Thursday, May 31, 2007

I didnt mean to write it

Since I was finding new ways to procrastinate, I started trying to put down my signature properly using my left hand. Having succeeded, I started writing some random sentences and before I knew it, the pen switched hands and I ended up with this. Whew, its been a long time since I wrote a poem on paper :) And I guess, this is the first one that doesnt rhyme.

I walk a deserted road
by the side of the stream
with the sun playing the clouds
and the breeze with the leaves

My hand ought to caress
the gentle sparkling waters
but it twitches for the touch of
the smoothness of her skin

My ears ought to be immersed
in the pleasant twitterings of the robin
but they silently earn for
the bustle of her laugh.

My eyes ought to leisurely gaze
upon the yellow flower amidst the green
but they blur trying to remember
the radiance of her beautiful smile

My hair ought to dance
joyously with the breeze
but it sits tight longing for
her fingers to waft through it

My heart ought to blissfully relax
soaking in the pristine beauty
but it beats harder, craving to
feel her magical presence.

Monday, May 21, 2007

A Proposal for Culinary Experiments

PS ('PreScript') - I wanted to invite some friends for lunch on this sunday .. instead of the conventional phone call, i sent this mail.

The author has been cooking since almost 9 months. Lately most of his dishes have been arbitrary, innovative and often edible. However, most of these experiments only dealt with vegeterian items and the testing team comprised of only the author. The author, for no reason, wishes to expand the horizons of both his culinary domain and the testing team.

Related Work: Chicken is a very popular food item and is cooked in several ways in various cultures. However, one of the most delicious ways of consuming it, Chicken biryani, is a rarely explored idea in these parts of the world. The author, hailing from Hyderabad, the supremo of this dish in India, assumes that he has enough background knowledge to try cooking this wonderful dish. More truthfully, the primary motivation is that the author had bought some chicken on a whim on his last visit to the not-so-entertaining Asda and wishes to utilize it.

The Proposal: The author, having a busy schedule, finds no other day of the week except sunday suitable to invite people for lunch or dinner. Also, the chicken may not be able to stave of the bacteria for another week. Both these conditions imply that the chicken has to be cooked today. The author has some kind of a fair idea of how to cook it on basis of the innumerable ocassions he watched his mother cook delicious chicken biryani. At the same time, the author also realises that one of the recipients is a pure vegetarian and may not wish to consume rice that has been cooked alongside the chicken. So, the author is ready to embark on another experiment in parallel and toss up some kind of vegetarian noodles for the 'exceptional' case. The recipients may also, alongside, enjoy some of the many movies downloaded on the author's machine if they wish to. The author being quite flexible has suggested no timeline and is willing to act as the host for either lunch, tea or dinner or a combination of them on the pre-condition that he is informed considerable time before so that he can make himself awake and active.

Conclusions and Future Work: The author has shown why cooking chicken is both an interesting and neccessary activity for this sunday. He has also presented a guideline on how this activity could be conducted and how to deal with the exceptions. In summary--
Enjoy chicken biryani and/or vegetarian noodles (hopefully .. depending upon how it turns out) at Monte R365 today.
Time no constraint but preliminary confirmation neccessary.
The future work has to be conducted by the recipients who are expected to call and confirm/reject this invitation.

References: Have been ignored.

PS ('PostScript') - Guess, this makes it pretty evident that I have become a complete phd student now ;))

Friday, May 18, 2007

Writing ... and the rest of blah

Having painstakingly accomplished the task of writing the introduction to my report (almost, havent finished yet), I have come to the conclusion that it is much more easier for me to code something in java rather than to explain the same, scientifically in the english language. Perhaps thats the distinguishing feature of a programming geek?

I attended a very interesting, rather entertainingly lecture by Prof. Rodney Brooks about the latest home robots being developed by his lab. He is the director of the CSAIL at MIT. He sure is a very good speaker. We have been having such lectures by imminent professors from all over the world as part of the 60 year anniversary celebrations of our school. For every such lecture, posters are put up all over the place announcing it. I have been noticing that almost without exceptions all the speakers look much older in person than they do on the photograph in these posters :D.

