Suramya's Blog : Welcome to my crazy life…

November 26, 2023

Thoughts of Dr Who and the 60th Anniversary Special

Filed under: My Thoughts — Suramya @ 8:45 PM

Folks who know me or have been reading this blog frequently know that I am a big fan of Doctor Who and yesterday was the first of the specials made for it’s 60th anniversary. I have been reading Dr Who since around 1992/1993 and watched the first episode around 2000. Then the series relaunched with Rose and the rest is history.

David Tennant nails it again as the Doctor and while the story was not too complicated or involved it was a fun one that didn’t make me want to forward through it. I feel that a lot of the shows/movies etc are going for the dark and gritty reboots/changes and that is something that is good in small doses but not for too long. I watch TV or read a book to get lost in another world. Not to see the same issues up on the big screen as well. This episode was a welcome exception to that trend.

In addition the folks at BBC have also released a new colorized version of the first story featuring the Dalek’s called ‘The Daleks’ with the video cleaned up and new score added etc. I re-watched the episode and it was great. However, the Doctor as shown in the first season was not a very likable person. They were manipulative, arrogant and selfish at the beginning of the show with a very Sexist attitude that mirrors how the world was at that time. Over the decades since then the character has evolved and become much more emphatic and caring. Looking back the way the 12th Doctor behaved was the closest to how the 1st Doctor always acted which could be the reason I never really liked that iteration. Plus there were the ridiculous sonic-sunglasses.

There are a lot of people complaining about the new version and that is ok. They don’t like the direction because a non-white man is going to take over from Tennant and are pitching a hissy-fit over it. I personally am looking forward to the new season and cant wait for it. The best quote for Ncuti Gatwa taking over as the 15th incarnation of the Doctor is from Tom Baker who played the 4th: “Oh! Is this the next Doctor Who? A handsome young man! Marvellous cheekbones. These things are important as you get near to death.”

Some of my other all time favorite quotes from the Doctor :

“Never be cruel. Never be cowardly. Remember, hate is always foolish and love is always wise. Always try to be nice, but never fail to be kind.” – 12th Doctor
“There’s no point in being grown up if you can’t act childish sometimes.” – 4th Doctor
“You know, the very powerful and the very stupid have one thing in common: they don’t alter their views to fit the facts. They alter the facts to fit their views.” – 4th Doctor
“We’re all stories, in the end. Just make it a good one, eh?” – 11th Doctor
“Some people live more in 20 years than others do in 80. It’s not the time that matters, it’s the person.” – The 10th Doctor
“You want weapons? We’re in a library! The best weapons in the world!” – The 10th Doctor
“I eat danger for breakfast. I don’t, I prefer cereal. Or croissants.” – The 13th Doctor

– Suramya

November 23, 2023

Watched The Marvels and loved it.

Filed under: My Thoughts — Suramya @ 12:01 AM

Watched the Marvels today and loved the movie. The reviews and the initial box office returns had made me a little skeptical on how good the movie would be as it has apparently the lowest opening weekend of all Marvel movies ever. I think that this is because there are a vocal group of people who don’t like the idea of a non-white male centric movie and that resulted in a poor opening weekend.

The movie was good and most of the jokes were actually funny and from what I could tell the entire audience loved the movie. The villain of the movie was a bit 1 dimensional their motivations could have been explored more in detail and other than the Marvels not much focus was given to the supporting cast. Even with that though the movie was a fun watch. My Niece Sara who watched it earlier this week apparently loved it because of all the cats in it. So that is another point to consider.

The end credits scene on the other hand was wow! It really opens up the stage for a massive new set of stories and crossovers. So I am looking forward to that.

– Suramya

November 22, 2023

My Deepavali vacation 2023 – Part 2

Filed under: My Life — Suramya @ 11:36 PM

Continuing from my previous post My Deepavali vacation 2023 – Part 1. After Diwali we relaxed for a day and finished the Bhaiya Dooj festival. On Wednesday, we met up with Tarini and Varun at their place for dinner and drinks. I am not a cricket fan but if you are in India (or anywhere where there are Indians) it is impossible to escape the craziness of the World Cup.

