Tuesday, March 30, 2010

More IPL, criminals, body art and penance

IPL commentary is a sure fire cure for insomnia and the only saving grace is one gentleman who went in for hair transplant before Sehwag. If it were not for him you would simply drown into parrot talk that will kill you with its monotony or clich├ęs.

How many times can you stare at a blimp and be reminded of the contributions of the Pace Foundation to Indian cricket, maybe its time that some of the superstars get back to the Foundation to remind themselves of the basics.

I fear that IPL 4 will have a sponsor for every delivery that will be bowled at the rate things are going and overkill can kill you painfully. And another word for omnipresent is Lalit Modi.

Crime pays big time and in India it can be a great pension scheme, can’t remember the number of criminals who have swindled the public, shot to infamy and then with fickle public memories retire out of the lime light to enjoy their ill gotten wealth.

Justice delayed is justice denied, one of the foundations of justice but the Indian judicial system has been reduced to a farce by a plywood company, a sad commentary on the nation.

What came first? The politician or the criminal. Do politicians become criminals or vice versa? A rap sheet of some of the leading politicians makes you shudder and wonder how can a law breaker make a law?

Women and pain (the self inflicted) go together. Saw Trinity get her ear pierced and was informed that the pain will last for three days. Then I remember the many women who get their ears pierced multiple times, not to mention those with belly, eyebrow, tongue and whatever piercings done. And not to mention the tattoos, that have become bigger, more colourful and very exotic. And this craze is not restricted to the young and reckless but even thirty somethings are flaunting their body art. This is not sexist, I know men do all the above and more but still, I think I’m missing something here. Is the pain worth it? Or is this a small price for vanity? Come to think of it some beauty procedures are not painless either. Next time some one calls women the weaker sex, he better take a second thought.

I see a few around me sporting beards and sorrowful faces because it is Lent. Going contrary to the basic tenets of fasting in the Bible these people make it seem like more self inflicted pain. Such observances belittle the idea and personally are best avoided. They forget that this period has actually cleaned out their systems and their profiles look leaner than a month or so ago. And little good comes without effort, except salvation which is free. Look forward to the Easter as it will be another option to sing the Easter proclamation in church which I feel is a blessing from above.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Of Mongooses and bats

The most talked about bat in town will be the Mongoose though it has broken many hearts after the Delhi sojourn. The CSK self combustion is worth a separate post but I’m not interested in debating something that has been done to death. But I cant resist offering some scraps of opinion to the CSK management:
- Murali Vijay is an opener and if you want an anchor or someone to face hostile bowling it is he, if he is not doing that don’t let him do anything else or he will drop catches and then the match a la Gibbs
- Parthiv and Raina should expand their strokes to more straight bat hits, horizontal swipes when they click look nice otherwise look terrible

Anyway I digress this post is not entirely about the IPL. You can’t ignore a gorilla that commands prices of 3200 crores for just the rights to two teams. I predict that the phenomenon may implode soon in its excesses as already I am stifling a few yawns during the matches. Also Lalith Modi is getting too big and I am surprised that there are no knives being sharpened as yet around him.

So what is the mongoose, some physics and some craftsmanship that whittled a cricket bat blade into one small sweet spot. The longer blade gives greater leverage and is supposed to increase power by something. But you know all that, what people fail to appreciate is that the bat is just a tool and only in the hand of the wielder will it produce results. Even Haydos keeps switching bats so it may not be the wonder kit of the future.

But if you are Chennai the Mongoose will page in comparison to the most famous bat of the times. It can be safe to say that most of the households have this and what is more it has brought out the sporting skills and instincts in so many closet sportspersons out in the open. It is a versatile bat and the range of strokes it offers is amazing and what is more it comes in different colours so you can match it with your outfits if you so choose. The beauty of this bat is that it permits single player games and multiplayer games and the results can be death devastating. If the mongoose can cause carnage this can do it many times over and you just have to look at the bodies scattered around when you do the post match analysis.

Wait a minute did I mention bodies and not balls? Of course I did because you don’t play with balls here but with mosquitos. Ladies and gentlemen presenting the Hunter which has a greater appeal than the IPL and the mongoose if you happen to live in Chennai.

The mosquito population has exploded and I wonder if it is some conspiracy theory. Today it is impossible to spend a peaceful evening at home. And wherever you turn you hear the crackle of a square drive, a hook, a forehand smash or even a sweep depending on the sports leaning of the wielder. Again like the mongoose it takes a skilled handler to execute maximum damage but being a great leveler this sport is open to all ages and genders.

So if you are a closet sportsperson or even a couch sportsperson, here is a sport you can take up, no kits or playing fields required. All you need is a hunter and for the mosquitoes, just look around.

PS if you don’t find mosquitoes but would still like to play do drop by at my place, will share loads with you for free.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Indiblogger Meet 2010

I participated in the Indiblogger meet in Chennai on Saturday and it was an interesting experience, thought I will share it with you.

