What Game/Sport Would You Like To Redesign?

What Game/Sport Would You Like to Redesign?

I know the original prompt says just game but I am adding sport to it. Alright, so currently there are only sports that I watch and care for ; football and ice hockey (or soccer & hockey as N.Americans call it). I still have a passing interest in tennis but not enough to sit and watch games being played either recorded or live. I just don’t feel like I have the time or patience to do so.

So football : I’d like to being a change in how substitutes are done. 1) no restrictions on how many substitutes are allowed per game and b) players can have multiple shifts like they have in hockey. I feel that this way top players won’t get too tired or exhausted and can still contribute to the end and critical moments of the game without the fear of being overplayed & exhausted. And also make it mandatory to review contentious goal lines, penalties & penalties in the matches. So many games we have a team being robbed of points or even losing because the referee and/or linesman got the decision wrong or did not see it properly. They are human, bring technology to help them make the right call.

Right, now onto hockey :  fighting – get rid of it. Seriously how is this nonsense still tolerated in a classy sport like hockey? It is ridiculous! Also bad hits that can cause serious damage to a player who gets badly injured and even have terrible concussions which can end his career way too early. Make it safer for the talents to shine. Also increase the size of the ice rink and add a player or two. I could be more fun. I would also make the goal size bigger but I might be hunted down by Mounties and thrown in a jail to rot for the rest of my life.

So that’s my two cents worth of opinions on the two sports that I love.

Prompt from The Learning Network from The New York Times

“The Things I Do for Love”: George R.R. Martin’s Inspiration for Game of Thrones

Episodes of the insanely popular television series Game of Thrones would have never reached the limelight if it weren’t for the book that inspired them: A Song of Ice and Fire. George R.R. Martin published the first book in the series back in 1996 but actually started writing it five years prior in 1991 (of course, he is now known for his incredibly slow pace in releasing his novels). Martin had only fairly recently become famous for the series when the television adaption had premiered in 2011, when it received praise from nearly everyone who watched it. Now in its fifth season, now is as good a time as any to look back at Martin’s original novels and what inspired them.

A Song of Ice and Fire is action-packed, political, and most of all, fantasy-driven. With dragons, magic, and sorcery, it is not at all a surprise that Martin was inspired by a handful of other fantasy authors. Perhaps one of the most obvious among them is J. R.R. Tolkien, the father of all things fantasy. His work is still as relevant and popular today as ever, with the latest Hobbit having just premiered last December. Martin draws from Tolkien’s use of magical and fantasy elements, as well as his focus on strong characters and storyline.In addition to this, Martin splits up his characters as Tolkien did in The Lord of the Rings. We see family and friends start off on adventures together, but they soon separate to have journeys all their own.

Perhaps less-known is the inspiration Martin draws from other fantasy authors such as T. H. White and Robert E. Howard who were famous for the King Arthur and Conan the Barbarian stories, respectively. From Howard, sorcery and swordsmanship is brought to life just as it is in A Song of Ice and Fire and Game of Thrones. Martin also borrows from Howard’s work the idea of a hero along with the same elements he grabs from Tolkien and White.

In addition to these fantasy writers, Martin was inspired by real historical events in his writing as well. GoT’s Red Wedding was a retelling of both the Black Dinner and the Glencoe Massacre, which happened in the 1400’s and 1600’s in Scotland. The Black Dinner revolved around the murder of the 6th Earl of Douglas, who was only 16 at the time, and his younger brother David. They were invited to dinner with the King of Scotland but were dragged outside and given a trial in the middle of their meal. When they were found guilty of high treason, they were both beheaded.

In the Glencoe Massacre, 38 people from the Clan Macdonald were murdered by the Campbells in their sleep, a separate clan who sought shelter from the Macdonalds. This event was deemed a “Slaughter Under Trust,” much like The Red Wedding.

Other aspects of history also inspired Martin’s fantasy writing, such as Hadrian’s Wall or Roman Wall in Scotland, which inspired the Wall in A Song of Ice and Fire, and the War of Roses in which houses fought for the throne of England. Sound familiar?

Despite what has inspired one of the most famous novels and show to date, Martin created a world in which we are able to escape to and have adventures in. His inspirations, the writers that came before him, and the history that predates us all have all made for an incredible and thought-provoking series. With the fifth season only just beginning (look at this resource for listings), we are sure to be in for a fantasy-filled journey.

