Wednesday, July 27, 2011

My daddy strongest

Today, my father had a car accident.

He was travelling on the main road and a guy came full throttle from the side road and banged into his car and then screeched to a halt. My father is fine, but the front part of his car is totalled.

Now my father says only one thing - that he is so grateful that I was not there, coz I might have gotten hurt. 

But there are two things that I find ironic. 

1. From the time Thom and I decided to get married and we told everyone, people have been telling us to pray for our and our family's protection because this is the time that one is most prone to accidents. Why is this? It's a superstition to put its simply. When there is good, there is evil. When people bless you, malediction lurks close. It's just a superstition. But I can hardly say that now considering that we just added one more to the statistic against it not being one. It's absolutely uncanny. All I can say is that it is huge weight to bear in a way - knowing that just because you're getting married, everyone else is at danger's hand! Crazy!

2. My father will have a huge added expense this August of repairing his car when he already has to get his daughter married. Poor George!

But all's well that ends well, I guess. He is absolutely unhurt, save his possibly frazzled nerves, which is truly all that matters, and I was shopping for clothes blissfully when this event occurred, so all was well with me too!

I am leaving to Bombay tomorrow and I'll meet Thom after ages. AGES! He better tell me how gorgeous I look and how much prettier I've gotten. Every time I meet him after a long period he says, "Oh my god Liz, you look just the same!!!" And he thinks it's a compliment of course! Men - Can't live with them, can't live without them!

But all I can say now is this: Please pray for Thom and me and for all our family and friends (that includes you guys :)) that we all remain in one piece until 11:59 PM of August 31st 2011. It's kinda an important day. ;)

Cheers!  

Monday, July 25, 2011

Run Lola Run

I got these awesome running shoes from Hush Puppies yesterday.


We are a Hush Puppies family. Nike, Adidas and Christian Louboutin are all no good for us. That's the only reason why I don't own Louboutins, actually.

You can't see it here, but the grey is really silver and it sparkles. Like fairy dust. And the insides are really ugly but it looks like grass and I am sure it's some form of Neuro Linguistic Programming or hypnosis or suggestion technique that is intended to make the wearer feel like he is waltzing through grass, 'coz why else would fairy dust shoes be so ugly inside! 

So since I have made a high risk investment in these shoes, obviously, my new aim in life is to run the 42 km marathon in Mumbai in January.  

Now we need a strategy. Do you think I should start training by walking first? 'Coz I seem to have lost touch with the whole world of motion with all the lying down I've been doing!

So, in tribute to my commitment to this cause, today I went to the largest mall in Qatar today, and instead of walking from one shop to the next, I ran! Actually, towards the end, I had so many shopping bags that it was more the weight training than the running that I benefited from. But I already feel a little like Super Girl. Now it's just a matter of time.

Tomorrow I am going to the supermarket - long aisles with food on either side! It's the definition of heaven for the marathon runner version of me. 

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Tattooing for Dummies

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You'll need to save this image and enlarge it to read the text. 
Tattooing for the drop dead gorgeous: Because scars are beautiful. And they may be the only thing making you real (a.k.a. distinction from Barbie). 

Tattooing for the geek: Because it's your only redemption - your ticket to coolville. 

Tattooing for the slacker: Just get your notes tattooed onto yourself. (Refer to Michael Scofield's antics.) It is the easiest way to copy on a test. 

Tattooing for the girl who's gonna get dumped: Because it's one way to ensure that your soon to be ex is always a part of you. This is way creepier than just wearing a vial of his blood as a pendant, and if your intention is to piss him off, it could work..

Tattooing for the rebel: Because that's the done thing and you can't possibly be rebelling against that, right? Because a rebel with a tattoo is so not a cliche!

Tattooing for the creative: Because the body can be your canvas. And because each scar tells a story.

Tattooing for the newly wed: Because you can take off wedding rings when you wanna be an infidel but a tattoo is never going off. This must be made mandatory by the government before weddings along with pre-nuptial agreements and HIV tests. In any case, a wedding is a formal agreement in front of witnesses bound by law. Might as well do the whole shebang and be in it for the long haul!

Tattooing for the thrill seeker: Because the pain from all the needles going against your skin, sewing machine style, may give you a huge adrenaline high.

Tattooing for the preacher: Because you want people to see that you practice what you preach. If you believe in the power of tattoos, get a tattoo. It's way easier than living a sinless life. (I know. They should make me queen of the world.)

Tattooing for the suicidal: Instead of cutting yourself with a  blade when you're feeling desperate, why not make a day out of it and think of ink? The pain can be as high as you need purging for, and you will have artwork on yourself to show in return. And better yet, no one will throw you into the mental hospital.

