Thursday, November 20, 2008

I'm not done with my name

No,not yet. Welcome to round 2 of the name-bashing. In my other post, 'Whts in a nme?' (still hurts to type words like that!), among other things, I said "Yes,I know my name isn't all that bad". I write today,because I think otherwise.

It all started with a classmate making fun of my name. Strange as it may seem, I've never been made fun of,over my name. Nicknames,yes. Crazy reactions and pronunciations,yes. But no one ever told me "Funny name! Haha!" and went on to deform my already handicapped name.Not until now. I was angry. Why me? Why do I have such a lame name? This frustration eventually led to curiosity(God knows how). I wanted to know more about my name. So I've been named after a Roman Goddess. Which Goddess? Whats the story built around her? And what does an aging teenager do,when faced with questions like these? Google.
I looked up 'Roman Goddess Merin' ,on Google. The link to my previous post(where I've mentioned the whole Goddess thing) sat on top of the result screen. My heart sank. As in, no other site on the www spoke of Roman Goddesses known by the name Merin? More research!!! I typed in 'Origin of name Merin' but apart from learning arbit possibilities of the origin, I was slapped across the face,again,with the fact that 'Merin' is not-a-feminine name. And well, no Roman Goddesses. Now I had just one option left. I called out, "Maa!".

Me: Ma,I ran a google search on my name..
Mom: So? Have nothing better to do now that your internals are over?
Me: Listen! There's nothing about any Roman Goddess with my name!!
Mom: *grins*
Me: *stare* What?
Mom: Took you so long to figure this out?
Voice in my head : WTF?! Does she mean what I think she means?! No way man! This is outrageous! Say something! Anything!!!
Me: What? *more of the lame my-last-brain-cell-just-died staring*
Mom: Oh it isn't the name of any Roman Goddess. Your dad and I just liked it.
Me: You mean...?! What the hell does my name mean then?! (Oh a couple of 'em cells were alive!)
Mom: We just liked the name. We didn't know what to tell you,so we thought Roman Goddess sounded nice.
Me: You lied to me all my life?! (No,this is not the effect of watching saas-bahu shows. Trust me,you actually react this way,in situations like this.)
Mom: Ok,sorry. But for me, it'll always mean Roman Goddess,ok?
Me: Who in-the-f'ing-name-of-Lewis-Hamilton cares what you would like to think?! You lied?! However did you come up with this name then? Where'd you find it?!
Mom: The Pandit told us your name had to begin with m and we wanted a 5 letter name. And your dad's name starts with m and my name begins with n. So we just put this all in together.
Me: (After spending 15 seconds trying to digest that) So you just had m---n and you filled in random alphabets in the middle?!
Mom: Look I don't remember how we came up with it, but its no big deal. You're my Goddess,ok? Its just a name. (And walks off,making me feel highly immature).

Voice in my head: No,wait,Just a name?! Hello? Its my name. Its like the frikkin' passport number that your passport bears or the whatever code the processor-chip of your computer has! Only much more important!! Come back!

But that stayed in my head. I felt like I'd been robbed. (Don't you call me dramatic,you haven't spent 19 years being called 'merin'!). My name actually had no proper origin/meaning/gender. This was sad. The pathetic, jump-into-the-path-of-a-moving-cycle type sad. I sat in my room for a while,along with my different personalities,trying to cope with the truth.

It wasn't very long before I went back to Google. 'Merin' has to have a meaning! It has to exist somewhere! I'm a frikkin' Goddess!! And I found a page alright. A page that spoke of a Deity named Merin. And how I wish I'd never looked for it!
So there exists a Deity of the name 'Olori Merin',worshiped by the Yoruba-Speaking Peoples of the Slave Coast of West Africa. Then again, its a HE. He's a God. But that's not the worst thing I was to find out. Here's exactly what that site had to say :

Olori-merin, possessor of four heads, is another god whose worship is nearly, if not quite, obsolete. He was the tutelary deity of towns, and was represented by a hillock, or, if no hillock existed within the precincts of the town, by an artificial mound.

Sacrifice was made to Olori-merin every three months, or four times a year, and always consisted of a new-born child not more than three or four days' old. The child's throat was cut by a priest, and the blood, caught in a calabash or earthen vessel, was placed on the summit of the mound, after which the flesh was sliced up into small pieces and buried in the mound. During this dreadful scene the mother had to be present. This sacrifice was called Ejodun (Eje-odun), "The season of blood."

Olori-merin had, as his name betokens, four heads, with which he watched the four points of the compass from the top of his mound, and it was believed that no war or pestilence could attack a town under his protection. He had the legs and feet of a goat. Sometimes, at -night, he appeared in the shape of a venomous serpent.
(If you think I'm SO messed up in the head that I would cook this up, here's the site. )

Now I have every right to scream, WHY ME?! Couldn't my parents have thought of some other set of alphabets to complete their ever-so-special m---n puzzle?! This flood of self-pity suddenly made way for enlightenment. The truth. Stark reality, if I'm allowed to make this sound fancy. Names are said to affect personalities...aren't they?

