Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Innovation??? Imitation??? Abomination?

I don't know what to decide but what do you think????

They do know its christmas time...again.

I am paraphrasing the song by Band Aid to illustrate my point about Christmas time for some being not only about giving but taking. Even forcefully! And (sometimes) through intimidation. No am not talking about thugs who generally hang around with the likes of Vermin but actually more normal gentle folk who become thugs during Xmas and Sinhalese New year. People like the postman and the guy who collects the garbage. And some, who we do not know, turn up at our doorstep brandishing lists insinuating that life as we know it will not be the same if we don’t make use of this season of cheer to make them happy through a generous donation.
First the postman came with a list. We did the honors. Then there was another guy who delivers registered letters. Till then I thought the postman delivered registered letters as well. But I stand corrected and he too got a donation. We drew the line when a third guy appeared with a list claiming he was the “Old/previous” postman.
I must say I was impressed with the quality of the lists these people were bringing over. It was quite well done. Not the usual full scrap sheet with hand drawn lines. Someone had taken the trouble of setting this up on a computer and actually developing a heartwarming intro intended to make the reader tip more generously.
Much to their chagrin a few garbage collectors have discovered that some of their more unscrupulous mates have beaten them to the punch by going earlier to the doors of potential donors.
I don’t resent the fact that one should give something to those who make our life more comfortable with the services they carry out. But I certainly don’t want to feel like that I am making a donation because I have to. And these days to many of these people it is an entitlement not a gift given at ones discretion. Which to me is wrong.



Sunday, December 18, 2011

An ode to bacon - Shenoj de Alwis

 Oh sweet bacon that comes from above,
You had me at hello – it was pure piggy love.
You are everything I need or wanted in a meat.
With your sweet taste on my tongue, I feel so darn complete.

I love to watch you sizzle and pop on that grill.
Your oozing fat’s delicious, your texture is a thrill.
You get along with everyone but can stand on your own.
If taste was a kingdom, you’d have a porky throne.

I come before you now to get down on my knee.
If you say yes, dear Bacon, I’d just die in jubilee.
I’d love you till forever, I’d never say goodbye.
The day I’d stop loving is the day that piglets fly.

I found this on a FB comment thread. Am sure it was written on impulse. So I thought it deserved a more permanent place on the web hence this post. I love bacon.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Rock on!


Well this little article has nothing to do with rock music at all. I just thought it was an intriguing title to seduce readers into an otherwise boring subject about shower stall flooring. Well I just changed mine from the normal tiles to natural stone (or Kalu Gal) with the uncut (rough) surface. What I could not believe is the impact it had on my – for the lack of a better word – showering experience. It was a complete transformation which has to be experienced to believe. The fact that your feet are on natural stone makes your shower as refreshing as bathing from a spout or under a water fall. Isn’t the power of nature amazing?

Dutch Hospital and Ministry of Crab!


Now us Sri Lankans have the perfect excuse to go out and have a good time and when asked by irritated boss/spouse/colleague say you had to go to hospital with a straight face. And that’s thanks to the opening of the new Dutch Hospital complex in Fort recently. I must confess they have done a remarkable job of renovating the place and it really looks lovely. You do need to ignore the few dogs who roam inside along with the rats and the stares of the military guarding the place. I happened to visit the place with my chums AJ and CT on the opening night of “Ministry of Crab”. We had made reservations without realizing that it was their first day. Since MOC has still not got its liquor license we had to have our drinks at WIP which is a lovely cozy place opened by the Hilton. I was really impressed with the place and the ambience. In fact if we had not made our reservations at MOC we would have had dinner here. After downing a couple of drinks we strolled over to the MOC. Well the ambience was nice. The cooking area looked really nice as it was an open kitchen. I had gone through the menu on the internet and was looking forward to sample some of their Japanese specialties too. For those who don’t know this place is run by the same gentlemen who manages neonbashi. At least three items we asked for from the menu was not there and our dining experience was a bit diluted because the vegetable dish we ordered only came once we had finished our meal. And how was the food you might ask? Expensive is the first comment which comes to mind. The taste was ok. Definitely not out of this world. And if there was one thought we left MOC with was EXPENSIVE! Our bill for three people for one big crab weighing 1.5 kilos two portions of prawns and some rice and vegetables was 12k! No drinks. No dessert! Well as my friend CT commented we would have had a far better experience at “The Lagoon”. I heard the owner of the locations had a 400% mark up on his food sadly the experience he provides does not justify it. Maybe this average service could have been because it was their first day. So I shall go there once more before giving them up for good and running back into the warm embrace of my ever so lovely lagoon.
I also heard that Citrus Reef is starting a new fish restaurant aimed at Colombo Diners who can get their within an hour thanks to the new Southern Highway. Can’t wait for that to come true because I hear the prices are going to be really attractive.

Malnourished Santa!


I always believe that if you can’t do something right then you should not do it at all. But sadly I seem to belong to the minority. Where ever I go  these days I see these men dressed in red with some cotton wool as a beard and being an extremely bad imitation of Santa. It was really irritating but not enough to warrant a post. But then I was driving down Havelock Road the other day and saw the scrawny Santa above and I said to myself I have to write about this. Look at this guy. Does he have any resemblance to the Jolly Santa Clause in red which the good old coca cola company helped to popularize? He is more like what Santa would have been if he was born in some third world African Country ravaged by war, famine and disease! I could not help but feel terribly sorry for that poor fellow dancing in the hot sun wearing that stuffy costume I am sure he would have been boiled alive. But he did seem to set about his duties cheerfully and with lots of enthusiasm. I know if not for this work he would have been idling and we know what kind of mischief that can lead to.  But nevertheless I still feel sad that humans have to be exploited this way to make a few bucks, But what really makes this particular Santa more absurd is that he was encouraging people to drive into a Vehicle Battery Replacement shop.  A scene flashes across my mind. Of a couple driving and passing the mal nourished Santa. The driver turns to the passenger and says “Oh what a nice Santa  lets replace our car battery!” If only life works like that. I wish! I really question certain peoples decisions sometime?

Monday, December 12, 2011

The Mirror of Paradise - Asgar Hussain


I judged this book by the cover and am glad to say it was not a looser! Yeah!
We all know we should not do it. But I tend to do it most of the time. It is the rule, rather than the exception of my book buying addiction. Maybe it is because I don’t like hanging around the bookstore for hours on end virtually reading half of the book before I decide I should buy it.
But after nearly a lifetime of buying books I have realized I will buy a certain amount of losers regardless of me having browsed through it or not. And once again this book was a complete impulse purchase. I bought it because I liked the cover. And of course the author was known to another friend I knew. But wow it really turned out great. The book was a collection of short stories extremely cleverly written and the plots were amazing if I was being a bit critical I might say some of the endings were too abrupt. But in the end it was a wonderful relaxing reading experience. I relished every word I read. And I can’t wait to read it once more but this time I want a nice Old arrack and coke along with some hot cashew nuts while I savor each succulent word once more. Good job Mr. Asgar Hussain! Hats off to you!

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Obituary on hoardings!

A couple of days back a group director of Maharaja’s passed away. Almost immediately, all across the city hoardings sprouted up featuring a larger than life picture of this gentleman and a message of condolence.
I really don’t know what to make of it.
On one side a public display of grief from a company perspective is highly admirable. But on the other hand I do feel a shudder of revulsion pass over me as one part of me feel this gesture is in poor taste. A close relative of his told me I don’t think he would have appreciated it if he was alive. I for one did not know him well enough to comment. But one thing is for sure the day I go to meet my maker I would prefer my obituaries to be limited to the press.


PnS version of lampries.

Some of you purists out there are going to call me foul names and the connoisseurs of this fine food are going to damn me into eternal suffering in hell when they realize that this is actually a complimentary post instead of a critical one.  But do bear with me.
Firstly to call this packet a lampries –just because it is wrapped in a banana leaf – is an insult. It is like calling someone a mechanic because he is dressed in overalls or thinking someone is a doctor because he is wearing a white lab coat and carrying a stethoscope. But you cannot ask for it by any other name than lampries which ever outlet of Perera and Sons you decide to step into. Whilst it is not the authentic lampries like one would find at DBU and Green cabin I love what the guys have done. It is my kind of lampries. The “kana bona” mans lampries to say so in another way. To me it has all the goodness of a lampries plus more.
The first positive thing I noticed is that it is not tiny.  I feel full after consuming one. Also it has a decent sized piece of roast chicken, an egg as well quite a hot lunu thel dala added to it so it is quite spicy which is great for me. All in all I loved eating my PnS version of lampries and applaud them for having the guts to change it to suit our local palate instead of hiding behind authenticity. Well done gentlemen!

Good Restaurant(s) but Really Bad Situation:


Well I was out with some friends the other day and as we are all foodies the conversation got around to food. And of course somewhere down the line the discussion led to how unhygienic some of the so called “posh” restaurants were. Here are three horror stories which I wanted to share.
Gallery Café. Even though I have not had a proper meal there for a long time I step in frequently for coffee and dessert. Well it seems that there was a cockroach in the meal my friends parents were served there once. But what is worse is when they pointed it out to the chef and the manager they had been quite rude about it and even suggested that the cockroach had somehow flown over the wall and landed into the food.
A lady who was eating Salad at the Hilton nearly swallowed a worm with a forkful of rocket lettuce she was about to swallow. Fortunately someone saw the worm dangling and decided to stop her.
And finally I heard from a highly trust worthy source the gelato ice cream parlor at Odel was inspected by the CMC and they found the ice cream contaminated with the e-coli virus.
Well guess it seems that it is not only the cheap things which are no good in these so called Fine Dining restaurants. So be careful very very careful. Apparently the only hygienic and clean kitchen in Sri Lanka is supposed to be at the Airforce mess in thunmulla. 

Merv the Pervs foray in to the tea trade


Maybe I better use the word furore! Because somehow it seems more apt.
Remember a couple of weeks ago there was a crisis in the tea auctions? The average price of a kilo of tea went down by 10 – 20 rupees thereby depriving the country of over 100 million rupees of foreign revenue. I don’t believe the newspapers carried the real story behind these events. If they did I did not see them. So here goes. Apparently Merv the perv had wanted to get the transportation contract of Sri Lanka’s largest tea buyer. In order to encourage them to give him the contract he had been strong arming the Muslim owners of the company by making it difficult for their containers to move around. In fact I heard that one of the store managers of this company had been kidnapped too. As a symbol of protest – as well as because they were unable to transport the goods - the owners of the company had refrained from buying at the tea auctions for one day resulting in this sad situation. Fortunately sanity prevailed and more powerful people got involved and this situation was brought under control. But it is indeed sad to see the state of the society we live in.

New cool and interesting places to stay in Colombo!


I was looking for some digs for one of my friends visiting Sri Lanka in December and was amazed to find the new mid priced (Roughly 70 U.S Dollars) accommodations Colombo had to offer. I just thought I should share/save them on here for future reference though a simple search through trip advisor would yield the same results. Tripadvisor! What a great invention. These were some of the places I discovered.

Lakelodge down Alvis place. Casasusana in believe it or not Galle Face courts on top of German Restaurant. A place I have been frequenting so much without realizing there was a hotel right above my head. And of course Colombo haven which is situated near the Carnival ice cream parlor on the Galle Road.

