Rocker Wins American Idol

David Cook, a rocker from Missouri, was declared the winner of the 2008 American Idol. Having sung songs by Seal, U2, Aerosmith, The Who & Our Lady Peace, Cook got the maximum number of votes in the final to beat his 17 year old competitor David Archuleta. Finally a rocker gets the big one! To be fair, I thought that Cook’s rendition of Billie Jean had sealed the deal for him many days ago. The rest were just formalities. Although I think Bo Bice, Chris Daughtry & Constantine were better than him, its good to see a rocker snag the win. Go Cook!

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Friends Season 3

Season 3 starts off with what the guys thinks is the ultimate Sci-Fi fantasy (Princess Leia in the golden bikini) and they learn a valuable lesson – that girls talk! Ross gets upset that no one is getting ready for his big banquet at the museum. A lonely Monica tries to get over Richard by making a lot of jam and then thinks that she should become a mother to fill the void in her life. Phoebe finds out that she has a half-brother, who she initially has trouble bonding with. Chandler gets back together with Janice but finds out that she is also seeing her estranged husband. Rachel finally quits her job as a waitress and Mark comes into her life with a job in the fashion industry and that Ross gets jealous of her new friend. They take a break and a drunk Ross sleeps with the cute copy girl. Joey gets mad at Chandler because the latter fooled around with Joey’s sister and he doesn’t remember which one. Monica & Richard start being friends again and have a casual fling. Phoebe is disappointed when her old friend sells her out and sells Smelly Cat as a jingle to make money. Monica has to work at a small diner to make ends meet, where she wears fake boobs and a blond wig. Joey & Chandler adopt a chick & a duck. Monica stars dating a rich guy who wants to become the UFC champion. And finally Phoebe takes them all out to find out more about her dad and instead finds out her real mom. When Ross brings his new date along, Rachel realizes that she still has feelings for him.

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Stanley Cup Finals 2008 Set

So the best team in the west (and in the league going by their points) meets the best in the east. The most consistent team in the league for the last three years meets the most exciting team (both according to some). The tough as nails Detroit Red Wings meets the youthful & soaring Pittsburgh Penguins. I suppose most neutral hockey fans will be predicting a Red Wings win because of their combines experience and maturity.

Just as I am sure that most neutral hockey fans will also be secretly be supporting the Penguins because of the exciting hockey that they play and for the play of young stars Evegeni Malkin, Jordan Staal & Marc-Andre Fleury. Or some will be rooting for the grizzled veteran warrior in Gary Roberts. Or for defence specialist Darry Sydor and tough guy Georges Laraque.

But most will be rooting for the Penguins just for the reason that they lay claim to these two words – Sidney Crosby!

Notes For 19th May

  • I’m not sure if I like the way some things are playing out in the office lately. But there’s not much I can do to change it. Or rather, there’s only one thing that I can do to change it – leave! And I am hunting once again for a new job.
  • Finally got a new ceiling fan for my bedroom and its a welcome relief as the one I had was old and had some motor problems.
  • I’m planning to buy a rocking chair for me to relax during the windy evenings on my balcony
  • I had some samosa chat while on my way home from the bank in Padma. Yummy! I immediately felt thirsty so I got a nice ice-cold lemonade about 10 minutes later.

A Tale Of Two Dogs

I took a book from “Chandler Bing” and formed a silly question in my mind today, while getting ready for work.
I am not sure if someone else had noticed it and asked this question before but I just realized it and found it kind of odd.

Ok, the question that “Chandler” asks is this – “Donald Duck never ever wears pants but how come we see him come out of the shower, he always has a towel wrapped around his waist?

This is typical “Chandler” asking the oddest question, which could be totally irrelevant at the point of time and could throw the listener totally off the rails. This is what I aim to do in my life!

I like to ask these questions to my cousins, relatives, friends and at the office. So here is the question I asked two people at work today in a similar vein.

