I didn't realize..

.. how expensive manual labour really is in the US till I bought a pair of jeans for $14 (on sale of course) and spent $16 to get it altered! How I missed my alteration-tailor in Jayanagar who would do it for 50 cents!
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San Francisco!!

I have been living in San Francisco for the past two and a half months. This is the first time I have ever been outside Bangalore for so long and the first time I have ever lived by myself. Though I am missing home I am really enjoying my solitude. Lots of time for myself that I can't crib for a long time about the lack of it.

I love San Francisco. The city's very charming. (Some people say that it's really a town that likes to call itself a city) And the people here are really polite. So far every driver I have seen on the road has waited for the pedestrians to cross. I mean, they actually wait, just the hint of a pedestrain twenty feet away from the curb is enough to make them stop and signal the person to cross. We in India will jerk our necks impatiently to signal someone to pass, but here one would politely lift their hand, curl their fingers and signal people to go. Usually with a smile and a nod. How polite is that? Why can't everybody do that? Don't believe me? Here's a small example of how one catches the bus to their workplace.

How you walk to the bus stand:
Blr: Don't notice anybody except to avoid colliding with them. Cut in in front of people if need be.
SF: Greet everybody you come across with a smile and a Hi. If you have just had your morning coffee, greet them with a 'Hello there!'. Never cut in on someone's path.
Always wait patiently for the other person to pass. (Note: this might sometimes result in both the people waiting politely for one another for an infinite amount of time)

How you stand at the bus stop:
Blr: Just mind your own business and avoid eye contact. Not that anyone will chit chat with you, you don't really want to talk to anyone either.
SF: Smile and nod at your neighbour and occassionally exclaim to your neighbour 'What a beautiful day it is today!'

How you board the bus:
Blr: (I don't need to say this)
SF: Wait for the person in front of you to board first. Stay atleast two feet away from the person in front of you. Let the women go first. (Always. Everywhere)

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Yes, I still exist

I am still around people, alive and kicking! It's been a long time and life has, as can be expected, changed a lot in the past two years that I have not written in my journal. Yeah, I got married, changed two houses, changed my job... and a lot of other events in between.

I have no excuses for not updating my journal. Let's just say don't take the word 'procrastination' lightly from me anymore.

So that's good enough for a first post for this year (and the last year :P)
See ya soon.

P.S: It feels really good to be back on LJ!
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My review of The Deathly Hallows

This post has been a week overdue.. never found the time to pen down my thoughts about the finale to the HP series. (If I had, this post would have been twice as long :D)

On the outset I can say that the book was very predictable. The first six books imparted this feeling of suspense and uncertainty but that was all laid to rest with the last book. There was a constant feeling of loose ends being tied which was in a way comforting but also carried this over-hanging feeling of the end of the story coming near :P And somehow Harry's seems to be riding on more luck than usual (that's what I felt everytime he missed the killing curse or missed being caught). But again hey, this is a children's book. Which is again proved in the climax of the story, the great war that takes place at Hogwarts. That was when I was starkly reminded that this is a children's book and could imagine the kids jumping up and down each time their fav characters entered into the Room of requirement one by one.

The blotches in Snape's and Dumbledore's lives were neatly filled. Frankly I appreciated how Dumbledore was not as perfect as we thought he was. It was more human - everybody-has-their-story types. And Snape deserved the tribute he got in the end for all the hatred that was directed at him all through.

The confrontations with the Dark Lord were truly disappointing because of how everything seemed to be going in Harry's favor. It was a little unrealistic even for the magical world. Am sure if Ron could find Harry during the latter's 'exile', then definitely even Voldemort could! (Yeah, yeah, I know its just a story..) Too many things fell into place for Harry just when he needed it.

Parts I think could have been better/more believable:
* How Hedwig dies - it was more like getting her out of the way
* How Harry comes out unscathed when stricken with the killing curse.
* How easily things fall into Harry's lap - the black stone(one of the hallows) and especially how lucky he got with the Elder wand

But there were lots of feel good factors that made it a truly enjoyable read like the PottersWatch, DA. Though it was slow paced in the middle, the story picked up in the second half. I hadn't realised how much I missed Hogwarts and its teachers until they went to Hogwarts to fight the war.

