Saturday, December 27, 2008

Yelagiri Ride - Christmas Day 2008

pics..

on the NH46, between Vellore and Ambur.


#3(i think) of the 14 hairpin bends


Us


on the way back, on the NH46




self timed shot, had to run across the to get into the pic.


Started from my place at 5.30am, we were out of the city and on the NH4 before 6am, next stop was at Vellore with very few butt breaks inbetween. We held a steady 70 kmph through this stretch of our ride and i started listening to music on my iPod. Highway + Unicorn + relaxed speed + cool climate + AR Music = Bliss. Reached our (now) usual hotel, Hotel Vasantha bhavan near the Vellore bus stand at 8.15 am. Gorged on idlis and dosais, the food is good and cheap here.

Started towards Yelagiri, the route we were to take was, Vellore - Ambur - Vaniyambadi - Ponneri - Yelagiri. The 4-laned NH46 till after Vaniyambadi and the twisty 2-lane state highway towards Ponneri and took the detour towards the hills just after ponneri. The 15Km road up till Yelagiri from here is a treat for bikers with 14 hairpin bends and awesome roads, hard sporty riding is possible, however we did none of that. We were enjoying the view and started riding up at a sedate pace, stopped to take pics along the way and i tried shooting some one-handed videos too. Got to the top just before 11am.

Stopped by to check out the 'lake', the only place of interest in Yelagiri. The travel sites called it a 'tiny man-made lake', so i expected a small pond-like lake but it was way bigger than i expected it to be. Convinced Venki to try boating and we took a two seater pedal boat. After we got on we realized that the pedals were useless and the boat was very slow even when we pedalled real hard, the rudder did not seem to work either(the boat started changing direction even when the rudder was held straight). We let the boat drift on its own after a while and started discussing plans to ride back, eat etc. Hung around in the park overlooking the lake for some more time after the boat ride and then started riding back at 2.30pm (ithink).

The ride downhill was done with our engines turned off and we just rolled down with the help of gravity, but midway I decided to start the bike and try a little bit of hard riding, this went on till i had a close call with a truck on one of the hairpins, i was running a wide line expecting to pass the truck on the outside comfortably, but midway through the hairpin realized the truck was right in front of me on my lane. Somehow managed to avoid crashing into the truck, after the usual exchange of expletives i decided to pull over and wait for Venki to catch up.

Started riding sensibly after that, we made a stop at Ambur on my insistence, for i wanted to try the 'Ambur' biriyani. Vellore was 50 kms away and Venki had to wait till we got there for veggie food. We did pretty good speeds after that to reach Vellore in very quick time, made a stop at the same hotel that we ate in that morning.

Started riding back at 5pm, we were a little delayed and it was beginning to get dark. I find night riding very difficult, so we decided to cover as much distance before the sun went down completely. I began listening to music on my Pod again and we set a steady pace of 85-90 kmph with no breaks till the light went off. Took a long break after that, we were still 50 kms from Chennai and it was going to be night riding all the way back. We dropped to very low speeds of 50-60 kmph till we reached city limits. Got back home at 7.30pm

End of the day i had done 445 kms in all, all of it on my Unicorn ( we never exchanged bikes) and this was the most number of kilometers in a day for me. (I've once travelled 525 kms in a day during my Ooty ride, but most of that was as a pillion).

Got my bike back from the first service today and plans for the next ride have begun already. Hoping to squeeze in a ride to tirupathi before my college reopens next month.

That is all...

Thanks for reading.!

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Monday, December 8, 2008

Jaya Tv's interpretation of Pakistan

There was this program on Jaya Tv which ended few mins back, it was called 'Semma Scene' or something like that. It is the kind of program where they show scenes from some recent movie and the anchor craps about some unrelated stuff inbetween scenes. Usually these 'anchors' stick to giving us 'gyaan' on life/love etc. But after the Mumbai attacks they've decided to base their talks on 'terrorism'

Few lines from the today's show -

'manidha uruvula irrkura mirunganga intha pakisthaniyargal, ivanga panratha romba kaalama mannichi vittutom. Inime porumaiya irrukarthula arthame illa, aana namma bathil theevaravathomo vera entha violencea o irrukathu, naama por seithu avangalukku oru paadam karpippom'. - ippo intha scene paathu enjoy pannunga.

Translation- Pakistanis are animals in human form. We have forgiven them for their misdeeds so many times in the past. But this time there is no reason to be patient this time. Our respone won't be terrorism or violence. We'll will go to war and teach them a lesson - now watch this scene from the movie...

:( wtf ? these people are crazy...

btw, me got a new bike. A Honda CBF150S aka Honda Unicorn. Some pics can be found here.

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Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Facebook

The latest episode of Dexter is buffering in another tab and i thought i'll write something till that is done. So if you're not as bored/wasted as me, there are better ways to spend your time on the WWW.

I joined facebook last week, Orkut was getting too boring for me, i'm stuck with a constant number of friends/scraps. I've reached a saturation level i guess by adding/talking/scraping everyone i remotely know, there are no more 'hey .. remember we were in the same class till the 8th class .. nice to catch up with you again ..' add requests. Scrapping classmates to ask 'wots up?' is not 'okay' anymore. No more interesting girls whose profile i can visit and then cross my fingers waiting for them to visit back ( as if that means anything).

So.. I created a FB account and started searching for 'friends' to add. First thing i noticed was the fresh looking user interface which was a few hundred light years ahead of the html-ised orkut interface( i recently found out that Orkut was not even optimized for wide-screen monitors). Now first, on FB the colors were really soft and (cliché alert) easy on the eye, which is a relief cos' orkut has this new option called 'profile themes', and almost everyone has set their profile colors to thick black, bright yellow or the 'mtv roadies theme' which imo is the worst theme ever.

FB has reduced the number of pageloads by using in-page popups for most actions (adding friends/sending messages) this reduces delay b'w pages and there are no full page reloads for even the simplest of actions, like in Orkut. This means i can use FB without bothering to pause my torrent downloads, when each Orkut page would take 15 secs to open up when a download is on.

One other thing i noticed is FB has screwed up a bit on profile security. When users are allowed an option to block 'non-friends' from viewing their profiles, this validation happens only when you enter the profile page directly. But it is possible to enter even restricted photo albums if you enter through a different path. This is how you do it..

you're A, B is your friend, C is B's friend.

To enter C's photo album you just need to find a photo in which 'C has tagged B', or wait for 'B to comment on a photo in C's album'. When either of these things happen the update comes up on B's wall and you can enter C's album through there.

There is no user validation( ie. checking if the accessing user is allowed into the profile) if you enter through a photo ( this i've found out for now) and i'm sure there are a lot more holes like this one. Orkut on the other hand has a slick security system in place(AFAIK).

In the last two paragraphs, i might've sounded like this desperate guy looking to enter/view other profiles/albums by all crooky methods. Well i'm bored of all that actually..

Got to go.. the buffering should be over by now..

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Friday, November 14, 2008

Vaaranam aayiram - Movie review.



...will be up here in 6-7 hours from now(hopefully), going for the evening show at Sathyam Cinemas with friends.

Adios

Edit: Here is the review as promised... and i'm sorry Rahman for the false alert.

First of all i'm not going to say anything about the 'story' part at all. Any discussion about how good/logical/bad the story is would be useless cos' this is not a movie you see for its 'story/music/screenplay etc.', but you need to watch it for the magic it creates within you (IMO).

Gautham and Surya together have made a very sincere movie with so much effort, i would've watched it even if it were boring/dull/useless.. and... then they actually made it 'interesting/awesome/true/pure/(all possible positive adjectives for describing movies)'. Wow.. What more could I ask for ? The film's sincerity makes up for all the tiny flaws it has. The movie might be 3 hours or so long, some people might call this movie a 'drag', but not for me. There was this moment in between the movie when i felt i wanted it to go on forever without an end.

Nothing i say would be enough here. I could write on for a few hours about this movie if i wanted to and still have so much left unsaid.

Can't wait to rewatch it again... for me this movie is a perfect 10.

End.

just go watch it and tell me what you think of it.. i'm waiting to discuss the movie with other people..

Edit 2: I open the paper today and got to read this VA 'review' by 'Bhama Devi Ravi'.

@her: Never find fault with an artist for not doing what he never set out to do in the first place'. Gautham menon never said he was making a 'muvee' and your review goes to all lengths to tell us how and why this isn't a normal muvee.. and that is exactly what is wrong with your review. You need to understand the intentions of the director and then check if he did a good job of what he wanted to do ithinks.

Cheers

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Sunday, November 9, 2008

On Cricket(again)...

I don't even have to link to this to tell you what i'm talking about, you could just scroll down two posts to see my 'hate rant' on cricket, the one i wrote less than 20 days back.

And now... I've got my semester exams ( i'm not in the 'study hols' before exams, but i'm actually in the middle of my exam schedule) and all i do in the days between my exams is watch cricket. Yep.. the very game i 'totally despised/puked at the mention of/knew was for losers' some 3 weeks back, that very game. I can't seem to get away from it now, i started with following ball-by-ball text commentary on cricinfo and now moved on to watching live streaming on the net( cos' i don't get the channel on TV). I wait for the preview, review articles at the end of the day on cricinfo and i've even started reading a few cricket blogs. I look up future match fixtures and check which matches i'll be able to watch and right now i'm even planning on buying tickets for the Champions League matches at Chennai. whoaa.! thats one major jump from being a cricket 'hater' to become a 'fanatic', don't you think ?

