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Showing posts from March, 2018

A contrite Steve Smith has the capacity for greatness

On Thursday night, as the devastated, broken, young man faced the people he let down there was some comfort in knowing we were right to be proud in the first place. We cherish cricket in this country. We hold our cricketers to a higher standard than everybody else because it is sport that gives us so much pride and hope.  On Thursday night Steve Smith met those standards.  He went on manfully, ashamed of his actions but not ashamed to show the world how abject he feels. “I know I’ll regret this for the rest of my life,” he said. “I’m absolutely gutted and I hope in time I can win back respect and forgiveness.” He made no excuses. He sought no mitigation. He flailed himself and when it appeared he could not go on he went on some more. Cricket was more than a game to Smith, this is more than a professional disaster. “Cricket’s been my life,” he said. “I’m sorry and I’m absolutely devastated.” Though I myself am not a cricket fan (I only watch the IPL and World Cup finals

Why the Australia Ball- Tampering Scandal is making headlines in Cricket mad India

Cricket is a game which is revered in India. More than any sport played, this game has received a lot of support and recognition in the country. Cricketers are treated like Gods. So definitely everyone looks up to such people as role models. When such a person does this kind of an act, people start to lose faith not only in him, but in the spirit of sportsmanship as a whole. The trio must have had their reasons, those, which may never be revealed to us. They have done something wrong, have been caught in the act, and have received their deserved punishment. Here is the background story: The cricket world was left stunned by the news that Australian captain Steve Smith, vice-captain David Warner and teammate Cameron Bancroft were found guilty of  ball-tampering  on the third day of their third Test against South Africa on March 24.   On  Sunday , Smith and Warner were made to step down from their roles as captain and vice-captain of the Australia national team.   n Wednesday, C

HDFC puts iron spikes outside it's Fort branch.....and the janta is mad about it

A prominent bank in Mumbai is facing massive outrage over its unusual move to put up iron spikes on the pavement outside a branch, to prevent the homeless from sleeping there.  The multiple rows of iron spike were panned as a public hazard when they appeared recently. A journalist drew attention to the feature in his tweet. 

Why The Godfather is the Bible of cinema

The Godfather was a book which I have seen sitting in my bookshelf (top row, extreme left corner to be exact) since the past 6 years. However, I was allowed to read it only after I turned 16 (the allowance came on my persistent nagging and not because my father thought me old enough to read the book). The story content is overwhelming. First, it's full of violence and secondly, never before had I ever read a book which had me hooked on for hours (443 ultra thin pages, Times New Roman, font size 12 or less). In March 1972,  The Godfather  was first screened in a New York theatre. The movies were never the same again. 46 years later, longtime Rediff movie critic Raja Sen reveals why that film means that much, and how it led him to a unique tribute. I desperately wanted to eat a cannoli. My father's hurried explanation, meant to shush nine-year-old me so the cassette would not have to be paused -- "Something to eat" -- did not sit well with me, especially consid

When Facebook knows more about you than your family

I drove to Daman and back....and I couldn't be happier

First of all kudos to my father  for entrusting his car to his 19 year old daughter. Couldn't have asked for a bigger braveheart than him! While I've driven to Bandra, Manor and Pune before, this was the first time I drove continuously to Daman. It took us around 4.5 hours (we made 2 stops on the way) to reach via the Daman Vapi road (which right now is quite bad because it's all dug up. But don't stress, there are 2-3 other entry point into this UT. I prefer the other entrance which goes under a huge canopy of trees). In Daman, we stopped at a place called Sandy Resorts. This is a small compact resort with a swimming pool and restaurant in the premises itself. I personally liked the place because it was the last in line of all the hotels on the Devka Beach road (it comes 1km after Miramar and Cidade De Daman Beach Resort). The crowd here was quite good and the surroundings clean. The place is quite pleasant for a 1-2 night stay.

Investing in NIFTYBEES (ETF)

Yesterday I made a blog post on my first investment which was in NIFTYBEES.  NIFTYBEES is a type of ETF (Exchange Traded Fund). ETFs are basically baskets of securities which are traded, like individual stocks, on an exchange. They are a cash market product and trade in the Capital Market segment of NSE.  An Index fund is a mutual fund that tries to mirror a market index as closely as possible by investing in all the stocks  that comprise that index in proportions equal to the weightage of those stocks in the index. They are passively managed funds wherein the fund manager invests in the stocks comprising the index in similar weight. Index funds, while reducing the risk associated with the market, offer many benefits to the investors.  ADVANTAGES OF ETF  ETFs can be bought and sold anytime during the day. They provide investors a fund that closely tracks the performance of an index. They are low cost as they are passively managed. Since an ETF is listed on an Exchange, co

Today I did my first trade in the stock markets.

