Thursday, November 13, 2008

Plutonium made dwarf element

Rueters, November 13, 2008.

Two years after the controversial decision to demote Pluto to dwarf planet status, the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry today ruled that the chemical element Plutonium has been re designated as a 'dwarf element'.

Scientists around the world expressed their approval for this bold and innovative move. "Pluto is a bad influence on our kids", said Dr Ying Hu, Professor of Chemistry at Yandall University, "we should banish it from all science."

A small but vocal minority of scientists questioned the decision. "It is blatant political pandering", said John Jacques, member of the American Plutonium Fans Association, "What has Plutonium ever done to anyone?". He blamed the Democratic party for this. "I'm sorry, but Obama just doesn't know Chemistry."

Spokeman for the Vatican, Bishop Francis Agnossi told the press that the Vatican supported this demotion. "God made only 92 elements. All others are works of the Devil."

The position of 94th element is now open. In an unprecedented move, IUPAC has put the slot up for sale on Ebay. "We want to engage the community on this matter", Wolfe said, "We are selling this hot piece in the Periodic real estate to the highest bidder". She hastened to add that Science still comes first. "We require all bids to have atleast 225 neutrons. We also need the name to begin with Pu to avoid reprinting all those books".

At time of writing, PopUnderium was the highest bidder on e-bay. If it wins, it will be the first element to be named after an annoying internet technology. Pussium, Puliyogrium and Putridium were trailing close behind.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Ondu Benchina Kathe

It was dark when I came home that evening. Having missed the 248, I had walked all the way from the Deepanjalinagara stop. Tired to the bone, all I wanted to do was crash in bed.

"Who is this Anukriti?"

My mother's voice jolted me out of my lethargy. How did she ... the letter! The goddamn letter which I had carelessly left in plain sight.

"How long has this been going on?" she asked with quiet fury.

"Three months", I blabber.

"Which bench does she sit in?"

"S-She's from a good konkani brahmin family, amma. Only daughter of wealthy parents. Her father owns..."

"Which. bench. does. she. sit. in?", her anger was palpable now.

"L-L-Last B-Bench", I stammered.

Crack! The sound of the slap resonated with the sound of my heart breaking.

That was the end. I never saw Anukriti again. The next day I was forced to join another college, a much inferior college, but one which had a single row of desks in each class. There would be no more last benches in my life.

Disclaimer: All characters in this story are fictional. Any resemblence to Anukriti Pai, c/o Niranjan Pai, 121/38 5th cross 8th main Malleshwaram 560003 is a statistically improbable coincidence.