14 March 2015

This is too funny!!

An Indian bride yesterday dumped her groom-to-be during the wedding ceremony near Kanpur because he failed a math test he gave her!! The question she asked was how much was fifteen plus six. The groom replied seventeen! The bride simply walked out accusing the groom of lying about his educational qualifications!



Now, there are unconfirmed reports that many Indian husbands are egging their wives on to ask them math questions. Evidently, everyone is prepared to say one thousand plus two thousand equals zero!!!

14 March 2015

Today is 3.14

Here in US, we celebrate today as the Irrational Exuberance day. (We might have as well called it the Alan Greenspan day). People – especially those who do not remember what the definition of pi is (not the value) – get together and have pies and pie parties.

The rest of the world looks at us completely bemused. I am sure they go something like “Dude, you don’t even know how to write dates properly. You either go up DDMMYY or down YYMMDD. And by the way, the pie that you eat is not spell the same way as pi – the math symbol. In fact, there is an extra “e” in it – which is another math symbol that you probably neither know the definition or value of”.

In response, we pop in one more Tums. Because we have run out of pies.

Jokes apart, did you know Belize is the only other country than US that uses MMDDYY format? (There are a few other countries like Kenya, Philippines etc where, in some parts, MMDDYY is also used)

13 March 2015

Catching up on political news

After a real hectic week on the road, I was trying to skim thru news in politics from the last few days, half asleep in the plane.

I understand Hillary Clinton had set up her own email server at her home. Dealing a mortal blow to all Bangalore call centers in India.

And that 47 Republican Senators wrote a letter to her parents complaining about it.

Or something like that?

12 March 2015

This is why I love the life on the road….

There is an old Nazrulgeeti (songs written by a famous Bengali poet called Nazrul) that went something like “Potho cholitey / Jodi chokitey / Kobhu dekha hoy…”. Roughly translated, it means “Traveling on this road / If someday, suddenly / I get to meet you”…

That was the song that I was remembering as the Delta flight from Portland started its descent in to Minneapolis. I had an hour and a half layover to head out to St. Louis. And my mind went back to Joydeep – our good old friend from Dallas days – who is one more of those great persons that I got to know personally and professionally. He had joined our group as a young guy way back at the turn of the century and has since, reached one professional highpoint after another. In the latest great career move, he has recently joined a Minneapolis based company. I recollected, sitting in the plane, that he had mentioned something about bringing his family to Minneapolis for house hunting.

Moment the plane landed, I sent a text message to him saying that I was in his vicinity to make sure his house hunting was going on well and he that had had no second thoughts of staying put in Dallas.

No response.

The plane was yet to reach the gate. I called him. Went straight to his voicemail. He had either finished his trip and was inflight back home or his cellphone battery was dead. Called his wife – Swapna who is also a dear friend of Sharmila and myself. Went straight to her voicemail. “Dang! they are headed back to Dallas”, I thought!

When we got out of the gate, I checked the American Airlines (based out of Dallas) screen. Sure enough, a Dallas flight left half an hour back. Could not believe how close I came.

And then I got a text message saying “Just landed”. I did not immediately respond, figuring I would do so after reaching my gate for the flight to St. Louis. In about ten minutes I got a call from Joydeep asking where I was. A few confused minutes later, I realized, he had not left Minneapolis. In fact, he just landed. His family was joining him in Minneapolis in a different flight.

As you can imagine the next few steps included quickly checking airport map, rushing towards an agreed upon point and get a quick drink together. His family eventually landed too but they had proceeded to baggage claim and could not join us due to the security stuff.

It was absolutely great to get together with such an young and dashing guy as Joydeep.

As my flight to St. Louis took off, I was again thinking of the odds of meeting somebody that I was just thinking of an hour back. He, coming from Salt Lake City. I, just connecting thru! Again, I was reminded of the Nazrulgeeti!!


12 March 2015

Another first after two decades of flying

I could hear the wheels of the plane coming down. That was my cue to take the earplugs off the Amjad Sabri qawwali I was enjoying and pack my stuff up to land. Moment I took my earplugs out, I could hear a lot yelling going on upfront. It appeared two male passengers were yelling at each other. One of them – a rather young gentleman – was clearly out of control. And there was a young lady trying desperately to defuse the situation. My biggest fear was it was a case of a psychiatric patient gone wrong. (Having two parents with psychiatric issues, that is often my first conclusion).

We landed smoothly and reached quickly to the gate. But you could see the person was perturbed – he just would not sit down and follow instructions. Full credit to Delta air hostesses for keeping their calm. It took us a couple of minutes after reaching the gate to get instructions to get up. At that point, I was sure it was a security issue. Very efficiently, St. Louis airport police showed up and promptly took him away without any incident. I later found out he was totally under the influence…

I took a few pictures but am posting one that does not show his face just to respect his right to privacy.

Never ever have I experienced this before…


9 March 2015

I am getting smarter!!

Some of you may remember my handwritten notes for the girls that I had put up on the fridge before I left for India. The ones with sharper memory might even recollect that one of my instructions was to keep the shoes in the shoe closet and leave the floor for the purpose of walking. Well, that has been a struggle for a long time.

At home I am the one who likes keeping everything back in their proper places and the girls like to just infuriate me. By not putting everything back in their proper places. Especially shoes. Given that we live in the forest, we do get some occasional bugs here and there in our house. No problem!!! There is at least a couple of shoes within spitting distance regardless of where you find the bug.

At one point, I got even some elaborate shelves built in our garage with a lot of space for every family member to entice them to keep shoes back in their places. Want to guess which shelves have more shoes out and around them than inside?

Then again, sometimes, problems have a way of sorting themselves out.

On that note, please meet our new family member – Jay Jay – a mix of cocker spaniel and a terrier. He is the one closer to you in the picture. The other one is Princess – our thirteen year old Maltese. You will be amazed how a three month old puppy’s unyielding energy to chew anything and everything in its eyesight can quickly bring shoe discipline at your home.

Evidently, all these days, I was simply “barking” up the wrong tree!

Enough said!!