Activating your inner AWACS

At some point one starts acting one’s age. I suppose. In the past year, I can’t recall how many times I’ve come close to yelling “For @#$%$#% sake, increase your goddamn immunity! And, for crying out loud, develop some proprioception!!” Some folks are born with great immunity while others need to work (a little harder) …

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The imperfect vegan

When I turned vegan ~6 years ago, my conformance was slightly less than 100% initially. This was largely to keep domestic peace without compromising the core principle. For example, Palak paneer, a popular dish when dining out, couldn’t be messed with. So I’d focus on the palak while they’d monopolize the paneer While eating at …

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The coffee abstinence experiment

Regular readers of this blog might know that I run multiple experiments at any time. Experiments of the life hacking kind. Start doing this. Stop doing that. Well.. maybe more of the stopping kind. April 28, 2019 marked the kickoff of one of my more ambitious experiments – quit coffee. April 28 was the last …

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Eating pork chops while petting your Golden Retriever

Fifteen years ago, as we sat in a Singapore tour bus, we heard the story of how the Singapore zoo came to be. An entire generation of kids had grown up knowing chicken only as a packet of shrink-wrapped meat bought from a supermarket that would eventually turn into a delicious dish for dinner. The …

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Adventures in buffet optimization

Mathematically speaking, a buffet function could be expressed thus: Buffet f(x) = sigma (dish1(a1 ->n1)) + sigma(dish2(a2->n2) +… + sigma(dish N(aN->nN) (Turns out there is a WordPress LaTeX plugin that’ll make the above equation more readable but I’m skipping it in the interest of early publishing) For the purpose of this blog post, I’d classify …

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The Bengali outlier

What if I told you that I know a Bengali who doesn’t eat fish. In fact he doesn’t eat meat of *any* kind. Furthermore, he convinced his parents that they too should give up fish and meat. And they did. Maybe him being an only child was a factor but still.. Reflect on this: a …

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A vegetarian cracks an egg

I was raised a vegetarian. Avoiding meat was the most natural thing for as long as I can remember in my childhood. During our teen years, eggs made a brief entrance into our lives. In the form of cakes. They would be baked in a special-purpose oven (egg handling done by a domestic help) away …

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The Salmon Experiments

Among marine life, salmon probably lead the most interesting lives. Born in freshwater rivers, they migrate to the ocean where they live most of their adult lives and, when it’s time to spawn, they start the reverse migration process swimming upstream all the way to their natal river, often to the exact riverbed area where …

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Why do vegetarians annoy people who eat meat?

Why do vegetarians annoy people who eat meat? A 2012 psychology research study, it turns out, has the answer. But before I get to the study (bulk of this post anyway), I want to give some background. I wrote this post a few days before Eid 2016, a rather unremarkable piece recounting my witnessing the slaughter …

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Witness to a slaughter

It was my¬†second year at BIT Mesra. My friend was the hostel mess secretary (hostel #7). One of the secretary’s responsibilities was to accompany the hostel mess manager for the weekly groceries+produce shopping. For one of those¬†weekly trips, my friend couldn’t make it so I substituted for him. Pretty uneventful stuff for the first few …

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