Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Prajjwala and Suneeta Krishnan

In a world where everyone is consumed with themselves and their well being here is a woman who is selfless and has dedicated her life to the betterment of others. Suneeta Krishnan was featured on the The Newshour with Jim Lehrer on PBS tonight. You can read the story at http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/health/jan-june07/trafficking_03-27.html

Suneeta Krishnan is the founder and Chief of Prajwala an organization that is dedicated to protecting and helping those that have been the victims of trafficking. You can learn more about Prajwala at http://www.prajwalaindia.org/

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Shashi Tharoor on Cricket and America

An excellent editorial in the New York Times --

Our Cricket Problem

LAST week, the greatest sporting event of the year in terms of audience began in Jamaica, when the West Indies beat Pakistan in the inaugural match of the 2007 Cricket World Cup. A six-week extravaganza follows -- 51 matches that are being monitored with nail-biting excitement around the world. The final, on Saturday, April 28, will take place in Barbados, but friends of mine in New York are already planning a World Cup party at the home of an expatriate with a satellite dish. The party will be attended by a raucous group of Indians and Pakistanis, Bangladeshis and Brits, Australians and Zimbabweans. But of course there will be no Americans.

No, it's not a case of ethnic discrimination. Call it willful ignorance. Americans have about as much use for cricket as Lapps have for beachwear. The fact that elsewhere in the civilized world grown men dress up like poor relations of Gatsby and venture hopefully into the drizzle clutching their bats invariably mystifies my American friends. And the notion that anyone would watch a game that, in its highest form, could take five days and still end in a draw provokes widespread disbelief among results-oriented Americans.

Friday, March 23, 2007

On Reading to Write...

Tom Ashbrooke interviewed Francine Prose, novelist, essayist and literary critic. She's taught literature and writing for more than twenty years and is the author of fourteen books of fiction including "A Changed Man" and "Blue Angel." Her new book is "Reading Like A Writer: A Guide for People Who Love Books and For Those Who Want to Write Them."

Prose has some very simple yet lucid thoughts on how to become a good writer. Seems like plain commomn sense to me. Here are a couple of quotes from her book--

"Instead of looking at works and point out what is wrong with them, why not look at brilliant works and see how they did it."
"Writing can not be taught but learned, and most writers including myself learned by reading."
"Like most, maybe all, writers, I learned to write by writing and, by example, from books."

Many many more fascinating thoughts in her book, "Reading Like A Writer: A Guide for People Who Love Books and For Those Who Want to Write Them."

Sunday, March 18, 2007

The Stay at Home Mom

I am a stay at home mom and proud of it. I believe that I have one of the most mentally and physically demanding jobs on the planet. Recently, standing at my kitchen counter sipping on my hot cappuccino, I was shocked and angry when I read an article about philosopher, Linda Hirshman and her statement that the best place for an intelligent woman is in the workplace and not at home.

In an article in the American Prospect this self-proclaimed intellectual reportedly wrote, “Housekeeping and child-rearing are not worthy of the full time talents of intelligent and educated human beings.” And then there is her book titled, “ Get to Work: A manifesto for women of the world.” As if being a stay at home mom was a South Seas vacation.

It was also reported that death threats have become an occupational hazard for Hirshman and that she and her husband live in anonymity, fearful of what may happen. I wonder if this should even be surprising.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Six Sixers in Six Balls

World Cup 2007 Record 6-6s in a Single Over

An outstanding over in World Cup Cricket 2007, a match between Netherlands vs. South Africa. Herschelle Gibbs smashed six 6s in one single over. Absolutely fantastic and a world record, both in World Cup Cricket and ODI.

Here is the youtube link --

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

The Bangalore Globe Controversy!!!

Jobs are being outsourced in every sector so why not here?

Robert Gavin Reports -- "The Boston Globe's biggest labor union has begun an advertising campaign decrying the paper's plan to outsource the jobs of about 50 workers to India. In radio ads that began yesterday and in an ad published today in the Boston Herald, the Boston Newspaper Guild urges Globe readers and advertisers to call the newspaper and its parent company, The New York Times Co., to oppose the move . "It's the Boston Globe, not the Bangalore Globe," the print ad says. The Globe rejected publishing the ad "because it did not meet our standards," a spokesman said. In January, the Times Co.'s New England Media Group launched a buyout program to cut about 125 jobs at the Globe and Worcester Telegram & Gazette, including those being outsourced. Globe officials said the outsourcing decision is difficult, but necessary for the paper's long-term health."

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Teaching Religious Literacy

The NPR radio magazine "On Point" with host Tom Ashbrook, recently had an episode dedicated to "Teaching Religious Literacy". It was a very thought provoking discussion and really got me thinking.

Here is a capsule --

" Americans are among the most religious people on earth, if you ask if they believe. But if you dig a little deeper and ask for a few details on their religion or anyone else's, don't expect too much. Surveys show only half of Americans can name even one of the four Gospels -- never mind the four Noble Truths or Buddhism, or the Ten Commandments.
Religious studies scholar Stephen Prothero says that religious illiteracy is a serious problem in a world where so much conflict, politics and conviction is framed in religious terms. Such a big problem, he argues, that we need to start teaching religion in public schools to know what we're all talking about."

You can listen to the full show at the link below --

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Mass Transit Rocks!

