“Pura Vida and the chronicles of insomnia from the land of witches”

01 Sep

The one and only Aranal volcano in it's full majesty

August just felt like july – some enlightenment and some inconvenient truth. I have been waiting all month long for an epiphany to occur to me or something profound to happen.All I had was a minor anti-climax! Life gets complicated when one has many more questions than answers! It doesn’t help that I have a Chinese wall inside me. A wall between what I feel inside and what I show outside! Do all Indians feel the same way? I for myself got too influenced by Mario Puzo’s novel ,“The Godfather”, for too long!

Having found the strength to dig my heels in, I am resigning to fate. I am used to life being a ferris wheel and now it has offishally entered “ bungy-jumping” territory. May be it’s fate’s way of telling that get used to it and develop a thick skin, you would thrive in future!

In LA rain gods have pissed again and pretty much took a month of summer away. Living at the beach comes at a premium, so I nearly started a facebook petition to force all beach landlords to refund a part of the rent money. I haven’t completely given up on the idea, so what do you think? August brought the gloomy news about housing and economy too. The Fed seems to be doing everything, but It all seems to end up like whipping cream on crap.
I don’t want to try but I am sure it still tastes like crap! If braindeadanomics were a kingdom, Bernanke would be its king! I understand that there is a correlation between GDP and collective happiness. We are at a point mindless consumerism is threatening the planet (Read global warming, BP rig explosion, etc.). This is high time people rethink consumption ! As a token gesture, I am giving up buying alpine water, which is usually shipped 10000 miles across from Europe, what a joke?

The signature thing about Europe is it’s reasonably free of mindless consumerism. but in fast changing global business dynamics- donno how long they would have this luxury-It reminds me of a news story where spain’s towns were competing to host a nuclear dumpsite. May be one day people in Madrid stop taking complete august off!

August also brings in solidarity among Indians everywhere, to ring in 64th year of India’s independence. In the 80s there was a Bofors guns scandal, where guns were purchased a little over regular price. In late 90s there was again Kargil coffin scandal when coffins were bought at 13 times the regular price. 2010 brings in $80 toilet paper rolls for commonwealth games. Assuming that toilet paper is not gold, it’s like 100 times the normal price. Who ever thought India was not developing fast enough needs to think again! Jokes aside, I am delighted that India is inching towards its rightful prominence on the world stage. We come from the land of $35 laptops and $2k cars! The world can ignore 1.1 billion people at its own peril! China recently surpassed Japan by sheer GDP terms. I hope India does the same soon sans the 60miles long traffic jams and polluted environment.

There was recently a customer at my travel agency. He is a student at USC and was explaining how he got a tech job in summer though his tech background is zilch. This is what I call as positive side of racism- the benefit of being dark skinned and having a strong accent! Now why doesn’t it work for getting into best B-schools ?
Finding conviction to give up coffee is not an easy thing and I just might have done that! I realized coffee moves food thru the system before the body got a chance to absorb all nutrients. It gives a nice kick the first hour after drinking, but the dependency is simply unacceptable. I have been successfully off coffee for 10 days now and gave myself a couple of pats  My next goal is to get up early and start getting back to shape. I am calling 1-800-wish foundation already!

Talking about food, I have been considering raw diet for a while and had my friend Sunil dragged me to this fancy place called “Planet Raw”. As with all fancy places the food is innovative but expensive. The best thing is they have a few non-alcoholic drinks that give a nice buzz. The worst part though is if someone wants to get more info on raw diet, they have to cough up $150 for a 15 mins. consultation ! (I absolutely, positively, didn’t make this up. SWG it said on the menu)

In LA we never have a shortage of fads and very of these fads last longer than Larry King’s marriages. I am sure many people have come across “Conscious Consumerism” thought it’s relatively new for me. In LA I observed many rich people taking pains to support many local causes, and pay a lot of premium for ethical goods and services. Coming from India, where subsistence has been the buzz word, with nary a sense of civic responsibility, I salute the conviction of these people .I have been living in LA for almost 10 years but I have no LA in me and that’s beginning to change! In this spirit, I am giving up leather. Most animals are beaten, electrocuted or skinned alive for leather. If you have a moment browse this website and you would never wear leather again!

I never got a chance to introduce our stat professor Dr. Seal. He might have anglicized his name but he very much our Indian. One problem with him is the obsession with getting street cred. And the other one is his continuing LMU’s grand tradition of telling very un-grand jokes. I couldn’t care less cuz he is extra generous in grading! His favorite phrase was “ Lies, damn lies and statistics” . And I would like to add to that, Department of Labor’s employment numbers and National Realtor Association’s housing forecast!

As the story goes, god created the world in 7 days and on the last day he/she realized something is missing and so Beach Volleyball was born. I suck at BV but it’s a nice cardio and even nicer way to make new friends. I have actually asked my LMU friends to help me put a small BV league in our neighboring beach. Playing BV at Playa itself would give me an hour extra sleep on the weekends and free parking!

I also need a clarification about template jokes whether are they good or bad? One template joke goes like this. There was this guy Amit, who always had hard time understanding his wife Rekha. One day he was wandering on the beach and accidentally stepped on a bottle. The proverbial genie popped from the bottle and asked Amit for a wish. Amit thought for a while and asked for a bridge across ocean, to cut his daily commute to the other part of the city. Genie thought for a minute and begged for an alternative wish. So, obviously Amit asked for the ability to read his wife’s mind! Now the Genie thought again and said, “You want 10 lanes or 20 lanes?’” The sheer ingenuity of a template joke is that it allows one to say the tricky wish as the second wish and make seem a bridge across ocean as an easier thing. So I ask what’s wrong with a template joke?

I recently had my first real vacation in god-knows-how-many-years. . I have to say I am pleasantly surprised that the sky didn’t come crashing during my absence from work. If Goa is “god’s own country’ then Costa Rica is it’s Siamese twin. The parallels in climate, food, culture and people are unmistakable. People in CR have a laidback lifestyle. They even have a term for it called “Pura Vida”, which loosely translates into English as “Pure Life”. However, CR is beginning to be spoiled by American capitalism. All the ills of US like McDonalds, BKs and even SUV culture seem to be mushrooming all over. I think I am having a romantic affair with CR. I donno if it’s true love or just an infatuation! I have to confess that I have a trackrecord for having extended infatuations with some stuff and even some people. If someone wants to make a (mo-) documentary on infatuation, I would be the obvious candidate!

Here is an update on Mozart. I believe Mozart and I have fell apart. In good old days, he would fart and I pretend not to notice. I would sing and he pretends not to groan. Nowadays he stinks and has become too clingy! I have become somewhat of a bad tempered person too. I think that’s it for dogs and me. No mas perros!

I would like to wrap up saying that “Salt” is a very dangerous movie capable of annihilating 3 perfectly good hours ! Never did mankind was exposed to such scripted dialogue and even more scripted fights. Note to myself: don’t trust sis-in-law’s reviews!!
-Love , Language and La Vida

This blog is not culled, copied or mangled from a variety of resources, but as bollywood directors would say, “is INSPIRED from a lot of Hollywood movies :)”

1 Comment

Posted by on September 1, 2010 in Uncategorized


One response to ““Pura Vida and the chronicles of insomnia from the land of witches”

  1. Murali

    September 4, 2010 at 4:24 pm

    another entry for an effortless smooth read! loved it 🙂


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: