Thursday, June 30, 2005

Seeing as I like to state the obvious...

... here's a new look. Whaddyafink? Hate it or rate it?

About time!

China wakes up to the AIDS threat

The willingness of China's government to enlist the help of NGOs like the Clinton Foundation and Safe Blood is a sign that the Communist leaders understand the choice they face. The potential for HIV to spread in China is obvious. The country has 1.3 billion people, a thriving sex industry, a relatively backward health-care system, and a culture that makes it especially hard for many gay people to come out of the closet.

"You can go the Western route, keeping HIV under 0.5%, or you can go the Africa route, where some countries are pushing 40% of the adult population," says Busch. "The problem is there's not a lot of in-between. China has woken up to that." Beijing still needs to do a lot more, of course, but there's reason to be hopeful that the world's biggest country is now serious about stopping the spread of HIV.

Where have I been?

Wolfe says:
wot is it about boys? why do they all smell bad?
A.P. says:
The all new AXE Lavender.. with rose petals, one quarter cream and haldi ... for that fair complexion..

Czar says:
i'm dust godammit.

A.P. says:
getting 8 of these guys to agree on a common time is like getting ladies to pick between tha chic black dress or the fiery red one for a date !
Wolfe says:
how would you know.. you've never worn red
A.P. says:
i'd die before i wore, sat, drove, adorned or tried on ANYTHING in red.. (a 550 Maranello being the exception)
Wolfe says:
why this aversion to color?
A.P. says:
Wolfe says:
so you won't wear red?!
Wolfe says:
wot's wrong with homos anyway.. they're fun

Wolfe says:
i need a color pencil

I really like the flash splash on the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre.

The Unseen Guest's 'Let me in' very accurately sums up my reaction to Madness's post about the mind illumination. It's a combination of sadness and despair followed by rebellion, frustration and more despair.

That also pretty much sums up my feelings about this project plan. I've just found out that I'm going to be managing another account. I've got no issues with working 36 hours a day but I do have an issue with people taking away A. Pinto. He's mine. MINE!

Make that three more accounts. AM says it's because I'm so darned efficient. I think he's seen me checking my email and thinks I've got nothing to do. Little does he know I'm secretly planning to take over the agency and start from scratch.

Salami sammiches for lunch today. To the terrace! is the cry raised by the masses. To the terrace we go with our sammiches and book.

In other news, my toes are sun-burnt.

A.P. says:
Wolfe says:
it's your fault for being so cute.. *snigger*
A.P. says:
dharma ... i dawn't cayre whatchu say ... but baaa gad, aa am nat pullin out ma teddy bear tee shurt

Wolfe says:
he brushed! he brushed!
Wolfe says:
you didn't say anything when TRaz brushed
A.P. says:
that was a pat
A.P. says:
Wolfe says:
admit it.. you think TRaz is cuter
A.P. says:
one big TEDDY BEAR
A.P. says:
were you around when he tried to snort a packet of sugar?
Wolfe says:
no.. but that doesn't work.. i've tried it
A.P. says:
starbucks sugar
Wolfe says:
that stuff's too coarse .. you gotta try confectioner's sugar
A.P. says:
thought that might've worked
Wolfe says:
no.. you just sneeze a lot

Walshy says:
"Let the music play...bum dum...worries for another day..."
Wolfe says:
dance your fears away... down in fraggle rock.. *boomp boomp*
Walshy says:
correct.. well done... have a gold star
Wolfe says:
does it come with fringe benefits?
Walshy says:
Red looks like her fringe has some benefits

Friday, June 17, 2005

In other news...

Please donate generously to the Chulbule Chaar fund. Details to be found here and here.

Really though. Nobody said he was an artist.

Mo money, mo music, is all I need

You know wot I'd really like for my birthday? An overnight stay out in the desert. Complete with tent and sleeping bag and basket of sammiches. Problem is, I don't know anybody to go with. I guess I could go by myself (which, under normal circumstances, I would) but the parents would freak out and think I've been taking drugs again or something. So this whole birthday thing has got me a little blue. But that's ok, because it'll be back next year, right?

And I've figured it out. I don't so much want to date tall Punjabi men as much as I want to BE them. You watch the Dhol Foundation live at WOMAD and tell me you don't.

