Picking A New Fridge

We bought out current fridge 8 years ago. My biggest complaint about it is that it is kinda small. There just isn’t enough space for keeping all the stuff that we need to keep in there. We are 3 people in the apartment and the mostly vegetables and bowls of stuff. Buying a refrigerator is a big deal. If you make the wrong decision, you’ll have to live with it for a few years. And you need to make sure you have a good appliance repair business that can do repairs on it if needed.

While choosing one you need to make sure that it fits in the area of your kitchen that you have to keep it. It is a good idea to take measurements just to be sure. And as for styles, it is best to have one like this one pictured here – with the freezer at the bottom. Let’s face it you use the freezer the least and won’t store many things in there. Think of all the times you open the fridge to take something from there. Now think of the number of times you open the freezer to get something from it. Mostly ice and some frozen meat and a couple of other things, right? Yeah that can be at the bottom.

Also look out for ways to save on your electricity bill. Look out for more energy efficient brands and models that can go a long way to get you a good appliance but at the same time isn’t that bad for your environment and power bill.

6 Months!

It has now officially been 6 months since we went into lockdown here in my area. March 20th was the last day I went to work at the office and after several discussions of when and if we would go into a lockdown, it was declared that India would go into a complete lockdown, other than essential services, 3 days from then. Kerala declared that we would go into lockdown on the next day, which gave a lot of people enough time to get arrangements made after the weekend. I went into the weekend not knowing if we would go into lockdown and on Monday morning we got the info that we will be effective that same day.

Since then I have been working at home, using the client/windows system provided to me by the company. We are working outsourced for a large, large company. I have been working steadily at home (sometimes a little too much for my taste) and I have only gone out for a few times since then. Usually just to the main post office (to collect packages), some grocery shopping (it’s nice to go out to a store once in a while even if we do most of our shopping online via delivery apps), go to an ATM, some other errands and to get a bite to eat from one of the restaurants or cafes that are allowing dine in options.

How things have changed! I never thought I would ever get some work from home opportunity other than the freelance thing that I do. Never thought this job would be allowed to get done from home but here we are. And I still don’t plan on going back for a while. If I do quit and leave for another job I will be looking for another work from home option as well. Life as we know has certainly changed!

Part Working Weekend

Woe is me! Such is life! I am working for a few hours this weekend. split between Saturday and Sunday. We need to create client ids for around 125 newly hired employees for our company. This falls to me mainly now and I have to pick someone else to shoulder some of that burden. They do not make it easy to create these ids and it is a bit tedious and takes up some time.

So this morning at 6:30 am I made sure that after my training batch trainees left for the day and I wished them a happy weekend and made sure I had everything ready for creating sad ids. I then got my breakfast of chapatti and peanut butter while I checked my office mail. 20 minutes later, I was in bed and watched some Corner Gas before I fell asleep. I woke up at 2 pm and brushed my teeth and then ate lunch. Back to bed watching 3 episodes of Defending Jacob before I woke up for coffee.

At 6 pm I went to take a shave and a shower and went down to get the groceries that I had ordered. Once I did that I started to work on the id creation for a couple of hours, stopping just to place an order for fried rice, some dumplings and dragon chicken for dinner. I have had two beers along with dinner and now waiting for the football to start.

What Do You Collect?

I used to collect books – the first thing that I collected. Then it was music cassettes and followed by cds. Man, I had an amazing collection of cassettes and cds for the longest time. Ever since I was 11 or 12 I collected music albums on cassettes and by the age of 22-23 I started collecting CDs. I spent a bunch of money buying the albums I had on cassettes on cds. But yes by then I also started selling off my cassettes which gave me some money back.

I collected cds till my early 30s but then realizing that space was a concern in my small apartment, I ripped all my cds into mp3 format and saved them on a hard drive. I started doing this back in 2006-07 and by the time 2010 came along I stopped buying cds. In 2015 I sold all my cds and the remaining cassettes as I had everything on mp3 format and the cds were just taking up space and from 2009 onwards all new purchases (I rarely buy any new music anymore) is all digital and online. But then I had a new thing to collect. Star Trek spaceships.