Colombo Haven had such great reviews that I suggested to my friend he stays there and I am relieved to say it lived up to its reputation. My friend was gushing with praise about how good and friendly they were. And what an enjoyable time he had.

There were also two properties which were getting lambasted by clients. One was the Colombo City Hotel just outside WTC and the other a place called Ranjiths Ambalama? I have not been able to figure out where it is situated yet though it is supposed to be somewhere down Torrington Avenue. You have to see the reviews to believe how terrible these people have been! In fact if not for the negative reviews I would have suggested Colombo City Hotel as the first choice to my friend.
Isn’t this a great example of the power of the information age where bad service and cheating cannot be kept under wraps.
More power to those of us who are on the net and take the trouble and effort to share our experiences.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Interview for a CEO

A Large Australian Company advertised for a CEO, but only had one applicant,
whom they weren't enthused about, and so decided to give him a test
Irish Math Test
A Irishman wants a job, but the company won't hire him until he passes a little math test.
Here is your first question, the Chairman said. "Without using numbers, represent the number 9."
"Without numbers?" The Irishman says? "Dat is easy." And proceeds to draw three trees.
"What's this?" the Chairman asks.


"Have you ain't got no brain? Tree and tree plus tree makes 9" says the Irishman.

"Fair enough," says the Chairman. "Here's your second question. Use the
same rules, but this time the number is 99."

The Irishman stares into space for a while, then picks up the picture that
he has just drawn and makes a smudge on each tree... "Ere you go."




The boss scratches his head and says, "How on earth do you get that to represent 99?"
"Each of da trees is dirty now. So, it's dirty tree, and dirty tree, plus dirty tree. Dat makes 99."
The Chairman is getting worried that he's going to actually have to hire this Irishman, so he says, "All right, last question. Same rules again, but represent the number 100."

The Chairman looks at the attempt. "You must be nuts if you think that represents a hundred!"
The Irishman leans forward and points to the marks at the base of each tree and whispers, "A little dog come along and poop by each tree.
So now you got dirty tree and a turd, dirty tree and a turd, and dirty tree
and a turd, which makes ONE HUNDRED!"

That Irishman is now head of Qantas

The One Liners

* I asked my new girlfriend what sort of books she's
interested in,
She said: Cheque books.

*****
* The easiest way to make your old car run better, is
to check the prices of new car.
*****
* Q: What is the difference between men and pigs?

A:Pigs don't turn into men when they drink.
*****
* Q:What's the difference between a good lawyer and a
great lawyer?
A: A good lawyer knows the law. A great lawyer knows the judge.
*****
* Nurse: A beautiful woman who holds your hand for one
full minute and then expects your pulse to be normal.
*****
* Boss: We are very keen on cleanliness. Did you wipe
your feet on the mat as you came in?
New employee: Yes, sir.
Boss: We are also keen on truthfulness. There is no mat.
*****
* Q: Why dogs don't marry?

A: Because they are already leading a dog's life!
*****
* Q: What's the diff between mother & wife?
A: One woman brings you into the world crying & the other ensures
you continue to do so.
*****
* Q: Singh enters kitchen, opens sugar container, looks inside and
closes it. He does this again and again. Why?

A: Because his Doctor told him to check sugar level regularly.
*****
What's the difference between a good secretary and a personal secretary?
One says "Good morning, boss". The other says "It's morning, boss."

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

The need to communicate...


This picture was taken in a bungalow deep inside (35kms from the main entrance) the Wilpattu national park. If you look very closely at the picture you will realize a cell phone has been kept on a chair which has been kept on top of a ledge so that it can connect to the Dialog network in order an “incoming” call can be received. I have stayed in this bungalow before and know this for a fact. Only when I saw this did it make me realize that what a powerful need the ability to communicate is?
And I guess this need to keep in touch to connect increases by leaps and bounds when you are stuck in the middle of nowhere. It reminded me of a little bit of trivia which I gathered from Nat Geo that the human brain processes loneliness in the same area which pain is processed. That is why loneliness is such a destructive emotion. And we are coming in to the season where loneliness reaches its peak some resulting in suicide. Yes it’s the season to be jolly. Christmas!

CHINESE PROVERBS....

Man who wants pretty nurse, must be patient.

Passionate kiss, like spider web, leads to undoing of fly.

Better to be pissed off than pissed on.

Lady who goes camping must beware of evil intent.

Squirrel who runs up woman's leg will not find nuts.

Man who leaps off cliff jumps to conclusion.

Man who eats many prunes get good run for money.

War does not determine who is right, it determines who is left.

Man who fight with wife all day get no piece at night.

It takes many nails to build a crib, but one screw to fill it.

Man who drives like hell is bound to get there.

Man who stands on toilet is high on p0t.

Man who live in glass house should change clothes in basement.

Man who fish in other man's well often catch crabs.

Finally CONFUCIUS SAY. . ......

"A lion will not cheat on his wife, but a Tiger Wood!"
(I've added)

Man with hole in pocket feel "cocky" all day

Girl sitting on jockey's lap get 'hot tip'

Man who tap around pubic area is 'beating round the bush'

Saturday, November 19, 2011

"Live Band" is it an alternative to a "Dead Band"


How many times have you been bombarded with the statement “With LIVE Band”? Especially in adverts for restaurants and bars. Yesterday I think I saw and heard this phrase three times which set my mind wandering. If they are advertising a “Live Band” it automatically begs the question is there a “Dead Band” out there somewhere? Maybe certain unscrupulous businessmen use bodies of dead people posing with musical instruments to dupe customers into believing that there are musicians performing. I know it is gruesome. And it would be that much easier to get some mannequins instead. Or is this an alternative to certain places playing performances of concerts through DVD. Or is this another uniquely Sri Lankan English word. Like Chinese Rolls? Do you know you can’t find Chinese Rolls in China and its only available (as far as I know) over here? What do you think??????

