Friday, April 30, 2004

The end of an era....

I'm an Engineer now. Cant believe it can you? I cant quite believe it myself. 4 years of college have just flown past.

I cant say I progressed intellectually in these 4 years ;-) but I did make an enormous number of really really good friends. I'm gonna miss them real bad.Somehow when I was in school., I didnt really make too many friends but college has been a different story altogether.

Yesterday after the last exam got over, we guys went to the beach. We ate bajjis and yakked our hearts out. There were about 22 of us there. The guys wanted to play kabaddi. Never having played the game, I opted to sit down and watch for a while. All the guys took of their shirts, their belts, their watches, their cellphones, their wallets and gave it all to..guess who?? ME! For the next 30 minutes, I was richer than I'd ever been in my whole life. I had a lap full of shirts, 2 arms covered with wrist watches, my bag was bursting with cellphones and wallets and I had 2 gold chains around my neck. I could have simply walked away with the loot...sigh.

Anyway, after the kabaddi match, all the guys got into a huddle, just like the Indian cricket team. I expected someone to say something poetic but everyone was silent. Then we started revolving as a group, shouting on top of our voices and doing a mini dance kicking sand up in the air. It was GOOD.

So today I plan to go out with a couple of friends. I only hope I wont ever fall out of touch with them.

Sunday, April 25, 2004

I came across this sometime back. Read it, it makes you think...

Nathuram Godse's self-prepared defense in the court

Born in a devotional Brahmin family, I instinctively came to revere Hindu
religion, Hindu history and Hindu culture. I had, therefore, been intensely
proud of Hinduism as a whole. As I grew up I developed a tendency to free
thinking unfettered by any superstitious allegiance to any isms, political
or religious. That is why I worked actively for the eradication of
untouchability and the caste system based on birth alone. I openly joined
anti-caste movements and maintained that all Hindus were of equal status as
to rights, social and religious and should be considered high or low on merit
alone and not through the accident of birth in a particular caste or
profession. I used publicly to take part in organized anti-caste dinners
in which thousands of Hindus, Brahmins, Kshatriyas, Vaisyas, Chamars
and Bhangis participated. We broke the caste rules and dined in the
company of each other.

I have read the speeches and writings of Dadabhai Naoroji, Vivekanand,
Gokhale, Tilak, along with the books of ancient and modern history of
India and some prominent countries like England, France, America and'
Russia. Moreover I studied the tenets of Socialism and Marxism. But above
all I studied very closely whatever Veer Savarkar and Gandhiji had written
and spoken, as to my mind these two ideologies have contributed more to
the moulding of the thought and action of the Indian people during the last
thirty years or so, than any other single factor has done.

All this reading and thinking led me to believe it was my first duty to
serve Hindudom and Hindus both as a patriot and as a world citizen.
To secure the freedom and to safeguard the just interests of some thirty
crores (300 million) of Hindus would automatically constitute the freedom
and the well-being of all India, one fifth of human race. This conviction
led me naturally to devote myself to the Hindu Sanghtanist ideology
and programme, which alone, I came to believe, could win and preserve
the national independence of Hindustan, my Motherland, and enable her to
render true service to humanity as well.

Since the year 1920, that is, after the demise of Lokamanya Tilak,
Gandhiji's influence in the Congress first increased and then became
supreme. His activities for public awakening were phenomenal in their
intensity and were reinforced by the slogan of truth and non-violence
which he paraded ostentatiously before the country. No sensible or
enlightened person could object to those slogans. In fact there is nothing
new or original in them. They are implicit in every constitutional
public movement. But it is nothing but a mere dream if you imagine
that the bulk of mankind is, or can ever become, capable of scrupulous
adherence to these lofty principles in its normal life from day to day.
In fact, hunour, duty and love of one's own kith and kin and country might
often compel us to disregard non-violence and to use force. I could never
conceive that an armed resistance to an aggression is unjust. I would
consider it a religious and moral duty to resist and, if possible, to
overpower such an enemy by use of force. [In the Ramayana] Rama killed
Ravana in a tumultuous fight and relieved Sita. [In the Mahabharata],
Krishna killed Kansa to end his wickedness; and Arjuna had to fight
and slay quite a number of his friends and relations including the
revered Bhishma because the latter was on the side of the aggressor.
It is my firm belief that in dubbing Rama, Krishna and Arjuna as guilty
of violence, the Mahatma betrayed a total ignorance of the springs of
human action.

