Da In-VINCI-ble Code! :D

Word count: 301 | Estimated time to read entry: 3 min

I have blogged a couple of times earlier that I subscribe to a tiffin service that is door-delivered to me on weekends. The food is really good and is delivered piping hot. The boys and the lady who manage the enterprise are very amiable folks.

Two days ago, I was busy playing a round of Quake 4 on my PC and after shooting down a few hundred stroggs with my lethal Nail Gun , I was really ravenous. The tiffin arrived promptly with this note that is to be interpreted as the bill for the past few orders.

See pic below – click to enlarge.

 bill1

 

Though I am an avid cryptic crossword solver, I was quite shaken by the complexity of the “crypts” in this bill. 😀 Thankfully the first word ‘Egg’ made sense as it was the only word spelt correctly.

I am challenging all my readers to break the code on line 2 against the number 40 and below the ‘Egg <whatever>’. To me it looks like “Boonbus” but I really don’t remember having consumed anything remotely like that. I am now wondering what was served. I wouldn’t have been half as surprised if “Giraffe meat” was mentioned in that row but Boonbus really gives me the creeps.

I request readers, cryptologists, crossword solvers and Dan Brown fans to try their luck at decrypting this and kindly let me know what I had for lunch on the fateful afternoon of 31 Jan 😉

Oh! And as a clue to help you start with, let me tell you that the item on line 3 against the number 30 <savathe nadan> is actually “South Indian”!!! Now, that should give you some yardstick to bank on while working your brains on the code on line 2. 😀 😀 


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Hey! I can play PSP games wearing non-proprietary underwear!

Word count: 777 | Estimated time to read entry: 9 min

psp

I wish I had an don’t have an irksome girlfriend who asks me to set caller tunes on her cell-phone “now, or game-over” with raised eyebrows so I decided to yield to my gaming addiction and bought an Original Sony PlayStation Portable recently.  I had considered buying from the grey markets also but the deal looked too shady and the console certainly didn’t look new – it couldn’t be because to mod the PSP, someone had to get hold of an original one and do the needful.

Well, a complete gaming ignoramus might want to know that a ‘modded PSP’ is a hacked version sold slightly above the Original’s market price. A PSP runs games on something called the UMD – Universal Media Disc, and each UMD based game costs anything between Rs 999 to Rs 1599! The advantage of a hacked PSP is that it enables one to download games from the internet and install it on a data card, similar to the one used in digicams, thereby bypassing the need to purchase UMDs recurrently. Considering widespread hacks of the earlier version, Sony has tightened security measures and as a result, the recent most release, PSP 3000 series, hasn’t been hacked… yet. 😀

I was aware of all these issues but couldn’t get myself to trust the grey-market chap. And I wanted it urgently so I decided to go for an original one, quite confident that my brethren in the underground gaming industry would soon blog about the hacks.


When I went for the purchase, I realized that Sony didn’t offer a single game along with the new console. And a PSP without games is like a box of chocolates minus the goodies. Having no alternatives, I bought an original UMD based ‘Need for Speed Undercover’ for Rs 1599.   😦

I came home and decided to read the User manual. I was quite happy to see in the introduction page that the console could connect to other PSP consoles over Wi-fi (for multiplayer gaming) and also to the internet for browsing. It had RSS channels and Skype along with voice chat. I learnt that I can connect the PSP to my TV using an AV cable and transfer videos from my PC and watch it on the PSP!

But when I turned over to the next few pages of the manual, I found out that I couldn’t use my regular AV cable to connect to the PSP. Sony has a proprietary AV cable which is sold separately. Since the UMD could run only games (which means there is nothing ‘universal’ about it), all other media like songs and videos had to be stored on a memory card, again Sony proprietary and sold separately. I found out that an 8GB card costs Rs 4000 – almost half the cost of the console itself. Luckily, I had an old 1GB card that met all Sony propriety. I then decided to try the video output quality of the PSP and found out that I can run only MP4 files and if I wanted to run .mpeg, .avi and .dat formats, I had to buy a Media Manager Pro version which was proprietary and sold separately. All the videos on my PC were deemed PSP incompatible. As you might have noticed, the most repeated phrase in the manual was ‘sold separately’ which would immediately follow the mention of most new features and thereby kill any joy of having it on the console.

In short, I can game on the PSP by burning a hole in my pocket for the UMD, listen to mp3 which I could have listened to anyways using my sub Rs 1000 PMP and load a few pics (.jpeg is thankfully a compatible format!) and gape at them for cheap thrills – and all this only because I was fortunate to have a 1GB data card. For any other activity on the PSP I have to purchase ‘proprietary software/hardware sold separately’. The only “accessories” that come with the purchase is the charger and the battery – not even a pair of earphones.

