Posted in Politics - General

Drilling in the Arctic

Following the candidates and their presidential campaigns are fascinating acts indeed – but in this day and age, I think we get an overdose of the same, because of the multitude of 24 hour news channels and of course, internet. Bloggers like “your truly” add to the congestion there. And with this campaign, it’s no different. The Obama factor is most certainly the fluff and the only factor that keeps this election attractive in spite of all of the above factors.

I can’t understand why more than 60% in this country thinks offshore drilling is a good idea…and does anyone understand that with the magnitude of oil addiction this country has, what comes out of the Alaskan coast may not even be enough for a couple of years? Well, figuratively speaking…

People of the country – Don’t panic and make an erroneous judgement (not even when your 800 year old war veteran and an American hero, who has been in the senate for 250 years & is running for President, tells you it is good)!
Dubya can do that as he is beyond that kind of stuff.

Posted in Miscellaneous

Grilling Weekend…

The weekend tennis that was planned never happened..
Watched “Sillunnu Oru Kadhal” – pretty ok stuff for what I had anticipated….
Hmmm..Did I also mention that I finally ditched Sprint (after almost 10 years) and joined the iPhone bandwagon? Love it!…

Weekend Grilling was adventurous as it involved some bad planning – The worst thing that can happen to you before you start the grilling process happened this past Sunday to me.. – Veggies, Skewers, Veggie dogs and sausages, condiments were all laid out and even the temporary patio furniture was laid out…everyone was ready to pounce on their food. And that’s when I realized I was out of Propane.
7:20 PM – The neighborhood hardware store that refills cylinders was already closed and so was everyone else that I could think of at that point of time, as it was Sunday.
Finally – I go to Home Depot – 2 minutes before they close, grab a cylinder in a quick second – as stupid as I can be – not realizing that they don’t sell filled cylinders inside..and paid for it and drove home in a hurry.
10 minutes later (8:30 PM) – I knew what they mean by thinking through knees when under presssure….
We had to finally give up on our full-fledged grilling venture. Instead, we resorted to the mean & lazy gimmick of using a small Electric grill as everything was already laid out and there was no going back to the kitchen to start from scratch.
By 9:40, we were done.

Sort of a lame grilling venture that certainly could have gone better with proper planning!

Posted in Movies - General

Axiom for future

Happened to watch Wall-E with no expectations – It is a Pixar movie and in the back of my mind, I knew it had to be entertaining – at minimum. Boy! was I glad..

The concept and to create an imaginary future with an imaginary galaxy with all the other stuff – sometimes, you feel inferior to be living with the creative geniuses like those who were involved with creating this picture. After a while, you forget you are watching an animation fair and that too involving lifeless machines and robots. Soon you actually get involved with the love story between “Wall-e” and “Eva” and start rooting for the successful return of humans to the Earth from Axiom…and…it all ends well.
Andrew Stanton has some environmental message too – cleverly interleaved with the whole narration. In the end, the movie is brilliantly entertaining and a tad enlightening….Watch it if you can!
Posted in Miscellaneous

Two Different Incidents – Same Cause

And there we were, trying to take a nice evening stroll from the Santa Monica beach to the Promenade on the Third Street, talking about how much we enjoyed it the last time we were here, in June, 2007…As we entered the Third Street, the first sight was that of a guy with a powerpoint presentation right in the middle of the street, where you normally expect to see street performers juggling their bowling pins or strumming their guitars. It was a bit weird and he certainly drew our attention because the title slide said “$250,000 reward to those who can prove macro-evolution is true”..or something to that effect. And he even had the guts to invite questions. As we started walking towards him, I saw this Stanford looking tall guy, walk up to a microphone, to ask the following: “Have you heard of the Human Genome project?”..and as expected the response was trite. He finally gave up and asked the stubborn man in suit “Do you believe in God?”..”Yes.I do..but only in the God of the Bible”..and this guy in shorts goes..”How can you prove that there is God?”..”Have you met anyone who has seen God?”..and the reply goes “Yes. I have”..That’s when I decided to show my fist to the man in suit and walk away.

