Monday, 24 April 2023

My favourite Western Classical composers

  • Bach
  • Vivaldi
  • Mozart
  • Beethoven
  • Chopin
  • Tchaikovsky

Saturday, 29 October 2022

Comics strips I read regularly

In The Telegraph, Kolkata:

  • Ziggy (in the Tom Wilson II era)

  • I read all Calvin and Hobbes (by Bill Watterson) chronologically through a set of illegally obtained digital images I acquired way back in 2005. The strip was published from 1985 to 1995, a much smaller run than the other ones, so one can actually read all of it over a small period of time. It is a pity that  I read Calvin and Hobbes through piracy given that Watterson went at great lengths to prevent greater commercialisation of his work. Sad and ironic. 

  • Either The Statesman, Kolkata or The Telegraph used to publish Beetle Bailey at one point of time. I remember reading that regularly as well.

  • I never read Henry in English as neither The Statesman  nor The Telegraph carried it when I read them but I read a Bengali translation of it called Gablu/ গাবলু which used to be published in Anandamela/ আনন্দমেলা. Wikipedia says that now it is no longer syndicated.

Monday, 14 February 2022

Political issues

 The issues which I believe are most important in India today (in decreasing order of priority) are:

  1. Increasing communal harmony
  2. Decreasing income inequality
  3. Reducing unemployment
  4. Improving access to health facilities
  5. Improving quality of education
  6. Reducing corruption in politics
  7. Ecological sustainability
  8. Improving caste, gender, sexual orientation equality

Wednesday, 5 January 2022

Fun with mathematics

a) Think of a whole number between 1 and 10.

b) Double it.

c) Add 4 to your result.

d) Divide the result by 2.

e) From this result, subtract the initial number you had thought of.

f) Your result is 2.

Another exercise

a) Think of a whole number between 1 and 10.

b) Multiply it by 3.

c) Add 30 to your result.

d) Multiply this result by 2.

e) Divide the entire result by 3.

f) Subtract 10 from your result.

g) Divide this result by 2.

h) From this result, subtract the initial number you had thought of.

i) Your result is 5.

Consecutive squaring

My computer can keep on squaring 2 only 6 times, at which point of time it gives the result 1,84,46,74,40,73,70,95,51,616. It cannot give an accurate result for the square of this number.

Exponential growth

 My computer's calculator can calculate 2 to the power 106 (or 2^106) accurately. Which is 8,11,29,63,84,14,60,66,81,69,57,89,00,51,44,064. It cannot multiply this figure by 2 properly.

Saturday, 4 September 2021

In the Dark Night of the Soul it's Always 3:30 in the Morning

One of the TV shows I have enjoyed watching in the last two years has been The Morning Show on Apple TV+. The first episode was titled 'In the Dark Night of the Soul it's Always 3:30 in the Morning'. I had assumed, that it was a title made up entirely by the creators of the show. But I was mistaken. It is inspired from an autobiographical essay by F. Scott Fitzgerald titled 'The Crack-Up' (Esquire, 1936) where Fitzgerald writes:

Now the standard cure for one who is sunk is to consider those in actual destitution or physical suffering—this is an all-weather beatitude for gloom in general and fairly salutary daytime advice for everyone. But at three o'clock in the morning, a forgotten package has the same tragic importance as a death sentence, and the cure doesn't work—and in a real dark night of the soul it is always three o'clock in the morning, day after day. At that hour the tendency is to refuse to face things as long as possible by retiring into an infantile dream—but one is continually startled out of this by various contacts with the world. One meets these occasions as quickly and carelessly as possible and retires once more back into the dream, hoping that things will adjust themselves by some great material or spiritual bonanza. But as the withdrawal persists there is less and less chance of the bonanza—one is not waiting for the fade-out of a single sorrow, but rather being an unwilling witness of an execution, the disintegration of one's own personality…