"I can't resist"

What's with this need to act upon those weird requests that come in your email, wall, scrapbook and other versions of the pigeon? Why would you even believe that a "hot" girl has added you to a crush list? Even when you are of the feminine gender? Is it curiosity or is it just that abundance of time that is on our hands?

Everytime I login to Orkut (which is once in a month or more), the only message I see is something that reads "blah.. blah.. copy and paste this definitely suspicious looking javascript into your browser window. You will become a prince or princess (as the case maybe) overnight... blah blah blah." What does that tell you? Other than the fact that I am a loser with nobody bothering to scrap me! Let's leave my social (-networking) life aside for a while and examine this "I can't resist" phenomenon.

Either there is some kind of magic that is put into these silly messages that make us want to do it (like a sort of hypnosis) or we are dumb. As I am holier-than-thou, I believe it is the latter. This is where that popular theory that "education dumbs people down" plays out well. It is well educated, mostly computer savvy (sometimes computer science experts) people that fall for the stupid trick. It is a trick, if you haven't realized that yet. A trick that usually floods everyone in your buddy list with some stupid message.

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Eating Out @ Mpls - Part 3

Another draft from very long ago....


I have nothing better to do in the evenings so every evening I open up opentable.com and read through the list of restaurants in Downtown Minneapolis and visit them one a day. Let me list down the restaurants I have been too and what I thought of them.. I hope to update the list as the days go along. :)

15. King & I Thai

Excellent food! The flavours are perfect, the smells are just right. This is one place you must try if you like Thai/Oriental food. Be warned though - the portions are *huge*. The hostess warned me away from ordering soup and a main course. She said that the soup is large and the main course is larger. Thank god for that timely advice. Ordering just the entree, I had more than enough to eat and a lot more left to box. :( I wish they did smaller portions.

I tried the curry of the day - which was a green curry made with beans, carrots and potato strips. You can choose the meat/seafood that goes into the curry. I chose the Walleye fillet. The curry is served with white rice. The curry was flavoursome. It was a bit spicy but not overwhelmingly so. Of course, you can ask for the Thai red hot if you are spice-inclined but I am sure you will perhaps resent doing that :).

If you have a healthy appetite or if you can share a plate with someone, then head to the King & I. It's one of the best Thai food I have ever tasted. I will probably visit again but the quantity of food puts me off a little.

16. Chamber's Kitchen

The dining area is very well designed with a glass window that lets you look into the kitchen. The restaurant is popular and the noise level stands testimony to it. The food is asian inspired with a surprising and well-balanced. The food is well designed too. The coconut chicken soup was lip-smacking delicious. You will want to slurp the last drop off the bowl. For the entree, I ordered the duck in a tamarind and pear sauce. The tangy-and-sweet sauce enhanced the juiciness of the duck slices. The white chocolate pavlova was teeny-weeny and left me yearning for more of the heavenly chocolate.

The food is yummy and the ambience classy and informal at the same time.

The only gripe I have about the restaurant is the dinnerware. They awkwardly shaped with all of them sporting a deep center - even the ones that entree is served on. Eating out of them is a test of patience.

17. The Newsroom

The restaurant's decor is inspired by the news. The wallpaper is composed of large prints of newspaper sections. You have newsprint from the yesteryears to recent years looking down at you. Well actually you look up at them. My first impression was not very pleasant. The maitre d' of the moment was rude and that overshadowed the politeness of the rest of the staff.

The seared tuna that I ordered was served nicoise-style and was good. The tiramisu was not great and I think it was served toppled on its side.

18. Dakota Jazz Club & Restaurant

Alright, I didn't have a proper dinner at Dakota. Frankly, you don't go to a jazz club for food. The short eat I ordered - fish trio - was a surprise. It tasted very good. If you like jazz or just want to chill to some live music, head to the Dakota. The acoustics of the place is great and the North Coast, who played that particular day, put up a great performance. The pianist/keyboardist was fast and brilliant. The trumpet and the sax, played by the lead man, was awesome. If the fish trio is anything to go by, the food in Dakota must be fabulous too.

19. Nami Sushi & Bar

Imagine awesome sushi (honestly I am not an expert to differentiate between sushi) in a chic, warm and uncluttered ambience. That's Nami. The setting's really good as opposed to the slightly cramped environs of Origami. The sushi chefs and the waiters are very friendly and put you at ease. Nami has a pretty large, spacious sushi bar with lots of space around it. Nami also features a huge dining area with well-spaced out tables.

The sushi is very good too. All the regulars are on the menu with some special rolls. The pineapple that is served at the end features a very nice sauce.

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In Other News

What's hot on everyone's lips and spewing smoke? Not ciggies, dudes. I am talking about that talking point that everyone is talking about when they find the need to be talking. (Note to self: Don't go overboard!!)

