Thursday, February 28, 2008

Memorable Moments of cricket in SSN III

Well, its been quite some time since I last updated this series that one starts to think I make up all these memories and that I haven't had any new ideas as of late. I must say to all these non-believers that these are authentic experiences I have been part of in my colorful life.

Anyway, back to my memories.I have always been a sharp fielder especially in the close in position which I developed in my childhood by playing my cricket in confined spaces. There you needed extremely to be extremely watchful to stop the lusty blows from batsmen standing not more than ten metres from you. You had to look, move and grab all at the span of milliseconds. There was no question of deflecting the ball- you either stopped it completely or not at all, as the ball would still reach the boundary even if you got a hand to it.

And direct hits were a must if you wanted to remove wickets regularly. Come to think of it- what with small grounds (you couldn't call my backyard a ground in the actual sense) capable batsmen with powerful hitting, under-arm bowling, no wicket-keeper dismissal (the wall was the stump) and no lbw rule, the only ways to remove a batsman was to bowl him with a fast ball, a very wily one, a catch- all of which were highly unlikely, or a run out. With short boundaries, runs were fetched in the stand-and-deliver manner more often. And with the pitches being short too, you would say there's little chance of a run-out. However you would find it surprising that quite q few important dismissals were run-outs. A sharp fielder who grabs the ball and returns in the nick of time can effect more dismissals than any wily bowler.

Anyway, I learned the art of direct hits there- I don't miss many even now. However the skills I
couldn't learn fielding in the heat of that arena were- naturally those learned in large expansive
spaces- long distance catches and throws. My fielding in the deep was underdeveloped to say the
I was never a good judge of catches and my limitations were blatantly exposed in one fateful match.

I was standing in deep square leg- my usual fielding position then. The batsman pulled a short ball and the ball sped in my direction, in a beautiful parabolic trajectory and I rushed forward in an attempt to prove myself, only to find, in horror, the ball sailing way over my head. It was a misjudgment like no other! The ball would have been right down my throat if I had only stood my ground in the first place.
The guys shrugged it off as a one-off incident. Little did they, or I knew that more was in the
pipeline! The next ball was similarly short and consequently the shot and trajectory no different.

However, this time I was ready- or so I thought. I stood there rooted to my spot expecting the ball like a girl waiting for her estranged lover, but the ball swerved from its purported path, and fell down out of exhaustion not more than half way before its destination! I realized too late that the ball didn't have enough in it to reach me.
I was repeatedly reprimanded by my team-mates for not reading the ball through the air, and was moved to square cover with a strict warning. I was happy now that I was in my favorite position and felt I had seen the last of my misfortunes for the day.

Sadly, it was not to be! In my position you need to look for catches on both sides by stretching your arms far and wide. Its the exact position Yuvraj used to be and where Rohit Sharma is now.
The next ball (of course, it was not the next ball chronologically- its just the next ball of
importance in my story. Perhaps I must add the prefix "later". In fact, it was the last over of the
innings) was short and wide (again!) and it was duly slashed with a horizontal bat. The intention
was to execute a fiery square cut, however the batsman looked with horror as the ball ballooned,
rather launched itself in the vertical direction, stayed afloat for an eternity, and after a vain
attempt to reach the heavens, it began to descend towards me after its lengthy sojourn.

The fact that I was the only one who could go for the catch made me feel naked, however I reassured myself saying this was my chance for redemption, and such chances don't come easier. I didn't move this time- keeping my eyes on the ball all the time, and rightly so- as the ball didn't move from its laser-straight path. It was bound to end up in my hands. It was as certain as the Sun would set soon that day, and everyday. The ball came down, I clutched it, and... botched the catch!

The ball slipped out of my hands as if it had a mind of its own. I had dropped the mother of all simple catches! I couldn't believe what had just happened. How many ever times I try to look at it I don't know what went wrong. Everything had been perfect- my technique had been flawless.

It was the last incident to cap an already rotten day. I had to end the day apologizing to all and sundry. The catch itself had no bearing in the match- they just took one run and it was the last over of the match. However, I couldn't bear the ignominy of such a deed.

I had determined myself to improve on this very important area of my cricket. How I did and came out with flying colors is what the next episode is about!

A View to a Kill: Electrifying extravaganza

Bond songs have fascinated music lovers from time immemorial. After all, the whole business of establishing an uber-cool franchise and maintaining the hype rests on an electrifying intro number, (besides a lot of things like story screenplay casting etc.) :)

However they have never made a deep impression with the critics, who usually slammed it as as childish or teenage stuff, akin to how Britney's creations was always derided as Bubblegum pop. Although it was true in her case, I wouldn't agree with their view on the former.
Anyway, even good creations like Diamonds are forever, You only live twice, All time high (from Octopussy) never got their due. Perhaps the first song to capture critical attention , even acclaim was "A view to a kill" from the movie of the same name. And no wonder- it was a powerful intro song with a medley of notes from the drums and the electric guitar. Followed by an exciting chase in the snow laden peaks, it was the near-perfect launch for any Bond movie, bettered later only by Golden Eye (so perfect that it was artificial).

