TIJP – Imagine Dragon’s Believer

Tushar Lall’s The Indian Jam Project is awesome. I have posted about them multiple times in the past. They are a group of musicians who take well known International hits and recreate it in Indian classical style.

They don’t post content too fast. They take their time for each video. But it is worth the wait and an ecstasy to the ear. Sometimes, I come to know about the original song only after hearing their tribute. My simple logic is that I love this group’s works and if they are inspired to do a cover for any song that song should also be awesome.

They just released a tribute to Imagine Dragon’s Believer song. I have not heard this song before. I came to know only through their tribute video. Here is The Indian Jam Project’s latest work.

I observed that Tushar Lall has not released this song in their usual youtube channel. They have released it under Corning Gorilla Glass’ channel. I guess they have tied-up with them for a contest for Imagine Dragons’ event in Las Vegas.  One of the major complaint of the fans of TIJP is that they are terribly underrated. They deserve more views and followers. I hope this tie-up gives them the platform and the reach that they deserve.

My favourites from their tributes: Interstellar, Dark Knight, Inception – Time, Harry PotterRequiem for a Dream (using SIRI), Justice LeagueStar Wars, Game of Thrones

No Sugar

Don’t eat that biscuit. It has transfats“, he told me. I didn’t have a clue then, or now, about transfats. But from his expression, I got that it was a bad thing to let in your system. I took out a box of Kaju Katlis (Cashew cake) I had brought from India and almost shoved in his face, “This doesn’t have transfats. I hope.

No. But it has added sugar. Refined sugar. Do you know how harmful it is to your body?
I obviously have heard about it but never used to care about it. I noticed this behaviour with many of my Indians colleagues who migrated to The States. All the others used to take at least a small piece out of politeness. I had and still have a sweet tooth. I scoffed at his advice, considered him to be old and made a mental note of not offering anything to him in the future.

Fast forward a decade and few years, I am more or less the age he was then. And I am considering quitting added/refined sugar.

I have seen many stories of people quitting refined sugar and bursting with energy all day, saving a lot of money and losing weight. The idea of having all the 3 benefits is quite tempting. I am thinking of taking a 30-day challenge of avoiding refined sugar. It is more difficult for me as I have a sweet tooth. And I literally run on Coffee (with sugar).

A few months ago, I took a challenge to drink at least 3l of water every day for a month. I posted about it here. But sugar is a whole different beast. I have tried multiple times but I have failed this challenge. I wish I could quote Jaime Escalante for motivation:

Life is not about how many times you fall. It’s about how many times you get back up.

But this meme explains the actual fact.




Been there, Run that!

After a lot of self-debate, I gave in to the pressure and signed up for a half-marathon which will happen in two months. 3 years ago, when I was fitter and lighter, I completed a 21K and wrote (read: cribbed) about my experience in the post below. Now, I am 3 years older and 5 kgs heavier and I haven’t run in a long time. I do not know if I will be able to complete the run this time but I am pretty confident I will have one hell of a story to tell after the event. Fingers and toes crossed.

Pointless & Prosaic

I had signed up for half marathon mainly due to peer pressure. My previous long running experience was when I ran a 10k race couple of years back, out of interest. I thought of signing up for 10k this time as well but I got carried away by peers pushing me for 21k.  We managed to convince our employer to pay for the event and tick off the CSR objective. My practice run started 8 weeks before the event and ended 6 weeks before the event.  To say that I was not prepared to run is a gross understatement. I was up against the odds in an event that I don’t fancy much.  I managed to complete the run, somehow. This post is just an account of what raced through my head before, during and after the run. Feel free to click on the little ‘x’ mark on the window if you are…

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Book Review: Kolaigal Oivathillai

Every year, I take up the Goodreads Reading challenge of reading ‘n’ number of books where ‘n’ is an insignificant number. This year, as always, I am lagging behind and thought I will catch up a little. I haven’t read any Tamil language book this year. I have a great Tamil novel, Parthiban Kanavu, in my to-read list. It is a long and an interesting one. So, I thought I will warm up by reading a shorter novel thus ticking one more book off the list for the challenge. I stumbled upon Kolaigal Oivathillai (transliteration: Murders don’t stop/rest) by Balakumar Somu, in the kindle store. It sounded like a pulp fiction and it’s been a long time since I read one.

Pic Courtesy: Amazon Kindle Store

I was initially skeptical as the name of the book rhymes with a classic Tamil movie Alaigal Oivathillai. The novel also started in a weird way. May be, it’s just me – I haven’t read too many fictions. It picked up pace after few pages and was an interesting read. The details are explained well as well.  I felt that the reasoning behind the antagonist’s character was weak. Somewhere around 3/4th of the book, the story becomes predictable and the plot ends prematurely. For the last 10% of the story or so, the author continues to explain the reasoning for reader’s sake. This reminded me of recent movies of A.R. Murugadoss where they play songs after the logical end of the plot. It kind of spoiled the ending for me.  Nevertheless, this book was fresh, easy read and it got me interested in Tamil novels again.


Holy Crap

Waiting to deliver a huge project right on the deadline is like waiting till the last second, with the stomach ready to explode anytime, to take a dump.

See, there will be a lot of tension built up, it will be thrilling, and you will be relieved at the end of it and feel like you have accomplished something. But, what will be delivered would be nothing but a load of crap.

125th Anniversary of Swami Vivekananda’s speech

Today, the World Hindu Congress (WHC) commemorated 125th Anniversary of Swami Vivekananda’s famous speech at the Parliament of Religions in Chicago in 1893. Here ‘s the Wikipedia link about Swami Vivekanda and here’s the link about the speech.

I admire Swami Vivekananda for he was the embodiment of spirituality and boldness. He often stressed about being bold and courageous and not fearing anything or anyone. My first memories of him are from my school days. Mine was a pro-Hindu school. We often hear Swami Vivekananda’s stories, speeches and quotes setting a benchmark for how an ideal student should be.  Our teachers used to tell stories of him learning everything in one-sitting as an example of concentration and focus that we should strive for. He is much more than that, of course. I have a very deep respect for him.

My respect only strengthened further when I met a couple of his ardent fans in my real life. They were the most un-corrupted people I have met. I particularly remember a lawyer whom I contacted for legal advice before buying my apartment. He was as a simple and straightforward guy who spoke in black and white. Either a yes or a no. Unlike other lawyers who provide a similar service, he charged much much lesser. The others used to charge an arm, I also learnt that he charges nothing for people who can’t pay. When I went to his office, I saw Swami Vivekananda’s books and quotes everywhere. He was very professional and didn’t encourage any loopholes. His integrity may be costing him a little bit in the line of business he is in but nevertheless he was being honest. By the end of that short meeting, I started respecting him and, more than him, Swami Vivekananda.

When it comes to Swami’s works, I have read ‘Karma Yoga’ but I found it very heavy may be because I read it too early. I should read that again for understanding. I have ‘Complete works of Swami Vivekananda’ and I hope to read them and understand them well.

You can find the full text of the speech at Viveksamity website here

Below is the audio recording of Swami’s speech by Subir Ghosh. Thanks to Sanskriti Culture channel in Youtube.

Following are some of my favorite quotes of him:

“Arise, awake, stop not till the goal is reached.”

“The greatest sin is to think yourself weak”

“The greatest religion is to be true to your own nature. Have faith in yourselves.”

“You cannot believe in God until you believe in yourself.”

“Comfort is no test of truth. Truth is often far from being comfortable.”

“The fire that warms us can also consume us; it is not the fault of the fire.”

The complete list of his quotes can be found in this Goodreads link