Sunday, February 26, 2006


Americas 2004..

One boring winter evening, me and my roomie discover that we get FOX TV without cable!( We didn't have cable and didnt use our tvs but for watching movies via vcr). We decide to check out American Idol. "Too much drama.. and these preliminary stuff is boring!"

We watch it next week just the same :) And the next week..and so on.. till we start rooting for Bo Bice! That rocker could rock the stage. And there was this other guy who had awesome charisma, and this music teacher who sang awesome ( Ok I am biased towards guys! what to do?). Of course Carrie won, she sang well..So fine. Even though I would have voted for Bo.

India 2004.

So I hear that there is an Indian Idol. Who won? The final two were too good, and it was all based on looks. Then I hear Abhijeet Sawant and Amit Sana on desi-radio..dunno who became the idol but Abhijeet Sawant can sure sing! After hearing Lafzon mein, am convinced looks or no looks he deserved that Idol prize!

Americas 2005..
Have caught a few episodes...but the finals have only now began...

India 2005
Accidently I discover some Indian Idol 2 episodes online. This is piano round. Here comes a Abhishek Bacchan resembling chap ( only resembling ok no one can look as good as Abhishek!!!.. ) from hydy. And this chap starts off singing the Punju song from Chalte Chalte "Layi vi na gayi" and am spell bound.. I am no music expert.but that boy can real sing well. I checked out
all the videoes yesterday (ok.. really had nothing to do..:) ) A little over-confident perhaps but good. Then there is Amey Date ( and if you have ever seen Sa re ga ma and various Suresh Wadkar students.. you know he is good!)
The two girls surviving, Meenal Jain and Antara Mitra can sing well. Again Antara is from a small town with a strong bangla accent working real hard.

The sad part is Karunya is not getting as many votes..possibly cause people dont watch this stuff so much in south? If you are in des-land...please vote for him.. on my behalf !!

Saturday, February 25, 2006

Email Story : Part III (soon to end I promise:) )

continued from " Email Story Part II "

Date: Thu, 1 Jan 2004 12:56:31 -0600
From: "Sumitra Narsmihan"
To:"Mythili Rangaswami "
Subject: Re: venkatiah

Just got up! We went to play pool last night. All those places were having some championships. So ended up back home, junta felt very senti about not doing anything. So we danced :) Kya contrast hai, you go to a discotheque to dance, we dance at home.
Btw I am rolling with laughter imagining Venkatiah (urf venky!). You remember the mama's boy who used to sit in front of us. I was telling Prashant about him and how we used to torture him!

So what's up with this Vineet thing then? I know long distance can be tough. But you know I am in one. Me and Prashant meet once in two months usually na? Of course dude has been crashing here all this month. But of course with junta coming here at random hours my dear hubby has to behave himself :)

Chal dishes beckon me. Prashant cooked all week, at least I can do the dishes.


Date: Sat, 3 Jan 2004 10:20:15 +0530
From: "Mythili Rangaswami"
To: "Sumitra Narsmihan"
Subject: Re: venkatiah


arre how is your dear hubby? give him my love (even if he doesn't want it!). agar main hoti, I would crash at your place all the time..just to trouble him.
Ya that Vineet thing is a flop. Am meeting one Mr Ramesh today. He is a doctor or he is still doing his residency in the americas. So lets see. Please remind me again what pluses did I see in this arranged marraige thing? I know I have been arguing for it all our lives. And now am getting cold feet!

waise you and prashant thing is different re. Your parents were friends. And you have known him for kya 6 years now? from NYSS time? And married for 2 years at least na? S o how can it be the same? Its like a arranged cum love marriage. apne aise naseeb kahan.

I was telling amma, why they couldnt have some nice friends like that, with nice sons. So there appears my Mr Ramesh Rajgopal. He is a friend/acquaintance of srini anna. So lets see he must be 2 years elder to us.

ok chal then, have to go shopping with bhabhi and manni. I still don't know why I started calling kartik, bhaiya while I call srini anna. I sure had some confused parents who taught me that!


