Category Archives: Anything Seriously Anything

Older and, hopefully, wiser

I’m not going to use any gimmicks in this post. No protracted sentences. No loquaciousness. No references only understandable to certain people. It will just be my attempt at simple, straight, hard facts.

I have often complained of how life throws shit in my face. Whined in wangst at fate and the tortures it puts me through. And I did nothing about it.

A mining analogy:

We are all digging for gold, diamonds and other gems (ideological and literal) to enrich our lives. And some of us happen to hit a drainage pipe and end up with a pile of shit in our beloved gold mines. I am one of these people. People try to assist you out of this (in this analogy, literal, but otherwise metaphorical) shithole. And I was no different. Except that I didn’t use them to get out. Rather, I almost pulled them in.

Now, I’m through.

If I whine again, shoot me.

It is time for action.

But first… A few words which I have to make known public.

The people I knew while I wrote this blog over the past 4 years have defined this era of my life. An era that is reaching its end. And they deserve my thanks. I will not hide any details, by the way. If anyone here would like me to; say so and I will give you my id and password for WordPress. Knock yourselves out.

First, and most important:

Monisha Vemavarapu: Venom, SuperMon and a million sobriquets. No one has influenced me as much as she. Currently in London on an exchange program, she is dating a large, oafish, somewhat paranoid, whiny, self-obsessed and neurotic nutbag. I feel that she perhaps deserves better; but she’s a wiser judge of such things than I am. No one I have ever known has ever evolved so much so quickly. When I first was re-acquainted with her, she was a wild, kranti-kari, ultra-modernist pseudo-hippie. She is now one of the most level-headed determined and pragmatically intelligent people I know. I will be frank: When I first met her, both online and in person, I felt I was the superior individual. But I must now concede this title to her. She has proven herself to be a most fascinating person and one who accepts a random destiny with an élan that I wish I possessed. Monisha is one of those people who you just know will not fade quietly into the night, and will leave a mark on the world. I find my vocabulary failing me in my attempts to describe how happy I am to have known, and know, this singularly unique individual. I sincerely hope that we will never become strangers through providence or (more likely) some ridiculous action of mine.

Nimish Batra: After working at Infosys Technologies in Bangalore, Nimish is now pursuing a Master’s degree at the University of Florida. Nimish’s jesting misanthropy was what really resulted in our ever becoming friends. We shared in our fandom for Douglas Adams, I introduced him to Radiohead, and he introduced me to Monty Python. But in our protracted one-downmanship contests, (held periodically over the internet, the telephone and in person) I believe I learnt a lot. And perhaps too much. I appreciate and respect him for a lot of things, but I must say that what applies to me in a large measure applies to you too… Stop whining. Shut up and live. The thing about Nimish that few people get is that he is a genuinely warm-hearted person. Try visiting his home in South Ex, and be amazed at the hospitality shown by him and his family. One part of his brain has the capacity to make him do what’s necessary and drag him across the finish line while the other part is kicking and screaming. As long as that former part dominates the latter, he has nothing to worry about. Genuinely.

Dinesh Kapur: Decay is currently working in Gurgaon for a sustainable ventures firm whose name I can never remember, but it starts with a W. (edit: WinRock! It’s WinRock!) His George Best old-school footballing skills are no longer useful to him in the modern game much like my Karl Marx old-school thinking skills are of no use to me in the modern world. As I’ve often said; this man is a kindred spirit. We’re almost alter-egos of each other. Decay is someone who I can trust to understand my point of view on a matter, usually because he’s been there before. Like Monisha, Dinesh is someone who I feel is destined for far bigger things in life than he can possibly see now. And like Monisha, is an individual in possession of far too many talents, such that it looks unfair to the rest of us.

Anupam Guha: After a successful stint at the Georgia Institute of Technology (where he completed a 2-year Master’s course in a year with a perfect 4.0 CGPA), Guha is currently in Ahmadabad, working for a company that pays him to essentially be their poster-boy. His relationship with Anupama (who I’ve never met properly) was much joked about (my contribution was the idea for “Anupam (1+a)” wedding cards) in college. Oddly enough, it appears to be highly likely that theirs’ will be the first marriage of a friend that I will be a guest of. The conversations on every topic under and beyond the sun were, and still remain, much appreciated. Even the ones where we vehemently disagree. And his conviction to “save” me and show me that humanity is worth saving might just pay off. The path of the wannabe Bushido-ist is fraught with many perils, I joked of him. Well it appears that he intends on making these words an eerie prophecy. Much like a Katana, he has forged his tamahagane worldviews by repeatedly putting it through fire, folding it and beating the shit of it. And that’s why Guha will probably end up as that rarest species of all: A happy, intelligent man who is satisfied with his life and the world he is living in. Or we’ll embark on our plan for revolution. He’ll be Trotsky, I’ll be Stalin… Minus the backstabbing, of course.