I blame it on my exams, i desperately look for a distraction to put off studying and this time it is cricket. :(. Waiting for this phase to pass, i like the cricket hater 'me' better.

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Monday, November 3, 2008

Of Friends...

This friend called me up at 10pm and asked me to come out of my house and meet up with him. Now what is so not-normal about this ? I know this guy from my first semester in college (three years back that is) and we were in the same class for like 6 months. He was one of my first friends in college and we all had this small close knit group back then, it was fun. I shifted classes after that and we really never saw much of each other. We exchanged 'hi 's' when we crossed each other in college, the occasional meetp-ups when i sometimes went over to see guys from my old class, that was all.

And today all of a sudden he turns up and starts talking about how much he's wanted to catch up with me all these years and goes on to speak about wanting to stop by to just see me every time he goes past my place and how it never happened till today et. al. . I was seriously touched. We then were talking about 'those times' for sometime and he left with promises to meet more often.

I don't think he knew... he made my day

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Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Guruem.com, what think ?

I'm having my study holidays right now, and as always this is the time i develop this sudden urge to spend more time on my blog. This time i thought i needed to do something more than just write a few rant posts, so i decided to buy a domain name for my blog.

If you look up at my blog url you'll know why i'm so desperate to buy a domain name of all things. When i started this blog two years back ( well.. almost) i entered a simple blog url, but then that name was taken and i had to try again. This went on for some time till when i realized all the good url's ( even the .blogspot.com url's) were taken, i had to either rack my brains and think of a good, short url for my blog or i could just enter a lot of words in that space and know it wouldn't be taken and then move on with the blog. What i did is for you all to see.

Like i said i ended up with a long long url, which even i find irritating to type out. One of the advantages of blogging on Blogger is that i can always change my blog url in seconds, but that would be a stupid thing to do right now. After having used this url for 2 years I'll have to go around informing my url change to everyone( at least to the few who bother), all backlinks will stop working, and worst of all i will become invisible to Google again and i will lose all my search engine traffic.

When i went domain scouting this time i had my priorities in place, i needed a real short, easy to spell,remember domain name and something i could relate to ( not some arbit 'myveryownrandomsomething') .

I've been interested in 'gurum.com' for sometime now, i kept following the domain's ownership cos' the guy who had the domain was not using it and the term was nearing its end and i was hoping to snap it up if it went un-renewed, but that was not to be. Some domain auctioneer lapped it up as soon as the domain became available and according to his Sedo page his expected price is '3500 Euros'. :P Now i know that no amount of bargaining will bring the price down to my levels, so i decided to try 'guruem.com' where 'em' is to make up for 'm'.

http: //guruem.com

Okay, now pliss tell me what you think ...

I know the way stuff like this is generally done, i need put up a poll with 4-5 options and ask you to choose, but i swear i don't have any more suggestions. It'll be so great if any of you could suggest a name. TIA.

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Sunday, October 19, 2008

So what ?

Yep, Sachin did become the highest scorer in tests and ya thats pretty good and all that.

So what ?

Bledy, Everyone puts up a Sachin display pic or they change their orkut profile name to 'Sachin - XXXXXXXXXXXX', where XXX may be some crap like 'rename cricket as sachin','the unbeatable champ','the god even atheists believe in','the master has done it'.

Now what does that prove or do ? Move on da.. Its just a f'ckin game.

Ya, i get they love his game so much, he's awesome et. al. but isn't all this build up konjam too excessive ? And when i'm waiting for this to pass, the Indian team is in a very good position in the Second test match against Aus. So, god forbid if they manage to win this, 'it'll' start again.

P.S: I'm not a Sachin hater. I hate Cricket.

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Sunday, October 5, 2008

About Me

This blog is almost 2 years old. I'm sure a lot has changed about the way i write, think, express my thoughts since my first blog post and now. I started posting comments on blogs, forums long before i started this blog, and today I happened to revisit this site and i just could not believe 'I' wrote all that. I'm talking about those immature arguments, unnecessary sarcasm, needless show-offs and every extra line of text that was not-needed. There are loads of 'such' stuff on the www that i would love to erase or at least take my name away from. But, that is the easy way out, right ? Either that, or i could take something from this and make sure i'm more sensible when talking, writing things that are 'good' or at least 'not-bad' when i look back a few years from now.

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Saturday, September 27, 2008

Sakkarakkati - The Movie - Review

Totally awesome!! Can a movie be this good ? Seriously .. Wow.



A must watch for all movie buffs, heck anyone who understands the language should see this movie. You're missing a piece of history if you miss this movie, cos' IMO this is the suckiest movie ever ever made in Thamizh film history. For all the pre-release hype it generated it set new disappointment lows. And, now before you start arguing about how this other movie is the baddest movie ever, go watch this.. There is no way it can get shittier than this. I'm serious ..

The hero, looks kind of good. Okay, i'm done saying one good thing about the movie. I'll start now ..

First of all, if i remember right, a movie needs to have 'actors' in it. I don't know how the people who made the movie forgot that very basic point. There was not a single living thing in the frame which could 'act' in the whole 3 hours running time of this movie. A guy in the theatre said this about the hero - quote ' anju paisa kudutha aai nooru rubaiku nadikiran da ivan' unquote, a crude translation would be 'after taking 5 paisa he's acting for 500 rupees worth'. One word to sum up everything - OVERACTING, down to every last person in the cast.

One more good thing about the movie. The hero has taken a lot of effort to make the movie Deaf-friendly. Now thats so noble and all that, but then what about the rest of us normal people. What do we do ? Damn.. I mean.. why does he have to emote every single little word he speaks. I understand words like 'sorry', 'hello' etc. etc. without him having to act out 'sorry', 'hello', bledy he even acts out YES, NO and then every other damned line that leaves that mouth throughout the movie. That sucks.

Now, talking about the lines in the movie. Not a single line, i mean not a 'single' line is good( i even waited till the end credits to see if the script writer let one 'not-sucky' line through. Never happened). Every line makes you want to throw up, total shit. Its like someone decided to make a movie, and the guy in charge of the script failed to turn up on the day of the shoot and they decided to shoot the scenes with junk dialogues, and then someone forgot to put the real script at the dubbing table and then the screwed up dialogues were dubbed in by mistake. ( This is a rant blog, okay ?)

Now, the people who made the movie wanted it to look/sound cool. So, they decided to have 'cool' English dialogues. Now for one, the movie already had a sucky script writer who couldn't write sensible lines in thamizh, he was given the job of writing 'english dialogues' too.

Mistake 1: no one bothered to find out if he knew the language, or if he knew about the existence of this thing called 'grammar'.

Mistake 2: Too bad, the actors weren't that good either, or they were too busy 'acting' their lines; they never cared to find out if the dialogues were any good.

Result: Every few minutess some crappy engleesh dialogue is spoken by someone on screen. Now i can stand crappy peter lines, not a big problem that.. But the stupid, fake-cool-accent is too much.

The heroines, they do what they were hired to do - expose their bods. And i should say they look pretty good, but then the rest of the movie sucks so much that you just can't get yourself to watch the screen with a neutral mind. So we hate the whole thing anyways .. The same thing with the music, ARR made an awesome soundtrack for this movie, and they've used it in the worst possible way ever. We get to see a lot of movies where ARR's songs are screwed up with stupid picturization. This movie sets again sets new standards for sucky picturization. All the songs except 'Taxi Taxi' have anime backgrounds, which sucks.

Story - Non-existent.

My weirdest dream has more logic than this movie's 'story' i thinks.

I could go on.. My point simply is this .. Stupid Movie.. Don't ever watch it.

Adios.

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Saturday, September 20, 2008

On Compering ...

I am totally not comfortable with reading lines from script. To realize this in the middle of an event infront of 500 people is sic. I just cannot modulate my speech even if my life depended on it. I don't understand how some people manage to read a script and still sound 'not fake', still get the timing right et. al. I just don't think i'm that gifted period.

According to me hosting events, say a quiz is way way easier, you get to be spontaneous and say any shite you feel like. You don't have to worry about modulation, timing, content, speed etc. I'll take that over puking out a script any day.

And, thank you Thanamoi for that award. And ya, i still remember my first time on your blog. I think i got there following a comment you left on one of my posts, and the first thing i noticed was that i was already on your blogroll. wow.. I'll always remember that about your blog..

Also, i0'm sorry for taking so long to 'accept' your award. I noticed the comment only a few days back, i've been wanting to write a post ever since. Infact, i think i started writing this post sp that i could accept your award.

Cheers... Rock on!

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Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Olympics




India won its first ever gold in an individual event. Wow ..

I was looking around for Olympics updates when i found this.

100,000 ? Isn't that too much ?

Lets see the stats already available.

130,000 condoms were given out at Athens in 2004.

According to the wikipedia entry on Athens Olympics, a total of 10,625 athletes with 5,501 team officials participated in the games.

So around 16,000 in all, lets say there were 8,000 men approx.

130,000/8,000 = on an average, 16.25 condoms per male.

The games happened from August 13 to 29 = 17 days.

I know a lot of rubber would've gone unused, mostly cos' men are very optimistic about their chances and might just end up carrying extra condoms hoping to get lucky, and prolly' a good number was wasted ( at least according to me) for other activities which don't really require the participant(s) to use a condom.

Even with all that, thats still a lot of sex. Wot think ?

Just an observation..

Bonus link- check this out.

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Monday, August 4, 2008

College...

Effective today my classes at college end 15 minutes earlier than before. ie. we are 'let off' at 3.40 instead of 3.55 pm. Now, this 15 mins time gives me enough time to catch a train at 4pm, which means i don't have to wait till the 4.45 train. This means I get home 45 mins- 1 hour sooner than before. Wow.

I feel my evenings have suddenly opened up( eventhough i get just 45 mins extra), i have time for so much else. It does not get dark by the time i get home, and i get back home in the 'afternoon' not 'evening'. We even started planning to go for a movie today ( plan flopped in the end), something unthinkable when we were on the previous schedule.

I think this is the only reason i'm in pretty decent moods now( i can't think of any other reason). 15 minutes change so much.

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Friday, August 1, 2008

Life...

is so amazing. So much can happen in a single day. Yesterday i had a very bad day and an awesome day together. What started off as a very neutral day turned into 'very bad' and then later in the evening it finally became this superawesome day. I just can't stop thinking about how things turned around for me in a few hours.

I really need to try and have a smoother emotional curve. Oscillating between 'slightly suicidal' and 'cheerful' isn't so easy on me. Neutral plateaus with gentle swings are better ithinks.

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Saturday, July 26, 2008

Books



I've now started reading books to kill time in class.

First, made a mistake by starting off with 'The Three Mistakes of my Life' by Chetan Bhagat. I think this is the worshest book i've read ever.

I borrowed the book from a friend, just to check if CB was worth all the hype he generates around here.

He sucks.

I know this sounds a little 'too much'; I really think i can write rant better than him. When 'I' start feeling this way, the guy has really screwed up, right ?


Next, i moved on to 'The God of Small Things' by Arundhati Roy.

Very Impressive and i should say this book 'high level', In all my life I don't ever remember rereading lines over and over to understand the meaning. I even had to look up a few words on the online dictionary after i got back home. The narration style is simply awesome methinks, i sometimes found myself smiling for no reason at all. Everything about this book is awesome.

Pliss read if you can, and you'll not be disappointed. I promise.


Next up for class reading, The Lord of The Rings, my sister has all the three volumes in a single book ( must be atleast 4-5 inches thick), the wonly prob is i'll have to carry it to college everyday. Also its going to be a little difficult to hide a book of this size when class is on. Anyways ..

btw, any book suggestions ? Pliss leave a comment.

I'm thinking i'll read Archer's 'Kane and Abel' after this. Wot think ?

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Saturday, July 12, 2008

A.R.R's 'Sakkarakatti' music...

... very Himesh Reshamiya-like. Loud and screechy. Sucks..

Also, this happens to be post #100 on my blog.

Edit: On repeated hearing i find that, two tracks - 'Chinnama' and 'Elay' are actually good. Listening them on loop from evening, sounds like the only A.R.R tracks in the album. All other songs i'm sure were outsourced to Himesh Reshamiya.

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Sunday, July 6, 2008

Jaane Tu Ya Jaane Na



Reason i went to see JTYJN on Saturday - ARR's music, Genelia D'souza and Aamir Khan Productions ( in that order). What i got was just an ' okay' bollywood teen flick . But then the superawesome music and the cool main characters kinda made up for all the general drabness.

A few general points.

- I find it very difficult to appreciate the humor in the movie ( i understand the lines .. no prob) but i just can't seem to sync with the crowd when it comes to laugh outs ( very few good ones in the movie actually).

Imagine this .. Everyone in the theater bursts out laughing for a scene which you don't find even mildly humorous. And for other scenes where you think there is a real subtle, laugh-worthy humor the crowd totally ignores it, and you have to check your burst out in milli-seconds to stop embarrassing yourself.

- The movie has a slew of guest appearances, Naseeruddin Shah, Paresh Rawal, Sohail and Arbazz Khan. I hated them all, too loud, jarring.. so irritating. I understand that Bollywood is one big brotherhood and all that, but this many needless 'guest appearances' is not necessary methinks.

- The movie gets very slow in the second half, sometimes it looks as if the film is moving in slow motion by mistake, every character on screen takes his/her own sweet time to deliver their lines and they talk at 5 words per min, take a small power nap before they react to lines and damn even they start moving slow. Bugging ..

- The only adjective that comes up when I think 'Genelia' is Sweet.

More later..

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Saturday, June 21, 2008

Dasavatharam



Kamalhassan wanted 10 roles in a movie , there is no possible way he could've squeezed in 10 roles in a normal ( sequential, logical) storyline. So he chose - Chaos theory. Characters could appear randomly and fade out when not required and still the story would move on. I don't see why everyone made a huge fuss about the story, this movie does not require a story period.

The make-up and the CG could've been better, thats the only sore point. The movie works on two levels; for the masses its the high adrenalin chases, nice humor, a kill every few minutes by Fletcher and the like. And for the people who look for story, logic etc. there is the concept that random events happening to different people has an effect on the final story. This is good enough for me..

Don't have too much to say about Kamalhassan's acting, dialog delivery etc. cos' i watched the movie at home. A lame cam print is all i could get, the video was very poor and the audio was half a second out of sync.

More later ..

But people who haven't seen the movie yet - you need to ignore all the 'no story' reviews and check it out for yourself.

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Wednesday, June 4, 2008

LA Confidential & The Negotiator



Two Kevin Spacey movies in two days. After being stuck with a string of mediocre movies the whole of last week, finally i get to watch some good ones. Two good cop movies both with the basic good cop vs bad cop plot.

'The Negotiator' was the better one methinks, now this movie is not to be confused with Frederick Forsyth's novel by the same name (the movie is not an adaptation of the book, which actually would have been good too). This movie also has Samuel L Jackson ( 'Jules' from Pulp Fiction) as Danny Roman, who is this expert police negotiator who has to becomes a hostage taker himself after he gets framed for the murder of his partner and also for embezzlement of employee funds. The movie is about him clearing his name and also finding the people behind those crimes. Kevin Spacey is the negotiator called in to handle this situation and he ends up helping Danny find the bad guys in the department. Great movie ..

LA confidential has another fav actor of mine, Russell Crowe and also Guy Pearce ( the guy from 'Memento'). Three cops (re)investigate a cafe shootout in their own different ways, after they are convinced that the guys who were arrested for the crime weren't involved with it. Their search for the true criminals leads them back into their own department. Also this movie has the superhot 'Kim Basinger' in it. A very trigger happy movie .. Pretty good ..

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School

Its so nice to catch up with old friends from school, right ? Today i got to speak( on YM) to this girl from my class at school after a long time. She's always been on my messenger list, but we never seemed to be online at the same time ( cos' i guess she's not an internet freak like me) so we never really spoke ever. Now, this girl - i've known her really well, i remember back during school times ( in the eighth class i think) she was my sworn enemy in class. All i can remember about her is the fights/arguments we've had. But then after 12th i started being 'normal' and we knew each other through a mutual friend of ours. Normal, casual conversations happened ..

Coming back to the point, this girl i'm talking about - she got placed in CTS ( it was placement time at her college today). That was what started the conversation on YM and after that the discussion moved on to other things like her personal life and we finally settled on 'school'. The 'school' talk did not last for very long but still it kinda made my day ( i've had a very boring day otherwise). Very nostalgic.

My point - School was 'nice' .. She's 'nice' too ..

Thats pretty much all ..

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Saturday, May 31, 2008

Venki and his Pulsar 220.

This one is long due..

Venki got his Pulsar 220 delivered last Tuesday. Here are some pics ..


Venki and his 'Pudhu Vandi'



The Evil Eye ( fuckin' awesome pilot lamps .. )




More pics - 1|2|3|4|5|6|7


First Impressions.

The gear shifts are very non-Pulsar like; i reached neutral on my first attempt almost every single time.

The bike is being 'run-in' ( no break-in this time .. no risks with a 88k INR bike), so i've not taken her over 4k rpm ( the bike redlines at 9.5k rpm) or 65 Kmph. But the extra power is so obvious, just a little blip on the throttle at any rpm above 3k - the bike shoots forward real quick. Can't wait to rip her when the run-in thingy is over .

The headlamps are awesome. Actually they are just super bright, need to take the bike out at night to see how effective the headlamp throw is.

I'm too tall for the bike (6'1"), my knees butt into the front fairing when i sit normally. I need to sit at the rear most part of the front seat to avoid that( which is impossible when with a pillion).

Braking is superawesome, don't know if it is cos' of the rear disc brakes ( which i don't use much anyways) or cos' of the overall balance even on hard braking.

Self canceling indicators are confusing.

Exhaust note is loud and bass y, some might say it sounds like an autorickshaw .. But, i'm okay with it.

