Sunday, June 28, 2009

UBI caritas et amor, Deus ibi est (Latin)

So what does the above latin phrase translate to ?

UBI caritas et amor, Deus ibi est (Latin)
WHERE charity and love are, God is there.

If you've attended to any of the serving or sermon at a church or any gospel you might have heard this during the choir session.

I came across this in a wonderful movie that I watched this Sunday, "Doubt". Doubt is an amazing move which revolves around this word "doubt" and how it actually takes over we humans, just that the context here is from the parish.

Catch the Trailer below:

The performances are just perfect !

"Doubt can be a bond as powerful and sustaining as certainty"

But the point that I'm driving home is that "doubt" can be such a dampener in any relationship. Once a person comes into this mental block by inadvertently forcing oneself to believe something sham about another person, there is unfounded belief that takes over him and doubt is one such thing.

Once doubt takes control over you then I guess there is no way you can extricate out of that doubt.

Good movie, do watch at leisure !

Saturday, June 27, 2009

What did Indians Eat before Rice and Wheat ?

So what do you think our forefathers used to eat centuries ago ? How old are rice and wheat?

There have been some surveys that millets are much older than rice and wheat

As Rice and Wheat have become staple diet across the Indian subcontinent then why is that now, rice has been looked down as a strict no-no at later years of our lifestyle. Well the reason is simple, "polished rice". As a lifestyle change in recent decades we are all now used to polished rice which is devoid of all essential fiber and nutrients. This is where rice began to loose out to wheat. Otherwise calorie (energy) wise both are same. The generation before the 1980's was more involved with physical work as part of their regular work and lifestyle, so the rice that was consumed was well accounted for. But as we moved into this century our lifestyle and work became more sedentary and this misfit is gaining notoriety for rice.

So when did we start eating rice ?

I'm not sure but rice and wheat became our stable diet but the polished rice concept came into being around the time of Britishers and was considered to be rich man's rice. Unpolished rice is still associated with the poor but ironically that is what is more beneficial to our health.

Green Revolution

We all know how the green revolution helped us in achieving self reliance on our food security but what it also did was to promote food grains like wheat and rice to a greater extent and healthier options like millets reduced in area of cultivation.

Millets can grow in regions where there is water scarcity and that is why in many dry region millets are the staple diet [Rajasthan(Bajra), Telangana and Raylseema Region in AP, south Maharashta and North Karnataka (Jonna - Jowar), South Karnataka (Ragi) etc].

Learn more about agriculture in India here:

Just my two cents and I may be incorrect in certain conclusions. Please do correct me if I'm wrong and do share your views.

Try millets !

Friday, June 26, 2009

Obituary : Michael Jackson (MJ)

As a kid I grew up listening to names such as Tracy Chapman, Samantha Fox, Abba, Boney M and others. But the real impact I had was when I saw Michael Jackson dance and sing. The real superstar when I was a kid.

Dangerous was a very intriguing album and I remember possessing an original audio cassette of it as well.

Long Live MJ !

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Team Asha 8k Run - Logisitics Meeting

(Meetup at my place)

The Team met twice, once in Ananya and next at my place to discuss and take stock about how we were doing in various aspects for the race at Valley School.

Nice "kutti" group that spends more time in digressing and coming back to the original intended topic later !

But then, all this planning and minute details helped. Fortunately this group really doesn't spend too much time in pondering to take a decision. Once taken we stick to it and we are like "open source" !

Finally the event went off very well and more on the race and event in a day or two visit the Team Asha blog!

Some media coverage for the event:
Citizen Matters, from Manjula Sridhar.

Come, run with us. Train, Run and Educate !

Corporates seeking out bloggers

Corporates seeking out bloggers

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Friday, June 19, 2009

Masilamani - Superrraaa !

Tamil rap and mass appeal !

Yo ! Yo !

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Aathichudi - Vijay Antony

I'm a big fan of Vijay Antony and Naka Muka is my favourite. Another latest favourite is: Aathichudi

This genre which we call as "Mass" invigorates any person. Until I find another Vijay Antony song, Adios !

BTW, the last 30 seconds has an amazing dance sequence which I want to master one day ! Dancing is the next big thing in pipeline.

Monday, June 8, 2009

The 100KM Cycling Duo

Bike Bala Bike

We all talk, discuss and ruminate a lot about many things and set certain targets and goals. Long distance cycling has been a long pending activity and this Sunday we jammed for a big one.

Manjula and I have been planning some long distance ride for sometime and it was this Sunday that was waiting to happen. Thanks to her initiative, she was able to gather around eight of us.

The Route

(Entering Tamil Nadu)

We all met up at Sarjapur Road and started towards Sarjapur. Soon we crossed into Tamil Nadu towards Bagalur. From Bagalur we headed towards Jain Farms. The total distance was close to 35KM.

