Tag Archives: Blogging

Moving to Restricted Feed

Now this is what I would say is putting foot in mouth, as I have always been a supporter of complete feed. The idea was why force the user to visit your site and specially that a lot of times some or the other sites are blocked in the offices the user should be able to read the post.

Now recently an event which made me thinking if I should reconsider my stand in the wake of latest technology and things which it has enabled. A few days back I got a pingback from the website of Pratik Patel. I went over to his website and I could see some of my posts on his site word by word. I was about to blast him and inform people that my blog was being plagiarized. It was then I noticed that my post was under the shared heading and there was small link saying that this was shared on the Google reader and there was a link to my blog.

So I was assured this was definitely not a case of Plagiarism but still the idea that people were reading my blog on some other site, without my permission and knowledge is a bit disturbing, specially given that people might comment on the site the post was shared and the opinion would never reach my ears. The fact that we share the same first name was not helpful either. Here is a link to one of the posts which was shared  on the site in case you want to see.

So I feel that I should move to restricted feeds like a lot of other bloggers do, this is something which I felt was an irritant but sometimes you got to choose your priority. What do you folks feel about this issue. Though for now I am going with a reduced feed (which is a knee-jerk reaction) but if convinced I am open to revert back to the complete feeds.

So come on people help me out here.

10 Day You Challenge- Day 8: 3 Movies

3 Movies, now this is an easy one-

1- Guru– I am a fan of this movie and I have seen it so many times that I can’t even count.

2- Choti Si Baat- This again a brilliant movie which deals with a complicated subject of human psyche of perceptions in a very light and comical way. I have learnt a lot from this movie.

3- Thank You for Smoking– This is another movie which has motivated me a lot in life.

10 Day You Challenge- Day 7: 4 Books

Books are again one of my favorite past time and interests and given that I read a lot choosing 4 books becomes very difficult. Obviously both Urban Shots & Down The Road are not included in the list though they are special to me more than any other book. 🙂

So here goes the list of 4 books which I really loved-

1- One, Richard Bach– If there is a book which I think changed me as a person it was One. A lot of my world view was changed after reading this book.

2- Atlas Shrugged, Ayn Rand– There is so much written about this book that I cannot possibly add anything further. All I will say that I generally have some of my favorite excerpts of this book typed on my comp and I read it time and again when I get a chance.

3- Srimad Bhagvad Gita– This is one of the best philosophies of the world, I have read it couple of times and don’t think have a got even half of the essence in it. Every time I read this it brings out a different perspective in me.

4- Harry Potter Series- Again enough has already said about the HP series and how it takes the reader to the world of fantasy.

Image Source: Google Images

10 Day You Challenge- Day 5: 6 Places

Now I am not the one who has traveled across the globe and seen a lot of places but in what ever places I have been here are my picks from those-

1- Kanpur– This is my home town and I have grown up there. A major contribution of who I am and what I am is courtesy this city. A lot of people who I consider my life support system share the essence of Kanpur with me. Though the city is on a decline because of all the crappy politicians who have taken charge of it but still the place adds a zing to my heart whenever I visit there and it will always remain home for me.

2- Pune – again is city which is very close to my heart. I have spent some very beautiful moments in Pune and some of my high points in life have happened in Pune.

3- Bangalore – This is the city where currently my life is. 🙂

4- Goa – Though I have not stayed there for a long time, but in a short trips which I have made to Goa the culture, life and beaches simply take over me.

5- Singapore– I know I am one of the people who find the concrete jungles lovely. And Singapore is an epitome of the concrete jungle. The kind of organized and orderly lifestyle the city has makes my heart yearn for being in Singapore.

6- Cliffs of Moher, Ireland– I visited the cliffs couple of months back and the view is simply difficult to get out of heads.

So before I close this post, I will leave you folks with the view of The Cliffs of Moher.

10 Day You Challenge- Day 4: 7 Wants


This time it’s all about 7 wants, the thing which makes this tag interesting is there is so much to choose from, selecting a few of them makes it very difficult. Like every other human being I too have an unending wish list. You know it is indeed very simple to want everything. So here I list the top 7 wants as of now-

1- Writing an international Best Seller– Come on for a writer there is nothing better than this. I don’t know why I don’t wish for a Man Booker or Nobel in English Literature but all I wish for right now is writing an international bestseller.