The 120/80 rear tyre adds muscle to the rear end of the bike, this becomes totally necessary cos' the front end is huge with the fixed fairing, rvm's from the fairing et al.

The exposed chain makes it very high maintenance, also the excess grease from the chain splatters over the alloy rims, so with the DIY chain care we need to be really careful, excess oiling could screw your clothes.

The pillion seat is screwed up, its tiny and has a weird shape, also the padding is not sufficient. My arse starts hurting just after 10 km..

More later .

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Saturday, May 24, 2008

Off To Mysore ..

Leaving to mysore today for a short weekend trip. I'll be back on Tuesday ..

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Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Ada - Initial Impressions.

Just got to check out the music of Tanvir Ahmed's film 'Ada'.. Well i think it'll be better known as A.R Rahman's 'Ada' after 'this' kinda music.



If you haven't heard this already, stop reading this right here and go buy/find/borrow/beg a CD from someone/somewhere and check them out, cos' IT IS AWESOME.

I've not checked all the tracks completely yet, but just skimmed through them all once. Around 3-4 tracks totally blew my mind the very first time i heard them.

Track List - Back Cover.



^^ Click for a larger image.

Tracks 1,5 and 8 are my fav. for now. I'm sure i'll start liking more when i take a proper look at them all.

Track 8, Ishq Ada by Parul Mishra is particularly awesome. I can't get myself to take a break from that song and move onto rest of the album.

Track 5, Maherbaan is by A.R Rahman, need i say more ?

Enjoy.

Also, the music of A.R's 'Jaane Tu Ya Jaane Na' was also released yesterday. I'm almost done with that download. I'm sure that will be superawesome too. Don't forget to check that out next.

More Later...

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Monday, May 19, 2008

Is This Too Much To Ask For ?

After one reads a 200 page long e-book (tiny print), the least one expects is the Hero to be alive at the end. Don't we all look for Happy Endings (at least in books) ?

Whats the point in extolling the virtues of a man for a full 195 pages , only to introduce a bizarre (needless) twist in the last chapter and 'assassinate' him. Why couldn't the author just let 'him' live happily ever after with his voluptuous Italian wife ?

I just don't see the point of having an ending like this. I mean .. After staying up late to finish the story, i just needed to see him alive. If that had happened i could've gone straight to bed and i wouldn't have stayed back to write this at 2 in the morning ... Damn ..

The book i'm talking bout' here is 'The Sicilian' by Mario Puzo. 'Turi Guiliano' deserved something better methinks ..

What say ?

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Friday, May 16, 2008

Newsflash: VHP leaders are DUMB.

Fresh proof has come in to prove the above said statement.

Today the VHP leadership has 'demanded' that no Pakistani player be allowed to player in the IPL. Reason: The suspected Pakistani involvement in the Jaipur blasts.

^^ This is total crap, and we'll not be talking bout' this. Cos' no amount of bashing on those lines will be enough and also i don't think it is required.

Now, methinks this is the dumbest thing they've done in recent times. haha.. Blaming a whole nation/community/religion for the wrong deeds of a small section of them is the foolishest thing one can do. Now, they've done this kind of totally unrelated blaming a lot( that is all they do), but this time it looks extra stupid, right ?

And, such a 'demand' from an organization claiming to be the 'World Hindu council' ( VHP in English is World Hindu Council) projects a very negative image about the 'whole' Hindu community( who they claim to represent). And its a pity that such a huge national party like the BJP( which is looking to be elected at the centre next term) supports all this crap. I'll always hold this against them - the BJP promotes religious communism indirectly by supporting the RSS and the VHP (IMO). Oppression of people of their own faith, and destruction of non-believers, that is what they do, right ?

Actually, i could go on and on bout' this ..

But, I guess it'll then be proof that i'm DUMB too.

End of Rant.

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Thursday, May 15, 2008

Random Ramblings

Me just got back home after dropping a friend at the airport. Srikanth left for the US of A to present a paper at the ISEE 2008( International Symposium on Electronics and the Environment) at San Francisco on the 19th . His paper is on 'an alternative to the present hydrogen generation methods', and he's also got a proposal for implementation of this technique in a motorcar. He gets to go to SF with his partner and present his 'idea' at an international IEEE conference. Now, even forgetting the part that he gets to enjoy a sponsored (okay only 50% is from the sponsor, and the rest bout' 35k is his) vacation in the US of A in his third year of college; i just can't stop thinking bout' how awesome it would be to have a IEEE conference certificate in your resume file when the companies come knocking next semester. Damn..

Okay, nuff said .. Does the above paragraph sound like a crazy rant of a guy whose heart is full of envy ? Cos' that is what it is...

Actually, i'm just kidding, i'm really happy for him cos' i think he really deserves this and prolly even much more.


Other Tidbits

Srikanth'll be getting a Canon Powershot A590 IS for Venki when he gets back. It costs wonly 150$ in the US. So handed over venki's 7k INR to him, pretty good deal considering the same cam costs 11k at the Canon showrooms here in Chennai. Point to be noted: this money was earned completely through his blog by making sponsored posts. Isn't that cool ? I think its cool ..

My first time on the Kathipara flyover, and damn its awesome. I just knew a section of the junction was opened for traffic a couple of months back. But then i assumed it was the Mount road section ( guindy railway station towards the airport), but then today found out the section that was opened was actually the one from 100-feet road towards the Airport. Right from the time we started off, i kept thinking bout' all the traffic i would need to cross at Kathipara. I estimated it would take me a minimum of 20 mins, but cos' of the flyover ( which actually has 4-lanes for each direction) i did it in 2. Wow ..

Ripped my Dio real hard on the way back, throttle constantly pinned at 80Kmph and on certain longer sections the needle would climb up to 90Kmph, thats the max speed on my Dio so far with no favorable gradient whatsoever. Dropped to sane speeds once i crossed the Kathipara junction and cruised at 50Kmph all the way till home.

Thats pretty much all,

Now, i'll get back to watching a few episodes of Heroes and then crash.

More Later..

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Wednesday, May 14, 2008

A Very Sluggish Start To The Holidays.

After all the enthusiastic talk about my holidays, i guess they've gotten off to a very slow start wonly. I hardly ever left the house these two days and i don't think i've slept so much in a day ever before. Eat-Sleep-Eat-Sleep, that is all i do. Of course there are movies, watched 'Sweeney Todd: The demon barber of fleet street' yesterday, 'Blow' the day before and planning to watch 'From Hell' today. This seems to be a 'Johnny Depp' vaaram for me.

I stayed up the whole night to read Forsyth's 'The Afghan' on my comp( does anyone else read fiction thru e-books ? or am i the only crazy one here?). This was the only remaining Frederick Forsyth book for me, now i'm done with them all. My favorite still is 'Fist of God' prolly cos' it was my first Forsyth novel and 'Mike Martin' i think is the coolest Forsyth hero ever( the same guy reappears as the lead in 'The Afghan', SPOILER: Too bad he dies in the end :( ). Now, i've run out of authors, any suggestions ? Is Robert Ludlum any good ? I've read his Bourne series of novels, they were okay ( cos' i liked the movies better).

Also started with Season 1 of 'Heroes' today, it is good so far.Two complete seasons left in this show, so that should keep me busy for at least a week.

Too bad i don't get the IPL telecast at home at least that will keep me busy in the evenings, for some reason the cable operator decided to stop giving us the channel( of course it was available through my exams, and now when i'm totally free i don't get it .. Damn ..). Got no choice but to follow the ball-by-ball text commentary on Cricinfo.

Cleaned out my room yesterday , and took my comp apart to clean everything and put it back, cos' i was bored. But very wrong choice to beat boredom, cos' when i put everything back together the UPS wasn't working. Don't know what went wrong, so i have the comp running on the regular power now. Don't think i'll buy a new one for now, if i had the money i would instead buy a DVD writer to back up all my movies and TV shows, it is very difficult to Shift+Del 10Gb of a particular TV show you love, just cos' you need to make space for the new stuff. Right now i've got less than 50mb free space on each of my partitions ( only got a 80Gb drive), and with the heroes download going on, i should choose to delete something now. Just can't decide which one but ..

Got 15 mins to make that choice or pause the download, which i won't like too much cos' i'll be left with no episodes for tomorrow. Okay i'll get back to the choosing now ...

Thats pretty much all,

More later ..

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Monday, May 12, 2008

Itt ees all overrr .. I'm Freeeeeeee ..

I'm done with my semester exams ( just got back home). Fuck.. Never been more relieved in all my college life.

Lots of reasons, my last exam was Antennas and Wave Propagation, totally screwed up subject. Lots of derivations crap, so need to mug lots of formulae ( i'm very bad at math, so even the normal integration, differentiation steps are 'steps'). My prep wasn't all that great, decided to skip all derivations except 4-5 very very important( and simple) ones and study all the (easy)theory topics, which is basically long stories about all types of antenna. And i got lucky, the paper was full of theory q's, did really well ( for the amount i studied). All my friends who put in so much effort to mug/learn all those numerous derivations were screwed. haha .. Okay .. Chuck all that.. It is always great to end things on a good note. That way all the previous screwups are forgotten.