Since India was playing in the Semi-finals we ended up going to a nearby sports bar to have a few drinks and watch the match. Watching any sport with a crowd is an interesting experience as it is almost impossible not to get caught up in the excitement when everyone is on their feet cheering and screaming their heads off. After a few drinks we headed back to Tarini’s place for dinner and finished watching the match over there. India won the match even though it looked it they might not earlier in the game so that was good.

We would have loved to stay back longer but folks had to go to office the next day (not everyone was on a holiday like me) so we headed back home to Noida. When I got home we found that the parents had forgotten to leave the outer door unlocked (I had the key for the inner doors). As I didn’t want to wake anyone up, I ended up jumping over the wall, unlocking the inner door to get the keys to unlock the main gate to let Jani inside.

The remaining week went by with us just chilling at home. On Saturday, I had friends from college visiting for the weekend. Amit, Vinit, Pranav and his Wife Jigna came over and stayed with us in Noida. I was meeting Amit after almost a decade so it was fantastic to catch up after such a long time. I have known these folks for 24+ years now. Saturday afternoon we went out to Lunch at Burma Burma where the food was so good… we ended up overeating to the point were we barely had room for dinner a few hours later. (We started lunch at 3 and ate till around 5:15 or so).

Lunch at Burma Burma

After lunch we were almost in a food coma so we hung out at home while Jigna caught up on her sleep and Amit visited his uncle. Jani had meetings so once she got back we drove over to Ravi’s place who is another friend from NJIT for dinner and drinks. Since the last time we had met, Ravi had learnt how to make amazing cocktails so we had drinks and just caught up with each others lives and were up almost till 3am just chatting and then drove home.

You don’t often make friends with whom you stay in touch and remain great friends even decades later and it is a privilege to have such friends. Or as Yeats said “Think where man’s glory most begins and ends And say my glory was I had such friends.”

Group Pic at Ravi’s place

For Sunday we had planned to go out somewhere where we could watch the match and spend the day there. But as always the laziness quotient was high and dad moved the TV to the drawing room from the living room to give us more space where we could laze around and watch the match. The setup was a complete jugaad with my Dressing table being used as a stand for the TV and cables being run all over the place.

Watching the Indian Cricket Team’s pathetic performance at the 2023 World Cup Finals

Unfortunately for us the Indian teams performance was not worth the effort that we spent setting up everything. It got to the point where some of us actually dozed off in the middle of the first innings. The second inning was a little bit more interesting but the Indian fielding was pathetic so we stopped watching the match when it was clear that India is not going to win and went out for Dinner.

Diner was at this lovely place called Theos Cafe & Patisserie. The food there was quite good and pretty much everything we ordered was good. Once we finished dinner we just hung out at the cafe till it became obvious that they were waiting for us to leave so that they could close up so we headed home and spent the next few hours looking at old photos from our College days.

Dinner at Theos Cafe & Patisserie

The next day everyone except me and Vinit left to go back and since I was working on Monday I spent the day catching up to emails and things that had piled up during my vacation. My return flight to BLR was supposed to be at 9pm but Spicejet delayed it till 11pm (we actually flew out around 11:30pm). Thankfully they did send an email/sms/call about this early enough that I could plan accordingly and not end up sitting at the airport from 6:30pm… The Delhi airport Terminal 1 is undergoing renovation so not much to do there except sit at the lounge. I ended up working for a bit before catching up with my reading.

Thanks to the delays I reached Bangalore around 2:30am and home around 3:30am. That concluded a very restful and fun vacation and I am already looking forward to my next trip.

