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Monday, August 31, 2009

My khichdi life

Has been quite some time since I last scribbled on this blog. Thanks to my poor BSNL broadband connectivity, thanks to my mood swings and also, thanks to my new addiction, this blog felt neglected. The blogs which find me as a regular visitor missed me as well and I am sorry for that.
But, all said and done, I am back! ...as promised. :)

By now many of you must be thinking over... mmm... addiction??

Don't worry! It's just a game - the mafia wars! For those who are wondering what it is - it's simple to explain.
1. Get an account on facebook
2. Check out the applications available under the category 'Games'
3. Find 'Mafia Wars' and start playing!

I am sure, many of you know about it. For those, who do not, check out once! :)

On a separate level, I am over my emotional downswing at the moment and back at my lively best.

In the meantime, there were few incidents I really felt bad about.

1. In Kolkata, few days ago, three people lost their arms while jutting them out of the window of a running bus. Overtaking is a syndrome that Kolkata drivers will forever embrace, notwithstanding the amount of accidents their reckless behavior cause each year. They are fearless in a true sense and whom should they fear when they have so many dadas and union leaders and the who's who of politics at their arm's length! Pity those people who lost.... I even shudder to think...
But, lesson for all of us, "PLEASE DO NOT EXPOSE YOUR HANDS (OR HEADS) OUT OF THE WINDOW OF A RUNNING BUS" until and unless, you plan for a suicide!

2. A friend of mine lost his elder sister. It was a 'suicide', as per the note available. It was an 'accident', others say. But only the poor girl's relatives know what it was! It was sad... very sad...
Powerful people always tend to get away, don't they! That is one thing, that has not changed over the years.

3. I am reading Linda Goodman's "Love Signs" at the moment. A very interesting book - I must say. I am not a bookworm by any remote stretch of imagination, but even a guy like me has got hooked on to it. No plans to write a review any soon - until of course I am through with reading the whole of it.

That more or less sums up what I have been doing in the secret chamber of mine! ;)

Chao guys and gals. See you some other time... Gosh, I have a lot of other blogs to read and comment on...

***am coming friends...am coming***

Until next time..

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Back to the drawing boards

jeevan ke din chhote sahi
hum bhi bade dilwale
kal ki humein fursat kahaan
soche jo hum matwale

Remember this famous song of kishore da? If you do not, well, here it is on youtube!

The last few days were disappointing for me. Expectations! Hopes! Dreams! Aspirations! and then, folly! Disgust! Disappointment!

No, am not down and out, no way! It's just a temporary setback, to which I do not want to give a permanent status!

I was listening to a wonderful song this evening on 104 Fever FM, courtesy RJ Arvind! Superb lyrics... another classic from Kishore da... Check this:

aaye tum yaad mujhe gaane lagi dhadkan
khushbu layi pawan, mehka chandan
jis pal naino mein sapna tera aaye
us pal mausam par mehendi rach jaaye
aur tu ban jaaye jaise dulhan
aaye tum yaad mujhe gaane lagi har dhadkan

jab main raaton mein taare ginta hun
aur tere kadmon ki aahat sunta hun
lage mujhe har tara tera darpan
aaye tum yaad mujhe

gaane lagi har dhadkan
har pal man mera, mujhse kehta hai
jiski dhun mein tu khoyaa rehta hai
bhar de fulon se uska daman
aaye tum yaad mujhe

gaane lagi har dhadkan
khushbu laayi pawan
mehka chandan
aaye tum yaad mujhe
gaane lagi har dhadkan

I became nostalgic again, thinking of the ever fresh morning dews on the leaves, the mist on the winter mornings, the flowing ganges.............. and so many other memories....

However, life happens just like that!

My take away:
Life gives you setbacks, disappointments! But have a 'never say die' attitude. Failures are the pillars to success.

ps. This post was a whole mumbo jumbo for many, but that's exactly how my thought processes are working at the moment! I would be back in my normal self.. yes.. pretty soon!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Rejoicing our freedom...

At the stroke of the midnight hour, when the world sleeps, India will awake to life and freedom - said Pt. Jawaharlal Nehru (1947)

A billion population
A billion ideas
A thousand languages
A hundred religions
A hundred rivers

kar chalein hum fida jan o tan saathiyon
ab tumhare hawale watan saathiyon
- sang the soldier in his death bed...
His wish translated in english -"We leave this land forever after giving our everything, now this motherland is yours" (...respect her the way you respect your mother!)
True - there are differences, there are conflicts, there are challenges, there are diversities, but the reason we stand together to this day is our unity in integrity.
Friends - Let us not compromise the dignity of our motherland on any pretext. You cannot see you mom bleed. Can you? So, we should not let anyone hurt our motherland!

