Sunday, January 8, 2017

Honorary Doctorate Degree

I have read many blog posts during the last few weeks about Ms. Jayalalithaa. All of them addressed her as Dr. Jayalalithaa. Many leaders, actors, and others who were condoling her passing away, addressed her as Dr, Jayalalithaa. Watched them in Youtube.
Her arch rival (or should I call her bête noire) in Tamil Nadu is always addressed as Dr. Karunanidhi.
I was wondering which medical school these people attended. Ms. Jayalalithaa was a high school graduate. Mr. Karunanidhi did not even enter high school. They both were given honorary doctorate degree from some university.
According to the book, Honor & Respect, the Official Guide to Names, Titles & Forms of Address, recipients of honorary doctorates are not entitled to be addressed as Dr. except at the granting university.
I don’t know why these important well known people are given honorary doctorate degrees. They don’t need this degree to advance their career. Funny thing is you don’t even need to be a human being to get an honorary doctorate degree. In 1996, Southampton College in New York awarded an honorary doctorate degree to Kermit the Frog.
Hope the Indian politicians who are given honorary doctorate do not start wearing stethoscope around their neck.
Hope they do not compel the party members to come to them if they need medical advice or any surgical procedure.
It is also illegal to use the Padma awards (Padmashri, Padma Bhushan, etc.) as a title in front of one's name.  But almost everyone in India who received these awards are addressed with these titles.  I have seen many many tamil movies "starring Padmashri Sivaji Ganesan" (title credit at the beginning of these movies).

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Transgender Bathroom

President Obama has sent a notification to all the States that public* schools should allow transgender students to use bathrooms (restrooms) matching their gender identity. In other words if a boy thinks he is a girl in his mind he should be allowed to use the girls bathroom. And vice versa. The officials say a student's gender identity as the student's sex for the purpose of enforcing this guidance.
It is only a “guidance” and not a “law”. In other words if you do not comply with the guidance, funding for your school will be cut off.
Mr. Obama wants to make sure transgender students enjoy a supportive and nondiscriminatory school environment. Many states are objecting to this. But LGBT groups praised this announcement. What if a creep posing as a transgender enters a girls bathroom?
Someone has filed a case in the Supreme Court and it has taken up this case for hearing,
President Kennedy wanted to put a man on the moon.
President Obama put a man in the girls bathroom.
* In USA, public schools mean government schools that operate from money received from the government,

Sunday, December 11, 2016

First Impression – Part 2 of 2

Time rolls by. He had finished college and now has a good job in New Delhi. Lost touch with his college friend after graduation. 2 years gone. On a Sunday afternoon, he was walking in Connaught Place. Is this a fate or is this a fate? Who he saw in Connaught Place by chance on that day? The same college friend. And, they started meeting each other frequently.
He was going on vacation to Chennai. His friend gave him a package and asked him to deliver to his family. So, one day, he visited his friend’s family. This time he did not go in a bullock cart. He went in a rented car. Not wearing a lungi with no chappals. Decent pant and a dress shirt.
Ding Dong. Who opens the door? That most beautiful girl. He asked: Remember me? She replied: How will I forget. Neengathan andha lungi katna retta mattu vandikaran (You are that lungi wearing double oxen bullock cart driver).
He: Is your mom home?
She: Mom has gone to the hospital. She will be back in a few hours.
He: No one home except you?
She: The servant maid and the errand boy are here. And, our 4 Alsatian (German Shepherd)
He: I will come back after 2 hours
She: Please stay here. I want to talk to you.
He: What????
She: Remember you said I was wasting my time doing English lit?
He: It was an off the cuff remark. Hope you did not take it seriously.
She: After you left, my brother told me how intelligent you are. But in your village outfit on that day, I thought you were an uneducated villager. I took your comment seriously. I thought about what you said and changed my major.
He: (a guilty) What????
She: Yes, I changed my major to “this subject”. I was also impressed you were the first guy who never gave a damn about my beauty. All the boys I have come across used to agree with me all the time because of my beauty and how rich our family was.
He: Your brother told me also about how good Bharathnatyam dancer you are, and a great violinist. I did not give a damn for them either.
She: Unga thimir appidiyey irukku (You still have the same arrogance)
He: I was born with it.
And the two hours went by like two seconds.  Almost the entire conversation was a  non stop talk talk talk. The 4 German shepherds (one sitting on her right side, one on her left side, and two near her feet) constantly looking at him.  Looked like any wrong move from him, they were prepared to clobber him. The last 15 minutes were shared silence. They fell for each other.
They were happily married a year later.
Years later, they were travelling frequently in first class across USA and Europe and Asia. On one occasion, in the comfort of first class, a glass of double scotch on the rocks in his hand, 35,000 feet above ground, he asked her: why are you silent? What are you thinking?
She: How the world turns! That maatu vandikaran (bullock cart driver) is now travelling in first class in a jumbo jet.
He: How about the girl who married that maatu vandikaran? She should be in a village fetching water from the river 2 miles away. She is also comfortably seated in a first class cabin sipping orange juice.
She: I was born with luck.
He: Our fate is intertwined
Epilogue: KK wrote: Does the girl know about this story being written and posted on the internet for the world to see? If yes, what does she think about it?
No, she does not know. She passed away in a freak accident 10 months ago. If she was alive and informed about this post, she would have said: Don’t you have any other topic to write about for your blog?
Aval avan uyirin uyir (She was his life’s life)