Foreword

There is neither a structure nor a texture to this blog. The subject matter can be anything and everything under the sky that I feel about at any given point that I happen to sit and blog rambling about everything in general. My thoughts and views are basically influenced by what I read, hear, gather, and ponder... if there is any copyright violation which I have not duly acknowledged, kindly let me know.

Ref: Chichkoo is what I lovingly call my daughter, kiddo my brother, amma and taatee my late maternal grandparents, and OA is the other adult in the family.

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Jan 31, 2008

Heartbreak Kid!!!



Have you ever seen all that mattered to you for all your life just being scattered?? This is how it feels!!!

But the moment I look at OH or think about our life together, I know nothing else matters, at least nothing that I have put an effort in and could not help... but I guess, I am a human after all to feel the pain that kind of hits in waves!!


So, as of now, I am counting my blessings 'cos I do not have everything I wanted but I have everything that I need and a lot more and already on the path of healing. All I can do is pray for everyone's well being and carry on with my life.

Picture Courtesy:
FotoSearch

Edited to Add: I am fine, doing good emotionally too.. you know just the moment.. which i felt like penning down to find comfort.

Antarmadhanam !!! Internal Conflict!!

A few days ago, as part of some social networking community discussion, I happened to take part in a discussion on corruption and had seen quite a lot of people come out in open and criticize about the existing system but in spite of repeating time and again, only a few came forward with some resolution or some contribution from their end to put an end to it. Interesting, easy to blame but difficult to practice.. that discussion has set a pattern of discussion between me and caps these past few days and we both agree that as of now, there is nothing we can do and all we can do is take one step at a time and try and make the difference.. practice first and then preach others!!

We the same people in India give bribe to get our things done faster but when in US, we pay up taxes promptly, do not dare to bypass law, go within speeding limit, follow all the rules and regulations.. whereas back home, people hardly care about following them, 'cos they know even if they are caught they come out easily by paying up the concerned.. awwww.. and if I want to go by law, then I end up making 'n' number of rounds to the concerned authority.. siiiiiiiiiiiighh

I have not had association with actual American citizens after coming here but whatever little fraud that is committed and that I come to know of is done by other nationals by doing odd jobs on no-job visa status, and all I think of is.. we dont leave an opportunity anywhere.. sigh!!!! I have no right to criticize any individual but still, why do we resort for unaccounted money generation!!! why???

On that note, I dont see many card accepting shops in India, I can do nothing but gaze helplessly as my hard-earned white money turns black (unaccounted) if I refuse to buy something without a bill, I cant buy even basic necessities.. sad but true situation. Who says as a nation we are poor?? why is that ever since I can remember ours is a DEVELOPING nation?? why do some people still think we are from land of elephants and snake charmers in spite of a lot of high-paid white collar jobs beingours?? why????

These are a few things that I figured after a lot of brainstorming that might help

-- Have an equal pay scale for everyone or at least balance the monthly pay at least to cover the bare minimum necessities without having to resort to bribery. How can a common man afford to live without the s/w frills that have taken the cost of living way too high!!

-- Make education free of cost and give ample scholarships not based on caste system but based on economic conditions of the student.

-- If one needs to get things done faster, legalize it, put some fast-track or premium processing stuff for some extra cash that will go directly to the govt rather than filling individual pockets.

-- Give identity cards to each and every individual who earns or who gets benefits from the govt, similar to the SSN. Erase the minimum balance concept in the bank and help people open bank accounts and help regulate the circulation of money and gradually eradicate the black money altogether (biiiiiiiiiiiiiiiig hopes!!!)..

....but it is possible and we need a lot of social and economic reforms put in place and when I am still dreaming, I would want all the politicians to be from IIM.

When people say they are ashamed of India for its corruption and talk bad about it, it hurts me and I am ashamed of them and yes, I am ashamed of myself for not being able to do anything to make it a better world, but I promise myself I WILL make the difference.

Jan 30, 2008

Where Are We Going!!!



TV9 or TV5 or ETV2 or whatever.. what is the local media in AP up to??? I hardly understand anything any longer. Why are they more focused on what is happening in celebrity households than what is actually happening in the state.

Why are movie star's kids' weddings taking up most of the airtime than the more concerning issues?? Why is an eloped couple given more importance than a person dying without proper medical assistance outside a government hospital? Why cant they expose a corrupt official or a criminal with the same fervor.

When they say they show any person who comes to the channel, seeking protection and exposure why is it that only celebrity kids or celebrities enjoy that privilege? Why is a common man not given that opportunity. To date, I have not seen a non-famous person getting this kind of protection or publicity in any of these channels. When the channels say they are bringing awareness among people what is it?? Showcasing crime and corruption with anchors giving the programs a feel of horror/thriller rather than something to do with reality and social issues. God!! All I can say is give me a BREAK!!

