Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Advise to the 'stone'

This is quoted:-
  1. Spend time with yourself without feeling the need for companionship.
  2. Don't modify to please others.
  3. Build yourslf from scratch,
  4. Stop thinking of 'test drives'
  5. Hard work will tell you a lot about yourself.
  6. Keep your eyes and ears open to what you feel.
  7. Make friends. JUST friends. You'll be surprised as to how much they can teach you.
  8. Make time to read
In all, 'be a man'

lyrics of my recent favourite (from kasoor... haha)
Kitni bechain ho ke main tumse mili,
tum ko kya thi khabar ki main kitni akeli...

Another recent fav is 'Something something' by Mika. Totally groovy.

tell me something meri jaan

kar le hamse ek baar pyar ki meethi baaten chaar

oh sohniye sun le tu

something something tell me something

That is soulful... and true!

Well, now I am on lyrics roll... Not a big fan of poting lyrics, but heard this song today. Floyd.

Coming back to life
Where were you when I was burned and broken
While the days slipped by from my window watching

Where were you when I was hurt and I was helpless

Because the things you say and the things you do surround me
While you were hanging yourself on someone elses words

Dying to believe in what you heard
I was staring straight into the shining sun

Lost in thought and lost in time
While the seeds of live and the seeds of change were planted

Outside the rain fell dark and slow

While I pondered on this dangerous but

I took a heavenly ride through one silence
I knew the moment had arrived

For killing the past and coming back to life

I took a heavenly ride trough our silence

I knew the waiting had begin

And headed straight... into the shining sun

I feel like being in this person's place

Tuesday, February 27, 2007


All your life you are looking for perfection.

And then, after some years of pointless, hopeless and rewardless endeavours, you conclude that perhaps nothing more than an ellusive search. You KNOW it's a mirage.

You give up, disillusioned.
You had the picture, you had a good idea of what you wanted. But you have concluded that the perfect match does not exist.

You move on... meeting less-than-perfect (but really good) entities. You enjoy interacting with them.

And then, one day, after a long time since the search was relinquished and expectations were compromised on, you meet someone.
This someone, is not just wat you always wanted, but much more than that.

It's that someone whose presence can put your senses on high-alert... someone whose words you can't listen to, but only hear, because you are so lost in appreciation.. someone whose eyes convey so much to you, even when no message was intentionally transmitted.
Someone who can make you believe in love at first sight (or at least in the first couple of sights).
Someone who can make your day by just appearng in front of you.

It's unfair.
It's unfair that THAT someone exists.

But well, such crazy (unfounded?) feelings are.. well, unfounded!

No matter how tempting a dessert looks, it's the taste that makes it delicious,
no matter how inviting a book appears, it's the content that invigorates,
similarly, no matter how perfect a person SEEMS, one can't give a high rating before test-driving the product!

It's one of the rare occasions when I genuinely meant an 'If only...'

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Rock and Roll, Sonhiye

In spite of having SO MUCH to write about (so many firsts - tumult, unease, elation, frustration, shame etc), it's Salsa that inspires me enough to blog!

tan tara tara... I love the song.. I love the rhythm.. I love dancing to the rhythm of that song...
The instructor is one of those people who do their job so well, that the inspiration is enough to get you going.
The way he moves, the way he treats the ladies (can give AB a run for his money... and that's saying ALOT), the panache, the smoothness.... aha! Its a feast to the eye to see him groove so naturally...

Ok, enough. (But I just cant have enough of that... I so goddamn wish I could twirl and whirl like that). OK ENOUGH!

Proof : I can't stop smiling after the dance...

Apart from that, I am HAPPY today. That's because I made someone else happy. Erica was rahter annoyed that the house was not 'clean' (cleanliness being a highly relative term... especially after seeing the other houses on M.G.Road of Santa Ynez.. )
So, I cleaned the tables, cleaned the tras can, vaccuumed the floor... and in-all, made it spotless... wah wah! I am sure Yamunabai would be sooooooo happy to see me work like that.
And it really made Erica happy. She filled the 'notice board' with exclamations... YAY! HOw much I love being appreciated.

Another incident. I had a phone interview. It is one of those things that make you squirm when you look back at them. 'Wishing it never happened' is a mild way of putting it. When I think of the answers I gave, I feel the bile juices in my stomch rising to my throat, the teeth clenching in disgust, and the mouth untterint un-utterable phrases.
Never mind! "Everyone goes through this". I don't care. I wished I didn't have to go through it. It has made me paranoid about interviews."I want to go back to Kailas and sleep in dad's arms. I dont want to do any god-forsaken internship". This is what I think everytime I reminiscise about that i/v.

Another incident. I wet shopping. Downtown. Alone. I browsed through most of the shops. Alone. Had lunch at Picazzio (Italian place, with a guy playing guitar and my table being strategcally located so that I could see the whole street and also get warmth from the bukhara-equivalent... and I had a delicious Panini). Alone. Bought stuff (lip gloss... YAY). Alone.
And LOVED that day.
I love this place. It is like a movie set. Downtown is the ideal place to spend a Sunday morning and afternoon.

Another Incident: I shared my deep-dark secrets. Now someone can blackmail me! (Scary...)

