Unbelong to Belong

Flesh, Blood and Awesomeness



Horror of Children’s rhymes

In the last few months, my life has changed in awesome ways. We bought and moved into our own house which is a great feeling. To top that, I became a father in Jan of this year. Atharv has been a delight who instills pride and sense of dread as to what kind of dad I will turn out to be. But this post is not about parenting but about one of the aspects of me being a father that I find appalling.

Atharv likes being sung to when he is about to sleep. The songs he wants to be sung changes every few weeks. Initially, it was Achutam Keshavam by Ankit Batra which is an amazing rendition. Do check it out below.

Achutam Keshavam

Over the past few weeks, he has gotten over it and since then, his new favorite song is “Five Little Ducks”. This song horrifies me simply by its existence. Like who in their sane mind made this rhyme up. The first para goes as below:

Five Little Ducks went out one day
Over the hill and far away
Mother duck said Quack, quack, quack
But only Four little ducks came back

Say what!!! There’s one missing duckling and the mother duck is fine. She even allows the remaining ducklings to go out until none is left before she makes the effort to go find what happened. What even is happening.

Then comes the Five Little monkeys rhyme. This one makes me  positively call the Childcare Services. Monkeys jumping on the bed, one falls and injures himself and the doctor just says no more jumping on the bed. He should be advising the mom monkey to not allow the baby monkeys to jump. Just imagine the insurance cost or cost for doctor’s visit. Enough to make a deep hole in the pocket. I mean why is the doctor so indifferent to the irresponsible parenting on display. Let us not even go into having five kids.

If the first 2 rhymes were examples of parenting done wrong, the next one is going a step further. What goes further than parenting mistakes, it is exposing kids to violence in the form of the innocuous rhyme “Baby Shark”. We go to lengths to keep kids from being exposed to violence in visual media but gladly do that in the form of rhymes which they remember for a long time. Yikes. I didn’t exactly explain what is going on with Baby Shark yet. Baby Shark introduces the Shark Family of Baby, Mom, Dad and Grandparents. Lovely, right. Too soon, too soon. Right after the introduction, Sharks go hunting causing all other fishes to flee. Sheesh. And here I was thinking that this is a nice enough rhyme.

So Swapna has no objection to expose Atharv to these horror rhymes as he drifts into Dreamland but she will yell and scream if I expose him to Japanese Anime such as Baki. SMH. Let us maintain one uniform standard where kids do not exposed to these rubbish rhymes and instead grow up listening to more wholesome rhymes. So, which ones do I consider wholesome, no clue, if left up to me I would rather make it a karaoke session of Hotel California than sing these rhymes. Until such time he doesn’t grow out of these rhymes, I am forced to comply; not to mention that singing these a few hundred times has made me forget all the bands and albums I used to listen and groove to. Instead, singing Five Little Ducks has become muscle memory and I can rattle the entire rhyme without even waking up.

Till next post.

Electric Cars are going to change movies… forever!!

Well, we all hear everyday that Electric Cars are changing mobility in terms of carbon emission, full self driving, reduce accident rate etc. One of the aspects none is talking about is that Electric Cars are going to change the way cars are depicted in movies in a big way.

Imagine James Bond driving his Aston Martin DB9 fast on a winding mountain road being chased by a villian in an equally awesome car except that both are in electric cars. They could set the cars on Full Self Driving mode and concentrate on shooting at each other while the car navigate the curves on its own. Sounds exciting… Not so much. At least for me.

There will be more Fast and Furious type drag or drift sequence but no more cross border run scenarios with strapped on gas tanks for added mileage. Instead, there will be a series of stops for quick charging at supercharger like stations and more fight sequences at charging stations.

There will also be less shoot-at-the-dripping-oil-from-car scenario and instead more shoot-at-the-battery-pack scenarios with the big blow up of cars replaced by exploding batteries flying through the car.

Not all change is for the bad, there might be montages of Bond sipping on his Vodka Martini, shaken not stirred when he is relaxing in his car waiting to arrive at the villians lair than arriving sober and having to fight before relaxing with his Martini. Also, instead of movies jumping 8 hours to show start and finish of journey, they might show scenes when car is getting charged and the actors are doing something else. Or instead of figuring out which direction, the villains have taken off into, police might ping the superchargers and find out exactly where they are. The movie script writers may finally have to make the movies a wee bit more realistic in terms of what they can do with cars and what they cannot.

With all said, one thing is for sure, Electric Cars are coming to the silver screen and will alter the way, movies depict cars and car sequences.


Passing Peak Humanity

I have been on Twitter for close to a decade now and in that time, I have seen it change from a place where it was cool to hangout to where negativity abounds and people are manipulated into joining camps. However, for all the times I have spent on Twitter, it has served as a portal where I can also get a lot of news that I would have never normally come across in my daily life. This has actually helped me in ways unknown to me and in forming my world views. Some good, mostly bad.