Date: Sat, 3 Jan 2004 10:22:17 -0600
From: "Sumitra Narsmihan"
To:"Mythili Rangaswami "
Subject: Re: venkatiah


Prash passes his love to you , the little that he can spare from me :) He says he does have some left for you, inspite of you pulling his leg over thanksgiving break.

Ramesh haan? Ok girl, you have your fun. You know am no fan of arranged marriage. But if thats what you want to do. Go ahead! Waise your parents must be thrilled na? I guess they musn't have been expecting this.

Aur kya? Nothing much is new here. Prashant has to leave next week, so we are thinking to spend some money and catch a Broadway play before. Don't know last minute mein koi tickets milega kya!

Chal then,

Date: Sun, 4 Jan 2004 10:20:15 +0530
From: "Mythili Rangaswami"
To: "Sumitra Narsmihan"
Subject: Re: venkatiah

arre that Ramesh chap is not all that bad. I actually liked talking to him. Hes as big a fan of hindi movies as I! We are planning to watch a movie today evening.
and hes all cool. Quite open about his views. Entirely thrilled :) Can you see me grinning?

By the way our dark past has come back to haunt me in the form of venky!
Usne sidey ne apne mom ke samne sunaya ki how you and me used to trouble him. That we would throw chalks at him. And tease him about being mama's boy :(

So I told aunty, that her son keeps grudges, which is why he is embarasing me now!!
His mom was so cool about it. She said, he just is trying to prove that he isn't a coward anymore :) Woh log aaj subah aaye the. mr venky had gone ponna pakkal with his parents. I didnt ask for details. Its shameful, to do social visiting when you go to meet a girl and all. But apparently there was some confusion with time and they came to Ghatkopar way too early and since they were on East anyway, Venky suggested they drop by. I told Venky exactly what I thought of that. For which he shrugged and said Its all good.. khair jaanede. I am upset with him.

phone ringing.. probably venky to say sorry.. YA right.. am just expecting too much!


Date: Mon, 5 Jan 2004 5:13:34 -0600
From: "Sumitra Narsmihan"
To:"Mythili Rangaswami "
Subject: Re: venkatiah

Ramesh sounds like a good guy. You should meet him as often as you can whiel you are there. Waise you must have made up your mind when he said lets go watch a SRK movie :) Arre does Venky still not watch any TV and movies? because they are such a waste of time?

There you go I gave you another reason to fight with him :)


to be continued...

Friday, February 24, 2006

Part II Email Story

continued from " "Email Story I "

Date: Sun, 28 Dec 2003 22:30:45 -0600
From: "Sumitra Narsmihan"
To:"Mythili Rangaswami "
Subject: Re: venkatiah

What no reply? Better write before I am convinced you have become a myth!


Date: Mon, 29 Dec 2003 12:23:12 +0530
From: "Mythili Rangaswami "
To: "Sumitra Narsmihan "

arre kuch nahi, got stuck with meeting guys and all. Still think this whole process is silly yaar. Met one guy on Thursday, Vineet. He is a software engineer. But he is in Bangalore, he visits US often on Infosys jobs. I don't even know why we are both considering each other. It doesn't makes sense. I will be in Americas for at least a few years.. and arranged marraige mein who wants a long distance relation?

And then he gave me some fundaes about how his mom will always be right, and that he can never go against his parents wishes. What the hell is he talking about? Matlab aise wierd conditions mein koi kyun shaadi karega? I am not expecting to fight with his mother, she seemed like the sweetest woman, but phir bhi? What century is that guy in? The more they become westernized, the more conservative they become seems like!

Venky was telling me that he has already met two girls, and it didnt work out. But hes so cool about all that. He says they have these chats and if things don't seem to be working, you just decide then and there to let it be. WHat a great start? I mean if you don't want even start with some meeting ground, where does he expect it will end?

