Will sing for my drinks

Pre-Diwali day in the office. Slow since morning... slower post a pretty heavy Diwali lunch with the team. I'm only writing this post coz i'm in serious danger of snoozing at my desk... zzzzzzzz zzzzzzzzzzz zzzzzzz

Most of the agencies & clients' offices are shut today and in some cases till this coming Thursday. We're out till Wednesday. This being the last set of chuttis till December, its causing a feeling of blah amongst a lot of my colleagues. ("yaar no public holidays till Dec.... how will we survive??")
And that is of course promptly followed by "you lucky bastard, you toh dont need to worry since you're quitting in a couple of weeks."
I am.... weeeeeeee!

Definitely in the mood for a few drinks and some karaoke tonight. So I'm thinking of going to Soul Fry this evening and might end up going alone. Alone because most of my friends are either out at their Diwali teen patti sessions or at the Russell Peters show tonight.
Haven't done the whole going-drinking-alone-at-bars bit since my last job when I was posted out of Bombay. Perhaps this is the night to relive old habits...

If you hear someone singing some Billy Joel (Piano Man/We didn't start the fire) or U2 (Without or without you), or Elvis (Jailhouse Rock) it could be me. Or not.
I haven't copyrighted those songs on karaoke as my own... yet!

So why don't you drop by,
say me a hello or even a hi,
I'll sing you a song or tell you a joke
if buy me a brew or two,
coz I'm flat broke.
Note - The Author was formerly a vocalist in a band. However he has limited lyrical ability as can be seen from the above post. Additional testimonials towards the same will be provided by his former bandmates who used to giggle and snicker when he'd come to their garage jams with lyrics he claimed were masterful. He does not speak to these former bandmates anymore.

The Chicken or the Egg?

I was reading the Oct issue of this music mag called Blender. It was an article about a Damn Yankees album.
I quote below the writer's Asif Khan's opening paragraph:-
"Throughout the history of music, there have been eras, which as a thumb rule have occupied the timeline in units of decades, and have had the birth, emergence, establishment and decay of genres, which held their mainstay and defined those lengths of time."

I kept wondering why it looked so familiar when it hit me suddenly...

The closing paragraph of my post dated 24.09.08:-
"Special mention also about that musically confused/chaotic decade - the 80’s. With most other decades, there is an association of a genre with a particular decade - like blues and jazz for the 40's and 50's, rock for the 70's, grunge/alternative for the 90's, hiphop for the (early) 2000's. But the music from the 80's has always been referred to as that. 80's music. No particular genre ever made that decade its own."

Tell me its not just me...


It's 5 o'clock somewhere...

So I went to Goa on the weekend of Bapu's birthday and I'd promised myself I'd write about it. I'd started this post a lot earlier but didn't get around till today (20.10.08) to posting it. As with so many of my trips to Goa, I'm not sure what to write about at the end of them. I mean it was a great trip but I'm not sure I am up to describing it in its entirety. Goa's like that for me. Just an extended experience which turns into one big, alcohol-induced hazy and kinda secret memory. So I'm just gonna put down some of the highlights...

The Journey - So the traveling circus was J, Ed, MK, DKS and moi. Now J and Ed are married as are MK and DKS. Fortunately I'm very close to these folks that I don't feel like the "single" fifth wheel sort. Also helps that I have a fairly thick skin about these things :D

We decided to save a few bux by going one way by train and returning by flight. I'm not sure it was worth it the following morning when I'm totally exhausted from sleep deprivation (I rarely am able to sleep in a train and not at all on a bus) to the point of wanting to strangle the cabbie who was so obviously overcharging us to get us to our hotel. Anyway we reach our hotel and what followed was 4 days and 3 nights of drinking and eating a LOT of (esp. sea) food.
I think I'd grown gills by the end of it and could probably have swum back to Bombay in case I'd missed my flight.