I am quite relieved that Sony didn’t mandate a pair of goggles, proprietary and sold separately of course, that is required even to see the PSP console. Or perhaps black underwear with the PSP logo emblazoned on it and a USB cable to connect the two, without which the joystick wouldn’t work?? 😛

So c’mon, Bebo, let me set ‘Pyar hua ikrar hua’ as your caller tune because my game is long over. No, I won’t surprise you by doing it real fast. 😛


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My blog – A few weird observations

Word count: 1157 | Estimated time to read blog: 10 minutes

This is an entry about my own blog and no, I am not paying myself for putting this “ad” here. I have already claimed and substantiated earlier that I am quite observant, especially in matters that don’t warrant an observation. 😉

But each day when I check on my visitors, geographical hits on the map, comments, search strings that were used to land on my page etc a few things just leap at me and I find it difficult to reconcile with them. Here are some prominent ones:

 

1. Search strings – Namitha, Mallu Girls and Obese women are hot!

I made a big mistake by using Namitha’s pic in one of my previous entries. I had no idea she is such a “big” star 😉

Every day I get hits for all the wrong reasons. “Sexy mallu girls”, “heroines with no clothes” and a lot of other desperate search strings seems to point to my blog. The pic here gives you an indicative list – there is a better, more interesting list that I have saved for my own kicks and am unwilling to share 😛

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I tried entering some of these search strings in Google and to my surprise my blog is listed as far as in pages 10 or 11 and more often than not, it is even farther. Boy! Some people do go to great lengths to find what they need huh?

But the brighter side of things is that I am sure a lot of mallu girls reading this entry will be very happy. This blog is proof that they are very sought after! Overweight girls may also derive a ray of hope from these search strings. You might as well sell away your aerobics cycle and buy a PC/Laptop with that money to keep a tab on my blog entries because my blog will certainly make you feel sexier than any amount of peddling away to neverland.

2. Map – al Marhaba!

Of late, I have been receiving a lot of hits from the Land of Beef Eaters – yes, the Middle East. In spite of my geography being quite poor, I discovered that one small dot from Dubai was increasingly well, increasing. Soon, some nearby provinces picked up and it is just my guess that this is perhaps Kuwait, Abu Dhabi and other camel-loitering countries.3.jpg

My guess is that some jobless Arabs have stumbled upon my site. I think I can safely link this trend with the one about the search string anomaly mentioned above already. Yes, that makes sense considering the fact that Arabs prefer well-rounded women, including their air-hostesses. And the fact that there are more mallus in the “Gelf” than there are camels and cacti put together, adds on to my guesswork and the abundance in such search strings.

Well, I can imagine that Arab sitting with a laptop reading this entry with a wide smile across his face, his teeth flashing with all the gold studs and nuggets of beef sticking in between. I got you habeebi, didn’t I? Khaifa Halaq??

It could also be that some well-rounded women from the Gulf are reading this entry just to feel beautiful – Mallu or otherwise. To them, all I have to say is “Yes ladies, you are beautiful. Ask any Arab passing by and he will tell you that. If you don’t believe them look into the mirror; buy another one and keep them both side-by-side in case you can’t admire yourself in just one of them. You may also ask a pilot from either of Gulf Air, Emirates or Al Jazeera if you disbelieve your twin-mirror combination. And if all else fails, please feel free to contact me! 😉

3. Contact me – but then, I will be me:

Another strange thing that has happened is that I am beginning to get mails, scraps, comments etc from ‘fans’. Some just send a word of appreciation and some others decide to cling on.

I kept getting mails and appreciatory remarks on my blog under an assumed name from one particular “girl”. I was doubly certain that this was one of my prankster male friends, considering I have enough and more. And considering that they have enough and more reasons to retaliate to what I had once pulled on them, this was a very believable surmise until that girl decided to call me in the dead of the night. (Yikes! How exciting!)

When I expected to hear a huge guffaw from the other end, I was surprised to hear a feminine voice! We spoke for a good 30 minutes and she proved me wrong on all of the above surmises. She was a Mallu girl (sigh!) staying in Mumbai and in her second yr yem-bee-yeh 😉

We then began a chatting session and discussed everything under the sun. We had fights, quarrels, make-ups, mud-slinging, praising and all the rest. She was quite a sport but like all girls, wanted to change a few things in me – and those things were precisely the reasons she got friendly with me in the first place. “Sabse alag ho tum ye kehke paas tumhare aaye, Aur kuch din mein tum mein alag sa kuch bhi na usko bhaaye” Very true Saif Ali Khan, very true. 😉

We aren’t on ‘chatting terms’ now because I refused to change. And she in turn has promised me that she will never look at my blog! Well Mallu lady, in my opinion you are missing something considering the search queries elaborated above! 😉

4. Videos – Beauty versus brains

Another surprising thing until recently was with the videos that I have chosen to display on my left-hand side bar. I am a big fan of Agatha Christie’s Hercule Poirot and David Suchet’s portrayal of Poirot is just perfect. The title track is also a great masterpiece by David Gunning. But I didn’t expect others to be equally crazy about the whole Poirot thing and was surprised when I noticed that the number of views for this video exceeded that of the one containing a very sexy lady!

