Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Book Review

Last night I finally finished a book I've had for quite some time (the fact that it got stolen when I was midway through it when I first bought it has something to do with the fact that I resumed reading it perhaps a year later).  The Independence of Miss Mary Bennet by Colleen McCullough.

You remember Mary right? Mary? Who?! Nah, of course you don't. Noone remembers Mary, the younger middle, and therefore unmemorable, sister of the Bennet sisters in the classic Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice.

Everyone who remembers P&P knows Elizabeth. And anyone who is a female and read P&P at an impressionable age would have fallen in love with Darcy. I sure did.

But noone remembers Mary. Or, you might, just in the way you'd remember all the sisters enumerating one hand. But she was so indistinct a character that at the end of the day, you don't lose much by forgetting her.

That's the whole point of McCullough's tale. She turns the spotlight sideways, away from the classic love of Jane and Bingley, away from the intense chemistry between Elizabeth and Darcy, and suddenly we see Mary in HD.

You don't care really though, do you? I know. But I care. Because, like always, there are so many things about this book that I can relate to, and at the top of the list is the development of Mary Bennet.

As a child, in P&P she was the bookworm, nose stuck in books, acting like a little know-it-all brat, the one noone really liked, but tolerated simply because she was family. Her father detested her, because she wasn't the classic beauty of the two elder sisters, and she wasn't the baby of the family like the younger two sisters.

In The Independence of Mary Bennet, we are taken many many years down the road from when P&P was written. We are given a deep inner look into the actual workings of the marriages of Jane and Bingley, Elizabeth and Darcy - a more realistic look because, unlike the fairytale ambiguity of the love stories in the original P&P, we encounter relationship breakdowns, loves gone stale, and the effects of time upon them all. Which we can relate to because we simply walk in stride with these characters in parallel with our own lives.

Mary was left behind to take care of her miserable mother. Years and years shut up in one house, in a Victorian time when it wasn't seemly to be out and about when a woman was unmarried, and it was a duty to ..do one's duty. A duty that meant she was forgotten and had to take care of a parent who had no love for her, and expected everything back.

Mary is a woman who's spent all those years cooped up trying to educate herself, she read through all the books left in her father's library. A father who spent his money on building this library, his wife's clothes, and none on educating his daughters. So the story begins with the death of her mother, and suddenly she is free.

"But now that I am free, I have no wish to experience any of those things. All that I want is to be of use, to have a purpose. To have something to do that would make a difference."

Fiercely independent, a Miss-know-it-all, prim and proper in the pious way, a flower that has suddenly bloomed beautiful from a wacky looking geek everyone knew her as, yet oblivious of the attentions of enumerable suitors, feisty and equanimous at the same time, then ends up falling in love with her best friend - is it such a surprise that I wouldn't relate?

Monday, April 29, 2013


On a lonely walk through a despairing evening, I finally reached the final peg of travel on my journey homeward bound. It was a lonely day, filled with abstract tasks of work, all the more catering to that lonely remoteness of precariously teetering on the brink of some unknown fissure in the substance of something which was somehow dissolving the more I tried to hold onto it, lonely in ways that coldness wafts biting and bitter inside out, in the fragility of glass ready to shatter at a single breathe, or the way a flame goes out without a final tendril of smoke, goes out, despite every effort to save it.

A bus pulling away, taking the last of light, humanity with it. Alone, on a dark street, a lonely night, a wet, grey world, and a world that was entirely mine, or rather, a world that felt like it would go on without me, a world that I felt disparate from, and therefore not mine.

What were the guitar strums that faded out? The sounds of feeling that pluck from the very heart, very soul? In a world where emotions fluctuated in and out, where mouths moved without being heard, where heartbeats beat for someone who wouldn't listen, where tears were shed only to be dismissed the way rain frequently falling was unseen, unappreciated, what was a vacuum to the heart?

Memories, suddenly and immediately, a song blossomed out into fifty million colours, a voluptuous growing of vines and life, a stray laugh, a happy moment, a moment of amazement at sharing, of similarity, of love. A love that would blossom the way the song blossomed out into tendrils of memories. And suddenly, I realized

Was it possible to remember the future? It was - for a song so curiously possessive I became, a song which had every hue of grey of sorrow, a sorrow yet inexperienced, yet so absolutely my own. How was it possible that years before I was able to make it mine, that familiarity of knowing the feelings, and yet never having had felt them, nor heard it before? Like a stepping stone onto a path where I wasn't sure I was going to go - where did it take me? A lonely ambition to steadfastly follow the path alone, a path wherein I lost nights of sleep, not even really sure why, where somehow I was awake that night I was going to come face to face with my fate.

