Indian Ameri

Wednesday

Religion or Humanity?????

I went to bed around 3 in the morning today. But I din't sleep coz I was thinking about something. I had to make a decission. My birthday is around the corner next week and am pretty sure some friends might turn up. Unfortunately am in this Vrath in which am not supposed to eat any eggs. Being in a country infiltrated with low fat or fat free food and egg whites in every product you can see on the shelf, I guess I would need to ask someone to bake me an eggless cake. I did ask a good friend of mine about the recipe so that I can give it to my roomies. But while I went to bed I was thinking, is it necessary that I need to have an eggless cake for my birthday. I don't want my buddies to work for me just coz that I am in a Vrath. I've been toiling my mind for quiet a long time until I dozed off.

Dad used to say this often to me, "Religion is a way to pure your soul. Being in a world filled with science and technology miracles seem to be fake. But miracles do happen beyond the scope of human thought." Me being a lazy fellow have never read a single line from the Gita nor the Quran nor the Bible, but I know that all of the 3 preach just one thing in common - The fastest way to reach God is to see Him in others, in people, make them happy and that does purify your soul. So I was having two things in my hands. My Vrath on one hand and the fact that no eggs or beatings from friends. On the other hand happiness of friends and people who would love seeing me getting pounded (Ya its true... People are waiting). Most of them are gonna leave after this sem and am gonna see them come up in life. But will I be able to meet them the same way I do now down the road, say 10 years in the future???
I was very much confused, that I finally decided to ask the question to Him. I wrote 'Happiness' in a chit of paper and 'Worship' in another. Folded them equivalently and kept it in front of Him. I had ensured that I din't know which one was which. Took a paper after my usal prayer and found that He wanted me to follow my conscience - So I chose to have eggs only on that day, that too only for that one moment in which I can see happiness in the eyes of my good friends.
I am gonna regret this decission of mine coz now everyone have a chance to kick the life out of me. If it was last year it would be different coz was a pachyderm. Now am not sure how am gonna handle this. What goes good, goes good.......
Todays update: My flickr account is full for the month, that means I dint upload all my pics implying lesser comments from the people who look into it. I thought of postin all my best pics and go for the Indian photographers group. But now I need to wait for a couple of weeks to be enrolled as a member of Indian photographers.
Had another dilemma while uploading pics in orkut, not with which one to put but to remove which pic. I had this two pics, one my parents and other of Jawans. Though my pick was to remove the parents pic, somehow the Satan in me removed the Jawan pic too. I was so filled with guilt that kept no pics in orkut. But kept a link in which people can access my pics. I am pretty much upset on what I have done now. I wonder what makes fellow Indians born in our mother land turn against the country if I feel so much guilt for just deleting a picture whereas they try to delete the whole concept of Indianism........
PS this blog doesnt ask my friends to do what I like. It's a reminder that I am fine with anything that they do as long as it doesnt harm others and not me........
posted by Hariharasudhan Cd at Wednesday, November 22, 2006 2 comments

Tuesday

San Francisco - Revisited.


$ Main aisa kyon hoon, Main aisa kyon hoooon... Main aisa kyon hoon, Main aisa kyon houun$
$ Main aisa kyon hoon, Main aisa kyon hoooon... Main aisa kyon hoon, Mein jaisa hoon mein waisa kyon hooon$

Nice singing ppl. This was the question I asked myself before I went to San Francisco for my AICHE (American Institute of Chemical Engineers) technical conference. But that one week I shall never forget in my life. It had answered me questions which I've been trying to sort out for a looonnnnngggg time... When I say long I mean real Loooooooooooooooooooooonnnnnnnnnnnnnngggg.
Things I learnt as a student or as a researcher was a lil below my expectation, but things I learnt as a person was gargantuan (like that word). Since I had my previous post on my future goals I would like to skip my mindset on it and try not to bore you.

Lets go to some interesting stuff I noticed during my trip.

