Yet each man kills the thing he loves,
By each let this be heard,
Some do it with a bitter look,
Some with a flattering word,
The koward does it with a kiss,
The brave man with a sword!"
                     oscar wilde , the ballad of reading gaol







When was the last that I thought of you...I know not...but am I the one who goes alone on this path...and should I but care only a little for the souls that follow or those as march ahead?

Mode C is a way of life, perhaps my way of life: C for Cool, C for Cold, C for Chaos, C for Calvin. Ultimately, all of it boils down to the way you look at things. Are they not how they are but just how they appear?? No...and yes...Almost all the seriously critical fundamental concepts of life...aren't they just the bogies under Calvin's bed that he is afraid of? Miss Wormwood, Susie, Mom and Dad, and of course above all, Hobbes...aren't they all merely the means that he uses to attack these bogies?

Reflecting on 'living the Calvin way', I have started to believe that life and our reaction to it can only be explained by a number of Calvin and Hobbes strips combined together. The philosophy, as I like to call it, is to know that you are not alone. It is not just my perspective alone that is going to help me fight my bogies. I will be able to inch towards the Calvin way only when I perceive the other perspectives on my way.



   
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My Past
Loyola High School Patna
Delhi Public School RK Puram
Institute of Technology BHU
Infosys Technologies Ltd
IIM Kozhikode

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Kotak Mahindra Bank Ltd.

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Movie Reviews at Mode C

Kaminey
Gulaal
DevD
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Omkara
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Batman Begins
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Anniyan
Dus
Sarkar
War of the Worlds
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Bunty aur Babli
Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith
Kaal
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Raincoat
Swades
Musafir
Naach
Veer Zaara
Phir Milenge
Kyun! Ho Gaya Na
Mujhse Shaadi Karogi
Spider Man 2
Lakshya
Yuva
Main Hoon Na


Book Reviews at Mode C

Stay Hungry Stay Foolish
The Inscrutable Americans
Harry Potter - Half-Blood Prince
The Monk who sold his Ferrari
Angels and Demons
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The Da Vinci Code
The Tristan Betrayal


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Monday, May 16, 2005
Just too much...

My Yahoo status message reads: "apun ka weekend...15 hours of movies, 3 hours of guitar concert, 6 hours of French classes, 8 hours of guitar practice, 1/2 hour of work". It does give me a pretty good idea of what I will have to write if I were to cover the events of the past two days. And that is precisely what I am going to do because presenting life as it goes past me gives me the biggest licence to express myself and my thoughts in the way I want to. So here goes...

Kya kool hain hum is an absolute timepass but in the league of movies I like, you will never find a place for this Tushaar (I don't know the latest spelling) and Ritesh starrer. Above everything else, it makes an absolute mockery of the feminine gender and societal issues. In fact, I am pretty surprised why no feminist group has taken up arms against the movie yet. It is so insensitive that it glorifies rape by trying to base the entire story on how a female police officer (the paan-chewing and naturally-sensuous-but-still-trying-to-shed-clothes Isha Koppikar) tries to entice a serial rapist killer suspect into raping her so that she can catch him red-handed. On the other side, the other female lead (who else but Neha Dhupia would be fit for this) tries the same with a guy who she thinks is in love with her brother...man, how uncool can you be!

Main aisa hi hoon, though a non-starter, will certainly find a place of pride in my movie list. Apart from Devgan's acting (which, once again, turns out to be two notches above the rest), the entire plot and the supporting cast (including the for-a-change-looking-good Esha Deol) make for an interesting movie. To add to the flesh, there is the extremely graceful Sushmita Sen (I have been thinking lately...I know it is hard to digest for me but probably she did deserve to win over Aish) and one gifted performer in the girl who plays Devgan's daughter in the movie. The sentiments and emotions are all there in the movie but in as much restrain as ideal...no overdose of loud guffaws or sobs...a balanced directorial outlook and some decent music, too.

