Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Whos the Farmer?

This is not about FarmVille. This is the story of how i managed to get returns from one of the hazaar plants that tried to take shelter in my pot. I got to harvest Moong dal in my garden (If i can call one pot in my balcony my Garden :-?). The harvesting is happening in a staggered way (even though there is only one plant :D). All the beans do not ripe/dry at the same time. So i have been harvesting one at a time over the past few days. Some pics to enlighten what i am talking about. This was planted by my cousin in the already overcrowded pot a couple of months back (I think). One moong dal grain has given almost 75 moong dal grains :D. It could have been more if we had used better soil and the plant didn't get infected so early.

I have been unsuccessfully waiting for the 6 month old Lychee tree (Plant) to grow. It seems to have forgotten its purpose on this planet. Anyways, may be it didn't like the other 10 plants growing in the same pot ;). Not to forget the 6-8 Chilli plants which were quick to sprout and grow but seem to like the Lychee way of living. Next what? Time to get more pots i guess.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Move V

2009 is drawing to a close. The last 2 weekends will be busy ones. More about them when they become past tense :). I have a long list of movies which are there on my system begging to be watched. I am more interested in watching Avatar/3 Idiots in theatre. Its been ages since I went for a movie in a theatre. Damn costly tickets i say. Its lack of options that drives the ticket sales at the insanely priced Multiplexes. All the crooks have joined hands and have similar pricing patterns. I don't feel that the recession is over but the retail and entertainment industry claims that recession is history. When people say worst is behind them, they should know whether its right behind to come back any moment or its history. I still feel its just standing next to me waiting for a chance >:). I wish Bangalore had more Multiplexes than the number of upcoming states. If these people continue such pricing practices, I don't see an end to the piracy business. I would feel bad to watch a pirated movie if the ticket costs were around 30-40 bucks. At 250-1k per ticket, i am encouraged to go the wrong way. On one hand we have the TV channels which play a new movie for 6 hrs (#@$@#) on the other hand the magnificent Multiplexes. Difficult choice eh? Anyways, whats the point of ranting in my blog :P, i will continue my movie watching in HBO/Star Movies.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Taking Stock

Last weekend, I was supposed to be in Chennai but ended up canceling the trip. Was not really feeling too great to travel for the weekend. Given that i had been out of Bangalore for 6 out of the last 8 weekends (dragging throat infection along spreading across the state borders). Hmm, not that i got rid of the throat infection over the last weekend :). The doc visit didn't seem to help (even though it was ages back). Got a free flu shot from the company. Hopefully that will prevent complications in the current Flu season.
Weekends in Bangalore remind of the innumerable pending chores. Property tax was one of them and it was supposed to be paid by July this year. "Better late than never" being my motto for life, i decided to drive (ride!!) to the BBMP setup near my house. The moment i entered in one fellow was interested to fill up the Tax form for me (Damn, i always end up with the Kannada form). Lucky me, the officer who sells the forms had gone for pre-lunch meal and i had to wait for half an hour. In the meantime, i kept disturbing the other officers(/agents??) sitting there to find out if i could get the form and get going. It took me 4 months to visit this office which is 3 KM from my home and now, it looked like further delay was inevitable. Phew, somebody rightfully said "You don't get it until you sweat it out". Yeah right. Just when I was fooling around, I lost the lonely chair which i had reserved for myself. Wonder what happens to people when they step into govt offices. They seem to lose their integrity. I just stood up and one supposedly "well-educated" lady snatched the chair and sat on it. I didn't want to create a fuss about it. Move on buddy, its just a chair!!! After losing the chair, I lost interest in waiting for the ever punctual and duty conscious officer and decided to leave. Hopefully next weekend or some other weekend in the future will be a better one. Near the entrance, I saw a couple of Software folks talking about paying taxes online and were looking confused. I pinged one of them and asked him about online payment. He said he didnt take a chance and indicated that one of his friend's dog's friend's owner's relative's cousin had tried it and it was very simple but it had some issues. I was happy to hear that people have tested the site and rushed back home. I switched on my machine and decided to explore the tech provided by the Govt body (BBMP). Of course, the first thing you do when you are entering unexplored territory is "google search". There are lot of nice angels who curse, swear and sometimes praise the available facilities on the web. The site from where the Online filing and payment is supposed to be done is I was not too keen to do online transactions via this "nameless" site. After reading a couple of blog posts and articles, i decided to give it a shot. The only input which i needed to enter was the previous year's application number and viola, the new form filled with all the necessary details and amount due shows up. At every stage of the process i was printing out the page to pdf file for reference. You never know when the dark angel attacks. AS usual, clever me, was trying to pay taxes online without credit card in vicinity. After hunting down the Key to life, i completed the payment procedure smoothly. I saved some 50-100 bucks by not letting some agent fill the form and do some magic math which i never understood. I vaguely remember somebody telling me that you end paying more online because the calculations are accurate ;). I would prefer paying the govt rather than some fella who does magic. Anyways, given the process is so simple, i would advise people to follow this route rather than standing at the govt office's door waiting for your turn and the irritating mid-meal and mid-snack breaks taken by people there. Way to go BBMP. I am very appreciative for this feature. I guess, we just need to open our eyes to such technological advancements made by the govt and start utilizing them. (Else the govt may decide to stop such advancements for poor response). "Trust in Govt" eh ?
Not sure how many more chores are left.
Let me count:
1. Need to call the Electrician.
2. Need to call the Plumber.
3. Need to call the Carpenter.
4. Bike servicing
5. Address change for Demat
6. Bike Tyre change
and many more :(

