Thursday, August 26, 2010

"Menu" needhi

There is a scene in "Azhagan" movie where Mammooty opichufies the menu to Banupriya. He would repeat everything on the menu, category wise. Similar scenes are there in "Server Sundaram","Pudu Pudu Arthangal" and many more movies. (Just realised all three are KB movies. May be KB has a fetish for this type of recital?:D)

The point is, nowadays, there is hardly any communication between the waiter and the guest. The menu card is shown to the guest and he picks and chooses his wants. The art of showcasing the memory might of the waiters, hardly exist. Mylapore boasts of many famous hotels, which are well known for their specific menu items. Be it Sambhar or even coffee, tea for that matter. The name of the hotel would be synonymous with the dish. I've never frequented hotels as a kid as my mom's cooking was way too tasty to even consider going out to try options :D But on those occasions when i did went, i used to be amazed at the speed with which they recite the list of items and also how they managed to memorise the requirements of different tables, without writing them down and how they managed to serve the same, without missing anything. They used to take pride in announcing the daily special and would be more caring and patronising, urging us to try. Whatever be the intention, its always nice to feel pampered and attended upon, right? :)

I went to Karpagambal mess today to get dinner. Though its at a stones throw distance from my house, i've never visited that hotel ever before in my life. It was really a pleasant experience. I often used to wonder, whenever people used to speak so highly of that place, as to whats so special about it. Well. For starters, they still use plantain leaves to serve food. And the head waiter uncle did the recital. I went to order just "Idly" and came back with a bucketful of dishes :D He introduced each dish as if they are hot models on ramp walk :d It was cute and nostalgic. Main matter. The taste didnt disappoint either. So next time when u are anywhere near this area, give this place a try for sure. Its just opposite to Bharathiya Vidhya Bhavan.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Happy birthday chennai :)




Kudalai kumattum koovam irunthaalum




Kuppai koolangalil roadu marainthaalum




December maatham vanthidin




aagidum enathu chennai "sing"aaram.

Happy birthday chennai :)

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Amazonia...

"In 11 out of ten stories, its always the hero who chases the gal..confuses her..convinces her..makes her fall for him. What would be the guys reaction had the same been done by the gal. Imagine a gal, repeatedly running behind a guy..in spite of him rejecting her.. multiple times and managing to win his heart in the end. What would you think about such a gal?"

So began the great coffee day debate :)

"Is she good looking??"
"Who?"
"That girl you were telling about"
"Let's say..Yes. She is"
"Is she hot?"
"Yeess..hot and cute and etc etc"
"Gotcha..is the guy married?"
"No...i know wat u will ask next. a big noooooo to that too"
"Thats a rather "straight" answer..hehehe...then this is a theoretical impossibility. No good looking gal will go after a guy, even after multiple rejections and no sane single guy would accept such an offer"
"What is insane in a gal going after a guy and why would he reject her?"
"Well..for starters..that guy would be scared out of his wits. Have you seen Discovery channel? even in animals..its always he male who trapezes to attract the female. Never the other way round. And moreover..a good looking gal proposing to a guy, without even him trying!! Had i been in his shoes, i would be absolutely careful and watch out for any pranks"
"PRANKS!!! hummppfff...you guys will never be serious.."
"Ok..ok...relax. Lets be practical. The scenario you are describing might sound like every guy's dream. But in reality..thats not the case"
"Thats what i want to know. Why? Lemme ask you direct. Do you guys think..just because the gal herself comes and asks you..she may not be of good character?"
"Hmmm...see..anything which comes easily looses its sheen.. right?"
"How mean. No gal would think like that about a guy who comes and proposes to her"
"Well..because thats what everyone expect."
"So u mean to say...a gal cant fall in love on her own and should always wait for someone to propose to her? how stupid.Even in this modern world..you guys cant accept a women to take lead isnt it? Accept the fact that..it would hurt your male ego's if a gal comes and propose to you and thats the reason why you cant agree to that. All day you dream about your Jessica Alba's and Angelina Jolie's. Even for them..if they come direct and ask you out..you guys would never change"
"Hey u never said the gal looked like Jessica Alba..if Jessica Alba comes and proposes to me..i will surely consider. Anything for.."
Even before he could complete a jug of cold water gets emptied on his head.

"By the way..why this topic all of a sudden? Wait a minute. You want to propose to someone and is testing waters now?"
She sheepishly smiles and says.."Maybe..maybe not"
"Well..you could've told this first. Had you been the gal who is proposing to the guy..this would be his reaction"..he runs away from that place..with her chasing him.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

What you sow..so you reap :)

