Tuesday, May 25, 2010

I know where my towel is...

Douglas Noel Adams is my favourite author, just because of his style of writing. Rarely have I come across any writer/person with such an unbelievable sense of humour combined with a flair for the language. On Towel Day I seek to educate people on the importance of a towel, with an excerpt from the book "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy"...

"A towel, it says, is about the most massively useful thing an interstellar hitchhiker can have. Partly it has great practical value. You can wrap it around you for warmth as you bound across the cold moons of Jaglan Beta; you can lie on it on the brilliant marble-sanded beaches of Santraginus V, inhaling the heady sea vapors; you can sleep under it beneath the stars which shine so redly on the desert world of Kakrafoon; use it to sail a miniraft down the slow heavy River Moth; wet it for use in hand-to-hand-combat; wrap it round your head to ward off noxious fumes or avoid the gaze of the Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal (such a mind-bogglingly stupid animal, it assumes that if you can't see it, it can't see you); you can wave your towel in emergencies as a distress signal, and of course dry yourself off with it if it still seems to be clean enough.

More importantly, a towel has immense psychological value. For some reason, if a strag (strag: non-hitch hiker) discovers that a hitch hiker has his towel with him, he will automatically assume that he is also in possession of a toothbrush, face flannel, soap, tin of biscuits, flask, compass, map, ball of string, gnat spray, wet weather gear, space suit etc., etc. Furthermore, the strag will then happily lend the hitch hiker any of these or a dozen other items that the hitch hiker might accidentally have "lost". What the strag will think is that any man who can hitch the length and breadth of the galaxy, rough it, slum it, struggle against terrible odds, win through, and still knows where his towel is is clearly a man to be reckoned with."

So long Douglas, and thanks for all the fish!

Sunday, April 4, 2010


It has been a long long time since I posted anything. The main reason is not that I didn't have anything to write, it's just plain old JU lyadh [lethargy, for the college-lingo challenged people]. I hardly have a month left of college, so this is a very small incident that highlights the extent of my lethargy, for which I have the great JU culture to thank. This is what the name of my blog means, love of lyadh!!

Normal day, same old same old.. Me sitting in front of my computer. Tisfz asks me for a link to an image I posted on my facebook wall (a hilarious dig at Mafia Wars players) a few days back. This is what went through my mind in the moments that followed...

[ My posture at the computer table will help people visualize this better so I am trying to describe it to the best of my ability...

My left hand on the keyboard, on the left side. My feet spread below the table, one on the floor and one on the rod connecting two legs of the table. My right hand on the mouse. Thumb on the left side, 2 fingers on the body, 2 on the right side.]

-- Haven't bookmarked it.

-- Image does not have a name which I can type in my address bar and it will pop up.

-- Two options
1. google talk chat archive [rejected, gmail not opened, too much effort]
2. facebook wall. [approved, since my facebook page was open].
- Ok i press Ctrl+Tab with my left hand and get my facebook home page into view.

-- This is what it looks like roughly [I have used wiki's facebook 2010 page as a model]. The pointer is as shown.

-- How to get to my wall??

-- The most obvious solution -- 'Me' on the top right ['Me' stands for 'Profile', I use Facebook in Pirate language]

-- But that is too far!! I have to move the mouse diagonally [via path B] when I can do better. Any person who has a vague idea of the basics of geometry will know this.

-- Go straight up, via path A. Less distance. Type GA in the search box. My name will appear. Click on it. VOILA!!! My home page!!

Then the usual followed and I got the link.

The interesting thing about this is how quickly my brain processed the situation. It was almost natural. Path A might have involved more effort on the whole because it involved typing two characters and one more click, but it was the more atractive solution as I only had to move one finger of my right hand while path B meant exercising all 5..

Ironically I have put in a lot of effort to describe this... :P

What do you think?

More weirdness later...

Monday, September 21, 2009

Robin Hood and the Miracle of Nottingham Castle, Part Deux

One basic realization I had about PJs was that the build-up is as important as the punchline. You gotta build up the anticipation, build up the sense of impending doom, as is with most listeners, or should I say, victims! That is why this joke is unique, it's the sequel to the original Robin Hood joke. In case you haven't read it, you can find it here. I would advise you to read the previous one because otherwise there's no point reading this sequel..