~ guest blog written by Emma! (connect to her via @emma_bailey90)

You Are Ahead By A Century

Do You Want to Live to 100?

Fuck yeah, who doesn’t want to live long. If you ask me, a 100 is too young. That is just a century. I want to live longer. I want to be able to live forever. 100 is just not good enough. I want to be able to experience the world and the rest of the universe and there is just not enough time to do so.

But wait – I don’t want to be old and frail and weak. I want to be young forever. Well and not even this age of 38; I wanna be 29 forever. I dunno for some reason I like the age 29. It’s not the young 20s and not it’s the 30s yet but it’s a nice age to fall back on. So yeah, rewind 9 years back and keep me at that age. I wanna be young and live forever at that age. I want no illness to fall upon me and no injuries or harm to be inflected upon me.

But I also want that for all mankind and womankind! I want everyone to be able to live forever without the fear of being killed or falling ill and suffering. Universal healthcare. And how about not having to work and worry about money too? I always come back to that. We need to find a way to get rid of monetary concerns and instead work towards making sure that everyone gets adequate supplies of food, proper clothing, water, comfort, shelter etc etc. All the needs of humans fulfilled without the bother of money and worrying about it.

Prompt from The Learning Network at The New York Times


Do you have animals in your life? If yes, what do they mean to you? If no, why have you opted not to? (Bonus points for adorable animal photos, and double bonus if they’re taken with your phone!)

No I currently do not have animals in my life, as in living with me in my home. One reason is that it is not allowed in this building to keep any cats or dogs (smaller animals in fish tanks and cages are allowed, like say a parrot or a pair of love birds or a hamster) and the other reason is I cannot subject a dog or a cat to live in a small apartment with the three humans who live here as well.

But having had a dog for 11 years and taken care of another one for a year as well, I miss having dogs around. They are cute, loving, affectionate, friendly, cuddly, make you feel better by just being there and loyal. And they are the best friends man or woman can have. So I do hope that my situation changes to one of more positivity; meaning that I can get a bigger place or move into a bigger place in a year or two which will mean that I can keep a dog and a cat or more of each in my residence.

In the meantime I will have to make do with the occasional visits that I do to go and see Barfi, my sister’s Pug. Or sometimes my sister brings him around to my place as well and well…as you can see he is adorable and funny as hell.

Prompt from The Daily Post at WordPress.com

The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies

The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies is a 2014 epic fantasy adventure film, directed by Peter Jackson and written by Jackson, Fran Walsh, Philippa Boyens, and Guillermo del Toro. It is the third and final installment in the three-part film adaptation based on the novel The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien, following An Unexpected Journey (2012) and The Desolation of Smaug (2013), and together they act as a prequel to Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings film trilogy. It stars Martin Freeman, Ian McKellen, Richard Armitage, Evangeline Lilly, Lee Pace, Luke Evans, Benedict Cumberbatch, Ken Stott and James Nesbitt. It also features Cate Blanchett, Ian Holm, Christopher Lee, Hugo Weaving and Orlando Bloom.

