Idiots In All Places

One of the saddest things to happen in recent memory was the passing away of my grandmother. At her funeral I was with my cousins and we were all nostalgic about our favourite memories about her and we spoke about them. I was also hoping that things would go smoothly; I am always weary about too many people or ‘experts’ claiming that things should be done in such & such manner or else, heaven forbid, the sky may crumble down on our heads! I usually try to avoid such ‘politics’ and religious naysayers and keep to myself or stick close to my cousins.

But yesterday, I happen to get a bit of a shock – some guy came and punched me in the belly! If that wasn’t rude enough, he comment on my weight and said that I have to do something about it! Eh, okay motherfucker now how about something to be done on your manners, was what I wanted to say! I also wanted to smash the asshole’s face in. I was about to say something back, when he asked me if I remembered who he was! I didn’t, although his face was somewhat familiar. Turns out he is my mom’s brother’s bro-in-law. I haven’t seen him since I was 12 (or maybe just at some wedding or something that I don’t remember) and he punches me!

scrooged download And the worst part was, that the sonofabitch was drunk! You could smell the whiskey a mile away. I wanted to say ‘hey you shithead, aren’t you ashamed, coming to the my grandmother’s funeral all drunk?” But I didn’t, just because I didn’t want to make a scene at a time of mourning. Turns out he is drunk almost every day and he acts like an idiot. My father & cousins told me to ignore him. I said, keep that jerkoff away from me, cause the next time he is gonna end up flat on his arse! What a loser!

Ammumma

My maternal grandmother passed away early this morning at around 2:30 am. I got the call at around 4:45 and quickly informed a couple of my cousins about her death. She had been ill quite a bit recently – she had a urinary infection, then she had a fracture in her hip bone for which she had to undergo surgery. She also had a battle with cancer, which was thought to be in complete remission. While in recovery from the surgery, she went into cardiac arrest on Wednesday night and then into a coma. I went to the hospital yesterday morning but I couldn’t see her as she was in recovery. The brain activity had ceased and she was hooked up to a ventilator and her heart was the only thing keeping her alive. Last night my dad confirmed to me all the talk that was happening among her children – they were to take her off the ventilator as there was nothing anyone could do. However, she passed away during the early hours naturally and peacefully.

It wasn’t your typical funeral : only a few people were crying. She was after all in her late 80s and they didn’t want her to suffer in pain as she has had quite a battle with illness. Plus her spark kinda left her when one of her sons, my uncle, died in 2001. She had 12 children but he was the focus of her attention due to his ill health and the fact that she had mostly lived with him & his family. For her, keeping on living and being able to do things, was like a huge curse when her son was dead. She found that a burden to bear.

She was a petite woman, highly religious and always living for her family. She wasn’t perfect, infact she had her numerous superstitions and her methods may not always be the best. She could use emotional blackmail like the very best of them. But she was also a sweet old lady who got married at the age of 15 and birthed 12 children – 7 sons first and then 5 daughters! Her first daughter and the 8th child being my mom. For me she was always ammumma – my mother’s mother, my mom’s mom, my mummy’s mummy. That is something special. This lady birthed the lady who birthed me.

She was a sweet old lady. My favourite memory of her is back in 2002; she was staying with an uncle of mine who lived two houses away from my old house. The football world cup was on at that time and my uncle would call me to watch the games at his house in the afternoons and early evenings as he wanted company. When we were watching the games, ammumma would sit with us for a bit until after lunch when she is supposed to take some strong medicine and then go to sleep while the meds take effect. However, she would nap for 20 minutes and then come and sit with us again. Each time we would send her back to sleep and 20 mins later she would come back and say that she prefers to sit with us. This went on for a couple of days. So I looked at my uncle and said, tongue-in-cheek ofcourse, ‘Grandma doesn’t know the first thing about obedience. No wonder the rest of us turned out like this – we were learning from her all the time!’ My uncle would start laughing & ammumma would join in. She would crack up everything I joked about that.

