In The Hands Of The Maker

on Posted by Rajesh J Advani
"What was that?" Mrs Maker shouted as she came rushing into the workshop. "I heard a big bang. What exploded?"

Mr Maker looked up at her innocently and replied, "Nothing exploded." And he was telling the truth.

"Then what's that mess in the middle of the room?" The mess she was pointing at, seemed to be growing, and fast.

"That's the explosion of course."

"I thought you said nothing exploded."

"Yes, I did." Mr Maker maintained the look of innocence.

Mrs Maker wasn't giving up, though. "Well, if nothing exploded, then what is that?"

"The explosion, of course."

"What do you mean by that?" She looked around the workshop at the charts that he had been drawing. There seemed to be a lot of circles all over them. She shouldn't have bought him that compass. "And what in your name have you been doing here?"

Mr Maker smiled, since Mrs Maker had never taken any interest in his work before. He took off his gloves as he walked towards one of the charts that had a lot of squiggly figures on it. "I've been doing some calculations," he explained, "and I think - though it might be a while before I can prove this - that I've invented... Time."

Mrs Maker wasn't impressed. "And what is Time supposed to be? Your idea of a joke? You call that mess there," she gestured towards the mess - which seemed to be growing larger - "Time?"

"Oh no, no, no!" Mr Maker turned around to look at it. "That seems to be an unexpected by-product."

"Well, I'm not cleaning it up for you," Mrs Maker replied angrily. "I'm tired of cleaning up after you." And she walked off back to the kitchen.

"Clean it up?" Mr Maker thought to himself. "Now why would I want to do that?" He looked at what the Mrs had called the mess, and smiled to himself as he stroked his beard. "It looks beautiful." He watched it some more, and then thought, "Well, I'll probably have to make some more space for it. It seems to be growing awfully fast. And all those little lights inside it will need some studying too."

As he lifted the ever-growing mess, he realised he'd have to give it a name. Something nicer than what the Mrs had called it. A name that captured the sheer poetry that seemed to emanate from his heart as he watched it grow. It looked like it belonged on its own. And yet, it looked incomplete. Like it would never be complete. Like it would grow until it occupied everything. Until it was everything.

If it were a song, it would be the first verse, and the last. It'd be the only verse. One verse.

He smiled as the name came to him. He'd call it, The UniVerse.

Arranged Marriage

on Posted by Rajesh J Advani
Warning: This is a serious post.

I was sent this link today - Arranged Marriage, with the words -
You believe arranged marriage is not bad. Here is an article. See how you can justify now.

Well, first of all, let me make my opinion a little clearer. What I say is that, in today's scenario in India, while I do agree that young men or women have the right to choose their own life partner, we should not get too carried away.
I believe, that today, in India, an arranged marriage probably has a greater chance of being successful, than a love marriage.

I don't have any statistics to prove this, other than the fact that in the US, where love marriage is the norm, has a much higher divorce rate compared to India, where arranged marriages are the norm. And now that love marriages are becoming more common in India, the divorce rate is also going up. Flaky statistics, I know.

The first flaw in the above argument, of course, is that divorces don't necessarily happen because of love marriages. The reason for a higher divorce rate is also because of better education, and because women are no longer afraid to take charge of their own life, and because the taboo of a divorce is slowly lifting from Indian society.

But before I start tearing up my own argument with counter-arguments, I should probably state what I feel clearly.

A typical Love Marriage in India today, is very different from a Love Marriage, say, in the US. Before a marriage in the US both the man and the woman experience a lot more than their counterparts in India. There are relationships as teenagers, they spend months or years together (on average), they even live together, and only then, do they tie the knot.
A typical Indian Love Marriage is more like - Falling in Love -> Courtship -> Proposing -> Getting Married.

Yes, I know, things are changing. But I did say "on average".

When two people are in love, the equation is very different before the matter of commitment comes in. There are expectations built up, when you are in love, that aren't very east to live up to, after marriage.

