23 August 2013

Professor Aditi's Guide to Wasting Time- Part I

...brought to you by the professional. You won't find a better guide anywhere else.

So kick back and enjoy the first edition of...

PROFESSOR ADITI'S GUIDE TO WASTING TIME

Introduction
Let's get the pleasantries out of the way. I'm a professional time-waster. I can waste time anytime, anyplace. In fact, you might not have noticed, but I'm wasting time right now. Sneaky? Check. Pointless? Check. Yes, this is the guide for you.

Lesson One
The first step to mastering the art of wasting time is to know the all the theories and their corollaries. By familiarizing yourself with these, you will be be enriching your knowledge, and with this knowledge, you can become more adept at wasting time. And while memorizing these--yep, you guessed it: you'll be wasting time!

Theories
Theory I: Wasted time is time that could have been spent in a more productive way.
          Corollary to Theory I: All time is wasted time.
               Corollary to Theory I Proven: One can always be doing something more productive, therefore one is always wasting time.
Theory II: Wasted time is more effective when an important task is at hand.
Theory III: Wasted time is even more effective when one is reprimanded for doing so.

Lesson Two
So. You've memorized the theories. What you'll learn in lesson two is simple: ways to waste time. You can implement or improvise on these ways. The best time-wasters come up with their own ways to waste time.
  • Plan and write a guide to something completely pointless. Points for illustrations!
  • Make a list of things you hate.
  • Make a list. Of things. That you have feelings for.
  • Make a Harry Potter tumblr.
  • Write Harry Potter fanfiction.
  • Write poems.
Part II to come later. Yeah, I didn't want to make it too long. If you share this I love you.

-Aditi

06 August 2013

24 July 2013

Back again!

Ok, so this time it really has been forever. But I'm back! Mostly because a friend convinced me to continue. I mean, it's summer and I'm bored out of my mind, so why not?

So right now I'm in INDIA. I arrived on the 14th of July, and it's been raining pretty much nonstop. One of the hazards of coming during monsoon season. In fact, my uncle signed my brother and me up for tennis lessons, and we've only been able to have ONE.

An upside, though, is my completely adorable baby cousin! He's about two years old, and he's sort of talking, and it's so cute!

Also I've decided to share this blog on Facebook and I'm totally embarrassed and nervous cuz people I know might read this.

Meanwhile, here's a poem I wrote some time ago, about addiction. Although it really doesn't apply to me much longer, thank god.

Addiction

When you think of addiction,
just what comes to mind?
Alcohol and cigarettes,
your insides all maligned?

Surely not your laptop,
where several websites call?
Impossible that those websites
could become your downfall.

Doesn’t seem a problem (you think),
for Facebook’s not a need.
Twitter’s not a must,
nor is your YouTube feed.

What, then, explains the longing
that tugs at your insides?
How your time will now be spent—
that longing will decide.

What explains that urge
to check your latest post?
That desire to get likes, and see
who can get the most?

“I don’t have an issue,” you say,
and in your mind you don’t.
So there’s no need to close (and think)
“I won’t, I won’t, I won’t!”

But then you visit all your friends,
and it’s there for you to see.
‘They have no life,’ you think in shock,
‘could that really be me?’

So don’t think that it’s not there—
that your issue is fiction.
You’re only fooling your own self—
‘cause you’ve got an addiction.

Like it? 

28 March 2013

The Difference Between a Nerd and a Geek (and a Dork)

It's been a long time, guys, but suddenly while browsing LOLpics on my iPod, I remembered something that truly annoys me. People always use the words nerd and geek and dork interchangeably. Well, guess what? They are not the same.

In my mind, here is how this works.

A nerd is someone who is intelligent and likes to learn--more than the average person. A nerd may not get straight A's constantly, but they are truly interested in their subjects, unlike nearly 75% of my school. When someone is called a nerd, it can have a negative or positive connotation. For example:

guy: hey [wannabe cool person], you're such a nerd!
wannabe cool person: =(

or

guy: hey [science lover], you're such a nerd!
science lover: aw hell yeah! nerd and proud!

A geek is someone who has interests in certain topics--more than the average person. A geek will have an obsession with, say, Pokemon, or Doctor Who. Or Harry Potter. Like nerd, geek can have a positive or negative effect.

A dork is someone who either dresses weird, acts weird, or is in general strange. The word has a decidedly negative connotation, but friends often affectionately call their friends dorks.

Any person can be any one of these, or two, or three. I believe I am a geek and a nerd. If you want to be more specific, you can attach tags: I am a science/math nerd and a Harry Potter geek. Make sense?

So don't make the confusion again. I might have to eat you.

13 March 2013

Real mint: smells a lot better than it tastes

I was so excited. So freaking excited. After a long while, my mom had finally bought me some spearmint tea!

I don't think I've mentioned that I love the flavour of mint. That is, the kind you get in little tins. Needless to say, I was not prepared for the taste of real mint.

I thought it would be fantastic. It smelled good. The tea bags. They smelled delicious.

What a rude awakening. They tasted NOTHING like the "mint" flavour that I loved so much. NOTHING. Clearly my sugar levels are much too high.

I hope that I'll like the taste better when I get used to it. It doesn't taste BAD, just...unexpected. Plus, you catch a whiff of the smell as you drink, so it gives you the illusion of mint leaves, which taste reasonable.  Spearmint tea has a lot of benefits: as well has containing a high amount of antioxidants (those lower your risk of cancer), it also lowers the levels of the male hormone androgen in your body, which causes facial hair growth.

