Back To Life

After an especially long and exhausting drive or flight, a grueling week at work, or a mind-numbing exam period — what’s the one thing you do to feel human again?

This is something I like to do everytime I have had a long drive or a day spent out traveling in a train or bus – I live in a place that is usually very sunny and hot unless it is raining and I tend to sweat a lot. Plus you know dust and pollution and so the thing I like to do is to change my clothes and or go for a long shower. I would like to have the occasional soaks in a tub but we don’t have bathtubs in this apartment (they aren’t that common over here) and so long showers it is. Cold showers!

After that depending on my mood and how hot it is it’s either a big cup of coffee or iced tea or a soft drink for me and sitting under the fan cooling off while I listen to music or watch some fun stuff on my laptop. I’m a simple guy and I have simple needs. If I can have some tasty snacks to munch on that that would be great. A cold beer would be nice but I haven’t drunk much in about 10 months!

It would be the same for the other things to – long tiring week at work or an exam period. Find your favourite stuff to do and enjoy the relaxation. Simple!

Prompt from the Daily Post at

The Emperor’s Space Pod

It was sunny when you left home, so you didn’t take an umbrella. An hour later, you’re caught in a torrential downpour. You run into the first store you can find — it happens to be a dark, slightly shabby antique store, full of old artifacts, books, and dust. The shop’s ancient proprietor walks out of the back room to greet you. Tell us what happens next!

The proprietor is an old man, perhaps in his late 70s and uses a walking cane to help him get around. He has stringy long white hair, a full beard and wears a coat. He comes towards me and says “I’ve been waiting for you Emperor Roshan”! This stuns me and I look around and notice no one else around. I look at him and say “Yes my name is Roshan. How did you know that? And also you must be mistaken. I am no emperor and no ties to royalty of any kind.” I smile and hope he says that he made a mistake in his advanced years.

But he shakes his head and says, “No sire! I have been waiting for you for eons. Come take a look.” And he takes down a huge leather bound book from a shelf and lays it on the table. He opens it up and stops at a page towards the middle of the pages and points to an image. “Look” he says and as I glance down I get a huge shock as I see a regal looking image of a man dressed in an outfit from a fantasy world, sitting upon a giant throne, with a giant laser gun in one hand and a gold crown with jewels studded in it, upon his head. The face is familiar – it is the one I look at in the mirror every day!

“This can’t be! That’s not me though it is a great likeness.” I say. He smiles and says “No sire. It is you. I was sent here to earth to look out for you. When the time is right you would show up at my abode & store and you have. And not a moment too soon. Things are bad on our home planet, planet Zegna. You are wanted back there where you must fight the evil rebel forces and take back control of your empire. Even as I speak, the rebel armies are capturing vital strongholds of ours and you need to make yourself shown which will inspire our army and people. Hurry there is not much time left.” And he ushered me into the back of the store where a small spaceship awaited. It was only for one person and the old man was to stay behind. He handed me the armour and crown that I was to wear and gave me my weapons and showed me the controls. “The course is set to take you staright to Zegna’s capital city, Aurobis. I shall send word of your arrival. Hurry now Sire!”

And he stepped aside as the space pod launched and I, totally unprepared for what awaited me, was launched into space headed for the planet Zegna!

Prompt from the Daily Post at

Under The Skin (2013)

Loosely based on Michel Faber’s 2000 novel of the same name, Under The Skin is a 2013 British-American science fiction movie starring Scarlett Johanssen and directed by Jonathan Glazer who also co-wrote the script along with Walter Campbell. It’s an artsy movie that drags and stretches and has very little dialogue and few actors – a lot of the scenes were shot with a hidden camera as Johanssen talked to people on the streets and another character is played by the owner of the land some of the scenes were shot in. Championship motorcycle road racer Jeremy McWilliams was cast as the motorcyclist alien, as the film required a “world-class” motorcyclist who could ride through the Scottish Highlands at very high speeds in bad weather conditions.

