Sunday, October 28, 2007


Jaage Hain der tak, hamein kuch der sone do
Thodi si Raat aur hai, subah toh hone do

Aadhe Adhure Khwab jo poore na ho sake
Ik baar phir se neend mein, woh khwab hone do

Let me sleep a while more, I lay awake all night
The night is not yet over, let the dawn break

The dreams that were left halfway, incomplete
Let me finish those dreams once again in my sleep loses so much in translation.

Project week(s). I'm going to be awake for quite some time through them, I hope I get to catch up on my dreams in a while.

I leave you with my Wall.

Friday, October 26, 2007


Singapore has no quizzing circuit to speak of. Its a nice place, and usually replicates home when you want it to (just go to little India on Sunday if you want to be pushed around by 1 million smelly people in search of a decent dosai). However, it has no quizzing. Being an impressionable first year I assumed that in absence of quizzing the next best thing must be debating because at least I get to keep reading and do something competitive. However, something was always missing, and my favorite pastime continued to be ignored through my two years here at college. It just didn't exist.

About a month ago, Ban (a second year who is similarly quiz starved) called me to check out the details for a quiz. In Singapore. Naturally, I was excited. The Tata Crucible thingummy, which they bill as India's largest biz quiz was going global and they had picked Singapore as their first stop. Okay, so it wasn't a general or lit-entertainment quiz but beggars can't be choosers and at that point I was willing to go for anything outside of an SMU college course which had the word Quiz attached to it. The quizmaster, Giri "Pickbrain" Insert-long-southie-name was familiar to ban, and he said that it would be a pretty decent quiz as well, lacking in the stupidities and arbitness that come with most corporately sponsored events who think calling Derek No-Brain or Siddharth "My Wife's A Child Molester" Basu.

So day before yesterday evening the day finally came, and my drought of close to two years ended: I went for a quiz. It was fun, the questions albietly were simple being dumbed down as the quiz master could have no realistic measure of the level of competition in Tiny Island Nation, and had not been exposed to the term "Kiasu". I think quizzing is perfect for Singapore, in that sense. In fact, scariness could happen if it really takes off, you'd have coaching classes for it and what not. The prelims were remarkably close, and we qualified in joint top position with 23/25. This is unheard of in a quiz, and the QM admitted to not having expected it. I think that's pretty tosh given how exceptionally simple some of the questions were, though it was fun yelling out "No Clues Please" to every second question.

The final rounds were well organised and presented. The man had a field day, an entire audience who had never before heard those standard quizmaster jokes that will now get brickbats back in India (My questions are easy, its only the answers that are difficult, and so on...). You could tell he was enjoying the attention.

For me, I was finally home. The adrenaline rush of being back on stage was one I've missed for far too long stuck in Tiny Island Nation. While debating does give you a kick, there's a special joy out of getting a question you know, or working out one that was at the back of your mind. Plus, the enthusiastic hive fives are something you have to give up in the interests of good parliamentary behavior during a debate (This may change, if I have my way about things).

Of course, the most fun bit was winning. I haven't won a quiz in two years, and the loot made up for it. Three and a half K in cash, along with an iPod Nano (the new one), a digicam and a watch and this is the best part... a VERY big foam check that I nicked and put up on my wall in my room.

Now I'm excited.

Monday, October 22, 2007

How to Bring down the Burmese/Myanmari Junta


I mean, it was the obvious solution really. One pictures B52's loaded with Victoria's Secret making Panty Raids on Yangon.

I think this solution can be effectively imported in India as well. The next time the VHP/SIMI/Moral Authoritarian Body that Wants to Impose Indian Culture On Us All gets uppity, bombard them with women's underwear till they have no power left.

It'll make an interesting visual in the newspapers too.

Monday, October 15, 2007


Krabi is really the most brilliant of places. I bet you've never even heard of it, and that's a good thing too. Its a province in Southern Thailand, for starters; and is serviced by the nicest small international airport you'll find, replete with Thai Television with scary sitcoms. As a direct result of you and me and pretty much most people never having heard of it, its nowhere near as croweded as Phuket, Pattaya, Tioman, or any of the other said beach places in vicinity of Small Island Nation. The closest you'll have come to hearing about it is watching a movie called "The Beach", where Leonardo De Caprio prances about on said beaches and eventually has a whole lot of people die around him. Krabi is exactly like that, except without the dead people.

I had the privilege of vacationing there for around three days last week, even every moment was worth it. The beaches were some of the best I've ever seen, and while I do not have an accurate gauge of comparison not having been to a lot of them, were really visually stunning. Stretches of white sand banks, blue and aquamarine lagoons, and amazing cliffs and rock structures that come out of nowhere.

Most of the beaches are on small islands and can only be reached by boat, so getting on a speedboat package is a great idea to check all of them out. But I don't want to drone on like some lonely planet review, so I'll move on to more fun things.

Thailand is the only place in the world where you'll find Ronald McDonald standing up. Not only is he standing up, he's doing namaste (folding his hands) to greet people entering. And here's the best bit about Thailand that I've seen so far: its got the friendliest people east of India. Friendly people serving you is a real change from Small Island Nation, where delivery men tell you that you're a spoilt rich bastard because you didn't show up to collect your stuff two hours before you actually told them to be there. In short, returning to a place where customer is king, and haggling for useless things is fun is a nice break from being told that $34.50 is the best price you're going to get, and that you can fuck off if that doesn't suit you.

Punjabi's are everywhere. At dinner, we stop by an Italian-Thai Restaurant (yes there are such things, wood pizza and green curry on the same menu, go figure) run by a German fellow. The guy serving us was from Jalandhar, gladly took our order in Punjabi, and translated it into Thai for the Chef. There's thus created a basic rule of globalization. No matter what the organization, at what level of management, and what country you're in, you'll find a guy from Jalandhar who's missing home and thinks you're from Bombay.

I love traveling. The further you go, the closer you are to home.