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Positivity

December 28, 2016

At the dinner table today, I started rattling off about things my son could improve on. He turned it around and asked if I have anything positive to say about him. I did tell him his positive traits. Daughter joined in and called for family time (husband was out of town, so just the three of us). Family time is when we sit together and either perform our talent or discuss something. Today during family time, each of us ended up saying good/bad things about the rest of the family.

It was so pleasant discussing the good things about each other. Kids knew enough about their negative traits since we are all quick to point those out. So we went through those real quick. They were pleasantly surprised and happy when I listed out their positive traits. I’m listing them here:

Daughter:

  • Very responsible, when tasks are assigned she completes them ahead of time.
  • Very charming and funny.
  • Empathetic – if someone is in a bad mood, she tries to pacify them or at the very least knows not to aggravate them.
  • Extremely helpful – you can count on her help when needed.
  • The glue in our family – rounds us all together for anything. The rest of us are happy sitting in our corners doing our own stuff.

Son:

  • Responsible – wakes up and gets ready for school all on his own.
  • Smart
  • Goes to his activity classes regularly without any complaints.
  • Good listener (I want to put a caveat and say when he is in a good mood. But I’ve said we are not attaching any negative caveats to the positive traits).

Guess who was the happiest after this exercise? Me. They came up with so many good things – some of which are very generic to all mothers. Here is the list (paraphrased):

  • They feel like they can talk to me about everything without hiding (like some of their friends do from their moms)
  • I always get them what they want.
  • I am relatively lenient (not strict specifically) unlike some other parents.
  • They love that I take the time to talk to them sometimes.
  • Oh and my son said I can really study and perform well if I have an exam (I recently got a technical certification, and he saw me prepare for it). He had his doubts before that because he’d never seen me study.
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Election outcome

November 9, 2016

In 2 words – “Unf*****g believable”. As somebody said, the glass ceiling is still pretty solid. It’s so unfortunate that hatred for Clinton has led to this outcome.

Lessons learnt:

  1. Elections are popularity contests. Unpopular kids lose to bullies, whether at school or in the Presidential elections.
  2. It doesn’t matter how qualified you are, how ambitious you are, how hard you’ve worked to achieve your goals – these are not qualities that are admirable in women, let alone women presidential candidates. The votes are in the hands for white uneducated population who hate your guts.
  3. Mainstream media unanimously supporting the right candidate DOES NOT go well with the majority population that already hate the unpopular candidate. In the words of DaveRubin @RubinReport “the absolute destruction of the mainstream media”.
  4. Insulting and stereotyping a whole “white working class of people” of supporters helped no one but Trump.
  5. It’s a sad thought, but any other Democratic candidate would have had a better chance of winning.
  6. Hatred is very powerful. It can make and/or break people.
  7. Being in the public for too long is not helpful either. People tend to look at the negative things in a magnifying glass, while the good deeds are overlooked.
  8. Somethings are beyond comprehension. Such as why women under 35 hate Hillary.
  9. Anti-incumbency is real and happens more often than you’d expect.

Olympics

August 19, 2016

So so proud of the girl PV Sindhu for going into the finals. Watched the game and it was a treat. The girl was amazing. She showed so many colors – stressed, frustrated, excited, aggressive, happy, on the verge of tears – some bad shots, some silly mistakes and some great shots. She was such a contrast to the cool, calm and collected Nozomi who was amazing too. In the end our girl won. Good luck to her for the final today.

On the other hand why oh why are the medalists being showered with crores of rupees AFTER the olympics??? I just wish they’d invested that money on the players before the olympics and we’d probably have a few extra medals. I was so happy and heart broken at the same time for Dipa Karmakar. If only she had better coaching/training facilities, she would’ve won the medal. But no, we only choose the winners to shower with money and gifts after the fact. How stupid is that???

Facebook Fun

April 16, 2016
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I am narcissistic, and I realize I do love to talk about myself. And that sentence had 3 “I”s – 4 if you also count “my”. Now this post is about FB posts, and I am slightly FB shy. Meaning I do not post much, but when I do, it’s mainly pictures of me and/or my kids. People are selfish and it reflects a lot in the FB posts. These are some kinds of posts/FB behaviors that are annoying, but at the same time some of them provide a lot of entertainment value.

