Kiran Somanchi

Archive for the ‘Ruminations’ Category

Calgary’s Best Patios 2011 | Avenue Magazine

In Misc. on September 23, 2011 at 14:37

http://m.avenuecalgary.com/articles/calgarys-best-patios-2011

Easy Vegetarian Thai Green Curry Recipe (via This Sh*t’s Delicious)

In Misc. on May 6, 2011 at 00:40

Easy Vegetarian Thai Green Curry Recipe I had been craving Thai food for a while, so when I stumbled upon Rasa Malaysia’s Asian-themed food blog, I knew I had hit the jackpot. I am a big fan of Thai curries and was pumped to come across a green curry recipe, which is the spiciest of them all. Unfortunately, like all Southeast Asian (SEA) cuisines, this one was chock full of meat which didn’t work for me as I am a staunch vegetarian (although really, I have no ethical issues with animal … Read More

via This Sh*t's Delicious

Review of The Big Cheese (via This Sh*t’s Delicious)

In Misc. on May 6, 2011 at 00:39

Review of The Big Cheese Like clogging up your arteries with potato, gravy, and cheese curds? Yeah, well so do we. This fine establishment is right beside Melrose on 17th Avenue, making it the perfect location for grabbing a late night snack as you stumble out of the bar at 2 am. The last thing a drunk wants is healthy food, and they definitely don't want to walk more than 3 blocks to get it. The menu is all poutine, baby. One section dominated by chicken, one section wi … Read More

via This Sh*t's Delicious

The Mojito in two acts (via Rufus’ Food and Spirits Guide)

In Misc. on April 9, 2011 at 15:20

The Mojito in two acts Nothing says summer is coming to me more than when my four mint plants start producing gigantic leaves. Of course in the South, this means summer starts in May and ends around late October. Now any sane person would wonder what they would do with so much mint or why they don't just have one plant. Luckily, I am a complete lunati … Read More

via Rufus' Food and Spirits Guide

Long-cocked by Life

In Misc., Ruminations on March 24, 2011 at 23:03
Long-cocked by Vance

Today has been a rough day. Not only have I been up for 24 hrs straight, but I have also had to endure the travelling equivalent of waiting in an emergency room with a dislocated shoulder: waiting in an airport with a dying cell phone. To make matters worse, I seem to have misplaced both my Blackberry wall charger and the USB connector.

Hats off to you life: you have long-cocked me indeed. Well done, indeed.

Waiting in airports has to be the most dehumanizing and humiliating part of travelling. You don’t do anything, yet you are exhausted. You want to go out and explore the city, but you don’t cause it will be a royal pain in the ass to go back through security again. You are stuck in this nether world over which you have absolutely no control. Humans thrive on being able to dominate our environment and subject it to our will. Waiting in airports takes this need to control your environment away from you. Basically, you get long-cocked.

One way I exert my will on having to wait is to incessantly and obsessively check my BB. After 3 years of owing my BB, I finally understand the misnomer Crackberry. People wine and bitch and complain about how they don’t want to be connected 24/7 through a smart phone. I don’t understand these people. Who wouldn’t wanted to be connected 24/7? I fucking love it. Wouldn’t you want access to all the information in the world at your fingertips? Who doesn’t want to be able to be connected to every corner of the world through a device the size of your palm? I know I do.

In all honesty, I am addicted to my BB. I feel disconnected from the world and my friends if I don’t check it constantly. I suffer from withdrawal symptoms when I don’t have access to my email while traveling overseas. I constantly find myself feeling for the familiar bulge in my pocket to make sure I haven’t lost it. It is my lifeline in the field when I don’t have access to internet. The first thing I do when I wake up is check my email.

But, that is where I diverge from most people: why is this such a bad thing? Maybe some people don’t like being that connected. That’s fair. I have heard others complain that they don’t want to be receiving emails after work. There’s a simple solution to that: stop checking your work email after hours. If your boss expects that you should respond, then it’s time for you to have a conversation with him to set some boundaries and expectations right. Personally, it is part of my job to receive emails and phone calls on the weekend, so I don’t mind it at all. I guess I just like feeling important.

Another thing that I get constantly told by baby-boomers is the over-reliance on emails by Millennials. Apparently, phoning someone for information is a much better approach than sending an email. The problem with this is that most time the call goes to voicemail. So, in the time it takes me to call my voicemail, wait for my phone to connect, grind my teeth through the annoying welcome message, finally get to my message, and find out that the message is the click of someone hanging up, I am ready to pound someone’s face with the cell phone. If you had emailed me instead, I could have determined in 2 sec whether I needed to respond to that email right away or hit Delete.

So, next time you want to get a hold of me, don’t call me, just e-mail me. And make sure it is on the weekend. At 2 am.

Unless of course, it is an emergency. Then you are allowed to text me.

