took place in the 90s.

First, this new Indian has given birth to "insecurity" in society. At a personal level, the high level of competition from school to college to work has created pressures from family and peers to perform like never before. The weakening of the physical family network — with the emergence of nuclear family and working parents, gives children (and even adults) fewer people to fall back on for managing emotional stress. The result is growing psychological loneliness. This is compounded by an environmental change. In the 60s and 70s, India, as a nation, faced known enemies. Today, with the growth of terrorism, the enemy is unknown — he could be anywhere, even next door! It's ironic that we talk about a more confident younger generation, but research shows that parents today are more scared of letting children go out freely. Mobiles have become a means to keep in touch with children as they go from school to vocational to tutorial classes — something earlier generations rarely worried about. India (and maybe the world too) has become a more unsafe place.

The second characteristic of the new India is "aggression". When aggressive energy is expressed as trying to be better or actually exploring new lands, it's positive. However, there is a "darker" side to it. Shoot-outs in schools, revenge and murder killings among the educated class are a reflection of this new-found aggression — an outcome of society's inability to cope with emotional stress in an intelligent and mature fashion. The recent Harbhajan-Sreesanth slapgate during the IPL may seem amusing to some or just a venting of sporting aggression to others, but it is also symptomatic of the dark side of the "aggressive" Indian. There is discussion currently on championing that, besides skill development and psychological preparation; cricketers need to be "trained" in managing themselves and their emotions on the field — it's a recognition that the new Indian we are so proud of needs to leashed!

The growth of the media has only compounded this "insecurity" and magnified "aggression". The rush for TRPs has triggered a proliferation of graphic descriptions of violent acts — often salacious, much like a low-brow murder mystery — which only subliminally spread a feeling of uncertainty. It may be facile to say that the media is giving people what they want — the real truth is that people may be natural voyeurs and enjoy it when given, but aren't really vicarious in nature — they don't seek to know gory details. "Positive" news turns the average viewer as much as "negative" news engages him. While such media coverage does help to raise the ante of the system and works towards bringing justice, it also has the other effect of spreading "paranoia" in society.

Economics is taking over society and culture. In the new world, companies are the new government, guiding society — shaping it with their products and messages. With their privatisation, the media too is another corporate. Businesses and brands need to be sensitive to the larger role they unconsciously play. We need to realise that though India has over 2,000 years of history and culture and 60 years of independence, we are a teenage country. A "doddering" old man of 44 was re-born as a child in 1991. We are like an average teenager coping with change — in our own circumstances and in a transformational world around us. Any social stimulus needs to be viewed in this context. Social influences, whether media editorial or advertising messages, need to evaluate whether they can play a more encouraging role rather than just a commercial one. Simultaneously, the situation provides brands — media or product — an opportunity to take on the role of advisors and guides that help people — consumers and citizens — cope with change and uncertainty.

In the recent IPL semi-final between Chennai Super Kings and Kings XI Punjab, Kumar Sangakarra walked because he thought he was out even though the umpire did not raise his finger. It was a great act of sportsmanship. Yet, there were enough youth who said Sangakarra was foolish; he should have played by the book rather than the spirit — there are other times he gets bad decisions, so this could have been his lucky moment.

The event by itself is small but is reflective of our times. Clearly, Indian culture and values, in the long term, will see society through this teenage tryst. However, social influencers need to be constantly aware of the impact of their actions on society today rather than fall back on the cushion of Indian cultural strengths that will see us through tomorrow. Maybe if the three ads quoted at the start of this piece are viewed with this filter, our perspective could change.

Something worth thinking about.

The views expressed are personal.

The author can be contacted at

Courtesy : Business Standard

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

The Terminal man

The time had arrived. She was there too among the huge gathering of people. The friends surrounding him were more in number than his family for he was a popular & lovable person amongst them. But for her, he meant something more than that. Everybody knew who she was, but not as much as he did. They had been together only for a month, but still it seemed as if they had spent their entire life together. But all that was insignificant now. What was more important was that, he was leaving her, why only her, he was leaving a whole bunch of his loved ones.

There were tears welling up in her eyes, but then he didn't want to see tears, not now. Mustering up the last of the resolute courage that was left within her, she put up a good battle against her own self. But then his eyes kept going back to her. She simply wanted to hug him tight and say that she would always be there for him. No! She couldn't do that. She got her answer from him soon. A smile and a bat of the eyelid, that said things more than words could have explained. That was all that he could manage and that was all she needed.

The moment had passed, the time had finally arrived........ the electronic voice on the loudspeaker cried out loud .....

"All the passengers to the flight Luftansa 330 are requested to proceed to the security check"

Final handshakes, hi-fives, pats on the back, hugs and soppy teary kisses and a final look at his sweetheart, he pushed his trolley and moved towards his new destination. A place totally new to him, a place void of his family, friends and of course his lovely sweetheart. Last minute handshakes were exchanged and she kept looking till he reached the point of no visibility.