1) In the flight saw this book called 'Skymall'. If you are really bored in a flight just have a peep into it. Who said inventions are supposed to be big. The inventions that these products show are extrordinary. I loved the inventive products they published. It gives you new insight into your imagination. Just try lookin at the book and guess what you might end up with an idea that might change your life.
2) If you aren't queasy about lift off or touch down then look at the people sittin beside you. You can see an overflow of emotions. Saw this guy who's face was blank as a blue windows screen showing no emotions. But his hands were making odd circles which I felt that he was calming himself someway or the other. A child who was playing all the time went and hugged his mom and sat on her lap when the plane landed. I was fortunate enough to view their relationship. An old lady was so interested in seeing the plane land that she pushed the window seater (an average elderly man) and saw the whole landing procedure.

Now for the fun part -

3) I was damn hungry when I was coming back to Atlanta and the air hostess offered everyone peanuts. The ironic thing was the common TV which was overhead showed excuisite and exotic food shows in the food channel. I called her and asked her, 'Thats a nice way I can quench my hunger with peanuts' She laughed and said, 'Guess what! Thats how we eat our daily meals' She went and changed the channel to CNN.

4) Back in San Francisco, Ghirardeli chocolates offered 10% discount with the previous bill you got when buying sweets. When me and some of my friends went to have ice cream there was this cycle of bill exchange in order to get 10% discount. Aatish's bill went to Abhay, Abhay's to me, Mine to Reynolds, Reynolds to Shyam and finally Shyam back to Aatish. Unfortunately Aatish dint get the discount coz he was the starter... I was thinking about the situation and was thinking, this looks like an analytical problem which I remembered when my bro gave his GRE. PS I was thinking what if somehow you got bills from trash cans outside the store, can you use it to get free food. I shook my head and gave a smirk to my innovative yet cheap thought.

5) We went to a hotel near San Francisco, where it was written Free internet and free breakfast. The wireless internet wasn't working and so went and asked them what the problem was and they said that the system was down. I asked them to take the sign off and immediately they apologized and the receptionist removed the free breakfast board. That was real funny. I had to hold my laugh for a long time and then gave up hope on the internet stuff.

6) Saw this kid in Fishermans wharf who was throwing stones at doves. Fortunately for him his dad was sittin on the other side and so got hit twice from his kid. He saw the situation moved away from the position asked his son to stop throwing stones. He did but the doves werent fine with that. One dove flew over the guy and pooped over his shoulders. The dad got real angry and started throwing some stuff in his hand at the bird. Unfortunately it hit an old lady and the rest was just apologies.

7) Had to fight with a Pakistani guy for cheatin on an American friend. It was only a dollar issue, but it could be worse in the way an American thinks of the country. Be it Pakistan or India, elevate your countries position with what you do. Its not necessary that you need to do good but never do anything bad to depriviate your countries pride.....

8) I won $34 by beginners luck in a casino, thats when I realized am not supposed to gamble because of the Vrath am currently undertaking. So had to spend all the money on friends and felt a great deal of satisfaction.

9) Was the only non American non Japanese in the US Japan conference in which I gave my talk.Said an 'Arigato' at the end and still was able to get only blank faces during the question part of the talk.

10) and finally, I liked the place Lake Tahoe where I sat alone for a while watching the lake and the mountains surrounding me. I wont say that I had a nostalgic feeling, but defenitely something that pured my heart of troubles.

This one week has opened ways of looking back at my life, my goals, my emotions, etc. Met some new friends and met more people. I am starting to like the way, Main Aisa Kyon Hoon stuff....
PS this is my half century in blogging in blogger.... Standing applause.... Thank you for all the comments I recieved so far.
posted by Hariharasudhan Cd at Tuesday, November 21, 2006 2 comments