Other foods that are high in antioxidants include:

  • blueberries
  • cranberries
  • dried prunes (yum!)
  • pecans
  • apples
Luckily they all taste good.

Also, the spearmint tea makes my throat feel pretty fresh, which is awesome.

Anyways, I've got a truckload of homework to get working on. Bye.

28 February 2013

Summer

I'm so ready for winter to be over. So ready. Please, summer, please come fast.

Wrote this after my mother commented on the weather, saying, "It almost gives an illusion that summer's here, long evenings and all." I was "struck by a passion" then, the lyrics to a poem almost sprang into my head at that moment and I had to write it down. It's not fantastic. But it's something.


Summer

Summer is gentle,
romantic, sensual,
long pleasant evenings
the gentle glow of candlelit dinners,
unrushed strolls around the neighborhood,
hand in hand with your other.

Summer is exciting,
surprising, fleeting,
water balloon fights,
the rush of amusements,
sleepovers and bonding time,
smiling with your buddies.

Summer is relaxing,
paced, drawn-out,
streams of sunlight and lazy mornings,
quiet time all by yourself,
time to collect your thoughts.

Summer is exhilarating,
passionate, overwhelming,
feeling the wind on your face,
walks along the beach,
feeling the sea spray sprinkle your face.

Summer is everything.

27 February 2013

Why Your Writing Sucks

Yes, it does. It sucks. And mine probably sucks too. Actually, your writing has a lot of potential. Don't ask how I know. I do. And once you tap into that potential, your writing will be brilliant. It will be so riveting, so down-to-earth and astonishing that readers will not be able to look away. Everyone has that writing genius (unless they are truly idiots) and the level of your writing is determined mostly by how easily you can come to terms with your writing.

Stop trying to be grammatically correct all the time. I don't mean become lazy in your use of "your" and "you're" or "there" and "their". If you use the wrong word there, I will get one of my friends to eat you. What I mean is, stop limiting yourself to rules like: don't use fragments, don't begin a sentence with 'and' or 'but'. Those are terrible rules, and apart from English essays I want you to delete that from your brain. Think how dramatic fragments can be.

"Blood. It was everywhere, streaked on the walls, oozing from the furniture and splattered on the floor; a stark reminder of the tragedy that had just occurred."

See how effective and dramatic that was? The sentence started off with one word that was something like a slap to your cheek; it woke you up, made you blink and shudder a couple of times before you even knew what was going on.

Eliminate the details. Don't try to write like those 19th century poets. Instead of:

"Even broken in spirit as he is, no one can feel more deeply than he does the beauties of nature. The starry sky, the sea, and every sight afforded by these wonderful regions, seems still to have the power of elevating his soul from earth. Such a man has a double existence: he may suffer misery, and be overwhelmed by disappointments; yet, when he has retired into himself, he will be like a celestial spirit that has a halo around him, within whose circle no grief or folly ventures." -Mary Shelley, Frankenstein

write: 

"Though he was drowning in intense sadness and misery, he still had room in his broken heart to accept the beauties of nature. Every wondrous sight seemed to lift his soul from the earth. He was split in two: he suffered, yes, and faced disappointments, but in his own companionship he was an angel with no cares in the world." -me, my blog

Give your characters flaws. Don't turn your guys into Edward Cullen. Don't turn your girls into the epitome of perfection. Nobody is perfect, and nobody wants to read a boring book about perfect people. Give your characters interesting flaws, like serious identity issues, or a terrible family background, or a flaring temper, or excessive nervousness, or narcolepsy, or color-blindness. Mix it up. Make it interesting. Don't use cliches or stereotypes. Don't make all the popular girls blonde, like Barbie dolls. Don't turn them into typical, popular-girl, hair-flipping freaks. Haven't we all read about those before? Hmm? Don't be all like:

"The intensity of his gorgeous brown eyes made me want to melt into him."

or

"His skin was so flawless, his hair so artfully messed, his frame so athletic yet slim."

instead, write something like:
 
"He was on the skinny side, more like gangly, really, tall and thin with clumsy movements. Despite his awkward build and stance, he was quite popular; always making his friends burst into laughter, always smiling and cheerful. He did have a rather blunt way of saying things, however, and often unintentionally hurt people's feelings. Despite his flaws, though, he had a heart of gold." -me :P

Show, don't tell. You've heard this before, but I'm serious. Don't say: 

"He was extremely sad."

say

"Emotions ran through him like a wind of silvery knives, jabbing and twisting and slicing at his insides."

And finally, embrace your writing voice: it is your one and only original trait and you must enhance it. Don't try to write like someone you're not. Just write. And make sure, throughout all that prose and dialogue, that a hidden shadow of yourself is recognizable.

Goodbye, or as they would say in Hindi, alvida. Happy writing!

18 February 2013

What Disney Teaches Us

Remember all those Disney princesses we loved as kids? Some of us still love em. And there's nothing wrong with that. But lately I've noticed that there are--perhaps unintentional--underlying messages in each one.

For example, in "Sleeping Beauty", princess Aurora was asleep for 100 years, and she woke up with a stranger kissing her. She married him. First of all, the condition for her to wake up was that the kiss had to be one of true love. What kind of creeper falls in love with a sleeping girl in one second, and then kisses her? That is the weirdest thing ever. The prince (Prince Charming), on the other hand, teaches us that for a girl to fall madly in love with you, you need to be rich, charming, handsome, and famous.