So Robin missed the first time. He wasn't happy about it. After all, he was supposed to be one of the best archers in the country, couldn't he hit a guy on a wall?! So he thought, 'I'm not letting this guy go, where are my arrows??'. He was out, so once again the Bengali merry man comes up and offers a female, unmarried arrow to Robin. A quick roll of the eyes later, realizing he had no choice, he aimed at the guy. The previous miss came flashing back to his mind. He was angry. He wanted the sentry dead. He fires. Unfortunately, there was a sudden gust of wind, which blew the arrow way off course. It headed away from where the sentry was standing, towards the outer walls of the castle. There it went, but as fate would have it, there was a guard who had just got up and was on his first round. It hit the guard square on the head but since he was wearing a good helmet, it bounced off, apparently without causing much damage. BUT, from the shock of the arrow hitting the guy's helmet, the guard instantly dies. The arrow, a light supple arrow, which didn't pierce the helmet, killed the guy. The question... HOW?!?!

[ Answer coming up ]

The arrow was female. Tiri.
The arrow was unmarried. Mistiri.
BUT the arrow had no AIM (read M). Istiri.
So if an Istiri comes at you from that far out and hits you on the head, it's not good news man, you have little chance of living.


More weirdness later.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Champions' League

Another season of the UEFA Champions' League gets under way tonight. It's not as fun as it used to be when they showed it on ESPN and Star Sports with the good Sky Sports commentators though. TEN Sports sucks, they bring random people as 'experts' who clearly know less about the technical aspects of the game than you and I. I mean, people with vague claims to fame, like 'John Doe, lives next door to the groundsman of Old Trafford' ... COME ON!! Get some proper people to analyze the game, geez...

Anyway at least they're not gonna show just the English clubs' games this time, much to Agent Zero's surprise who had been fearing that they would show 'something like Liverpool vs Debrencen in stead of something like Real Madrid vs AC Milan'. This is the beauty of the tournament, European superpowers clashing at any stage of the tournament truly meant for Champions.

Funny thing, my mind suddenly drew a comparison with the over-hyped 'Champions Trophy' of cricket coming up in October. WHY is it called the Champions Trophy?! Who are the Champions?! With all due respect, West Indies might have won the World Cup a couple of decades back but they are NO champions. Neither are England, New Zealand, Pakistan and 4 other teams out of the 8. There's no logic behind calling the thing a "Champions Trophy", it makes no sense. Then again, much of what happens in the cricketing world makes no sense. Over-hyped teams, over-paid players, I could go on and on about how cricket is ruining Indian sport especially football and hockey but let's reserve that rant for another post shall we? This one was about THE REAL sport, ie football..

Enjoy the season maties, and to a particular matie, don't get too carried away with Fantasy Football...

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Comptine d'Un Autre Été

This is an impromptu post.

I've been listening to this track for a while now. It's 2 minutes and 19 seconds long. There is many an occassion when I've just put my Windows Media Player on repeat and listened to this track for 20-30 minutes continuously, like now.

It's part of the Amelie soundtrack, by Yann Tiersen. Amelie is the best Romantic movie I've ever seen, definitely in my top 5 list of favourite movies. You should watch it if you haven't already.

The strangely wonderful thing I discovered right now may seem normal to some, weird to others but I find it unbelievably soothing, relaxing, addictive and maybe that's why I've been at it for the last half an hour. It's nearly 1am in the morning and I have an early class the next day.

The thing is, I found a Flash Piano on a site and liked it. This was a while back. Sometimes boredom made me try out songs, tunes and stuff there and I even used it to tune my sitar loads of times. The thing is, I figured out which notes the guy was playing in this song. Knowing those, I tried to add my input to the song. That doesn't mean editing. The song's playing on WMP, I'm playing the flash piano. There is a slight time lag but that doesn't really make much of a difference since I'm not playing the real thing. I've been adding my rhythms and to hear the result is simply awesome. I didn't want to stop, but *sigh* I have to go to sleep now. Maybe I'll listen to the song a couple more times on my mp3 player in bed :)

PS. There's no way to measure how much you like something, a song say but the 'Play Count' column in WMP is a good indicator. Needless to say, this, being my all-time favourite Western music piece, is on the top. The 2nd, 3rd and 4th entries have been played 29, 28 and 26 times since July/August last year. This is the 191st time I'm listening to this track.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Robin Hood and the Miracle of Nottingham Castle

PJs are the order of the day. Well at least they were a while back, dunno about now. In college, I was the joke guy - I used to entertain people during our laboratory classes by narrating one poor joke after another, mostly ones I came across. I use the word 'was' because many people aren't really entertained by it anymore. That sort of helped me to get started making my own. If I may say so myself, I have been successful in creating some unbelievably nauseating and gut-wrenching such 'jokes' and simply love to see the reaction on the faces of the people who realize they just wasted two or three minutes of their life on THAT. Anyway this is perhaps the first real elaborate one I came up with. I think it has a better effect when told in person, but most of my friends already know this and the others I don't think I'll have an opportunity to narrate to in person. So, here goes...