Huh.... somebody said haircut !!!

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Back on Rolls, Rock n Roll

Good to be back on the payroll of the company. I am glad and very happy that it happened. Better late than never ;). End-of-my-smallest-post :D

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Mutual Funds - Entry Load & Exit Load

I have listed down the Entry Loads charged by the various distributors (for MFs):


Amount in INR Transaction Fee**
Upto 2 Crs 2%
From 2 – 5 Crs 1.5%
5 Crs & above 1%
Equity Arbitrage Funds Nil
Debt Nil
MIP 0.5%
Liquid Nil
On top of it 10.3% service tax will be levied.

For redemption :
An exit load @ 2.25% has been applied on the NAV by the Fund House.

2. ICICIDirect
If MF holdings in ICICIDirect is less than 8 lakhs
SIPs : Rs 30 or 1.5% Whichever is lower
Lumpsum: Rs 100

On top of it 10.3% service tax will be levied.

If MF holdings in ICICIDirect is greater than 8 Lakhs then charges are NIL.

Not sure if the charges are applicable for Liquid/Debt funds. Citibank's response addressed this.

3. Kotak Securities
No charges levied.

Information has been taken from respective sites or emails sent by the respective distributors.

Friday, July 31, 2009

Tides are changing

Indeed. Yesterday was the first glimpse of my attitude changing. I was an emotional investor who believed that no-matter-what, the stocks in which i invest will surely give me returns when i needed. All i did was buy and buy and buy. But never sell. I didn't want to pay the govt 10% (from this year its 15%) captial gains tax by selling profit. For the all greedy investors, paying off the 10% tax is more logical than hold on for 1 year and lose 50% principal. The Stock market is moving because of the FIIs and the traders. Investors are the ones who are the lame ducks in the market. I held on to my stocks when in Jan 2008 the markets peaked . Even though the profits were there, i didn't cash. I wanted to be an investor who stayed invested during bad times than exiting. I paid heavy price. All i learnt was, get what you want and then throw the bledy stocks. As long as you are selling it for profit, you should be happy. I did chuck out some shares (which went on to gain a little at the end of trading :D).
There are many more areas where my attitude is simple and reasonable, i think it needs to change. Time to cash in. I am sick of making a fool out of myself by giving silly reasons.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Quarter and a one

One more year completed. It was a very eventful year. Too many things happened in the last one year and am happy that it happened that way :). Last week also marked the completion of four years in bangalore and also as an engineer. Same kinda jeans, same kinda Tees, but different attitude. My day was made special by my family, cousins and friends. It was special in a different way too. Will cherish it for a long time to come. Thank you all those who remembered, and advance thank you for those who will remember it next year ;). I always had the bad habit of turning off alerts in social networking sites, end of the day, its special only if someone remembers and is not reminded. I love it that way :D.

Monday, June 15, 2009

First Drive

This post is a long pending one. 2 more drives have been completed before the post :D.
Mid June, Asko and I decided to get some driving practice(read learn). We decided to drive to Mysore. The timing was critical since our next plan was Chennai and we didn't want to go slower than the trains.