Where has the good old journalism gone? Where is educating the public and letting them know about the happenings gone?? Looks like the media is busy creating the sensational news rather than covering the events. What the hell is wrong with you guys!!! and most of all why is the public taking it all..

Been there a few days ago in Hyd and all I see in the so called numbered channels is the replay of only one news, either showing the same clip over and over and over or put it in the flash scroll below on the screen, until another sensational news comes in. Why is there a hype on anything and everything that spells ad revenue?? and why are we lapping it up.

Some unnecessary events thus telecast that got my goat are that of Arthi Agarwal's suicide first and then the hush-rush wedding, Chiranjeevi daughter's wedding, NBK and CBN family wedding, Chiranjeevi's daughter's elopement, now the latest Dr. Rajasekhar and Jeevitha issue, agreed it was scary, your voice has been heard by the entire nation, just stop it now!! The last one broke the last straw of my patience.. what the hell is wrong with all of you??

The Controversy Goes Here

The latest sensational news in making is whether Chiranjeevi is joining the politics or not, when why and with whom?? God!! give that man a break!! announcing a party or getting politics is not some secret. When they do it, which they might or might not, the press and public will be the first people to know, why harass that poor man and drag him in to so many controversies?? Contemplating is fine but beyond a point it is pure harassment. We all will get to know in due time. I am not his follower or admirer, just an onlooker. Why not let an individual lead his own life and let him do things at his own pace? Why drag the most personal things into public and most of all what do we get humiliating a person in public. If either pro or anti groups want to make some good out of it, they will be having a field day!!

And coming to the fanatic fan following!! This guy has some tremendous following but is it acceptable when the affection and devotion towards a person spells doom to anyone who dares to even speak against him?? I am beginning to feel sorry for this guy whose sole duty these days seems to be apologizing on behalf of his fans or requesting his fans to calm down and take things easy.

The way I see the assault episode, it was blown way out of proportion.. I have a lot of questions unanswered??

Where did the channels get the footage from?
When the actor's cabin in the train was attacked why was there no police protection all the way back to his home when he reached Hyd?
If it were real Chiru fans, who organize blood donating drives, etc., will they bring a blemish to their idol by dragging him to such a mess?
Why will these guys who did that knowing fully well that with the video and photo evidence of events might go to jail or face legal consequences, go to such an extent.

Tt seems to me it is a set-up or a staged incident and everything is not as it looks on the surface but I am not able to point the finger, where??

Sadly enough, all the while, I thought the duty of the media was to help me, or the common public, point and figure out that WHERE rather than confusing us all the more!!!

Pic Courtesy: Photobucket, Joblessjosh

Jab They Split!!

Happened to see Jab We Met the other day starring Kareena and Shahid, must say it was a nice feel good movie and looking at the chemistry between the two of them or the excess from Kareena's end, I was a little curious as to what went wrong between them.

I am not real gossip, gossip-py person but must admit that I am curious and used to read a lot of movie magazines like Stardust, Tinsel Town, Movie, etc. before coming to US and liked to keep an update on who is doing what :) (well, I do have my own vices, not a saint you see) at the same time I am not downright cheap as to speak whatever I want to about a person and mainly assassinating character sort of talk when in a group, read, kill curiosity before it killed me, and keep it to myself, and that too stopped after coming here.

Well, coming to the actual thought process that triggered this post, I always had doubts as to how long this would last right from the outset, she seemed much older and louder and wilder than the cute, baby-faced, innocent looking Shahid but I had to admit that after I have seen these guys on Koffee with Karan where these were the only couple that won 10 on 10 on their likes and dislikes when they were questioned separately, I thought maybe I am wrong, they indeed had common interests and would join the league of happily married ever after movie couples. Now, I dont really know the facts but seeing them split, she moving on with Saif, Saif with a tattoo of her name, and Shahid seemingly looking like a dumped puppy (dont even know if it is the opposite), I feel a little sad, no matter who tried to change who and who felt restless and lost in this whole thing.

Well I never really thought I would feel like this when they split which I always secretly wished for no particular reason...

Why do celebrity marriages or live-ins which I appreciate so much go wrong??

Amir and Rina
Saif and Amrita

I guess being under constant public glare and scrutiny most the times must be getting on to their nerves... phew!!!

