Friday, October 31, 2008

Trick or Treat!!

Sounds of little footsteps and laughter can be heard in the corridor since morning. My back is to the door and everytime I turn to see who is giggling, no one seems to be there. Around 3 pm this happened repeatedly. Finally tried hiding by my office door and suddenly a fairy, pirate and rabbit ran across my office corridor giggling. I slowly stepped out and tried walking noiselessly in the direction they ran. Suddenly I was poked by a fake knife and its hmm what is this? “Trick or Treat” said a 3 yr old, and I think he was a shark. I wonder what’s a fake knife to do with his costume? I looked at his dad who was beaming with pride. I had to sit on my knees to talk to this shark. Seems he wanted a candy no matter what. I had none, so I had to go steal some from next door. As soon as I handed this kiddo candies his face beamed. Boy this little one had collected quite some candies. I walked back to my office and turned on some Shankar Mahadevan songs. Then came a puppet, he asked me what I was listening to and to turn up the volume. Surprisingly he liked Shankar’s “Taare Zaamen Par”. “Cool” he said and handed me a candy. Funny, sometimes how little things can surprise me, totally unexpected. Last year, Halloween had come and gone and I hadn’t noticed. This year it’s what can I say, it’s different. I walked over to Jas’s office and there were so many kids and parents. Parents looked tired and kids looked super energetic after eating all the candy I guess. I saw an alligator, several butterflies, robot, vampires, and tortoise (hmm he was too fast though), also saw a dog wearing a hotdog costume. It was super fun. They have decorated the entire buildings with creative halloween decoration, every office has a basket of candies sitting outside. Among others there were twins in Dalmatian costumes, they were absolutely identical, I guess had their parents not dressed one of them in blue and other in grey jeans, it would be impossible to guess who’s who. A rabbit got scared of a fake spider and burst into tears, I couldn't stop laughing watching that. Whereas a lion almost squished the fake spider. I wonder if costumes reflect people’s personalities, even kids for that matter. I saw a mechanic with tools, this little mechanic dropped a basket full of candies not coz he didn’t want the candies but rather he wanted to check how the chipped basket could be fixed. Dunno why the alligator was crying, I remembered “Magarmach ke aasu” hehehe I know mean isn’t it?

I wonder if I were to dress for Halloween what would I wear. Maybe leave my hair open, put lots of kajal in and around my eyes, put a big rather a huge red bindi on my forehead and carry a trishul. Howz that for a designer Halloween costume? O ya and I would wear a odissi style saree. Also, a rudrash mala around my neck and rudrash earrings. In fact nothing like a kathakali costume. Next time I go to india I got to get one. So what are you guys up to this week? Any Halloween plans?

Friday, October 17, 2008

Politics Vs Politics

And I was thinking November-December means vacation time. Historically that maybe true but for some reason amount of incoming work is no way depicting it. For two weeks or so I was absolutely relaxing, I even got a book to read at work and today suddenly there has been an avalanche of user research study requests. My reaction to all this, all I said was woah, is this fun of what? I hate sitting idle, especially during times as these, when all you can read online is about recession and elections. Talking of elections, in India I wasn’t ever attracted to the subject. I hardly heard about ShivSena or BJP other than when dad or other elders discussed. The bandhs, rasta rokho activities sure did bother me but not so much that I could educate myself on the mysteries of politics. Here however people don’t openely speak as much of politics. I learnt quite early that it’s not as polite to ask political opinion of someone. This made politics mysterious and hence attractive. I watched the political debate the other day. This was the 2nd of such debates we watched. I don’t have much right to say which candidate is better than the other considering I don’t know much of their previous work record. But I do have an opinion of who came across as genuine, wasn’t just interested in pointing the other guys mistake and accepted rather than avoiding the current economic condition. I’ll tell ya, but only if you ask.

But this post isn’t really about these candidates; it’s about the difference in way politics is conducted in different countries. I don’t remember a single such debate between politicians in India. And I can’t really imagine how Lalu and Balasaheb would debate. Anywho, maybe soon times will change, educated people will be able to fight and get into the system to correct it. Maybe then we’ll get a chance to listen to some real promises. Yeah such dreams of mine! For now I am waiting for our short little vacation to Texas. New place, new environment, new energy. On another note, I requested a Marathi novel at KCLS library and guess what? They had a copy and I got it yesterday.

