Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Exam blues

A part of the engineering experience is the Oral examination or the viva voce. They are on right now, and I wish all friends and colleagues all the very best. As for me, I need all the luck I can get, considering I have done nothing; and continue to do nothing productive by writing blogs that make no sense.

Its amazing how engineering makes you so callous to the whole examination system. I shall never forget the first semester, when we are all so nervous about the impending exams. The exam hall looked like a moratorium. Now of course, the mood is much lighter. There are constant debates as to who has done lesser. You have scenes of intermediate professors cropping up, who spent the last might cramming into their head things that made little, it it all any, sense. These professors are dear little commoditites, what with the absence of any professor in the college.

Another thing engineering soes teach ot rather inculcate in you is confidence. I can say, without a second thought at that, that I can face any viva, with the least amount of preparation. Thats quite a departure from the first viva I had in which all I could do is stammer and blabber a few sentences.

Well, books need my attention right now, not my blog. Have to leave in an hour for a viva which I shall duly start preparing for. Pray for me friends, I need it.

Monday, October 17, 2005

Why be Indian

Project work is on full swing. I have quite a few people who will second me on this one, with Anks being a notable one.

So, these guys have come over home to get some work done. What was meant to be a pure work session turned out, as it always does, it one big party. I had asked my parents to get something for us so that we shall atleast not have any hunger pangs whilst we were "working". And the huge heart that my dad carries around got us 10 sandwiches. A sizeable amount considering we had Anks and myself who had just eaten, and two girls, with one of them who is full by just looking at food. So that left me asking every two minutes whether anyone would like a sandwich. Also in abundant supply, thankfully might I add, was coffee. That of course, was not something any of us would volutarily pass by, with Anks being a fine illustration. His take on coffee supposedly is that if it available, it must be had. Somewhat my policy too, only minor deviation from the same is that in my case, it is anything edible. I guess that explains why I am dimensionally challenged.

Well, Nimoli has gone home and supposedly said that all we did was to gorge and that Sunil only fed her. Not true, in my opinion, but her dad says that he shall return the favour when we pay her a visit. Anks' mom is no different, neither is Madhu's mom. Anks' ma feels sorry for me as my mom doesn't live with me. So, she says that Sunil can come over whenever he wants to for a nice meal. Little does she realize, that this "Poor little Boy" is quite well fed, by the greatest grandmom anyone can have. By the way Anks, come over for coffee.

Its things like these that makes me love India so much. Where else would we find such warmth? Where else would we have this family thing, with the sheer pressure of having to eat because food exists in the kitchen? Where else would we have moms, grnadmoms, aunts, sisters etc in abundance, who are waiting with a million spoons filled with food, to thrust down that gullet of yours? And it's not just the food. Its the family, the people around us, the works. And it is at such times when I want to stand up and sing "Jana Gana Mana" or "Hum sab Hindi Hain".

Acknowledgements (in no particular order):
1: Madhu's Mom
2: Madhu
3: Nimoli
4: Nimoli's folks
5: Anks' mom
6: Anks' sis, Sapna
7: Anks
8: My mom
9: My grandmom (the most beautiful and active 81 year old on this planet)

Friday, October 14, 2005

All the best Mr. Dravid

Well, seems to me its the end of the road for my favourite player. And the very same guy he partnered when he scored his centruy on debut, is poised to take over. Well, before everything else, all the best to Dravid. I am Indian first, and only then a Sourav fan.

It's been a pretty rough time for Dada recently, what with India not winning and his form as dismal as ever, the century at Bulawayo not withstanding. I guess he is the pet peeve of the press. The press went after him for scoring the painfully slow hundred at Bulwayo, but openly lauded Dravid for his centruy which came in almost the same rate. Double standards? Has to be, it's the Indian media. But that is as much a tribute to Dravid, as unfair it is to Ganguly. The press loves him primarily for his consistency and his demeanor.

I do feel Ganguly should not have gone to the press about the Chappel issue. I am a firm believer in not even taking dirty linen out of the house, forget the washing, scrubbing ,wringing and hanging out to dry that they did at Bulawayo. The photoop was possibly the biggest farce that could ever be staged. Who were they kidding anyway? But irrespective of what happens I shall remain an ardent Ganguly follower. There is no more elegant a batsman as him. No guy can step down the wicket and hit Shaun Pollock for sixes over cover in succession. No guy can build the team that he has--which sadly is on the verge of disintegration. And no guy can have hit 21 centuries and still be always at the receving end, irrespective of what he does.