In more recent history, it was the heroic fight put up by Chhatrapati
Shivaji that first checked and eventually destroyed the Muslim tyranny
in India. It was absolutely essentially for Shivaji to overpower and kill
an aggressive Afzal Khan, failing which he would have lost his own life.
In condemning history's towering warriors like Shivaji, Rana Pratap and
Guru Gobind Singh as misguided patriots, Gandhiji has merely exposed his
self-conceit. He was, paradoxical as it may appear, a violent pacifist
who brought untold calamities on the country in the name of truth and
non-violence, while Rana Pratap, Shivaji and the Guru will remain
enshrined in the hearts of their countrymen for ever for the freedom
they brought to them.

The accumulating provocation of thirty-two years, culminating in his last
pro-Muslim fast, at last goaded me to the conclusion that the existence
of Gandhi should be brought to an end immediately. Gandhi had done very
good in South Africa to uphold the rights and well-being of the Indian
community there. But when he finally returned to India he developed a
subjective mentality under which he alone was to be the final judge of
what was right or wrong. If the country wanted his leadership, it had to
accept his infallibility; if it did not, he would stand aloof from the
Congress and carry on his own way. Against such an attitude there can be
no halfway house. Either Congress had to surrender its will to his and had
to be content with playing second fiddle to all his eccentricity,
whimsicality, metaphysics and primitive vision, or it had to carry on
without him. He alone was the Judge of everyone and every thing; he was
the master brain guiding the civil disobedience movement; no other
could know the technique of that movement. He alone knew when to begin
and when to withdraw it. The movement might succeed or fail, it might
bring untold disaster and political reverses but that could make no
difference to the Mahatma's infallibility. 'A Satyagrahi can never fail'
was his formula for declaring his own infallibility and nobody except
himself knew what a Satyagrahi is.

Thus, the Mahatma became the judge and jury in his own cause. These
childish insanities and obstinacies, coupled with a most severe austerity
of life, ceaseless work and lofty character made Gandhi formidable and
irresistible. Many people thought that his politics were irrational
but they had either to withdraw from the Congress or place their
intelligence at his feet to do with as he liked. In a position of such
absolute irresponsibility Gandhi was guilty of blunder after blunder,
failure after failure, disaster after disaster.

Gandhi's pro-Muslim policy is blatantly in his perverse attitude on
the question of the national language of India. It is quite obvious
that Hindi has the most prior claim to be accepted as the premier
language. In the beginning of his career in India, Gandhi gave a great
impetus to Hindi but as he found that the Muslims did not like it, he
became a champion of what is called Hindustani. Everybody in India
knows that there is no language called Hindustani; it has no grammar; it
has no vocabulary. It is a mere dialect, it is spoken, but not written.
It is a bastard tongue and cross-breed between Hindi and Urdu, and
not even the Mahatma's sophistry could make it popular. But in his
desire to please the Muslims he insisted that Hindustani alone should be
the national language of India. His blind followers, of course,
supported him and the so-called hybrid language began to be used.
The charm and purity of the Hindi language was to be prostituted to
please the Muslims. All his experiments were at the expense of the

From August 1946 onwards the private armies of the Muslim League began
a massacre of the Hindus. The then Viceroy, Lord Wavell, though
distressed at what was happening, would not use his powers under the
Government of India Act of 1935 to prevent the rape, murder and arson.
The Hindu blood began to flow from Bengal to Karachi with some
retaliation by the Hindus. The Interim Government formed in September
was sabotaged by its Muslim League members right from its inception,
but the more they became disloyal and treasonable to the government of
which they were a part, the greater was Gandhi's infatuation for them.
Lord Wavell had to resign as he could not bring about a settlement and
he was succeeded by Lord Mountbatten. King Log was followed by King

