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Archive for March, 2008

Past Week …

1. Saw Michael Clayton Michael Clayton - Movie Poster

Fabulous movie, excellent characterization, brilliant performances and superlative portrayal of behind-the-scenes deals! Must see!

2. On similar lines, saw Halla Bol (“Attack!”)

Albeit a bit predictable, based on the Jessica Lal murder case, with parts that remind you of Rang de Basanti, this was a thought provoking movie, displaying the cost of sticking with the truth in a world with extreme political corruption.

3. Finished reading ‘The Alchemist’

Found the book a bit disappointing. Perhaps I was looking for ‘The Monk who sold his Ferrari’ effect. The book focused on achievement of your own ‘Personal Legend’. Wonder what my Personal Legend is? Has my heart stopped advising me on how to achieve my personal legend, about reading omens and the Language of the World? In my opinion, the book did not advise me how to get back to achieving my personal legend. (Note to self: I need to read this book at some other stage in life. Perhaps I will find it applicable then.)

So that was my past week! How was yours?    

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Large strength of classroom, bad for students – http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/HealthSci/Big_classes_bad_for_students/articleshow/2892418.cms

And I thought, we had about 70 students in each class until the 10th grade, from anywhere between 60 to 120 students in the 11th and 12th grade, and about 60 students per engineering class. As quoted from the article “Large class sizes disrupt and damage the prospects of less-able students.

What is less able? I think I will define it using myself as an example. I was (and still am) good at Maths, Science, English and Marathi. And am not so great at Hindi, Drawing. So let me call myself “less able” at Drawing. There was this Miss S., who was our drawing teacher from the first standard until the eighth standard. She never really focussed her attention on all students in class. There were three to five girls, who were really good at drawing. She would review their drawings, comment on them, and not really care about the rest of us. So in my objective opinion, I have not learnt any technique of drawing. Yes, not even a single one! The other day I was reading this book (Basics of Drawing) in KB’s house, and I realized that there is a technique to create a particular effect from a particular form of color (like pencils, crayons, water colors, etc.) . And I do not possess this knowledge.

Granted, I might not have turned into a Monet or a Picasso, by learning things in class. But I would not be where I am right now.

Did the teacher have a problem with the class size? Would it have been different if the class size was say 30, instead of 70 plus? What happens to the students who are “less able” with Maths and Science and English and the list continues …..

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Home Herb Garden

L, from my workplace, forwarded this excellent link on building a home herb garden.

http://www.olivebarn.com/garden-in-a-bag.html

I think its a great idea for people who live in appartments, or want to grow fresh herbs in winter.

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India trip

Excluding the couple of ‘Hello World’ posts that I have written on Conversation Galore, I haven’t blogged in a bit. Past two months have been exciting. The not-so-hectic days at work after a big release, planning for the India trip – Visa appointment, travel arrangements to India, travel within India, actually flying to India, spending quality time with family, and back to the Mister in the US.

Bombay (Mumbai) has changed quite a bit, since March of 2006 to be precise.

Observation Number 1 – Every other building is a Mall 

Observation Number 2 – Coffee on the airport is so expensive! And people don’t mind purchasing it

Observation Number 3 – Mumbai domestic airport has become extremely plush! It is comparable and in many ways better than some of the international airports outside and withing India. Can we attribute it to the newness? Maybe. We’ll wait and watch.

Observation Number 4 – There is significant amount of traffic at all times, even at the odd 11AM or 2PM.

Observation Number 5 – Train and bus transport remain the same. It was exciting to hop onto a train at 4PM, and try to get down at Andheri Station at 5.15PM, from a Borivali local. Not so much fun to travel, in standing, from Lokhandwala to Andheri Station by bus.    

Observation Number 6 – Finally the flyover near IIT Powai has been constructed and hopefully allows you to jump traffic at peak hours. Wonder how long it took to build? I wouldn’t go as far as saying it involves my sweat and blood. But it definitely involves a whole lot of coughing and sneezes on my part; inhaling poisonous fumes from trucks in ‘construction’ traffic en-route to/from the Patni office in Mahape.

Observation Number 7 – Movie tickets have become really expensive. They range anwhere between 120 bucks to 250 bucks. I wonder how college students survive.

Other things remain the same – local bhaji walas, (slightly elevated prices of) nariyal pani walas, Medhu Wada at Radha Krishna, baking fragrance of Parle G biscuits in Parla, fare of Mumbai autowalas, rush at Dadar!

Oh, Dadar reminds me, Raj Thackeray created quite a bit of chaos by commenting on the “North Indian” influx into Bombay. I think Northies were defined as people from Bihar and UP. There was some slander against Amitabh Bacchan. Which leads me to the most disheartening observation.

Observation Number 8 – The media in India is going berserk. I think they will end up like the media in the US – glorifying small things, posting individual news (say a court case) as headline news. Every news is “breaking news”. A 10 second clip is played repeatedly on news channels for 24 hours, with the same comments, and people follow it diligently. The extremity displayed on television is not representative of the actual state on most occasions, and definitely not for the period it is played on screen. An example was the shutdown of shops in Jogeshwari. You head out of the appartment complex and its all quiet and functioning as it should. You wonder where is the so-called chaos.

Which begs the question, is there/should there be sponsorship for the 24 hours news channels?  

Anyways, overall the India trip rocked! Visited my in-laws in Chennai and sister-in-law in Bangalore. It was fun to be away from the daily grind.

Will sign-off for now! Have a wonderful day everyone.

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New Blog!

Well, some of you might say “You don’t write a significant amount on your blogspot space. Now a new blog! Why?”

Unfortunately, write access to Blogger has been shutdown by my office. Like I was telling RS, I feel suffocated. It feels like someone has taken away my capability to communicate to the outside world. So here I am, on WordPress.

Hope to keep up with the writing from here.

S’long then!

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Hello world!

Welcome to ‘My Space’.

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