2- A BMW Z4 is the model which has all my fancy right now. You can see why don’t you?

3- A Tag Heuer or an Omega Watch– I have a fancy for watches and these two models right now simple make me go “I want it.”

4- A home like this one-

5- A Vacation on a cruise at least once a year

6- Barney Stinson’s Television– If you haven’t seen How I Met Your Mother, and not seen Barney’s TV. You must, its like a dream come true, imagine playing PS3/Xbox or watching movies on it.

7- A La Z Boy Recliner


Phew! This was difficult seems like your wants change a lot with time. A few years before when I used to be a bachelor my wants could have been the images search result for “Hot European Models” 🙂
*Image Source: Google Images, All the images and Trademarks belong to their respective copyright owners.

10 Day You Challenge- Day 3: 8 Fears

So I am back with 8 fears I have; which is a bit tricky because I am not sure that I am actually afraid of that many things or people.

1- God– actually it is not God that I fear, but the fact that I believe that I have to face him after death and justify my actions and their purpose makes me afraid of doing something which I believe I won’t be able to justify to my lord.

2- Death– Though death is an ultimate reality which everyone has to face one day or the other, but the thought of losing my family & close ones to death is very scary.

3- Physical Incapacitation- I have always feared the prospect of taking care of myself physically because either being disabled due to an accident or old age. I have been pretty close to the first one when I met with an accident when I was 12 years old and met a major accident, and the doctor told me that had there been some more complications or injury they would have removed my left hand, the prospect of it though it never happened leaves jitters down my spine.

4- Fear of disappointing people who matter, I have done it before and that too more than once. There is nothing worse than letting down people who put their trust and faith on you and your abilities. I have been lucky to have been blessed with people who love me and put their trust on me and there is always a fear that even by mistake I shouldn’t let down that trust and faith.

5- Fear of Social Gatherings– I am not sure if I fear social gatherings or despise them. But the fact of the matter is if there is a plan to go to a social function I would always find an excuse to excuse myself.

6- Fear of snakes and other venomous animals

7- Fear of missing a flight or train– If I have a flight or a train for a journey, I am always afraid that I might miss the same. As a matter of fact there have been times I have not been able to sleep through the entire night just because I had to catch an early morning flight.

8- Fear of handling small babies– I get very psyched out and avoid holding very small babies. I have a great fear that I might hold the babies incorrectly or might drop them or hurt them. So I always ensure that if there is small baby around I do not hold him or her.

10 Day You Challenge- Day 2: 9 Loves


So day 2 of the 10 day you challenge is to post about 9 loves. Actually when I decided to do this challenge I thought it would be quite simple but as it seems now it wasn’t. I mean there are so many things one loves, and choosing 9 of them is indeed difficult.

1- My Parents, needless to say I am what I am because of them. And how much I love them cannot be described in words.

2- The Wifee since the time we got married ours have been a “give and take” relationship. She generally gives her piece of mind and I seem to be taking it most of the time. Now that I am taking all the pieces of mind (wondering what would happen when she wouldn’t be left with any) and storing them safely in my mind despite all the storage constraints in mine is only because I love her so much.

3- My Friends, now I couldn’t have survived without them. I am lucky to have a very close bunch of friends who I can depend on with my life. I am so thankful to lord, that my paths crossed the way they did and I could collect these pearls of friendship during the journey of my life.

4- My Car – There as in entire post dedicated to my first car. You can read about it here

5- My house– Again there is a post about it if you want to read it in detail here

6- My gadgets, I am a gadget lover I have an Ipod Touch, WII, PSP (recently gifted by Radio Indigo), Home Theatre, Canon Rebel T1i, and the list continues. All of the gadgets are something which I totally love and I can spend hours fiddling with them.

7- Coffee, now my love for coffee has been previous talked about on this blog and some other forums. I actually have a make shift coffee bar at home with an espresso machine, single origin coffees, flavors to enhance coffee and a collection of mugs.

8- My books, the readers of this blog would already know the amount of reading I do and I can assure you that I do not subscribe to a library or a rental service. So for the most part the books I read are purchased and I have a mini library at home. And as with all book lovers I am very possessive about my books.

