Monday, January 24, 2005

Just Some Trivia

"I do not know where family doctors acquired illegibly perplexing handwriting
nevertheless, extraordinary pharmaceutical intellectuality counterbalancing indecipherability, transcendentalizes intercommunications' incomprehensibleness.

Thats the longest sentence in English where the Nth word contains N letters & the shortest one is "I am" or "I do".


These days I spend a lot of time with Henry, our very own O.Henry of 'The Gift of The Magi' fame. The collection called 'The Best Short Stories of O.Henry' is a wonderful read. Before I list down my favourites let me tell u some trivia about the famous author:

- He was born William Sydney Porter in Greensboro, North Carolina
- Before he took to story writing, he worked as a columnist for Daily Post in Houston and later as a bank teller in Austin, TX
- He was sentenced to 5 yrs imprisonment for mismanagement of the bank's funds
- It was while he was serving his term that he took to serious writing & also acquired his pseudonym from the prison warden named Orrin Henry and
- The Hindi movie 'Raincoat' is inspired by one of his well-known short stories

& here's my pick, which I believe should not be missed

The Cop & The Anthem - for Satirical humour
The Making of a New Yorker - for metaphorically describing the cities of US
The Last Leaf - Touching
The Pendulum - Plain funny. Based on the theme Men are from Mars.


Its Infuriating!

Read on rediff and I am disgusted to the core to know that there are a few cheap and opportunistic priests and nuns who are trying to convert the poor Tsunami-struck fishermen by offering them aid. Thanks to these so called helpful Christians, decent people like Mother Teressa might be turning in their graves. Which world do these people come from? Haven't they seen/read enough about the 1984 Sikh massacre, Bombay riots, Godhra - Gujarat carnage? In a country which is as volatile as ours, we don't need big issues to cause a bloodshed. So please go home, take up your Bible and study and not just read, understand and not just learn the verses and passages by rote and what I told my friend last weekend is what I'm saying now & I am as sure of this as of the fact that I am breathing - the God that I believe in is above all trivialities of life. He'd rather see us all live in peace than kill each other in His name.

"God, please forgive (& FORGET) them coz they know not what they do."

Start of Yet Another Week

Has it ever happened to u that u wake up with a song in your head? I mean the moment u open ur eyes there is no blank (possibly from a hangover), no trying to focus on the alarm clock, no mental calculations that if u lie down for 5 more minutes, will u be able to make it to office on time but ur first thought itself is a song? That happened to me today - I woke up with Kishore Kumar humming 'Yeh Jeevan Hai ...'. Its strange cos I haven't listened to Kishore Kumar, for that matter, any Hindi song for more than two weeks but its definitely a nice song to start the week.


Weekend went off smooth. It snowed here - just a bit but enough to keep me from venturing out. Watched 'Wizard of Oz'. Nice movie. Even though it was released in 1939 (& the book was published much earlier) it still retains its freshness. Here's some of life's philosophy by the wizard himself -

"Hearts will never be practical until they are made unbreakable."

"A heart is not judged by how much u love, but by how much u are loved by others."

& the most important of all...

"If I ever go looking for my heart's desire again I won't look any further than my own backyard b'coz if it isn't there, I never lost it to begin with."

Sunday, January 09, 2005

My Personal 'Will Knot & Mr.Watt' Tale

Its nothing new when someone calls us and v r not able to recognize their voice or we confuse them for someone else. It happens to the best of us. But its heights when your own parents confuse u with ur sibling over the phone (& no, we are not identical twins). Infact until this incident happened I never thought there's any similarity between my sis & me, whatsoever. We don't look alike, we dont dress alike, our tastes ranging from food to fashion to men are poles apart. In short, we are anything but similar.
But every once in a while something like this happens that just proves me wrong. This incident happened when I was still in school (just after my 11th exams) and sis was doing her MBA in Pune. I, alongwith a few friends of mine had gone to bid farewell to a friend who was moving out of town for good. The train had got delayed by an hr and was now arriving at 10:00 pm instead of the scheduled 9:00 pm. In a small town like ours, 10:00 pm is considered quite late & so to save my parents a sudden fluctuation in their heartrate and blood pressure, I thought of calling them & telling them about the delay. Here's how the conversation went:

Daddy: Hello
Me: Hi Daddy! Its me.
D: Hi sweety, how are u?
(M: eh, Whats this formality about? I just saw them half an hr back)
M: I am fine. How r u? (If Dad wants formality then so be it)
D: We are doing good. Hows your studies going on?
(M: Is this a trick Qn? Is he being sarc that I am out with friends? Did mom squeal about my marks?
M: Hmm ... well, studies are going on fine.
D: Thats good to hear. Listen, you have got an interview letter.
M: What interview letter?
D: Its from xyz (it all sounded greek & latin to me, anyway) company in Bombay.
M: xyz? Whats that?
D: How do we know. You applied for it.
M: When did I apply? (Which company? When did I apply? They responded ... cool)
D: (After scanning through the 'supposed' interview letter) last month.
M: (What the $#%^? How forgetful can I be - cant even remember something that I applied for? How am I gonna pass my 12th board?)
D: Its at 10:00 am, Sunday morning.
M: Sunday? Its day after. How am I gonna go there? (Logistically, its impossible. Can I postpone the interview but WHAT INTERVIEW IS IT? Damn!)
D: Take a train or bus.
M: What about reservation? Will u not be coming with me? (I will have to start tonight ALONE! How come he is letting me travel all by myself???)
D: Ofcourse not. U take some friend with u.
M: (Friend? %#$@ I knew it - its always about my friends. Why are they after me & my friends? Dad must be really pissed that I am out so late.)
D: Ok, here talk to Mom, she is trying to pull the phone out of my hand. (& gives the phone to Ma or maybe Ma succeeds, whatever)
Ma: Hi muththe (pearl). How are u?
M: (Oh no, here we go again. Whats come over them?) I am fine.
Ma: Did u have ur dinner?
M: No, will have it when I get back. (Hope the samosas get digested before I reach home)
Ma: Good. Don't get thin. Dont diet.
M: (Diet & me - why is she pulling my leg?) No Ma, I wont.
Ma: Ur phone bill must be running high. Keep the phone. We will call u once u r back in Pune.
M: Pune? (& now just like the reality of Keyser Soze's identity dawns on the cop in 'The Usual Suspect', the reality behind the extra sweetness, interview, Bombay, no dieting instructions, everything, also dawns on me. Everything falls in place & I almost yell on the phone) Ma, this is Reenu not Beenu. I just called up to say the train is delayed & I will be late.
Ma: Oh, so its u, we thought its your sister. Yeah, ok ... come back soon. (Her disappointment so evident in her voice).

Since then everytime I call my parents I start with: "Hi Daddy, its me, from US" saves them a lot of disappointment and me, a lot of confusion.

Sunday, January 02, 2005


If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings,
And never breathe a word about your loss:
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: "Hold on!"

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with Kings - nor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,
If all men count with you, but none too much:
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds' worth of distance run,
Yours is the Earth and everything that's in it,
And - which is more - you'll be a Man, my son!

... Excerpts from 'If' by Rudyard Kipling

Saturday, January 01, 2005

Tsunami Relief Organizations

If you have any ideas or opinion about some efficient NGOs working for Tsunami relief, please visit: and post your comments.

For others who want to contribute to the relief and are finding it difficult to decide on the right organization, there are few good responses already out there which may be of help.