Apr 29, 2010

The night walked down the sky with the moon in her hand.

Shot at
Exposure:      1/4000 sec
Aperture:     f/5.6
Focal Length:     200 mm
Edited with Photoshop elements for contrast

Apr 15, 2010

A Retiree's tale - hilarious

I picked this up from a forum somewhere, really hilarious and quite true i would say
Yesterday I was at my local WalMart buying a large bag of Purina dog chow for my loyal pet, Biscuit, the Wonder Dog. I was in the checkout line when the woman behind me asked if I had a dog. What did she think I had, an elephant? So, since I'm retired and have little to do, on impulse, I told her that no, I didn't have a dog, I was starting on the Purina Diet plan - again. I added that I probably shouldn't, because I ended up in the hospital last time, but that I'd lost 50 pounds before I awakened in an intensive care ward with tubes coming out of most of my orifices and IV's in both arms. I told her that it was essentially a perfect diet and that the way that it works is to load your pants pockets with Purina nuggets and simply eat one or two every time you feel hungry. The food is nutritionally complete so it works well and I was going to try it again. (I have to mention here that practically everyone in the line was by now enthralled with my story.) Horrified, she asked if I ended up in intensive care because the dog food poisoned me. I told her no, I stepped off a curb to sniff an Irish Setter's ass and a car hit us both. I thought the guy behind her was going to have a heart attack, he was laughing so hard. Wal-Mart won't let me shop there anymore. Better watch what you ask retired people. They have all the time in the world to think of crazy things to say!

Apr 6, 2010

A peek into my Food Pictures

In the past many years, i have taken tons of food pictures. Each time i take a food (any food, any camera) picture I tag it with food, have been doing this meticulously till date. Here's a peek into my food pictures. Nothing that i am very proud of but its interesting when i look at them and try to remember the location of each and every picture :-)

Jul 7, 2009

Life is a balance - By Shamsher Singh Puri

Shamer Singh Puri Uncle sent these nice points in an email today

To be effective and successful, you have to balance between the following
1. Respect other’s opinions but differ with them when required.
2. Agree to disagree.
3. Be assertive without being dominating / submissive.
4. Communicate an unfavorable truth – pleasantly and positively.
5. Develop personal habits, and likes but adjust/co-exist with that of others.
6. Empathize not sympathize.
7. Courageously speak out your feelings but empathetically understand those of others.
8. Maintain individuality but respect other’s opinions.
9. Be tactful but do not manipulate.
10. Be concerned over matters not worried.
11. Make credits into the emotional bank account of others without the objective of withdrawing from it.
12. Develop abundant mentality and avoid scarce mentality.
13. Commit mistakes and learn from each mistake.
14. Act, do not react (Be proactive and not reactive).
15. Appreciate, do not flatter.
16. Discuss, do not argue.
17. Consider other’s criticism / appreciation but do not get guided by it.
18. Develop liking to those who dislike you.
19. Synergize, need not compromise.
20. Develop patience, but not procrastinate.
21. Respect other’s time but do not allow others to waste yours.
22. Understand others before being understood.
23. Compromise on modalities, techniques not on principles and values.
24. Win and let others win too.
25. Maintain commitments but do not commit what you cannot maintain.
26. Develop intrapersonal relationship before establishing it. (Interpersonal relationship).
27. Dedicate yourself to profession but without ignoring family and self development.
28. Be task oriented without relations getting affected.
29. Listen to others and make others to listen to you as well.
30. Develop honesty but ensure that others do not exploit it.
31. Have personal touch with people without compromising on safe distance which is professionally needed.
32. Socialize but spend time on yourself.
33. Make the other person feel important without understanding your importance.
34. Reveal yourself to others but to the trustworthy others.
35. Win the hearts of people not only the minds.
36. Work smart not necessarily hard.
37. Delegate work not responsibility.
38. Use personal influence to get jobs done but do not hesitate to use personal power when needed.
39. Be an exemplary leader and effective follower.
40. Believe in destiny without undermining human efforts.

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May 5, 2008

And we say food prices are going up

This picture actually reminds me of Hammy in Over the Hedge, when he actually shows all the other characters the amount of food the human beings conserve. There is so much food around the human beings but it is still never enough for them. If they have had enough food they try to get rid of it (exercise, etc)

I wish we all could be a little more responsible when it comes to food wastage. Off late this issue hurts me a lot especially with the food crisis. In addition, we have innumerable human beings, across the world, who sleep without a nutritious meal

There are so many ways in which we can counter the wastage of food

1. Parties : We often have parties at our house and generally we tend to overestimate the food consumption and end up cooking a huge quantity of food. The other reason we tend to overestimate is because we want everyone to have enough of everything, they should over fill their stomachs and go home so that it leaves a good impression on the party host and we gather our cookie points. A caterer once mentioned to me that a normal human being doesn't eat more than 200 gms of food. If we probably stick to that figure its rare that we would over cook anything. Even if we have left overs from the party we should make sure that its not being wasted. Pack the food and give it to the guests, if you think that you cannot finish it later in a considerable amount of time. Yes very important that you estimate it correctly. Normally you wont eat the left overs more than twice a week and then if it still remains you are bound to throw it away.

2. Serve/ Take Less When you take the food in your plate make sure that you take the right quantity and finish it. It is really important for parents to inculcate this habit in children. Indian parents normally have the habit of finishing up the food left by their children. Sometimes we as adults too commit this mistake. When we are hungry we tend to take a good quantity of food in our plates, (the psychological effect) and end up putting half of it in the garbage. If we are serving the food, make sure we serve a little less quantity and come back later, if they still want some more. Don't try to impress them by serving more food in the plates, it aint worth it.

