I am a university professor in the social sciences, and one who comes to political and economic issues mostly from the center-left. However, unlike most people in those two camps, I do one thing quite frequently. And to many of those people my action will certainly be offensive. Even unpardonable.I h
Sriram blogs. A lot.
Located in Monmouth
Last update: August 21st, 2014 at 12:01 am
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Every profession is a conspiracy against the laity
I could not resist the urge. It was a golden opportunity.I went for it.This was the result: @sciam A big bag of beans? ;)— sriram khe (@congoboy) August 20, 2
A few years ago, a senior colleague came to my office to talk with me. He said that every institution has its own culture, and that there was a significant hallway culture where I was, and not working with that
I can feel in me the seriousness, the urgency, of the upcoming academic year and the conference. My senses are so focused that even when I took a break to play a few minutes of bridge, I was lethally there. It is as if I knew exactly what the other hands were. When we are focused, we see things--as simple
Once bitten, twice shy. So, I didn't go for a walk for two days!Ok,I exaggerate ;)When I approach the area where that mysterious bug got me, I move to the middle of the path in order to be as far as
As I get older, some of the finer details from the years past get fuzzy. I don't mean I am imagining events and places--it is just that sometimes I am not sure about the contexts. I guess it happens to all of us
Even after having authored 169 op-ed essays over the years--yes, I counted them a few minutes ago--there is a worry in the back of my mind: what if there is nothing more in me to write about? This worry is not anything new. It has been the case for a long time now, though I am not certain when exactly this
For a couple of years, the late Denis Dutton, who founded one of my favorite websites ever and one which I religiously check every single day, ran a bad writing contest. No, you did not write in or
Out on the path, I noticed that I was catching up on a much older neighbor. At a curve, when she stopped to look at a bird, she saw me. She waited, and as I reached that spot, she said "may I join you until the bridge?"It is a different culture here. In the old country, I cannot imagine a "may
I know of only one way to fight, whether at workplace or in geopolitics--civil disobedience. Thanks to Gandhi, of course. And the older I get, the more I turn away from violence. Thus
The human that I am, I, too, bleed when pricked and feel that tinge of revenge when wronged. But then the insignificance of my existence means that even that tinge of revenge is not worth any damn thing.
Through all those years that I studied math and science and engineering, understanding the materials and working out the problems was not a big deal, even if challenging at times, compared to my life as a student since then for one simple reason which is this--it appears that the subjects I have been studying since graduati
There are book reviews and then there are book reviews. There are reviewers and then there are reviewers.I always loved Christopher Hitchens' review essays and his death was the end of the glorious days of the book review essay, I worried. Not only does hope spring eternal but a bearded male intellec
Throughout the movie, The Hundred-Foot Journey, the story makes it clear that food is memories. Just in case it did not get through to anybody in the audience who might have had way too much carbohydrates to think, the young chef, Hassan, even utters that very line "food is memories."
With every passing day, I am acutely aware of the very little time that I have left. No, I am not referring to the death that looms large but to the end of summer and the beginning of a new academic year. This is when I begin to offer myself deals and negotiate with myself; such as:"If you at l
Typical of the "intellectual" that I am, I was listening to Fox News the other day ...Did that make you sit up and re-read that sentence?I was making sure that you were carefully reading, and not merely skimming through my blog posts ;) Let me start again.Typical of the "intellectua
A couple of years ago, when visiting with the parents, father said he felt like eating சேவை. I offered to help mother in the kitchen, recalling the hours that it took mother to prepare that. "Oh, you can get instant சேவை from the store" father said.
I have always had enormous sympathies for the anti-abortion sentiments, even though I am firmly settled on the side of the mother having that choice. I understand how deep down that opposition is not merely to the horrors of abortion itself, but is about a philosophical understanding of what life is. This strugg
One of my complaints about higher education (yes, I have many!) is that the curriculum that faculty put together and the way they present their courses is mostly to achieve only one goal--to replicate themselves. As in the higher education process seems to be designed to make graduate students and then facul
"It all comes down to relatability ... I mean, after the introductions, what two people can talk about depends on relatability" I pontificated, as I always seem to do, especially as I am getting close to retirement!"
One of the greatest of all hushed-up stories is this: forty-five years ago, when Neil Armstrong opened the Eagle's door and climbed down on to the surface of the moon, he was welcomed by a Keralite who also offered him a glass of hot tea.Of course, that did not happen. But, it is a tired-old joke from the
It happened.Again!What happened, you ask? Ok, let me tell you about it.I figured that I would get myself, or get for my vehicle, a one-year pass that would allow me to park the vehicle at the national forest spots without having to pay each and every time. A simple thing, right? &nb
A fresh off the boat immigrant I was quite some years ago, and with no prior exposure to the uniquely American sports of football and baseball. No athlete I ever was, nor pretended to be one, yet, practically from the first day, I took to baseball and football, as the proverbial fish to water, which is a hilarious met
"You often refer to the cosmos" my father said in an extended conversation that was about the latest collection of my blog-posts that he had read. "You talk about the river, clouds, nature, deer ... I call them
An elderly black man, with an Ascot cap on his head and a walking stick on his right hand, was walking in the opposite direction from me on the bike path on a warm summer morning. The picture he presented and the way he walked made me think he would have some stories to tell. But, what could be my opening line t
Back in 1986, my employer sent me to Calcutta, as the city was known then, for a week-long training. I thought the HR folks made a mistake when they told me how to get to the YWCA hostel off Park Street, which is where they said I was going to stay for those few days. Yes, it was the YWCA--apparently an entire floor t
For a few months now I have been bugged. No, not by the NSA--at least, I hope. I am far too insignificant to even blip in the NSA's radar. This is a living bug. No, not the much joked about mother-in-law either ;)A real bug.Tiny-sized. Every day I see one
Way, way, back, when I was in graduate school, I made a wonderful mistake of reading something by Ralph Nader, and even listening to him. One of his favorites, which continues to dog me enough to even blog about it, questioned the idea of corporations as people.Much later, another progressive,
A plane goes down in Ukraine. We seem to kind of sort of know where that country is. A plane goes down somewhere in that area bordering Mali, Algeria, Burkina Faso and, as the friend alerted me, even the Los Angeles Times then produces map about the country of Africa!“AFRICA"
The summer weather has been unpredictably up and down like a teenage girl's moods ;) Last week, we flirted with triple-digit temperatures but fell short by a degree. And then came a cold front from Alaska, which brought down to the high to the low sixties and dropped some record-breaking rain. Well, the tw