Now I have 2 tattoos - one on my left ankle and one on my right ankle. One says 'divine'** and the other says gibberish. 

Left - Divine + Right - Gibberish = Me
Other than the obvious reason that it is a tribute to my burgeoning creativity in deciding on things that define me (yes, I am being sarcastic!), I got it done for 6 other reasons among the above - no need to identify which.

* I am neither condoning suicidal intent nor am I intending to introduce inappropriate frivolousness into this grave matter. All I am saying is this - Don't ever try to hurt yourself. But if you must, go get a tattoo and move the heck on.

** No, I did not write divine on my foot just to be cheeky / audacious / rebellious / sacrilegious. I just like my ankles, possibly to an inordinate extent. If my body is a temple before God, my ankles are the altar. 

On Self Awareness

You know what the irony of self awareness is?

The journey towards self awareness can start only in an atmosphere of nurture, care, compassion and acceptance. The world around may have figured out every flaw in you and maybe pointing them out in equal measure in an effort to possible guide you to a state of self awareness, and possibly enlightenment, but the instinct that kicks in at this point is the need for self preservation and ensuring the maintenance of an intact ego. Self preservation is undoubtedly a greater need than self awareness from an evolutionary perspective. Therefore, all energies go towards proving that the accuser is wrong on every count and that is how self delusions kick in.

It takes multiple instance of unconditional acceptance and oodles of nurture for one to let go of these defenses and then the process of self awareness will happen naturally, much like breathing does. A natural and timely unfolding of this will be complete and honest, as opposed to one which is forced and contrived.

One cannot be forced into self awareness. But self awareness is a certain event that is a result of organic growth and time in a conducive environment. So let go and let it be and the other will understand all there is to understand and all that he is meant to understand.

A consciousness of this process is critical for there not to be a compulsion for accusations and guilt in relationships.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Bad Romance

Today was a monumental day in my life because first came this.




And inside, was this.




My first macaron!


I talk so much about macarons to people you'd think I invented them.


Even in this blog, I have written about it here.


But I live in a city where we eat like cavemen and macarons are expected to be available in the 3010s. So I got off my behind one day and went and made macarons myself. This is what they looked like.




Kidding. These are by Aran from Cannelle et Vanille. Fooled ya!


These are what my macarons looked like.


Or maybe I should call it macaron square.


The one in the picture is what they were supposed to look like. They are by Callum from Masterchef Australia, the bestest TV show ever! And you can read about how the macarons became a giant macaron here. It's a pleasing story.


But I ate a true blue macaron today from a true blue Parisian Bakery today. Paul, its called. Founded in 1889. And it was alright. Maybe I had romanticized the idea too much for the macaron to live up to it anyways.


(Note to self: A macaron cannot be manna. Manna cannot be a macaron. A macaron cannot be manna. Manna cannot be a macaron. A macaron cannot be....)


Gimme one meringue any day in exchange for 20 macarons. (But then again my love for meringues are also due to romanticized notions. Refer to this. It's a story about my grandmother. It's a pleasing story.)


Questions to God: What is manna, really? Everyone keeps talking about it. Can I taste?


Also, can I be rational about things like Lady Gaga is when I grow up? 

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

A Lesson in Creative Communication



This video is the bomb!  

I found it over at Elizabeth's blog, Coppertop Kitchen, (yes I admit that the only reason I went there is because we have the same name! Today I've been on a mission to read blogs of people named Liz.) and her blog is really really cute and it made me glad that I am affiliatory about deeply superficial things like names. 

In this post she talks about how ridiculous the liberal use of 'LOL' is in the most inappropriate of places.  

I quote Elizabeth here. 
"I just made macaroni and cheese for dinner LOL."
"I love peas LOL."
"I reaaaallllly need to clean my bathroom LOL."
And I just think, are you really L-ing O L right now?  Really?  Because of macaroni and cheese?  Peas?  ...Needing to clean your bathroom?  Why is that funny?
I imagine these stone-faced people, in dark rooms with only the blue light of their computers, writing ROFL without cracking a smile.
You're bang on the money with this one, Elizabeth!

And you know what actually ruined 'LOL' for me? I had a friend, (let's call him Joel for educational purposes) who used to say LOL any time he wanted to be sarcastic or sardonic or just plain nasty. And I think I'm the only one who got that because no one else used to find it irritating. 

These are snippets of actual chat conversations between us!

Me: Stella's getting married! :)
Joel: LOL!!!!!!!!! To??? Poor guy!