  • The movie starts off where the last movie ends off; Bilbo and the Dwarves watch from the Lonely Mountain as the dragon Smaug attacks Laketown. Bard the Bowman manages to break out of prison, fights Smaug, and eventually kills him with the black arrow given to him by his son Bain. With the death of the Master of Laketown, Bard becomes the new leader of the Laketown people as they seek refuge in the ruins of Dale, while Legolas travels to investigate Mount Gundabad with Tauriel. Thorin, now struck with “dragon sickness”, searches obsessively for the Arkenstone, which was stolen by Bilbo, during his encounter with Smaug. Bilbo learns from Balin that it would be best if the Arkenstone remains hidden from Thorin, who orders the entrance of the Lonely Mountain to be sealed off.
  • Galadriel, Elrond and Saruman arrive at Dol Guldur and free Gandalf, sending him to safety with Radagast. After battling and defeating the Nazgûl, Sauron himself confronts the group, but Galadriel uses the Light of Eärendil and banishes Sauron and the Ringwraiths to the East. Azog, marching on Erebor with his vast Orc army, sends Bolg to Gundabad to summon their second army. Legolas and Tauriel witness the march of Bolg’s army, bolstered by Goblins and giant bats. At Dale Thranduil arrives with an elf army, supplies and aid, and forms an alliance with Bard, wishing to claim an elven necklace of white gems from the Mountain. Bard attempts to negotiate and reason with Thorin to avoid war, but the dwarf refuses to cooperate. After Gandalf arrives at Dale to warn Bard and Thranduil of the Orc army who will take Erebor as part of a campaign to revive the kingdom of Angmar, Bilbo sneaks out of Erebor to hand the Arkenstone over to Thranduil and Bard. When Bard and Thranduil’s armies gather at the gates of Erebor, offering to trade the Arkenstone for Thranduil’s gems and Laketown’s share of the gold, Thorin is shocked to learn of the Arkenstone in the Elves’ hands and he nearly kills Bilbo in a furious rage.
  • After Gandalf forces Thorin to release Bilbo, the arrival of Thorin’s cousin Dáin with his Dwarf army worsens matters. A battle of Dwarves against Elves and Men is imminent, when Wereworms emerge from the ground releasing Azog’s army from their tunnels. With the Orcs outnumbering Dain’s army, Thranduil and Bard’s forces, along with Gandalf and Bilbo, join the battle as some of the Orcs attack Dale. Inside Erebor, initially refusing to fight, Thorin suffers a hallucination before regaining his sanity and leading his company into battle. While the other dwarves of the company aid Dain’s forces, Thorin rides towards Ravenhill with Dwalin, Fili and Kili to kill Azog and force the Orc army to retreat. Meanwhile, after being banished by Thranduil, despite her and Legolas warning him of Bolg’s army, Tauriel leaves with Legolas to warn the dwarves of Bolg’s approaching army, with Bilbo following them using the One Ring.
  • Thorin sends Fíli and Kíli to scout, not knowing they are about to be overrun by a second army of Gundabad Orcs. Bilbo and the elves arrive too late as Fíli is captured by the Orcs and is executed by Azog. Kíli, who is hiding underneath the cliff, sees his brother’s body dropping down and battles Orcs in a rage. Thorin battles Azog to avenge Fili’s death, Bolg knocks Bilbo unconscious, overpowers Tauriel and then kills Kili who had come to her aid. After Legolas kills Bolg, the Great Eagles arrive with Radagast and Beorn, and the Orc armies are finally destroyed. As Bilbo regains consciousness he finds a dying Thorin, having killed Azog, and makes peace with him before the latter dies. On Thranduil’s suggestion, Legolas leaves to meet with a young Dunedain ranger going by the name Strider. As Tauriel mourns Kili, Thranduil tells her that her love for Kili was real. Grieved by the deaths of Thorin, Fili, and Kili, the people of Laketown, the elves, and the dwarves bury them inside the tombs of Erebor.
  • As a result, Thorin’s cousin Dain is crowned King Under the Mountain, the citizens of Laketown are given the riches promised to them by Thorin, and Dain restores to the elves the white elven gems that King Thror had stolen from them years ago. Following these events, Bilbo bids farewell to the remaining members of Thorin’s company and journeys home to the Shire with Gandalf. As the two part on the outskirts of the Shire, Gandalf admits his knowledge of Bilbo’s ring and cautions him against using it. Bilbo returns to Bag End to find his belongings being auctioned off by relatives’ family because he was presumed dead. He aborts the sale and tells the other hobbits to leave but finds his home has been almost totally pillaged. Sixty years later, Bilbo receives a visit from Gandalf and runs out to greet him, thus setting in motion the events of The Fellowship of the Ring.

A visual treat with some amazing large scale fight scenes but it is less interesting and entertaining than the previous two movies. The movie grossed a worldwide total of $955.1 million. 8.5 outta 10!

Arsenal 0 Chelsea 0

Chelsea ended Arsenal’s eight-match winning run as the two London rivals fought out an at times dull 0-0 draw at the Emirates last night. Chelsea took another step towards clinching the Premier League title after the goalless draw ensured they remain 10 points clear at the top of the league. Jose Mourhino’s side will clinch the title if they follow victory at revitalised Leicester City on Wednesday with three points against Crystal Palace at Stamford Bridge next Sunday. Arsenal’s fans vented their frustration with chants of “boring boring Chelsea” at the final whistle after the Gunners failed to make the most of their second-half chances.

