Friday, September 24, 2004

Smile please!!

Walking with your wife can be a risky affair as I found out. The other day we were walking down MG Road, my wife was looking for things to buy and I was "just looking" (as did James Bond in Dr No). I noticed a girl I used to meet in the gym in the crowd. I smiled, she smiled, a perfectly acceptable social gesture in a civilized society. My wife saw!! I thought .. big mistake...

She asked, "who was that?" To save my skin , I said.. "I dont know!!".

That was a bigger mistake. (guess she had not seen me smile)

"Wisdom is nothing but common sense....

in an uncommon degree"

XBox Part II

On Wednesday, I went and purchased a converter and revved up the box. It was very nice and neat, neat images came on, the so called Dashboard and the display confirmed that it was "XBOX". But...
it came with no default games. Now why would MS not want to add a single playable game into the box that boasts of 10 GB of hard disk space is something I can never understand. I mean, make money on the games, fine... but at least allow the poor guy to have one preloaded game in the system to play!!

For the past weeks I have been following the stuff hackers have done to the xbox. From a gaming console XBox has come a long way. Last heard copies of Linux for the x-box were being distributed online. MS made a lot of attempts to ensure that the xbox is used for the purpose it was designed for, that is to play games. Games for which MS has been paid a huge royalty by the company marketing the games. But all were in vain, even an Indian website is selling kits and modchips that if installed allow the xbox to run every damn CD available. Any game, any movie, any region etc etc. But I am very happy for the hackers.

I believe that there was a contest featuring an award of 1,00,000$ for booting up Linux on the xbox without making any hware changes to the xbox. I think the objective was achieved by making use of a bug present in a game for the xbox. So the xbox has reached the status of a very cheap computer!! MS intended to sell the xbox first and make money on the games. But the hackers have ensured not only piracy to flourish , but also for the xbox be used to be run as a server!!

What was most hilarious was that after discovering a way to make the xbox run Linux, the hackers made a public request to MS to "officially" introduce a version of Linux that would run on the xbox failing which the hackers would be forced to reveal the hack. MS reacted in the way everybody expected them to, by threatening the hackers with lawsuits! Now, there are books available on amazon that provide details about how to repair the xbox and make it do what any computer does. Long live the hackers :)

I had a few doubts about my tv handling the NTSC format that the xbox plays. The first images I had seen were grainy and B/W. I seriously worried abt the decision of purchasing the box from US instead of UK. But a look at the manual the TV came with got me acquainted with a button the remote that enables the NTSC mode. A typical case of RTFM!!!

I now wait for the games. Sito !! Thy return is awaited famously!!!

Wednesday, September 22, 2004


Just have to share this news with all!! My xbox arrived on Tuesday. I proudly brought it home, the box with the accompanying jacks and stuff. Dad asked immediately, "What's that?". So I told him.

The response was met with a grave look. Guess it is not a very reassuring thought for a father to have a 28 yr old married son spending thousands on video games. The fact that I had recently purchased a comic set for an exorbitant price(It'S ASTERIX for heavens' sake) did not help my cause much either.

But as they say , "You gotta do what you gotta do". ;)

All enthusiasm at starting it up waned immediately as I saw the power cord rating of 120V. We have a 220 V supply here, just like the queen. Wonder why the Americans wanted to be different in everything that they do. So I gave up on any further attempts until I had a transformer capable of the task.

Tuesday, September 21, 2004


Just finished a road trip to Davangere. Since I now have a decent music system, I had decided to buy a couple of decent cassettes to listen to. A couple of Jagjit Singh albums were it. So that was the music that we listened to for nearly the entire journey. (Oh! I must not forget the "Tum to thehre Pardesi" album that too featured prominently.)

There is something mystic abt the word Gazal, u just have to like the sound of it. The lyrics of the Gazals by Jagjit Singh are definitely a treat. One of them had the opening line:-

"Tum nahin, Gam Nahin, Sharaab nahin"

At first it appears to translate to, "If u arent't there, there is no sorrow or need for alcohol".
Not a very pleasing compliment. But the next line goes:-

"Aisi tanhayee ka javaab nahin"

If I need to translate this, then the impact is lost. But I too joined in the ensuing "Vaah Vaah Vaah" :)

Friday, September 10, 2004


Girls are very emotional,in a strange way. I am soon realising that. My wife had to spend a day away at some resort for some office partying. She was very sad at the thought of having fun without me. I mean she was feeling guilty. She confessed her feelings to her girlfriends. And they all tried to get her cheerful by saying, "its only for a day" and stuff like that. Except for a foreign female who is out there doing an internship or something. She said, "No.. No.. No, you must not worry, you must trust your husband"


"Trust???", my girl had not not thought of all that??? "Trust"??

Ever since I am not allowed outside of home for long durations.

Speaking of that same firang female, when my wife first told me about her, my "intellectual" instincts were aroused. I immediately asked my wife to get her home for lunch or dinner or whatever. All instincts were doused by the look my wife gave me. I believe all her friends had also spoken to their husbands, boy-friends about this firang. And each one of them had requested their girls to get this firang for lunch, dinner, whatever. Men have similar instincts I guess;)