– Suramya

November 21, 2023

How to get people to spend less time in the toilet

Filed under: Humor,My Thoughts — Suramya @ 3:51 PM

If you have had a roommate who takes ages in the bathroom because they are busy catching up on social media or a company who wants their employees to spend less time on breaks there are a few anti-user designs that people have been pushing over the past few years. Such as a slanted toilet designed to make it painful to sit on for more than 5 minutes and other such hacks.

I have a better way to ensure people are not spending too much time in there. All you have to do is ensure that the Wifi and Mobile data connectivity in there is poor and folks will automatically stop spending too much time in there. This idea came to me when I was stuck in such a restroom with very limited cellphone coverage and poor wifi signal.

Obviously this is a joke post not meant to be taken seriously so please don’t do this to your workers. 🙂 Yes, I am zonked out due to all the travel I have been doing. Why do you ask?

– Suramya

November 20, 2023

My Deepavali vacation 2023 – Part 1

Filed under: My Life — Suramya @ 7:30 PM

Last week was a lot of fun, we (Me and Jani) went to Delhi for Diwali which was on the 12th as we try to be with parents for Diwali whenever possible. Took an early morning flight and landed in Delhi around 10:30am. I was worried about the air quality in Delhi but thankfully it had rained the night before so the pollution level was one of the lowest I remember. My air purifier at home in Delhi usually runs at about 300+ but that day it was in the 70’s so it felt great.

11th was also Axu’s wedding anniversary so we went out for dinner with Axu, Montu and their parents. It was the first time I had gone out of the house on Choti Diwali (the day before Diwali) and I was surprised to see the number of folks who had come out for dinner. I always thought that most people would be at home but apparently that is not the case. Dinner was a lot of fun and it was good to catch up after a long time.

The next day was Diwali where we started the day with a Havan. I have a problem with it because of the smoke so ended up having to take an Allegra tablet to ensure that I can function. When I was a kid my nana (mom’s dad) used to do a Havan every morning and I had just learnt about air pollution and how smoke is bad for you. So I used to take a bucket of water and pour it on his Havan kund to stop the ‘air pollution’. It is a wonder that I didn’t get smacked into the next year.

All of us seated at the Diwali Havan in our house

After the Havan I escaped to the garden outside the house while the smoke dissipated from the house and then we all just chilled around for a while. Met some of the neighbors which was interesting because most of the folks I knew when I was living in Noida had moved out and I didn’t know any of the new folks.

Mom, Dad, me and Jani in the garden at our place

At night we did the pooja and lit candles and Diya’s all around the house.

Diwali Pooja

Photo taken outside the house with the full lighting on

One of the questions that has been asked a few times is:
“जब दीपावली भगवान राम के १४ वर्षो के वनवास से अयोध्या लौटने के उतसाह में मनाई जाती है, तो दीपावली पर “लक्ष्मी पूजन” क्यों होता है ? श्री राम की पूजा क्यों नही?”
(We say that Diwali is celebrated on the occasion of Lord Rama returning to Ayodhya after 14 years of Vanvas (Forest living) so why do we worship Lakshmi on the day instead of worshiping Lord Rama.)

The answer to this questions is:

“दीपावली उत्सव दो युग “सतयुग” और “त्रेता युग” से जुड़ा हुआ है!”
(Diwali is associated with two Yuga’s or ages as per Hindu Mythology, The Satya Yuga and Treta Yuga)

“सतयुग में समुद्र मंथन से माता लक्ष्मी उस दिन प्रगट हुई थी! इसलिए “लक्ष्मी पूजन” होता है!
(In Satya Yuga, Goddess Lakshmi appeared during the churning of the ocean to produce Amrita. This is why we worship Goddess Lakshmi on this day.)

