Food Review #21

For my 21st food review my cousin Sujith & I went to the Abad Food Court in Bay Pride Mall and enjoyed some Chicken Poppers from MarryBrown (very similar to KFC) as well as some milkshakes. MarryBrown is a Malaysian chain of fast food restaurants that serve southern fried chicken, chicken & fish burgers, etc. They were ok.

2014 Indian Super League Launches

This is it. This is the trophy for which 8 newly formed teams in the inaugural Indian Super League will be fighting for. October 12th 2014 sees the start of the Indian Super League, a top tier league in Indian which features some of the best Indian players along with international stars, most though in the twilight of their careers. The league will run from October to December, with a finals series determining the champion. The formation of the league is an effort to bring some big money sponsorship to the beautiful game in India, where it stays on the sidelines both in glamour, achievements and financial benefits to cricket.

Indian football hopes that the big names and the hype will inspire more Indian footballers to spring forth from academies across the nation and also bring foreign talent, investment and investment to the next generation of footballers for us. The kind of investment that cricket has seen and hogged the limelights for so long! Unlike the majority of football leagues around the world, the ISL will not use the promotion and relegation system. Instead, the ISL will use a franchise system in which eight teams will be created to participate in the league. During the regular season, each team will play each other twice on a home and away basis. The top four teams at the end of the season will qualify for the finals series. The semi-finals will be played in a two-legged format with the winners moving onto the one-legged final. The Indian Super League will also consist of controlled rosters. Each team must sign at least one marquee player while they must also sign seven other foreigners. Of these seven foreigners, only two can be signed directly by the club with the other five coming from the foreign player draft. Each team must also have 14 Indian domestic players, four of which being local players to the city.

Above are the logos of the 8 teams. Below are some details like stadium, cities and marquee players plus coaches. I just hope this won’t become a Bollywood production and a hyped up bauble of a shame gimmick. This is India after all and with a lot of focus and news print given to the celebrity owners and stuff! The players seem almost lost in the midst of all this.

Voices In A Crowd

A lively group discussion, an intimate tête-à-tête, an inner monologue — in your view, when it comes to a good conversation, what’s the ideal number of people?

I often enjoy good conversations in small groups – 5 to 10 at the maximum. Sometimes the groups have been larger like 20-25 or slightly more but I think the points get diluted or even lost if you do not have a good moderator to control the discussions when you have large groups. Some voices don’t get heard and big numbers of people can share the quiet & shy ones who are intimidated by the crowd.

Good conversations can be enjoyed by more than a handful but the platform and the venue is very important. As well as the  topics for discussion and the other members. The atmosphere has to be inviting and the chance for everyone should be provided in order to facilitate an open, equal and encouraging  vibe for all the participants. It’s upto the moderator or host to set the tone for the occassion and see that other members understand what the purpose is for the gathering.

Prompt from the Daily Post at WordPress.com.

Martyrs

Heavily recommended by the horror group that I am a member off, I kept putting this off for several months since the first I had heard about it. Martyrs is a 2008 French horror film written and directed by Pascal Laugier. The film debuted in Cannes and focuses on torture.

The film starts with a young girl named Lucie, who has subjected to tremendous physical abuse, escaping from a building in what looks like an abandoned factory area. Bloodied and her hair shorn she is found and taken to an orphanage once her physical wounds have healed somewhat. She doesn’t trust anyone and flinches at the slightest movements and it is only Anna, her roommate who is able to get close to her. Lucie is haunted by a ghoulish figure that is emaciated and covered in scars which attacks her at night unseen by anyoneelse, except that Anna seems to know about these attacks. 15 years later a grown up Lucie enters what seems like a rich family’s home and proceeds to kill the father and the mother of the house with her shotgun. She then asks the teenage boy if he knows what his parents did to her and when he replies no she kills him too. She then hunts for the young girl in the house and kills her as well. Lucie then calls Anna, who has remained best friends with her, and tells her that she found the people who tortured her all those years ago and has killed them.