Me: Hey Joel! 'Sup?
Joel: Hey! 
Me: I'm coming to your city in 4 days!
Joel: What???????? Cool!!!!!!!! LOL
Me: 'LOL', it seems!!!!!. Some things haven't changed! You better meet me. That's not even a question.
Joel: How long u gonna be here? 
Me: A week I guess.
Joel: Meet u?... LOL... lemme look into my schedule first

He really did ruin 'LOL' for me! And now any time I say LOL, I'm being sardonic! 

But Elizabeth dahlin', you're a funny kinda gal! 

And I couldn't agree with you more. LOL in incongruous places is just silly!

And ROFL? Really? You wouldn't be laughing if you actually had to 'roll on the floor'!

Let's all vote for LOL and its close cousin ROFL to be taken more seriously. 

And be creative. Use appropriate emoticons instead of saying LOL and ROFL in all instances! There's a reason why there is one emoticon for each possible human emotion and action.

 

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Woe is my toe

So I really think that Meg from Meg's Mind is the funkier, jazzier version of me! I could say that the things she says... they resonate with me and makes me feel like I'm not alone in this damp, cold world!!! I could very well be saying the things she says, but no, there are now two people in the world saying the same things - me and her. God sure does work in mysterious ways!

So when she wrote about her lower back pain a week back and proceeded to diagnose herself with renal trouble, it resonated with the diagnostician in me, and of course I quipped in with my opinion and told her that it was probably kidney stones. (Kidney stones is one of my favourite diseases to diagnose myself and others with because Joey from Friends had it once!)



So now, I am most definitely hypochondriacal. But it is a weird version of hypochondria because I like to ignore all the health problems that I actually have been confirmed with (there are many) and seek new unchartered territory in the universe of diseases - the road less travelled, so to speak. Diseases that I already have are boring. Possibilities of new and varied diseases that I may have are so much more intriguing. And what I love even more are weird , unexplained symptoms that have no reason to be.

For instance, last week, I found that my toe nail is half white and half flesh coloured vertically! How strange is that. And you know how I discovered it? Because there was an inexplicable pain on my toe in the middle of the night, and when I looked, there it was - the freakishly cream bizarre looking claw! Ugh!

And you know what's weird? The pain suddenly starts in the middle of my sleep and I am woken up in my sleep. And the pain is never there during the day! I really smell something fishy here! Maybe Casper, the friendly ghost lives in my toe and of course wakes up only at night! (Would explain the white colour, if nothing else!) Or maybe I should take another leaf from Meg's book and conclude that there are flesh eating bacteria living in my little piggie that need the dark to thrive and gobble their way through my body.

So I thought thus far and then I decided that speculation is a needless occupation and that I should do what any logical person would do. So I took my problem to the omniscient one - the internet - and He diagnosed that I have 'Lateral Onchyomycosis', which literally means that it is not the bacteria but the fungi that are eating away at my little toe. Woe is me! Woe is my little toe! (A note specifically to Meg: Don't search for this disease online if you don't want to be scarred for life with pictures of misshapen, grotesque, ghastly looking toe nails! It's for this same reason that I am not posting pictures of my toe here!)

And my diagnosis of why I like to self diagnose is thus: My mother got pregnant with me when she was still a medical student. So my guess is that as a fetus, I spent my time doing clinical practice in the medical wards and listening to lectures on Taenia Solium and Sarcoidosis. When I was a wee baby, the bedtime stories that my mother told me were those of heroic rescues that she did as a gynecologist and the lives she saved in the process. So in my psyche, I was already a doctor when I was 3. And now I am a super specialist in all possible specialties!

Hey, Meg! Is your dad a doctor too?

And now I will recount a problem that one of my patients came to me with.

Rosa De La Coeur: I am 80 years old and my right leg hurts a lot when I walk. My doctor said that it's due to old age but I don't believe him because my left leg is of the same age and it does not hurt. What could be wrong?

Pray for me!

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Earthlings

A long long time ago, in Dec 2009, after I quit my Marketing Research job, my superstar friend Sharmila and I went on a pilgrimage to Haridwar, one of the holiest cities in India, to bathe in the Ganges River and cleanse our sins.

In India unfortunately, 'holy'  is also directly proportionate to 'dirty' because of the sheer number of pilgrims that flock to these places. Therefore, while the accepted level of coliform bacteria present in water in the third world should be below 50 units for drinking purposes, less than 500 for bathing and below 5000 for agricultural use, the present level of coliform in Ganga at Haridwar has reached 5500. (So methinks that Hinduism has the same idea of 'penance as repentance for sin' as in Christianity.)

So after I dipped my fingers in the river (because the only sinner in me are my fingers), I filled tiny alcohol bottles with Ganges water for my enemies so that their sins can be cleansed too. Then Sharmila and I went further up the mountains to Rishikesh, which is the yoga capital of India. Here we spent two days eating Italian - Indian spaghetti and French - Indian crepes and freezing our brains out because it was freakin' cold and we were ill equipped for it.