We started from home at around 10 AM on a fine sunday morning. We got delayed because we thought 9 AM was too late to start. It was my turn first. I took it slow and didn't want to get the car scratched (I guess in highways you don't get to scratch :P). The speed was amazing, 90 minutes into the drive and we were 50 KM from home. Thats when Asko decided, enough is enough. At this rate we would complete the round trip only by midnight. He took to the wheels and then went berserk. We were cruising at around 90k. The lost time was being recovered. The scenery around was pretty much okay. We didn't try too many stunts, we had to respect our first highway drive. People driving in the Highways seemed much sensible than the ones back in the city. I meant, people are in complete senses when driving on a highway, may be the traffic jams are the catalysts contributing to the city driving characteristics. Or may be people know that highways typically don't give you a second chance ;). Either way, except for one or two pesky drivers, the others were decent.

The only problem was that we had to cut through 3-4 towns and they had some mountains built on roads. The road sign said speed breaker but they were huge and didn't look like one. This was dampening our already battered avg speed. Time to switch driving seats again. Taking cue from Asko, i decided to keep up the pace and we were heading in decent avg speed. After one more round of driver switching we reached mysore in just 4 hrs (:-O). Thats 40K average. This was an insult to the capability(and capacity) of the car. But we were not too perturbed by the stats (we had no choice). After getting lost in the Mysore Town (was it a city?), we reached our destination. The good part was that we didn't have any pitstops for input/output. This saves a lot of time.

It was time to return back home. We started around 6 PM (add a few more mins) and were determined to break the 4 hr record (record!! :-?). The start was pretty good and we were lapping the Ks in no time. Alas, we didn't know about the damned traffic on the Mysore-Bangalore highways every weekend :(. It was jam packed and we were crawling. At one point of time, it took us 30 mins to cover 3K. Thats when we stopped chasing the 4 hr target and decided that fate was against us. The Jam ended after we crossed the bottle neck bridge (some construction was going on). We were back to our highway speeds again. It was dark and we dropped atleast 20K speed. We were surprised to enter the city limits in less than 3.5 hrs. We decided to chill and took a pitstop. By the time we reached home, it was 10+. Hmmm, 4 hrs again. Big deal. Good night!

oh, did somebody say that max speed of a car in the first month should be maintained below 50k ? We thought it was Avg 50k.

First Drive: 14th June, 2009
Destination: Mysore
Distance: To 160+ KM/ Fro 160+ KM
Time : ~4 hr / ~4 hr

[Started this post on 15th June, but completed & published in sept.]

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Test Drive

The first time i drove a car, i felt horrible (May be 6 years back). Its crap man. It was so irritating to forget which gear i was in. Sometimes i would accidentally press the brake instead of the clutch. I also remember bending down and searching for the brake when the car was moving at 60 kmph. Seriously, i need a car like the one shown in Flintstones. After my exploits with the bike without a DL in college days, it was the turn of the car. Most of the car lessons i got was from my friends in college. At home, my cousins and bro would occasionally take the Goa registered car for a drive on Chennai roads. After all the "Just-Missed" driving, i decided to get a DL so that insurance can be claimed in case of bang. I love the RTOs, i got my DL without giving the Driving Test >:). Time passed and i forgot that i had a DL for a car, may be i forgot how to drive too. I had an opportunity to get behind the wheel in my Bro's marriage. Of course, as expected i made a mark in atleast 2 cars :D. I realized that when in reverse gear, we need not reverse our sense. In the hindsight, it was seriously funny.

Last weekend was very interesting. My friend bought a car. Since he did not have a DL, we decided that i would drive the car home from the showroom (!!! Are we mad ??). I was going to get behind the wheel after 3.5 years. Wow, Asko, you had the guts to give me the new car :D. Since i was out of practice (tell me about it, i need to know driving before i can practice), i decided to take a Test Drive. The showroom guy arranged for a Test Drive of Maruti Ritz (Diesel). It was the closest to the Swift Diesel that Asko bought. So it made perfect sense to check what i can do to a new car. We all sat in the car and managed to push the showroom guy to the backseat. He assumed I knew driving and was interested in buying Ritz. But the moment the car stalled in the first gear, the only thing he asked was "Sir, do you have a DL?". Of course, I have. But that doesn't mean i can drive :D. After a cautious start, i could find the clutch/brake/accelerator with my legs without using the eyes. That was a good enough start and after a few Km of drive i was satisfied that i could move the four-wheeled thingy without much incidents (Oh, really ?). Not to mention the stalling of the car again at the entrance (it was a slope), when the showroom guy insisted that he can take over the reins from me. Now to do some experiments with the new thingy.