Ashwin Murali: After half a year of working 80-90 hour weeks at Citibank, he’s now at his palatial penthouse in Nasik preparing for a second MBA. Ashwin’s greatest trait as a friend has been his ability to listen to me constantly abuse, demote, shout at, vilify and generally insult him for over 3 years with a patient nod and that irritatingly reassuring stupid smile. He set me off on a tangential path in my worldview, for which I still hate him by the way, but it might perhaps lead to a better future. You better hope it does bro.

Akhil Garg: Working at Accenture in Hyderabad, his tryst with the Alagappa family continues as my sister was his HR rep as a trainee. We have both learnt, very late, that we weren’t as bad roommates to have as we thought. Perhaps immaturity came between what could’ve been a far more rewarding friendship for us.

Swati, Priya and Ankur: Swati is working with Wipro in Bangalore while Priya is doing her Master’s at the University of Sussex, I believe. Ankur is doing his Master’s at IIT Kharagpur. I drove you guys away from me in a fit of madness and have regretted that decision since. My yet unfinished college life would have been far better if I had not done that.

Nitesh Bhasin: The entrepreneur and fellow backlogger. We really dump on you more than you deserve. The fact remains that if you hadn’t taken the effort of befriending me in IP University that day, I wouldn’t have gotten to know a lot of the people mentioned here. You’ll either end up in jail or in Forbes. Have fun in Vegas.

M.V. Harish: Another man at Georgia Tech, here’s to perpetuating the “crazy Telugu mofo” image with me. Keep it real with the brothas in the hood in Atlanta. We’ll meet up in a gun shop or seedy beer bar someday.

Many others ought to feature in this list, but I feel it has become so sappy, your monitors might have started leaking already; so wait for another epiphany and moment of emo-ness.

Seriously, I have so many epiphanies; it’s hard to tell which ones are genuine.

Oh, and I almost to mention… This post formally ends this blog. There will be no more posting on Chaosverse any longer. Frankly, I would like some order. Unpredictability and randomness are, as always, welcome; but I’ve had it with the chaos.

I would like to delete this blog, but perhaps will save it. Someday, the people mentioned in this post will look back and this and other posts and laugh at the naivety, stupidity, folly, and immaturity on display.

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D-Day…

D is for Disgusting, Damnations, Dull, Dreary etc etc…

Why am I perennially irritated?

  • I have had absolutely NOTHING to do for the last week. I was bored in bouts previously, but there were moments of salvation in between. Like the time I went to Morrison drunk with Venom’s friends. But since May 30th, it’s been an irrelevant existence. Wake up at any time, sleep at any time, eat, don’t eat, who cares! HAL Bangalore is killing me. Make up your mind! Please!
  • Monisha of moated grange is having a great time… in Bangalore! Everyone but me is in MY city. Even Decay had a week in Mukteshwar amidst some eco-geeks! I haven’t done a thing! Except shave my head. A day after I do it, a friend of mine tells me it’s the latest fad. I am completely cut off from all current affairs. I wasn’t even aware that the World T20 Championship was taking place until a few hours ago.
  • And this leads me to my next point. The World Quiz Championship is tomorrow. Great! More obscure trivia! Honestly, quizzing stopped being fun somewhere in my 2nd year. As I said on Twitter, the set of “things/topics I like” is a subset of the set “stuff which will never make it’s way into a quiz question”.
  • I’ve been listening to a lot of Sum 41 and System Of A Down. I miss Radiohead. However, my system cannot sufficiently cool an AMD Athlon X2… so it shuts itself off before it can even boot. So I’m stuck with my roommate’s laptop.
  • Started reading ‘India After Gandhi’ by Ramachandra Guha, but found it to be so accurate and non-partisan that it began to depress me. Were I not a member of this blighted race, I would’ve finished it in a day. Were my history bad, I would’ve finished it in a day. Unfortunately, reading the lead-up to the 1962 war is getting to me. I honestly cannot turn another page. And even assuming I skip that part, I’ll still have the war of ’65, the war of ’71, Indira Gandhi’s ‘Garibi Hatao’ election, the Emergency and Sanjay Gandhi, Janata Party and Morarji Desai, Indira part II, Operation Blue Star, the Sikh genocides, Punjab Terrorism, Morte d’Indira, Rajiv “the unwilling PM” Gandhi, Sonia Maino, LTTE, Rajiv’s assassination, babri, Bombay, terrorism strikes, the 90s and the rise of regionalism, Sonia Maino turns Gandhi, Atal’s 13-day stint in Power, H.D. Deve Gowa as PM (“-the fuck?”), I.K. Gujral’s highly useless and uneventful stint, BJP’s rise, Nuclear Tests… Basically, Indian history is interesting till the Slave Dynasty of the 13th century. I know, political intrigue existed back then too (Kanishka “The Great” was assassinated in his sleep by a Kushana General, similar to how Xerxes – of 300 fame – died. Minus the Kushana part). Summary: Can’t continue with India After Gandhi right now. Romila Thapar’s book on Ancient India: Pre-history to the 12th century ought to capture my interest more.
  • And wordpress is starting to annoy me. The screen is lagging behind my keyboard by a good 2 seconds. And the spell check is astounding! Words that were underlined included “friend” (suggested change: “fried”), “with” (suggested change: “wii”) and… “wordpress” (suggested change: “worthless”)

