Sunday, February 20, 2022

Rava Dosa

Yesterday night I made Rava Dosa for my dinner. My thoughts went to about 30 or so years ago. 

At that time, it is considered very difficult to make rava dosa at home. It does not turn out like we eat at restaurants. Even now, in many households, they would rather eat rava dosa at a restaurant than making it at home. 

My parents visited my cousin for a few days long time ago. She made rava dosa for them. My parents praised the rava dosa she made and how they enjoyed eating it and sipping coffee with each bite. 

My wife was an expert cook even though she never entered a kitchen until she married me.  She taught her sister in laws how to make rava dosa.

Nowadays it is very easy to make rava dosa. If you look up in YouTube, there are hundreds of videos teaching us how to make rava dosa. These include from renowned chef Venkatesh Bhat to hundreds of no name chefs. 

Here is one of the rava dosas I made last night.

Monday, February 14, 2022

One Idea Several People

There is a Hollywood movie, Marry Me, was released last week all over USA. Directed by Kat Coiro. 

In this movie, the heroine rejected her fiancé in the marriage alter and marries someone from the audience on the spot. The story is about how their life turned out after the wedding. 

Why I am writing about this? 12 years ago, September 16, 2009, I wrote a blog post titled “Random Thoughts about Marriage”. I mentioned about 4 real life incidents. I reproduce one incident here from that blog post. 

This happened in Mumbai, I was told. In those days there was a 3 year waiting list to get a vespa scooter. In a particular marriage, part of the dowry deal was the bride’s father should give the groom a vespa scooter on the marriage day. The marriage day came and the bride’s father could not deliver the vespa scooter because of the waiting list. He said he has the money and will give the money. This was not acceptable to the groom side. They argued and argued and argued in front of so many guests. Finally, the bride told the groom he has 10 minutes to decide. That 10 minutes came and gone. The groom was not willing unless a vespa scooter was produced. The bride took the mike and told the gathering as to what is happening and asked if any of the guests is willing to marry her that very minute. One of the groom’s friends came forward. Bingo. They both got married immediately. 

Did the producers of this movie “took” the idea from my blog post? Or more than one person can come up with the same idea? 

Something similar happened many years ago. 

We were in a get together in Chennai. The discussion was Tamil literature, particularly Silappatikaram, a Tamil Epic. It is a tragic love story of Kannagi and her husband Kovalan. As the story goes, the Pandya King in Madurai executes Kovalan by mistake on a false charge. Kannagi gets very mad and burns the entire city of Madurai in Tamil Nadu. 

I jokingly mentioned in that get together, Kannagi is the role model for the modern day political parties to burn and destroy public properties during protests and agitations. 

Much to my surprise, two years later, in a Tamil movie, the same sentence (Kannagi is the role model) was expressed. 

Did someone who was in that get together “took” the idea from there? Or more than one person can come up with the same idea?

Thursday, February 10, 2022

A page from the past

I just read an interesting news item. A couple from Japan were traveling to United States for vacation. Booked their tickets in economy class. The husband used his miles to upgrade his ticket to the business class. But did not upgrade his wife’s ticket. So, he ended up in Business class and she ended up in economy class for the 12 hour flight. 

The wife was not happy about it. She wanted to sit with him for the 12-hour flight. His argument is it is a night flight and everyone will be sleeping and therefore what is the point in sitting together. She got upset because she thought he chose business class over her and that is rude.

I suddenly remembered an incident in the past that happened to us. 

The year was 2009. I, my wife, and my son were traveling from San Francisco to London to see a few T20 World Cup cricket matches. We went to the San Francisco airport. We checked in using the self-service kiosk at the airport. My wife was upgraded to business class. Her name was selected at random. Now we have one business class and two economy class tickets. 

I went to the business class counter and explained the situation. I asked the agent if in any way she can upgrade me and my son also to the business class. 

Tup Tup Tup. Computer sound. A few phone calls by the agent. Could not hear what she was talking and to whom she was talking. Another Tup Tup Tup. Computer sound. 

She finally said – Today is your lucky day sir. I have authorization to upgrade you and your son also to the business class. 

We go inside the aircraft and take our seats. It so happened my wife’s business class seat was already given to a couple. The flight manager comes in. He said to me he is going to upgrade one person in our family of 3 to first class. 

My son said either me and or my wife should go to first class. My wife said either me or my son should go to first class. I told my son he should go to first class. My son asked me why.

I told him I and his mom are vegetarians. Since we were upgraded in the last minute, we are going to receive the same IVML (Indian Vegetarian meals) we would have received in the economy class. Since you (my son) are a non-vegetarian, go to first class and enjoy the best food and comfort. 

Half way into the flight, my wife and I peaked inside the first class. Everyone was sleeping except my son. We asked why he was not sleeping. He said he wants to enjoy the first class by being awake all the way. 

End of story.

Saturday, February 5, 2022

White Snow on Red

24th Winter Olympics began today in Beijing, China. 

Here are my observations. 

I saw the opening ceremony. My impression: Spectacular. 

Total of about 84 countries participated in the opening ceremony. 

USA has the greatest number of athletes – 224. China (host country) was second with 173 athletes. 

There are many countries with only one athlete participating. This includes India and Pakistan. All these athletes are competing in Alpine Skiing. 

India has one athlete (Arif Khan) in the Alpine Skiing event. But there were 4 people in the march-past. Who are the other 3? Coach, trainer, doctor? Or some Joint Secretaries from the Government of India? 

Pakistan has one athlete (Muhammad Abbas) in the Alpine Skiing event. But there were 4 people in the march-past. Who are the other 3? Coach, trainer, doctor? Or some senior officers from the army? 

USA boycotted this Olympics because of human right abuse in China against Muslim minorities Uighurs. But sent the athletes. India boycotted this Olympics for a different reason. It is because one of the Chinese commanders involved in the border clash was selected as a torch bearer. But sent 1 athlete. 

I was surprised Taipei (China) and Hong Kong were allowed to participate separately. 

NBC network is broadcasting this Olympics for USA. They are very shrewd. Here are the 3 things I noticed. 

1. They cut the program to show Chinese President Xi Jinping clapping hands when the Hong Kong athletes were marching. 

2. They cut the program to show Vladimir Putin sleeping when the Ukraine athletes were marching. 

3. I am irritated they were showing USA athletes more often than necessary. 

Will the Chinese leave anything without making their own propaganda? One of the 2 athletes who were torching the Olympic flame is a Uighur. 

I personally am interested to see only two events. 

Karen Chen from our own Bay Area (Fremont) is participating in the Figure Skating competition. 

USA vs Russia in Ice Hockey. This is analogues to India vs Pakistan in a cricket match.

Here is a video clip:  Unfortunately, NBC TV has disabled this video.  But you can watch it on YouTube.