I bought a shelf to display them and bought closed to 50 of them. Now that is on the back burner. I feel like I will only buy a few more and keep most of them in a cupboard. Mostly because it gets very dusty here and it’s hard to clean the ships and the shelves all the time. But since late 2018 dvds have been the thing that I love collecting. I buy them online and display them on my two shelves. I don’t have a bluray player and most of the blurays of the movies that I have checked out are more expensive than dvds and well I don’t want to spend that much money.

Prompt from 550 Prompts for Narrative and Personal Writing at The NY Times

Night Shift Instead

Ah, I was wrong about my shift for this week and probably for the next couple of weeks as well. The latest batch joined the office on Monday and instead of the 12:30 pm to 9:30 pm shift, it is now instead a 9:30 pm to 6:30 am shift. I guess the one hour difference does make some difference. This is ofcourse not that great for my health but it can’t be helped. I need to make sure that I get enough sleep, probably more hours that usual and get lots of rest in between.

But in reality I was working from around 5:30 pm or 6pm yesterday. That’s the worst part as we have a lot of other work that is done in tandem with a large set of new people joining the organization. I worked for 3.5 hours on Sunday to get a bunch of this stuff done and coached a colleague on how he can do the same for another set as well. This looks like we will have to do this again for this weekend as well.

At 3:45 am I stopped to go get some coffee and a small snack (biscuits) and then at 6 I toasted bread for 2 peanut butter sandwiches which was my breakfast. At 6:30 am I quit everything and got into bed so I can watch some Corner Gas and then went to sleep.

Fan Of These Bands

Back in 2007 I had written a post about the number of years that I had been a fan of my favourite bands. 2007 is such a long time ago now and it’s time to see how may years have I been a fan of the artists that I enjoy listening to so much. My list of songs & albums and decided that it deserved a post. So here it is, in descending order, the bands that I have been a fan of (I’m not including bands that have disbanded but artists who have died are included, provided that they have a considerable amount of recorded material) :

Band / Artist No. of Years Year which I first heard them

  1. Bon Jovi – 34 – 1986
  2. Europe – 34 – 1986
  3. Scorpions – 33 – 1987
  4. Van Halen – 33 – 1987
  5. Deep Purple – 33 -1987
  6. Bryan Adams – 32 – 1988
  7. Def Leppard – 32 – 1988
  8. Neil Young – 32 – 1988
  9. Eric Clapton – 32 – 1988
  10. Deep Purple – 32 – 1988
  11. AC / DC – 32 – 1988
  12. Aerosmith – 32 – 1988
  13. Guns n’Roses – 31 – 1989
  14. Metallica – 31 – 1989
  15. Alice Cooper 31 – 1989
  16. Warrant – 31 – 1989
  17. Poison – 30 – 1990
  18. Iron Maiden – 30 – 1990
  19. Jeff Healey – 30 – 1990
  20. Queensryche – 29 – 1991
  21. Megadeth – 29 – 1991
  22. Rush – 28 – 1992
  23. Pearl Jam – 28 – 1992
  24. Joe Satriani – 28 -1992
  25. Yngwie Malmsteen – 28 – 1992
  26. Steve Vai – 27 – 1993
  27. Alice In Chains – 27 – 1993
  28. Crash Test Dummies – 27 – 1993
  29. Ugly Kid Joe – 27 – 1993
  30. Barenaked Ladies – 22

These are the longest that I can think of. There are other bands that I like, but I either own just a few songs (like Ozzy, Judas Priest) and or never bought any of their albums (Led Zepplin).

Blocked By A Racist

Someone I know only online just asked me if he would be thought of as a racist if he thought some Africans / people of Africa heritage were ok but that some of them are still more monkey than the rest of us!!!! This guy actually said that.

I was like “Excuse me!! That is not something you say” but he then proceeded to send a pic of a football player and typed “Look at this guy! Look at his head especially his face and his mannerism. Don’t tell me this guy isn’t part gorilla or some other species!”

