Summer Time Reading Plans?

Summer reading time! What books do you plan to read this summer?

Absolutely none! My days of reading fictional novels – and I used to read a shit ton of books – and non-fiction are long past me. My free time is usually spent in front of my laptop online and mostly on Youtube or watching one of the numerous movies that I have to watch. With highspeed internet and streaming tv shows and movies, I just don’t get the same enthusiasm for reading books.

I used to be a voracious reader and I’ve bought and read a lot of books. From the ages of 11 till my mid 20s I was a member of a couple of libraries and I used to rent many books, several at a time and finish them off in 2 weeks. I was known as the extended family’s bookworm and for many a birthday people gifted me books to read, knowing that I would really like them.

When I moved to my current apartment, which we own, back in 2006 I couldn’t find a good library but this 30 year old found a store that sold books at cheap prices. These were mostly second hand books that were almost all in mint, just like new condition, probably read once and then donated or sold. Some were even from the US, UK or Canada from libraries that have probably closed down (you could see the check out card at the back page). I would spend an hour or so browsing through the titles and then picking 2-3 books at such cheap costs.

A book which would cost me Rs.349-500 at a book store to buy new would be between Rs.75-150 at this place and it was almost brand new. I would take those books and walk over to a bar called Oberoi bar & restaurant and pick my favourite seat near to a window so I could  move the curtain and get enough sunlight in and order beer or vodka and some food for lunch and spend 3-4 hours drinking, eating and reading there before it was time to go home.

I actually miss that. Maybe I should try doing that again.

Prompt from 30 Days Of Writing Prompts For June at TheSitsGirls

Have Mercy!

Having bitten the bullet and now continuing with Netflix, despite earlier not wanting tp pay Rs.500 every month for subscribing to them, I am kinda watching Netflix every day now. It’s so easy to get into it.

I always pick a sitcom to watch after I get back from work on the regular days when I work either a 6:30 to 3:30 am or a 7:30 to 4:30 am. I find it a great way to unwind and relax and finally go to sleep with a smile on my face. So it was Frasier, Corner Gas, Friends and Seinfeld that I would turn too. This past few days it has been Full House.

Full House is an American television sitcom created by Jeff Franklin for ABC. The show chronicles the events of widowed father Danny Tanner who enlists his brother-in-law Jesse Katsopolis and best friend Joey Gladstone to help raise his three daughters, oldest D.J., middle child Stephanie and youngest Michelle in his San Francisco home. It aired from September 22, 1987 to May 23, 1995, broadcasting eight seasons and 192 episodes. I used to watch this on reruns back in the early to mid 90s but only once in it’s tv run. I hadn’t seen anything from Full House since 2006. And yet I find myself oddly giddy with glee when the time comes for me to play a couple of episode from this fun show. It’s cheesy and corny and probably meant for kids (not really) but it’s innocent fun with a lot of “aww” moments, especially with Stephanie & Michelle, and it’s a big nostalgic ride.

Ranking The Teenage Ninja Turtle Movies

The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles are among my fav childhood cartoons and movies. I first got introduced with the turtles through the first film, which came out in 1990 and I watched it later in the year. The first two movies became part of my frequent movies to watch over the years and I still enjoy them a lot. Here is how I rank the six films that have come out. I understand that there is another one but I haven’t yet watched it.

  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
  • TMNT
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II : Secret Of The Ooze
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles III
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2014)

Retro Toys That Made A Comeback

Sometimes a sequel or a reboot can suck. It changes how we feel about something. After all the classics are the best. In the last few years, retro games and toys have been making a comeback. With enough of the original charm, and an added splash of modern technology to make it relevant to a whole new audience. Here are a few of the most popular comeback kids.

My Little Pony

They got longer legs, sleeker bodies and in some cases (see Equestria High) they turned into people. The original My Pretty Pony was a massive hit in the 1980s. After all what little girl didn’t dream of owning a pony?

The more recent models have seen the toys come with much more than that original brush or stable. Now you have shoes, capes, combs, wings and so much more. With the significant unicorn trend and even more cartoon channels, My Little Pony is firmly on the must-have list once again.

Furbie

The annoying cute, and sometimes creepy Furbie. Was so popular upon original release that they sold out almost everywhere. Children (and adults) spent hours trying to get their Furbie to say cool things, sing and be happy. Getting together with your mates and making your Furbies chat with their Furbies was the stuff of dreams.

They made a big splash once again in 2012. The newer model was smaller, with many more designs and once again tea-parties with Furbies became a big deal.

Racing Cars

There are a few big racing car brands. They used to just go forward and backwards. But now, the flip, bounce, top and bottom half car work independently and so much more. They cost a pretty penny at the time, and not every primary school going kiddo managed to get one. But there were mini ones that totally rocked.