What is the feeling of watching your life come alive in front of you, of feeling that amazing feeling of two parts becoming whole? That feeling of never being me, until I met you? Of learning who I am because of who I never was without you? How was it possible to lock a door that didn't exist and yet find that someone had the key all so long? There are so many possibilities that could occur in every instant, how was it possible that at that moment, that instant, that place, that time, that mood, that moment, the dice, the roulette, the stars all aligned to be exactly what they were for this to have happened?

In a second I realized that never more so was this song I was walking home to ever so apt, in a moment I forgot the pavement of the sidewalk, the sighing of the trees, the rustle of grass growing greenly, and suddenly it seemed like all those moments of backwards deja vu were all me remembering the future of this moment, because never before had I felt the need to feel it with all of the me that was feeling it because, this time it meant losing you would be losing the key to the door through which only you and only I, and only you and I together could enter because that portal would only exist as long as we existed together.

Friday, April 26, 2013


I knew this would have happened: the insistent longing, tugging at me, pulling at me. It's why I avoided  it, evaded it, tried pretending it wasn't there. For the longest time, I thought digging my heels into the ground to slow down where I knew it was taking me would somehow work. Oh, and it has, but with that trail of upturned soil left behind, if I look, I can see how far I have come, and now I am here.

Where am I, I don't know. I knew I would reach here one day, and here I am, at a place so instinctively familiar, a place I have only seen in dreams, in nightmares, in that dark alley existing when I close my eyes so tightly making that secret wish. But when I look at where I am and what has brought me here, I am overwhelmed by a sensation that pulls me in every direction, I am blinded by a light so bright, I lose every sense, even of who I am.

But I am not here alone. In this spiralling deluge that drowns me, in the torment and  torrent pulling every which way, in the feeling of endlessness, in the perpetual fall of motion, there is constancy, calm. I would not be here, if not for having been alone. But I am here, a bittersweet anguish, a torment, a sadness that amazingly is inexplicably intertwined with this happiness.

A Week

Yes, I know that little voice has been there consistently, poking, prodding and telling me what I already know - it's been a week since I've actually written or posted anything here. Reasons? Hmm, I'm not really sure. I've been more busy with working and tweaking coding and themes for a few other blogs. And while I sure do love writing, I love doing artistic things also, which is why when I get into the delight of experimenting, designing and making a blog/web look beautiful, I go into it full bodied (or mindedly?). If I spend my time idle, thinking to myself, that's when I get some stray thoughts to pen down, and lately I think I've spent any idle time doing that stuff, or just having some me-time (usually on the commute home).

I've finished that Lit Course at UM that I was taking just for fun and I miss it. Quite a number of us taking that course had developed a bond of sorts, and we started a post-class reading group on Goodreads, but it hasn't been the same, obviously.

As for reading, I've finished most of Cory Doctorow's novels - I'd have mentioned the book we read for the Lit Course, Little Brother. This book and his sequel Homeland are two books I strongly suggest to anyone who is looking for something to read. His writing isn't on par with great writers, but then again, the standard of writing and reading really has flat-lined with the breakout popularity of Fifty Shades of Grey. Anyways, the topics and themes Doctorow puts out are those that make you think and relate to. For most of us using the internet especially. I learnt how to make awesome cold-brew coffee.

On to books to movies, I watched The Host. As always, a book made into a movie will never be better than the book. And this is a book I have a strong attachment to, since I think I read it the moment it was hot off the printers and first put on the shelves, and after reading insisted to anyone who would listen or I knew read books, to read it. I think my only success thus far in that regards is with my favourite co-blogger reading it and falling in love with it just as I did. She watched the movie before I did also, and wrote a review about it which somehow is on par with my own feelings.

So, speaking about her, you will have known her quite well as Kiara, blogger at a-shared-thought.blogspot.com. For quite some time now, she`s been thinking about renaming herself with a more apt and current blogger name, because Kiara was from another phase of her life. (Albeit, a Ranbir Kapoor connected phase, but the direct RK Phase is one that can never get old :P)

So, I`m taking the opportunity to introduce you to her new look and new name: Wanderer. :)

If you want to know the reasons for this name, you will have to read the book, or watch the movie.

Back to the movie: It was okay, if not leaning onto the "good-ok" barrier. I say it's good, because it's from THAT book. But I don't say it's great, and perhaps I am afterall reluctant to say it IS good, because noone can know how much better it can be without reading and comparing it to the book. What I have to say is what I dislike most about a movie made from book is when the movie absolutely changes the plot. While The Host movie loses most of the rich layers of the book, it doesn't actually change, but rather leaves out a lot. The casting was weak in that Ian wasn't portrayed as per the book Ian (a rather dweeb faced and skinny rendition in the movie), and the depth and intensity of the love between the couples is definitely not developed as well as the book. And, after all a Stephanie Meyer story (although for a more mature audience vs. the Twilight teenager saga), it's the love that is the foundation that makes the other elements, sci-fi and otherwise, so much more inspiring. That's lost out in the movie. But I still say, watch.