Parts I liked:
* Prince's tale
* Kreacher and R.A.B's story - totally rivetting
* Harry reproaching Lupin for abandoning his baby - strong social message sent out
* Harry's bravery when he goes to face Voldemort and is ready to die - when he realises how he has to leave everything and everyone behind and walks alone without looking back..
* Hermione's loyalty and intelligence
* Humour brought in by Ron and the twins

My questions:
* Why did Harry promise to return the sword to the goblin instead of requesting to hold on to it till he finished his work with it?
* How did Neville catch hold of the sword in the end?
* I thought more members of the Order of phoenix had the invisible cloak?
* Who was the repulsive baby-like creature at King's cross? was it Grindelwald?
* why didn't Harry think of using the Deathly Hallows(to defeat death) when he already possessed two of the three? In fact, it wasn't considered as an option at all

My favorite book of the series still remains as the sixth one because of the anticipation it built. And Deathly Hallows has everything in it to make it a perfect ending to the series.

The three 'self's that I battle with..

1) It is hard for me to trick my brain
2) It is very hard to subdue my ego
3) It is next to impossible to fool my heart

PS: I have been hoping to get company to watch HP5 and when none presented itself I forced my brother only to find out that there are no tickets available for the whole weekend. I was hoping to see the movie before I read HP7 :(


A train leaves New York for Boston. Five minutes later another train leaves Boston for New York, at double the speed. Which train will be closer to New York when they encounter?

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31 ways to denounce a person..

I got this in a mail forward.. it was just too funny to pass it up:

For everyone who has ever had an (Employee Performance) Evaluation - just remember, it could have been worse. These are actual quotes taken from federal government employee performance evaluations.

1. "Since my last report, this employee has reached rock-bottom and has started to dig."

2. "I would not allow this employee to breed."

3. "This employee is really not so much of a has-been, but more of a definite won't be."

4. "Works well when under constant supervision and cornered like a rat in a trap."

5. "When he opens his mouth, it seems that it is only to change feet."

6. "This young lady has delusions of adequacy."

7. "He sets low personal standards and then consistently fails to achieve them."

8. "This employee is depriving a village somewhere of an idiot."

9. "This employee should go far, and the sooner he starts the better."

10. "Got a full 6-pack, but lacks the plastic thingy to hold it all together."

11. "A gross ignoramus - 144 times worse than an ordinary ignoramus."

12. "He doesn't have ulcers, but he's a carrier."

14. "I would like to go hunting with him sometime."

15. "He's been working with glue too much."

16. "He would argue with a signpost."

17. "He brings a lot of joy whenever he leaves the room."

18. "When his IQ reaches 50, he should sell."

19. "If you see two people talking and one looks bored, he's the other one."

20. "A photographic memory but with the lens cover glued on."

21. "A prime candidate for natural de-selection."

22. "Donated his brain to science before he was done using it."

23. "Gates are down, the lights are flashing, but the train isn't coming."

24. "He's got two brains cells, one is lost and the other is out looking for it."

25. "If he were any more stupid, he'd have to be watered twice a week."

26. "If you give him a penny for his thoughts, you'd get change."

27. "If you stand close enough to him, you can hear the ocean."

28. "One neuron short of a synapse."

29. "Some drink from the fountain of knowledge; he only gargled."

30. "Takes him 2 hours to watch 60-minutes."

31. "The wheel is turning, but the hamster is dead.
I love books

Bitten by the Harry Potter bug.. again

I can't wait for the book release on July 21st. Meanwhile I thought I could console myself with the Order Of the Phoenix Movie. It looks awesome, better made than the previous ones. But it's releasing on July 19th, just two days before the book release and 8 days after the US release. And what's worse they(in the US) get to watch a 3D version of the movie too(ok only the last 20 minutes is 3D, but still)!!

You scored as Ron Weasley, You often feel like second best and as a result don't have an awful lot of self confidence, but a truer more capable friend would be hard to find.


Ron Weasley


Hermione Granger


Remus Lupin


Sirius Black


Severus Snape


Harry Potter


Albus Dumbledore


Ginny Weasley


Draco Malfoy


Lord Voldemort


Your Harry Potter Alter Ego Is...?
created with

PS: On other news, I am gonna watch Sivaji tonight. Am not a Rajnikanth fan but since I have heard so much about the movie, I am looking forward to it.
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