Last Wednesday turned out be a day of surprises :) Well actually we had planned a surprise bday party for 2 of our team mates. So the day began in right earnest..with cake hunting to card selecting. There was a mini pattimandram as to which one to buy vanilla or chocolate. Vanilla is my favourite flavour..but that chocolate cake was too enticing and the fact that the baker just then poured yummy smelling hot chocolate sauce on top of the cake took my vote. (Just not to annoy my vanilla favouring sense i bought a separate piece the size of the original bday cake... just for my tiny self hehehe). Along with another team mate, I entered office like a foreign spy on an clandestine espionage mission, to hide the goods from the eyes of the bday babies. I just about managed to hide the gifts when i heard my name being called on the PAS. Then only i noticed the unusually big crowd in the middle of the wing. First i had thought it was just another Bhaashan session going on..but looking at the crowd's response it was bit intriguing and more so that my name got dragged into it. It turned out to be one surprise fun event being conducted by some whacko guy who had asked for the name of the naughtiest guy on the floor and these buggers had given my name. "Enna koduma saravana ithu"nu i took part in the mini ragging session. The best surprise of the day was when that whacko guy came and asked me if i remembered him. Namakulaam pagallaye pasu maadu teriaathu..iravula erumaiya theriyum. His face did look familiar though. Ethachum pera solli maatrathuku munna he introduced himself as one of my tuition students. Then all the memories came flooding back. He then told that he has acted as villain in a recently released tamil flick..which was even more of a surprise :) Evening yarukum teriama thirututhanama pantryku cakelaam kondu vanthom. What began as a decent cake cutting ceremony soon turned into free for all with pastries taking the role of face pack :) Another happy addition to the list of memorable days this year :)

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Inconsistent Yuga

At the fag end of the Mahabaratha yuga (Dwabara yuga??) after the great war finally got over and Pandavas claimed the throne of Hasthinapura, soiled with their own kith and kins blood, one fine day 2 farmers were presented in the court of Yudishtra, who obviously had been crowned the king.

Thus spoke the Minister " Dear lord, oh mighty Yudishtra, the noblest and Just person ever, Son of Dharma, here i am faced with a peculiar case. I am not able to give them a proper solution and hence its been presented before you"

"Noble minister, pray tell me what is the issue"

"Well, standing before you to, your right is Bhola, who had sold his land to his cousin Baalu standing to your left. All the settlement has been done in a proper and just manner and the transaction has been completed in the most proper manner possible"

"So..whats the issue here?"

"Yesterday while digging a corner of that land, Baalu had found a pot of gold treasure hidden. He had gone to Bhola to give it to him as he believes the treasure rightfully belongs to Bhola. But Bhola has refused to take it as he had already sold the land to Baalu and whatever treasure had been found should belong to Baalu. I am at a loss to give a Just answer to this issue and hence had to disturb your highness"

Yudishtra, was secretly happy that his subjects were so noble and decent, was perplexed at the same time how to solve the issue. He adjourned the issue for that day and went back to his harem thinking. The ever clever Lord Krishna paid a visit at that very moment. Seeing the clouds of confusion on Yudishtra's face, the lord asks for the reason and when he hears about the case has a hearty laugh.

"Oh dear Yudishtra, dont worry. You did the right thing by postponing the judgement by a day. Wait till tommorow and see what happens" with a wink and smile the lord vanishes as quickly as he came.

The next day dawned and Yudishtra's court proceedings get disturbed again by the same 2 farmers who turn out in a pretty violent mood, each one literally on other's throat.

Even before Yudishtra could enquire, Bhola shouts "oh Just king..the treasure which Baalu found on the land is my ancestral property and should rightfully belong to me. Please get it for me. I would be devoted to you for life"

For which Baalu shouts back saying "Lord..i've paid him full and final and just amount for his land and whatever is available from the land belongs to me now. How can he claim something which belongs to me. Please help in restoring my rightful claim to the treasure"

Yudishtra is perplexed with the sudden turn of events and decides to postpone the proceedings again. He prays to Lord Krishna who appears before him.

"Oh merciful God..i am confused over the sudden turn of events. How come both the people went through a sudden change of heart?? Both were selfless and compassionate towards each other yesterday and overnight both have become selfish and greedy? what happened??"

"Dear Yudishtra..arent you aware? From sunrise today, begins Kaliyuga. The most difficult yuga ever. In Threthaa yuga..there were fewer demons and even them were pious and righteous. In Dwabara yuga..the good and bad were in equal propotion. But in Kaliyuga the good and bad exist in the same form. No one is completely good or completely bad. The case in your court is just a trailor of things to come. Be prepared" and pufff vanishes the lord.

Yudishtra renounces his throne the very same day after appointing his successor and leaves with his brothers to do penance.

P.S: Eppovo padicha kathai..ipo ethuku postirukengareengala..i think it applies to each and everyone of us. You can never be good, or even bad for that matter, continuously to anyone and everyone. At some point the twine breaks. Nallathu senjatha nenachu paathu..allathu seiayarappo mannichiruvomaga. Happy independence day folks.

Sunday, August 08, 2010

Fire in ice

Like few of my fellow Indians, who number in millions, i am also a silent spectator to the happenings on Kashmir. After the masthead in any newspaper, death of a person in Kashmir would've been the most consistent news for the past few decades. Whether that person was a terrorist, or a case of mistaken identity..who cares. Its as if, if there is someone in that cursed place they are either a terrorist or those who are expected to die a violent death sooner or later. Show me a Kashmiri who had died in peace i can bet you it wouldn't be on his native land.