The good: The venue GRT Grand Convention center is a better venue than the earlier one (Deecee Manor)
The bad: The venues are still limiting capacity maybe next time we can give up the aircon claustrophobic confines and take maybe OAT at IIT?

The good: This was the second meet
The bad: this was the second meet in 3 years and if this is the blog capital then it deserves better

The good: The large number of people who came for IB10
The bad: the very few repeat visitors from IB08

The good: The huge age band of members
The bad: very few school students unlike last time

The good: The programme was well planned and structured
The bad: The planning took away the unconference, it still resembled an office meeting

The good: The riotous Hitler video really was awesome
The bad: too little of awesomeness

The good: the team of Indiblogger, who put things together
The bad: didn’t see all of them mingle in the crowd

The good: The 30 seconds of fame
The bad: because it was random, you could not list the URLs or the sites, maybe the roll call could have been done

The good: The chart on back method of social net working
The bad: some unpleasant comments noticed on that, open is not always good

The good: The huge turnout and the disparate membership
The bad: many were probloggers so the fun element of blogging got subdued

The good: the huge number of techie blogs and bloggers
The bad: the tech dummies like me felt lost

The good: the sponsor did not bore us to death like last time
The bad: since it was a mobile phone sponsor we only got to rate mobile phones,

The good: the well intentioned panel discussion
The bad: the snide comments and lack of tolerance of the so called non tamil crowd, come on you are living in Chennai if you cant get along with Tamil then move on

The good: the discussion
The bad: The moderator

The good: the FCUK punch line from the back bencher
The bad: the very few such punchlines and the search for sponsors etc by bloggers

The good: The food
The bad: being lent, could not try the chicken sandwiches! Lack of discipline by those who have to cut lines for even the food line

The good: Tshirt finally!
The bad: haven’t tried for size, if it it don’t fit, that’s bad

The good: the commitment of Indiblogger to have more events
The bad: the wait!!!

Finally I must salute the Indiblogger team for the effort and for a great meet. May I suggest that maybe we can look at smaller sectoral meets for better interactions.

P.S. did not take any photos so this time no pictures to share.

Friday, March 19, 2010

What's in a name?

What’s in a name?

It depends
– if you are someone who convults parent given names to weird unpronounceable spellings that should change the life of the so named for a charge it is your bread and butter
-if you are a superstar who’s claim to fame is not just good acting and histrionics but a cult name like Rajinikanth it can be your calling card
-if you are a believer of misspelling or respelling the name will bring an riches and what not, it can be the passport to something else
-if you are sufferer when people who cannot for the world of it pronounce it with the same good meaning given by your parents and end up murdering it to new levels, it can be a cross for a life time
-if you want an extra term of endearment to your loved ones and end up with an official name and a pet name so even at your wedding you may have a card that read XXX a.k.a YYY it can be an often unwanted excess baggage
-if you want to be relatively anonymous or a change of image for professional reasons like a nom de plume then it can be a mask
-if for want of remembering a major part of the family tree you end up with the names of the dearest grand parents and grand folks ending up with a first name, middle name, surname and some next to middle names in between it can be a head ache
-if you are a celebrity then it means endorsements
-if you are a felon then it is something to be hidden
-if you end up with a name that can confuse your religious antecedents like mine, it can be the start of many curious conversations

The list goes on but none of this came to mind when D and me were name hunting for our to-be born baby. We had two lists and after much deliberation I let D have the final say. We found to our chagrin that what is sounding good to us will sound good to others too and found that we were beaten to the race to name by kids born before September 16th. September 16th narrowed the list to the girl baby list only and we had decided that we will have two names only a Baptism name and the other a Tamil name. Trinity was a no brainer as it was a favourite of D and she blogs under the same name as well. And it was a rather uncommon name except for the fact that D’s friend by the same name has a girl called exactly that a year ago so we were actually beaten but we refused to throw in the towel. WE said that the second name will be equally unique and I wished to include the letter “ZH” in it and we wanted our daughter to be musically inclined so Yazhini it was. To those not in the know Tamizh has the “L”, “LL”, “ZH” three distinct sounds that usually get massacred and misused by people of poor instruction. To a non Tamizhian it can be a tongue twister and I heard that M.K. Azhagiri made the supreme sacrifice recently and converted to MK Alagiri after his name sounded out like a Soviet name in the mouths of fellow Parliamentarians. But I digress here, the point is our daughter is Trinity Yazhini and mum will take it upon herself to help anyone finding her second name difficult to pronounce with language classes.
As early as 4 months Trinity Yazhini responded to both names so it was worth the effort.

What’s in a name the bard said, a rose by any other name… I disagree.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Of IPL, nityananda, garlands and other things

I did not follow the second innings of the match yesterday as I felt that it may be a damp squib and so it was reflective of the margin of nearly 100 runs that separated the Mumbai Indians and the Delhi Daredevils. Twitter is full of tweets on how the Thackeray’s will change the name of the imports into Marathi names like Keiron Pollard to Karan Poddar…

Though it may be the least imaginative of all franchisee names given the current scenario MI tells the world that Mumbai is for all Indians and many high priced imports and if the MNS thinks otherwise they can bid for the 9th team when it starts.