Anyway, so talked a few more times with Vineet saheb, but dont look like it will work out :(

Sahi hai you guys saw movies and all. And no my bro is no SRK fan, refuses to even come for Munnabhai. He doesn't watch anything other than documentaries on NG. What a bore ! I don't know uska love marraige kaise hua. That guy hardly ever speaks to anyone. Even to Simi bhabhi now!

me ( haha, thats what I ask these guys I meet.. love me..:) )

Date: Tue, 30 Dec 2003 9:29:31 -0600
From: "Sumitra Narsmihan"
To:"Mythili Rangaswami "
Subject: Re: venkatiah

Dear Mythee,
BAck to the working grind. These IT people even don't know how to distribute holidays. Thinking of taking a break and going to Calif with Prashant. He still has his winter break going on. These MBA's first pay through their nose for schooling and the world pays through their nose for educating them. He already has two job offers!

Don't worry about all this arranged marriage thing re. Why are you doing this yaar?
Your parents should be quite open to love marraige after two in your family and you are only 24! There is lots of time to fall in love.

On the other hand if you want to go through with this, you are right, stop seeing this Vineet guy. And what? are you and venky exchanging notes? Venky haan? I don't remember anyone calling him that in junior college!

Well boss entered. Better get back to work.


Date: Thu, 1 Jan 2003 5:44:36 +0530
From: "Mythili Rangaswami"
To: "Sumitra Narsmihan"
Subject: Re: venkatiah

Guess what I did? I went to a disco here, with my bros, bhabhis, would be bhabis, Venky and his sister.
We danced all night. I had a real New Year Party. Junta in India has really transformmed. I would never have done that in the US. In last two and a half years we have been to the bar kya, a couple of times?
It was crazy. Oh and let me tell you Venkatiah can really dance good. Never expected that!!
Anyway, uski sis kafi cool hai. She is elder to him, doesn't want to get married ever or so she claims. Apparently thats an issue he has to deal with in this arranged marraige context. Although, dunno why anyone should care. She is the epitome of feminism. She is a journalist in the Indian Express. I became totally fida on her.
She was making fun of Venky all the time for being such a good boy etc. Gulty boy gets teased about making money out his marraige all the time.

So what did you guys do for new years? Actually its not new year yet there I guess.
So whats the plan?


To be continued

Tuesday, February 21, 2006


Walking towards my office from the coffee shop I looked around.
Every city has a character of its own. People dress differently here from the Midwest. They just don't seem to dress all that brightly here as in the Midwest. All dark coats, grey and black.. smart looking men and women. But no bright colours.

Then splash! Actually it was Whoosh! The truck past me sprayed a whole lot of dust on me. " And dust," All big cities have their share of dust and wind.
The daily routine is such that I walk a lot and think a lot about what I want to write.
Except I never get around to writing it.

I really like to write. But its not writing, I really love to think out loud. Put it out there for some listening ear to catch it. But really, I don't even want to think out loud. How wonderful it would be if I could transmit my thoughts.

I would just think " Loud" and then ramble on into the universe. Some kind soul would happen to say at that time " Listen" and would hear my comic narrations (even if I say so myself!) And then when I get bored with thinking, I would switch to " Listen" and tune into somebodys thoughts. Neat....

Sigh! and what a beautiful dream it was , chaotic perhaps but beautiful all the same :)

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Say a little prayer

You know you are in trouble when you read the sign on a door saying " dept of so and so...Welding lab " as "Wedding lab!". It almost makes me sound lonely and desperate.. I say almost, cause in reality am not desperate, lonely..yes.. and that is just due to being a strange city.

Anyway, I have my own solution to all this. Like every good human being, I pray every night for all the wars to end..good things happen to good people. And then I have a secret prayer of my own.. which namely seeks a few miracles, like a husband, two children, a doctrate, a job at a univ in India..( I figured asking for a house to add to that list is way too much, some restraint is due even with greed!) appear lo and behold next morning..

Every night, oh god I say a little prayer for me :)

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Derivatives in Real Life

We derive inspiration from those around us.

We derive our aspirations from what is around us.

We derive pleasure from our surroundings.

We are the derivatives of our familiy's hopes and fears. (so, Mike and the Mechanics tell me in the Living Years!)

Friday, February 10, 2006

Whence do I belong?

There are two ways to kinds of travellers in this world (very soon I will outdo no of times Amitabh says in Hum, "do tarah ke cockroach hote hain..." )

There are those who do in Rome as Romans do. There are those who are a Roman no matter where they are !