It was the third time or so that I feasted myself on these two of Tarantino's amazing works. Personally, I prefer the original Kill Bill to the much hyped sequel. The way Uma Thurman and Lucy Liu fight it out on the snow in the climax of the movie and the scenes in the middle where Thurman demolishes her enemies are pretty much in a different league. Kill Bill 2 is darker and perhaps because of this, did not appeal so much to me. Luckily, I got some amazing prints of the two movies and enjoyed them a great deal.

Swordfish was the umpteenth time, too and so was Face-off. Nevertheless, the movies were on as soon as I heard the familiar Travolta attitude-filled tone coming from the speakers of Anurag's (my PG mate) laptop. Swordfish is certainly meant to be enjoyed all the more by the geeky types...or at least those who know the difference between a 64 bit encrypted string and say...a rope string :-). Halle Berry is great, BTW. Face-off, of course, is full of spice and dares you to let your eyes go off the screen for even an instant. Full of chills and thrills, the chemistry between Nicholas Cage and Travolta is electrifying (BTW, the Amitabh-Bajpai effort in Aks was not bad, either).

The God of guitar was in town. The first ever western music conert by an international artist (I have had quite some experiences of desi bands trying to play foren music) that I attended, I found it worth all the money and hype. Rushing past the barricade into the higher-priced stall was fun as long as it lasted but once we settled down (which is to be read as "once we started to shout our heads off while head banging to the music), the magic began. He really deserves the praise that is heaped upon him and man, does that guy have some stamina! He plays music like triple octave on his guitar (or maybe, I should say guitars, given the frequency with which he was changing them) and keeps moving to the lower end of the fret board, feels as hot as some one in a furnace and yet keeps stringing away for two and a half straight hours without any sort of a break.

The basic difference between an Indian music exponent and Joe Satriani (as also others I have seen performing in video) is, in my humble opinion, one related to the intended audience and its importance in the concert. While the typical Indian musician plays for a higher power (or spirit) and interacts more with his/her music than the audience, a western music performer relies on adrenaline to take the concert through. To get the required dosage, these performers have to be on a platform where they can hear people root for them, shout out, and bang their heads. This is what drives them and this is what gets the best out of them.

The French classes have slowed down a bit or perhaps, all of us in the batch have become a lot more comfortable. Personally, I felt that a lot more could have been covered in the class and we could have gone to at least one level higher in the two days. But there must be purpose in the way things went and the people who designed the course, of course know much more than I do about what they should be doing. And anyways, if we are able to understand this much this quickly, all the better for us.

Unfortunately, I had to miss three straight days of guitar lessons on account of night outs and presentation preparation and what not but I did manage to get in some quality practice time. I am worried about the final shape that this thing is going to take, however. The time that I am spending on this activity, though quite a lot in absolute magnitude, appears quite small when I try to relate it to what I have really learnt. It will suffice to say that in two odd weeks, I haven't progressed much and given the little time remaining, I am forced to think...

After arranging a string of cartoons for my presentation, I did not want to change it and spoil the effect by adding any text :D. All the topics had been covered through some typically satirical Dilbert, CnH and Peanuts cartoons and the real content was as good (or as bad) as a disturbance in the scheme of things. Sivaram (the IIMC guy interning with me) suggested that I let the presentation remain as it is and give printouts of the actual presentation to the audience. Good idea but I did not take the risk and instead put in the real stuff in my presentation itself in a way that the cartoons came first and gradually gave way to the more serious (and relevant ;-)) text.

I have been tweaking the presentation since morning today and have just come back after what, I would say, was a pretty successful and comfortable presentation. This post has ran into quite some length now so I will post more about my presentation and those of my fellow trainees in the next post. Till then...


Posted at 05:26 pm by Nitai

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Friday, May 13, 2005
The usual crib and some more

The post-a-day run seems to have run out (literally) and I am back to keeping irregular rendez-vous with the blog. However, it is not too irregular, either considering that I am still able to write about almost everything that has been happening out here in my life and around.

A one-off quiz that I took at one of those livejournal quiz sites put me down (or should it be up?) as a life blogger, essentially someone who writes about what has been happening in his/her life, whether or not that is interesting read for others. I don't know how far it reflects on my blog or on myself, but then again, questions at the seriousness (and the need for it) of blogging keep popping up every now and then. I keep wondering if I should start testing my PG Wodehouse memories and try to re-style some incident (real or fictional) a la Woodie just for the heck of fulfilling that long-hidden desire to write. On the contrary, should I continue to write about things that happen in my life, just as they are...or should I go back to writing about, in addition to the events themselves, my feelings regarding those events and associated people?

Probably, the last one is out of the question, what with the feelings of others involved and all that...but as between the first and the second choices, I am often confused. That is the reason why my blog is home to movie and book reviews (based on whatever little understanding that I have of them), too and not just my raves and rants...and yes, the occasional blurting out of what I have been thinking, even at the risk of sounding like a "serious blogger" and thus putting off some people, certainly adds to the diversity.

Updating the blog regularly or not, one thing that I have been doing regularly nowadays is to not let a second tick by without doing anything enjoyable. Continuing in the same mode, Dan Brown series seems to be over, with the last of my collection, "Deception Point", getting wolfed down last evening. Although science and its discoveries do make their entry into this novel, but the political overtones make it a tad different. I must say that such political thrillers should be best left to the the likes of Jeffery Archer and Co. and Dan Brown should have focused on what he does best, science, religion, symbolism, and of course, thrills.

The story is all about NASA, which is on the brink of being privatized and since it is election time, the NASA is not alone in getting the mud heaped on them. The President of the United States has to save his office from the allegations of overbudgeting and loss making that have been brought forward by his primary opponent in the presidential race. A big help comes to the NASA and the President when a discovery is made of a meteorite with fossilized remains of extra terrestrial life, proving beyond a doubt, the worth of all investments made in the NASA.

The President, in order to bring all doubts and cynicism to rest given the volatile time of impending elections, engages the help of four civilian scientists and the White House's liasion officer, who incidentally happens to be the daughter of the President's opponent, and an embittered daughter at that. The book's title leaves no room for doubt as to what happens next but the way it happens is Dan Brown's forte. He tries to keep the identity of the villain hidden and probably succeeds, too but only for the naive ;-). My logic behind outguessing a Dan Brown novel stands vindicated after yet another of his character-building-followed-by-partial-demolition exercises.

The Joe Satriani show is finally happening in Kolkata on Sunday (at the Ravindra Sarobar stadium) and tell you what, I have got the tickets. Widely touted as The GOD of Guitar, Joe Satriani is credited with tutoring guitar greats like Steve Vai and others including lead guitarists of bands like Metallica, amongst many more. This is probably the first time that I shall be attending a concert by an international artist and it will be interesting to observe the difference between them (or at least the sole representative of them, whom I will be watching this Sunday) and the exponents of Indian classical music, whose numerous shows have graced my graduate college (IT-BHU), situated right in the seat of the Indian classical music, Varanasi. More on that, however, in the next post on Monday.

Monday also promises to be an important day at work. The mid term review of our summer projects is scheduled for Monday afternoon and all the summer trainees in the TAS division are to present a half hour each presentation on what they have done so far and what they shall be doing in the remaining month that they are here in the company. The audience of the presentation is expected to be quite high profile with directors of the company, senior project managers and of course, the HR team planning to attend. I have just kicked off with preparing the presentation. Trying to make it look a little different from what others are going to present (I am sure that in the midst of all IIM students, it will be difficult to score much on the presentation style alone), I have decided to take some risk and go a little informal, making a statement through cartoons and some bold contours on neutrally colored and level plains of presentation slides.

