Saturday, December 31, 2005

Not Benefited

My boss frequently tells me things like how I have certain benefits that he, at his level, doesn't get to 'enjoy.' These 'benefits' are small things like a small overtime for staying half a day more in the office, and a day off if you work on weekends. He always tells me like these are very important things that he has to forgo because of his position. What he doesn't tell is that he has other bigger benefits that the low men don't even know existed.

The salaries, benefits, and bonuses of the biggies are multiple times bigger than what the wee willies get. With a bigger pay package, bigger benefits, bigger workspace, and bigger everything, he has nothing to complain. To be fair, he has bigger responsibilities too. Unlike other bosses, he doesn't want to approve these expenses - he sees me work till he leaves, knows that I come an hour before everybody trickles in, but still has trouble approving my expenses. How many bundles of paper, office supplies, and toilet paper rolls should I help myself to before I am even? Maybe I should 'work' like the lazy bastard who has been assigned to me, and get praised a lot with a good performance appraisal for coming in late, just browsing the internet, chatting, and taking hour-long fag breaks!

My boss has a nice flat by the sea in a posh locality, which I can only dream of living in. Sometimes I ask him if there is anything vacant in his building, or close to it, just to see his face change from wheatish to a pale greyish brown.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Late Manojar

In the last 9 months, I've done quite a bit of work that has never seen the light of the day. Like muslims locked up in Guantanamo Bay, some of my work is locked up in the bossman's computer and/or desk for his review. When the work finally gets reviewed, the bossman says that 'the closure time is long and has to be reigned in.'
double-u tee eff!

Friday, December 23, 2005


It sucks when a bank holiday falls on a sunday or saturday! Atleast I am not one of those guys whose birthdays fall on the same day as a festival. Merry Christmas to anyone here.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Satellite launched!!

Our latest satellite has been successful! Only because those French rocket scientists incorporated the best safety feature developed by Indians.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Indian English

Seen on a ad board behind a bus here, somename "AT yahoo dot coin"

Sunday, December 18, 2005

Flat finding mission, again

It is the season for flat hunting again. On saturday I visited a flat somewhat close to my current place, but turns out, like many others, the housing society doesn't accept bachelors. Such blatant discrimination! Would they dare to say they won't rent out for Muslims or South Indians? Wait, they do, in many places. If I have to get into that studio flat, comes furnished with a sofa/bed, a cupboard, full kitchen, a fridge, and a TV, I have to say I am married. Haven't we seen movies like that? The guy says he is married to get a flat, and some random girl comes claiming she is his wife, and a lot of comedy. Unfortunately, life is not a comedy, so we all know how tragical it would turn out.
Another place I went to saw has a plot of land nearby with some wild growing plants. I saw a homeless lady hurriedly plucking leaves from one such plant. It did not take me much time to realise it was not an ordinarly plant - some call it weed, some call it grass, marijuana, Indians call it ganja.

Friday, December 16, 2005

Wiki or Britannia

I've always known Wikipedia is not entirely correct. Even I could point out a lot of articles (especially related to India) and the errors in each. Now, Nature has come up with a study showing Wikipedia is 30% shoddier than Encyclopaedia Britannica.They all seem to concentrate on just the final number, no one puts them in correct context - Apart from the 24% of articles which are equally bad or correct, 69% of Britannica articles are better than Wikipedia articles! What can you expect from an encyclopaedia that can't spell encyclopaedia correctly?
Which?Count% better
I've been using wikipedia for marketing my company's products for quite some time now. I am not the only one!

Mozilla feedback!

Why does this happen to me frequently? This is just for today - from 10 am to 4 pm, and only those which I sent. I thought this opensores browser was supposed to be free from such things. :|

Updated on 17 June 2009:
I didn't realize how many people like this song!! Download with "Free Youtube to MP3 Converter"

O Fortuna! - Old Spice ad! (midi)
Complete Carmina Burana Collection

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Indian VC

Another Indian on Dilbert. Is he from IIT too?

Vijay means victory, hmm...

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Another one

My boss had this bad habit of coming to the office before everyone, and leaving after everyone has left. One day, he told me how nice it was to leave at the regular time, but got bored by 9 pm. Nowadays, he frequently comes late to the office, leaves well before closing time, and frequently 'works from home.' :) That's because he leaves early but comes back to the office late at night to work :o

Saturday, December 03, 2005


The 40 year old accounting lady who sits next to me in the office has been reading pr0n stories from morning! She tells me it is not pr0n but just some stories like Mills and Boons (which I consider pr0n). I told her to 'browse safely' and 'use protection' lest the company restrict internet and prevent me downloading music in the office.

21 years ago

Why isn't anyone talking about Bhopal today? Why do the newspapers carry 4 full pages of Amitabh Bachan, but not of this biggest industrial disaster till date? Must be because his net worth and future value must be higher than the collective NW and FV of the dead and living dead. But the, when did dead people have a future?

Friday, December 02, 2005


I have been put in a project of which I have no experience; I have oblique authority, and indirect responsibility over the 'resources' working for me now. I tell the programmers to do what I want to do, but my boss puts it in a different way that what I told them becomes wrong, but it gets done more or less the same way I wanted. I tell someone to do something, they tell me it is difficult. I can't control them because I am not their manager, so I resort to emotional appeals - "don't do this for me, do this for the company!", "it is a million dollar project, so help me get that deal". I stink :(

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Sony India

There have been huge outcry against some Sony software. Even Indian newspapers talk about this rootkit - how evil it is and how 'eminent people' are fighting for consumers' rights. Everybody is happy that there are many court cases against Sony. But, all these desi reporters seem to ignore one basic fact - the consumers everybody is talking about are North Americans and maybe Europeans and these 'lawsuits' will help only them. What about the tens of thousands of Indians who bought ridiculously high priced CDs? Laws in India are changed to conform to American and European practices, only because under the threat of stopping outsourcing, not for helping Indian citizens. Even the 'IT Act of 2000' is seemingly upgraded to help all those celebrities and politicians, not the common man, even if he is one of the new millionaires. Isn't globalisation a bitch?

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Breaking News!

Thousands fall sick because they had no option but drink flood waters and it is a tiny news item in the last few pages, but a celebrity feels woozy after a stomach upset and he makes the front page - full page on a tabloid and half a page on a broadsheet. In India, if you have enough money, everything will follow!

Monday, November 28, 2005

Dry Land

Barely a year ago, Tamil Nadu was one of the places affected by Tsunami. Now, what I see on TV resembles water world! Three cyclones in as many weeks, what is the world coming to? A month ago, if they said there was a heatwave in Gobi desert, I would've believed it, but not a watercovered TN.
Dry land is not just our destination, it is our destiny!

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

November Rains

The three seasons of this city are Hot, Hotter, and Hottest. The peak temperature can reach 42 degrees celcius. People wear a sweater if the temperature drops to 25 degrees celcius. It rains for barely over two weeks in a year, for less than a week during some years. But, whenever there is a cricket match scheduled, rains batter the city.
We need more cricket matches in Chennai.

Monday, November 21, 2005

Priorities, people

There are critical issues facing India:

While there might be a famine in 20 years, the rightwing wanker wants to do away with family planning

There are no more pressing issues than attacking women for saying something they shouldn't have

While the police is , doing something against corruption politicians want to save their own dirty arse

When a crime fighting indie journalist says, Indian media is not too bright no-one else carries it

While a US Government report praises India for religious tolerance somethings in India tell otherwise
Biased Buildings
Biased Buildings 2
No mass for mixed marriages
A female tennis player's attire is "unislamic"
Atheists are idiots
Thai Princess and a White woman denied entry into temples.

Thursday, November 17, 2005


Macho Men, eh?
We are used to such things, but the Americans were not amused. They are not used to seeing so many people together. After what happened on November 7, the USAF pilots and personnel became edgy.
Not used to see so many people together, especially as not targets. It is a good thing they are not practising with live ammunition, or is it just a dress rehearsal? "First we take Baghdad, then we take Delhi?"

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

What shall I do?

My former flatmate is here on an official visit and instead of staying at the company's guesthouse, he has been staying with me. I won't say it is because he can save a lot of money that way, but I won't rule it out. It looks like he can never forget this girl who was working here with us. He used to be in her department and he tells me he was quite close with her. Long story short, he is obsessed with her, she doesn't want to do anything with him, she is planning to marry her boyfriend, which our hero can't digest. He has been complaining to me for the last few days how he can change her mind and convince her to marry him if only she would reply to his deluge of emails. He tells me how every girl he has worked with have thrown themselves at him and she was the only girl he has ever pined about - 'why can't she realise that?' He takes this as a personal failure but can't see it that way. This seems to be my role since seventh standard - listening to "friends" cribbing about women who don't want to do anything with them, and they weren't exactly on my good side to begin with. The only good thing that came out of it seems to be being privy to their dirty secrets, their weaknesses, being dined at their expense, and ofcourse, the fun of seeing them embarassed at the least. But with this guy, I am afraid he might harm the poor girl like we see in many news reports, especially considering that he is from North India; that too, from Delhi.

Monday, November 14, 2005

Saturday Night

There are places man was never meant to go, and the movie The Cave is was of them. That was one of the most boring, predictable movies I ever saw. The minute the parasite was introduced, I knew the path of the movie. Except for the stunning underwater scenes, everything else was skippable. The music in the movie starts and whines like a jet engine, but the flight never takes off the ground. The dialogues were a brilliant piece of art, for a school drama. I fear there might be a sequel to this movie. After that, I saw a browsing centre open at 12.30am and I entered out of curiosity. I saw a lot of dirty bastards sitting there and looking up pictures of hot girls on hi5, orkut, and matrimonial websites.

Saturday, November 12, 2005

Tigers at home, Mouses outside!

