Tuesday, November 23, 2010

This is a blog update

You are reading this blog-post. This blog now stands updated.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

My tryst with scrabble

There's this scrabble club here where I work. They meet up every Monday and play into the late hours of the night. Then they send out e-mails to every one on the DL proclaiming how great their last session was - how one girl managed to score a full 50 by coming up with 'urinates', and how another managed to place four swear words in a row and all that. Naturally, my attention was piqued. And when my attention is piqued, Hari's the fall guy. So, last Monday, away we went, Hari and I, to the uncharted back-waters that make up third floor, Building-1.

We meet up with this Karthik guy who's the typical nerd. Plays scrabble, is a quizzer, and can also tell you the color of Darth Vader's light-sabre. (That yours truly can do all that too is a completely different story). Anyway, Govind (I do not know much about him), Rajeshwari (female version of the typical nerd), Hari and I start a game. Hari plays first, and comes up with a spectacularly imaginative 'TO' for a first word. Rajeshwari then plays out some 5 tiles and comes up with a strange word no one's heard. Hari challenges, loses, and straightaway sends his score plunging into the negative. Govind then comes up with another whopping 6 letter word, and enters a huge number into under his name. I do better than Hari - 'AND'. :D

So, we're well and truly into the game - no one opening up anything for anyone, and everyone except Hari and me making double digit scores on every word they put down. Hari's never played the game before, so he's a real mess. I put up an inspired performance and gradually catch up on Govind - more of a fluke though. I just managed to keep three tiles and make many words and send my score rocketing while Govind had to exchange his tiles twice after being blessed with a bevy of Zs, Qs, Js, Xs, and no U to go with the Q.

Suddenly I see an opening. I have a blank and the letters T, O, N, E, D. Right, I think - The blank can be S, and if I can fit these letters down somewhere, I might shoot my score to an unassailable lead. And then I see it - Two Os with a blank space between them - And the column along the blank begins with a Triple word score. So, I put my tiles out. Down STONED, Across ODO. (Ok, some 20 odd points only, but a good start nonetheless) The only snag was that I wasn't sure ODO was a word. I'd made vague plans of bluffing my way through how ODO was a widely accepted shortening of Odometer, but Rajeshwari would have none of it. So, she challenges, and bloody ZYZZYVA, yes, that's the name of the dictionary they use, says the word is unacceptable. In red. Well, that's me stumped. Rajeshwari grins, and for an encore, goes on to add 60 points to her tally by the strategic placement of a single Q. She then declares she's bored off this game and goes on to start a parallel timed game with Karthik.

We wind up the game - I am the first player to finish off all the tiles, which means everyone's remaining tiles are minused off their scores and added into mine. Whoppee!! And by sheer dint of this strange rule, I manage to over take Govind and come in second. Rajeshwari is in first place with a good 90 point lead over me. All in all a delightful experience. Looking forward to more such games in the future.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Inception reviews...

I loved the movie inception. Quite a lot of people I know have also seen the movie and have given me reviews about it (Here be some spoilers) -

Doctor, aka Vinod - Awesome movie da...

Raja Deepak - it ws da mozzt amzn muvie iv evr seen, itz smply awsum i luvd evry bit f t ghj bbc cnn axn ftv..

Arun M - You see, according to the movie, the mind is like the CLR dude. It's awesome da!! If you dream inside a dream, it's ok. But if you dream inside a dream inside a dream inside a dream, a stack overflow occurs. This is called as going into Limbo.

Marc - Inception was clever but not awesome. I give it 4 out of 7. I was expecting them to rebuild the dream world in real time to escape projections and for the Ariadne character to have some work and not be completely useless. I simply have standards and don't go around declaring everything amazing.

Polur Sunil Chandra - I watched it in Telugu.

Paambist - Line

Shanku bai - Jacques!!

At this point, the interviewer committed suicide.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Vichu goes a-dancing!!

Visu is busy correcting figures by dancing in his company's gala events: Here's the video.