In the meanwhile, the fingers of my left hand (especially the little finger) continue to play tricks with my brain's pain cells and the first few minutes of guitar practice every day get wasted in gingerly checking if I can still handle those strings without some permanent damage to my 'pinky' (this is the term my guitar instructor has for the little finger :-)). French classes are going to happen tomorrow and day after and I have not gone through anything that was taught the last weekend :-). Rohit is in town and I will be meeting him tomorrow and the first question that he is going to ask is about the alumni freshers' meet, which I haven't done anything about :-). 

Now that my cribbing is over, I can peacefully go back to preparing my presentation...Dilberts and Dogberts of the world, here I come... :-)


Posted at 01:40 pm by Nitai

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Wednesday, May 11, 2005
Too much for a lifetime

I hope that I am not taking up things that are beyond my capacity to handle them. It has been five straight days since I watched a movie and for me, this is quite a lot. The initial days (it has been more than a week, actually) of the guitar lessons are turning out to be quite a task, what with the notes, the cycle of C, the fingers and the chords. At the same time, the French classes scheduled for the weekend are already giving me jitters as I am not sure how much of what was taught last week will I be able to recollect and retain when the time comes for the next lesson. On top of everything else, of course, is the reason why I came to Kolkata, which is, despite what anybody else might think, my summer internship ;-). With the new phase of the project having started and the new team working with seemingly unstoppable enthu, things do not seem to be following a straight line anymore.

The alumni freshers' meet for IIMK in Kolkata is due this month. When Vaibhaw from the Alumni Committee had asked me to take care of it, I had said yes without giving it a thought as I was in a hurry to do a lot of things...pack my stuff, submit assignments, take home end-term papers and what not. Now that I have started making the arrangements and actually calling up people, I have realized that it might turn out to be more than I had bargained for. There are hardly any alumni in Kolkata and even all the freshers are not going to be here in May. As for our batch, there are just two people...Sandipan and me, waiting for Rohit who was supposed to be here this week but has not contacted any of us so far.

I guess that this much of cribbing is enough for the day so shall move on to some thing different...not too different though. I am still in the Dan Brown mode and after finishing a higly engrossing "Angels and Demons" (and giving myself a small break...just enough to re-vitalize my taste buds), I started off with "Digital Fortress". Recommended by a lot of people as delicious fare for the computer-savvy, I had great expectations from the book. To say the truth, it did fulfill most of them. There were a number of references to viruses, worms, 64 bit encryptions, cryptography and powerhouse parallel processing. And more than that, there was the typical Dan Brown thrill-a-minute caper that made the story that more interesting.

However, the book did not excite me enough to finish it off in one sitting, as had been the case with the earlier two. One primary reason for it can be that I may have got used to the tricks of the trade. The character building of the villain of the piece has become too much of a common trait to be a coincidence now. Brown seems to have this habit of building up the qualities of the character who turns out to be the villain in the latter half of the book. And not just this...you can also find the villain to be not a villain actually...just a person who does what he/she believes to be right and in the process, crosses the line somewhere. These people, as Dan Brown shows them, are not inherently bad, but have been forced to do things by the situation and their convictions which often make them prone to be mentally disturbed, too.

Digital Fortress is the story of NSA (National Security Agency for those who haven't read much of Ludlum) and its high profile code breaking Cryptography division which is held to ransom by an ex-employee via the threat of having developed an unbreakable code, a code with mutation strings that can not be out-guessed even by the fastest of parallel computing that NSA is capable of unleashing. Unfortunately for the reader, the suspense is too thin to be of any sustainable interest and not just the villain, but even the fate of the unbreakable code and the climax of the story are quite predictable...certainly a little timid when you compare it to the twist-a-page nature of his other two books. Anyways, the next in line is Deception Point by the author...if things go as peacefully (sic!) as they are going right now, I just might be able to finish it in this lifetime. :-)


Posted at 11:33 am by Nitai

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Monday, May 09, 2005
Oui, c'est Louis!