And finally, an ad concept which  came up with. I won’t be surprised if someone else came up with it before this:

This has been a headache.

Poetry is a common feature on blogs. You see a lot of amateur poesy on yonder blagosphere… And when I say amateur, I mean crappy. I mean, really, god-awful, torturous, pompous, self-indulgent, moronic fecal matter.

Thus, I shall conclude this annoying (it has been so to write and I assume, shall be so to read) post with… A poem.

Death is the end of life; ah, why
Should life all labour be?
Let us alone. Time driveth onward fast,
And in a little while our lips are dumb.
Let us alone. What is it that will last?
All things are taken from us, and become
Portions and parcels of the dreadful past.
Let us alone. What pleasure can we have
To war with evil? Is there any peace
In ever climbing up the climbing wave?
All things have rest, and ripen toward the grave
In silence; ripen, fall and cease:
Give us long rest or death, dark death, or dreamful ease.

I know, there’s been an underlying series of references. But I doubt anyone cares or will find it. Even with this text here and the bloody obvious last hint.

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Filed under Anything Seriously Anything, Arrgh!!!, Life

Mann Role Mera…

It’s 5:02 AM and I’m typing this.

The title. Sad. It’s easily the worst title to a post ever. If the discerning reader (fuck, I’ll just name the sole reader I have!), if Dinesh has noticed, I haven’t complained about how my writing style is non-existent, or how I’ve been going through a bout of writer’s bloc (sic.) for the last one-and-a-half years et cetera. It follows from my principle of “Blog as if no-one’s reading!”, and no-one is! Except for Decay, of course.

In any case, the title is actually a reference to xkcd. I’ve been clicking on the random button at the rate of once every 6 minutes, so I’ve seen approximately 50. Also, there’s a reference to a popular song that is sung in B-grade hindi movies to charm snakes. Also, strangely enough, there was a one-hit wonder teen-pop cover of the same song sung by a girl who had attended a school in Bangalore which I subsequently attended. Can’t remember her name (I never knew it properly in the first place, to be honest).

So, there. TITular references done with.

Randall Munroe is God. Since I was born into a Hindu family (into the Brahmin caste to boot! Descendent of the ancestral priests of the Kalahasti Shrine… Now atheist and KFC fan), I can have multiple cultural and intellectual demi-gods (to monotheist cultural/intellectual demi-godders: Nyeh nyeh!)

I’m going back into AYBABTU probably. It’s psedo-retro and just forgotten enough to be funny again. Again, like in xkcd, it was my first internet meme.

Btw, if a=1, b=2, … z=26.

x + k + c + d = 24 + 11 + 3 + 4 = 42!!!! OMFG! UBER PWNAGE!!!!

But xkcd’s greatest moment has to be this line:

Ah, late night internet. The sheer wastage of time, unrivalled by any other action.

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Filed under An Atheist's Gods, Anything Seriously Anything, Art, Blogroll

Bob Dylan was right after all!

The parts of his songs I could actually understand that is.

There’s this one song, which like his others, goes something like this:

neeeeya, neeeeya, yeeee, anna, neeeeeya neee neee… Oh, the times, they are a-changing…

Which, as I have implied, they are.

May 11th, 2009.

The 91st birth anniversary of this guy (terrible article, as I believe all of mine are)

The 8th death (or final lift?) of this guy.

