April 28, 2008


I didn't want this to be a personal blog documenting things about my life. But I decided that I should acknowledge the latest, biggest event thats happened...the birth of my 2nd child. April 26, 2008 at 0202 India time. Due to this, I will be taking a short break from here. Back with some extreme randomness very shortly (I hope).

April 15, 2008

Leagues and sports

An Indian cricket league is something I've always dreamt off. Imagine having your own home team to root for, wear their jerseys, cheer for the franchise player, buy season tickets, the whole nine yards! As much as I loved living in Hartford Connecticut, I couldn't help but feel a bit sad that we never had any city teams in any of the leagues (basketball, baseball, football...). No, I've never been a fan of the New England Patriots, so that doesn't count.

Anyway, we now have two cricket leagues in India; ICL (the rebel league) and IPL (the BCCI's answer to the rebel league). Neither of these are along the lines of what I imagined. I always assumed that a state's Ranji Trophy team would be marketed in a different way, people would get to know up and coming players from their state or city, maybe the matches themselves would be televised, stadiums packed and so on due to the marketing effort. Unfortunately, that's where the business aspect of sports comes in to play. Owners of these league teams are successful businessmen, actors and the like. The bottomline for them is ROI (return on investment) not talent encouragement. Hence all the league teams have international cricketers that have been bought for huge amounts of money (well, not all expensive....sorry, Ricky Ponting) and a couple of Indian youngsters, who might make it into the Indian team if they perform well at this level.

As much fun as it is to watch these games, I can't help but wonder what the difference between this and regular first-class cricket is (ok, format is T20 not 50-50). But shouldn't the INDIAN Premier league have only Indians playing in it? Shouldn't the league be a stepping stone for local talent to perform well and thereby act as a screening for the national team? One can argue that the Ranji Trophy teams are there for that reason alone but I think everyone knows that the truth is far from it. Players do not get in purely on merit. Favouritism is the name of the game. A star player has his 'chumchas' and refuses to play unless they are in the team...and so on. With the BCCI sitting on so much cash, its tough to say how this will pan out in the long run and how much good it is going to do for Indian (and World) cricket.

It feels a bit strange to see Glenn Mc Grath in a Delhi Daredevils tee or Shane Warne as captain of the Rajasthan Royals. I wonder how it feels for the players to be donning jerseys of cities or states that they have nothing in common with. Does money make that awkwardness go away? Does money replace pride and love of the game? Is this the future of all sports?

Apartment Rules - Part Deux

The doorbell rings, a random person walks inside the already opened door and says she's here to have a look around my apartment because she is renting the one 2 floors down below. No introductions, nothing. She just waltzes around while I stand there speechless (stupid of me for sure). She then goes on to complain about the silly size of the bedrooms (her exact words), praises the fact that there is a room and bathroom for live-in help and then walks out the door. Comes back a second later and says, "I didn't get your name"!

WOW! Dare I say only in Hyderabad?

April 7, 2008

Well dressed thief?

2 days, 2 different stores. Both times I was asked to make my way to the cash counter to pay for something that my little daughter had in her hand. And in one instance, when I didn't comply immediately, there were at least 4 people watching me to ensure I don't leave the store. Do I look like someone that would steal something worth Rs. 200 and Rs. 40 respectively?

It's funny but the coincidence is hard to ignore; I usually dress ONLY in tracks and tees...some people like to call that kind of look snobbish grunge. To me its just comfortable. Anyway, when I'm dressed like this, people automatically assume that I'm from 'abroad' whatever that means these days. And I've noticed that the kind of treatment at stores is definitely different. People seem more obliging and once before, they even opened up a new counter for me! (Once at the airport too when the check-in lines were so long, the counter that handled excess baggage called me when I was almost the last in line!) On the 2 days of my attempted robbery, I wore a neat salwar. And what I got was being looked at like I was going to pinch something from the store.

How strange?! Does this mean that people from abroad can get away with whatever? Or that well dressed people are capable of stealing too?

It's late and I'm sleepy, so I'll stop the rambling. I still can't make any sense of it though. But given that I'm not a fan of salwars and the like I'll just stick to my grungy clothes so that the stores will think I'm cool.

April 4, 2008

The Graduate

I first wore a cap and gown and participated in a graduation ceremony when I completed my Masters degree. My daughter on the other hand, took part in a ceremony at her playschool today...and she's just over 2 years old!

Many times before, I've mocked at such ceremonies saying that they make a joke of a 'real' graduation ceremony, something that only happens after one completes an undergraduate degree at the very least. But I have to admit that I thoroughly enjoyed the school day/graduation ceremony at the school today. Although the cap and tassel may not have been as meaningful to my little one as to an adult finishing up college, she looked really cute as did all the other kids. I guess this is another trend that's caught up here in India...along with Halloween and a few others. I just have to get used to it and not be cynical. Tough...