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Remembering Mr. L. B. Shastri October 8, 2007

Posted by madhavi mullagiri in history.
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On Oct 2nd, I asked about 8 people if they knew which other eminent personality instrumental in the national freedom struggle and nation building shared their b’day with M. K. Gandhi and no points for guessing … no one got the answer!

I also reflected on the thought how the limited knowledge (of history) of people can make a mahatma’s personality shadow the small contributions made by lesser known people, such as L. B. Shastri!

Luckily for Vividh Bharathi, of the All India Radio station that plays age-old relevant song, while keeping up with the times, had a song aired where a lady is singing to her son whose B’day is on 2nd Oct and tells the kid that he should try to be like either of the two heroes or at least follow their path … and thats when it donned on me that it was L .B. Shastri’s birth anniversary too!

Again, we live in a generation where apart from curiosity and information, I am not sure if knowing these things are of relevance. While debating this thought, I thought it may be worthwhile to know a little bit more about the third Prime Minister of the country a little more. I was glad to learn the stuff I read on the wiki.

So Jai Jawan Jai Kisan (jai the soldier, hail the farmer) is what this man said, and the state of farming or agriculture does not sound too great in India at the moment! We hear of farmer suicides every now and then! And subsequently several farmers moving out to cities for non-agricultural options while some decided to stick on to agriculture. Led me to thinking if it was a good or a bad trend? Although, it looks heartening that we are progressing in the right direction as can be seen from the trend in the GDP, still cant help wondering if, by decreasing our engagement in agriculture, are we seeking trouble in the future? … like the terrible shortage of food the nation faced in 1967 … ?
hmm … coming back, while one man was a master strategist in gathering the nation to fight the freedom of independence (when there were far lesser communication channels), the other had his fair share on important contributions too!

Though it might seem irrelevant to think of these two people (and many other souls born on 2nd October), it is important to recognize and remember the contributions of these people have helped shape up the nation that way it is today!

On the other hand, I was glad to see this poster at a school, but alas, those kids might not even understand the import of the thoughts and actions of these two men!!

Gandhi Jayanthi

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These are men at work! August 7, 2007

Posted by madhavi mullagiri in daily quality ....
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BSNL men @ work

BSNL men @ work (2)

… they are working to set right a fault in the BSNL lines on a rainy saturday evening! This was quite a unique sight along the kerb of a busy road in Indiranagar (in Bangalore). So what about it? Well, the working conditions! See these men … sitting in the mud and slush, under a tent made using a plastic sheet. I think they could have been better equipped.

I wonder who is to realize that people at work should get the right gear for whatever work they are doing!

I wonder if it is lack of education or awareness. I guess it is both. With education you know why you need what you should need and with awareness of rights/standards you would know you can demand those.

And for most part I guess it is ignorance and indifference …

Where do you go to my lovely! July 29, 2007

Posted by madhavi mullagiri in Music.
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Look what I found on YouTube! A song that I was bowled over, from the first time I ever heard it (in Mar 2000), by Peter Sarstedt.

I distinctly remember lots of folks I know remember La Bouche’s “where do you go to my lovely”, a song typically played on dance floors during 1997 – 2000 in Bangalore, and I was expecting to hear a mellower version of the same like typically is the case with the original version of the song, like was in the case of “Can’t help falling in love” UB40 version Vs. Richard Marx version Vs. Elvis Presley’s version, and I knew I would end up liking the older version in any case. But hey! this was different! It was a classic! Brilliant! Lovely! I mush have heard it a hundred times over years, and love it each time I hear!

And my Sunday is made!

So where do you go to my lovely!

Rajni is a Phenomenon June 13, 2007

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To know who is phenomenon, one needs to watch the gearing up by the fans of this star for the upcoming release – Sivaji The phenomenon is Rajni. I have always been amused by his antics on the screen, truly entertaining! Some tidbits from the upcoming movie Sivaji:

1. Director Shankar used 2500 junior artists for the introduction scene of Rajnikant.
2. A huge set of glass house was built to shoot Sahana song.
3. 4K DI (Digital Intermediate) digital camera is used for the first time in India for this film.
4. Helium Balloon light is used to shoot a song. The crew has to use 13 helium cylinders for the lighting.
5. The team of Shankar saw important footages of most of Rajnikant’s films since his debut in 1975. They found that Rajnikant looked best in Padikkadavan (1985) film. Then Shankar summoned the make-up artist to come up with a similar hairdo for Rajnikant 22 years later.
6. Rajnikant donned 15 different hair styles for this film. He also tonsured his head and shaven off his mustache for a get-up in this film. A make-up artist from France is flown in for this purpose.
7. A few songs of this film are shot in the US of A and Sapin.
8. Rajnikant’s daughter supervised the 600 scenes of Computer Graphics work that lasts for 50 minutes in this film. It took over an year to do this CG work.

I would any day be entertained watching a movie starring this 57 year old actor!

Russell Peters in Bangalore March 3, 2007

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I thought it worthwhile to pay and see his show from the third row on 27th Feb, and it was fun! I particularly liked the imaginative Terminator 8 bit the American guy enacted before Russell took the stage. He was funny too!

