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Learning

Indian Standard Time - Living for NOW

Time in India is the proverbial ‘elephant in the room.’ Everyone here for some reason seems to dodge it while talking. Even simple conversations I would have with people about plans.

Him:  “So after lunch, why don’t we meet?”
Me:  “Ok, so when exactly?”
Him:  “Yes, after lunch.”  (Head wobble; begins to walk away)
Me:  “Yes, ok.  But what time?”
Him:  “Huh?!” (As if I cursed at him)
Me:  “No, I’m saying what time do you want to meet?”
Him:  “Time?  Anytime.  After lunch sometime.”

Indian Standard Time - Sharing the Time Zone

When one person stretches the truth, it’s called lying. When an entire country stretches the truth, it’s called Indian Standard Time (IST). IST refers to the geographic time zone carved out on a map for both India and Sri Lanka. But IST also refers to the well-known joke about how bad Indians are with time. Because time is malleable here, Indians themselves have renamed it Indian Stretchable Time. They’re almost half-proud of it.

“Yeah, yeah, come to my place by 9 p.m.  IST, ok?”  (Decoded:  Call me at 9pm to see if we are still on).

Indian Standard Time - The Meaning of Tomorrow

“I’m sorry to ask you this,” she said. “But something I do not understand. Why are Indian people always late? I have noticed this ever since I have been here. No one here comes on time. Even the musical is now starting late, why?”

Change I can believe in!

Love this photo. Finally a little progress...

The loneliest library

P.V. Chinnathambi, 73, Tea Vendor, Sports Club Organizer and Librarian is an inspiring man and I am not saying that lightly.

He runs one of the loneliest libraries anywhere.

A library? Here in the forests and wilderness of Idukki district? This is a low literacy spot in Kerala, India’s most literate state. There are just 25 families in this hamlet of the state’s first elected tribal village council. Anyone else wanting to borrow a book from here would have to trek a long way through dense forest. Would they, really?

Letting Go in a Virtual World

We now live in a computerized, connected world which brings with it so many obvious benefits and conveniences that we wonder how we ever lived without them. Online search engines help us research and shop for things, global positioning systems help us find our way through unfamiliar terrain and social networking or cell phones connect families across the globe and greatly facilitate multitasking. Yet, this new technology also brings with it new challenges for parents in helping kids navigate their way simultaneously through two worlds – real and virtual.

SHINE for Girls program combines dance lessons and math

In middle school, many girls show a notable drop in confidence in their math skills. That’s why MIT senior Kirin Sinha developed the SHINE for Girls program for seventh-grade girls, a free eight-week program that combines dance lessons and math.

Kirin Sinha noticed that when she tutored students, there was a clear gender difference: Boys say they don’t understand fractions. Girls say they can’t. And this begins a life long trend in which girls shy away from math and science.

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