However, as an adult, there is nothing stopping you bagging a sweet four-wheeled remote control racing car. Check out bestrcgear.com.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

Heroes in a half shell – turtle power! The 80s film is a cult classic, as much for its cheesy lines as the real 80s feel of it. The comic was popular too – of course. The new figurines released in recent years had more details than the originals and way more muscle definition.

There was another film released in 2014 that was a smash hit and sparked a new love for TMNT for some and rekindle that fire for others.

LEGO

LEGO has always been pretty popular, but with social media and blogs dedicated to reviewing kids toys and games,, it’s grown into a behemoth. With kits as small as the Lego City Coast Guard Bike and as big as the Millennium Falcon which boasts an impressive 75192 pieces – LEGO isn’t going anywhere any time soon.

Retro toys can bring us back to the time we had them pegged on our own Christmas lists and the feeling we got from playing with them for weeks and months on end. Are there any toys that you just could get enough of when you were younger?

On Libraries

Let’s talk about libraries and librarians! How have they impacted your life?

Libraries – I don’t think I can find even one in the city area but I used to have a membership in 3 libraries from the age of 12 to maybe 24-25. One was a very poor one in terms of selection but it was in a building that had the best supermarket (of sorts but that was what we had back then) and also a small restaurant that served some real good food as well as a library, a laundromat and a novelty shop in the first floor. Also I do remember reading some really memorable books from there.

The second one was in another part of the city and they had a poor selection too and they barely had enough stuff to entertain us. But the third one was the best – huge selection of foriegn magazines, novels, non-fiction books, comics (I especially used to love to get their Archies Double Digests, TinTin & Asterix comics; now I have the latter two collections on a digital format). Also this was a place that I used to meet my then girlfriend on a regular basis.

How have they impacted my life? Before getting the internet at home I was a voracious reader and I read a lot of novels, some biographies and autobiographies and a lot of magazines and comics. I have lost myself in the stories and been given so much entertainment and knowledge and yeah my vocabulary has expanded based on these books. And I am eternally thankful for that.

Prompt from 30 Days of April Writing Prompts at The SitsGirls

What A Trek!

In 1986-87 there was a short lived sitcom called What A Country which was a Mind Your Language ripoff. But the show had a Star Trek connection as the cast included former tennis player Vijay Amitraj who had a cameo in Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home (1986) as a starship captain Joel Randolph, the late George Murdock who was “God” in Star Trek V: The Final Frontier and as Admiral Hanson in the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode The Best of Both Worlds (as well as a recurring character Dr. Salik in Battlestar Galactica) and Ada Maris who played Captain Erika Hernandez in Star Trek Enterprise.

When I First Started

The day you started blogging. What were you thinking?

When I first started blogging, way back in 2002 and on a different blog than this, it was mainly because I had made the move from my hometown to Calicut and I thought it was a good way to capture my thoughts, ideas and what I was going through and events that happen to me living alone in a new city.

I was living & working in that city, renting a small room in a lodge and making very little but a couple of times a week I went to an internet cafe (yes we had plenty of them in those days) and spent a few rupees to use one of their pcs and connect to the internet, check my mail and browse a bit. Having read a couple of blogs every week before then, I thought it was a good way to keep a track of my life in Calicut. So I started a blog on Blogspot.

Since then it has become a daily habit for me, especially since 2006. I think I will always blog till the end of my time.

Prompt from Fat Mum Slim

The Search For Spock’s Horses

So I had posted in October that I was planning my 2018 Star Trek movies rewatching. This is something I do every 2 years and usually towards the end of the year, November-December. I have watched the first 3 films and I was reminded of something.

As a kid I only remember the Star Trek Motion Picture but I don’t remember watching the full movie. I am talking about when I was 7-9 years old, (1983-85) though the movie came out in 1979. But that’s when I remember my extended family watching and talking about that film and how excited they were then an Indian actress, Persis Khambatta, had a major role in it. The only other Trek movie I remember watching before I became a Trekkie at the age of 19 in 1995 was Star Trek III : The Search For Spock.

Back in the late 80s & 1990s we had memberships in a few VHS video lending library. And at one small one in Palarivattom, I remember picking up the Search for Spock as I was curious about the franchise. I must have been 13 or 14 at the time and didn’t know much about Star Trek. For some reason, I remember this movie having the Klingons riding on horses. I dunno why but that’s what I remember even though it’s not in the film. Although when I later watched the movie many years later, I did not remember the story but I was trying to look out for the horses.

This time too on Sunday, when I was rewatching the movie for the 10th time, I was looking out for the horses. No horses anywhere!

