Tuesday, June 16, 2015
Tuesday, November 27, 2012
Saturday, September 22, 2012
Monday, May 21, 2012
Tuesday, May 01, 2012
Tuesday, March 13, 2012
Pic : Depiction of the possible origins for the subject matter discussed below
To begin with I would like to point out that the title to this post, by itself, is very controversial. Considering the topic at hand, there would be a lot of passionate discussion among all the readers as to what exactly would be the spelling of the “oh so often” used shortened form of “What is up?”. Technically, the response to such a statement can and in all reality, should be of the order of “Fan”, “Sky”, “Ceiling” or to crude double entendres which I would rather not touch upon here (no pun intended). All the same the nature of the generic “Watsup” (the spelling I will follow for convenience), has developed over the years to mean more and much more than more.
In the annals of history, two strangers passing each other by, only had the ‘smile’ to confront each other with. This passing gesture was densely packed and ridiculously conspicuous with the absence of any vocal acknowledgment. Ofcourse, a tip of the hat with a nice “How do you do?” or “Good morning” can be imagined. But then I would have to account for the cross legged, knee bending, skirt holding ladies. All of which I will have to imagine up from movies. So, for now I choose to ignore the overly polite gentlemen and wonderfully cultured ladies here. Anywayyy, as I was saying, the smile stood for all that we, as humans did not represent. If baring of teeth or widening of lips was enough to pass messages, how would we distinguish us as the evolved individuals we are!!!
And thus comes the role of “Watsup”. No amount of Googling will be able to explain when along the history of English language this came into such common usage. But certain mannerisms in which it is used does hint that it has to be over the last few decades. Now, as mentioned earlier, there is a confusion as to how it is actually said, typed or heard. The variations in emotion as well as actions associated with this small word can only be matched by the equally stunning “Awww”. Listing out a few of the usages would be as below :
1. SUP : This is a highly shortened form of the word and is usually given with a nod or tilt of the head in the backward direction
2. WATSAAAAP/WASSAAP : Usually used between people who know each other very well. Actions associated with this could be ‘High Fives’, ‘Fist pumping’ (sometimes followed by an imaginary blowing up of the said fists) and in extreme cases, running into each others' chests.
3. WHATSUP : This normal usage of the word can have multiple connotations. It could either be in response to “Can I speak to you” etc, or in place of customary hi’s. At times, when said in a solemn tone and preceded by “Awww”, it can imply deep concern and interest.
Other variations to the above mentioned usages can be WAZZAAAP, WAZZUP, WASSUP, WADDAAAP etc. All these can further divided based on the number of A’s, Z’s or S’s. Years of usage and observation have shown that the first W and second A are rarely extended.
The beauty of the word is in the fact that, a mutual exchange of “WATSUP”s can be followed by a smile, a nod or even nothing at all and still the conversation can be deemed a success! In addition, any amount of translation to other languages can not give the same feeling or impact. Eg. Upar kya hai(Hindi), Molil entha (Malayalam).
So, go forth, enjoy, interact and don’t forget the customary smile and the WASSUPs that makes us social beings and the world a better place to live in.
Wednesday, January 25, 2012
The coincidence is STUNNING. An unplanned post exactly after a year!!
What every student seeks in his/her years of education are different techniques to stay entertained. I have to admit that the modes of entertainment vary a lot over the years. By this I do not just mean the “generation difference” which is highlighted by the advent of mobile phones right at your finger tips, to chat, message and play. I mean the difference between what is possible in your school life, under graduate and post graduate. The fact that I have experienced all three and experimented across the years is both a matter of pride and concern. Pride, for obvious reasons and concern coz if I wanted to study so much I would have become a doctor! (No offense to more than 50% of my family).
