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.