The Memories A Song Can Evoke

What sort of music was played in your house when you were growing up? What effect, (if any) did it have on your musical tastes?

When I was growing up I first remember listening to bands like ABBA, Boney M and lots of Hindi & Malayalam songs. That’s what my parents played in the home we grew up in. My sister, who is 6 years older, started me out on listening to some western music like ABBA, and perhaps Culture Club and Duran Duran. I tended to listen to whatever she played for us until I was about 8 years old and became a Michael Jackson & Jackson 5 fan. That was the first time I started defining my tastes in music.

I listened to a lot of MJ for many years. In 1986 I discovered rock music – I was watching a music program that would show feature a lot of music videos and in the gap of 12-15 minutes they played Europe, Bon Jovi & Van Halen singles from 1986. A rock fan was born, just like that. I bought their albums that were released that year and became hooked on rock & soon metal music. For a while I still listened to MJ but by 1991 he had begun to annoy me a bit and I never bought any of his albums again but still do appreciate his older stuff (pre 1991). I have been and always will be a rock & metal head! That is who I am.

I read somewhere that psychologists say that the music you listen to between the ages of 12-15 will always be what stays with you. That seems to be true. I always get nostalgic about the music that I played a lot during those years. There is something about those songs and it tugs at the heartstrings a lot.

Prompt from The Daily Post at WordPress.com

The Evil That Men Do

Write about evil: how you understand it (or don’t), what you think it means, or a way it’s manifested, either in the world at large or in your life.

I don’t believe in the supernatural. No fucking gods or demons and devils and no angels no imaginary supernatural buggers in another realm or heavens and hell and all that crap. Makes for good stories and films but that’s all they are; fantasy and mythology.

Having said that “evil” is what we do. Us humans can be the most evil, corrupt, barbaric beings on the planet. I do not think any animals are evil, they hunt and kill for food or territory – that’s it. There is no other reason for it. Humans on the other hand can be evil bastards and motherfuckers! They hurt other humans or animals for sport and enjoyment and because it gives them a perverted sense of pleasure and ecstasy. That is pure evil. Reveling in the misfortune and pain and torture of another living being is evil. That is solely the trait of us humans and no other animal on the earth.

If we do not destroy the planet soon, maybe we can change all that. But it takes a whole lotta work and unlearning and change to do so.

Prompt from The Daily Post at WordPress.com

Memories Of A Tiny Flat

What are the earliest memories of the place you lived in as a child? Describe your house. What did it look like? How did it smell? What did it sound like? Was it quiet like a library, or full of the noise of life? Tell us all about it, in as much detail as you can recall.

I remember a small apartment. Much smaller than most standards today of a 2 bedroom, 1 bathroom but it was quite cozy and warm in the winters and cool during the summer months. We had a large coffeetable smack down in the middle of the apartment, with a double sofa on on side and a 3 seater sofa on the other plus a chair or two tucked in one corner. The tv stand was at a diagonal in one corner and to it’s left was a large drawer / table on which the telephone and the VCR rested. A few items were on the shelves and in the drawers of the stand.

I remember spending many hours watching tv – cartoons, tv shows and movies – with my sister and folks and whenever friends would come over. We usually age breakfast, lunch (whenever I was at home for lunch) and dinner at the large coffeetable with the tv on most days. We had a dining table in the next room, which was also a bedroom shared by my sister & I, with a bunk bed against one of the walls. We also had a spare refrigerator in one corner as well. Yeah the apartment was that small. My parents had their bedroom, opposite the single bathroom with a basin, a toilet and a shower . bathtub combo. And we had a small kitchen.

All my memories of it are good. Cozy, fun filled, lots of good food, friends and family. Some tears but hey all kids cry when they are kids. Lots of tv shows and movies and music. Good memories. Awesome memories. Wish they weren’t over.

Prompt from The Daily Post at WordPress.com

Mirror, Mirror, On The Blog

Think of your blog as a mirror: what does it reveal? Consider your blog name, theme choice, design, bio, posts… what does every element tell you about yourself?

Well the mirror might be a bit murky and not too clear for you to see. I mean, I do blog about a whole lotta things, any topic that hits my fancy and I feel like blogging about. My fav sports team, the lunch or dinner I had, things I was thinking about, stuff at work, stuff at home, stuff from around the city, state, country, planet or universe. The music I listen to, the books I’ve read, the movies & tv series I’ve watched. I share a lot of music & other videos and I also share my own videos and photos too.