Although I do not want to go into details of the fundamental avenues of entertainment in classrooms like talking, hitting the person next to you, staring longingly at your latest crush etc., I will all the same for the benefit of the confused, give an idea of the difference across different courses. In schools there was a limitation to how much freedom our hands had. A question used in one of my blog posts earlier, “Why is there so much noise, are you writing with your mouth?”, if not analyzed for its sheer logical idiocy actually signifies the need to constantly write down what is being taught. Over the years, this need has decreased due to two reasons – the need of education changed and the “no need” attitude of students increased. Moving onto an under-grad course, it called for a different classroom setting. The mistake in analyzing this would be the fact that different students have different experiences here. But on the whole the scope for entertainments increased since the students were older, bolder and the topics were boring and tough.
Experiencing a post-grad course now, I found the need to list out 3 techniques of entertainment in class which I occasionally implement. Since the classification under academic circumstances, I have felt free to use relevantly catchy self-proclamations for my techniques.
1. “SAME” Technique: This is a beautiful technique which I have only had the opportunity to implement once or twice. The attractiveness lies in the fact that it achieves a dual advantage of remaining active in class while giving an image of being attentive as well. The execution requires utmost care and timing. All it involves is paying 2 minutes of attention or even lesser. As soon as the faculty asks a question wait for someone to raise their hands and be noticed. At once raise your own hand. This can also be done if you don’t even hear the question and just see the raised hands. Be very careful you don’t get his/her attention before anyone else. The crowning moment of this technique is in the reaction given once you are called for an answer, after the first person. With utmost conviction you go “Sir(Madam), Same point”..The intention is to give an absolutely disappointed look with a shrug of the shoulder to ensure that the faculty feels guilty for not having called you first.
Courtesy : thebadchemicals.com
2.Random Number method : This one is much more simpler and fun. As soon as a question beginning with the word “How many…” is put to the class, start shouting numbers. This can also be used as a two or more player game with the victor being the person closest or furthest from the required answer. Other variations of this include “Guess That Place”, “Who’s that Guy” etc. which originate from random guesses as obviously applicable
3. Shouting Along Phenomenon : Now one thing that has stayed constant throughout the year is the visualization of the difference between combined knowledge and individual knowledge of the students. As soon as the tutor asks a question, the entire class knows the answer but not one single person does. This phenomenon of shouting out answers and theories all pointing to the same answer for the careful listener is in fact something that can be analysed by itself. The method originated years ago from the gypsy fortune tellers. Their technique of throwing out words so that the listener hears what he wants to hear, has been adapted beautifully by students everywhere and of all ages. Although an insult to the historic origins of such a respected method of classroom participation, this too can be used as a perfect source of entertainment. The techniqueis simple. As soon as the class starts answering shout along. But the fun is in challenging yourself to be more creative. My initial days began with words related to the respective subjects. I have moved on successfully to movie names and the occasionally comic references. There is a slight requirement to know that subject, so that you avoid saying the right answer accidentally and being dragged into the discussion.
All these techniques have been tested and proved but at the same time there are two warnings:
- Use at your own discretion
- Do NOT use it in the class I am in. I can’t have two people saying “Sir, Same point”!!
*Author is noted for his unique multitasking ability to keep himself entertained while pissing people off at the same time.
Monday, January 24, 2011
Privacy invasion hit me hard… But luckily for them it hit me on the funny bone.. (Frankly, I’m not sure if that is supposed to make me feel that things are funnier or less funnier but let us go ahead with my initial assumption.). I have only heard of the risks of putting up your pictures for all of FaceBook to see. And also of the horrible things that is carried out in “Yossarian Speaks”. But a deadly combination of both over a period of time, along with a nonsensical game show by a renowned (they wish!) TV channel ended up in quite a hilarious infringement of any privacy laws that may be in this country.
I shall introduce the situation from a first person perspective. Imagine yourself to be casually having a good weekend with your family. As all families who complain about the television ruining the family unity, you are all gathered around it in an unnaturally abnormal and apparently non-evident sense of unity to watch some particular show. And as the whole room looks on, there pops up your picture.. right there! Right when everyone is watching, you are on TV! And you have no damn clue how! Worse yet, you are on TV coz the channel wants the viewers to wonder, if you are the son of some random guy!! No no… NOT the son of YOUR father but supposedly more honourable that you have a 0.25 probability of being the son of that famous guy on screen. Now in case some of you do not have the extreme imaginative capabilities required for this exercise. Here is a sample video of how it might look if you were me :
Only cute lady on the whole set (from now on CL) : Who is the son of Murali Mohan? Option A
CL : No? you don’t know the color of his jeans?
