The Artist In Me

When I was a kid I used to draw quite a lot. Now, I am not saying that I was very good at it but good enough that several people in my family wanted me to pursue it by enrolling in art classes and see if I could find a career in it. I remember drawing most figures like super hero comic characters and even a few deities from what I saw in Amar Chitra Katha. Good times!

As I turned 10-11 years old I kinda stopped drawing as I just read a lot instead. Also music became a big part of my life and I devoted a lot of my time listening to rock bands. However from time to time I would doodle a bit or try and draw a person’s pose from a photo or another drawing. One of my favourite drawings which I did safe for a few years was when I was about 15 years old. That would be 1991 and I had my first relationship with a girl. Her name was Michelle and I drew her portrait….with one single tear falling down her cheek.

Why, because I was influenced by a talk we had on the phone and I put on some music and just drew. I tore the paper outta the large book I had and put the drawing in a photo frame and it sat on my desk at home for a few years. The relationship only lasted a little while but I still have fond memories of that time and the drawing. I can’t find it and think I tossed it back in 2006 when we moved homes.

Arsenal 2 Newcastle 0

Extra-time goals from Emile Smith Rowe and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang ensured holders Arsenal beat a stubborn Newcastle in the FA Cup third round. In-form Smith Rowe had an eventful evening after arriving as a second-half substitute, seeing a red card rightly rescinded before opening the scoring. Aubameyang tapped in the second after a slick move cut Newcastle open. Andy Carroll missed two golden chances in normal time, which could have sent Arsenal to a rare third-round exit.

The Gunners, who have won the FA Cup on a record 14 occasions, go into the fourth-round draw having being knocked out in the third round just once in the past 25 years. But it could have been different had 32-year-old striker Carroll been able to convert his opportunities, particularly the second, which came in the final minute of normal time. Arsenal would have had little time to recover from that and they had keeper Bernd Leno to thank as he reacted quickly to spread himself to smother Carroll’s shot. That chance came after former England striker Carroll had been unable to take another opportunity early in the second half, staying onside but sidefooting wide.

Instead, it was a player at the other end of his career who took the plaudits. Smith Rowe, with his energy and willingness to carry the ball, has added another dimension to Arsenal’s attacking play in recent weeks. After an insipid first half, the England youth international was brought on as a 56th-minute substitute by Gunners boss Mikel Arteta and quickly became the game’s central character. In the dying moments of normal time, he was shown a straight red card by referee Chris Kavanagh for a challenge on Newcastle midfielder Sean Longstaff, only for the official to overturn the decision after watching the incident again on the pitchside monitor.

Refusing Same-Sex Couple Service

Is It O.K. to Refuse to Serve Same-Sex Couples Based on Religious Beliefs?

Hmmm let’s look at this at all possible angles. Let’s say you are running a bakery or cafe that bakes cakes. If the ingredients or something in the cake is against their personal belief or beliefs or the design of the cake represents something that is considered taboo in their beliefs, then I suppose I would understand that. Like say a Satanic symbol for a Christian run bakery or something like that. Maybe a lewd suggestive wording of a sexual nature or something along the likes.

Otherwise I do not see why or how it should be OK for any business to refuse to serve same-sex couples. If they are asking for a cake that doesn’t have lewd remarks in icing or any odd shapes or something like that, then what is the problem? If you do not like homosexual relationships, do not have a homosexual relationship. Why should you have a problem with some folks who are in one? The religious angle is always a tricky one because people get so sensitive and authorities as well are reluctant to touch it.

But basically what you are is ignorant, bigoted and homophobic if you refuse to serve them. Using some ancient text book to justify your hatefulness and overall assholeness (is that a word? It is now). And if you do choose to refuse them service, be prepared to get a backlash from people. That can affect your business and Karma is a cold hearted bitch.

Prompt from 401 Prompts for Argumentative Writing at The New York Times

What’s The Beef, India?

Long long ago, long before any religion ever existed, there lived a civilization in the Indian sub-continent who were primarily farmers. They settled in the banks of major rivers, concentrated on agriculture and cattle farming. 

Cattle became an integral part of their existence because they

  • provide nutritious milk for children on a daily basis,
  • provide manure which was turned into a fertilizer to support agriculture, and
  • actively got involved in physical labor like land tilling, grinding rice etc.