Anna comes to the house and agrees to help Lucie bury the bodies but is shocked to find that the mother is still alive. In between the creature attacks Lucie a couple of times and she has to hide in a bedroom. That night while Lucie sleeps, Anna tries to help the mother escape but is caught by Lucie who then proceeds to beat the mother to death. Lucie is again attacked by the scarred creature, but all Anna sees is Lucie banging her head against the wall and cutting herself with a hobby knife; the ‘creature’ is nothing more than a psychological manifestation of Lucie’s guilt for leaving behind another girl who was also imprisoned and tortured with her as a child. Lucie then tells the apparition that she has killed the torturers and she can now rest but is “attacked” by the creature again. Convinced that the apparition will never leave her alone, Lucie slits her own throat and dies out in the rain as a horrified Anna weeps for her friend. Anna waits till morning to clean up the house before she leaves and discovers a secret passageway leaving to an underground section of the house where she finds a terribly tortured & scarred woman tied up in chains with metal contraptions on her head and body. Anna brings the woman out to the main part of the house when some strangers arrive and shoots the chained woman dead. Anna is captured by them and is chained to a wall in the underground chamber.

The leader of the group of strangers, identified as only ‘Mademoiselle’ arrives and tells Anna that her secret philosophical society is behind the torture of Lucie and several other young women. The elderly woman says the purpose behind the kidnappings and torture of these young women is that the society believes that their suffering will offer transcendental insight into the world beyond this one – the afterlife, and they believe that the ‘martyrs’ will be able to offer the secrets of it! Mademoiselle leaves and Anna is tied to a chair and left to be tortured by a heavyset man who brutalizes & beats while a blonde woman comes in between to feed her, forcefully with a green slop, and on occasion cleans her up with wet sponge. Her hair is shaved off and she cries during each degrading beating. After an unspecified passage of time Anna is told that she has surpassed the previous length of duration of torture and will be entering the final stage. She is taken to a lab in the same underground chambers and flayed alive. She survived the procedure and enters a stage that seems euphoric to the tormentors who immediately call Mademoiselle and others. The members of the society arrive at the house along with Mademoiselle eager to learn of what Anna has seen in her state of transcendence.

Mademoiselle goes to Anna and asks her what she saw and the poor girl whispers to the older woman. The MC for the day addresses the gathering and tells them that Anna is only the 4th torture victim to attain “martyrdom” but is the 1st who was able to communicate what she has seen. While the others wait the MC then goes to the room where Mademoiselle prepares herself and asks her if what Anna said she saw was clear and precise. From behind closed doors she says that there is no room for interpretation and asks if the MC could guess what comes after death. The MC says no and Mademoiselle says that he should keep guessing and shoots herself dead with a gun. Before the screen fades, we see a close up of Anna’s face with some voices in the background.

What the hell!!! This movie is shocking in it’s brutality and fierce torture. Oh how realistic and painful it looks. With ever slap and hit, I shuddered along with Anna. And that skin flaying scene – oh! I flinched at the brutal scenes quite often; scary stuff I can take, horryfing creatures, scary monsters – bring them on! But this brutal hitting of women, and especially this dainty little woman! Whoa! I was moved by the situation of Anna and Lucie but the scenes depicting Anna’s tortures were hard to watch. I had to watch videos of puppies and kittens frolicking on Youtube just to get myself back into a familiar frame of mind! As a well acted and affective film – 8 outta 10! But I wouldn’t recommend anyone but horror fans to watch this.

Nose Up In The Air

Even the most laid back and egalitarian among us can be insufferable snobs when it comes to coffee, music, cars, beer, or any other pet obsession where things have to be just so. What are you snobbish about?

Music – most Bollywood & Hindi songs, Malayalam & Tamil and other Indian language songs that are not in styles I like. Also rap, hip-hop, most pop, Christian / Hindu or any other religious devotional songs, dance music, boybands, girlbands.

Coffee – Indian filter coffee. Just yuck! I’ve been told Turkish and / or Arabian coffee is very weak and coffee freaks like myself won’t like them. I can’t say!

Beer  – not really although some now hard to find brands like Sandpiper and Kalyani are just yuck!

