Are they real?
Reading this story a though came to my mind. Is anything for real these days?
NATIONAL POST: "40% of women with breast implants want them out: survey"

Is anything for real these days
Welcome to the new century. An new era of fake breasts, fake profits, fake fast bowlers. Is anything for real these days?

Visual Thesaurus
If have not visited this site. Do so now. If you regret it your money back guaranteed.
Visual Thesaurus
Its a awesome idea of representing information in the form of spatial maps. Don't we all think of words in this way. Thanks to the Internet and Java that such mental concepts are now actually possible to be represented. We live in such an exciting age.

Chaudhavi Ka Chand
This was the only movie that I missed among Guru Dutt's famous movies. The incomparable Waheeda. The greatest moment of the movie is the song and soft focus on Waheeda and amazing lyrics by Shakeel Badayuni. That's all the remains after the movie. Rafi's haunting voice of the song and the sleeping beauty.
The story was workable(!) and acting none too great. I mean after Pyaasa and Saheb,Biwi Aur Ghulam this was a damp squib in comparision. Johnny Walker was of course crazy as hell.

Wise Observation of the Day
"Could they have not talked for five minutes with each other to sort things out and saved me the torture of 3 hours"
Who? (Your guess is as good as mine!)

Happy Diwali email experience
Its Diwali and I feel its more in my heart than anything else. I am sitting here in the Co-op (thats where I live now) reading all that mail with Happy Diwali messages in it and I feel that my first statement was wrong.
Its been about a few days now that I get these mails and e-cards from friends, family other random people who cc-ed the message to everybody they knew or did not know. Mail which I would have deleted as spam and muttered a silent curse to those who can't tell the difference between a 'reply to' and 'reply to all'. The silliest message warms my heart. My aunt from Atlanta sent the Diwali sweets and fried stuff the other day. Its so good eating those chaklis. After a few bites one remembers the million times I must have sneaked up and stole chaklis as they were just done being fried. Chaklis that too hot to be eaten. Its cold outside and so is my chakli. But still its Diwail nevertheless.
Its seems so long ago that all I looked forward to was fire-works and of course the Diwali holidays. I wonder when I grew up and got over the fireworks craze. Then of course the great thing about Diwali was the New Year and all the money that was given for touching the feet of elders. I always spent it within the hour and it was always a tape. ( Yeah those days when I bought tapes).
The crowds on Main Street have been growing. It must be crazy right now. Those were the days when the pavement was wider and the hawkers were a huge presence.
Our wada in the evenings full of the acrid smoke and waste of the fire crackers. Mouths cloyed with the sweets. Relatives, friends...It was crazy.
Right now its me squatted on the floor reading those mails and revisting those memories. Its just another Friday in Ann Arbor. Tomorrows the football game against Purdue. For me though tomorrow will be Happy Diwali.
There are periods of sudden quietness in Diwali that are eerie. A time when all are out of the house and the neighbourhood is suddenly quiet. No crackers except the ones that light the sky in the distance. In this sudden quietness you see this 'diya' in the dark corner flickering. One see it fight with the wind to stay lit. I feel a little like that diya now. One diya and its still Diwali!


"As satisfying as an airline bag of peanuts when you're dying of hunger.

Eastward Ho!
Thursday, 9th October
Tomorrow I begin my five day trip to New England. I shall be visiting my sister after five years. Elder sisters are great to have but not when they still think you are a kid brother.
Friday, 10th October
2:15 am
Anuj dropped me off at the airport. Being a night owl he did not mind. Seems like paranoia to be coming so early to the airport to make sure that i dont oversleep. NO it hasn't happened before but I am not too eager to start now.
Finished reading the first two stories from BLind Love by V.S Pritchett. Excellent! Feel sleepy
Trying to sleep. Wondered when I did this last. Slept in uncomfortable positions on chair.

Standing I surely decline
I rather sit; better recline

Strange thoughts come to you when you in this state of limbo. At this odd hour, in this odd Detroit terminal I remembered why I found factorials so interesting. It was because of the "!" sign to represent them. I liked the notation cause it reminds me of the exclamations in sentences. Aha!..Great!..Arrgh! ..3!
Perhaps I am crazy. Well since I am half asleep I am just half crazy now.
5:00 am
Waiting at the US Airways terminal which seems to have seen its share of history. The seats were ripped. Man I felt like this was like some S.T stand!
6:20 am
Aloft in the skies wondering if the ailing airlines would give its ailing passenger something to eat other than slightly larger than a tablespoon of orange juice. They say times are hard!
6:40 am
Dawn is breaking across the sky. Its cloudy and hence nothing spectacular.
6:50 am
I was wrong. It needed some time. The view was spectacular. There was the dark, river and in the distance through the fog was this flame of red like a fire in the darkness. Down below the cars rushed on the highway like tiny LEDs on a display
7:15 amBought a burrito at MacDonalds. Can't simply live on the two tablespoons of orange juice.
7:57 am
Got the middle seat which is the worst. Crammed between two All American Women ( read huge) I was trying to eat my burrito.
8:40 am
Woke up from a power nap. Seemed like a bad idea fall asleep again.
9:15 am
Continued reading the Pritchett book while I waited for my sister to come pick me up. Would have liked to wait outside. It was hill-station weather. Misty, cool not cold. The sky murky grey.
9:40 am
My nephew is surprised why this 'new uncle' and his mom are screaming. I met Sheetal didi after five years. Obviously. "Son, you were not even born then.". I am getting old enough to say such stuff. Sad!
10:10 am
Driving down the rural Connecticut countryside. Fall colors my sister says each year are just as beautiful. The gold, the reds, the oranges. We stop talking. Its almost sacrilege to talk.
11:40 am
Watched a train cartoon for the first time while the kid watched it for the millionth time probably. He still enjoyed it more. Wonder how many things when we grow older are still fun the hundreth time, the millionth time?
12:30 pm
Had Indian food after a long time. Great the next few days are gonna be fun.
2:20 pm Read two pages of the book and feel asleep on the swing.
5:00 pm Woke up in a bed. I moved in my half comatose state there. A nice nap feels great!
6:30 pm My sister thinks I have grown up and become mature. Quite a welcome condescension. Elder sisters! Atleast the kid brother image is being replaced.
10:00 pm Drive to Vivek's house in Manchester (MAN-chest-er, not the English man-CHEST-er. The American change pronunciations too!) after dinner and a lot of catching up on old times. I was really amazed by his GPS navigation system. I think that it should be made mandatory.
10:40 pm We are fiddling around with the computers. Three comps between the two of us. Later we are conference chatting with my brother in India and also chatting across the room. Height of craziness. He shows his Mac off and I am sold to the idea. NOTHING BEATS THE MAN IN OVERALL DESIGN. PERIOD. Awesome. I am sold by it by vivek. (Knowing the fact that one cannot get a level opinion from one who bought an ibook on the anniversary of his first Mac)
1:20 am We are still up playing around this time looking at the really cool movies that he made using iMovie. That software is fantastic man. It possible ot produce almost professional looking films with it.
? Dont know when I dozed off.