The only major investment was fodder, which anyway came from agriculture. People never hurt cows because they treated it with respect, love and faith. In short, the ancient strategy for preservation worked for thousands of years! Protecting such an asset became vital to the society and its economic stability. It became a tradition, slowly crept into religion and holy books, and thus began the tale of cow worship.

Liberal Hindus: Some people realized why cows were important at one time, understood why it was worshiped, understood why it doesn’t make sense anymore in the modern society. They accepted on eating beef. Few of them chose not to eat it out of respect towards old traditions.

Conservative Hindus: They still believe that cows are sacred and worship them. They don’t eat beef. Some of them understand that it is a personal choice and are okay with others eating beef. While some of the extreme conservative Hindus can’t really stand the idea of others eating beef.

Legislation against cattle slaughter is in place throughout most states of India except Kerala, Goa, West Bengal, and states of Northeast India. In short, it mostly depends on where you live in India, if you do eat beef or not. At the end, roughly 25% of Hindus eat beef. 

Promoting Your Blog Via Social Media

How you use social media to promote your blog

Actually the prompt should be how do I use social media to promote my blog. Well I do it in a few ways and I should be doing a whole lot more. My main two social media apps / services I use are Facebook & Twitter for this. I guess I could also be using Instagram to prompt some blog posts as well but I haven’t really tried that out yet.

If I find that I have some posts that I think my friends on Facebook would be interested in, I will share that post on my Timeline. I rarely do it but I have started to do a few more in recent months. However each and every post gets shared via the Twitter app I have installed on my blog. At times I can see the likes or shares on Twitter. Problem is I stopped using Twitter regularly and only log in once a week or so.

Facebook remains the big platform that I use. I plan to share more posts and video clips of mine on Facebook and hopefully that will create a few more regular visits.

Prompt from 100+ BLOG POST IDEAS FOR 2021

Arsenal Sign Young CB

Arsenal are set to confirm the ¬£900,000 signing of Hertha Berlin defender Omar Rekik this week. The 19-year-old will be the first signing of the January transfer window for Gunners boss Mikel Arteta. Rekik is a centre back but is not expected to be part of Arteta’s first-team plans straight away, due to their surplus in this position currently. The teenager is already an international choosing to represent Tunisia through his father’s heritage – rather than representing Holland, where he was born.

It is believed that Per Mertesacker, current Arsenal academy coach, had a key part in making the deal happen. According to football.london, Arsenal are keen to loan their impending signing back to Hertha to aid his development but as of yet not decision has been made. Rekik was born on 20 December 2001 in Den Haag and plays for Hertha Berlin. He played for Feyenoord Rotterdam from 2011-2012, for Manchester City FC from 2012-2014, for PSV Eindhoven from 2014-2015, for Olympique de Marseille from 2015-2017 and has played for Hertha BSC since 2017.

A deal for Rekik was agreed on the final day of the summer transfer window, but the move wasn’t signed off in time so all parties had to wait until January to complete the switch. A fee of around £900,000 was agreed for the defender, as part of the deal that saw Matteo Guendouzi move to Hertha Berlin on loan, however, the fee has now come down to around £540,000 after the delay.

The 19-year-old has never made a first team appearance for Hertha Berlin, although did make the match day squad on three occasions at the end of last season. He has been playing in the youth sides so far this campaign as he awaits his move to Arsenal. It has been a nomadic lifestyle for the teenager in his career so far, having been on the books at Manchester City, Feyenoord, PSV and Marseille already. The centre-back plays naturally on the right side of central defence, but is also capable on the left side and in defensive midfield.

Burger Sauce?

So I usually buy some spread or the other for my sandwiches. If I am having breakfast at home I usually prefer to lightly toast bread slices and use a spread like mayonnaise or peanut butter. After eating jam until I turned 20, I stopped that and usually went for just ketchup and later dry toasts. A few years ago I started out with honey on my toasts but I soon got tired of that.

I then started an interest in mayonnaise and flavoured mayo like garlic or jalapenos or both mixed in. I moved onto eggless mayo and then middle of last year I started buying peanut butter since it is delicious. Two nights ago I placed an order for some grocery items on this online app and I also selected my fav brand of peanut butter and accidentally selected the burger sauce option instead of regular veg mayonnaise. In my defense, both say the same thing but the colour of the sauce in the jar should have alarted me. Again, I was in the middle of my work shift while I placed the order.