The Congress which had boasted of its nationalism and socialism
secretly accepted Pakistan literally at the point of the bayonet and
abjectly surrendered to Jinnah. India was vivisected and one-third of
the Indian territory became foreign land to us from August 15, 1947.
Lord Mountbatten came to be described in Congress circles as the greatest
Viceroy and Governor-General this country ever had. The official date
for handing over power was fixed for June 30, 1948, but
Mountbatten with his ruthless surgery gave us a gift of vivisected
India ten months in advance. This is what Gandhi had achieved after
thirty years of undisputed dictatorship and this is what Congress party
calls 'freedom' and 'peaceful transfer of power'. The Hindu-Muslim
unity bubble was finally burst and a theocratic state was established
with the consent of Nehru and his crowd and they have called 'freedom
won by them with sacrifice' - whose sacrifice? When top leaders of
Congress, with the consent of Gandhi, divided and tore the country -
which we consider a deity of worship - my mind was filled with direful

One of the conditions imposed by Gandhi for his breaking of the fast
unto death related to the mosques in Delhi occupied by the Hindu
refugees. But when Hindus in Pakistan were subjected to violent attacks
he did not so much as utter a single word to protest and censure the
Pakistan Government or the Muslims concerned. Gandhi was shrewd enough
to know that while undertaking a fast unto death, had he imposed for
its break some condition on the Muslims in Pakistan, there would have
been found hardly any Muslims who could have shown some grief if the
fast had ended in his death. It was for this reason that he purposely
avoided imposing any condition on the Muslims. He was fully aware of
from the experience that Jinnah was not at all perturbed or influenced
by his fast and the Muslim League hardly attached any value to the
inner voice of Gandhi.

Gandhi is being referred to as the Father of the Nation. But if that
is so, he had failed his paternal duty inasmuch as he has acted very
treacherously to the nation by his consenting to the partitioning of it.
I stoutly maintain that Gandhi has failed in his duty. He has proved
to be the Father of Pakistan. His inner-voice, his spiritual power and
his doctrine of non-violence of which so much is made of, all crumbled
before Jinnah's iron will and proved to be powerless.

Briefly speaking, I thought to myself and foresaw I shall be totally
ruined, and the only thing I could expect from the people would be
nothing but hatred and that I shall have lost all my honour, even more
valuable than my life, if I were to kill Gandhiji. But at the same time
I felt that the Indian politics in the absence of Gandhiji would surely
be proved practical, able to retaliate, and would be powerful with
armed forces. No doubt, my own future would be totally ruined, but the
nation would be saved from the inroads of Pakistan. People may even
call me and dub me as devoid of any sense or foolish, but the nation
would be free to follow the course founded on the reason which I consider
to be necessary for sound nation-building. After having fully considered
the question, I took the final decision in the matter, but I did not
speak about it to anyone whatsoever. I took courage in both my hands
and I did fire the shots at Gandhiji on 30th January 1948, on the
prayer-grounds of Birla House.

I do say that my shots were fired at the person whose policy and action
had brought rack and ruin and destruction to millions of Hindus.
There was no legal machinery by which such an offender could be
brought to book and for this reason I fired those fatal shots.

I bear no ill will towards anyone individually but I do say that I had
no respect for the present government owing to their policy which was
unfairly favourable towards the Muslims. But at the same time I could
clearly see that the policy was entirely due to the presence of Gandhi.
I have to say with great regret that Prime Minister Nehru quite forgets
that his preachings and deeds are at times at variances with each other
when he talks about India as a secular state in season and out of
season, because it is significant to note that Nehru has played a
leading role in the establishment of the theocratic state of Pakistan,
and his job was made easier by Gandhi's persistent policy of
appeasement towards the Muslims.

I now stand before the court to accept the full share of my responsibility
for what I have done and the judge would, of course, pass against me
such orders of sentence as may be considered proper. But I would like
to add that I do not desire any mercy to be shown to me, nor do I wish
that anyone else should beg for mercy on my behalf. My confidence about
the moral side of my action has not been shaken even by the criticism
levelled against it on all sides. I have no doubt that honest writers of
history will weigh my act and find the true value thereof some day
in future.
I've spent the last 2 days being blissfully lazy. My mother has reminded me several times that my exams arent over, but that hasnt sunk in yet. I'm hoping it will sink in before the exam though. Knowing myself, I'll be up at 3:00 AM on the day of the exam cursing myself for not touching the books before ( 10 days time, where did it go?? ). Actually, I've got so used to doing things in the last minute, I've become quite cocky about my ability to mug up so much information in the last minute. I'll come out from the exam hall, swell with pride and say " 1 semester's worth of education studied in 3 hours and I think I've done well! " Then I'll tell myself " If I can accomplish so much in just 3 hours, I would have really aced the paper had I studied earlier.. I'm a genius! "

I've realised I need to start making some money. Gym is quite expensive and my mom and dad always crib about the expenses. I do have some money saved up in the bank, money I got from writing for a few magazines. Problem is I dont know how to withdraw it :P. Should find out.

