The Worst Desi Pick up Line does One more Round…

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So I’m walking to work today from the train station and it starts to rain. Of course I forgot my umbrella. So I put one hand over my eyes so that my mascara wont come dripping down my cheeks like Courtney Love. I’m walking along, by the side of the highway, muttering “whatever” to the raindrops accepting the fact that I’m going to look like Swamp Thing by the time I get to the office. Suddenly the raindrops stop. “Huh?” I look up and there’s an umbrella covering me. Apparently chivalry is not dead; this knight in shining armour, clean shaven with a gleaming smile in a clean tucked in white shirt has suddenly covered me with his big umbrella. I’m like “uh…hey, thanks”. I eye him suspiciously but he looks like a nice “up-standing” member of society. And it really was pouring down. I kept my distance but truthfully, when a guy does something old fashioned like offer you his umbrella during a rain storm, you almost want to believe there’s no hidden agenda. He’s being polite. Keeping a formal distance and I’m thinking to myself “maybe he’s not a complete creep.” In any case the rain is likely to stop any second. And its possible he’s just being a good Samaritan. I shouldn’t tell him to bugger off just yet.

So I quicken my pace and attempt to ignore him- but he’s not giving up- and he’s yammering on like a nervous kid, talking about his sister who’s in advertising and how he’s a manager for a telephone sales company and how he’s also an event manager and he’s just bumbling on an on, chasing me with this massive umbrella. Then with a sudden grin he extends his right hand in an attempt to shake mine and says the fateful words I have heard so many many many times before,“So? Can I make a FRIENDSHIP with you?” Ugh. I do not shake his hand. Goodness only knows what he’s been doing with it. This guy wants to make something and its definitely not a “friendship.” I mutter impatiently, “uh…” and I show him my wedding finger, “I’m married.” He’s asks “to who?” to which I rather sardonically retort, “to my husband.” And get this- he says with vocal inflection, “WHERE” is “HE?” I raise an eyebrow, thinking to myself “Nice one. Serves you right for hitching a ride under some random umbrella. Now ditch this guy before he tries to convince you to check into a sleazy motel on the pretext of introducing you to his “other sister,” the one who does circus tricks naked.

For a moment there I thought that I was experiencing some anachronistic gallantry. But I have to hand it to the guy; it took guts to use a line that’s been used more often than a shanghai masseuse- and using an umbrella as a prop. Nice touch. And you know, I have nothing against creativity. There’s a whole artform attached to good pick up lines. How about my classic favorite, “If I said you had a beautiful body, would you hold it against me?” The ever tasteful, “Baby if you were a booger I’d have picked you first,” and “Fuck me if I’m wrong, but haven’t we met before?” I think I’d actually pay for some guy’s drink just to listen to a string of these classics. But if I hear the “be my friend?” line one more time…I’m going to…well, there’s no doubting I’m going to hear it again. Old is gold. And so is the creepy technique of disguising a come-on in a chivalrous gesture with pretences at brotherly sentiment.

He can tell I’m trying to get away from him so he says he only asked me to be his “friend” because he could be in some way “useful” in managing some kind of random P.R. event for me or something. He’s really casting about in desperation at this point, looking for something clever to say, having realized his “be my friend” line has failed. A light bulb flashes above his head. A stroke of genius. “Are you on orkut?” he asks me, with a worryingly excitable gleam in his eye, “ You can make lots of FRIENDS there.” The rain has stopped and his unfoldable umbrella wilts back to its usual size. I am beginning to walk away. He whines suddenly, “But don’t you want to make a friendship?” I’m feeling kind of sorry for him actually. “No.” I half smile, “ But thanks for the umbrella.” I walk off making a mental note to buy a new umbrella and possibly a rain jacket with the words “I’m not on orkut and I don’t want to be your friend.” printed on it.

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Thanda Thanda Pani

impressive memory this guy has…

Cannibal Goats and Drunken Rats

So get this: There’s this goat named Mantu who ISN’T being eaten because he eats other goats. Plus he’s going to get a cannibal goat bride. Only in India.

evil-goat.jpg image from thundercats

Goats are generally vegetarian. They eat grass, fruit and vegetables but have you ever heard of a goat who eats meat and drinks liquor!!! Yes, here is a goat named ” Mantu”,who is fond of all these stuff. There is a goat at the “Sana Bada Dhaba”, a roadside eatery, 350 kms from the state capital Bhubaneswar in Orissa state of India, who’s staple diet is cooked meat of other goats & this goat drinks liquor too.’The animal has been living in the dhaba since its birth and slowly developed the habit of eating non-vegetarian food,’ as per the dhaba owner Sana Naik.