Now I have to get back... to I dont know what. I am spoilt for choices. I can either read about turing machines, or read about caricaturing, or read Mouse-Driver Chronicles, or read CLR, or have my 5th glass of milk for the day (huh, that reminds me of a record I must record! Prerna and I finished 5 gallons of milk in a span of 2 weeks... Like Shaunak said, it's time to get a cow!), or I could solve cryptoquip ad get hooked to other Y! games, or I could dance, or I could call someone over ;-) , or I could think of an efficient algorithm that will make the choice for me from these options given the constraints, or I could keep generating newer options and keep writing them on the blog... or I could sit back and day-dream....

I know what I am going to do :-)

Friday, February 16, 2007

Whats the aim?

What moves me?
What are the things that have ever moved me, irrespective of their significance??

I was once moved by a teacher shoutig and hurling insult at me, by my best friend agreeing to come to a dandiya festival, by dad getting hurt because of my actions, by answering a Physics question right by thinking logically, by talking and getting talked to by Punit, by spending that evening with Mohit at reclamation, by Akshay's joke about the projector, by having the courage to go to a theatre alone, by the chhakka who would smile and give us blessings on Bandra signal, by reading 'A Fine Balance'.
I was touched when I talked to ma, when Parmit emailed, when Kai wrote me a letter, when I saw mummyjy leading Senior Women's Association. I was touched when Yamunabai made me food even when she was fatigues... and Nandabai took my insuts with a smile.
I was moved when I biked alone at 2am from lab, when I was drunk and enjoyin company of Juan and Erica.
I was moved when I held hands and walked under the moonlight... when we laughed at ourselves at nothing in particular... when we struck a chord...

Its these things that time is measured by. It is these things that are a measure of life. It is these things that impart meaning to life.
The more things that have touched me, the richer my life is.

These are the events/people/things that evoke in me a feeling so strong that it is worthy of plotting on the graph of life. The evoked emotion may be jealousy, terror, exuberance, bliss, rage, love... anything that is extreme enough for me to remember... rather, not forget.

I guess the aim, in the bigger scheme of things, is to increase the probabilty of encountering such events/people/things.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007


And I had my first interview... for a job (internship).

All 'firsts' have their place in one's view of life.
So does this.

I was anxious. Anxious since the day I got a call from the company (Microsoft). But until today, the anxiousness was a background process in the mind. It was invoked today.
I could not help get fidgety. I could not get myself to 'prepare'. I didn't know how to.

Some wise fellow gave me a wise (?) advice : "You can't possibly learn something in 2 hours what you did not do in 20 years!". Ok, point taken. But it feels strange to have a 'big day' and not prepare.

So the wise fellow gave me tips (and 'tricks'). He gave me pointers to what Microsoft generally asks. And then, a dreadful thing happened. He gave me a link to a website that has 'general interview questions'. Now that was a real eye-opener. I knew I was under-prepared, but the questions just blew my lid!

Anyway, so I decided to go just like that (coz nothing would have really helped).

I was 'advised' to go in casual wear (and I chose my fav top : And I go there, flustered, to see a bunch of guys in 3-piece suits! And girls in what f-tv would call their biggest buisiness casual show. It was unreal. I felt so out of the place. I settled down, nonetheless.
Then, to my relief, there came a really casually dressed (good-lookin) guy, walking confidently. I intantly liked him (one of those moments). Then he turned around and asked "Gaargi?"!
I was stumped!
He was the interviewer!!

We walked to the room and got done with niceties. He seemed so much like a guy just out of college, and a guy who understands exactly how you feel, that I got duped into revealing my dark-side...

It started with him asking me whether I had any Q about the form. Of course I had (I did a little math. I had roughly half hour. I didnt think that my knowledge ammunition would withstand a question attack for THAT long, successfully... The solution was to attack HIS ammunition). So I asked him a coupla questions. He talked for 10 mins, and I did te head-nodding (taught to me as a trick in the Entrepreneurship class).

Then he asked me why I had chosen to work with the 'Office' division of Microsoft. Frankly, I had selected it because I had no clue about what others do. Office was the only term familiar to me. So, I confidently replied "Coz there is a lot of room for improvement there". He smiled and asked 'Reallluy?? Like what. I work in THAT division. I'd like to know more". Dead silence. I didnt think he would question THIS deep. I hadnt used Microsoft OFfice for over 7 months. I had forgotten how MSWord looked, felt, smelt... and irked!
But I remembered one irking factor - the bullets. I just cant figure out how the hell they work. And that would be a constant source of reprimand from dad. He is one of the rare beings who can figure out how to use bullets with all the features. I always found them rather counter-intuitive. I said that, giving him a livid example. He smiled... and AGREED!

Then he looked at my resume... and asked 'So, you are a CS major. Have you done any coding?". I was so surprised, that I could not contain it. He smiled and sid "So, it seems you have done ALOT of coding, eh?". I said, 'not a lot... but more of delegation of work to able partners'. Now I knew I shouldn't have said that. But thats where he fooled me into revealing the deep dark secrets. I was even tempted to give him fundae about how the success of any project is getting the right people to do the right things and all... But i stopped myself.