Lady in brown saree hiding her goatee(??) (LG) : *shakes head* B
CL : Option B
LG : hmm…this looks less random.. let
me see C
CL : Option C
CL: Do you have matching jeans for that shirt? Or atleast some lungi mayb?
LG: yes yes…matchin lungi for this I have.
CL : Ok..Option B and Option D have nothing to do with Kerala
LG : I miss option A.Can I see all 4 pictures?
Program editor : I’m so smart!
Viewers : Wow..all famous people..so lucky fellows, no…
And while this whole ordeal is happening the rest of the family watching with you can be picturised as below:
Well so that's that i'm apparently a TV star now, thanks to FB,google and a side dish usually had with dosa or vada (http://yossarianspeaks.wordpress.com/2010/01/15/gossip-girl-3/).
*Video courtesy Youtube; Picture courtesy : Family guy on my hard disk (And that's how it's done!!)
Wednesday, January 19, 2011
It isn’t what is said that matters but what is meant. The tone alone can convey what you are trying to say even without the words being right. And that is how a person can survive in whichever linguistic region he goes to….*SCREEEECH*
Atleast that’s what I thought until I had that stupid incident on a bus in Chennai. There I was peacefully….oh wait..let me get that right. There I was nervously standing in the bus with one hand holding the top bar, another on a seat trying hard not to get too close to the neck of the person sitting there. Aw..comon.you know what I’m talking about. That posture you maintain in the bus, when you don’t know where you are supposed to be getting down. With your head somewhere below the elbow of your raised hand , looking out like one of those hens they show on cartoons scratching the floor and trying to find at least one place which looked familiar! Well, there I was standing in the above mentioned manner when I happened to see an unexpected face at a bus stop we just passed. All excited to spot a friend out there, I thought I’d get down there, chit chat with the old chap and catch the next bus. Being a mallu, quite naturally as the blood that runs through my veins I started : “Chetaaa..Chetaaa…Stop..Chetaaa” (Ask that mallu friend of yours..). Baffled by the absolute disinterest shown by the the “Cheta” on board, I thought for a while and it hit me. Ofcourse! I was in Chennai.. No one is a cheta there!! “Anna..stoooopp..Anna”… And I had hit the right note! The bus stopped at once and a very pleased guy bounced out of the bus. But sadly enough, this whole process and the thoughts involved did not take place at the lightning speed I might have preferred. In effect there I was, stuck somewhere in Chennai with not my friend or my destination in sight.
Setting aside all happy memories of that day, let me get to the point. Whatever they told you about being in a new place was a BIG lie! NO! The first thing people learn in another region is NOT how to swear. That would come somewhere between the first thing and “How are you”. The first thing anyone learns is to call a stranger on the road – an auto driver, the shopkeeper, the guy who you want to ask directions to... I’ve seen my share of people visiting Kerala and besides the occasional buddy of ours who was taught completely irrelevant and censored stuff that even I didn’t know then, almost everyone else knew one word in common – “Cheta” (Brother). Okay, I don’t want to come out as a male chauvinist here. As the occasion called for, they did use “Chechi” as required too. But you could get by anywhere with those magical words. “Cheta, tea”, “Cheta, juice”, “Cheta, this” and “Cheta, that”. Ofcourse, next up in the words most understood by non-mallus came poda and patti but I’ll refrain from going into the details since this is not about the “Mallus”. Oh..by the way…there is a HUUUGE difference between “Cheetaa” and “Chetta”. (Ask that mallu friend again)
Tamil Nadu had the characteristic Anna as referenced before, which meant the same as Cheta – brother. And the utility of this word is pretty much the same there too – “Anna,tea”, “Anna, coffee”, “Anna university” and the likes.