Chance Gardner & Toothisms

In Ruminations, Work on March 22, 2011 at 01:35

How to order coffee: “Caramel macchiato, motherfucker.” – The Tooth

“Yeah, I have known a few trannies.” – The Tooth

“If you cain’t eat it, you cain’t fuck it.” – L. Beaudoin

My term in the field is coming to an end. The last week has been the least work I have done out here, but the most fun I have had while on location. Person after person is a character. Most of them are racist, sexist, and pure country. I have really nothing in common with them except that most of them are foul-mouthed and perverted, even more so than I am. Most of them have cheated on their wives/girlfriends and some of them continue to do so even now. They are all pigs and unabashedly so, without any regret or remorse for constantly crossing the line by a wide margin. If they were in the office, all would have active multiple sexual harassment suits pending against them.

What have I learnt on this assignment? How to run CT ops? How to cuss out everyone for now reason except that you can chew them out? I haven’t learnt much that I already didn’t know about tight gas completions ops. For the most part, this assignment’s been a complete waste of time, with learnings relegated to minimal increments in actual usable knowledge. I wouldn’t ever do an assignment like this again unless I was in some sort of a supervisory role. This job is fairly boring with long stretches of “dog f*cking” where you are doing nothing.

I have learnt a lot about myself. I have learnt that I generally don’t like conflict with some foreman, while with other. I have learnt that if you use an authoritative voice and sound like you know what you are talking about, most people will believe you. I have learnt that I am terrible at going head-to-head with people in arguments as I cannot seem to think fast enough on my feet and that I f*cking hate to lose arguments. But most importantly, I know for sure that I will never work or live out in a small town or follow down this path as a long-term career path. It is too boring out here.

What isn’t boring are the people out here.

The one thing I have learnt is the existence of this substrata of people in the lower socio-economic classes. Which is an oxymoron as most of them are richer than I am. I have lived in more countries than most of these people have travelled to in their lifetimes. Yet, I have never really had the exposure to this class of people ever in my life before. I have always been surrounded, by the virtue of my upbringing and schooling, by the educated classes. Being out in the field has opened my eyes to the people who vote conservative. who listen to country music and think it is actually good, and who don’t support gun control as it interferes with their right to carry a weapon “in case a bear attacks me. ” These are the people who “prefer” that their wives stay home as they are “old-fashioned” and think that the house needs a “woman’s touch.”

In many ways, there are boring. Most of them aren’t educated past grade 12. Most of them consider travelling to mean spending a week in Mexico on an all-inclusive beach resort. They don’t really understand, appreciate or care for anything that happens outside of their myopic world-view. They are uncomfortable with gays and don’t think women should be in the field. I wouldn’t really want to be stuck out here with them for more than a year. Yes, there are a lot of pigs out here, but there are also a lot of good people that wouldn’t hesitate to stop at the side of the road to help you if your truck broke down.

Don’t really know where I am going with this post. I suppose I am walking down the sentimental path now that I have one more shift left. They aren’t bad people – just different. I suppose to them, city folk are all rude, weird, and obtuse. I can judge them for being uneducated, uninformed, and myopic about world views, but where does that really get me? I can go back to yyc and tell my friends about my (mis) adventures out here – all it will do is confirm their prejudices and biases. There isn’t an easy way out of ending this blog post.

I guess, at the end of the day, no matter where we all come from or what we think of ourselves, we are all cocksuckers out here.

Peace out, bitches!

Ideas for Food Blog Structure

In Food blog ideas, Misc., Ruminations on March 21, 2011 at 07:04
I am very inspired by Tiny Urban Kitchen's food blog. The whole blog has a sense of wonder to it, like a little kid in food wonderland who is discovering something new every day. But clearly, she also knows what she is talking about. The whole blog has a nice aesthetic to it and looks very put together. A lot of thought and effort has gone into this blog.

Some of the ideas for additional pages in the blog:
Restaurant Showdown: This page will contain links to all the different restaurants/eateries we have reviewed broken down according to different suburbs in Calgary. But really, it will contain links to summaries pitting each restaurant against each other. Haven't decided how to present this summary. Being an engineer (but not an engineering nerd), my first inclination to present this information in a table format.
Recipes: We all cook from time-to-time, especially for my Not-a-Dinner Parties. This page will be used to document the different recipes we have all given a whirl to show off our culinary skills.
Ranking Methodology: We explain our ranking methodology here which we will use to rate the best of the best. Haven't figured out the details yet, but I suspect it would look something like Table 1 below. I am trying to give an engineer flavour to the different levels but cannot think of any good ones right now. I will have to depend on Richard and Kent for that. There are six different levels to rank any of the categories. This might be an overkill, but no self-respecting engineer would leave it at five, in my opinion.
Table 1: Ranking matrix
This is just a rough draft of the rating methodology. I tried to nerd it up by trying to use some sort of mathematical series for assigning the numerical score, but 5 minutes on Wikipedia hurt my head. Why do I even pretend to be an engineer, I do not know.

Hello world!

In Misc. on March 19, 2011 at 04:08

Blogging is hard. Everyone makes it sound so easy.

It is harder than engineering.