Tuesday, June 29, 2010

A really old photo

Well, I'm second from the left on the third row. Who would have thought this boy would one day grow up to become so tall and handsome? :P

Wednesday, June 02, 2010

Blog update

Not much has happened in the recent past. Therefore no blog updates. Oh, I might have won an award in between, fallen in and out of love, gotten myself a new bike, and a pay hike, but they don't really count. Now, Marc has got something to say on his blog, so go and bug him there!

Sunday, April 04, 2010


I couldn't get the full lyrics for this song anywhere, so I listened to the song and wrote them down myself.

jhanjhariya uski chanak gai
chunri bhi sar se sarak gai
meri nazar usse mili to
uski nazar sharma ke jhuk gai

Somebody playing around with a bugle

Usse nazar mile beach bazar mein (2)
Dil gaya loot nazaronki takarar mein
mud mudke wo dekhe mujhe
jaise ki wo kudh bhi machal gayi

jhanjhariya... (2)

some weird 8 bit video game music
some female humming

Gussa ajeeb ka pehle mulaqat ka (2)
Alam Gazab hua mere dil ke haal ka
ik pal mujhe aisa laga
jaise meri dadkan rukh gayi

jhanjhariya... (2)

Suniel & Karishma rock ;)

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Slouching Tigers, Mumbling Dragons - II

I'd earlier posted on how some authors make for some really tough reading.Today, I was reading Robert Faggen's introduction to Ken Kesey's One flew over the cuckoo's nest, and he managed to come up with this:

Nature may be cruel but it allows mode latitude than the monotony of a system that discards everything that cannot be made to conform to its monolithic dream of success. Kesey battles against monotony and against those who attempt to schematize and subordinate the wildness and unpredictability of the human spirit.

Why, oh why? That too in the introduction itself? :(

Layla - Eric Clapton

What'll you do when you get lonely
And nobody's waiting by your side?
You've been running and hiding much too long.
You know it's just your foolish pride.

Layla, you've got me on my knees.
Layla, I'm begging, darling please.
Layla, darling won't you ease my worried mind.

I tried to give you consolation
When your old man had let you down.
Like a fool, I fell in love with you,
Turned my whole world upside down.

Let's make the best of the situation
Before I finally go insane.
Please don't say we'll never find a way
And tell me all my love's in vain.

Layla by Eric Clapton. Pure genius.

Lyrics lifted from lyrics007.com

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Sundar in blunder-land

Of buses
I woke up this morning on the wrong side of my bed. I wake up every morning on the wrong side of my bed because the other side is shoved against a brick wall. Having racked my brains to find one reason why I shouldn't go, and having failed, I started getting ready for work. Forty bleary minutes later, I find myself settling into the push back seat of a Kumbakonam bound ultra-deluxe-super-fast-bye-pass-rider-bug-infested-video-coach-lean-mean-transport-machine having convinced the conductor to drop me off at Mahindra city by promising that I'd take the ticket to Chenglepet, and that I'd tender the exact fare, and line up near the entrance when we'd passed a certain lion-god temple. All my attempts to sleep are completely dashed by 1:58 minutes of Baasha (sad) .mp3, 1.19 minutes of Baasha (wild) .mp3, and a whopping 6.31 minutes of 8 kulla ulagam irukku.mp3 played over speakers with about as much bass as S Janaki's voice.

Of work
Nine hours of breaking my head over radio buttons that refuse to get selected, drop downs that fail to drop down, and scroll bars that, well, apart from failing to scroll, also practice the five-point-palm-exploding-heart-technique on you. Oh, and Raja Deepak, of all people calls you and asks if you would like to go to a certain Gautam Vasudev Menon movie on Sunday. You think, oh well, what the heck, yeah, let's do it! Then the blighter calls you back and asks you to transfer no less than 220 rupees to his account. Great.

