ENGINEER 2009 - The Annual Technical Festival of NITK Surathkal

Sunday, January 18, 2009

ice cream snow

I feel this overwhelming need for ice cream snow.

It's something I used to fantasize about as a kid. Around then, it seemed to me the ultimate possible paradise. Soft fluffy finger-lickin' awesome snow. Ice cream snow.

It's naturally been about fifteen years or more since I first conceptualized this paradise and it suddenly came back today, along with this attack of senti that was hastily nipped in the bud by some awful singing courtesy H.

I'm thinking it could be because the realization is beginning to dawn that there are three months left.

Despite all the cynicism and the oh-jeez-i-cannot-be-feeling-senti-this-early... (no, it's a real feeling) I am quite genuinely beginning to worry. Worry about :

1) Not being able to wake up and wander into someone's room for water. Or to grumble. Or flick food. Or just be.

2) Not being able to walk down to the most beautiful beach there is in five minutes.

3) Not being able to sleep all day in what's quickly turned into the most comfortable bed ever.

4) Not being able to see mess parades - laugh at forehead, butt and breakfast jokes - cringe at blondie jokes - make ajji jokes.

5) Not being able to bitch endlessly and then feel slight qualms about having bitched endlessly and vow to not bitch endlessly but do it all the same.

6) Not finding time to read all the most awesome books there are in the world.

7) Not being able to share wisecracks about having Read Marx.

8) Not being able to see (and regret having seen) suspicious tattoos that turn out to not be tattoos at all.

9) Not being able to rediscover PT after a yearlong lull.

10) Not being able to experience the awesomeness and eccentricities of Shreekumar, Saidutta and DVRM.

I have a lot of worries. I am a champion worrier now.

Give me my ice cream snow I say.

Friday, December 05, 2008

The Show

I was talking to a friend a few hours ago; as we talked we traversed the long winding roads of relationships and theories about life.

Relationship theories cannot be complete without ample references to Seinfeld, and certainly not without due credit given to George. My friend brought up the Show Theory propounded by Costanza in The Visa;

George: Ya gotta put on a show, ya always gotta give them a big show. You always have to be 'on' otherwise why would they like me? They'd just go for a better looking guy with more money.

From the male POV, naturally it's quite upsetting - having to put on a show all the time can be tiring, especially when the chick walks out midway. This makes women sound materialistic and opportunistic. (No one likes sounding materialistic and opportunistic, even if they are.)

This is our take though:

See, we generally don't attend these shows based on newspaper reviews. If you're that frickin' good, you're probably sold out months before the show. Hence, we're genuinely taking a chance, its really more like a very iffy blind date than anything else. I might have been expecting a fine Shakespearean tragedy and I walk in to see an S. Vee. Shekhar play. The latter is great if you enjoy that sort of thing but when you're in the mood for The Bard you genuinely don't want to see anything else. We put the quick exit stage left.

I'll even give that you're putting up an excellent violin recital, when what I was expecting to hear was the sax. You've got our attention, and we're forgetting about the sax we were originally going out to listen to - and then you stop playing, or take a break. Now we're not entirely hooked by your violin recital enough to have forgotten about the saxophone, so can you really blame us if during the long intermission we realize we've somewhere else to go?

To clear this patent mismatch of ideas out, I suggest you stack out descriptions and genres quite clearly outside your hall. Make a little flyer.
"Jazz Only. Tickets to all other concerts must be left at the counter. Fair Software Engineer 24y preferred."

Tip - Open bar always draws in crowds. Women like their booze and they love it when it's free. Good luck at your next performance.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

They Said

Wake up. Clean up. Dress up.

Messed up. Screwed up. Stuck up.

Listen up. Keep up. Wise up.
Step up. Look up. Pick up.

Shut up. Given up. Too fucked up.


There don't seem to be many laughs around these days.

Maybe things aren't that funny these days.

Things have never been funnier. People have just lost their sense of humor.

