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Showing posts from April, 2007

Spider-Man 3 (No, its not a review!)

I am not going to watch Spider-Man 3. Oh, I might inadvertently catch it on TNT or something a few years down the road.

Infertility affects one in 25 American men.

The first one was refreshing (well, at least the first 20 minutes) and after barely sitting through the second one for about half-an-hour (which I caught on DVD at a friend's house), I put my hat on and went to see another friend. The trailer of SM3 reeks of melodrama and I could never particularly accept Tobey, that awesome man-boy, as a superhero anyway. Plus the overused background chorus in these big-budget movies is now starting to annoy me.

And what the hell is she wearing?

Speaking of budget, I heard that they have spent $250 Million to make SM3! I mean...what the holy f*ck! I could understand a budget like that for the Lord of the Rings franchise, which actually represents an epic event. But all that money for a dude with mental issues wearing a mask...!

I am going to lunch out now. I need to pause and take stock of …

Pristine Prisons?

Finally legislators in California have agreed to a plan to "overhaul" that state's extremely troubled prison system.

Prison plan details are discussed Wednesday by, from left, Senate Minority Leader Dick Ackerman, Assembly Speaker Fabian Núñez, Senate leader Don Perata and Assembly Minority Leader Mike Villines. Picture Copyright: Sacramento Bee/Brian Baer.

For years, no one could reach a solution on the problem of overcrowding in California's prisons. I have been following this particular issue with a great deal of interest for a long time now. A couple of Unions, naturally, are against the they have been for many years now.

My own take...I certainly hope the two unions don't have any success in overturning this plan. I cannot yet say if the unions are wrong or correct but at some point California will need to find out what will work (or atleast ease the problem). All parties concerned on this issue have been at a stalemate for way too long at the expense…

Showdown in little Barbados!

So...the Sri Lankans and the Aussies will be facing off (again) in the Cricket World Cup 2007 Final in Barbados. Watching these two teams perform so far has been an immensely pleasurable experience...and a stark reminder that it cannot get any worse for the Indian team which was sent home after the first round.

I still have to hear Indian selectors say, "Yes, we have a serious problem. We have players but no team." Until they do that, I am not going to have a positive outlook on the chances for the Indian "team" in the next World Cup (or for that matter, whatever the next major tournament will be).

Ahista Ahista (a brief film review)

Hey, I found a good Hindi (they say, "Bollywood") movie Friday night.

Cho Chweet! Soha Ali Khan is exquisitely pretty while Abhay Deol has good presence.
The movie has a cast that is actually young. That is, no old dudes pretending to be 20 year olds. Both Soha and Abhay carry their roles capably. Sure there were cliches but I didn't care as the screenplay kept moving at a good pace. This movie for some reason reminded me of the award-winning Tamil movie Iyarkai, which starred the very under-rated Shaam, who, in my opinion, is probably the most natural actor working in Tamil cinema today (case in point, Shaam's casual performance in YNRAI). Anyway, it is a beautiful Sunday afternoon and the weather outside is a sunny 60F. I am off for a stroll around the North End. It is supposed to reach 75F in a couple of hours by which time I should be at the track in UMASS enjoying a session of sprinting. Then the kitty transfer happens when Raina gets back from France later today …

Lara Walks

So Brian Lara will not be playing International Cricket anymore. He has retired :(

A young Brian Lara makes his Test debut in Lahore in 1990. Picture Source: BBC Cricket.

The front page of the Trinidad and Tobago Express announcing Brian Lara's retirement, April 20, 2007.

Lights Out

“Apple blossom, juicy pears and apples, mingled with fresh grass on the nose. Also a hint of mint. Smooth, delicate and sweet on the palate with a sweet rounded finish. Absolutely charming. Reminiscent of a walk in a Norman orchard bathed in morning dew.”

Can you guess what that was about?

Those were the words spoken by a Whiskey reviewer. Let me make something clear. I like Whiskey. I really do. But...Holy be damned! Some of these people are going to need help down the road.