What a full weekend it has been! I know that this blog mentions just how even most of my earlier weekends in Kolkata have been full, but this one takes the pride of place amongst all. Having ditched Sandipan for the last few times (that is what he says), this weekend was reserved for a rendez-vous at his place. At work, the project had come to the end of the first phase and I was expecting to be taken off it and put into another at any time. The HR Head had called for a meeting at 4:30 in the evening but it never happened and so it was at 6 that I left with the entire batch of trainees for an evening of fun that we had been promising each other for quite some time. The idea was to go to some hangout, have a drink or two with some snacks and then head for some movie.

A good idea or so it seemed till we reached Opium, the hangout selected for...well, hanging out. The place did not appeal to the refined tastes of many but after some cribbing, owing mainly to the fact that most of the others were not willing to travel all the way to the city to go to Someplace Else or one of the better do's, we made peace with Opium. After a few drinks and some food, we decided to call it quits and while some of the people left for their homes, I, Sandipan, and the two IIMC guys, Aditya and Sivaram, decided to move on to Someplace Else for some good music and some good crowd. The ambience was great, as it was when I had been there the last time, and by the time we reached Sandipan's home at about 11 in the night, I was satisfied with some good music still ringing in my ears, dead tired, and my stomach was filled right up to the brim.

The amazingly affectionate hospitality and the delicious dinner that Sandipan's mother had put out for us, however, turned out to be my undoing and...I hogged. I kept hogging for the rest of the weekend and had it not been for the few outings that we had and the few chances of walking and sweating the calories off that I got, I would surely have gained a couple of kilos on this weekend trip to Sandipan's home...not that I am reasonably sure that I haven't gained those couple, either.

The first of these outings that I talked about was to the Alliance Francaise for the third of the weekend classes in the month-and-a-half elementary course in French. We had already missed the first two classes because of joining one weekend late but the enthusiasm of the teacher (Mr. Amitav Ghosh, who quite resembles Prof Broaca, back at IIMK, in his teaching style and enthu) and the help that we got from some of our batch mates (especially Sweta, who is an ICFAI Hyderabad passout working in Kolkata, and who loaned us her notes of the first two classes for getting them photo copied) compensated for whatever trouble that we did have in the first hour of the first class.

French is understandably, one of the more popular languages in the world, what with its musical feel and the romantic appeal of all things assoicated with France. In fact, I have still not been able to recover from the extremely melodious way in which the French pronounce the phrase "Oui, c'est Louis!" (don't ask me why this phrase of all...my subconscious just picked it up amongst others). BTW, the way it goes is something like this...oooiii, say Loooiii :-). And so it was that by the Sunday class, we were quite sure of our foot hold and quite in sync with the rest of the batch (especially Sandipan, who even took a lead over others, partially due to his starting advantage of having learnt a bit of Italian earlier, which is helping him at quite a few occasions in this course, as well).

Once we were out of the class, we had some other concerns. Tanu, Sandipan's girl friend and Pallavi, my cousin had both agreed to come for the night's party at Fusion, one of the better known Kolkata discs. Pallavi is going to join Wipro at Bangalore as a Business Analyst and she was going to be in town for the weekend. When she heard about the party at the disc, she wanted to go and get a feel of the Kolkata discs after having been through the razmatazz of the Goa night life (she passed out of GIM this year). I had to ditch my own friend I had already asked for the party and had quite a row over the thing with her and we are still not talking :-( but that is perfectly okay...after all, I might not be meeting Pallavi again for quite some time and family takes precedence for me...any day.

The concern that I had been talking about was only this...that I had to go and pick Pallavi up from her Bua's place in Golf Green where she was staying. Having not known the folks and not having met them ever, I was feeling pretty uncomfortable about the entire thing...as if I were a rogue come to ask my own cousin out for a late night party. I perfectly understood Pallavi's Fufaji's hesistation in letting Pallavi go without ensuring that there was someone escorting her to the disc and all the way back to home but as I said, it just did not gel with me. I was really glad, however, to have met Gudia didi, Pallavi's cousin, at the place...though she was busy with getting her kid ready to go home with her and we hardly spoke and though we had met for the first time...I still felt that somehow she seemed to be aware of my discomfort and silently telling me that it was okay. I relaxed and all thanks to didi for that.