It's high time that we the public, corporations and governement alike, started understanding the importance of mass transit, and realizing it's many benefits.

In todays New York Times in an article titled "Google’s Buses Help Its Workers Beat the Rush"-
"The perks of working at Google are the envy of Silicon Valley. Unlimited amounts of free chef-prepared food at all times of day. A climbing wall, a volleyball court and two lap pools. On-site car washes, oil changes and haircuts, not to mention free doctor checkups.
But the biggest perk may come with the morning commute.
In Silicon Valley, a region known for some of the worst traffic in the nation, Google, the Internet search engine giant and online advertising behemoth, has turned itself into Google, the mass transit operator. Its aim is to make commuting painless for its pampered workers — and keep attracting new recruits in a notoriously competitive market for top engineering talent.
And Google can get a couple of extra hours of work out of employees who would otherwise be behind the wheel of a car.
The company now ferries about 1,200 employees to and from Google daily — nearly one-fourth of its local work force — aboard 32 shuttle buses equipped with comfortable leather seats and wireless Internet access. Bicycles are allowed on exterior racks, and dogs on forward seats, or on their owners’ laps if the buses run full.
Riders can sign up to receive alerts on their computers and cellphones when buses run late. They also get to burnish their green credentials, not just for ditching their cars, but because all Google shuttles run on biodiesel. Oh, and the shuttles are free."

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Namesake - The Movie

I thoroughly enjoyed this movie, it was a gentle mix of drama, romance, and humor. It was great to see the mainstream American audience enjoy this with me as well.

As if there have not been enough reviews of the Namesake. Nevertheless I had to do my part. Read my review at

NPR Commentary on The Peace Train between India and Pakistan

This was an excellent commentary I heard on NPR this morning by Bilal Qureshi...

Morning Edition, March 6, 2007 · India and Pakistan are meeting for the first time to discuss ways to fight terrorism.

Thousands of people have died in sectarian and political attacks between India's Hindus and Pakistan's Muslims since the countries split in1947. Many families have been touched by the violence.


Friday, March 09, 2007

A turning point in Indian American Cinema...

I really enjoyed watching the Namesake and would recommend this movie to everyone I know.

Read my review at

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

India is favored again - BBC World Service Poll

So much media attention for India. It's increasing by leaps and bounds. Books being published, recently by Mira Kamdar and Ed Luce, talk about how this nation is becoming one of the more favored nations of the world, thanks to it's globalization and economic growth. The latest in this are teh results of the BBC World Service poll.

"In the latest BBC World Service poll (conducted by the firm GlobeScan), which asked 28,000 people around the world how they felt about other countries, India got positive marks from people in 17 countries but negative marks from only 3 countries. India appears to be the only South Asian country on the survey. Overall, Canada had the most favorable ratings. Israel, North Korea and the U.S. didn't do well at all. GlobeScan president Doug Miller said "India is the only country that has significantly improved its global stature in the past year, and is now even with China. Britain, while slipping a bit since 2005, appears to be avoiding the steep decline that its war partner, the US, is suffering. And it is fascinating that Chavez's Venezuela seems to be appealing to as many people as it is displeasing."

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Indonesia -- Again!!!

Barely had the earthquaks hit Indonesia and caused devastation and now a plane crash. It just does not seem to end for Indonesia...

"A Garuda Boeing 737-400 overshot the runway at Yogyakarta airport and exploded in flames about 7am local time (11am AEDT), burning some of the 133 passengers and seven crew alive in their seats. Garuda tonight said 22 people, including one crew member, had died, while 118 other passengers and crew escaped. The figures were backed by Indonesia's national health crisis centre. A government official had earlier said 49 people perished," reports The Age.

Monday, March 05, 2007

Starbucks versus Starstrucks!!!

Xinhua News reports that -- "Starbucks Corp is opposing Indian entrepreneur Shahnaz Husain's plans to start a chain of coffee shops called Starstrucks, the Mint business paper reported. The U.S. coffee-shop chain has told India's Controller-General of Patents, Designs and Trademark that the name is deceptively similar to its own name, the paper said."

Thursday, March 01, 2007

India gives birth to another lucrative business!!!

Indian outsourcing in a totally new arena. According to an article by Siddharth Srivastava in the Asia Times --

" Surrogate mothers being outsourced to India add one more chapter to the saga of cheaper "jobs" being transferred to low-cost economies such as India. For now, "hiring" a womb appears to be a win-win situation, both from the cost and quality of medical service. The cost of renting a womb is under US$5,000, compared to more than $50,000 in the West. The entire procedure in India costs in the range of $10,000, and the quality of treatment and technology and the expertise of the country's doctors compares with the best in the world."

Whose Bed Is It Anyway?

Intereting article in the NEw York Times about children co-sleeping with their parents. I have never been a fan or Dr. Ferber. I have always believed that children are better off sleeping with their parents especially when they are infants and toddlers. As they grow older and more independent they will move into their own beds, as they get comfortable.

New York Times, February 28, 2007
Whose Bed Is It Anyway?
Four years after the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development published a survey in which 12 percent of respondents reported sleeping with their babies, those babies have grown into children, and those children are still in their parents’ bed. Many parents are reluctant co-sleepers, too tired to disrupt a practice that may irritate one or both adults, but, in the end, seems to promise the most amount of sleep for the most people in the house.