Things stop being funny when people get hurt.

Au contraire. That's when things get hilarious.


Time will heal. There is true love. There is a point to life. Say no to drugs. Prioritize. See the big picture. There is right and wrong. Love your family and friends. Be normal and happy. Choose life.


Scars never heal.
Life is fucking pointless.
What's there to prioritize when life is pointless?
What big picture?
Right and wrong are anthropogenic abstractions.


I am the system. You are mine. You were born here, you will live here, and die here. And as long as you're here, you'll live by my rules. The Freedom Act gives you what you've got - we didn't sign up for free-floating ideals.

And if I don't?

You pay the price.

What's the price? I'll pay it.

What with? You're already paying for your birth with your life and then your death. You have nothing to give us.


As far as we can discern, the sole purpose of human existence is to kindle a light of meaning in the darkness of mere being - C.G Jung: Memories, Dreams, Reflections

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

My ten most memorable characters

I compiled this on an unnaturally long journey back to college. Ah, Final Year!

Not necessarily the best roles I've seen, just the most memorable. The kind that make me go Ah! Yeah, i sure remember that one.

10. Val Kilmer as Iceman (Lt. Tom 'Iceman' Kazansky) in Top Gun

I don't know if I remember him this well because he was so bloody hot (and he's Val Kilmer!), but he's definitely the first thing I remember when I hear Berlin's Take my breath away.

9. Whoopi Goldberg as Sister Mary Clarence in Sister Act (1 & 2)

I've seen Whoopi in other movies, and nowhere is she as convincingly funny and in-your-face as she is in Sister Act. I know this movie was totally panned by everyone who watched it, but it's so campy it was actually funny.

8. Edward Norton as Smoochy in Death To Smoochy

It's not easy for an actor like Norton to play someone so utterly and brilliantly naive and stupid. I love him and his stupid Smoochy costume and his 'Well, How'dya like that?'
And because I think Norton is so awesome I'm going to put another of his pictures up here.

Ramya Krishnan as Neelambari in Padayappa

This woman is so bloody powerful in her role! She's venomous and vixenish and utterly completely bewitching as Neelambari, and as a testament to the impact her character had in Padayappa, they brought her back for a cameo in BABA. Ramya Krishnan rocks!

6. Pumbaa the Warthog in Lion King

I found it very tragic that Pumbaa's chronic flatulence problem was so mocked (he found his aroma lacked a certain appeal, he could clear the savannah after every meal!)
This warthog was so uncool he was brilliant!

Imho, Pumbaa kicked Timon and Simba's ass each time.

5. Aravind Swamy as Rishi Kumar in Roja

This character was so resilient and fought so strongly in the movie; I watch the movie each time only to see him come alive in it. Why don't we get to see more of him these days?

4. Jeff Anderson as Randall Graves in Clerks 1 & 2

This guy is berserk. Foul-mouthed, insane, crass, berserk. He's amazingly funny and totally memorable for the same reasons. He was way funnier in Clerks 1 though. Goes for the entire movie, really.

4. Heath Ledger as The Joker in The Dark Knight

I know there are two fours.

3. Marlon Brando as Don Vito Corleone in The Godfather

He made me an offer I couldn't refuse.

3. Audrey Tatou as Amelie Poulain in Le Fabuleux destin d'Amelie Poulain

This woman is simply gorgeous. I can't think of anyone else who could have played this role as awesome she did. Her optimism and acute naivete are so infectious!

2. Kamal Hassan as Kameshwaran in Michael Madana Kama Rajan

Enna ellorum meenu-meenunguranga?
Ava English meena sollara da.

This is my favorite role of Kamal Hassan's thus far. He's got an awesome Palakkad accent, is insanely funny in Crazy Mohan's role, and has me rolling with laughter on the floor each time I see this movie!

Nee Tiruppura Sundari alla. Thiruttu Sundari!

