Archive for April, 2004

10-Apr-2004

April 10, 2004

Trivia night was … interesting. Ok, so I went to this sports bar about 2.5 miles from my place (a little further than I thought). I’m drafted into a team with 3 other Chinese guys, one of whom works in my company and who I’ve met before. Now, since I’d mentioned that I did trivia in high school, and apparently two of the guys in my team were supposed to be good, people called us ringers, so that’s what our team name became: “The Ringers”. Alas, after about 6 questions that we had no idea how to answer, we quickly decided to change our name to “The Dingers”. After the first two rounds, we were tied for last place with a team of drunk guys called “The Nutless Wonders”. *rolls eyes* The main problem was that a lot of the questions early on dealt with trivia related to the 50’s and 60’s, and most of the audience hadn’t been born then. Things eased out later on, and we ended up doing somewhat respectably (we weren’t last!!). But we were nowhere near winning the $100 first prize. Sheesh.

Here’s something else freaky. With a name like “The Sports Page”, you figure this would be a pretty manly place, right? While we’re sitting down, suddenly we hear “End of the Road” by Boyz II Men playing over the sound system. In a sports bar. I’m sorry but even though I love the song personally, that just isn’t right. Later selections included a Mariah Carey song (does it matter which?), and Sting’s “Fields of Gold”, another song I like but still wholly inappropriate. We discovered near the end that someone had selected those songs on the jukebox, but the fact that the box even had those albums was inexcusable. So, being the rapscallions that we are, The Dingers decided to continue the musical trend. For $1, we bought Cher’s “I believe”, Aqua’s “Barbie Girl”, and an AC/DC song to compensate. Sadly, we ended up leaving before the songs played, but still…

Tonight, Vicky, Siddharth and myself are going down to San Jose to a comedy club. Pablo Francisco is performing, and we’re gonna go watch. If you haven’t heard of him, he’s a pretty funny standup performer, and does excellent imitations. He was even featured on Comedy Central, so if you look him up, you might be able to catch a rerun of his 30 minute special. I remember the last (and only) time I went to a comedy show, the featured performer was Louis Ramey. If you don’t know who he is, he’s the bald black dude that “hosts” Nick At Nite. He was pretty awesome too, so hopefully this will be just as good.

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9-Apr-2004

April 9, 2004

So I’ve moved into my new digs (well, for the next 2 weeks anyway). I’m sitting in a cubicle in a massive room (did I say room? I meant hall) ;filled with more cubicles. According to Eric, the guy I’m working with, the building was built in the 50s, and it certainly feels like it. Apparently, the air circulation system comes on for 5 minutes in the morning, then stays off for the rest of the day. At least, that’s what I heard from someone who works here. To make my time here more bearable, I burned an MP3 ;CD with 100 famous pieces of classical music, and I’m listening to it now. Pretty good stuff, actually. Even if you think you wouldn’t know any of them, you’ve probably heard a lot of them in commercials and cartoons. The best part is that they’re in the public domain, so I can’t get in trouble for burning the CD.

It seems my move had consequences for other people as well. The chair I had been using in the previous building had actually been borrowed from Eric’s cubicle mate. Now, the evening before the move, I put signs on my computer and a box of stuff (but ;NOT the chair), marking them as mine. I came in yesterday morning, and my computer and box had been taken to Eric’s cube in preparation for the move, and the chair was gone altogether. I have no idea who took it, only that it wasn’t moved here. ;Today, Eric’s former cubemate sent him an email complaining about it. Apparently, it’s a pretty big deal to get a chair around here. People seem to be very territorial about their stuff over here. Feels worse than an Indian Government office sometimes.

I saw The Man Who Knew Too Much last night. It was a good Hitchcock movie, but I think the hype had spoiled it for me. Nonetheless, I recommend it to anyone who is interested in thrillers. The 10 minute musical finale (with no spoken dialogue) is a great sequence, and Doris Day is very cute. James Stewart’s accent got a bit annoying, though. Now to watch the other Hitchcock films…

Tonight, the Beer Club is meeting at The Sports Page again, a sports bar 1.5 miles away from my house. More important, they’re having Trivia Night, and first prize is $100 for the winning team. It’ll be my first quiz competition since high school. Let’s see if the juices are still flowing. I’ll let y’all know how it goes.

8-Apr-2004

April 8, 2004

Well, I’m sitting at a terminal in a computer lab here at work, waiting for the movers to come and take our stuff to the other building. And since my computer’s already packed, there’s really not much I can do except kill time. Today feels like it’s just gonna be one of those days.

I heard some rather sad news yesterday. Out of respect for the party involved, I can’t be more specific until it becomes official. Let me just say that I’m about to lose something that can honestly be considered one of the best parts of my day. ;Que sera sera, I suppose.

Current DVDs at home:
1) Godfather Trilogy Bonus Disk (should finish today)
2) The Man Who Knew Too Much (Hitchcock movie. Heard a lot about it. Now I’ll finally know the significance of the Que Sera Sera song)
3) Gandhi (No, I haven’t seen it. Yes, I am ashamed.)

7-Apr-2004

April 7, 2004

So, Darna Mana Hai was an interesting movie. I guess the best way to describe it would be an Indian attempt at The Twilight Zone. The basic premise is that seven friends are travelling one night when their car breaks down. They decide to wait at a nearby house, and end up telling scary stories around a bonfire to pass the time. These stories are presented as individual fifteen-minute clips, and form the bulk of the film. In the meantime, there is a larger story going on in the background involving the kids.

