The clock hands have definitely started running faster because I can’t believe the fact that 2007 is almost over. As I write this post, I can’t help but retrospect about all my accomplishments and failures in 2007, and hope for a better year ahead. This post is not supposed to be a nostalgic trip down my personal life. Instead, I plan to hand out some “awards” and mention other important events that are related to my blog. Winners- Sorry, I have no flashy badges to hand out. Just a link.
Total Hits till date, while I was writing this post- 276, 280
Total Comments-2,940. I don’t really believe this number because at least 25% of these comments are my replies.
Top Post of 2007- None other than Deathly Hallows-Lots of Leaks Surface. This post received 7,978 hits in a single day, thanks to the Harry Potter mania.
Top Search Engine Term- No, it’s not Harry Potter or any other permutation combination. It’s “Taj Mahal”, “Jesus Statue in Brazil”, and other words related to my post The New Seven Wonders of the World.
Most Enthusiastic Commenter- No guesses here! I have only one contender and that is Ish. In fact, it’s not just to do with my blog, Ish comments enthusiastically in the blogs of all his friends. He doesn’t look at the length of his comment and stops only after he’s done explaining his viewpoint. You need to read his comments to really know what I mean.
Top Blogging Topic- I have tried to blog about all sorts of things that interest me. But my categy widget tells me that there are the Top Three Categories-
Post with the most number of inflammatory comments- After I wrote a post bashing J.K Rowling and the new book (in a very bad,abusive language), people started bombarding my comments section with all kinds of ludicrous comments. I had to close down the comments section for sometime. I’m not very happy with this post because on second thoughts, I shouldn’t have written such a childish post. But then again, it’s my blog and I write whatever I feel like.
Here’s an example-
I came across this page accidentally while searching for something on google. It was explicit very early on that there are several inconsistencies and innacuracies in what appears to be the pathetic rant of an illiterate moron.
The sole thing ‘hurting’ anyone’s ‘intelligence’ is the terrible phrasing and literary style of this utter piece of crap. To begin with, the phrase is ‘an insult to my intelligence’ but i shall refrain from being too pedantic and not comment further on your choice to use simpler, less grammatically correct, words.
Futhermore, you speak of various plot holes, yet your argument appears to lack substance as you fail to point out any of these and back up your point with any feasible evidence.
Ignoring your petty attempts at low rate sarcasm, i will move on. You criticise this woman’s writing, so go on, why don’t YOU write a novel then? Write a book, get it published and make it a multimillion pound bestseller. No, not some half-ass fan fiction which rips off her plots, your own. See if you get thousands of sleepy kids waiting in line for YOUR ‘epic’.
Your response to this will probably be ‘but i never said i was an author’. Well, neither did JK Rowling before THOUSANDS OF MILLIONS OF CHILDEREN, ADULTS AND TEENAGERS AROUND THE WORLD BOUGHT AND READ AND RAVED ABOUT HER PUBLISHED BOOK. But she tried, and clearly succeeded. Your opinion is irrelevant.
You know WHY it’s an epic? Of course you don’t, your IQ rivals that of an Amoeba (look it up). So i’ll explain. Because even though you didnt like it- you feel compelled to rant and talk about it. It’s THAT important to you. Surely if it’s worth you wasting your WISE words and evidently PRECIOUS time on (when you could be out getting a husband and starting your beautiful family) then it is an epic. Any publicity is good publicity. Secondly, have you heard of any other book which had an opening like this?! Probably not, most illiterates don’t know many book names. Alas, i pity you. But trust me, there hasn’t been. And if there has, not for a long long while. THIS MAKES IT AN EPIC.
Top Blog for Entertainment- Not many of you know about this blog called Profusion, but I love reading it to get all kinds of gossip news.
Top Blog on India and other current events- Nita, just because of the simple reason that I haven’t come across any other blogger who writes about India with such passion.
Top blog for movies and other reviews- There is a tie here-
1. Prestidigitator- He writes wonderful movie and book reviews. So, if you’re an avid movie fan or a book reader, then you really need to check out his blog.
3. Canadian Cinephile- A very professional blog with very good reviews on movies, both new and old.
Cooky Award of the Year- Goes to Nikhil, for keeping hundreds of hard disk under his bed, for getting bored because he took ONLY 18 credit hours in Fall, for signing up for 30 credit hours in Spring 08, and for having the guts to laugh outrightly at a Professor and then getting thrown out and for sending me a free copy of his upcoming novel.
Top blog on Technology- Engtech, because I love all the tips and tools that he dishes out. My all time favorite is the WordPresss Ninja Comment tool.
Worst Blogs of 2007: Tie again!
1. I CAN HAS CHEEZBURGER? – - No seriously…what is so cute about those stupid cat pictures? Happy with the enormous success of this blawg, the authors have started another one on dogs- Loldogs ‘n’ Cute Puppy Pictures- which is definitely much better, because I love dogs.
2. Scobleizer- We need to stop labeling this guy as a Tech guru. The quality of his posts is declining exponentially. Unfortunately, I made the mistake of adding him as a friend on Facebook, and since that day, he hasn’t stopped irritating me with his stupid status and twitter updates.
Actually, there is another one that I came across recently- Dalit Nation- The Only Authentic Voice of the Dalits. The author takes pleasure in analyzing every main stream event (even the crowning of Aishwarya Rai as Miss World) from a caste-system-point-of-vew. He abuses anyone who doesn’t agree with his narrow view point. Such blogs that focus on the caste system need to be shut down.
Top Controversy- The Blogger OpenID thing, all thanks to some unexplained moves made by Blogger.
Best WordPress Theme for 2007: The Journalist Theme. I saw lots of blogs, including mine, implementing this neat, two column theme. Like the blog description mentions, it’s perfect for people who need lots of writing space.
Best Feature Introduced by WordPress in 2007: Integrated Blog Stats. I love the detailed, blog stats that are available on WordPress. The best thing is that it keeps getting better.
Top Technological Innovation- Apple iPhone
Top Event- Everything Britney Spears and Rowling
Moment of the Year: Miss South Carolina 2007 talking absolute sh*t on National TV
Biggest Flop of the Year- Saawariya
Best TV Series- Heroes
This website helps you track Santa Claus, as he delivers presents all over the world tonight. No, don’t laugh! Keep the faith!
There is a cool Google Map that shows the cities/towns where Santa’s already delivered the goodies.
Here is the video of Santa’s first sighting-
There is this video where Santa is shown flying over the Taj Mahal. Err…isn’t flying over the Taj Mahal prohibited? Maybe the Government makes an exception for Santa Claus.
For other videos, check out this page from Youtube.
There is a page that’s titled “Is He Real?”. According to the website, of course, he’s real. Another page tracks the number of cookies he’s already eaten. Want to know the number? It had crossed 1 billion the last time I checked. The counter gets updated every nano second. Not a very good message heath wise, eh?
Yes, I used to believe in this stuff as a kid too. Not anymore. If anyone were to ask me if it’s real, then I wouldn’t come up with such elaborate lies. At one particular place in the website, it’s written-
I can’t stop squirming in my chair. This website is probably getting a lot of hits. Whatever! Happy Holidays everyone.
P.S- Sorry for not replying to your comments. I’ll do that as soon as I can.
Blogged with Flock
A couple of people landed here while searching for “moms f***ing” and “aunty lover”. When I ran a Google Search, all I could see were listings of porn sites, at least in the first ten pages. How desperate must they have been to go beyond the first ten pages or so to have actually landed up here! My blog is rated for “General Audiences”. Take a look at my About page.
Also, someone searched for Ranbir Kapoor’s phone number. Heh. Poor fan! No doughnuts for you. Sorry!
Edit: Came across another weird term ” THE RECEIVER REQUESTED A HOLD FOR A FUTU” (WTF?! what is a Futu?)
Have you come across any weird Search Engine Terms in your Blog Stats Page?
Found this one from the Wake Up Pune Website:
Some daunting India HIV and AIDS statistics:
India has a population of one billion, around half of whom are adults in the sexually active age group. The first AIDS case in India was detected in 1986; since then HIV infection has been reported in all states and union territories.
The spread of HIV in India has been diverse, with much of India having a low rate of infection and the epidemic being most extreme in the southern half of the country and in the far north-east. The highest HIV prevalence rates are found in Maharashtra in the west; Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka in the south; and Manipur and Nagaland in the north-east.
- Estimated number of people living with HIV/AIDS at the end of 2006 was between 2-3.1 million.
- The 30-34 years age group has the highest % (0.54%) of HIV/AIDS affliction.
- 124,995 people (Males- 88,245 Females- 36,750) were tested as HIV/AIDS positive at the end of August 2006.
- In 85% of the cases, the virus is transmitted through sexual contact. Mother-to-child comes second at 4%.
- Tamil Nadu has the highest number of HIV/AIDS cases, second comes Andhra Pradesh, whereas Maharashtra occupies the third spot.