Thursday, April 22, 2004

I just finished reading " Bleachers " by John Grisham and I kinda liked the book. My eyes moistened when I read the last few pages. Its about a football coach who is dying and all the chaps who he coached return to town to attend his funeral. They get together and share memories and relive moments. I didnt understand much of the american football jargon but I did end up asking myself some very important questions. The chaps in the book discuss how hard the coach made them work and then I began asking myself " When was the last time you really worked hard for something?"... I didnt really have an answer. My board exams, the TNPCEE exam, my college university exams, the CAT, the XAT...did I really go out and out and slog my ass off? Do I push myself really hard at the gym? Do I give anything my full 100% and the answer And its about time I did something about that.
I went turtle walking wednesday night. It was hmm..interesting. First, Tushar came and picked me up at around 8:30 and said " We arent expected till 10:00. I've got a full tank of gas and the scooter does not belong to me, where do you want to go? ". So we went through every road in Adyar, Annamalipuram and Mylapore.

While we were driving in Mylapore, we saw a girl driving her scooter get rammed by a PTC bus. There was this huge BANG! I got off the bike and ran towards her,certain I was going to see a gruesome mess, Tushar following me closely. I got to the girl. The bike had some structural damages but the girl was unhurt. A small crowd formed around her. She insisted she was okay, got onto the bike and drove away! You ought to have seen the way she rammed into that bus, I thought she was a goner for sure.

After that, we drove rather slowly back to Adyar where we were supposed to meet Tushar's aunt and uncle and also our very own turtle of the class, Chandramohan. Tushar then very unwisely asked me to sit with Chandramohan on his bike. The chap drove like a maniac all the way to Neelankarai beach. We screamed down the highway with Chandramohan clapping his hands as he made me listen to awful rendition of " Manmatha Raasa". I spent the entire journey telling him about the accident but the chap didnt care. We never slowed down.

When we got to Neelankarai, the rear tyre became flat. No puncture shop was open so we left the bike in front of one of those numerous vilas which dot the place.We got to the beach and found our guides were 3 kids who were just out of school and had very long hair. They knew what they were talking about anyway and we commenced our walk. We walked for about 20 minutes after turning back. Turtles werent expected so they asked us to go see the hatchery. The hatchery was a small hut like structure, surrounded on all sides by wooden poles. We went inside and got to see baby turtles hatching. About 12 hatched in front of us and we kept them in a basket. It took some time for them to become active. At around 12:30, we took them to the shore and waited for the waves to carry them away.

We spent the night on the beach and it was so damn cold! With Tushar sleeping on my legs, it was even more uncomfortable. Small crabs kept running over my hands and legs. At 5:00 AM, I finally got sick of it. I kicked him off said it was time to go home. Chandramohan said he'd wait for a friend to come and pick him up, so I took a PTC bus and left. Got back home, had a bath and deposited enough sand to have my own mini beach in the bathroom. Then I went to my room and crashed.

Went to Nungambakkam, Spencer's plaza and the British council.The British Council looks amazing after the makeover. Got back home by 7:00.

I guess I have to start sudying today.

Wednesday, April 21, 2004

My mom put the pillows out to dry on the terrace last afternoon and forgot to collect them later. She remembered at about 11:30 PM and asked me to go fetch them. So, dutiful son that I am, I went upto to the terrace. It was pitch dark and I couldnt see anything. I sort of used my indiglo watch to find the pillows. To my surprise, they were damp. Anyway, I bundled them up and brought them back down. My mom was surpised too. Then suddenly we realised that someone had urinated on them! EEEEEEWWWWW! Dont know which sicko did it. I strongly suspect the kid who lives on the 3'rd floor. If I catch him at it again, I just might throw him off the terrace.

We washed the pillows with surf and lots and lots of dettol and put them out to dry. I dont know if I can use me pillow again :-(. It will never be quite the same between us.