I was blown away but then all I could say was that humans are basically less hairy apes. We chimps and other monkeys all had evolved from a common ancestor.

To that he started abusing me. I checked his Twitter profile page – AH! Creationist. I had hit a nerve. I abused him back and told him to shove his opinions up his arsehole! I am now blocked by him and feeling rather proud of myself!

What Is On Your Music Playlist Right Now?

Mostly the same bands and artists that I usually listen to. The classics are always great. Most bands that I currently listen to I have been listening to for a long, long time. Bands from the 70s, 80s & 90s and a few from the 2000s. There are a few artists that I listen to a bit more now than previously. Like Slayer – I barely listened to them for so long but recently, since the past 2 years, I have been playing them on Youtube a lot more.

One band that I have started listening to are Greek Black Metal band formed in 1987 and their first album came out in 1991 but I only started listening to them last year and they blow me away. I have also been watching/listening to some cover bands, The Classic Rock Show and the Lexington Lab Band, that are a class above (meaning about as good as top class rock bands but these guys only play covers) a lot on Youtube since they do really fine, almost updated, covers of some of my bands songs and bands.

Other than that ofcourse I listen to my fav bands – Rush, Barenaked Ladies, Pearl Jam, Metallica, Iron Maiden, Alice In Chains, Queensryche, Def Leppard, Deep Purple, Dream Theatre, Bryan Adams, Joe Satriani, Steve Vai, etc etc a lot.

Prompt from 30 Days Of September Writing Prompts at The SitsGirls

Another Week Passes, More Of The Same

And ofcourse the grind continues. I will be handling my 4th batch of new joinees since July. The latest batch will be joining the office on Monday and I will be training them remotely from home. This almost means another shift change back to 12:30 pm to 9:30 pm from a 10:30 pm to 7:30 am. I have to tell you that I am really happy to move outta that graveyard shift. Man that is bad for my health. I am always tired and always have a dry throat it seems during the graveyard shift.

Unfortunately this sudden new change in the schedule also means that I have to work a bit during the weekend. There are client tool ids that need to be created and it is a 4 step process that takes a long time to get done. I cannot believe that this huge company cannot find an easier and simpler method to create ids for their software. It is ridiculous how much time one has to waste in getting them created and setup for a new set of folks. I guess that’s why they outsource this stuff.

Anyways, I have just received the list of new folks who are joining the company on Monday. I have to work for a couple of hours tomorrow to create their ids and I will be showing a colleague as to how to do the same so we can share the work. Tonight it’s KFC and maybe a beer.

3 Things

Three things you want in a relationship.

  1. Companionship: I want to live with a woman who wants to live with me and spend her days and nights with me as much as I want to do with her.
  2. Sharing experiences and interests : I would love to listen to music with my woman. Watch movies and tv shows together. Go to different places and enjoy the food and drink and talk about these. I would want a woman who I can introduce my favourite things to and share them with her so we can enjoy them together. I hope she also loves dogs and cats because I would like to raise a dog or two with her and a couple of cats.
  3. Love : Emotional and physical. I want to be one with her. And that’s emotional as well as sex. To be comfortable and sleep together knowing that the love we have is wonderful and great.

Blog Prompts 119 Journal Prompts for Your Journal Jar

Have You Ever Had Jury Duty?

So in India we do not have a jury system. But I think that’s a good thing. I don’t think we would do well with the jury system. I mean we can easily find people – second largest population in the world. How hard do you think it would be to get 12 people to sit in a jury? But it’s the next part that scares me.

The jury must decide upon facts to determine someone’s guilt or non guilt. Listen to disputes and take notes on evidence and facts presented to assist in making a decision. Jurors add certainty to the law, that is the jury merely states that the accused is guilty or not guilty and does not give a reason. That is what scares me because I am not sure about local people being able to do that without some bias or the other.

Therefore I have never had to do jury duty and never will while I live here in India. But it would be fun. Or maybe I have read too many John Grisham novels or watched too many movies that have jury trials.