Aargh! They shouted, they kicked, screamed, kicked up dust, spat in anger. All because their favourite hero was dropped from the one-day series.
"India is doomed! Greg Chappel is an idiot, a racist."
"This is why I don't watch cricket no more."
"Sri Lanka is a powerful team and we need the best to win against them!"
"Rahul Dravid is a traitor for siding with the white coach," Dasgupta Moshai screams into the TV camera.
"If you were a true Indian, you would want Ganguly back into the team," writes Shurojit Babu.

India beats Sri Lanka by over 150 runs in the 1st match, by 8 wickets after containing SL to a mere 122, and had a record broken in the third match. They sealed the series - after a very long time. The team was rotated to give youngsters a chance.
"Why in the name of Kali was a winning team changed? Now we will surely lose. Who gave Greg the right to rotate the team?"

Sure enough, we lost a match. "We can't experiment now, we have the wonderful Ranji Trophy to 'develop talent.' We need to win all the 7 matches, our national pride is at stake!", said the 'cricket-loving Indian,' while his 10 year old domestic help was playing with his infant son.

India were on a roll again, after crippling Sri Lanka to less than 200, and winned in under 35 overs. India finished off the series in style, with Dhoni scoring one of the highest scores in ODIs. Now they are celebrating. Sania who?

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Blogging Boss

I found out my boss has a blog, atleast one that is not secretive. I have to find out now if he has some anon-blog. What would he write there? His flings? Work?

Gartner Voice

Gartner analysts have come up with a new webcast - Gartner Voice - and have made it available for free on their website. Looks like they started in October 2005, and no registration is required, for now! Available as mp3.

Sunday, November 06, 2005

Yahoo! Prank!

1) Go to yahoo locals
2) type "the dude's fish store" in "search for" box, and click on search
3) look at the first result

Yahoo! has their listing!


Friday, November 04, 2005

What it really means...

When the Chinese 'official media' says something like this,
"Now that the United States buys another country in with nuclear technologies in defiance of international treaty, other nuclear suppliers also have their own partners of interest as well as good reasons to copy what the United States did," it said.
it really means that "we now have a reason to bring the existing nuclear pact with Pakistan above ground!"

Monday, October 31, 2005

Deepavali 05

Used google talk for the first time! The sound quality was amazing, and the speech was crystal clear! After a very long wait, I finally got approved for a set of mic and speakers, officially. One guy I knew at PHB school used to chat all night with (according to him) chicks from Eastern European countries. That was one of the guys who tied up all the precious bandwidth, along with downloading p0rn all the time.

The person whom I was chatting with is one of the most paranoid people I've ever seen. He is afraid of even typing bomb, nuclear bomb, muslim, eid, president bush, america, etc He is afraid he will be sent to Guantanamo Bay.

Tomorrows and the two days after it are holidays because of Deepavali/Diwali. This is one of the 'holidays' when people wilfully cause massive air-pollution, noise-pollution, and thrash the whole country on such a scale, not unlike the rest of the year, and enjoy the fruits of (mainly) child labour - crackers and silk dresses. People take it personally if they are not allowed to shatter the eardrums of everybody else. I wonder if there is any other country where blasting huge amounts of gun-powder to show their wealth, causing trauma for millions of sick, old people and children is allowed.

Sunday, October 30, 2005

The Exclamating Boss!!!

I am scared of getting emails from my boss - not because I did something wrong, but because he uses a lot of exclamation marks. Exclamation marks to me, perhaps full stops to him! When I get an email from him saying "Do This !!", I don't know whether he is surprised I haven't done it already, or he is ordering me to do it, or he is simply fascinated with exclamation marks!!
Elaine: Well, I was just curious why you didn't use an exclamation point?
Jake: What are you talking about?
Elaine: See, right here you wrote "Myra had the baby", but you didn't use an exclamation point.
Jake: So?
Elaine: So, it's nothing. Forget it, forget it, I just find it curious.
Jake: What's so curious about it?
Elaine: Well, I mean if one of your close friends had a baby and I left you a message about it, I would use an exclamation point.
Jake: Well, maybe I don't use my exclamation points as haphazardly as you do.
Elaine: You don't think that someone having a baby warrants an exclamation point.
Jake: Hey, I just chalked down the message. I didn't know I was required to capture the mood of each caller.
Elaine: I just thought you would be a little more excited about a friend of mine having a baby.
Jake: Ok, I'm excited. I just don't happen to like exclamation points.
Elaine: Well, you know Jake, you should learn to use them. Like the way I'm talking right now, I would put an exclamation points at the end of all these sentences! On this one! And on that one!
Jake: Well, you can put one on this one: I'm leaving!

Saturday, October 29, 2005

Indian Nooks!

This is the first time India has been mentioned in some place without Pakistan, that too, talking about nuclear weapons. It has been a lot of times the other way round.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Chennai Trip

I was planning to go home for the deepavali vacations, half-heartedly. Stalled till the last few days to get air-tickets for cheap. Unfortunately, every body else has the same idea. The only solace was that some flights to Madras Airport were cancelled/diverted due to the cyclone in the Bay of Bengal. Had I gone, I would have definitely brought my beloved computer with my huge music collection here. Well, it can wait a few more months!

Also, today I downloaded Rammstein's Rosenrot (full album). I am very happy!

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Virus Alert!!!!

We got an email from the IT guy. One senior person in the company got an email from his friend warning abou the "WORST VIRUS EVER - CNN ANNOUNCED!!!". He forwarded it to the IT guy and he forwarded it to us, telling us to go through the forwarded email, not open any email with "A Virtual Card for You" as the subject, and delete it even if we know the person. As I went through the email, I remembered seeing those words somewhere.Then I realised where I saw it - various emailing lists, and!

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

e-commerce in India

I have long been a proponent of all things online and ecommerce. I used to do a lot of shopping online: books, music, air-tickets, train tickets. Since I moved to Mumbai, I find it very difficult to do these things. Why? Because of my address. Mumbai is a city where people and places have names with atleast 12 characters, houses have no numbers (only long names) and streets have insanely long names. For an 'international' city, they don't have international addresses. My home in Chennai has 36 characters (including spaces), my aunt's home has 32, my hostel address had 25. In Mumbai, my last three addresses have 50, 40, and 54 characters, and my office has 78! The problem is not with these very long addresses, but with the dim-witted web-designers (atleast in India) who did it in such a way that I have to leave my address hanging!! What do I do? I originally wanted to put it as Air-deccan sucks, but I don't have the power to stand against them. So, this is a general rant.

Indian Railways is one of the few websites where I can enter my complete address twice over. Anyone who have booked their train tickets over the net would have noticed one thing - IR computers never crash, but their trains frequently do!

A few days back, I got a coupon to buy a book over at an online bookshop and I tried to get one. The coupon had expired before I could utilise it. So, I cancelled the booking. After an hour or so, this one guy calls me and asks me whether I want to buy the book, and if they should hold it for me. I was confused: I never completed the transaction; doesn't that mean I don't want the book? Maybe they were just being helpful.

I also tried online share trading a few times. I registered with four online trading sites and every one of them called me within an hour to "verify my Name, address and phone number." They all told me a representative would meet me the next day. Till now, I have not received even a call from anyone! Is it just me or does this happen to others also? I see a lot of people trading online - during office hours.

At such a young age!

I got an email a few days back. Another guy from my class died in a road accident. Just a few weeks back another guy died. Two down, 60 more to go. What's my number? A couple of days after that, my former flatmate sends me an email - his marriage is off. He had three people staying with him before me and they all got married and moved out. I thought that streak was broken when he moved out to get married. If this trend has to continue, and I have to get married before he does, he will have to die a bachelor.

Friday, October 14, 2005


How serious are these ?? any privacy infringements?? pl enlighten on this issue
Just search : yahoo +web + beacon ..for more insight............................................

some Infowars story

some newsfactor story

read elsewhere..someone who informed abt this beacons in his egroups got his gps shut by yahoo..ennamo nadakuthu !!

This is what a friend recently asked me. This is not like the IIPM issue, where you would be sent a 'notarized email' and 'sued' for $2.7 million for writing about them. So, I decided to 'investigate' a little.

The Yahoo! Privacy! page on web-beacons is full of weasel words.

# Yahoo! uses web beacons to conduct research on behalf of certain partners on their web sites and also for auditing purposes.
# Information recorded through these web beacons is used to report aggregate information about Yahoo! users to our partners. This aggregate information may include demographic and usage information. No personally identifiable information about you is shared with partners from this research.
Usage information? Certain partners? Who are those partners?

If some country or its newest friend decides that I am a terrorist and wants to see what websites I visit, this would be certainly used against me! After all, this is the country where government blocks access to yahoogroups because some separatists in North East were using it, arrests the CEO of an auction site because some desparate IIT student (isn't that redundant?) sold a porn clip on that site, and the police closes down a five-star hotel's bar and arrests the manager and a bar-tender based on clandestine pictures of a private party taken and published in a vernacular newspaper.
"No personally identifiable information about you is shared with partners from this research".
-- This comes from the company that handed over 'personally identifiable information' of a journalist to 'comply with local laws.'

And, what do we see here?
Note: This opt-out applies to a specific browser rather than a specific user. Therefore you will have to opt-out separately from each computer or browser that you use.
The optout is for EACH COMPUTER AND BROWSER combination!!!
# Yahoo!'s practice is to include web beacons in HTML-formatted email messages (messages that include graphics) that Yahoo!, or its agents, sends in order to determine which email messages were opened and to note whether a message was acted upon
There is nothing wrong with companies auditing their advertising strategy, but this just takes things too far. Whey does Yahoo! need to know which emails I open or not? If I don't open an email from a particular sender, what would they do? Stamp it out as spam? The spam I receive has certainly not gone down!
In general, any file served as part of a web page, including an ad banner, can act as a web beacon. Yahoo! may also include web beacons from other companies within pages served by Yahoo! so that Yahoo!'s advertisers may receive auditing, research and reporting.
This is one reason why ads have to blocked, and I recommend the adblocking plugin for Mozilla Firefox.