Friday, November 18, 2011

A nice touch by the Bavarian


As is my usual Friday routine my mates and I were ensconced in the dark bowels of the German Restaurant for a long lunch over one or two cold beers after a long hard week at work. Sadly beer for me was out of the question as I was suffering from a terrible sore throat. But the Brandy was as delightful thank you. Today the service was more outstanding than usual. And the food was heavenly. At the end of the meal when we were being served drinking water the waiter who had noticed that I was suffering from a cold had made sure I had a glass of warm water while the others were given cold water. Somehow this little gesture really touched me not only to write a post on here but also to write to the owner of the establishment and compliment him on the manner his staff treated/delighted customers. I know it is a very small gesture but I thought it showed that he was being really attentive to his client’s needs. And somehow this little act of thoughtfulness really made me feel warm and mushy inside. And of course go there even more often than before. Way to go Bavarian as one of my fellow Diners said “This is what you call service”!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Thinking the world is “JUST” can fuck us up!


I just got off the phone with a friend after an interesting conversation which has to be shared.
What she was saying is that people think that the world is just and fair. In other words good happens to those who do good and bad to those who do bad.
For instance if someone who is kind and generous and known for sharing his money wins a lottery everyone would say good for him he deserves it. On the flip side if a girl wearing revealing clothes, has a reputation for being drunk and walking around the street in the middle of the night gets mugged they would say she deserves it too. Somehow these values have been ingrained into our belief system and it can’t be erased out of our system.
But this messes us up in the long run. For instance if something bad happens to a normal human being they would decode it in their mind as it only happened because they are bad. This in the end leads to lots of guilt which that person carries around for years and years affecting their entire future and relationships as well. You can easily see this in kids who are abused in their young days they always think it is their fault.  
Interesting isn’t it? 

Confused’s Existential Anxiety


“I should be happy” says confused looking at me. “In fact I should be overjoyed”.

"I am living the life what most others dream about".

"I have a beautiful family and kids in fact people consider us picture perfect".

"I have a great job and career and I drive a nice vehicle".

"I  may not be a billionaire but I am financially comfortable. Sure I can always use more money but I don’t have to think twice about spending money on something".

"But yet I feel empty. I feel sad. I feel I am missing something".

"But I don’t know what it is".

"It seems that I have spent my entire life making other people happy I don’t know what makes ME happy any more".

"I provide care for so many people but I can’t seem to provide the required level of care for that person I care about the most".

"I have everything yet it seems I have nothing".

Monday, November 14, 2011

Aleph – Another addition to my growing Paulo Coelho collection


“If you want to see the rainbow you have to learn to like the rain”
This was just one of the beautiful sentences which kept me mesmerized this weekend and up way too late I might add. Such beautiful words! Rich in depth yet so simple and elegant. To me reading most books by Paulo Coelho is as divine a experience as enjoying the double chocolate cheese cake at Paradise Road Gallery Café – savored slowly, one spoonful at a time.
It was completely by accident that I discovered that he had a new book out. I was browsing through PC’s Face Book fan page and blog whilst chilling out in my office den on a poya day and happened to play a video completely by accident which turned out to be the trailer for Aleph his new book.  The moment it dawned on me that a new book was out my heart started beating fast! I started sweating and was agog with excitement. I HAD to get my hands on this new book right then. Fortunately for me Vijitha Yapa Crescat- yes one of the few book stores open on poya days - had a few copies available and I rushed there like a drug addict running to get his fix and heaved a sigh of relief when the copies were finally in my hands.
I am glad to report that my reading experience of Aleph lived up to expectation.
In fact it seems that it exceeded my friend RC’s expectation who I also got a copy for because she says that it was the best book she read of his so far. Personally I thought it was “Eleven Minutes” or the “The Zahir”. But then each to his own at least that is what I say.
It also dealt with a subject that I have been thinking about a lot the past few days. Specially due to the current situation I am experiencing in my life right now. Do the people whose lives we have affected in a previous life (positively or negatively) come back into the presnt? As a Christian who worships in a charismatic church these kinds of subjects are considered taboo. But still I can’t help but wonder? 

Friday, November 11, 2011

So…



It has been a long time since I wrote something on here. It is not that I have had nothing to write about. In fact a lot has been going on in my life. But for some strange reason I have not had the inclination to write about it on here because it has been too painful.  14 years ago I lost someone close to me and I thought I would never experience pain as bad as that. But it seems I was wrong. Maybe over the years I have gone soft.  Metaphorically that is because I have grown soft literally. Or pain is pain and after a certain point you can’t feel a difference regardless of the degree. I don’t know. Once again I lost someone close to me and it bloody hurts.
In Eat Pray Love the book it says to forget someone you deeply care for you need to go to someplace far away from that person. That’s exactly what I want to do sometimes. Just drop everything and runaway. Get out and forget everything. But sadly that is easier said than done. There is a huge roadblock blocking my way. A 16 letter word which says Responsibilities!!!! Thank goodness for my partner in pain RC and Eckhart Tolle without who I would have definitely gone over the edge.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Cat fights :(


Why do seemingly normal people turn out into absolute bitches when confronted with a member of the same sex who they consider a threat?
Well guess it is a Million Dollar question which no one has found the answer to yet? And I doubt they will do so in the future.
But I faced a situation the other day where two ladies who I work with pretty closely fought like absolute cats. Even though this fight was a nonphysical one – it was done via email – one could sense the viciousness and hatred emanating from this exchange. And when probed it seems the main cause of it is due to jealousy. Each person is jealous of the other and the worst part is I am stuck between the two trying to balance everything. Trust me this is no easy task. It was started by the office bully S who over reacted to a simple email by K and then boy didn't the fireworks start to flow. But in the end it was K who I felt sorry for because she did not realize that S was manipulating her to react in that manner. 
What they say about hell hath no fury like a woman scorned is absolutely true.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Eat Pray Love - the novel!