Malawathi oops Mayawathi is hogging the news space and the vulgar display of sycophancy and money power is sinking to new depths and positively makes you throw up. This is the state that recently declared it bankrupt after the many memorials and statues to pay compensations to the victims of the ashram stampede. Saw the news today where a MLA from the Samajwadi Party is missing after setting a woman on fire and yet another story where a wheat consignment from Australia which is supposedly unfit for human consumption has been imported from Australia and is awaiting distribution for food use, this import being done by someone with political connections. Until community and caste based politics recede such goons will continue to rule us.

Actually the IPL and now Mayawathi have pushed Nityananda to the background, he was actually a hot topic on Twitter. I watched with amusement and some amazement at the frenetic reactions to the breaking news story till they eventually died down. I know everyone has an opinion but if he had not advocated celibacy for self what he did in his room was his personal business. I am not sure what right anyone had to invade his privacy and these sting operations do little more that increase the TRPs of the news channels.

Now the church is facing flak for all the abuse cases and it is time that such instances are not swept under the carpet and those who are guilty face the music. It will tarnish the image of the church but in hindsight the church was built on sinners and for sinners so let the one without sin cast the first stone. I will not be surprised to see more people use this as an excuse to move away from the faith, it is their choice but if their faith is indeed personal and built on a personal experience then it will weather all things.

Staying on the discussion of religion and the church, I am against all independent churches who proclaim a skewed version of the gospel. This malaise is not restricted to the church alone but is a growing phenomenon across all faiths where mushrooming of fringe groups with narrow and militant views are spewing fast food religion. Religion that is convenient, attractive and easy for weak believers. Such independent groups often distort the faith and cause dissent and division and often end up as money spinners for the creator leaders.

On a happy note Trinity seems to like driving, her past time is to move around purring like a car and tossing her cushion like a steering wheel. Another racer in the making I think, but D would not have any of it already.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Some random thoughts

My prolonged absence from blogosphere has made my ranking drop 12 notches and I’m now languishing at 36, any more absence and…

Getting a little frustrated with the unfriendly systems in place at work, hygiene factors are taking a back seat and despite my boss’ best efforts it is a real dampener and everything boils down to money.

Chennai Super Kings opened their account and it was an interesting match. The CSK top order was extremely scratchy and they some how scratched their way around till the unbeaten partnership that took away the game. But what was more pleasing was the bowling of Morkel who kept it simple and bowled straight on a good length. Aggressive fielding helped and it was a team effort that made KKR look very ordinary.

Staying with the IPL, this year it looks like the CSK missed a trick by not picking up ICL players who are shining in many other teams, especially some local bowlers who can add muscle to the team.

I think that the time out this year can be used as a good tool by the captains and can be game or atleast momentum changing is used well and looks like an innovation that can be regularized.

Some of the ads that we are bombarded with during the IPL makes you grimace, especially an aged Akshay Kumar who is flogging his parkour skills to the death jumping off every thing for the silliest of reasons. And I am yet to figure out the Havells executioner ad and the Spice London bua ad. IF anyone understands these please write in. Zoozoo still makes you smile and you must credit the makers for making some absolutely enjoyable ads and the latest Havells MCB ad is actually good fun and is a better watch thatn the other mentioned.

Staying with ads another ad that kept me scratching my head and when I noticed that I was not alone is the JK cement ad. A scene straight out of Baywatch and nothing else, in case you have missed this incredible ad it shows a woman walking out of the water in the beach in a swimsuit and the voice over saying that there is something special about this, I wish they had given some more pointers.

I think that I have lost weight by being conscious of my food and that has helped. Must check on the actual loss but it feels good and I have eliminated junk food out of my system for some time now, no more mid meal snacks and dinner is now generally a fruit / sprout / veggie salad with a mild dressing. Abstinence from meat during lent has also helped if nothing, it feels good.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Just another post

Its been awhile since I blogged and I have already explained my prolonged absence in earlier mails. I have signed up for the blogger meet that is happening shortly and so I got back into the blogosphere.

Q4 has been busy and it has been good, with success tasting sweet but the rewards are still looking elusive. So waiting with a silent prayer. I have finally got a team actually one member has joined and the other will join shortly, these two will lessen my workloads and let me do my normal job which had got changed recently.

Trinity is growing fast and spreading loads of happiness around. My office travel weary body has got some rest and is recuperating before the next set of trips which are thankfully day trips only.

Farmville is the greatest time pass apart from the occasional TV sessions. Have decided that Mafia is no longer my cup of tea and have retired to the farmlands exclusively!

Had an opportunity to sing with a choir for a gospel concert and had a good time doing it. Looking forward to more such chances.

Will get back to the normal average again as I have missed blogging. Till then ciao.