Jan 28, 2008

On Blog, Blogging and More :)

"Racing Thoughts" has been my best buddy for the past almost a couple of years. Much as I am a celebration person I have not really celebrated any of the landmarks of this baby, i.e., no birthdays, no 50, 100, 150, 200, 250, posts.. yup!! put together in all my offspring blogs, I finished more than 250 posts.. phew!! I sure use up a lot of cyberspace :).

When I think back as to why I blog and what I actually accomplish by blogging, my blog provides me with a few moments of glory.. well, I mean, people do come and read and be kind enough to comment and give in their view point. I have seen people raise hell and high water about bad, rude, scary comments, but thank God, I have been lucky so far. Mostly maybe because this blog is not tremendously popular, it has only limited regular visitors and once in a while random visitors, who just find boring rambling about I, Me, Myself, nothing controversial, not very aggressive stuff, just about me and my little pleasures and pains.

This blog satiates my hunger to write and see my writing in print media, well I just cannot imagine who else would publish my idle blabber for the world to see if they want to. I am not a responsible journalist answerable to the society, I need not submit any thesis or high-funda technical stuff for others to follow, I just write what I feel like and as long as it does not invade anyone else's private life, hurt anyone individual's or a group's sentiments, it is not a potential trigger of some unforeseen violence, and most of all as long as my conscience is clear, I can write anything. It gives me the freedom of expression, which at times is stifled under the mask of goodness, good manners, and a whole lot of other factors in life.

This space has been exclusively mine, never letting me down, just standing there a mute witness to all my venting out, my jubilation, my melancholy, every single moment and every single emotion. Beginning as an aid to focus my thoughts and develop my English and written skills in general, then graduating to an online journal to my real life buddies, to making new friends out here, I have come a long way. I have a few favorite blogs, a few regular bloggers, who have become a part of my life, just like everything else around me, about whom I know a lot more than my next-door neighbor or even a casual friend of mine. I admire their guts to spill out everything and wish I can manage that but am content with where I am right now.

With my job starting this 4th, I need to be more organized and not idle along aimlessly in this ever-tempting, time-eating blog world. I need to plan my day and time real well, so that caught in the whirlpool of emotions and work, I dont lose out on the very essence of life, LIVING it, that is. So, getting the blogger out of its routine template and trying out the new look, with some added in features like blogrolling, etc. I am giving myself a visual treat :).

Wish me luck guys!! Do let me know how this baby looks after the makeover :).

Jan 27, 2008

Together and One up!!



This one is long pending. Blogging, as I have always felt, is really therapeutic, in the sense, when I choose a particular topic or feel like writing on it, I tend to focus on that, at least that short amount of time that I spend articulating what I feel makes me put things in the correct perspective.

A year into marital bliss or blast or whatever (has been both in the past year thanks mostly to my temper outbursts and irritable mood swings.. phew!!) , it is time to look back and see how I fared, learn my lessons, and take it from there for the betterment.

How much ever I want to resist change, the fact is that sad or happy, good or bad, I am no longer the person that I used to be before the D-day and am sure neither is the OH. We have taken our baby steps, faltering at times, waddled a lot initially, had adjustment-resistance syndrome, had that "you ruined my life moments", had those "aaww, so special marvelous moments", had seen a lot of new places together, had stayed without each other for a while, and slowly but gradually our gait is stronger and stable. In short, we tested ourselves to the maximum possible extent and have settled into that peaceful acceptance mode (touch wood) which is good for the sake of sanity.

-- Staying together and knowing each other for a long time are two different things, nothing prepares you for the reality. We no longer care to dress and get ready just for each other, no longer mask our feelings not to hurt other's feelings and give in easily to anger or emotion.

-- Mutual trust and understanding is a gradual process and expecting that everything will be just the same as it was before wedding and expecting that the other person read one's thoughts and not doubt the noble intentions from the day one just does not happen!!

-- Friction with the influx of a whole lot of new relations, all at once, in life is a MUST. We are brought in two different families combined with a mind of our own, so it is but natural that there are disagreements and misunderstandings, and mis-communications both between the couple and the couple's respective families. It is up to one mature group to give in for the moment and not bother about setting the offensive party right. Expecting total blind acceptance and trust from his/her part of the family and being hurt in the process, might put a dent in the glass but it is up to us not to let it shatter. Family is a priority but it is the new couple that has to start a family of their own and hence just ignore the rest as long as you both are fine with each other. Everything will fall into place, patience is the key!!

-- Unconditional love, loads of patience, anger management, lots of effort is what makes a marriage a good one.

-- If we survived the rocky first year, we are meant to be together forever (touch wood), so take it carefully from here :).

Passionate About ?????