It arrived and I saw that what I have ordered was burger sauce. Burger Sauce is usually a creamy sauce made with a combination of ketchup and mayonnaise with additional mix-ins that make it unique and give it extra flavor. Stir together 3 tbsp mayonnaise, 2 tbsp ketchup, 25g finely chopped cornichons and 1 tbsp American mustard. It says that there is mustard in this brand but I doubt it. I gave it a taste this morning on my sandwiches and it is ok but I still prefer mayo.

Jokes On You!

Gorbachev, Reagan, and Thatcher all meet God. God says “I’ll answer one question from each of you.”

Reagan asks “How long will it be before the American people are happy, healthy, and living in prosperity?”

God replies “50 years.” Reagan starts to weep, and says “I won’t live long enough to see it!”

Thatcher says “What about the British people? How long until they’re all happy?” God says “100 years.”¬† Thatcher starts to weep as well, saying “I won’t live long enough to see it!”

Gorbachev asks “What about the Soviet people?” God starts to weep, and says “I won’t live long enough to see it!”


What do you call an Englishman in the knockout stages of the World Cup?

A Referee


What does the Loch Ness monster eat?

Fish and ships.

Tanya Roberts Passes Away

Tanya Roberts, the breathy-voiced actress who found fame in the 1980s as a detective on ‚ÄúCharlie‚Äôs Angels‚ÄĚ and as a brave earth scientist in the James Bond film ‚ÄúA View to a Kill,‚ÄĚ finally died on Monday night in Los Angeles. She was 65. Her death, at Cedars-Sinai Hospital, was confirmed on Tuesday by her companion, Lance O‚ÄôBrien. Her publicist, who was given erroneous information, had announced her death to the news media early Monday, and some¬†news organizations published obituaries about her prematurely.

The publicist, Mike Pingel, said Ms. Roberts collapsed on Dec. 24 after walking her dogs near her Hollywood Hills home and was put on a ventilator at the hospital. He did not give the cause of death, but said it was not related to Covid-19. He said she had not been noticeably ill before she collapsed.

Tanya Roberts Still Alive

Tanya Roberts’ publicist retracts report that said actor had died. The former Bond girl was mistakenly reported dead after being hospitalised following a fall at her home. Tanya Roberts, who played Roger Moore‚Äôs love interest in A View to a Kill and later starred in the sitcom That ‚Äė70s Show as Midge Pinciotti, has been hospitalised after falling at her home. Her publicist, Mike Pingel, mistakenly reported the 65-year-old dead on Monday, leading multiple outlets, including the Guardian, to publish stories saying she had died. Pingel later told the Associated Press that Roberts was still alive as of 10am in California but was in a poor condition.

He had said earlier that Roberts collapsed in her home and was admitted to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. Pingel said Robert‚Äôs husband, Lance O‚ÄôBrien, told him that he held his wife and she ‚Äúseemed for him to slip away‚ÄĚ. The publicist said he was awaiting further updates on Roberts‚Äô condition. Pingel told the PA news agency that the family was waiting for further news from medics, adding: ‚ÄúIt does not look good.‚ÄĚ The US website TMZ first reported her death, saying she had collapsed while walking her dogs on 24 December and was admitted to hospital.

Ashton Kutcher has taken upon the job of clearing out the confusion amidst his contemporaries that Tanya Roberts is alive. The confusion about the information started when Roberts’ publicist Mike Pingel confirmed about her death on CNN after which he told NBC News that Roberts¬†is still alive. However, many of the show’s cast members didn’t get the memo as they were posting condolences for the¬†James Bond¬†actor. Ashton tweeted to their comments and made them know about the correct information.¬†

Saliba Joins Nice On Loan

Arsenal has loaned centre back William Saliba to French Ligue 1 side OGC Nice for the rest of the season in a bid to give him more playing time, the Premier League club announced on Monday. Saliba, who was signed by Arsenal in July 2019 for about 27 million pounds ($36.59 million), spent last season on loan at St Etienne and has yet to make his debut for the Premier League club, with the 19-year-old only playing for the Under-21 side.

The France youth international was also left out of the club’s Europa League squad for the group stage. “William experienced a very challenging time last year, with his playing time limited by injury and the early ending of the Ligue 1 season due to the pandemic,” Arsenal’s technical director Edu said. “So together with William, we have decided that spending the rest of the season on loan with Nice is the best way for him to develop.” Nice is 12th in the standings after 16 games and return from the league’s winter break with a game against Brest on Wednesday.

