Saturday, January 28, 2012

25 and counting..

As you grow and traverse through various paths in years, you expect to grow in many ways, to see people and learn or unlearn, to make some mistakes ( or many) and either learn from it or ignore it

As I turn 25, I am plainly surprised at the like minded characters I have met so far. By no means, I am trying to put them into buckets as each are one unique gem in its own worth. But, the similarity is striking and fascinating. So many tunes and shades – yet they are all being the same.

In this world I live in today, every single thing works on a business possibility.People have a value life and once their value is over, they are no longer used.They are not exactly thrown away too. They become friends on Facebook, thekinds you do not bother to "like" even if they own a Booker Prize.

I can count with one hand the number of sensible, generous and smart ( I tell you, this is a very rare combination ) I have met baring the usualsuspects of family. And to that, I add the ones with personality, spunk and attitude – it is not even a legible number to write down. The illusions we get on people and emotions as children are plainly illegible to survive in this big bad world.

Love - Oh, love is the most highly traded commodity. It merely moves from one place to another with eye glances, unspoken words and crappy internet romantic lines. It means convenience, comfort, a cushy wallet, a stable job and some basic looks. There is hardly any courage in acceptance, dignity in behaviour in most relationships. Add to it, the moral policing nazis - who take it as their birth right to comment on every single relationship change you go through. It is not exactly happy, or even appealing to one's own heart.

It is only a matter of how well you can make things happen with each other. If you succeed in making life simple, then it works. Else, it does not.

Friendship – The F word in my own dictionary. I mean, it is SO hugely abused and I will plainly walk straight with love for this story. If love says highly traded, this is the combination that gives the most pennies. A profit in getting a cup of coffee, to a free ride for a few years in others lives. And after Facebook made its way, the word merely means “anyone you see for 120 seconds or sees you for 180 seconds”. Italso means, you allow that person to access your life – past, present and future and all that you will mostly get back is a tag. Or may be, may be a like.

If you disagree with it and are lucky enough to still continue and exist in 2012 with a handful of friends, you are lucky.Lottery winning types. Even Casino types.

Parents/Relatives – Merely a visiting card to grow on. I am sick of the number of "kids" who used an uncle or a dad to get a internship, a job and a admission. It is probably remorse that I do not have high profile relatives to itch me a favor but in all honesty, people like me are glad we do not have them. It is one thing to have contacts and get information and act smartly. It is an entirely different thing to get guidance and fall back as a pillow.

I should write an entire post on the parents bit. It has irked at people like me for such a long time, and I hardly see any noise made about it. I am no judge to pass my statements and make an entire world go by it. At the same time, I am no soul to simply ride on opportunities and live with my own world in my head we well. I refuse to be that way. For, still there lies a world where such things matter. It still does.

This post by no means was written in a bad mood, or a wrong day. It is a mere culmination of how things are around every one of us. I just decided to call a spade as one.

I realize this is not the first time I feel this way; Here is another post on a similar note.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

South Asian Reading Challenge 2012 and Good Reads

This blog does no justice to any of those wonderful people out there hosting events, conducting challenges in blog sphere. This, if I complete successfully will be go down as the first ever challenge or even a bet that I have won over myself.

Of all the comforts at Singapore, the one I have abused the most is the library system. Coming from a place I am so used to lines, waiting, nightmares in libraries - the system to get a card is a breeze. And, and whole choice we have here is mind boggling to say the least. I realized the idea of walking into a library without knowing what book to take, or at least what genre is pulling me back to boring business likes or really well known slight chick-lits. Honestly, I was getting too bored of my laziness.

I chanced on GoodReads and life got slightly better. With an updated set of shelves, I know what to pick up when I walk into the library next. The last three month saw some real amount of 'good reads' cracking at at least one book a week. The trend in my choices was either picking up books on India or by Indian authors, even to the extent of reading Lonely Planet guides.

2012 has to be a year of better reading habits, so my random browsing for more Indian authors led me to S. Krishna's page. She has been hosting a lovely event for South Asian authors and has a ready to pick up list on her page.

I challenge to read 20 books for this challenge by the year 2012. If you think I am crazy, please go and check my GoodReads shelf. Yes, that is exactly how I came up with the trend :)

Now, before I get all started - a few pointers on it.