The week has seen yet further development in terms of the weather; the grass is so amazingly, richly, vibrantly green at some instances it just takes my breathe away. The trees are still bare, with no buds as yet. But I know one day I will look out my window and it will take me by surprise and give me yet another reason to smile to myself.

You may recall me writing about that tendency wherein people usually find it easy to approach me, or think I'm one of those 'somehow familiar faces'. I'm approachable I guess; I have a ready smile for others - and well, a ready cut-eyed glare for the usual perverts :P. Anyways, so on my commutes home, there are the usual faces, those others who are sharing the same bus or train home from work daily. One of these is a somewhat older than me woman, who for quite some time, we'd end up sitting next to or near one another without a word. Me reading or minding my business, her doing her own thing. Anyways, some time ago, another woman had approached me asking which bus she needed to take to get to some other place, and I helped her out, and it turned out the other woman had given her a suggestion previously but wasn't sure, so she had come up while I was telling the lost woman where to go, and when we sent of the lost woman onto her bus, and still waiting for our own bus, we fell into the easy small talk of acquaintances. For a long time she thought, or so she told me, that I was from Goa. Yeah, I'm shrugging too: her reason (like always) was that she was from Goa so, yeah, that's why I must be also. But anyways, now I have a small-talk buddy. To be honest, I rather not, I like the anonymity to be able to think in my own world, or read, or write, without someone's little nose peeking into my bubble. But oh well.

And the final bit of news is, I'd like to also introduce another new blog to our family of blogs: Nerdyy - who either you know, or have seen his comments - has FINALLY started his own blog, and I'm totally excited because he's full of lotsa things to write about and I've been telling him to make his own blog for the longest time ever. So yes give it up everyone for the man at musikellishus.blogspot.com.

And with that all said, I'm back to work!

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Natural Remedies: Apple Cider Vinegar

This is one of many natural remedies that I suggest everyone to try out. Apple cider vinegar (ACV) is one of the most simplest and cheapest ingredients, and guess what? It's amazingly effective. What do I use it for? Well, it's the best toner I've used yet. I mix about two-three tablespoons of it in a Mason jar and fill it up with water. Swiping with a cotton pad daily renders a clear, soft and flawless skin. :D

Similarly, it's really good for hair and scalp. If you've got dry scalp, dandruff then this does a good job of fixing it, and ACV for a rinse in the hair makes your hair so shiny.

15 Reasons To Use Apple Cider Vinegar

1. Apple cider vinegar is a completely natural product. It is made from apple juice and is fermented to hard apple cider. It is then fermented a second time to apple cider vinegar. When using natural apple cider vinegar, we instantly decrease the consumption of unnatural chemicals in our homes and daily lives.

2. Apple cider vinegar can be used as a rinse for your hair after shampooing, and will aid in increased body and shine. I recommend recycling an old shampoo bottle, then filling it with 1/2 a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar and a cup of cold water. Pour the solution through your hair after shampooing several times a week for dramatic results.

3. Natural apple cider vinegar regulates the pH of your skin. Dilute apple cider vinegar with two parts water, and spread the concoction over your face with a cotton ball to replace your current toner. You can do this at night after washing, and in the morning before you apply your moisturizer. A dab of apple cider vinegar can also be left on the skin overnight to fade age spots or acne scars.

It is also a recommended agent for warts. For warts, soak a cotton ball in apple cider vinegar, then fasten the cotton ball over the wart with a Band-Aid overnight. The skin may swell some as it reacts with the solution. However, the wart will fall off. Once it falls off, the treatment should be continued for a few more days, to make sure the wart doesn't return.

4. Apple cider vinegar can help remove stains from teeth. Rub teeth directly with apple cider vinegar, and rinse out with water.

5. Add a cup of apple cider vinegar to your bath, and soak for 10 minutes to eliminate discomfort from sunburn.

6. Apple Cider vinegar can be used as a natural aftershave. Fill a bottle with equal parts apple cider vinegar and water, and shake before applying to the face.

7. Rubbing apple cider vinegar on your hands and feet will give massage-like benefits and relief to tired hands and feet.

8. Apple cider vinegar can aid in weight loss. For daily weight management, add 2 teaspoons of apple cider vinegar to 16 ounces of water. This concoction can be sipped throughout the day. Data shows some limited, yet significant, weight loss benefits from sustained daily intake of acetic acid (which is a main ingredient in apple cider vinegar).

