gasp! I need some air, and was searching for it at - of all places- on google, semi-geek that I am, when I came across this website. Not quite what I was looking for, but refreshing nevertheless.

Friday, September 17, 2004


Angry. That's all that is me nowadays. Specially when I walk through the office entrance, please check my bag, thank you for passing it through the X-ray machine, I should pick up some breakfast and head up. Why, I ask? The LCD panel glows with glee. I like the smooth non-reflective surface, encased in crisp black plastic. The machine hums away, the fan spewing hot air, because I am churning Fast Fourier transforms. Not that I know anything about that. But I am still mad at the world. Can't escape the matrix. Every day is a mirror of the day before. I was supposed to change the world. Make it a better place. Beat everyone to the invention curve. Someone had me swindled. Learning all those crop cycles in geography. And the size of a brick in the Indus Valley Civilization. If all I needed to know was how to color a button red, then why, I ask? Sucks. Top to bottom. I sit there, having my morning coffee. The apple strudel is a bit too sweet. But then there's Jim singing in the back of my head, "The face in the mirror won't stop The girl in the window won't drop". Don't know why - have not heard the song in ages. Something about this frustration that brings it forth. A random iPod in my head.Doesn't solve anything. Don't want to move to Warren, but my company wants to. Don't want to support stupid people, but my company wants to. They even think people may read up my books on Java and learn about company secrets, but it's OK to leave code around. Intellectual property rights are standing outside the door. Insanity is having tea with us tonight.

Wednesday, September 15, 2004

Calcutta 1947

Came across this gem of a website hosting nostalgic pictures of Calcutta from 1947. Apparently, it's not known who took all these photographs, but UPenn has been kind enough to host them for a while. Spelling mistakes aside, the pages are an awesome way to spend 15 minutes and ponder about my home city. Hope you enjoy them as much as I did.

Now, if only Kati Rolls were available in as many places in NYC as Starbucks coffee.

Thursday, September 02, 2004

One Big Circus

Take a look at the pictures, taken yesterday around the Herald Square area, and tell me - does this, or does this not, look like one big circus? Only in New York. The police cordon off the sidewalks. Make us cross according to their whims. Traffic signals are more like christmas lights - seen but ignored. The protesters don't really give a damn, and go about doing their own thing. They are on bikes, on foot, carrying loudspeakers and bullhorns. There was an organized protest yesterday against the rising umemployment - people were dressed in office formals, carrying banners around, projecting the damages done in numbers out to the world. Somewhat like the Billionaires for Bush protesters, with their nice suits and combed hairs. Then there were these anti-war protesters who were projecting an Orwellian future through their gas masks and Grim Reaper clothing.

In all, I'm glad, in a way, that the RNC was held where it was. Would never have come across anything like this otherwise.

Police State!

New York City has become a police state. The cops are everywhere. Like Macavity the mystery cat. We go up to the roof of my apartment building - mere 3 floors above the ground - and they come into the building and order us down. Apparently the helicopters detected us smokers as a threat to the high and mighty. And I don't think they mean by second hand smoke.

The cops are all over the sidewalk, and on most of the road - on little scooters, huge motorbikes, cop cars with the flashers on, and on some weird looking vehicles that look more futuristic than practical. Just get a few of them on Segways, and that'll complete the spectrum. I don't understand the logic behind using electric vehicles for cops, when the special buses for carrying the RNC delegates around the city are left idling in front of our building for the entire evening, leaving the smell of freshly burnt hydrocarbons in the air.

These images are from yesterday evening, around Herald Square. The sidewalks are cordoned off by orange chicken mesh, and the cops move the mesh around to open up the crossings for us mortals. People cross like herds of sheep. Or like cows. Well, not quite. This is what a crossing cow really looks like, in Bangalore, from the Deccan Herald: