Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Leap related

So, why the name "Leap Year"?  Some say its because we leap forwards four years. But could it also be a leap backwards?

In any other year, March 1st comes after February 28th. So the insertion of an extra day in between would indicate the extension of a year (I know its not an extension per se- we round up the extra 1/4th days of the year on the fourth year), so maybe the leap forwards theory could hold true, but March 1st is delayed by a day, so how could a delay be a leap forwards? Some say its because in any other year, a given date, like maybe March 30th, should it fall on a Tuesday, it would then fall on a Wednesday the next year. But in a Leap Year it would fall instead on a Thursday, so it skips a day, hence the leap forward. But if that's so then what about people born on Feb 29th- Leaplings or Leapers they're called. There;s this 52 year old man who is born on Feb 29th, so his actual age is 13. I guess one could say that his chronological age has leaped backwards, but then he has walked this earth for 52 years, so has he himself leaped forwards, leaving his age behind? Augh!

Have always wanted to use this picture, yay!

And didn't I read somewhere that the 2004 Tsunami altered earth's revolution in some way by some nanosecond(s) and so traditional time has shifted or something? If that's true, would the span of a leap year be longer- or shorter? And would it be a forwards or a backwards leap? And would movies based on the manipulation of time/space continuum have to revise their theories a bit? And if the Tsunami didn't change anything, then why am I wasting time thinking about it?

I went and consulted that repository of all wisdom, Wikipedia, and it supplied me with a whole lot of gobbledygook about Gregorian, Hindu, Iranian and Coptic calendars and it even threw in an algorithmic formula and a Boolean expression. Greaaaat help, Wiki, way to

                                ( Insert Previous picture here again, yay)

Interesting info, though-
In some countries, a woman may propose marriage to a man on a Leap Year. If the man refuses, he is liable to pay fines such as
- a kiss (the utter condescension!)
- 12 pairs of gloves (....)
- material for a skirt ( Can i change that to material for a billowy blouse?)
- a silk gown (Can i change that to silk underwear?)

And a woman who intends to propose to a man should either wear breeches (will jeans suffice?) or a scarlet petticoat (ooh,I like).

So what's the modern equivalent if a man refuses a woman's marriage proposal on a Leap Year? I'm so looking to upgrade my wardrobe with the "compensations" collected from a few rejected marriage proposals :)

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Great Greedy Guts

It caught me unawares. There was I, stuffing myself with Nanz pastries, fat roadside momos, and Abba chow and curling up in my blanket to ward off the cold Shillong days and nights. One day I noticed that my jeans started to feel uncomfortably tight, and that the flesh on my stomach, no longer content with feeling just the insides of my waistband, had spilled over and started skimming the outside too. And getting in the way of me buttoning my jeans up.

After that there wasnt anything I could do to get rid of my fat gut. It was totally in sync with my movements- it moved when I did, it jiggled when I did, it spread its expansive self all over when I lay down, it doubled up when I sat, it helpfully supported my breasts when I squatted.

Becky said we should play basketball on the courts near the hostel so that we could get rid of it. It heard her and it made the basketball do its evil bidding. The ball tripped me everytime I tried to dribble it, and dodged my hands and instead landed hard on my face or my head when I tried to catch it. I quit the game and till now, retain a phobia about balls (the bouncy kind).

After leaving the hostel, I started to lose weight. My stomach lost weight too, but it remained flabby. It never bothered me because, at least it didnt protrude. And then I watched Transformers. And Megan Fox bending over the hood of an open car engine. Like so.
Camera trick!

And that's when the "Get Fox-y belly and bend over while wearing decent but mid-riff showing shirts" project started. I googled ab-tightening exercises and skimmed Cosmo's fitness pages and I came up with a rigorous exercise regimen. It included names like "Ball Up" (which necessitated curling up like a ball and rolling back and forth), "Hand Pump" (pumping fists vigorously while elevating both head and legs mid-air) and other torturous movements with cutesy names. Some articles also suggested clenching stomach and butt muscles all the time to surreptitiously firm them up. So for about a week or two, I couldn't breath properly because clenching involves sucking and holding in air.

And oh, talking about breathing, it seemed that there was a "correct" way to breathe! I realised I had been breathing incorrectly all my life. Thank God I hadn't died of carbon monoxide poisoning or something. Some of the exercises also called for the use of dumbbells, and since I was too cheap to buy them, I filled two coke bottles with sand and improvised. The effect was negated somewhat by the fact that I drank up all the contents of the bottles before filling them with sand. And I changed bottles every two days.

After about a month or so, all I achieved was a raging appetite and sunken cheeks and super-muscular ankles and a permanent crick in my neck. Almost all the exercises required the elevation of the head and that strained my neck muscles so bad I almost had to wear a neck brace. 

Also, I lost weight rapidly after that- but only on my upper body. So I had a bony face, skinny arms and a flat chest. With a still-jiggly belly. Everyone said my bony face made me look older than I actually am, so I tried to regain my weight again. Oh vanity of vanities, what hell thou hath wrought!

Now my stomach has started to protrude a bit, so I've taken to wearing loose, flowy tops and I convince myself that Im a Boho-chic girl who's too cool to wear tight shirts. Goodbye all you decent but midriff-showing shirts. And on the occasions that I have to wear a tight shirt, I suck my gut in. Course, sitting's a different matter. It's impossible to suck in all that roll of fat when one sits, so I improvise. Like so- 

Hide behind purse, folded hands or table.