Well, ok, yeah. I am talking about the proposed apocalypto (that's what I am told it is) that was all set to open a no. of times in the past month. The Bengaluru Intl Airport is finally (hmmm, are you sure?) gonna open on the 23rd. (Actually it shouldn't be called the Bengaluru Intl Airport. It's more like the Miles-out-of-Bangy airport)

People have been cribbing left, right, center and through their nose. What? 2+ hours through hellish traffic to catch a plane that has a 50 minute air time? What? You expect me to pay extra for going through all this hell? Brilliant business model, you got going there dudes!!

Seriously, though, I don't mind that the airport is so far away. In kilometer terms. I don't mind that it is so far away. In hour terms. Of course, there are the bird brains that have been proposing a helicopter service from the city to the airport! What gives? Another 2000 bucks on top of all that crap.

That brings me to this. What the fish do these airline companies think of themselves. 99 bucks only for your flight ticket, sir!! Ah, but then we need to charge you this Fuel Surcharge of 1.5 K. How else do you expect us to pay for the fuel sir? Put that on the airfare, you cheating nincompoops.

Back to the airport then. As I said I don't mind that it's 40 kms out of town, but you shouldn't make travellers travel for 2 hours, then get through 3 hours of check-in+security check+waiting time, then travel in those lousy seats for hours and hours. Geez!! Couldn't you have done something about connectivity during all this time you spent building one (yes your read it right. ONE!!) runway?

Move forward a year and what do you hear. "Hello folks. This is your First Officer speaking. Due to congestion in Bengaluru, landing will be delayed by 2 hours time. Keep yourself amused. We will very soon recycle those dumbwit movies that you are watching.."

Ok, my mandatory BIAL rant is done. Now I will go and crib about to the first person that I will meet. BTW, if you are on that inaugural Indian flight to Singapore, expect some goodies. Especially if you can get to the airport before anyone else does! You just might find yourself splashed as front page news.. Awwww, no, I didn't mean you would get killed by a bird-hit.

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This has been a draft for a year now.. :-/

A spring's dream
to push back the cold
envelope that shrouds
the ragged man. his rags
don't hold
the slivers of heat.
Burning paper
in the drum. Shivering
against the gates
to a warm day, sunny
and bright. A fresh
paint brush stroke,
a canvas in a rich man's
home. Spring will clean
the air of damp lethargy -
a task of feat,
when winter clings
like a rascal kid.
Spring will cajole
life to step out.
Birthed from the womb,
A winter later.

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Around Bangalore

After a long time, I got to do a short but fun trip on my motorcycle. Without any confirmed plans 5 bikes and seven people met up on Bannerghatta road. We road down bannerghatta road and somewhere just before reaching the park, we turned into some untarred roads. We headed down looking for a waterwall (Swarnamukhi), but didn't find it. Instead, there was a neat water body (lake?) that we found. After some time spent there, we found our way to Horahalli on Kanakapura Road.

A short ride and breakfast later, the gang crept back to Horahalli and took some very scenic country roads to Thalli in Tamil Nadu. The roads were brilliant. Narrow, winding roads with greenery everywhere. On the way, we also discovered a reservoir whose name we don't know. :) After Thalli, we headed to Hosur and wound back towards Bangalore on the infamous Hosur Road. Lunch was at a place near Electronics City.

We must ridden for about 150 kms in total. Short but a welcome ride.Some pictures here.

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Long time, no see..

Bangalore is swelteringly hot. Swirling in and out of the mid to high 30 deg Celsius', it's hot. Ah, I am not comparing it with Meerut where I went a week back to experience the 45's with the added wrath of really hot and very dusty winds. Not with Chennai, where the highs are now in mid 40's. I have promised my parents that the next time they will get to see my in chennai will only be after the summer simmers down.

Looks like Bangalore will see a profusion of air-conditioners by next summer adding more CFC's to the already polluted air. Step out during the day and you will feel the skin burning right off, which is why I am closeted in the house with the missus during the weekends. Thank heavens for the teeny-weeny rains last week, the nights aren't too bad.

The jacarandas have come and gone. Now, it's the gulmohar's time. Lots and lots of the cheery red flowers all over the place.

The BMTC volvos, the saviour of many a frustrated (ofcourse, well-off) road warrior, have now started spewing out smoke. I have seen at least three different examples of that. Looks like BMTC is not very enthusiastic about maintaining those red ones well.

Traffic snarls are still the talk of the town, although in the last few weeks I have noticed that my commute to the office, which by the way is now far enough to dissaude me from using the bike, has come down by about 5-10 minutes. Oh, so you think 5 minutes is nothing?! The outer ring road needs one of those magic-box crossings that the BBMP has been implementing. There are so many snarled-up junctions on this road that despite the 3 lanes, travelling is no easier.

Why can't we put down some of those automatic spikes inside of the traffic stop markers. These can be raised when the signal turns red. So if any moron tries to jump the signal, he will have a flat tyre to parade as his trophy. Interesting idea?

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