Read it! Read it! Read it!
Even if you have seen the movie. Because it is far deeper and actually is full of interesting facts for those of us who are seekers of a more spiritual way of life.  I did and was accused of being a chick in a man’s body. But enjoyed it tremendously nevertheless. It is one of the few instances in life where the book and movie complement one another. I have only found two other such situations. One was Silence of the lambs series with Anthony Hopkins and of course the twilight series. But be forewarned the standard edition of the book has really small lettering and could be hard to read. Well at least for me it was.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

More conversations with confused: The parting


Confused sits in front of me. Stares at me desperately and says:
“It happened.
We decided to part.
It hurts. No it hurts terribly.
One part of me screams go bring her back
Fight for her
But logic raises its ugly head
For what it asks?
So that you can have another fight?
Another argument over something trivial?
Because we are both frustrated at what could have been…
We have seen what heaven might be like
Even though it was through a thick impenetrable glass pane
So the logical part of me dictates to my heart
and I am doing my level best to ensure that we remain apart
Because in the end it is the best for her.
Because I still care for her
After all what can I offer her?
A secret visit?
A quiet journey far away
Away from the eyes of the public
I got too many responsibilities
Too many commitments
I can’t even go out with her
Hold her hand and go for a walk or dance with her
Be there with her when a new year dawns
I just wish fate had not been so cruel and decided to connect us
Just for a few moments… instead of a lifetime.
Yet I am grateful
For the brief moments we shared
For the gentleness that I experienced
For a brief glimpse of true happiness.

A rant about prostitution


This was originally a comment to a post by Lady Divine here. But it became so long winded and serious I thought I might as well post it on my blog instead of venting on her page which would be uncool to say the least.
I always find it incredibly sad how people look down on "Prostitution" and have so much negative attitude towards them. In my experience most of the time it is the females who look down on other female prostitutes the most. I do not know why that is? In fact I think it is downright cruel. I personally feel that a female would have empathized more.  I think I would feel sad if I know someone who has to go down that route because that would mean he/she would be in a desperate predicament. But I would also admire that person’s determination, courage and strength and Love. Yes Love! Because I know it is not easy and you would have to really care for someone to lay down your dignity for them.  At least they make some money out of when there are thousands of others who have to "Sleep" with their spouses for free; not because they want to but because they feel obliged to.

Monday, October 10, 2011

What do you do???


When you see someone destroying her life in front of you?

Where whatever you say falls on deaf ears.

Where parents are so dysfunctional they are blind or refuse to see what’s happening.

Where everyone around is doing what little they can to push her over the edge.

Where your hands are tied and you have tried it all and there is nothing else to do?

What can one do other than pray and leave it in God’s hands…… 

...and wait for the miracle.

Have you discovered Michal Angelo????


See how our minds jump to conclusions. I used to pass this pizza parlour on the Nawala Rajagiriya road quite frequently but never gave it a second glance because I never thought a pizza place worth its salt would situate itself in this kind of neighborhood. But suddenly I began to hear whispers of how good they were and when a colleague of mine who is absolutely critical of food started waxing eloquent about how nice the pizzas were I had to give it a try.
I must confess I was not disappointed.
The pizzas were quite good. In fact my kids were over the moon with the cheese lovers pizza. Well I must confess I was too. It was the first time I have enjoyed a completely cheese pizza.
Apparently the owner of this place is the ex of the Italian lady who runs Regina Margherita. Though he is of Sri Lankan descent he seems to have mastered the art of making pizza better than an Italian. He is also quite a genial chap though he looks quite unapproachable at first. He was generous enough to give me some salad thing which was really nice. According to him the best way to enjoy Michal Angelo’s pizza is to dine in at their tiny restaurant because you can enjoy it straight out of their wood fired oven with their fresh condiments. Hmmm that’s what I am going to do next!
For those who are interested they do deliver on 0722612612 but they are yet to accept credit cards. 

Monday, October 3, 2011

Conversations with confused: The season of reason


“They say people come into our life for a reason and for a season” confused tells me.
“We need to welcome them with open arms but more importantly need to let them go without clutching at them when it is time to depart.”
“Sadly that's a problem I am having trouble with. It seems I can't let go. I am clutching desperately. Like a drowning man reaching for a blade of grass”.
“So much so I am beginning to be sick of myself.”
“Maybe because she came to me just like a wounded bird. A bird, that I had to pick up and care for nd make strong. Who was helpless and would not have survived without me.  I cared and I protected and I watched her heal. Regain the strength bit by bit. Yes, I admit I have become attached to her. Maybe the act of caring for her gave me meaning to my life gave me a sense of worth. But now the wounds have healed and she is ready to fly away.
“Gosh I wish I did not feel this way. Wish God had given me a thick skin where I did not feel anything or made me blind to the little cracks which seem to appear as large as the Grand Canyon to me.”
“I don’t think even she knows the transformation which is taking place in her”. But I know for a fact that it is the beginning of the end.”

Friday, September 30, 2011

Lie about the truth? Tell the truth about the lie?