Jain Farms

Jain Farms is an amazing place to spend with family. Specially on weekends you'll find nice recreational activities and there are amazing trails for cycling and running.

The Gang

We had a great time folks and I hope this is just the start of our cycle trips. Six of them left back to Bangalore before lunch and only Manjula and I were left to leave post lunch.


As soon as we reached in we were served with south Indian breakfast. Looked like we earned it. Hot hot pongal was what I was looking for in the second round.


I tried some hand at pottery. The person who taught me was a retired school teacher and was doing this at his age.


My afternoon catnaps are almost never missed. Here is a pic below where you can see me taking a siesta.


Well then after a great short nap sumptuous lunch was awaiting us. Here is where we decided to make this trip a 100KM deal.

The 100KM Duo
(Warning: Some Math involved)

Manjula and I were left now to go back to Bangalore and we were hell bent to round it off at 100KMs. We had to cover around 24KM to make it 100KM. So we decided to go 12KMs towards Mallur. But immediately after 5KMs from Jain Farms the roads became pathetic. So we decided to go back towards Jain Farms. So of the extra 24KMs we had covered 10KMs. So we were left with 14 more KMs.

We moved towards Hosur from Bagalur now. Hosur is at a distance of 12KM from Bagalur. So we had to go until the 5KM (12-5 = 7) KM mark and then turn back towards Bagalur again (so 7+7=14KM).

As we started cycling towards Housr the roads were predominantly up hill and the wind was against us. Just making it all the more impossible. But we were determined and pulled and encouraged each other. It was getting tough but then we wanted to reach Bagalur badly and we did. This last 24KM took us almost two hours.

Winners are not quitters: There were some Plan-B options but we decided to stick to our original plan. The only concern was lack of sunlight and traffic. But then the idea was to reach Sarjapur by 6ish and we were there ON DOT. Had an amazing coconut water (Village style - No straws) and we were all charged up an it was just matter of time we were in Bangalore.

One-Arse Cycling

Have you ever cycled seated on just one side of your butt. Yes, I did as we moved into our 50+ Kms the arse was beginning to cave in and I had to find comfort by shifting my butt. As this was my longest cycle ride the endurance levels needs to be upped now.

To counter the pain we also decided to walk the uphill at some stretches. Must have walked close to one KM. Soon we reached the outskirts near Agaara lake and headed to our respective homes. Wow what an effort. Night was a big PITA (Pain in the A**) !

Reminded me of Saif Ali Khna's dialogue in DCH (Dil Chata Hai):
"Tumko kya lagtha hai, main takhiyein pe roj baitha hoon"
(What do you thin? Do I daily sit on a pillow ?)

Just the Start:

This is just the start and the next one is a trip to Nandi hills (70+70Kms) and by October reach Mysore ! Do you think we can do it.. well keep watching this wall !

Great cycling with you pal ! Lets do it !

More Pics in here:
Pic Courtesy for the blog: Manjula

Friday, June 5, 2009

Team Asha Team 8K - Updated

( )

The “Team Asha Team 8K, 2009″ is a running event organized by Team Asha. The primary objective of this event is to create awareness about Asha’s efforts and kick start our Team Asha “Training” programs. The team of runners who run marathons, half marathons, 10Kms or even ultra marathons constitute ‘Team Asha’ and we fund raise to support Asha’s efforts.

Run details
Location: Valley school, Bangalore.
Date: 20th June, Saturday
Time: 8:30 A.M

The run will start at 9 A.M sharp and reporting time is no later than 8:30 A.M

There are a lot of BMTC buses to the pick up point on Kanakpura road from Banshankari - Most of the 211, 214 and 215 series would reach this point (ask for the SILK FARM bus stop).

Terrain and location
The entire route is scenic with lush greenery and beautiful streams lacing the landscape of Valley school. The terrain will be a mix of road, soft trail and even stretches of rugged rock trails with some steep uphills. Beginners or first timers are advised to walk the uphills cautiously.

Who can run?
Anyone above the age of 10 can participate in the run. We will have children from multiple Asha supported efforts running along with us on June 20th.

The event’s objective is to go beyond the usual ‘need for speed’ and make this a wholesome event. The event is about bringing together adults and children from varying backgrounds with running as a unifying factor. Prizes would be awarded for different aspects of running together rather than just speed. There will be interesting categories for prizes and every participant will get a T-shirt as memorabilia.

Please do register online by clicking here -

A nominal registration fee of Rs.150 would be collected at the venue to cover the cost. We would strive to organize this event at the minimum cost and impact to the environment. If there are any proceeds from the event, it will directly go to Asha Bangalore’s efforts.

We look forward to having you run with us on June 20th for a fun-filled team running event! Please do help us spread the word and come as friends, families or just runners :)

Go Team Asha!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Rang De: Make a difference today

Continuing my feature on NGOs in India here comes Rang De. Read more at their webpage by clicking the below link !