Cars – nope, all cars & vehicles have a purpose. Unless they are dirty ofcourse!

Non-Malayalam movies in India – with the odd exception of a handful I can’t stand Indian language movies that are not in Malayalam. Especially Bollywood & Tamil movies (I used to watch both a long time ago, very few Tamil though)

Books – most chic stuff, anything by PG Woodehouse (blah) and Jeffery Archer. Stuff like that.

Prompt from the Daily Post at WordPress.com.

Extant – Season 1

This past year has seen so many shows being premiered, shows that mostly look good and are seemingly ones that you want to see and follow for a few years. When the plot behind Extant was first shown, I was so excited yet now that the first season is over I am left unsatisfied, puzzled and wondering what it was all about. Extant is a science fiction television drama series created by Mickey Fisher and executive produced by Steven Spielberg. The story revolves around astronaut Molly Woods (Halle Berry) who returns home to her family inexplicably pregnant after 13 months in outer space on a solo mission.

Set sometime in the near future, astronaut Molly Woods of the International Space-Exploration Agency (ISEA) is assigned a 13-month solo mission aboard space station Seraphim. While there an alien entity, shown in forms of a blue spore, takes the form of her dead former lover Mark (who died in a car crash in which Molly survived but her unborn baby also died). She opens a hatch and sees him and after he points to her belly, he disappears. Once she gets back to earth, Molly feels off and asks her best friend and ISEA staff physician Sam Barton (Camryn Manheim) to run a separate check on her – the tests come back that she is pregnant! Molly is stunned as she & her husband John have been trying and were told that she could never get pregnant. She does not initially tell John about the pregnancy and returns home to him and their son Ethan! Dr. John Woods is a robotics engineer heading the Humanichs Project and he & his team consisting of Julie (Grace Gummer) & Charlie Arthur (Tyler Hilto) had created Ethan, a humanoid robot and the prototype for the Humanichs Project. Molly & John are treating Ethan as their own son.

While Molly tries to come to terms with her pregnancy she discovers that her bosses at ISEA, in particular director Alan Sparks and Hideki Yasumoto, owner of the Yasumoto Corporation had planned for the alien entities to come in contact with Molly. Two previous astronauts, Katie Sparks (Alan’s daughter played by Tessa Ferrer) and  Harmon Kryger (Brad Beyer) had also come into contact with the aliens and were killed. Molly is contacted by Harmon, who faked his death and has been hiding in seclusion and he tells her that there is more than meets the eye. Molly getting pregnant with a half human, half alien child means a lot to both individuals; Yasumoto is aware of previous encounter with the aliens, which can provide humans with a cure for aging and illness and needs it to help him as he is dying, while Sparks believes that it can bring back his daughter Katie. Also in the mix is Gavin Hutchinson (alias Odin James), a man Julie begins dating. He secretly leads an underground organization dedicated to eradicating advanced technology, and has targeted the Humanichs project. Sparks has Molly abducted and has the fetus removed from her, covering up all traces of a surgery on her using state of the art medical care and blackmailing Sam into keeping quiet by using her former addict brother as collateral.

The Offspring grows at an alarming rate as shows Sparks a vision of Katie as a child to keep him under control. ISEA’s DeputyDirector who initially was hostile changes his mind and helps Molly & Harmon infiltrate the warehouse where Sparks is keeping The Offspring but as they run into the team of security men. Fearing it’s own death The Offspring influences the minds of armed security personnel to kill each other while it contacts Sparks, using Katie’s image and has him smuggle it out. The Offspring needs to feed on people’s mind’s to survive and Sparks helps it to do so. He also brings Katie’s mom, his ex-wife to see Katie’s image and although initially she is protective of it, the Offspring kills her too. When Molly, Kern & Harmon confront Sparks, the latter is forced to kill Harmon by shooting at him and the Offspring escapes from there. Meanwhile an alien being shown as Katie is found by a French astronaut crew onboard a pod and they bring her to the Seraphim where ISEA astronaut Sean, now on duty, is reunited with her. However he realizes that she is a fake Katie when he spots the real Katie’s dead body in storage and is locked up. The Offspring influences Molly to enter codes that verve the Seraphim off it’s course and heading towards earth – when it crashes a large collection of alien spores will be let loose on our planet making it fertile for them to take over.

