Monday, August 31, 2009

First Among Sequels

I finally finished off the last book in the Thursday Next series. Tremendous work by an evident book lover and extremely talented author. Jasper Fforde deserves praise for revitalizing several old fairy tales with twists of his own.

Loads of plot devices which one gets used to (sort of like Pterries get used to his wickedly intelligent scenes) once one has read more than one book by him.

Sample this ->"...Do you loop people just in stores? "We used to use dentists’ waiting rooms, bus stops and cinemas during Merchant-Ivory films, as these tended to be natural occurrences of slow time, but there were too many prisoners, so we had to design our own. ..."

This is the description of a prison equivalent in the world of Jasper Fforde wherein a criminal is looped continuously in segments of 8 mins over several years.

There are several nods to popular culture including a tongue-in-cheek reference to Harry Potter.

Please read

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Sunday, August 30, 2009

Why Exercise Won't Make You Thin

An article in the TIME magazine which explores the perennially popular theme of exercise and weightloss...

I can speak from personal experience that diet changes make a dramatic change in my weight while exercise has mostly boosted my fitness levels. Let us also be clear here that losing weight and being fit are not necessarily correlated.

Especially over the past 2 months when I have lost more weight than I have ever lost in one go in my entire life, I can vouch for the article's basic premise. However, that said, I lose weight during my peak training season when I ramp up mileage without significant changes to my diet (of course, all the weight comes back post-race! :( )

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Ashes to Dust...

Work has completely assumed control of my life.
However running boring laps around Shivaji Park has resulted in some sanity being maintained...

My reading target for the year is now off. I will be lucky if I hit 20 books for the year as opposed to the ambitious target I set for myself last year.

But I have been reading funny stuff like this one -> "...the pitch lasted as long as a celebrity marriage ..." by Roebuck. While he is biased towards the Ozzies mostly, he does write sterling stuff such as this -> "...And it is rare for an Australian captain to be allowed to keep playing once he has stood down. Other countries may field several former captains in their line-ups but that is not the antipodean way. Ponting knows that resignation and retirement are closely intertwined..."

I rarely write about cricket, but do watch some once in a while, especially when some landmark sporting event is underway such as the English win in this year's Ashes. But I do read Roebuck quite a bit, for writing such as the above.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Bangalore Book Buys

Sea of Poppies by Amitav Ghosh
Six Impossible Things Before Breakfast by Lewis Wolpert
White Tiger by Aravind Adiga

In a frantic but futile denial of the fact that I return to Bombay t'row morning, I made some buys to soothe my agitated mind...


Books bought while in queue...

While we were figuring out what to do with our time before waiting in queue for a place in the Music Academy, I bought

Confessions of a Cineplex Heckler by Joe Queenan

Seems like a promising read. Considering I got it for just 50 bucks, seems like a very promising read ;)


Saturday, August 15, 2009

Landmark Chennai 2009

Yet another quiz. Still didn't qualify. But no hard feelings. Really!
We still missed by a point or so, but we were clearly outclassed by some very good teams.
Was nice to see my alma mater REC Trichy (now called NIT Trichy) win best college team.


Saturday, August 01, 2009

Reaching a Landmark

I meant quite literally!

Despite taking the train to Andheri and autos to get there and back, I got there after what seemed like an eternity in traffic!

The euphoria of shopping wore off in about a nano second due to the messy traffic in Bombay, which increasingly convinces me that poor Bangalore is put down more often than necessary and more than necessary!

Anyways, here are the new babies, which await the bookshelf, which is now on its way to Bombay from Bangalore, having evicted its surprised previous occupants in Bangalore :( Now I need bookshelves, in Bangalore and Bombay!

The Glass Palace by Amitav Ghosh
The Hungry Tide by Amitav Ghosh
The Ascent of Money by Niall Ferguson

Yeh Jo Hai Zindagi - complete 67 episode collection in 11 DVDs (surprise buy)...

thanks to credit card points and some hard earned money...