Rang De: Make a difference today

Its more like the micro financing concept !

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Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Sunfeast 10k 2009, Ananya and Team Asha

The 12 week long journey

This year's Sunfeast 10k generated enough excitement and believe me it looked like the entire Bengalooru (aka Bangalore) was there to run. Team Asha Runner, Santosh, now involved with Runner's High chalked out training schedule for Ananya and Thulir kids. Some Asha Runners whom you must have been following up in this blog got involved with Ananya. We added variety by adding Karate, some Frisbee, some volley ball, some cycling and of course lots running and strides to make this entire exercise all the more enjoyable.

This small team from Team Asha has bonded so well with Ananya that Tuesdays and Saturdays we are invariably present at Ananya. The entire place has so much energy and we fell all the more part of Ananya.

Art Work in Progress

Our last Saturday run which also happened to be the last saturday as part of the training schedule ironically did not feature a run (as it was rest according to the training plan). So we all sat down to prepare some posters to cheer Ananya, Asha and Runner's high. Thanks to Narmada and Vinbot for all the charts and colors.

Thanks to Agnus, a volunteer at Ananya who spearheaded this session.

More pics in here (Pic Courtesy: Vinbot's mobile camera):

We were served Tea three times and it also included a special Tea from Assam which one of our volunteer brought it all the way from Assam during her backpacking trips. As usual we had Idlies first soaked in Sambar and accompanied by chutney. We set forth some logistics and transportation plans for the race day.

Thanks to Pramodh, another Team Asha runner for the conveyance to make sure the kids reached the venue in time. Pramodh also ran his longest at the Sunfeast 10K. I'm sure half marathon is just the next target for him this year.

The Race
We all met at the Cubbon gate and Mallaya road junction. Luckily we had a pre-paid parking at UB city. Kids from Ananya got this cool drum and we all had fun and frolic. I was on (runner's) high and was up to this famous Hyderabadi dance step "Teen Maar" (Three times) which turned out to be a total (dis)graceful dance steps from my side, but nevertheless I had fun !

That's me above

All the kids were up for Majja run and the Thulir kids and Team Asha runners were up for the open 10K without chip category. All of us finished our runs to our utmost satisfaction and I'm sure we will improve as we progress. Met so many Asha runners and thousands running for their good cause. My roomies, Ritesh and Rampee manged to put in a great show in their first ever attempt. Good job boys.

Brainless Twits
Some runners just have no patience and in the gallery where they were seated started to jump from the fence instead of using the normal entry into the stadium. Brainless twits and I'm sure they needed some cane from the cops. I'm sure India is far far away from order and civility. So many men and women who look prudent and educated where doing this and finally one of them got hurt. Mob mentality !

Post Run

Some Kids Cheering for us

Post run we all met again at the same spot. Our Sensei looked like had cracked this run and her cycling stint seemed to have worked wonders for her. She was also in trance and no stopping her now. We had more fun discussing about the event and stuff and the Thulir kids and some Team Asha runners headed back to Ananya to spend the night there (envy you guys). More report on that awaited(I understand they had a ball).

My Tsunamikas

Here are my little cute Tsunamikas at the corners. I used Tsunamikas to pin my bib. Very cute ones.

Learn more Tsunamika at

Many Asha, Ananya and Thulir runners also pinned Tsunamikas across their bibs.

A Big Thank you

This could not have been possible but for your support folks !

Thanks to fellow Ananya-Asha runners who helped us in raising funds.

Thanks to Bata for giving us shoes and socks at very low discounted rates.
Thanks to Runner's High and Printo for Tee Shirts and other Ananya related paraphernalia.

Thanks to Sensei Manjula for giving Karate a humble beginning at Ananya and I'm sure things would get in proper fold when kids are back full strength.
Thanks to Shashi for persevering with us and making us feel very much part of Ananya.
Thanks to Sivamma's Kitchen (I mean Sivamma herself), George and his wife (We owe you three a surprise) and of course all the wonderful kids and voulnteers at Ananya with whom we had gala time through running.

Also, thanks to Thulir kids who prepared on their own accord (with inputs from Santhosh).

This is just the beginning of our interactions with Ananya and we will keep you posted through mail and blog about our activities. We personally thank all the Asha runners who have helped us in this sojourn at Ananya.

If I've missed anyone then it must be my unwitting brain that must have overlooked you :-(

Looking Ahead
We are going to continue this Asha-Ananya initiative and will get in full swing from this month onwards. We will be there from this Saturday onwards. Want to join us ?

Until then, Keep miling and Stay Fit !
Go Team Asha, Ananya and Thulir.

Other Pics, Courtesy: Santhosh. All rights are reserved by the respective photographers !