With Yahoo! recently giving up details about a Chinese journalist, it won't be long before that friend would be sent to a certain place in Occupied Cuba (or its partner site in India!)

Thursday, October 13, 2005


I thought this would be a good week, but things don't turn out as expected. My friend from Chandigarh, on a vacation and staying with me, wanted to go see a movie, so we went to see The Grudge at Gem, in Bandra. The tickets were sold out in 10 minutes for the afternoon show. Since we had to while away our time till the next show, we went to 'The Great Punjab'. The food was good, but very costly. A litre of water (MRP Rs. 10) cost Rs. 40. In comparison, a litre of petrol costs Rs. 42 ONLY! The service was not bad at all, compared to how people who appear non-rich were treated at such pricey places. We found out why the tickets were sold out for an old movie when we went inside - the 'theatre' was so small, my house was bigger than that! It had only 45 seats, in 6 rows!! We were the only 'older' guys there among a bunch of college kids. With 1/2 the population female, I expected a lot of screams during the frightening scenes. To my disappointment, they were all laughing. Have people become so desensitised to humans suffering at the hands of ghosts?

Tuesday, October 11, 2005


The office had a party today - for a Gujarati festival called Dandiya. I don't what it stands for, but people dance around in a circle, clapping hands and/or hitting sticks. They made me dance in that circle! Apart from the normal 'wheatish' faces, there was a very pink face in the crowd. It was the face of a French guy. It is not everyday we see French people working in India!. Tomorrow is a holiday for Dusherah - a Bengali festival. Kali is supposed to be the patron goddess for Bengalis (and Mysoreans). What a day it must've been for him - a party on the first day, and a holiday the next!

Monday, October 10, 2005

Kashmir Earthquake

Very bad week, that was! First, the cable guy finds out the cable connection was illegal and takes it away. The share markets plunge and I might have lost a bundle, the new electricity meter increases my 'consumption' by 80%, and the trekking trip that was supposed to be on Sunday gets cancelled!

I was planning to go to Mahuli with a friend - he gets down with a bad stomach and I had to cancel it. My friend from Chandigarh drops in early Sunday morning. He misses the earthquake as he was on the train already and had crossed into Madhya Pradesh. Late in the evening, we went to Lokhandwala Garden for the Durga Puja festival. Some Bengali restaurants had turned that festival into an impromptu Bengali food festival with pricey food. Atleast I had some decent fish yesterday. I got a free cap, 'won' a free audio cassette, and got free internet coupons! That was the only consolation after a bad week.

Funny, how some disaster brings out the truth in politics. Before the earthquake, Pakistanis were saying Kashmir (Pakistan occupied) was a sovereign state and Jammu & Kashmir (Indian state) was 'Indian-occupied-territory', and the Indian government and media were telling it was Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir. After the earthquake, we get reports of _Pakistani army bunkers_ caving in and killing _Pakistani soldiers_, media reports of the epicentre being in "Muzaffarbad, Pakistan". No reports of the "Kashmiri Prime Minister", only _Pakistani PM_ visiting the 'affected areas' and _Pakistani President_ appealing to 'friends' for support. He doesn't want to ask India for help because of his ego! Indian TV stations first report of Earthquake in North India (with tremors felt in Pakistan also), BBC reports from Delhi about earthquake near Islamabad (though Muzaffarbad is closer to India than Islamabad), CNN shows footage of an Indian TV (which shows footage of a Pakistani TV). I wonder how long something can be called a 'breaking news'; CNN was showing the morning earthquake as breaking news at midnight.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

New blog

I spent five full hours designing a new blog, and one whole day convincing my boss to use an actual blogging software for a blog rather than maintain a blog manually. Fortunately, he understood and agreed to it. The web designer under me had a lot of innovative ideas for the blog, though - like comments, dropdown menus for navigation, a calendar to show when things were posted, etc.

Monday, October 03, 2005

Help! Help! We are being repressed!

Due to some recent incidents, the name of my beloved city has been sullied. Now, the state called Tamil Nadu is up for renaming again - to Taliban Nadu. Please keep in mind before casting a stone on me, the people who bring up these issues are not natives of Madras, they are immigrants who want to impose their will on the majority. None of the politicians, 'moral guardians', the goons protesting against 'defamation of culture', nor the jackbooted thugs in uniform, are from this great city. Nor are the 'movie stars' who preach and live a flamboyant life on screen, but want a 'conservative life' at home. The 'women' who recently 'protested' don't give a rat's arse about 'Tamil culture' - and they definitely don't speak for the 'women of Tamil Nadu'. An encounter with these 'ladies' would rot the ears off a sailor!

Crackdown on dance shows in city hotel
Actress apologises for pre-marital sex remarks
Single and Homeless in Chennai
Moral policing has students up in arms
V did it first - Chennai the only city to ban Vagina Monologues
College wears dress code on its sleeve
How dare you kiss in Chennai?
Beware of moral cops

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Funny or Serious?

Decide for yourself!
BBC carries a story about India's five-year-old policeman, and no one knows about it. If a report carries even the word India just once in 10 000 words, the media blows it out of proportion and says the whole report is about India. Some thing awful has been going on for years, and not one newspaper has published it! Not even in the odd news section!
Saurabh has to feed a family of five and so his mother, Ishwari Devi Nagvanshi, holds his hand and takes him the 110km (68 miles) from Bilaspur, where they live, to Raipur.
The mother walks him to his 'office', like she was walking him to crèche, or school.

He is quiet. If you try to talk to him he will either run away or hide behind his mother.
A policeman who runs away? LOL! ROFLMAO!!

[Mrs Nagvanshi] says: "In order to run the house I had no option but to make my child work. It's not nice. He should be jumping around and playing at his age."

Only in India!

The Indian Government (sometimes) has lofty goals for the people it lords over, but the politicians don't make it work. It someone tries to bring some legislation to support the poor, women, or the low-castes, the others create a ruckus, saying it is 'populist'. There have been instances when bills regarding women have been snatched from the speaker and thrown around the house. The schemes for the poor are always misused by everyone!
While the government is planning on such legislation, like free school for girl children, another girl killed herself because she couldn't afford one rupee! Funny how the second news wasn't seen in any newspapers or TV, probably because it was a homeless child? This is India Shining!! While this is happening in one part of India, there is a movie star supporting pre-marital sex and 'people' protesting against it, because it 'tarnishes the image of Tamil women'. Living in Bombay, I read everyday how the 'Bollywood stars' say it is not big deal, and the politicians silent about it, even if they band up every year to prevent Valentine's Day. Some kind of understanding?

Yesterday my father called me and asked me what TV I had bought. Then he tells me I am staying alone and so I should filter the programmes that I watch. 'There are certain undesirable channels that I should avoid and he didn't want to advice me on such matter.' I hit puberty and he hit conservatism, along with his friends. Whenever my brother's friend's mother talks to my mother it is always about horror stories - how she saw the son of a neighbour cruising with his 'girlfriend' on his motorcycle. After that, I was not allowed to take out my scooter anywhere outside, giving such lame reasons as how it was not safe anymore to drive in the city, and they did not want to lose me. Just before I left for Bombay, my father and I went to see his a state official friend. I guess it was a covert 'counse'ling and warning' operation. She started telling him stories about how one of her friend's innocent son was 'stolen away from his mother' by his girlfriend from another caste (or religion, I don't remember), and how another one was 'murdered' (she believes), because he had married a girl from some other caste (or religion). Then my father turns to me and says I have to heed his advice as it is 'only for my good'.

Does these things happen only to me?

Friday, September 23, 2005

Conferences on Friday Evenings are bummer

I am just back from a CxO meet organized by a famous lobby group and a very famous research group. There were presentations by 2 people, two VPs of that group. What I know about Americans/Europeans from TV and movies is not at all true. Everybody looks light brown on TV, but these guys were the pinkest I've seen. Pinker than the Spanish guy I met at the Gateway of India when I moved to Mumbai. They talk as if their noses were stuffed, I could understand what they said, but it appeared like they were talking in a silly voice, like my cousin talks My boss sat for just one presentation (by the first VP) and left. He had a lot of work. But, the sales guys went out within 15 mintues after my boss left. Must've been over their head. My company has the laziest sales team I've ever seen. One wanted my boss to 'just include his name' whenever he writes a paper, and the other one says he doesn't do anything other than what is said, because people then expect him to do something. People ask him to work? That must be horrible! While our biggest competitor was there, handing out business cards to all the CIOs present there, and working, they went out 'for a smoke.'I met them outside and they say to me, 'let them meet 20 people. What's the big deal? I will get 20 of them as clients'. They blew up the one chance they had to meet top 15 or 20 executives at one place, for free!

After that, I came back to the company and saw the common newspaper lying in the lobby. I picked it up and started reading it, when this duffer programmer comes up and 'asks' if he can have it. I said, I just started reading it man, and he goes to another guy and started cribbing about me. He starts badmouthing me in Hindi/Marathi to the other programmer, not knowing I knew Hindi. I don't know what I did to offend him! I've barely talked to that idiot. There was one guy leaving our company to join some MNC. I asked him how much of increase there would be in his salary (expecting something like 80% or 90%), the previous guys pips in and says 'X Lakhs, X Lakhs'. I guess he did that to deride me or something. I just smiled, he has worked 4x as long as I have and it was still about 25% less than what I get. Umm... Yeah!