This has been finally set right and the “natural order” of things has crept back in. 😉

*****************

I was on the verge of writing a befittingly weird conclusion while I accidentally refreshed my blog stats page and Voila! I noticed the weirdest thing in my life. Nothing can beat this. See the pic below for more details – I have expressed my surprise at one of the search strings using 3 red exclamation marks!

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Kudos to you buddy, whoever you are. You have managed to do the weirdest thing anyone could possibly do and have blessed my blog by landing on it. All the Arabs with their camels and beef-infested gold teeth, mallu aunties and their ardent admirers, overweight ladies looking for appreciation, fans chatting with me and demanding a change in my behavior et al pale in comparison to what you have just done. Congratulations, Amma! I am rendered speechless!


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I’m too sexy for my…

Word count: 835|Estimated time to read blog: 7 minutes

 

When was the last time you wanted to binge on that pizza and down that milkshake but had to stop your gluttonous self because you were afraid of putting on all those extra kilos? Relax guys! According to a latest expert opinion, being a littlenamitha.jpg overweight is the new in-thing and is even considered sexy!!!! No prize for guessing that the ‘expert’ quoted in the previous sentence is me myself. 😛

I realized the hard way that it is easier to change popular opinion than change my build status from “a few extra pounds” to even “about average” on Orkut. Forget “athletic” – way too far from it. So now I have set out on a mission of convincing all you anorexic damsels and muscled hunks that it is actually cool to be a little overweight.

Recognition of the fact that I am overweight didn’t happen in a hurry. Each time I met up with an old friend, I was fed up of listening to the same old unoriginal comment– “Hey man! You have put on some weight!” To combat this, I began to use this very remark on the other person even before he/she had a chance to use it on me. This proved out to be very effective.

It was in this process that I found out that convincing people isn’t as difficult as convincing my bath stool – whose groans are becoming louder each time I sit on it. Its four feet, which used to be straight, are now splayed out like Charlie Chaplin’s. The pleas from my bath stool and my brainwave that people are easy to convince are the right reasons behind writing this blog.

Some readers have accused me of being an MCP in one of my earlier blogs. This, coupled with the fact that it is women who are more calorie-conscious prompts me to address them first. Ladies, the benefits of being overweight are numerous for your gender. For one, you will know what true love is. If you are overweight, the chances that you will be liked solely for your bodies are quite less. So if the guy still likes you, he will like you for what you really are – your true (obese) self!

Secondly, you can save all the time you spend on preening in front of the mirror and invest it on some exciting and more important things like, say, shouting at your boyfriend/husband or watching more soap operas so that the others in the family are bored to death. And your effective life span will obviously increase because, as per a recent news article, the total cumulative time spent by women on dressing, getting ready etc is around 3 years of their respective lifetimes! So by not paying attention to it, you now save three years! Don’t you feel three years younger already?!! 😉

Then of course, there is this added advantage of going clothes-shopping every weekend. You can now stay au courant with the current clothing trends and do away with old clothes instantly. Your otherwise parsimonious spouse will now be glad to buy clothes and accessories for you because you can mortally petrify him by giving him examples like – “What if my skirt tears off while I am bending over in the office- because it is too tight?” or “What if the buttons on my top just pop out when I raise my hands to explain something in the presentation!?” 😉 Wishful thinking? You bet! And I will stop at two examples!! 😛

For the guys also, the advantages are very many. You can stop focusing on your looks – 6 packs, biceps etc and pay attention to your skills and abilities – like for example lying to your girlfriend/wife how amazing she looks, cooks etc. In the bus, you can comfortably occupy that 2-seater without the fear of someone occupying the adjacent ‘vacant’ seat.

Of course, you wont get a bad name for having a beer belly because when having a belly itself becomes a hep thing, you can have unlimited beer without any accompanying pangs of guilt. In fact, you can even entertain the babes at a party by balancing a mug of beer on your belly and running a race.

And think about all the cash you will be saving due to abstinence from gym, health clubs and other exercise. You can now buy that SUV you always yearned for – of course, you wouldn’t fit into any other forms of personal vehicles 😉

Also, with all the weight on your own self, normal every day walking becomes an exercise in itself. Isn’t lugging around a near-hundred kilos all day a very good form of exercise? Lift one of your arms and it is equivalent to lifting a 15 kg dumbbell! Who dare say you don’t exercise? Taking your body to the building would be the best form of body-building for you!

So guys and gals aren’t you in-fat-uated with putting on weight right away?? C’mon, try and beat me! 😉

PS: The title is taken from one of Right said Fred’s song having the same name. You are damn Right, Fred – I totally agree with you on this one. 😀

 

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