The song itself was of a more versatile variety with deep lyrics, electrifying notes that sent surges of energy through your body, and Duran Duran's voice added to the effect. It was the kind of song that wouldn't send you running head over heels to the dancefloor- it aws more of a You-Can-Do-It-Buddy invigorating number.

Till now it remains the only James Bond theme song to have reached #1 on the Billboard Hot 100, and it fared excellently in the US Top Ten and other charts as well.

Its a must-be in your collection; a song you would enjoy listening to on a hard day when you're depressed; its the tonic for your soul- the kind Shakespeare talked about when he said "Music is the food of the soul".
Here's the link, enjoy!
Free James Bond A View To A Kill Duran Duran Rapidshare Megupload Ziddu
Size:4.07 MB

Friday, February 15, 2008

BT Home IT Support

We all face loads of problems with indispensable appliances that we use daily, yet don't know how they work.
So whenever something goes awry, we are grounded. The manual is no help- it only explains the basic functions, and online forums for help take such a long time that you would grow waiting for a reply.
Enter BT Home IT Support. BT is a company that has extensive experience in various IT related fields, and it now offers home IT support for its customers.
The services offered are two-fold. Over the phone support and direct face-to-face support.

The site is well structured and neatly packaged. The services offered are clearly mentioned, and sample problems that they have resolved are also provided (so that you can compare them with your own problems and decide if its worthwhile to use this service).
I found that the problems displayed are those you encounter everyday- printer's not working; Computer crashed; Attack of the Popups etc.

Also- demos of the team working at customers' homes are also provided.
All services offered are only for BT customers, that is you must have a BT line to avail of it.

If you are a heavy user of electronic appliances, and face a lot of problems everyday, this is one service you don't want to deny!

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Ghost-like white Stag? Bah Humbug!

Recently a ghost like white stag was allegedly found and photographed in the hills of Scotland. A lengthy and highly complicated scientific explanation of the appearence of Stag, (which is reportedly not an Albino) was also provided.

Now there wouldn't be a more blatant way to draw public attention to yourself. Just imagine- you're a naturalist or something, and you're working on some drab project, say researching mating habits of some kind of deer, and your funding is gonna go dry soon- then this is the sort of thing you would try to boost it. The sheer publicity involved would attract far more funding, and even bring you better projects. And of course- you can always keep the location of the discovery secret, with a convenient reason- to prevent poachers. Ha! As if people are going poach the rare species (if at all there is) Even poachers know better than to kill such a thing.

Why they could capture it alive and sell it to some zoo for a fortune! Nah! There's no such deer! This is just a tall tale!

Also- the fact that the person involved in this case is a Lockhart, whose namesake in the world famous Harry Potter books, Gilderoy Lockhart is a person who rose to fame (in the fictional Harry Potter universe) by lying about having killed fascinating and dangerous creatures. Ah! The parallel is so exact that the whole article is amusing

Here's the picture they sent- quite a clear shot for such an elusive creature- as if it had been posing!

Read about the original article published in Yahoo News here.

Ashop Commerce: Sell your Wares online

The Internet has penetrated far, wide and deep, and any company worth its salt would use it to the fullest. One of the surest ways of increasing sales is to publicise and sell a product online. People find it simpler and faster to buy online, and thereby avoid all the hassles associated with going to the malls and dealing with the crowds while they search for what they want.
But care must be taken that all the transactions made through the site are secure, and that the security software used by the site is fool-proof.
Ashop Commerce is an Australian based website for selling products online. It uses an award winning shopping cart software (details on the site) and has links to various ubiquitous brands like Paypal, UPS, Bank of America etc. It offers a 10 day trial as well as a complete demo of how the ecommerce software works. It also provides free registration with other to publicise your products.
Consumers would find this site attractive as well- as the secure transfer system is one of the best on the web.
So what are you waiting for? Miss out on this shopping cart and you would sorely feel about it- whether you are a merchant or a consumer.