Thursday, September 22, 2005

Looking for a terrible girlfriend for one week

I am looking for a terrible girlfriend for one week to restore my happiness in being single. Now that I have joined work, and started living in Mumbail, I see people married, just engaged, and in a relationship (and tying up all the phone lines). I was content to be single all now, but now that I have been exposed to all these happy people in relationships, I'm starting to wonder if I need one too.

In my head, I know I don't, but let's make this concrete with an experience. This is where you come in. I need you around for one week in the role of a bad girlfriend to renew my glee in being single.

My requirements of you:
-You must be attractive. Sorry, but if this is to work out for me, you have to be a pretty girl who is nice to look at but a total bitch otherwise.
-Be very needy. Call me several times a day, checking where I am, who I'm with, etc.
-Have excessive manners not found anywhere outside Victorian England. When we go out, I want you nag me to use my napkin, tell to tip like your father, and, never open doors yourself, that sort of thing.
-It would be nice if you have feminist leanings so we can get into fun arguments
-Never let me even look at the shadow of another girl. Shout when any girl comes within 2 kilometres of me.
-Never let me talk.
-Never pay for anything (reasonable pre-agreed-to limit, exception: see below).
-Insist on taking a cab everywhere, even for less than a kilometre.
-Criticise all my outfits.
-Have wildly inaccurate information and unfounded opinions. It is your mission that you are right about everything, conversely, I am wrong about everything.
-Don't let me talk to any of my long-time male friends.
-Steal something of mine. I will set out one designated thing that you must steal from my house. You will steal this and nothing else.
-Don't be too upset when I end things after a week (and part of this deal is that I am the one to break things off). You know what you're getting into and do not form any untoward bond.

After the week is up we can either be friends and laugh about this, or we can pretend that we've never met and ignore each other if we happen to meet in a public place.

What do you get out of it?

At least 5 nights out (you pay your half, sorry. I am not rich). One stolen item (of my choosing). A good story to tell people later. Satisfaction that you are also single. A chance to vent your spleen. A dissatisfying tryst for both of us.

You'd be a fool to pass up this opportunity!

In Mumbai only

(modified from craigslist, I am not all that creative)

Monday, September 19, 2005

Psycho Finance person

[Antione Bechara], an associate professor of neurology at the University of Iowa, said the best stock market investors might plausibly be called "functional psychopaths."
I know atleast one person in this company, and atleast ten people in my b-school, who I thought could be somewhat crazy. This study just proves my hypotheses right :) I feel the same way about the accountant lady too.
The result was those with brain damage outperformed those without.
Maybe this is why I am so afraid of the sharemarket.
Fellow author, Baba Shiv of Stanford Graduate School of Business said many company chiefs and top lawyers may also show they share the same trait.
Interesting, a study was made about a year back by Discovery (Channel) on Psycho Bosses. Does this mean I can't be a successful boss?

Friday, September 16, 2005

Management Lessons

Never start work on a friday, especially when the person
a) comes in at 10 am and leaves sharp at 5 pm, even when the office hours are 9 to 5, and you say the job is critical. Never mind the loss to the company when the website is down for the weekend. It is weekend in India, but still 3/4ths of a day is left in US/Europe
b) doesn't work unless you sit with him, has to be spoonfed in such a way that if you were doing the work yourself, you would be doing it faster, but he has three-times more 'experience' than you
c) is a web designer but has trouble using a WYSIWIG editor, knows not even basic HTML/Javascript, but disagrees with every bloody thing you say
d) with his 'experience' asks 'how?' when another guy, a newbie, does it without thinking
e) is in the payroll of a company but does freelance work at company hours
f) everybody else cribs about him to you, even your boss' minion

Start the work under such conditions, only if you don't have a personal life and/or can't afford to let the company website go down for even a minute AND you are willing to write off your weekend for this.

Next step

I am taking the next step to becoming Lumbergh. I have been made incharge of getting a guy do his work here. There is this web designer guy here. He has a different boss, but works for mine. Even my boss finds it very difficult to make him work. So, what does he do? He 'delegates' it to me, as part of my management training. It makes me happy, and sad at the same time. Happy - something to put in the resume, sad - high tension for nothing.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

The forgotten one

September 14th: I am seriously pissed off. This was the seventh time in a row I have been left out of client meetings. Neither did my boss inform me, nor did his first minion, who got some documents from me for the meeting. It had been running for over two hours when I found out about the meeting. I opened the room, just looked at the minion, and walked out.

September 15th: I asked the boss about the client meeting. He casually says the meeting came up at the last minute, and he just 'forgot'. Just like I was forgotten when there was another meeting at the conference room right next to where I was sitting. I ask about another one and he tells me there is one tomorrow and he will send me an 'lotus notes invite'. After 10 hours, I was still waiting for it. My flatmate moving out refused to sell me his 14" TV. I went ahead and bought a 21" flatscreen. The sound is amazing and they look very big compared to the old one. Just about one year back it was priced at Rs. 20000, and now I got it for Rs. 9000. That happens to my first big-ticket purchase. The sweet smell of economic freedom!

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

It happens only in India!!

Rumblings around me again! My boss had to leave office early as he received news that his father's news back in Bihar was ransacked and a threat note left :o Looks like some of his fellow villagers were jealous of his NRI status. My friend's house in Chennai was burgled 3 times in 1 year, once upon a time!!

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

This Week Starts On Tuesday

Monday has been rescheduled - because of the non-stop drizzles! The 'stoic' people of this city panic everytime it gets wet, all due to one small rainy day. Now, I have to work this Saturday. Not everything has been going on well this week, starting today. Some work has been pending for so long that I forgot what I am supposed to do. I can't go ask my boss because I am supposed to be a brilliant guy who needn't be told things twice. I haven't found a flat-mate yet, and that doubles my cost of living here. But that appears to be the cost of avoiding a crazy flatmate. Most importantly, the old flatmate is not selling me his TV. I am afraid I might go insane.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

No Entry

Yesterday was a rare mid-week holiday, Ganesh Chaturti, the festival of the elephant-headed god. People make his doll of clay, worship for 10 days, and dump it in the nearest lake or river or sea on the last day, signifying the cycle of birth and death - from dust to dust. Ganesha was one of the immaculate conceptions in Hindu mythology. His mother created him out of her own grime. This particular ceremony was started in 1937 by Bal Gangadhar Tilak to cleanse India of the ill-effects of Christianity brought in by the British, and to revive Hinduism. People seem to have forgotten the origins of this and say that this has always been the tradition in India. Since we live in a plastic world now, Ganesha is made of plaster of paris, but still is dumped in the nearest water body, polluting it. There weren't much celebrations near my home as I live in a christian locality. So, I went to see a movie in Bandra. The first stop was 'Jai Jawan Punjabi Tandoori Centre' in Bandra Linking Road. Chicken Tikka and Chicken Sheek Kabab were food, cheap too. The prawn fry was not so good. I wouldn't recommend any sea-food dishes in any Punjabi restaurants. What would they know about fishes? they live in a land-locked area. The restaurant is open-air, with no chairs or tables, but the food is cheap and tasty. After a nice dinner, I went to 7G multiplex, one of the old theatres converted into a multiplex. The only movie watchable there was No Entry. Tickets were sold out just a few minutes before we reached, and we had to buy it in black - Rs. 80 for a Rs. 35 ticket! I read somewhere that foreigners are clamouring to get into 'bollywood movies', and true, there were a lot of white people dancing in it. Lot of skin, lots of dance numbers, lots of people, but no logic. Timepass, worth watching once with the gang. I wish I had a camera with me to catch all the Engrish signboards in the railway stations though.

Monday, September 05, 2005


1) Atlast I got some substantial work, something which people might notice.
2) Saw Mystic River and Addicted to Love on CD
3) My flatmate is leaving in a couple of weeks. He flatters me by saying I was the only friend he had in this city, and he spooks me out by saying some 'secrets', like he kissed a guy before and that was his best!! I am now afraid to sleep with the door open.

Friday, September 02, 2005


If this is what I do here means in the west, why should I bother putting it in my resumé at all?

I hope I someone junior to me so he can be my towelboy.
The CEO called the management trainees for a meeting and told everybody to start blogging. I couldn't tell him I was the only person in the team that did :(

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Damned French!

If you ask me, the trouble in New Orleans is because of the French. Look at the map (cross section), why did they have to build a city in such a place? I guess some people have France to blame for one more thing!

Sunday, August 28, 2005

Dark Water

I went to see the movie 'Dark Water'. I did not know at first that it was written by the same guy who wrote The Ring. It was 2 hours and Rs. 300 of my life that I would never get back. I spent less than that in a nearyby bowling alley and I was satisfied. The only things that looked scary in the movie was the power plant built so close to the school in that movie. After the 2 Ring movies and this one, I will never look at the ditch full of black water the same way again. Should I expect a little girl to jump out of that and try to kill me? What is it with Japanese, death and watery tarts? To boot, some 'respected critics' here have given three and a half stars out of five for this!

I went with my flatmate to this movie. We went to a bowling alley first, then to a nearby restaurant - 'Only Parattas', on Linking Road, Lokhandwala. Describing it overpriced is an understatement. A single paratta was Rs. 100 - the same could be had for less than Rs. 10 in a decent restaurant, and Rs. 20 in a pricey restaurant. Service was very poor. We had to wait for 10 minutes to order, even though it was past 10 in the night, and there were only a few people. The kitchen's smoke was spilling over into the hall, the stuff my flatmate ordered were very oily, there were flies about the place, we had to tell the waiter three times before he brought us our bills, there were two very noisy children crying in the restaurant. I would never recommend anyone to eat there. I have also been taking him to a nearby bar for the last two days. He says he has doubts about the marriage. He wonders if his old 'girlfriend' still wants him.