Then he asked me about some of my projects... He chose Ruby on Rails. I felt a clog in my throat. DAM! I gave him some fundae about scalability. And then I went on to explain httperf (which is what I liked the most... being able to simulate users). He asked me further about httperf... I knew... YAY!

And then he smiled and said "lets get down to some coding now. Do you preferLinked LIsts or String Manipulations?". I confidently said, "either is fine... but may be, liked list... no actually either is fine... but may be...". He agreed on Linked List. He asked a double-linked list question. He asked me for the logic. He asked me for the code. I wrote a code, but did not cover all corner cases. I think i made some errors too.
But since i had applied for the testing position as well, he asked me to come up with test cases. I did that.
It was good... it was the intellectual part. I came up with ALL The cases I could. And he was still waiting. I started feeling anxious. I culd not think. I was blank. I looked at him feebly. He said "ok, just 2 more". And smiled. DAM! How can i?
I came up with one more. Blank again. Then I looked at him for help.

He gave some clues. I refuted them. He agreed. He said ok, thats that. "Do you have any questions?". I asked "So what next?". HE explained. I asked him "So, where do YOU work??". HE said Redmond. I confused Redmond with Richmond. Asked him how far Richmond is from Seattle. He smiled again. And corrected me. I felt like a fool. I said "Oh I am new to this place". And said thanks and bye.

Walked out.


Not the best I could have done. Surely lot of ground for improvement.

But it was a start. And a good start. It wasn't as terrifying as I had concocted it up to be.

The trick is to be relaxed, and alert, and use all your resources to do your best... and to be happy.

One lives and learns :-)


Nothing is perfect.
Nothing shall ever be perfect.
One shall have to strive and persevere and compromise and settle for less.

Everything is less than the best.

Then how does one define best?

Is best the customized robot that does exactly what one wishes and pleases?
If so, nothing can be the best.

If not, one does not have a yardstick for measurement.

But one has hope : Perhaps someone will understand...
Bigger hope : Perhaps someone will reflect the same thoughts...
Still bigger hope : Perhaps I will meet that person.

Biggest hope : It will be perfect.

Monday, February 12, 2007

My Shangrila

It was lovely day.

It was a lovely night.
There was music (soft) and there was good company.

It is again a promising day. The sunlight has found its way (after diffraction, courtesy Imaging course) through the cluster of branches, into my balcony. The cardboard cans of Low-Fat Milk are partly shining in it, and are partly covered by the shadow of the mop (that has been proudly displayed for all and sundry to appreciate).

I went to a Chinese function yesterday. Juan acted in the drama. It was interesting to watch drama where language is a handicap for you. Got a few ideas on how it could have been improved. Then stopped by to see the guitar performance in ucen (and got a free vegan pziza slice.. it didnt have cheese and it was delicious).

Talkd about making Valentine day plans. (it seems that its generally more exciting to talk about it than live it!) (I hope this year its not the case).

Saw Borat on the weekend. Crazy movie. CCCCRRRAAAAZZZZZYYY. Hilarious. Outrageous. Totally out-of-the-box. Insightful. Perhaps True.

Got emails from home. Things are changing. People are changing (drastically, or so it seems).

Last week was most intellectually stimulating. Aho,Ulman and Lynz dug my brain. THe subject is the most challenging one I have ever encountered. Loved reading for it. The mid-erm was okay. I was satisfied. Dil khush hua! :-)

Hav a mid-term tomo. Have an inerview tomo. HAve an assignment to submit day-after. Another mid-term on friday. Busy schedule. Not because of all these deadlines, but because of the heaviest course that generally begins at 11 pm and lasts for eternity.

Love life!

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Recently learnt Lessons.

  1. Concretizing thoughts helps.
  2. Formalizing arguments by writing makes them way more coerent than talking about them
  3. If you have a group of people who you want to convince about the potential of idea A vs idea B, then you need a lot more than just the fact tat idea A is ACTUALLY better than idea B. Group thoughts are not the summation of the thougths of the individuals. The two differ considerably.
  4. Putting clothes in the laundry is an interestingly complicated knapsack problem. In my opinion, it can be solved using a Deterministic Push Down Automata.
  5. Cleaning the kitchen floor is way more difficult than it loooks. It seem that even that can be mapped into a CS problem.
  6. The sticky-notes software is perhaps the most helpful application on the computer.
  7. Being alone helps. Walks on the wharf help a lot more. Staring at the pelicans who are unhindered by the crowds of people and who continue to chirp, is insightful.
  8. Getting lost whole biking, and subsequently exploring untreaded paths is a great source of excitement.
  9. All Taco Bells have reat veg food....except the one in Fairview! (Hail Murphy).
  10. Hotchetta (or however its spelled) is nectar.
  11. Hurting people hurts you. One tries to not hurt. But if there is a conflict... one can either say the truth and hence cause hurt OR not tell the truth and avoid a 'mess', then THATS a tough decision. It has always been a tough decision. But sometimes, the magnitue of the impact of the decision is overwhelming.
  12. Writing blogs helps concretizing thoughts. Hence it loops back to the first lesson.