And, notably, the day South Park will premiere on Indian Television.

Yes. What the fuck just isn’t enough.

It’s strange. The moment a show hits Indian TV, it goes bad. Scrubs hit Indian TV when season 5 started elsewhere. And we all now that started the steady downward slide of an otherwise hilarious and intelligent show. Following this trend, South Park’s season 13 is a massive disappointment.

Episode 3 was alright. The whole Kyle is a Jew thing can go wrong if not done well.

Episode 1 was kinda funny in parts. “You do not.  FUCK! With Mickey Mouse! Got that? ha ha?”

Episode 2 was just… bad. The Dark Knight could’ve been parodied so much better.

Episode 4… they were tripping on acid or something, but ended up making a brilliant feminist statement. And as a guy, I was repulsed. Sorry, it’s a genetic thing probably.

Episode 5… Nice. Best episode of the season, but nothing compared to their previous work. Why is Trey Parker going after Carlos Mencia? I mean, who cares about Carlos Mencia, for DNA’s sake? The Kayne West thing was nice though.

Episodes 6 and 7… Worst. Ever.

I don’t have a TV, so no clue as to where they’re starting off from and if they’ll go in order. I’m surprised that any TV show who’s pilot episode is called “Cartman Gets An Anal Probe” is being broadcast. I don’t think it’ll last. With India’s censorship system and how regressive thought sells on the t00b, it’ll end up being one long, uninterrupted bleep. Then some nut will say killing children is un-Indian (which it isn’t, by the way… Look at our education system!) and poof! It’ll be gone before you can say Meekrab.

This is the defining sequence of South Park’s pilot episode. I tried to find the actual video, but google has betrayed us and youtube is more or less the lunatic asylum of the interweb, or whatever the damn thing is called now. Anyway, the essence is still there.

Dedicated to ye, who know South Park as only a “3-time Emmy Award winning, animated TV show”…


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Resurrection

“And on the 42nd day, he shall rise again!”

Hello!

I cannot explain why I haven’t been writing. Maybe it’s because I no longer enjoy the honor and privilege of an internet connection, or maybe it’s because I’m so busy I can’t waste my time on a silly blog.

Or maybe it’s because blogging, like social networking websites, is merely a fad. And it’s time is up. It shall now be relegated to that hallowed graveyard of peculiar habits that the populace began to practice en masse, solemnly swearing to never stop; for THIS truly defines them, THIS is finally an opportunity for them to express themselves creatively; THIS is the moment they have been waiting for. However, THIS finally becomes THAT and THAT always has been and always will be… boring. (I used to fancy myself as a writer. I just tried to elucidate my views by the means of a series of sentences that hinged on demonstratives.)

The point is, it appears that blogging is now giving company to the Macarena, the Fonz’s jacket, Akshay Kumar’s blue jeans and movies with ‘Khiladi’ in the title and college basketball-playing “dewds”. It’s a pity, though. I used to like blogging. Until the pressure to write something extraordinary every single time kicked in. I guess I’ll resume this blog differently. It’s probably a fresh start.

2008 was a strange year. In the stats column, it started with Chaosverse enjoying 3,000 hits in the first month alone. In the last month of 2008, it dropped to 700. That further fell to 600 in January ’09. I guess that’s a good thing. There’s no more pressure. No more “Is Harish in form again?” I know I’ve lost my edge, but I’m going to stop trying to get it back. The best things come to you when you never expected them or even asked for them. That’s the one lesson I can say I learnt the easy way. Right, Venom?

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Download Diary

I utterly despise the practice of alliterative phrases as titles. There is something fundamentally stupid about it. I mean, when I see an alliterative title I instantly assume that what layeth b’fore mine eyes is a chick-lit novel written by some NRI about the trials and tribulations of a teenage girl with orthodox Punjabi parents living in Brixton or Chelsea or Bedford or some such place. Apparently the only decently good novel in this genre is Meera Syal’s ‘Anita and Me’, whose title, please note, is not alliterative. So, eugh! Horrible title, but I can’t copy someone, who incidentally vouched for the decently good-like nature of ‘Anita and Me’, and title my post “Bah! I hate naming ‘me posts!” So, British Punjabi chick-lit title it is.