My friend and a classmate in college, Kuchi, died in a road accident on friday. I am very sad. He was not even 25.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Nazi India

On Times of India

"The Union home ministry is considering a proposal from IIT-Kanpur to set up an 'Internal Security Centre' (ISC) in the country on the pattern of US Department of Homeland Security to protect India from terror attacks."

The too powerful, all pervasive government here is set to become more powerful, with a Soviet style 'Internal Security Centre'. Proposed by a duffer in IIT Kanpur.

Why not just put everybody in jail? That would be costly - building a lot of jails for 1.3 billion and growing. Just make the whole country a big jail.

" The Centre hopes to put in place a security system in which "everybody would know that somebody is observing him", making it impossible for an offender to remain undetected."

What are they going to do? Have 1 billion cameras? Let people 'keep tabs' on their neighbours? Pit family members against each other? It is funny how they call him an 'offender' and not a terrorist. What about the politicians? Would they be tracked too?

Congress is not new to having control of Indian citizens. In 1971 they came up with something called MISA. It was used extensively to arrest and detain anyone who dissented with Indira Gandhi or the Congress Party or the neighbourhood policeman or any bloody fool, without producing them in court. Tens of thousands of 'political prisoners' were tortured to death. Later, they came up with TADA, which was used again. This time, it was used by the state governments more than the central government. Again, tens of thousands were jailed without legal recourse, and most of them were tortured to death. The current act isPOTA (2002). Used extensively, again, against anyone who dared to voice their opinion. It was common by the friendly neighbourhood policeman to pick up someone alive and return them dead. If someone died and the news came out in the newspapers, they were posthumously made 'terrorists trained by Pakistan.'

" The ISC will work as a coordination centre for all security and law enforcing agencies in the country. Besides maintaining a databank of every individual and activities like profession, place of residence, records of foreign visits etc., it will also act as a central body to tackle internal security issues particularly those requiring "scientific, technical and analytical" expertise."

I know what it will be used for - terrorising the common man. Don't like someone's face? Someone did not let you break the queue? Flag his name in the database and let the local thugs, aka policemen, do the dirty job. And, what scientific, technical and analytical expertise? This is a country where the government blocks 'objectionable websites' like because it was used by terrorists to communicate with each other. This is the country where the policemen capture 'all involved terrorists' within days, only for the convicts to be released 5 years later because they really had nothing to do with those blasts. This is the country where something like a voters' list is used during riots for targeting the 'opposing forces. - as in 1984, 1991, 2002

"The brain (sic) behind the proposal, Phalguni Gupta said: "The proposal is aimed to act as a deterrent and give security agencies an edge in the fight against terror."

It will definitely give them an edge, in the fight against honest citizens, fight against human rights. Policemen fight tooth and nail against human rights organizations which 'protect terrorists'. If not for the human rights activists, they would be doing an effective job of cleaning the country of terrorists and solving all crimes within a day, with their unique 'investigation techniques'. Why label it torture when it is so effective?

There is even an Anti-Hijacking Act (1984)- could they use it when the Taliban hijacked an Indian Airlines plane to Kandahar? Eight days, one death, and the release of some terrorists. Compare it to the incident where a central minister (Mufti Muhammad Sayeed)'s daughter was kidnapped and the government immediately gave up some Kashmiri terrorists.

Don't be surprised if some mandarin reads this blog and it doesn't get updated any more. You know where you can find me. Just tell my parents I loved them very much.

List of ordinances.

Monday, August 22, 2005


My flatmate is getting married. He got drunk the next day. I will have to move out in the next four or five months, again. This is the third flat I had in about 5 months in Mumbai. I hate moving again. :(

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

An Omnivore's gripe and a recipe

Vegetarian people give examples like the strongest animal(!) i.e., the horse, is a vegetarian. But can you compare a man to a horse? He cannot become as strong as a horse by simply eating grass and oats.

Let's compare man to the strongest herbivore (horse, as they say), the strongest carnivore (tiger), and the strongest omnivore (bear). Man has feet and legs, which is close to the bear's. Man has molars, like horses and bears. Infact, they are called wisdom teeth because man doesn't sprout molars till he is very old. This might be because he doesn't have the strength to eat meat at old age (atleast, after he has lost his canines and incisors), and can chew only ultra soft cooked rice (or wheat). Man has nails, while the carnivores and omnivores have claws, and horses don't have. Man has short intestines (around 2.5 metres) to expel meat faster, while the horse has an intestinal length of about 6 metres - the same case with the tiger and the bear. Omnivores also have multichambered stomach (but the horse has only 1, like our man here).

Our digestive system is close to that of a dog rather than a goat.

Certain vitamins like B12 and vitamin A (not beta-carotene present in carrot and spinace) can be got only from an animal diet. Plant foods do not contain vitamin B12 except when they are contaminated by microorganisms. Thus, 'pure vegetarians' need to look to other sources to get vitamin B12 in their diet.' B12 can be obtained from milk, and meat. What? Milk is not vegetarian? Milk is not considered by vegetarians in India as non-vegetarian, because it is not got by 'killing' or 'harming' any animal. But in fact, milk is produced only by mammals! (They are s8xualy assaulted everytime they are milked.) Man, cat, and dog are the only adult animals that drink milk produced by another species. The ancient cave paintings show animal hunts and not growing crops or vegetables - man was an hunter-gatherer before he settled down to produce crops. Even then, he did not stop eating meat. Then came religion - depending on your flavour, certain animals were excluded from being eaten. One of my 'friends' told me that we should not eat beef because (in his exact words) 'cows give us milk and so it is like our mother'. Some people say Krishna was a cowboy and he 'played' with cows and since he is a god, cows are holy to us through associativity. Jesus was a shepherd and I haven't seen a christian who doesn't eat lamb or mutton. B12 can also be got from yeast - but yeast is not a plant. Even now, there are tribes (AFAIK) like eskimoes who eat only meat. 'People' say "many diseases can travel through non-vegetarian diet" and so we must avoid meat. They must also stop driving vehicles, and stop having s8x, and avoid their homes as driving is risky, AIDS is transmitted through sex, and most accidents happen at home. There are more than 10 varieties of these 'vegetarians', each saying their cult is the best - sounds like it is a religion or something! Back to animals suffering - honey is included whatever hindu ceremony I've been to, but did they think about the suffering that is caused to bees during honey extraction? First, they are chased away from their home, some are burnt alive while chasing them, and many die trying to defend the hive.

Some 'people' like our former environment minister, Maneka Gandhi, 'advices' people to convert their dogs to a vegetarian diet!

You worry only about things that you can change. I can't or don't want to change 'vegetarians', but I have to protect myself from some people who want me to become a vegetarian. I don't care if someone doesn't eat meat, but I care if that idiot tries to force his views on me. Why do some people try so hard to annoy others? In many 'housing societies' in Mumbai, you wouldn't be given a home because you eat meat. Some people scratch and/or damage cars parked outside restaurants that serve meat.

One of my favourites - Mutton Varuval. Sure do miss mom's cooking :(

Mutton Varuval:


Mutton - 750 gms
Onions - 3 medium
Ginger - 1 inch piece
Garlic - 4 cloves
Cinnamon - 2 pieces
Cloves - 6 nos.
Cardamoms (green) 2
Cardamoms (black) 4
Pepper - 1 tsp.
Green chillies - 2
Kashmiri chillies - 4
Poppy seeds - 1 dsp.
Cashewnuts 8-10 nos.
Curd ¾ cup (thick)
Turmeric powder - ¼ tsp
Salt to taste
Oil or ghee

Clean and cube mutton and keep aside. Chop one onion fine. Cut the other two roughly. Chop ginger, garlic and soak poppy seeds in a little warm water for 15 mins. Blend ginger, garlic, rough-chopped onions,de-seeded kashmiri chillies, pepper, turmeric, cashewnuts and soaked poppy seeds in a mixer till smooth.Heat ghee or oil. Add finely chopped onions and fry till transparent. Then add the cleaned mutton and fry overmedium fire till the meat is brown. Add whole spices and fry for a few minutes. Add the ground mixture and fry again till the mixture is dry. Add salt and the well beaten curd, along with 2 cups of water. Pressure cook for 10 minutes, or till mutton is tender. Garnish with chopped coriander leaves. Serve hot with rotis or rice. Tastes better with dosa.

Monday, August 15, 2005

Independence Day

August 15th. Independence Day. Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel; pride goes before fall. Why be proud of something when you did not have a choice in it? Since it was Independence day, my flatmate and I went to see history being mangled by 'bollywood', like a a dog chewed on shoes. It was supposed to be patriotic, especially when the hero laughs and tells the British guy torturing him that he was a dog. (Cheers from the audience) If the depictions and scenes, if not the story, were real, then not much has changed in 150 years. Instead of white feet on brown backs, it was brown feet on brown backs. The next day, Karthik came and we went to see my old flat, his friends. The old flat was crowded now, with three more people! I guess I was kicked out at the right time. Karthik was happy that the guy who wanted to get me out within a week was not there. Then we went to Juhu beach and had cotton candy after a long time. Since it was independence day, the beggar urchins at the beach thought they had the freedom to climb inside our autos to demand money, and we exercised our right to shoo them away. At the South Indian store near Andheri station, I bought as much Upma as I can. Now, I have to hide them away from my flatmate.

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

cool birds!

I hope Russia wins this contract . Who needs F16s or F18s when we can have these?

Sunday, August 07, 2005

Guns! Guns!! Guns!!!

I feel like I have been shopping a lot lately. Just yesterday, I went to Vile Parle to buy a book, instead, I went to Irla. I saw all the shops had some monsoon sale! I bought a lot of shirts and this:
A 1:1 model M37 airgun :)
Too bad I can't buy a real gun in this country :(. I would like to lay my hands on this one.

