Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Fish yes, genetically modified no please

I am not particularly fond of salmon. Yes, I am sure I prefer my Rohu or Hilsa to it, but then again, Salmon seems to be a favourite among many, including bears. But what I am going to talk about wouldn’t really bother vegetarians, who have their own genetically modified brinjals to worry about.

So yes, genetically modified. It is a big word especially when it is applied to something like salmon. Soon to hit the supermarkets or not, is a decision that the US FDA will have to take, to introduce these modified salmon which seem to grow at twice the normal growth rate. Not only that, it seems a gene that has been introduced will ensure that it keep producing growth hormone even in cold, winter months, unlike its original cousin. Aqua Bounty technologies has developed this fish and most of the paper work and testing seems to be ready.

I wish I could eat good food, not something genetically modified, though am not really betting on the taste. After all, who cares about the nutrition content when eating fish?

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Buy 1, Get 3 free lifestyle

The other day I went to a store where I was kicked to see this offer where with a washing machine, a microwave oven came free, and the total offer price was not so bad either. This got me thinking that we have entered the age of 'Buy 1, get 1 free'.

Though this has been around for quite a few many years, everyone works on an incentive basis. Buy a mobile phone and get accessories free, buy a computer and get UPS free, buy a flat and get furniture free, buy a honeymoon package and get champagne free.

The list is endless. And to top it off, though monthly expenses are actually sky rocketing, people are able to afford it, thanks to the easy EMI scheme that several banks provide. Not just that, enroute to Tiruvanmiyur, Chennai, I saw a hoarding in which a bank offered gold loan in easy EMIs.

This easy EMI options can be quite addictive. I remember trying to apply for a Kotak xxxx card, where any purchase above Rs 5000 automatically gets converted into a 6 months, 0 interest EMI. Now how's that for modern comfort living. My application was however rejected because the firm I work with was not registered.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Tamizh Vazhga

Tamil is a classical language, no doubt, as its history can be traced back to 300 BC. Now, in a recent news report I read that the AIADMK has appealed to Indian President Pratibha Patil to use the language as an official language in Madras High Court.

Now, in my visit to Singapore, I found that announcements are made in Tamil (in addition to English, Chinese and Malay), so why is it so difficult to give the go-green for the same here. As long as there is an understanding that in a country like India, a state does not consist of only regional language speaking population, and also that Tamil cannot be forced upon non-Tamils like me.

So, a non-Tamil who feels at home in Tamil Nadu, my only request is that in all official exchanges, forms, there should be a translator and also the documents should also contain English translations.

In a way, we should all be thankful that the local transportation in Tamil Nadu does not contain Tamil numerals (yes, did you know that Tamil has its own numerals that you can never decode unless you are one, or are an expert on the subject?). But what I found funny today was – I had called the Aircel customer care, and after a long long process of punching 1 and 3 and what not, and requesting for English, the customer care executive spoke to me in Tamil, and fast. Unable to comprehend what she was saying, I asked to my surprise “Neenge English le pesaringala?” translated “Can you please speak in English?” in Tamil!!!

Tamizh Vazhga! (Long live Tamil)

And oh! Not to be missed -At 27, Sandhosh Kumar became the first Tamil to conquer Mount Everest, the world’s tallest peak on May 22nd (I think). At the summit, he unfurled a banner that apparently read Thamizh Vazhgha. Now, that is heights!!!