The next reason is, i get more than 40 days of holidays, college reopens on 23rd June ( by then i'll be a 'Senior', that is a rant for another day). Actually we get lots of holidays every even semester, but this is the first time i'll get to enjoy them fully. Every other time i'll usually have a few arrears after my current exams schedule, so when everyone else would be on holidays, i'll be stuck with screwed up exams. But then, i did my previous sem pretty well, so no more arrears.

I still have FORTY days left .. Wow .. My blog will be seeing a lot activity this month. Got nothing much to do - movies, TV shows, read/write blog posts and ofcourse we'll be doing a few rides later during June. We also have plans to go on a totally unplanned 2 day trip. Lets see whether this happens ..

More later ..

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Saturday, May 3, 2008

This Time Its Mallika Sherawat ...

Every big film function in Tamilnadu seems to generate a new controversy, first it was Kushboo's 'Chappal Incident' then the (in)famous Shreya controversy during the silver jubilee celebrations of her film Shivaji and now its Mallika Sherawat's turn. The 'dress' she wore at the audio release of Dasavatharam is supposed to have caused 'mental agony' to the people of TN. And she went on to sit with her legs crossed when Thamizh thatha, our CM was around.

The complainant no wonder is from HMK, the self proclaimed 'Hindu Makkal Katchi' whose sole mission seems to be protecting ' Thamizh culture' - very noble, but then according to them the whole process of protecting our culture seems to start and end with making the leading ladies of Kollywood cover up.

Last time around Shreya was intelligent enough to end the issue with a quick apology and an explanation that she came in directly from a film shoot, so there was no effigy burning, effigy thrashing using chappals etc. But, Mallika isn't all that bothered .. So, i think this time we'll be treated(?) to a long drawn controversy.

btw here is the pic of the dress that caused 'mental agony' to the people of TN.



And ya, this time Mallika's dress is little over-the-top, Shreya's dress was nothing at all compared to ^^ this. But, 'mental agony' is too much methinks..

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Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Some good reads ..

1. Yet another lynching incident in Bihar - A Teashop owner gets killed for a delay in serving tea.


2. TOI carries this report bout' another weird incident in UP this time - 3 brothers beat their mother to death supposedly to free her from the spirits that possessed her( hit the read link for more on this, of the 3 brothers - one of them was a MBA, another an engineer at a MNC). The incident is quite bizarre in itself, and what followed is even more shocking (stupid?).

"As news of the violence spread, several hundred residents rushed to the police station to get a glimpse of the "butchers of Vijaynagar". Some agitated residents demanded they be allowed to lynch the culprits."

WTF ? be allowed to lynch the wrong doers ? What were they thinking ?


3. Cool political ad.

Too bad ^^ this guy didn't win ..


4. Story of a Man trapped in an elevator car for 41 hours.

Additional reading: Up and then Down - The lives of elevators.


5. Man holds daughter prisoner in basement for 24 years. And all this for sexual abuse, he ended up fathering 7 children with his own daughter and also held 3 children locked up with their mum - WTF ?


Links from IndiaUncut.


btw, i've got my semester exams till May 12, this blog won't see much activity till then though i have so so much to write about. But i guess 'they' can wait ..

Thats pretty much all,

Cheers.

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Saturday, April 26, 2008

Verdict - Dasavatharam Music is a Dud




The songs were done by noseman Himesh Reshamiya - What else do you expect ? Getting him to do the songs for this project was a big big mistake, and letting him sing a 'Tamil' song sucks even more.

Now,

The track list.

01 Ulaga Nayagan.
02 Kallai Mattum Kandal.
03 Oh Oh Sanam.
04 Mukundha Mukundha.
05 Kaa Karuppanukkum.
06 Oh Oh Sanam - Himesh Reshamiya.

Kamal has lent his voice for 'Oh Oh Sanam' and 'Mukundha Mukundha' - they are okay ..

Track6 is 'Oh Oh Sanam' with Himesh replacing Kamal, sung in his usual nasal voice and we finally have someone to beat Sukhwinder Singh (of 'Arjunar Villu' fame) in screwing up Tamil pronunciation.

Track2 'Kallai Mattum Kandaal' with lyrics by Kavignar Vaali ( the song goes like this - 'Kallai mattum kandaal kadavul theriyaadhu, Kadavul mattum kandaal kalladi theriyaadhu') by Hariharan is probably the only good track in the album.

Track5 'Kaa Karuppanukkum' prolly' the suckiest of the lot. Signature Reshamiya style heavy drum beats in infinite loop, pure crap - Thank 'god' he did not sing this himself- can't think of anything worser than that.

But, fortunately the rerecording is by Devi Sri Prasad, we won't have to endure Reshamiya's crap through the movie.

So, for now the songs are screwed up .. Lets hope the movie makes up for this.

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Sunday, April 20, 2008

Changing Notes = Awesome

Just got back from AR's concert, very difficult to find words to describe my experience today. My first time live at any musical event( i think) and i started off with 'this'. I don't think i could have asked for anything better.

Now for those of you who want to know what you missed, this list is for you.

List of songs performed at the concert today.

1. Jaage Hain - Guru - Saadhana Sargam & ARR.
2. Ella Pugazhum Oruvan Oruvanuke - ATM - ARR.
3. Endendrum Punnagai - Alaipayuthe - Karthik/Naresh Iyer/Shankar Mahadevan.
4. Varadhe Nathi Karai Ooram - Sangamam - Shankar Mahadevan.
5. Vaaji Vaaji - Shivaji - Hariharan & Madhushree.
6. Barso Re - Guru - Madhushree.
7. Newyork Nagaram - Jilunu Oru Kaadhal - ARR.
8. Enaku Oru Girlfriend - Boys - Karthik & Blaaze.
9. Jashn E Bahaara - Jodha Akbar - Javed Ali.
10. Roobaroo - RDB - Naresh Iyer.
11. Munbe Vaa - JOK - Karthik/Naresh Iyer/ Chinmayi.
12. Enna Solla Pogirai - Kandukonden Kandukonden - Shankar Mahadevan
13. Kanodu Kaanbathellam - Jeans - Nithyasree.
14. Dil Se Re - Dil Se - ARR.
15. In Lamhon Ke - Jodha Akbar - Javed Ali/Karthik & Madhushree.
16. Adhiradi - Shivaji - ARR/Sayonara and others.
17. Chaiyya Chaiyya - Dil se - AR Rayhana & Shankar Mahadevan(or was it Javed Ali ?).
18. Azeeem Shah - Jodha Akbar( this was capped off with the first line of 'Veerapandi Kottaiyile') - Shivamani ('the man')/ Naresh Iyer and others.
19. Oru Koodai - Shivaji - Blaaze
Intros by Blaaze
20. Pray for me Brother - ARR
21. Bombay Theme.
22. Khwaja Mere Khwaja - Jodha Akbar - ARR
23. Udhaya Udhaya - Udhaya - Sadhana Sargam & Hariharan.
24. Ay Hairathe - Guru - Hariharan.
25. Tumhari Adao Pe - Mangal Pandey - Saadhana Sargam/ Rayhana and others.
26. Maiyya Maiyya - Guru - Neeti Mohan.
27. Maduraiku Pogadhadi - ATM - Benny Dayal & Darshana.
28. Tere Bina - Guru - ARR and Chinmayi.
29. Antha Arabic Kadaloram - Bombay - ARR/Karthik/Shankar Mahadevan.
30. Vande Maataram - 'GOD'

My pick - 16, 17, 26, 27, 29, 30.

Also, if i missed out someone/a song or made mistakes with the list please let me know.

More later ..

Cheers.

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Changing Notes - AR Concert Preview



Thanks to TOI i'll be at the concert tonight, in about 6 hours from now the maestro will start with his first song. wow .. The 'wow' will go on till 10 in the night. Three and half hours of live AR music.

Can't stop thinking about it, i'll actually be hearing songs like Anjali Anjali, Uyire Uyire, Veerapandi Kottaiyile, Pudhu Vellai Mazhai LIVE.

I'll be treated to the likes of AR, Hariharan, Shankar Mahadevan, Sadhana Sargam, Madhushree, Naresh Iyer, Javed Ali, Sivamani, Blaaze, Chinmayi .. the list just goes on.

I'll try and get some pics/videos for my blog.

btw if you've not watched the promo yet, check this.

Thats pretty much all..

Cheers

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Monday, April 14, 2008

Changing Notes - AR Rahman's Concert - Free Passes from Times Of India



Times of India started their Chennai edition today(check this) and they've started off by giving away (awesome) complementary passes to AR Rahman's Chennai concert which is happening on the 20th of this month. The event is co-sponsored by TOI, they are giving away free passes in exchange for a little coupon in their paper ( yeah.. ), check the page 2 of today's(14/4/08) TOI for the coupon. btw the concert starts at 6.30 pm and is happening at the St. George school grounds opposite Pachaiyappa's College.

However, the passes are only for the standing gallery, so be prepared to stand for 3-4 hours continuously (and no, we are not complaining) if you want to use these free passes. Vijay and me have 6 tickets between us, we actually bought 4 extra TOI's for the coupons and at 2 bucks per pass, this must be the lowest priced AR Rahman concert night ticket ever.

