Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Emergency Adventure

Someone wrote me a message on IM: itz bcum ovr.
And I laughed really hard.


I thought to myself that life was not exciting enough and decided to develop a gum-ache. A graduate student getting a gum-ache in America is like AIDS in Africa. It can't be cured. So this gum-ache started last Wednesday and I started icing it to get sleep at night. It was bang in the front, my bunny teeth getting chattery from all the ice.
Graduate students get indecent dental coverage and dental appointments with the doctors who participate in the esoteric program have to be made a month in advance. So I decided to go on our desi Combiflam. Then on Friday, I decided it was about time I did something (the ice was giving me cold sores) and I went to the Stony Brook Infirmary. What an appropriate name. And they have just one standard prescription - antibiotics and Ibuprofen. Penicillin and Ibuprofen. Erythromycin and Ibuprofen. Thiscin and Ibuprofen. Thatcin and Ibuprofen. So the diagnosis that Dr.Tuckerman gave me was that I was suffering from Gingivitis, an inflammation of the gums and some salt soaks, antibiotics and ibuprofen can take care of it.
So I paid 15$ for the medicines and went my merry way hoping I'll be fine by Monday. Monday was a special monday because I was due to be presenting in lab meeting. Saturday came and the swelling started. By Saturday night I looked like I was officially on the rugby team- mouth swelling, slurred speech et al. I decided to go into lab thrice and retreated to my room. Sunday was the only day that now separated me from the overbearing meeting. So Sunday morning, I popped 4 Ibuprofens, made an icepack and drove to the lab (READ: insane 45 minute ordeal). Once in the lab, I decided to warm up before I "focus" and opened up the customary Gtalk program. A few chats later, the offending gum begun to act up again. I ignored it and had lunch. After lunch and the antibiotics that I was still investing hope in, the pain did not go away. My usual 4 Ibus didn't help either. I had made about 3 slides (Title, Blank, Thank you) and had about 100% of it left.
So I did the worst ever thing a person in an emergency can do - I went to the emergency room. The ER, is anything but emergency. A relaxed atmosphere with kids screaming, rolling on the floor, America's funniest videos playing on the lounge TV. It was almost like being at home on a sunday evening.

"Please take your badge and wait in the line for the emergency dentist."

I discovered that there was just one woman in the line before me and she was in excruciating pain so I dropped plans of jumping the line before her. After 2 agonizing hours, the dentist finally found time to see me. A couple of X-rays and weird tooth examinations later, it was confirmed that I had a necrosed nerve that was infected - hence the swelling. She suggested root canal treatment (My God has absolutely no intention of making this easy on me) and also for immediate relief said I should get the swelling punctured, drain the pus and go on stronger antibiotics. I said ok.
I've experienced a lot of different kind of pains. Bicycle fall downs. Skidding in the sewer. Punched in the face. Menstrual cramps. Wrong vein picked for blood donation. My repertoire is somewhat impressive. But the pain of getting an injection in your gums is the mother of them all. Ironically, the injection itself is local anesthesia but does nothing to alleviate the shivers you get after that injection. Local anesthesia and weird senselessness in place, the kind dentist (who was fair and warned me that all this would hurt) did what she had to do and I got out of the place after having given the hospital my insurance details.
(I am yet to find out if my ER visits are covered. Else I am not only screwed, I am also third degree burned. I am yet to find a dentist to do the root canal treatment.)
What I did do though was finish my PowerPoint slides ten minutes before the meeting was scheduled to start. I also had an exam on Wednesday for my (supercool) Imaging course. I decided that I must rest on Tuesday and cram on the said Wednesday for the exam. Of course this was insufficient preparation and the exam was anyway predestined to be ruined by reckless mistakes.
I am not going to tempt fate by saying nothing else can possibly go wrong (Three unpaid parking tickets begging to be appealed, the car making weird noises, the landlord wanting us to declare bankruptcy are some others I've to deal with right now). But I think I am ready to call this a week.

Screw you guys, I'm going home.

Color: Blue
Song: Alaska is a microcosm of America

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Guffaw.

People think its hard getting into Grad school - dealing with GRE, applying, purposing and all that muck; they should try getting out. 
(Is this the part where I apologize for not blogging as often as I should have? Later? OK.)

So in these three weeks, I have 

- been tortured by the fact that I am a G4 status graduate student. It is the most annoying/senseless status assigment I've ever come across. So the way this "works" is, if you have completed 24 credits and are currently taking 9 credits per semester, you are G4 status. If you are still doing those 24 credits, then you are G3. You can graduate when you are in G3 but not when you are in G4 (with a Masters, that is). Technically, the more credits I have, the more I must have to graduate (I need 56 for a Phd :|).

- gotten addicted to Ma No Pa. When I am with company that might not appreciate the brilliance of U Shrinivas, I wait till they leave. I pray that they leave soon so that I can listen to Zakir's and Selvaganesh's rhythmic geniuses. And the minute they step out of the car, I quickly direct my quivering hands to turn on the stereo and thank McLaughlin for making this happen. All of my labmates have had to yell to get my attention because I had it full blast on my iPod. (I'm totally iEverything since the arrival of my Macbook). 

- been told that I am having too much fun at work: "You have to enjoy working, not enjoy at work." Thanks Eugene. You Jewish Chinaman, you.

- wondered what'd happen if I didn't know Science. Since nothing is happening when I know it, I guess nothing would happen if I didn't know it. 

- signed up for Facebook and regretted it almost immediately. 

- had someone change the gear on my car to neutral  accidentally when I was waiting at a traffic light. When it turned green, there was some serious honking and I practically stood on the pedal to get the damn machine moving. Then everyone behind me started going around my car, one profanity per car being hurled at me until I realized the car was in neutral. 

- gazed longingly at this amazing tweed coat for an embarassing length of time and for the umpteenth time wished there was as much money in science as there is in computers/finance. :( But Wall Street is so hahaha now that I am actually happy for science.

- been asked by someone to write a blog or else to stop changing my status on GTalk. :P 
(I suppose this gives me clearance to change my status) 

- realized that if either of these men were single, then all my problems would come to an end instantly. 

(Is now OK? No? Fine.)

Though I've been told a  gazillion times that I am actually less busy than I project myself to be, this time I really was busy. Really. Pinky swear.

Color: Army green

(Now is it okay to apologize? You understand? Really? OK Thanks. By-bye)

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Anonymuse.

So I use Yahoo! Messenger. And actually used to prefer it over Gtalk for a lot of reasons.
a) The emoticon range. 
b) The invisiblity mode.
c) Categorizing friends. 
d) Webcam usage.
and so on. 