The entire day was spent in mind-numbing boredom. I can just feel my youth passing me by. One day, when I'm 60, I'll look back at this and want to kick myself. I mean, people are going camping in the Canadian Rockies as we speak! (Who? Never you mind who. My new friend in San Jose is who). This bites.

S'posed to go to Delhi at the end of the month for Deep's wedding but having second thoughts now. Will be bored stiff and prolly get a stomach upset and numerous mosquito bites. But hey, not like exciting things are happening here.

I'm going to go work on this new template now and try not to check work email.

I AM Garfield.

This proves it.

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

One other thing...

I also wanted to tell you about Tripathi and his madness and how it made me feel to read his post on all things illumniated. But I really am sleepy and even though I have words, they refuse to make sentences so I'll tell you tomorrow because I'm afraid I won't be able to do my feelings justice and it is important that I do.

Don't count your chips before they've been banked

I've been meaning to write. I did have a lot of things to say. I wanted to tell you about sunday night when I was working till 1 am. I sneaked back home and crawled into bed and my head was buzzing with tips and tricks on how to solve my project plan problems and my eyes were doing that freaky side-to-side thing they do when I'm thinking real hard and in the 3 seconds it took me to fall asleep, one clear thought broke its way through the madness (much like the parting of the waters it was) and I said to myself, "damn it's good to be employed".

I've been doing something I haven't done since the early days at Spin. I've been putting my book away and switching off the light and going to bed. As opposed to falling asleep reading with the lights on. I think I've finally broken the spell. I can now fall asleep at will. And I know the reason why. It's called job satisfaction.

Sure, they're not paying me as much as I'd like them to, but boy oh boy do I like working. I complain about it and I'm struggling with this project plan (which, much like unwilling shark, keeps wriggling about, won't stay still and has a tendency to bite me in the bum when I'm not looking) but I like it. Sure A. Pinto gets on my nerves now and again with his incessant apologizing but I kinda like him too. If you look closely, you'll see he's got very long eyelashes and when he laughs he looks like a little boy. That and given that he's just a kid who wants to study in the US and hang out with his buddies and go bowling is very endearing. (Note: simply must not let A. Pinto get to this blog. Must consider changing name and all references and masking identity. If all else fails, must vehemently deny).

I do still want to start a comic though. Problem is, I have no sketchy skills. Wot I need is a designer to command.

I wanted to tell you about Monday. Surprisingly enough, I was up at the crack of dawn, chomping at the bit, raring to go to work. Poor Pops didn't know wot hit him in the form of an egg on toast and his tea being flung across the room at him and a barked order to hurry up and get dressed 'cuz I couldn't wait to get to work. Another feeling I haven't had since the winter of '01. Today, I thought, today I bring that project plan to its knees.

It didn't happen. Most of Monday was spent in a dismal gloom.

Then came Tuesday. I worked hard all day. I took my lunch (two khubz with cheese and zaatar, two cookies) (I make good zaatar sammiches) outside, sat on the steps and read my book as I ate. Then I spent the rest of the day kicking that project plan until I had it where I wanted it. After which I went swimming. 500m in 30 minutes.

And boy did I swim. I swam like my tail was on fire. I swam faster than I had swum in years. Back in my heyday when I was queen of the blue lanes and no man could match my stroke (except the really really tall ones because they have an unfair natural advantage, which, quite frankly, isn't really cricket, if you know wot I mean). People stopped to stare. My strokes were beautiful. I did the whole back arching thing (you know, when you dive in deep as you push off the edge and then mermaid your way up to the top for air) and everytime I had a smile on my face.

I crawled into bed, a happy tired woman and for once, I didn't need the distraction of a book to help me sleep.

I lazed in bed this morning and after wrestling with the printer and then later with the project plan (which still isn't final) (it's been more than 9 days now) (this IS the largest project of my career) I went out to dinner with Pops and the limousine to Indy where the food was horrible, the decor was hideous, the singer was marginal and the service was excellent. As I was leaving Emirates Towers (I walk through the Hotel because you can always find a cab at the Hotel Tower), the chick in the reception was playing a tune I knew and hummed as I smiled my way into a cab. Funny how the little things make you so glad to be alive.