Coming to why this blog post, a few days back. I was contemplating how things are regressing back to what they used to be instead of what they could be. It was a quite simple trigger actually, perusing the evolution of vacuum cleaners in the 1960s. If we already had all the tech to put a man on the moon, invent vacuum cleaners and various medical devices, why are we not growing exponential but actually regressing.

Around us now, we are now planning to visit the moon when we should have put a colony on Mars, Concentration Camps (Detention Camps) are back, People are dying of easily preventable diseases such as Measles. All this is quite funny to me, not least because I am not affected but because we did already do these things and moved on. We walked on the moon, made medicines to cure diseases and prevent epidemics, defeated the Nazis. So what happened.

My hunch is we got complacent and patted ourselves on the back a bit too much. We collectively decided that we have achieved all that we ever could want and stopped. However, some diseases tend to come back and never really die without follow up medicines. Our tendencies to progress also got hit by the disease of complacency and forgot to keep moving onwards and upwards. Progress not only in terms of Materialistic things but also thoughts. Where we used to have people advocating more and more liberties of thinking, we now have people advocating the closeness of thoughts and closeted racial tendencies. None of this is more apparent in the behavior of our politicians who are not the most in tune with the times and are shoving their agendas on us, the people. The common man is as much to blame too by refusing to stand up to what is happening and instead of pulling their fellow people from under their rock, are piling bigger ones such that they do not come out for under the rock. This is actually going to cost us time, money and lives. The longer we engage in this behavior of segmenting people on the basis of their vulnerability, the longer it will take people to get to see the right thing and undo the damage we are wreaking on ourselves and thi world.

How do we get to ridding ourselves of the complacency and closeted bigotry, I am not sure but I think it has to do with acknowledging that we have those tendencies and dust off the cobwebs from ourselves and work towards making today, tomorrow and the coming days better by working towards towards progress of humanity as a whole


Dealing with a Reader’s Block

Ever since the trip to Luxembourg, I have been having a bad case of Reader’s Block. Reader’s block, like Writer’s Block, deals with the inability to hold on to a book and see it through. Most students have a Reader’s Block when it comes to their textbooks anyway. However, I have begun losing interest in reading steadily for a while now. Not that I don’t enjoy books anymore but that the subjects and arguments have begun repeating so often and seem so much more rehashed that it has become a labour instead of something to look forward to.

When I moved to Eindhoven, I looked forward to having more time to read and I generally started picking more books on my Tablet and Phone to read on my way to the office or in the train. I think I also started paying more attention to prose styles and subjects instead of sometimes skimming the books. That’s when I started noticing that a lot of authors write in an unconvincing way about the arguments put forth in their own novels. They hinge on the likelihood that some other author may have convinced you about the logic in the author’s argument.

For example, recently read a fantasy fiction book involving God, Angels, humans and demons. Humans killing each other. God decides to punish. Angels take stand against God and save the humans etc. Demons wanting to kill humans because why not. Standard setting for a fantasy fiction, isn’t it? If I wanted such a book, I can choose from a hundred million books with the same premise. I have seen fewer books deal with the conflict that drives humans to kill themselves without them sounding like medical textbooks. Or about why Angels want to save humans. or any of the other ten topics less explored. like What would God do if he let humans fail and vanish from the Earth? Will God and Angels sit around a bonfire and twiddle their thumbs. Why were humans chosen as the best of God’s creations? Take a topic, any topic except the one in the story

Or take Dan Brown, or more popularly known as the International Chetan Bhagat. who has used Robert Langdon and a pretty lady as the main character stays so often and for so long, the moves have become predictable.  I read the novel for the interesting snippets about the places and to plan holidays. That’s how boring it has become.

Then I started reading a little bit of biography-ish books which did not do a whole lot for piquing my interest and nearly everything in the books are available in shorter, faster paced and compact articles in newspapers and online media.

It has become incredibly tiring to find a book I want to read without yawning by the time I read the second paragraph of the excerpt page in the back. Not that I have read a lot but that a lack of creativity is worrying. It has become a chore to find something to read and has been telling on the number of books I have read this past month which is 1 frikking book and that has been on Elon Musk which I have powered through just to see where the author left off. Book recommendations on Twitter or in Blog comment are always welcome.

Till next rant


Cryptocurrency is the new Porn

Ah, the first post of the year 2018 and such a nice topic to blog on.

I was in a meeting when this thought randomly popped into my head and since then it has been swirling around taking a dimension of its own. So, I thought that it is a good idea to blog especially when it is still fresh and I know what I want to write.

