REC culturals !

March 30, 2007

Well well well… I went to REC College, yesterday for their culturals. I wanted to participate in the Classical solo event.

I boarded the REC bus at 7:00 am at Thiruvanmiyur RTO. The bus was pretty nice, comfortable, but was a very bumpy one. The bus route was pretty interesting. ECR-> LB Road -> Indira Nagar -> LB Road -> Bessie -> LB Road -> Sardar Patel road -> Kottur -> Sardar Patel road and on to Kathipara and Poonamallee bypass.

A nice guy called Chowdary sat next to me, and showed me some interesting landmarks enroute like the AWESOME Chennai bypass road. The Bangalore highway was awesome as well, though there was quite a bit of traffic.

Bangalore Highway

We reached REC at 8:25. A stern looking, fat and authoritative guy demanded to see our ID cards. Those without ID cards were shown the direction to the Main road. I dunno why a college needs so much security.

The college was beautiful. I took this snap of it.

REC College Main block

The whole damn thing was disorganised. Nobody knew who the event coordinators were, and best of all – nobody was there at the Reg. desk. Then, someone realised that and told a few girls to sit there. However, the people there were extremely hospitable and patient, treating their guests very well. The gaming staff especially, were extremely considerate about the participants. These people are good hosts.. only need a little more organising ability.

In the classical solo event, I sang my favourite “Parvathy Nayakane charanam”, making a couple of mistakes and narrowing down my chances of winning. Then, I went on to play Quake 3.. I won the 1st round 30-17-15-10-5-4 and finals 30-7. Got 500 bucks for that 🙂

I came out of REC at 2:00 pm and headed for… you guess where ! Kanchipuram….

Kanchipuram – The land of Temples !

Kanchi was one hell of a place. I reached there by 3:25 pm (Kanchi buses are not very frequent). I got down from the bus stand, fixed an auto to visit the 4 main temples – Kailashanathar temple (Sandstone), Ekambaranathar (Huge), Kamatchi Amman, and Varadaraja Perumal temple.

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A Nice day !

March 10, 2007

Well… you could say it was a last minute decision to go to SSN today.

Kichu “Prashanth” called me up yest. and told me that I should participate in the Solo Classical Singing event today.

Today morning, I took my bike to college, and waited for the 8:30 bell before I asked HOD if I could leave. He was furious, shouted at me, blasted me etc etc. However, he did sign the gate pass. Cool ! That was our passport to SSN.

Off we went on the Old Mahabalipuram Road for a 22 Km ride to SSN. We reached there in some 30-35 minutes. We soon found the mini-auditorium where I was to sing.. The event coordinator happened to be an old friend of mine.. The minute Prashanth saw her, he went into a good mood (err..)

And as usual, Prashanth and I started playing our usual game. “Evaluating” opponents by their looks, for the fun of it. We did that last during the Infy interview. While others were busy preparing for the HR round, working on puzzles, working on Technical questions, and sharing information about Infosys Corp. and all sorts of crap, Prashanth and I sat idle, looking at HR managers, and evaluting their “Stern” factor by looking at their impassive and un-emotional faces. (hey Prashanth.. remember “Sterny”.. our favourite ?).. wonder if they will show the same faces to their wives as well :))

Well.. I waited for my turn to sing, and sang.

Next on, Prashanth and I went on to some Tamil Literary events. They were awesome fun. Prashanth won the 1st place in an event, in which you had to transliterate Movie titles. There were lot of creative names like

“Samsaram adhu minsaran” – “My current wife”

“King kong” – “Kodura Korangu” (Prashanth)

“Mummy returns”- “Amma vandhachu”

“Vasantha Maligai” – “The Whitehouse”

and some more…

Well.. then Prashanth and I decided to leave.  I took a minor deviation from Kelambakkam, and told Prashanth his most-dreaded abbreviation “E-C-R”.. Prashanth was paralysed and tried in vain to make me change route 🙂 dint work out.

we soon reached home, having driven a total of 68 kms during the entire round trip.

The same evening, I drove my family to Aradhana Theater on ECR to watch Mozhi. It was a run-off-the-mill story.