Some wise soul once said - Time, tide and flights wait for none. How true !!

Unsung Glories...

six year old kid janani walked into her contemporary duplex house with a beatific smile on her face. The reason for the big grin was clenched tightly in her little fist. A cup testifying her first place in the singing competition held in her school. She walked in screaming- "Amma, ammaaaa, where are you?" Probably amma hadn't returned from office yet. She ran to the telephone and dialed the ten digit cell phone number. "The personyou are trying to call is currently not reachable" repeatedly uttered the electronic voice. Janani called up her father's office next - "Daddy, I won the first prize today" she exclaimed excitedly

"That's good darling, now I'm a little busy, we'll talk later baby"

She hung up with a long sigh took the cup upstairs to her disabled grandmother's room. Nandana never liked the room. It smelt of dettol and had the most dull and vapid interiors unlike the rest of the house.

But the moment Nandana walked in, her grandmother stretched her arms out and said - " I knew you'd win Nandu, I'm so proud of you my angel ! Will you sing once again for your grandmother?"

And the smile that was swept off from Nandana's face a few minutes back, lit up the entire room as she sang for her grandmother.

So much to do, and so less time ....

Of late i've been postponing lot of things including blogging, and continuing my hobby(robots). I've tried to start myself every now and then to get back to what i was back thenbut often failed to catch up my lost dreams....

Here in my blog after series of poems,fiction, Technology, economy and news, im sure you ppl must've felt a bit boring. I too have started feeling that I'm losing that personal touch with my blog. Of course im thinking of introducing the stories wchichwill be interjected at regular intervals. I've seem to have lost continuity with the string of events happening around me. My working life can't get any boring ! The 5 and half working days of the week seem to pass at the slowest pace ever possible. I never seem to be catching up on my sleep and the rate at which my activities after-office-hours are increasing, I'd probably be an insomniac at the end of this year!

I've wanted to involve myself in so many activities that interest me, but other activitiestake the major share of my time and leave me void of any time to spend in activities of mychoice.

I wish my hibernation gets over soon, I have a lot of things planned for all these years... Trepidation grabs me eventually.. too fast so I'll just have to patiently hang in here and keep a cool head as much like Dhoni..

However the countdown begins. Finally !

My days with the angels - Moments to savour

Blessed are the souls who hop around the toddlers... Kids are the amazing creatures to be with. I had always envied their carefree life, without any worries or disputes. Thatpampered living void of any conspiracies, hassles, egos, hatred or tensions.

I live in an apartment complex that houses a half a dozen kids, majority of them who are so tall that, the top of their heads reach my knees. So, when the clock strikes 6, all of them rush out and well, its invited chaos.

Of late, I've been too moved with their cute simle and the way they play games. It remindsme the times i've been in one of my relatives house with around 7-8 kids during the summer holidays. During which im the one who is supposed to cook up new games for them daily and take them for go-round spins or at times a ride on my bike.

Running n catching, Hide n Seek, Red Letter, Spell the word, Tricycle Races and so many other activities. Those were the days even now i long for...

It happened to be a daily routine for me to think of new games everyday. My evenings thosetimes were spent with these lovely souls, who made me feel so young (not that I'm 60 already), happy and it seemed as if my life has been fulfilled. Their way of talking, their hoppity hoppity hop walks, their cycles, their squeeking shoes, their toys, shrieks, their grubby knees and muddy hands, their broken teeth issues and so much more. One really has to be around to capture the moment. Words fail always to describe beautiful things in the world !

I still savour those happiest moments of my life.. for thatz where i regain my strength from.Now that i've put a facade around myself as if hardened inside i still am that old soul longingfor these moments with the most gifted creatures on the world...

Forgive me

For everything I've said and done,
For everything that made you run,
Everytime I hurt you bad
I'm sorry, I can't see you sad.

Now I'm mild & meek,
Forgiveness is all I seek,
I cast my eyes upon the ground,
Twiddle my thumbs, not making the slightest of sound.

I don't want to run, escape or hide !
I confront you dumb & mute
I'm so tongue-tied
And so I plead with only the soul so resolute.

You smile, I stutter
My limbs start to flutter
And all I have on my lips now is a simple Sorry.

Sunday, June 01, 2008

A successful soul and a Soulful Success

To have succeeded
To laugh often and love as much;
To win the respect of intelligent people
And the affection of children;
To earn the approbation of honest critics
And endure the betrayal of false friends;
To appreciate beauty;
To find the best in others;
To give one’s self;
To leave the world a little better,
Whether by a healthy child,
A garden patch,
Or a redeemed social condition;
To have played and laughed with enthusiasm
And sung with exultation;
To know even one life has breathed easier
Because you have lived

This is to have succeeded.

- Ralph Waldo Emerson