My father opened my trading account when I turned 18. The trading account was opened with Upstox; a low cost brokerage. Due to market conditions we did not invest earlier and in hindsight, it was a good decision. But now that the markets (NIFTY) have dropped from 11,000 to 10,000, my father thought it appropriate to invest in the stock market. After a lot of study we came to the conclusion that the best instrument to invest would be an exchange traded fund; in our case it was NIFTYBEES. What I learned today was: Customizing my Upstox trading account. Adding funds via logging in from my bank account. Placing a buy order. (I attempted twice but the buy order failed. The third time it went through properly.)

Raj Thackeray questions why Sridevi was given a state funeral

Less than a month has passed and the Bollywood actress's funeral has already begun raising questions.  Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) chief Raj Thackeray on Sunday, questioned why late Bollywood actress Sridevi was given a state funeral, asking “What did she do for the country that her body was wrapped in the tricolour?"  Honestly, while I felt bad about Sridevi's death, I personally didn't think it was necessary to give her a state funeral or have her body wrapped in the tricolor. India has a lot of state and national awards honoring people who have contributed to the country in different fields. However, the National Flag is something which must be kept only for the soldiers and jawans who sacrifice their lives in order to protect the country's citizens. If the government were to wrap the tricolor around every famous person who has contributed to the country (without sacrificing much; here I mean their lives), the very action would lose it's significan

The reason why men are not allowed to give advice in love column of magazines

Circular Reasoning

Makes sense, doesn't it ?

Why should WOMEN do all the work ?

Though I must say nowadays a lot of guys my age do know how to cook and do grocery shopping (something which even I'm not too good at). I sincerely hope they keep up the good work !

Want to use plastics? Pay Rs. 25000 and face a 3 year jail term

Maharashtra to ban plastics from March 18, says environment minister Ramdas Kadam.  The ban would cover the production, use, storage, sale, distribution, import and transportation of plastic, the minister informed the House.  He told the House that plastic bags, thermocol, disposable cups and plates, cutlery, non-woven polypropylene bags, plastic pouches and packaging would be banned.  He said that those violating the ban would be fined Rs 25,000 and could also face a three-year jail term.   Plastic milk pouches would have to be above 50 microns and it should be recyclable, he said, adding that these used pouches should be bought back for recycling at a cost not less than 50 paise.  I feel this is a really good move because charging Rs.5 and Rs.10 at shopping malls for plastic bags doesn't seem to be having much of an impact.  So the next time you step  out of the house, be sure to either not carry plastics or fill your wallet with Rs.25000.

Ever imagined living in a pipe ? - Check out this Tube Home

A local Hong Kong architect has proposed a tube home which is low cost in nature. Now one would feel that 3 people living in a 1 BHK flat is cramped enough (let's not get started with slums here. They are a different story altogether) but these tube homes just changed the definition of living spaces; and took it a whole notch higher with it's innovation and uniqueness. Here are some pictures of what they look like:

Stephen Hawking dies at 76.....and leaves a black hole in our universe.....

The Cambridge University physicist and best-selling author who roamed the cosmos from a wheelchair, pondering the nature of gravity and the origin of the universe and becoming an emblem of human determination and curiosity, died early Wednesday at his home in Cambridge, England. He was 76. I wish I could write this well, but I'm really not that into Physics. I was however, until a few years ago, very interested in the life of Stephen Hawking. He was diagnosed with an incurable disease in his 20s, with his doctors giving him a maximum of 3 years to live. This man however, proved everyone wrong (obviously) and lived uptil 76! Not only that, he also contributed to the field of physics in a million ways (you can check how on the internet....there are tons on sites on that topic). While I may not be a fan of his work (I'm a Business Management student, and physics has always been one of my lesser liked subjects), I definitely admire him for his persiste nce, patience (beca

SK-II: Marriage Market Takeover - Leftover Women Part 2

Sheng Nu - China's "Leftover Women"

Sheng Nu is a  derogatory term  made popular by the  All-China Women's Federation  that classifies women who remain unmarried in their late twenties and beyond.  The  slang  term,  3S  or  3S Women , meaning "single, seventies (1970s), and stuck" has also been used in place of Sheng Nu. Here is an excerpt from an article written by a Chinese lady on what it feels like to be unmarried at 30.  " As I turn 30, I am left wondering what it means to be a Chinese woman - and a well educated one at that - entering her fourth decade. One thing is for sure: if like me, you’re unmarried at 30, your life “is over”.  No surprises there, given more than 90 per cent of women marry before 30 in China. Single at 27 and you’re a “leftover woman”; single at 30 – well, you're as good as dead. A woman's early twenties in China are considered her most attractive. It’s also when a woman is most “tender”.