I blog about whatever I feel like. Some of my personal thoughts & feelings. Some posts I will password protect as I only trust a few people to read them and I will send them the password if they choose to read them. I am comfortable about sharing most of my stuff online, the stuff that I keep away is not for you. So all in all I do like to share a lot of my life with anyone who cares to read about it but there is still some stuff that is not for the public.

The theme – well I like it simple. White background with some structure and colour here and there. That’s about it. You decide what you want to decipher from my stuff.

Prompt from The Daily Post at WordPress.com

The Flangiprop To The Rescue

Invent a definition for the word “flangiprop,” then use the word in a post.

Hmmm, let’s try this. A Flangiprop is a useless item in a house or home that is never used, has no use and is usually ignored by the residents of the home until the place needs to be cleaned. Also, it will suddenly become useful when you least expect it and in a sudden moment of need, it can be used to great effect.

So I had this flangiprop that just lies on this mantel at my home. It was a gift from…I dunno….years ago at my wedding and neither I nor my wife are aware of who it is that gave it to us. So in order to be safe we kept it there on the mantle just in case it was a close friend or relative who gave us this gift and we wanted to be sure that they saw that we were displaying it, or they might feel bad. But we never found out just who it was that gift us that ugly and clunky looking thing.

However this one night it came in handy and very useful, 7 years after our wedding. We were coming back home from a night out at a movie and then dinner and my wife had entered through the front door while I was parking the car in the garage, when I heard a scream. I rushed in and saw that a masked thief had a gun pointed at my wife and was beckoning me to be quiet and close the door behind me. I did as obeyed fearing for our lives but when he was distracted by our dog coming in from the upstairs room, I picked up the flangiprop which was near me and hit the thief on the head, knocking him outcold. I hugged my wife and using a piece of rope, I tied up the intruder while my wife called the cops.

As the police took away the thief, my wife and I poured a glass of wine each and silently thanked the unknown person who gave us that flangiprop!

Prompt from the Daily Post at WordPress.com

Arsenal 3 Manchester United 0

Arsenal stunned Manchester United with three goals in the opening 20 minutes as the Gunners moved up to second in the Premier League table. United had no answer to Arsenal’s opening burst as Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil scored twice in 74 seconds. Sanchez added a third from 18 yards as the Gunners beat United for just the second time in 14 league meetings. United improved after the break but Arsenal substitute Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain hit the crossbar late on. Defeat leaves Louis van Gaal’s side in third place, behind Arsenal on goal difference.

Arsenal’s Champions League defeat at home to Olympiakos in midweek left them in danger of failing to reach the last 16 and manager Arsene Wenger in the face of heavy criticism. Wenger was forced to defend his selection of goalkeeper David Ospina, describing recent criticism as “not analysis of football”. He also called the press “boring”. But his side were anything but in an opening half which saw them tear Manchester United apart, almost at will. With their first real attack Sanchez back-heeled in at the near post after good work from Aaron Ramsey and Ozil, and the Germany playmaker then added the second a minute later after Walcott ran at a struggling defence. Sanchez shrugged Matteo Darmian aside to add his second with a brilliant 18-yard strike which brought up an unwanted record for the visitors, as they conceded three goals in the opening 20 minutes of a Premier League game for the first time.

And it should have been four just after the half-hour mark as Ramsey volleyed wide from close range when completely unmarked. With the game won, Arsenal failed to repeat their attacking display in the second half until substitute Oxlade-Chamberlain chipped David de Gea and hit the crossbar in injury time. The Gunners are now just two points behind leaders Manchester City going into a two-week international break which had the potential to be uncomfortable for their fans and for Wenger. The recalled Petr Cech – who made a good save to deny Anthony Martial just before half-time – saved well from Schweinsteiger late on, but United rarely threatened. Arsenal have 16 points after 8 games, the same as ManU.

Unboxing The USS Enterprise NCC-1701-C

So up next, is a gorgeous ship and model, even with some glaring errors that Eaglemoss did. It’s the USS Enterprise C which made it’s only on screen appearance in the Star Trek : TNG double episode “Yesterday’s Enterprise”. When I first saw the model that was included as part of Eaglemoss’s Official Star Trek Starship Collection, I drooled at the images and couldn’t wait to get my hands on one.