I wish he continues to be captain. Primarily because, Sourav is a better captain than Dravid- and few will contest that. But if he is not captain, dont play him. I do not think he is good enough to retain his place purely as a batsman now. But then, when we have had Mike Brearleys why not Gangulys? After all, we all know what a coward Mike Brearly was.

I am too perfervid to have a clear style right now. Any comments guys?

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Feline Chronicles

The CAT a.k.a Common aptitude test is going to have an awfully inept student taking it this year. Sometimes, he wonders why he is even giving this paper. But one thing about him, his sense of optimism is non-pareil. So, if you were to meet him and spot him adorned by an original IIMA shirt (which happens to be his cousin's.. and you shall not miss out on the rant that he shall soon present you with his own), do not even try to dissuade him. Much to your chagrin, going against your very friendly and very concerned advise, he shall just laugh at your face and say that no one can stop him from getting through.

As for effort, true to inimitable style, there is none. All there is hope. The other day, I heard he was lamenting on how it's him who gives the toughest two exams in the world-the IIT JEE and the CAT. The whole world knows him to be a whiner, and hes living upto the reputation. The CAT is on the 20th of November. Of course prior to that he has a host of other things to do such as his project, vivas etc. So if he even manages to get an hour a day its commendable. I suggested to to him to stop writing his blog, but he says hes addicted.

Anyways, heres wishing him all the very best.. and the others too.

P.S: Thanks for the title Vivek.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Congrats Mr. Baradei; Smell the coffee Mr. Singh

Hail El Baradei! It's a stupendous achievement on his part to have won the Nobel Peace Prize. The IAEA gets caned for every possible nuclear transgression by any state, which in my opinion is highly unfair, considering many of them are not even bound by the NPT.

I think we Indians have committed harakiri by taking a real stupid stance at the UN conclave. Why do we have to suck up to the states is something I just understand. I do understand American friendship is something that every country besides Russia and China ( even them possibly) would enjoy, but definitely not at the cost of the country itself. Where we seem to have lost the plot is where we have failed to recognize how deeply influenced our economy is by oil. Mr. Mani Shankar Aiyar, along with with our PM has not realized how thirsty our land is. Our economic growth graph is headed northwards primarily because of the development in all fields, which stems from the oil supply being there. With crude touching $70 a barrel any source of oil or gas, as in the case with Iran is something we can't pass up.

So why must we support the US? Sure, Indo US relations are at all time high, and our vote against could have put a spanner in the works, but that is not everything. What is the US really giving us? They might lobby for a seat at the UNSC, great. Even overlooking the fact that they are not doing anything of that sort right now, what we really need right now is still oil. If we were to jeopardize this we would lose definitely a lot more than we would gain, even if we were to get a seat into the UNSC.

As for Mr. Baradei, congrats. Despite, the heavy criticism he has come under, he has managed to stand tall. His doctrine of overall disarmament is definitely the path to walk on; not the one where a country like Iran is prevented from acquiring weapons while others openly mint them as if they were coins.

The RSS and the Congress

Its been a real long time, and I have been thinking as to what must I write to break the hiatus. And in that time, I have wasted some more. By the way there are quite a few good bloggers around nowadays. Check out Humbl Devil and Ranjani’s blogs for example. Even Vivek, Rach are also good.

Coming back, I was reading this editorial in the TOI (I read it out of compulsion) that stressed on how secularism is killing religions. I must say I agree almost in totality. What we don’t realize often is that secularism never tells you not to advocate you religion. In fact, it’s the sheer paranoia affixed to promotion of one’s own religion that is being touted as secularism nowadays.

But certain things that I would like to say that are not in sync with the views of the author. When we are being hypercritical of the RSS and its functioning- by branding it as a “communal organization”, aren’t we turning a blind eye to what the Congress and its leadership is doing to our country? Let me tell you that their pro-Muslim stance is nothing but possibly the longest running electoral strategy ever. For 50 years, they are screwing both our country and the Muslims in it. We as Hindus, feel like a minority in our very country despite contributing to well over 80% of the population. How are we being democratic by being partisan to a minority? Besides, why the special treatment? In the end we are all Indians.

I am a supporter of the BJP, heck the RSS too. Sure, the RSS are wrong in saying that Muslims are wrong and the Ram Temple issue etc. But they are right in championing the cause of the Hindus. Remember people, why shirk away from the religion of your birth? I am not Anti-Muslim; but can I ask you, which Muslim (if not in India- outside of it) will be as subservient as we Hindus here? As the author rightly points out, we in the name of secularism are snuffing out culture and tradition; the very same culture and tradition that are well over 3 thousand years old. And that to me is sacrilege, blasphemy, heresy- you name it.

And not the least bit secular.