Be Average. Your Life. Your Rules

End of the year comments: Excellent, very good, can do better, needs supervision and improvement, etc. How many of us have gone through this during our entire academic life ? Why do we let other people's judgements, based on a totally ridiculous education system (some parts of it) decide what we become or are fit to become in our lives ? Studies don't define who you are as a person afterall (some would argue otherwise). Maybe on the professional front, yes. But there is a vast majority of our personal life as well on which studies have no control. Fatigued by the obsession of flawless, a new generation of youngsters are shunning the pursuit of perfection. People nowadays have become smarter. In the process of learning how to face their biggest fears (insecurity, inferiority complex, social pressures etc) they have now embraced the fact that being excellent or perfect is not the ultimate goal. There is much more to that in life.

Thanks to Sunny Leone, this farmer harvests bumper crop!

An Indian farmer from a tiny village in  Nellore  district, has come up with an out of the box idea to protect his crop from ‘evil eyes’. He has put up  massive flex boards of bikini-clad Bollywood actress  Sunny Leone  in his 10-acre agriculture field to protect his crop from dishti (evil eyes). He believes his trick has done wonders for his crop yield. He  has put up  People travelling through this small village are now unable to turn their heads away from the glamourous pictures standing in the field.  The flexes with Sunny Leone carry a tag line written in Telugu: Orey, nannu chusi edavakura (Hey, don’t cry after seeing me).  However ridiculous this may seem, it worked. And here we have a genius farmer from rural India who's got a bumper crop; all thanks to Sunny Leone!

China bans the letter "N"

It's kind of hard to spell China without the letter "N" (at least in English), but the Chinese had to make do without the letter for a while because it was banned. Yes, that's right: The Chinese government banned a letter. China banned "N" as part of a widespread censorship clampdown. (Which means words like no, never may stop existing). In addition to banning use of the letter "N" online, words such as "immortality" and "ascend the throne" were also deemed inappropriate to use on the internet.  Winnie the Pooh, too had been banned

My father told me to "Catch Them Young"

Sunday. My father woke me up as always (the best part about mornings). Except that today I was told in a very serious tone that I had to get ready to go to church (by my Hindu dad married to my Catholic mom *love*, so it's normal) to register myself with my age and photo for the newly started "Catch Them Young" programme. And I fell for it.  Turns out that this "Catch Them Young" is a made-up programme by my father in which all kids who have attained marriageable age (which makes me eligible because I'm 18+) have to register. Basically this thing aims at matchmaking maybe because kids nowadays are going astray or whatever and choosing all the wrong kinds of life partners. So my dad felt it wise to enroll his only daughter in "Catch Them Young" (what a name, I really thought this was real). Really. Indian parents love knows no bounds.  Disclaimer - "Catch Them Young" does not exist in reality. And I don't plan on getti

Dylan Elise, World's greatest drummer? 2/4

Higher Power Workout Motivation! - Bar Brothers

Who said you need a gym and supplements to work out properly? Check out the bar brothers.

No time for Family: God save our generation

Busy work schedules and fewer holidays means more people are spending less time with their families on festivals. In a study conducted, it was found that one in every two people said they haven't met their family during festivals in the past 3 years. About 50% of respondents said they spend less than 30 days a year with their parents while 76% have cancelled a family holiday in the past 3 years.  However, they are still bonding digitally (kya zamaana hai). 89% said Whatsapp was the new "meeting place" for families, while 73% are connected by Facebook. Considering how smartphones and chatrooms have taken over our lives, youngsters now prefer staying connected over social media than actually spending time with their families.  As for me, festivals means family. There are lot of things which get passed on to the younger generation during these times when the family comes together. Past experiences, stories of childhood memories all make us realize how much we've gro

Did you know? There is an Arctic Seeds which holds emergency grains of the world!

Which means that even if all the crops get destroyed tomorrow and we have nothing to eat, we can still start all over again with the sample seeds stored in there. This vault contains seeds from around 73 institutions around the world which are stored in a room measuring 12m X 27m (around 40 feet). But this is also suffering climatic pressures of it's own. The Svalbard Global Seed Vault, which turned 10 on Monday, holds nearly one million seed samples from the world’s gene banks – an agricultural back-up in the event of disasters ranging from nuclear war to climate change. The vault  holds the key to 12,000 years of agriculture but also to food supplies for future generations, with countries urged to deposit seed samples there.

A short history of BHAANG in India

What coffee was to the American television sitcom,  Friends , the cannabis drink bhaang was to Hindi’s greatest satirical novel,  Raag Darbari . Set in an Uttar Pradesh village during the 1960s, bhaang is ubiquitous and even the children of the village, some of whom are too poor to even know what milk tastes like, are familiar with it.  Even if you chew half an anna’s worth of the cannabis leaf and then have a drink of water, you get fairly high, but this is cheap inebriation. Ideally almonds, pistachios, rose-petal conserve, milk, cream and so on should be used with the cannabis leaf. The bhaang should be ground to the point where the grinding stones stick together and become one, before it is drunk, verses in praise of Lord Shiva should be recited, and the whole exercise should be a community, not an individual event.