Memorable Moments of cricket in SSN II

I've bowled a lot of overs in my time, and successfully too. Now I have a reputation of being a wily leg spinner who can spin the ball both ways, and turn the ball tremendously. But none of them have been more nerve wracking than this one I'm gonna talk about.
I had just been mugged by Sundar for 4 sixes off an over a few matches before- That was my first over after a very long time, and so I had lost my pace and had totally forgotten to control my flight. Without those I was just feeding him slow balls right on the slot for hitting- on leg stump line, at a full length. No wonder I had been mauled!
So this over was a make-or-break over for me. I had to impress my fellows to demand, or even ask for more overs in following matches. I was determined, or maybe desperate.
Saisriram was the batsman. He mocked me by standing to right of the off stump- exposing all three of them with a stance pointing towards square leg. He was reminding me of the way Sundar hit all those sixes, and that I was cannon fodder to him anyday.

The first ball I bowled was even fuller than I had wanted it to be- had Sai been in his normal stance that would've been a full toss outside off. But with this stance he missed it- the ball was faster than he expected.
Everyone cheered, or maybe sneered, at both of us- the crowd didn't know whom to mock and whom to cheer. In their eyes both of us creatures of ridicule (in a funny way of course). The next ball was very full- in fact it was a full toss. It rose high from my hand, floated past Sai's bat that met with air (again) and crashed onto the stumps- sucker punch!
I couldn't believe my good fortune! The crowd went wild, and Sai was looking like a dunce! Sai sheepishly walked off the pitch while Raghavan took his bat.
The interview wasn't over for me yet, but I had got my confidence back- I knew had it in me to perform my exploits against these fellas as I had done with my street and school buddies.
I just breezed past the rest of the over, conceding just two runs, and showing samples of my prodigious spin with a ball outside off stump that beat Raghavan's bat.
There had been no hat-trick, not even a wicket earned with a beauty, but the over silenced all my critics (everyone congratulated me) and had signalled to one and all- I had arrived.
It would take about 2 semesters until I would bowl my best spell- which I did recently, which everyone remarked was unplayable except for the wides, (About that spell later on in this series)
however, this was the over that started it all- acting as the tonic that invigorated me back after a career wrenching drubbing.

Domain Registration

Almost all businesses now need domains. And there are so many nascent industries in the Net that cater only to online services, that domains are at a hard-to-get state, presently- prices are high and you don't get the name of the site you want.
Enter paylessdomains, a domain registration site based in Australia, and all your problems are solved.

The site has everything you need to know about domain registration, and gives genuine suggestions regarding name selection, and the volume of domains to be bought. Furthermore, the site is well structured and the prices are pretty cheap- about 11 Australian Dollars per year, which is about 10 US Dollars at the present time.

Anyway, apart from that it has a variety of domain extensions to sell- .com, org, info, de, au etc. So that does make it a good site, considering the fact that some other sites provide weird domain extensions like tk.

So if ever you thought of reserving some Internet space for you in the IT Highway- come over here- its all you ever needed to buy a domain.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Memorable Moments of cricket in SSN I

The match was in the balance, Shiva who had bowled an excellent previous over had the ball. Sundar's team needed 10 off 12 balls. Prakash was the batsman. Shiva had spent eons setting up the field and started down the run up with utmost confidence, and the crowd (read five members) at his back. I was at square leg watching history in the making. Shiva bowled at a good length, and Prakash danced down the track, swiveled to face me and smacked the ball high up in the air in my direction.

I could only stand watch, with my mouth gaping as the ball sailed over me, over the boundary ropes, and way over the CSE Block roof, and was out of sight. Needless to say- the ball had disappeared over the tall CSE block and landed on its roof.

For moment, nothing happened. All eyes were glued on the CSE roof, as if waiting for the ball to come back all by itself. The next moment, pandemonium ensued. Everybody was running towards Shiva or Prakash, mostly Shiva to beat him up.

I could only watch and laugh knowingly, as I could understand how it would have felt to Shiva, already having been at the receiving end of a Sundar mauling a few matches. That over almost destroyed my career as a spin bowler.

Shiva was at a similar state now. Just the over before, he had been a hero. Now everyone was blaming him for the abandonment of the match- everyone believed the ball had been lost because of his poor bowling.
Prakash stood there, bemused at his own shot, and his power. It was to become his forte soon- power hitting. This was the moment that started it all. It is one of the most enduring moments of cricket in SSN.

Monday, February 11, 2008

India faces test of solidarity

We all know how much we care about what happens at the Indo-Pak border, where our jawans brave torrid conditions of sub-zero temperatures and ridiculously low oxygen to save us from invasion each day, so that we may sleep well in then nights.

And we know very well how much we care about any incident, law ordevelopment of national significance- indeed our circle of concern doesn't extend beyond the immediate boundaries.
But, involuntarily we have been nationally united- in watching TV, especially cricket.