We all got into the brand new Swift VDi, and decided to burn some rubber. It was a long wait to ensure that i did not bump into any of the cars inside the showroom. When i turn the ignition, some idiot would come and stop right in front of me, i would coolly turn off the engine and wait for them to move off. After some 10 mins, my friends decided that we will not be moving from the place if i decide to operate in such a safe manner. Then we decided to forget that i was driving a new car. That really helped. Slow and steady, we were on the ORR, broad road with lots of over speeding buggers around. There was one other swift which desperately wanted to overtake us. Honk! Honk Honk!!!, man. I was already at 60+ and didn't want to go beyond that because i knew that 2 KM in front of me there are a bunch of uniform guys waiting with a speed gun. The other swift wanted to show us its power and zoomed past us at more than 90 kmph. All i could do was sit there and watch the swift swiftly get into the arms of the hungry policemen >:). By the way, it was being driven by a lady :D (Male chauvinist me). Knowledge is power, its true. Had i not known about the police fellas, i would have touched 80+, which i anyways did after crossing them ;). I was not rash, its just that i didn't realize the speed. On the bike, you can feel the wind and you feel you are going fast. In a car, you just press the gas pedal (for my american friends who get confused if i say accelerator :D ), and zoom you go. It doesn't matter if its 80/100/120 or whatever rubbish. As long as you can get it to stop on time. Same applies for the bike but controlling a bike in high speeds is not easy. I am not getting into the topic of slippery roads and blah blah. where was i :-?, we cruised to our home and then both of us together clocked more than 100 KM over the weekend. I managed to scare a couple of them when they were waiting behind in the queue on a slope. I loved their expressions when the car moved backwards. As long as it doesn't touch them, they are happy, i am happy. Signing off. Vroom Vroooooooom.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Gone with the wind

Is it just me?

June 2001: swimming+skating. One month affair. >:)
Mar/Apr 2003: Website designing. few months may be :-?
June 2003: Gymming, hmmm, i dont remember a thingy.
May 2005: I started blogging. I stopped blogging (http://amevil.blogspot.com/)
Oct 2007: Re-Started Blogging. Stopped Blogging again !!! ( Current one)
Oct 2007: Started playing Tennis. By december, my love for tennis vanished
Feb 2008: Inline Skating. No Comments
May 2008: Running + Gym. By Sep 2008, it was curtains
Jan 2009: Restarted Blogging. Current status is not encouraging :).
Mar 2009: Cycling to office. After 6 weeks break, restarted again last week :D

Just a few of them which i remember. I might have missed a lots of things in the above list.
Wonder how many more hobbies to be developed and left half way through. Probably learning a foreign language next ;). No comments on Investing because its not my hobby :P. Did i forget cooking :-? ...

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Jagore, then what?

It was a pleasant and quiet morning. I woke up around 9 AM, i was feeling powerful but still powerless. It was the D-Day when the citizens of this wonderful nation would stand up and get their finger marked. Most of the companies in bangalore had declared a holiday, so that the 80% odd unregistered voters could watch IPL matches and have a blast. I suspect some of them might have taken the friday off and extended it for a wonderful loooong weekend.

Surpringly, yours truly is a registered voter and this is the 2nd time that he would be casting his vote. Of course, I did cast my vote (don't expect me to reveal the candidate, as if u care :P). I pulled up my sleeves (damn, i wear only Half sleeve Tees), decided that i will use my right to vote and make a mark in this elections. Given the fact that many like minded people are not voting, i didn't bother to go through the profile of all candidates. No point voting for some independent unless there are many people who would evaluate like you and vote for him. So i decided to vote for one of the Big 2. (I am not a fan of the 3rd Front and to me the 3rd front represents Doom of India). After some thought, i voted for one of them and i am not too emotional about the results.
The most interesting parts of the 2 elections where 'i exercised my right to vote':
1. The polling booth where i vote has been empty in both the occasions. I just walked in, cast my vote instantly. No Queues, No Hungama; just vote and get marked.
2. There is a rule that the Party workers cannot put their tents in 100m/200m radius from the polling booths. So they choose the most convenient spot which is allowed by law and put a nice little tent there. The innocent (read ignorant) citizens believe that they are the guiding force and park their vehicles all around their tents and rush to them. After they confirm that their names are there in the list, they rush to the polling booth by walk. Why all this drama? Illiterates know better i say.

