Monthly Archives: September 2007

Superbowl 07: Patriots vs. Packers…or Cowboys?

Yeah its just three weeks into the season and I am already talking about Super Bowl. Isn’t this too early….you might say…but I predicted Colts’ Super Bowl win in the second week last year. Besides, the morning shows the day.

So, after disappointing loss of Saints against Colts, the season has not looked any good for the Saints. They are 0-3 entering the bye week.  Hopefully the season will be better for the Saints and thus for my Fantasy team which has three of Saints players.

A fascinating observation is though all the bad teams of last year are doing really well and all the good teams are doing horrible.
That statement can be extended to the players as well. Whatever happened to Seahawks, Bears, Eagles, Giants, Chargers, and Bengals. Whatever also happened to LT, last years MVP and Alexander and McNabb. When will the Bears and Giants be consistent? Even with the defensive coach, Bengals never seem to improve on defense.

A few teams have been impressive though. New England Patriots for instance, they were always good but this year they are playing like the best in the league. Randy Moss seems to have been enlightened that its not always about him. And T.O. has also realized that and these two teams seem to have picked up where they left off last year.

I am even more impressed with the Packers. Man they playing good. Go Favre! All the inconsistencies out, good decision in for Favre and he looks like a force to reckon with, breaking all the records and winning all the games.

Of course the season is not going to go like this; there will be bumps here and there. But if the winning teams adjust to the losses, not only games but also their injured players, and focus on being consistent, they got a good chance of appearing on the big day in uniforms.

Personally, I wanna see the Packs win. One last for Favre and let the Rodgers era begin. If not I’ll take Pats vs Cowboys and witness the dynasty being strengthened.

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New Materials on Kusunda Language: BK Rana

Noteworthy:The article has been edited. Strike out text represents my opinions.

( Presented to the Fourth Round Table International Conference on Ethnogenesis of South and Central Asia, Harvard University, Cambridge MA, USA.May 11 – 13, 2002 )

General Background

  • The Himalayan kingdom of Nepal is extremely rich and complex in cultural as well as linguistic diversity. Kusunda is one of the ethnic groups of Nepal whose language and culture is believed to be precious to the students of ethnology.
  • Kusundas are also known as one of the indigenous peoples of Nepal. They feel embarrassed being introduced as the Kusundas. Therefore, they seem to have shifted to other languages and cultures apparently leaving an impression of their extinction. Their tribal name is myahq -‘king of forests’. Now though, times have changed and Kusundas take pride in being Kusundas. I met with 17 Kusundas in February 2007 in Dang and they were not embarrassed at all.
  • British Resident Representative to Nepal, Brian H. Hodgson said about Kusundas that “they were generally supposed to be autochthones, or primitive inhabitants of the country, were near to what is usually called the state of nature as anything in human shape can well be, deemed very precious by all the real students of ethnology.Their origin, condition and character are, in truth, ethnic facts of high value, as proving how tribes may be dislocated and deteriorated during the great transitional eras of society” (Hodgson 1857). This information is brief and sketchy and demands more research regarding the Kusunda origins.

Kusunda Ethnicity and Population

  • Kusundas are also called Banarajas – Kings of the forests, because they used to live in the forests, called themselves *myahak[1] had a kind of taxation system over Rautes[2]. Kusundas were Kings and Rautes were their subjects. Generally Rautes run away if they happen to see a Kusunda from a distance.
  • 7 Kusundas, in the central and mid-western hills of Nepal, are believed to be ethnically pure by origin. There are few other Kusundas of mixed origin; including them the Kusunda population in Nepal will not exceed fifty in total[3].
  • Both ‘Banaraja’ and ‘Kusunda’ are names given to the ‘myahq peoples’ (Kusundas) by other communities. Kusundas are also said to be the offspring of ‘Kusha’– Rama’s second son born from ‘kusha grass’ in Valmiki’s Cottage. This story is well depicted in The Ramayana. Chepangs[4] also believe they are the offspring of Sita’s first son Lohari or Lava who is also very famous in the Ramayana. Lohari and Kushari were two sons of Sita. Later Lohari and Kushari became rivals. Then the Kusundas and Chepangs began to liveseparately. Some of the Chepang cognates have some similarity with that of Kusunda’s. Both Kusunda and Chepangs are found in the hills of Nepal.