There are millions of fans out there who would see cricket for days together whether India plays against Australia or Bangladesh , or even New South Wales for a warm-up match. If their favorite stars are playing, they would watch the most insignificant match there could be. (When Sachin played for an English University to get match practise after his elbow surgery, there were people who wanted to know the scores of even that match)
This country is cricket crazy- its official and the whole world knows that. There wouldn't many eyebrows raised if Cricket was made the national game- it would be accepted with glee.

The BCCI is raking in cash like a minting machine all because of these frenetic fans. There's absolutely no question whether the IPL would be another watched event- it sure will be. With matches lasting just double the time of your average football game, its the perfect competition for EPL in India.

However, I believe with the influx of the might of FIFA to help popularise EPL in India, and the fact that so many of the present upper middle class hooked on the derogatory madness that is the EPL, the IPL would be muscled out.

Let's face it- IPL is bound to be boring at some point of time. Besides, the Indian fan is a curious entity- he watches any trivial if the Indian stars are part of it. Anybody else if rubbish. And that too- not any Indian would do. Only well identified figues could rein in the fans and keep them glued.
Already there have been a lot of converts- from cricket to football, who would never come back. They think they are a much higher mortals watching a world renowned game, not accepting the fact that it is just another madness.
Earlier the US was targeted by FIFA, but it found impregnable fortresses in NBA, NFL and NHL. The problem (for FIFA) with America is that their culture is rooted with watching the local games. They watch anything "National", but nothing beyond that.
Although the average Indian cricket fan seems to present a similar picture, I wouldn't bet my money on BCCI getting more from the golden goose.
Already the present cricket season (for India, and other countries) that there is an overdose of cricket. The introduction of IPL would further cram the calendar and make the game more complicated (people would find trouble remembering who is in which team and a lot of such things discussed in EPL).
Above all that- with so many T20 matches, the whole meaning of runs would be lost. I know that 80% of Indian fans are Sachin's ardent followers. About 50% of them follow his each and every run, counting them like spanish doubloons they earned. When he retires, along with the many cherished stars, and when his run machine comes to a stop at long last, people wouldn't care much about cricket.
Even I cant think of a time cricket would be enjoyable without him. The average Indian fan would easily convert to football- and that would open vistas for many other sports as well.

The Indians face the ultimate test of solidarity- the US faced it a decade back, and successfully resisted, will the Indians be able to resist the Global attack and keep their viewing localised?

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Advanced English Dictionay for S60 platform

I found a lot of english dictionaries for the mobile (no not for typing, but a real dictionary where you can see the meaning etc.), but this one stands heads and shoulders above the competition. Its range of words is vast, and it includes almost all the slang words you can think of.
It has an inbuilt thesaurus (it gives example sentences- there is no specific section for thesaurus.

It is a truly advanced dictionary, and the best for any mobile phone. Every word has the right amount of explanation to help you understand the meaning, and it covers all contexts of the word, with example sentences to elucidate the different meanings.

The trial and full version are part of this file. Just install it into your phone, and then click "register & info" in the main menu and click register.
Then type the following in the respective text boxes and click ok. And voila- you have the full version.
For all those guys studying for GRE and other such examinations, this is a godsend. Just put it onto your cell and you would've no problems learning new words while on the move.

Please type the password with the hyphens ( - dashes)
Format : JAR
Supported phones: Nokia, Sony Ericsson

Advanced English Dictionary on platform Symbian 60 S60 for Nokia Sony Ericsson
Size: 7 MB

Note: Tinyurl is just a masked version of Rapidshare links. Its perfectly safe. It will redirect you to the rapidshare link in a moment.

Saturday, February 9, 2008 : The yardstick for online gambling

There are a multitude of online gambling sites right now, and picking the pearls from this ocean is a tough job. And even if we do home in on a few sites for certain reasons (like maximum bonus), we find they are hopelessly bad in other factors- like payouts (the most important thing of all).
So has rated all the popular online casino sites and provided a host of factors for that. Although the color scheme is too flashy, I have nothing to report against the site structure- it contains all the required help menus, and even sections of help for newbies to the concept of online gambling.
The online casinos are rated for each and every game they feature, and you can check out how each site fares for a specific game.
The home page provides the list of top 20 online casinos and they have about 75 online casinos rated in their database. Both user's and editor's ratings are provided. Online casinos for US citizens as well as others are included.
Clicking on the site name brings up the complete review statistics that reveals all reasons that caused this rating. Factors for rating are divided into three: In-game experience, Trust score (Reliability) and Extras (Other Features). Also software used.
Every little point of each site is meticulously observed and a comprehensive review has been provided.
If ever you wanted to play online gambling, make sure you pay a visit to this site- its the ultimate guide to the best online casinos.