A 9 step algorithm for any tamil movie of today is as follows:

1. Hero sees heroine in public place

2. He flirts shamelessly, falls in love

3. He proposes, at the behest of a friend

4. proposal turned down

5. Intermission

6. Adamant heroine not accepting hero

7. Hero does something for heroine’s family/friend

8. Proposal accepted

9. No move goes beyond here bub !

Sheesh.. love is so casual in movies..

In all, today was a nice day.. with lot of driving and a bit of singing !

Thanks to Prashanth for all this ! 🙂

Jerusalem College CSE symposium

March 9, 2007

Well.. I had this great opportunity to go to Jerusalem Engineering college at the behest of One Mr. Raja Deepak. He invited me because it happens to be the place where his life-time partner is currently pursuing his Engineering degree.

And so, Prasanth and I started off to this wonderful place, driving on the 200 feet road, wearing out my bike’s suspension. We reached there in a matter of about 20 minutes. The bike parking was a nice, shady place.

Once we got down from our bikes, we went to a small shamiyana enclosure. It happened to be the main registration desk. I managed to get my ID card after a bit of struggle, since I did not have my College ID. After getting my Sympo ID card, Prasanth and I went on to register for every event imaginable, including some mixed masala, paper presentation and 5-6 more.

One thing that struck us was that nobody at the Reg. desk knew a thing ! When I asked them which were the games for gaming , they replied “Video Games sir”.. Well.. I dont suppose you play anything other than video games in symposiums, do you ? They also gave a wonderful explanation about “Mixed masala”. They claimed it was an event where you were asked questions and you had to reply.. well.. then what’s a quiz for ? And did I mention about one of them being confused about where their college auditorium is ? One girl promptly told me “Take a left, go straight, go thru’ the parking area, and ask someone there. I am not sure where it is !”

The first thing that struck us was that every event took place between 10:00 and 12:00. Well.. we want to attend 4 events, all between 10 and 12 ? Seems fair..

Prasanth and I went on to attend a good quiz, for which we did not qualify; a pathetic debugging, with pathetic questions, for which we again did not qualify and finally, a most useless mixed masala event, for which we did not qualify either.

We did manage to get into the finals of “Windows Explorer”, in which a Windows 2000 OS  was screwed up by ravingly mad person, who removed the clock, screwed up the file ordering, put up a flash file covering the whole desktop  et al. We were given the task of restoring the system, single handed. None of us managed to do it. Guess no OS is foolproof to a sufficiently talented fool 🙂

Oh.. and coming to gaming, I reached the place last, around 11:30, and wanted to play Unreal Tournament. I was shooed off since the event was already over (?) I was told that I should have come by 11:00 and registered. I told them politely that nobody at the registration desk mentioned a separate registration was required for gaming; that we did not register for quiz or debugging and we presumed it would be the same for gaming. This guy got kind of scared, called the gaming boss, a stout and unshaven fellow. He just told me “No chance da. Your fault. You should have registered”.. I told him that the event was to be held upto 12, and nobody at the registration desk knew a thing about a separate registration for gaming. He told me that it was my fault that I did not come and enquire about gaming. Nutcases, with no politeness. Well.. poorly organised. The UT game got over by 11, and I couldnt have attended, unless I ditched debugging or quiz.

Further, the first guy I talked to gathered some courage, and told me to leave, very impolitely.  At this juncture, Anand and Co. called me to play Counter-Strike as their 4th team mate. I initially rejected, telling them it was stupid to play in such a dumb college. But then, I decided to go ahead for their sake. We lost miserably.. The other team was a well-organised clan, which plays regularly at Zap.

After the UT incident, I was really angry at the college, and wanted to leave. Just then, I was informed by Prasanth that i had qualified for the finals of Windows Explorer. At the suggestions of my classmates, I decided to stay back and compete. There was no winner in this event, and I suppose the event organiser got richer by 2K at the end of the day.

The only pleasant thing was meeting my friend Hariharan there. The symposium sucked big time, being totally disorganised, with the Reg. desk having no idea that some events required another registration at the event hall, and that there were extra events. The manners of students conducting the symposium, especially gaming was very, very unruly.

In all, a nice Jerusalem college, with pathetic students organising a pathetic symposium.