I must admit however that the edited videos were funnier, but I guess this is how live stand-up comedies are!

I did notice some of the elder folks were quite uncomfortable when Russell Peters started talking explicit stuff! Surely the youngsters who brought them must have quite regretted it.

A sunday toast! February 22, 2007

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With slight apprehension if I was doing the right thing giving up the only day I had free last week, I decided to attend the First South India conference of the Toastmasters International – (District 82P Division B).

After a slightly boring cliche’ inaugural, it was time to hear Mr. Srinivasan (who assumed office as the DG and IG of Karnataka police). His speech was simple for a non-flambouyant person to understand, sometimes colloquial, but so full of humour while being sincere. I have never before admired the captive power of a pause in a speech.

The educational sessions revealed an interesting aspect of public speaking: You may be confident, immaculately dressed, your speech extensively researched and your English impeccable; but if you don’t connect to the audience, or listen (to the active feedback your audience gives) with your eyes, you can be sure you lost it. Like Ken Blanchard says – ‘Feedback is the breakfast of champions’, it is important for a champion speaker to absorb feedback!

The sumptuous lunch was followed by a competition, and some speeches were simply cool. The undisputed winner had me wipe my tears atleast 6 times; I could not control them as I laughed my heart out! It got me more tears than speeches that tried to apppeal to my empathetic self. Well, it was not just me, the whole hall was in splits on the harmless subject of a Home maker!

At the end of the day, I believe it was a Sunday well spent.

But it set me thinking, where the heck did I put in those Aaah’s and Ummm’s in my talk? Too much exposure to amatuer reporters on news channnels? Well, I have turned to reading news! 🙂

Bandh – A total shutdown February 13, 2007

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I have never experienced a silent morning in Bangalore where you hear nothing but just the birds chirp … no automobiles, no noises of domestic help at work, no honks, no hawkers … It was bliss. It was as if I was in my village. But the Bandh came at a cost!

A city with 8 million population comes to a halt
Incurs atleast 610 crores loss
Some losses can be made up by compesating to work on a subsequent weekend.

All this in addition to having recd. a share of Cauvery water considered lesser than acceptable after the cauvery tribunal passed the verdict after 16 years!

So what have we done? We have bled ourselves today for having known what is to come couple of months from now. Makes me wonder if Bandhs are suicidal!

Now there is a 3 month window for all stakeholders (including Karnataka govt) to file a petition. What happens after 3 months?

We need to fight our problems and strongly so, with facts and figures but no emotions in place. While all other stakeholder states have not lost their productivity and revenues for 12 hours, how can we do so for our state?!

My inner child is ten years old! November 21, 2006

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How Old is Your Inner Child is an interesting site I stepped upon while reading about the power of paradigm shift at someone’s playground to the internet. It tells me

10 yr old!

And it also tells me: The adult world is pretty irrelevant to me. Whether I’m off on my bicycle (or pony) exploring, lost in a good book, or giggling with my best friend, I live in a world apart, one full of adventure and wonder and other stuff adults don’t understand.

Indian Megalomania ;-0 October 4, 2006

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Indian Mythological roots of International Names – An awesome take on the Indian megalomania of ranting away past glories and mythologies!

Kodbali October 3, 2006

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I could be totally wrong on the spelling. Well, my mom took a lot of effort to write to me the recipe on Yahoo Chat. She makes this stuff really well, and I just love it.

4 measures Rice flour
1 measure Maida (all purpose flour?)
15-20 red chillies
2/3rds measure fresh coconut
Salt to taste
2 spooons Jeera
Hing – A pinch

In a kadhai (wok), fry maida on a low flame. Take it off the flame when it is just a little warmer than being lukewarm. Add this maida to the rice flour.

Heat a tablespoon of oil in the kadhai and fry the red chillies in it.

Grind salt and chillies. Grind coconut seperately. Then mix both and grind them together to a smooth paste.

Heat one ladle full of oil on medium flame, till it begins to fume.

Pour the oil on the mixture of rice flour and maida. Mix it well with a flat spoon.

Add to it the coconut/chillies/salt paste.

Add Jeera and Hing.

Mix it all uniformly.

Heat oil in a kadhai on medium flame for frying the kodbali.

Meanwhile take small quantity of flour in a plate. Sprinkle handful of water on the flour & knead thoroughly. The water should be just sufficient, so that the flour becomes soft by kneading.

Take a small lump and work with your palm to make it a long tube (solid), and join the two ends to make it a loop (O). This is the raw kodballi.

Prepare 8 to 10 of those. When the oil in the kadhai becomes hot, put the
kodballi in the oil and fry. Turn the kodaballi in kadai. When they are cooked remove from fire and serve!

Recipe tip: If small bubble like blisters come on cooked kodaballi means you have used more water!

Note on Tradition: Normally we take apiece of one kodaballi of first batch, circle it around the kadai & put it near the stove before serving the rest. Most all south indians do so.