The story of my photos with truth III

Self potraits are some of the most difficult to take- because you cant look through the lens while posing for the camera- its all a matter of chance, you think.
But not so- it needs some practise, and some trials that produce errors, but once you get the feel of it, you'll be clicking away all day at your face in different poses.
Although any digital camera would serve this prupose, the best way to do this is using the cell camera as it can be held without any shakes with just one hand, while you put on a smile for the camera.
Beware- you are supposed to take relaxed picture of your face- not contortions of it while you concentrate hard on taking the picture- so just keep calm, soon you'll get into the groove.
It would take atleast 3 to 8 takes to get an idea of the right distance from your face as well as the angle for a cool shot.
Also take into account the power of your flash- if the mobile phone camera is too close it would expose your face to extreme light that would distort your natural complexion as well add some unwanted effects like red eye. And although red eye can be removed using Photoshop, some other effects are permanent, and computer modifications of this image makes it too artificial- you wouldn't recognise yourself.
Here're some pics I took using the mobile camera:

BT Wireless Broadand service: We aim to please!

BT offers a variety of services and its internet wing- bt broadband uk offers Broadband all over Britain, and when I saw the site for the first time, I was deeply impressed. The site is neatly structured with a pleasing color scheme and query/help sections at precisely where people would look for. They offer three options ranging from 5 GB downloads to Unlimited- at the same speed, which is about 8Mbps at the maximum.
Another attractive feature is the free hub (for wireless) they provide for each connection, whatever scheme you choose.
Option are priced from 8.95 pounds a month to upto 18.99 pounds. Of course, depending on the period of suscription, the prices vary after the first 3 months.
Another good thing I noticed was that they charge you for exceeding download/upload limits (mentioned above) only if you do so for two consecutive months. The charges are 30 pence per 1 GB of bandwidth exceeded. That's reasonable, I guess.
Everything is totally explained in the site, and there are no hidden charges. Just take care to go through everything they have to say.
So if you're looking for a broadband connection this is one site I'd recommend you to visit first up. And if you are impressed (like me), then you'd better be fast- because ordering connections online is available only till February 29th.

The story of my photos with truth II

My favorite subject has always been, and (until the time I find my dream girl), always will be Nature. And what better place than Manali to revel in the beautiful paintings of the Divine Artist?
My trip (with college mates) to North India was a grand success- in every aspect I would say. Except the fact that we missed out on the famous Rock Garden of Chandigarh (it was dusk when we reached there, but the light was quite bad). Anyway- it was a paradise for photography, with photo moments dime a dozene, especially in Manali where we were treated to landscapes of breathtaking beauty.
Here are some of those I had the honour of capturing.

Note how the subject is centred and shown only upto the lower thighs. This allows you to show more of the taller objects behind him and it gives the subject the look of a native. The subject merges with the landscape, with authentic articles (the snow boulder) in his hands, it is the perfect postcard picture.

An accidental snapshot, but nevertheless, it produces a nice effect. The green grass that almost covers the picture with the solitary trees provide the right setting to shift attention to the subject. And the subject himself is in an unusual pose (actually it is not one- I was just signalling the photographer to stop. The subject is I)

Now this is another excellent example of how a landscape shot ought to be taken. The hills are preceded by the countryside houses, flanked by barren trees awaiting spring (it was winter when I took this photo), and the solitary, "floating" tree at the top right corner for perception of distance- so that you can easily place as to which object is at what distance from the observer.
Also there is no specific emphasis on a specific subject.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Get advance cash and loans instantly! is a review site that provides ratings of various sites that offer you loans or a cash advance. There are even sites that can help you earn more in your free hours, while you are sitting idle online.
The site makes no bones about what it provides, and it does a good job of it.
The home page shows the top 5 sites reviewed. Even users are invited for reviews, although I'm not sure if every user's review is displayed.
The sites reviewed are on similar lines, but offer different services- some offer advance cash, some offer easy solutions for payday loans while some make these tranfers completely confidential, just in case you don't want your spouse to know you borrowed some money.

Some others let you spend your time online earning cash, rather than chatting mindlessly. Every enterpreneur out there knows that the payday loan is the norm in every growing industry- you don't always have readymade cash with you, as you yourself would be waiting to cash the post-dated cheques of customers. This is a good to visit and solve those problems.

The only glitch I noticed is they don't give a contact email ID. But as it is just a review site, you better direct all your queries to the site being reviewed, and not to this.
A pretty good site to look up, if ever you want to borrow cash quickly.

Looks that could kill: Dare to stare?

Well folks, we have all seen a lot of grotesque things in our lifetime- mostly in horror movies like 13 Ghosts etc, or gory flicks like The Texas Chainsaw Massacre. But I daresay you have never seen something as gross and ugly as these animals here.

Behold! The Ugliest creature Mother Nature ever created!