Recently, Gtalk caught up with a and b (though my mom keeps asking me why I put a blue colored colon and bracket after some line), while c and d still remain to be solved. Now I use both programs. About a month back a friend told me one could find out if someone is invisible in yagoo! (the way I say it, becaas of the saauth yinndian aakksent you knoo vaa?) here. And I use it from time to time to detect friends who I need to talk to ASAP(Gossip must spread like wildfire, do you know what the speed of wildfire is? Do you?!), or to check if my best friend is hiding from me(his fiance really hates me :D) etc. 
So one fine day in my pathetic grad life, I was sitting around lazing in my post-doc free office, contemplating stealing the Jap's coffee powder to make some stimulant that could get me to work. I was as usual signed into every messenger installed on my laptop (READ: lifeline). I stealthily closed the door to the office and in true grad student fashion, I stole coffee powder (Hideyuki, if you are reading this, I am sorry and I'll make more competent cells to make up for it) and made the beverage (potability: average). Finally when some neurons in the corner of my grad mind were jerking awake and cursing me for the untimely stimulation, the strangest thing happened on my laptop screen. In quick succession, three people BUZZed me on yagoo!, none of who I knew. I ignored the first two. 
The third one was persistant and BUZZed me three times. I was getting curious about how these guys chose random ids so I engaged in the following conversation.

Deepu (9/4/2008 6:30:19 PM): who are you
george_williams95 (9/4/2008 6:30:28 PM): i am williams
george_williams95 (9/4/2008 6:30:32 PM): frm australia
Deepu (9/4/2008 6:30:42 PM): really
george_williams95 (9/4/2008 6:30:43 PM): flight engineer by profession
george_williams95 (9/4/2008 6:30:52 PM): how abt u?
Deepu (9/4/2008 6:30:52 PM): and how did you find my id ?
george_williams95 (9/4/2008 6:31:10 PM): i found it from persiangap.com
george_williams95 (9/4/2008 6:31:15 PM): i found it from www.persiangap.com
george_williams95 (9/4/2008 6:31:29 PM): is that ur pic in avatar?
Deepu (9/4/2008 6:32:02 PM): persiangap?
Deepu (9/4/2008 6:32:06 PM): i have never heard of the site
Deepu (9/4/2008 6:32:12 PM): i cant see how oyu foiund my id there
Deepu (9/4/2008 6:32:21 PM): *you
george_williams95 (9/4/2008 6:32:22 PM): just check it urself u can find out
Deepu (9/4/2008 6:32:32 PM): never mind
Deepu (9/4/2008 6:32:37 PM): i think we're done in this conversation
Deepu (9/4/2008 6:32:39 PM): good bye
george_williams95 (9/4/2008 6:32:44 PM): ur pic appeared there
george_williams95 (9/4/2008 6:32:52 PM): i liked it so i added u up
Deepu (9/4/2008 6:33:22 PM): i am sorry, but that doesn't help at all. i refrain from adding people i actually know .
george_williams95 (9/4/2008 6:33:35 PM): ahh its okey no probs
george_williams95 (9/4/2008 6:33:41 PM): may i know ur asl pls
Deepu (9/4/2008 6:34:06 PM): what is asl
george_williams95 (9/4/2008 6:34:16 PM): hmm age,sex,loc
Deepu (9/4/2008 6:34:43 PM): i see no need to share that information with you
george_williams95 (9/4/2008 6:34:51 PM): ahh okey
george_williams95 (9/4/2008 6:34:54 PM): bye
Deepu (9/4/2008 6:34:55 PM): bye
george_williams95 (9/4/2008 6:35:01 PM): #:-S

(I do find it stupid that I didn't know what asl was. I remember knowing it at some point of time in my life :|)

So after the "Flight engineer" explained, I went to the website. I really don't know how it functions, this invisibility finder. My surmise is that it is a cousin of the one I use. Every time someone uses their website, the profile of the person whose status they are checking is flashed. So someone was checking if I was online. And the irony is that I was not even invisible. :| Nonetheless, I think it would do us a lot of good to keep away from such website and let invisible people be. I take an oath to never use an uncloaking site again (except for detecting best friends with cuckoo fiancees and co-mongers). Amen.

On a totally different note using an entirely different music scale, a junior of mine got married (!!) and I was looking at her wedding pictures. One of their well-wishers (literally) had the following to say, 

M: made of each other, well wishes!

I yamm suure they yarre Mr.M, I yamm suuure. 


Color: Blue

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Three lame mice.

See how they run.
See how they run.

I wait for a social event. In the social event, I wait for an interesting discussion. During the discussion, I wait for conflicting opinions. Once the conflicting opinions are stated, I wait for an accusation.
And then the games begin!


Ten questions I have been asked recently.

Who is your favorite God?
A: Krishna. He made flirting and lying legitimate.

Is it possible to love two people at the same time?
A: As long as you are willing to accept the outcomes*, sure.
(*of the declarations - added after considering Saffy's comment)

What if the guy you are with is monogamous?
A: I doubt any guy truly is. And if he is, then he wouldn't be my guy.

Would you eat something even if you didn't know what was in it?
A: Depends on how hungry I am.

What do you think YUI stands for?
A: Yahoo User Interface?
(Turns out the person was aiming for FYI but made a typo. I am yet to figure out how he messed up that bad.)

Arranged marriages must be really interesting, no?
A: Define interesting.

Why do I meet all the cute guys after I get a boyfriend?
A: Some says it is time testing your "loyalty". Some think its dumb luck. I think it doesn't matter before or after!

If you don't have sequence information, how do you plan to design primers?
A: Errr... umm....

When do you think you'll have the money ready?
A: Err... umm....

Do you think its a good idea to get into graduate school?
A: Err... umm....

The first question led to a discussion about Judaism and Christianity. The second and third was from someone who was trying to understand how polygamy is possible. The fourth was from my roommate who is on IV-coke on our way to dinner. The fifth was from some arbitrary argument with some arbitrary friend of a friend on some arbitrary picture. #6 from a German friend. The seventh is from Ms.IV-coke again, who recently hooked up (congratulations!) and is considering requesting an open relationship (way to go Chick!). Number eight from my omniscient Jap post doc. Nine and ten have been asked so many times I've lost count. Most recently from someone we're buying a car from (#9) and a poor French undergraduate student in my lab (#10).

I think I am largely satisfied with my haul this week.

Color: Fuchsia (I was thinking of one other word that begins with FUC when we play quarter-gone)
Song: You've got me all tied up in knots.. and I love you lots and lots (I can't find the link to this song or remember who it was by :( )

Friday, August 22, 2008

Seeds of time

Okay. So in the last few days I've received a considerable amount of feedback on my blog post about China's political attitude. Mostly in personal conversations than on the blog itself. But the best argument was with my roommate.

It began with something like-
"I can't believe you let Assaf get away with the Kashmir comment."

It thus ended-
"A part of me believes that it would have actually done us some good if we didn't get Independence (so early)."