In a 2009 study published in Bioscience, Biotechnology, and Biochemistry, it was found that subjects that consumed acetic acid for 12 weeks experienced significant declines in body weight, abdominal fat, waist circumference and triglycerides. Triglycerides contribute to the bad cholesterol that we want to avoid.

9. Apple cider Vinegar will balance your entire inner body system. The body constantly strives to achieve a state of equilibrium. Apple cider vinegar helps the body maintain a healthy alkaline pH level. Research shows that higher acid levels (lower pH level) leads to a lack of energy and higher incidences of infection. Hence, my desire to sip some a few times a day for a natural boost of energy.

10. As part of balancing the body's pH, apple cider vinegar creates an overall detoxification of the body. Research shows that it can help stimulate cardiovascular circulation and help detoxify the liver.

11. This miracle vinegar helps to break up mucous throughout the body and cleanse the lymph nodes. Believe it or not, research suggests that apple cider vinegar can help with allergies because of its ability to reduce mucous and sinus congestion. When reducing the effects of allergies, it can also help stave off sinus infections and their related symptoms (sore throats and headaches).

12. This vinegar is rich in natural enzymes that can help rid your body of candida -- yeasts that are attributed to thrush in humans. Candida also is blamed for creating symptoms of fatigue, poor memory, sugar cravings, and yeast infections.

13. Though it might seem like an oxymoron to treat stomach acid with an acid-containing vinegar, there is research suggesting that apple cider vinegar works by correcting low acid, hence reducing heartburn. Natural remedy experts say you should begin to feel relief very shortly after taking a teaspoon of apple cider vinegar followed by a glass of water. Note that apple cider vinegar will not give relief if you have an ulcer.

14. The use of apple cider vinegar is effective in repelling fleas on your pets. One part vinegar and one part water can be sprayed on your pets fur and rubbed in generously to the skin. Saturate the entire coat, and continue every day for a few days to a week. Any flea infestation will surely be gone.

15. Apple cider vinegar will clean your toilets and have your bathroom smelling like apples! Just pour apple cider vinegar into the toilet, and allow it to sit overnight. It can also be used in dishwashers as a substitute for dish detergent. Mix 1/2 cup of apple cider vinegar with 1 cup water, and you can use this solution to clean microwaves, kitchen surfaces, windows, glasses and mirrors, too.

List courtesy of http://www.mindbodygreen.com

Saturday, April 20, 2013


Gave a warm hug
Gave a hand to hold,

Gave away my heart
Gave away my soul

Held back the tears
What else could I do;

Just gave out the smile
The pain only grew.

Told them I loved 'em
That all would be fine.

Just wished
- like their tears-
Someone would wipe away mine.

- Written by IQ,  Dec 20 2005.

Friday, April 19, 2013


So this started from a notification on Facebook, one of those omnipresent status updates; this time about Dove. This especially caught my eye, because earlier today I was having a discussion about Dove itself with someone, and it's 'moisturizing' properties.
"Dove ain't all that :P'Dove is not actually soap, that's why they have to call it a "bath bar". I used Dove for years until I realized it was actually a detergent, that's why they brag about adding "1/4" moisturizing cream". '"

So -- after all this time, it's BAD? I decided to do some digging.

First stop, Wikipedia:

Dove is primarily made from synthetic surfactants, soaps (derived from vegetable oils such as palm kernel) and salts of animal fats (tallow). In some countries, but not UK, Dove is derived from tallow (like many soaps) and for this reason it is not considered vegan, unlike vegetable oil based soaps. Dove is formulated to be pH neutral, a pH that is usually between 6.5 and 7.5.

Um. Okay then. So I don't know about you, but this word "surfactant" is blinking at me like a neon sign. I click the link to find out more....

Surfactants are compounds that lower the surface tension of a liquid, the interfacial tension between two liquids, or that between a liquid and a solid. Surfactants may act as detergents, wetting agents, emulsifiers, foaming agents, and dispersants.

I do some fast skimming of the very in-depth chemistry write up on surfactants, then I slow down when I find this:

Prolonged exposure of skin to surfactants can cause chaffing because surfactants (e.g., soap) disrupts the lipid coating that protects skin (and other) cells.


So, basically, Dove soap is a detergent, a surfactant that may cause chaffing by disrupting the skin surface.

Then, why all these years, has Dove been lauded for it's awesome moisturizing qualities, among others? Think, think, think...

