Wednesday, April 28, 2010

I searched for the tamil version of 'Qufe sera sera' online and came across a file which had both the English and Tamil versions of the song.I played it in class and asked the group to discuss about how music directors lift tunes from other language songs.At the end of the discussion, they had surprised one another by talking about a number of songs which were not original scores. One of them wanted to download the song 'Unfaithful' and show the others how it had been made into a tamil song. As it was almost time for lunch, I told them to go ahead and stay on and listen to the song. I also showed them how to find the lyrics. When I returned to the class room I saw them singing in chorus to a female voice. They were in tune and sang with some feeling, but their pronunciation was really funny.Guess we will all 'the music in our hearts bear, long after it is heard no more'

Thursday, April 22, 2010

some questions on philosophy

1.Do mosquitoes have souls?
2.What exactly happens when i swat them with my electric swatter?
3.Is there a mosquito heaven?

Saturday, April 17, 2010

This happened

I orkut regularly. Batches of students inhabit my friends page, beginning with Abishek, a quiet boy who grew up into a friendly, respectful, responsible young man, living in U.K at the moment. The site became a historical and geographical record of my friends and I did not wish to try any other, inspite of many invitations to join other networking sites. I
Then I got an invite from my husband to join facebook. Not wanting to offend him, I accepted the invite. Then as I filled the required fields, I came across,"What is your relationship to Padmanabhan ?" So I typed ,"husband' Then the site said, "He has to confirm this" OK! The next day the following statement came up in face book. "Padmanabhan has confirmed that he is your husband" or something like that. To top it all Aruna, one of my students in the past and one who has worked with me in certain college programs cracked underneath "I like it"

Thursday, April 15, 2010

work life balance

Now what is this? I want definitions, break up of 24/7/365 with good examples coz it looks like we are all goin to live long; very long and not going to win a lottery even then. . Am going to use my semi vaction researching this, Right now am actually resting a lot reading alot and exercizing five days a week and thinking if there is a perfect life work balance and need some inspiration from outside. Granted that I have a lot of talent for enjoying little things (alpa santhosham).However, at the moment, I am forty enough to think what else to do.
Suggestions please,

Sunday, April 11, 2010

found him

I think the one who wrote the poem given below is Katsumi tanaka. Correct me if I am wrong

Chance encounters

(one impressive poem by a Japanese poet)

Halley's comet appeared in 1910
(And I was born the following year)
It's period being seventy-six years and seven days,
It is due to re appear in 1986-

So I read, and my heart sinks
It is unlikely that I shall ever see the star-
And probably the case is the
same with human encounters

An understanding mind one meets as seldom
And an undistracted love one wins as rarely-
I know that my true friend will appear after my death,
And my sweet heart died before I was born.

I failed to copy the poet's name. It is in the syllabus of fatima college, i think in some paper with an international name.Bala, you know the name of this poet?

Friday, April 9, 2010


I switched on Zee studio in my English class. The channel was telecasting a movie, 'Never been kissed".The students tried to write down at least a couple of lines of the dialogue and tried to repeat the same with intonation. We watched two 5 minute clips of the movie and they were very funny. But my students looked at me quietly as I laughed aloud.Not because they were super cool like some of the students in the movie but because they couldn't follow most of what was being said.Any way, I decided that I should watch this movie and searched for it online after my class.
I located it and found that my ASUS mini laptop could not reproduce the sound of the movie . I was not sure if the quality of the files was bad or the problem was with the lap top. I spent an hour or so trying to find a good print.(Look at the title of this post!)
Youtube had the movie in fourteen parts and i was sure that my lap top could download these files and the film looked good since the mini's screen was small. But nothing could be heard. The head phones did not help and then i attached a couple of speakers to the laptop. Nothing happened. Sometimes i press my ears to my laptop's speakers if the sound is feeble. Now I picked up the external speaker and pressed it to my ears. And yeaaaaaaaay! I could hear the dialogues. So I lay down, placed the laptop on my tummy, took one speaker in each handd, pressed them to my ears and watched the movie.
Moral of the story: Perseverance pays
Second moral of the story: Read the title of the movie carefully, coz it will give you a good idea of where the film is heading and then invest your time in it. For all my trouble and exhilaration, the movie was just so-so.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Good deed

I performed a good deed today; which is a rare thing for me.I helped my friend prepare her profile for a matrimonial website. Haven't yet got a chance to find out what her family thinks of it.One more good thing that am going to do is give a tip for south Indian chefs, which is that they could prepare tamarind paste at home for the whole week rather than buy the paste at an exorbitant rate or squeeze tamarind juice everyday for kolambu or sambar.
Squeeze the soaked tamarind (half an apple size) and let it boil seasoned or unseasoned, but with salt. Once it becomes thick, you can refrigerate it and add spoons of it to vegetables and pulses and your sambar is ready.
Works for me!

Sunday, April 4, 2010


The most carefree times in my life were when I was a school teacher for eighth graders. The really funny times were when as an English teacher I was given charge of the play for the school day.
Once I wrote a simple script titled "Ulysses” and got the approval of my head, the effervescent and encouraging Revathi Krishnamurthy. I let it out in class that I needed a lot of people for the English play, for acting as well as for playing making props, like a cave, swords and sack clothing. Bhuvanesh, who was quick to realize that this was a chance to get away from regular class turned to his neighbour Prabhu and wised him up. Soon I had nine boys, all ready to participate. It was an enthusiastic crowd. They made swords from thermocol, fought with them pretending to practise and broke them into pieces. This stopped after I got them to pay for fresh materials.
The problem was to identify someone to play Ulysses. All the boys in the class were skinny and sported the blank expression characteristic of boys of thirteen. Prabu Prasanna seemed to be the better looking of the lot but I was not totally satisfied. I scanned the rows of faces in the school assembly. Then i spotted the clear wide brow, the broad erect shoulders, the way Karthik priya held her chin, parellel to the ground and looked straight ahead. She looked like a leader. Yes, this tall athletic girl from class nine looked more like Ulysses than any of the boys.
The boys of course, looked at me crossly when I brought her for the practice. How could I select a girl to be the hero when there were so many boys around. I ignored them and we got on with the rehearsals. The play turned into an action packed one, with lots of movement and one liners!
One year we did Puss in Boots! It was one of my favorites and there was lot of color and action and masks and music in the play. The only problem was that none of the girls were ready to play the princess whom the hero wins in the last few minutes of the play. So I made a secret pact with Ram Prabhu, a small made boy from class XI, that he need not attend rehearsals as he had no dialogue or part in the action, but that he should wear a dress and veil and appear on stage as the princess and no one ever need know who played the part. He was sportive about it and the whole cast was surprised when he appeared in the make up room and wore the dress just a few seconds before the play.
I have many such stories to write about.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Can an actual event be captured in writing with all its shades and nuances? Assuming total objectivity, a photographic memory, superior listening skills, an ability to grasp points of views of people from a variety of cultures and historical backgrounds, a writer requires above all, the ability to distinguish between what people say and what they are trying to convey.Great writers of plays, novels and film scripts manage to do this with varying degrees of success.Lesser mortals like me find this exhausting.