The movie starts with some odd 60s scifi looking imagery and then we see a biker riding at night on the streets of Scotland. He stops near a van and finds the body of a young woman on the side of the road and he picks it up and puts it in the van. A naked woman, in a featureless white void, removed the clothes of the dead girl and puts them on. The woman (Johanssen) later drives the van on the streets looking for men to prey on once she lures them in for sex, which she promises them in her remote residence. She selects men on the pretext of asking for directions and chooses the ones who don’t have family around or who won’t be easily missed. Once she gets them to her residence, they walk in a black, featureless void and the men sink into a black liquid abyss with their skin separated from their flesh. I don’t know how to explain what the liquid looks like but imagine a thick liquid kinda like black jello! The woman and the motorcyclists are both aliens, with human skin fitted onto them to make them look like human beings, and the bodies of the victims are processed for food which is sent to their home planet!

There is another scene where the woman attempts to pick up a swimmer at a beach but he is distracted by the cries of help from a couple who are drowning. He tries to save them but the woman, ignoring the  cries of the couple’s infant on the beach, hits his head with a rock and drags him away. Later the motorcyclist comes and disposes of the swimmer’s belongings leaving the baby there. However something happens to the woman as she lures a lonely disfigured man – she begins to feel empathy and lets him free even after she gets him to her residence. The disfigured man is however found by the motorcycle alien who dumps him into a car that he steals and drives off with him. The woman goes to a hotel and attempts to eat human foo;  cake but finds that she cannot swallow it. Later she  meets a man on a bus who takes her in from the rain, cooks her food and gives her a room to sleep in. Later he tries to have sex with her but she stops abruptly and examines her vagina in the light of a table lamp (I am led to believe that she discovers that she cannot have sex with a human). She then makes her way to a forest and sleeps in a shelter there but wakes up to a logger, who she had met earlier, attempting to rape her.

As she tries to get away, the logger rips her clothes and finds that the skin has torn off too – to reveal an almost featureless black skinned alien beneath the human skin. The woman rips offs the rest of her fake skin but the frightened logger, runs away and returns with some petrol which he uses to douse her body and lights it on fire. The alien dies in the flames as her ashes coil in the sky, freed from her former life of killing humans as it becomes apparent that the time spent in human skin, pretending to be human and interacting with them has made her feel like a human as well.

Weird, dull, boring and dragging. It’s a thoughtful film, but it is so devoid of excitement or action. Despite the fact that I liked the concept and the imagery, the movie is dull. I almost fell asleep a few times. I’m going to give it a grudging 6 outta 10!

Rock Drummer Torpey Has Parkinson’s

Pat Torpey, drummer for Mr.Big, revealed in a recent statement he’s been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease. “I’ve been dealing with Parkinson’s symptoms for the past couple of years and only recently received a confirmed diagnosis as symptoms worsened,” Torpey’s statement reads. “I intend to fight the disease with same intensity and tenacity that I drum and live my life by and will continue recording and performing, as always, to the best of my ability.”

Although his disease will force Mr. Big to find a replacement drummer while touring behind their upcoming album …The Stories We Could Tell, Loudwire reports Torpey will man the sticks for at least a few songs during each concert. The band stated in their website that they plan to announce a drummer in the near future whom will handle most of MR BIG’s drumming duties on the Fall 2014 tour but expect Pat to jump on the drums on suitable live songs as well as participating in the our acoustic set.

The 60 year old Cleveland, Ohio native has also played with Impellitteri, The Knack, David Lee Roth Band and the Exile Social Club, Jon Parr & Belinda Carlisle. Pat formed Mr. Big in the late 80s with Eric Martin, Billy Sheehan & Paul Gilbert. Because of Mr. Big’s popularity in Japan and Asia, Pat released two solo albums overseas, Odd Man Out and Y2K in 1998 and 1999. Pat also has two instructional videos overseas, “Big Drums” with Billy Sheehan and Rock Groove Drumming. Both provide insight into his original and creative drum parts.

Nothing But A Number?

“Age is just a number,” says the well-worn adage. But is it a number you care about, or one you tend (or try) to ignore?

By now long time readers (all 6 of you) should know that I have a saying : “You are only as old as the girls you feel!” so bring on the 16 year old chickies! I love that saying, even if I came up with that myself!

Ah, on a more serious note, while I do believe that you can remain young at heart by following your dreams, being silly at times and enjoy doing the things that you love and having fun, there are certain things that you can’t escape from as the passages of time throw it’s long dark shadows on you. I don’t feel much different, other than physically, from the time I was in my early to mid 20s as I do now – a couple of days away from my 38th birthday.

I’ve always felt younger than my age and this will probably continue to be so until my dying days. But the growing old part doesn’t always have to be a bad thing. Nothing can last forever so why fret over it too much? I guess though it’s hard to comply to that way of thinking.

Prompt from the Daily Post at

A Blessing For The Tipplers In Kerala

I wonder why it took me soooooo long to write about this as the event took place with effect on the 1st of April, 2014 (the beginning of the financial year). I only wrote a post in May about the temporary (hopefully) closure of one of them. Anyways, as per the ruling at took place earlier in the year, and that has been bubbling for a long time, and the new liquor policy in the state all bars that did not have a 3 star rating in the state of Kerala were not allowed to renew their license to serve alcohol and some which were found to be lacking were denied their licenses and hence around 418 bars in the state closed their doors – some forever and some hoping to reopen once they could improve on facilities and get their licenses renewed. 418! Which meant almost all of my favourite & affordable bars (Oberois on MG Road, Velocity near High Court, Malabar House in Convent Junction and Karthika Regency’s Kairali Bar in Edapally) have been closed since April 1st!

Since last October I’ve had alcohol exactly 3 times – on New Year’s eve and 2 beers each with a cousin and a friend and so I haven’t actually been to one of those bars (the beers I had on both occasions were at a family style restaurant that also serves alcohol) since October – this hasn’t really affected me as of yet! Due to financial situations I had chosen to avoid drinking as a personal decision until I get a full time proper & well paying job. But yes this decision did anger me a lot as this is purely pandering to the section of society that wants to get rid of alcohol drinking because one section of society drinks too much and abuses their wives/families and use most of their money for drinking. Those idiots ruin it for the majority of us who just want a few drinks with some good food in the company of friends once or twice a week. So now because of this, I or others like me have to shell out a lot more money if we want to drink in a more expensive bar or hotel. Or ofcourse go stand in the large queues at the BevCo outlets and buy the bottles and come home and drink them. However a good news has happened yesterday.

The State Human Rights Commission has ordered the closure of all open bars that do not have two-star facilities. Additionally, the Commission has ordered that 2-star level bars among the 418 closed bars should be allowed to operate. Commission chairman Justice J B Koshy further asked the government to roll out its liquor policy at the earliest. The Commission noted that there was discrimination in the allocation of licences to the bars and said this should be avoided. Which  means all the good ones will be allowed to reopen their doors. Which means probably Velocity, Malabar House & Oberois will be allowed to open. I am not sure about Kairali – it seems good enough! Oh well, 3 outta 4 is not so bad. Let it happen!

Arsenal Looking Good With Trio Of Confirmed Signings

Finally Arsene Wenger has seen the light and armed with the $100 million that the club board of directors have given him to buy quality players, he has set out to strengthen the squad and make the club look like title contenders. With a few exceptions, grabbing players on deadline day has become what Arsenal fans are used to which has frustrated fans including myself. Wenger has always been seen as the most miserly of managers when it comes to shelling out the big bucks for buying world class quality players that not only gives your team a glamourous look but also excites the fans to root for the team. And in this day and age, you need to spend to keep a quality side. There are some exceptions where a combination of good quality but lesser known players combine well to play outta their minds and guided by the right coach they can win leagues – Athletico Madrid comes in mind! However you can’t always do that.

Despite having some marquee signings in the years since I became a faithful fan of the Gunners, the clubs has recently stuck to a policy of either building from within (which hasn’t always been the best for us) or letting Wenger buy players who all seem to play alike – talented & exciting but certainly fragile and injury prone and prone to not rising to the occasion against the bigger clubs and occasionally fumbling against weaker opponents. Hopefully this season will be the start of a stronger and more winning era for Arsenal which will see us back to challenging and winning the English league as well as that elusive first Champions League trophy. Wenger & staff has made a few signings which will help us get there.

First up is Chile’s attacking star Alexis Sanchez who was bought from Barcelona. Sanchez has shined at the recently concluded World Cup and will add some sharp teeth to the attack. Next up was Matheiu Debuchy who was signed from Newcastle United to be the replacement for the departing Bacary Sagna, who signed with Manchester City this offseason. Both signings have been met with resounding approval and more recently Colombian goalie David Ospina has also signed from Nice. Although he is being signed as the backup goalie Wojciech Szczesny should surely be concerned about his number one spot. Ospina, who stood out for a brilliant Colombian side at the World Cup, turned a lot of heads in his country’s run to the quaterfinals and will battle for the top stopper role as Wenger confirms it.