Today, U.S announced that China has agreed to-
eliminate WTO-illegal tax breaks that encouraged Chinese companies to export more to the United States and other countries… Chinese had also agreed to scrap tax and tariff penalties that had penalized U.S. and other foreign countries in trying to sell their goods in China.
If you remember, in March 2007, US had also imposed some import duty level of 10.9 to 20.35% on the value of coated paper imports from China. Some are of the opinion that all this is being done not to reduce the US trade deficit with China, but because of the mounting political pressure.
This page tabulates the US China Trade Statistics and China’s World Trade Statistics. As you can see, the current US Trade Deficit balance is $232 billion. It’s been increasing by about $30 billion on an average since the past five years.
One of my professors brought it to my notice that a town in Florida is considering banning Chinese made products. If the bill passes, then this will be the first town in the US to take such a step against Chinese goods. But there are some clauses. Not all kinds of goods will be banned.
It only applies to Chinese-made products costing more than $50 or those in which more than 50 percent of parts are manufactured in China. In addition, the city may purchase a Chinese-made product if it is not available otherwise. Finally, if an alternative product, for example an American-made wheelbarrow or an Indian-made rain jacket, costs 150 percent or more of the cost of the Chinese-made product, the city can opt for the one made in China.
As far as I know, supply chain management and the related manufacturing is a complex procedure. How exactly do we determine what exactly is meant by “50% of parts are manufactured in China”? There needs to be some sort of a barometer that would standardize the different component of each product that is imported! This would require lots of tax payers’ money. Is it even useful?
Their line of reasoning is that banning such goods is necessary because of the loss of jobs manufacturing jobs in the US and China’s violation of important human rights, record levels of pollution etc. Will banning such goods bring back those manufacturing jobs back to the US? The logistics are much more complicated than this. Consumers will in almost all the cases go for goods that are cheaper, provided that the quality doesn’t suffer. Will US be able to produce goods of the same price and quality? Quality, yes…but price?Probably not. Labor costs in China are low due to a variety of reasons. One reason is that the labor regulations are not that strict. So small manufacturers get away with many illegal practices of hiring small children etc. It’s not the same in the US. Americans are paid overtime, benefits etc. The cost of living also plays a very big role here.
If this move of globalization were to recede, then it would go against the law of comparative advantage, which states that
“Individuals and nations gain by producing goods at relatively low costs and exchanging their outputs for different goods produced by others at relatively low cost. All potential trading partners can gain enormously through appropriate specialization and exchange.”
This doesn’t mean that every company should go global. Even though production is cheaper in China, other costs such as inventory management, shipping and handling etc. do shoot up. Most of the times, companies end up having a higher inventory due to bad forecasting, or stocking out of date products when the industry demand changes unexpectedly. So, nothing comes without external and internal risks. The costs will increase dramatically if something were to go wrong in such a long supply chain. A risk benefit analysis needs to be done.
Corporate America, particularly Walmart, is often blamed for this huge trade deficit. People believe that it is the greed of the organizations that is driving the economy down hill. The American CEOs are the highest paid in the entire world. There are huge accounting scandals here. There is no balance between the desires of the global corporation, the needs of the nation’s population, and world improvements in the standards of living.
I actually agree with Lou Dobb’s point of view when he says that the government is too soft on the super corporations because of donations to the political parties and their elections. It is during times like these when the bottle neck gets too tight that the Government decides to do ‘something’ in order to ease the pressure and not because they are concerned of the national economy and the people. However, I don’t support most of his other views regarding immigration, anti-gun control measures etc.
For me, the important question here is- Lower prices give customers more choices and improve their standard of living. The money that is saved is actually spent again in buying more goods. It might not translate into greater savings. If a country gets lower prices at the cost of a weakening economy, then is it worth it? Where should the Government draw the line? Can a line be drawn at all? (I’m not implying that this is what is happening in the US right now. In fact, the current situation in the US would be because of the sub prime mortgage crisis and a credit crunch in general.)
If various theories of economics are to be believed, then globalization should help clear out the inequalities in labor wages between two nations. In fact, I’ve read lots of news reports recently that pointed to the increase in wages in China, India, Brazil etc. The labor wage in India is increasing at the rate of at least 20% per annum, if not more; in the US, it’s increasing only at the rate of about 2% every year. It will be interesting to see the effect of this wave maybe after a decade or two.
Please feel free to share your thoughts. This post turned out to be much longer than what I intended it to be.