Look at this fella- they say it is a delicacy in Japan, Europe and the US. Gosh the only thought that comes to me when I look at ugly thing is kill it with an exceptionally large knife and throw it into the fire. Looking at those teeth and its entrails actually makes me want to puke. Gross!

Now I don't need to tell you what this is- yes it is a bug, and if any of you want to wiki it (are you serious!)- it is called the Dobsonfly. It just won the first prize in the Ugly Bug contest (Nope I'm not kidding, and I'm sure you'd agree with the award).
Actually you may not ever be able to see this "beautiful" face in real life- unless you have a highly powerful microscope. Because this is an image of the fly magnified about 500 times.
That is if the bug were to become as big as your keyboard, then this is the view you would get, although I must warn you- it might be the last thing you see in this world :)

This is the Muscovy Duck. I know- it does look like its top skin was removed to reveal the inner flesh. It actually looks even more gross- as if its face was burnt, and that the skin would never grow. It even looks like a portion of our brain planted on its face (yuck!). Anyway- whatever it is, it is surely not "that" feature that attracts a mate.

What is your first impression of this creature? If you did think it is some alien species, you could be easily forgiven- it does look like some creepy alien from some far off planet. But sadly (no I didn't mean it)- it is a common Russian wheat aphid, and although it is not an alien, it cuses so much trouble to the people on earth, especially to wheat, no less than an alien bent on destroying life on earth would do.

Now this is what I would call pitifully ugly. The only thought that would come to anybody's mind when you look at this Warthog is deep sympathy for its ugly appearence.
Its caved-in eyes, the unusual ears, two extended canine teeth, and a rather wrongly painted face that contains this all- sorry about your fate fella.
Check out more ugly animals from

The evolution of Gambhir

Gautam Gambhir has been in the Indian for quite some time to be an easily recognised batsmen- much more than Manoj Tiwary, or Rohit Sharma. That in itself is reason enough that he is not a newbie or freshman anymore, and although he is still a youngster, one must understand that he has had enough opportunities to prove his worth, and he has come out of all the tests with improving performances. His heroics beside Sewhag in the T20 World Cup are now part of Indian folklore, but apart from that he has gotten not too many good innings to show to cement a place, and not too few to completely forsake him.
Although he has produced a brilliant hundred against Sri Lanka of recent, it doesn't tell us a lot about him.
Only his consistent performance (or not) in the series can have the final say.
Not to discourage or downsize the wonderful effort to rescue India beside his captain, one must understand that he hasn't solved his age-old problems in batting.
He still gets out LBW while playing across the line and still gets out (or comprehensively beaten) by fishing for the ball outside the off stump.
However, he has evolved from his early days. He is arguably one of the best players of spin in this side next only to Tendulkar. Dhoni, Sewhag and the others can negotiate spin well just like any Indian batsman can. But Gambhir's technique is solid- he uses his feet immaculately, while he cuts and pulls with ridiculous ease. His inside out shots are as good any you shall see in the international arena.
The way he picked Murali's doosra in the last game shows the kind of player he becomes when he is full of confidence- which he was after scoring an enterprising 70 (till then). His six off Malinga shows that he has the power to clear the ropes, which was sadly devoid of some Indian batsmen who have graced the stage.
It can be safely said that he is the best No.3 in this side. I'm absolutely sure that it is time to say goodbye for sure to Dravid- his slow accumulation has been a constant bane to the side, and with Gambhir now finding his destiny, India can forget those bad days.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

topusaonlinecasinos : No need for a fancy suit to gamble!

Well, whenever we talk of gambling, we think of dames, dollars and Las Vegas. And we have always felt sad when we know all the tricks of gambling and poker and what not, while the ones to get into the casinos are the ones that have all the money, that they don't care if they win or not.
How many times have you dreamed of going into a casino and earning a huge wad of cash, yet couldn't- because you didn't have enough money to arrange a cool car and an escort.
Here's your chance to redress all that- Top USA Online Casinos provides you with all the best sites for online gambling.

The people who made the site were straightforward about what to expect- the best sites for online gambling, Poker, Blackjack etc. and that's what you get- nothing more, nothing less. The home page gives you the list of sites. It contains both kind of sites- those that need you to download client software for playing and those without. And of course- it reviews online casino sites that accepts US players. It's not clear whether the reviewed sites would accept non-US citizens- but that's for you to find out by going to the site. As for the sites themselves- they are visited regularly by US Poker players, and this site takes that as one of the yardsticks for reviewing.
The reviews are crisp but full of information, highlighting the top reasons for you to choose the online casino. Security is also a deciding factor- and I'd say that is a sensible deed by this site to include it for review.

It also provides category wise classification, and complete with a contact email ID, it is just what it is- the best online gaming reviews guide, the Rotten Tomatoes of Casinos.