Nice will cover the centre-back’s wages and are not required to pay a loan fee. There is currently no provision for a permanent move, with Arsenal still determined that the 19-year-old has a future in north London. It has been a frustrating half-season for Saliba, who has been restricted to under-23 football after not being named in Mikel Arteta’s Premier League or Europa League squads. Arsenal had failed to secure him a loan move in September, although there were plenty of suitors, and will expect to see him develop with a view to competing for first-team football next season.

RIP Alexi Laiho

Former Children Of Bodom singer and guitarist Alexi Laiho has died. According to his label, Naplam, the Finnish musician passed away at home in Heklsinki last week. Although no cause of death was specified, the 41-year-old had reportedly been suffering from what were described as ‚Äúlong term health issues‚ÄĚ. Laiho founded Children Of Bodom in 1993, and led them until they split up at the end of 2019. In 2020, he formed a new band, Bodom After Midnight. Laiho received widespread acclaim for his guitar work.

In 2004 he was ranked #96 out of 100 Greatest Heavy Metal Guitarists of All Time by Guitar World. Guitar World magazine has also ranked him as one of the 50 fastest guitarists in the world. In addition, Roadrunner Records ranked Laiho at #41 out of 50 of The Greatest Metal Frontmen of All Time. Furthermore, Total Guitar conducted a public voting poll to determine the greatest metal guitarist of all time; Laiho was voted #1 out of 20 metal guitarists, with over 20% of the vote.

Laiho started playing violin at the age of seven and guitar at the age of 11 and in 1993 formed Children of Bodom together with drummer Jaska Raatikainen under the name of Inearthed. In 2004, Laiho founded a side-project called Kyl√§hullut, which was assembled together with Tonmi Lillman (ex-Sinergy) and Vesa Jokinen 69er (from Klamydia). The band was created merely for the entertainment of the musicians, and takes a carefree approach to their music. The band’s discography includes two EP’s, and two full-length albums. Laiho has been featured on the cover of Young Guitar Magazine several times, as well as being on the cover of Guitar World along with master guitarists Steve Vai and Zakk Wylde. The “Wildchild” nickname is derived from the song “Wild Child” by the band W.A.S.P. He also has a clothing line called “wild child industries”.

In February 2002, Laiho married Kim Goss during a private ceremony in Finland. Prior to the marriage, they dated for four years. In 2004 they separated, but still remain close friends. For several years after he was then with Kristen Mulderig, manager of Slayer until mid 2015. Later that same year he began a relationship with Kelli Wright, an Australian Public Relations Manager who he became engaged to September 2016 and the two married December 2017 in a private ceremony in Australia.

On 15 December 2019 Children of Bodom played their last show at the Icehall in Helsinki, dubbed ‚ÄúA Chapter Called Children of Bodom.‚ÄĚ This followed the announcement in November that after this show, all members of the band except Laiho and guitarist Daniel Freyberg had quit. Following their departure, it was revealed that due to legal reasons, Laiho would need permission from his former band mates to continue using the Children of Bodom name. In March 2020, Laiho and Freyberg officially announced their new band, Bodom After Midnight, named after the second track from the album Follow the Reaper. This officially marked the end of Children of Bodom.

RIP Tanya Roberts

Actress Tanya Roberts has died. Best known for her roles as a Bond girl and on That ’70s Show, Roberts died Sunday after a brief hospitalization. She was 65. The actress reportedly took her dogs for a walk on Christmas Eve, and collapsed upon returning home, according to TMZ. She was put on a ventilator after being hospitalized, but never recovered. The outlet reports that the actress did not appear to be ill in the days leading up to her collapse, and that her death is not related to COVID-19. However, additional information was not available.

Born Victoria Leigh Blum, she changed her stage name to Tanya Roberts. . She was best known for playing¬†Stacey Sutton¬†in the¬†James Bond¬†film¬†A View to a Kill¬†(1985) and Midge Pinciotti on¬†That ’70s Show (1998‚Äď2004). Roberts was born in 1955 in¬†the Bronx, New York City, the second child of her father, of¬†Irish¬†descent, and a¬†Jewish mother. She relocated from New York with her mother to live in¬†Toronto for several years, where she started formulating a photo portfolio and laying plans for a modeling career. Her career began as a model in¬†TV ads¬†for Excedrin,¬†Ultra Brite,¬†Clairol, and Cool Ray sunglasses. She played serious roles in the¬†off-Broadway¬†productions¬†Picnic¬†and¬†Antigone.¬† She also supported herself as an Arthur Murray¬†dance instructor. She met & later married ¬†psychology student Barry Roberts. Her film debut was the horror film Forced Entry¬†(1975). This was followed by the comedy film¬†The Yum-Yum Girls¬†(1976).