Well, going back to the original Facebook notification, it links to an Etsy page where homemade soap makers discuss Dove. The thread is called "Is the DOVE commercial correct when it implies that you don't want any of that 'soapy residue' left on your skin?"

The person who opens this thread remarks that most of the soaps she uses have awesome natural butters that she would actually hope remain on her skin. Makes sense.

Further discussion highlights the distinction of soap vs. detergent (i.e. real soap vs. dove soap):

Dove's 1/4 moisturizing cream is doing exactly what the soap is doing; leaving a film on your skin (that's what moisturizer is).

There's a difference between soap and detergent and how they react with water. A detergent washes away with water, while a soap reacts with water in such a way that not all of it can be rinsed off, hence the film (this is because of the fatty acids that comprise soap, and how they react with water). Detergents are often considered better cleansers than soaps because they don't leave a film. They are organic acids rather than fatty acids and they bind differently with water.
But the Dove commercial, they're trying to weasel word you. They want you to think that a film of moisturizer is better than a film of fatty acid. Maybe it is, but it's still all filmy.

I've gone through most of the comments there, and it would be an interesting read for those of you who have sensitive or dry skin. I'm now considering doing some investing and experimentation regarding 'homemade soap' or the like.

What I believe might be the breakaway from the "Dove is bad" credo is the actual soap bar vs. body wash.
Because I use the body wash (Jasmine+Vanilla Cream Oil Body Wash ♥). I used to use the soap when I wasn't the one buying my own soap, and I will admit in retrospect, yes, Dove soap bars did leave my skin feeling tight and dry. I did once buy the special scented Dove GoFresh bars, both cucumber and lemon, and I don't remember how they reacted with my skin, but I DO remember that they smelled awesome, and actually left the bars in my clothes drawers just for the scent.

For soap bar, I use Olay Moisture Bar, and it always leave me feeling soft and sexy. (er) :P


Breaking news. This is huge, this is epic, this is momentous: Welcome to the first day of the year where I do not have to wear socks.

No, I didn't run out of clean laundry, and no, my feet smell delightful. It's just so awesome being able to go outside in flats without socks, and not. feel. cold. The sensation is so liberating.

I know, I know. It's going to get cold again, but why should the fear of enjoying the moment now somehow jinxing the moment in the future stop me from enjoying the moment now? If we all did that, no one would be at peace, no one would be content, no one would be satisfied, and in constantly expecting the worse, and denying ourselves the pleasure of today, we conjure it up and  give it power, we make the worst come to life.

So, for the good we have today, rejoice in it, and offer up your thanks and gratitude, for these are the thoughts which strengthen the worth of us maintaining the good.

Thursday, April 18, 2013


The seat before me is bare. The gentle jostling of the train upon the tracks as it ascends a hill to pull into the next station distracts me briefly from my absentminded reverie. The pages in the book left long neglected flips over lazily in my hands.

The seat before me is bare. Sometimes, though, it isn't. Sometimes the seat beside me is - and when it is, sometimes even then, it is not.

You've always been there, sitting across from me, or at my side. Quietly, yet consciously. Sometimes I look over, unfocused, sometimes I forget to breathe. Sometimes you're there in a pause, and peripherally.

You've always been there, where the seat has been empty. You've always been there, before we even met.

A moment all alone, suddenly I sense you. A whisper by my ear, a warmth behind me, at my shoulder. On a crowded bus, a sudden happy thought. In every moment I needed you, in each moment all alone, somehow there I found you, even before you were my own.

Kodak Moment, Preserve Thyself

The soft caress of the wind, teasing, drifting through tendrils of hair, warm and full of promise. Wafting, entwined with the redolence of fresh baking cookies from the nearby cookie factory.

The quiet murmur of friends, of family, of neighbours asking for the time, of coworkers and strangers, sharing a moment before the right bus comes at the bus terminal at the town center.

Couples descending the escalator, slowly cocooned in a world of their own, he holding her shopping, she holding his hand. The sweet aromas of popcorn saved from the last movie, the bag of pink fluffy cotton candy taken home to the glee of a younger sibling awaiting in pyjamas.

Then over the soft murmur, through the whispering winds, the lazy cascade of a saxophone's melody, tumbling tenderly, crooning, floating down from the terrace up top the overlooking condo. It lingers and retreats.

A pause, a moment where the world eases to a standstill. Then suddenly the downpour, the shimmering rainfall, a cloudburst spray from the twilight blue.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013


Today's the most beautiful day, weather-wise, of the year. Beautiful warm sunshine on your head, and a refreshing, slightly cool breeze to tantalize your senses. :)

I was planning on writing this with the full euphoria of the beautiful weather, but then I regretfully put it off until the realization of a disappointment kind of cut off the happiness into just a quiet sigh. 