Is it just me or does it seem weird to you as well that Mickey Mouse has a dog for a best friend (in Goofy) and a dog as a pet (in Pluto)? I mean, both are dogs for crying out loud.

Does that not seem odd to you?

Ok, please don’t stop talking to me!

Named After Me

Astronomers would like to have a planet named after them. Or Maybe a moon or a star. Or a comet or an asteroid. Hell, if you are really good then maybe a constellation. So would astronauts. Maybe a huge section of a planet.

Lawyers would like a legal strategy named after them. Chefs would like a dish named after them. Or if you are a bartender, then a cocktail. Or even a whole brand of alcohol.

If you are a sportsman or woman you would like a trophy or a tournament or an arena named after you.

If you are a musician – an award or a musical technique would be nice. Maybe a studio.

The same for movie directors, producers & actors. Although it would be a style of ending or a twist in the plot.

Like authors – awards, grants, theaters & writing styles.

But would you want a disease named after you? Not me

Like Lou Gehrig, Burrill Bernard Crohn or Thomas Hodgkin?

Here’s a list of eponymous diseases!

Childhood Quirks

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  • When I was a small kid between the ages of 4 to 6, I used to say ‘baby for yesterday’ instead of ‘day before yesterday’.
  • Around the same time, my mother tricked me into thinking that ‘robbery’ was a female robber!!
  • My sister used to call me ‘knucklehead’ and I used to retaliate with ‘knukana-head’ (I have no idea what that means)
  • I got the pants scared off of me, when I saw the movies Evil Dead, Omen & Basket Case during those years
  • I started hating my name around that time and wanted to change it to ‘Michael’! I don’t anymore – I love my name now!

My Room, My World

I think or rather I know that its pathetic & sad but my room is my world. The majority of my world because even if I spend anything between 9-11 hours at the office, there is no way that I can consider it to be my world. Not this job anyway and certainly not this company. But my room is my world. It’s where I retreat to every evening and every day that I am not working.

It’s a small room. Very small. I have a queen sized bed, a chair & a small computer table (with a computer ofcourse), a steel cupboard & a built in cupboard, a small stool on which a tv, that I never use, rests, a clothes stand and a carton of some old stuff parked in one corner. That’s it! There is nothing else in here. Oh me ofcourse! That’s a given.

My bed, pushed against a wall, is kinda hard and I have an extra mattress propped against the wall & the bed, kept there in case a cousin who needs to sleep over comes along. My bed usually has some cds, dvds & books lying on one side, the side next to the wall, on it. This is because I am a bachelor and I do not need the extra space, as big as I am.

My room is where I escape to at the end of my work day. The place where I spend the majority of my free time. I read and write here. I surf the net, visit other people’s blogs, I dream that I had a better life – one in which I am not so lonely that I have to escape to my room. I dream & come up with various science fiction plots here. I call my friends from here. I think of days gone by and think what will be here. This is where I listen to my songs ans sing along with them and play the world’s best Air Guitar in. This is my world.

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And to quote Bon Jovi, this is where “I dream about movies they won’t make of me when I’m dead”!

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Meme Mia

Got this meme from TechnoDoll:
1. What was I doing 10 years ago?
1998. Studying in NIIT (diploma in computer science). Made a ton of friends there, we hung out in a quite manner near the institute. I spent a lot of my free times with my cousins. And the end was near with my girlfriend of 4 years.

2. What are 5 things on my to-do list today, not in any particular order?
I’m gonna make that to-do list for tomorrow, since its 10:15 pm now. Go to work and finish off a couple of pending stuff to do, meet a friend for an early dinner of pizzas or burgers, try to get an interview arranged for a new job for Saturday, try not to feel too miserable all day and find something fun to do with the team for this weekend.

3. Snacks I enjoy:
Chocolate, lays, cookies and I’d kill for a juicy & cold apple right now.

4. Places I’ve lived:
Countries? Kuwait & India

5. Things I would do if I were a billionaire:
QUIT MY JOB & RETIRE! And start a rival magazine to Playboy with lots of chicks!