I guess what I found most interesting about the film is that all seven kids are relatively no-name actors, while the fifteen minute stories star famous actors like Saif Ali Khan, Nana Patekar, Vivek Oberoi and Shilpa Shetty. As I mentioned above, the stories are very reminiscent of the Twilight Zone, with one story in particular (the last one) having a premise very similar to an actual Twilight Zone episode that I’d seen (and loved) a long time ago. These stories form the actual fun part of the movie, as they can be quite unpredictable for the most part. They are all very stylishly shot and edited, and quite well directed. The main story itself (involving the 7 kids) feels like somewhat of an afterthought, and doesn’t gel very well. Nonetheless, a great attempt at something different. Check it out. For you non-Hindi speakers, it has sub-titles.

The group I’m working with temporarily will be relocating to a new building tomorrow, so I’ll be moving along with them, even though I’m only going to be working with them for another couple of weeks. I guess that means another day wasted. *shrugs* At least this one wasn’t my fault.

I might have some fun(ny) plans for this weekend, so I’ll keep y’all posted. Kristina said that reading my blog lets her feel like she knows everything that goes on in my life. All I gotta say is, not everything in my life goes up on my blog.

5-Apr-2004

April 5, 2004

This was a busy weekend. On Saturday, I was at the Jain temple from 11a-7:30p. First we had a meeting, then I stayed to try and recuit as many uncles and aunties to volunteer for the convention as I could. Afterwards, I went to meet up with my aunt’s husband’s nephew. My aunt had called me in the morning and asked me to spend some time with the dude, since he lived about 15 miles from me and was feeling kinda lonely and depressed. Anyway, it wasn’t too bad an evening. We went to the nearby AMC and saw Hellboy, and got some dinner. He stayed the night at my place, and I dropped him off this (Sunday) morning. And since I had done my weekly YJA meeting on Saturday, this was my first free Sunday in weeks.

As for Hellboy, I liked it. It’s based on a comic book character, but odds are you’ve never heard of him. Neither had I, until this movie. But it’s an interesting idea. Towards the end of WW2, American GIs disrupt a Nazi occult ceremony to bring in some crazy Gods of Chaos. They close the portal, but not before a small devil child makes it through. He’s red, got horns and a tail, and has a massive, unbreakable stone glove on his right hand. He’s raised by a scientist who heads the Bureau for Paranormal Research and Defence, and becomes a force for good. As the professor explains in the preview, “There are things that go bump in the night. We are the ones who bump back.”

It’s a fun movie. I wouldn’t rate it as highly as X-Men 2 in terms of comic book movies, but I enjoyed it more than Spiderman. The movie never takes itself too seriously (like it even could), and never forgets to have fun along the way. I personally would have preferred even more action scenes, but this was still a good movie. Not a bad way to kill a weekend afternoon.

There are lots of other movies coming out this summer that I’m gonna want to see in the theatres. This month alone, there’s Kill Bill Vol. 2, The Punisher (both Apr 16), Man on Fire (only because I read the book when I was 10 and really liked it) (Apr 23), and maybe The Girl Next Door (Apr 9), but only because Elisha Cuthbert is scorchingly hot. Then there’s the rest of the summer blockbusters. My wallet will feel empty this summer.

Anyway, time to watch Darna Mana Hai. I heard it’s a good, offbeat movie. Let’s see.

2-Apr-2004

April 2, 2004

My right wrist has been hurting me something fierce these past few days. It’s gotten to the point that just flexing it causes pain. I’ve been stretching it a lot this week, but methinks it’ll take a while to get better. Damn computers.

So, India won its first ever test in Pakistan. ;That makes me happy. After all the ;brouhaha caused by the pitch for the first test, I’m ;pretty sure they’re gonna ;put out a lawn in ;Lahore. ;Here’s to hoping the Indian batsmen can still fend off Akhtar and co. in ;bowler-friendly conditions.

So, Ishani and I were talking last night, and she mentioned that Apra Bhandari had her own website . I went over to said website, and I gotta tell you, it was amusing. Now, for those who don’t know her, Apra graduated Class of 2002 from Cornell, the same year as me. I knew her since I was involved with Society for India, and she was one of the head cheeses over in Sitara, the desi dance troupe. Anyway, I’d heard that after graduation, she had headed on over to India to try her luck in the showbiz world. Well, it seems she’s made her mark… sort of. Further investigation on the website by Ish and myself revealed that Apra has starred in a Telugu film called Shambhu , released last July. The link above is for a review of the film, and it seems that Apra has changed her name to Sarika.

Now, to be honest, I laughed when I first saw all this. But I later realized that this girl actually deserves some major props. She had a dream, and she went after it, no matter how implausible it might have seemed. So while I still find it amusing, I wish her the very best of luck. Lord knows, she’s got more ; huevos than most of us.

Here are another couple of funny links. First, this rather odd reworking of a Pepsi commercial , starring the Pakistani cricket team. It’s an 11MB movie file in Hindi, so be warned. Also, you probably don’t want to listen to this while your parents are in the room. Trust me. The second link is for an April Fool’s Day news story from yesterday. Most of you have heard of (or played) at least one of the Grand Theft Auto games. Anyway, here’s ;an article about an Indian version, set in Mumbai.

Lastly, some big news. I’ve booked my tickets, and I will be arriving in Ithaca on Thursday, Apr. 22 and will stay for the weekend, leaving on Sun, Apr 25. I woulda mentioned this yesterday, but I figured people would consider it an April 1 joke. ;More details on this to follow in the coming days.