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger will have been as frustrated as his team’s fans, having now gone 13 games without a win against his old adversary Mourinho. The Gunners had plenty of possession but could not find the inspiration to alter that grim statistic. Chelsea mounted a defensive rearguard action after the break with Per Mertesacker and substitute Danny Welbeck missing from the rare opportunities that fell Arsenal’s way. Chelsea would feel that they should have won one of the 3 penalty appeals but referee Oliver did not penalise Hector Bellerin when Oscar fell under his challenge and the same player was involved again when he was cleaned out by Arsenal keeper David Ospina as they challenged for Fabregas’s pass.The third claim came when Fabregas fell theatrically to the floor after coming into contact with Santi Cazorla. The only outcome, much to the delight of Arsenal’s fans, was their former idol being shown a yellow card for diving.

Amid this chaos, chances were at a premium but Ospina came to Arsenal’s rescue with a fine low save from Ramires after he ran on to Willian’s pass. Arsenal had a rare opening when Courtois could only half-clear a free-kick but the loose ball did not fall to the ideal person, giant defender Mertesacker screwing a finish well wide. Welbeck then scuffed a clear chance in front of goal in stoppage time as Arsenal did most of the second half pressing – and Chelsea held out to leave their supporters celebrating a vital point.

Unboxing The Akira Class USS Thunderchild

And up next is the Akira class USS Thunderchild NCC-63549. This is the cannon ship design I like the most. There is one other ship but it’s only been seen on Star Trek Online gaming websight and not in any movie or tv series. Anyways, I love this ship.






And here is the unboxing video. I have another video coming up which is a closer look at the ship on her stand. Enjoy.

I Am Looking For Tattoo Designs

Would You Ever Consider Getting a Tattoo?

Why yes I am. And I am seriously considering getting a tattoo as it isn’t a huge deal anymore and it can be done without shelling out obscenely large sums of money for a good tattoo. And I don’t have to go to Bombay or Bangalore or Chennai to get it done. I can get it done in good ole Cochin city.

In 4 places that I know off – one is in Lulu Mall, one in Oberon Mall, one in Fort Kochi and one in Kadavanthara -I can go and get some ink done. Kadavanthara is probably the one closest to me (more or less) and it’s also the one that has a website and a gallery more importantly. A gallery of really good and artistically done tattoos I might add. I am in the process of finalizing the design of my first tattoo – I have 3 or 4 finalists and will have to choose one and send it to the tattoo artist vie email before I go down to the parlour for getting the ink done.

I am thinking of a dragon but since I am getting it on my arm (between the wrist and the elbow) I think I might go for something else. I found a dagger with roses & skulls that I think is really awesome as well. I was also thinking of some other stuff that I find really cool but let’s see. My heart is really set on a dragon but I might change my mind.

Prompt from The Learning Network at The New York Times

If You Can’t Stand The Heat….

Do you love hot and spicy foods or do you avoid them for fear of what tomorrow might bring?

Let me tell you something right away sparky! I’m Indian. More importantly I’m from South India, Kerala to be exact. Indians can, for the most part, handle the heat and the spice. South Indians more so because we had a shit ton of masala and spices to some fish & meat curries and a bunch of chillies too. There’s chillies in my curries with my chicken, beef, mutton or fish. Even with the pure veggies. There’s chillies in my morning chutneys that I eat with my dosas for breakfast. Not too much in the morning but enough. We also tend to add green chillies to omlets.

So I can handle the spice and heat. I’m not some of you feeble bellied, fragile digestive system wimps can handle them though. But I will admit it that I do not like to have spicy food all the time though. There is a time and a place for it and too much of it can cause you problems. But yeah sometimes spicy is good and you get the cravings for it. A nice thick spicy chicken/beef/lamb masala with chillies and that clears your sinuses as soon as you eat some of it. Ah, and some cold drink with ice on the side. Yum!

Prompt from The Daily Post at WordPress.com

Lists For The Foodie In Kochi

Top five sandwich places / outlets in Kochi:

  • Cocoa Tree (MG Road & Panampilly Nagar)
  • Fort Cafe (now only in Center Mall)
  • Coffee Beans
  • Cafe Coffee Day
  • Chai Kofi

I can’t help but to put up the best sandwiches even if it is a large international chain!