I am not pro-Pakistan, I am not anti-Kashmir. I love my country and I want to do my bit for its society (that needs a LOT of work, btw). But I am trying to play spectator here and spot if India is doing to Kashmir what China is doing to Tibet/Taiwan.

Thoughts?

Color: Rose
Song: Tamizha tamizha

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Saved by the bell.

The Kite Runner is a must read book. Khaled Hosseini has used the simplest of words to convey the most complex emotions in their purest form. One such emotion is betrayal. (Sorry for being a spoiler) In the book, when the protagonist, Amir, watches his best friend being molested, he walks away without doing anything simply because he is terrified to intervene and is guilt-stricken for the rest of his life. That chapter of the book shook me completely and Hemangini's post here got me writing this post.

Sexual abuse is more common that we all think it is. Cold Spring Harbor labs had its own "Sexual harrassment awareness" program which is mandatory for all new employees. In the program, they say that Sexual harrasment is subjective and sometimes arise out of cultural divides like that between the oriental and occidental parts of the world. An inappropriate joke, an uncalled for hand gesture or even something as simple as shutting the door with only you and someone else in the room can be perceived as harrassment. But the kind of harrassment that is most violating and revolting is physical. Rape is a superlative of this kind of harrassment but "feeling up" incidents are more common.
I was eighteen at the time it happened. I never found the strength to talk about this with anyone until a few days back. It was Hemangini's post that I found here which nudged me to finally discuss the incident with Shri. I was on a bus from Bangalore to Chennai and I was harried enough even before the journey began. My uncle who dropped me off at the bus station ensured that I was sitting next to a lady before he left. Later that night though, the lady switched seats with another man so that she could sit with her husband. I didn't pay much attention to it since all I wanted to do was sleep. I drifted off to an uncomfortable slumber soon enough, only to be woken up twice again. The first time, I woke up because I thought I felt someone touch me. I shuffled about a little in the confinement of my seat, attributed my waking up to the jerks of the bus and closed my eyes in wait of sleep. The second time I woke up from my semi-consciousness was when I felt someone touch my breasts. I waited for a moment to make sure that this wasn't a figment of my imagination. It wasn't. The guy in the next seat was definitely feeling me up and I was disgusted and angry enough to slap him.
I regret not doing that even today.

The only reaction my brain offered at the time was to stand up, which was pretty hard considering the legroom available in Indian buses, and without looking at the man (who sat unabashed and unmoving) I squeezed past him to the conductor to ask if there was anywhere else I could sit. And when he asked me why, I couldn't bring myself to tell him the real reason so I mumbled a lie about some noise and not being able to sleep. He said there isn't another vacant seat so I made my way back to the 2x2 hell I had paid three hundred rupees for and sat upright and alert for the rest of the journey. My molester eventually fell asleep. The rest of the night, I wondered if he was even slightly guilty about what he did.
To this day, I regret not raising a ruckus. I regret not complaining to the conductor. I don't know if it would have done me any good then, but I would have been at peace now that I tried to put a woman groping a-hole in his place. Perhaps I could have saved other girls from being violated.

Do such men reason with themselves about what they are doing or did? I don't know if there is one straight solution to this problem. But I do know that a lot of women are subject to this and they don't speak out. Why? I don't know. Maybe because we were taught to be submissive and run away from trouble. If the same thing happened to me today, I'd make sure the guy regretted it every bit. I wouldn't hesitate kicking him in the nuts (pardon the indecency) if I could. It is aggravating to see the effect such incidents have on women's lives. My landlady's sister was harassed on the subway and she was so shaken that she quit her job in the city and moved to Long Island. She was a successful lawyer in a big firm, confident and well-read. For the first 3 weeks after the incident, she walked around the house like a pale ghost barely speaking more than ten words a day. She now works in the city again but drives there and avoids taking the train whenever she can.

I am not sure if it would be sexist to say that its more common that women get molested as opposed to men. I don't have a significant data set to conclude that. The internet seems to suggest that. Either way, this is a site that everyone who has a such an experience must visit. The others should take a look as well. We talk about woman empowerment and reserving seats & rights for women in my country where there are filthy hypocrites such as my molester walking free. I can't and don't want to find anything other than the molester himself to blame such behavior on. Not even my favorite scapegoat, society.

Color: Blind
Song: Blank noise

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Asking for it.

Politics and I have never gotten along well. I have never felt the need to read the paper or watch the news to find out more about who is running my country or any other. And hence my knowledge of politics is equal to that of a eight year old who can name the Prime minister, the President and other important heads (I wouldn't be surprised if I got even those wrong, I discovered only ten minutes back that Gordon Brown was the Prime minister of England).

Given that deliverance, China's political attitude pisses me off. No, wait. That could be an unfair generalization.
The political attitude of the Chinese people I know pisses me off. It infuriates me to the point of wanting to slap them back to their senses but the Father of my country taught me non-violence (I know something). Every Chinese person I know has this condescending know-it-all tone when they talk about Taiwan and Tibet. They think both those "pieces of land" belong to them and that they hold no significance or meaning by themselves. I've even witnessed statements like "Taiwan is just a game piece between Japan and China." and "The Tibetans will not survive without us."
It is not easy for Taiwanese and Chinese to travel between the two countries. (It doesn't solve anything at all if you cordon off your geographical boundaries. If you want to stop co-operating with another government simply because they didn't succumb to you, then you need to go to political kindergarten.)
Displaying the Tibetan flag is banned and is a punishable offense in China. (This may sound dramatic but I have a friend who's uncle runs shelters in Tibet for children. These children are ill-treated (READ: have eyes poked out) by the Chinese locals for petty crimes that were poverty-driven.)

The last I discussed about this was yesterday night with an Israeli and a Taiwanese. Like the Taiwanese so graciously pointed out, we're all allowed to have different political views. She also went on to say that they (Chinese) are educated to think that way. (The Israeli said just one word, Kashmir.) But no, the purpose of education is not to make you think a certain way. We are educated to make us aware of the facts and ways of the world so that we can form opinions for ourselves about what is acceptable and not. Our generation is often talked about as the one that is open-minded and advanced. We often criticize our parents' generation for being single-minded, conservative and not progressive in their views (especially of dating, sex etc). Then why don't the current generation of Chinese (that I know) extend that progressive logic to the way their country is handling political issues? Why don't they see that Taiwan is happier without their constant hovering about and Tibet doesn't want to be run by them?

The world is organized into countries because we all have different cultures and views and it is easier to govern a similar group of people within a certain geographical reach. That is all there is to a country. Patriotism and national pride are not about yes-bossing to your country's views. It is simply about being happy that you are from wherever and you are happy indulging in your culture. That's that. Developing prejudices (like India and Pakistan) and going on a power trip (like China and USA) will never make sense to me, political or otherwise.

NYC is mon amour.

Color: Saffron
Song: Calabria

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Social b(l)inds.

Note: This post is partly Nikhil's opinions that are now mine too.

