Saturday, 29 March 2014

How To Write A Gross Food Poem In Less Than Twenty Minutes

A lot of my friends have asked me: "How do you do it?  How do you write funny poems that make us spew jelly all over our computer screens when we're reading any of your funny poems?"  Well, maybe not that second question, but, yeah, I guess the first question means the same thing. 

So in this post I am going to show you how to write a gross food poem in less than twenty minutes!  Because this is what life is supposed to be like--fast!  Mind-blowing!  Exhausting!  Draining!  Buzzing!  Annoying!  


And that's why you need to know how to write a gross food poem in less than twenty minutes!


Nah, I'm kidding.



Anyway...back to business!  

What You Need To Do To Write A Gross Food Poem


Step One: Listicle-ify it! (Four minutes)


Make a list of the grossest and most stomach-churning food items you can possibly think of.  Google "disturbing food dishes" or "fried tarantula dishes" or...well, you get the picture.  

Or you can make your own, like I did.  It's fun!  Don't do this while you're eating, of course, because the consequences....will be severe.

One thing I've noticed about my own gross food poems is, somehow, all of them contain some form of dead tarantula.  Blech!  What about you?

Step Two: Drum it!   (Four minutes)

Get a beat!  D'you want to make it a limerick poem?  A cinquain? A series of haikus?  (That's pretty interesting, actually.  I doubt anyone has ever tried to write a gross-food-haiku-poem.)

Tarantula fried
In whipped cream and marshmallows--
Ew, that's just so gross.


For example, if you're writing a limerick poem, your beat will go like this--

Da DUM da da DUM da da DUM
Da DUM da da DUM da da DUM
Da DUM da da DUM
Da DUM da da DUM
Da DUM da da DUM da da DUM

(Writing a Limerick's absurd,
Line one and line five rhyme in word,
And just as you've reckoned
They rhyme with the second;
The fourth line must rhyme with the third.) 
Sourcehttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Limerick_(poetry)
  
Step Three: Rhyme it!  (Ten minutes)

Now that you've got your gross and possibly exotic dishes--and a rhyme scheme and a beat for your poem--you start rhyming!  (Yippee!)

You can get online rhyming dictionaries like RhymeZone and Rhymes.Net, but try not to use these too often either.  Rhyming dictionaries are also available on Amazon.

Step Four: Save it!  (One minute--if your computer's extra-slow, that is.)

What good is it if you forget to save your poem?!  There's no telling what today's technology might do if you force your computer to sleep.  It might become your nemesis.  (Adopts Voldemort-like whisper)  Bewaaare of the Eenformation Age...

'Nuff said.

Here's one of my own gross food poems--hope you like it!  (The poem, I mean, not the...food items.  That would be gross.  No pressure, though; each to his own.)



WELCOME TO GROSS FOODS  (Yes, what an imaginative title that was.)


For breakfast we have apple cider,
And all things that make tummies wider!
Of our esteemed French toast
I’m permitted to boast—
It feels like you’ve eaten a spider.

For lunch you’ll get baked angelfishes,
We deal with the ghastliest wishes—
We’ll give you rats’ stew
And grilled rabbit’s poo—
And a medley of such loathsome dishes.

We’ll give you a bat with its toenails
And chocolate ice cream with some blue whales—
Your stomach will burst
You’ve no time for thirst
We hope you liked all of our cocktails.

Come again soon to have a great dinner—
Sushi rolls will make you look thinner
We hope you drop by
(We’ll make sure you cry)
You’ll make our hotel such a winner!           


- Vruta Gupte.

Thank you for reading this, and see you next time!  

D'you want to look at some flowers till then? *smiles sheepishly*



P.S. I've added Disqus comments on here.  Please click on the time-stamp near the end of the post to comment.  (If you don't have a Disqus account, you can still comment as a guest with a custom name.) Thank you!


Thursday, 27 March 2014

More Flowers!

So in my post 'My Experiments With Gardening', I said I'd explain the system we use to water the plants in our garden.

Here goes...

The system basically uses capillary action to ensure that plants get enough water to last them for a day or two.  You get special Water Smart Pots divided into two parts--one-fifth of the pot is a chamber for storing water and the rest is for soil.  The two parts are connected by a porous membrane so that plants' roots can take up water from the soil.

You pour water into the tank through a pipe attached to the pot...



...And as soon as the tank is full, excess water comes out through a small hole near the base of the pot.



Then you get these beautiful flowers....