Prompt from 30 Days Of September Writing Prompts at The SitsGirls

Mid-Week 30 Things – Part 2

16. What’s a saying that you say a lot? “God Less”

17. Who told you they loved you last? My baby cousin on a Facebook post

18. Last furry thing you touched? ahem!!

19. How many hours a week do you work? 48-50

20. How many pics do you have on your mobile phone? 561

21. Favorite age you have been so far? 29

22. Your worst enemy? myself

23. What is your current desk wallpaper? The USS Interceptor, a Star Trek online starship

24. What was the last thing you said to someone? “I’m off to bed”

25. What was the last thing you received as a gift? A skull designed mug from colleagues

26. Where did you go for your last vacation? Hahaha – to a hotel in the city

27. What was the last alcoholic drink you had? Amstel lager on Saturday

28. If you could eat only one thing for breakfast for the rest of your life what would it be? Omelettes

29. What is your favourite holiday? New Year’s Day

30. If you had to choose between a million bucks or to be able to go back in time and fix all your mistakes which would you choose? The Million … I could use it

Mid-Week 30 Things – Part 1

01. When you look at yourself in the mirror, what’s the first thing you look at? my glasses

02. How much cash do you have on you? Rs.3000 in my wallet and Rs.5000 which is my emergency stash

03. What’s a word that rhymes with “TEST”? breast

04. Favorite plant? Marijuana

05. Who is the 4th person on your missed call list on your cell phone? Airtel (from their automated marketing)

06. What is your main ring tone on your phone? ‘Wonder Woman Theme’

07. What shirt are you wearing? black with black n white diamond shaped designed

08. Do you “label” yourself? yes, rock n’roll GOD

09. Name brand of your shoes currently wearing? Gubatti (local Indian brand)

10. Bright or Dark Room? depends on my mood, as of right now…DARK

11. What do you think about the person who took this survey? Never meet him (PD) but he seems like an alright bloke

13. What were you doing at midnight last night? working

14. What did your last text message you received on your cell phone say? “Ok”

15. Do you ever click on “Pop Ups” or Banners? occasionally

10 Tips For Night Shift Work @ Home

The night shift. Most of us dread it and some fear it. There are some crazy souls who do like the night shift as they feel like their city takes on a whole different look and feel when they go out at the night time. I have trained a bunch of folks in Hyderabad who like the 9 pm to 6 am shift. That’s great for you crazy people. The rest of us have to prepare ourselves for it. So I am working a 10:30 pm to 7:30 am shift this week and possibly the next 2 more weeks as well.

Here are some of my tips for people in the night shift especially if you working from home:

1.Wear comfortable clothes – it doesn’t even matter if you are wearing you jammies. I wear my lungi, which are like Indian pyjamas, and a shirt. If I wore t-shirts then I would chose them instead.

2. Have you dinner by 8 or 8:30 pm. You do not want to feel very heavy right when you have to start your shift. And avoid heavy foods or spicy food as much as you can.

3. Arrange your breaks for every 2 hours, the same as you would have in a normal day shift. You need, deserve and have a right to those breaks. And walk around even if it just in your home or apartment during those breaks. Stretch if you can.

4. Make sure to drink a lot of water in between. Gotta stay hydrated. And avoid really cold water, though slightly chilled is fine.

5. For snacks try to get biscuits or fruit. I like what I call my “apple breaks” in that I keep chilled pieces of apple in my fridge and have them at 2 am or so. Keeps me feeling fresh. Grapes, pears and bananas are also awesome snacks.

6. Coffee or tea. Yeah, I need my caffine kick. But I have tried to keep it to just one coffee a night shift. Strong and black and usually at around 4 am which is when I start to feel a drowsy and tired.

7. Plan your breakfast. What I do is I give both myself and my batch of trainees, if I have one, a break at around 6 am. For them it will be breakfast is what I was told and for me it is to go and make my breakfast. I try to eat my breakfast at around that time or prepare something that I can eat quickly at 7:30 am. Soon as I finish the shift.