  1. Blowing the trumpet about their new additions to the garage, which could be one of the mighty and legendary merc/bmw/ferrari etc. These picture posts are so tacky.
  2. The Uber Narcissist (usually girls/women) who posts picture(s) of themselves almost everyday. Accompanying super sweet captions will include how “blessed and pampered” or “super thrilled and content” they are, their “sweet home dairies”, “beautiful <insert vacation spot>”, “crazy shopping fun”, “blissful blasts/happenings with besties”, “darling all stars (kids) celebrations” and 😘🎉🎊😍 . You get the drift. I swear I have one of those from a friend in my feed everyday.
  3. Another variation of the narcissist – Posts about what they ate for breakfast/lunch/dinner, their work, cubicle, view from the officeetc., and their workouts/fitness regime/dance classes  daily. I understand getting excited about food occasionally, but daily 3 posts about it – please spare us.
  4. Jesus followers who post or share captions and videos about Christianity 3 times daily. This has zero entertainment value and I simply block their posts from showing up in my feeds.
  5. The persistent admirer who posts about 10 different comments with slight variations on how great someone else looks in the same picture. Isn’t it so obvious that they are crushing on the other person (At the other extreme, I may cyber stalk someone I have a crush on silently, but I’d never even “like” their pictures 🙂

2015 reflections and New Year resolutions

January 3, 2016

Reflections:

Overall 2015 has been a decent year for our family.

  • The boy got an award for topping a subject in a board-like exam that goes overseas for grading in the previous academic year. This gave a nice boost to his confidence. The girl has the most vibrant personality but is starting to show a lot of attitude towards everybody in the family.
  • Business wise we see some light at the end of the tunnel for the first time since the husband started his company 4 years ago. He is extremely busy as always, but at least it’s starting to show some results.
  • Finally quit my job a couple of days ago after a very unhappy year. Started working for the husbands company part-time. However I am not sure if that is where I want to be long-term.
  • Health and Exercise: Going to yoga/aerobics classes 2-4 days a week. I want to go more often and it’s going to be one of my resolutions.
  • Got rid of my candy crush addiction after many years which I am very happy about. But I need to stop spending hours doing mindless reading.
  • The boy doesn’t have a dedicated activity although he is starting to show some interest in a sport at school. He became a couch potato this year – thanks to a reduced focus on academics at school, and zero outsize activities resulting in a lot of free time. The girl is becoming a good dancer, but does not want to take up any other activity despite having an aptitude.

Resolutions:

I rarely make new year’s resolutions, but want to do some this year so I can track progress. I have an addictive personality and having a lot of free time means more addictions. The theme behind most of my resolutions is to get more active and keep myself busy.

  • Get more involved in household chores. I have very good helpers, which means I literally don’t lift a finger for daily chores. But I don’t let them do certain things like putting away clothes, cleaning  closets etc. Any deep cleaning that has to involve me pretty much never gets done. And it’s starting to show (dirty curtains, balconies with old stuff piled up etc.). This year I resolved to do smaller household tasks like putting away clothes, clean up mail, throw away junk etc.. on a regular basis.
  • I love the idea of growing my own vegetables, but I have a black thumb when it comes to gardening. This year I want to start growing some green leafy vegetables and herbs.
  • Career-wise I am not sure what I want to do. Even though I work for the husband’s business for now, I really don’t want to. For one I cannot take the stress since it impacts us directly. Secondly, too much pressure since I have to stand up to everybody’s expectations. Third, no matter what my husband promises, I d/won’t get paid what I am worth. My resolution is to find my own job which pays well (this part is not hard), and allows enough flexibility so I can manage my life and kids (this is not as easy).
  • Finances: After being married for 18 years, I had an epiphany. We will always have debts with the way my husband operates. And I cannot wait for them to be cleared before I can start spending for myself. Also he uses up ALL my money, and no matter what he promises I will NOT get it back. The goal is to separate my finances AND manage them on my own if I have any hope to spend/splurge some on myself/kids/family. It hurts to see how naive I’ve been all these years. Granted he doesn’t use the money for himself (either on his business or buying properties for the family), but it doesn’t make it fair for me.
  • Reason with kids instead of flaring up. I don’t like how I am yelling/screaming at the kids despite knowing it never works. As they are growing up, they are starting to yell and talk back – so it’s setting a bad precedent.
  • Start some sports activities for kids and get them off the couch and away from the gadgets/screens.