Techno had tagged all her readers by default. I’m gonna do the same, anyone & everyone is welcome to please try this meme. And let me know your answers in the comments.

Fernando’s Got My Vote

The Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy is awarded annually to the National Hockey League player who best exemplifies the qualities of perseverance, sportsmanship, and dedication to ice hockey. Past winner have included elite stars like Mario Lemieux, Steve Yzerman, Teemu Selanne, Saku Koivu & Gary Roberts. This year too we have three finalists, nominated by their respective teams.

My vote is going for Fernando Pisani.

Pisani, who was diagnosed with ulcerative colitis in 2005, suffered a major flare-up of the condition this past summer. His body stopped absorbing food or fluids, and he lost 30 pounds and six pints of blood. He needed blood transfusions and spent most of the summer in and out of the hospital. Despite that he returned to normal life and also returned back to the NHL! He didn’t want the disease to run his life. He had plans for a life that included the NHL and a certain quality of life with his wife, Heidi, and their children.

Progress was slow, but Pisani began skating with the team in November, and amazingly played his first game Dec. 2. He’s played all 47 games since then, totaling 11 goals and 18 points while averaging 16 minutes per night. Not huge numbers but for a player whose own teammates didn’t think that he would be back the same season, its a huge deal. The son of Italian immigrants didn’t just lie back and let his illness ruin his career. He could have chose to be quite about suffering through an unglamorous disease but by speaking about it he has provided some inspiration for his fans & fellow hockey players alike.

That’s why he has my vote.

Notes For 13th May

  • Just one day back at work and I’m already tired & bored. I did a presentation as part of a certification and then went to read my one week’s worth of office email and as I was about to leave, I got a call for a last minute report! I wanted to leave by 6pm and ended up leaving onlly by 7:25 pm. What’s new?
  • As I expected, the day that I am back to work, I get a little ill. Nothing major though, just a little sore throat that’s making me drink lots of hot water & coffee.
  • Nothing’s changed work wise but it seemed to me that the office looked a bit different. There were just some decorations left over from last Saturday’s quarterly Rewards & Recognitions event but that was minimal. The place did look different to me.
  • I reached home and had a coffee and a little snack and that was it for me – I could not do anything else, I just wanted to hit the sack. My mind felt blurred and I was tired and sleepy.
  • I tried watching an episode or two of Angel but my eyes kept shutting down and I quit trying to watch and went to sleep.

The Reminder – Feist

I first heard about Feist (first name Leslie but she prefers to use just her surname for her musical career) in an article that appeared in some online magazine. Then Toronto Mike hosted an mp3 for sharing in his website a few months ago. The song was Mushaboom, which was a hit for Calgary raised Feist and got her noticed. That was from her 2004 sophomore Let It Die. Feist is also part of the indie rock supergroup Broken Social Scene, who have earned a lot of critical praise in the music world. And in early 2007, Feist put out her third solo album, The Reminder which has won her five awards at the 2008 Juno Awards, held recently in her home town of Calgary, including Songwriter, Artist, Pop Album, Album and Single of the Year.

Released in April of last year, The Reminder debuted in at #16 in the Us & #2 in Canada. Starting the album with the gentle So Sorry, an apology to a lover for her actions which hurt the lover. I Feel It All is more upbeat & lighter, which would have been a better opener to the album. My Moon, My Man is a little sexier, comparing her man to the moon. The song was also chosen to be on Verizon’s advert for the LG Chocolate phone.

Next up is an acoustic The Park a nostalgic look back at life passed by. The Water is a cryptic song about how some things are more than meets the eye and that it usually takes some other incident to make us understand what we have. Pale as a pile of bones, You long for your babies and this is how they grow, Wind-battered, knocked over, The teeth by the shoulder, Watching the gray sky, That’s acting like a good guy. Fiest next covers Nina Simone’s Sea Lion Woman, although she & Bass add some lyrics to it, a song that starts out sounding like an African folk song before a guitar solo rips into it.

