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Showing posts from January, 2009

A Case of 27 Oranges

In relation to my previous post, I have come to a strong conclusion that we Indians know and care little about other cultures. We can ramble about our cities, the diversity of North-South India, weather etc. But rarely is a similar curiousity expressed for others. In a food court or street peppered with a dozen outlets, we plonk ourselves in a place with closest resemblance to Indian food. In the world of cuisines, we are the ultimate risk-averse chicken.

As an antidote to this I decided to improve my behaviour starting this year. My resolution for 2009 - "Understand other Cultures of Asia".

The first event to exercise this was the Chinese New Year/Lunar New Year on 26th-27th January 2009. What earlier seemed to be just a bunch of holidays now posed a serious opportunity to learn stuff. The good part of the story is that I along with my flatmates visited Chinatown on New Years' eve - enjoyed fresh Sichuan cuisine, bought some touristy junk, and watched some live dance perf…

Protestors want Protestors to be removed

The National Happy Dog Association of India has protested against protests made against the film title of Slumdog Millionaire. The latter protestors have an issue with the 'offensive content' in the title.

Miss Loveleen from Dadar (Mumbai) said, "You know my dog fluffy was quite happy before these protests started happening on the streets of Mumbai. He would eat his food and do potty properly. Look at him now!"

If these protests lead to action, the film might be renamed to Slum dash Millionaire or Slum dash Crorepati. This will seriously undermine the credibility of dogs - not only the slum kuttas, but on a wider global scale.

A certain conspiracy theory also suggests this has been triggered and financed by the rival group National Cat Association of India. "By undermining dogs, they are trying to capture the 'Man's Best Friend' equity. We shall not allow this long-ter…

But you never mailed...

Dear Andrew Gale

I can't believe I got fake-email-IDed by you.
It hurts.

Till my group reached the resting point Laban Rata, we feared that we'd not have any 'cool pics' to share on facebook to boast about our accomplishments at Kinabalu. And then we met you - a blessing from New Zealand. As we were led together up the Kinabalu summit by the guide, I earnestly indulged in small talk with you. My favourite monologues were those on 'Tandoori Roti and Other Indian Breads' and Kolkata. Didn't you like my detailed description of my university?

All I had asked from you when we reached the top was to patiently click my pictures using your obese SONY Digital SLR camera. Apart from solo shots, Vikrant and I had made only six-seven poses in front of the 4095M summit board. I am told that the pictures, had I received them by email, would have been quite spectacular.

But you never mailed.

You may question why two Indian men of decent physique did not carry cameras of their o…

The Murder of Salsa

Poor flowchart skills from IIM and the IIT obsession to break content into variables/processes leads to this....

Your Marriage Un-vites

I post this article with utmost sincerity and genuine concern for my friends. Many people of our generation are still unaware of rightful use of online communication. They spam everyone with "Hey dude Happy Budday" wishesand bulk mail New Year messages. There have already been quite a few weddings in my circle in the last few months. And even though this event holds tremendous importance compared to yearly holiday wishes, many have succumbed to the same mistakes.

I hope to pass on some ideas for future wedding invites. Even if you aren't busy with marriage preparations currently, you can enjoy this and probably pick up some lessons for other forms of communication.

Dear Prospective Bride/Groom,

Before you salivate at the easy prospect of thrusting your wedding invitation on your whole universe of friends, ask yourself the first major question:

Is your motive information / persuasion?

In case you just want to announce to all these 'friends' that you are getting married…

Ek Cup Chai

Bajpai, Saurabh [3:01 PM]:
Iyer, Arvind [3:02 PM]:
Sorry. I am working on some important work for YikHun. You go ahead.
Bajpai, Saurabh [3:02 PM]:

Pant, Deepak [3:11 PM]:
Chai chalna hai?
Iyer, Arvind [3:11 PM]:
Sorry. I am working on a business review for YikHun. Can't spare time now. Why don't you ask Saurabh?
Pant, Deepak [3:12 PM]:

Patnaik, Mukesh [3:19 PM]:
? See you at the lobby in 2minutes.

Iyer, Arvind [3:21 PM]:
Sorry. I am working on something for YikHun.
Iyer, Arvind [3:22 PM]:

Lee, YikHun [3:31 PM]:
Iyer, Arvind [3:31 PM]:

Stranger than fiction - Slumdog Millionaire Review

Guest Post by Saurabh Bajpai

Is Slumdog -

a) Beautiful

b) Brings the true colors of India alive

c) One of the best works of Danny Boyle

d) None of the above

No you don't get 20 million rupees for answering this correctly (yeah I know million and rupees together sound like a duet with Kumar Sanu and Ila Arun). If you are mathematically challenged as I am, then it means 2 crore rupees – Kaun Banega Crorepati Dwittiya – rings a bell? Only difference in the movie is that the show is probably both hosted and sponsored by Mr. India aka Prem Kumar aka Anil Kapoor. This explains why he doesn't want a "chaiwala" – a slumdog to win 20 million bucks. Didn't Anil play a slumdog himself in like 1000 movies?

By the time I started to watch Slumdog, the "Awsomeness" of the movie had already been fed to me through movie reviews, blogs, imdb ratings and even gtalk status messages of people. The reputation was already built to a point from where it could have only gone down. But…

Let go

I always thought my Dad and I, referred together as 'the males', were the cold rational beings of the family. We have shown some odd signs of attachment over the years. Like the way I clung to my archaic CHIP/DiGiT magazine issues for half a decade before they were dumped. Or the way my dad was seriously considering getting our old Fiat car over to Delhi in 1998 (You can read about the horrendous Fiat tales here). Ignoring these aberrations, I did believe we could let go when it mattered.

On the first day of my trip back home, my sister and I were given a comprehensive task of clearing clutter from the house. The treasure was displayed on the table after a day of work. My father spotted something checkered amidst the clutter. He fished it out bewildered.
'Hey. This is our beautiful magnetic chess set! Why are we throwing this out?'

We thought it would have been evident to him that he was holding just one half of the board.
'It's broken.'
'But it is so beaut…