Well, the other day when we went over to our relatives' place for the long weekend, the topic drifted along to passion and what each person is passionate about, some passionate about a goal in their life, some about movies, some sports, some studies, some clothes, etc., etc.

That set me thinking as to what am I passionate about.. what is that I really feel strongly about, something which I would give anything and everything for?? At that point in time, when I could not come up with answer even after wracking my brain and pulling out the leftover hair on my head which survived the heavy hair loss (sob, sob, sob) I was like WHAT??? AM I SUCH A BLAND PERSON??? Now, when I sit back and think and rethink and rethink about that, I still cannot come up with an answer.

Circumstances never really allowed me to enjoy normal childhood like yearning for things, goals, etc.. only aim was to keep the family together. Wanted to be a doctor, but that was nipped in the early stages saying that it is too costly, long-term affair.. after that I really lost interest in anything and just drifted along.. and that continues, maybe that is the underlying reason for all my restlessness, lack of passion, that is.

Having a good and peaceful life is my passion is what I can say, YES!!! living a tension-free,secure life.. well, passionate about living life for the moment. Again, is that really my passion or am I just giving it that name 'cos I have to!!!

“The more intensely we feel about an idea or a goal, the more assuredly the idea, buried deep in our subconscious, will direct us along the path to its fulfillment.”
Earl Nightingale

Lazy Me!!



I have been free all week this past week thanks to the OH half being out of state for training purpose, staying alone first time ever, got to say managed pretty well (barring the extreme laziness on my part, just eat, watch movies, and sleep.. no dishes, no cleaning, nothing!!). Well, if I thought lack of a schedule was a bless ever, all my illusions are out of the window :).. it is good one day, okay the next, bore the third, and so and and so forth the pleasure declines as days pass by.

I was reading a whole lot of blogs, covering a lot of ground on whatever I had not checked for a while and had a lot of posts and topics thought up in my mind which I wanted to blog with fervor, only to let them diffuse in the initial phase itself, well what can I call this???

I like to stay on my own for a while, I enjoy the freedom for a few hours and I MUST have that time to myself without which I kind of grow restless and crazy but at the end of the day, I need to see OH and be with him. sigh For better or for worse, we are tied up together and I am so used to us living together that I actually miss him like a part of my body.. in the true sense, gradually he is becoming my other half !! Is this what is the magic of marriage.

Pic Courtesy: www.All4humor.com

Jan 17, 2008

Snow Time!!



Well, I have as a child or even as an adult thought that US means snow and more snow in winter and snow is fun and snow is this and snow is that.. even envied those who could play with the snow flakes and make the snow balls and what not :).

After coming to US, I was a little disappointed that our climatic zone is not a regular snow area and wanted to see snowfall at least once before going back to India for good. Yesterday was kind of an answer to my long-time snow dream. I had a fun-filled evening and for a change OH had a lot of fun too but you know, in a more dignified manner. We were the only crazy people out trying to enjoy the snow without caps or gloves or proper layered clothing.. just going with the mad flow that okay lets enjoy before this one stops.. and it was out and out masti time for me with my friend coming out too, had fun making the snowman.. eerrr.. snow scarecrow, rather and then throwing balls of snow at each other and just trying to catch the snow flakes with the tongue.. I was in a different world altogether and after 2 hours of masti, retreating back to a hot shower and tucked in for good sleep.



Snow is good, it is beautiful, wonderful, and marvelous but only in moderation and only on holidays when no one has to go to office on those slippery roads or have to clean the walkways and cars and all to get into them and to get them started..

Jan 14, 2008

Sambarala Sankranthi...

This is my second SANKRANTHI out here in states, a festival which signifies new beginnings for farmers, the harvest festival of south, and the one which is very close to my heart, considering we got to spend time in Guraza, my granny's place, and see all the festivities mentioned HERE. It is our very own "Thanksgiving Festival" to the Gods for the good harvest that we get after a whole year's hard work.

This time around too, it is quite cold over here and I am missing my ammamma and without her back home in India or here, it is one kind of one and the same for me other than that I am trying to relive her memories by continuing the tradition but that enthusiasm of sharing it with her is GONE FOREVER.

Got a new rice bag and groceries along with fresh fruit, sugarcane, etc. to signify the harvest beginnings, well it is not one and the same but yes a good substitute.

Wish each and everyone a very happy Sankranthi.

Sankranthi In US



Had been to TAMA Sankranthi Celebrations - 2007 celebrated in Meadow Creek High School, it had been a masti evening being among the people from our very part of the globe out here in this western world because of varied personal reasons coming together and keeping alive our traiditions and culture and our values which seem to be at an all-time low even back home.



