Wednesday, January 21, 2009

One Inauguration, so many questions

President-elect Barack Obama’s journey to drop the “-elect” from his title started with a 137 mile train journey from Philadelphia to Washington D.C., which took about 7 hours (that’s about 32 kmph. And we Indians thought Barshi Light was slow). My question is:

Was he sitting in the train looking at his watch and going, “48 hours till I can ride the Air Force One, 47 hours till…”?

We have seen all the film award shows put musical performances before the Big Four awards to increase the suspense. Just like that, after swearing in the Vice President, there was a musical performance.

Does the president-elect think at this point, “let’s get this done already”?

Can a close friend of the president-elect (or better yet, soon-to-be ex-president) turn around and go “Once more” after the performance is over, just to pull president-elect’s leg?

After the swearing-in ceremony is over, the president was shown inside the Capitol signing some documents. Of these options discussed in our office, which do you think describe the documents he was signing:

a. Lease for the White House, Air Force One, Marine One etc.

b. HR documents

c. Benefits documents

d. Just some papers he doodled on so that photographers can get shots of him signing something.

Meanwhile, people on the ground had other concerns. Bars open 24 hours, sub-zero temperatures and (despite this being the costliest inauguration yet)  one port-a-potty for about 6000 people on an average. I will leave you to complete that thought.

And while we are on the thought of bars, the president has to attend 10 official balls on the same day. This, plus 24 hours open bars: does the entire country wake up with a serious case of Januarythefirstitis on 21st January every four years?


- The Great Eagle Has Spoken


P.S. Obama vs Congress chess? What an idea…

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Waxing Eloquent

A few thoughts from a recent office party:

Attending a party in a wax museum is extremely confusing -

  • Looking from a distance, you never know if you are looking at a person or a statue. “I thought you were a statue” is not exactly a good excuse when somebody asks you why you didn't say hello.

  • It is very easy to get your picture with any girl, and tell your girlfriend it's just some celebrity. On the other hand, you have to convince your girlfriend every time she sees you getting photographed with a girl.

  • When you see people standing around or near a statue, you can easily mistake it for a person. On the other hand, a person standing alone...

  • In the similar vein, imagine: you are standing in a group talking. You sense something and look back to find somebody standing at your shoulder. As a courteous person, you move a bit to include the newcomer in the conversation, only to realise that it's a statue. On the other hand...

And, after a long time, here's the latest edition of Quick Quotes Quill* – Celebrity edition:

  • “How do they get the clothes on (the statues)?”

  • “He's so short.”
    - Standing next to a Barack Obama statue

  • “Next time you come here, he will be younger.”
    - Looking at Brad Pitt. (Incidentally, I have seen two museums now and why is Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie the only couple in Madame Tussuad's apart from the Clintons?)

  • “He should have auditioned for the part of Benjamin Button.”
    - Tom Cruise – apparently, all of his wives are 11 years younger than the earlier one.

- The Great Eagle Has Spoken

* Earlier editions of Quick Quotes Quill: Part I, Part II, Part III

Thursday, January 01, 2009

The Year is Over, Long Live The Year!

The Year That Was:

Personally, after last 2 years, 2008 was not a bad year for me. But then, I can imagine why some people felt like doing this:


On the positive side (just as a sample), India had the biggest medal haul in Olympics in its history of participation, (which included a gold medal after 28 years, and first personal gold). Viswanathan Anand successfully defended his World Chess title, and continues his third year at the top of ratings. And there is a piece of Indian technology in the form of Chandrayaan I, which is orbiting around the moon right now, and will continue for next 2 years.

On the negative side were (at the very least) last 40 days of the year, when India faced a horrific terrorist attack, and Pakistan government continues to change its stance with about the same frequency as the dress changes of actors in a typical Bollywood masala movie song, most of the times coming out as equally ridiculous (sorry, this is not a political blog). And then again, there is the looming (or rather, continuing) shadow of economic disaster (to say the least).

And then there was this:


The Year That Will Be:

So, here’s hoping all of you Have a Very Happy New Year!

May all

- feel safe in their homes and outside it

- prosper, keep your jobs and find new ones you like

- (and last but not the least) get what you wish for this year. And that means keeping your resolutions too.

- in short, be happy.

As for me, I think I will follow Chintoo’s aai’s advice and will “take the year as it comes”.


- The Great Eagle Has Spoken


* Translation for Chintoo comic:

1. Chintoo: In this year I will…

     Mother: Don’t decide anything.

2. Mother: You don’t follow your resolutions.

     Chintoo: All right.

3. Chintoo: I had decided to eat all vegetables in this coming year. :(