IMG_20150801_150008Until I did, I watched a bunch of other unboxing and review videos on Youtube. Yes there is the main error of no impulse engines and some others but she is a beauty. IMG_20150801_150019

The USS Enterprise (NCC-1701-C) was a 24th century Federation Ambassador-class starship operated by Starfleet. This was the fourth Federation starship to bear the name Enterprise. In 2344, Captain Rachel Garrett was the commanding officer of this ship. In 2344, the Enterprise responded to a distress call from the Klingon outpost on Narendra III, which was under attack by the Romulan Star Empire. When the Enterprise arrived at the outpost, she was engaged by four Romulan warbirds.

IMG_20150801_150039Few details are known about the actual battle. What is known, however, is that the Enterprise was destroyed with the presumed loss of all hands. Starfleet would not commission another Enterprise until nearly two decades later in 2363. It was later revealed by Sela that the Romulans took a number of the ship’s crew prisoner. In the aftermath of the battle, the Klingons were deeply impressed by the act of self-sacrifice by a Starfleet crew to protect a Klingon outpost, and the Enterprise-C’s ultimate legacy was reinforcing the relations between the Klingon Empire and the United Federation of Planets, leading to a close alliance of peace. IMG_20150801_145547

During the battle, a temporal rift was created due to the highly-energetic weapons discharges, and the severely damaged Enterprise drifted through, emerging in the year 2366. There, it discovered that the outpost at Narendra III had been completely destroyed, and a state of war existed between the Klingon Empire and the Federation. The Enterprise encountered her successor, the Galaxy-class USS Enterprise-D. The Enterprise-C had suffered severe damage to her warp nacelles and external hull, with 125 crew members surviving, and the Enterprise-D assisted in repairs. Both crews eventually realized that the current timeline was a result of the Enterprise-C’s absence from the battle, and determined that the Enterprise-C needed to return to their own time through the rift.

IMG_20150801_145707

Lieutenant Natasha Yar, the Enterprise-D’s tactical officer, learned from Guinan that, if the Enterprise-C was successful, in the new timeline that would be created she would die a meaningless death. Not comfortable with that idea, Yar requested and was granted a transfer to the Enterprise-C. Both ships soon came under attack from the Klingons, and Captain Garrett was subsequently killed. The last surviving senior officer of the Enterprise-C, Lt. Richard Castillo, assumed command of the ship and, under the protection of the Enterprise-D, took her back into the rift to return to 2344 and the battle of Narendra III. This had the effect of realigning the timeline and ensuring future peace between the Federation and the Klingon Empire.

Enjoy the pics and also the unboxing video.

The Longest Ride

Based on Nicholas Sparks’ 2013 novel of the same name, The Longest Ride is a 2015 American romantic drama film directed by George Tillman, Jr. and written by Craig Bolotin. the film stars Britt Robertson, Scott Eastwood, Jack Huston, Oona Chaplin, Alan Alda, Melissa Benoist, Lolita Davidovich, and Gloria Reuben.

Luke Collins is a bullrider on the professional circuit and gets seriously injured one night while performing. A year later he gets back on the circuit and wins his first tournament back, where he also meets New Jersey native Sophia Danko, who is working on being an intern at a posh art gallery in New York once her classes are done and was only there because her sorority friends asked her to. After they meet again at a bar, Luke asks her out and they have a really romantic picnic near a lake. On their way back they spot a car crash in the woods and help rescue an older man who is stuck inside. Sophia also pulls a wooden box from the vehicle, when the older man manages to mumble about it. The two take him to a hospital where Sophia decides to stay back while Luke goes back to his ranch.

While in the hospital, Sophia continuously visits the man she and Luke rescued, Ira Levinson. He explains that there are letters in the box, which he wrote as a teenager, and she offers to read them to him, as his eyesight is bad. They tell the story of how he met his late wife, Ruth. Throughout the film we flashback to the early 40s when a young Ira meets newly arrived immigrant Ruth and how they begin dating. Ruth tells a young Ira that she wants a big family and, eventually, he proposes to her before leaving to fight in World War II. However, Ira is shot during an attack and is later informed by the doctor that he can no longer have children, news that causes distance between him and Ruth when he returns because he knows how much she wants to be a mother. They decide to make it work regardless and move in together, decorating the house with many paintings that Ruth loves. Ruth was a school teacher who became very attached to a young boy in her class. Because he comes from a broken family, her and Ira begin taking him in as their own and, eventually, Ruth decides she wanted to adopt him but his guardians wouldn’t allow it.