In "The Little Mermaid", Ariel falls in love with a stranger she sees on a beach, goes to great pains to change her appearance so as to be more attractive to that stranger (with the aid of an evil lady) trading her voice in exchange. No matter, she apparently has nothing of great importance to say. The prince (Prince Charming) teaches guys to be rich, charming, handsome, and famous.

In "Aladdin", a 'street rat' falls in love with a princess (who walks around in the most revealing outfit ever) and eventually she falls back in love with him and they get married. The guy teaches us to be charming, handsome, and appear to be rich and famous.

In "Cinderella", Cinderella lives in terrible conditions. Her beauty helps her attract a rich, handsome man, and  get married and inherit his wealth. Excellent.

In short, Disney teaches us not to talk to strangers, unless they're hot. Also that all a man needs to get a girl is wealth, good looks, and fame. Actually, in "Beauty and the Beast", looks don't matter. Except in the girl.

But the Disney movies aren't all bad. They're not all chauvinistic. "Mulan" is one of the best Disney movies...ever.

And here's a magazine cover spoof I picked up off of cracked.com:


































So now we know exactly why people act the way they do. It's Disney's fault. So there.

13 February 2013

The Complete Guide to Writing Passwords

Writing a good password is a skill that a surprisingly high amount of people lack. Many password tips will tell you not to use the same password for everything. I agree. But it's becoming impossible to remember a password for each and every account you have, which is why several different passwords are enough. However, having one password that will unlock many accounts makes it easier for a person to access all of those, once he knows your password. That means you have to make the decision about which accounts are really important and which accounts don't matter as much. So how can you write a hard-to-guess password? 

There are plenty of password testers out there, such as howsecureismypassword.net, which is what I used to determine my password strength (results above). But don't be fooled: these password testers can only do so much. What they recognize is the variety of characters you use, like symbols, numbers, capital letters and lowercase letters. You want to keep in mind who you are trying to protect your account from more: computers or actual people? For instance, if you want a good password for a home computer account, you'll want to choose something hard for people around you to guess. If you're trying to create a passcode hard for a computer to guess, these password testers aren't always accurate, sometimes a password like "!A56h$32" is a lot easier to guess, with the help of a computer, than a password like "dontgiveuphope". You'll also notice that the latter is much easier to remember. So how can you make that password harder to crack? Try these steps:
  1. Find a phrase or title of a song you like: "dontforgettolive"
  2. Capitalize where appropriate: "DontForgetToLive"
  3. Add punctuation: "Don'tForgetToLive"
  4. Add punctuation in the form of emoticons: "Don'tForgetToLive(:"
  5. This one's if you have a really good memory; substitute letters for numbers: "D0n'tForg3tT0L1vE(:"
Notice that I didn't substitute ALL the o's with 0's, and so on. Password hacking programs are equipped to substitute numbers for letters! So it is at your own risk that you substitute these letters with numbers. 
 
The password we finally came up with, when plugged in the the password tester I mentioned, estimated this computer cracking time:



That is a lot of years. Remember, however, that testers calculate all the possible combinations for your password, multiply that by the time it would take to try each one. Of course it is not perfectly accurate.

So those were tips on how to write a good password. But what about the don'ts? What do you absolutely not want to do?
  • Don't use numbers in a patterns. A passcode that contains "123", "111", or "246" and the like is very, very easy for a person to guess, and even more so for a computer.
  • Don't put your username or other identifying information (i.e., your name, birthday, country, pet name, teacher name, etc.) in your password.
  • Don't use only one type of character. Use a variety, to make it more difficult for hackers.
  • Don't use letters in patterns, either. "asdfghjkl" and "qwerty" are the easiest passwords to guess, ever.
  • These should be obvious: don't write down your password. Don't tell people your password; if necessary, not over a connection but in person. Over a connection, everything is recorded.
  • If required to change your password, don't make it similar to the previous one. It should be completely different.
  • Don't use extremely common phrases, like "LiveLaughLove<3" or "SharingIsCaring". Plus, those passwords are stupid.
So now you have it: how to write your next password. Keep in mind that this is not your final guide--there are a number of choices that you have to make yourself, depending on the situation. See you soon, or as they say en francais: a bientôt!

11 February 2013

Why I Hate Valentine's Day

I hate Valentine's Day. All the pink, all the lace and frills and hearts, all the couples debating in high voices what they're going to do...it drives me nuts. You could argue that I'm just a bitter, jealous girl who scorns relationships because I'm not in one. That's really not it. I just think, what is the significance of the day? If you like a guy/girl, and a guy/girl likes you, what grain of effect does Valentine's Day have on your relationship? You like each other the same, just as any other day.

I try to ignore Valentine's Day as much as possible. So imagine my horrified surprise when some guy says, "Oh yeah, it's Valentine's Day on Friday, isn't it?" and a bunch of girls reply in shock, scandalized by his mistake, "It's on THURSDAY!"

My French teacher laughs, and says, "What girl DOESN'T know when Valentine's Day is?"

Ahem. Me! I'm sure my face turned bright red. 