Its hard to decide which is the better way. Probably the best one can say is that there is no better way!

As an Indian in India (who has never been anywhere much ) I had a certain impressions Indians from America visiting India. " Why do they have to be so American? Why do they say fast instead of faast? Why do they need toilet paper and Bisleri everywhere they go?"

As a legal non-resident alien in America ( I mean the United States really!) I have another impression of Indians in America. I think " why are they so Indian? Why don't they mingle more? The same old gatherings, where you might see one or two Americans? Still adhering to same old traditions"

Ya ya, I am stereotyping here, but its really only an impression, a feeling , not completely without grounds !

So then I wonder, who am I? Am I an Indian? I defintely say fast more often than faast. I try to fit in somewhat but still am stuck to age old conservatives, which are derivatives of being an Indian.

I am afraid I am caught in a time warp. I am afraid by the time I am settled here, I will be going back to my home country. I am afraid that by the nothing will be hte same there. It already isn't.

So there is no escaping the truth. I am an Indian in the Americas!

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Money Money Money...

" Must be funny in the rich man's world!" sing Abba.

I realised that I will always poor. I have a middle class mentality. Why?
So I overheard (actually I could have been a part.. but ever so often I have nothing to say!) a conversation about someone buying a friend a pair of jeans worth 150 dollars. Someone who probably makes a little bit more than me possibly. I realized that even if I was a millionaire I could never buy really expensive clothes.

Sure, I can imagine buying an expensive gift, but designer clothes just dont sound right to me! I can still remember that I had once recieved a 1000 rupee scholarship, and decided I will buy myself a really expensive salwaar kameez. I had to make my friends take me to expensive stores. And it took me a whole lot of effort to buy that dress. I still have it of course, and it was totally worth it. (this was a few years ago when 1000 rupees was worth much more!).

I suppose everybody has his/her taste for expensive things. I can really spend on buying gifts, buying electronics, something random on a whimsy, CDs, etc.
But still I think I will never be rich!

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

H two O

Flowing river has a strange calming effect. As I watch past huge tables, through the high windows of the library, into the slowly treading waters of Boston, shinning bright in the sunshine, I feel at peace.

I wonder how water flowing down the mountains through Ganga looks ever consuming, while the small stream trickling off the mountains at khandala tempt you to get wet without fear.

Have had these strange feeling at times when I stare at huge chunk of water of being drawn into it, the feeling is over-powering. Perhaps humans were really meant to be amphibians, perhaps we moved way too inland.

Sad then that I cannot swim (inspite of taking classes), sad that I never learnt to sail a boat or walk into the ocean and let the waves tease me.

No, life is not short enough that these dreams are never realised. But I kind of understand those few who do indulge in taking the plunge.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Pastries, cheese and coffee

These are things I crave for. Smell and sight of certain food have an ability of numbing the practical mind.

But why is it so often that the taste doesn't live upto the smell of it? Coffee never tastes as good, even though I am into becoming an addict soon.
How come pastries, which look beautiful as you dream about them ( inspite of most of dreams these days involving a warmer room , I do day dream occasionally about other things!) very rarely taste as good.

On the other hands, one can remember the taste of best dessert one had, or the taste of the spiciest food. The flavour lingers on. And you can recall it whenever you want to, with no bad aftertastes!

Life is like that, very much close to what Mr Steele says in the conversation posted before. Not everything is upto our expectations, and then there are those cherished times, which stay with us always!

Monday, February 06, 2006

weathering heights

Its insanely cold out.. Its cold in my room.. :( Change of cities, no change in weather but its almost a new life.
Its like being back in Bombay again, travelling half hr for work. Except its cooooooold..
Change in life is expected. But expected or unexpected its hard to accept.. at least for me..but then, every time after the first few days of complaining I settle down and hate to leave.
Thats probably a pattern hard to change, I would rather crib now than hate living here always :) If you didnt realize by now, its really cold out and am wrapped up in blankets while writing this....The sunny bright days though decieving are most welcome.