Odin meanwhile gains Ethan’s trust and uses that to plant a sophisticated bomb inside him. The Offspring makes contact with Molly; he looks human except for his eerily-glowing eyes. The offspring reveals that “the ones before the blood” and “without bodies” are coming to earth in order to survive, and he is powerless to stop them. This convinces Molly that she must go back into space agrees to take a shuttle to the Seraphim and attempt to re-establish communication with ground control, as well as install a replacement computer module to redirect the station back to its original orbit. Should this fail, Plan B is for Molly to set timed explosives to destroy the Seraphim and quickly undock the shuttle to return Sean, Katie and herself to earth. At ISEA ground control, the Offspring breaches the facility, leaving Ryan with no choice but to evacuate the crew. Though Molly is able to replace the module, the lack of ground control leaves her to use Plan B. She sets the explosives and tries to take off in the shuttle, but B.E.N. will not let her, citing ISEA protocol as she and Sean are contaminated and would endanger the earth. Molly tries a manual override, but B.E.N. has locked that out, too. At the lab, John wakes Ethan to tell him his fate. He has also learned about the ISEA evacuation, and tells Ethan that his mother may not return.

Ethan volunteers to go to the ISEA control room, knowing that the Offspring’s mind control will not affect his brain. Ethan manages to get manual override returned to Molly, but at a price: he had to heat up his body to simulate a human hand to enable override control, and the explosive is now in danger of detonating. By this time, the Offspring has made it to the control room. The doomed Ethan urges him to run away. At home five days later, Molly and Sam discuss whether the Offspring is alive, with Molly saying she is certain that he is. Molly and John lament the loss of Ethan, as do Julie and Charlie at the lab, only to have “Ethan” appear in a body-less form on their monitors and speak to them. Elsewhere, a passing couple see the Offspring walking down a city street. They ask if he is okay, and invite him into the car.

Strange and disjointed series, way too much happening in a shirt 13 episode season. The storylines causes much confusion and it’s not clever enough to close the holes in the plot. The evolution of Ethan is a cop out in the end, offering very little explanation (hopefully season 2 will fill that) and the Offspring too is not very clear about his intentions. Best thing about the show is the clever usage of technology & special effects to show us how our lives could be and what gadgets and gizmos we could use in say 20-40 years from now. The show started off very well but went off track from a scifi story to elements of a horror flick with alien/ceature bits in it. I hope the next season is more lucid.

Time Machine; Boldy Going Foward

Congrats! You’re the owner of a new time machine. The catch? It comes in two models, each traveling one way only: the past OR the future. Which do you choose, and why?

Hmmm so given the option of getting a new time machine (where are all the old ones?) and having the choice of either only going back in time or only going forwards in time? Which would I chose?

While it is tempting to go back in time and see a lot about our history or even pre-historic times and learn a lot about our past (what really happened at Stonehenge or how did all the dinosaurs all die out or hey are those aliens building the pyramids?) and maybe even kill off a few religious figures before they can do their damage, I think I would pick going forwards to the future.

I wanna see how we progress as a species and evolve. I want to see if we finally get rid of all our negative baggage and build the comfy spaceships that allow us to travel the universe and see what’s out there. If we finally make first contact with other alien races and exchange knowledge and information (and maybe cuisine). How we explore new worlds and make new friends and learn more about the planets and stars.

Yeah baby, let’s go forwards in time. Full speed ahead!

Prompt from the Daily Post at WordPress.com.

Beer & Chinese Food With Anil & Madhu

A year later we meet again – Madhu was back in India on a month’s vacation and he treated Anil & myself for dinner & drinks last night. Actually he had just reached Cochin early yesterday morning and took a long sleep and then called us up. I knew he was reaching Cochin early and thought he’d need some time to spend with his family and was surprised to get a call from Madhu at 6pm asking me to get ready by 7pm. Anil would pick him up on his scooter and meet me in the city.