I have not yet discovered what it is in Karnataka, but I have heard that you can get by with an interchangeable use of “Cheta”, “Anna” and the sorts. I shall not venture into the North since, as all below Mumbai are Madrasis, I am going to irrationally assume that it should be “Bhaiyya” everywhere (Foreigners, ask that Indian friend of yours. Yes yes..the mallu itself..he’ll know at least that much Hindi). One trend I DID notice ofcourse was that everyone was your brother: the rickshaw guy, bus conductor, even the guy younger than you who you need something from.
But then again, 1.5 years in A.P and I have learnt to use a new word. It could be due to the possibility of a majority wanting to badly dismember and swear at the person holding the actual title as referenced by this word but extensive use of it has ruined the title holder’s value. And not to mention the condescending manner in which it is uttered : “Boss”. There are variations to how it is said : “Booss”, “Booasss”, “Boohse”, “B-hose” etc etc.. Oh! This just in..apparently its catching up in Karnataka too. Well as long as I get the things I want done without having to walk over and poke the person or wave my hands crazily in front of him, I’m happy to call him anything. So I got no complaints. Besides, you know what they say " When in rome…
DISCLAIMER: This post was not intended to insult any region or faction of the society but if in ANY way you feel hurt or offended, Thankyou for reading.
Tuesday, December 07, 2010
Over the last 2 days I have been on a mission of searching for long lost contacts. People I shared incidents in my life with 18, maybe 19 years ago. People with whom I grew up, who I always took for granted at that age. But regardless of the extensive utility of social networks, I was unable to locate any of them. Well, the fault isn’t completely on those addictive time-consumers, coz it really is hard to remember full names from that age! And add to that the extensive collection of Indian names with their multitude of possible combinations along with minor variations which could include - the addition of an “h”, removal of an “a” and the occasional “…ia” instead of the commonly assumed “…ya” - and you have a huge database to go through. Of course even if I get a name right, identification based on their facial features would be a near impossibility as I have practically no clue what they would have changed into now. And let’s not forget the distractions posed by the empty pangs of hope that “that particular profile pic could be my friend now…or I wish it is. Maybe I should drop a message and find out. If not the old one, a new friend made.SCORE!”.
Anyhow, the relevant point here is that I didn’t make any new friends NOR find the old ones. But it made me wonder. It made me wonder about the people, the people that were around us and the people that may or may not be around us in the future. In effect it made me think about how we are, what we are…
I may sound like I’m turning 70 next month, the way I put it. But the fact is that our life, and more importantly, who we are has basically been a culmination of incidents – both big and small- over the ages. It could be as big as falling in love and breaking your heart, or as small as choosing where to sit in class. The butterfly effect phenomenon plays a huge role in making void any possible measurement of the impact of these incidents. The same circumstances would give completely different outcomes to different people. How one incident impacts a person, would depend on how he/she assimilates it. Recursively, this depends on the incidents before it. Thus, at any particular point the Past adds up, to help read the Present and thus, define our Future.
The question here is for how long does this last. Could it be an endless relation where every single day we learn? This would imply that every day we change something in ourselves. A minor touch here, a slight push there , to try and perfect who we are. As I type it, it sounds like the most possible thing but how big are these changes as compared to how they were possibly ten years ago!! Somewhere along the line the base was made; what is inside had been largely fixed and sealed. All ongoing changes are purely superficial, and sometimes just a temporary volatile addition . A change to who we are, how we think, how we react will require harder work; breaking open the seal to rebuild the base.
But on the whole, can we change who we are? Would we WANT to change who we are? What defines how a person is supposed to be? Every person is simultaneously in the right and the wrong when he reacts the way he does. He is right in his eyes since his actions are defined by his ethics, thoughts and experiences. At the same time, for someone else his actions could be interpreted to be defiant, unethical and even outright vicious. So how exactly do we define the change that is required? Aahhh..who knows J