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Summary post of the past fortnight

January 3, 2009

First, here is something I got in a forwarded email. I have not had any “New Year post” as such and therefore these words of wisdom could possibly be a good start to a new year:

A Group of alumni, highly established in their careers, got together to visit their old university professor. Conversation soon turned into complaints about stress in work and life. Offering his guests coffee, the professor went to the kitchen and returned with a large pot of coffee and an assortment of cups porcelain, plastic, glass, crystal, some plain looking, some expensive, some exquisite – telling them to help them-selves to hot coffee.

When all the students had a cup of coffee in hand, the professor said: “If you noticed, all the nice looking expensive cups were taken up, leaving behind the plain and cheap ones. While it is but normal for you to want only the best for yourselves, that is the source of your problems and stress. What all of you really wanted was coffee, not the cup, but you consciously went for the best cups and were eyeing each other’s cups.

Now if life is coffee, then the jobs, money and position in society are the cups. They are just tools to hold and contain Life, but the quality of Life doesn’t change. Some times, by concentrating only on the cup, we fail to enjoy the coffee in it.”
Don’t let the cups matter… Enjoy the coffee instead!

Here are the posts I wrote recently:

Top Ten movies of 2008 This list is a personal one and as I have not been able to see many of the films I wished to, particularly the English ones, this list will remain very subjective.

Best movies of all time (tag) The kind of movies which I like are those which give me thrills, whether of the mental kind  (psychological thrillers) or the funny kind (I do not have a partiality towards a particular kind of humour and can enjoy situational, mental and slapstick humour) or the action adventure kind (sci-fi are my favourites and so is fantasy) or the romantic kind (I prefer serious romance)…If a movie throws light on some important issue, makes me think, is not preachy and holds my attention as well, then the movie would be at the top of my list, not otherwise. I consider the ability of a director to entertain very important…

Is voting for a political party better than voting for the candidate? It has been said that in the political systems of Canada, New Zealand and the United States, only about 20 percent of the voters vote for a candidate who is not from a preferred party…Some believe that in America there has been a shift from party-centred voting to candidate-centred voting, particularly in the recent presidential election…One wonders why a good percentage of voters vote for a candidate whom they don’t like too much…In India an overwhelming number of people vote for candidates based on party affiliation…here are some new parties which have promised to bring in honesty and transparency into Indian politics…

Will India’s Power and Transport take that big leap forward? A Special Report in a recent issue of The Economist hammered home the point that India cannot progress without a major step forward in infrastructure development. Well, the positive thing is that our government knows what to do, even if it is going about it very slowly…There are plans to double infrastructure investment to $475 billion in the next five years, which amounts to about 8% of GDP a year. Here are a few of the government’s plans to boost infrastructure…

Ghajini movie review Ghajini is a gripping and powerful movie, and draws you into the violent world of a man terribly wronged. It’s a movie that keeps you on the edge of your seat from the start and is replete with violence, even after three scenes were cut by the censor board…certainly not a pleasant ride for kids under the age of twelve despite the film getting an UA certificate! That said, Ghajini is a well directed film with brilliant music by A.R Rahman. The film begins by introducing us to Sanjay Singhania (Aamir Khan), a man suffering from anterograde amnesia, a condition which prevents him from remembering anything beyond 15 minutes…Ghajini is a typical Bollywood masala movie, with song and dance, a heart wringing romance and plenty of dishum dishum, but what will make this film memorable is Aamir’s performance.

Funny signs (photo post) Here are some photographs of funny signs, some confusing, some quite ridiculous!

Antulay’s vote bank politics Abdul Rehman Antulay, the Union Minister for Minorities, thought that by saying that the death of ATS Chief Hemant Karkare in the recent terror attacks was suspicious, he could be a hero to Indian Muslims . However, I rather doubt that Antulay has impressed his vote bank… On the face of it, a rather dense statement by Antulay considering that the Taj and the Trident were attacked a good half an hour after CST station. And even Leopold Cafe was attacked about 15 minutes after CST. In the CST massacre, around 60 people were randomly gunned down and then the terrorists ran away.  It was most logical for Karkare to rushto the spot to follow them! But like MJ Akbar says, Antulay was not interested in the truth or saying anything intelligent. He wanted to please his vote bank…

I received two awards, the “Bloggers for World Peace” award given to me by Indian Homemaker and the Garland Blog award by Kanagu.  Thanks both!

12 Comments leave one →
  1. January 3, 2009 3:32 pm


    May be coffee is the problem? I know several people who drink a lot of coffee to stay on top of things. They are fidgety, easily irritated and not keen to admit their dependence on a handful of roasted beans. If these people truly liked their work, the adrenalin and the motivation would keep them going, no stress.