Turnout at the constituency where i voted was 45%. This means 45% of the registered voters voted. Probably the number of registered voters would be around 50-60% (my guess) of the actual population which in turn means that only around 25% of the eligible voters cast votes this time around. Even with so many awareness programmes running around i the voter turnout didn't increase very significantly. I was able to get lots of information about each of the candidates who were contesting. Many of them commpained that they couldn't get enrolled in the lsit easily even though they tried hard. I have no choice but to pity on them. I remember being stranded in the 2004 elections. The corporation office was in the same lane as my house and the polling booth was next door, still my name was not in the list. Thats the irony. Some di$%head is trying to apply his intelligence to manage the voter's list i guess (or its just another bug in the software)

The day online registration and online voting come into play, the elections are going to be kick ass. I am eagerly waiting for that day. For heavens sake, i transfer all my money online, so why shouldn't i be allowed to vote online.

If 3rd Front comes to power, i better sell all my investments in equities. And for all those so-called-literates who voted for 3rd Front, you have made the mistake of ur life. Election commission and other authorities should bring a 2 party rule to this country. I just hope the Big 2 individually win 'atleast' 55% of the seats. I don't care which one of them gets more. I can list down 'n' things here but whats the use if i just list it in my blog? Someday, when i am really irritated and lose all my patience towards this dirty game of coalitions, i might do something ( may beee ).

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Be Kind, Rewind

Tring Tring (Of course, I am not going to type the junk tunes that my reliance box gives out), rang my mobile phone; I was on my way to Agra from chennai (looong train journey); the number was different and it seemed like an ISD number. I wondered who this could be, i decided to pick the call (Given that i was looking out for a job then and was optimistic, he he).  It was my school friend. It was her marriage and she invited me. I was touched. It has been almost 8 long years since i was in touch with most of my school mates. I was really happy. I was happy to know that she was trying to reach out to each of our batchmates and invite them personally to her marriage. You don't come across such people these days, do you? 

I managed to attend her reception this long weekend. It was very nostalgic to see my high school classmates. I had a chance to interact with them again. I don't know whether i was snobbish (of course, "Amrit" was Snobbish) or just a jerk in school (and possibly, a jerk too). I never interacted too much with girls back then (okay, don't fall off ur chairs and start laughing).  I don't intend to reason out why i was like that! Anyways, i did get to interact with some of them again. I hope they don't see me as the same snobbish guy now ;).  Some of them had kids and i was like wow. Everyone had taken new roles in life, and were really responsible and mature.  It was a wonderful sight.  Thanks to her marriage that i was able to re-connect with my friends again. A very sweet gesture indeed.

There are plans to have a Re-Union in 2011 (10 years since we left the school). I hope more friends turn out for that event. No one stops anyone from meeting before that anyways. Sometimes you wonder how difficult it is to pick up your phone and reach out to your friends or just drop a "Hi" mail ... 

[One more sentibega blog, and everyone will boycott ur blog forever!!! ] 

Thursday, March 19, 2009

25 Random things

What facebook can do to you!!

1. I don't know why i am on this planet. I am just another insignificant soul.
2. I forgive anyone and everyone because i forget why i was angry on them.
3. My memory is weak and i don't remember names very easily.
4. I love my bike, maggi, ice creams, cooking and numbers
5. I can play video/computer games non-stop for long hours
6. I love my family and friends. They believe in my abilities more than i do :D
7. I can be boring, exciting, caring, loving, irritating, ignoring, annoying, etc at the same time
8. I react differently to the same thing under exactly same conditions.
9. I believe random decisions are sweeter than planned ones
10. My advises are usually sarcastic and would never make any sense. Advising is sin!
11. I like to take my decisions. Tossing a coin usually assists me.
12. I think my knowledge on finance is slightly better than other ppl in my field. Though most of my investments are in red ;)
13. I want to be a bad man. Villains get to be happy for 99% of their life.
14. If i would have failed in school, i would have become a fugitive. You never know what will happen if i lose my job one more time. Being a corrupt govt officer is also an option.
15. I am a pessimist. Pessimism brings the best out of you. if u can get hit, u will get hit. (oh, was that murphy's law?)
16. Half my teeth are gone, others are waiting for their turn.
17. Senseless movies are better than sensible ones. Movies are for entertainment not for reality bites.
18. I don't have dressing sense and can never become a marketing or sales guy.
19. People remember me for my stupid (& insane) -{ thoughts, words, actions }.
20. In my presence, others also tend to become senseless, evil and insane.
21. I try to keep things simple and brief.
22. I contradict myself. I am prejudiced. I don't take anything at face value.
23. My English grammar sucks big time and i am dumber than what people think of me.
24. I don't plan, it just happens and later i forget that it happened.
25. I have not reviewed or edited what i wrote above and will not edit it in the future. As usual!
0.a. life seems better only after bad things have happened, you don't appreciate life if everything is cheesy.
0.b. I wrote this because i have been tagged by so many of my friends, i have internet connection, lots of time to waste and make sure others will soon follow suit. This weirdly numbered points are there to point out that i am a CS guy and i am bad at it.

Saturday, February 28, 2009

The Cyclist

If each and every soul (who is physically fit or wants to be physically fit) staying in the radius of 5-?? KM from their work place decide to shift to cycles from the ever-polluting-fuel-hogging-monsters then the world might suffer a bit less. Over the past couple of decades the climatic conditions seem to have changed a lot. In fact, don't blame me if you get sick by breathing in the 21st century air when cycling. May be our bodies are getting used to the air or may be the cars are equipped with better quality ACs.

When i shifted to bangalore in June 2005, it was a very cold place where people didn't know what summer was. Of course, it was polluted even then. Many more people claim that it was much better a decade back. The software industry started growing in the garden city and along with it the real estate business. It was like a chain reaction. One industry leading to the development of the other and over a period of time anything and everything was overvalued. Bangalore became the center of India. Anything above it was North India and below South India. IT industry was blamed for the ever-rising-living-costs. Nobody wanted to mention the house owners who were never satisfied with the earthly rentals @#$@#$!!! How did i forget the govt which never wants to improve the infrastructure? Okay, let me not get into politics now. Where was i :-? ...

Hmmm ... pollution. Why are the roads so dirty and air so polluted? Ever polluting overloaded trucks, shady autos, buses, old vehicles or any other thing that coughs out smoke. I guess the problem is more severe and basic than what it seems like. Every vehicle that runs on the road leave its mark, some in the form of sand and some in garbage. These spills are the ones that mostly spoil the roads and add to it the digging woes, we get apna very own sexy roads - too curvy :P. Somebody dig a grave for these diggers i say. The most senseless activities are undertaken by the authorities in ALL parts of our country. How do you expect to have a clean and green city/country if basics are violated. Only a handful of cities are clean in India. I can preach lots more, but i am tired of typing now.

Why have i moved on to a cycle? For being green, saving fuel and feel happy? Just felt like, no particular love for environment ;). I never harmed it anyways :D

I amaze myself. I start with some title and end up writing about something else. Time to write a story for apna bollywood.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Shakes & Creams

August, 1992. Family of four shifted to the City of Sun and beaches (Sweat goes unsaid). The 2 kids, the naughtiest ever, were excited to be in the city. This became their land of dreams. All that the 9-10 year olds can think about is Chocolates and Ice Cream. Nothing less, nothing more. Father, being the sweetest and not realizing what more the kids can demand, took the family to a place where only Ice Creams & Milk Shakes were served. After living in a town for most part of their chotu lives, the kids were amazed that the whole joint was specifically meant only for ICE CREAMS!!! The kids were over the moon (dreaming about 2 cones with double scoops in both the hands and four flavors). They were confused and were not able to decide on what to order. After a stringent round of elimination process from the menu ("inky, pinky, ponky..." ), 2 items were selected. Mouth was watering, eyes were glowing. The wait for the biggest sundae of their lives was over. After a long wait, the waiter had placed the sundaes on the table. The kids sneaked over the table and looked into the eyes of their parents to check if they would scold them if they grabbed the sundae. After seeing the re-assuring smile, the kids jumped on their seats and started gobbling the goodies. The older one was able to finish his sundae, the younger one was hardly able to finish half of it. Father knew that the small one is going to gift away most part of his sundae to him (as usual). The small boy had actually consumed more than expected. Everyone was surprised. That was the best ice cream the boy ever had in his life. This became a weekly routine for the kids for long time to come.

As the years passed by, kids became boys, boys became teens, teens became adolescents, then adults, but nothing much changed in the Ice Cream front. Weekly affair to partying to treats to get together to dates to hang outs, anything and everything, this was the place for the boys and girls of the locality (and also many more souls wandering around the world). This place, my dear readers, is/was the "Shakes & Creams" on top of the Adyar bakery in Chennai. The Waiters ensured that the appetite of the customers hit alarming levels before they decide to serve the ice creams.