Woke up early this morning and had an excellent back workout at the gym. Came back and had to go with my cousin Prashant to help him vacate his room. We'd hired an old, fit to be scrapped matador van with a rather volatile driver and 4 helpers. The driver was pretty voluble all the way, insisting we pay him more than the Rs.500 we had initially agreed on. We silently refused.

The road after Velachery was terrible and especially after a rather strenuous back workout, I found it even more uncomfortable. Prashant hastened to tell me the road was actually a lot better that it was before.

We got to the house and I helped them load the stuff onto the van. I went back into the room, squatted down to lift a rather heavy iron box and Rriipp! My shorts tore! Luckily Prashant had plenty of shorts around and I gratefully clambered into one of them. We then went to my grandfathers place to unload the bed and then came back home. Prashant had an old electric fan which didnt work and the driver asked him for it. We agreed. Sometime later he asked for the cycle. If the man had his way, we would have returned home with zilch. Anyway, the fan put him in a good mood and he didnt ask for more money.

Had some nice lunch and now I'm due for a nap. I think I'll go the library later. Cricket season at IIT has started, I'm looking forward to bowling :-)

Tuesday, April 20, 2004

PSS was...well easy, but I still feel I've screwed up. Something about the paper..I cant quite put my finger on it. I think its because I wrote so much, I often wondered if I was writing an answer relevant to the question. Another thing is that there were hardly any diagrams to draw. Any madras university student worth his salt knows that what really counts is not what you write, but what you illustrate. The answer paper basically has to look like a comic strip. Lots of coloured pictures and very little dialogue. So if the question states: " Draw Clarke's diagram for two machine systems with and without losses and explain in detail " and you write " My grandmother's neighbour in Coimbatore had a mutt named Clarke, and one day it got sick and threw up on the door step", YOU WILL NOT GET MARKS. Instead you need to DRAW the dog and the puke, use neat arrow marks and label the dog "CLARKE" and label the puke as " CLARKE'S LOSS ", you can be sure of scoring top marks.

Trust me, this method works, because the honourable Fenil Y Shah comes up with the most imaginative of answers and still gets fantastic marks. Here is a sample of how Fenil thinks:

Gnanaprakasam: You know, the transmission and distribution power loss in India is 40% !!. So hypothetically, if we had 100 power stations, 40 of them would be just for losses!

Fenil ( extremely puzzled ): " So why dont we just shut down those 40 plants?? "

Sigh, I know, I know.

Anyway, I have 10 days before my final exam, so I can take it easy for a while.

Sunday, April 18, 2004

A pretty irritating day. Woke up with a headache, tried studying Power System Stability and ended up with a bigger headache. Asked my friend GP to come home and teach me the subject. Asked him to come at 10:00 AM, he turned up at 6:00 PM. Shobha my perennial source of notes, xeroxes and answers took the phone of the hook because she was getting too many calls and couldnt study. Sigh, it made me feel so helpless. I'd gone to her place in the morning to get another ton of xeroxes. She asked me to get a copy for her too and I kinda forgot. She ticked me off proper and cursed herself for trusting me with the job. Felt pretty bad after that. I guess I am a real scatterbrain. If I cant manage taking xeroxes, how can I manage companies? Will an MBA change me?

Also spent the morning discussing future prospects with my dad. Like all such previous conversations, he ended up telling me there was nothing better do than engineering. My dad has a pretty limited view when it comes to careers. Your either an engineer or you are a complete idiot for not pursuing engineering. Thats one reason these conversations go nowhere. I hate attending them because I already know what he's going to say. He's been telling me the same thing for 4 years now. After that my dad will accuse me of avoiding him and not facing reality. Reality sucks. For my dad, engineering is salvation. For me, engineering is well..something I had to go through because everyone else was doing it. My dad is so stubborn, he refuses to believe that people can make their money by other means too. I really dislike the way the dismisses other career options. I hate conversations where the ending has already been fixed.

Well, its late now and I'm drowsy. Have to get up early tommorow.

Saturday, April 17, 2004

UEE wasnt so bad, I think I've done quite well. There was a lot of hue and cry over the 4'th unit, somehow I found it quite easy. I came back home, had lunch and then dozed off.

There is some polishing work going on in the next building and the noise generated is driving me mad! Its loud and relentless and fanstastically annoying. I cant catch a decent nap and it drives me to distraction when I try to study.

