Sunday, July 29, 2007


Lately there has been a rash of virus attacks in computers around the area. It all started with a friend telling me of something strange going on with his computer. Namely, whenever he tried to open, there was a devilish laugh and a window that had a fairly uncomplimentary message. The long and short of it being that opening was impossible. The second being another similar window that prevented Mozilla Firefox browser from opening, and thats not all because after advising the user to switch to internet explorer, IE would shut down after a few seconds too. The third virus in the zoo was something called Nhatquanglan (someone in HO Chi Minh city Vietnam). This guy was pretty cool too, it would reproduce itself every time a folder is opened and take up some space. More irritating was the fact that it would disable the task manager and the folder options (ostensibly to prevent the user from shutting of the program). They were apparently being spread by flash drives, and no anti virus program seemed to be able to do anything about it. This necessitated a fairly radical operation in which some software like Hijack This, and reanimator had to be downloaded to clean the laptop up. So far it seems to be holding up. But what I am looking for now is some sort of a vaccine for a USB drive. Giving its overwhelming convenience and yet stupid safety profile, I hope someone somewhere , smarter than us all would get around to doing something about this.
That person would earn my undying gratitude.

On the other hand, I hope good sense prevails and life goes on smoothly.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Canned Telephone Messages Helplines

Take a peek at this little gem that I found in the Nurses’ Office of a Psychiatry Ward…

If you are obsessive-compulsive, press 1 repeatedly.

If you are co-dependent, please ask someone to press 2 for you.

If you have multiple personalities, press 3, 4, 5 and 6.

If you are paranoid, we know who you are and what you want. Stay on the line so we can trace your call.

If you are delusional, press 7 and your call will be transferred to the mother ship.

If you are schizophrenic, listen carefully and a small voice will tell you which number to press.

If you are manic-depressive, it doesn’t matter which number you press-no-one will answer.

If you are dyslexic, press 9696969696969.

If you have a nervous disorder, please fidget with the hash key until a representative comes on the line.

If you have amnesia press 8 and state your name, address, phone number, date of birth, social security number and your mother’s maiden name.

If you have post-traumatic stress disorder, slowly and carefully press 000.

If you have bipolar disorder, please leave a message after the beep or before the beep. Or after the beep. Please wait for the beep.

If you have short-term memory loss, press 9.

If you have short-term memory loss, press 9.

If you have short-term memory loss, press 9.

If you have short-term memory loss, press 9.

If you have low self esteem, please hang up. All our operators are too busy to talk to you.

Sunday Afternoon Blues!!

Its 5.20 PM, so it isnt afternoon any longer. But, its a sunday and it was afternoon not too long ago and is still unrequited. Therefore the blues continue and rightfully so. When I was in the deaddiction unit, sunday afternoons were all about relaxation (all sorts), eating, drinking and sleeping. But now, they are all about driving back and forth from work and the lack of quality time is discomfiting to say the least. How do the blues feel? Well, not great I suppose. Its like something foreign in the stomach that needs release, with a promise of hope that stays with it as long as its there. On the other hand, I accompanied a friend yesterday afternoon to the Punjab and haryana high court to take some pictures. I was quite shocked to see the number of photographers and assistants crawling out of each nook, corner and crevice. As my friend said, "each window must have been shot a 100 times by now". And I am sure it has been, so admist a surfeit of red, yellow and green pillars, here is hoping to some interesting shots in the photo competition.
The psychiatry ward is all about diagnostic difficulties at the moment and I must say the intellectual excercise is pretty stimulating. Some complicated cases, and a lot more not so complicated. For example, if one has a phobia to a situation that cannot be avoided, does the phobic thought not take on an obsessional quality? What does it become then?
Anyways, the open hand is a picture I took with my new (3rd hand) Nikkor 80-200 mm 2.8 lens. And it is sized so that it can be used a screensaver. And the lens is a peach to use. People say all good thing come in small packages, I think all good things in life come with a Nikon marking!!!

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

A happy news!!

(The building in question, started off as a parking lot and almost ended up as something else, a fancy Hotel)
As an individual who loves Mcleodganj and loves going there often (see earlier posts), I was very happy to read this news regarding strictures on illegal constructions in Mcleodganj. I have been interested and lately involved in a very very limited way with activism against the flouting of rules and environmental degradation in the Mcleodganj hills.
I often read about the sheer natural wealth that india was blessed with even until independence and the mindless and greed driven destruction that has taken place since then. All this has only led to further problems, shortages of water, climate change and general destruction of the landscape. And this step though small is a step in the right direction.
Even in the last 2-3 years that I have been going to M'ganj regularly, every visit seems to be greeted by lesser greenery, more encroachments, more shortages of water, bigger crowds. True, M'ganj is no longer a residential place, in fact it is now almost wholly commercial, but everything cannot be allowed to go to waste because someone wants to make money.
I constantly keep getting the feeling that money is now the bottom line everywhere, to hell witheverything else. But soon when the chickens will come home to roost, it may be too late.

Thursday, July 05, 2007

The 150th Post

Happy days are here again, ward posting has started. Instead of drug addicts, its all types of mentally ill people now. And I must admit its so much more fun. There are so many stories that are found and cant be told. And so many lives that change forever in the ward. On the other hand, went crazy and got a mighty mighty expensive The Complete Companion to Tintin by Michael Farr, and it is one hell of a read (not lending it to anyone ;-))). SO life is more fun, all of a sudden.
Should have had that ward posting earlier.
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