Santa’s Indian Helper

Does your installment loan poor credit family celebrate with Santa Clause? Why or why not?

No. Why? They have other imaginary characters that they believe in and they don’t have time for no Santa.

Me? Nope. But I was Santa Clause once. Or rather I dressed up as Santa once upon a time. I was in the 8th grade so, 13 years old, and I was selected to dress up as Santa for December. This despite the fact that I had lost a lot of weight in the last year and a half. Well ok, I can do that. Dress up as Santa and have the pretty girls sit on my lap.

Anyways, I got the costume from the teachers and hat and a fake long white beard and mustache. And I went Ho! Ho! Ho! and stood in front of the whole school to give equity loan interest rates our sweets and chocolates. Ah, good times!

Prompt from 31 DAYS OF WRITING PROMPTS FOR DECEMBER

Have You Ever Used A Typewriter?

Yes but not too much. I was born in 1976 after all and only started using a computer at home in 1995! The typewriter has always had a place in my family home since I can remember and my dad bough the latest alliance and leicester loans electronic one whenever he could as he used it for work once in a while.

My sister used it for a while as well though I do not know if it was for school work or anything else. I certainly never used it for anything important and just typed for keeping a few notes or perhaps a few letters. I think that’s what I used to write letters to my cousins who didn’t like in town with the rest of us and it was fun to get them back. Ah, the days of the snail mail! Sheesh, how ancient am I!

Anyways, there are still documents being typed on in some small and government jobs here and there. Nothing major. Now that I think about it, we had to type up applications for school and stuff back in the day. I’m glad we don’t use them anymore.

Catch Something From My Memory

Share a childhood memory that makes you smile.

I will tell you one of my favourites. I was about 12 years old (I think) so this was 1988 and my family – dad, mom, sis and I – were going on a long summer vacation trip with our extended family on my mother’s side. Uncles, aunts, cousins and my grandma and us were all going in two 16 seat vans (or mini-buses) and 1 car.

As we were getting ready and just waiting to leave, my older sister was telling my dad that we had too many bags for her and my dad to carry and that they were heavy too. So my dad said that “Roshan will have to catch something” meaning when they toss the bags into the large van, I will have to catch them and keep them to one side. I was walking in at that time and only heard what my dad said about me catching something. Not knowing what they were talking about, I said “What? A cold?”

And they both started laughing for a long time and me, I was just standing there, annoyed since I didn’t understand.

Prompt from 31 DAYS OF OCTOBER WRITING PROMPTS at The SitsGirls

The Good Ole Days

Write about the things you loved doing when you were a child.

When I was a child, I certainly loved to watch Cartoon Network and watch cartoon after cartoon. I loved watching them (though very selective) even in my 20s. I loved playing football, badminton and occasionally cricket with my cousins or friends.

I also loved playing board games like Monopoly or Hind Trade (basically an Indian version of Monopoly) and we have spent hours & hours during lazy afternoons and evenings and even late nights playing that. Listening to music too – my cousins and I spent many afternoons and evenings playing our favourite 80s & 90s pop and rock songs.

And ofcourse a group of us would go to one or two of the local video lending libraries and pick a couple of movies for us to watch that evening or night. Those were the days.

Prompt from Cheryl Strayed’s writing prompts

Bloodied Knee Memory

Write about a memory of a physical injury.

I was about 16 or maybe 17. Probably 16 I think. I had bought my spanking new bicycle when I was 15 back in 1990, something called a Street Cat. I loved that cycle a lot. I mostly used it to go around the little suburban town my family lived in from 1987 onwards. I also rode it to my tuition classes that I attended for Math, Physics and Chemistry.

My childhood friend Renjish, who lived less than a kilometer away, attended the same tuition classes as me and we rode together in the mornings on the weekends and evenings on other days. We rode on the bad roads up and down and we had some slopes on the way. For two years I had no incidents. But one evening, I tripped and feel on my left knee which was bloodied and bruised.

I had to go to the doctor and I was limping. He advised me to stay off my feet for 5 days and rest at home. I also remember my sister and my cousin sister, who lived with us for 3 years while she was in an housing loans india engineering college close to my home, fussed over me and got me soft drinks and snacks and pillows. Which was weird as they never did that any other time I got sick and was laid up. Oh well!

Prompt from CHERYL STRAYED’S WRITING PROMPTS

Child’s Play

Child’s Play is a 1988 American slasher film directed and co-written by Tom Holland, and produced by David Kirschner from a story by Don Mancini. It is the first film in the Child’s Play series and the first installment to feature the character Chucky. It stars Catherine Hicks, Dinah Manoff, Chris Sarandon, Alex Vincent, and Brad Dourif.