And, about the passes; I think passes will be available for a few more days ( 2 more days at least). You just need to take the coupon to one of the 'Times space centers', there are over 25 such centers in Chennai, so finding one near your place shouldn't be tough. The list of all the 'Times space centers' is in the ad. And there is no limit to the number of coupons one can redeem - you get as many passes as the number of tear away coupons you submit.

So,

See you at the concert .. ;)

Edit: 16 April- There was a different ad in today's edition of TOI.

New requirements if you want to get these free passes today, you need to find a TOI team (they are stationed all over the city) near you and show them a copy of today's TOI to get your free pass. But here is the catch ' Only one pass per person', so you can't get passes by the bulk(i think). Too bad ..

Cheers.

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Sunday, April 13, 2008

Today I Used Orkut To ...

... relive my past.


Read on..

So, it was again a very boring day today, no one at home, nothing good on TV, i did not have any unwatched episodes of any TV on my PC (btw i'm done with the second season of Sleeper Cell - its just 'okay'). If only i had Neo sports, hmm .. that would've kept me busy all day. Trust me, following a test match through the text commentary from cricinfo.com is really really boring.I hate playing counterstrike continuously for long hours, so i had nothing at all .. I was just bored.

Went back to the only thing that never fails me - Orkut. Over the last week Orkut has been a great source of entertainment(?) for me, cos' i got into this minor row with a friend (with a few other people joining in later.. okay.. let me stop here. the argument is not the topic of this post, right ?) and we both filled each other's scrapbooks with a lot of junk ( just the usual, no big deal).

But, this today i was there for a better(?) purpose. I went to my scrapbook, hit the 'last' link and started reading my scrapbook from the very first entry.

Some tidbits.


I got my first scrap on 19/5/2006, almost two years back .. Text of my first scrap - 'hi welcome 2 orkut' from a classmate in school. hmm .. Wokay ..

After that came the flurry of ' Is that you?', 'Are you that guy from MVM?', ' Hi .. remember we studied in the same class till the eighth standard?' scraps. Started building my friend's list with that, which was just basically adding every person i ever knew till then and approving every add request. Some random guy from school, who was in a different class, with whom i prolly' spoke only once in my whole life became my 'friend' .. Wokay, no issues..

Then, there was another phase. All my classmates from college got onto orkut, so it became the primary mode of communication for all in-class/college talk. We would make exhaustive plans to complete assignments, observation books, or rather make plans to convince everyone else to not complete anything. A common phrase - ' Nalaiku class la poi paathukalam da, konjam a4 sheets konduva ( Translation: We can complete the assignment tomorrow in class, just get some blank a4 sheets).

Then started a different(interesting) phase - finding new friends through orkut, now 'new' friends might not be a exact term, cos' when you've been in the same class/department/college for two years, you are not exactly 'new' to each other. Yep, i'm talking bout' the phase when we started scrapping people we've never spoke to even though we see each other so many times, and 99% of the times its usually a member of the opposite sex. We have so many different opening lines, a common one would be ' Hi, Are you by any chance the xxxx from my class in college' or ' Hi, I'm the xxxx from your class, so you are on Orkut, eh ? just add me in'. Just the usual hormones kicking in, you can't blame the guy/gal for anything.

And then came the arguments - for people like me, who love getting into arguments very often, it becomes really difficult to keep them off orkut. So a ideal argument would run into a few 10's of scraps, each of which would be no shorter than 5 sentence lengths, these might even turn abusive at times, would prolly' go on for a day or two, at the end either the issue is resolved or the conflicting parties just lose interest.

Then there are informative 'gyaan' chats/talks, you catch up with that a friend after a long time, find that he is in a different country/city/industry etc. This is interesting - so we start sharing 'gyaan', extensive discussion about the subject again piles up the scrap junk, pages and pages of it. These conversations can sometimes be interesting to the onlookers too, if the guys in the discussion are bright enough to have a decent conversation, one just has to open up both their scrapbooks and follow the conversation to get 'gyaanified'.

Another little trick on Orkut is the 'talking through profile visiting' trick. Orkut has a stupid system in place to track profile visitors, it is supposed to display the last 5 profile visitors, but it gets refreshed only every two days. Even with that, it manages to keep track of new profile visitors, so if this girl from my class visits my profile, i get to know that after the refresh that happens the next day. So i pop in, just to give attendance - my name gets onto her profile visitors list. This is one way of letting each other know bout' the interest without even saying a word. Usually cross profile visits between a guy and a girl is followed by a 'Hi' and conversation begins, or sometimes the involved subjects develop cold feet and stick to profile visits alone, waiting for the other person to initiate conversation.

phew .. ^^ all these are stuff that i've done at some point during my Orkut sojourn, prolly' there are more ( a few dark ones too, more on that later.. ) and i was reminded of all 'that' when i reread my scrapbook today.. Nice times ..

I just have one thing to say - No regrets . I enjoyed this totally, and i even miss it sometimes.

Cheers..

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Tuesday, April 8, 2008

New TV Show - Sleeper Cell

I've started with another crime show(?) or rather law enforcement drama, after Season 3 of Prison Break ( watched the 13 episodes in 2 days flat) and Season 2 of CSI:NY.



Sleeper cell is not actually about a 'sleeper cell' as the name suggests, cos' this terror cell is actually active ( i'm right, right ? How can an active terror cell that is planning a mission be called a 'sleeper cell').

So, its about this moslem African-American FBI agent who infiltrates a terrorist sleeper cell in LA and the plot proceeds from thereon.

Now why am i watching this ?

Cos' of my interest in moslem culture and more particularly the exact meaning of 'jihad', a word thats oft used, but whose meaning is always debated and is never clear. I started reading up a lil' on this, and i'm still as confused as i was before i started. So we'll talk bout' this later .. Coming back ..

I started with Sleeper cell expecting a real lot, but then at the end of the first season, it wasn't what i expected. The show is so damn dumbed down, when CBS makes a TV show bout' an issue like this, shouldn't they be more convincing ? Either the research wasn't enough (which i really doubt) or the shows makers decided to keep it this way intentionally. Now, what do i really mean by 'not convincing enough' ?

These guys need a better, properly justified reason to be involved in a terrorist operation, one does not become a terrorist after a misleading initiation of what the Qur'an means ( AFAIK). I still believe in this - Not all muslims want to be terrorists, and generalizing them that way is unfair.

I'm just not convinced with the character development and also the dialogues aren't all that precise, in a scene when two intellectual Islamic radicals are trying to convince each other of the cause that he believes in (one is a 'holy warrior' and the other is a scholar who preaches the meaning of the true Qur'an and opposes the 'misinterpretation of jihad' which is terrorism ) we definitely need better lines. Damn .. these people have devoted their life for a cause they believe in, and shouldn't they have a clearer idea of their ideals? Dunno .. I'm just not convinced ..

I'll start with season 2 tomorrow. Lets see how that goes ..

Now, i just said the show was a lil' dumb, other than that the show is fine and interesting too ..

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Sunday, March 30, 2008

My Flickr Page

Check it out here.

I signed up on flickr today, i've used flickr a lot ( the flickr search is an interesting place to spend time, when you are really bored try looking up your fav. tags here at flickr advanced search)but i never bothered to set up an account. This is cos' i did not have too many pics of my own to show off. I don't own a digital cam, so the only time i get to handle a cam is during a g2g ride with friends or during a match(hint.. hint).

Everytime a different cam, and even before i can get used to the settings, the day is over ( or on our rides - the battery drains out). I had very few don't have any good pics to show off, so i did not see the need for a flickr account.

Now, nothing has changed really- I still don't have a cam. :(

But, i'm into photography now( i know this is funny when ya read it). So what do i do bout' something i'm interested in ? I start reading bout' it. Started with some basic stuff (i'm very very bad even with regular photography lingo) and i'm starting to like this more with every article i read about digital photography. I'll try and buy a cam very soon, till then i'll be using mobile phone cams, borrowed cams to get my pics. Thanks everyone in advance ..

I started my flickr account by posting a few pics i clicked during the test match (Check 1|2) .

These pics were taken using a Sony DSC T7, 5.1 mp. Cropped and corrected using Picasa.

Sample pic



Hoping my flickr account will see some regular activity ( no i won't be flicking pics and posting them as my own) .. Lets see how long i can sustain this interest ;)

Cheers ..

Thanks for reading .. Really ..

btw flickr is awesome .. Best feature - Mass pic upload option.

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Friday, March 28, 2008

Chennai Test - Day 3

I was at the match today ( read my first day experience here, or instead just scroll down).

Today we were at the F stand, Canara Bank stand. Paid 200 bucks for a single day ticket :(.

Man of the Moment



The Run machine - 309*

I'll be there tomorrow too, when he goes past 400, maybe even a round figure of 500 is possible ;)

And today we got to sneak a Digi cam into the stadium.

So here are the pics ..

















Keeping my fingers crossed, we need to get tickets tomorrow too ;)

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Wednesday, March 26, 2008

My First Time .. ;)

South Africa finished the first day of the Chennai test at 304/4, Hashim Amla unbeaten on 85, all set for his first century on Indian soil.