1. (After not much consideration)

Jack Nicholson as Col. Nathan R. Jessop in A Few Good Men

You want the truth? You can't handle the truth!

This courtroom scene is one of my all time favorite scenes. I only wish Tom Cruise hadn't nancy-boyed the entire movie. It would have been simply brilliant without him. Aaron Sorkin did a fantastic job, and Nicholson as usual is simply awesome.

Note: I know I might have forgotten several highly memorable characters, but whatever, the Mangalore Express is not exactly conducive to great memory.

Friday, September 05, 2008

For neither love nor money...

Scene at SAC one lazy Sunday morning

...People still make fools of themselves for free.

Saturday, July 26, 2008


I have a new neighbor.

It's a Surd kid in a little pink turban called Harjot.

All the other kids in my apartment building are badly behaved Tam kids who play cricket and football and break windows and charge into your apartment if your door is left open and break anything within reach on the pretext of finding their greasy ball.

I mentioned Tam kids; so you must understand that there is a lot of coarse swearing in Tam. The new Kids on the Block start off saying idiot and fool and descend within two days to muttal, shaniyan, bemari, somari and within a week, to thevadiya, all lead by a prepubescent but precocious 10-year old named Jagat, (Jaggu).

There are really no other racial, ethnic or linguistic groups apart from these Tam families, not accounting for the odd Marwadi businessman family or Northie DINK couples who come to rent in one of these buildings and soon move away unable to take the accusing stares of the parents of the abovementioned Tam kids (How dare they breathe the same air we do? Bloody philistine foreigners.)

Notwithstanding the fairly multicultural exposure at school, these kids are born xenophobes (as all kids must be, except these are armed to the teeth with expletives and cricket bats and eons of cultural egocentrism running through their veins). So when little Harjot came to play, they did not take to him as friendly little children do. He got called a lot of names (Popular Choice: Urulakazhangu-thalaya or Potato-Head). They grudgingly let him play though.

Jaggu soon came around after his tuitions and Harjot was umpiring. You've got to realize that this is Jaggu's birthright; no one else umpires while Jaggu's around. Unsaid apartment rules. Jaggu started off with some comments which ran on these lines (in tam, of course):

Enna da? Who is this towelhead? He can't be umpire. I'll hit him.

The bullying started all over again, with various kids backing Jaggu up and threatening to beat Harjot up to pulp. This little kid in a pink turban staunchly stood his ground; without saying a word or understanding a word that was said.

Finally, when Jaggu moved in for the kill, Harjot shot out a brilliant left hook contemporaneous with a kick to the shin that took all the wind out of the chubby and overfed Jaggu. He crumpled like a paper doll and subsequently ran off to his mom. The rest of the kids stood, shocked and awed.

Harjot resumed umpiring, and the children quietly took their places.

Languages are merely theoretical boundaries. Who needs words with a left hook like that?

Friday, June 20, 2008


There are a huge number of engineers all over the world. This number is made more significant by their importance to the community they live in.

Not looking to give any merit whatsoever to sitcoms or dramas, or make them a barometer of the importance of people, but I'll definitely credit them with being a barometer of the public interest.

There are sitcoms about every possible profession. The law, medicine, nurses, detectives, vampires, PI's, etc. alright, dramatic, interesting.
Also about private practitioners, expats, hotel management, hotels not so well managed (Hotel Erotica, WHAT?) actors, managers, script-writers, teachers, school kids, book-keepers, drug-dealers, deadbeats, car mechanics.. er. not so dramatic now.

In short, about every single profession apart from that of an Engineer.

Not blaming them. Sigh. Who wants to watch a guy in glasses in oversized clothes and a stutter fabricate an IC? Or a boring short woman in badly matched clothes design tray towers?

Face it. We're boring people with boring jobs that no one (including us) are interested in knowing about.

ps: The Big Bang Theory is _not_ about Engineers. The show would fall flat if there were only Wolowitz and similar Wolowitz-like creatures in it.