Incidentally, the results are in on the world's best Whiskies.

I know. This is the second post today. I thought that I would go with the "flow" of the post from earlier today and throw in something that made for some "light-headed" reading. Its 8:40 PM EST and I think that I am ready for a bit more of "light-headed" reading myself :-)

Spaced Out

Well, my last two posts were kinda heavy. So I thought I would post something "light" this time. Check this out:

Earth's City Lights

This is a cool tool but it doesn't allow the User to get really close. For instance, I could make out the spot that (I think) is my hometown Madurai as the spot could easily have been a conglomeration of Madurai and neighboring towns like Dindigul and Sivaganga. New Delhi and Mumbai clearly stand out. Most of Africa, the Amazonian basin, Northern Canada, Central/Northern Australia (and the rest of Oceania), the islands in SE Asia and Northern Russia (all of Siberia, I presume) are very much in the dark and somehow I feel very comforted by that. Use left-click and right-click to zoom in and out.

Studies in Scarlet

So we have 32 dead from the rampage at Virginia Tech State University yesterday. Blaming the University for lax security is bullsh*t. As the University's President said, the school had no reasonable cause to expect a second shooting two hours after the first one. Lets say the school had sent a couple of campus security officers out with a bullhorn to warn all on campus that the gunman from the earlier shooting had not been apprehended yet. What would have happened? Widespread panic? Stampede? Very likely. Either way, the University was looking at problems regarding its approach to security.

If we accept that violence is always going to be around (maybe not with the frequency that sh*t happens in the middle east) then the solution becomes simpler. Therefore, lets look at such an event from another angle. How many students had become nervous after the gunman had peeked into their classroom twice earlier? You might first want to read my post Your body is your church below...Welcome ba…

Your body is your church

So I had a run-in with a Boston Councilor this morning. She was talking about this program and that program aimed at preventing crime in the city. When she was done, I didn't know whether I wanted to laugh or go outside and throw up. Boston, given all of its dynamics, is never going to be free of crime (just like any other major metropolis). As long as people don't reclaim a certain level of physical fitness and awareness of their surroundings that they have given up since having become so used to the benefits of technology (and as long as government keeps coming up with technology to "prevent" crime), people are going to get softer and continue to play the victim. I mean how many people, when they are attacked, can fight back or at the very least outrun their attackers without having a cardiac arrest.

The Councilor mentioned a "tiny woman" in one of her public meetings who had asked her how she (that is, the "tiny woman") could protect herself fro…

Super Good Stuff

BioPower Systems has come up with two slick ways to generate electricity from sea water. Just like windmills use the wind to generate electricity, BioPower's BioWave (Fig. 1 below) and BioStream (Fig. 2.) products use ocean currents to generate upto 2 Megawatts (enough to power 1,620 homes) of electricity. The BioWave product design is based on giant kelp behavior while the BioStream product design is based on the tail of highly energy efficient fish such as Shark and Tuna. This is 100% clean energy and should also be zero unsightly (unlike windmills).

Fig. 1. Copyright (C) BioPower Systems Pty. Ltd.

Fig. 2. Copyright (C) BioPower Systems Pty. Ltd.

Sprinting for Summer

Well, so I was out on the track at UMASS yesterday afternoon doing 25 yard sprints. It was a warm, breezy day. The overall effect of the weather felt cool. I was the only guy on the track. I felt sorry for all those people who like their couches too much. The workout was intense and that is how I like it. Slow, long distance running could never give me the satisfaction that sprinting does as I have always had a natural tendency to move fast and smooth. By early summer, I should be at the 50 yard sprinting level sporting a lean mean physique. The women at Revere beach this summer will have a lot to fantasize about (more so than last year).

I have to train instinctively because of the meniscus tear in my right knee. But the knee feels really solid. But either the PCL or the popliteus muscles on both knees started aching...or it could have just been really sore upper calves (since I've felt that type of soreness after really hitting seated calf raises at the gym) or hamstring tendons.…