9- My writing and this blog. All the stuff which I have written in this blog or in my books or outside it, I wrote them because I actually loved writing it. The writing is my way to express and unwind myself. I wouldn’t have been the person I am had it not been for my writing.

So these were the 9 people/things I love. Now on a different note, the narcissist I am it is very difficult not to love myself. So I love myself, for one simple reason I am effin’ awesome. Now those of you planning to debate that please look at the image below, by a “trusted website” who does a facial recognition and matches you to celebrities. I am 53% like George Clooney. So you know I AM AWESOME (readers are requested to conveniently ignore the fact that there is a 55% match with Omar Sharif). So I just need to lose these extra 20 kilos around my waist to become the female magnet what George Clooney is, right people?

10 Day You Challenge- Day 1: 10 Secrets


Preeti started doing this series of tags which is to posts interesting things about her. The idea seems interesting to be on the blog; so I start with 10 secrets (things which the readers of the blog won’t know) about myself-

1- I once disposed off my school test notebooks when I got terrible marks and later claimed to the teacher that the notebooks were stolen. (I was caught 3 months later when one of the neighbors whose empty house I had thrown away the notebooks came to inspect the house and duly returned the notebooks to my parents after spotting the name)

2- I have a sweet tooth; it is very difficult for me to resist something sweet. Some years back when my weight wasn’t a concern I would not even throw away the sweet syrup from the gulabjamuns and rashogollas but rather drink them or have them with bread or chapatti

3- On the same note, I can have almost everything vegetarian with bread, which includes things like chocolate, butter jam, fruits, sugar syrup, lentils, milk, cereals etc. I can eat bread for 7 days a week 3 times a day.

4- I have never been a sportsman or followed any sports religiously until I started working and started playing squash and following cricket, and tennis.

5- I wrote my first poem when I was in class fourth, my class teacher told to my parents that I am good in writing. Though I couldn’t figure out what one can do by writing poems. Thankfully I didn’t choose it as a career given the state of English poetry writers in India and sadly I don’t have a copy of the first poem I wrote.

6- The following sets are in my wish buy list for ages- Calvin & Hobbes, Dilbert and Amar Chitra Katha.

7- I hate watching TV.

8- I created an Online game for my college fest which got some 1 million hits on the day of its launch. The entire experience of designing that game was so close to me that I still quote it as one of the most satisfying experience.

9- I have never touched a drop of liquor till date.

10- I hate people who do not take ownership and responsibility of their work.

Redefining The Blog

Warning: Long Rant Ahead

As I mentioned in my last post, I have been in a lot of introspective mood lately. There has been something which has been putting me off blogging, or rather making me rethink about one of my favorite areas where I spend my time. I have been blogging close to 6 years and I have been following other blogs since then. Over a period of time the blogosphere has changed dramatically, and somehow I started to feel that it might not be an as interesting place as it used to be.

I don’t know why but I too face the problem which D faced and mentioned it here. Though I followed a lot of bloggers without any gender bias, but over a period of time a lot of male bloggers have disappeared from the block leaving my readers dominated primarily by female bloggers, which I don’t have problem with but my Google reader opinions are lot more female centric as they used to be. I don’t know the reason for this sudden disappearing of the male species from the blogging, some of the very good India male blogs I used to read are simply gone or are not frequently updated- Twisted DNA, Hitchwriter, Rajeev Karwal, Sidin, Amit Varma, Desi Pundit blogs, Nariyal Chutney are some which I miss reading on regular basis.

Another factor which has lately been a cause of disappointment for me in the blogosphere has been the quality and type of posts. If I would generalize the posts which actually carry me away from the blogging world would be-