Shakes & Creams started as an ice cream only joint and later added lots of unnecessary items to its menu. The quality of ice creams and other new dishes was on a steep decline around 2004-05. The place which was over crowded and the most happening place in the locality slowly became the most horrible place around. With the rise of CCD's and Pizza culture, S&C was running out of time and business steadily. Alas, the once loyal kids never turned up to this place. Not even to remember the good old times. The memories were there in their hearts but the place just didn't remind them of the good times. The kids had no idea what might happen to this place. They moved on with their lives and shifted out of the city one fine day.

Time just flies, many years passed (not too many), the younger one came to the city to visit his family. He noticed that the S&C was renovated and it was appealing for one last chance before totally dumping it from the must-go places in town. Given that the relationship with the place is long standing than most of the friendships, he decided to give it a try, the last chance to prove itself.

Funny isn't it, the same kid for whom the place was a heaven during childhood was pleading him to return for one last time before ignoring it for eternity. In life, we start ignoring the once important-caring-loving people and fail to give them one last chance. Wonder how many such important-caring-loving people are still waiting for their loved little ones to give just one missed call. Move-on-man attitude has not done good to the youngsters, they are just moving away but not moving on anyways :). The generation gap between the parents and kids seems to be miles apart. May be the G-gap between our parents and grand parents was not too much. The rise of technology and uncertainty in life has surely led to this revolution (being optimistic to call that a revolution!! Shame on me).

The last chance was given to S&C. It turned out to be one helluva treat. He was shocked to see that the quality of ice cream served was same as the one he ate for the first time. The pricing, quality and quantity were amazing and nobody in this universe will be able to match this. Down with the CCDs and other Cafe joints where one has to pay a fortune for a sip of coffee and a feel of ice cream.

Sorry for the lover boys/girls, this is no longer a place suited for dating. You will be sitting right across a super mart entrance =). Good times guaranteed for the family and friends who just want to chill out and bite the dust.. oops .. ice creams.

Need i mention that i was the younger kid (of course, my brother being the older one). Am loving it! One more time ! (Wait till McD sues me)

Tuesday, February 3, 2009


Evolution of human species is a very interesting topic. It is said that as the years pass by Human brain evolves and becomes more intelligent and humane. However, there is one example right below which shows how an angel slowly transitions to evil :D.






Friday, January 16, 2009

Duplicate RC book

Jan 1st 2007, i made a resolution that i will get my duplicate RC made and today, Jan 16th 2009, i have applied for it :). I want to list out the TODOs to get a duplicate RC book so that people will be able to get it done easily without too much of a hassle (i can't help you if you are good for nothing).

Simple Advise:
1. Do not get in contact with the Middle Men. RTO guys are straight forward and no one takes a bribe to get stuff done (atleast they won't ask for one). Kudos to Bangalore Central RTO employees.
2. Working hours for the Assistant RTO is 10:00 to 13:30 hrs. Ensure that you are not caught off guard.
3. The RTO officials believe in a step by step procedure and they don't like over smart people asking too many questions at the same time. You will be given info about the current step and not the future steps.

Necessary Documents:
1. Police Complaint Challan
2. Affidavit requesting for Duplicate RC book
3. Photo ID proof
4. Address proof (In case address change is required)
5. Form 26 (Duplicate RC book)
6. Form 33 (Change of Address)
7. Copy of Motor Insurance (which is not expired, of course)
8. Copy of old RC book/ Road Tax paper (not necessary but handy doc)
(In case your vehicle is taken on loan then you might need to get approval from the corresponding banks on the form 26).