For now, ciao, take care and laugh lots.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Ghost moderating comments

The weather with no care or concern for me or my health has changed yet again leaving me sneezing, coughing and irritated. So here I am at work starring at the computer and wondering what to do which won’t involve humans. I notice I am scarring them away,no one wants to attend meetings with an infection carrier in the room. So I turn to blogging. As I lazily logged on my blogger site, I found two comments smiling at me (on my previous post). The only thing other than Dasera greetings that has cheered me today. I quickly hit on the publish comment button and guess what happened? Only one comment got published and the other disappeared from the face of the google publisher. Darn it! I was all gr@#$#. I mean seriously I already have a list of reasons tempting me to move to word press. I scratched my brain trying to remember what name or sign of the fellow blogger who commented. All I could recollect was it started with a “p” something along the line of purvi, purva, purv, pvur, paavam gosh! All I can do is curse google and apologize to the stranger. And cough violently on the google webpage while my colleague watched and aweeed me. What, I was just hoping to pass on the infection to the webpage. After pondering for a while about the blogger, I decided to stay put here.To move to another blogging site would be to find a new home, research, check the vastu shastra and all that. And well, this blogger has been my home for quite some time now. Agree it has its flaws but then home is home right?

On another note, someone is trying to sell a used dustbin on one of our DL’s. This dude seems to be moving out of US and has listed everything barring his clothes for sale. The advertisement was posted a week or two back on the distribution list and travelled through thousands or more inboxes. Now really, is this some culture effect(seller is Indian) or it’s just an individual nature thing? As I scrolled down the list of things for sale, I couldn’t help but laugh reading the items namely kid’s potty seat and dust bin. Dude has even clicked pictures and put them on Picasa. If that wasn’t enough after a week’s patience, the guy published this ad again claiming- “Price Reduced”. I mean, I understand the economy is slowing; things are really bad around here but again are they as bad? Worth pondering!

As for all you nice readers, wish you a happy dasera, eat well, enjoy life, stay healthy and well keep laughing.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Reminds me of Tum Tum- the 8 seater rickshaw

Yawny Friday! You would say that too if you had to work this weekend like I do. So for me this week has been never ending. It started on a Monday and is progressing into yet another Monday sigh! I am suddenly noticing a lot of “Enjoy the weekend”, “Happy Friday” etc at the end of emails people are sending Grrrrr! On another note, I ran into this video of Tata Nano and simply couldn’t stop laughing watching the car.The wheels look so tiny and the fact that they have only 3 bolts makes me kinda uncomfortable. Back in India if it was a 2 seater, one could easily find 3 people merrily riding on it. Sometimes entire family of 4 would be on a scooter. Typical scene would be a little boy standing in front and a little girl in mum’s lap. A good example is the “Tum Tum”. Extremely noisy 8 people carrier. More so like a rikshaw. I have travelled in a Tum Tum only once I believe, thank god. I think it was near Pune or maybe Vidarbha I don’t remember now. What I clearly do remember is choosing a door seat coz I considered it best rather than getting squished in between people. You see Tum Tum is the last place I want to die. Anywho, I was squished against the door and I believe there were atleast 20 people in that Tum Tum if not more. I also occasionally saw a leg or a hand when I tried to look out the window. These must the people hanging on to the Tum Tum and enjoying the wind. Also I distinctly recollect getting suffocated and experiencing odors which can easily be traded for poisonous gas. I survived that journey. But I wonder if Nano would turn into modern day’s Tum Tum. And the pretty little, fragile looking car be able to take it. On a Ganpati Visharjan day when the eldest uncle in the family commands all the kids to cramp up in the car? Or someone orders all the women to get in their car with little ones? Well, we’ll just see what happens of Nano as time goes by.

On another note, did you read about the public smoking ban? Is that true? I mean if its on BBC it has to be real, right? In India my office was at a walkable distance from home. I made it a point to walk daily to my office and back. It took almost half an hour or 45 mins but still faster than driving to work or even taking a cab. Mornings usually I had no issue walking to work. Roads would be relatively empty (if I left home at 8) and it seemed as if the city is still kinda gearing up for the day. But in the evening, walking along with hordes of people and cars just added stress. I recollect the number of people who smoked in the crowd back then. Sometimes I would end up walking behind someone who would be smoking and I would have no choice but continue to walk that way till I reached home. I felt like a smoker. I would curse, grate my teeth, even say things loudly like “Kidhar se aa raha hai yeh smoke?” but would be talking to walls. Even if this ban is implemented in half of the crowded areas, I am sure thousands of non smokers will be pleased. On the other hand, I wonder what’ll happen to the poor pan valas. They won’t make much money selling meetha pan, will they?