3. Community : Often in gurdwaras the langar gets overestimated too. The responsible gurdwara members should put up a guestimate of the langar quantity on the gurdwara websites. Also make sure that if there is langar left over, pack it up and give it to the sangat.
I remember a lot of historical gurdwaras in India wouldn't allow the sangat to leave if they didn't finish eating the complete langar. You probably will eat a little extra the first time but later on the discipline of finishing the food gets installed in you and you become more responsible as a result of it

4. India Marriages Woohooo...what do i say here ? Being a part of the north indian community i have witnessed the extravagant marriages and the money going in drain on all sorts of unnecessary things like tons and tons of variety food for dinner/lunch. Woof, cant even imagine how much of the food made during marriages/reception parties get consumed.

5. Shopping Don't go out hungry to do your groceries, you end up buying a lot of extra things. Also keep a very watchful eye on the expiry dates, make sure that you have a plan to finish them off before they get expired, especially fruits and vegetables. Go through all groceries when you do your check out, that is your last chance to make sure that haven't over-shopped.

These are just a few little things by which we could avoid the food wastage and contribute in some way for the hungry and the homeless. I am pretty sure you guys have many more such useful tips to reduce food wastage

Mar 7, 2008

First Marathon of my life

The sports genes don't run in my family. I have never excelled in sports (whatever form). If look myself in the mirror i find myself a jack of all trades and masters of none.

But finally I have something to talk about. With god's grace I ran my first marathon of 13 miles on 2nd March 2008. I took 3 hours and 12 minutes to complete it but this is all what i wanted. Alpharetta Marathon is conducted once a year and has 2 flavors

1. Half Marathon - 13 miles
2. Full Marathon - 26 miles

It just a week before when Trilok veer jee put forth the idea of participating in the marathon. My first reaction looking at 13 miles (forget 26 miles) was "hell no" but then he, with his calm and composed nature motivated me and I agreed, thinking If i can't complete i will run as much as I can.

1st day - I started practicing in the apartment gym. The first day i was barely able to reach 3 miles.
2nd day - I took some rest
3rd day - I comfortable ran 2.0 miles at the speed of 4.7 miles per hour. After little breaks i made it till 4.0 miles
4th day - I was little more comfortable now and wasn't tired or pain of any sort. I could complete 5.0 miles with the first non-stop stretch of around 2.5 miles
5th day - I managed 6.0 miles
6th day - took some rest
7th day - took some rest again , wanted to practice but because of some other commitments I couldn't make it

After these many days of practice I knew one thing that completing the race is just a mental game. I can even complete the race by walking 13 miles. I had noticed during practice that even brisk walking kind of gives you a 4 mile per hour speed.

On the race day, all I did was Ardaas and went to the race along with Trilok veer jee. Vijaya cautioned me that don't stress yourself else you will face adverse effects. We arrived just in time and therefore couldn't do a lot of stretching. After the US national anthem the race started and i started remembering my childhood days of sports events. Usually whenever such events happened during my school days i use to feel disappointed since everyone would go past beyond me but this time it was different. I started at my medium pace and allowed everyone to go ahead without disturbing my mind, remembering the Tortoise and the Hare fable. The initial 2 miles were very tough (lack of stretching) but then after taking some water i felt a bit comfortable and got into a good pace. It went fine till 6 miles smooth and steady. the ahead thing will be though i knew that and whatever distance i cover, its going to be a bonus.
I was at the same pace with a fellow runner, Chanda Provost. She accompanied with me till the last and probably only because of her i could finish the race.

Last 3 miles were brutal. I was taking my liquids on regular intervals and didn't feel famished but my knees (specially my right knee) was hurting the most. Although i was just jogging (people who were walking, went beyond me :-)), I felt as if i have tied a 10 kg weight around them. I just hoping that i don't spoil my knee ligaments or any tendons. There was one thing i said to myself "2 steps before the victory and you loose the cup". Your cup is participation and completion :-) and you don't want to loose the cup, coming this far.

It was such an awesome feeling going past beyond the finish line and wearing that medal. Trilok veer jee were waiting for me all smiling and happy. He completed the half marathon in 2:20 minutes.
I attribute my success to lord almighty who helped me through his creations, fellow human beings helped me finish the race. Its his win and not mine.

kbIr myrw muJ mih ikCu nhI jo ikCu hY so qyrw ]
kabeer maeraa mujh mehi kishh nehee jo kishh hai so thaeraa ||
Kabeer, nothing is mine within myself. Whatever there is, is Yours, O Lord.

qyrw quJ kau saupqy ikAw lwgY myrw ]203]
thaeraa thujh ko soupathae kiaa laagai maeraa ||203||
If I surrender to You what is already Yours, what does it cost me? ||203||

Half Marathon Finisher - 365.19

Jan 16, 2008

Childhood:The Care-Free Season

The Childhood Season

I want to jump I want to fly
High, up in the sky
No tension No worries
No rush No hurries
who is worried of stocks or pound
who cares earth is square or round
Rain or Shine we will play
eat chocolates, forget tooth decay
studies, school, homework ?
these things, will make you jerk
Spiderman is my latest hero
Don't bother me he will make you zero
pizza, ice-cream, coke please
everything digested with utmost ease
All are friends, so close and dear
I have no foes, I don't fear
If you choose, the season will forever stay
all your life it won't betray