  • Feminist & Male Bashing: There would be a lot of posts on how the women are being mistreated or some piece of news/article how males raped women or tortured them etc. Now don’t get me wrong I too feel towards the cause of the women and support it whole heartedly. But its kind of boring reading similar posts and similar comments on a lot of blogs but not a single blog about actions being taken; a lot of blogs wrote on “Why Shiny Ahuja should be hanged/ castrated etc for what he had done?” but I didn’t see a single line on any of those blogs “I had a conversation with my husband/ brother/ son/ father on how to maintain the decorum when our maid is working in the house?” Some how all the talk without an action makes me disappointed. Similarly when lots of blogs were supporting Pink Chaddhi campaign over the top but I missed a picture of a set of Pink Chaddhis which were sent by those bloggers. All this makes me questions are we just the high society who would sit with a hot cup of coffee and discuss how much problems the world is in and then go back to our home without doing anything?
  • Wordless Wednesdays : As far my knowledge of the concept goes it supposed to be wordless because the pictures posted should be expressive enough and shouldn’t require words to describe the photograph. But somehow Wordless Wednesday has become more of filler posts which would be schedules for weeks with actually no thought going in what goes into the posts. Though I am all for the awesomeness of the abstract art in photography but then may be its not such a bad idea to write a line or two about the photograph and set a context where the reader of a low IQ like me can get it too.
  • Too Many Filler Posts: I am sure most of us have been guilty of posting posts without any actual content in it. But lately the filler posts have started exceeding the posts with actual content on the blog. So if three consecutive posts were only on how you didn’t have time to post and you would start doing it from tomorrow may be you should have combined the three posts into one and written something which would have satisfied you as an author and the readers too.
  • Celebrity Posts: which are primarily about announcing to the world when and what they ate, generate controversies and then address them for free publicity. Having been on the block for a long time, I also know that most of them might not be even managed by the so called celeb themselves, but a trained PR professional might be doing it for them creating the so called “Public Image”.

So in short I was having what I would call crisis of faith on the blogging itself because either the world has changed or I am not following the right people, which led me to a point that I was considering that I should formally quit blogging. What brought me back was a series of posts from Sayesha (who from now I claim to be my blogging idol) whose blog I have been following since so many years. She underwent through a very difficult phase while giving birth to her baby where she also had to consider an option of terminating the baby. All the while in the hospital when she was struggling amidst difficult time she held on and never blogged about it and this is the reason she mentions on her blog which she also calls her bar “Some of you have asked me why I never mentioned all of this on the blog when it was happening. Well, here’s the reason. The bar is a happy place. It has always been and it will always be. I wanted our story to reach at least a small positive point before sharing it.”

It was reading these lines from her made it all come back to me “Why I started blogging/ Why I kept on it even when people around me were letting it go/ What do I owe, if I do when I Blog?”

So I guess its time to establish revisit the tenets which form the core of my blogging-

What is Ginger & Cardamom?

Ginger & Cardamom is a place which is open, fun, creative, humorous and happy while still being reflective on life, India and the world view.

Who are the people to which Ginger & Cardamom is responsible to and what that responsibility means?

  • The Readers: Since they are the primary consumers of the content posted on G&C it is a responsibility to ensure the readers get the quality posts which maintain the Ginger & Cardamom character of fun, creative, humorous and happy
  • Authors of the Post: Should allow the authors to reflect experiment and feature their creativity without editing or post processing the original posts.
  • Aggregators: Any people (other bloggers or non bloggers) or forums (like Blogadda and indiblogger) who recommend G&C or a post on G&C; the G&C should strive to live up to the recommendation.
  • Blogging Community: G&C would always be ethical and responsible to the basic tenets of the blogging community and would neither entertain evil practices like Plagiarism nor support people who indulge in these evil practices.

How do we plan to achieve the characteristics defined above?

  • Open: The blog would be open about the authors’ identity and contacts while allowing the reader community to have a voice in terms of comments on all posts without moderating or editing.
  • Fun & Humorous: The blog would strive to be a fun place retaining a sense of humor in posts, comments and replies
  • Creative: The blog would be a mix of fictional, poetic & non fictional posts allowing multiple areas for creativity
  • Reflective: The blog would constantly try to keep a perspective on things happening around us (events, news, politics, books, movies etc) to give the readers an opinion to rely on.
  • Happy: The blog would be a happy place where the reader should be either happy with the effort put in or because the post left a smile on the face. (Thanks a lot Sayesha for this)

So this is what I think Ginger & Cardamom stands for and this is what I would be trying to achieve through this blog. However, since this is a changing world I would be revisiting this post again and again to chart out the future course till then see you when I see you. Meanwhile if you as a reader have some views on how can I improve this space or what can be a better direction for this place I am all ears.