Saturday, July 10, 2010

I walk the city....


I picked up this line from the Jodie Foster starrer "The brave one" where she acts being a Radio Jockey and muses about this great city. I too literally do the walk...at least two times a week on a regular basis....NYC has become one of my favorites, I donno when and how. The first time I visited the "Big Apple" back in 2006, I was completely lost. It seemed like an ocean of people within a thick concrete jungle. That was a vacation trip. I moved to the vicinities of NY in 2008, and since then it has been a slow and steady love affair. It was not actually love at first sight (that place is reserved for Sydney), however, the more I delved into this city, the more I started to get comfortable and after a few initial days, I shunned traveling by any type of vehicle while in the City. I really love walking in NYC, it has an uncanny resemblance with Kolkata, Mumbai and any other large city I've been to or lived in around the world.....I especially dig midtown, and can spend hours and hours just walking there....each lane and by-lane reminds me of something or some place with which I can draw a resemblance and and like any great metro, this place has a thousand more things to offer even after one comes to a point where they start to think that they've seen enough and they know the city. I love NYC, for its like that mysterious person that entices you with a new charm every time you meet them, and makes you return back, again and again.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

My First Swimming Lesson

A few days back I went to register myself for the upcoming swimming lessons at the local YMCA. Upon asking about the details, the lady at the front-desk asked me - "How old is the child?". I thought omygawd ! So sheepishly I went forward and stated that the "child" is none other than me and its better late than never....so the lady somehow concealed her amusement and carried on with the necessarly formalities to register me.
So today happened to be the first day of my "formal swimming class". There were not many "oldies" like me - most of the students were in the 2 -3 years age-group (you gotta believe me), and then there were 4-5 of us, way past their primes, trying learn new life-skills :D....
We were each supplied with one styrofoam barbell, and asked to leap forward holding the "device" and paddle on. I was the better of the adult-lot by virtue of my previous amateur floating experience, while the rest of the group did not seem to have touched water except for the purpose of drinking. I did receive a lot of accolades for doing great for the first day, but the basic issue is that I can float with my head inside the water and not the other way round (weird ! donno how I picked it and when). So as soon as the trainer tells me to lift my head above the surface of the water, my feet start to reach the bottom of the pool and in no time I am standing in the middle of the puddle (yeah its only 5 feet or so deep). This makes me tense - my "first day" is over now....I am concerned on what would I be told on my second day :)......I just thank god that today was not my first day of driving, otherwise the situation could have been much worse.

Intelligence Versus Talent

The other day I was driving back home from work when I tuned in to the local Hindi radio channel. There was a very animated discussion going on on the subject of the recently released movie "Raavan" and the discussion turned to some weird direction when people started discussing on who between Amitabh and Mani Rathnam is "Talented" and who is "Intelligent". After a while of discussions, the talk host opened the lines to the listeners posing a very "Intelligent (talented ?:-)" question as to "what is the difference between Intelligence and Talent?". Answers started poring in, but most of them were chicken and egg types - falling in the bucket of one is the mother of the other one. I was listening to this for a while, and after 15-20 minutes, I thought that I should also take a shot at it - at least I would be "on-air :-)". By that time I had reached home - so I picked up the phone an connected with the hosts. I stated that "Intelligence is the looking glass wearing which talent can be identified". The hosts sounded impressed - they did ask me if looking glasses can be substituted by contact lenses :-), but they made me repeat my answer to record it.