You know you’re part of the Indian middle-class when…

(Because we all just love stereotypes). Your national element is Indium (In), very malleable and soft, but not useful for building long-lasting structures. You find it normal for random people to get close on buses, but find the idea that two potential life-partners be allowed to talk unsupervised before being thrust into wedlock, preposterous. You … Continue reading You know you’re part of the Indian middle-class when…

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

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 kill small animals for no good reason

The dissection. I stared in resignation at the pouch-like underbelly that contained all of the entrails of Rana, the unfortunate amphibian in front of me. It looked so fresh. No matter. Best to get this over with as soon as possible. Singh Sir had a zero-tolerance policy towards miscreants in his class and the orders … Continue reading How to kill small animals for no good reason

How to write an application letter in Indian English

Pappu Patligali, our perennial hero, recently moved to India after spending years abroad working on various IT projects. Pappu studied in English-medium schools before completing his engineering degree from a state engineering college in Karnataka. In school, Pappu enjoyed reading novels written by Enid Blyton, but was not thrilled with studying English. He didn't know … Continue reading How to write an application letter in Indian English

Monkeys can do math so let them solve the oily bamboo problem

A research article published this week in the prestigious scientific journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences caught my attention. Two German scientists report that monkeys have the brain structure to learn and apply basic mathematical rules. Chartered accountants and theoretical physicists thought they were unique, but now¬† this article shows that non-human monkeys … Continue reading Monkeys can do math so let them solve the oily bamboo problem