Tuesday, September 25, 2007

A Poem A Day

In there, in that book of poetry,
Were unpredictable leaps.
To unknown sensations
And unforeseen lands.

Her fingers pry it open
With deliberate indiscrimination;
Anxious for her daily gift.

Will it be Pablo speaking off love,
Or Tennyson telling her about kings?
Or her life summed in four lines
Ironically attributed to “Anon”

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Haal Kaisa Hai Janaab Ka?

The blog alarm went off. I have been off blogs, both mine and others, for a while. As I sit down with my trusted cup of coffee at seven in the morning feverishly typing a few words to construct something other than poetry, some highlights come to mind worth sharing.


I am sure I must have mentioned this at some point in my blogging career, but back at Texas A&M, I had started, nurtured and grown a literary club called Literati to fill the void I felt having been actively involved in lit events including quizzing, back in India. For over two years, that became an important part of my life and others who were part of it remember it fondly till date. For the past four years, no such activity had taken place here. But a seed has been planted. We have started a small quizzing club here on Redmond campus which meets biweekly. As part of that effort, I conducted a cricket quiz yesterday. That pretty much explains my absence. Setting a quality quiz takes time, setting it while you are employed (my first such experience :-)) takes a lot more out of your daily schedule. However, it was all worth it in the end. The response was terrific and it was good to see others relative amounts of craziness for the game in others as well. Hopefully this endeavor will last long.

While my guitar urgently creeps?

I am good with percussion and a sense of rhythm. My tabla learning helps me with that. However, when it comes to such concepts as pitch and notes, I fall short. I can pick things by ear up to an extent, but that extent is limited. I have always wanted to do something unto that end. I wasn't keen on learning how to sing, so an instrument always felt like a good way to go. This best laid plan was waylaid for many years. Until now. My wife gifted me a guitar for my birthday, and my lessons start next week. That should be exciting. As a side note, I have always wondered why guitarists are considered cool, especially when you are in college. Poor old tabla players have no visibility if you can't match Zakir's flowing locks. I can't remember the admiration factor being high because one played the tabla instead of the guitar. So, I suppose I am on the coolness route now, about twelve years late.

Six-pack _______

There are two distinct categories of men: one who complete the above phrase with abs and the other with beer. More likely, the twain shall never meet. SRK has defected to the former group for his new movie release OSO (Om Shanti Om for the uninitiated). Which beats me: why would an actor known for his romantic roles work so hard to reinvent himself having crossed 40? The look is alright and I am sure he had to work on getting there, so perhaps he has earned himself the witty "re-introducing Shah Rukh Khan" caption that comes on the screen in the trailor of "Dard-E-Disco". Worth the crunch? You tell me!

Parth has left the building

After working almost four and a half years in a single little building, I have now moved to another newer, nicer place on campus. It is amazing how familiarity and attachment builds up even though it is your work place, not your home. In many ways, my old building was the focal point of the campus for me. All roads led in and out of that place and everything was relative to it. Now, the co-ordinates have shifted. I am on the fourth floor with a window office that overlooks a bridge over a freeway. It is a terrific view while I can watch pedestrians cross over, traffic weaving in and out of the freeway, and the rapidity of movement on the freeway itself. To top it all, even the sunsets are great to watch. The place is nice and bright and inviting. The only thing I miss is access to a table tennis table close by. I was meaning to put some photos up, but the resolution that the camera on my phone produces is pretty ordinary. The pictures I took did not show up so well.

20/20 vision?

The madness is underway with the 20/20 world cup. It is a new form of cricket and hence will always be interesting. Peppered with interesting events like Yuvraj's six sixes and the tie between India and Pakistan (what's with the ridiculous bowl-out to settle that? ), this will satisfy the slog-hungry viewer. Someone dispute this, but isn't the big hitting numbing after a while. I feel like someone is playing out the slogout game on cricinfo. Why not just get a bowling machine and ask it to pitch deliveries? Spare the bowlers. I don't think I am bought off, but I guess people's attention spans and ability to appreciate a good game of cricket have gone down anyway. So 20/20 is here to stay.

Friday, September 07, 2007


Are you then,
My bulwark
Against reality?

Or a half-truth
I need to prove
In the light of the day