Today, I tried to sleep before 11, blasphemous I know! But, I also put an alarm for 6 in the morning, hoping to wake up and complete the introduction. However, what do you know, just as I was about to doze off, my chinese flatmate (the cute one) knocks on my door. Apparently, the windows on her laptop was acting crazy and was just continuously rebooting itself. I went to help and what do I find? That everything was in chinese!! So she had to keep translating to me what each of the options on the screen meant and on basis of her not so perfect translation, I had to figure out what to do. Anyway, since she had no important files on C:, we just recovered the windows. Nice laptop it was, didnt require CDs to recover, just needed to press a combination of keys at boot to start the recovery. And since I am wide awake now (because of this), I am blogging and after I click on the publish button in the next minute, I hope to get back to the introduction and finish off!! Its not that easy.

update: the problem with the laptop of my flatmate was due to an automatic update of Norton antivirus which deletes some system files in chinese version of xp. It was over the news as it effected, well, lots of pcs.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Stupid Tag post and other random observations

I am not particularly fond of tag posts. Yet Sumanth tagged me despite knowing this. But since he keeps linking to my blog in every other post of his .. guess I shall have to humour him. So here we go (I shall try making it as nonsensical as possible)-

1. A living person I would like to meet - I dont really like meeting people, be they living, dead or in coma. But, if I am forced to meet someone, I would rather meet someone who doesnt want to meet me. Since then, I wont be the only one to suffer and the meeting would most certainly be short :P.

2. A dead person I would like to meet - I can reiterate the above. But on second thoughts, I would like to meet any dead person. Yeah anyone as long as he/she is dead. Because I could then find answers to the age old questions about the existence of ghosts, souls, heaven, hell, god and what not!! (my inquisitive research mind seems to be acting up again!)

3. An event in the history I would like to change - The creation of blogs and specifically the idea of tag-posts. Think of all the time that people would spend productively had there been no blogs acting as a means to procrastinate work.

4. An event in the history I would like to witness - the birth of life, universe and everything ... well wouldnt that be the start of history itself? whatever.

5. A movie I would like to witness without being a part of - None! I have chanced upon some film-shootings from the balcony of my home a few times and believe me, there arent more boring things to watch in this world. Perhaps watching a snail sleep would pip it to the post of most boring event.

6. A literary character I would like to meet - Bill Waterson .. yah he is not fictional .. but he is a literary figure nevertheless (comics are literature!!). But if you insist that the character has to be fictional .. then .. Calvin ofcourse! And yeah Cecilia of PhdComics is fine too. Actually on second thoughts, Cecilia is my answer .. not calvin :D.

So, should I inflict this torture on some other souls? Ofcourse! I do have a few people whom I hate right? So Su, you are the one :P. And Halley! I dont care if you have already done this thing earlier, just post something. I seem to be missing your daily dose of inaneness :P or is it inanity?. Better not lose my sanity :D.

Aah .. now that its done .. I can get back to some normal blogging.

Been to southern part of Wales, the previous weekend. Nothing much to write about other than that we learnt how to set up a tent (we had to camp as we got bored of searching for a cheap decent place to stay :D), realising that most of the words in Welsh do not have any vowels in them (they seem to use the english alphabet but seem to only have words like wychlwchllm :P) and that driving on the motorways (M\d where \d stands for an positive integer) is very convenient and a very quick way to get around.

Watched one of my chinese flatmates make a poached egg today. She was using chopsticks to flip it over. They seem to act like extended fingers of her hand. No idea how the chopsticks users are able to control them. I never got the hang of it the few times I tried (at Japan and at Hyderabad)

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Curious book in London

Finally I got my hands on this book- 'The Curious Incident of the dog in the night-time' and read it in one go. Before reading, I had no clue as to what the book was about. I just knew that it was well appreciated by people whose opinions I value in these literary matters. And I loved it. It reminded me of 'Catcher in the rye', another book that I loved reading. Both are quite different yet similar in some ways. For one, both have the protagonists as narrators and these protagonists are not 'normal' per se. And the books are filled with their opinions about things.

I read this book in the unlikeliest of places. Sitting in the French Consulate in London, I started reading this book. I only had to read a few pages to discover that the narrator was living somewhere in England and that he had been to France and also that he hated France. And there I was waiting for a visa to go to France. All in all, the book is a must-read if only to realise how there could be a simple view of the seemingly complicated things around us.

Yesterday, I did spend a good deal of time walking around a small part of London between Victoria and Kensington. I had been once before to central London (have been many times at Heathrow but thats not exactly the London you would want to visit) and wanted to blog about it then but never got down to it. The best memory of the previous visit was sitting high up on Trafalgar Square and watching the traffic whiz by at 2am on as saturday night. And this time, it suddenly struck me as to what exactly I was doing. I was walking in London! I would have been easily passed over as yet another South-asian origin Londoner. I was being a part of that same London that I have read about in innumerable stories and saw in so many movies. Half of the road names seemed familiar though I was in those places for the first time. I would have come across them in some story obviously ranging from the 'Umbrella Man' of Roald Dahl to various Jeffery Archer novels. Looking at the high profile shops- Armani to Harrods made me think that the world isnt such a big place afterall :D. Spent some time going around the famous 'National History Museum' which was right opposite the consulate. got drenched by the popular 'London rain' wherein you would find quite many people walking around in black suits and holding black umbrellas.

Another city that I remember most from novels is Paris. Will be visiting it some day, perhaps sooner than you think ;).