Porn in the really old days of cavemen and middle ages was limited to some scratchy drawing or portraits by masters who would base it on some biblical story and put the dong in amidst a scene. It was less accessible and not many knew what they were seeing anyways. Porn in the modern era started after the advent of Photography and rapidly became an industry of its own as the cost to produce photographs dropped from the heydays of using silver plates which made it ridiculously expensive. Hence, porn was restricted to a very small percentage of the populace, the ones who Continue reading “Cryptocurrency is the new Porn”

63 day hiatus

Ah well. I did not blog for 63 days and I also did not blog much since the Greece trip to be honest. Well, it was not sheer laziness but I had certainly hit a rut in terms of the content I was coming up with. Which is great if I was a genre blogger, like Food blogging, but not so exciting for me. I had to take a step back and reevaluate what I wanted to put up on my blog. I had many interesting thoughts to put but then I was not looking forward to receiving any flak like I have received many times earlier.

I don’t claim to be a highly imaginative guy but then I keep having some outlandish ideas which do not get along so well. For starters, I actually have come to hate WP or any other blogging platform except Tumblr, I think, cos of the shitty layout they provide and the inflexibility in terms of how I can structure my posts. So I thought learning Web Dev would be a nice thing to do and I started putting in about 2 hours of learning a day on Web technologies which got me hooked but then I realized designing a website needs loads of planning for which I neither have the time nor the propensity. So I need a plan of action before I can get into something I can design myself fully.

I also was on a vacation to India which was awesome aside from the fact, I got flu from Germany, the irony, and some odd allergies and was not interested in blogging during this period.

Anyways, Back to blogging for now on travel and maybe some things I want to write about over the next few weeks, I suppose. Till then


Pizza Hut nostalgia

Ever since Pizza became a dinner option, I would constantly order from Domino’s or Pizza Hut. There was never a clear winner as to which was better until Pizza Hut made me an offer I could not resist.

When i started my MBA, I knew i was dipping in to my savings to get through the 2 years of education during which time, spending was only on necessities to avoid taking on a huge pile of debt. I had a group which i was always happy hanging out with. Whenever there was a birthday, the entire class would celebrate together with cake and birthday bumps. But when it was one of the members of the group, the day meant we headed for Pizza Hut to eat like a king on a pauper’s budget. Back then, Pizza Hut had released an offer of meal for 1 consisting of a personal pan pizza, 2 pieces of Garlic Bread and 1 Drink; all for Rs 99. This was a huge hit among the student populace and with us too. For us, it was a special day too where we would just go for some yummy pizza and bread.

When i was talking to Mukul, i realized, half a decade has passed by but some memories and moments are cherished and treasured alike. Mukul reminisces of the days when he passes by a Pizza Hut. I practically make it a point to visit a Pizza Hut when i am in a city with one (P.S. Netherlands does not have a Pizza Hut). When Swapna and me were in Berlin, I made her walk 4 kms to get to Pizza Hut and also in Ghent, Belgium when we had lunch at Pizza Hut when the city had so many better options to choose from Whenever we meet up, we will make it to a Pizza Hut and have new moments and memories to cherish


The power of vote

So in the last 24 hours, 1 major event and 1 relatively minor globally but a major event in India has taken place. USA has chosen a new president who has the less popular backing than his opponent. Indian Prime minister has unveiled major steps in his fight of corruption and unearthing hidden money. Both were made possible by one thing : people getting off their asses to vote… Or not… In which case, a vote was still cast

When the Indian elections were held in 2014, the entire country got up and headed out the door to deliver a historic mandate to elect candidates from one party, BJP, to form a government single handedly and chose as it’s representative a tainted, controversial, harangued by a biased media, hard working and honest erstwhile chief minister of Gujarat, Narendra Modi. One of Narendra Midi’s election promises was to bring down corruption and black money which he seems to be keeping by unveiling major measures of financial inclusion, voluntary disclosure of black money scheme and now abolishing currency notes of higher denomination making people to extract them from their hidden places and bring it into the open. How successful this measure is remains to be seen but it is huge step nonetheless in the fight against corruption.

In the USA, on the very same day, the country’s citizens chose to do one of the 3 things

  1. Cast a vote for Hillary Clinton
  2. Cast a vote for Donald Trump
  3. Did not cast a vote

It so happened that Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump carried the states that typically voted Democrat or Republican but the big swing states which made all the difference voted unanimously Trump. Not by a huge margin but by a significant one enough to give Donald Trump the votes he needed to get elected. Many do not see him as their President nor worthy to be a candidate for election but what now they have to live with is that he is the President for the next 4 years. In the midst of all this, there is only one dawning realization for one and all, it is that not enough people who should have vote exercised their constitutional right to choose their President thereby voting someone else to make their decision for them.

Thus the lessons and meaning of democracy are always reinstalled in everyone that Democracy and Government(formation) is for the people, by the people and of the people. Just not all the people. To end my rant, I will leave with a modified version of a few lines that have stayed with me from Guy Fawkes plot

Remember, Remember the 9th of November

USA cast the ballot;

I know of no reason why the cast of ballot

Should ever be forgot



Nando’s Sauces: Taste ka Dhamal

Finally Nando’s Sauces are available in Eindhoven and I can resume munching on my fave sauces

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