Mantu does not like grass – the staple diet of other goats. ‘The goat eats the cooked meat of other goats that we serve to customers,’ he said. ‘Because of its peculiar habits, we are not killing it.’

The goat also drinks liquor. It obeys commands like monkeys.’If you ask it to perform a death scene, it will lie on the ground as if dead. You ask it to show a fight scene, it will demonstrate like a warrior,’ he said.As per the dhaba owner Naik. ‘I love the goat so much. It is like my own child. I am looking for a female goat as its bride,’ Naik said. ‘I am planning to organise the marriage in a big way, may be next August.

‘I will also host a grand feast. My customers, who include ministers, legislators, officials, businessmen and journalists, have assured me that they will join the feast and bless the goat couple.’ from weird India

green beer rat
from webshots

Rodents get drunk as skunks off seized liquor

Posted Thu Jun 21, 2007 10:25pm AEST

Authorities in India say rats are gnawing at beer cans and making holes in caps of whisky bottles stored in police storehouses in the east of the country and apparently getting drunk.

Kundan Krishnan, a senior officer says the rodents’ love for liquor has the police department in Bihar state stumped as it tries to store hundreds of bottles seized from illegal sellers from across the state in Patna, the state capital.

“We are fed up with these drunk rats and cannot explain why they have suddenly turned to consumption of alcohol,” he said.

The problem costs revenue as the seized liquor is usually sold through auctions, he said.

Rats were also attacking people near the police buildings, nibbling at their toes, although it was not clear if they were under the influence, officials and witnesses said. from abc

Happy Rakhi Sawant Guys…

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For some strange reason, Rakhi is one of the few festivals that I try not to dismiss off hand as being another opportunity for greeting card and cell phone companies to cash in on nauseating mass-sentimentalism. Like a vegetarian who eats a portion of fish once a year (for health reasons) I try to put aside my “bah-humbug” attitude for at least one incremental day of the year. Cuz in our extended little clan of bros…these guys are like characters that just popped out of strange chapters of dusty books and they are truly mad and like Kerouak:

The only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn, like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars and in the middle you see the blue centerlight pop and everybody goes “Awww!

and now for a gratuitous song and dance number…by the biggest rakhi one could hope to tie around a boy…. Rakhi Sawant. Dancing in a harem. Happy Rakhi guys. lol:

lol. I just found out a close friend of mine wants ME to be a rakhi “brother” and is going to tie a rakhi on me today. To make matters more interesting; my rakhi sister is a guy. That’s pretty cool. I always wanted to have a sister. Just never realized she was going to be a guy. lol. 🙂 click here for next year’s Rakhi post.

Pratap Chahal- our Desi chef returns with Monsoon madness & Chocolate Macaroons

Just came back from seeing a most excellent Pixar film about how good cooking can come from the most unusual places… “Ratatouille: Rat-a-too-ee” is a film that is a must see for foodies and animation junkies alike (the graphics are amazing) and the watching the food being prepared just made me salivate. Its about a rat chef and is set in the militarized, maniacal environment of one of the finest restaurants in Paris. Made me nostalgic for the good old days when Pratap used to come home after a hard day, slaving away in a Michelin restaurant like a mad inspired pastry genius, bringing home incredible savory delights that he’d invented in the kitchen for his house mates to gormandize. Anyway here he is, our very own Prata-touille :

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To be sung in the tune of ‘Soldier of love’ by Pearl Jam:

‘Where o’ where can the summer be?

Global warming took it away from me!

Now I’ve got to get away from all this rain

So I can be alive and not drown…in floods.’

Monsoon madness…aptly named for it drives people nuts – especially when England gets its first taste of monsoon-style rains. For us in the food industry, it’s a blessing and a curse – it helps crops to grow, albeit, marginally. The damage from the excessive rain is far more crippling, having painfully thrashed into near non-existence the presence of cauliflower and broccoli, and my own pumpkin and courgette plants are drowning in my back garden.

Ok, ok…enough moaning. Doesn’t help though everytime you go to the supermarket to but food, 90% of the items on your list come from half way across the world! It’s impossible to get home-grown produce anymore. Although in the restaurant world, global farms are, ironically, life-savers and earth-killers (death by food miles).