My table is littered with xeroxes, actually the entire house is littered with them. Until the exam I usually dont have a single scrap of paper to call notes so I take a helluva lot of xeroxes. Its such a pity, until the exam that xerox is more important than my birth certificate and then after the exam, it becomes completely worthless. The life of a xerox is so ephemeral, it makes me sad:-(

So next I have Power System Stability on tuesday, the mother of all tough papers. I have to go find out what its about. So I shall leave now and search for the xerox.

Friday, April 16, 2004

So the babe of my college is getting married. Sigh. Big Sigh. Yes, I know there are a lot of you out there who would disaprove of this entry but I'm a full blooded male dammit!

The babe ( I wont mention her name for decency's sake) gave me a choclate and popped the bad news. I was sort of taken aback and she laughed at my reaction. 5 minutes after she left I began kicking myself for not having said anything intelligent. I might have reasoned with her and convinced her that girls shouldnt be getting married at 21, it puts too much strain on the admirers hearts.

I noticed the babe in my second year, rather late considering most of my friends began drooling over her from day 1 of the first year. She has the kind of physique that would make your loins ache...and now some other guy gets to play house with her and do all the stuff that married couples do. BIG SIGH.

Now that I think about it, I dont think I've exchanged more that 10 meaningful lines with her. First year, I was too blind to notice her. Second year, one of the girls mistakenly assumed that I wanted her to give me an intro. So she yelled it out across the corridor. My ego plummetted to the very depths of the earth.

Third year, I was able to crack a few jokes, make her laugh a bit. Didnt make a big impression though.

Fourth year, Forgot all about her because I suddenly found someone WAY more interesting.

I guess another reason I forgot about her was that though I was really attracted to her physically, intellectually, the attraction was zilch.

I hope my readers will pardon me for this lecherous entry. I do not mean to compare her with anyone I know. Being a male I just had to write one just this one wistful entry.

Back to UEE now.

Thursday, April 15, 2004

1 day to do 5 units in Utilization of Electrical Energy(UEE). God help me. I'm already getting sick of the long hours spent at the table. So I guess I need a change of mindset. For the next 24 hours, I'm going to pretend UEE is the best thing that ever happened to me. I shall drool over induction furnaces, smile coyly at tractive calculations and orgasm when I study starting and running characteristics of DC and AC drives. Like Rick Bayan, author of " The Cynic's Dictionary " said:

Self Improvement = Self deception for self improvement.
Had my High Voltage Engineering paper today and I have mixed feelings regarding my performance. 4 units went fine, 1 unit I could not do because there wasnt enough freaking time. To make it worse, we were sitting on the 2'nd floor and the wind kept blowing our papers away. My question paper went for a ride around the class every now and then. We closed the windows but it wasnt enough. After a while I got fed up and asked the teacher to shut the door. Something which aint supposed to be done. Poor thing complied but wasnt strong enough to push the door against the wind. A chap had to help her close it. Each time the stupid attender opened the door our papers would go flying. I got so distracted while tying the sheets, I missed one! Later as I was writing the page numbers, I began to wonder why it was so low. Then I looked down and saw another sheet floating aimlessly. That got me more flustered. I finally broke the knot using brute strength and almost tore the paper ( almost ). In the end, I couldnt write the 4th unit. Not that I knew what to write, but I should have written something!

Came back home, had lunch and had a disturbed nap. I had mixed dreams involving cricket and impulse voltage circuits. Somehow they seemed to be connected and I tossed and turned as I fretted over it. Guess its cos I stuffed so much into my head in the last minute, my brain is discharging all the information.

Have to study! only 1 day before the next exam! HALP!!!

Tuesday, April 13, 2004

I was wrong, High Voltage Engineering does bring tears to my eyes, thats because I dont understand a damn thing!!!! So many damn circuits, my mind keeps shutting down saying " Too complicated, I cant remember it all '. Sigh.

I guess I have to take a deep breath, get my mind to slow down and pick up the book again. Wish me luck.

Monday, April 12, 2004

Finished reading Man Woman and Child and it made me cry. Well, not cry..its not like I wet my pillow with tears or something, I just felt them well up. Somehow High Voltage Engineering by Mr.M.V Suryanarayana fails to me move me in the same way :P.