Three of a kind

And there I flipped the third card and that changed the smile in his face to a frown.... Naaaahhhhh!!!! Dint play any card game in the busy conference I have had so far. The three of a kind I am pointing out is about the people I met in the conference.
It was a memorable night for a newcomer like me into the world of Professional chemical engineering. It was the AICHE awards ceremony. I sat with all the other guys of my lab in a hall filled with around 2000 chairs. The chairs got slowly filled up people in suits. Thats when I noticed people of three kinds.
First - The delegates, the real pro's exubering with posh and confidence, greeting every person with a sense of technical knowledge. They were really having fun in meeting their ol' pals. Their body language was stiff, strong handshakes, belly show offs, hands moving while talking, faces showing all kinds of expressions, great eye contact, and of course the often so beautiful smirk with the funny attitude look.
Second - The listeners. The people who really came in to see their pals, mentors, thesis advisors, godfathers and technical idols get their awards for their achievements. They listened to the people with the ears and hearts open. They understood what people were explaining technically. They are the pioneers who believe in the field of chemical engineering and give their life for the profession so that others in the world can live not good but great.
Finally the Third - The lone standers who came there for watching the pros talk. But they weren't interested in their talks. They just were there coz either their advisor asked them to do so, or coz they had no clue what was goin on and finally coz they wanted to just look at these people.
The question now is what kind of a listener was I that day? I started as the third of a kind, turned immediately into the second of a kind when I saw Indians and other internationals got the awards and finally became a First of a kind when all the award recipients commented 'This award actually goes to all the students and post docs without which no research is truly possible'. I realized somthing I forgot for quite sometime coz of my frustration with my negative results.
I realized that I aint working for material gain or for my career.. I am working for humanity in general. It is not about what profit I get from my research but what happiness the future generation would get. I know am gettin too sentimental. But thats what motivates most true scientists. Do you think that Bill Gates is the no 1 in his profession. Nope. There are people who work in NASA whos names are not even known to the world. Its the satisfaction that they achieve in life in the name of humanity. I am goin to take my research serious from now on coz not my life but the lives of the future generation depends on my dedication to research...
Got great heights to achieve and am gonna achieve it not by the money nor laurels I have. But by the amount of friendly people I see in life.....
posted by Hariharasudhan Cd at Tuesday, November 14, 2006 6 comments

Wednesday

Snaps! Click!!

You might be wondering what the hell made me to write snaps and click in the blog title. The thing that happened to me in the past 15 hours is all spooky. Spooky to the hilt, but still funny to the heart.
It all started like this. As soon as I had finished my last blog, was looking through my collection of photos so that I can take a print out of my buddy Nitin and present it for his Birthday. Hey buddy if you are reading this forget it. U looked bad in most pics. Just kidding. Got something else for ya. While doing so I saw this picture of a girl who was crying near the football stadium (must b happy tears coz we won against the Georgia dogs). I converted it to B & W and had put it in my orkut page with the title 'No more L'. Naaahhhh what u r thinkin is wrong! If you had read my previous blog then you won't ask what L was. L is not for love its for Loser. Hey guys come on, if its love I wont say no more L. I would say no way am giving up on love. Its an immortal feeling. Coming back to the blog, That snap had brought with it somewhat 30 scraps in orkut. That too from distant friends. I was happy on side coz so many ppl worried abt my love life (Ya!!! crap shit) and on the other side was sad coz I missed those guys.
Later got this call from my bro and he wanted me to call my mom immediately coz she was crying back in India. The reason my bro visited me yesterday after 2 months and he called my mom and said that I had lost more weight and that he couldn't sleep that night. So chweeeeeetttt of him is what you would expect me to say. I dont think so. Things are pretty different in our case. Had this 26 mins of heated arguement with mom. She was crying all the time, had to make her happy and also had to shout at her at the top of my voice so that she would forget my weight problem and would get angry on me. She looks pretty when she is angry than when shes crying... My roomies were real scared abt this. Sorry guys hope u understand. The only mistake I did was not sending my parents any of my pics. If I had done it reguarly she wouldn't have cried. She thought that the medical research study I underwent like 2 months ago had used steroids against me and thats y the drop in weight. Had to make things clear to her that I didn't take any medication. It was just a pain perception study in which I had to keep my hands in ice for a couple of mins. The culprit was 'not sending my parents a photo of myself'. Guys if I dont make it back to my research in jan end that means am under house arrest. To be precise under Mom arrest. After the heated arguement decided to have dinner (wasn't even hungry, but have no other choice but to gain some pounds before I return back to India).
After all the chilling out with roomies, decided to watch Final Destination 3. It was just like any other final desti movies except for onething. The death pattern was based on the snaps that the heroine took. Again it was snaps which confused me. At the end forgot one thing I promised a friend and was real mad on myself for making such a promise.
Woke up in the morning and the first thing I noticed in my room was a potrait of my parents big enough that even a farsighted man of spherical power would have noticed. Got real freaked out on how it came there. Then my right side of my brain gave me the snap of my bro keeping it in my house yesterday.
Completely freaked out, went to class and then to the lab. Got this mail from a friend in which there was this picture of a table having around 40 items (like eraser, pencil, staples, etc). The mail said it was a test of memory and so I had to see the pic only for 15 seconds. Answered this question of 'Name the objects you have seen on the table' Wrote like 32 items in 90 seconds. Pulled up the answer and presto thats a great score. The result: answer correctly 30 or more - you have a photographic memory (bull shit, I can't even remember my roomies name at times), you are very intelligent (Ya!! thats sarcastic), you like a song for its lyrics and not the music (Hey I dint make it up guys. I have no clue y this trait came in here) and it went on.... The only one thing I noticed was 'Your perception is beyond what a normal person would look at and your doubts are often to the core'. Now thats what I am talking abt. I do look at odd stuffs in movies and in ppl. The only other person I have met so far is my ESP friend Anand. Both look at the same stuff, start talking about the same stuff at the same place and at the same time. Now thats real freaky at times. We sing the same song, humm the same music and why not even have similar tastes. Now thats what I call true alter ego. Anyway after reading this mail, I started looking back into my work and I did have doubts to the core.
Watched some more usual snaps from the flickr page. Was sad coz had chances of taking some good ones yesterday, but had my camera at the department. Went to the AFM lab, analyzed all my previous snaps and tried to churn out some result out of crap images.
Hey I completely forgot. I watched this movie 'One hour photo' by Robin Williams. It was great and more coincidental was when my buddy Anand gave a philosophical note when I was worried about my research. He said 'A photograph is developed in a dark room to give color to the picture. Similarly God developes a person by keeping him in dark thereby shedding the light of true life in the near future' Though I was touched by the quote, I was freaking out coz too many snaps have happened in the mean time. Finally was looking thro my orkut page and noticed a great snap of my friend Abhisekh, who recently got engaged. He looked like an Indian politician with the Khaadi topi. Laughed my mind out of it. He is 25, a great person, a great man, a great lover, a great son, a great brother and above all a great buddy. I miss him a lot. Anyway a toast to Abhisekh..... May you quit smoking, may bhabhi beat you to misery and above all may you still remeber the buddies you left alone in Lexington.... :) Chow!
Time to go out and do some CLICKS......
posted by Hariharasudhan Cd at Wednesday, November 08, 2006 0 comments