So while I am trying vehemently to ignore everything about Valentine's Day, here is how I am being hindered:
  • Overenthusiastic announcements on our school TV and in the caf, "Valentine's Day is coming up! Show your love by buying all your friends a Candy Gram! Candy Grams are only 50 cents each, and they are sure to show everyone just how much you care about them!" Yeah, right. I care about you so much that I bought you a fifty-cent, red, heart-shaped lollipop that tastes like a hyperventilating hippopotamus threw up on it.
  • Excited girls everywhere, squealing and gushing and giggling, gossiping about what outfit they're going to wear, how they're going to color-coordinate ("I am TOTALLY wearing pink. Omg, ___ you should so wear red! It looks so pretty on you!! Omg we can be, like, twins!"). Yeah, cause wearing pink on Valentine's Day totally indicates love and happiness.
  • Advertisements on TV, telling me I have to attend Justice or Abercrombie because of the mega-super-awesome Valentine's Day sale they're having. "You get 2% off EACH ITEM YOU PURCHASE! What a deal! What a deal!"
  • Valentine's Day (more like Valentine's Month, really) specials. "See Lauren and Conrad in this Valentine's Day special filled with MORE drama, spice, and never-before-seen scenes!" Seriously? I don't even watch TV, and each drama is literally shoved in my face from fifty feet away where some member of my family is watching the talking box.
  • Blog updates, all giving me new DIYs for Valentine's Day and suggestions as to what I should get for my nonexistent spouse, my best friends, my mother, my father, even my teachers. "Valentine's Day is coming up, and here's why YOU should be excited!!" Hell no! I don't give a pig's nostril!
Okay, so maybe that was a bit much. Valentine's Day is pretty dumb, but there's one thing about it even I can't complain about: chocolate. The chocoholic inside me is drooling at the thought of all that yummy stuff, even if it is wrapped in shiny pink foil and shaped like a heart.

So Happy Valentine's day, everyone, and I hope you have a good one!

10 February 2013

Animator vs. Animation I, II, and III

Animations galore! I really really really have a thing for 'em. Here are three in a series, by Alan Becker, you can follow him on deviantART: ~alanbecker. The previews look bad quality, but the videos are better. I promise! Once again, enjoy.

Animator vs. Animation



Animator vs. Animation II



Animator vs. Animation III

The Crazy Evolution of Man

Again, another animation. I love how the artist interacts with the drawing. Some people have so much talent!



Credit goes to boolab, a production house dedicated to motion graphics. Hope you enjoy it!

09 February 2013

Many Answers


I came across this story yesterday and thought it was pretty interesting.
  
   "Some time ago I received a call from a colleague. He was about to give a student a zero for his answer to a physics question, while the student claimed a perfect score. The instructor and the student agreed to an impartial arbiter, and I was selected. I read the examination question:
"SHOW HOW IS IT POSSIBLE TO DETERMINE THE HEIGHT OF A TALL BUILDING WITH THE AID OF A BAROMETER."
     The student had answered, "Take the barometer to the top of the building, attach a long rope to it, lower it to the street, and then bring the rope up, measuring the length of the rope. The length of the rope is the height of the building."
     The student really had a strong case for full credit since he had really answered the question completely and correctly! On the other hand, if full credit were given, it could well contribute to a high grade in his physics course and to certify competence in physics, but the answer did not confirm this.
     I suggested that the student have another try. I gave the student six minutes to answer the question with the warning that the answer should show some knowledge of physics. At the end of five minutes, he had not written anything. I asked if he wished to give up, but he said he had many answers to this problem; he was just thinking of the best one. I excused myself for interrupting him and asked him to please go on.
     In the next minute, he dashed off his answer which read: "Take the barometer to the top of the building and lean over the edge of the roof. Drop the barometer, timing its fall with a stopwatch. Then, using the formula x=0.5*a*t^^2, calculate the height of the building."
     At this point, I asked my colleague if he would give up. He conceded, and gave the student almost full credit. While leaving my colleague's office, I recalled that the student had said that he had other answers to the problem, so I asked him what they were.
     "Well," said the student, "there are many ways of getting the height of a tall building with the aid of a barometer. For example, you could take the barometer out on a sunny day and measure the height of the barometer, the length of its shadow, and the length of the shadow of the building, and by the use of simple proportion, determine the height of the building."
     "Fine," I said, "and others?"
     "Yes," said the student, "there is a very basic measurement method you will like. In this method, you take the barometer and begin to walk up the stairs. As you climb the stairs, you mark off the length of the barometer along the wall. You then count the number of marks, and this will give you the height of the building in barometer units."
     "A very direct method."
     "Of course. If you want a more sophisticated method, you can tie the barometer to the end of a string, swing it as a pendulum, and determine the value of g at the street level and at the top of the building. From the difference between the two values of g, the height of the building, in principle, can be calculated."
     "On this same tact, you could take the barometer to the top of the building, attach a long rope to it, lower it to just above the street, and then swing it as a pendulum. You could then calculate the height of the building by the period of the precession."
     "Finally," he concluded, "there are many other ways of solving the problem. Probably the best," he said, "is to take the barometer to the basement and knock on the superintendent's door. When the superintendent answers, you speak to him as follows: 'Mr. Superintendent, here is a fine barometer. If you will tell me the height of the building, I will give you this barometer."
     At this point, I asked the student if he really did not know the conventional answer to this question. He admitted that he did, but said that he was fed up with high school and college instructors trying to teach him how to think."
    
The student was Niels Bohr and the arbiter was Ernest Rutherford.