(This one isn't from our garden--but I just had to put it in here.)





Ta-da!  

See y'all on the next post!





P.S. I've added Disqus comments on here.  Please click on the time-stamp near the end of the post to comment.  (If you don't have a Disqus account, you can still comment as a guest with a custom name.) Thank you!

Tuesday, 25 March 2014

Joel Burgess' Music

A few months ago I stumbled upon the beautiful works of this pianist.  His name is Joel Burgess.  

No, he hasn't hired me to promote his YouTube channel or anything.  It's just that his music is awesome beyond words.  (Just like The Piano Guys.)  It makes you feel happy inside.  

So, without further ado...




 






Joel Burgess, if you're reading this, best wishes, and never, ever stop making music.

Cheers, everyone, and see you on the next post!




P.S. I've added Disqus comments on here.  Please click on the time-stamp near the end of the post to comment.  (If you don't have a Disqus account, you can still comment as a guest with a custom name.) Thank you!

My Experiments With Gardening

So I was watering the plants in our garden on Sunday and thought I would click some photos.  It'd been a long time before I'd actually gone outside to get some fresh air.

Here they are!  The beauties...(I mean the plants, not the photos.  Big smirk.)



What is this called?  Weed?

Basil Flowers

Poor dried flowers

I don't know what this is either...

Roses are red...



We have a very unique watering system installed in our terrace, but more on that in another post!  Cheers and thank you for reading!




P.S. I've added Disqus comments on here.  Please click on the time-stamp near the end of the post to comment.  (If you don't have a Disqus account, you can still comment as a guest with a custom name.) Thank you!


Sunday, 23 March 2014

Homework Excuses: Part Two

This is Part Two of the Homework Excuses series.  To view Part One, click here!

I DIDN'T DO MY HOMEWORK

I didn't do my homework--
I just thought you should know.
I cannot tell my teacher
I've forgotten it, y'know.

I had a soup of numbers
And squiggles inside my head
So I couldn't do my homework
I went to the park instead.

My history book got lost
My homework got delayed.
So I travelled to the past
And wrote about the next decade.

My books flew away--
They sprouted wings, you see.
And then they all straightened up
And spit some ink on me.

Yikes!  Oh, no, the teacher's coming!
What am I going to do?
Should I just go and tell her
The excuses I've told you?

~Vruta Gupte.

Note:  This may be used to improve your teacher's mood in the unlikely event of you not doing your homework.  Yes?

Thank you for reading, and see you on the next post!






P.S. I've added Disqus comments on here.  Please click on the time-stamp near the end of the post to comment.  (If you don't have a Disqus account, you can still comment as a guest with a custom name.) Thank you!

Saturday, 22 March 2014

Single-tasking vs. Multitasking: Why Focussing On One Task Is Better

For years and years (and years) societies--as in, we--have conditioned our brains to believe in multitasking.

I accept multi-tasking to be the sole path to heaven and I will travel upon it for my entire life or else I will, quite literally, go to hell--that sorta thing.  Not really, but you get my point, donchya?

For most of us, multitasking-ness is Godliness.  Don't deny it.  The reason?  "Oh, so-and-so can text, talk on the phone, participate in a video conference, put the laundry in the dryer and make sure the tea isn't boiling over, all at the same time!  I wish I could be more like her, maybe then I would have more time to sleep!"


But have you really seen anyone ever do all that correctly, without making mistakes?  Ever?


In an article by Sandra Bond Chapman, Ph.D., she elaborates on the notion the society as a collective whole has about multitasking: " the more you can do at once, the more expertly intelligent and efficient you are."  


This notion, needless to say, is absolute scientifically-unaccounted-for hogwash (for lack of a better word, like....gibberish).


For example, a study by researchers at Ohio State University had college students record the amount of time they spent using media and on other activities for 28 days.  The findings reported that students, after multitasking, felt emotionally satisfied even if they had not been paying adequate attention to the task at hand.


"They felt satisfied not because they were effective at studying, but because the addition of TV made the studying entertaining.  The combination of the activities accounts for the good feelings obtained," Zhen Wang, lead author of the study and assistant professor of communication at Ohio State University, has said.


Students also reported that multitasking helped them to fulfill their emotional needs, which, oddly enough, were needs they hadn't wanted to satisfy in the first place.