The party, however turned out to be a dud. With Jassi-turned-Jessica-but-actually-Mona-Singh scheduled to make her appearance at the disc, the place was choc-a-bloc with some faces and chartacters that you will never expect in a night club. For the very first time in our lives, we saw kids in a night club...and not just kids, but fully grown Papajis and Auntyjis, too...and to top it all, some salwar and sari clad behenjis and some kurta clad bhaiyyas, as well. They had all come to watch their girl-next-door-turned-glam-doll Jassi-Jessica and until she arrived at about 11:15, the party was at a stand still...well almost...but for the last three quarters of an hour when they played some real music and all the six of us (including Sandipan's friend 'chai' and his girl friend) had a good time shaking our legs. By the way, I realized that it does feel a little awkward to be dancing with your cousin in a night club and neither of us could really dance with as much abandon as we could have, had the company been of friends. Strange but still true!

Much before the DJ took over and the dance started, the disc managers had been thrusting upon us, their idea of entertainment. It consisted of three skimpily (but smartly) clad Chinki girls (they called themselves Filipino...they might have been, too...who knows) trying to make a mess of some good songs by trying to shake to the music and sing at the same time...all the while, making sure that their stilletos did not slip on the polished dance floor. Mona Singh's arrival (and she does look stunning, BTW) put an end to all fun that had started post the torture with the DJ taking a hold over the proceedings. We had to make a beeline for the exit at about 11:30 (10:30 being the time that I had promised Pallavi's Bua we will be back home by).

With "Chai" doing the Michael Schumacher (and a drunk Schumacher at that), we reached Golf Green in good time and it was at midnight that we stood outside Pallavi's Bua place, expecting the worst. It did not come immediately...not in my presence at least, might have come the next day for Pallavi...am not too sure. We did hear some rapidly spoken Bangla from Sandipan's mom though, but since I could not make head or tail of it and anyways, since it was not meant for me, I just sat down to another dose of royal pampering and another lavish dinner to fill an already filled stomach.

Sunday's French class took a little longer and though there was quite a lot that was covered and despite the pace being scorching, I enjoyed the session. However, I did not enjoy the following session that we had with Sandipan's friend, Soochna (nice name, isn't it?) at Camac Street. Heavily made up and full of words, my prejudice started working as soon as I saw her. The telephone call from my sister, Priya, having put my mind in the dark mode, I was a silent spectator to the lively and intelligent (my prejudice turns out to be unreasonable, too...at times) discussion between Sandipan, Soochna and Sivaram (yes, all three names starting with 'S' and as for Sivaram, the fellow trainee from IIMC, we met him roaming around the Camac Street, absolutely out of the blue).

We finally managed to make it an early night and Sandipan's mother...was she relieved! After two more meals (another couple and I would be bursting out of my widest pair of jeans), I bid good byes to Sandipan's folks and the excellent stay that I had at his place over the weekend. The odd one out (not having carried my formal office wear, I was still in my casuals) in the company bus, I was relieved at not having to hide beneath the last seat. I must have been looking like a pig, in worn jeans, not really spick and span tee, and with a stubble that had been growing for the last five days. I skipped out of the bus as soon as it reached office and instead of moving in with the rest of the people, made a rush to my PG.

A clean shaven, fresh smelling, nicely dressed me came to office to realize that I had not been put into another project. However, the second phase of my project is going to start now. Along with two others, I shall be given access to the new ERP system that the UK office is currently following. With the Indian system already charted out, my job now consists of trying to understand the UK system and prepare reports relating to the gap analysis between the two systems and regarding the things that the Indian system might put in its wish list for the adoption of the UK system to be profitable.