Kusunda Language

  • Kusunda language has been cited as a dead language. But it is not completely dead yet there are still a few survivors who can communicate in Kusunda language. Professor David Watters has already constructed Kusunda grammar.

 

  • Kusunda culture is nonexistent now. But, there is their language which, originated in the Sino-Tibetan area;or it could be an earlier language in this area. There are some who believe present Kusunda cognates might be Tibeto-Burman borrowings. If it is to be believed, then Kusunda will be a ‘barren’ language without its own cognates for objects such as: *ing (sun), *ngsa (fish), *uyu (blood),*gepan (language), *un (trail), *langhai (village), *suta (thread), *mucha (banana), *kakchi (crab), *tu (snake), etc. So, it is a matter of thorough research.
  • Robert Shafer (1954) was the first scholar to notice Kusunda as a language isolate. Professor H. Fleming as well as most other linguists also believe that this is a language isolate. Yet, it may also be argued that Indo-European, Tibeto-Burman as well as other languages also shared with Kusunda.
  • It is a matter of serious study as to what is the genesis of Kusunda language in the Himalayas.

Reinhard-Toba Data:

  • John Reinhard and Sueyoshi Toba also worked on Kusunda some 32 years ago. Their data are the primary data recorded by Reinhard from the field, which were later analyzed by Toba in Kathmandu. But, the latter had not been able to see and speak with the Kusundas in person.Both of them were non-native researchers. I have found a number redundant data in Reinhard-Toba lists, nevertheless, it is a scientifically accomplished work. Reinhard has honestly admitted “this (Kusunda analysis) unfortunately was based on very little data, is incomplete and contains several errors; significant variants obtained from different informants have been listed. Several of these terms could not be checked and therefore the list should not be considered definitive” Reinhard (1976). Therefore, there are also some inevitable redundancies.

Similarities with Other Languages

  • Having found some sorts of similarities with a few indigenous languages of the Tibeto-Burman family, Kusundas probably originated in the Sino-Tibetan area. Kusunda *mahi (water buffalo) and *mai(mother) are similar to Central Magar mahi and mai, with the same meanings; cf. also Sanskrit mahisha. Kusunda mai is quite close to Sanskrit *maataa meaning ‘mother’. Some other Tibeto-Burman linguistic communities also have ‘mai’ for mother. In the same manner Kusunda and Magar say suta for ‘thread’ and its Prakrit is sutta and in Sanskritit is suutra.
  • Some linguists differ with my view on the origin of Kusunda. They believe that Kusunda is a language isolate – not sharing recent common origin with any languages. But my recent findings confirm that Kusunda has noticeable affinities with a number of indigenous languages spoken across northern belt of Nepal. Therefore, it is possible that this language originated in the Sino-Tibetan area and other major language families also shared with it.

(Full article can be obtained from the link above.)

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NFL 2007: Game 1…Colts vs. Saints

I know the Colts are going to win…..

C’mon Saints, you can do it…if Appalachian State can beat the Michigan Wolverines, the Saints can defeat the Colts…just a note though Reggie Wayne should have a good game.

Colts 0 Saints 0

Colts three and out. Saints have first down…thanks to Colston. Another first down by TE Johnson and another one by Bush…all on my fantasy team. The Saints are stopped soon.

Colts 7 Saints 7

Colts keep advancing…Saturday plays great. Touchdown…Harrison. Why Harrison? Why not Wayne? Damn…but Wayne’s time will come soon. Wayne time…he receives a pass but oh no…fumble…Saints take it all the way for a touchdown.