Simple examples are, like promising to give up non-vegetarian food, or drinking, or smoking after marriage. It's quite simple to make these claims, but I haven't seen many people who live up to them. There are other expectations which are not vocalised, but are there nonetheless. The disappointment from these expectations not being fulfilled, leads to discontent with the marriage, specially since things seemed so perfect before the knot was tied. "You've changed" is a common refrain.

In an Arranged marriage, both the man and the woman are predisposed to the idea that they will have to adjust. Both sides know that the person they are marrying might not be the one of their dreams, since they don't even know that person very well.
And arranged marriage today is not like the arranged marriage of 1950, where you met each other the first time at the time of "girl-seeing" and the second time at the wedding. Maybe not even at the time of "girl-seeing". Today, you meet each other, spend some time together alone, maybe even go out on a couple of 'dates', and then decide.
And all the stuff about who will cook, whether the woman works, where they will live, are cleared in a much more informal setting, which means that disagreements on these are not even likely.
By the time you tie the knot, you are comfortable with each other, so the old fears of arranged marriage being between two people who don't even know each other are no longer completely valid. Plus, since the expectations are low, and the willingness to adjust to the new person in your life is already there, the chances of success will be higher too.

So, that's my opinion.

Coming to the article that my friend sent me, it has these words highlighted, that I take complete exception to.
Arranged marriage starts from a fundamentally evil premise - that any parent or relative has the moral and legal right to force someone to marry against his or will, or to prevent him or her from marrying for love.

I mean, hello? Which century are we living in? My idea of arranged marriage today, is when the son/daughter tells his/her parents that he/she is ready to get married, and that is willing for arranged marriage. Anyone getting married to someone against their own will, is making a mistake I won't even discuss here.

So, have I given up on Love Marriage completely? Ha! Not on your life!

Another interesting write-up on the topic, is here - Say I Do?

Women online

on Posted by Rajesh J Advani
A friend of mine (this guy was webmaster and maintainer of a now-defunct website meant for geeks) was once serenaded online by this girl called Kavita. They got chatting because of the site, and she sent him a photograph of hers. The girl in the photograph was what we called drool-category back in college (Ok, not only back in college).

I was suspicious initially, but she apparently convinced him that the photograph was really hers, and I believe they chatted online for months after that.

Of course, like many real-life online-love-stories, it came out that the photograph wasn't hers. And that she was really a he.

So, I prefer to believe that any good looking girl I meet online is really a 53-year-old truck driver. Like single girls, good-looking-female-online-acquaintainces, just do not exist.

Unless, of course, some good looking girl wants to convince me otherwise (Hint, hint).


Posted by Rajesh J Advani
Labels: ,
I ask you, when women meet me, is there something written on my face which shouts, "I'm dying for you to tell me that you're getting married very soon?"

Honestly. Pretty girls come up to me gushing about how they loved my story and that they are going to show it to their boyfriend/fiance/husband. "Oh, didn't you know? I'm getting married next month." I mean do I really have to be the first person to know?

Or is it just me?

I seem to attract non-single women like a magnet. And if they are single the first time I am introduced to them, they definitely are not by the second time. It's like I bring them luck or something. The number of female friends who've invited me to their weddings, must be a world record. I must have been St Valentine in a previous life. There is no other explanation.

Picture this:

Day 1:
Me: Hi, I'm Rajesh.
She: I'm Shirley Temple.
Me: Shirley Temple? What a nice name. Is that Miss or Mrs?
She: (smiles or blushes) Miss. As in unattached.
Me: Really? Do single beautiful women still exist in this world?

Day 2:
Me: I'm going to have coffee. Do you want to join me?
She: Sure. I'll also call Humphrey Bogart.
Me: Who's that?
She: My fiance.
Me: Your what?
She: Oh, didn't you know? I'm getting married next month.
Me: But yesterday you said you were unattached.
She: Oh, he proposed yesterday, and I accepted today morning.

And this is not fiction. It's the tragedy of my life.

There must be something about me that drives women to get hitched as soon as they possibly can. To anyone but me, though.