Inspiration

November 16, 2015
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Read this article and a few of her points resonated so well with me – http://ww2.kqed.org/arts/2015/11/08/the-five-smartest-things-mindy-kaling-said-last-night/

  • These words from Mindy are truly inspiring. She seems like a tough cookie. “The encouragement you have to find is within you, in that little fire that everyone’s always trying to put out. So getting used to people encouraging you? You can’t get hooked on that, because it will not come until much, much later, after you’ve proved it yourself. That seems like a bummer thing to say, but it’s true. I mean, when you’re a chubby Indian kid with a haircut that’s like a boy’s, sitting in the classroom, and you say you want to be a leading lady in your own plays, any reasonable person would be like, ‘Eehhh… I’d revise your ambitions.’”
  • I was an extremely shy kid in school and college. Forget about boyfriends, I couldn’t even gather my nerves to talk to boys. Through all of this, I could totally relate to Mindy about being boy-crazy, too susceptible to handsomeness, too responsive etc. My parents found me a good boy who did turn out to be extremely nice. If I had a choice, I’d have been totally immature and would’ve married the first idiot I had a crush on. And I may not be the best person to give advice about this. BUT I think girls and boys should interact with each other, explore relationships, get their heart broken and go through the growing pains that will make them tougher and allow them to make the right decisions when the time comes.
  • Just like her, I think of myself as a smart person, love to read, keep up on global events etc. But when I was younger I  hated shopping, makeup, jewellery and all the girly stuff – possibly because they went against my internal image of being a smart girl. Today, I still hate shopping, but I do love getting ready and making myself beautiful. I also love girl talk and gossiping. Being girly, loving makeup, gossip etc., and being smart and/or an intellectual are NOT exclusive to each other.
  • On a tangential note, there was a comment on facebook which said “Love of reading is not a qualification for being smart”. I was wondering if there is some truth to it? Reading is an integral part of my life, so much so that it shaped my personality and made me who I am today (more than my parents did). But, while I do read good books, 90% of what I read is junk (romance, fiction etc.). I have an addiction for reading and if I have to read a book a day, I can’t help but reach out to the ones (junk) that make me happy (as opposed to heavy reading everyday). I still feel like I learn something even from the junk, and maybe they do enrich me. I am introvert and don’t socialize much, and how am I to understand the way of the world if not for my books. So I guess in my case love of reading is a qualification for being smart.

Politics and Moderation

November 9, 2015
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I started out being a strong Modi supporter, but slowly came back to reality that there are no miracles happening with this government. Bihar election results are out, and while I am sorry about Lalu coming back to power, I am happy that BJP lost. Hopefully this will dim their arrogance a bit and bring them closer to delivering on their promises. Dear Modi, it’s time to deliver on the assurances made to the people of Andhra Pradesh!!! The state is bankrupt and bleeding despite the optimistic glow painted by the CM.

So many heated arguments breaking out on twitter, whatsapp, facebook etc., with seriously opposing views. Honestly, I don’t see the point of these discussions – it’s not like they can convince each other. On the other hand, these arguments are turning friends against each other and end up with someone or the other leaving the group.

My positions on recent political happenings:

  • Beef Ban: Seriously?? People have been eating Beef since time immemorial. Get over it.
  • Raghuram Rajan talking about bans and such: YOU have no business making such statements. Please stick to economic policies.
  • People returning awards: WHO the heck cares??
  • Bharka Dutt saying “Shahrukh, we don’t deserve you”: HA HA HA HA….

And I totally agree with these 2 opposing views:

Not being a Modi fan doesn’t make me:

  • Pro-Congress
  • Leftist
  • Pakistani
  • Hindu-hater
  • Pro-corruption
  • Anti-India
  • Any other fucking thing

neither does being pro Modi make me:

  • a bhakt
  • a bigoted troll
  • a sanghi
  • a cow urine drinker
  • gowmata freak