“Come out into the universe of Light, Everything in the universe is yours; stretch out your arms and embrace it with love”
- Swami Vivekananda
I’m a little late doing a Diwali post compared to my other blog friends. So, Wish you all a Very Happy and Prosperous Diwali!
I wish I could burst fire crackers and hear some noise. I miss the commotion and the general hustle bustle in India. A couple of days before Diwali, I would go to the firecrackers market with my father to purchase fireworks supply that would last me at least for four days. Here, the silence comes to haunt me, especially during Diwali. All of you who are still with your family should feel really lucky and appreciate it because it’s only when you move away from home do you realize the importance of being together on festivals.
I have tried to make my house look a little festive by putting up (christmas) lights and burning candles. I will probably try to make some kind of sweet (probably Gulab Jamun because it’s very easy and can be made using the ready made Mix).
Here’s a picture of some Gulab Jamun that I had cooked a couple of weeks back-
Not bad, eh? What do you say?
In an interview,
Interviewer: How does an electric motor run?
Santa: Dhhuuuurrrrrrrrrr. ….
Inteviewer shouts: Stop it.
Santa: Dhhuurrrr dhup dhup dhup…
Agent: What is your father’s name in english?
Santa: Beautiful red underwear
Agent: R u joking?
Santa: No, my father’s name is Sunder Lal Chadda
Napoleon: There is no such word as ‘Impossible’ in my dictionary.
Santa: To dictionary dekh kar kharidni thi…! (So you should have seen and bought the dictionary!)
Ek baar Santa Gangubai ke ghar jaata hai aur darwaza knock karta hai.
Gangubai: Kaun ?
Santa: Main !
Gangubai: Main kaun?
Santa: Tu Gangubai
An Englishman and Santa inside the toilet.
Englishman: Good evening, how do u do?
Santa: Gud evening, we open the zip and do.
Banta ped pe chada to upar baithey Bandar ne poocha: Upar kyon aaya?
Banta: Apple khane.
Bandar: Yeh to aam ka ped hai.
Banta: Pata hai, Apple saath laya hoon.
Pappu while filling up a form: What should I write against mother
Santa: Very long…..!
Q: Why was Santa writing the exam near the door?
A: Because it was an entrance exam.
Nurse: Congrats Santa ji, aap papa ban gaye. (Congrats Santa ji, you’ve become a father)
Santa: Meri wife ko nahi bolna mein use surprise dunga! (Don’t tell my wife…I’ll give her a surprise)
Q: Why did Santa throw the butter out of the window?
A: He wanted to see butterfly!
A lady calls Santa for repairing door bell. Santa does not turns up for
Lady calls again, Santa replies: I’m coming daily since 4 days, I press
the bell but no one comes out.
Lady to inspector Santa: My husband went to buy potatoes 5 days ago, he
hasn’t come back yet!
Santa: Why don’t u cook something else
Santa: Itne kam marks? Do thappad marne chahiye. (Such horrible marks? You deserve two slaps)
Pappu: Haan papa, chalo maine us saale master ka ghar bhi dekh rakha
hai. (Yes father; let’s go! I even know the house of that stupid teacher!)
While walking in the highlands Santa fell down a deep hole.
Banta: Are you okay?
Banta: Did you break anything?
Santa: No, there’s nothing down here
Santa was riding on a horse. He jumped the red light & a cop whistles.
Santa lifts the tail of horse & says: ‘Le Karle Number Note’ (Here…take down the number!)
The above accounts by the Chennai woman and the software engineer are hard to believe for me. Why did the officers just smile and not demand “real” money? I do like the fact that this is definitely a good step towards eradicating corruption. Whether it’ll work or not, I don’t know.
After the much-hyped shaadi of Ash-Abhi, it’s time for another celeb wedding — Rani Mukherjee and Aditya Chopra. The duo had a hush-hush engagement on Monday and is planning to tie the knot soon.
According to a source close to the family, “The roka took place at the same Chopra bungalow where Chandni was shot. Around 60 people (family and friends) attended the ceremony that included Rani’s parents Ram and Krishna Mukherjee, brother Raja and his wife. Present from the Chopra clan were brother Uday, dad Yash Chopra and mum Pamela Chopra.”
Jugal Hansraj (Uday’s close pal), Anupam and Kirron Kher also attended the ceremony. Adds our source, “Rani wore a maroon saari with silver embroidery and Aditya wore a kurta-pyjama, both designed by designer Pallavi Jaikishan. Pam aunty didn’t seem very happy, as she has a soft corner for Adi’s ex-wife, Payal. Another function will take place at Rani’s house next week.”