  • I do not plan to review any book except if it is absolutely remarkable in my mind. Truly, I should not get into the reviewing business of books at all . My language flow goes for a toss and I end up using too many superlatives.
  • Most, if not all of my books will be from NLB. So, I do have a restrain if I do not manage to get enough books here.
  • For the interest of it, I plan to include some cooking and travel memoirs into it
I am also taking up the Good Reads challenge for 2012 ( please pretend that you have noticed the shiny new widget )

To a much well read 2012, here I come :)

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Brownies Anyone ? - The Brownie Factory Review

I love Brownies.

I love anything that is nutty.

I am tempted to add a smiley to the title.
Image Courtesy here
The Brownie Factory is small in size but very generous in choices. They offer over 20 types of brownies to choose from and it is not easy to pick one at all. Conveniently, they have placards on the best sellers ( from 1 to 5) and offer the new ones with a note too.
I have personally tried their Fudgy Gooey Chocolate Brownie, The Triple Chocolate Brownie, The Vegan Nutty Brownie, The Salted Caramel Brownie and the The Caramel Pecan Brownie ( most favourite!)They also have convenient packages for you to gift or for a birthday.
The prices range from 3 dollars to close to 5 dollars. If I am not too wrong, the most expensive one was a cheesecake brownie at some 4 dollars odd. They are a perfect fix for a sweet carving, or for a not so awesome day at work. They also offer some icecream choices, which I haven't tried.

Triple Chocolate Brownie is one of their best sellers and it can be safe bet for anyone who wants to try for a first time. It has a crumby texture unlike a brownie and is with apt sweetness. Made a mental note to try their peppermint brownie sometime too. It has this pretty green with chocolate stripes. They have seasonal specials - for CNY they have mandarin orange brownie and some blondies as well.

Visit them at 1 Raffles Place, OUB Centre ( open till 8PM). This place is right next to a Swiss Bake and is opposite to a BodyShop store. They should consider renaming 1 Raffles Place to 1 Evil Place !

All pictures clicked and edited with Instagram. Pardon the poor lighting.

P.S : I hope you got the clue about gift boxes. I travel via Raffles Place twice a day.
P.P.S : The Salted Caramel Brownie is actually nice. I was just grumpy when I wrote this post.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Stories to share!

The first post need not be this for a new year. But like how it goes, this is on my mind. Rather, they are on my mind. It was a totally different game before family came over. One whole year went strong and would have gone all too if only I had not known how it feels to have them here.

For a multitude of reasons, me and my mom are great buddies. So much that I am yet to met anyone who hits on that chord or laughs at a wink for an unspoken joke. She has certainly got strong influences on me, both genetically and behaviourally. Good or not, I don't know but it is not easy to miss someone at all.

I have missed people and cribbed, written poems(!) on it too but this one is way too heavy. The trains, buses and walkways are filled with them. Argh, had i known it would be this bad, I would have flown down instead.

We had a whale of time,unquestionably one of the best vacations ever. In many ways, this was the best way to end 2011. The year saw certain milestones for us. From a huge question mark on when I am going to study again to a successful convocation, from my lonely worried sleepless nights of job hunting to one helluva job I do, from a decade old unused passport to making Amma 's first ever foreign trip happen- I really should not be complaining. Yea, that way I am insatiable. I need the cake, the pie and even the cute plate it is on.

Suddenly, Singapore looks all ugly. I was all awing at the safety and beauty but as loneliness gets bad, it simply looks monotonous. May be I should switch to a better mood or just imagine driving through saidapet in my Scotty. I will instantly love this place.

Grumpy mood led me to The Brownie factory. Does no help to an oily face,but a teeny part of me still hopes chocolate makes everything better. I spent a good seven minutes going through the fourteen choices( I swear! If you are from SG, you must make it as a resolution to buy one even week) and I chose the salted caramel brownie. Such a pain my pea sized brain is to choose the only salty option when I carved some sweetness. It probably is not bad, but I kinda thought it was horrible. What a grump my mood is in!

Before the devil cribs again, I will leave this post to rest

By the way, this post is entirely typed and posted from the new iPhone ( show off, me!)

Wish you a blessed 2012!