This is a classic horror franchise and film which I watched at the age of 14 I guess, which was in 1990. I remember a cousin of mine telling me about it and I’ve watched it twice and today was my first view of the movie since those early 90s. I also remember renting the 2nd & 3rd films in the franchise and I have also seen Bride Of Chucky on cable a many years ago.

Charles “Chucky” Lee Ray is a criminal & serial killer who is shot by homicide detective Mike Norris on his way to a getaway car. His accomplice, Eddie, panics and leaves him behind. Charles is shot in the leg and tries to hide in a toy store nearby but Norris follows him and fatally shoots him from afar.  Realizing that he is soon going to die, he transfers his soul into a “Good Guys” doll via a Haitian Vodou spell. A bolt of lightning causes the shop to explode. Mike survives the explosion and enters the shop, only to find Charles’ dead body and all the “Good Guys” dolls on the floor. With the store destroyed and a crime scene, the doll ends up being taken by a hobo who sells it a day later for a smaller rate to widow Karen Barclay, who’s son is turning 6 that day.

Later that evening, Karen’s friend Maggie Peterson babysits Andy and is annoyed when Andy disobeys her saying that Chucky wants to watch the news. After putting Andy to bed, Maggie is hit in the face with a hammer and falls out the window to her death. The police search the apartment. Detective Norris deems Andy a suspect, much to the annoyance of Karen, who orders Mike and the police to leave once they complete their investigation. The next day Chucky gets Andy to skip school and head to Eddie’s lair. While Any is urinating Chucky sneaks into Eddie’s lair, turning off a stove’s pilot light but turning up the gas. As Eddie shoots the stove, the house blows up, killing him. Andy, once again a suspect, is placed in a psychiatric hospital. That night, Karen discovers that Chucky’s batteries were never inserted, and that Andy was telling the truth about Chucky functioning on his own power. While she is inspecting the doll, Chucky comes to life, bites her arm, and escapes.

She finds Norris and shows him the bite wound that Chucky made. He does not believe her and leaves. Chucky tries to strangle Mike from the backseat using a cord but Mike burns Chucky with a cigarette lighter. After that, Chucky attempts to stab Mike. Mike shoots him and Chucky retreats. After that, Mike finally agrees to help Karen. Chucky tortures John, the voodoo practitioner who taught him the spell him, and he says that the longer he stays in the doll, the more human he will become that he has to transfer his soul to the first person who he revealed his true identity to which is Andy. Before bleeding out and dying, John tells Norris that although Chucky is a doll, his heart is fully human and vulnerable to fatal injury.

Chucky attacks Andy at his home but Karen and Norris arrive and stops Chucky from completing the ritual to transfer his soul to Andy. Chucky slashes Norris Mike, then goes after Karen and Andy. Soon, the pair trap Chucky in the fireplace and burn him alive. Karen and Andy leave the room to help Mike, but a heavily burned Chucky follows them and attempts to kill them, since burning him alive didn’t work. Chucky is again thought to be killed when Karen shoots off his head, arm, and leg. Mike’s partner Jack Santos arrives at the apartment, and disbelieves the trio’s story just before Chucky’s body then bursts through a ventilation duct and tries to strangle Jack. During the struggle, Karen tells Mike to aim and shoot at Chucky’s heart (as John told them to do) which Mike does finally killing him.

While Mike, Jack and Karen go to the hospital, Karen turns off the bedroom’s lights and Andy looks back at Chucky’s burned remains before closing the door. This itself in an indication to the audience that the producers wanted to make sequels from the beginning – Andy’s look indicates that he knows that this is not the end. They did a great job finding the right innocent kid for the role. Brad Dourif, who had 3 appearances in Star Trek Voyager as a psychotic Betazoid,  is an apt choice for the mainly voice role as Chucky and he and Catherine Hicks (from Star Trek IV : The Voyage Home) are the Star Trek connection to this role. 7.5 outta 10!

Rollercoaster

Write about the last time you rode a rollercoaster.

The last time I rode a rollercoaster was when I was 9 years old. I haven’t been on one since then. We lived in Kuwait until 1987 and they had this large amusement park named Entertainment City. They had so many rides and things to do there. I remember an Australian log ride, carousels, bumper cars etc etc.

Ofcourse they had this big rollercoaster ride. You had to be 8 or above to ride it, if I remember correctly. My sister, dad and I went on the rides a few times. I remember feeling as if my lunch would rush out of my belly, through my mouth and spray everyone when we hurled down at fantastic speeds. But I loved it.

I also remember that one time, maybe our very last before we left Kuwait and settled in India, that my sister lost one of her contact payday loans online direct lender no credit check lenses during the ride. That’s weird that I remember that.

Prompt from 365 Blog Post Ideas and Writing Prompts at See Jane Write