[ NB : Please don't question the logic, as there isn't much of it. Also, you need some basic Bengali vocabulary, just basic. ]


Robin Hood and his merry men are at war with the Sheriff of Nottingham. The war has lasted 2 days. On the dawn of the 3rd day Robin wakes up early and finds the castle in ruins. Another 12 hours of sustained attack will do it for them.

Suddenly he spots a sentry on a turret of the castle and thinks, well I'll take care of this SOB. He prepares his bow, finds that he's out of arrows! One of his merry men, who incidentally was Bengali, steps up and gives him an arrow. Robin thanks him but the Bengali guy stops him and tells him the speciality of the arrow he offered. He says "Robin, this is indeed a very special arrow. It is sacred, we Bengalis consider it a female unmarried arrow and hence it is holy, it's bound to do the trick." Robin goes "WTF?!" But thinks, this guy's from India, they have all these weird traditions and stuff so he doesn't make much of a deal.

He aims and shoots, and lo! he misses! The arrow misses the sentry by a whisker and falls inside the castle. An hour later, the castle is miraculously repaired, all their hard work undone. They lose the war.

How did this happen?

[Scroll down a bit]


The arrow - tir (Bengali arrow)
But it wasn't a tir.. it was female, hence a tiri...
It was unmarried too, hence a miss-tiri.
So if you send a mistiri flying into a castle you can guess what will happen...

Monday, August 10, 2009

10 things which may not seem so but are oddly satisfying.

This is not a tag, I've been meaning to write this ever since I managed to do #4 on this list a week back. No order or anything, the list is numbered randomly.

#1. Getting the last seat on the bus to college.
A really good feeling although I know that I'll get screwed later, since the last seat is always at the rear and getting off the bus when it's full isn't that easy, especially when you are carrying a football in a plastic packet.

#2. Seeing the 'Free Space' of your hard disk increase after burning stuff into a DVD and subsequently deleting that stuff from your HDD.
Well this doesn't seem that odd but when your DVD writer conks out 5-6 times in as many months, trust me, it is a sight to behold. My HDD's capacity is 120GB but there was a point of time a month or two back when I had just 3GB or so free. So you can imagine.
I get a similar feeling when I hear the rusling sound when I empty my recycle bin (in case I forgot the Shift button when I was deleting stuff).

#3. Doing a perfect Neck Stall.
I like showing off by doing tricks with a football but I do look like an ass sometimes because I haven't perfected them. For those who don't know what a Neck stall is, it is simply kicking the ball into the air and catching it on your neck. Awesome feeling when it works perfectly...

I'm not the guy in the picture by the way.

#4. Shelling a boiled egg and obtaining two pieces of the shell.
Normally when you shell a boiled egg you look for a crack and then pick at it, ultimately getting about 100 small fragments of shell. Getting just 2 pieces is hard, try it.

#5. Seeing the football field almost completely dry during the rainy season.
When you hate playing football in the mud as much as I do, you'll understand.

#6. Waking up early in the morning, checking the time and realizing that you can afford to sleep 2-3 hours more.
This is anything but odd and everyone has felt this. I had to include this because I love sleeping and sleep an average of 8-9 hours per day.

#7. Start of the new English Premiership season.
The months of June, July and August can be rough every alternate year as there are no good football matches on TV. Take this year for example. We had a week or two of the Confederations Cup and then, NOTHING. Regular football on weekends (watching at least) has become a necessity in my life. I can't wait for 15th August...

#8. Pouring out just the right amount of Chili Sauce / Tomato Ketchup.
This one is nice. It's basically realizing you had poured out just the right amount of sauce (so that you don't waste anything but also don't have to pour again) as you're having your last piece of French Toast or Chicken Cutlet or anything for that matter.

#9. Receiving an attemped 'missed call'
No one really does this anymore but a few years back people used to bug each other, during a boring class for example, by continously giving 'missed calls' to their friends. I was on the receiving end (pun intended) a number of times and simply loved it when I managed to answer the call, costing the caller a buck and making sure he didn't bug me again, temporarily at least.

#10. Walking on a clean pavement and seeing a person throw rubbish into a proper bin instead of on the pavement.
This may sound silly but when you hate littering as much as I do, it's not. I like to see my city clean. Although the 'non-litterer' is actually doing what he should be doing, it feels good to see people who don't subconsciously make the city dirtier and then complain about it.

Wow I actually finished this in one sitting. Anyway more weirdness later...