Nature is a blanket term for scientific jargon and a bourgeois word for the 'world around us'. Either way we tend to generalize and make patterns of the "natural" happenings around us and thus the term unnatural is born. Some people think homosexuality is unnatural and some even think Michael Phelps getting eight golds is unnatural. While I don't have such important opinions, there is one such thing that I feel isn't natural. Monogamy.

Monogamy is just a social norm, a limit that is put to maybe test the character of a person. But definitely not something that is natural. It is a choice that has a lower rate of occurrence in the XY population. I am not questioning anyone's fidelity here, I am just saying I know a lot of people who would be much happier when the imposition of just-one-partner is lifted. My sample size is definitely not small and my views are mostly unbiased. For the smallest and silliest of things we borrow examples from animals. Intelligence, loyalty, organization and other blah things. When I hear the frequently abused phrase "Even animals..." I want to ask back a lot of questions. I bite my tongue and let it pass because I know my argument is rarely well-received.
When some say Nature didn't notarize homosexuality, do they also agree that Nature completely votes for polygamy? Monogamy is something society designed to make a more peaceful state and its on the same lines as religion ~ a way to be able to control your emotions. I know of people who force themselves to be monogamous. Some can't control their emotions and "cheat". We waste no time in pointing an accusatory finger at the "cheat" without even pausing to think if what he did is unnatural at all.
I'm not against monogamy nor for it. Its a preference that you can either have or not. And just like other preferences, you respect people's choices and let them be.
Vive y deja vivir!

Color: A meterosexual yellow (I pity the meterosexual man for the effort he puts into his image and bearing the disatrous side-effects, if any)
Song: Pappu can't dance saala

Friday, August 15, 2008

They have pills for this kind of thing.

I've had more remarks about my blog in the last one week than I've had in the last year.

What is www.twobananas.blogspot.com?
~Balu being his usual "creative" self.

Dude, you write about July the 4th but not about Aug 15th. You have no patriotism. You suck.
~ Ashwin who is convinced that I am all pro-American and irrevocably westernized.

So you are looking at matrimonial ads finally.
~ Nikhil's opening comment in the seemingly long discussion about marriage and its uselessness.

You keep saying you write well, but no one comments on your blog. Do you think something is wrong?
~Someone who really thinks writing and I don't fuse well. That I just try to turn just about anything into a blog post. (Now why would he think that?)

If grad life is injury, blogging is the added insult. I take up both voluntarily with a masochistic attitude that never fails to make me laugh. They say there are pills for this kind of thing.
Really, there are.

Really.

Color: Blank
Song: Blank

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Furcht.

Recently, I've been reading a lot of matrimony ads. Strictly for entertainment. This change in my humor preferences is a direct result of the fact that I am bored of PhD comics and am almost done watching all episodes of South Park.
Anyway, people use silly adjectives to describe their candidate or to describe what they'd like in a candidate. I mean no insult to their intelligence or their language skills. But don't you try to think of the many different ways in which a reader can interpret it your "ad", given that the reader is most probably a 24-30 year old? Mabye I'm being nitpicky and just trying to make a blog post out of nothing. But I want to know why matrimonial ads mostly begin with a 'WANTED'.
Wanted? Really? It makes me think of a mugshot of an unshaven dude in striped PJs holding up a number plate.
Well-educated. Who isn't? Every T, D and H has a Masters from the States. Every Gita, Sita, Anitha has a Bachelors with "excellent scores". How about something like she can converse in 3 international languages? Now that is something I'd proudly put in a matrimonial ad.
God-fearing. Now don't get me wrong on this one. My theistic orientation is perfect (by my standards) and I'm a total believer. But why would a normal person fear God? Believe maybe, but fear? I'm inclined to think that only someone who's wronged would fear God. What does that say about the candidate? (Don't give me that look, I am just the average reader).
Slim, fair, good looking. That is just as informative as Well-educated. Would be more convincing if you attached a picture, no?

My expectations are high perhaps. But hey, if we're using computers to draw squares and predict horoscopes, don't the matrimony ads have to catch up?

My favorite matrimonial strip so far reads: Looking for a smart, understanding and a helpful housemate.
Ironically, this is what I would put on craigslist if I were gay (no offense to my homosexual friends) and was looking for a partner. Is there any such profession as a matrimonial ad drafter? If there is, I want it. If there isn't, maybe I should be the first one. Our newspapers and matrimony websites could really use my services.

Aaah, yet another day in grad life. Yet another imaginary alternative career.

Color: Maroon
Song: Ghita (Cleopatra Stratan)

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Not the difference.

Why? is more than a question.
It is a rhetoric, an evasion tactic, a way of life and the umbrella under which all other questions take shelter.

Why not? is more than a question too.
It is inspirational exclamation, an accusative statement and the umbrella under which all unconvincing answers take shelter.

Color: Blue
Song: Kangal irandal

Monday, July 28, 2008

Endurance

I've never lost to temptation simply because I never fight it. Especially the one to be sarcastic. Humor is not my thing at all. Sarcasm is the dull, blunt sword I use to cut through stupid or humor-requiring or awkward moments. But something tells me I am overdoing it. Maybe my friends actually believing what I say as a sarcastic response is indicative that my delivery royally sucks.

A conversation between Ann and me:-

"Dude, what are you wearing?"

"Me?" (Which is a silly question considering that we're the only ones in the room)

"No dude, not you. The invisible man behind you who's my fashion guru."

"Really?" (Whips around to see if someone is actually there, again a silly move considering that the man is supposed to be invisible)


This is when it occured to me that maybe I am not getting the intonation right. Maybe the sarcasm has saturated my dialogues so much that people are actually failing to notice it. Its almost insulting to have someone not detect the sarcasm and doubly so when they don't see the intended humor in it.
It hurts, it really does.

I dream... I dream of a better world... where chickens can cross roads and not have their motives questioned.

Color: Orange
Song: Dum diddy do



Monday, July 21, 2008

Pardon the parallax please.

I've had the most interesting weekend with the most interesting group of people. Seven of us, six different countries. And I can certify that India, China, Taiwan, Germany, Italy and Korea get along incredibly well. :D
Communication is not a problem thanks to English. But then I'm amazed at a German's ability to take a simple word and contort it into something that sounds like a guy with bronchitis breaking into a cough while gargling. Case in point: the German "version" of the name Charles is a sound similar to Khhhaazvlksjghz. Until then, German was a cool language. Germany was a cool country. German cars were awesome. German dudes were desirable. German dessert was the awesomest.
Post-Khhhaazvlksjghz, my entire fascination with Germany has turned into a focused effort of trying not to spit/spray/bathe-neighborhood-with-saliva when speaking the language. It's warfare, I tell you. Sheer brilliance. In those concentration camps, they probably put the guy in a pit and spoke German to him for 10 minutes and the guy drowned in saliva.