A Lime Called "Peanut"

Wouldn't that be a great name for a novel? Anyways, today I brought a lime to school. I thought it was a lemon. Do not mock me. I assumed, since limes and lemons are shaped the same, taste similar and look the same, excepting colour, that they are the same. A green apple is just as much an apple as a red apple. I assumed that the same applied to lemons. Apparently not. Lemons are most certainly not limes, and limes are most certainly not lemons.

Why, you ask, why did I bring a lime to school?

In science class, we made wet cells out of lemons. Lemons contain a mixture of chemicals that can be converted to electricity. Well, I brought a lime. A lime, apparently, could not be used for the experiment. So I drew a face on my lime with a red permanent marker, and by the end of class, when I finished the experiment with an actual lemon, I had grown somewhat attached to the cute lime sitting on my table. So I dubbed it "Peanut". My friends think I am insane. To some degree, I agree with them. But the lime deserved love. After all, it had been rejected by the science teacher and made fun of my class.

Actually, it's a little creepy how it never blinks.

Moving on, I'd like to ponder on something else, something I came across while browsing a funny picture app on my iPod, something completely unrelated to the post title but interesting nevertheless. Barbie, the doll we girls all knew so well in elementary school years, is scientifically impossible. Her breast-to-waist-to-hip ratio would force her to crawl around on all fours. She would fall over. She is unbelievable top-heavy. In addition, she is anorexic by medical definition. With a height of 5'9" (scaled up to a person's average dimensions) and a weight of 110 lbs, Barbie's BMI is estimated to be about 16.24. She was sold in 1963 as a babysitter, with a book-prop called How To Lose Weight. On the back of the book, the advice was stated in two words: don't eat. Later on came Slumber Party Barbie, who was sold with a pink scale permanently set at 110 lbs. By the clinical definition, Barbie is anorexic. What kind of message is this sending to young girls all across the USA?

Ciao for now. Peanut waves goodbye.

02 February 2013

The Problem With Proverbs

How many times has an adult quoted some old wisdom upon you? Isn't it annoying? Especially when they make no sense! Here are some "wise quotes" people will tell you, and why they're completely false.

"What doesn't kill you makes you stronger." Ever heard of polio? I mean, how many people narrowly escape death and become stronger? I think this quote should say, "What doesn't kill you will give you PTSD."

"No pain, no gain." While this can be interpreted several ways to make sense, there are also many ways that it makes no sense. For instance, when you are exercising, pain does not necessarily indicate gain. Pain, in general, indicates an injury. An injury is hardly gain. Many people strain themselves following this saying, and then are surprised when they don't see results.

"Money can't buy you happiness." Try saying that to a homeless person. It cannot be argued that pleasure and comfort, which can both be bought with money, can bring you happiness. What this quote should be is, "Happiness can be achieved without money."

"Failing to plan is planning to fail." Any saying that instructs you, that tells you exactly what you must do, is inevitably wrong. For instance, when writing, different things work for different people. I have planned about two essays in my life, and those were the only ones that I got below an A on. Of course, don't take the wrong idea from this example. Planning is good. Just don't plan like me.

"You are what you eat." I don't remember eating any tall Indian girls in my lifetime. Oh wait...there was that one time...no. Just no. A more accurate saying would be, "You are how much you eat," although that isn't necessarily true. For instance, I think I eat quite a lot per day. I am nowhere near the amount of food I've eaten in my lifetime.

"He who laughs last laughs best." Does this even need an explanation? No...he who laughs last didn't get the joke. I know because my brother does that. HOWEVER: I do realize that this can be interpreted as "having the last laugh"--meaning no one can top you.

"All things come to those who wait." What, all things come to those who wait till the last minute? No, I don't think so. Nothing good has ever come of procrastination: other than the project being cancelled at the last minute.

"Easy come, easy go." Acne comes easily. It does not go easily, unless you have a cortisone injection, which happens to be a steroid, therefore rather expensive. I would not consider that easily either.

"Silence is golden." I can think of so many examples that prove this wrong. What of the woman suffragist movement? Or even the Civil Rights movement? Marin Luther Kind, Jr.? Look what silence would have brought them!

"After the storm comes the calm." Hardly. Hurricane Sandy? The earthquake in Haiti? Those were storms, and the calm certainly didn't return right after.

Furthermore, there are quite a few popular proverbs that blatantly contradict each other. I mean, how can you take one seriously and not the other?

"The pen is mightier than the sword."
"Actions speak louder than words."
------------------------
"Many hands make light work."
"Too many cooks spoil the broth."
------------------------
"You're never too old to learn."
"You can't teach an old dog new tricks."
------------------------
Clothes make the man."
"Don't judge a book by its cover."
------------------------
"The best things come in small packages."
"The bigger, the better."
------------------------
"A miss is as good as a mile."
"Half a loaf is better than none."
------------------------
"Look before you leap."
"He who hesitates is lost."
------------------------
"If at first you don't succeed, try, try again."
"Don't beat a dead horse."
------------------------
"The early bird gets the worm."
"The second mouse gets the cheese."

So next time a proverbial saying makes you want to bang your head on a wall, let 'em know just what you think about proverbs! 

01 February 2013

Paperman

Just wanted to say, I have always been a big fan of animation. I love animated short--the old Mickey Mouse ones, the newer ones--all of them. I found this one while on StumbleUpon (great site, by the way, check it out), and it was so cute!




Hope you enjoy it.

31 January 2013

Desi Memes

I know this is short--but check out my new Google+ page, Desi Memes. If you love Indian stereotypes, this is the place for you! I manage it with a friend of mine.

Let me know what you think, and of course, add us to your circles.

https://plus.google.com/u/0/b/100799854145846031899/100799854145846031899/posts

29 January 2013

Team #Fail

This was too useful not to share. I know which team I'm on ;) but which team are you?


The Tale of the New Year's Fail [Infographic]

28 January 2013

5 Everyday Questions--Answered

Nerd that I am, many questions enter my mind at every second. But several continue to plague me, and probably several of you too, so here they are: answered.

Why do we sound better singing in the shower?
The shower is a small, enclosed space. You are surrounded by hard, smooth surfaces that cause your voice to bounce back quickly, giving your voice more power than it would ordinarily have. Also, the sounds are bouncing around so much that sometimes they take longer to reach your ears. That way, they sound longer and fuller than they usually would be. 

If you drop a feather and a brick at the same time, shouldn't they fall at the same time?
Yeah--if there was no air. Air resistance acts more against a feather, because it is lighter, causing it to fall slower than the brick.

When you look at a clock, why does the second hand seem to freeze and then continue?
This illusion has been creatively named the "stopped clock illusion". The reason it occurs is because whenever you shift your eyes, though it usually isn't noticeable, you experience a momentary break in vision. When you shift your eyes to the clock, your vision is readjusting, and in that moment, your brain just fills in the blank with the second, so it seems to last a lot longer than it actually does.


Why do we cry when we chop onions?
Cutting up an onion releases a chemical, syn-propanethial-S-oxide, that irritates your eyes, causing them to tear up. What do you think they put into tear gas? Something similar, no doubt.

What happens to body fat when we lose weight?
My brother asked me this at some point, and it bothered me that I didn't know. "Doesn't the skin get all saggy there then?" he asked. "Plus where does that fat go?" I remember knowing this some time ago, but I forgot. Well, it bothered me so much that I decided to look it up. When you lose weight, the fat cells shrink. They don't fall off. They don't disintegrate. As to what happens to excess skin, well, that depends on how old you are. Your skin is elastic. But as you grow older, it doesn't retain its elasticity as well. If you were, say, 10, and you lost weight, the skin would tighten relatively quick. But if you were 41, your skin would have stretched and settled to suit your previous fat. It will show stretch marks, just like after pregnancy. It will be loose, but may tighten after a while, depending on several factors. That's why it's important to drink water, to maintain the elasticity of your skin.

I hope that was both informative and slightly entertaining. I certainly didn't cover every single question that plagues me--just the ones I could remember. I'll post a follow up when it comes to mind. What are some questions that plague you?


25 January 2013

My Favourite Online Games

More ways to waste time! Who doesn't want those? Yep, it's here, a list of the most addicting games, bound to keep you hooked.

Hint: keep a Google tab or other educational tab open right next to your game, when your parents walk by just switch to that tab really quickly and stare at it until they leave. Hope that they don't notice. Hope that your computer doesn't freeze.

I'm not talking about MMORPGs. I'll write a separate post for those: I used to be obsessed. These are just no account, quick games that you can play anytime, anyplace. *cough, cough*

Here it is!

This is the Only Level TOO. Play as an elephant. Think outside the box. Be fast. Read the level title for clues. I beat this game. http://armorgames.com/play/5351/this-is-the-only-level-too
Chain Reaction. I beat this game. Click anywhere to start a chain reaction. Meet the goal. There are only 12 levels, so it's unfortunately short. But still, nice. yvoschaap.com/chainrxnadvanced/
The World's Hardest Game. You just gotta have quick fingers for this one. I think my highest is like...20? I forget, I haven't played it in forever. http://www.addictinggames.com/action-games/theworldshardestgame.jsp
The Impossible Quiz. Think outside the box. Also be quick. Expect surprises. No, it is not a logical quiz. I think my highest is question 89...?  http://www.addictinggames.com/puzzle-games/theimpossiblequiz.jsp
Google PacMan. Like the original, but cooler. I haven't gotten past the second peach. google.com/pacman
TypeRacer. There is NO better way to practice your typing skills. I swear. play.typeracer.com
Cat Mario. Oh my god. This is impossible and addicting! And everything's in Japanese. When you die, the evil monsters mock you IN JAPANESE. I mean, what is more infuriating than that?! You need Java to play. Also don't bother translating it. http://www.geocities.jp/z_gundam_tanosii/home/applet/Main.html
Run. There are 50 levels. I have gotten up to 49. Loads of my friends have beat it. There is a normal, fast, and impossible mode, but the impossible is only unlocked once you beat all of the levels. Alien-pigs are pretty awesome. http://www.albinoblacksheep.com/games/run

Of course, the list of games is constantly growing, so I shall definitely add another list when it comes to mind.

Until the next post! :)

21 January 2013

Ask Yourself...

Now, I'm not a huge fan of overly cheesy posts. But if you ask yourself these questions, then you will realize things that you need to change. They're also really pretty! The photos are very pleasing.








If these made you question yourself and the way you're living, good. That happened to me too. It might be a long time before I do anything about it, but still. It's there in the back of my mind. File it in the back of yours, too. What are you favourite thought-provoking questions?


20 January 2013

More Addicting Apps

Remember the last time I posted one of these? That was a long time ago. But apps keep changin', and so do my opinions. More than is healthy, I think. So here's an all new list of apps you have to get!

Just a little note: I have the oldest iPod in the world. I swear, it's like a dinosaur. So there are probably other addicting apps out there, but these happen to be the ones I can actually download on my iPod.