And that’s not all; Wenger stated that Arsenal are not done and could be finalizing the signing of promising youngster Callum Chambers for $16 million from Southampton and who will be the second choice to Deuchby at right back but can also fill in at the center back’s role! Also Sami Khedira is the transfer rumour that refuses to go away – the only hindrance is his high salary demands but that might be sorted out soon. I hope we get a couple of more really good signings before the season starts. Things look good.

Back Online With A New Connection From Asianet

It’s Done! Screw Fucking RELIANCE ASSHOLES! I am now on ASIANET BROADBAND! Hope this is a better experience.

Already a promising start, they under promised and over performed in terms of activating the connection for me. I had enquired about taking up a new connection from Asianet by calling their customer care call center a few days ago and they forwarded my number to a saleman from the area who called me later that same day. I told him that I wanted to wait for a few days to sort out the problems with Reliance and that I would call  him in a few days. Well I called him on Friday and later that night I met the salesman at 8pm at my residence and after I paid for the activation he said it would take 3 days, as per procedure, meaning Tuesday to get the connection up.

However on Saturday, the very next day, two guys showed up at my apartment and they setup the cable and even then they said that it would take time till Tuesday as Monday is a holiday. I said ok and called up their office number to confirm that the cable has been setup in my home. She told me that it would take time till Tuesday but that they would try and see if they could make it earlier. I was pleasantly surprised that the technician called me up this morning asking for directions to my place – on a Sunday! He came here by 12 pm with the modem and in a few minutes he activated  my connection and so yes my internet is up today – yes on a Sunday!

I am happy about it and the speed seems fine and I am not really noticing any difference from the higher plan and speed I had with Reliance. This is fine for now. By the 1st my old connection should be completely terminated and I can said a goodbye to them – don’t let the fucking door hit you on the ass on your way out!

Women & Shopping

My cousin Shalini posted this video on her Facebook wall and tagged me saying that this little cutie pie, sweetie pie ranting about women shopping (and taking way too much time going to several stores and not being satisfied) reminded her of me complaining about my sister Sherine and another cousin Raakhee!

What Shalini is refferring to an incident that happened when i was about 16 or 17 (back in 1992-93) and I had gone shopping with my sister and Raakhee to Convent Junction here in Cochin (which is an area where there are numerous clothing stores for women). Now my sister & girl cousins have always been known for their pickiness during their teenage years and early 20s but even I wasn’t expecting this! These two ladies made me walk t0 15 different clothing stores, where they spent hours making the salestaff take down all the churidhars from the racks and displays and didn’t buy anything from them! Not one and at each one it was almost like the staff were scared of these two young women! But they were giving me dirty looks and glaring at my direction, as if I were responsible for all of this torture.

Finally after hours & hours, they went back to the very first store we had stepped into and bought a single churidhar outfit – 1 lously churidhar after all that shopping time! After that I declared that I would never ever go shopping with these women again and it became a legendary story in my family.

The Ongoing Saga Of Reliance Internet Limbo

I’m really saddened by the state of my internet connection. After I gave the cancellation request to Reliance’s office I was told that it would take 7 working days for them to cancel my connection. I expected as much but the connectivity issues still persist so – am I expected to pay the rent for these days as well when I am not getting proper service? Atleast now they are responsding back via email and are trying to retain me with their service. For what? From the 11th of this month till today the 25th I have got exactly 2 days of proper service. Not two full days but 48hours split across 3 days. The connection has been patchy from the 18th evening onwards and now for the past 3 days I am getting 2-5 hours of connection and then the total outage – the connection goes down! The tech guys have been here to my place twice in the last 2 days and they are stumped.

These are contract staff hire by Reliance and they say that they have checked everything – the DSL box, my system and the modem here, the cable and everything else they can think off. They cannot give me an answer as to why I am not getting service. The final thing they said, which is beyond their responsibilities, is that there is a tower congestion in this area as Reliance is also working on enabling 4G services for their cellular customers and that tower is shared between their phone connections and their broadband connections and this is hindering my services and the connectivity for this area. So what do they want me to do? And finally after all the checking and me telling me about my woes, I asked them a question : “In all honesty would you still remain with this ISP if you were in my place?” And they reluctantly replied that “No” they wouldn’t. They have done all they could but now it remains in the hands of another department of Reliance to clear out the problem and these guys have given up.