8. Don’t stay up after that. Breakfast done, I either go to bed straight away or lie in bed and watch a little tv until I feel my eyelids get heavy so I can sleep as much as I can.

9. Naps are great. If you haven’t got enough sleep during the day, a light nap will do wonders. This could be between the hours of 7 and 9. Not later than that.

10. Don’t go out during the day, unless it is a quick trip for groceries or anything else that you really need. I don’t want to feel even more tired than I actually need to be.

Awesome Saturday

I had a nice day out. I’m trying to get back to some degree of normalcy by going out every Saturday and enjoy a day out of the apartment. Well 2 hours atleast. Yesterday I went out to get my hair cut. I had last cut my hair in March, a week before we went into lockdown. And even if I am having a big bald patch on the top and the hairline is in the advanced stages of receding, in 5 months my hair was long on the sides and back. When I sweat or after a shower, I hate it when my hair sticks to the back of my neck.

But up first I had to collect 9 packages from the post office – because the postman is a lazy bugger. I waited for the bugger to come and deliver them and since he doesn’t leave them on the table (no security guard due to Covid) at times, I have to go and collect it from the main post office in Ernakulam. What is it’s a weekend that I want to relax and stay in at home? I still have to go because this idiot can’t do his job probably. His excuse this week was that “were 9 packages” so he is too lazy to carry them. Why not on split it on different days? Idiot!

Anyways I went and collected my packages and then went to Ole to get my haircut. I had to, for the first time in my life, book an appointment to go get my haircut at this nice salon. They are accepting appointments for the most part to avoid crowds in their store. Is this what it feels like to be a women? Once that was done, I walked next door (they are in the same compound) and went to Couchyn, which is the bar of the the Grand Hotel, and bought 4 Amstel beers. Post that I went to an ATM and took out some money and then went to a grocery store for a few provisions. Then it was time for lunch and decided on Dominos and had a nice pizza.

After that it was back home to watch a movie – The Craft – and a nap. In the evening I had an over 3.5 hour WhatsApp video chat while he was drinking vodka and Sprite and I was drinking a couple of beers. He had KFC and I had a burger and fries in our respective homes and discussed scifi, movies families and shot the shit so to speak. It was fun.

My 3rd Mobile Phone

So I made a mistake but since over 14 years have passed since then, I think you can forgive me. So, in between my Samsung R220 and the Sony Ericsson W800i purchase, I actually had Nokia 1100. But here’s the problem – I remember having used that phone but I don’t remember when I got it.

I went through the old blog that I had but I can only find one entry about the Nokia 1100. Which is odd! But yeah, it’s was in the beginning of I think when people at the office, my friends and colleagues, convinced me to dump my Samsung R220 and get the 1100. Over 250 million 1100s have been sold since its launch in late 2003, making it the world’s best selling phone handset and the best selling consumer electronics device in the world at the time.

It was targeted towards developing countries and users who do not require advanced features beyond making calls and SMS text messages, alarm clock, reminders, etc. The Nokia 1100 was the company’s cheapest mobile phone when it was released to the market, making it ideal for the developing world yet had some of the best features. The 1100 features a built-in flashlight, activated by pressing and holding the C key once, or by pressing it twice to lock it on when the keypad is unlocked. It can also be accessed via a menu item. The 1100 and 1101 are only able to play monophonic ringtones, which can be selected from a list of 36 pre-installed tones or from 7 self-composed ones.

In addition to the default light blue, orange or black, there are also dark blue, yellow, red, green and pink versions offered by Nokia, as well as many 3rd-party covers. Other features include a 50-message capacity (inbox and drafts, with 25 messages in the sent items folder), alarm, stopwatch, calculator, 6 profiles, contacts storage (capacity 50, with the ability to assign different tones and icons to different contacts), games (Snake II and Space Impact+) and the ability to compose your own ringtones. The Nokia BL-5C battery has a long standby and talk time – this battery is used in more advanced models that have increased power needs for their features, but in the basic 1100 it consumes a fraction of the power and therefore lasts for up to 400 hours between charges.