One of my friends cum colleagues has also taken upon himself that he needs to serve the people and therefore has decided to contest in the local elections. I was waxing eloquent about how wonderful it would be to have someone with private sector thinking in power in the municipal councils to some of my colleagues when someone said something which was like dropping a bomb. Quite literally!
“If anyone knew how he conducts his business they would never vote for him”
How true it was. It was easy for me criticize politicians failing to see the evidence right before my eyes. It seems quite hypocritical now.
The truth is he ran his business in a terrible manner. Unorganized Unplanned Unprepared and Uninformed could be described as his management philosophy. To this date I am surprised how his company manages to make profits. If he can run a company so badly I would hate to imagine what he would do in the municipal council. Now I am supposed to go and canvass votes for him something I loathe to do because I know I will be lying. But then I really can’t go out in to the world and share the truth can I???

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Powerless's Pity Party


I have written about powerless before and how life has been absolutely cruel to her.
But on the other hand I feel she is quite happy to wallow in her discontent and not do anything about it. Other than complain continuously that it is “karma” and “I have lots of issues” etc. Sometimes I feel like giving her a good slap to shock her back into reality and say “wake up!” Sure things are bad for you. But it could have been a helluva lot worse. There are people with far greater problems than you have and they are managing to stand up. Sitting on your ass and feeling sorry for yourself is not going to get you anywhere. Be angry about the unfairness of it all and use that anger to be strong. To fight. To stand up against all this unfairness. Ultimately it is only you who can help yourself.
But so far I have restrained myself. I don't know why. I know it is the wrong thing to say. But gosh I am coming close to breaking point. Hmmmmm patience! Patience! Patience!

Great Quotes! Greater Truth!

1. In my many years I have come to a conclusion that one useless man is a
shame, two is a law firm and three or more is a congress.
-- John Adams

2. If you don't read the newspaper you are uninformed, if you do read the
newspaper you are misinformed.
-- Mark Twain

3. Suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a member of Congress. But
then I repeat myself.
-- Mark Twain

4. I contend that for a nation to try to tax itself into prosperity is like
a man standing in a bucket and trying to lift himself up by the handle.
-- Winston Churchill

5. A government which robs Peter to pay Paul can always depend on the
support of Paul.
-- George Bernard Shaw

6. A liberal is someone who feels a great debt to his fellow man, which debt
he proposes to pay off with your money.
-- G. Gordon Liddy

7. Democracy must be something more than two wolves and a sheep voting on
what to have for dinner.
-- James Bovard, Civil Libertarian (1994)

8. Foreign aid might be defined as a transfer of money from poor people in
rich countries to rich people in poor countries.
-- Douglas Casey, Classmate of Bill Clinton at Georgetown University

9. Giving money and power to government is like giving whiskey and car keys
to teenage boys.
-- P.J. O'Rourke, Civil Libertarian

10. Government is the great fiction, through which everybody endeavors to
live at the expense of everybody else.
-- Frederic Bastiat, French economist(1801-1850)

11. Government's view of the economy could be summed up in a few short
phrases: If it moves, tax it. If it keeps moving, regulate it. And if it
stops moving, subsidize it.
-- Ronald Reagan (1986)

12. I don't make jokes. I just watch the government and report the facts.
-- Will Rogers

13. If you think health care is expensive now, wait until you see what it
costs when it's free!
-- P.J. O'Rourke

14. In general, the art of government consists of taking as much money as
possible from one party of the citizens to give to the other.
-- Voltaire (1764)

15. Just because you do not take an interest in politics doesn't mean
politics won't take an interest in you!
-- Pericles (430 B.C.)

16. No man's life, liberty, or property is safe while the legislature is in
session.
-- Mark Twain (1866)

17. Talk is cheap...except when Congress does it.
-- Anonymous

18. The government is like a baby's alimentary canal, with a happy appetite
at one end and no responsibility at the other.
-- Ronald Reagan

19. The inherent vice of capitalism is the unequal sharing of the blessings.
The inherent blessing of socialism is the equal sharing of misery.
-- Winston Churchill

20. The only difference between a tax man and a taxidermist is that the
taxidermist leaves the skin.
-- Mark Twain

21. The ultimate result of shielding men from the effects of folly is to
fill the world with fools.
-- Herbert Spencer, English Philosopher (1820-1903)

22. There is no distinctly Native American criminal class...save Congress.
-- Mark Twain

23. What this country needs are more unemployed politicians.
-- Edward Langley, Artist (1928-1995)

24. A government big enough to give you everything you want, is strong
enough to take everything you have.
-- Thomas Jefferson

25. We hang the petty thieves and appoint the great ones to public office.
-- Aesop
FIVE BEST SENTENCES

1. You cannot legislate the poor into prosperity, by legislating the wealth
out of prosperity.

2. What one person receives without working for...another person must work
for without receiving.

3. The government cannot give to anybody anything that the government does
not first take from somebody else.

4. You cannot multiply wealth by dividing it.

5. When half of the people get the idea that they do not have to work,
because the other half is going to take care of them, and when the other
half gets the idea that it does no good to work, because somebody else is
going to get what they work for, that is the beginning of the end of any
nation!

Can you think of a reason for not sharing this?

Neither could I......

Monday, September 26, 2011

...of old flames and coincidences!


