Archive for February, 2008

I am sitting in the BA lounge waiting for my flight to London so I thought I’d post about a great travel website called Seatguru.com  One of our travel managers recommended it and I have been using it ever since to check out my seat before checking in online.  On this site, you can look up any seat on most airplanes and get the straight scoop on legroom, storage, noise and more.  Check it out.

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Bollywood is the largest film industry in the world, producing the most films with the largest audiences. It makes up to 800 films a year – twice as many as Hollywood and about 14 million Indian people go to the cinema each day!

Last Saturday night, we went to see Ayushee perform at the Bollywood dance contest sponsored by UCLA but with all the major colleges in the Pacific competing. This included USC, Berkeley, Stanford, UC Irvine, UCSD and USF to name a few.

All in all, I was impressed by the creativeness of the students in coming up with the story line, costumes, music and set design. A pretty complete presentation.

The winner was UC Berkeley with UCSD coming in a close second.

Here is a cut from Ayushee’s performance.

Note to Ayushee:  It was a tremendous effort and clearly a lot of hard work went into the preparation and practice. On the funny side, I thought the American Idol spoof at the beginning was pretty good.

As a novice observer, I have several recommendations for next year’s contest.

First, it was clear to me that the winning teams had some big time support for costume design, set design and construction and choreography. As a USC student, you should leverage the outstanding talents of the USC School of Cinematic Arts which is one of the leading (if not the top – behind UCLA) schools in the country for film. Seek out a prof and some film students to help you.

Second, your costumes need to “pop”. The winners all had brightly colored costumes with sequins and sparkle. Costumes cost money, so see if you can get some rich USC alums to help sponsor you. Let them know you lost to UCLA and you should have money flowing in!

Finally, get some more students to participate. The winners had big numbers and that helped make a grander impression on the large stage. Eighteen to twenty dancers seemed to be the magic number.  But get quality over quantity (no bellies hanging out – you know what I’m talking about)!

Congratulations on a job well done. Anjali and I had a great time watching all of the dance productions. We’re coming again next year!

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Annika’s Birthday – The Party

Annika invited her friends to Scooters Jungle for her birthday party.

Here are some pictures of her friends.


Here is her “homemade chocolate chip brownie cake” since she doesn’t like regular cake with frosting.


Here’s the little princess making another funny face!



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Annika’s Birthday

Anjali took Annika and Emma out to Macaroni Grill for Annika’s birthday. She could not get a smiling face. This was the best of the night!


What a pair of cuties!

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Last weekend, we went to see the Harlem Globetrotters at the Honda Center in Anaheim with our cub scout den. Anjali and I had seen them 16(?) years ago in Long Beach and they were up to the same old antics – water in the stands, confetti, and playing with the kids and the fans.


Here is Annika enjoying the antics.


Here is Vikram with his friend Michael.


It was a fun evening!

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I was watching TV this morning and saw my old college roommate Nabeel Gareeb on CNBC. He is now the CEO of MEMC Electronics which is a $2B manufacturer of wafers.

Check out his interview below.


When the rest of us were in college partying, he was up studying or working. His only vices were cars and speeding. He had a Haulin’ Ass poster taped to his door proudly displayed with a collection of speeding tickets! Other than that, this guy was always very studious, one of the smartest kids in class and destined to be successful. Good luck Nabby!

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Last week, Anjali took the kids to the Natural History Museum on their day off.

Here are some pictures from the trip.

Here is Vikram at the rock exhibit learning about one of the excavation machines.


Here they are with their friends Ryan and Brandon.


Here are Nikhil, Annika and Brandon in front of the polar bear exhibit.


Here are Vikram and Annika in front of the dinosaur exhibit.


Here is the whole gang in order (Nikhil, Anjali, Annika, Vikram, Ryan, Brandon and Robin)


Here is Nikhil at the white polar bear exhibit. Check out the height of the bear!


And finally, at the end of a long and tiring day, the kids are ready to Relax!


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We are in the small minority of American families that did not watch the Super Bowl. Instead, we decided to spend the day up in LA.

We started off at the Griddle Cafe in Hollywood – this was rated a top 10 breakfast restaurant by City Guide and City Search and we can see why. At 9am there was a 1 hour wait, but we got lucky. Alex (the maitre d’), must have thought Anjali was a movie star because he seated us in the VIP room. This was a separate private table in the back of the restaurant. Quite a fun way to eat breakfast. The food was awesome and the service very good. I would highly recommend this restaurant.

After breakfast, we went to Universal Studios. There was a light sprinkling of rain that turned into a major downpour and flooding. Here we are on the shuttle tour inside the park.


We were lucky to escape the rain and flooding, only to get caught in a firestorm. This was from the set of Backdraft.


After the fire, the kids were eaten alive by Bruce from the movie Jaws.


And then, Nikhil was chased by a mummy from the movie The Mummy.


We then witnessed a plane crash on the War of the Worlds set.

After such an adventurous day, Anjali got to be a real movie star when she was cast in the Nutty Professor movie alongside Eddie Murphy. Check out her audition tape in front of a live audience of thousands.

By the time we were ready to leave the park, the weather had cleared and it turned out to be a beautiful day in sunny Southern California.


We left the park about 5PM and still got home in time to watch the last 8 minutes of the Super Bowl. As it turned out, this was the most exciting few minutes of the entire 3 hour broadcast.

Oh what a day!

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