Tuesday

Patience?????

Was reading this article in KY Kernel on womens soccer team and there was this line which made me stop reading. It made me realize the mistake I was doing. The line was 'Patience now is considered an excuse for failure instead of resolving for success'. Enough wasting time on expecting my research to click at some time. It's time to pull my pants up and take care of stuff seriously. Leave AICHE conference. It's gonna be a disaster. My conscience would defenitely kill me if I don't put in more efforts.

Started the process of erasing the L from my forehead. Came home directly, looked at the mirror and said one thing, "Theres gonna be a paper submitted by you before you board the plane to India". No kidding. Am serious. Got 52 days to climb the flight including tonight. I had done it in the past, and am doing it now. Its not 52 days. It's 52*10*60*60 seconds (If I work 10 hours a day exactly I can achieve anything). Got loads of time to work on and still enjoy.
This is a challenge I am facing currently. No more mood outs, no more frustrated talks abt bad results, no more complaints abt equipments. If my research needs a war, then hell am gonna give it a war. No more fear of quick sand problemos. Am never gonna use the word Patience in research context.
The fire of failure has broiled me for a year. No more charring. Only Churning.... My dear good research, here I come.... You can't hide, you can't run. All you can do is give up or better than that fight with me........
This is no funny blog. This is a remainder for me, for myself and for my future.
Am an Indian, and am not gonna give up on cheap stuff. I bow my heads only to my motherland.

posted by Hariharasudhan Cd at Tuesday, November 07, 2006 0 comments

Monday

Negated & Guilty

Things din't go as expected in the last 48 hours. Had to quit on my idea of a solo performance for the Diwali night coz I wanted some friends (who are gonna leave after this sem) to perform on stage. I gathered some 20 guys and gave them ideas and lots of stuff. But eventually most backed out at the last moment. So had to rechange the whole concept to a mime. Somehow had 5 more guys accept the offer and made them practice as I needed. Though most were first time stage performers, they did as I had said during the first practice. Next day morning had to do most of the work selecting songs, pulling my head apart on that part, cutting them and then imagining how the guys are supposed to perform. Finally had 3 hours to practice the whole mime and brought the guys to the hall where the show was to be. Had a horrible practice with the guys as they werent experts in the field and most lacked the talent of understanding the music. I wonder why people listen to songs. Lyrics are a part and music is always in beats of 8.

