Saturday, October 28, 2006

Martini - Gult Style

Thanks to Reddy, here's the recipe for a martini made to suit anyone who has gult taste-buds.

Ingredients (for 2 servings),
60 ml vodka (any brand, its not going to make a difference in a bit)
3-4 green chillies, cut along their length (some say, the more the merrier)
1/2 a lemon
Few drops of tobasco sauce (boy...already getting the fire burning)
Ice (you'll need this)

All the ingredients in a shaker with lots of ice. Shake hard.
Strain into martini glasses (or a tall glass filled with ice cubes, for the faint hearted). Olives only if you need them!

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

We are on high alert...

Was traveling Indian Railways' marquee train - the Shatabdi Express when I saw this :-). Makes one wonder - where did the train get lost?

Ithaca...long time no see

Was browsing around, when the eyeballs hit a name that sounded very familiar. Ithaca. Yes, the one nice poem, that probably everyone has read.

Here it is, once more:

When you set out on your journey to Ithaca,
pray that the road is long,
full of adventure, full of knowledge.
The Lestrygonians and the Cyclops,
the angry Poseidon -- do not fear them:
You will never find such as these on your path,
if your thoughts remain lofty, if a fine
emotion touches your spirit and your body.
The Lestrygonians and the Cyclops,
the fierce Poseidon you will never encounter,
if you do not carry them within your soul,
if your soul does not set them up before you.

Pray that the road is long.
That the summer mornings are many, when,
with such pleasure, with such joy
you will enter ports seen for the first time;
stop at Phoenician markets,
and purchase fine merchandise,
mother-of-pearl and coral, amber and ebony,
and sensual perfumes of all kinds,
as many sensual perfumes as you can;
visit many Egyptian cities,
to learn and learn from scholars.

Always keep Ithaca in your mind.
To arrive there is your ultimate goal.
But do not hurry the voyage at all.
It is better to let it last for many years;
and to anchor at the island when you are old,
rich with all you have gained on the way,
not expecting that Ithaca will offer you riches.

Ithaca has given you the beautiful voyage.
Without her you would have never set out on the road.
She has nothing more to give you.

And if you find her poor, Ithaca has not deceived you.
Wise as you have become, with so much experience,
you must already have understood what Ithacas mean.

Constantine P. Cavafy (1911)

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Ah! Products and what not...

Did someone talk about perseverance paying off in the long-run (and laziness immediately)?

Here goes... just launched the first product from the Phonon stables - GoTalk. Like the name? Well even if you don't the application is still better - type in anything in English and what you get is a translation in any European language. All on your mobile phone :-). Cute ain't it..pphhrrtt! Will be cute only once it starts generating revenues.

Download it? Just the alpha version - send me an email info(at)phonon(dot)in.

Till more comes around,

Friday, July 21, 2006

On branding...

Pyramid Tech ceases to exist as a brand (except for the visiting cards that need to be designed). launches today.

More on this later. As usual, wish me luck.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006


...what a name, but I can't keep it for my organisation; I know what is good and what is not good. The name starts with a P, comes very late in the alphabet; is not an active verb.

I love my motorcycle; I plan on getting it repaired.
My car is lying desolate in Bombay (yes, I prefer the romance of Bombay to the trains of Mumbai), I plan on getting it to Baroda.
I have a dream - and am searching for it.
My sister is the most beautiful person on the face of this earth.
Where have all my girlfriends gone?
I would love to go off on a month long vacation to the Himalayas, but do not have the time or the inclination for it.
There are good days and there are bad - I need to get the business off the ground.
I am very busy with very little time - yet I am here typing gibberish on my blog.
I used to love a beautiful girl - and then we disappeared from each other's lives.
I hate hypocrites - I change my perceptions as it suits me.
I used to be very lazy and then I started putting fight.
Never judge a book by its cover - but clothes maketh a man.
I love music; people hit me when I try to make music.
I love business - technology needs to be leveraged.
I dream of someone who will be my Lesley (Bridge Across Forever).
I hate voilence and I love WW2 movies.
A healthy body is very important for a healthy mind; I enjoy running.
Fun is my way of looking at life, seriousness is how I try approaching it.
I love home-cooked food and am going to become a vegetarian.

Monday, April 03, 2006

Voila Indie Cricket!

The one day team seems to be on a roll. Forget the tests, the team seems to believe in instant gratification. As an arm-chair cricket enthusiast My Re. 0.02 on the current state of the team.