Now to make a long and branched out story short and linear, I am gonna put it in bullet points.
  • We walked around the whole of Rishikesh because it was a loser of a place with nothing to do, and we had to validate travelling thousands of miles in the dead of winter to this place. So we walked. 
  • And then we walked some more.
  • Then I chanced upon a poster for a yoga class and further walked about 3 miles to go find the centre. 
  • The teacher, a really handsome Belgian man told me that I was destined to do this course. (At least, that is what I understood from what he said. He was too good looking for me to actually listen to him.)
  • And that is how I started obsessing about Agama Yoga and 'my destiny' there.
  • I continued obsessing about this for the next six months and pretty much had their syllabus for Level 1 by heart.
  • In May, I set out again for the Himalayas, this time to Dharamsala because there is no way I was going to Rishikesh again if I had a say in this matter, and that's how I came to be in McLeod Ganj, living among rocks and trees for a month, and learning yoga at the Dharamsala centre of Agama Yoga. 
There is so so so much I can write about my month there.

I saw the Dalai Lama at one of his events at the monastery in McLeod Ganj where he lives and listened to him talk, after which me and a hundred of his disciples ate a meal on a plate of leaves. He said things that I did not understand, but mostly because the speech was in Tibetan. I met the Karmappa, the second in command to the Dalai Lama, and he gave me a pretty white scarf that he had blessed for me. I got a blue braid in my hair and didn't do my eyebrows for a month. I did the complete headstand precisely two times. I ate a lot of Bhagsu cake, which is a specialty of the place. I took walks in the woods almost everyday and got followed by wolf like dogs who think they are your guardian angels.

The 'Original' Bhagsu Cake
Each day was an experience in wonder and delight and goodness and gratitude and truth and beauty and magic. Each day was sublime. There are so many experiences that I had there that I still haven't wholly processed; still haven't figured out the reason, effect and takeout for. And maybe I never will. And maybe that's the point of all - the lesson that experience can only be subjective and that it continues to be subjective in space and time. 

Forgive my digressions, but the point of this post is something else entirely. 

I have always been such an avid meat eater that my favourite food would probably be roast beef wrapped in ham sprinkled with bacon bits and shredded lamb. No meal of mine is complete without a meat component, including for breakfast and tea. 

So when I was doing the yoga course, I paid no heed to the multitude of vegetarian yoga practitioners around me and the disapproving looks that they'd give me when I'd order a Spaghetti Bolognese. So all was well until one day, we had a class on Ahimsa (or Non Violence). And the lecture was about vegetarianism. 

Now you can all imagine what would have been part of the lecture. Monika detailed out why meat was bad for health and how cruelly animals are treated all their lives and how much pain they are forced to undergo and how meat is all filled with insecticides and pesticides and how when animals die, there are a lot of fear hormones circulating in their body and when we eat it, we get our own fill of these fear hormones and so on and so forth.

It was an amazing lecture and totally not like how I made it sound, and by the end of the class, Brandon (who was the only other non vegetarian in the class) and I probably looked ashen and flushed all at the same time. It was the first time in my life that I asked myself whether I should be not eating meat. 

And then they showed us a documentary called 'Earthlings' and I can truly tell you that no other film that I have ever seen has moved me and continues to touch my life the way that this film has. It grips you like a vice and never lets go, that movie!


Joaquin Phoenix, who did the narration for it, said, "Of all the films I have ever made, this is the one that gets people talking the most. For every one person who sees Earthlings, they will tell three." Peter Singer, best known for his book Animal Liberation states, "If I could make everyone in the world see one film, I'd make them see Earthlings" and Tom Regan, "For those who watch Earthlings, the world will never be the same."

And I couldn't agree with any of them more. So I can only tell you this - Watch this documentary. It will change your world in such a good way and you will never be the same again.

And if you feel sad or guilty or grossed out in the first 5 minutes and want to stop watching it, I can only tell you what Monica told us. "If you have made the choice to eat meat or wear leather or fur or use cosmetics that have been animal tested, you must be brave enough to know all the aspects and perspectives that contribute to and are a result of that choice. The decision must be well informed. You must at least be able to watch this movie." 

Now at the risk of being called a huge hypocrite, I have to say that I am not a vegetarian. I am far from it. I was, a while back, but I am not anymore, for multiple reasons, none of which actually justify my decision. But I can honestly that I have cut down my meat consumption into about a tenth of what I used to eat and I am constantly trying to be more environment friendly and that is solely because of the class and this documentary.

I am kind of going against the whole idea of 'practice what you preach', but if at least one person is positively influenced by this documentary or this post, and even stops eating a meal of meat or buying a fur coat or baby lamb leather shoes, I would say that it is wholly worth being called a hypocrite for.

I have embedded the whole documentary here below and you can see the whole thing, or you can go to the Earthlings website and watch it.

All you need to do is push play and not stop until you're done.

And if you do get through to then end (or even if you don't), please do tell me what you think.

xo


EARTHLINGS from Nation Earth on Vimeo.

Friday, July 15, 2011

How do I love thee? Let me count the ways...

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How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.
I love thee to the depth and breadth and height
My soul can reach, when feeling out of sight
For the ends of Being and ideal Grace.
I love thee to the level of everyday's
Most quiet need, by sun and candle-light.
I love thee freely, as men strive for Right;
I love thee purely, as they turn from Praise.
I love thee with a passion put to use
In my old griefs, and with my childhood's faith.
I love thee with a love I seemed to lose
With my lost saints, --- I love thee with the breath,
Smiles, tears, of all my life! --- and, if God choose,
I shall but love thee better after death.

- Elizabeth Barrett Browning

A note: Yes, the dog might have been chopped up and eaten as a sandwich by an old lady with a failing eyesight. 

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

The big search

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While Jessica Hische has said something that is truly and insightful and life changing, it makes me wonder what possible vocations I might be inclined towards.

There is

1. Compulsive viewer of television shows on the internet. 

FYI, I have already finished all seasons of Lost, Prison Break, 24, Dexter, Desperate Housewives, How I met your mother, Two and a half men, Better with you, Happy Endings, Lie to Me and The Mentalist and I am steadily making my way through House MD. (The shows I watch on TV sometimes are in addition to this, but the programming in the third world is kinda sad so the television plays season 3 when season 22 is actually going on in the first world.)

Yeah, I have a lot of time in my hands and often get very little sleep.


2. Obsessive blogger and reader of other blogs

Not a bad choice for a career ideally, but the logistics of it boggles my mind. And honestly speaking, precious few amongst the 10101983937409 bloggers that there are in this galaxy, are going to be like The Pioneer Woman or Dooce and earn a gazillion currency notes every month. So let's leave this aside for now, or at least until I have 20 people consistently reading the blog.

As for reading other blogs, which one of you is gonna pay me to read your blog?


3. Virtual stalker of Taye Diggs

This may be my favourite. Now how could I do this for a living! Maybe Taye Diggs should be ordered to pay me.


4. Real life stalker of Thomas 

He is a cryptic kinda boy and I am a curious kinda gal! The more apocrypha there is, the more interested I get. Works well for the relationship. It keeps the chemistry flowing over the thousands of miles that separate us.


5. Reader of the dictionary

It's my favourite fiction. Beats even the newspapers.

Yup. That's all I do in my life.

Now what could I possibly make out of all this!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Suggestiveness Defined

1. This is suggestiveness in a shot.


I could just post Katie's pictures in this post. Her pictures are the definition of great food photography. They almost seem to beckon and promise a culinary experience that is paralleled by none other. I stare at her pictures so much and so often that of late, I just need to think of her to get hungry - Ivan Pavlov called this phenomenon Classical Conditioning!


2. This is hands down what my ideal chocolate mousse / truffle tart should look like.

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Heaven in a deep brown hue and a creamy, pudding-like, yielding texture, dusted with dark cocoa with a rich and crumbly crust. I love this image. And I can imagine every part of the sensory experience that would be eating this concoction. Divine and sinful all at the same time.


3. I am an 'I will follow you to Mordor' kinda fan of Linda of Call me Cupcakes




Did you know she sprinkles fairy dust on her creations after she cooks them? How else could every single one of her images look so good! Look at those macarons! Look at that Swiss meringue buttercream filling! My! How pretty and perfect!


5. This is Martha Stewart in a nutshell on a plate. Simple, classy, elegant and oh so good!


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Oh how I wanna get my hands on you and make you move to my bidding, you dusky, wily triple chocolate mousse cake.


5. Here's another one from Katie's blog - a double chocolate raspberry pavlova



You've got me when you say 'double' or 'triple' anything. 


Now imagine the light pliancy of the meringue, the heavy and cloying sweetness of the cream, the tartness of the raspberries and the decadence of the chocolate all melding with each other to create the most delectable of tastes and textures. Are you in heaven yet?


6. Nigella Lawson + Chocolate + Lemon + Liqueur = Need I say more?


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Could you look at this and not want to slather the Margarita Cream all over that Flourless Chocolate Lime Cake and eat the whole thing by yourself?