Blackjack - I got the boys (that's J & DKS in case you're still wondering) hooked onto Blackjack on the train trip. And it continued right thru the trip and even on our return flight back to Bombay. I was the house for most part and they were playing against me for 10 bux a hand. Which reminds me - they frickin' owe me money. The house always wins baby!!
In DKS's case I also started tutoring him on the basic of poker. My young protégé displayed a decent grasp of the game and might be good if he decides to pursue it further.

Whiskey Sour - Another highlight of the trip was the discovery of my new favorite cocktail.
A lovely... lovely... "oh-my-God-hit-me-with-the-nearest-blunt-object-to-stop-the-hangover" lovely drink. J called for this drink our first evening at the bar opposite where we were put up. After that every night before going to sleep we'd indulge in one or two or ten of these. Be warned tho - this mofo will sneak up on you and maaaaaan the hangover's a b*tch to deal with in the morning.
But hell we was in Goa after all...
I generally avoid drinking whiskey or whiskey based drinks coz I tend to become a lil nasty when I drink too much of this poison. But I think I will make an exception for this drink :)

Zeebops - This is a shack that's located on Utorda beach in South Goa. It took us just under 90 minutes to get there from our base in Baga but it is so damn worth it. The food is fine, the beers are chilled but what you come here for is the view.
One of the best beaches I've ever been to in Goa. There's not a lot of people here, the water is cleaner and clearer, the sand too seems softer. Even with my limited foto-taking abilities, here's a pretty picture I took of the beach...

"No Smoking Unless You're on Fire" - The ban on smoking in public places went into effect the day we landed in Goa. Despite being a smoker, I'm all for this law. I mean sure, it's an inconvenience if you gotta go a long way off to get your fix but it wasn't as bad as I originally thought it'd be, having already had a taste of it when I was in Singapore a few months ago.
And sure that don’t stop us from bitchin' about it but this is a good thing. My only gripe remains with people who can't ask me simply to put out my cig. Instead they give you dirty looks and make rude under-the-breath comments. That used to just succeed in goading me to continue blowing smoke rings in their faces. A lot of "us" are regular civilised folks who will immediately stub it (or take it) out if we're told to. There's something to be said for common courtesy. Give it a shot sometime...

The Lighthouse - That first night with our "softdrink" bottles in hand we ventured out in our vehicle which was a Gypsy. Everyone was kicked about roaming about Goa in an open-top. Very Dil Chahta Hai types (wait... didn’t those guys ride a Merc?!)
So our Goa expert J (he's probably made more trips here than all the other places he's ever visited put together), decided to take us to the Lighthouse out beyond Candolim. It was probably 10 at night and barely any street lights. And then suddenly it almost seems like we've left civilisation behind. Only the forest-like woods on either side of the road keep us company as we reach the end of land and see the lighthouse. It's big white beam of light going round and round with reassuring certainty.
J was gung-ho to take us right out to the adjoining cliffs to see the light beam play out over the surrounding Arabian Sea. But in our slightly tipsy state, we chickened out but I could the disappointment in his voice at us missing out on a superlative view.

On our drive back, we went by a helipad type area located pretty close to the lighthouse.
Dr. Mallaya's aerial steeds use this area to land and take off. Aah to be rich... We came to a standstill in the centre of the LZ. Switched off the engine and indulged in some stargazing. One of the simple pleasures denied to us city dwellers. A diamond studded velvet blanket which gazes benevolently down, mysteriously twinkling here and there. Its a humbling feeling when you look up and realize just what a tiny tiny speck you are in this grand ole universe. The alcohol, I think, went down the smoothest in those 30 minutes.
That about covers the so called highlights. There was a lot more alcohol, tons of fingerlickin' food (btw crumb-fried Anything tastes good), loads of laughter, stories old and new, reminiscings of trips past and memories to last me a lifetime. The last time i had gone to Goa with these guys was about a year and a half ago.
Hopefully it won't be another 18 months before we do this again.