1. Give Viru a rest - making him play will just destroy his confidence. He is flamboyant, let him go back to First Class cricket for a season. (I know, now that I have written this, Sehwag is going to make a big one in the next match. Simple Murphy's law)
2. Get Gambhir in. He should be playing a lot more. The boy is high on confidence.
3. Don't abuse Pathan. He is GOLD. But come on, let's not abuse him
4. Give Greg Chappel some classes in the Indian culture. India is very different from OZ. He needs to know that the birdie in India is not given a PG certificate. Keep mum and get on with your work, mate!
5. Have a national campaign along with Pulse Polio, for the masses. Let's not react to every duck. But well, this is religion and a dogma is a dogma is a dogma (sic!).
6. Get some better pitches. We love to win. Our pitches are good. All pitches should be like Feroz Shah Kotla, Delhi. The best way to train ourselves for the World Cup. Come on get some swing!
7. Get the top order in line. The pressure builds on Dravid every time the top order fails and the law of averages will soon catch up with him. We do not want that to happen during the World Cup, do we?
8. Let the stock markets boom. This is quite a bit a corollary to what I had learnt a while back. There has been a study that has linked the Dow average performance with the length of the hemline in fashion during that particular time. Could there be some kind of a statistical correlation between the Sensex and the fortunes of the Indian cricket team? Why risk it?

I guess, I could be a very good team manager. Well, nevertheless.

Sunday, April 02, 2006

Motorcycling (Actually!)

And what is good Phaedrus, is not what I am talking about here.

Spent the last half hour riding around on a 350cc Royal Enfield Bullet Machismo. Was that a completely different experience than riding my KB125 RTZ. Don't get me wrong. As mentioned in my review at Mouthshut, it still remains my first love.

The Bullet is a completely different piece of machinery. A motorcycle, not a Jap-Bike. It needs love and tender care to kick start and drive. No throttling to vroom your bike. The Bullet will just not take that from you and shut itself if you do that. It takes a lot to start a Bullet too! Not a normal kick-start. Decompress, observe the gauge, kick, nope Baby says push the kick start. He started the bike by pushing the kick lever with his hand!

The most beautiful part of the bike is once you get it onto the road. The regular thumping of the bike. Boy, does it just make one feel larger than life. What better a feeling for a narcisist like me. The bike just rolls with a regular thump.

I am going to buy a Machismo. Wait till the business kicks-off. Dad, I should have heeded your advise while buying the KB and bought a Bullet instead. Well guess, each bloke learns about the value of a Bullet at a certain time.

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Passion and Obsession

Daily life these days more or less consists of getting up in the morning, playing squash for a while (while in Mumbai or jogging back home after work while in Baroda), strategising and deploying all the things that need to be deployed for Pyramid Tech. Seems to be fairly dreary but (un)fortunately, it cannot be more action packed, more fulfilling. Atleast over the last two weeks, hardly has there been a night when I have not patted myself for a day well spent (sic!).

Keeping one's focus towards a few objectives is hard, especially getting the grit and determination to go along thoughts and plans that one has worked out to be productive. A few moments with youngsters (yes, I say that!) who have a passion, who are obstinate and have never ending energy is like rekindling the flame. Spent probably an hour with a youngster, the Baby, atleast for the timebeing. An engineer by profession; analytical, passionate and creative by action. We were going through his portfolio of achievements the discussions meandered. And as usual, what did they meander towards - what are the things that inspire us, get us to do what we want to do.

He made me run through a quote from Meet Joe Black. The quote went - Love is passion, obsession, someone you can't live without. If you don't start with that, what are you going to end up with? Fall head over heels. I say find someone you can love like crazy and who'll love you the same way back. And how do you find him? Forget your head and listen to your heart. I'm not hearing any heart. Run the risk, if you get hurt, you'll come back. Because, the truth is there is no sense living your life without this. To make the journey and not fall deeply in love - well, you haven't lived a life at all. You have to try. Because if you haven't tried, you haven't lived.

The quote is more in context of love between individuals, but isn't that what love with one's life, one's passion is about? Going ahead with what one is passionate about, irrespective of the dangers and obstacles. Does not mean one goes blindly into something, however, it is fairly important to go with what one's heart has to say, without probably thinking of the end-state or the nice world that makes us live in our comfort zone.

As Neo from the Matrix would have said, (and was the subject of a mail from yours truly to a friend yesterday) I am not here to tell you how it is going to end, I am here to tell you how it is going to begin....A world without boundaries, without rules, without controls. A world where anything is possible. Where you go from there I leave to you.

That's probably what passion is about, what love for one's life is all about. Probably thats the direction one needs in life. If you feel so passionately, go ahead, deliver once. What do you have to lose?

Good job, Baby.

Friday, March 03, 2006

A Brand New Chapter

On the verge of starting a new chapter in my life soon. Over the last almost 4 years since my graduation from my business school, being in a corporate salaried job has helped me learn a lot, meet very interesting people, mature up and realise the value of productive achievement.

As said very often, it is never the best time to start on one's own; I find now to be the best time to launch a technology firm. Going to start with some basic SMS applications - just one application and its potential for the market is tremendous; and I have four(?) such ideas.

The woods are lovely dark and deep, but I have miles to go before I sleep....

p.s. keep tracking the progress of :-)

Saturday, January 14, 2006

Two Quick Long Years and BluffMaster!