7. Few things look as tempting on a plate as a Tiramisu does.


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It's layers of unctuous softness seem to beg you to 'pick it up'. Oh Tiramisu! You are my endless love!


8. If you can find one picture on Cannelle et Vanille that is not postcard perfect, I will give you my awesome cowboy boots and new boot polish to boot. 


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I love her photography and her food and her kids and her white wooden table. It lets me believe that the only reason I dont take such great photos are because there are no dining tables in my house, wooden or otherwise. (I love trivia that perpetrates delusions even more than I love the photography on this website!)

9. This may just be the most beautiful shot of brownies that I have ever seen. 

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If you ask me, brownies are like the essence of cake - they have all of the good things about cake in greater quantities - like the butter, sugar and cocoa. I could eat brownies everyday for the rest of my life and not get tired of them.


Now I don't know who took this picture because I found it on Pinterest and it was not properly credited, but it so totally looks like Katie's! What an artist she is! 


10. If you haven't eaten a Banoffee Pie, I can veritably tell you, my child, that you haven't lived.


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Because Banoffee Pie is cracker crumb crust, butter, banana, dulce de leche and whipped cream - all singular reasons to keep on breathing. The moment that I first ate it was when I first experienced lust. It redefined my life and I haven't seen desserts in the same way since. And yes, I'm  trying to proselytize. If desserts were a religion, Banoffee Pie would be the Pope.

That's all folks!

And a word before departure: Be proud of who you are. Dare to not wipe the drool off your face.

And do you know what the definition of torture is? Doing this post while you're on Day 6 of the South Beach Diet. I would take 'the rack' any day, my child. The rack would be an easier instrument of torture!

Till death do us part

Thom fell violently ill today morning and in his own words 'felt like he was dying and wanted to speak to me' and called me up at around 11:30 AM, but of course, I was still sleeping because my wake up time is noon and I don't let anything get in the way of my beauty sleep. (If you see me, you'll know it's absolutely worth it and you'll start doing the same thing.) So I woke up, had a mug of hot chocolate and called him and this was how the conversation went.

"Liz, I am terribly ill."

"What happened?

"I have a really bad case of blah blah and I feel like I'm blah blahing."

"Oh no! Are you ok?"

(An aside: You need to record conversations and listen to them to realize how redundant they are. The greatest folly and frailty of humankind is probably our ability to speak.)

"I am ok. I thought I was dying and I wanted to speak to you!"

(Another aside: How can you be ok and also think you are dying?)

"You can't die now! I will kill you if you die on me now!"

(Yet another aside: I shudder with embarrassment when I think that I actually said this! )

"Oh you're sweet. I would actually rather die by your hands than die in your arms, Liz."

"But you won't have to die by my hands if you don't die in my arms, Thommy.... you know... coz I won't have to kill you if you don't die."

And can you believe that the conversation went on like this for another 2 minutes! (I am not making this up. This really happened.)

Now, if you are wondering why I posted this, it is only because when I thought about it, I was struck by how silly conversations are sometimes, and yet how unbelievably fun, and I am so absolutely amused by this phenomenon.

How are human beings this way?

We are all so puzzling and wondrous and ridiculously silly and amazingly foolish and irritatingly endearing all at this same time. And we are all as pointless as this blog post is, actually. Just thinking about this fact makes my heart flutter and my feet curl up. That is how silly human beings are. I think that's why they say that to be alive and cognizant is the greatest gift - because we are all so very cute, right? :)

And as a wedding gift, I am pretty sure that Thom is gonna give me this T Shirt.

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Well, someone should, I guess. 'Coz I do like bordering on 'boundary-less', and it's nice to come with a warning. Makes me feel like I'm dangerous.

Monday, July 11, 2011

To drink or not to drink... that is the question

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I saw this and I thought to myself, "Oh my! What a strong and powerful message! This should be made part of the constitution. Maybe the sages had gotten it all wrong as usual and the root of all evil is actually alcohol, not money! Don't they know that money can buy happiness, not evil!"

And then I thought about Luxembourg which is the largest consumer of alcohol in the world and also the world's happiest country and my head became all muddled again. Can alcohol also buy happiness?

If there is one person who definitely doesn't need a nightcap or Irish in the coffee a whisky sour at tea, it's me. 

My Everest

Guess what I did today! I learnt swimming from scratch. (Beat that, all you fellow school mates who are doctors now! What did you guys do today? Unless you saved a couple of lives, I accomplished more than you.)

I feel like a rockstar now. I can swim the English Channel and cross the seven seas! (You too can learn how to cross the seven seas by contacting my friends Rithu and Appu. They are rockstars too, and they are really cute too boot.)