Top five burger places / outlets in Kochi:

  • Burgeria
  • Cocoa Tree (MG Road & Pannampilly Nagar)
  • Coffee Beans
  • Chai Kofi
  • Food Marley

Something In The Air?

I dunno if there is something in the air or it’s just the season for it but people in my training batch who are now working after their training has just completed are having deaths in their family. Like literally at the end of the training one guy’s grandfather died and 2 guys have had their uncles pass away. Close relatives means taking leaves for attending the funeral and taking care of family needs.

Now it is perfectly normal for people to pass away and their relatives needing leaves to go attend the funerals but the timing of it seems odd. At a previous place of work we had an epidemic – there too we had a month long training period post which they new employees have to begin work. At that precise moment in that office atleast we’d have one, maybe 2 and at times even 3 employees whose grandfather or grandmother passes away! For a period of two years I checked – atleast one person per training batch has lost a grandparent.

Now this place hasn’t been that bad but I am just about to complete 4 months here and suddenly – 3 of them!

The Discussion To Avoid

“It’s never a good idea to discuss religion or politics with people you don’t really know.” Agree or disagree?

I agree though it can be hard to avoid it especially if the other person or persons keep bring up the topics of politics or religion. As a rule it is ideally a good practise to avoid all talks about religion and politics in a place where you aren’t supposed to do so – like an office or any place of work, school, colleges and other educational institution (unless ofcourse asked to do so).

It’s never a good idea, it lead to heated arguments and curses and threats and causes friction in public. Only do it with close friends or family and people you are comfortable with. Unless you are paid to speak and discuss/debate it with other people in a forum or even not paid but invited to do so – then go ahead. If not do what I try and do and not speak about it unless it’s with people you are comfortable with. Or do it on Twitter and Facebook!

Prompt from The Daily Post at WordPress.com

A Closer Look At The Refit USS Enterprise NCC-1701

So up next is the refit (for the first three Star Trek movies) USS Enterprise NCC-1701. This is the classic design. Might not be favourite design of a federation starship but it’s the classic & iconic one.






And here is a close up video of the Enterprise on it’s stand.

Photo Sharer?

Why Do You Share Photos?

I can’t say for sure as to why other people share photos but for me, and this could be only me, I like taking photos. And if I like a particular photo I’m sure that some if not all of my friends and family members will like them too. That’s why I share them. I am not a photographer of any note, neither do I have a proper camera; I shoot my photos on my phone (currently an 8mp camera on my BlackBerry Q10) and I have taken photos on them since I have had a photo enabled phone (since late 2005).

I take photos of whatever I see that I like – the food I eat, the drinks I drink, the things I see, the places I go to, the view from my balcony, the gadgets and stuff I use or buy, the signs / boards / posters and designs I see. Rarely is it that photograph people – for some reason. I just don’t see the reason to snap pics of people except for really close friends and family. Nothing against people but I just don’t get too many selfies or group selfies (groupies) etc whatever bullshit name is associated with them. I just ….. I’d rather take photos of dogs and cats.

In a way I’m also trying to show people that I have some excitement in my life and that interesting things are happening in my life and don’t you envy me just a bit – isn’t that what everyone wants? Maybe you don’t say it out loud but you are sharing these pics so that other people can see what it is like to live your life. And if it looks appealing to another person, you look better to them. It’s that narcissistic side in all of us and it’s ok to do so. So share your photos to everyone and enjoy what they share back in return. It’s all good.

Going to the bathroom in a club/bar/restaurant etc and taking 150 photos of you with a pout (duckface) is not!

Prompt from The Learning Network at The New York Times

Early Monsoon?

Looks like the monsoon might come in early this year. It has rained a couple of times earlier this month with heavy doses of thunder and lightening but that soon passes and it’s back to boiling hot sunny days and humidity beyond what you would ever want.

But yesterday evening and now this afternoon it looks like it’s more rain and looks like the monsoon is soon upon us. Usually it’s by the end of June but hey no one is complaining if we get lots of rain to cool us off. Last night was ok, almost pleasant night. Except for the fact that also insects will start coming in to take shelter from the rain. Ugh!

So how often does in rain where you live dear reader?