If  I have indicated that there is a free version, that means that there is a paid and a free version. It also means that I think the paid version is worth the money.

Here are the must-have paid apps for your iDevice.
  • Fruit Ninja. Whether you love fruit or you hate it, no one can refuse that slicing fruit isn't fun. Especially when it makes an awesome noise and explodes all over the place. That's exactly what Fruit Ninja is. The objective: slice as many fruit as possible. You can complete achievements, get powerups, and unlock blades and backgrounds. There is a free version.
  • Unblock Me. Are you a lover of puzzles? Do you like for your brain to be challenged? Unblock Me is definitely for you. It starts off extremely easy, but there are innumerable puzzles to keep you and your brain occupied. There is a free version.
  • Cut the Rope. More puzzles! Meet Om Nom, possibly the cutest monster ever. Find a way to get the candy to him by cutting ropes and activating stuff. Tons of challenging levels and achievements. There is a free version.
  • Pinger or Textfree. Made by the same company, these are probably the coolest apps ever. They let you get your own number, text any number in the US and Canada, no limit, for FREE. This whole app is FREE. There are no catches. NONE. Also you can log in and text your friends from the computer at pinger.com/tfw. You can call for free too, but you have to earn/buy minutes. Fantastic app.
  • Traffic Rush. This one's an oldie, but it's really great. Prevent the cars from crashing by swiping. There isn't a free version. But it's worth the money.
I hope this list was helpful to all who read it. Feel free to mention your own favourite apps! Also, keep an eye out for my next post: best online games.

15 January 2013

Sleeping Tips

Who doesn't love sleep? It's funny how we hated sleep time back in elementary school, when plenty was available to us, but after that even a few hours of sleep is a treasure. That doesn't mean you can't get the most out of your shut-eye. Here are seven must-know facts about sleeping.


  1. Hour naps keep you alert for 10 hours afterward. Have to pull an all-nighter? Never fear! Get a good hour of sleep just before, and you're good to go. Be warned, however, you may experience post-sleep grogginess by exceeding 45 minutes of sleep. A solution I always go for is splashing my face with cold water. The shock wakes up your brain. Hopefully.
  2. Don't work/study in your room if you can help it. By doing so, you are associating struggling, stress and tension with your room. This can have a negative effect on your sleep--you will start stressing out in your sleep. Of course, this isn't possible for everyone.
  3. If you're going to exercise before bed, do it at least 30 minutes before. That's exactly the time it will take for your body to feel tired. Any less than that, and your body will still be alert, and you'll have trouble falling asleep.
  4. Stay cool. I find that curling up in my blankets, unless it's really really cold, often has me up in the middle of the night, sweating and sweltering hot. Not good. A cool, relaxed temperature helps for the best sleep.
  5. Don't drink caffeine right before bed. Actually, don't drink anything with sugar. This should be self-explanatory.
  6. Those who sleep more are less likely to gain weight (and acne). It's true! Sleep deprivation can lead to stress, which can trigger your hormones to start storing fat. Stress also leads to acne.
  7. Try to have a regular sleep time and wake-up. Your body works well on a routine. Bathroom stuff comes regularly, wakefulness is much improved, you'll feel less sleepy at other times because your body knows it will get sleep later.
Hope these helped anyone who needed them. What are your best tips for having a good sleep?

11 January 2013

To Make You Think

This story never fails to raise a lump in my throat. I've read it quite a few times, but this time when I received it I thought, "I really should post this on my blog." You've probably read this before. But here goes.