Now we know the root-cause of my spooky ideas! Next time I joke around saying "I need to see blood! or I'm going to slit his throat with a blunt knife,Joker style! or I'll frikkin' chop him into pieces,yank his intestines out and feed it to dogs!", you know whom to blame. Its NOT my fault. I was born normal; but over the years, my name worked on a couple of those personalities I shelter. And there was once a time when I thought a couple of disturbing Marilyn Manson songs that I liked made my brain think extreme,when frustrated.

When I reported my findings to my (permutation-combination loving) mother,she walked away,laughing-but I saw shock and a tinge of fear in those eyes. For those of you who haven't dismissed this as a ridiculous post by a jobless engineering student whose life revolves around her name(ahem...anybody?), you've no reason to worry. No,really. Nothing changes but for the one statement I would proudly announce when asked about the meaning or origin of my name. I'll probably spend the next one hour spoiling my soul with self-pity and then I should be back to my weird-er old ways. :)

Meanwhile, I prepared a wish-list(number1,draft1) for Christmas/New Years. I haven't asked for better hair/better genes et all, because they've featured on the list way too often(and have been ingored everytime). I've not asked for world peace and a solution to Global Warming because sane statements have always been a misfit in this blog. Here's what I'd like to ask for:

1. A Ferrari Fiorano 599. Yes, I frikkin' know that's too much to ask for,so how about flight and race tickets to ANY Formula1 race next season? (Preferably Imola or Belgium :) )

2. Hmmm,lets see.. more than 5 exam-less days per semester,in college? Wouldn't that be lovely!

3. A new brain. The last one I bought can't be used as it submitted itself to this disease they call 'rusting' and the one I'm using right now has to be discarded as repeated attempts at defrosting have failed. (This shows not only on the blog but also in my exam results.)

4. Santa/Mom-Dad can choose between a new vehicle, hormone-overpowering grey matter and make-me-a-good-programmer pills.

5.Like duh!, a new name. ( We're not past the one-hour mark yet.)

P.S. To certain members of the society who will find bright opportunities in this post :
Crude jokes about the new found connection this five lettered thing called name has,will not go down well with my system. This entire rant must be enough for you to understand that. If it isn't,I can always call upon snakes-at night. Ha!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

The 2008 Formula1 season is over.We won't stop talking about it for long though,will we?

And so this gripping,overly-competitive,controversy-filled or in one word, brilliant season is done with. How many times did we go about discussing which driver would win,whether FIA would come out with more biased decisions, whether DC would finish the next race, whether Alonso would crash into Lewis sometime(damn the guy for not doing it!),whether Force India would score any points at all and oh,whether or not Kimi would retire at the end of this season! And could we ask for a better finale? I don't think so. For a review of the race (if you are looking for one ) visit . I'm not writing about the race simply because I can't. I can,in no way,explain what happened in the race and how emotions ran loose.The person who has written that article though, has done a great job and has made a mention of every driver/team(most of us forgot about 'the others',didn't we?).

So here's what I have to say about a select bunch of drivers,followed by a small discussion about the next season! :)

Massa : How obvious was it,that I would start with him? "He isn't that good","He makes too many mistakes","He's isn't champion-material"..what else have the critics said? Yes,that exact bunch of super-humans who,right now,are having a hard time getting their feet out of their mouths? He didn't just silence the world with his aggression and determination but also showed unbelievable courage,as he stood on the podium this weekend,in the most dignified manner. No,going into the last race,I had no hopes of seeing Massa win the championship this year. But the race had me believe that Massa would,miraculously,win it. But he didn't. Can you get closer to winning a championship? A corner and a straight. That was all Lewis needed to grab the trophy back. When we,mere audience, lost our minds(did anyone suffer a nervous break-down? I'd like to know.My mom almost called for a doctor.) and felt our hearts break and sink, whatever went through that man's head,as he stood saluting thousands of fans? After a steady season and a stunning drive(in changing weather conditions-in front of God knows how many fans-with all the pressure in the world), all I can say is, Massa has trully arrived! And my respect for him has only increased,multi-fold. Hope to see him fight back,and win,in the future.

Lewis : Yes,the first Afro-Caribbean(correct?), youngest fellow to win the championship; The richest Briton, who dates a woman who has a band with a name I despise; The guy who should be gifted the record for rubbing people the wrong way and also, crashing into stationary cars in the pit-lane(I'm certain not many people have achieved this feat) : well,Lewis did it this year! Daddy's boy held onto his pants and managed not to press arbit buttons on the steering wheel this time around. Ok,in all fairness to Hamilton, he is definitely a fantastic driver and you don't need to hear me say it. I hate to admit that his style reminds me of Schumi,but I can't help but compare. He is a great driver. But for me,the greatness stops at that. Congratulations to him and all his fans. Hope we get to see more good,clean racing from him next year.