In 1977, as her husband was securing his own screenwriting career, the couple moved to¬†Hollywood. The following year, Roberts participated in the drama¬†Fingers. In 1979 Roberts appeared in the cult movie¬†Tourist Trap, and also in¬†Racquet,¬†and¬†California Dreaming. Roberts was featured in several¬†television pilots¬†that were not picked up:¬†Zuma Beach¬†(a 1978 comedy),¬†Pleasure Cove¬†(1979), and¬†Waikiki (1980). Roberts was chosen in the summer of 1980 from some 2,000 candidates to replace¬†Shelley Hack¬†in the¬†fifth season¬†of the detective television series¬†Charlie’s Angels¬†on¬†ABC. Roberts played Julie Rogers, a streetwise fighter who used her fists more than her gun. Producers hoped Roberts’ presence would revitalize the series’ declining ratings and regenerate media interest in the series. Before the season’s premiere, Roberts was featured on the cover of¬†People magazine with a headline asking if Roberts would be able to save the declining series from cancellation.

Roberts played Kiri in the adventure fantasy film¬†The Beastmaster¬†(1982), which included a topless swimming scene. She was featured in a nude pictorial in¬†Playboy¬†to help promote the movie, appearing on that issue’s October 1982 cover. In 1983, Roberts filmed the Italian-made adventure fantasy film¬†Hearts and Armour. She portrayed Velda, a buxom secretary to private detective Mike Hammer, in the television movie¬†Murder Me, Murder You¬†(1983). The two-part pilot spawned the syndicated television series¬†Mickey Spillane’s Mike Hammer. She declined to continue the role in the Mike Hammer series to work on her next project,¬†Sheena: Queen of the Jungle¬†(1984). The movie was a box office and critical disaster, garnering her a nomination for “Worst Actress” at the¬†Razzie Awards.

Roberts subsequently appeared as¬†Bond girl¬†Stacey Sutton, a geologist, in¬†A View to a Kill¬†(1985). She again found herself nominated by the critics for a¬†Razzie Award. Other 1980s films include¬†Night Eyes, an erotic thriller;¬†Body Slam¬†(1987), an action movie set in the professional wrestling world, and¬†Purgatory, a movie about a woman wrongfully imprisoned in Africa. Roberts starred in the¬†erotic thriller¬†Inner Sanctum¬†(1991) alongside¬†Margaux Hemingway. In 1992, she played Kay Egan in¬†Sins of Desire. She appeared on the cable series¬†Hot Line¬†in 1994; and in the¬†video game¬†The Pandora Directive in 1996. In 1998, Roberts took the role of Midge Pinciotti on the television sitcom¬†That ’70s Show. Roberts revealed on¬†E! True Hollywood Story¬†that she left the series in 2001 because her husband had become terminally ill.

Roberts was married to husband Barry Roberts from 1974 until his death in 2006. They had no children. Roberts resided in Hollywood Hills, California.

Theatres To Re-open On Jan 5th

Word is out that movie theatres in Kerala will reopen from January 5 but only with 50 per cent capacity. Theaters in the state are reopening nine months after the lockdown forced cinema halls to shut down. Theatre operators must ensure that all COVID-19 protocols, including masks, social distancing and sanitisation are followed while functioning. Cinema halls in several parts of the country started reopening from October, months in the shadow of the pandemic. Theatres and multiplexes had been shut down since March because of the coronavirus crisis.

As per the guidelines under the phased lifting of restrictions under ‘Unlock 5’ the government had directed several measures. Fifty per cent occupancy, staggered show timings, social distancing, thermal screening, adequate protection gear for the staff, and compulsorily providing phone numbers for “contact tracing” were some of the changes that were called for. The announcement comes as a big relief to the Malayalam film industry, which has suffered due to the disruption caused by the¬†pandemic. According to reports, top executives of the Kerala film chambers have planned to meet Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Monday to seek the government‚Äôs support, including tax exemption and concession on the electricity bill.

While it is great that the theatres are reopening, I am not going to go for a movie anytime soon. I will wait, check with people’s experiences and see how it goes. Same for bars and I haven’t been in the inside of a mall in months either. I am gonna wait it out for a while. I don’t think I am missing out on too much but I do miss watching a movie on the big screen. That is an experience that cannot be beat at home, not with a 32 inch tv.