Another realization since the morning has been that after Friday's bout of not-strictly-related-to-project activities of the trainees observed by some senior people in the company, the mid term review has been called for. We are all scheduled to present a status report of all that we have done so far and a plan of action for all that we are going to do over the coming month...and all this action happens live...right here in Kolkata...at the 16th of May, which incidentally is exactly a week away...one whole week?? We will be able to make a dozen status reports in this much time :-)


Posted at 04:08 pm by Nitai

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Friday, May 06, 2005
Godspeed!

I had to wait for one entire day before I was finally called upon to make the presentation and it did turn out to be pretty low key, not at all what I had expected. Probably, the decision had already been taken and the presentation was of academic interest  only, as they say of the last cricket one-day in a series that has already been won and lost. The proposal to adopt the UK system, it seems, had already been rejected and the UK guy might have been trying to salvage his position by studying my presentation and trying to draw parallels between their system and ours. At 6:30 PM, when I finally gave my presentation, it was not too detailed and of the 50 odd slides that I had prepared, I was asked to cover only the selected few that had created some doubts in the mind of the intended audience of the presentation. From my end, I would say good riddance if this project dies out here and I am sent on to another by the start of next week or better still, by the time office ends today. I have decided to meet my Project Manager today..let's see what he has to say.

While I was waiting for the presentation, I decided to make some good use of time and got on with the e-book version of Dan Brown's Angels and Demons. Widely publicised as the prequel to The Da Vinci Code (actually, the stories have no relation apart from Christianity, of course and the books are just part of the same series with the symbologist, Robert Langdon as the common protagonist), the book scores over its more famous cousin in terms of thrills but as far as the symbology (which really made The Da Vinci Code so popular) is concerned, this book is certainly a poor, and yet somehow fitting, cousin.

Based on the eternal conflict between religion and science, the book tries to trace history in the backdrop of the current times. Right from the times of Copernicus and Galileo to the modern times of the nuclear bomb (and even more serious, harmful , and as the beginning of the book says, factual technology called the antimatter), science and religion have been at loggerheads. The analogies drawn right through the book are impressive. I particularly liked the part where one of the staunch church believers admonishes science for its reluctance in accepting a greater power in things that it has not been able to explain. He says, regarding the beginning of the universe, that scientists are ready to believe a mathematical near-impossibility of perfect conditions for the genesis of creation but are not able to see a bigger hand in the creation of those conditions. Well said, I believe....given the Time Zero's non-explicability in the Big Bang theory.

Religion supporters go on to argue that science is taking the soul away from the human race by making the entire lot cynics and unable to appreciate the finer things in life, unable to submit to a bigger power. Surprisingly, little has been said about the point of view of science. In a pretty lop-sided story for most of the part (except the end, perhaps), science is shown to be the villain of the piece and the brothers of Illuminati (another sect that factually exists) shown as the Satanic cult that is all set to destroy the church. With illustrious members like Galileo, the Illuminati (the enlightened ones) are shown to have infiltrated the Masons of the current times (with the Masons having some more illustrious members as Winston Churchill, Roosevelt, and even George Bush) and thus, preparing the world for the tomorrow that shall accept Science as the new God and the only God capable of miracles.

As for the chills and thrills, apart from arranging four churches at four ends of the cross, with an obelisk each as company, the story does little else. However, this is sufficient to keep the viewer glued to the book (or the computer screen in my case). The imminent destruction of Vatican City can be stopped only by a symbologist from Harvard and a scientist from Europe, an unlikely team that, as expected, does the unlikely and in the end, all is fine...well, except for a final twist, which I shall abstain from disclosing (for people who still haven't read the book and want to).

The guitar lessons are becoming more difficult now and it does need a lot of patience to keep tugging at the strings as if there is no tomorrow when I can see my instructor play Floyd and Maiden with such ease. The finger tips have had quite some wear and tear and they should be thankful for the two day break that I shall have this weekend. I am likely to go to Sandipan's place for the weekend and will be back to the PG only on Sunday. Tomorrow also marks the beginning of my weekend French classes at the Alliance Francaise...after all, I need to be able to communciate to the French supermodels once I am in Paris, what say! :-)


Posted at 11:13 am by Nitai

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