A British exchange student told me about being surprised that "Bombay Mix" isn't available at all corner shops in New Jersey, given how many Indians there are here.

I do think there is a huge market opportunity for namkeen mixture in the broader US market.
Just call it Savory Gluten Free trail mix. Leave out peanuts and add "nut free" versions. Put "Chickpeas based" in bold letters on the packaging. Y'all have no idea how many chickpea based products hit US retail aisles. It's shocking not a single one is Indian.
I guess my British student's reaction was the opposite of my delight at how widely available Desi snacks, especially Bombay Mix, are in the UK.
Of course, it's Britain. The only kind of Liz Windsor story I find entertaining is something like this. That she has bowls of namkeen mixture all over her house and that her security guards help themselves to it and that pisses ole Liz off. 😂😂😂

I wondered what exactly that woman does all day. I guess, like something out of a Curb Your Enthusiasm episode, goes around checking levels of namkeen and then politely whining about it.

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More from @gauravsabnis

18 Nov
Setting up a meeting with the provost for a visiting candidate and remembered my own interview with the provost when I interviewed at Stevens. And a funny bit from it.

The meeting was planned kinda last second at the end of a day filled with interviews and presentation. /1
Back then, the provost interview used to be a separate stage at Stevens (now we do it with the campus visit). But apparently the dean & search committee liked me enough to rustle up a last second meeting. Cos I had 2 other offers and they wanted to move fast.
So suddenly, after about 10 straight hours of talking and talking and talking, as I was looking forward to relax a bit before more talking at dinner, I was told, hey, come, let's have you meet the provost. I'm happy cos it's a positive sign. But also a bit thrown off. Just a bit.
Read 13 tweets
17 Nov
Oooh yes! A ripe topical topic for #AcademicTwitter.

Is having classes on the Monday, Tuesday before Thanksgiving break just stupid or extremely stupid?

It's been my standard procedure for a decade to announce on day 1 of fall semester that there will be no class that week.
It took me just two years of teaching in the US to realize the utter futility and even low key cruelty of scheduling classes on those two days. So many students are so far from home and so strapped for cash. Even the "best" students will often take those days off.
All universities in the US should give the entire Thanksgiving week off and eliminate the entirely pointless two days of classes, which neither the average professor nor the average student is very keen on. And see THE lowest attendance of the year. With good reason.
Read 5 tweets
17 Nov
LOL, I also convert oxygen into carbon dioxide.

It is my Twitter account. Of course the debates I want to start are selective and driven by my agenda.

Why would I start debates on someone else's agenda? Twitter is free. They have their own accounts. Image
These sanghis randomly show up demanding some mythical objectivity from me as is I'm some newspaper's editorial board.

I am me. I have my agenda. I tweet it.
On my last Pune visit, a childhood acquaintance said, "don't mind haan, I love your food & travel & cricket tweets a lot, but when you talk Indian politics, it seems like you're mostly obsessed with calling out the RSS and brahminism."

I said, "Yup. Why aren't you?"
Read 5 tweets
17 Nov
Whenever some Desi repeats that sanghi propaganda line "Holocaust was bad but Hitler was a great orator", open YouTube and ask that person to watch, uninterrupted and silently, a Hitler speech. And watch them squirm.

He was a HORRIBLE screechy "orator". Objectively!
Goebbels famously talked about the virtue of repeating a lie so much that it becomes accepted as the truth. And the bigger the lie, the more likely it is to be believed.

His greatest triumph was the continuing widespread belief that Hitler gave great speeches.

Sit through one.
(lots of subtitled videos online. Don't ask me for links. Use Google.)
Read 6 tweets
17 Nov
Wow, literally the first and only time I went was in 2008 at age 28. So I guess the next trip won't be for a while. 🤣🤣🤣
(I have been to konkan a lot tho, so no stranger to Arabian Sea vacations. Just that where I grew up, it was always, "Goa kiti mahaag padta aani kashala? Pori baghaayla gaccha gardeet? Tyapeksha aapla Diveagar-Dapoli barey! Masta maasey, rikaame swacchha beach, ah!")
Translation - "Goa is nice but so expensive! And for what? Staring at hot women on overcrowded beaches? Nah! Let's do Diveagar or Dapoli instead. Much cheaper. Empty clean beaches. Fresh awesome fish."

Why growing up in Pune, never made it to Goa.
Read 11 tweets
17 Nov
I'm mildly surprised that the Muslim world and especially Muslim social media worldwide is mostly ignoring the daily assaults on Muslims in India by the state on a daily basis.
You don't have to be a doctorate in history to see the direct parallels.

Nazis used a pincer movement strategy not just on the battlefield but also against their hated minorities.

From one side, vigilante mobs butchering people.

The other, legislation & economic attacks.
In 1930s Germany, they created legislative hurdles against marrying Jews. And roving mobs of brownshirts would punish defiant lovers and even random couples. Ranging from public shaming to murder.

That is playing out with love jihad and Romeo squad.
Read 36 tweets

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