This is our second time at such an event and though not as much power-packed and punch-filled as the previous time, it was a different flavor (kiddie stuff).. too many kids hardly able to stand and concentrate for a while breaking into jigs and dancing and stopping on the stage and then restarting :), it had a charm of its own. It is really a joy to see these kids dancing as young yamas and apsaras, gopikas, golla bhamas, struggling with their costumes and lip sync but yet giving in their best shots on stage.



The traditional kuchipudi and bharth natyam performances by the artists were a treat to the huge dance-form fan like me, though both of them were in a class of their own I loved the co-ordinated performances in "krishna Shabdam" as I was able to comprehend the meaning, mostly because it was about the naughty krishna :).



After the aah, ooh, choo chweet performances by the kids and the kiddie sweet overdose, the actual tapori in me got satisfied by the final performance of the day, a near flawless performance by a group of teenagers, a masti dance number medley of Hamma Hamma and Mukkala Muqabla.. and finally my urge to yell, scream, clap, and shout "once more" got satisfied. (I am one total tapori from inside, dont go by my traditional exterior ;))



In all, it was an entertaining evening and time well spent amongst the fellow countrymen out here trying to make a difference in their own to keep in touch with their own roots and letting the generation-next born here (technically US citizens) know of our rich and varied heritage.

Well, at times like these I dont really miss India (yeah I know that rolling of eyes and thinking typical desh-drohi getting used to comforts here) but the fact is, I no longer blame these guys for making a home here. I am proud of them respecting our nation wherever they are and in turn making the world respect us.

Jan 10, 2008

Shrimp Biryani!!



This net is surely an amazing place, making a non-cook like me brave enough to try and experiment with stuff that actually tastes good is not an easy task.

Well, this happens once in a while with www.sailusfood.com

but I found yet another amazing video cooking site www.vahrehvah.com

Check out the pictures and judge for yourself..



Fry marinated shrimp 450 gm (corriander powder, salt, red chilli powder, turmeric, ginger-garlic paste) in oil, few at a time and keep them aside.



Soak Basmati Rice for 30 minutes and cook with oil, spices, and salt only 85%, do not cook rice completely.



Fry yoghurt, spices, green chillies, corriander, mint, biryani powder, etc. and add fried shrimp to the mixture, stir it once and add the semi-cooked rice and cook it for not more than 10 minutes.




That rose is also by me... yay!!! (patting myself on the back)

Jan 2, 2008

Santa Funda of Life

The four stages in life :).

Got this interesting forward in the mail.

1) You believe in Santa Claus.

2) You don't believe in Santa Claus.

3) You are Santa Claus.

4) You look like Santa Claus.

PS:
For you Caps

The first phase is where we are very innocent and believe in magic and miracles and everything in life.

The second phase is when you start realizing the harsh facts of life and the magic just begins to fade away reality hits hard.

Then comes a phase when you want to pass on that magic legacy to generation next and play along for a while with them.

The final phase you begin to look like one (huge tummy, snow-white hair, etc., etc.)

Well, this is how life comes full circle.. or this is how I perceive this.

Jan 1, 2008

Notes to Myself

Seconds, minutes, hours, days, weeks, months, years, decades pass just like that without me actually achieving anything per se.. well, anything that I can claim is worth making a difference to the world that I inhabit. But yes, I have a clear conscience that I have not hurt anyone, not cheated anyone, did not give in to the 'n' number of provocations or temptations that came in my way. I miss ammamma, miss that unconditional love, and sometimes miss India but mostly I am content with where I am, who I am, and what I am doing though I would like to do something more constructive.

Yet another year and I can say that the past few years, 2005-2007 have totally changed me as a person, my perspective and the way I look at the world. I had maintained a blog, well four of them actually, and been an active posting member in another group blog. Around 250 posts later, I see that blogging has made me think about certain things with a new focus and it has been therapeutic at times when I wanted to say something out aloud to the whole world out there and run away from the nagging thoughts that bogged me down. This new year, I intend to continue this online journal and track my progress as an individual.

Took up a job-related test, yet to join in the job, giving a thought as to whether to rejoin the same place or check out other avenues. I would love to go out and work and have some interaction with co-workers and colleagues in person rather than the IM ones that I have now. Let us see how it goes. With the OH down with a bout of viral illness, all I have done today is call up friends and relatives, wish them, cook, eat, watch TV.. CSI Miami (oooh.. the picture quality is amazing, I just feeling like going to Miami and enjoy that scenic beauty in person) and just idling away.. hope this changes tomorrow.. with me doing something more constructive...

Happy New Year!!!!!

For Evil Eyes on LO