And I also wanted to tell you about The Dhol Foundation's latest bit I've heard - After the Rain with the WOMAD show. I wanted to tell you about how euphoric their music is. And how badly I want to learn to play the dhol. And I've seen one woman play with with Johnny Kalsi so it's not entirely inconceivable. Although I think Pops would be very surprised if I picked up the dhol. Problem is that where is one to find a kick-ass dhol teacher? I'd give my right eye to know someone like Kalsi (that's not much, seeing as I almost gave away the left one for nothing.

And it's so bad that I'm falling asleep typing this. I've also found that the extent of my multi-tasking is that I can fall asleep while typing. In fact, I just did and accidently deleted the word "nothing".

There were a couple other things I wanted to tell you but I'm too sleepy now. Maybe tomorrow.

Sunday, June 12, 2005

Still at work

Waiting for my AM to show up after putting his little tykes to bed so we can continue working.

Went to Noodles downstairs to grab a bite since haven't eaten all day. Ordered a ridiculously expensive appetizer (prawn dumplings) and a ginger ale (that's 30 bucks of my life I'm never going to see again) and I'm still hungry. If you're eating alone, Noodles puts you on the same long table as the rest of the loners and you get to meet some very interesting albeit un-understandable Germans. Noodles should start a dating service. Maybe I'll hit the sushi joint later for another ridiculously expensive bit of seafood. Heyy! Now's a good time to plug in that expense account, eh?

Resh, you were right. I have severe loyalty-itis. Irregardless of which company I work for.

Read links schminks -

UW Biology Center gets a $57,000 copy machine.

Wi-Fi: Pumping up the volume Now THIS is the answer to my current wireless cold spot situation at home.

Welcome to the Gen Y Workplace. Now THIS is wot I'm talking about. Pallavi Gogoi does a brilliant analysis of how corporate America (and indeed the world) needs to understand the needs of this vibrant generation.

I love BusinessWeek's review of gadgets. Check out this Guide to Personal Techology.

Chris Shipley's report on the challenges faced by today's mobile workforce. The numbers are very surprising. I didn't realise that it was that bad.

Marshfield Clinic has embarked on a novel project to match genetic information from Alzheimer's patients with environmental factors that may contribute to the disease. This should be interesting.

Brown Deer start-up wants to serve up foreign film through broadband box. Hmm.. interesting.

Background checks for online-dating websites. I think it's absolutely essential. You have no idea how many crappy people are lurking out there.

Analysis of Social Security private accounts. Does it work for you?

More later.

Saturday, June 11, 2005

Only in India

Toads married in Hindu ceremony. Sepia does a lovely job of it here.

Damn you, blogger!

I did have a nice long post about Thursday's power cut and other interesting tidbits but blogger ate it all and belched up an error. I think it's time to look for another host. Or even better, a website. Now if I could only find free hosting.

Read the history about Indians in the US.

Random Name Generator. Very helpful when coming up with usability scenarios *heh*.

Digital Immortality. Download the mind by 2050. How's that for a legacy. We better come up with kick-ass data warehousing systems by then. Wait.. will I live that long?! Crikey, I'll be 72! Better start getting healthy.. t'would be a pity to die just when things are getting interesting.

And while we're on the subject, can I just tell the wonderful people at Yahoo! that they're doing a beautiful job. No really, hats off to you. You've come a long way.

Speaking of doing wonderful jobs - I've sent in yet another complaint to Etisalat to unblock this blog and some other perfectly harmless ones. Yes, it's true, my blog is blocked. Every other week. So I can post but I can't see wot I'm posting to. Let's see how long this takes. Remind me to sacrifice a goat or three.

Went to see Bunty aur Babli with the parents and misc uncles and aunties yesterday. Don't waste your time. Ne'er was a Hindi movie so long. And so random. But it was nice to see Abhishekh Bachchan again. All shaved shooved and all. Lookin' slick. Too many bad jokes referring to AB and his papa in that movie. Plus one random Aishwarya Rai song. Which, quite frankly, made no sense. And not for lack of listening either. I was on the edge of my seat, cupping my ears, trying to make sense of it all. Alas, I failed.

On another note, why is it that the smelly Pathani population in Dubai has increased astronomically? Or were there always so many sitting on the steps of the Plaza and I just didn't notice?