Indians should strive to respect every guest in this country on the lines of "atithi devo bhava..."(Guests are as good as God). But given a challenge, where our unity, integrity, sovereignty and freedom is threatened, we should be powerful enough to retaliate strongly!
Terrorism in all forms, in all names, in all pretexts should never be let to grow. We are a free nation and we have every right to lead our lives in our own ways.

No nation is perfect. India is also not. But, we have the onus on us to make it perfect. We fail to understand the meaning of freedom simply because we were fortunate enough not to experience what slavery meant.

India is a land of great men and women!

Stop! Think! Ask yourself - are you carrying the legacy forward? Are we upholding our values and principles?

All is well! Partying, catching movies, playing pranks, working like work horses - all come and go! At the end of the day, what is it that we are giving back to our motherland?

I loved Gandhiji's talisman.
It reads - “I will give you a talisman. Whenever you are in doubt, or when the self becomes too much with you, apply the following test. Recall the face of the poorest and the weakest man whom you may have seen, and ask yourself, if the step you contemplate is going to be of any use to him. Will he gain anything by it? Will it restore him to a control over his own life and destiny ? In other words, will it lead to Swaraj (i.e. self-rule) for the hungry and spiritually starving millions ?
Then you will find your doubts and your self melting away.”

Please try to follow this, so wonderful that this can be applicable for everyone, irrespective of nationality!
Finally, today is 15th August! Happy Independence Day, India! May the flag keep fluttering for thousands and thousands of years! Amen!

Image source: Google image search

Friday, August 14, 2009

Swine Flu alert!

With the Swine flu threatening to attain a larger scale in India, it is very important for us to stay ever alert. The death rate has increased enormously in the last few days and people are literally panic stricken.

Check this link on wikipedia. It shows the toll on a world map!

In this respect I also came across this site:
Please go through it. It has a rich resource of information of dos and don'ts.

In any case, I share with you all of these and hope that this would benefit you and your near and dear ones.
Main symptoms:

How to prevent the spread of H1N1 Flu?

Wash Your Hands:

  • Before eating or preparing food

  • After coughing, sneezing, or blowing your nose

  • After using the washroom

Hand washing technique:

  • Wash your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds. Rinse well, with hands held downward.

  • Dry with a paper towel, then use the towel to turn off the faucet

  • If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand cleanser. Alcohol-based hand cleansers significantly reduce the number of germs

Spread of germs:

  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. Germs often spread when a person touches something contaminated and then touches their eyes, nose or mouth

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick

  • Attempt to keep at least three (3) feet or one (1) meter away from ill individuals

When sick, keep your distance from others to protect them from getting sick.

  • Practice respiratory etiquette.

  • Cover your mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing, use tissues and dispose them properly.

  • Wash your hands afterwards.

The more I think of it, the more it seems to attain a gigantic hold on this billion population.

Friends, take care, stay healthy, keep fit, practice safety norms and hope for the best!

Source: Company advisory

Number 4 - tagged

Hi all

Tagged once more. This time by preposterous girl. Without wasting much time, let me get into the basics. Somehow the tag creator has a fascination for the number 4 and he/she has explored it thoroughly:

Four places I have lived:
I have lived only in three places till now - all in West Bengal!
  • Kolkata
  • Berhampore
  • Farakka

Four T.V shows that I love(d) to watch:
All in past tense, since I hardly watch any nowadays. Here they are:
  • Chandrakanta
  • Alif Laila
  • Mowgli
  • Tom and Jerry

Four places that I have been on vacation:
  • Delhi - in class 8
  • Puri - in class 9
  • Digha - also in class 9 and last year 15th August
  • Kolkata - during the Durga Pujas...

Four of my favorite food items:

  • Rabri
  • Biryani
  • Pizza
  • Chocolates

There are many more, but these are my top 4 favs!

Four websites that I visit daily:
  • Google
  • My blog
  • My company web page
  • Yahoo
Four places I would rather be:
  • Talsari
  • Ooty

I would like to keep the last two options open...

Four things I hope to do before I die:
  • Become an artist
  • Explore the whole world
  • Love and be loved
  • Leave a legacy
Four novels I wish I was reading for the first time:
Question not very clear
Four movies that I can watch over and over again:
  • Pushpak (hindi)
  • Agniswar (bengali)
  • Sabyasachi (bengali)
  • Hirok Rajar Deshe (bengali)
Four people I believe will respond to this tag:
Hey, people please do it! :D

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

The tremor

It was 1:30 AM tonight. As I was finishing up a few of the leftover office chores, I experienced a faint sway of my bed. Right then, I noticed the window of my 2nd floor apartment swaying to and fro, without as much as a wink of wind! I figured out, it has to be an earthquake! And it definitely was! I would keep a keen watch on the news tomorrow to see, what was the richter scale reading! Of course, it was very mild, but you know, I am keen to know the epicenter of it! I hope, not too many people live near that point!