 What a way to start the week… I was turning into the gym this morning and had to make way for a lady who was driving out. I could not help but think how familiar that face behind the wheel was. And then it strikes me like a bolt of lightning she is someone I knew very well many, many years ago. Virtually from a different lifetime.
This was during the late 80s when Fresh by Kool and the Gang was a hit and Miami Sound Machine had made it big. I was young and single then but definitely a bad apple considered the black sheep of the family. The worst nightmare parents with daughters could dream of. Somehow we met and our lives became intertwined. And when our parents found out there was hell to pay. She was from a high society Jaffna Tamil family and me well I was a nobody with no one and no money to boot. The fact that I used to be a DJ, smoke like a chimney, drink like a fish, had no qualifications or any idea of what I wanted to do when I grew up did not help to endear me to her parents. And as the fury of the opposition increased the passion died and our relationship ended. I had not seen or heard of her since then.
Well until now that is.
Just to be doubly sure if this was the person who I thought it was I double checked at the reception. I was absolutely right. We had not seen each other in maybe 20 years but her face remained the same. From the way the staff were referring to her, she has been a member of the gym for some time just like me. It seems we have been missing each other by a few minutes every day as she comes early in the morning and leaves roughly half an hour before I walk in to the gym. It was an absolute coincidence that our paths had crossed today. She has arrived late thereby the delay in completing her work out. I on the other hand never go to the gym on Mondays due to a morning meeting which is part of my schedule on a permanent basis. However today it was canceled. Last week the scaled had tipped beyond 100 kg and I wanted to renew the war I was waging with my ever expanding waist line. Hence the move to squeeze in some additional time at the gym.
I wonder what made our paths cross after all these years. Was it mere coincidence or was it fate? I wonder if she recognized me as I did her. I did find her on FB and send her note saying “hello did you see me?” and I wonder if I will get a reply? Guess time will answer all these questions.

Somehow this was what I was listening to as I typed this post.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Brilliant Joke!!!


I generally don't put up jokes but the following are so good I cant help but share them. 


A woman was enjoying a good game of golf with her girlfriends. "Oh, no!" she suddenly exclaimed. "Look at the time! I have to rush home and fix dinner for my husband! He'll be so annoyed if it's not ready on time."

When she got home, she discovered all she had in the fridge was a wilted lettuce leaf, an egg, and a can of cat food.. With no time to go to the supermarket, she opened the can of cat food, stirred in the egg, and garnished it with the lettuce leaf.
She greeted her husband warmly when he came home, and then watched in horror as he sat down to his dinner. To her surprise, he seemed to be enjoying it.

"Darling, this is the best dinner you've made me in 40 years of marriage! You can make this for me any day?"

Needless to say, every golf day from then on, the woman made her husband the same dish. She told her golf partners about it, and they were all horrified. "You're going to kill him!" they exclaimed!?

Two months later, her husband died. The women were sitting around the clubhouse, and one of them said, "You killed him! We told you that feeding him that cat food every week would do him in! How can you just sit there so calmly knowing you murdered your husband?"

The wife stoically replied, "I didn't kill him. He fell off the windowsill while he was licking his arse."

Parliamentarians English Exam (PEE)

I don't think is true but then you couldn't expect more from the donkeys in
parliament today. Click on picture to read. It is hilarious.

In Mexico ONLY....

FOUR GRAVESTONES IN MEXICO
(These are actual grave stones..English translation provided on the right!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Hook Line and (you) Stinker!!!!


What’s worse than sharing a racist joke with someone - a very bad racist joke at that – and have that person tell you quite seriously that her blood line from her mom’s side includes the race you were slurring?
Realizing that she was pulling your leg! And that the joke was on you.
What makes it worse?
Spending a fair amount of time trying to cover up that “Oh Shit!” moment. To realize it has all been in vain.
I will get you next time my friend. You know who you are.
Evil smile!!!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Learnings from buying an ipod?


“An i-phone!”
“Or I pad!”
“Or I pod Touch”
“That’s what I need for my Birthday!”
Steve jobs would have had a tear in his eye and a smug smile on his face if he heard my daughter give me the multiple options of what she wanted for her birthday. Well since the phone and pad were definitely out of the question I had no option but to settle on the i-pod. Now some time back over work related matters I had met up with the agents for apple products in Sri Lanka which was a company called Future world. Not BT Options which is generally associated with Apple in Sri Lanka. Anyway when they were making their sales pitch what they were telling me was that their prices would be cheaper than any other supplier since they were the main agents in Sri Lanka after all. This information made so much sense I accepted it unquestioningly. So much so I went and bought her ipod from future world without even checking the prices of other suppliers.
“Never believe a sales guy completely” these were the first words which went through my mind as I realized that the price of the same model was a couple of thousand bucks cheaper at BT options. And what more they fill the ipod you buy with over a 1000 songs a couple of applications and movies absolutely free. A service which I had to pay 5000/- for since I had not been wise enough to compare the prices before and buy it from them. But what I really appreciate is they were really nice to me. I expected them handle me with a bit of surliness as I had not bought the equipment from them. But that was not the case. The sales lady who served me would have spent a good three hours loading the ipod with all the songs and stuff but she cheerfully told me that if my daughter did not like the music on it she would gladly sit with her once more and go through their database of 50,000 songs and reload it without any additional charge. I must confess this floored me. Naturally I couldn’t ask my daughter what she liked cos this was a kind of surprise and I was willing to pay again if necessary if I had to change the collection. Somehow I had thought BT Options were extremely expensive and quite uppity but my experience completely changed my opinion of them.  I was touched by how nice they were to me. So much so it will be to BT options I will be running when I have to make another purchase which is going to happening quite soon. 