Why Multitasking Is Not Good

Heavy multitasking does, in fact, hurt your brain and may even cause a temporary dip of 15 points in your IQ.  Multitaskers are prone to make 50% more mistakes in their work than they would if they were focussing on their work without multitasking.  Additionally, multitasking also costs the global economy an estimated $450 billion annually.  Chronic multitaskers also have increased levels of cortisol, the stress hormone, which can damage the memory region of the brain (the cerebral cortex, among other parts).


However, instead of looking at the downsides of multitasking, let's focus on the pros of single-tasking.


Why Single-Tasking Is Better

Consistent single-tasking ensures that your brain retains its sharpness and ability to form memories late into your life.  Studies show that single-tasking helps us to retain sound decision-making abilities long into our senior years.

Single-tasking also results in a drop in stress levels, and increased mindfulness (since you're not focussing on that e-mail you just wrote ten minutes ago while you were playing Minesweeper, wondering if you'd made a spelling mistake).  It also helps you to get more downtime for yourself, since you're not worrying about doing anything wrong, because it's almost impossible to get distracted when you're single-tasking.  

It'll make you realize the value of time, and you'll be able to spend more time with your family and close friends, and who doesn't want that?

And Lastly....Take action!

Most of us already know all of this stuff and we're just waiting for some 21st-century-Moses to smack us in the backside and say,"Oi, wake up!  Single-tasking will prevent the apocalypse! Single-task, single-task and single-task only!"

Resist temptation!  Avoid interruption!  Start single-tasking and stop multitasking...now!  Don't wait to read till the end of this blog post!  See you next time!  Now go, go, gooooo! 





P.S. I've added Disqus comments on here.  Please click on the time-stamp near the end of the post to comment.  (If you don't have a Disqus account, you can still comment as a guest with a custom name.) Thank you!

Homework Excuses: Part One

Note to Reader:  These excuses may be used in school....for a small fee: no names, please!


HOMEWORK SOUP

I didn’t have anything to do this evening,
Besides my homework vile.
So I rounded up all my books and
Made them stand in single file.

I made them march past the pen stand blue
And dip themselves in ink.
Then I poured them into a cauldron
And stirred till their pages were pink.

I heated them up until they were burnt brown,
Then I dried them in the sun.
So the next time my teacher asks for them,
I’ll say, “Oh, my homework’s well done.”

- Vruta Gupte.


(No books were harmed during the production and imagination of this poem.  Thank you.)






P.S. I've added Disqus comments on here.  Please click on the time-stamp near the end of the post to comment.  (If you don't have a Disqus account, you can still comment as a guest with a custom name.) Thank you!







Wednesday, 19 March 2014

The Other Side

A few months ago I read an article in Reader's Digest.  I don't remember the name of the article, but it inspired me to write this poem:


The Other Side


There, on the other side of the fence, the grass is greener.

There, on the other side of the fence, people hurry through the green fields,

Trampling the patches of golden sunflowers in between.

They’re too busy; they have something else to live for.  Maybe it’s more 
important.

There, on the other side of the fence, no one drinks and no one cheats.

At least that’s what they show to us.  Who knows what really happens.

There, on the other side of the fence, it is always sunny and the clouds

Never frown at you.

There, on the other side of the fence, there is a big red barn

Where all the animals live together in peace and harmony.

There, on the other side of the fence, no one fights and no one swears.

Everyone has money.

So there, on the other side of the fence, there is perpetual happiness.

Or so it seems.

Here, on my side of the fence, there are dark clouds, rain,

Fights, tears, outbursts, penniless people, deaths, deadlines

And no ice in my darned soda.  It’s too hot outside.

Here, on my side of the fence, if you just glance at it for a few seconds, there is only misfortune.

But if you look closer, you will see that here, on my side of the fence, people’s problems make them stronger,

They realize that adversity is necessary for success,

And that everything isn’t really a bed of roses.

If there are no problems, how will they push their boundaries?

How will they touch the stars?

On my side of the fence, people grow as they face challenges.

On my side of the fence, people lead fuller lives.

On my side of the fence, there is darkness, but there is also room for light.

After all, what is good without bad?  What is light without darkness?

On my side of the fence, people do their best to bring that light into the lives of others around them.

On my side of the fence, we try our best to earn money, but we also try our best not to be superficial.

On my side of the fence, happiness and misery co-exist.

Now, imagine if someone tears the fence down, and my side and the other side isn’t really there anymore.

Will they become like us, or will we become like them?

*


Thank you for reading; see you on the next post!


Want to see another one of my poems?  Click here!