Of interactions with Hari
At around 6 in the evening, you start winding up whatever it is that requires winding up, packing up whatever it is that needs packing up, and call Hari up. The bloke's really got no clue what's going on. The queries he's trying to run, well, are making him query his own sanity, the reports that he's supposed to generate plainly never report back, the spread sheets he's working on wrap themselves around his non-reporting reports, and the stack traces magically vanish from the spread sheets that're wrapping around the non reporting reports that are generated by the queries that query his sanity. And so, I meet up with Hari and we decide to go to the book store. We browse through the books and somehow manage to end up in the self-motivation/management/cheese-moving ferrari-selling flat-world-winning kinda books section when I spot a title that's a sight for sore eyes. "Hari, would you like to buy Indecent Exposure?" I ask and turn around. The only snag was that where I'd expected a snickering Hari, I see this affronted young woman. She makes this weird face that plainly conveyed the I-know-all-about-your-types-coming-into-bookstores-to-hit-upon-innocent-young-girls expression. I manage to extricate myself with a smile and a pointed comment about what a great novel the Linda Goodman book she was holding was. That bad. I spot Hari staring fixedly at a few pink dolls, and manage to drag him outta the store and into the adjacent one, which sold clothes with your corporation's insignia at prices just below your salary. Then we manage to miss the next bus home, and are forced to walk nearly three kilometers to the main road. Pretty soon we find ourselves tramping around West Tambaram. And Hari says he's got to do some necessary shopping.. and off he ducks under a tent. I follow, and am shocked to see a farm of vegetable markets. Vegetable markets as far as you could see, and in all directions.

Of vegetable markets
With a flippant comment about having to buy vegetables for home, Hari picks up a banana branch lying about, and asks for the price. He then proceeds to accost a passing by gentleman, obviously a seasoned vegetable market gamesman, and asks him, "Anna, I do not know how to buy this vegetable, how do you do it?" The guy shoots a strange look, then proceeds to scratch the top of it out with a finger. "Thanks", says Hari and saunters down to the next shop. Here a few middle aged women are haggling with a harried vendor over the price of onions. The women are in their element; apparently they're winning. Hari jumps right in, points to some ginger and asks, "What's this?" Instant silence. The women are shocked. How dare two vegetable market noobs not only interrupt a first class game of onion price haggling, but also ask what a ginger was? Hari, uncharacteristically, is right on top of his game, and wins the women's hearts right back, "I mean, is this this-and-this type of ginger, or so-and-so type of ginger"? Having seen his ability with being able to identify the taxon, genus, latin name, vascular bundle or whatever, they suddenly realise they're dealing with a serious student of the art, and instantly welcome us into the club. "These are just ordinary gingers, m'dear, they smile".

Soon, we're standing erect outside the tent of doom. I'd survived. Hari is positively beaming. He's bought spinach, carrots, ginger, pudina, ladies-finger, beans, and a whole lot of the other green vaudeville stuff you generally push around on your plate. Me was carrying the majority of it. Oh, the shame! Anyway, Hari dropped me back on his excel super, and I came home and blogged about buying vegetables.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

An interesting photo for you

A few days ago, I swore that I'd update my blog everyday. That rule, however, has long since been relaxed to an update every week. It's hard to keep track of stuff when you're brain's all muddled up from trying to read Carl Sagan and PG Wodehouse at the same time, all the while pretending to be working.

Here's an interesting photo for you. This happens to be my cousin. He's previously been featured in this blog as the proud owner of an iguana that later ran away. This time around, he's been playing musical chairs with royalty.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Two birds in a bush

Tamil Nadu's two most often mentioned birds are the kaka and the kuruvi. Now, let me sit back and enjoy watching you retch to death.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Slouching Tigers, Mumbling Dragons.

I had managed to muddle through 195 pages of Carl Sagan's Dragons of Eden which I'd picked up in a cheap second hand book store to come across this: However, an algebraic equation is an archetypical left-hemisphere construction, while a regular geometric curve, the pattern in an array of related points, is a characteristic right-hemisphere production. In a certain sense, analytical geometry is the corpus callosum of mathematics. Every now and then authors I read do this and put my comprehension of all that I'd read so far completely off track. Of course, this wasn't as bad as Umberto Eco, who barely seven pages into Foucault's Pendulum managed to come up with this: ...you first cross an eighteenth century courtyard and step into an old abbey church, now part of a later complex, but originally part of a priory. You enter and are stunned by a conspiracy in which the sublime universe of heavenly ogives and the chthonian world of gas guzzlers are juxtaposed. Wow. Whoever's heard of a word starting with chth?

