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My first fine!

Last night, I was in Besant Nagar, trying to get out money from the ATM. I had parked my Scooty outside the ATM and when I got back, I found a policeman trying to “c lamp” it. Apparently it was a no parking zone and I had to pay a fine. The funny thing was, the fine was only fifty rupees. But I had to pay a hundred more rupees as “unc lamping charges,” in spite of the fact that my vehicle had not been c lamped at all! Anyway, in commemoration of my first fine since I got a licence 14 years ago, here are the receipts and the charge sheet! read more

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Why the tsunami occurred!

The tsunami, like any other newsworthy event, has spawned a set of legends and myths. Among these, the most widely circulated now are those that account for the causes of the tsunami. Almost immediately after the news of the tsunami came the first “cause.” Divine retribution, said the godly, for the arrest and subsequent “humiliation” of Jayendra Saraswathi.

Then came a lot of discussion on the underwater quake that had actually caused the tsunami. Learned and unlearned heatedly discussed plate tectonics and geological stress. Streetside seismologists gravely predicted that “all was not over,” and that we could expect a series of such tsunamis in future. read more

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Haast’s Eagles, Lammergeyers and Painting the Weather

I was reading of this great big prehistoric eagle that used to hunt the giant moas on New Zealand – Haast’s eagle, when I was reminded of how fascinated Sriram was when we first read about the lammergeyer. We both have been fascinated by large birds of prey, and it was only natural that I should look up the Australian wedge-tailed eagle and the harpy eagle. While I was at it, I also stumbled upon the Philippine monkey eating eagle! Of course, I am writing Sriram about this!

The BBC weather website gives an interesting twist to met-watching. “Painting the Weather” is “a major art show, only online.” Only thing is, it sucks up major time. read more

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