Ammumma means grandmother and the literal translation is mother’s mother. She was ammumma to 11 of my cousins, my sister & me and achamma (dad’s mother) to 11 of my cousins.

The End Is Near, Closer Than Expected

download ghost rider dvd I guess I was only fooling myself that anything could / would happen with her. It’s just too much for me to handle that I find myself being jealous when anyone speaks to her. I would do anything for her and have probably done all that she has asked better than she wanted to. Not just from a work aspect but I poured my heart & soul into it. I knew that I could never be anything more than a crazy colleague who makes her laugh once in a while.

I never asked anything more from her that to be near her and see her smile and laugh. Every time I did something silly just to make her laugh, my heart was jumping for joy on hearing her girlish giggles. However I knew that she would have to leave after being here for a year or just a little more. She had let us know that she would probably have to leave by the end of July. A couple weeks ago I heard that it could be as late as September. And the rumours came; she might leave in a couple of weeks or so.

cactus download And yesterday I heard her speaking on the phone and caught bits and pieces of it, and I knew. Today she informed us that she has been offered a wonderful opportunity by our company in another city a long way from here and the good thing is that her sister, who she loves dearly, can also work there in the same office and that they would help her folks to also relocate and find them a house there. That is a great deal and she is all but packed to go there. And that could be as early as the end of this month! But the package is so wonderful for her to say no. She gets a great profile, a new challenge, her family with her and all that.

What about this lovelorn boy over here who will grieve long & hard over her? It figures, always a friend and nothing more.

New Blog

Hello my handful of readers, I have some news for ya! Last Saturday I decided to hell with it and start writing the sci-fi novel in blog style that I always wanted to do. I have had a couple of attempts at doing something similar but I keep deleting it. I kept dreaming about the concept of human life waay out there in the future and the kind of things that would happen in that future. I would make up these episodes & adventures – while in the loo and just before I fall asleep every night. I’d be still awake but these ideas just keep coming to me (hey, my main blog isn’t called Awake & Dreaming for nothing, you know) and I’d forget bits of the plot after a few days, so I thought I better start putting it on my computer.

And just in case there are other people who would be interested in reading it, I thought why not put it in a blog. So I created one in wordpress.com and wrote out the first part of the intro to the futuristic world. It’s called The Forcefield and that’s because of the forcefield (more like an self-adjusting armour) that humans have developed that make them almost indestructible to any hostile alien attack. Think of it as Star Wars meets Star Trek meets Battlestar Galactica meets Farscape!

Creating stuff in my mind is one thing (and it’s easy) but putting it in words is another whole new ball game! But I am going to try and you are welcome to join the journey. Blogging there might be a lot slower than it is here but keep checking every week at The Forcefield for any updates.

And……may the Forcefield be with you!!!!! Live long & blog!

1000 Posts

I’ve made it to 1000 posts at Awake & Dreaming.org and it took me just a little under a year and a half. I’ve deleted quite a few (I think that had the deleted ones also been published I would actually be at 1041 posts) but I’m only looking at published ones. And ofcourse I have blogged a whole lot more at my two previous blogs in Blogger.com, so 1000 is not really a big deal for me. However, when I think about it Awake & Dreaming.org download banana joe online is my heart & soul. I have poured everything of me into it and it’s a true representative of who & what I am. Reaching the 1000 posts mark is therefore a big deal for me in that regard. The format will largely remain unchanged. But I have a new project also running side-by-side, which will not be at this url but at another one. Anyway, here’s to the next 1000, starting with this announcement and a self-pat on the back

Dutch Delight So Far @ Euro2008

The Dutch national side have been, so far, the best side at the currently progressing Euro 2008 held in Switzerland & Austria. The Dutch have scored 7 goals and conceded just one in beating two normal powerhouses in France & Italy. Dutch captain Edwin Van der Sar (Manchester United goalie) isn’t being carried away with the talks of a possible triumph for his side but it’s hard not to get caught up in the goals frenzy. Along with Spain and Portugal, they are now favourites to lift the title, with their vast array of forwards in sublime form and their often suspect defence holding up in their opening two matches.Dirk Kuyt had opened the scoring against France with a simple header from a corner in the eighth minute, but it was after the break that the Oranje really put on a show as France pushed forward and left gaps at the back. Second-half substitutes Arjen Robben and Robin van Persie exposed the French by finishing off flowing team moves in some style, before Wesley Sneijder added gloss in injury time with a trademark strike from long range.

Ruud Van Nistelrooy, Giovanni van Bronckhorst & Sneijder scored the goals in the first game against world champions Italy. It’s performances like these that have Dutch chicks , like the one below, all smiles!

What You Wish For

I was thinking about all the things that I want and what I wouldn’t do to have them. To let you know what it is that I want, it’s pretty simple : I want a well paying job and be very comfortable financially, I want a small but cozy house, I want my perfect woman to fall in love with me and we get married, live a happy life with her, get a puppy or two and finally have kids of our own, raise them and then die a happy content man.

I am so far away from that dream that I have no clue as to when I get it. Now, when I see people who seem to have what they wanted or are close to having what they wish for, I feel a bit jealous and a bit envious. But sometimes it just isn’t what its cracked up to be. I met my uncle and aunt today, who were speaking to me about their son, my cousin. To the outsider, he has got what he wanted. He wanted to live & work in the US and a few years back (1999?) he got what he wanted : the software & networking company that he was working for placed him in the US and he was quite happy to be there. He settled in quickly, or atleast I think, buying a house a couple of years later, joining the local Malayalee Association and making friends. He never had any trouble making friends anywhere he went. But he lives alone and not all seems to be rosy.

I recently found out that he has had some lady trouble and is probably lonely because of that. His employers seem to take him for granted and pile him with work and more work. His mom told me today that when they went to visit him, she saw that he has a huge cupboard filled with books and suitcases filled with comics. When she asked him, since he was always quite busy, if he had read any of them, he replied that he had and that he had read some more than once or twice. How he finds time to read them, I have no idea. I have a guess how and where he does but the fact is that he lives in the US and he should be having a ball as most Indians would think but truth is that he is not.

Not with his work. It seems that he noted once that he was so frustrated that he wanted to take his car and run it straight against a brick wall or a building and crash it. Why would he want to do that?

Anil Leaves

Today would be Anil’s final day in the city before he left for his hometown of Thrissur. And next Friday he would be on a train to Delhi and a new job with a new bigger profile. This is good news for him and Madhu & I are happy for him. Sad that we are saying bye to our friend but happy that he is on the verge of being well settled with an important job and more importantly more money.

So we needed to have one last evening of getting together before he had to take his leave. We met up at Barista and after some coffee we headed out to the new roof top garden restaurant @ Mercy Estate. It really is a wonderful setting; lush green lawns, big umbrella protected tables with comfortable chairs, a beautiful swimming pool, a play area for the kids and scrumptious food. It was quite expensive really but worth it for the occasion. We only had two fried rice plates, with a chilly fish & a butter paneer for dinner, with an appetizer of french fries and the three of us split 2 beers among ourselves. We ended the night with cokes and it cost it upwards of Rs.800! It’s not a place to come often but it would a nice place to have a family party.

We said our goodbyes and Anil dropped me home with a promise to try and come by on Wednesday evening, so I can burn a whole lot of my mp3s into a couple of dvds for him to take on his new journey unto a new life. Madhu & I have promised Anil that we would try to come by and visit him in 3 months time and take a trip out to Shimla for a week. Hope we can do it.

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Trevor Linden Retires

Vancouver Canucks forward & fan favourite Trevor Linden announced his retirement from the game. The Medicine Hat, Alberta native’s announcement comes 20 years to the day, after the Canucks selected him with the 2nd overall pick in the 1988 National Hockey League Entry Draft at the Montreal Forum. Linden spent 16 of his 19 NHL seasons in a Canucks uniform.