So I changed my clothes and got ready and met them outside Center Mall but we ended up not going in there. Instead we debated and decide to go to Couchyn for some beer. So we enjoyed an hour or 90 minutes there drinking a few beers and some peanuts and also shared half a plate of chicken tikka. Couchyn, which is now one of the only few bars left open that we can go to, started filling up and by 8pm it was quite crowded, which is odd for a Tuesday night.

After what felt like a quick 90 minutes we left and then was debating where to go for dinner. We finally decided to go for some Chinese and after listing out the list of places decides to walk the 10 minutes to Chinese Garden in nearby Pallimukku. We had some hot n sour chicken soup, shared some noodles & fried rice with dragon chicken, shrimp manchurian and some other shrimp stuff that I cannot recall this morning! It was all good. It started raining a lot by 9pm and we were lucky that it started dying out by the time we finished dinner.

By around 10 pm we walked back to Couchyn because that’s where Anil had left his scooter. We stopped so that they could have a smoke (which is rare for them and I don’t smoke at all) and then I caught an auto to come back home. I was in my room, dressed in my night clothes by 10:30pm and watched some Fraiser till I fell asleep.

The Supermarket Debacle

Well time for a mystery. I don’t know what the issue is but there is a problem with my area that it seems that supermarkets are doomed here! And I just mean a small section of Kacheripady which is an area in the city of Cochin. See I live in an apartment building about 5 minutes away from the main road and we have some shops in our junction and walkable area nearby. But the supermarket situation has always puzzled me. When we first moved here back in late 2007 there was a small supermarket two buildings in front of us. That was convenient! Now I mean a rather small supermarket, more like a small shop but they had most of the things that we’d want, except for fresh fish or meat and most vegetables but since we have door to door fresh vegetable delivery operating in the area as well as a small grocery store opposite the supermarket, it was quite ideal for us.

Then Varkey’s, a then popular supermarket chain in Kerala opened their store nearby and the supermarket started getting less and less business. 3 years later, it closed down as the owners, a couple in their late 60s were unable to keep a profit. A guy who used to work for them a few years earlier said that he would take over the lease and continue the business so they handed it over to him. He ran it for a year and a half before he moved it to a similarly sized store just a couple of buildings down the road. Still quite convenient so no one complained. But it was quite obvious that he was having trouble getting regular customers and hence also having trouble keeping the shelves stocked. A year or so later he shut the store down. By 2010, Varkeys began having severe financial trouble due to mismanagement and they started closing down several of their store including the one closest to me.

In 2011 the same guy restarted the supermarket again but at a smaller scale and continued his business at the first location. Yet the rental costs itself was very difficult for him and he wasn’t getting much business, plus his stocks were bare minimum, and he had to close it down yet again in 2012. Now the store has been split up into 3 to become a beauty parlour and a men’s barber shop and small stall that sells cigarettes, snacks and juice! I heard that the second guy who ran the supermarket is a partner in the combined 3 businesses. Meanwhile sometime earlier this year (I think 2-3 months back) a new supermarket opened up in the same location as the Varkeys and they seem to be doing alright. I myself have only been there one but will be using them more often. I shall even take a video of the store. But I wonder why the heck supermarkets have had such a big curse in a residential area that also has a few businesses and other types of stores nearby!

Welcome, Stranger

Think about the town where you currently live: its local customs, traditions, and hangouts, its slang. What would be the strangest thing about this place for a first-time visitor?

For a first time visitor, and for the purpose of this post I shall assume that he/she is a foriegner, there will be quite a few things that will seem strange or odd about Cochin.

  • The humidity. Yeah people, on a hot & sweaty day (mid February till late April or even June) you’re not gonna like it. Plenty of water is advisable.
  • The monsoon. And when it rains, it pours. And we complain that it’s raining a lot during the monsoon, which cools things down quite a bit but we still complain. And when it’s not raining we complain that it’s too hot and we need some rain!
  • Harthals! Most people outside India and even outside the state are puzzled with the phenomenon of the harthals – which is a general strike (no shops, no public transport and no business are allowed to operate). These years it lasts for 12  hours when it used to be 24 hrs earlier. Usually started by an opposing political party as a protest against a new rule or change in rule or some controversy.
  • On really hot afternoons, most of the people drink boiling hot tea! At 3pm! Even I am stumped at this!
  • The traffic and the roads. And how much filth we dump onto the sides of the roads.