Initially I thought I would wait for a few more days before I applied for the new connection with Asianet but I’m getting bored and frustrated so I have applied for a plan with the Asianet representative who came over to my place last evening. He signed me up, filled the application form and I gave the activation charges & the advance rent. They will get me the connection by Monday or Tuesday and until then I am at the mercy of Reliance – hoping to get a couple of hours being online a day or whenever they feel like giving me service.

Gave A Cancellation Request To Reliance

Well it’s done. I went to Reliance’s Kadavanthara office, the main office for their wireline broadband section, and after waiting in line at the customer care for 10 minutes found out that I had to go to another office on the 1st floor and around the back. I went in signed at the register and told them that I want to cancel my connection. I was asked to sit at a table and since I hadn’t brought a letter requesting the same, I took a paper and a pen from them and wrote a letter that basically stated :

I wish to cancel my connection and please do so at the earliest as you are unable to provide me with a proper connection. Please refer to my numerous complaint nos that I had registered with your customer care call center. Also please have someone come to my residence and remove the cable from my apartment once the connection is cancelled.

I waited until the person at the counter was free and then handed it to her. She told me that it would take 7 days for the connection to be deactivated so that means I won’t take up my new connection with Asianet until the 1st to avoid two connections at the same time. She also confirmed to me that one of my waiver requests has been approved but the other has been escalated to a higher section since it is disputed.  I said fine and then she told me that I will have to bring the modem back to their office – they are too fucking busy to come and collect it I suppose and the guys who will remove the cable can’t do it either. I said perhaps next week.

You know what? No attempt at retention was made. If, during my time with Idea or Vodafone, any customer care representative was caught not attempting a retention of the customer’s account when they called or showed up for cancellation – the employee would be sternly dealt with. These morons do not care I guess. No problem, I don’t want to stay. They still don’t know how to fix the issue. So goodbye and good riddance to bad rubbish!

Stuck With A Chatterbox

It turns out that your neighbor on the plane/bus/train (or the person sitting at the next table at the coffee shop) is a very, very chatty tourist. Do you try to switch seats, go for a non-committal brief small talk, or make this person your new best friend?

Well it all depends on the kind of person and the topic that they are talking about nonstop. If the person seems like a genuine, sincere person who just wants to talk and make friends and is decent I will join in and have a fruitful conversation with the person. If the tourist is a hot blonde/brunette./redhead woman – then it might be me doing the initiating! Try and stop me!

If the person is annoying, boisterous and obnoxious or wants to complain or talk about politics, their religion, deity or book of choice and why it is the best – I will switch seats and or walk off. I won’t bother to offer any explanation and just be on my way as I do not have time for bullshit like that.

Small talk is fine and I not only tolerate it but also indulge in from time to time but there are limits.

Prompt from the Daily Post at

Cancelling Reliance Broadband Connection

I have finally taken the steps to cancel this stupid connection that I have with Reliance Broadband. I am fed up of this ISP as they obviously do not care to fix the problems and only want to take your money. For the past two months I have been facing numerous outages and problems with these idiots and they haven’t bothered to address the issue properly. Not only that they have denied me the waiver due on my rent for the month of June which I had raised as I had over 4 days of no connectivity. But their complaint handling section had denied it saying “We see activity on your account” – how the fuck can I use the connection if your cable has been disconnected for over 4 days you morons!!

Their customer care sucks, their escalation team sucks and their appellate desk sucks! Their technical department sucks. What does it say about a company if their own contract staff, the guys from the local company who have hired to lay the cables and replace faulty modems, tell you – the customer – that they themselves are fed up of Reliance as the problems were pending for long and to get permission they have created so much red tape and the advices are falling on deaf ears? I saw the change as being inevitable but I really do not want to leave this plan. The current plan I have is a good one – for just Rs.610+ taxes I get an unlimited download at 1mb speed. That is really great for my usage and that’s all I want.

But what is the point of having a great plan with such lousy service? They close the complaints without fixing the problem or checking with me to see if I am getting the service properly. I don’t need that.

I Have All Of Your Requests For Silence

Alanis Morissette’s hit single Hands Clean performed live. The narrative voice of the song alternates between verses, and is about hebephilia. Morissette reportedly said in an interview to US Weekly that the song is about an affair she had with a man who was 29 years old when she was 14. Their relationship lasted for five years.