Colts 10 Saints 10

Wow! Saints run a reverse and pick up a first down. But end up kicking a field goal.

Fantasy check: I am down 1-7. I am yelling stop that running game. Manning keeps passing to Wayne but just cannot make the play…the defense is playing great 😦

It is evident that the Colts are far better than the Saints in both sides of the field. Seconds before the half time, a field goal by the betrayer, Vinateri ties the score.

:38 left in the half. Brees: most touchdowns in less than 2 mins last year. Can they do it again? Nope. Dwight Freeney sacs Brees and illegal passing penlty is called. Colts opt for the penalty…dumb.

Half time. The worst person in NFL is Keith Oberman…dumb…who the heck is he and who cares?

Colts 27 Saints 10

One deep pass to #88 and #29 rushes in. Up 7 Colts.

Hurray!!! Wayne gets a TD pass! Field goal Coalts.

Fourth quarter…Freddy Keiaho the rookie who replaced the big shoes of Cato June is very impressive… Saints are 4th and 1 (less than 1 actually) and they punt. Punt? Dumb.

Manning is going to score again and game over…if that happens, I am gonna stop watching the game.

Colts 34 Saints 10

Touchdown Wayne. Yeh!

Game over. 10mins to go.

Fantasy check: 31-29. I am up. My players left to play: 5. Opponent’s players left to play: 8

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Violence in Fremont: Shoot ’em Kids?

A couple of weeks ago, on a Friday evening I visited my friend at his home. Since it was hot inside, we decided to crack open a bottle and chill outside at the porch. His porch has trees all around it and there is a creek closeby so it is cool out there.

We were just sitting there and chatting, two young lads covering their faces with scarf came running below our porch and started shouting racial slurs…alarmed and shocked we all got up and told the kids to leave…they left saying, “we’ll get you b@tch#s.”

Still shocked, we were talking about the bizarre incident when one of our friends spotted them across the parking lot walking. He then, despite our advice started shouting at them. He had not said much–he shouted that they were kids and it was too late to be hanging around; they should go home.

One of the kids then picked up a stone and threw at us. The stone did not even come close to us and we were giggling at their feeble arms when a bigger rock came flying and hit our neighbor who was witnessing these events silently from his porch. Now the situation was getting out of hand and thus my friend, the one shouted earlier called the police.

We thought the incident was over. Alas, we were wrong. A minute later, I heard something walking on the grass and I was cautioning everyone to go inside…suddenly we were showered with pieces of dried mud…it hit our door, windows, wall, everything… We ran inside and the cops came shortly. They talked to us and our neighbor who was hit with the rock and they kept patrolling the area or hours. The kids did not and have not returned since.

The funny thing is that everyone gave their opinions why the event happened and what should be done to prevent such incidents in future. Various ideas were uttered, one suggested we place a gate, the other suggested we have guards but almost everyone came to a consensus that the owner should own a gun… a gun?

I realized that this conversation was not going my way so I left….but guns?

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Jimi Sir: Nepal from the eyes of a Peace Corp Volunteer

Here I am…born and raised in Nepal…stittin on my butt at San Francisco and there is this foreigner…born and raised in Boston…graduated frm MIT…and he is helping reconstruct Nepal…shame on me.

I really want to go tho…go to Nepal, Africa, Europe…go everywhere. I wish I had no responsibilities…then I could leave now. But I am tied like a dog in a leash, like a bird in a cage…but one day, one day I will break free and go to places I long to go…live a life I long to live…I live for that day.

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Buffalo and Lion: Predator and Prey?

Opressor vs Opressed

We’ve heard of lions chasing buffaloes but have we heard of buffaloes chasing lions? Forget about hearing we can even see that in this video.

May be this is a lesson the Nepalis need to learn…

Youtube title: Battle at Kruger

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