There’s quite a lot of things we do that will seem strange but these are the ones I could think up right now.

Prompt from the Daily Post at WordPress.com.

Arsenal 0 Chelsea FC 2

In a match that saw both coaches threaten to steal the spotlight off the pitch, Diego Costa scored his ninth goal in six Premier League games to give Chelsea a comfortable win over Arsenal. Chelsea took the lead in the first half at the Stamford Bridge when Eden Hazard converted from the penalty spot after he been brought down Laurent Koscielny. Spain striker Costa added a second after the break when he latched on to long pass from Cesc Fabregas and lifted the ball over Wojciech Szczesny. Arsenal had a penalty appeal turned down, but otherwise rarely threatened.

Arsenal have only themselves to blame (and in particular Mezut Ozil) after failing to make something of the chances that they had, especially in the second half. Arsenal could have and should have scored atleast once yet they managed to falter yet again. Also the foolishness and mistakes are a plenty. The Gunners kept making rash challenges and bad passes at opportune moments and why the fuck did that moron Wenger not substitute Ozil is beyond me when he kept giving away the ball? Instead he took off Santi Carzola around the 70th minute to bring on Chamberlain.

Cahill should have walked for a late, ugly challenge on Sanchez, earning only a booking from Martin Atkinson. Wenger was enraged, marching over towards Mourinho, his tie flying up, his hackles equally raised and pushing Mourinho with both hands in the chest. Mourinho told Wenger where to go and pointed the way, indicating the away technical area that the Frenchman had vacated. Wenger & Mourinho were cautioned by the referee who pointed to the stands to indicate that he would send them off if they didn’t calm things down.

Arsenal now languish in 7th spot, 9 points behind Chelsea. Fire that Wenger!

War Of The Worlds (2005)

From director Steven Speilberg comes the 2005 science fiction disaster film War Of The Worlds, a loose adaptation of H. G. Wells’s novel The War of the Worlds. There has also been a 1953 film of the same name as well as a tv series in the 1980s which is sort of a sequel to the events of the book. The film stars Tom Cruise with Dakota Fanning, Justin Chatwick and Tim Robbins.

Ray Ferrier, a divorced crane operator working at the docks in New Jersey is estranged from his two kids teenager Robbie and 10 year old Rachel. One weekend his ex-wife Mary Anne drops of their kids at his house in the morning as she & her current husband are on their way to visit her parents in Boston. A little later strange storm clouds form over the city, similar to ones in Ukraine (as shown on the news) with violent lightning seemingly striking the same points in the area. Almost all electrical activity is affected with cars, tv, power, watches all stopping. Ray goes to check one of the spots where the lightning has hit several times, leaving Robbie & Rachel in the house. As the road breaks up from underneath a massive three-legged or tripod machine emerges and with alien weaponry, incinerates most of the witnesses.People are blown into dust and their clothes scatter in the wind. Ray rushes back home doging the laser beams and packs his kids into a car, that works, he finds at a garage and heads to Mary Anne’s home; it is empty so they spend the night there.

The next morning Ray wakes up to find a large plane crashed into the street and a news crew that shows his clips of other cities under attack from similar tripods and they also show him that the aliens entered the machines in capsules via the lightning. Which means that the pods have been there for so long and this was all planned, perhaps 1000s of years ago! Ray decides to take the kids to Boston but Robbie is causing problems as he wants to leave and join the US army vehicles in the fight against the aliens. On the way to the ferry their car is attacked by a mob and Ray is forced to give it up. As they walk to the ferries, another attack by the tripods kills several humans and causes a ferry to sink. During a desperate battle between the U.S. Marines and the aliens, Ray is forced to choose between being separated from Rachel and preventing Robbie from joining the fight; Ray lets him go with the soldiers and disappears. But the soldiers are being overwhelmed as the tripods have a shield around them that proves to be difficult to penetrate. Ray picks up Rachel and runs into Harvey (Tim Robbins) who offers them shelter in his underground bunker. Harvey tells Ray that the aliens must have planted their tripods in the ground eons ago and says that from the bunker they can observe the aliens as it is right in the middle of one of their camps.