Finally got the stage to practice and when we started, the chief guest came. Had this gut feeling that things are gonna be pretty bad. Was pissed with lots of stuff in the stage and then calmed myself beforet the performance. The show started and it was a major flop. People dint get the concept, had 9 major errors in the act (watched the recorded show) and the worst of all people faked as if they understood the concept.

Met like this swarm of friends, who being friends had to fake a smile and applaud the show. Had only two people really giving a critique on the show. Thats when I was happy. This is what I call as being 'Flushed big time'. Had planned for a good show like 2 weeks ago, had to backout of it so that I can bring in some good talents, missed all the fun running here and there for the performance, had to pull my hair in most cases, made sure that everyone had the attire, the music was ready, the slides (man horrible ones I did) were there and finally everything flopped at the same time.

Coming to the guilty part. I felt really depressed as I had let myself down and above all most of the friends who expected a great show just like the last one I did a week ago. Came to the lab and I am still suffering from this guilt of going to a conference next week and still am having trouble finding some results. My talk is for 12 mins and I stay in San Fransisco for 7 days and my buddy Nitin is asking me what plans we are having in San Francisco. I am ashamed to use my guides money to go to a conference, publish crap results and yet go and watch san francisco. I now have this doubt in myself of achieving my dream. Had been working for the past 1 year and have crap results only. I wish I can get some results before I go to India so that I can face my Dad and my faculty with some pride. Lets see what time brings in for me..... Am @*&#ing depressed.

Chow happy world.......
posted by Hariharasudhan Cd at Monday, November 06, 2006 0 comments

Thursday

(Bad) Well (Start) begun (is) is (full) half (dead) done!!

Everyone has one of these days. ‘Today’ comes in my top notches of the worst days list. I was dreaming as if I am swimming in this spring with fall colors blanketing the water by reflection. All of a sudden I hear my name called softly. Hari…. Hari…… I think it’s someone above me, over my head and then it slowly evanescenced to darkness. Yet i heard my name being called. My eyes opened hesitantly and looked at this face, a face which I knew very well. It was my roommate Harish, definitely above my head. He was calling my name as if I am his wife whose gonna kill him for some mistake he had done against her. I realized that I am supposed to drop him in the airport and come back with the rented car.
Considering the fact that my job is to just drop him in the airport I decided not to change my dress from my Bermudas and the old T shirt. Carried the luggage downstairs and opened the door. Woosh!!!... Brrr…. Its freezing cold. Ran to the car and sat in. To our misery the glass was filled with ice (thanks to the weather it was – 3oC yesterday night). Took 10 mins to clear the ice of the glass. In the mean time I turned the heater on in the car and to add on to our misery, the heater dint have much heat to heat the car. Instead the fan just made the interior colder than freezing point of water.
Fought 20 mins of the cold inside the car and we reached this railroad crossing. There was this train having two engines. My inner gut feeling told this is gonna be a long train. And yes it was long. We counted till 73 cargo boggies and Screech….. the train stopped blocking the road. Had to U turn our vehicle and call a couple of nocturnal friends who obviously were sleeping with their voice mail doing the job. Finally got hold of one guy and asked him the diverted route and the answer was take diversion take diversion take diversion. 30 mins for lift off and we reached the airport. Dropped him in valet parking, ran to the drivers seat to park the car. Came into the parking lot. Parked the car finally in a nook (it was 6 30 in the morning and it was full), stepped out of the car, banged the door and started to walk. Tring Tring….

Me: What happened Harish?
Harish: Everything’s fine here. U can go.
Me: have a safe journey buddy.
Harish: Thanks and hung up.