He recorded 867 career points (375-492-867) in 1382 regular season games with the Canucks, Montreal Canadiens, New York Islanders and Washington Capitals. In addition, Linden proved himself to be a strong Playoff performer, in 124 Stanley Cup Playoff games, he recorded 99 points (34-65-99) and 104 penalty minutes.

In his first eight NHL seasons, Linden recorded 30 or more goals six times. In 1991-92, Linden, just 21 years old at the time, was named the Canucks captain, becoming the youngest captain in the NHL, wearing the ‘C’ for 7 seasons.

Just as impressive as his on-ice accomplishments are, Linden’s work in the community has been tireless over the past 20 years. Most recently Linden was named the recipient of the NHL Foundation Player Award which is awarded annually to the National Hockey League player “who applies the core values of hockey – commitment, perseverance and teamwork – to enrich the lives of people in his community”.

In 1997, Linden was awarded the King Clancy Memorial Trophy which is given annually to the NHL player who best exemplifies leadership qualities on and off the ice and who has made a significant humanitarian contribution in his community. Linden’s work with Canuck Place, BC Children’s Hospital, Camp Goodtimes, Ronald McDonald House of B.C., Canadian Cancer Society, B.C. Cancer Foundation, Kids Help Phone, the Michael Cuccione Foundation, and many other charities in BC has helped raise millions of dollars for those in need.

Throughout his career, Linden was very involved with the NHL Players Association beginning as a player representative in 1990 and acting as the President of the NHLPA for eight years from 1998-2006. – from http://canucks.nhl.com/

Paraskavedekatriaphobia

Considered a bad luck in most European countries and English speaking countries, this superstition is found in many cultures. An estimated 17 to 21 million people in the United States are affected by a fear of this day. Some people are so paralyzed by fear that they avoid their normal routines in doing business, taking flights or even getting out of bed. It’s been estimated that between $800 and $900 million is lost in business on this day. There’s only one Friday 13th this year.

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Ofcourse most horror movie buffs, like yours truly, love Friday the 13th, especially for the the movie franchise named after this day. Jason, our beloved slasher for no reason with an attitude, drowned in a lake while at camp. He starts killing people, taking over from his mama, who blames the camp counselors who were having sex while Jason was drowning and hence did not help him. Since he has mysterious regenerative powers, he is kinda hard to kill and has stalked movie theatres in 10 sequels and thus a star was born.

New Reason

I found this over at the Friendly Atheist

. To all you believers of god, how many found this highway billboard offensive? Is this aggressive?

Well apparently the right-wing Fox News isn’t too happy about it! They have some scary music to along with the news clip on the billboard. I hope nasty Bill o’Reilly has his knickers in a permanent twist.

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What about all the mindless god stories spoon fed on millions every day? Entire tv channels devote to spreading drivel and junk, god tv for Pete’s sake.

Hair Apparent

What do you call have a bunch of rabbits, standing in a line, hopping backwards? A receding ‘hare line’! Yuck, yuck! Lol!

With that bit of PJ eloquence out of the way, the subject of hair is what I want to blog about. Ever since the age of 28, I started noticing that my prominent forehead was getting more and more prominent as the months went by. Not just that, I also have a balding spot on the top/back of my head. This is not acceptable at all! The problem is that my hair is very light & straight and I am susceptible to dandruff and my goddamn family has a overwhelming history of male pattern baldness! The odds are against me.

The last few weeks I have also been noticing something – gray in my beard! Holy cow, I’m not yet 32! It’s not noticeable, except when I stare at myself in the mirror. And it’s just three single strands, that no one else has been able to find. I stress, you wouldn’t be able to see it, unless I pointed it out to you. And plus, I shave every two days. But it’s still scary.

I also have two silver nostril hairs. Disgusting!! ROTFLOL

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