Past In Present features a clapping accompaniment & distorted vocals during the verses. Next comes The Limit To Your Love is about that no matter how much another person tells you that they love you, its all up to you. You are the one who can do the most for you, even if you also love the other person. Next comes her big hit 1234 – the song was digitally released through iTunes Music Store. It became famous subsequent to its use in an iPod nano commercial. It also appeared in an Australian commercial for eBay. Brandy Alexander is comparing a lover to a brandy based cocktail.

Intuition, Honey, Honey & How My Heart Behaves round out the 13 track album, which firmly puts Feist in the spotlight. Already touted as one of the best indie rock albums of all time, The Reminder was also nominated for a Grammy, selling 1.2 million worldwide. Enjoy!

Hanging Out With Anil & Madhu

Saturday morning came late for me, as I spent a good portion of the night watching Friends on dvd. I woke up late, had coffee and took a long shower and went out for sometime. I didn’t have any particular plan, I was just roaming in the cds & dvd stores on MG Road. I bought a movie & the new Joe Satriani cd (review to hit this blog soon) and then went in for some coffee. While I was sipping a chilled mocha, Anil called me and said that he & Madhu would be coming in to the area and that we should meet @ Marine Drive for a few drinks @ 2 pm. It was just about 1 pm when he called. I said ok and checked with Madhu as to when he would be there and then went to get some cash at the ATM.

2 pm rolled over and I headed out to Marine Drive and waited outside Coffee Beanz, our meeting point for the day. Anil arrived within the next 2 minutes and excitedly informed me that he had got the offer letter from the job that he had interview for recently. The job is in Delhi and although it was for a very important designation, it didn’t show in the salary package that they offered him. I said that we should hold our discussion for the while and find a seat. Since Coffee Beanz was crowded, I suggested we go find a sofa in Barista and off we went.

Madhu was duly called and informed about the change in venue and pretty soon we were there on a couch, sipping cold Raspberry Ice Teas and discussing Anil’s options. Living in New Delhi on the salary that they had offered wouldn’t be that easy, since it’s a new & bigger city and he is going to have expenses to meet. We’re not young anymore and with his 34th birth coming up, Anil shouldn’t be heading for uncertainty in the Indian capital. Madhu was very vocal about Anil speaking to his potential employers and negotiating a better pay.

We soon wanted to drink something stronger so we looked for some place that would serve us beer. I forgot to mention that it was a very humid & hot day. So after checking out a couple of places, including one that was a shithole, we headed for Velocity. There we ordered some Kingfisher beer, chilly pork, chilly fish, chilly gobi and french fries. We talked a lot about stuff, getting quite animated at times. By 5:15 pm we wound up our talks and Anil said that he would foot the bill, as this might be his last time with me & Madhu. So we said our goodbyes and I headed for home and crashed on my bed.

Raspberry Ice Tea @ Barista

I’m usually a lover of all things coffee and I love to try different kinds of coffee. Well today I was able to go for some tea at Barista Cafe @ Bay Pride Mall in Marine Drive. I don’t usually go for tea except if its ice tea and had been wanting to try some really good tea.

Well Barista have a lot of new choices that have become popular in Kochi recently and earlier today Madhu & I decided to try out a Raspberry Ice Tea while Anil went for a lemon & honey Ice Tea. I gotta tell you that it took me a while to get used to the taste but I really started enjoying it after a few sips. It’s very refreshing on a hot & humid afternoon in Cochin.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 cups tea
  • 2 cups raspberry juice
  • 1/4 cup honey

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Mix raspberry juice, tea and honey. Whisk until honey is dissolved. Serve cold over ice. You can substitute cranberry juice, instead of raspberry for a different taste.