No getting away from it, have to slog tommorow and day after if am to entertain any dreams of getting decent marks.
I've got my hands on JACK STRAIGHT FROM THE GUT and Man Woman and Child by Erich Segal. So I'm happy that I have something good to read. I guess I would never rate Erich Segal as one of my favourite authors but what the heck ! I dont have to strain my brain to read it.

Reading Erich Segal's books is like watching television, you dont really have to think,entertainment ( or time pass ) is spoon fed.

I have to go study now.

Sunday, April 11, 2004

My sis and her husband drove down from Bangalore yesterday. Thats my excuse for not studying both yesterday and today :P. She left this afternoon.

I'm toying with the idea of preparing for the CAT again, this time with full josh. Once I get the hang of DI( data interpretation for the uninformed :P ), I should be fine. The trouble is, what do I do all day? If I sat alone at home the entire day, I would go mad. Myabe I could do a computer course meanwhile, or maybe I could get a job. Dad feels that once I start working, I wont have too much time to prepare. Guess he's right. I would like to pay for all the application forms on my own though. At 1000 bucks a form, it aint cheap.

My next paper is on thursday, wish me luck.

Saturday, April 10, 2004

I've become aware that I need to get a lot of things sorted out with myself, like what I believe in and what I stand for. Once I figure that out, I need to make sure that I dont stray from it. I really need a strong belief system.

I'm a little confused when it comes to God.My parents certainly believe in God but they arent very religious. They visit the temple once a week, but thats about it. Festivals like Deepavai and Pongal are celebrated as usual. I'm not so sure about my stand on God. I cannot take belief in God for granted. I need some proof of his existence. At the same time , I do not want to reject God either. So I'm sort of stuck in between. I sometimes ask myself whether we will find God with science or find him(or her!) with spirituality. Will science and spirituality eventually merge? Will there come a time when scientists the world over say " Damn it! We cant progress any further! We've reached the boundary! "

I wish I understood the significance of a lot of rituals we go through. This thread I wear around my torso, the poonal, why is it so revered? Sometimes I take it off and it keep it in my cupboard because I find it irritating. Then I feel a little guilty and I wear it again. I wish someone would tell me in a logical, rational way why we go through all these rituals.

My classmates believe rather firmly in God. The other day after a group study session, the 8 of us went to Madhya Kailash, a temple nearby. I did almost everything they did, alternately envying them for their profound belief and I'm ashamed to say this, but sometimes sneering at them for their unquestioning attitude towards God.

I do know that the people who succeed are those with very strong belief systems. I really need to evaluate mine.

Friday, April 09, 2004

Couple of things I should have mentioned before:

1) My project sort of worked on the day of the demo. It almost worked on the day before but we ended up scewing the microcontroller. So I had to rush to Mercy Electronics and get a new one. Of the 300 Rs we had remaining from our budget, 269 was spent cos of the micro :-(. All visions of hogging with the money after the project sadly vanished. On the day of the demo, we were all pretty nervous. We blew the fuse 4 times because one of the relays got jammed. After that, the project actually worked! The micro switched off the induction motor and resistive load when we overloaded them :-). The external didnt ask too many questions. My so called viva was limited to " what was your contribution to the project? ". He asked us questions as a group and it was mostly limited to VB programming

2) We had the comprehensive viva exam. Imagine being asked questions from 4 years of engineering! Other than Bharat and Pradeep, both GATE genies could answer well, the rest of us were totally blank! I answered every 3'rd or 4'th question only. I spent most of the time grinning stupidly at the external examiner each time she asked a question.

3) I should have mentioned this a long time back, I participated in my first bodybuilding competition in college :-). I didnt win and there were times when I wondered what I was doing clad in nothing but my undies in front of a large audience. It is an experience though and its taught me a lot.

I went to college and headed straight for the gym where I found some other participants working out. Until then I always thought I had a good physique but when I saw them, I was shocked! They had absolutely amazing bodies! ( No, I'm not gay ). Then the PT sir came and I asked him if we should wear shorts on stage. He gave me a disgusted look and said
" Yenna shorts? Jetti than! ".

As I was warming up, one guy comes up to me and asks " Why didnt you shave your arms and legs? You loose points for body hair! ". Actually,I knew that but I didnt have the guts to shave my legs the day before. Every guy has to have hair on his arms and legs, its a guy thing!!