And this is what I dream about:

My round plastics BB can pass through four sheets of paper and tear a fifth sheet.

Thursday, August 04, 2005


I am disillusioned with what I am doing. I get the feeling I am like a secretary, but paid more. All the plump and visible assignments go to my boss' other minion and I am stuck with work that has high volume but low visibility. I feel nihilistic about this place. Maybe that's why the employee turnover of this place is very high.

Wednesday, August 03, 2005


This morning, my flatmate took all the change I had kept on the shelf, put it in his pocket and walked away!

Sunday, July 31, 2005

Traffic Alert?

The depression conditions over Santa Cruz area are much less than the severe depressions and cyclones forming in the Bay of Bengal. Even when there were cyclone alerts in Chennai - with conditions of 85+kmph gales and 110+kmph squalls, the only alert I remember receiving were those warning fishermen not to venture in to the sea and evacuation of people from low lying areas (mostly slums) to higher ground. Now, they have issued a 'traffic alert' in Mumbai. But, I don't see moving of people to nearby schools!

Saturday, July 30, 2005


I am in the office now, just another guy and the security guy to give me company. My boss has not come in yet. And it is still raining here which means my room might get flooded today too!

Prophet Mohammed

A few days back, there was this report of some people arrested in UP for publishing a picture of Prophet Mohammed. I don't know why printing an image of him is banned.
I got this picture from a history website.
One more from a religion website.

I would like to get my hands on that magazine. Can anyone 'stumbling' upon this and/or reading this tell me why it is blasphemy? Is it coz I is black?

Thursday, July 28, 2005

Mumbai Flooded

People must have read/heared/saw something about floods in Mumbai in the news. They say it was a depression around Santa Cruz that caused this rain and almost a metre of rains in half a day led to 'floods'. I was stuck in my office the whole night of the rains and it was better than returning home to sleep in a room full of water. Even a slight drizzle causes my room to get wet and 8 hours of a wall of water falling from the sky ensured some things were floating in my room. Roads were jammed, telephone networks were clogged, utilities were cut off. Very much like rains back home in Chennai. The company provided food for us. I was expecting worse when I went back home in the morning, but things were not so bad. However, when I was mopping up the floor, I saw some centipedes running out. I spent the night fearing the walls might cave in on me. Now, I have to do something about that mouldy smell. I did get a two day holiday - yesterday and the day before. Now, my deadlines remain the same. While most of the mobile telephone lines were down, my faithful CDMA was up all the while - allowing me to talk even with the feeblest signal. CDMA rocks, but Reliance (my service provider) sucks! When I told my father, he was not even slightly worried about the rains - he had seen much worse situations - he used to live close to a river which overflow every year.

Thursday, July 21, 2005

the smiling toaster :)

News 1: USA Agrees to'civilian' nuclear cooperation with India
News 2: India may buy $5 bn military equipment from US

Dilbert says:

If you don't get that smiley face on the toaster, India's first nuclear fission explosion was allegedly code-named the Smiling Buddha. Rather, it was reported that Indira Gandhi was informed that the Buddha has smiled after the event.

When did Dilbert turn political (apart from offshoring bashing?)

Wednesday, July 20, 2005


Some people make covers of some famous songs. Sometimes they are crappy, sometimes they are better than the original. Sometimes, they are funny, sometimes they are bizarre - like this version of NWA's Straight outta Compton, by Nina Gordon. I was left speechless!


There is this story in Sun, about how some lady is selling pictures of her bathing children on e-bay. What is the ad that I see just below that picture? A photo of a family with three children in a pool!

Another one one e-bay - some guy selling a cricket ball signed by Michael Vaughn. Calling him "Ashes winning Captain!!!!" is premature and seems farfetched. The closeup of the ball says "made in India".

world cup 2007

The 2007 world cup schedule has been released. India has been put in the easiest group. If we cannot move into the super-8's, I have nothing to say against them except "off with their heads".

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

three suns

Scientists have discovered a planet with three suns. Big deal! They must come stay for a few days in Madras, they might be motivated enough to think the earth has other suns too!
CNN Article

Monday, July 18, 2005

irregular combatants, not indians

Indians Beware of what you say! Anything you say against the world's only free country with democracy will land you in Guantanamo Bay or Diego Garcia or some unnamed place. Be afraid, the world's big brother is watching you, right in your homes, at your work, when you are in the toilet. You can't run anywhere, you can't hide anywhere. Sovereignty was a thing of the past. Welcome to Malabar Front.

Friday, July 15, 2005

Corporate Training!

I handled my first training session today. I have been preparing the training material for over 3 weeks and today I had to handle a class of over 30 fresh recruits. My legs hurt from standing/walking around for 7 hours. Phew!

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Another anti-American Indian?

Wasn't it some president of Coca Cola that said the biggest competitor to coke is not pepsi, but water? The Godfather said, monopoly is the most efficient form for corporations - they don't have to worry about competition, no cost cutting, more and more profits. looks like coca cola has been successful in eliminating competition wherever they go. This photo by Sharad Haksar has made them sue him as it is 'causing them damage.' They are also famous for their 'secret formula'. I guess their secret formula is all the groundwater where their plants are!

Die Cocacola!

There are also other photos that he has put up in his website -, though they are in shockwave/flash. I remember installing flash in many computers, even in many browsing centres, and that is a huge pain.

These are brilliant!

More Photos

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Muddy Matheran

While by and large the trip to Matheran was peaceful, and fun, there were some incidents which almost gave me a headache. One of them was the 'debate' with two über-capitalist guys. Both seemed to agree that my 'sources of information' are screwed up and I must read 'The Economist' to get my fundamentals right.
We argued for sometime about the differences between capitalism and libertarianism - I have contempt for that American word, which they copied from the French. Naturally, the next topic was anarchy. Now, they would not listen to me that Somalia is the only country with no government - they believed there were atleast four countries ruled by anarchy, an oxymoron right there!
The discussion turned to civil wars. I wonder, what war is ever civil? They seemed to think the civil war in Sri Lanka is not one but it is only terrorism. The Tamil minority there were never oppressed by the Sri Lankan Government, and it is not the 'Tamil people' who were fighting the government, but 'only some terrorists'. Wha?

Monday, July 11, 2005

Matheran - Day 2

[from Day 1]
We had to wake up very early in the morning – at 6 am, so that we had enough time to visit all the points. 6 am, my normal wakeup time seemed tooooo early this time. None of us took bath that day, we simply couldn’t. We then started walking up and down the rolling hill road. Our first stop was Charlotte Lake – which looked like an artificial lake made by damming up one of the sides. The water overflowing from the dam created a great waterfall downstream. All the waterfalls I had seen were from the bottom, and this was from the top! While we were admiring the beauty of the view from the falls, one of the moronic tourists threw a plastic peanut bag into the stream. We then walked to some of the view points there – Lord Point, and Lumley Seat, which had no railing to protect us in came someone fell down. We saw a phallic looking rock from there and we would be seeing that wherever we went.
We then walked back to Echo point, and Honeymoon point. There were another three moronic tourists relieving themselves, in a tourist spot! Our next stop was Louisa Point, one of those places where you want to build a cottage and allow no one else to come within 5 kilometres of! The scene was captivating. This is the place where the phallic rock is present. From here, we could see a Maratha fort in the distance, a British watchtower, and the first bungalow built in Matheran, and some other places. There was this guy with a telescope, fleecing tourists, as usual – he was showing ‘5 points for only Rs. 10’, of which two were of the paddy fields in the valley below and one was of the rock that was just metres away – Lion’s Head, which had featured in many Bollywood movies.

After spending almost an hour there, we started walking back to the station, and we had lunch at a Gujarati place. A few friends from the plains who just wanted to ride the toy train, up and down, joined us. They did not get tickets up hill, but they hitched a ride anyway, and caught up with us. An hour later, we went to the station to get tickets back down. Unfortunately, they were sold out just moments after we joined the queue. We thought we could ‘bribe’ the ticket collector and somehow get a ride. After half an hour of debating, he relented and let us one girl from the group to ride till the taxi stand. I was disappointed as this was the fourth toy-train that I had missed – the other three being the ones to Ooty, Darjeeling and Shimla, in that order. I and another guy then decided to ride a horse downhill, all by myself. Unfortunately, I got a grandpa horse that would not go more than a trot, how much ever I kicked it.
I thought our excitement was over once we reached the taxi stand, but then, there was some more left. The taxi we got was a rickety old Premier Padmini, whose doors had no handles, no levers inside to open the door or roll the windows, and had to be pushed to start. It sounded like the car was running on a motorcycle engine. After a few metres, the silencer broke and we dragged it till the plains where it broke completely and fell down. From Neral, we caught the train back to Dadar.