There is a story many years ago of an elementary teacher. Her name was Mrs. Thompson. And as she stood in front of her 5th grade class on the very first day of school, she told the children a lie. Like most teachers, she looked at her students and said that she loved them all the same.
But that was impossible, because there in the front row, slumped in his seat, was a little boy named Teddy Stoddard. Mrs. Thompson had watched Teddy the year before and noticed that he didn’t play well with the other children, that his clothes were messy and that he constantly needed a bath. And Teddy could be unpleasant. It got to the point where Mrs. Thompson would actually take delight in marking his papers with a broad red pen, making bold X’s and then putting a big “F” at the top of his papers.
At the school where Mrs. Thompson taught, she was required to review each child’s past records and she put Teddy’s off until last. However, when she reviewed his file, she was in for a surprise.
Teddy’s first grade teacher wrote, “Teddy is a bright child with a ready laugh. He does his work neatly and has good manners. He is a joy to be around.”
His second grade teacher wrote, “Teddy is an excellent student, well liked by his classmates, but he is troubled because his mother has a terminal illness and life at home must be a struggle.”
His third grade teacher wrote, “His mother’s death has been hard on him. He tries to do his best but his father doesn’t show much interest and his home life will soon affect him if some steps aren’t taken.”
Teddy’s fourth grade teacher wrote, “Teddy is withdrawn and doesn’t show much interest in school. He doesn’t have many friends and sometimes sleeps in class.”
By now, Mrs. Thompson realized the problem and she was ashamed of herself. She felt even worse when her students brought her Christmas presents, wrapped in beautiful ribbons and bright paper, except for Teddy’s. His present which was clumsily wrapped in the heavy, brown paper that he got from a grocery bag.
Mrs. Thompson took pains to open it in the middle of the other presents. Some of the children started to laugh when she found a rhinestone bracelet with some of the stones missing, and a bottle that was one quarter full of perfume. But she stifled the children’s laughter when she exclaimed how pretty the bracelet was, putting it on, and dabbing some of the perfume on her wrist.
Teddy Stoddard stayed after school that day just long enough to say, “Mrs. Thompson, today you smelled just like my Mom used to.” After the children left she cried for at least an hour. On that very day, she quit teaching reading, and writing, and arithmetic. Instead, she began to teach children.
Mrs. Thompson paid particular attention to Teddy. As she worked with him, his mind seemed to come alive. The more she encouraged him, the faster he responded. By the end of the year, Teddy had become one of the smartest children in the class and, despite her lie that she would love all the children the same, Teddy became one of her “teacher’s pets.”
A year later, she found a note under her door, from Teddy, telling her that she was still the best teacher he ever had in his whole life. Six years went by before she got another note from Teddy. He then wrote that he had finished high school, third in his class, and she was still the best teacher he ever had in his whole life.
Four years after that, she got another letter, saying that while things had been tough at times, he’d stayed in school, had stuck with it, and would soon graduate from college with the highest of honors. He assured Mrs. Thompson that she was still the best and favorite teacher he ever had in his whole life.
Then four more years passed and yet another letter came. This time he explained that after he got his bachelor’s degree, he decided to go a little further. The letter explained that she was still the best and favorite teacher he ever had. But now his name was a little longer—the letter was signed, Theodore F. Stoddard, M.D.
The story doesn’t end there. You see, there was yet another letter that spring. Teddy said he’d met this girl and was going to be married. He explained that his father had died a couple of years ago and he was wondering if Mrs. Thompson might agree to sit in the place at the wedding that was usually reserved for the mother of the groom. Of course, Mrs. Thompson did. And guess what? She wore that bracelet, the one with several rhinestones missing. And she made sure she was wearing the perfume that Teddy remembered his mother wearing on their last Christmas together.
They hugged each other, and Dr. Stoddard whispered in Mrs. Thompson’s ear, “Thank you Mrs. Thompson for believing in me. Thank you so much for making me feel important and showing me that I could make a difference.” Mrs. Thompson, with tears in her eyes, whispered back. She said, “Teddy, you have it all wrong. You were the one who taught me that I could make a difference. I didn’t know how to teach until I met you.”

04 January 2013

Five Reasons Not to Read The Selection

I am a sucker for books written in older times, about girls and royalty. I am a total sucker for those. When I saw the fantastic cover of The Selection, I was instantly attracted.


I mean, isn't it an awesome cover? I asked my French teacher if I could borrow it, and the rest of the next two days, my nose was buried in the thing.

The Selection started off great. A girl, America Singer, who is in a low caste, in love with and secretly seeing a boy, Aspen something, in an even lower caste. Typical, clichéd, but still nice. Then America gets the letter...35 girls will be selected to compete for the prince's heart. Again, very typical. But still, it sounded interesting. America doesn't want to sign up, and she talks to Aspen. Aspen feels ashamed that he can't "provide for her", convinces her to sign up, and then dumps her. I mean, what a douche! America, of course, cries and does all that annoying dramatic stuff, gets picked and travels to the palace. There, she meets virtually perfect Prince Maxon, and they fall in love, etc, etc. End? Nope! ASPEN gets drafted, and comes to the palace, and then she basically cheats on Prince Maxon by kissing Aspen and forgiving him. Aspen was a douche, but America is just stupid. Stupid. Stupid idiot girl. The worst part is, they didn't even end the story! They're dragging it on over a series of books, the next of which will come out on April 23 of 2013 (The Elite), and which I will certainly read so that I may vent about it on here.

So instead of a sparkly review of why you'll enjoy Kiera Cass's princess novel, here are a bunch of reasons you SHOULDN'T read the retarded book.

  1. The names. America. Maxon. Tallulah. Marlee. Aspen. Those have got to be the most obscure names ever. When I told my friend Thejus that the guy's name was "Aspen" he could not stop laughing. Unique names are good, but not if they're horrible. Please don't ever write a book using the messed up names that this author uses.
  2. The plot. So clichéd! So typical! So old! Give me a break and write about something WORTH reading. This book would be better off sold as one of those cheap romance novels for 50 cents. Wait, make that 10 cents. Hell, I wouldn't even pay a nickel to read this.
  3. The love triangle. Love triangles aren't necessarily bad. But you have to have a good one for it to be good. A strong central character. Not one who's a complete sass and an idiot.
  4. The characters. Can you come up with any more overused characters? America, who's beautiful and a good singer, and brave and attractive. Aspen, who's a jerk, but undeniably handsome, green eyes, black hair, passionate, extremely attractive. Maxon, cute, nice, clueless, royalty. And the other girls in a competition have so little personality that it's annoying. Celeste, the typical "mean but beautiful" girl, the girl that all the guys fall for despite the obvious witchiness. Marlee, the bubbly, cute best friend. The other girls have no character backgrounds at all.
  5. The personality. I know I gave this a category before, but the main character herself has no character. None! We get little to no sense of her feelings, her likes, her dislikes, her background, her timeline, her family. Nothing! If not the other characters, at least develop the main one!
I hope you understand the pointlessness and the insignificance of this book, despite whether you decide to read it. I know reading about how messed up it is will make you want to read it just to experience that "What the hell?!" feeling, but please don't fantasize about being in the main character's place. I would rather die than live the retarded romance that America Singer does.

Enjoy.