Saturday,11th October
Its a bright sunny day in New England. I awake from my slumber more than eager to seize the day and then again fall asleep. Ain't that perfect. Hell I am on a vacation. Finally wake up and to avoid destroying appetite for brunch we make some quick bhel. The temotation to eat more is always there. Brunches make sense when you wake up really late.
It was all really worth it cause Cafe on the Main in Manchester was a great place. An old world look to it. The unique thing was that each chair was different. Everyone got a different cup. I got the smallest mug. Wonder why. First time I have been given such benefit of doubt. The owner and the waiter were locked in a mutual, friendly slanging match for rooting for the Red Sox and the Yankees respectively. This rivalry would make more sense as the days went on and by the end of the trip I would be a Sox fan.
Golfing Golfing I thought was a fuddy duddy game and I never took to it. Today it was perfect day though for some practice on driving range. I was trying to hard in the beginning trying to almost kill the ball. Often to my extreme chagrin it landed a few feet away and MANY TIMES I swung and missed. Luckily not too many watching my baby steps at golf.
At the end of 1.5 buckets I was getting a couple to pop straight up and away. This came at the cost of one broken club. Gold clubs I am told dont break. Well I broke one on the first day. Such things are expected from me.
Apple yatra Well Vivek eager to Apple proselytize took me to the Apple store. Man if you have gone ever been there you would know that that was overkill. Amazing. All showrooms take cue from Apple. This is the way to present you stuff. Apple seems to be catching up on the selling aspect. For all that seems ironic that they have only 3% of the comp market.
Book shops We step into the Barnes and Noble store. Vivek and I can be easily left in a bookstore and we won't be bored for hours. Wish that instead of stools they had nice cushy armchairs. Perhaps they dont want to invite too many of my breed. Of late I get a sinking feeling that there are so many books that I would like to read and I am not getting any done.

Sunday, 12th October
What was possibly the rainiest day ever in Boston we decide to do exactly what should not be done. The all outdoors Freedom Trail and sightseeing. A really enthusiastic National Park Ranger made up for the bad weather. There was a T-shirt salesman who refused to sell a sweatshirt to Vivek cause he was not open yet. He needs some tips from guys down at Fashion Street, Churchgate and the 'boni ka time' concept. Maybe thats why he is still a T-shirt salesman and not Abercrombie and Fitch.
The Boston effect According to Vivek all sights in Boston have this unique 'Boston effect', which is that all things in Boston, like Boston are small. All the great and wonderful things that you hear about Boston are true but be prepared for the smallness of everything. America where the accent is always on Bigger, Grander Boston stands apart as the city built around cow paths. I don't know what a European feel is but surely Boston is different from the other cities I have seen. This is one city where Indian style rash driving, honking is not only accepted but an essential survival skill. I was impressed. Most Indians would feel at home.
The great temples of learning Afternoon,still in the pouring rain we cross the Charles River to Cambridge to see Harvard and MIT. It was nice to get a sense of history but again the Boston effect persisted. Both were smaller then imagined. They looked grand but not as I had expected. As usual we stepped in the bookstore. The Harvard Book Store is quite different from other stores. The selection of books is totally different and also I like the huge amount of staff recommended books. Most bookstores seem to just pay lip service to this fact.
Pani Puri Acceding to my request Sheetal made Pani-puri. The puris were from Cambridge. One would expect it easy to find an Indian store in Cambridge. It was great. Still nothing beats the pani-puri stall. Perhaps the lack of hygiene is a flavous that is missing from the bhel, vada pav, pani-puri, dabeli, sandwich made AT HOME. be continued..

As for me, I've never picked a guitar up without learning something. Sometimes you're learning things you don't want to know, like you're not as good as you thought you were. But even that's a lesson. To me, it's a friend when there's nothing else around. Everybody else is asleep or gone, or your old lady's left you. Well, you've always got her. I mean, the shape alone . . . I sleep with the thing sometimes.
Keith Richards
The previous quote was a little unsubstantiated,which drew a lot of unsubstantiated comment. I try to justify it despite the many Freudian associations with it. I am sure that Keith Richards meant going to sleep with it in a metaphorical sense. What you really, really should you not go to sleep with? Atleast with the idea. Funnily it echoes something related to
"..I thought only men went to with an idea.."
V.S. Pritchett (Blind Love)