Now I just need to find someone who can teach me how to fly. Then my superpower repertoire would be complete.

A note: The greatest learning was from Chintuji, who was R & A's first guinea pig as swimming student a few days back but was already a pro (maybe she was a fish in her last life), and she rocks the mostest! :)

Saturday, July 9, 2011

The fine line between want and need

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Just look at that! That could be me - skinny with a chic haircut. Not. But that book could be in my hand at least.

And that's totally Thom. With the collared sweater and that bigger than perfectly flat tummy and lots of pencils in the bag. Ain't he charming and totally smokin'? (No, you can't have him! Ha ha!)

How I would love a cake topper with books all around the figures!

I think cake toppers totally symbolize the life that you are meant to have. That is why mine is gonna be the bride and the groom sitting on the cake, the guy feeding the girl cake. That's the way I'm gonna make sure that my marriage is whoopingly successful.

Cake is believed to have the capacity to solve all of the known and unknown problems of mankind. That's why Marie Antoinette said ' Let them eat cake' when informed about the plight of the French peasants. But everyone thought that she was being uppity and went right on and started the French Revolution. Now if only they had listened to Mme. Marie and just eaten some cake. The world would have been a different place. (I'm in the same plight actually. Everyone thinks I am absolutely unprepared for marriage even though I have the mightiest weapon in my arsenal - cake! I dare you to prove me wrong.)

Anyhoo, this cake topper is from this adorable Etsy shop called 'Lace and Rubbish'. (I know! What a sassy name!) They've got lots of cute cake toppers there. I suggest that you look and lech and leer and stare and lasciviate (maybe that's not a word). That's what I did. And it's my burning fantasy that the world be full of clones of me.

And now look at this.

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I don't know why I fell madly in love with these ladies but I do have a sneaking sinking suspicion that maybe it's because they remind me of myself doing that Sarvangasana. (That's the shoulder stand, by the way.)

And yes, you should be impressed with my knowledge and skill in Yoga.

But these ladies look so oblivious and blissed out that I instantly feel like doing an inverted stand myself, which I can assure you, is a need I have never ever felt previously.

And last but definitely not least, I NEED this.

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I have too many enemies that I need to shoot down and I think I've waited too long. They are breeding and multiplying and soon, I fear that the world will be full of them. A pretty gun will do the trick though.

I'll go to them, point it at the back of their head, pull the trigger and BAM! They won't know what hit them.

But it will actually be a blast of hot air.

'Coz it's a hair drier!

How fancy is that!

I want I want I want. 

Friday, July 8, 2011

Note to self

If there is anything I should put for tomorrow, its 'worrying about tomorrow'. 


Thursday, July 7, 2011

Two on time

1. Who says that time travel is not possible?

I left Trivandrum at 5:00 AM on the 2nd of July on a 4 hour 20 minutes flight and reached Doha at 6:50 AM.

2. One thing I can't understand for the life of me is how doctors and diet gurus can say that you need to start the day early because that is when your metabolism is at its strongest.

So if I wake up at noon in India, it's still early morning in UK. How does my body know that I am in India and not in the Buckingham Palace plucking roses with those cute princesses with obnoxious hats / fascinators / headbands?

Here's my solution: Wake up anytime you want, because it is morning somewhere in the world at all times.

Good night.

(Or good day, if that's more appropriate.)



Monday, July 4, 2011

Cheers!

Fact 1: According to Professor Ruut Veenhoven who runs the World Database of Happiness at Erasmus University, Rotterdam, Luxembourg is the tenth happiest country in the world.

Fact 2: It has been reported that  Luxembourg has the highest worldwide per capita consumption of alcohol - an average of three beers a day for every man, woman, and child.

Coincidence?

I think not.

If you feel inspired by these snippets of information and feel urged to go get a drink (or ten), and then happen to lose your balance and fall, you may want to consider having this conversation with by-standers.

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Sunday, July 3, 2011

Missing the mess

A note: This post is dedicated to my room that rests peacefully 3306.29 km away in sunny, sultry Trivandrum. 
I love you just the way you are, room! 

I am still stumped as to why I feel this compulsion to confess all my dirty secrets here. Oh trust me I do feel compelled. It's just that I stop myself in most cases before I become a public embarrassment to my family name and to myself. (I really do have a family name. It is 'Barren Soil'. Ask anybody, they'll confirm this.)

For instance, I want to talk about all the weird traits that I have - like how the tooth that I got extracted 3 weeks ago had 3 roots instead of 2, which made the doctor say that it was the strangest tooth he ever saw. My mother saw it later and sweetly commented and I seem to have 'dog teeth'. (What a blessing she is in my life!)

