Thursday, October 19, 2006

Lesson for the day

Wash them, Dry them, but your cards will still work. Atleast my Debit card does as I was able to buy coffee using it at work. If my debit card works I assume my credit cards will work too. But then, as they say, assumption is the mother of all......

Clean Money

My absentmindedness, rather carelessness, reached absurd heights today.

I left my wallet with all my credit/debit cards, money, bills and so on in my trousers while washing them. No one can say I have dirty money anymore because all of it is washed, dried and squeaky clean! I guess I must be thankful that all the paper bills etc. in my wallet didn't catch fire in the dryer. After being under high temperatures in the dryer I doubt if any of my cards will work, which means a lot of telephone calls to the banks etc. trying to order replacements and shelling out fees! This most definitely is not my week I must say...

Years ago when I was still in college, I carried around a learner's license for my bike for a long time because I was too lazy to apply for a permanent one. In those days the learner's permit was an A4 sized piece of paper on which the RTO folks would put a renewal seal every 6 months and after about 3 years there was virtually no space to put another seal. One day I put my trousers to wash with the license still in my back pocket. As it happens with these things, my license was almost immediately up for renewal. Partly because I was busy and mostly because I couldn't face the RTO folks with that washed, smudged piece of paper, I sent Lover Boy to collect it back for me. The smart alec at the RTO told Lover Boy, "Nim friend ge heLi license clean aagi itkoLodhu oLLedhu aadre thoLyodella bekilla antha!" Translation: "Tell your friend that keeping the license clean is a good thing but he doesn't need to wash the license for that"!!

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Moscow Chill

Just when you think life can't get any worse....

The way Arsenal have played in the past few weeks has been a real reason to smile. Not anymore. A 1-0 defeat to CSKA Moscow, our first defeat in the Champions league since February 2005 (barring the pain of paris of course). The pitch was poor but so was almost everyone in the team.

Arsenal are a real confidence team and our perfomance in Europe has been the source of confidence for the gunners all through 2006. Only hope this doesn't affect us back in the premiership. Finger's crossed...

Thursday, October 12, 2006

'Traditional' Address System

Last century, 1996 to be precise, myself and The ladies man worked at a market research agency called Mode for 3-4 months. We would 'put' half a litre of petrol (for less than 10 rupees) in his Hero puch and go hunting for homes of people we were supposed to interview. Even with the Ladies man's excellent sense of direction and knowledge of Bangalore's bylanes finding the right addresses was a nightmare. House numbers would jump by hundreds without warning and streets would end in dead ends just before we found the number we were looking for! I was sure that a more chaotic address system woudn't exist anywhere.

Well I may have been wrong. A few weeks back my company had to send an invoice to a client in San Jose, Costa Rica. So my teammate wrote to the client for their office address. The client replied with the address in Spanish. It read, Frente a edificio Siemmens, La Uruca (edificio de marmol beige). San José - Costa Rica.

My resourceful teammate googled for the translation and came up with this, In front of Siemmens building, The Uruca (beige marble building). San Jose - Costa Rica

I surmised that, for some reason, she had given us directions instead of the address though I could not fathom why she would do that. So I called her to clarify. Imagine my surprise when the client said that it indeed was their address! She explained that was how addresses were in Costa Rica and that you would find addresses like next to the pink house or in front of the mango tree and so on! She didn't say what would happen when the neighbour painted his house red or if the mango tree died. Boy, I sure would hate to be a postman in Costa Rica!

Added later: A google search reveals that the Costa Rican postal department is providing some relief to their postmen through their revamp of Costa Rica's 'traditional' address system

Added even later: Found a blogger who lives in Costa Rica with the following address. 500 meters West of the Municipality of San Pablo, 50 Meters North, House Number 5, with Brown Fence, San Pablo de Heredia, Costa Rica

As a bonus check out the photos of awesomely sexy Costa Rican women the dude has on his blog . Costa Rica here I come...

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Pictureblog: The Virgin Music Festival

A few weeks ago a colleague at work told me about the Virgin Music Festival at Baltimore scheduled for the 23rd of last month. I checked out the lineup online which included, among others,

The Raconteurs
The Killers
Keane (Who finally didn't turn up because of, what else, drug problems)
The Who
and above all RHCP

and needless to say I was hooked!

So Ze Rock (Yes, he still insists on being called that!) flew down to Atlanta on the thursday before. I left work at around 4pm on Friday. RM took off from work earlier than me. By the time we finished lunch, packed, rented a car it was close to 6pm. We started on the 700 mile drive to Baltimore. Expectedly we got caught up in the infamous Atlanta weekend traffic and with the mandatory breaks it was close to 5AM on saturday morning when we finally reached our motel. Mr.B had already come in from NY the previous night. We caught a few quick hours of shut-eye and were at the venue around 12PM.

The festival was at the spacious Pimlico race course grounds in Baltimore. There was one grand stage where the all big guns were playing and two smaller ones. We were pretty excited but I thought getting a little more excitement in before we start off wouldn't do us any harm. So we went to the bar and gulped down a round of tequilas. We then scouted for a good place, spread the bedsheets that RM had thoughtfully brought, as close to the mainstage as we could, and settled down. We were right behing a couple of excited teenagers who were trying to peddle some dope. And they tried selling some of it to Ze Rock!

A view of the main stage from where we were

Two really hot women who were settled right behind us. Oh and that's the four of us in front!

Wonder why the teenagers thought Ze Rock would be interested in their dope?

It was pretty different from the handful of concerts I have been to in India. A lot of the people here were not bothered about the music and were just spread out on the grass and having a good time. But still it was quite mellow compared to the usual stories you hear of these shows - girls weren't fainting and being passed out over people's heads and unfortunately they weren't girls flashing either!

Wolf mother were playing when we came in and they were followed by The Raconteurs and later Gnarls Barkley (dressed like characters from Chariots of Fire). The four of us made quite a few trips to the bar in between. The Killers came on later in the evening as it was getting a little dark. They were pretty good and managed to get quite a few of the sleepers up & jumping to their music.

The Who were the penultimate act for the evening and they were surprisingly good for their age. They played with gusto and put on a great show. In fact their performance was better then even the Peppers who followed them. Part of it could be because the peppers played a lot of their relatively lesser known numbers. But it still was fantastic to hear one of my most favourite acts live. The show finished with a very energetic perfomance of 'Give it Away' by the Peppers.

A general idea of what was happening around

The Who on stage. That's Pete Townshend on the screens

Now you can see both Townshend and Roger Daltrey on stage

The Peppers on stage. Thats John Frusciante on the screen

We woke up the next day, had lunch at an Indian place in Baltimore and dropped Mr. B off to catch his bus. The drive back was pretty fun and Ze Rock and myself were reminscing about all the fun trips we had back in India. The entire trip was great fun and inspite of the drive really relaxing. It was very much the kind of getaway that I was talking about here. The only flipside was the amount of money I blew. Well... good times don't come cheap, do they?

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Just Watch

Unbelievable! Don't know what else to say. Just watch it. Again and again.