Monday, April 15, 2013

Sunny Days

Monday again. Bright sunny Monday. Yayyyyyyyyayayayayayyyyyyy.

I don't know why, but lately I've been having Sunday blues. I wake up with a dull throbbing headache - not really a headache but still that dull feeling of one, y'know? Depending on the events of the day, it goes away or it gets worse. Sundays usually witness me going to the Mandir for the weekly service... and yet, often I end up with an even worse headache, which, if you think about it is ironic considering one goes for inner peace. But then again, that's me. I can't really handle noise and that too, music and singing that's totally besura. Anyways, then I get home feeling exhausted and laze about, or even nap, and that makes me a bit more irritable, especially as I don't take naps in the day for the simple reason that I don't like how disoriented I end up feeling. I end up feeling like I need a day before Monday to recover from the weekend.

Or take another Sunday, where I spend the time with a good friend and although I'm on my feet more than anything, I'm left with an awesome feeling that makes me feel that the day has been worth it. And I can relax in bed with a great book, and not feel that a day has been wasted.

This might sound blasphemous in some way, but that's how it is.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Random Lolz

What are friends for?

Veggies: Layla learns her lesson.

Food? Can't fool Kiara.

OCD? Smoke likes his dirty talk clean.

Today's post is dedicated to IQ's best friends. Thanks for the Lolz.

I don't know about you, but I've got enough :P

Thursday, April 11, 2013


...Aaand it's snowing. Yup, the wonderful fated Spring has shown it's true colours: the inevitable hodge-podge, the smorgasbord, the conflation - of winter and summer. So, does that mean to say Spring doesn't have a personality of it's own, a face of it's own? Of course not! Spring is unique unto itself. The tender kindling of hope, inspiration and revitalization, all encompassed within the subtleties that induce it within. The burgeoning of craving, of longing, of wist and yen. For that which is right there, and yet is not. The blossoming, the creeping green, for when you look again you realize it's there. Underneath the crystalline ice, glistening upon the earth where it's falling, there peeking out is the bright vivid green that sets the kindling of hope aflame, that inner acknowledgement and recognition of what is to be. And though it's gray, and though it be cold, there the heart rests serenely, in hope, in peace.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

April Showers

It's raining, it's pouring....

Well, one day into being back on the public front, and I do admit I've been experiencing heebie-jeebies. I'd gotten so comfortable with writing for myself - akin to being peacefully alone on a park bench lost in my own thoughts, without regard to anyone around me or with me. But, this is a transition that's meant to occur, and occurring it is.

That said, over the time I've been absent, missing and 'away', I had been asked many times about the situation. There've been innumerable euphemisms and codes for the act of opening my blog; e.g. "when is your store opening?"

Now that it's open, I feel the need to make a distinction, rather than the store grand opening, I would rather like to take the opportunity to simply welcome you home. :)

Monday, April 08, 2013

April 9

193Septimius Severus is proclaimed Roman Emperor by the army in Illyricum (in the Balkans).

475Byzantine Emperor Basiliscus issues a circular letter (Enkyklikon) to the bishops of his empire, supporting the Monophysite christological position.

537Siege of Rome: The Byzantine general Belisarius receives his promised reinforcements, 1,600 cavalry, mostly of Hunnic or Slavic origin and expert bowmen. He starts, despite of shortages, raids against the Gothiccamps and Vitiges is forced into a stalemate.

1241Battle of Liegnitz: Mongol forces defeat the Polish and German armies.

1388 – Despite being outnumbered 16 to 1, forces of the Old Swiss Confederacy are victorious over theArchduchy of Austria in the Battle of Näfels.

1413Henry V is crowned King of England.

1440Christopher of Bavaria is appointed King of Denmark.

1454 – The Treaty of Lodi is signed, establishing a balance of power among northern Italian city-states for almost 50 years.

1511St John's College, Cambridge, England, founded by Lady Margaret Beaufort, receives its charter.

1585 – The expedition organised by Sir Walter Raleigh departs England for Roanoke Island (now in North Carolina) to establish theRoanoke Colony.

1609Eighty Years' War: Spain and the Dutch Republic sign the Treaty of Antwerp to initiate twelve years of truce.

1682Robert Cavelier de La Salle discovers the mouth of the Mississippi River, claims it for France and names it Louisiana.

1782American War of Independence: Battle of the Saintes begins.

1860 – On his phonautograph machine, Édouard-Léon Scott de Martinville makes the oldest known recording of an audible human voice.

1852 – At a general conference of the The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Brigham Young explains the Adam–God doctrine, an important part of the theology of Mormon fundamentalism.

