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Showing posts from May, 2014

LGBT (Rights) Are Human (Rights)

I was scrolling through my Google+ feed when I came across an interesting video called 'The Welcome' on LGBT Rights by the UN, posted by +Vamsee Kanakala. Now there are many things to criticize in the video like the clothes the two men wear (my goodness, what were they thinking?!) but it is still heartwarming. Unfortunately, I was checking it out on my phone and inadvertently looked down at the comments. Oh what a mistake that turned out to be! This would never have happened if I was seeing it on my laptop (where comments are hidden by default, you should do that too) but on my phone...it just happened.

The level of anti-gay sentiment displayed there astounds me still. The sad part is that most of the arguments used are not only irrational and downright stupid, they're ones that are quite easily debunked. Honestly, it shouldn't take anymore more than a few minutes to point out why they don't make any sense. So instead of just making sense in my own head (I do that…

The Girl Who Would Not Fail

Part IV - The Marathon The next day

Once again, Jazzy got out of the car in front of a lecturer's home. But this time, the event could not have been more different. The professor, Mr. Mohankrishna, was a recent addition to the college staff and was barely five years older than Jazzy herself. He didn't have much of a reputation - at least not yet - and there were no students huddled around, waiting to clear doubts or ask last minute questions. Murthy had told him about his daughter's predicament and he had accepted the job, viewing it as a challenge to his teaching abilities.

A lady with a kind face had let her in and told her to wait for MK in a rather small room. It wasn't long before he made an appearance himself, carrying a load of Accounts books in his arms. Before Jazzy could utter a word, he started talking.

"Your father has told me everything that happened with The Professor. He also said you were intelligent and determined to pass your exams. I'm willing…

The Girl Who Would Not Fail

Part III - The Verdict
Jazzy got down from the car and walked up to the address shown by the driver. A bunch of students were streaming out in ones and twos, discussing accounts and the forthcoming exams. Most passed by without even looking at her, though a few did glance curiously at this new face. She went inside and knocked on the door. It was opened almost immediately by a little girl of about 7 or 8.

"Thatha said no more doubts," she said uncertainly.

For a moment Jazzy was confused, then realized that tuition had closed for the year. The students had all been sent away to prepare for the finals and here she was, getting ready to start!

"The Professor knows I'm coming. Will you please tell him that Murthy's daughter is here?"

"You wait there," said the girl pointing to a door close by, before running off inside.

Jazzy went into the room and sat down on one of the chairs close to the blackboard. The last few problems of the day were still on t…

The Girl Who Would Not Fail

Part II - The Arrangement
Jazzy paced up and down on the verandah, anxiously waiting for her father. He usually spent some time in the front office after breakfast, attending to business before leaving for the factory. From her vantage point, she would be sure not to miss him. Not that she was looking forward to the next half hour, this would not be comfortable. She was nervous, trying to collect the words she would use to talk to him. She was so absorbed in this that she didn't see her mother come up and nearly screamed when she felt a tap on her shoulder.
"Aaah! Oh it's only you Amma!" exclaimed Jazzy.
"There is no need to be nervous now. Just go and explain to him what you told me yesterday, everything will be all right." So saying, Lakshmi bustled away to the kitchen to supervise the cook.
Easy for you to say, thought Jazzy. I'm the one who has to face him. I'm the one who has to study stupid economics and accounts instead of doing experiments in…

The Girl Who Would Not Fail

Part I - The Confession
Jazzy sat alone on the verandah, hugging herself and rocking back and forth. Practically everyone was asleep on this hot summer day, except Jazzy and her mother, Lakshmi. Why wasn't mummy asleep? thought Jazzy and then remembered she was busy getting the guest room ready for the relatives arriving over the weekend. She returned gloomily to her current problem, which was beginning to scare her the more she thought about it. How could I have been so stupid? What will I do now? I cannot fail, not now...I've never failed! 

Jazzy was lost in her troubles and nearly missed her mother calling her name. She jumped to her feet and walked up the stairs quickly. The maid had just finished sweeping the room when she entered, making her cough a little.

"Where have you been all this time Jazzy? I've been calling you for 5 minutes now!" barked her mom, worried as usual about the impending guests.

Sometimes Jazzy felt like the front door should be replace…

Dumping Windows For Linux? If Only...

How many times have you felt like doing kicking your computer to the curb? I mostly get the feeling when it comes to formatting my laptop (because that's the only way to fix whatever was screwing it up, even if it isn't my fault). I recently re-installed Windows 7 on my laptop. Why? Because Windows Update mucked up once again, that's why. If the official update system from Microsoft (designed to protect your system) causes problems, what can you do?! I was not prepared for yet another long day spent moving data around, installing all the applications I use on a daily basis and the ultimate horror - trying to find all the relevant drivers for my hardware.

With XP, getting up and running would often take me hours since there were hundreds of things I'd have tweaked and changed to suit me exactly. Mind you, I had done this before so I knew what to do and had all the parts (Win DVD, key, HDD for backup etc) on the table. Still, re-installing windows is never fun and I had…

Hope Remains, Always

This is the final part (V) in a series of stories, set in the game world of Banished. Read Part I.
I am dying. Oh, the others make polite sounds and murmur words of encouragement but we all know the truth. Without the advanced medicine and technology available on the other planets, it's a miracle that I have managed to live this long at all. In a month's time, I will be 80 - the oldest any Terran has managed to survive so far. One day we might once again live for centuries but this is the end of the road for me. To be quite honest with myself though, I have done more in these 57 years of banishment than any human with centuries under their belt on Ganymede or Mars. I have felt alive...
Quite a few people were skeptical about the trading post but we managed to finish it just in time before our stock of iron went down to zero. No iron meant no tools and without tools, our little band might well have perished the next winter. I was just as impatient to get news from the planets abo…