Well, here we are, again after an extended leave, not much has happened in the London restaurant scene, with this time of year being the quietest anywhere as everyone is traipsing around the world with their families. Nevertheless, here’s something you might like to whip up for your afternoon snack or tea…

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Chocolate Macaroons with a chocolate & black cardamom dipping sauce:

2 – Egg whites

40 g – sugar

80 g – Almond powder (just put some in a blender till they’re finely ground up if you

cant get any)

100 – Icing sugar

1 level tbsp – cocoa powder

Method: Whisk the egg whites and sugar till they for a firm meringue (you should be able to hold it above your head without it decorating you with a white hat!)

Sieve the dry ingredients and slowly fold them in with a spatula.

Preheat your oven to 180c, or medium heat.

Line a tray with non-stick paper and place a few spoonfuls of the mix onto the tray – don’t flatten it out too much. Bake for 10-15 minutes until the top is smooth and crispy. Let them cool down while you make the sauce.

Black cardamom sauce:

200 ml – Milk

200 ml – Cream

2 tbsp – black cardamom, crushed

30 g – sugar

50 g – dark chocolate

Method: Boil the milk, cream and cardamom and leave to infuse for 10 minutes. Bring back to the boil, whisk in the sugar and strain onto the chocolate. Mix till the chocolate has dissolved – taste for sugar. Sometimes, a pinch of salt give it a slight edge.

Alternatively, you can use two macaroons and sandwich them with some shrikhand and cherries!

Going back on the topic of food-miles, the philosophy is ironic in itself. Whether the food has come from half way across the world, or the half-way across the city even, I bet the miles notched up wont be very different. It’s us consumers who notch up those miles by driving to the marked – think millions of people driving any distance to buy food – surely those notch up to something. In a more positive light though, there is satisfaction eating something grown in the country you live in. India for example, is a champion of this as it grows almost all of its fruit and vegetables – also helping people to follow and be guided by the season. The anticipation of summer and the first mango, the thrill of winter and its apples and guava – these simple pleasures are numbed by the global availability all year round. But, and I’m fighting both sides of the case here, in a global kitchen, a city where the world is represented, people want food from all over – Indian vegetable will have to come from India, Caribbean yams and calaloo (similar to spinach) will have to come from a thousand miles away as we want to eat what our cultures have engrained in us.

For the better part, some of us are striving to do our bit by buying produce that is as near to the UK as possible, until, of course, the vicarious desire for Asian cuisine ropes us in.

I’d love to hear your opinions on this matter, as it is a vicious circle and we are hypocrites sometimes as there is no choice but to buy from far away – old habits die hard and we don’t want to change the way we eat, just the way we buy what we eat.

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Chakde ! India! Happy Independence Day…

Ok so I was more or less dragged to see this film but I have to tell you that if you that if you want to do something fun this Independence day- go see this film. It was the feel good film of the year- and even a crusty old cynic like me got sentimental during bits of it. Ok ok so I’m a softy. But go see it- by commercial standards its seriously well acted- Shah Rukh Khan actually manages to get through the film with minimal tears. Its a film about a hockey coach for the national girl’s hockey team, and how they whip out a can of whoop-ass at the world cup. It was a film that also managed to touch on a number of sensitive issues without getting disgustingly sentimental… for instance you don’t often see films that give you a sense of muslim Indian patriotism (Khan plays a muslim who is suspected of being a traitor by helping the pakistani team beat the Indian team). And the girls on the hockey team are awesom- really well acted. There’s like this bad ass sardharni chick, and this midget Haryanvi chick- and when the Manipuri chick and another northeastern girl sign up the guy at the desk says “welcome.” They scowl at him. He says “why are you unhappy?” They’re like “would you be happy if someone told you you were welcome in your own country”…so the film kind of touches on a number of general racial discriminations that you’re kind of aware of in every day life but that films don’t seem to have mentioned before. Plus the fact that Indian girls (like the girl from Manipur) who have slightly oriental features always get hit on…jerks calling out to them “hey baby”…etc. So there’s this awesome scene where the whole team of girls attack these pervs at McDonalds and kick some *#(%(%#…So my advice to you…see it. Chakde!

Also, apparently the girls who act in the film trained so well as hockey players that the actual national girl’s hockey team is planning to play a game against them, in real life.

Sugar Sammy- Stand-up Comedian

This is damn funny…