Stepwise actions:
1. Go to the nearest police station (preferably the station in your locality or RTO's locality). You have to handover a letter addressed to the Sub Inspector of police requesting application for duplicate RC book due to the loss of original one. The sub inspector of police will issue a challan with your name and a statement which says "RC Book Missing". This challan has to be attached with the form 26.
[ The police guy was quick and gave it to me in no time. The only bad part was that he requested for INR 100. As far as i know, we need not pay the police. Since i believe that the police officers in India are underpaid, i didn't make too much of a noise and shelled out the bucks. I hope the govt realizes the importance of paying the security guys nicely. This will eliminate corruption to a great extent.]
2. Get the Affidavit made on a INR 20 Stamp paper. There will atleast be a single shop near the RTO office which will be supplying such affidavits. You need to get your details printed on that in the same shop. [The shop guy charged me INR 120 to get it done. He gave me a useless bill when i demanded for one]
3. Collect form 26 and form 33 from the RTO reception (or ask some police guy/RTO official). Fill the forms appropriately and strike off the sections which are not applicable. The owner of the vehicle should be signing the forms.
4. Buy a simple file which will hold your papers(called as the RTO file in the nearby stationery shops). The papers can either be stapled or tied using a tag and should be attached to the file. It will be good to have the details like Name, Registration Number and the reason written on top of the file. (Give your mobile and phone numbers generously)
5. Goto the Superintendent of RTO and submit your file to him/her. He/She will verify the documents and forms. In case everything is fine, he will sign on the forms with the date. You will be sent to the ARTO.
6. ARTO will verify your ID proof (original ID card) and attest on the form.
7. Pay the fees at the cashier (INR 35 for form 26 and INR 20 for form 33).
8. Take back the file with the cash receipts attached to the Superintendent. He/She will sign the receipts too.
9. Submit the file to the reception or the person who collects the files (please find out from the RTO)
10. The person will hand out a chit with a date for receiving the updated document(s). Retain the slip carefully and make sure you remember the request number written on the chit (Just in case).

Thus, you have completed the procedure for applying for a duplicate copy of your RC book and also have the address on your RC book changed. I will update on how we receive the duplicate copy. I got a date of 27th Jan, 2009.

I have written the steps which i had to go through. Optimization may vary depending on how badly you fill the forms and act on your D day ;).


Collected my duplicate RC book on 30th Jan. No trouble in getting it done. The superintendent had to sign in few places, the other guy had to put the seal all over the RC book. You need to be patient as well as active to get your work done.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Coveted 24

New year, new day, new resolutions. It is the time of the year when one tries to fool oneself and world with the useless resolutions. I didnt make a resolution at the strike of the 0th hour of this year. But, as the hours passed by, i thought i should blog. I don't know what i want to achieve by blogging. May be, i don't want to achieve anything by blogging. This is just an outlet, to let my happiness, sadness, frustration, anger, and may be knowledge take shape of words.

I have given myself the target of 24 blogposts (excluding this blog) for this year. I want to see if i can learn things about atleast 10 varied topics and write some blog entries on those. I am not going to set limitations on the number of entries nor the kind of entries. If by the end of this year, i do not have 24 blog entries then doomsday has come ;). Come on. I am just another jerk with just another resolution.

Friday, January 2, 2009

Shut up and Dance

Dance(from French danser, perhaps from Frankish) is an art form that generally refers to movement of the body, usually rhythmic and to music, used as a form of expression, social interaction or presented in a spiritual or performance setting. That's how wiki has defined it.

Being a person who has no music sense, dancing is something which i cannot master in. Its all about rhythm and synchronization. Whenever i attempt to dance, i feel i have two left feet, a stiff back and a zombie head. With such a wonderful combination, dancing is something which is/was totally out of my capacity. I do dance (if i could call it that way) in parties where there are losers who are worse than me (:-O, worse than me, then its not a party). I always wanted to dance like Hrithik.. sob sob. Sapne hazaar, lekin bekaar.

Guys are generally impressed by girls who dance well (Remember listening to stories and watching movies where the Maharaja would be sitting with a rose in his hand and watching pretty dames dancing to nice tunes). This is a well established fact. Dancing and curves are intertwined and it does give a personality to the dancer based on the kind of moves he/she does. The cheaper the dance gets, the respect reduces proportionally. If someone is watching you dance, its either you are amazing or you are being vulgar. If you are dancing horribly, no one will even look at you. You can continue with the crap without shame.

Even though i have no experience with girls and dancing, i can say that girls would definitely enjoy to dance with their special someone. Dance partner becoming a real life partner or vice versa is not my concern and problem. Both are different and lucky people get to be both. Hand in Hand, Eye-to-eye, rhythmic movements, the fragrance and the music; i guess it doesn't get romantic than that.

Other forms of dancing include street dancing - where you stick your tongue out and dance, party dancing - where you keep bouncing like a spring, stage dancing - where you are clueless about your partner(s)'s moves, marriage dancing - where you shake your a$$ and pick up the cash on the ground, mirror dancing - you are shy and dance only in front of the mirror, masala dancing - ahem ahem. Hey there is also funny dance .

Okay, a sample from moi.(Black tshirt - alistair, Red tshirt - Amrit)

Okay folks, that's all i have to say about Dancing. Remember to shut your mouth when dancing. It will make it look more elegant ;).