Friday, November 30, 2007

I've forgotten the flick for off and on

Call it tension, forgetfulness, nerd-ness, anything, I've actually forgotten which way to flick a switch to put it off and on. Some of you brainy chaps will tell me to check for when the bulb glows - but I faced the problem when I was fixing a fused bulb, and ended up putting in the bulb when the current supply was active. Nothing happened though. Of course, this is the land of the up-side downs, a place called 'America'.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

The (in)convinience of time zones

It is Shravan's b'day, today, but technically speaking it's not yet his birthday, because even though I may be writing this blog on his birthday, he himself hasn't reached his birthday as yet.

To make things simpler, I am in Akron, I am writing this blog at 12. 45 am, but it is still 11.45 pm the previous day in Austin, TX. What makes things even funnier is that since it is already late morning in India, his friends have started scrapping him wishing him so. I don't think they actually realise that they are wishing him the day before.

Another of the fantastic things about USA is the time zones. I am in today, but my friend (Meta Subbu) in Golden, Colorado is still way back in time.. So when I call him, he says, "Yeah, its still not yet time.. Its only 11.2o isn't it", referring to the time in Austin, when his watch shows only 10.30 pm. Wow.

Friday, October 26, 2007

The bulbs are fusing out.... is there a ghost in the house?

First, the two incandescent bulbs in the common kitchen went out. As we were wondering how to fix them, Sriram, luckily had about 4 already, 'not mine' he said. Who cares, atleast we get some the bulbs. So I fixed them up.

Then, one bulb in my room fused out. I didn't actually notice it, but something told me everytime I entered the room that the lighting was different. It was then that I saw that only one was glowing. Yesterday, I flicked the switch up, and, with a tiny flash, the remaining bulb fused out. Great, I thought. There was one remaining bulb of Sriram's. I took it out(saw that the price was $.99 for 4, which is ok, compared to India prices), went to my room, stood on an old newspaper spread on a chair, struggled to screw the bulb out, and began to really struggle putting the new bulb in. I screwed, and screwed, and screwed(that's not funny). The problem was compounded by the fact that the chair wasn't tall enough to look over the shade attached to the bulbs. So I climbed on to the table, with the old newspaper protecting it from my big boots of course, and with the extra inch of sight, was able to screw the bulb in. I got down, crumpled the newspaper, threw it into my dustbin(I have improvised a cereals box into my dustbin), and with an air of pride flicked the switch back up. Nothing happened. I tried again. Nothing.

What I had done was I had screwed the fused bulb back, with the new one lying on my table. Gosh, I have to climb onto the table again. So there I was, back on the table screwing(yeah, screwing). And this time it was a success.

Monday, July 16, 2007

'Kadhal' and my Bihari friend

We were in our final days in college and were casually chatting about this and that and came over to movies. Deep Bhushan, a Bihari, said he watched 'Kadhal' on his way back from Bangalore in a bus. He correctly recalled that it was about a bike mechanic who loves a girl from a very rich family. He was all accolades for the film, saying it was very nice, music was very good and had a very happy ending. Happy ending? We were astonished, because the film has anything but a happy ending. It turns out, that like all films shown on buses, they rarely show the entire film, and Deep had seen or rather had been shown only till when the hero and heroine get married and move to a new house.... The rest of us had a good laugh and told him that the two were later separated and that the hero loses control over himself. Deep was like "Oh, is it.........."

Music wins the day, but singer gets the credit

I find it very, very odd, that in albums, when a particular one becomes a hit, it is the singer who gets all the credit, when actually the accolades should go to the music composer. Of course, the singer gives life to the music, but almost no credit is given to the composer always..... No wonder then, that all the albums of that singer, which may be under other composers, do not go on to become major hits... Celine Dion is an example. Titanic was a phenomenon, her later albums, as far as I know, were not as great. And now we hardly come across her...

Saturday, June 2, 2007


It may seem a bit naive, but during my recent trip to Madras ( I like that name very much), I was pretty impressed by two places.

The first was Mettupalayam railway station. With the Nilgiri range overlooking the station on one side, and houses and the railway track on the other, the station has practically only one train to serve - the Nilgiri Express (superfast actually) or the Blue Mountain Express, as it may be known. This arrives at around 6.00 am to Mettupalyam from Madras and leaves at around 7.40 pm, back to Madras. This train has been running practically for over a century (unverified), with the 'original' service being from Madras to Ooty, consisting of the ride from Mettupalayam to Ooty in the toy train which heaves up the 'highest gradient' in Indian railways. The toy train runs today also being interrupted by mother Nature, putting a boulder here or washing out a bridge there.
There is also a passenger daily, from Coimbatore and back, which makes use of the diesel engine which tows along the bogies from Coimbatore, beyond which it is an electric line. The passenger goes to Coimbatore in the morning and comes back in the evening.

What I liked about the station was the serene picturesque setting it is located in. The station is built at a higher level, which gives it the first sense of superiority. Some portion of the platform is not covered by a roof; a couple of benches here make for a good scenery. As the sun sets, a cool breeze blow across, and watching the passengers and the postal workers getting ready for the arrival of the train is fun. Add to this the hills looking over from the northwest; it is a really wonderful experience. It is pretty silent too.

The second place I was impressed about was Chennai Mofussil Bus Terminus, in Koyambedu, also called CBT, or just Koyambedu. This is truly a world apart, from Madras city, that is. I expected it to be like any other bus stand in Tamil Nadu - dirty, unorganised - but lo and behold - it was so surprisingly clean... There were separate bays for buses to each city, a lot of boards and information signs, policemen making sure the vehicular traffic was in control.... Felt proud that there was one nice, Govt. owned, well maintained place in the whole of Madras city. Hats off to CBT!

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

College life... Some things about them...

Some things I will miss about college...

-frowning at those who came late to class

-playing NFS UG2 at the middle of the night full volume

-listening to songs full bass on Krishna's 2.1 speakers at 2 am

-reading the paper at 6.30 am and dozing off to catch a few more winks

-those nighouts in octa

-the gaming frenzy that once affected Pearlites

-Emerald-Pearl AOE matches

-those laughter sessions in coordi's room

-movies in eee audi

-the warm weather of Trichy

-cursing the printer guy while waiting for a printout

-the long queues in first and second years in the mess

-the good ol' days of volleyball

-banging on Manju's door for a solid 5 min trying to wake him up

-standing in a queue at the ATM