Then everybody started oiling up, qute disgusting to watch. The stud from the mechanical department actuallly had people rubbing him with oil and colour! I put on some oil but I didnt want to overdo it. Everyone else had an oil bath.

We went on stage wearing nothing but our undies. We even had to pin our numbers to our undies.

We had to go through all the mandatory poses. It was my first time so I flexed too hard and my whole body started shaking with the effort. One mistake I shouldnt have made :-(. It was so exhausting. We had to stay flexed for almost an hour and half! Posing by itself is an exercise!

Luckily no girls were allowed into the auditorium. All my class girls wanted to come to make fun of me but thank god they werent allowed inside! Bharat, GP and Prabhakaran came to watch for a while. I couldnt notice them because I wasnt allowed to wear my glasses. Everything looked kind of blurry.

I didnt win, but I've learnt what areas I have to improve on. My chest and legs need a lot more work. My only consolation was that I had the best biceps and triceps there.

Right now, I have a new pupil, my friend Kumar. He's really skinny and wants to put on muscle. Considering I was super skinny once upon a time, I know just what he feels like. I'm going to make sure he gets a super bod. I've been pushing him hard at the gym for 3 days now.

Whew! Thats one long blog entry! Will write more later.
Yay! I fixed the bug on the comp!!!

I was able to access the net today ( thats the reason I was able to write the previous blog ) and I managed to download a firewall. The moment I ran it, it told me there was a program called NTSYTM.exe trying to access the port. So I blocked Ntsystm and then deleted it. No more internet troubles now :-)

Actually, I still have some trouble with svchost.exe. Not too sure what to do about it. Help anyone?
Well, I dont know whats screwed, my comp or my net connection. Each time I connect, there seems to be a whole lot of information being transferred, the modem lights blink like crazy. However, I'm unable to open any websites, it just takes too long!

In other news, I didnt get into LIBA :-(. Depressing I know. Made even worse by the fact that my friends wont remember it.

Myself : " Sigh, I dont know what to do after BE now."

Moronic Friend : " Dont worry, you'll get into LIBA .

Myself : " I didnt get in you moron! I told you so yesterday! "

Moronic Friend : " Oh yeah, you did. Why didnt you get in??What went wrong?? "

Myself : " Snarl "

Next day

Moronic Friend: " DD, gimme treat."

Myself : " Why? "

Moronic Friend : " Cos you got into LIBA? "

I'm beginning to wonder if theyre doing it on purpose.

Oh, I also had my first paper, Power Generation Systems and it was kinda easy. The next one is only on the 15th so I've been taking it kinda easy.

I'm also very irritated with my servant maids daughter, though I cant tell you why.

Thursday, April 01, 2004

I'm an englipiss boy in a maths physics chemistry world. Sometimes I'm proud to be different and sometimes I curse myself for not displaying conventional Indian intelligence. Why the disparity in my abilities? you might ask, and I think I have an answer.

I've always had a deeper understanding when it came to English. I had a feel of what was going on, I knew why things were happening. The language spoke to me. Words were like pictures. The word " Happy " smiles at me, the word " ugly " really does look ugly. I understood Shakespeare and Wodehouse long before my peers did. I just had a tacit understanding for the subject.

Maths, Physics, Chemistry though, I loathed. Why was something happening? What does Sin Theta and Cos Theta really mean? Why were we given complex problems in calculus and asked to integrate or differentiate? I might get an answer after a series of laborious steps but what does the end product mean? Nobody knew what it meant, nobody told me the underlying reason for carrying out the prescribed steps. I spent my final school years immensely puzzled by dv/dt and ds/dt.Also it sure didnt help that all around me people found the maths, physics and chemistry childs play. I felt incredibly stupid in front of my peers. I decided I was dumb. Only the intelligent people were good at M, P and C. Those who do well in english were the silly ones with good communication skills and no grey matter in their heads.

Slowly however, I'm beginning to change my views. I'm not really dumb, who decides the definition of dumb anyway? I've finally gotten it into my head that I dont have to be good at what others are good at. I'm not conventionally intelligent, I'm rather different and that makes me bloody proud. So what if I'm not an IIT or BITS Pilani graduate? Why do we glorify them? I think society sucks when it comes to labelling people as intelligent or dumb.