It's been two years; 15 days short of two actually since moving into this apartment of mine. The longest I have stayed at a place ever since moving out of home in 2000. And all my cartons are now packed and am almost ready to shift in with Akshay. A lot of reasons to move out for me - practicality being the most critical.

The two years have gone by real quick - the few things that strike me as I leave this apartment:
  • I am moving out more mature than I moved in (yeah, right!! is what most tell me) - is that what people call writing down to experience?
  • Have learnt to understand people a bit more - never judge a book by it's cover; but clothes make a man!
  • I find a few assets of mine that I have collected over the last two years. I moved in to the apartment with 2 suitcases and 3 bags. I am moving out with 3 suitcases, 4 bags, 4 cartons (many more actually), a cooking range and a gas cylinder (Reddy, what do I do of these??)
  • I am richer through better culinary skills, a carton of OH content and two squash racquets
In many ways this is a beginning of a new chapter in life - a few decisions to be made. The more I think of my decisions in life - objectivity, straightforwardness and setting priorities right seem to be the most critical DSS.

Till my next cooridnates,

p.s. As I pack, I listen to the musice of BluffMaster!

Monday, January 09, 2006

Serendipity and the Existence of God

Like all Sundays, had planned yesterday to maximise effectiveness. Had decided to do nothing, but play squash, go to a cousin's for dinner and also visit a temple on the way.

Left home in the evening after a good hour and a half of squash and a cuppa chai with Akshay. Moved through the lazy Sunday evening traffic in Mumbai (including a traffic jam by a truck stuck on an incline!) to reach SiddhiVinayak temple sometime late in the evening.

Got into quite a queue. The system at the temple is that they let in about 150-200 people every few minutes into the sanctum sanctorum of the temple. This keeping the queue moving forward in batches. The aarti (prayer services) are held probably twice or thrice a day. Quite a nice surprise when I got into the batch that would be a part of the aarti. Take it a bit forward - there are about a 100 odd people who are a part of each aarti and hence being right in front of the diety during the aarti is still more improbable.

Now that I am writing this article, one can easily guess where I would be standing during the aarti. It was a very nice and soothing experience. The aura through a the drums beating, chants of the pandits, the singing along and clapping of the devotees and most importantly the amount of devotion in the air was an experience one doesn't go through very often.

Sunday, January 08, 2006

Of Flute Recitals

The second Sunday of January and the cultural life in Mumbai is reaching it's annual crescendo. What with the Prithvi festival, the Mumbai Marathon, the Kalaghoda Art Festival and probably the most low-key of all, the Banganga festival. Low key - it doesn't have its own website!

3 years and 7 days in Mumbai today for me - and found such a serene and beautiful place as Banganga today. Going on to the Banganga festival - it is a 2 day cultural festival featuring recitals by 2 popular Indian Classical musicians on two successive nights. This year features Pandit Hariprasad Chaurasia (flute) and Shrimati Veena Sahasrabuddhe (vocal).

Reading about the festival in the morning newspaper, Akshay and I decided to go attend the flute recital today. 30 kms from home and we drove 2 hours to reach the place - shows how busy we are.

As is the usual when Akshay and I go out - we have plans of reaching a place at a specified time keeping all contingencies (such as lack of tickets for a show half of Mumbai would want to attend) whenever we leave home. But what happens on the way is - we had to complete tasks A, B and C and I have to compulsively take the route with maximum traffic. To cut a long story short, we reached the festival venue with all the tickets sold-out. Resigned to our fate and the absence of spare tickets with any spectators we decide to roam around the place, see the temples, try to figure out the look alikes of Jug Suraiya and yet no luck in getting any tickets.

Before going ahead, Banganga is a rectangular tank, probably 150m x 50m with stairs all around the perimeter. Akshay uses his charm(?) on a couple of policemen patroling the area and they allow us to get into a corner perch. All we can see from there is the rear of the stage. Whatever, any place is good to hear live classical music.

Starting with a few slower compositions / raagas (Bhupali?), Panditji slowly built the tempo of the music. As usual he is a maestro in his art and can get people mesmerised by the flute. But the best part was a few swans that were resting (it was around eight in the evening) towards a corner suddenly get into the tank, paddling with a lot of energy. Probably the first time I have ever realised and seen in real life the power of music. Could that be the best compliment they could have given the musician?

The policemen probably seeing our level of interest in the music in the meantime, help us get entry into one of the regular seating areas. Thank them for it. The music sounded so much better than from our perch. Spent the rest of the concert listening to a jugalbandi on the tabla, raag pilu and pahari (that's my addition to my Indian classical vocabulary today!).

Such is the maestry of Panditji's on the flute - across frequencies - there were so many parts that the tabla player tried real hard to live up on the jugalbandi, though quite a bit in vain.

Definitely one of the best recitals in an amazing ambience that I have seen in Mumbai.

p.s. Wonder - the above contains compliments for Mumbai police!!
p.p.s. Banganga festival is an MTDC event - no wonder the government festival has such low publicity!