No offense to any German reading this. I still largely adore the country and hope to visit it some day. But please pardon the parallax generated when I'm learning your father tongue. :)

Ich liebe dich!

Color: Black, red and yellow :D
Song: Du hast

Friday, July 11, 2008

PIc your words

I distinctly remember this free physics class on a Wednesday when I was in first year of college. We were each asked to speak for five minutes about someone who had inspired us, whose contributions to the world we thought significant and important. Two weeks before that Wednesday, I had read an article in Reader's Digest about how much the scientific world had progressed fifty years since the discovery of the double helix in 1953. There was also a short interview with James Watson. I'd never had a hero before, someone I wanted to be like, but James Watson had impressed me. I scribbled some notes before I went behind the podium and gave a short talk about James Watson, what he had done and how much of an impact it had had on science, and on me.

Four years later, as a graduate student, when I first stepped on to the campus of Cold Spring Harbor Labs and someone told me that James Watson lived down Bungtown road, I was hyper. I frequently spotted the Nobel laureate in the Winship bar, in post-doctoral candidate seminars, sometimes asking questions I never understood and once a while driving around in his shiny car. Over the next one year, the image of the hero I portrayed in my five minute extempore those years back slowly degenerated into a senile old man with no regard for others' feelings. Maybe I judge him too harshly, but that is all that I have witnessed of this great scientist.

Political correctness is one thing, but to outrightly shun races, call someone unintelligent and make random conclusions from non-existent data is plain unacceptable. The first digression from the image was when I realized that the questions he asked in the seminars were not non-understandable, they were irrelevant. The statements he made about African people being less intelligent and that having a possible genetic explanation were shoddy and utterly baseless. But what triggered me to write this post was mostly what he said at a recent URP meeting (Undergraduate Research Program). I don't know if my writing my opinions on my blog is politically incorrect (PIc). But I suppose they aren't any more PIc than what Jim Watson had to say as an answer to some of the questions the URPs asked him. Totally unrelated to what the questions was (as the URP related to me) Watson actually announced that~
"Nothing good has come of Asia in the last 2000 years."

Unless someone was buried underground with ear plugs on and a frozen brain, they wouldn't make a statement like that. If I quote too many examples it would sound like I am defending my continent. I've had to defend India under many circumstances, especially from people who have this image of my country as a place that has elephants and snakes all over the streets and dancers swaying to music all day long. But since most of us know what Asia as a continent means to the rest of the world, I'll just state what I think is the recent biggest achievement in science. Yamanaka's reprogramming of differentiated cells into stem cells is a wow paper that everyone doing science must read.
That said, I am in need of a new role model. My boss is someone I hope to be like when I am his age. Dignified, extremely brilliant, passionate, respected and loved.

Go NKT!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Jelly fish smoke trails :)

Lovely golden cascades exploded in the skies well synchronized with Star Spangled banner but there wasn't one American-looking person in sight. The fourth of July celebrations always leave me in awe of patriotism in the States. I was just reading the post I wrote on last years gala. Last year I was watching the Macy's fireworks over the Manhattan skyline from a State Park in NJ. This year was at Jones Beach, equally spectacular.
Patriotism in India (in my view) is a solemn and revered concept. We stand in silence when the Anthem plays, and there is something soulful about it. I'm not saying its not in the States but it comes across as a more joyous occasion here. A loud, colorful parade of who they are, and how important they are to the world. It almost makes me want to say they are smug, but they aren't there yet. They know the power they have over the rest of the world and they know the power the rest of the world has over them. It's a fine balance act that they are doing now.

Still, standing there with thousands of immigrants watching America's finest fireworks light up the night sky and leaving behind the most interesting smoke trails (jelly fish people chasing each other), I couldn't help but think that if this was my country's jubilee, then I'd have cried a little for all those who fought for our freedom and made it possible for India to be.

Jai Hind!

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Organ-ization

I personally dread lab meetings. For many reasons, starting with having to exhibit attention and interest in work at 9.30 on a sleepy Wednesday morning. It is even worse if you are the one presenting. You know everyone has a calculator in the back of their heads, punching away at who has more data, if the data (or lack thereof) is acceptable, if the boss is going to approve of it, watching for any slips. And you have to fight all these mental odds, keep composure and seem like you know what you are talking about.
I know my labmates would laugh if they read this post saying - nah, no one is doing that. We're all here to learn.
Yes, I agree. We are all here to learn. But there is always an invisible race. Always the pressure to perform. I see my peers worrying sick because their bosses don't push them and I almost want to tell them that its good that they don't have it. :D
But nothing makes you work harder until you sync your footsteps to the clicks on that calculator.
Nothing rings in your head like your boss asking "So, whats happening with your experiments?".
Nothing motivates you as much as a colleague's successful lab meeting.
And nothing depresses you as much as the miserable failure of yours. :|

Lab meetings must be made illegal else they must be offered with free pills or an option to be institutionalized.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Epiphany

Irony. Most writers strive to have it in their text, but it comes to you naturally.

Lines from a book I read recently that left me pondering about a lot of things in life. If what I do makes sense given the things that are plaguing the rest of the world, if what I do even makes sense to me, if I should consider career alternatives that make more sense in the "political world" and others on similar lines.

For as long as I remember, nothing but science has intrigued me. The only books I can't put down are fiction, old English literature, non-fiction, biographies and biology textbooks. The thing they all have in common is the question - how does the story end? Which is why I thought I'd be alright in science. Because that is what scientists do, find story endings. And those endings start off new stories whose endings need to be found and that is what people mean when they say "I've a career in science".
I thought I could have a career in science. I was reasonably good at math and to some extent gifted with languages. But I still chose science. And I've never wondered until today if I made a mistake.
Grad school does that to you I guess. Makes you second guess your choices. But its also probably an unfair generalization. I've seen people be humbled by grad school and people who've used it as a stepping stone to get to better places and do bigger things in life.
It depends on who you are and who you are with.
If you are motivated and capable of learning on your own, then you'll survive no matter where. Then grad school is just a building to you that gives you a degree.
If you are motivated but need a teacher, then it depends on who you are with. If that person is willing to teach you even when you are stupid, then you'll make it out of grad school unscathed. If they are busy and expect you to raise yourself, then you'll start a blog worrying if you made the wrong career choices. :)

More on grad life coming up!

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Un sirippinil...

You meet me only in my memories
This feeling is a step short of happiness.
Love is an umbrella we hide behind
From the other things the world calls us.

Unforeseen circumstances. How many times have we heard that in airport lobbies, concert shows... countless disappointments. I think that expression sums up my entire life - unforeseen circumstance. Every time I wash my palette and add new colors, an unwashed brush shows up and dips itself in every one of those colors and changes the hue. I don't know what life sees in me that it picks up every stray problem and makes it mine to handle.


What are you doing?