They hide out for 2 days even as a long probe and a group of aliens (who look a lot like the aliens in Independence Day) explore the bunker. Harvey however goes nuts when he sees a tripod harvesting human blood and tissue to fertilize a red weed. Fearing his mental breakdown rantings will attract the aliens, Ray is forced to murder him. Later as father & daughter sleep, a second probe finds them and Ray attacks it with an axe as Rachel runs screaming outside and is caught by a tripod. Ray runs outside to see the landscape being changed by alien plants that are growing and picks up a grenade belt from a fallen soldier and lets himself be captured by the tripod and is placed into a basket with Rachel and some other humans. He uses the grenade to blow up the trip from the inside, freeing the humans. Ray & Rachel make their way to Boston with a group of other humans and find a battalion of soldiers. In a devastated Boston Ray sees the red plants dying and the tripods collapsing. Seeing birds landing on the tripods Ray signals a soldier and the army attacks the tripod and it is destroyed. Ray & Rachel finally reach Mary Anne’s parents house where they are reunited with her as well as Robbie, who has made his way there as well. Robbie hugs his dad apologizing for leaving as the movie ends with the narrator stating that the aliens succumbed to the bacteria on earth as they have no immunity to it and hence the sudden defeat as they crumbled.

Brilliant movie with some fantastic special effects. The storm, lightning, the tripods, the aliens and their technology all looked amazing. Hated the nonsense about god’s “wisdom placing the bacteria on earth to defeat the aliens (what a load of crap!). Made on a budget of $132 million the movie made over $591 million at the box office. One for the ages although the aliens defeat was too sudden. 8.5 outta 10!

Before A Big Day Ahead Of You

It’s the night before an important event: a big exam, a major presentation, your wedding. How do you calm your nerves in preparation for the big day?

Well not having had to prepare for a wedding ever in my life (other than ofcourse attending my sister’s and cousin’s weddings) I can only answer for the other two. I wish I had done more for preparing for exams but that’s water under the bridge now. As for major meetings and or presentations for work I just follow a few steps.

I used to try and get plenty of sleep but awake early just so I am not in a rush to get ready to leave. I keep my clothes ironed and ready to go the previous evening. And I try to arrive early so that I am not sweating and can relax in the office for a while, preferably in a cool place, well before the time of the meeting. Same goes for interviews as well. I try and listen to rock anthems the previous night as well as just before leaving for the meeting /presentation / interview, which helps pump me up and keep me in fighting spirits.

I try not to eat too much and avoid heavy food. I try to drink cool water and keep a clean hanky ready with me.  And I keep some chewing gum or mints with me.

Prompt from the Daily Post at WordPress.com.

The Inned Moonlight Madness

Follow your inner moonlight; don’t hide the madness.” — Allen Ginsberg Do you follow Ginsberg’s advice — in your writing and/or in your everyday life?

To a certain degree, YES I do. I am known to have different ideas and thoughts and not sticking to the norm. I have some fantastical ideas and thoughts and sometimes I act on them and / or speak my mind about them. I like to think that everyone has that bit of craziness in them but only some of us have made an art form of harnessing that craziness.

My mind is very active and I have all these crazy thoughts. But I do have a filter and that is important otherwise I could unleash a whole lot of havoc if I spilled the beans. But yeah in my mind I do hear what I have just thought as I say it out to myself. Good thing you can’t hear them. Oh boy, if you could!

Sometimes when I am either not too careful or if I have been holding stuff in for a while, a few will spill out without meaning too and it is either a hilarious situation or a tense one. People don’t expect it and so it depends on how they react. If they see the fun side of it, the silly side then hilarity ensues. If not – oh well, confrontation! Complaints! Harassment! Insults! Threats! Bah!

Prompt from the Daily Post at WordPress.com.