1865American Civil War: Robert E. Lee surrenders the Army of Northern Virginia (26,765 troops) to Ulysses S. Grant at Appomattox Courthouse, Virginia, effectively ending the war.

1867Alaska purchase: Passing by a single vote, the United States Senate ratifies a treaty with Russia for the purchase of Alaska.

1909 – The U.S. Congress passes the Payne-Aldrich Tariff Act.

1914Mexican Revolution: One of the world's first naval/air skirmishes takes place off the coast of western Mexico.

1916World War I: The Battle of VerdunGerman forces launch their third offensive of the battle.

1917 – World War I: The Battle of Arras – the battle begins with Canadian Corps executing a massive assault on Vimy Ridge.

1918 – World War I: The Battle of the Lys – the Portuguese Expeditionary Corps is crushed by the German forces during what is called the Spring Offensive on the Belgian region of Flanders.

1918 – The National Council of Bessarabia proclaims union with the Kingdom of Romania.

1937 – The Kamikaze arrives at Croydon Airport in London – it is the first Japanese-built aircraft to fly to Europe.

1939Marian Anderson sings at the Lincoln Memorial, after being denied the right to sing at the Daughters of the American Revolution'sConstitution Hall.

1940World War II: Operation WeserübungGermany invades Denmark and Norway.

1940Vidkun Quisling seizes power in Norway.

1942 – World War II: The Battle of Bataan/Bataan Death MarchUnited States forces surrender on the Bataan Peninsula. The Japanese Navy launches an air raid on Trincomalee in Ceylon (Sri Lanka); Royal Navy aircraft carrier HMS Hermes and Royal Australian NavyDestroyer HMAS Vampire are sunk off the island's east coast.

1945 – World War II: The German pocket battleship Admiral Scheer is sunk.

1945 – World War II: The Battle of Königsberg, in East Prussia, ends.

1945 – The United States Atomic Energy Commission is formed.

1947 – The Glazier-Higgins-Woodward tornadoes kill 181 and injure 970 in Texas, Oklahoma, and Kansas.

1947 – The Journey of Reconciliation, the first interracial Freedom Ride begins through the upper South in violation of Jim Crow laws. The riders wanted enforcement of the United States Supreme Court's 1946 Irene Morgan decision that banned racial segregation in interstate travel.

1948Jorge Eliécer Gaitán's assassination provokes a violent riot in Bogotá (the Bogotazo), and a further ten years of violence inColombia known as La violencia.

1948 – Fighters from the Irgun and Lehi Zionist paramilitary groups attacked Deir Yassin near Jerusalem, killing over 100.

1952Hugo Ballivian's government is overthrown by the Bolivian National Revolution, starting a period of agrarian reform, universal suffrage and the nationalisation of tin mines

1957 – The Suez Canal in Egypt is cleared and opens to shipping.

1959Project Mercury: NASA announces the selection of the United States' first seven astronauts, whom the news media quickly dub the "Mercury Seven".

1961 – The Pacific Electric Railway in Los Angeles, once the largest electric railway in the world, ends operations.

1965Astrodome opens. First indoor baseball game is played.

1967 – The first Boeing 737 (a 100 series) makes its maiden flight.

1969 – The "Chicago Eight" plead not guilty to federal charges of conspiracy to incite a riot at the 1968 Democratic National Convention inChicago, Illinois.

1969 – The first British-built Concorde 002 makes its maiden flight from Filton to RAF Fairford.

1975 – The first game of the Philippine Basketball Association, the second oldest professional basketball league in the world.

1975 – 8 people in South Korea, who are involved in People's Revolutionary Party Incident, are hanged.

1980 – The Iraqi regime of Saddam Hussein kills philosopher Muhammad Baqir al-Sadr and his sister Bint al-Huda after three days oftorture.

1981 – The U.S. Navy nuclear submarine USS George Washington (SSBN-598) accidentally collides with the Nissho Maru, a Japanese cargo ship, sinking it.

1989 – The April 9 tragedy in Tbilisi, Georgian SSR an anti-Soviet peaceful demonstration and hunger strikes, demanding restoration of Georgian independence is dispersed by the Soviet army, resulting in 20 deaths and hundreds of injuries.

1991Georgia declares independence from the Soviet Union

1992 – A U.S. Federal Court finds former Panamanian dictator Manuel Noriega guilty of drug and racketeering charges. He is sentenced to 30 years in prison.

1992John Major's Conservative Party wins an unprecedented fourth general election victory in the United Kingdom.

20032003 invasion of Iraq: Baghdad falls to American forces;Saddam Hussein statue topples as Iraqis turn on symbols of their former leader, pulling down the statue and tearing it to pieces.

