How to tip desi-style – a guide to the “baksheesh”

Pappu Patligali was seated with his friends at at a table in the A.C. section of New Aroma Restaurant located just off of National Highway 6. He was visiting India during semester break and he had a few days to enjoy with friends and family before heading back to the US to finish up his … Continue reading How to tip desi-style – a guide to the “baksheesh”

India though the eyes of a former Viceroy

A chance encounter with a copy of the October 1943 issue of the National Geographic magazine at a library book-sale piqued my interest since the headline article was about British India. I have always had more than a passing curiosity in the opinions of the British ruling-class during the days of the Raj. What did … Continue reading India though the eyes of a former Viceroy

The monumental failure of modern Indian architecture

All great civilizations boast architectural wonders that are not only expanses for the soul, but temples of the mind. I gaze upon temples and stupas and get a glimpse into the heart of ancient India. In the medieval forts and palaces, I am transported into my country's heritage. I look at the Taj Mahal and … Continue reading The monumental failure of modern Indian architecture

Why are Indians so good at test-taking? India’s first competitive exam

Post-mortem: A recent article in the New York Times on pressures facing school-leaving teenagers in India brought back my own personal memories of the Higher Secondary and various competitive examinations. Some things never change. Of course, it wasn't all bad. What doesn't kill you only makes you stronger, right? I mean, those of us that … Continue reading Why are Indians so good at test-taking? India’s first competitive exam

How to write your own biography in Wikipedia. From the renowned author of “Deconstructing Quantum Sufi-Yoga”

Last night, the benevolent god mahi-mahi came to me in a vision and instructed me in a mix of Urdu-sounding Hindi, Hindi-sounding Urdu, Klingon, and C++ to form the Khudbakhud Uttarvedantic Wikipedia Society, a charitable organization exempt from US federal income tax under section 501(c)(3). As you know, articles in the online encyclopedia Wikipedia are … Continue reading How to write your own biography in Wikipedia. From the renowned author of “Deconstructing Quantum Sufi-Yoga”

How to talk with an Indian accent

Having spent many years in the US, I have often been told that I speak "without an accent." Of course it is impossible to speak without any accent.¬† For example, broadly we can say that some people have American, British, or Indian accents which can be further divided into regional accents like Bostonian, Cockney, or¬†received … Continue reading How to talk with an Indian accent

A review of a pre-globalization society as determined from Maine Pyar Kiya

Civilized cultures existed in pre-Columbian Mesoamerica. Similarly, intelligent life-forms existed in South Asia before the proliferation of cable television, cineplexes, shopping centers, cell phones, and the Internet. Using the cultural keystone Maine Pyar Kiya, I have attempted to painstakingly piece together details about the life of the "common person" as he or she lived in … Continue reading A review of a pre-globalization society as determined from Maine Pyar Kiya