He hastily shut his book. She gave him a mildly amused curious look.

Writing?

Yeah.

She waited for more explanation.

Its not ready for others to read.

Its always ready honey, you aren't.

He smiled that smile of his. An extraordinary smile on an ordinary face. Sunlight lost in his unkempt black hair. It was a moment of absolute bliss. She curled up on the chaise with a crappy book. He never understood her taste in reading. She could do so much better. He'd politely recommended some books he thought she would like. She'd read them but never said a word to him about how she liked them. He felt inadequate, like he wasn't doing something right. She could make a meal without asking him and it would be exactly what he wanted. A mother-like quality. She was not perfect, yet she was.

He flinched and instinctively shuddered at that word. Mother. That words pulled some cord in the region where he thought his heart was. His mind thought of it as a silken twisted rope that when tugged brought in a barrage of pain and flooded his mind with dark murky memories. He looked at her, peaceful in her yellow smiley t-shirt. She looked up and smiled at him.
The cord tugged.
He pulled the blinds and found a place next to her on the chaise, buried his head in her hair and fell asleep almost instantly.

(Scene IV from the Departure of Happiness)

There is no such thing as true love.

Color: Peach
Song: Ami je tomar

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Parihaasamo.. en mel paridhaabam illayo?

When she talked to him, she was sure. She was sure that this was the only way it could be. For his life and hers. A child out of wedlock was unacceptable. Unimaginable, he had said. It would ruin both their lives.
But the first free minute her mind found, a different spool of thought unwound itself. She tried to think of ways she could "solve the problem".

Maybe mom will understand. Probably not. Maybe brother? He would understand. But what could he do? Its not money I need. Not support. I don't even know what is stopping me. Some invisible knot ties me to his future. His college. His life. It was a not a sacrifice, but a sensible decision. But of what good is a sensible decision if it takes away all that makes sense in my life? There have been achievements before. Plenty. But this was different. This feeling of wholeness. Of finding an anchor... this warm heaviness.

She put lay on the bed and put her cellphone on her belly. As if on cue, it started vibrating.

Does that tickle you, my love?

She sighed and answered it.

Where are you?

Home.

You're at home? Its 4 in the afternoon.

I got done with work early.

Okay.

Thirty seconds of silence.

Whats for dinner?

I don't know. Anything.

You want to go out?

No. I'll figure something out.

Okay. I'll be back at 6.

See you then.

Hmm... anything you want to tell me?

Nothing in specific.

Rest up. I'll find a cab for Saturday morning. The train is too much of trouble. I'll be home at six and we'll cook together. Or even better, I'll cook.

Okay. I'll see you then.

You seem to be in a hurry to hang up. What is wrong?

Nothing about this is right. That is what is wrong.

He sighed audibly. It irritated her. She tried not to show it.

Okay, I won't go there. I'm going to get the laundry done. Do you want me to do yours?

Please rest. I'll take care of that stuff.

I'm not dying of cancer. I'll be fine doing the laundry I think. Again, do you want me to do yours?

Its okay. I have another week to go.

Okay.

Bye. Take care.

I will. Bye.

She flipped the phone close. She usually hated hanging up. She always waited till she heard the click on the other end. A habit from those late night conversations with her ex. When they would argue about who would hang up first... child play. Maybe he noticed. He probably wouldn't have. He never paid attention to minor details. He said they didn't matter.

They mattered.

It mattered that Saturday was Mother's day.
It would matter that there would be people standing there with posters to tell her what a big mistake she was making. Protesting the "cruelty".
It would matter that she would in the coming years, remember exactly what she wore, how that old man who handed her the pamphlet looked, how that taxi guy sneered at them.
It would matter, that she would wake up 4 hours later feeling empty. Empty and exhausted. And would find him sitting in the living room talking to his fiancee about their wedding plans.

(Scene III from the Departure of Happiness)


Color: Gray
Song: Mokshamu galada (Madras Quartet)

Monday, May 19, 2008

This prolonged ruthless silence...

Its like a Star Wars movie. It makes absolutely no sense, but you watch it, you like it... in fact, you watch it again.

That is what it is like to be in love.
Its like watching a Star Wars movie.

To be able to take in all the senseless details, to actually cherish them.
To realize the irrelevance of it all to everyday life but still crave it.
To get lost in those dreams of the future and actually sculpt a part for yourself.

Color: Black (though its not really a color)
Song: Wonder wall

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Velan ennai eno marandhan...

Every woman has a certain expectation of how things will unfold when she realizes she is a mother-to-be. How her husband would take her in his arms when she tells him, and the happiness on his face would uncontrollably spill into loving words, the way she would blush and he would say she looks more beautiful than ever. Words cannot describe that feeling sufficiently. Its tangibly magical.

Hers was filled with uncomfortable silence. A ten minute deliberation of how this was even possible followed by a single question.

What do we do now?

And the expected,

I'll find a doctor.

After about 20 rounds of Google and phone calls, an appointment was made to "clear" the problem. 500$ to clear the most beautiful thing that ever happened to her.
He didn't take her in his arms.
He didn't kiss her on the forehead and say "I love you. Thank you for making me so happy.".
There was no joy in his eyes.
The second offering of conversation was another question.

Are you okay?

I will be. I need to take a shower.


~~The water on my skin felt warm though I'd set the shower to cold. I looked down at my belly. Was there a swelling? I ran my hand over it, wishing that it would somehow penetrate the skin to stroke my child's yet-to-grow hair. In that yellowed shower, on that Saturday afternoon, I lost myself in a day dream. Of how my beautiful son, black hair wispy in the wind, translucent skin near the temples, cheeks pink from running in the park, would find me on a bench, reading a book. How I would stroke his soft arm and ask him if he was cold , hand him a jacket. Little fingers clutching mine, walking back home, refusing to be carried like a baby ~~

A sharp knock snapped her back to reality and the cold water stung momentarily before it washed the dream away.

"Are you done yet? I need to run by the office."

"Be out in a minute."

(Scene II from the Departure of Happiness)

Happy Mother's day.

Color: Baby blue
Song: Eru mayil eri vilayadum mugam ondru

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Inebriated.

I was woken up by a strangely familiar smell. Hair? Clothes? Comforter? Sheets? The feeling doesn't go, even long after brushing and a shower. A nostril implant? Ickie.

Tissue, paint, music, shoes, pictures and sweaters later, I still feel it. I turn up the music. Put away the paint. Hide the shoes and the sweater. Put the picture face down. Clear up the tissue.

FOCUS.

(What IS that smell?)