2005Wedding of Charles, Prince of Wales and Camilla Parker Bowles; Charles, Prince of Wales marries Camilla Parker Bowles in a civil ceremony at Windsor's Guildhall.

2009 – In Tbilisi, Georgia, up to 60,000 people protest against the government of Mikheil Saakashvili.

2011A gunman murdered five people, injured eleven, and committed suicide in a mall in the Netherlands.*

2012 – IQ creates a blogspot account and opens her blog to the public: Supercalifragilisticsexyalidocious.

2013 – IQ reopens her blog Supercalifragilisticsexyalidocious for public perusal.

Courtesy: Wikipedia


With the advent of April and therefore Spring (yes, I had to mention it again), I've started reconnecting with a couple of my friends (couple, literally). This morning while listening to the songs posted on Butterfly Effect, I got lost in memories. Specifically, the memory of listening to hindi songs and singing along with my friends. We had some fun nights just doing these random singalongs -- going crazy with crazy songs, or each of us getting totally lost and sentimental in the song, singing crazy duets that may have resulted in the guy doing the girl part and vice versa...

Anyways, this morning the song Tadap Tadap  got me grinning mentally: the memory of my pal always singing this song, even under his breathe or absentmindedly, it was like second nature for him to default to this song. We used to meet up for eats all the time and I mean ALL the time, and we'd listen to my mp3 while doing this, and to really understand or envision this you'd have to realize how crazy we are. So, one meal, many years ago, we sat down to eat, and suddenly he broke out into Tadap Tadap, doing a full-on filmy version, with his face all twisted up into the 'emo-shuns' and with eyes closed, and hands upraised as if he were praying, I just stared - then he stopped, peeked, and then grinned his half-embarrassed grin, and I burst out LAUGHING.

'Great, now you've prayed before eating. Ameen!'

And we dug in.

Friday, April 05, 2013


I love heat. I mean, I really love heat. This was the thought that crossed my mind as a sheaf of paper came out of the printer, with that awesome, amazing hotness radiating after printing a lot of pages at one go. When I do this - and I mean like 25+ pages, I literally hug the bundle of papers. Literally.

Today while doing so, I had flashbacks nostalgic almost of the future: Summer. I realize lately my posts have been sighful accounts about the impending Spring. With everything else in life being the usual if not just not great, I guess that awaiting for the warmth that will make it all worth it somehow unveils a patience that translates to everything else.

On the down side, I am going to cry in frustration when the public transit starts turning on their unbearable air conditioning. Grrrrr. Oh, I know I've written about this before; that just goes to show you how some things just don't change for the better. Sigh.

Thursday, April 04, 2013

Life in a Nutshell

"You can never be old and wise 
If you were never young and crazy" 


Wednesday, April 03, 2013

Life, Recorded

This morning on the streetcar with the sun streaming brightly, vividly, warmly, I blinked sleepily and soaked it all in. Then peripherally, I noticed the round bulb of the camera on the ceiling of the streetcar. Suddenly the thought came to me: imagine all the moments you're captured on camera. All those moments you didn't realize you were being captured, recorded. And imagine if all the moments you ever were, in the whole lifespan of your life, was all put together and played for our viewing.

All those CCTV records: wandering through malls, in the stairwells of office buildings, the surreptitious first kiss in the school hallway when you thought no one was looking, picking your nose in an elevator, or posing as you would never have posed in front of anyone else. The ice cream sundae you shared with a friend in a food court, or the one you'd dropped on the floor to the dismay of your parents years earlier. The moments of frenzied panic when you got lost in a crowd, or the moments you spent hiding from your siblings playing hide-n-seek.

Imagine all those forgotten memories, or being able to see yourself as others had seen you. Imagine comparing how you were to how you are today, and imagine seeing the world you were in with a different set of eyes. Imagine seeing your life all put together in those furtively recorded moments....

Tuesday, April 02, 2013


Since last week I was pondering the possibility of actually opening my blog on Easter Monday. Why? Simply because the day I wrote my first blog entry was on Easter Monday. But then I decided since I 've already told many people that the Blog's birthday and anniversary is the 9th of April, then I should adhere to it.

Anyways, unlike last year, I'm not experiencing the 3-day weekend hangover. Well,  perhaps I was super sleepy yesterday on the first day back at work, but then again that could just be attributed to the Monday-after-weekend phenomenon.

It's been bright and sunny since April has started. But - and here's the catch - it's been snowing. Dun dun dun. Yeah, snow in April? Not that hard to believe in my world because I still remember snow in May a few years ago. Sigh.

‘ Happiness is not something you postpone for the future; it is something you design for the present.’’