Shoot 'em up

Posted by Rajesh J Advani
What is it about us guys and these video games where you pick up a variety of guns and just go knocking peoples' heads off?

I bought myself Max Payne 2 a few weeks ago. I then had to buy myself a USB mouse too, since playing a shoot'em-up on a laptop's thouchpad is not very easy.

For a week after that, the only thing on my mind - and my brother's - was to play more and get to the next level. The beauty of the game is that it's got a story. I haven't touched the game in two weeks though. Don't have a stable spot to keep my mouse pad (no table in my bachelor pad), and without complete control over your mouse, you can't play a shoot'em-up.

I'm thinking of buying myself a USB joystick. Playing with that would definitely be fun...

92 words in "Planets"

Posted by Rajesh J Advani
Those who've read "The Da Vinci Code" (I haven't yet), will know that the author claims that ninety-two words can be written using only the letters in the word "Planets".

So we tried it, and though it took us over an hour, we did manage to touch the magic number 92. There is a bit of debate though, about whether "a", "an", "as" and "at" can be counted as valid for this. And what about "Planet"?

What do you think?

Huckleberry Friend

on Posted by Rajesh J Advani
Raat Akeli Hai,
Bujh gaye diye...

Oh, that Tanuja! Doesn’t she look so... nice?

Aake mere paas,
Kaanon mein mere...

Well nice is hardly the right word, but she’s old enough to be my grandmother! Alright. Not my grandmother but definitely a grandmother. And how can you even comprehend the idea that somebody’s grandmother is anything more than nice?

Jo bhi chaahe kahiye,
Jo bhi chaahe kahiye...

But just watch the way she’s swinging her... Yikes! Cover your eyes! Cover your eyes!

Something about her in that song reminds me of Audrey Hepburn.

Ah! Audrey Hepburn! Breakfast at Tiffany's would have been such an ordinary movie if it wasn’t for her. Sigh...

Remember the scene where she's sitting on the fire escape with a guitar singing that song "Moon River"? After she’s finished singing, she looks at George Peppard and says to him, "Hi," in that dreamy voice. Makes you want to melt in your shoes... And then she says "Watcha doin'?"

Are Julia Roberts and Demi Moore even a pale shadow of what she was? Divine beauty on this earth, no less. God doesn’t make them like that anymore...

Single women and Google

on Posted by Rajesh J Advani
Labels: ,
Yet another year goes by, and I'm still just as single. Every year on Valentine's Day, I have well-wishers telling me, "Don't worry, next year, you'll definitely have a Valentine." It seems to me, to be a perfect case of 'Tomorrow Never Comes'.

So, the search goes on.

And when you say the word "Search", how can you not think of Google. On an impulse, today, I keyed in the following into my Google Search Bar: single woman interested in me

I got about "about 939,000" results. Ha!

Result # 1, was: Russian Women - Mail Order Brides

What's the return policy on these?

Result # 4, was: What are Single Women Interested In

There's a website about this? I have a simple one line answer for you. "Not me."

Result # 6, was: How to Tell if a Woman is Interested in You

The author of this particular reason has obviously never met a woman in his life. Let me pick out a few examples of things he says are an indication that the woman is interested in you.

1. Big smiles with upper and lower teeth showing with a relaxed face.

I knew it! Aishwarya Rai loves me! I knew it! And so does Sharapova!

6. She starts sitting straight up and her muscles appear to be firm.


10. She blows smoke straight out from between her lips and towards you.

So smoking is now a good thing?

12. She exposes the palms of her hand facing you.

Right before she slaps me, you mean?

Result # 8: What Women Hate Most About Single Guys

The article helpfully points out that: For women, friendships and romantic relationships are two separate things. They are NOT the same.

I'm twenty-six years old. You're telling me?!

Result # 10: Jobs in Japan


Could someone please point me to the nearest Japanese consulate?

Interesting article on Blogging

on Posted by Rajesh J Advani
Wired magazine has this interesting article about blogger burn-out.

Never thought about it that way...