I dont represent any international peace agency. Nor do i have a professional degree or training in broking peace. One fine day i decided to follow, what the heck is actually happening there. The reason for the dawn of that "fine" day being, i saw a picture of one pink salwar clad lady, throwing stones on some security guys, who in turn, where throwing back the stones. For the first time i saw such a raw anger in those otherwise peaceful eyes. There were some more ladies carrying plates and pans and where shouting slogans. Mind that those were not any political party driven brain washed people..but any common person..like you and me. If our government, the so called UNION government, is really doing the right thing, then why the common man is out on the streets, protesting??!!! How come there are more deaths due to security forces firing on civilians than all the militant attacks this year put together?? If the forces are there to protect the people from militants then how come there are more deaths under their custody?

I tried to follow the news channels for the past one week. Everyday they would report some death or other, with their camera person filming the stone throwing or the gun fight, "LIVE", without "caring" for his life and transmitting the incident to the viewers being the single sole purpose of his existence on earth. The newspapers too grew tired of word whacking Omar "the CM" Abdullah and resorted back to the corruption prone Commonwealth games (Even if its private property..our politicians will shamelessly swallow it...with a name "common wealth"..no wonder they misunderstood the meaning (sic)) In comes the land slide in Leh and flash floods in Gujarat..the burning issue goes back to the burner. Cmon...who wants to see the same incident of stone pelting and firing day in and day out. Even action movies have comic relief right?

I've only one question. What exactly do all these people want? Is it independence? Let it be given to them na? Stats show that there are more military persons per men in Kashmir than entire Iraq with all its multinational troops put together and we call ourselves the biggest democrazy (pun intended) in the world. When we can barge in and liberate Bangladesh from Pakistan..how much time does it going to take for a China or America to create a Kashmiristhan? Sooner or later this is bound to happen and i doubt even then if the guns will remain silent. If there is a survey on who wants war with Pakisthan there could be a split result. But if the same survey is rephrased as who wants Peace with Pakisthan, the result, i am sure would be a vehement and unanimous YES from everyone. For a change let it be peoples decision and not power mad politician's one which decide the fate of innocent civilians..who can't even enjoy a cell phone without the fear of it getting tapped. Can't go for an outing in their own lake..without the fear of getting killed or kidnapped. Can't enjoy the god given natural sceneries of their own state..without the fear of tripping on a landmine. Its nothing short of an open cage and where they are hunted and hounded by everyone.

Like every ordinary citizen of this country, i too crave for a cricket team where Asif, Aameer, Gul will compliment the batting lineup comprising of Sachin and Sehwag. A hockey team where Sohail Abbas drag flick will win us a Worldcup or even better.. an Olympic Gold. A tennis duo of Bopanna-Quereshi lifting the Davis cup. If not all this, there would be atleast silence and peace for my fellow human, let him not be an Indian or even a Kashmiri for that matter, which by itself would be the greatest joy possible.

Sunday, August 01, 2010

Sometimes...

Sometimes i wish i could board the next available time machine slot and travel back in time to my most happiest years. While waiting in the platform i take time to ponder..which phase of my life i actually want to revisit. Schooldays ..that option itself is not there when clubbed under the category "Happy" :) College days..hmmm ..interesting..but to be clubbed Happy..something is missing there too. Post graduation period was a farce. So let me not dwell into it. There was an interim period before i got my job and while i was doing my UG. That was the time when i took tuition classes. For a very long period of time, those were the several continuous days of sheer fun and delight. Every evening i would look forward to those tuition classes as much as the kids..err..friends i should say :) True to my college founders motto (one mr.Viveka :D)..my aim, as far as my class was concerned, was not just to teach them..but to induce the curiosity in them to do things on their own. When they begin to relish the joy of solving their problems..i was hardly required as a tutor..but more of a coach. They were a great boost to my confidence and helped in shaping my personality. Those two years i felt would never be matched..ever in my life. Atleast..thats what i was thinking till few months back.

Consider the following place..situated in the remotest corner from any decent civilised locality with the nearest settlement at half an hour drive away by car (provided there is no upturned lorry or container blocking your way). A place so barren and timing so illtimed coupled with meaningless restrictions in the name of security..and to top it all if that place happens to be your haunt for atleast 5 days a week for which visiting and working fee happens to be your salary..i wonder how many would be willing to take up such "entertaining" vocations for a living. Still..people look forward to go there everyday. Every single person's absence..irrespective of their role and designation is felt and missed. Lunch breaks and tea breaks happen to bring out the creative best in those otherwise irritated souls. If there is an award for adaptability it would be well deserved by this motley bunch of people from different places and backgrounds..who have managed to gel in so well that despite the teething troubles workwise...personally they've all becomes friends for life. I can wager a month's salary that any new person joining or visiting the premise would find it hard to believe that this bunch of jolly gud fellas were total strangers 3 months back. Kudos to my team mates and a special thanks to them for bringing cheers to my otherwise dull life :) I would sorely miss you guys.

Sometimes i wish i could board the next available time machine slot and travel back in time to my most happiest years. While waiting in the platform i take time to ponder..which phase of my life i actually want to revisit. Well..for time being..let the machine not roll :) let me enjoy my moments while it lasts.

Happy friendshipday folks :)