BTW did i tell you, I was there .. :-)

Yep, bunked college today and went for the match. This is the first time i'm watching a cricket match at a stadium. And, it wuz awesome .. The view from the stands was way better than i expected, i was actually able to recognize faces(yep, without the binoculars) in the middle of the ground.

We had the 500 bux tickets, the D stand in the MA Chidambaram stadium - The famous Royal Sundaram stand. Exactly opposite the pavilion (on the other end),so we had a lot of space to move around, we could go to the extremes of the (huge)stand to get a squarer view or stay in the middle and get a straight on view( this way we could follow the bowling - the swing, spin etc, though i didn't follow the ball much). The Press and the commentators boxes are just above the D stand, we even got a autograph from the legendary Indian leg spinner, L. Sivaramakrishnan ;) I wanted to get Rameez Raja to sign the card, but then he never came out of the box .. Maybe next time ( what ??)...

The atmosphere at the MAC was superawesome, such a huge turnout for the first day of a test match( on a weekday) proves how cricket crazy this country is.The crowd was on its toes all the time - just imagine, SA was batting first and only 4 wickets fell today. But, then there was noise all the time, courtesy- bugle whistles, bearhorns, drums, water bottle thrash music, Mexican wave attempts, musical chants; all this went on nonstop regardless of what happened on field. Every time a player got near the edge of the field, that part of the stadium would erupt - mad hysterical waving, screaming, chanting, jumping- all this to get the fielder wave back to the crowd (I was one of 'them' .. ). This is so much fun actually, we even got Sreesanth to turn and look when he was bowling from our end ;) .. But, I have a sore throat ippo .. :(

^^ about all this noise, No, i was not exaggerating .. The atmosphere cannot be described in simple words, so if you are in Chennai and if can take a day off, just get down to chepauk and watch a day's play. Totally worth it ..

Btw, a good number of tickets are reserved for daily sales, so getting tickets should not be a problem during the weekdays. Daily tickets for the D stand cost 125 bucks( Try the D stand, i think its really VFM, the benches are too tiring and you'll be stuck with a square view).

Thats pretty much all .. I think i'll be going on Friday, Saturday and Sunday too .. So aiming for 4 days .. I'm not sure though, everything depends on Venka and Kaushik. Please please get us those passes macha ..

And we did not take any pics this time, no digital cameras allowed and no one had a camera phone .. Too bad .. :(

Too make up for that,

Indha Vecchuko ..



Sachin thambi eppavo MAC vandhappo eduthathu .. (Sachin at the MAC). The best pic i got when i looked up 'MAC' on Google Images.

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Tuesday, March 25, 2008

An Article That Teaches You To Be Fake...

Check this link, found this in my feed reader today. Article from yesterday's 'The Hindu- Education Plus'.

The author writes bout' how your blog or your networking site profile can affect your career(?).

He goes on to give a few suggestions to make your blog/profile an extension of your resume and help you in your search.

He even writes bout' using blogs to gain leverage by projecting positives and avoiding negatives.

In short, He asks you to fake up.

Somehow, this article pisses me off bigtime, also his list of suggestions.

For Blogs

- Write about a recent volunteering experience like a blood donation camp, tree planting campaign(?).
- Don't put your party pics online, cos' your potential employer might see 'them' and decide you kick you off.
- Do not bad mouth your previous job or organization, this = digging your own grave.
- In your blog and the comments you post on other blogs present the kind of image you would like to project about yourself.

Community sites

- Put up pics taken at family holidays/g2g's to project a good image.
- Upload pics of your interests, hobbies showcasing your skills.


I guess i do all the above stuff myself, on my own. I don't need anyone to teach me all this .. I write bout' my volunteering experience, i definitely don't put up any party pics( i've never party .. so not so difficult), I don't exactly badmouth anyone just for the heck of it( you tell me..), i write knowing very well that I'm judged by my words. So these suggestions actually make sense.

But, then doing all this with the only intention of building a 'good-looking' blog/profile for an employer, immediately takes away all the fun for me.

If someone chooses to reject me cos' of my blog or my Orkut profile, then so be it ..

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Monday, March 24, 2008

There is this guy in my class who claims to have a list of 'who-fucked-who'. We had a small argument today, he even claims to have video evidence of all these encounters (and even he asks me to come over to his place if i need to see them).

Everyplace he goes, he broadcasts this info, the rest of the dumbfks are so happy to know the latest of 'who-fucked-who'.

Whats so 'post-worthy' about this. No one fucks no one in my college. AFAIK i don't think any girl from my college is the kind who'll sleep with some random guy. That is a fact. So his list is just bullshit. Everyone knows this, but we all are happy to avoid the truth to enjoy the 'fun'.

Sometimes I'm one of them ^^. By keeping my mouth shut or by listening to these 'stories', i become one of them, right ?

I told this guy today that he was a 'sadist' and a 'hypocrite' ..

My opinion.

This is not a personal attack, I don't have anything against this guy. Swear ...

I'm not trying to say i'm a saint or anything. I'm as fucked up as 'him' or as any other guy of this age. But, i have a conscience, no denying that. I know 'Me' the best, right ?

End of topic.

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Of Reality Shows ...

In this post, Chinmayi writes bout' her Singapore TV show experience, she was the co-host for the finals of a singing talent search event called Yaar Andha Star 2008 on Singapore local television. I think this show is similar to the Airtel Super Singer kinda shows we have here.

But, i was really surprised to find that the final of this event was actually telecast live. A reality show( i guess i can call this a RS, right? all talent search shows are reality shows acc. to me) being telecast live = Wow.

We're are so used to seeing every single episode of 'such' shows being hyped up. Even a minor tiff between the participants or the judges, finds a place in all the promos of the show during the preceding week. These 'reality' shows on our channels will fail miserably if they were to telecast unedited feed with no added hype( even the camera pans and the music is part of the hype, a chappa matter is given so much build up). And i'm sure the Jodi No 1 kinda shows would bomb big time if they were denied all the pre episode build up ops.

I've been to one of these TV shoots (EQ2 - check this) , and the production is really pathetic. Nothing is really in place, everything is really messy, things go wrong all the time and the anchors were dumb( imagine having to give 5-6 retakes for a college name) .

Put these people incharge of a live show, result = The show will be more screwed up than the 'show' itself.

But, Kudos to Yaar Andha Star and Mediacorp production ( the producers of this show) for handling this well. At least Tamil audience someplace else get good content on their television. I'm okay ..

Cheers.

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Friday, March 21, 2008

Vellore Ride - 21/3/08 - 3 AM

Almost 3 months without any rides( the last one was the pondy ride after our semester exams last December) we were raring to ride someplace. We had a three day weekend, Vijay's parents were away for the weekend, cos' if they were around there was no way we could've done a Vellore ride leave alone start at 3 AM, and then my dad had the day off, so i could use his Dio( our backup scoot for all rides, another friend of mine was supposed to join us with his bike, but then he was not able to make it last minute - Dio comes to the rescue, yet again ..).

First the details ..

Riders: Venki, Vijay and Me.
Rides: Vijay's Caliber 115 and my dad's Dio.
Total Distance: 275 kms.
Started at 3 AM reached Vellore at 7.40 AM ( stopped for an hour cos' it was raining real hard) - 4h 40min
Left Vellore at 8.40 AM ( yep .. we were there only for an hour) and got back home at 12 noon - 3h 20min
Total cash spent: 900 bucks.. incl. of fuel, food and misc. expenses.

Tidbits

This ride was made extra special by the rains thru' the ride, there was a constant drizzle except for the 30 mins of hard rain on the way back (but we chose to ride on this time, no stops).

We spotted a Superbike near Vellore, i couldn't exactly ID the bike cos' he just whizzed past us. But then we found the bike in a Petrol bunk on the way, the bike was a Honda Hornet 900. A rider touring on a SBK .. Wow .. Sbk + Rain + NH4 = superawesome..

We stopped at a Toll Plaza, 30 kms before Vellore. The drizzle turned into a downpour and we did not want to get wet ( at 5.30 in the morning, it was really cold and we did not want to get wet on top of that) so we stopped for almost an hour. During this time the exhaust heat from the vehicles lining up at the toll booths was our savior. Vijay and Me used the exhaust heat to revive our fingers which had become numb from the cold. I'm sure the guys at the toll plaza thought we were crazy.

The food at Vellore was awesome, prolly' cos' we were really hungry ( riding continuously for close to 5 hours on an empty stomach really drains you). Vijay knew this place near the Vellore bus stand from the last time he was there, a good hotel with cheap food. Breakfast for the three of us cost only 64 bucks. We need to start eating like this on rides. No 500 bucks splurges anymore.

We borrowed Vivek's Digi cam, this time he gave us his 6 MP Casio cam( on the thiruthani ride we borrowed his 3 MP Mercury cam), but then even this time we screwed up the pics cos' the battery was drained after 20 clicks. Damn ..

Note to self: Don't trust Vivek. Next time we need to take care of this, and carry a few spare sets of batteries along.

Thats pretty much all ..

Pics from the ride





Great ride .. We had fun .. We'll not be doing any more rides for a while( till the end of exams this semester), so good that we managed to sneak in a ride this month.