This causes a rift between them and Ruth eventually leaves for a while but changes her mind and comes back regretful of her decision. They continue to live a happy and long life as a married couple when one morning 80 year olf Ira wakes up to find Ruth has died in her sleep. He boxes up all of the paintings they collected together to sell them at an auction. One night, a woman knocks on his door claiming to be the wife of Daniel McDonald, the child they almost adopted when they were younger, to inform him that he has died. She gives him a portrait of Ruth that Daniel had painted and the photograph Daniel had kept of Ira and Ruth (the one Luke found in his car the day of the crash) with a message on the back that reads: “Ruth Levinson, third grade teacher. She told me I could be anything I wanted to be when I grew up”. Daniel became a professor, taking after Ruth. Meanwhile as Luke & Sophia’s relationship progresses, they hit a snag when at an art exhibit in Charlotte the following week, which she invites Luke to, Luke makes a rude comment to Sophia’s boss, which causes an argument between them. They talk about how their worlds are so different and Luke doesn’t feel the relationship will work because of it.

However Luke gets injured at his next event, and is unconscious and taken to a hospital. As Sophia is leaving for New York, she gets a call and goes to see him. Luke is told he can never ride again but refuses to accept that his career is over. Following an argument, Luke and Sophia break up. A few weeks pass when Ira passes and Sophia is asked by his lawyer to attend an auction held for the paintings. Luke too gets an invite and wins his last ride, but feels disappointed because Sophia isn’t there with him. He then decides to go to the auction, where he buys the first painting, Daniel’s portrait of Ruth. Sophia and Luke talk, and he tells her he won’t ride anymore because what he really wants is to be with her.

While they kiss , an uproar breaks out in the auction room. Luke is informed that he is now the owner of all of Ira’s paintings since Ira left a message in his will stating that whoever bought the portrait would get them all since it was the most important one to him. A year later Luke and Sophia, now married, have built a museum dedicated to Ira and Ruth. Luke takes Sophia to the old college where Ira and Ruth used to spend their anniversary. He then starts to read one of Ira’s letters. They live happily ever after.

Sweet and sappy at times, a bit contrived (especially that last part and the mirroring of the two relationships from two different times) but I can’t say that it was boring. It was actually quite well done and I’d give it a solid 7.5 outta 10!

Time For A New Laptop

It’s time for a new laptop. This current one, a Lenovo G550 that I have named Samantha, is over 5 years old and it’s having a bunch of issues. Mainly that it’s aging and it’s time for a change.

Now I don’t use the laptop for anything fancy so I will go for a budget option. I had looked at laptops a few months ago and I think I can get a decent one plus I can now get it on EMI. I think I can get it on a really good deal.

I don’t want the fastest or the fanciest looking one as, well, I don’t wanna buy it and then starve for the rest of the month. Hence the EMI option on my credit card. I only use a laptop for the internet, downloading stuff to watch, listening to music, making payments online and online shopping. I don’t need the latest processor for that. I will go for a less faster one and skimp on the glitzy look and save that extra cash.

Let’s see, maybe I can go for a new laptop by November 1st.

That First Email

Do you remember you very first email that you sent?

I do. The year was 1996 I think. Or 1997 maybe. I had never used the internet before but was eagerly waiting for it. I wanted to send a quick email to someone, anyone and I chose a cousin sister who lived in the UK. So I went to this place where they offered internet browsing but it was so expensive back then. So instead I asked them if I could send an email to a relative using their business email id. They said sure and I typed a small email that was like 2 or 3 sentences and one of the guys there showed me how to send it.

I must have spent about 10-15 minutes talking with the people who run the store when they told me that there was a reply back from my cousin so I got it printed out and paid for the time spent and left. My cousin had written a paragraph or two about she, her brothers and sisters were and enquired about my family and other relatives back here in India. I read it back home and showed it to my mom as well.

How things have changed since then! Also I no longer talk to that cousin, neither do the rest of my relatives speak to her or her family either.

6 Year Old

You get to be a 6-year-old kid again for one day and one day only — plan your perfect 24 hours. Where do you go, what do you do, and with whom?

Where’s the nearest candy store? Where’s the nearest water fountain? Where’s the nearest children’s park and rollercoaster and theme park and water parks? Where’s the tv, I wanna watch cartoons all day? Where’s the nearest toy store and the nearest playground?

I wanna run like mad and play football with a bunch of other 6 year olds and yell “boys rule, girls drool” at the little girls and stick my tongue out at them and pat my butt at them! Hehehe, no I won’t do that. I might yell that stuff at them though

What else can I do for just one day? I dunno. I might tried after all that so I will probably fall asleep by 8pm.

Prompt from The Daily Post at WordPress.com