And there we were, finally excited and exhausted at the same time to be at the gate, after a long vacation, getting ready to board a red-eye from LAX to DTW. As we approached our gate, we heard some singing – singing that sounded really nice and like a bunch of well-trained professionals..didn’t quite catch the lyrics as some words sounded “Espanol” to me. As we approached, we noticed that there were some 20 odd people squatting around the gate podium in circles, belting out great Christian numbers – “Hallelujah” and what not! I have to admit that their signing was good – real good. But once I found out that the singing is really by a group of so-called faith mongers, I wondered “Even in California!!”..The NWA gate agents finally asked the loud and radical christian group to cut it down as it was getting loud and too distracting for those who were working there..Which is really underplaying the truth, according to me because it was like being at a country fair and not like being at the airport, what with all the loud noise. They moved out and I could hear a woman sitting next to me whisper “Thanks….They should be doing this at their homes”..”Or at a place of worship and not here in a public place”..replied my wife. I smiled.
You know by now, how much both the events have ticked me off. The question I have is (I am pretty sure you don’t have a good reason to deny or disprove my observation, because it is a fact), why is that only one group of people (or one religion or one faith, to be precise) is so radically obsessed with trying to prove Evolution is wrong? Why are they threatened by the possibility that if evolution is indeed true then it could cause doom to their religion and why can’t they strike a balance between their faith and science..accepting both fact and fiction (you know which is which :-)) ? On other hand, why is it that it is the same group that believes in pushing its religion (proselytizing as they say) in a passive yet very aggressive way? How is it different from the accusations that some other radical religious followers get placed on? I am not talking about the difference in the means (terrorized killing versus humanitarian violations) – but the basic philosophy of radical religious following?
Posted in Pictures, Travel

Out in the west…


..they say things can be rough. I have been having one helluva time the past 10 days, roughing it out in my own way and realized how hard it is to be on a “National Lampoon’s Vacation” with your real family. There are 7 of us (including parents and parents-in-law) and we have been doing a lot of California seeing. As much as I enjoyed every minute of the gorgeous vineyard trips, Yosemite Falls hike and even 2 nights in bug ridden Sequoia beds, the pressure is just too much to keep one 4 year old and four 60+ year olds entertained and making sure they are not upset. Just too tired to type a detailed travelogue – hence resorting to a lazy gimmick – Today is the last day and we are taking a red-eye from LAX.

I am glad the vacation is over but I am sure I am going to feel bad about it, in a few days from now!!

Posted in Politics - General

Squatting Elephants Do Lie

Dana Carvey is rambling on and on about Scientology and wondering what kind of weird religion could make even John Travolta look up and go “That is weird!”..As usual, he is at his “let loose” best.
But other than the inspiration he gives me for the title of this blog, what I really want to ramble about is not Scientology but the “scare-tactology” that the Republicans are expected to adopt, more explicitly than ever. Lieberman is beginning to look more and more like Cheney and that’s not a good thing…but he is pitching for McCain like he is a Republican to the right of even the worst rightists. And here we are, spending hours questioning Obama’s patriotism because he does not wear an American flag as his lapel pin. Where else can this happen on this planet earth but here?
Scalia led Supreme Court has lived up to its reputation by passing yet another conservative law – albeit, in as many ambiguous terms as they can!

Dasavatharam continues to intrigue me and I have not had a chance to watch it again. The holography, symbolism and all the talks about people actually discussing the several intertwined plots, makes me want to watch it again.

Jaane Tu Ya Jaane Na and Ada have been blocking my ears for the last few weeks..from letting any other kind of music enter. The jazzy no. and Meherbaan top the list, while Rashid Ali sounds too good in Ishq Ada and Kabhi Kabhi. I don’t think I will go through an arduous process of reviewing these albums, as I need time – but they are Rahman’s and sure enough, he does not disappoint. Talking about music, just got a Belkin Car kit for my iPod and got to see how it performs.

Today marks the end of the first half of the year – Time just flies is as banal as it may sound, but that is the truth. While the squatting elephants may continue to lie for 4 more months, I am hoping the donkeys can kick them in the wrong place, come November.