Tendulkar gets out hit wicket: Early blow for India

For the first time in his ODI career spanning over 400 matches, Sachin Tendulkar got out hit wicket, while negotiating a good length ball from Brett Lee. Tendulkar was moving across the stumps to play it square off leg, but trodded onto his stumps in the process.
It must be mentioned that Lee had been troubling the Indian openers with short pitched deliveries, and it may have been the reason for Sachin standing so far behind in his crease that caused his eventual downfall.
The Indian team for tonight's match is packed with inexperienced youngsters and it remains to be seen how costly this early unfortunate blow would be for India.
Gambhir and Sharma forged a 65 run partnership that was exciting for their boundaries as well as the dropped chances by Australia, but it was broken by Johnson with a well directed inswinger to remove Gambhir, and Sharma fell to Lee soon after.
Dhoni has the unenviable job of teaming with more rookies to lead India to a respectable total and prevent another embarassing loss like what happened in the T20 game on Friday.

Friday, February 1, 2008

Call of Juarez mission walkthrough guide

Well, Call of Juarez is the game of year, in my opinion- for concept and gameplay, as well as sound effects and graphics. Even casting has been meticulously planned and executed accurately, that the effect on the screen is breathtaking.
But, there's still one snag- there's simply no possible way to progress, at some points of the game- which I call dead ends. Of course, this aint a bug, only it means that the game is tough enough to make us rip our brains out. There are some dedicated gamers who would take up such challenges, for fun, and grill themselves to the end to progress.
But for us lesser mortals, we need people to guide us through such non-existent continuations. And Call of Juarez (CoJ) also contains innumerable secrets, and different ways to progress. Here's a perfect site to learn about all the above.
It contains a walkthrough guide- a step by step procedure of what needs to be done to complete the game- not just a short description, but a complete "walkthrough". The walkthrough guide contains even a search tool that helps you to wade through the murky pond, which is CoJ's gameplay.
It also contains files to unlock all secrets, as well more levels. Furthermore, there are various working cheatcodes and innumerable other features. As a fan of Call of Juarez and as a person who has heavily benefitted from this walkthrough guide written by a most a exalted soul who goes by the name of Grawl in the site, I would suggest you to try all means possible to get through the game yourself, and read this guide later on to look for any tricks you missed. If else, you'd better use the guide to save your day!

Find the Call of Juarez Walkthrough Guide at this site:

Ashop Commerce: Way to be on the Net!

With the advent of the Internet and the mobile phone, we have always wanted the world to be at our fingertips. From banking to gaming, from music to movies, we get them on our very own Net. Shopping on the net is the rage, but one needs to be careful while making any transaction through the net.

Ashop Commerce is a safe shopping cart software site that gives you the feel of real shopping while still being at the comfort of your study. You can roam around with your shopping cart over several racks, picking and rejecting items on the way, and make a single payment at your final checkout. Any good e-commerce software must be able to maintain a long session as well track user browsing various products without breaking the session, and still maintain security.

This shopping cart software site provides all users with a free demo (that has no committments), and a 10 day trial period as well. It is backed by well known brands like FedEx, Bank of America, Paypal, UPS, HSBC, United States Postal Service etc. and is definitely not the kind of site to raise any eyebrows about- it is safe and easy.
It also provides you with a table of data to compare prices of products and features offered by other sites. You can also customize the appearence and features to what you want to see. There is no installation required, and the software works over the Internet itself, so that you can use it anywhere- without the need to install it in each and every system you encounter.

So here's the smart way to shop on the net- Ashop Commerce Shopping Cart Software.

The Call Of Cthulhu: Truly Gripping, yet too Short

Well folks, I had FINALLY finished reading the highly rated Call of Cthulhu by HP Lovecraft- a task I had begun way back in my college years- in my very first year. Its taken about three years to complete it. a thinker from a very young age- he wrote his short story "The Alchemist" when he was only 17 yrs old. Looking at his list of works- I was stunned, finding myself lost in a veritable ocean of infinite themes and varied genres.

Many of the modern writers have been inspired by him- Stephen King is one of the most famous examples, while his works reflect certain characterisitics found in Edgar Allan Poe- the legendary wordsmith of the mystery and horror.

I was surprised that I never heard of his name till now (and I am a voracious reader), and come to think of it I only ever heard of Cthulhu from the PC game of the same name. Anyway, after that I wanted to immerse myself in the world of Cthulhu, or atleast have a basic understanding of the plot- in order to play the game, of course (I hadn't suddenly been bitten by a Cthulhu bug, trust me), and the first book I took up was "The Call of Cthulhu"- the book, going by its name, where it all started.
But, it seems this whole Cthulhu business has no specific root. Rather than concern himself with trivial matters such as chronological ordering of events, Lovecraft leaves it to the readers to arrive at a sequence for the events- an enormous task considering the vast ocean of bits-and-pieces clues in his stories- stories that already leave us half-demented by their ubiquitous gloom and constant feeling of tension and suspense.