The above two instances are nothing when compared to the sheer brilliance of William S Burroughs, who barely 4 pages into The Naked Lunch shovels this at you: "'Get her!'
"'Get the Paregoric Kid giving that mark the build up!'
"'Eager Beaver wooing him too fast.'
"'The Shoe Store Kid say: 'Give it to a mark with K.Y. and he will come back moaning for more.'
The reader, I assure you, has no idea of the situation, the scene, and who is speaking to whom.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

The more the merrier?

I fire up Visual Web Developer and am instantly presented with a terrible choice. Do I code in VB or C# or VB or C#? So terrorizing that I closed Web developer and went back to orkut.

Sunday, February 07, 2010

Cosmetic changes

For a long time, my blog sported the colors of the "Learn Kannada in 30 days" book. And was equally useless. Now I have changed it to look a little like The Hindu because I figured my blog is more boring than useless.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

My morning of extreme eco-friendliness

On one hand you have global warming because of all this CO2 in the atmosphere. And then someone went and put an hole in the ozone layer. On the other hand you have people felling trees to make paper for something as stupid as vodafone itemized bills. Oh, and the giant panda's almost gone, as is the Siberian tiger. Now, as any self respecting earthling, I've always been deeply concerned about this sorry state of affairs here on mother earth. And so, I've always done my bit towards protecting the environment - I send at least three chain-mails everyday imploring people to stop using plastic, and watch animal planet till my eyes water. Of course, having seen no measurable difference out of my actions, it was but natural that I volunteered to help the eco-club at my work place to plant trees at a near-by village.

The volunteering part as always, happened in a spate of eco-extremism sometime on Thursday afternoon, when you are in a state of heightened soporificity after a heavy lunch and a morning of analyzing some VB6 code written by some dim wit in 1999. When today morning dawned, I woke up regretting my decision to the core. I mean, who wants to spend a perfectly fine Sunday planting tree saplings in the middle of nowhere? Moreover, what's more eco-friendly than the India Sri Lanka match? And that's how things would have been had it not been for Kirthana. At around 9 AM, she calls me and gives me a long lecture, the long and short of it being: Where the fuck are you? Turns out that Kirthana, who had agreed to accompany me to the treeless village in question, had already travelled the distance to Tambaram from Anna Nagar, and was now tramping around in front of MEPZ. Yet another SNAFU, Sundar, you forgot to tell her!

Sundar then went and rescued her from the leering lorry drivers that hang out in front of MEPZ. Experts however suggest that I'd have been better off leaving her there, but that's an altogether different story. Figuring that I'd better plant a few trees just to humor her, we came home, and I quickly changed, and off we went - to office - on a pleasant, perfect Sunday morning. This was my first time on the bike since my accident, so I drove at a safe 70. That way, I was able to beat the drunk taxi drivers trying to occupy the same volume of space as me. Half an hour later, we ended up in our campus, and no one was in sight. We called up the organizers who told us that the group had already split into three, and were launching a systematic three-pronged attack on the village armed with an assortment of saplings.

Right. Kirthana and I looked at each other, and unanimously agreed it was a complete waste of time gate crashing their little party. Now what do we do? Kirthana blamed me for being a lazy slouch, and I blamed her for being completely unable to read people's minds. After doing the blaming bit for a while, Kirthana suggests that I teach her to ride the bike and then we'll go home.

Now, all my masculine/macho senses are screaming at me to not teach a girl to ride a bike, but then I really want to go home, and say, "Fine". She learns surprisingly fast, (OK, there's nothing much to it) and I let her do a few rounds on it. Then we go off to the canteen and Kirthana paid her tuition fees in full by getting her teacher a couple of burgers, some potato fries and a few cans of pepsi. We make a quick detour to some unattended cubicles, and check for mails from our on-site coordinators (surprise, surprise, I'd gotten one! On a Saturday night)! Then we start. This time I do 80, as I really wanted to get home to watch the match, and we reach Tambaram in almost no time. I drop Kirthana off at the bus terminus, and race home to reach just in time to catch the first over. Half an hour or so later, I receive a text message: It's the chairman of the eco-club. He praises me for being part of an admirable, select few who are awake to the environmental needs of the hour, and thanks me profusely for helping plant over 300 saplings in the little village of Anjur.

Now that's the way you help the environment. Watch and learn!