P.S. I've added Disqus comments on here.  Please click on the time-stamp near the end of the post to comment.  (If you don't have a Disqus account, you can still comment as a guest with a custom name.) Thank you!


Tuesday, 18 March 2014

How To Overcome Writer's Block

In the life of every writer, there is a time when they suddenly find inspiration in unexpected places and that becomes their next book.

But in the life of every writer, there is also a time when their brains are fuzzy and wobbly and…..let’s see…..not attuned to the Divine Force?

Yeah.

If that were death, I would’ve died five million times, excluding this one.

Dear me, I shouldn’t have said that.  My reputation is now at stake...(sighs deeply)

Anyway, today I am going to show you How To—how to—Un-fuzz Your Brain!  (Phew!  For a minute there I was wondering what to write.)

If you think this post is going to tell you what to do when you are….doing something you shouldn’t unless you’re twenty-one and with sober friends, this article is not for you!

There are times when we writers just cannot write, even if you hold a water gun to our heads and tell us to write your book report at one in the morning.  (Ack.)
How do we get out of such write-or-die situations?  The answer lies here:

Step 1: Get outta there.

Get out of wherever you write.  Try writing in a different place--if you write at your desk, try the cafe across the street (if there's a cafe across the street); if you write in your bed, sit at the dining table; go sit in another room, or go outside, if possible.  

If you write on Mars, well, congratulations.

Step 2: Listen to music.

Listen to Coldplay (oh, give 'em a chance, they're just experimenting).  Listen to The Piano Guys (yes!).  Listen to hard rock, soft rock, classical, pop, EDM, anything.  Anything that gets the blood flowing back into your brain.  Or ideas....flowing back into your brain, whichever you prefer.  You can't have everything, eh?  Kidding.

Step 3: Sleep on it.

Put your laptop to sleep (aw, I'm sorry, what happened?), or just shove your notebook outta the way, and get a good, long rest.  In this everyday ever-increasing bumble of homework and assignments and projects and presentations and examinations and traffic and workshops and Facebook and those annoying neighbours that turn the volume up so loud at twelve in the night, sleep will do you good.

Phew.

Step 4: Write something!

Sometimes the best way to overcome writer's block is to--you're a genius--write!  Write absolute nonsense.  Go off-track.  Joke around.  

Write two-word-long sentences.  

Write a satirical piece on how humans have degraded the environment for years, or how if you're a good host, you should ask your guests if they want "tea, coffee, or Wi-Fi", or how countries are spending millions on defense and less on education improvement and poverty reduction.  (YES.  Write about that.  We need to write about that, donchyathink?)

Step 5: Go outdoors.

Take a walk, man!  What are you doing sitting in front of your computer reading an article about how to overcome writer's block?  
Hasta luego, amigos!  See y'all on the next post!  
Peace.





P.S. I've added Disqus comments on here.  Please click on the time-stamp near the end of the post to comment.  (If you don't have a Disqus account, you can still comment as a guest with a custom name.) Thank you!

How Not To Make Vegetable Soup

So I was wondering how to start out here...and this hit me.  Bad, bad veggies!

VEGETABLE SOUP

Vegetable soup!
Oh, the despicable soup!
The formidable, throwable, undrinkable goop!

It’s garbage!
An outrage!
A diet gone wrong!
(But I admit that my stomach has become somewhat strong.)

It’s got beetroot, and carrot, and rocks with salt;
It’s got grapefruit and celery, shoe polish and malt!

Unhealthy!
A folly!
A delirious looting scheme!
(I think it’ll be delicious if they just add some cream.)

It’s got potatoes, tomatoes, and lava volcanoes!
Got turnips and spinach and half-baked mosquitoes!

It’s gross!
Adios,
I’ll never eat it again!
(Though I doubt my stance is supported by all men.)

If ever I look in a recipe book,
There’s this one thing I’ll never cook—
Vegetable soup!
Ah, the despicable soup!
The formidable, throwable, undrinkable goop!


Note to readers: Don't try this at home.  Please.  But if you do, give me some credit.  (I'm kidding.  Don't call 911.)  Thank you.





P.S. I've added Disqus comments on here.  Please click on the time-stamp near the end of the post to comment.  (If you don't have a Disqus account, you can still comment as a guest with a custom name.) Thank you!

~ imposter.

Alone on the roads Silent night All the streetlights Flickering, all the crickets chirping Unsteady steps - Nobody notices Maybe I...