Anyhoo, this post is an appeal. In the words of David Gilmour and Roger Waters, “Hello… (Hello, hello)? Is there anybody in there?” Or rather, OUT there. I am sick of nobody reading my blog. I don’t write for myself. I write for recognition. For criticism and extravagant praise. For comparisons to Wodehouse and Shelley and Bacon and Shakespeare and Raymond Chandler and Sidney Sheldon. (Okay, maybe not him!) Or to have my writing blown to bits by comparing it to Chetan Bhagat and Jeffrey Archer and Sidney Sheldon (that’s his rightful place!) and John Grisham and Dan Brown (please! I’m not THAT bad, am I?). Well, I shall again quote another band I partially appreciate to explain the nature of my appeal.

Maybe it’s just something I can’t admit but lately,
I feel like I don’t give a shit.
Motivation such an aggravation,
Accusations don’t know how to take them.
Inspiration’s getting hard to fake it.
Concentration’s never hard to break it.

Basically, I don’t feel like writing stuff I’d normally write about. Even that paper I was planning to write is suffering from a massive problem which can be summarized quite succinctly as: where/how the fuck do I start?

So, to kick-start my writing habit, I ask you fair readers to comment more often. Even a “Lol!” will suffice… for the moment. And now to the tit…ular.

I am in the process of downloading the following movies:

  • Brazil. Directed by Monty Python’s very own Terry Gilliam, it apparently stars fellow Python Michael Palin. A supposed dystopian science-fiction parody, it is ‘1984’ made in 1984 by someone who didn’t read ‘1984’. Download time left: Will take a day, methinks.
  • Slumdog Millionaire. I usually hate movies about India made by the good folks of Hollywoodland. They stick to stereotypes and pass that off as a “gritty and realistic portrayal of India’s…<insert what the movie deals with here>”. Left to them, all of us can’t speak in English without our heads bobbing and always do so in high-pitched nasal tones, every guy is a rag-picker, every girl is a prostitute and we all live in Dharvi. But apparently this movie doesn’t stick to that line. It’s by Danny Boyle, who made ‘Trainspotting’ – a movie I liked. And AR’s winning quite a number of prestigious awards for his score. He picked up a Golden Globe nomination; last time I heard. Too bad no-one gives a flying fuck about those awards. Downloading… 3 hours left.
  • Frost/Nixon. Now, Ron Howard scares me. It’s not just that he actually knew The Fonz… he made A Beautiful Mind. Great flick and all, but realism was slaughtered for making it more cinematically appealing. I’ve always felt his movies’ primary objective is to win Oscars. Downloading… 23 hours.
  • Vicky Cristina Barcelona. The quiz circuit is a good place to pick up cinema recommendations. Worst place for music recommendations, though. Anyway, there were questions about this Woody Allen movie at quizzes at IIT Delhi and Kanpur. Plus, it does have pretty nifty sounding title. Let’s hope it’s not a chick flick from a pederast. What’s a… pederast, Harish? Shut the fuck up, Donny. Downloading… 14 hours.
  • There’re also some “so-bad-they’re-good” flicks I’m planning to get. Showgirls, Freddy Got Fingered, Plan 9 from Outer Space, Gunda, Jaani Dushman.

I like posts which have very little to do with the title. The title is not completely irrelevant, just very irrelevant.

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I CAN HAZ DEKSTOP?

I have a desktop! Sorry…sorry… a dekstop. (up your’s Dilli!)

2GB RAM (Corsair), Asus 7100 Motherboard, AMD Athlon X2 Processor, 17 inch CRT Monitor (Samsung), Microsoft XP Professional (I’m planning to put up a “NO VISTA ALLOWED” sticker on my CPU case). No office suite or internet connection, yet. Doubt if I’ll get the latter. Thinking of downloading OpenOffice for the former (up your’s Microsoft!)

So, what am I doing on my new desktop  dekstop? Nothing useful really. (Up your’s anyone doing useful things on their PCs!)

I don’t have much to say right now. Except that I’m oddly calm. Listening to Honey Singh. Thinking of writing a review of that song. I actually like it! (up your’s… er… anyone who thinks I shouldn’t!)

So… wow… you guys expect me to say something profound or funny or absurd or meaningful… OK… err… Stirling engines are External Continuous Combustion types as opposed to normal (such as Diesel or SI) engines which are Internal Intermittent Combustion types. The fact that it’s a thermodynamic cycle that can provide the theoretically maximum value of efficiency (along with the Carnot cycle), but also practically feasible and cheaper makes it an ideal model for future engines. As of now, the Glenn Space Research Center at NASA is trying to develop a Deep-Space Propulsion System based on the Stirling Cycle. (STG’s they call them – Stirling Thermionic Generators). (Up your’s RTG Technology!)

There. Phew! The burdens of expectation!

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