Sunday, August 2, 2009

What is Friendship?

Back from an intermittent exile, here I am. First of all, let me wish all you readers out there a very happy friendship day. No matter which part of the world you belong to, today is the day to glorify friendship! If everyone could have regarded everyone as friends, the world would have been a different place to live in - no quarrels, no fights, no wars, no bloodshed... think about it!
That has been my dream for so long now, and yet to be realized and I am not sure, if ever that will be realized. *sigh*

Never mind , I thought what constitutes friendship. Is it about mutual trust and respect? Is it about alliance? partnership? In a recent study on friends and best friends, this is what Professor Kuezban had to say with respect to the newly coined Alliance Hypothesis for Human Friendship

"Friendships are about alliances. We live in a world where conflict can arise and allies must be in position beforehand. This new hypothesis takes into account how we value those alliances. In a way, one of the main predictors of friendship is the value of the alliance. The value of an ally, or friend, drops with every additional alliance they must make, so the best alliance is one in which your ally ranks you above everyone else as well."

The study also revealed that our mind subconsciously reads what our prospective partner (read friend) thinks about us. So, if we consider someone as our best friend, inherently we want to know if it is the other way round. So, a sort of mutual alliance is set up.

As per wikipedia, there are so many dimensions of friendships today, some of which are:
  • Soulmate - This is the ultimate form. Soulmates, sort of, die for each other. The ideal friendship - rarely found these days. Tell me people, do you have a friend who could die for you (I am not talking about love), or you could die for him(or her).
  • Penpal - You write to me, I shall write to you. We will exchange ideas and thus, we will know each other better and gather knowledge. Remember the days of postcards and inland letters? ...and of newspaper advertisements asking for penfriends (or penpals) [in the pre-internet boom era]? Why- even the day before, I came across a newspaper advertisement looking for penfriends, so it is very much there today.
  • Internet friendship - This is very much in place today. With hundreds of social networking sites, keeping in touch is really easy notwithstanding which part of the earth you belong to - only condition is you should have access to the internet. Some of the most popular networking sites today are Orkut, Facebook, Twitter, Zorpia, Fropper, Ning and Linkedin.
  • Comrade - This is a term very much use by the leftists in West Bengal when they refer to fellow political party workers. Mainly used to denote an ally, someone with a similar objective. Also used in military to denote team spirit and high esteem.
  • Casual relationship - This is considered to be a fling in the US. No expectations from either party - just for the sake of having a 'good time', whatever that means!
  • Boston marriage - Same as the legalization of Indian Penal Code 377। Do I need to say more?
  • Blood brother - Denotes blood relationships, , 'खून का रिश्ता' (in Hindi)
  • Open relationship - A relationship where the partners are free to choose others for fulfilment of physical desires. When this happens in marriage, it is called "Open marriage".
  • Roommate - The person who has lived with you at one point in time, generally in a hostel or a PG accommodation and do not share a family or romantic relationship.
  • Imaginary friend - General imagery created by a child when he or she considers someone as a friend - could be a living (example: a butterfly) or a non-living object (example: a doll).
  • Spiritual friendship - This refers to the kind of friendship with a higher purpose, as in Buddhist ideology. One of the friends can have more knowledge than the other and the relationship sweetens when the flow of knowledge enlightens both.
  • Inter species friendship - This is so common. Millions of us have pets in their households - be it cats, dogs, cows, goats, sheeps or something as weird as a venomous snakes! But when the creatures stay with us for a long time, a kind of friendship develops. Personally I had a cat who lived for 5 years and I loved it. We would play in the evenings and I used to be thrilled with all its antics. I am sure, many of you must have had similar experiences.
So, the word FRIENDSHIP is vast and used in a very wide range of scenarios. There are also theories that suggest factors which have an effect on friendship, some of which are:

  • Similarity - We instantaneously like people who are similar to us.
  • Proximity - "Out of sight, out of mind" is much more than a mere phrase. So, seeing each other often counts in a BIG way!
  • Reciprocity - This was discussed at the start. We tend to like people who like us and dislike those who dislike us.
  • Beauty - Looks kill. So, if you are beautiful, if you are good looking, if you are handsome, you definitely have an edge in making friends. People would fall flat to your charisma without you trying too much.
  • Competence - Last, but not the least: Nobody wants to make friends with idiots and duffers. So, if you have the skills, the competence, if you are sharp, demonstrate knowledge and intellect, there are hundreds who would be turned on!

Think about the people who are your friends (or whom you regard your friends). I am sure one or more of the above factors would be at play.

As the saying goes, "Great minds think alike", similarly, friendship develops among like minded individuals. You can probably empathize or sympathize with all. But while making friends, there would be more factors to count on. It's more than just a click on the button "Accept as a friend" on a social networking site!

Image source: http://www.quotesarcade.com/graphics/friendship