18 January 2014

One more of those hilarious conversations with mom…

I was having my daily call with mom this morning. We were just chatting about how the day went for her when she suddenly asked “Badambhaja kachchis?” (“Are you having roasted peanuts?” – this, by the way, is a very common snack for Bengalis). Completely taken aback (after all, I was just having my first cup of coffee in the the morning that time), I replied “Na. Keno bolo to?”. (“Nope. Why?”). To which she responded “Naah. Hotat badambhajar gondho pelam monay holo”. (“Oh! I thought I just smelt some roasted peanuts”).

And I am like “What? I am talking to you on the phone” ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚

A similar incident had happened a long time back. I was talking to her from my mobile phone near my cubicle in office. I was talking a little softly (unlike other days where I would have stepped out of the office and called her). She asked me if I was sick. (BTW, my mom ย jumps straight to the conclusion that I am sick if I do anything different from what I did the previous day ๐Ÿ™‚ ). I, of course, said No and asked her why. She said that my voice was very muffled. So, I explained to her that there were other people around me who did not understand Bengali and I was trying not to be rude – so I was speaking softly.ย She immediately hushed her voice and said “Oh! that is a good point”.

And I am like “Why are YOU hushing your voice?” ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚

We still talk about that incident once in a while….

17 January 2014

The girls always stick together…

Last night after coming back home, I was teasing Sharmila about something. She was putting up a spirited fight but clearly was not winning the battle of wits. (That is my story and I am sticking to it ๐Ÿ™‚ ). So the two girls immediately jumped in to bolster support for mom. But, I think what Niki did next bordered on the extreme ๐Ÿ™‚


15 January 2014

“e” to the power of “i” multiplied by “pi” equals minus one !!

A long day in DC was getting over. Speaking at an event in the morning? Check! Long customer meeting in the afternoon? Check! Business dinner in the evening? Check! Now what? What better time than to dig up one more of those “intersection points”?

I am really glad I called Venkat (or as he is called now – Ram) and asked if he had time to meet after dinner. Not only did he agree, he gracefully volunteered to travel for 45 minutes to come to the city. I was going to travel to meet him but he would have nothing of it.

A great energizing meeting. We were deep in our discussions when we realized it was nearly midnight and we called it a night. It is not often that I can hear somebody talk about the concept of religion in terms of De Moivre’s theorem. Somehow we got talking about the futility of trying to explain the precepts of religion and spirituality with the constructs of pre-frontal cortex based rationale and reason.

That is when he talked about how something as irrational as “e” (he had a great way of explaining “e” in terms of compounded interest compounded every infinitesimally small time intervals) raised to the product of another irrational number “pi” – nature’s great truth of an unchanging ratio of any circle, big or small – multiplied by an imaginary number “i” – gives us something very rational and something our mind can process – minus one! The point being there are various truths that reside outside our mind’s ability to comprehend thru rational tools.

Also, we had a discussion on why “i” is completely mislabeled as “imaginary”. It is perfectly a good number that has real life practical uses. It is just that our minds cannot process that concept or whatever that number is. So it is more an “unimaginable” number than an “imaginary” number!!!

Of course, we also talked about other sundry things like common friends we have from the past. Speaking of our past, Venkat and I met first in 1989. I was a senior (fourth year) and he was a freshman (first year) in IIT Madras. In fact, we were in the same dorm (hostel). Then I ran into him again for a few years in the first start up I worked in Dallas. In fact, we were part of the same software development team!!

And then nearly fifteen years later, I got to see him again last night!!!