But I am not talking about this, am I?

But I had to post this pic here.



This is my room on an average day - not a good day, but not a bad day either.

The multiple suitcases are there because I seem to be going on my next trip before I get a chance to unwind and unpack after my return from an earlier trip.

Suitcases are a significant feature in my life. They define me. (Or maybe Benadryl cough syrup defines me. I am not sure. Ask me again later if you need to know.)

This is what I hoped my room would look like before I moved in.

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Yes, the rainbow room replete with the little pug on the cream sofa.

The opposite wall would be like this.

Via MizzTissa - a shoe lover's paradise - my paradise! 
Christina Aguilera says, “Everything on my shoe wall is grouped by designer—Louboutin, McQueen, YSL—all in their own little family.” I had the same hope for all my Louboutins, McQueens and YSLs. But now they all live together in my shoe drawer as if from one family. (I know! 'God forbid!')

But now that I have come to terms with reality and have decided to accept myself for my 'disorderliness', I have decided to remedy the situation by taking the following steps.

These posters will grace the walls of my room, covering all the paint spots, the ink spots, the face and hair mask spots and the dirty feet spots.





And later when I have my own house, with kids to boot, this is what the sign on the front door will say.

p.s. All images via Pinterest

10 Reasons why I'm lovin' it in Doha

1. My feet look like this.


My feet are undoubtedly happier when ensconced in gray.

2. There is no pesky younger brother here, who hogs the computer all day. (Though I do miss watching his silences terribly. Yes. I know that the sentence is weird.)

3. I can lie on the couch and watch a Desperate Housewives Marathon on a Home Theatre system with a 50 inch screen and speakers all over the room, rather than on my laptop.

4. I can actually buy evaporated milk and not have to wait a gazillion hours for the milk to evaporate just to get evaporated milk. (Btw, next time, I am just gonna add milk to condensed milk and make it evaporated milk. Think about it conceptually. I am convinced that it will work.) I can also buy whipped cream in a can, cream cheese, asparagus, fresh rosemary and gorgonzola mushrooms. (In Kerala, there is only one kind of mushroom. Guess what they are called...... Mushrooms!!!!!)

5. In Kerala, the weather is so good and the air is so clean and fresh that we don't need an air conditioner. In fact, we don't even have an AC in the house. In Doha, the mercury soars and the sand flies. And of course, this necessitates that every nook and cranny is air conditioned. Processed and conditioned air rocks my socks.

6. My mother is not here. So she can't tell me to 'stop moping and start mopping'.

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7. High speed internet.

8. Fast Food at my fingertips!

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In Kerala, the closest thing I get to fast food is the burger from Coffee Day, the only coffee shop in town. Hot dogs and cheesy, greasy pizzas are a distant dream. That's what Steven Tyler sang about in  'Dream on' - the status of the fast food scene in Kerala.

9. My father is amazing fun, especially after he has downed 2 bottles of vino or 750 ml of Johnnie Walker Black Label, which happens with alarming regularity.

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10. Apple, Cinnamon and Raisin Biscuits from Hardees. That's reason enough actually. 

Saturday, July 2, 2011

I mean business!

I'm back! 

And guess what! 

Blogger is in Arabic right now and I have no idea how to set it back in English!

It took me ten minutes to figure out that  because Arabic is written from right to left, all the links are on the opposite side of what it typically is! I tell you, my brain is not wired for this kind of detective work and deductive reasoning.

I am sure all of you are dying to see pictures of the desert and the barren land and the shrubs and the sandstorms and the barren land. No?

Maybe I can interest you with tales of my forthcoming jaunts to the malls of Qatar. No again?

Well, at least let me give you a piece of advice: Business Class flying is the way to go. I already feel spoilt by the freshly squeezed orange juice and the plush seats and the drool worthy in flight entertainment. And if you're planning to go somewhere and if your ticket is funded by anyone other than you, refuse to travel in Economy Class. It is worth any tantrum and any price.

And I also want to tell you that today I saw a Richard Hennessy Brandy bottle that costs approximately 20,000 Qatari Riyals or 2,40,000 Indian Ruppees or $5500 or one trip around the world or my arm, leg and kidney combined.

Then my father bought 6 bottles of rum and 4 bottles of wine to keep him company on long winter nights and afterwards we went to church and prayed for a good 15 minutes. And by good, I mean very very good.

My father goes to church everyday. That is why I want to be like him when I grow up.

That, and because his job lets him travel Business Class whenever he wants to at the very very reasonable cost of 100000000 hour work weeks, week after week, month after month, year after year.

Except the weeks when he is traveling Business Class that is.

Talk about a fare deal huh?