Monday, April 30, 2007

In the name of fame!

Isn't it odd, how we suddenly adopt those unknown folks, with an Indian connection and make them a Desi, as soon as they become famous. Norah Jones, who has never really been raised by her father Ravi Shankar and Sanjaya Malakar, son of a divorced Indian father and American mother, who raised him, are just two examples. There are oodles of folks whom we choose to ignore and when they suddenly gain fame, they become ours -- to keep.

Sunday, April 29, 2007

Create, Energize, Enrich!!!

I just returned from 3 days of hob-nobbing with fellow desi writers, at the Kriti conference in Chicago. What a wonderful experience it was. More than anything the energy and enthusiasm that was flowing was fantastic, the quality of work was excellent.

Most of all I was touched by the desire of the participants to write and their love for the craft. Many, like myself if I might add, have quit high paying jobs and lucrative careers to pursue their dream. And besides those lucky ones, like myself, who have a pouse to support us through these times, there are an amazing group of people who hold full time day jobs and then make time to moonlight as writers.

Hats off to these folks who are excellent at what they do and are pursuing their dreams, come what may... Full steam ahead!!!!

Friday, April 20, 2007

Apple Advertisements...

The young, hip, trim and ever symapthetic apple computer and the obese, "feel sorry for yourself". whining, PC, they make a fantastic pair and for some very enjoyable advertisements.

The short witty conversations that make the apple computer some across as sympathetic yet highly competent are brilliant and fun to watch. See them here --

I hear your question, so what do I use eh? You guessed it right!!!

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Ricard Gere and Shilpa Shetty!!!

Lighten up !!!!

Blowing things out of proportion has always been the way it is. Indians protesting against the Richard Gere / Shilpa Shetty episode, need to step back, before they burn effigies. The number of kissing scenes in Bollywood movies and lurid sex scenes and dances are growing with each movie being released. And then there is a totally if nothing, innocent move by Gere and Shetty to get the attention of the Indian trucking community, and they go about blowing it up for no apparent reason.

Time for these people to stop acting like the most pure beings around and start looking internally!

Sunday, April 15, 2007

April Snow Showers...

I was returning from my yoga class this morning... When I left earleir, there was some light rain, but an hour and a half later tiny pieces of hail. I stopped at the grocery store to pick up some milk and produce. When I came out of the grocery store pea sized pieces of hail bounced off my head and body. I ran into my car and started heading home when the kumquat size pieces of hail pounded on my cars windshield.

This was the middle of April, April 15th, spring in thr northeast, when the crocus and daffodil bulbs sprout and start bringing color to our yards and homes. No such luck.

Whatever you want to call it, global warming, el nino, whatever else, fact remains that the weather is pretty darned bizzarre. My husband, son and I are raring to get out and enjoy the spring weather. My 3 year old son has been refusing to wear warm weather clothes for the last couple of weeks. He only wears short sleeve Madras shirts and summer t-shirts. He is rather upset that he is not able to go out and play in his sandbox. All the kids in teh neighborhood are gettign stir crazy. It is spring vacation week and everyone is cooped up inside thanks to the nor-easter that is pounding the east coast.

Time for the weather to warm up.... We are all waiting for the April Snow Showers to cease and bring us some spring weather!

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Another Deepak Chopra or Andrew Weil in the making???

Sanjay Guptas new book "Chasing Life" is getting a lot of publicity...

Here is what the CNN promo has to say about this book --

"In his groundbreaking new book, "Chasing Life: New Discoveries in the Search for Immortality to Help You Age Less Today," neurosurgeon and CNN Chief Medical Correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta offers a revolutionary way of thinking about aging.

Just exactly how do we age? Why do some societies have more centenarians than others? Is immortality possible? In a modern-day quest for immortality, Gupta takes readers on an investigative journey around the world to meet the pioneers and history makers in the field of immortality and to search for an answer to the question, "What can we do now to chase life?" "Chasing Life" blends futuristic science, compelling stories of the quest for life extension and cutting-edge practical advice on halting the aging process.