    So I think the lesson is – stop drinking coffee and seek to work at something that is meaningful and all stress goes away 🙂

    Happy New Year.

    • January 3, 2009 5:20 pm

      Shefaly, I think that’s it! If the coffee itself is a source of irritation and unhappiness then people try to find solace in the cups!

      DI, that’s all that cups do don’t they, provide illusions! The real taste of the coffee (happiness and personal fulfillment) is ignored, perhaps because it isn’t seen by anybody else! So the more you chase after the cups, the less importance given to the coffee! 🙂 Also I don’t think tasting some good coffee could be boring (although I prefer tea) although it’s not something one can flaunt! Which brings me to a real life incident. When I gave up my job to sit and home and look after the kids, I gave up the cups and sat down at my table to have my tea in chipped mugs instead, but I had darjeeling tea, which was my favourite then, not the sweet sickly tea I got at the office (although the cups were pretty) And now it’s green tea that I have on a regular basis, still in a plain ole mug. Believe me, there are enough people who try and tell me how boring it all is! 🙂

  2. January 3, 2009 4:28 pm

    When every one has the same coffee to drink, then I think the cups matter. It is useful in giving you the illusion that your coffee is better/ you are enjoying your coffee more because of the cup. If everyone has the same coffee and same cups – life would be so boring, wouldn’t it? At least, if there are different cups, one guy can hope that next time he will get the better one. Life is based on such loose hopes, I guess.

    Destination Infinity

  3. January 3, 2009 5:30 pm


    That is a great interpretation 🙂 I think we all know how easy it is to lose sight of the plot. Also reminds me of the man seeking his lost keys under a street light, when he lost it elsewhere, just because it was too dark where he lost it.

  4. vasudev permalink
    January 3, 2009 11:36 pm

    the soul’s ultimate goal is to reach God but it is hindered by such earthly desires like moh…maya…

    in today’s world it is truly said that a man might breathe his last not thinking of hari or ram but thinking of his share market debacles.

    while man must aim to reach a level of the ‘yogi’ by leaving behind his desires and attachments, man most commonly leaves his body thinking like a ‘bhogi’ in fear.

    it is said that the most blessed are those who are stupid or mad ’cause they are the ones who do not know how to desire.

    desire is the one which causes the distaste in the coffee ’cause desire is at the ‘ego’ level.

  5. ahumanbean permalink
    January 4, 2009 6:21 pm

    I’m of the firm belief that the cup makes the coffee!
    Yes, I’d rather drink the same coffee out of a nice steel dabra-tumbler than a porcelain cup 🙂

    It affects the tatse of the coffee – a *lot*. So I don’t buy the professor’s tale, except for the intended lesson of life and allll that!

    It’s the same as flying first class: yes, it’s the same stale air being recycled through cattle-class as well as first inside that little air-borne cabin in the sky. BUT. The level of comfort and sense of value/space is far higher!

  6. January 4, 2009 9:08 pm


    Hearing about cup and coffee from you is sort of funny. I keep visualising a coffee bean 😉

    But on your point, I agree fully. Many blind experiments show that people find more expensive wine better. Live TV experiments in the UK recently made some professional chefs eat various supermarket hams and puddings – without the labels – and they were disappointed when they found they had found the cheap ones tastier. Humans are odd creatures. 🙂

  7. Lilja permalink
    January 4, 2009 9:23 pm

    Good story of the coffee and the cups. It’s not only that we choose our cups but eye the others…
    I like your list of movies 🙂
    Happy New Year!

  8. vasudev permalink
    January 4, 2009 9:38 pm

    Lilja…there is a lot of depth in those pictures you took. Pray please tell me the camera make and the settings you used. marvelous works of art!

  9. vasudev permalink
    January 4, 2009 9:45 pm

    incidentally there was this professor who invited some students to his house and got some to hold a few glasses half full of water and then deliberately forgot all about it.
    i think life’s lessons can be debated on this story as well. conclude it at will.
    suddenly i was thinking of dilbert stories. found this blog site funny:

  10. ahumanbean permalink
    January 5, 2009 12:17 pm

    lol @ Shefaly!
    Here’s a real bean of an image for you, courtesy the talented BikerDudah: scroll alll the vay down to “And the Winners Are…” cartoon!
    I’m the cool dude in the blue shorts!:)

    I’m BeanThereDoneThat Human Being…lots of other puns vhich I vill share after my roasted beaning

  11. January 6, 2009 2:07 am

    Congrats on the well deserved awards Nita 🙂 I’ve always loved green and Darjeeling tea, but in the same old mug! It’s the essence that is an essential determination to choices we make in life. Happy 2009!

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