A cup of tea brewed in my favorite way grows cold in my favorite mug. I don't need it to wake me up. The music prods something in me. Unburies some kind of revelry I didn't know I was capable of. It does it gently, not shovel-like, more like an archaeologist dusting a delicate piece. But the now surfacing vine refuses to tame, it thrashes aside the cell biology exam, the Khaled Hossaini, the new tube of Prussian blue... but the notes continue to shush it, whisper soothing words. The vine is turning into Jack's beanstalk, magical, wild, growing uncontrollably.
A sudden quiet.
Sivaranjini. A voice smooth as silk, rich as cream grips the vine with its lilting waves, gently but firmly. It disciplines that unruly child. Walks the periphery, soothes the convulsions. The vine shrinks, now a blade of grass. Slender, elegant, obedience personified. A long, drawn-out session of snake-charming.
Exhaustion never seems to come to the voice, its dessert-like quality never seems to fade, no matter how many times over I listen to it.
Maharajapuram Santhanam.

Song: Just play any kind of music, I can only hear one thing in my head now.
Color: Deep purple.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Oops!

You are asking me to be what?

Careful. I'm asking you to be careful. Is that so hard?

Its not what you are asking me to be as much as the tone in which you are asking.

Tone? Now I have to watch my tone with you. What's gotten into you? Have you forgotten-

Ha! Don't get me started on forgetting things. 28th October. 28th April.

Why must you dwell on EVERY BLOODY detail of life? And its not even comparable to what we were talking about. The world isn't your backyard to throw people around like that. To say things so flippantly. You'll have to pick up after yourself when you are being so reckless with words. Don't expect me to come cleaning up after you.

Its okay. I'll fight my own battles. I never needed anyone to pick up after me. I never asked you to. You simply did these things yourself to feed your ego into a nice plump chicken that you aren't willing to sacrifice now. Learn to talk to me without that chicken clucking in the back of your head and maybe I'll sound more clear.

Ego? You think I'm egoistic? Whoa. Where'd you learn such big words?

Its three letters and I've known them forever.

Alright. I give up. Don't talk to me again about this, ever.

Fine by me.

(Scene I from the Departure of Happiness)


Color: Mauve
Song: Cry me a river

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Koinkydenki. (erstwhile Koinkydenky, as suggested by Regular Joe)

Some battles in life are best fought alone, even if it means losing them. A smart price for finding people out. Here's a few pointers from my experiences as a lone warrior.

1. The ones who offer you support as your strength wanes are the ones who truly care. This is truer when more is at stake.

2. The ones who disappear before the battle even starts (for a cup of ice cream perhaps), are the ones you should have never befriended to begin with.

3. The ones who stand around the ring viciously smacking their greedy mouths for gossip are the ones you should take scavenging lessons from.

4. The ones who wait till its over, then come by and drop in a word of how you could have been better are willing to truly teach you. Learn from them.

5. The ones who are leaning so heavily on the cordons that they need restraining orders are the ones who usually rush in to pick you up the moment you fall. DON'T let go of them. Ever.

In my brief existence on this planet, I cannot have claim to completely or successfully know people. I'm naive to the point of stupidity and native to the point of wearing leaves.
But still, I believe, some battles in life are best fought alone.

Color: Red.
Song: Gori teri aankhein kahe

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Hypochondriasis of guilt.

You know guilt works?? Its a brilliantly designed system. With nuances that you never knew could be and tricks you never thought would be played. How it slowly sinks in. How it takes over everything. How there are constant reminders, some genuine and some imaginary. A state of extreme hypochondriasis of offense. How sly guilt is, oh, how sly.

Color: Black
Song: Anbe sugama?? Un Kovangal sugama??

Friday, April 11, 2008

Chidananda roopa

I have drifted in and out of classical music quite whimsically in the last few years. I rarely am obsessed with any form of music or song for that matter. There is the occasional number that plays in my head for a while that I get over soon, but nothing more than that.
I happened to listen to this raag called Sohini by Veena Sahasrabuddhe. I was totally smitten by it. Its even better than Norah Jones' Come away with me that I can listen to all day and almost as good as Mora saiyan mose bole na by Fuzon. This finding prompted me to Google for her name (I must stop doing that with every new name that I come across :|. But you'll be surprised by how many new and fantastic things I dig out because of that compulsive habit). And the first link that Google regurgitated was an IITB link with my obsession on it - Nirvana Shatkam.

Veenatai for listeners Station 4808 at KIAC and IACmusic.com

The voice(s), the words, the raag, its a whirlpool draws me more to the center of it every time I hear it. I've worn out the CD in my car and had to write another one within a week. Blame it on the company, or on my music-starved brain or on my failing immunoblots, but this obsession is making Sideshow Bob look like a joke. :)

Color: Maroon(ed)
Song: Nirvana Shatkam :D

Monday, April 7, 2008

Serendipathy.

(No, I haven't misspelt the word. It is that way for a certain reason)

A fortunate accident. I don't believe in destiny per se, but the movie always leaves me with a nice feeling. More like a reassurance that things happen for a reason. Raised in a family where the concept of God and religion are central to everyday life, its hard to avoid the compulsive thought of an external Factor (F capitalized with a reason) playing a part in deciding your "fate". I have had arguments and discussions about this Factor with people from different walks of life and I have enough opinions about it to write a book. My Factor is God. And when I say this to my colleagues, an inevitable smirk crosses their face. A scientist and you believe in God? Someone once even said that its like a vegetarian who claims to like the taste of meat. I don't know if its that ridiculous a proposition for someone who has to repeat an experiment 3 times to make sure its outcome is true, to actually believe in a force that is beyond without having any proof for it.
But I do have proof. My entire existence is proof.


Mann se Ravan jo nikaale Ram uske mann mein hai.

Color: Saffron
Song: Pal pal hai bhaari

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Ome God (Read: Oh my God)

The first ome I knew was Genome. Then there was proteome. Then Transcriptome. But today, I heard the most ridiculous ome ever. Interactome. What is with the ome fever? Do biologists really expect the world to keep up with all their 'omics'? Or is it just a little word game they play in their own arena?

Either ways, the madness much stop! Else its going to be one helluva Omeome. :|

Color: Pale yellow
Song: Kadha kaelu (MMKR)


Monday, March 17, 2008

All's fair in love and blog.

After about an hour of frantic searching for the right words and phrases, she came up with an essay that described her life in ghory yet flowery detail. One hour from today was expensive considering how much real work she had left to do. She logged into Blogger to publish it. Created a new post. Titled it "All's fair in love and blog." Copy/pasted the text from Notepad. Read it. Re-read it. Paused for a second. And then with no indication of regret, deleted it all. Closed the Notepad file without saving it and didn't for a minute worry about the wasted effort.

Publish post.

Color: Angry
Song: We're all prisoners here of our own device.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Celibacy celibrated.