So this wasn't the start of all Cthulhu, but you are pretty much at home in the initial stages of the novel. Although a bit slow and transgressive at places, it proceeds like your average crime thriller, the story unfolding in the eyes of a victim's kin, who is reviewing the possessions that he has inherited.

The build-up to finale, and the suspense maintained for an explosive climax is all fine, even laudatory, considering there are few characters and things for the reader to think about. But, the story fizzles out at the critical denoument- the confrontation with Cthulhu itself. Maybe a hundred years back (when it was written), it would have been a chilling tale of the supernatural. But in this space age, it is no more than an amateurish attempt at imitating Allan Poe's style of suspense and horror. Whatever they may say, Edgar Allan Poe was far better than this chap, and shall be immortal.

You can read the book for free at Wikisource:

A rare retort to George Bernard Shaw!

George Bernard Shaw, the famous Irish playwright has been the central subject of many an anecdote, which almost always end with Shaw retort. Rare, or perhaps even non-existent is the anecdote in which Shaw is in the receiving end of the retort.
But here's that rare moment:

"I'm enclosing two tickets to the first show of my new play. Bring a friend, if you have one" wrote Bernard Shaw to Winston Churchill (then Prime Minister of England).

Back came the reply from Churchill to the searing attack by Shaw- "Cannot possily attend the first show. Will attend the second, if there is one!"

Shaw would have known, that he had (finally!) met his match!

Smorty: For the sensible blogger

I must say I've found the perfect machine for doling out cash for me-
The rule of the marketing world is simple- you need customers (the demand), and to sustain them you need good service (the supply), and marketing is the mantra that connects the factory to the consumer.Now, Smorty is such a smart marketing tool that helps advertisers home in on
Bloggers to review their products- websites in this case. It's a blog advertising site, where you get paid to drink honey; where you get paid to do what's fun for you; where you get paid to blog.

Bloggers are merely required to post their opinions of the advertisers' products and websites on their blogs, along with links back to the advertisers URL.
Unlike other sites that offer similar services, this blog for money website approves in the space of 72 hours at the maximum, and on most occasions on a single day! And you can start posting immediately after you are approved- no need for bidding and waiting for days!Advertisers and Bloggers are gonna love this alike!So whether you need to advertise on blogs or want to get paid for blogging, there's nowhere else to go but

Sidekick turns Superhero: Captain America Returns!

Well, finally it was not a death-defying ridiculous escape (Sherlock Holmes in the "Return of Sherlock Holmes") or a convenient resurrection by Eru (a la Gandalf in "Lord of the Rings : Twin Towers") that has hastened Captain America, the most celebrated hero of the Yankees (no offense fellas), but merely because America needs him. But, surely even he cannot come back from the dead- he is dead and dusted just like Dumbledore in Harry Potter : The Half Blood Prince, or can he?
The answer is Yes and No! Yes because Steve Rogers is but mortal and is surely not going to return from the grave, and No because Captain America is but an idea; and as Alan Moore would say- "An idea never dies", Captain America knows no death.

So he does return, with Bucky Barnes (Steve Rogers faithful side-kick) donning the robes of America's most cherished superhero.

Whether it's Bucky Barnes or Steve Rogers, Captain America is sure to dazzle the comics fans once again, and with a movie on the character slated for release next year, it is going to cause an unprecedented resurgence of Patriotism in the US, which is sorely divided by the unending War in Iraq, and the recent elections.

Captain America returns in the latest Marvel Comics Captain America#34. Check it out fellas and dames. Meanwhile, here's how the new Captain America Bucky looks:

50th Anniversary of Explorer 1: America enters the Space Age

America has been a pioneer and is now an icon in the Space Age. Although it had stiff competition from the erstwhile Soviet Union over the control of space (ironic isn't it? While we are no more than specks of dust in the eyes of the massive Stars and humoungously powerful and almost-everlasting Black Holes, we puny humans talk of space domination), it has been able to overcome every potential threat to its hegemony and as of now stands heads and shoulders above fellow nations.
Although undoubtedly the watershed was the landing of the moon by Apollo 11 in 1969, it all started in this event- the successful launch of Explorer 1- America's first satellite, on January 31st 1958. By then, the Soviets had already sent their first animal into space.

SO let's celebrate with NASA the golden jubilee of this historic event- one that has been instrumental in various day-to-day services we avail of, like Google Earth.