Matheran - Day 1

I went to Matheran for the weekend with some of my classmates. This was the first trip outside Bombay. Unlike the other hill stations in India, which have all been built by the British (except for Kodaikanal, built by the Americans), this seems to have been built by the Parsees living in India.
I started from my home in Andheri at around 4.30 pm on Saturday and went to Dadar station. We first went to Kalyan and got another train to Neral. There is a narrow gauge train from here to Matheran. Unfortunately, the train was cancelled that day due to fog and light rains. So, we took a taxi up the hill, at Rs. 50 per person. We reached the taxi stand within 15 minutes, and some sections of the road were steep. There were a few waterfalls along the way and people were wetting themselves under it. It brought back memories of trips to Gangtok and Darjeeling, where the ‘hills’ were much higher and the roads were very narrow. The view of the valley below was gorgeous, and there was this single Adivasi village down, below. The actual hill-station of Matheran was closed to traffic and only men and horses were permitted up, after paying Rs. 25 for adults and Rs. 10 for children as ‘capitation tax’. The sight of rickshaws pulling up old people and people with luggage appeared as an anachronism. We started walking up the dark, cobbled road through some light drizzle. One of the power cables had fall down and the area plunged into darkness from time to time. We saw a bunch of ‘youthful’ tourists walking down, which gave us an idea of the tourists we would see there.
After 30 minutes of walking, we reached the market place, and the place we stayed at was quite close by. The room was not all that great – we had concrete platforms instead of cots and a bed placed on it. There were 4 such ‘cots’ in a room and we had a 50% off-season discount – Rs. 550 for one room. Once you go up the hill, the cost of everything increases by Rs. 5.
We went to our rooms and went to this place ‘Hookahs and Tikka’ in the market for dinner. The place was not that great – tiny portion of food at more than the normal rates in the plains. Moreover, there was a blackout and there were gaslights into which thousands of insects created hara-kiri. After seeing the toilet facilities on the hills, I took some tissue papers from the restaurant, just in case, which proved immensely helpful on Sunday. Some of the guys went to get drinks – they got a bottle of vodka and came back to the room. Surprisingly, only three guys drank and we crashed soon after.

Friday, July 08, 2005


This Evian ad from Europe is amazing.

An animation of a 'water boy' who climbs out of a glass of water and walks to the beat of "We will rock you," by Queen. I don't want to break the funny parts, but I can't help but laugh when he extinguishes a fire by peeing on it. The final few scenes explain how there are so many waterbodies all over the world - the water boy and a water girl do something inside a big red throbbing heart, and they have five little water bodies. The best ad I've ever seen since that plywood ad with that Punjabi boy who remembers his previous life and talks in Tamil with his still living, 80 year old 'wife.'


I was playing nethack late evening when three people saw me - one 'developer' dude and my boss and a 'systems' guy. I evaded the dev dude by saying that I was a network in it and I was pushing packets around. I couldn't say the same to my boss. I just said that was something my friend sent me and I was trying to figure out what it was. The third guy, who was a linux admin or something did not know what this was! How could they be computer engineers without knowing what it was? But then, most 'engineers' in India have no relevance to what they studied and their career. There are many guys here who 'studied' civil and mechanical engineering but wanted to get into only 'software field,' because 'companies like Infosys pay very well.' Anyway, some of my classmates are planning to go 'trekking' to Matheran and I am planning to go along. I don't want to miss it like last time when they went (sort of) rock climbing. Yeah.

Lightbulb joke

How many invisible pink unicorns does it take to change a lightbulb?

2) Funny joke, now make one of Buddha! You can't, otherwise you will be blown to hell with such a joke. Only true believers of The Invisible Pink Unicorn (PBUH) are subjects of ridiculous "jokes"

Friday, July 01, 2005

Ms. Sushmita Sen vs [insert name here]

One Indian 'newspaper' - called so only because it is printed on paper - today reported about cyber squatters buying web domain names based on some 'bollywood' personalities.
Who would say that is Priyanka Chopra’s site or that is Pooja Bhatt’s? Others like Kareena Kapoor are totally disinterested in a cyber presence.

Says Kapoor, “I’m a hardcore Bollywood heroine and have no clue about the net or its misuse. Neither do I own a domain name. My staff handles all my mail.” Like Kareena many stars are shocked when told that their domain names could be abused and turned into porn sites. is not Pooja Bhatt's personal website, it is about her production company 'Fisheye Networks.' And, Kareena Kapoor '[has] no clue about the [inter]net or its misuse'. Maybe she had forgotten that it was just a few months before that a clip showing her tongue-wresting with her 'boyfriend' in a bar. The movie, caught on a mobile phone camera, was widely circulated through email and was available for downloads in some 'desi' websites (so was I told). Maybe she thought they were sent through 'MMS' alone, which is beyond the reach for most mobile users - cost of handset (which is coming down), cost of sending one big MMS (which they say is coming down), etc.

The main story was about Sushmita Sen, who said she was going to sue the squatter. While the news article is new, the news that the name was taken up by some Toronto guy is old.


Created: 2003-05-30
Updated: 2005-06-27
Expires: 2006-05-30

c/o Nameview Whois IDentity Shield
141-757 W. Hastings St., Suite #777
Vancouver, BC
Canada V6C 1A1

For two years, didn't anyone know about this? Moreover, this has been registed by a name which doesn't look like a company to me. With the guy 'under the care of ' of Nameview Whois IDentity Shield ( requests to view the webpage were refused.

“The guy who has stolen the domain name is sitting in Toronto,” fumes Sen. “He should brace himself for a nightmare as I’m taking him to court.”

I have no experience of any courts, even within India, atleast till now. But, judging by the court cases that newspapers (real ones) report about, I think I must laugh at her naivety. Or, I could be wrong in this one.

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Dear Lord!!

I know North Indian guys know nought about South India or the North East. But, I just can't belive the conversation that just happened near the water cooler. We were chatting about where he and his team came from, they had all come from the same place - Pune. He then asked me where I was from. 'Tamil Nadu,' I said. He then lobbed a question straight back to me - Aren't Tamil people called Andhrites? I could just utter 'Oh My God!' That must've been the nadir. He then asked me what language 'they' spoke (Telugu) and told me he always got confused between Tamil and Telugu! What could I have said?

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

what the hell

Philips dude tagged me, what the hell...

names you go by:

three screen names:

three physical things you like about yourself

three physical things you don't like about yourself
baby fat

three parts of your heritage

Three Things That Scare You
getting stranded in a theocratic country
losing my purse
put in jail

Three Of Your Everyday Essentials
my work
hunting for food, a restaurant, that is

Three Things You Are Wearing Right Now
(doesn't mean I am not wearing other stuff)

Three Things You Want In A Relationship

Two Truths and A Lie (in no particular order)
I like warm weather
I love the sea
only one of the above

Three Physical Things About the Opposite Sex That Appeal To You
girls are pretty:)

Three Things You Want To Do Really Badly Right Now
go home
tell mom to make chicken briyani
go on a boat

Three Careers You Are Considering
newspaper editing
starting a restaurant
become a sailor

Three Places You Want To Go On Vacation
lakshadweep islands
andaman and nicobar islands

Three Kids Name You Like

Three Things You Want To Do Before You Die
fly to space
fly a sea-harrier
be a sailor

People Who Have To Take The Quiz Now:
new york dude
kuchi dude

Monday, June 20, 2005

Weekend shopping

Back again, what good it is to be! Especially after a period of illness. I guess it all started about 2 weeks back, at the birthday dinner of this b-school friend at Bandra. We were supposed to go to this open air Cafe Mocha, but instead went to a place called Sizzlers nearby. Their speciality is a dish called sizzlers and they named the place after it. Anyway, I was never a fan of this sizzlers but still went because I didn't have dinner that day in anticipation of this party. Had steak pizza and shrimp cocktail, though, and a bit of other guys' sizzlers. Later we went for a stroll to bandstand. Whenever I go out with these guys, composed mostly of North Indian guys, is the noise they create - especially three or four of them, enough to bring the place down. Even though Mumbai is considered part of North India, they don't share that noisy part of North Indians. I was supposed to meet greenpeace guy last week, but missed out due to my illness. He wishes to clarify that the spamming he did was not for greenpeace but for some other company of which is not anymore a part of.

After a sombre weekend (and week), the roomie and I went to this place called Garnish Peninsula, an awfully expensive restaurant. 150 grams of briyani costs Rs 70 here, more than the Rs 50 for 1/4 kg which I used to consider costly just a month back!

This saturday, I went to Alfa at Vile Parle, a place where I found most of the things I was looking for, at a reasonable price. Not bad! I also found this 'factory outlet' where they say I can buy shirts and trousers for 20% less than market price. Must try that once. Hmm.

Thursday, June 16, 2005

American Jets, Iranian Gas

USA is trying to make IAF buy F16 and/or F18 jet fighters from it's companies. It assures us it won't let any sanctions prevent the delivery of those jets after a deal is made. Now, We are being threatened by none other than Condaleeza Rice herself about sanctions if we proceed with gas pipeline from Iran. Now, if the government decides to go ahead with the pipeline, and sanctions are placed (because the USA doesn't like Iran), would they stop Boeing and/or Lockheed Martin from selling those aeroplanes to us? What will happen to their promises of them being the 'most reliable suppliers,' who want a 'longlasting friendship?' How the hell can they deal with this cognitive dissonance? Would Pakistan be affected inspite of it being a 'major non-NATO ally?' I guess they will be given more armaments for trying to help Iran 'return to the mainstream.'

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Did you know?

Did you know that the default music played when a text message is received is the morse code for SMS?
... -- ... -> S M S

Sunday, June 05, 2005

Weekend in South Bombay

Wooh, wasn't that a weekend!

This guy, who used to work with greenpeace, is in town working - as he says, spamming. We decided to meet up before his assignment here ends. We went to Sterling Theatre to see 'The Ring 2,' which I personally found very boring. My friend says I should have watched the first part to understand this. Not only were the twists so predictable, they could've made the scary little girl more scary. With the peace in the movie constantly interrupted by the non-stop chattering of a bunch of boys and girls sitting before us, many 'enthusiasts' also 'forgot' to switch off their mobile phones, which were constantly ringing. Another annoyance was the high price of the snacks in the movie hall. Popcorn in a small cup cost Rs 25, and tea in a tiny cup was Rs 10! I get more tea than that outside for Rs 3!!