Spent all of today doing laundry and associated tasks. Got tired of living out of messy suitcase (no, I never fully unpack). You'd be surprised how many clothes 3 people can go through in a couple of weeks. Have finally unpacked suitcase and managed to squeeze everything Dubai-wearable into one shelf (yes, that's all the room there is for my stuff) but yet cannot find vital items such as graduation gift gold etched Mozee business card holder and degree. Very maddening. However have located pretty silver sandals which shall be worn in the subsequent week.

And I'll tell you why I've been doing laundry. I miss him that's why. I didn't for so long and then he popped up on my screen and said 'Hi'. That one little word drove me to such sadness that it was clean all the damn cupboards or sit in a corner and weep myself silly. I have a very tidy shelf and 3 loads of laundry nicely ironed and folded. And unfortunately Adil Ray was playing Ranjha (again) and the word 'yaara' stuck in my head and I got all teary-eyed and tripped over a pile of banyaans and fell and skinned my knees on the carpet.

Bet you can't remember the last time you had carpet burn *grin*.

Oh damn. Here I go again. :(

Thursday, June 09, 2005

Love kills

Manish Vij. And that's all I'll say on the subject.

Maafi AC!

So like the power went out in all of Dubai today. From about 9:30 am to 3:30 pm. Which is a huge thing. Power going out in the US - no big deal. No power in Dubai - very big deal. Did I mention I work in Emirates Towers on the 16th floor? But no, there was an emergency lift working. And strangely the electronic security entrances and exits. So after being sneered at by A. Pinto (the tech lead that knows it all) for inquiring about UPS systems and watching the production team goof off for about 40 minutes and working till my laptop battery died, I went off with Pops (who, btw, doesn't like to be called Pops, so you better cut it out). The rest of them looked cosy at T-Junction (cafe in the building) along with the rest of the staff (plus half the people from the agency upstairs) but I didn't stick around 'cuz they don't like me much at work (boo hiss boo). We, Pops and I, went to the Dubai Marine Sales Centre to register for the launch of a new development out on the marina. 50 apartments hovering over the ocean. Very cool, but only one swimming pool for 2 buildings. And then we came home. To eat food that would otherwise be spoiling. And he made a fuss about climbing up 3 flights. Then we played cards with Mum and he kicked our butts like he always does. Then the power came back and I rushed to Speedy Zippy. And now I'm here with you. Oh, and I took pictures today.

Here kitty kitty

Did you have invisible pets?

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Count to 10 and breathe deeply

Building a single view of customers. This is how customer management SHOULD be done.

The Treo Grande review. It seems good value. Remember, my birthday is coming up *grin*.

The Nokia 9300, however, I've heard isn't so good.

UW Prof makes laser for scanning lots of information at once. So you have faster drives? Er.. ok. Very cool but for wot purpose again? Just something bigger, better, faster or am I missing the bigger picture here?

Handsets to be made in India. God help us, but am I the only one who thinks there's a quality issue here? Yeah, sure, it's cheap. But you get wot you pay for.

I'm really annoyed because my new project plan estimates cost twice as much as the one originally scoped and I have to justify it to the client. I'm going home before I bash Pinto's head in. Yes, I know, it's not his fault. Who's side are you on anyway?

Some people ought to be shot

Boy dies in day-care van.

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Only links schminks

Sorry I haven't written in a while. Things have been busy. Hope you're doing well. Give my love to the kids.

The Feds hack WEP. Daym, this sounds like fun!

Symbols! Thousands of symbols! For EVERYTHING!

RFID goes chipless!

More than 50% of Americans will develop a mental illness at some point in their lives. Is this because the Americans are pansies who can't handle life? Or is it because doctors are better versed in psychiatry over there? 'Cuz we all know it ain't 'cuz life is hard in the US.

No stadium in NYC? Where would they put it anyway?! Queens?! Forget the stadium man! Build low-cost housing!

Microsoft's new Lenovo tablet. *drool*

Apparently there's a cross-site scripting flaw on an MSN website.

The chaps are playing Greenday in the office. It's not half bad. Maybe I'll be more open to alternative.

Disposable camcorders! Can you imagine wot this will do to the digital video market?! Not to mention in-store sales. Fuckin' brilliant!

Apple goes Intel! Batshitfuckinloco man, can you imagine the dilution of brand equity? But it's good news that now you'll be able to run Photoshop, Flash and Dreamweaver at the same time.

More later. I have IAs to clean up.

P.S. I have a cryptic note that says 'Majid - My struggle'. Does anyone know why?