Sunday, September 18, 2011

A salute to the staff of the lagoon

I love dining at the lagoon. In fact I guess it has become my favourite restaurant. Not only because the food is outstanding but also because the service is as good. I was there the other day and once again was delighted to see that the service levels have not deteriorated. I am a firm believer that it is the little things which make a big difference. And even in this instance it were those tiny insignificant acts which made our experience so memorable and worthy of a post in me blog. Also it reiterated the fact that we had made the right choice when deciding on this location.
Initially we were seated outside and I ordered a pack of ciggerrets since I had left mine in the vehicle. However it started raining the moment the fags arrived and we had to move inside into an area which was non smoking. I asked them "IF" I could return them since I didn't need them anymore. And of course they obliged without a fuss. I am sure it would have been an ordeal to get the item removed from the bill with their electronic systems that's why I appreciate this gesture very much. Even when we wanted to move to a table in a quieter area which was reserved once again they were happy to accomodate our request. And then came the final act of kindness which was the icing on the cake. I was dining with a friend whose wife was kind of stressed out because he was spending too much time working. So he asked if he could have some of those complimentary mint chocolates which they bring to the table to take home for her cos she loves them. The waiter actually gave him an enitre little tub the size of a yoghurt container filled to the brim with these chocolates. Now you might think a little tub was not that many but it was much more than we were expecting and it was done so spontaneously we were both overjoyed. It was the perfect ending to a delicious meal. Yes the food was amazing specially the fried calamari with tamarind sauce. So here I am ending my post by tipping my hat (with words) to the staff of the lagoon "thank you my friends for all your kindness keep the good work up"! Because I will be back sooner than later to experience your generosity once more.


Tuesday, September 13, 2011

The Cute little "unpretentious" coffee shop I discovered.

In the era of coffee shops sprouting all over Colombo like a bad disease with ridiculous prices and even more ridiculous names I consider it a gem of a find to discover this unassuming little shop down Fife Road Colombo 5.

While the digs were humble and down to earth, there was nothing humble about the pedigree of the product they serve. In fact one could describe it as legendary. What we don't realize is this is the same coffee we drink at some of the finer restaurants. And to my unrefined tongue it tastes as good as the more expensive international brands here in the market. Like Lavazza and illy or I might even venture to say even better because it is fresher.
I am sure to have heard of Hansa coffee? The place I am talking about is a tiny little shop which they have opened as a sales outlet. I believe subsequently someone would have realized the best way to sell the coffee is to get people to taste it and the location evolved into a coffee shop. It does not have the glitz and shine of a barista or any of the other unpronounceables. But the moment you step in you can't help but fall in love with the homely atmosphere of the place. You might think you stepped into a quaint little cottage in Nuwara Eliaya or Haggala maintained by sweet nuns. Coming to think of it the nun metaphor is quite apt because the iced coffee shake I had was absolutely heavenly and a large take away cup set me back by only 150 bucks. And when I checked the menu out I realized all the items were highly reasonable in price though the variety was not much when it came to things to eat. I think they are still going through a learning curve the service was not too great either. I had to wait a good five minutes before I was served and then they wanted 10 minutes for a cappuccino hence having to decide on the milk coffee shake. Worse of all the boy who served me was wearing rubber slippers which brought down the charm of the place a tad. But then ultimately the coffee was excellent and that is all that matters in the
end isn't it? Specially for chaps like me who can't stomach superficial pretentious crap.
I thought this was cute they were trying to make an extra buck by trying to rent a measly selection of DVDs but even in this case at 20 bucks to rent a movie for two days the price once again was really really attractive.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Rediscovering Reading

In the good old days I was an avid reader. Devouring a couple of books a week. Some people drink coco to sleep but in my case I needed a couple of pages of a book to sleep. I can remember once I was stranded without anything to read in Tissamaharama and was up all night. Till I found a detail leaflet which generally accompany medicine and started reading it like a drug addict finally getting his hands on his fix. But sadly during the past few months this reading habit had to be put on the back burner so to speak due to a lack of light. Yes as unbelievable as it might seem it is true. You see I use a little reading lamp which was homemade which throughout a shabby pool of dim light to read without waking my wife up. But as the years passed and I grew wiser it had a completely opposite effect on my sight. Nowadays the light was not sufficient to make the lettering visible.

But it all changed a couple of days ago when I spied a set of reading lamps in a shop window on my way to office from a meeting. Now all this time I have been looking for decent reading lamps. One for my study and one for the bed room but everyone which came across my path were either too expensive or just too shabby. Anyway these lamps were neither great looking nor extremely expensive which was perfect for me.

Now both these lamps are happily installed in my humble abode and I am delighted to say I am enjoying the pleasure of reading quite contentedly once more. Of course every silver cloud has a dark lining as it seems because now my problem is not getting enough sleep and it is a very sleepy me who is tapping away at this post right now. Yawwwwwn.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Another reason why you should strike while the iron is hot

In 1975, Kodak invented the digital camera—then stuck it in a safe lest it destroy its lucrative film business. By the time Kodak was ready to unleash its digital prowess, everyone from Canon to Sony was selling their own digital cameras. What a shame. What a crying shame and today Kodak is struggling because of the very thing they invented.

Necto and hair gel? The new high

In their constant search for happiness and Nirvana of any kind we Sri Lankans are quite ingenious in finding new ways to get high. I can remember when I was young it was coke and disprin. Then there was corexd and portello. I know some people who open the petrol tank of their Bikes and take a good deep breath of the fumes. Yesterday I heard that the latest combination to hit the streets of Colombo is to combine a small sachet of hair gel with necto. Apparently it only works with Necto and not with any other carbonated beverage. Makes me wonder if Gel and red bull might work too. I wonder if this is the brain child of some great marketing genius to help sales grow? Hmmm what will they think of next?

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Insulting through compliments

What a great example of reverse psychology by Iraj. I found this completely by accident when someone posted it on my facebook wall. If you look closely you will see what a scathing criticism it is of the terrible state our country’s police force is in. Yet so cleverly done that the authorities can’t complain.

What I found more interesting was how people on youtube had hijacked this song and done their own versions of it. Making it a great example of a 100% local viral campaign.

The sad thing is apparently the TV channels in Sri Lanka are scared to run this other than Derana. But my hats off to Iraj for his bold stand. Will he become the Eminem of Sri Lanka I wonder????


And the peoples version is below.