While keeping my cell in my pocket, my other hand reached the car door and pulled the lever. Aaaahhhhhhh! I locked myself out. Immediately there was this breeze which sent a chill in my spine (fear and cold together). Took 15 mins to get an airport authority to help me out. To my horror one of the back doors wasn’t locked. Cursed my inconsiderate mind and drove fast to the parking exit. Stop! In the name of parking law. Gave the parking ticket. The good ol’ man said. Sir, the computer has a problem. Can you wait a minute. To give him respect I kept the window open for more than 3 mins and that’s when my hands went numb coz of the cold. Finally he left me, drove 15 mph more than the speed limit, took a sharp turn went 6 miles and then did I realize that this is the other way of town. Cursed my anger, took a right from the main road and waited another couple of mins for the signal to turn green. Reached home, lay on my bed to take an hours sleep.
Being one of those nocturnal species and short time naps a day guy, I couldn’t sleep. Made the worst of my bed, got up, had my daily doze of frappuccino, checked my mail and took bath. To make the day worse, called the guys who are supposed to pick me up from the rental car place where I was supposed to return the car. Two guys numbers were wrong numbers, 3 ppl I called said they had work, 2 more backed off saying lame excuses. Got pissed really and decided to go to the lab. Came out and remembered that I kept my bike in the biomedical department. Aarrrggghhhhh!. Walked my way in the cold to the department. The only thing that made me happy while walking was the people whom I crossed were exuberating different emotions and the weather was just perfect to show their pain and sometimes their happiness.
Reached the lab, sent some faxes and went to the AFM lab. More anti Irish luck. George the incharge for the machine went for his lunch. Dude it’s ^%$&^ ing 11 30. Damn my luck. Came to my lab, did some more paperwork. Went upstairs to cool myself and noticed that all the Kentukcy Kernel newspapers were out. Took my index finger, made a gun out of it and shot myself thrice in my forehead. Came down, read a journal, got pissed on the results that they published (insane results and conclusion. Seemed like that they made it up) and finally decided to blog now. got to return the car today evening and walk back 4 miles, then need to go to gym for playing with a friend, come back home and do some house choirs. Pretty sure that Harish is gonna call me and gonna lambaste at me for not returning the car at 10. Got 12 more hours to survive before I go back to the dream where it all started.
posted by Hariharasudhan Cd at Thursday, November 02, 2006 0 comments

It’s not a job. It is The Job!


Being away from work sometimes suck big time. Being surfeited by my daily research I decided to take a nightly off yesterday. Went to the gym to stretch my left thigh thinking that it would loosen the fibers. To my Halloween horror it exacerbated the pain. Still being voracious about playing finally got a court to play for an hour. Thanks to Kirthi who waited long enough to get the court amidst the great crowd waiting to get a court. Came home, did my usual cooking (it was okra sambhar which eventually turned out to be okra dhal) and then came online. Chatted with a good friend for a while.

Here comes the part for the title of blog….. Watched the movie ‘Lucky number Slevin’. The movie was a guess job right from the beginning and in fact u can guess that the first scene has the clue for the concept of the movie. Nice direction anyway. The best part of the movie which I liked was at the end when the adopted son (acted by Josh Hartnett of pearl harbor) asks his pro killer dad Mr. Goodkat (Bruce Willis) how he knew about the death of Lucy Liu. Mr. Goodkat’s (Awesome way to keep a name) reply touched my heart. The reply was;

“I’m a World Class Assassin Fuck Head!!”

Mind my taste in language. The way Bruce said it was enthralling. It sent the way one has to cherish or love his job. Immediately the dialogue rang bells in my mind. There was this one another dialogue which changed the way I respect anyone’s job and it was from the movie ‘Collateral’. At the end when Tom (The worlds leading assassin) is shot by Jamie Fox, Tom puts this questionable look on his face and says;

“I was just doing my job.”

Then there was this icing on the cake when Tom narrates at the end – “Tomorrow morning more than 25 hundred people shall board this train and none shall note the dead. They shall just think that I am sleeping.”

The reason I am putting this blog is that those two dialogues by two assassin’s shows the dignity one has for his/her job. There is no job without proper dignity. So the next time I am watching a guy doing dishes or an old man taking the trash out, I am going to respect them. Still I remember what sir Benjamin Franklin once said, “Get a job you like the most so that you shall never work in your life again” How true!.... I wish people in the world remain happy with what they do…. Damn! I suck at this writing skill. I am trying to express my attitude to those two dialogues and Whew… I am digressing from it. Hope you guys understand what I am trying to say. Ok now lemme go and deal with the orkut replies and the two people who are online waiting for my reply….

posted by Hariharasudhan Cd at Thursday, November 02, 2006 0 comments