Devas (gods) and asuras (demons) were both mortal at one time in Hinduism. Amrita, the divine nectar that grants immortality, could only be obtained by churning Kshira Sagara (‘Ocean of Milk’). The devas and asuras both sought immortality and decided to churn the Kshira Sagara with Mount Mandhara. The Samudra Manthana commenced with the devas on one side and the asuras on the other. Vishnu incarnated as Kurma, the tortoise, and a mountain was placed on the tortoise as a churning pole. Vasuki, the great venom-spewing serpent-god, was wrapped around the mountain and used to churn the ocean. A host of divine celestial objects came up during the churning. Along with them emerged the goddess Lakshmi.

भगवान श्री राम भी त्रेता युग मे इसी दिन अयोध्या लौटे थे! तो अयोध्या वासियों ने दीप जलाकर उनका स्वागत किया था! इसलिए इसका नाम दीपावली है!
(Lord Rama also returned to Ayodhya on this day and the population of Ayodhya welcomed him by lighting diyas. Which is why it is called Deepawali/Diwali)

इसलिए इस पर्व के दो नाम हैं, “लक्ष्मी पूजन” जो सतयुग से जुड़ा है, और दूजा “दीपावली” जो त्रेता युग प्रभु श्री राम और दीपो से जुड़ा है!
(This is why the festival has two names, Lakshmi Puja which is associated with Satya Yuga and Deepawali which is associated with Treta Yuga and Lord Rama).

After lighting and decorating the house, me and Jani went on a drive around the sector to see the decorations which was a lot of fun. Jani wanted to walk but I was tired so we just drove around for a bit till we got tired and cold so we came back home and crashed for the night.

The days after Diwali were a lot of fun as well and I got to meet some old friends and I will talk about that in the next post.

– Suramya

November 6, 2023

Don’t make interview candidates wait 1 hour as the “filtering” method

Filed under: My Thoughts — Suramya @ 12:01 AM

The following post on Quora caught my eye earlier where this person asks that their boss purposely makes every candidate wait one hour past the scheduled interview time as a filtering method and if that was legal.

My boss purposely makes all interview candidates wait 1 hour past the scheduled interview time. This is their “filtering” method, as they refuse to consider anyone who leaves during the 1+ hour wait. Is this legal? by Patrick O’Neill

I am pretty sure this is legal but it is extremely unprofessional and a major red flag for people working under/with this boss. They don’t care for the candidates time and wasting it like this doesn’t show/prove dedication. Someone could have scheduled an interview during their lunch hour or they might have booked a babysitter so that they can come in for an interview. By wasting time like this, you don’t know how you are impacting their schedule and plans. Unfortunately, too many people think that the only thing people should care about is working and the more time they spend at office the better it is.

This is especially true in the Startups where people joining are expected to put in insane hours. I have worked with a lot of startups both as an employee and as part of the various incubator programs, I remember one startup owner that proudly told me that they ask their candidates if they are ok to work 7 days a week without exception and reject anyone who says no because they should be as dedicated to the company as the owner was. So I asked them if they are also going to get a part of the profit that the company makes and they responded with an empathetic NO! When you are not going to share the profits the owner is making then why would the employee work the same hours as you? You need to give them the same incentives if you expect the same amount of effort 🙂

For the most of my carrier I have had great managers and bosses who respect peoples time. I have been scolded about logging in during late nights and over the weekend unless there was something urgent that needed to be done. If I was in a situation like this, I would normally ask for a reschedule after about 30 mins, if it was a phone interview I would drop after 15 mins and send an email stating that the panel didn’t join.

People who this kind of screening are the ones who will call you on Saturday at 10pm and expect that you drop everything and come to the office for work. People do have a life outside work and we need to respect that. If there is an emergency, absolutely call me at anytime and I will log in (if I can). But for BAU (Business As Usual) work that can wait, you shouldn’t be calling.

– Suramya

November 1, 2023

Why do developers confuse Halloween for Christmas?

Filed under: Humor — Suramya @ 1:56 AM

Why do developers confuse Halloween for Christmas?
Because OCT31 = DEC25.
Merry Christmas!!! 🎄🎁

Extremely corny but funny: (i.e. just the kind of joke I love) 🙂


– Suramya

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