Kimi :What, oh what do I write here?! Steve Slater said that it seemed like Kimi would fall asleep once a race began, wake up towards the end and then charge through the field! Hard to disagree with that,the way this man has been performing. For majority of the season,he either didn't finish or he'd 'wake up' towards the end. What was the problem? Car didn't suit his driving style? Lack of motivation? Just bad luck? Whatever the reason maybe,I sure as hell am glad he's staying in Formula1!! And it certainly is fun to read about drivers turning up to Ski-resorts under famous-fake names and boating events dressed in Gorilla suits! Hope this fun(read alcohol)-loving Finn gets his act right next year.
Needless to say,he's a great driver and actually,I'm sure he will be back with a bang! :)

DC : The man of Formula1 retires this year,but sadly his last race wasn't exactly a send-off one would wish for. After being a part of the sport for 15 years,he leaves as one of the most successful non-champions(Going by what Steve said!). One of the most respected drivers around,David always knew the wittiest things to say and he'll surely be missed. Looking forward to those (non-driving)F1 activities he's got planned for himself. :)

Alonso : Yes,he no longer is the human I hate the most in this world. He is a fantastic driver and no one can deny that. (Not even the Merin of 2006.)What he achieved with the car he was given this year is remarkable and I sincerely hope he gets a car that a man of his skill desreves,for 09! And,for once,I don't mind hearing all that he's got to tell the world(since most of it is directed towards/against you-know-who). ;)

Fisi :
Why him? Because he has been a blessing to Force India. I think the experience he carried along,while joining the team,helped them grow-immensely. And I definitely won't forget the several occasions where he beautifully defended his Force India against superior teams like Mclaren. Well,thumbs up for a great effort and good luck for the next season!(if he plans to stay,that is).

Vettel : Been saving the best for the last! I love Vettel. (The excess amount of love I'm showering on the fellow could be a result of his role in the championship battle though). I've said it before and I'm saying it again,Vettel has what it takes to shine in Formula1. He's young,he has the skill,the aggression and most of what it takes to be champion. He has lots to learn and lets hope he will,soon. He's been doing well in other series and this year, he even won a race, overtook Lewis (ha!) and what not. That's got me rooting for him. But I remember having similar opinions about Rosberg
(who,sadly,didn't do very well this year),at the start of this season.Hope Vettel continues to drive well. Let this overtaking maneuver he pulled on Lewis not be a one-time wonder like the one Sato pulled on Alonso! (remember that? :D )

Looking ahead to season 09,there are, but a few transfers happening.
There are these bonds between drivers and teams now. Bonds that are growing to resemble this-
Michael : Ferrari
And the one that stands out prominently is Lewis : Mclaren.
And, I can probably add, Alonso : Renault , Rosberg : Williams.

Lewis and Mclaren certainly seem to work well together and I don't see him leaving the team-not for a very long time,surely. Heikki stays at Mclaren for another year. But as good as he was this year,he didn't remind me of the previous Finns who drove for Mclaren. Ferrari have Massa and Kimi booked for a couple of years now. Am I happy? I guess so. As much as I like both drivers,it would be nice to see a fresh face in the red suit. Someone like Vettel!! Talking of whom, his move to Red Bull,I think,isn't great. Wonder if they can provide him a car with which he can challenge for wins! Rosberg stays with Williams-who promise to improve next season,what with their immense research in the much-talked-about 'KERS' technology. Apart from Honda,Toro Rosso and Force India,teams have announced their line-up for the next season. Except of course, Renault. I'm not too sure about Nelsinho, but Alonso should probably stay put. No other team can possibly satisfy his ego and provide a car that's good enough. The team seem to be improving and they have performed well before,maybe they can help him win more races,and even fight for the championship next year!
Also,there's Bruno Senna(does he need any introduction?) who is supposed to test for Honda, India's Karun Chandhok who supposedly will test for Force India and Germany's Nico Hulkenberg(helped Germany win in A1,last season) who has been testing for Williams.And there are others,mostly from GP2 who have been linked to STR Ferrari and/or Honda. I'm hoping to see young blood racing around in F1,next season!

There are also the rule changes,that I haven't really read about,yet. The KERS, tyre(threading) width, conditions on aerodynamics-related modifications and so on. I also wonder if they'll bring around changes in the qualifying pattern. I hope they do. And how would it be if they awarded a point or two to the pole-setter? After all,the guy who bags the pole doesn't stay ahead after the first five corners,a lot of times.He might as well be given a point for the pole,is what I feel. Your opinion?

Now we have the long,gruelling wait. Four slow months,with no F1. I'm looking forward to reading about the FIA gala though,which happens in December. I'm more than eager to watch their video,which brings out the best moments of the season. IF you haven't already watched last season's video(which,by the way,is brilliant),here's the link. .

I'm done, I guess, with all the talking I wanted to do. Looking forward to another-I'm sure-mindblowing season, this coming year! :)

P.S. Any 'fact' that I've mentioned wrong,please let me know.