Did Vivekananda say ‘Sisters and Brothers of America’? Fact checking a fact check

Vivekananda at the World Parliament of Religions

Also a list of the other participants from India at the 1893 Parliament of World’s Religions at Chicago. There were at least 15, including Vivekananda.

A fidget spinner spins in ball-bearing carts sliding down Shillong slopes

Ball bearing cart

The fidget spinner is easily the toy of the year 2017. And with a 5-year-old who keeps abreast of all the latest toy trends via YouTube Kids, it becomes difficult evading any such toy craze. While pondering about what to get for Googool (my son, aka Advay) at an airport duty free shop, noticed the [Read more]

Poha: The momo for the mornings

Poha seller in Noida

I begin writing this perched on the top berth in a sleeper coach of a train that has a long halt at Ujjain Railway Station. Ujjain is an ancient town that has an important role in India’s history and religion. At the previous station, Nagda, I had a breakfast, that has become almost a ritual [Read more]

Moon Moon Sen in Cinthol toilet powder ad from 1986

Moon Moon Sen Cinthol poweder ad

Moon Moon Sen, to me, is more of a model than an actress. I recall seeing her more in print than on the screen. In fact, I have watched very few of her films (well, there are very few watchable Moon Moon Sen films). According to the (sometimes no-so-reliable) Wikipedia entry on her, “she notably [Read more]

New WhatsApp Status: This is going to be *BIG!*

New WhatsApp Status is going to be big

New features in popular services often rake up rancour. I have also grumbled a lot against certain changes. But then with time and familiarity that resentment reduces and we start to dig the very feature that we detested at launch. The same is true for the just-released updated WhatsApp Status, WhatsApp’s return gift to us [Read more]

ChaiCast: World Radio Day and a lifetime of radio listening

Murphy Radio

I am not in love with my voice and there are very credible reasons for that. And this is perhaps in over a decade of blogging, it is now now that I have finally managed to put together my first-ever podcast. This actually draws on quite a few of older Cutting the Chai posts. But [Read more]

2016 in unofficial Google doodles

Mrinalini Sarabhai the unofficial Google doodle

There are some doodles that Google didn’t (or wouldn’t) doodle. The Chaiwallah prides himself as an unofficial Google doodler. I have written about these unofficial doodles and they have also been written about at a couple of places. 2016 had its fair share of the unofficial Google doodles and the doodles are not necessarily a [Read more]