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Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Advertisements...

Good ads campaigns are a rarity these days, we saw one here.

That got me youtubing for good commercials. And I found these ..

Take a min off to watch this video.

And this one...

And then, take a look at this ad design from Chandra.

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Saturday, March 15, 2008

The Official IPL Ad

This ad is so awesome ..

Check out 00:42, i think thats Robin Uthappa( venka correct me if i'm wrong), that particular shot is just superawesome. I keep watching that over and over ..

I'm talking bout' this shot ..



The music and that voice in the BG, rocks bigtime ..

Verdict: Great advertisement, the IPL organizers know how to put their money to best use..

^^ This ad is the first of many more such campaigns and ad films( i guess you can call them that ..).

The IPL advertisement budget is Rs 100 crore, all the ads will be made by Ogilvy & Mathers (<< this name reminds me of the very popular Marshall Bruce Mathers III). Other popular ad campaigns from O & M include - The Hutch 'boy' and 'dog' ads , 'The first Bajaj Pulsar ad - the one with the nurses walking past and the bike turning around to look at them', The Fevicol ad with the fully loaded truck on a mud track. Source

Also, check out IPL team reviews on Venka's blog 1|2|3|4|5|6|7|8.

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Australia Dethroned ...

^^ This was the day's most important news according to TIMES NOW, the Times group's 24 hour news channel.

Now, this is so incomplete, right ? What was the real news ?

South Africa reached the top in the ICC ODI rankings released yesterday, this after their 3-0 sweep against Bangladesh and yeah they displaced Australia, so what ?

With such a headline( with huge jarring font) that stayed on almost through the morning news, they were just acting cheap and were converting normal news material into an issue with creative shitty scriptwriting. I know this is usual stuff from these news channels(?), but this particular instance pissed me off, dunno why ..

First, they took all the credit away from SA, damn.. It was they who improved their ranking and reached the top( even if India's series win helped them do this), how on earth did Australia come into the picture now. And what relevance does this news have in India ?

And i'm sure this news must not have got as much air time as it did here, anywhere else. Not even in South Africa. They just knew they could create a buzz with this insignificant( to us) piece of junk, cos' with all the recent shit that has happened, whats wrong in milking the cow a little more.

This is just another example of the 'anti-Australian' Indian media, (now don't get me wrong, they are not anti-Aus cos' of everything that happened down under during the last series, they just find Australia bashing to be very favorable on their TRP's) and on top of this they crap bout' the Australian media being biased.. funny people...

With the IPL T20 tournament coming up in a month, the news channels just have to keep the Australian cricket team in the news, they don't want people to move on from the last Australian series and all those incidents. Once the IPL tournament gets started( or soon after all the teams reach here) there'll be no dearth of content, then they'll get back to twisting statements, having talk shows to discuss a particular incident or comment, having a SMS campaign to protest some foolish issue, post some lame guy's foolish( received thru. sms) comment on a equally lame issue, as marquee text below the cleavage flashing newsreader's space.

Just another media bashing post .. I just feel a lil' relieved now .. Again i really dunno why ..

Cheers

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Blood Donation Camp.



My college organized a blood donation camp today, and yours truly was also a donor. This is the second time i'm donating blood at college, but this time the procedure was a lot more painful, i think the lady got the needle position wrong or something. For someone like me, who gets scared shitless when it comes to needles and injections ( as far as i can remember i've had less than 5 injections my whole life), blood donation is a big thing( for me).

I remember reading an article about how 'we all' assume there are enough blood donors and they themselves don't see the need to donate blood. But the actual situation is different, there is a lot of blood shortage even now as we speak, and hospitals are constantly looking for more donors.

A few facts bout' blood donation...

Donating blood will not leave you low of blood; the regeneration process is fast and in fact you will still have surplus blood after you donate. You will not faint or feel uncomfortable after donating blood. This is just a misconception.

The blood you donate can be separated into several components, including red blood cells, plasma and platelets and be used separately for different purposes.

Patients are just like donors - most of them have common blood types. Because your blood type is common, the demand for that type is greater than for rare types. So, even if your blood type is common there is still a requirement.

Every year our nation requires about 4 Crore units of blood, out of which only a meager 40 Lakh units of blood are available. ( i'm not sure bout' the figures ^^ here, but i'm sure there is a shortage)


I could write more, but i need to get back to Episode 15 of CSI Season 1.

So thats pretty much all .. And ...



Cheers

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Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Infractionz '08 - Quiz Questions - Elims

I just compiled, collected these questions from various quizzing blogs on the web. So if you see a question here that is originally yours, i'll be very happy to credit it back to you.

Now, we had 33 q's to be answered in 25 mins.

For the answers, just highlight the area below the question ( i could've posted them directly, but this way maybe you could test yourself a lil', but if you don't want to do all that just hit Ctrl + A and take a look ). Anyways don't forget to comment afterwards. Wokay ?

...

1. Born as Bank of Calcutta on 2nd July 1806, mainly to fund General Wellesley’s wars against Tipu Sultan and the Marathas. It was renamed Bank of Bengal on January 2, 1809. It became the Imperial Bank of India in 1921 and was renamed to its present name after the Act of Parliament on 1st July 1955.
Name the bank.

State Bank of India.

2. How do you refer to an event that has a frequency of 1.16699016 × 10-8 Hertz?
(Clue – Think ‘lunar’..)

Once in a blue moon.

3.What are these some of the types of: up and down, circular swing (windmill), Drunk style, half-circle, figure eight, side to side, whiplash, Two up, Two down, all-out, tandem, hammer, full body?

Headbanging.

4. What is the term for a naval vessel used to detect and defuse explosive charges?
(Hint—your computer might have one.)

Minesweeper.

5. How do we better know "id est"?

i.e - 'that is'

6. Who is the author of the following books - "Every Second Counts" and "It's not About the Bike: My Journey Back to Life".

Lance Armstrong - the clue was the word 'bike'.

7. Amalgamated Bean Coffee Trading Company Ltd started its first cafe in Brigade Road, Bangalore in 1996.Today it is spread across 69 Indian cities and has around 436 outlets. How are their cafes better known as?

Cafe Coffee Day

8. What is the name of Google’s operating system for mobile phones?

Android

9. Identify this ubiquitous icon in the World Wide Web?


RSS Feeds ( we all know this, don't we ?)

10. While browsing the net you often encounter a CAPTCHA. Can you tell us what a CAPTCHA is? (Extra points for expanding the acronym)

The word verification technique to keep out bots and spammers.
CAPTCHA - Completely Automated Public Turing test to tell Computers and Humans Apart.


11. Which company owns Picasa software that helps find, edit and share pictures in a Computer?

Google.

12. This former Aussie cricketer was named the Australian Father of the Year in 2005 and has the dubious distinction of running out 50 partners in ODIs and 23 in tests. Who is this famous Aussie?

Steve Waugh.

13. The world cup of which sport is known as the William Webb Ellis Trophy?

Rugby.

14. What company was Narayan Murthy working for prior to setting off on his own and setting up Infosys?

Patni Computer Systems ( PCS ).

15. What term coined by American financier and politician Bernard Baruch was a core part of the international political lexicon, during the post WWII era till the early nineties?

Cold War - the clue was 'WWII era till the early nineties'.

16. Which is the only country to have its map on its flag?

Cyprus.

17. Which recent Bollywood movie was based on Stephen King's story Quitter's Inc?

No Smoking.

18. Abu Dhabi + Ajman + Dubai + Fujairah + ras-al-Khaimah + Sharjah + Umm-al-Qaiwain = ______________

UAE.

19. How do we better know Vito Corleone in the world of fictional “heroes”?

The Godfather.

20. In Harry Potter, whose two parents were muggles and dentists?

Hermione Granger.

21. We all have sent emails. What does BCC stand for?

Blind Carbon Copy.

22. During the Cold War, to make things more interesting, the US and Russian Head of States had a telephone connection between themselves to call each other and call off the “war”. This gave rise to the coining of a word meaning telephone connection for emergencies. Which word?

Hotline.

23. How do we best know the hero of the animated series, "The Masters of the Universe”?

He-Man.

24. The equator passes through how many Indian states?

Zero.

25. In the world of abbreviations, what is a.k.a?

also known as

26. Which well-known ice cream parlor has the tagline, “31 flavors, one for each day of the month”?

Baskin & Robbins

27. What does the whole number series have that the natural
number does not?

Zero.

28. This software was invented to protect the old computer monitors from the phosphor burns that were caused by static images. What software?

Screensavers.

29. Which tree belongs to the Govt of India, even if it grows on a private property?

Sandalwood.

30. Who is the Managing Director of Ocher Studios, a post-production studio currently serving the south Indian film industry?
(Clue – ‘She’ was in the news recently)

Soundarya Rajnikanth.

31. Identify the logo.


Rockstar Games.

32. What is the Maximum number of hard disks you can have in a machine of only 2 IDE ports?

Four.

33. According to IRS 2006, it is the highest read English publication in India. In one of its recent ads, it claims that in-spite of not carrying any stories, it still has 1,39,32,000 readers. Which publication?

Yellow Pages.

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