In "Chasing Life," Gupta proves that a kind of "practical immortality" is within our reach. He explains major scientific advances that are going to revolutionize health care and potentially expand life by decades in the very near future, including an application of stem cell therapy to make degenerative diseases only a bad memory and new developments in gene sequencing that may completely transform the experience of aging. "

Workplace form asks for a "detailed menstrual history"

Outrage at India menstrual form
By Monica Chadha, BBC News, Mumbai

The form asks for a "detailed menstrual history"
Women civil servants in India have expressed shock at new appraisal rules which require them to reveal details of their menstrual cycles.

Under the new nationwide requirements, female officials also have to say when they last sought maternity leave.

Women civil servants say the questions are a gross invasion of privacy. One told the BBC she was "gobsmacked".

Annual appraisals and health checks are mandatory in India's civil service. The ministry was unavailable for comment.

But one of its most senior bureaucrats was quoted in the press as saying the new questions had been based on advice from health officials.

Read the complete story at --

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Stars of South Asian descent are on the ascent

By Bill Keveney, USA TODAY

It's not just Apu anymore.
After years of relative anonymity, performers of Indian heritage are establishing a small but growing presence in TV and film, breaking stereotypes along the way. From Sanjaya Malakar of American Idol to actors on some of TV's most popular shows, U.S. viewers are seeing a broader range of performers who trace their roots to the world's second most populous country.

"Things are opening up — very slowly, but it's definitely happening," says Sendhil Ramamurthy, who plays genetics professor Mohinder Suresh on NBC's Heroes, TV's biggest freshman hit.

Navi Rawat, a native Californian of Indian and German heritage, encountered a first when seeking the role of mathematician Amita Ramanujan on CBS' Numb3rs. "It was the first time I was cast in a role specifically written as someone who was Indian," she says.

Other actors of at least partial Indian descent on network TV include Naveen Andrews, ABC's Lost; Parminder Nagra, NBC's ER; Mindy Kaling, NBC's The Office; Ravi Kapoor, NBC's Crossing Jordan; and Aasif Mandvi, CBS' Jericho. Kal Penn, who stars in the film The Namesake, appeared this season on 24 and is in an ABC pilot, The Call.

Rawat says it's good for audiences to see that actors who share the same heritage can represent a range of birthplaces, backgrounds and appearances: "They don't fit one stereotype."

For decades, people of South Asian descent rarely were series regulars. (Kavi Raz held that status in the 1980s on St. Elsewhere, and Apu is a long-running animated character on The Simpsons.) In 2002, CBS' Presidio Med, a medical drama set in San Francisco, premiered with no doctors of Asian heritage.

That many of the characters have a medical or scientific background shows TV is starting to reflect a reality in which many doctors are of South Asian heritage (not to mention medical correspondents, such as CNN's Sanjay Gupta), says Karen Narasaki of the Asian American Justice Center, a civil rights organization that has studied diversity on TV.

Oddly, acting opportunities grew in the aftermath of 9/11 as films and TV cast actors of Indian heritage as Middle Eastern characters, says Ramamurthy, a Chicago native who speaks in Indian-accented English on Heroes.

Narasaki wants to see Asian-Americans getting to play all roles, such as Penn's stereotype-defying stoner in Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle, and not just those that fit a newer stereotype, such as "the model minority." TV also needs more diversity on its writing staffs, she says.

Kaling, also a writer on The Office, called on her knowledge to write "Diwali," an episode that featured the Hindu festival of lights. Says Mala Chakravorty of the online Indian-American magazine "It brought about this sense of cultural sensitivity and acceptance."

Plagiarism Anniversary....

Just about a year ago, April 27, 2006 was when the Kaavya Vishwanathan interview happened on teh Today Show with Katie Couric. One year has gone by and bygones have become bygones. However interetingly enough Katie Couric'sproducer was fired and CBS apologized after a Katie Couric video essay on libraries was found to be plagiarized from The Wall Street Journal.

Interesting coincidence on the anniversary of a plagiarism scandal!

Sunday, April 01, 2007

My Interview With Vikram Chandra

Read this doc on Scribd: Vikram Chandra TIA Mar April 2007