Being a twenty-three something girl in my family is a dangerous occupation. Hovering grannies, curious aunts, suggestive uncles, cousins with heheitsyourturnnow-looks, a mother shushed and threatened with the possibility of her child joining the nunnery and a father who you think is on your side but is secretly doing all he can to locate your Mr.Perfect (irony!!!).
My mother has allowed herself to "slip" many a prospective groom profiles into our daily conversations. I hear her out for the free humor factor that comes along with it. At the end of each conversation I find new ways to drive her nuts about this, my favorite one being- Amma, I'll run away from home, I'm far enough to do it also.
This doesn't put her search to rest but makes her resolve to visit me in Yamerigga stronger and her search more careful. I think they have a qualification list that is growing with my everyday tantrums (...fair.. tall.. thenkalai.. must be patient... must bear with threats of running away from home... must like cauliflower enough to eat it everyday...).

I even have a standard explanation why I don't want to get married right now.
"My career is in a stage where I cannot handle these things. I need to FOCUS. Science is all I can think of right now. Another person (that too a man!!!) ( What do you mean that too a man???) in my life would triple the chaos and all that I have worked for will be in a whirlpool of confusion. And what really is the hurry? I am just 23."
There is a tsk..tsk.. and a heavy sigh which is communicated with crystal-clear moroseness (Reliance India Call obeys Murphy's law and is always noisy when I am trying to gather gossip about my undergrad classmates). I then lead the conversation into how pathetic my lab results are right now, how much pressure I am under (Oh come on!) and how I am blessed to have understanding parents who'll wait until I feel the need to be married. Yea yea whatever.
Bye Ma, I love you.
Time to watch Will & Grace.

Color: Lemon yellow
Song: Take it easy...

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

When two and two have to make five.

My interest in breast cancer used to be very minimal. It has grown over the last few weeks owing to professional indulgences and some people I've chanced upon. One fights for the cause, one fights to make a living out of it and one fights it for real. I take a lot of pride in saying I am somewhat similar to the first couple of people. Well, actually, I haven't done much fighting for the cause other than put the ribbon on my blog (aaah, so that's what that is). But I am fighting to make a profession out of it. There is a tone of desperation to my last statement that is a direct result of my recent sub-mediocre performances. Even my blogging has been tainted as "just show off with english words from dictionary" which is rather heartbreaking and annoyingly funny. I've read some amazing blogs recently - The Goltese Falcon, Gounder Brownie (which was disappointingly destroyed by a stupid blog virus), All my bak-bak, (A)musings and one of my all time favorites Jyo's pensive. The feel good factor that I derive from these blogs is that they make me feel less guilty about not blogging as often. They also contribute to my graduate student pie-chart as drawn out by Jorge Cham and personalized to suit MY GENERAL INTERESTS.

(Click on the picture to enlarge. The original version is here)

Considering the amount of attention I give my blog, I would expect people to comment on the crappy language (I so often do that to myself). But now I'm all miss fancy pancy english dictionary. :D Warms my heart so. But my sincerest thanks to Vasanthi for quoting me.

Time to go back and try some of my new research (??!!) plans. Don't get any ideas, by new, I mean new to me. :D

Color: Pink (Go breast cancer fight!)
Song: Please forgive me (Bryan Adams)

Monday, March 3, 2008

Survival of the cutest.

Darwin's re-proposal of the Evolutionary theory.

1. Variation: The amount of cuteness in every population varies.

2. Competition: Species compete amongst themselves and with other species for attaining the cutest possible mate.

3. Offspring: Some organisms have more cuteness than is necessary and may spill them over to their offspring. Results may vary.

4. Genetics: It was believed that cuteness is genetically inherited, but sufficient evidence has been provided to prove otherwise. Organisms are expected to pass on their cuteness to the next generation, but chances are that cross overs are unsuccessful.

5. Natural selection: Those organisms with the cutest traits are more likely to survive and reproduce. Survival of the cutest.

Evolution from a microscopic perspective is very different from the nutshell perspective. In a social environment, its not the most talented one that rises (there are exceptions), but the most tactful ones. If you want to evolve in academic environments, showing that you are working is more important than working itself. If you want to leave something behind for the next generation, its money - not pride, not values, not culture - but money. Thats the inheritance they'll need the most.
This is what Evolution means now.
And I am content being the cyanobacterium in this world.

Color: Cyan?
Song: Right here right now (Fatboy slim)

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Pacifiers.

Don't we all need one?
Hope, love, happiness, romance - flavors of the same spice. They're all pacifiers. Ways to put my mind in a place it wants. Something for the mind to chew on so it doesn't bawl and throw a tantrum. My all-time favorite pacifiers are humor and inspiration.
Friends are probably the best ever made. I refused to believe that I could have an impact on anyone's life until someone had a huge one on mine. I was very careful about what I said to people after that. I am less reckless with words than I used to be. I make sure I don't say the "right" things, but that I say the right things. A slight alteration of my persona is helping me gain more perspective about friendship than I ever had. My pragma is someone's pragmatic. My apparently inconsequential words are advice to someone. My love is someone's hope.
I am someone's pacifier.


Build hope that realworld can be the foundation of
Build hope that love can be the future of
Build hope that deceit can't conquer
Build hope that one failure can't quench

Color: Olive green
Song: Wherever you will go (The Calling)

Saturday, January 12, 2008

p63 controversies.

Welgum to newest matrimonial site- Orkut.
Fransip anyone? Any mother browsing through profiles for daughters-in-law? haaai cute pic plz add me as ur frand? Porno links? Add requests from complete strangers with weird profiles?

I am sure there are a lot of people who are on this ever-improving network to meet new friends, to look for new avenues and build new worlds. But there is a how and where of doing that.
Mr.Buyukkokten is still to device ways to prevent people from uploading nude pictures other than that feeble line when you sign-up. I know there is nothing much he can do other than request people. (It's almost like Nobel inventing dynamite. Except I doubt there will ever be a Buyukkokten prize. Ah, well, who knows?)

I've made some great friends through Orkut, read amazing blogs, discussed mundane and super-important problems but also displayed uniform disregard for scraps with zero-percent sense (English-wise or otherwise). I've been criticized about a lot of things before, but never about being mean to strangers. I consider myself a fairly polite person. Its not that I don't appreciate strangers scrapping me - but I would like to have a choice of wanting to reply or not. And I thought I did. Until my not replying became rudeness and then somehow escalated to the point of me having sky-high attitude. I do feel the need to explain myself to myself. I try to reason it with some googling about etiquette. Doesn't work. Too vague.
Blogging seems to be effective, reminding me that I reply promptly to all my generous commentators and am receptive to criticism (I really am!). I am almost tempted to apologize for the unreplied scraps. But a sensible lump of ego is sitting at the tip of my fingers, shooing the apology away, saying that I did nothing wrong. So be it.
Non-repliers unite!

Stay beautiful,

Dee.

(Wink at Nik, Suhasa, Jyo, Vinda)

Color: Red
Song: Sandiyare sandiyare!

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

A songbird lost in a winter storm.

Obligations. They are like friction. There when you don't want them, and not where you need them.