With this 'very scary' movie over in less than 2 hours, we decided to go to another movie hall nearby, Eros. I thought all the platform book stalls were removed by the corporation, but I saw some shops and decided it was better to spend the money on books. I got 3 books for Rs 20 each, and greenpeace dude got a couple of science fiction books for almost Rs 100 each. Sci-fi books are so scarce in this 'great city of learned people,' where I can't find any libraries, that a 40 year old book has to be bought second-hand for Rs 150! I was so enraged by this daylight robbery that we decided to give ourselves a discount - 100% :x Just one book though, which turned out to be some victorian erotica. I gave the book to greenpeace dude.


Friday, June 03, 2005


My boss is on leave for the last few days, so I thought I can take a leave out of my accumulated 2 leaves per month. Today the HR person, who likes playing Solitaire and Freecell a lot, tells me my holidays start only after 6 months and this is coming out of my paycheck D: They have policies for everything and they tell you only after it has happened.

Sunday, May 29, 2005


This saturday, I was supposed to visit a play Vagina Monologues, along with some b-school buddies. Vagina Monologues was banned at the last minute in my home town, Chennai, notorious for being conservative and backward. It was banned by the police commissioner himself, instead of doing what he was supposed to do - prevent crimes and protect the citizenry of Chennai. But, solving murders and thefts is not as important as stopping a play, because it has a dirty word in it.

Empty chairs and wealthy socialites were the only people watching that play, till Mallika Sherawat announced she would be appearing in it. The enlightened males of Mumbai, suddenly wanted to espouse the cause of women worldwide, and to catch a closeup of the bomb filled the stands, and we did not get a ticket. They wouldn't have known just some women went on stage to talk, contrary to what the title suggested. What a disappointment it must've been to those neouvo-feminists.

Saturday was shot, but Sunday was good. I attended this cool party in a place that thought it was the only club, or atleast the best club in the world, so christened itself 'The Club'.

Either pasta was the worst food made on earth (next only to Japanese food), or they made their pasta appear so. After two hours of ear-shattering cacaphony called club music, I had to endure their food. Then, people did not go to these clubs to eat.

One notice common among all clubs and parking lots in India would be the notice "parking at owner's risk." 'The Club' had three checkposts and dozens of guards before a car was parked, but still they had the notice - Parking at owner's risk. If a thief managed to steal the car beyond the three checkposts, the club still shirked its responsibility. Maybe it was to protect the club from the club's lorries and transport vehicles jumping to 50 kmph in that tight place. Anyway, found out that one of my seniors was staying in the building next to mine! So, we returned together at midnight, something the police in Chennai wouldn't have approved of. I was stopped atleast three times and made to give the breath test when I was in college after 10pm because the police on the high moral ground (and lurking in the shadows) thought they are protecting me from the 'other drunken drivers')

This morning, as soon as I stepped into the office, my boss berated me left and right for not completing my work, in front of all. That seemed to realistic in my 8 am dream, that made me rush to work hurriedly to find myself in a meeting.

I feel so sleepy, but I have places to go, people to see. Not really, I have a load of work to do by this evening. That reminds me, I have a load of clothes to wash this evening. Groan!

Thursday, May 26, 2005

Ringo Sucks

I don't know.

There is this Malayalee guy from Kuwait who has the same email address on gmail, except my id has a dot somewhere in between. He registered with Ringo to get friends with this gamil addy. Instead of he receiving any ringo emails/friend requests, I am receiving them. Getting his password was not a problem - just to set things correct. I see he has other email addies, but he chose to set it something that resembles mine. He seems to be pretty famous with the girls. Till a few months back, there was this girl named Pearl who were sending emails to me with a lot of questions - why are you not replying to me? don't you like me? are my emails boring? and other crap, even after I tell her that I am not the guy she thinks I am.

How do I tell this duffer to change his erroneous ways?

Wednesday, May 25, 2005

Rate this government!

Today's poll in New Indian Express.

For your convenience, the option has been already selected. Can you guess what the result of this poll will be? Is this what they call freedom of press?

Sunday, May 22, 2005

Weekend Anti-American Protests

WooT,that was an interesting weekend. I was planning to see this movie Star Wars, to know what it has, but cancelled it at the last minute to go out with some friends. Had a small get-together here. Went to this place called Café Mocha. Saw there were people there smoking a hookah. My friend says it doesn't have ganja or any other thing, just some flavoured tobacco.

Looks like someone named Art has left a comment here. That was a pretty convincing comment dude, I have changed my mind, I am not anti-USA anymore!!!

I don't know if you would read this, but still find my comments inline.

Wow is that an interesting view of America. Are you sure you aren't just furthering such stereotypes and prejudices? Just like you are accusing Americans of doing?

No, I am not furthering any stereotypes and/or prejudices. Interestingly, what I wrote is what your blog conveys to me too!

Among other things, one of the basic principles of American society is freedom of choice. The whole idea that you use only products made by Company X or Nation X is anathema to our culture. You may chose whichever products you want from whatever source you want. Of COURSE companies try to convince you to use their products. Don't they do that in India?

Companies convince us to do that through something called marketing, silly! What I don't like is the strategy used by these companies - some of the advertisements have been tasteless and say that people using traditional methods are cavemen. They are also responsible at many places for the reduction in the ground water leve, and pollution of the reservoirs and the water table.

If you or your compatriots chose to listen to American music or buy Coke or wear Nikes . . . how is that an indictment of my society?

Freedom of choice? And as your leader says, we hate freedom!

If you don;t like it, don't do it. Would you rather not have the option? Would you rather the gov't step in and make a law telling you that you may not use/listen to/wear/watch/eat/drive/fly in/talk to people and things from other countries? If so, I am sorry you feel that way. We will continue to accept and allow products from all countries.

And for those areas where OUR gov't has decided to restrict imports, etc., I am sorry. It does not happen too often, but when it does (e.g. Chinese textiles or foreign steel), I wish it did not. I have posted many times about free trade and how I despise trade restrictions.

Have you read about (not just American, but also European) government subsidies for the farmers? You are not competing with the developing countries but with the LDCs, the African farmers who can't even stand against your government-sponsored might.

What about you? How do you feel about trade restrictions?

I am for removal of all restrictions - trade, economical and labour. Unfortunately, there aren't many of my kind now, asking for free movement of labour.

If all Americans are against free trade agreements, why is Bush pushing hard right now for Congress to pass CAFTA (the Central Amerian Free Trade Agreement)?

Because, then your country doesn't have to deal with (is it) 12 countries simultaneously, it is just one banana bloc you have to deal with.

Do you truly think that all Americans are prejudiced? That's too bad. Yes, some are. Just as some Indians are prejudiced against Americans and others. It's a sad fact of liife but every culture has people like that.

Didn't you read my disclaimer at the top? I agree there are people like that.

Want to know my position on the "outsourcing" trope offered by the Dems and some protectionist Reps? It's a lie. Click here and here. See also,here, here, and here for more.


For myself, not speaking for the rest of "my fellow Americans," I do think the U.N. is more trouble than it's usually worth and that Kofi Annan's son (and others) are corrupt. (See here and here for examples.) Do you not think so? Do you think that the Oil-for-Food problems are fake and that Saddam did not use his oil sales chits to curry favor with foreign gov'ts and the U.N.?

Aren't you aware that the oil eventually reached the shores of your country where they burn in cars driven by Americans?

You seem to imply that Americans think that the U.N. is the source of trouble in Iraq/Iran/N. Korea. I don't think that's true. Seems to me that foreign terrorists (Saudi, Syrian, etc.) are the trouble in Iraq and that an insane dictator is the trouble in N. Korea. As for Iran . . . well, the whole "stop trying to make nukes or we'll threaten you with considering a strongly worded statement" doesn't work. Has it ever?

Neither has the tactic of 'we will bomb you into the stone age'.

Regarding "calling the AT&T call center," are you saying that all Americans are racist?

Again, read the disclaimer. And, are you saying that it never happens? Then, why do I read about people forming some sort of groups to intimidate the poor call centre workers?

As for the "with us or against us" . . . um, how would you have us approach terrorists? Play nice with them? Yeah. That's worked so well for Italy. How do you want to treat terrorists?

If you care to look beyond your boundaries, you might notice that India has been dealing with terrorists ever since our Independence. This terrorism has been sponsored, not just in Kashmir, but also in Chechenya, Afghanistan, China and many other places, by your two biggest allies in the war against terrorism - Saudi Arabia and Pakistan. However, our approach is to not carpet bomb the innocent civilians living there with napalm.

You also seem to think that our resistance to laws which are anti-U.S. equals the denial of human rights to others. How's that again? Because we want to excercise sovereignty over our own country therefore human rights take a hit? When India promotes her right to self-rule rather than the imposition of outside rules on her, does that mean that human rights are hurt?

Of course, it was anti-US to stop the tactics used in Guantanamo Bay, prisons across Afghanistan and Iraq, the tactics used by the CIA and your green berets in Central America, in Vietnam, in Laos, in Cambodia, and many other countries. Excercising sovereignty over your own country is one thing, taking photographs of naked people in captivity, releasing photos of enemy combatants in their underpants, holding 12 year olds in Camp X-Ray indefinitely, bombing the hell out of fleeing troops along the highway of death, CIA training operatives for covert wars, proxy wars on behalf of corporates (ARAMCO, United Fruit Company, among others), is not.

I see a logo saying 'saving you, whether you like it or not,' or 'unilateral trade restrictions'. These babies would like to thank you for saving them from the evil pinko-commies (disturbing images). Too bad, such a strong issue has to be clarified by snopes for people to believe it.

Do you also know that USA is the only country that has used the atomic bomb and is still using 'nucular' weapons, in the form of depleted uranium shells? I am not really against the people of USA, I hate the government and its foreign policy. I wouldn't care any less about what happens in your country, but once it starts affecting me, I have to take a stance, don't you think so?