Archive for March, 2010

Avant Garde Bloggies Awards: Polls are live

Polls are LIVE at Avant Garde Bloggies Awards blog.

This is the FINAL, deciding phase where you have your say. Please vote for your favorite finalist. You can also find the list of finalists in each category here.

Please spread the word and vote. Polls will be live for a week, they will close on Sunday 28th March at midnight.

May the best win.

Once again a BIG thanks to all volunteers and judges who made it possible. 😀

Avant Garde Bloggies Awards 2009: Finalists

And the finalists for Avant Garde Bloggies Awards are:

1.1. Best Short Story Post

Plus and Minus

Author: Destination Infinity

Of Hands That Held and Promises Not Kept

Author: Chandni

Sometimes its love not crush but still

Author: Preposterous girl

A true story of love (A candle burnt on 26/11/09)

Author: Lemonytree

Arranged: Re-arranged

Author: Urmila Santosh

They Should Put in Jail for That

Author: Arshat Chaudhary

1.2 Best Off-Beat Post

Unharnessed thinking

Author: Smitha

5 Reasons Why You Should Not Shift from blog to

Author: Vikas Gupta

Yuva Dares to Bring Open Closet

Author: Sam

25 Years of Poison Bhopal

Author: Azad

Draupadi, Sita and Helen of Troy

Author: Indian Homemaker

Oh My God!

Author: Hades

1.3 Best Book Review

The Case of Missing Servant

Author: Smita

Review: Girl with Dragon Tattoo

Author: Couch Papaya

Constant Princess by Philipa Gregory

Author: SR/Shweta

Two by Ana Bronte

Author : Ava Suri


Author: Tonya

Book Review: “Bitter Chocolate – Child Sexual Abuse in India” by Pinki Virani

Author: Kiran Rao

1.4. Best Movie Review Post

Wake Up Sid Movie Review

Author: Partha Pratim

Love of the Mango People Aaj Kal

Author: Amrita


Author: Sahil Rizwan

Wake up Sid : Serene Serendipity

Author : Udta Hathi

Inglorious Basterds

Author : Pulkit

WAR = Desire of Individuals

Author: Sathish

1.5. Best Music Review Post

Share a Tune: Inspired Music in Indian Films

Author: Gauri

Delhi 6 Review

Author: Harry

Jazz all the way

Author : Arti Krishna Kumar

Soundtrack of Kaminey

Author: Bhargav Saikia

Rahman Unseen

Author Shruthi

1.6. Best How-to Post

Extracting Virgin Coconut Oil at Home

Author: Sangeeta Khanna

How to Add a Custom Header for Arras Theme

Author: Lekhni

Being Mom How To Deal with Toddler

Author Prerna

How to Make Girlfriend 9

Author DesiNinja

How To Do Nothing at Work and Still Get Paid

Author : Jay Maniar

Taking control of your inbox: Inbox Zero

Author: Vaibhav Gadodia

1.7. Most Interesting Personal Rant Post

5 Reason Why I am more miserable than Dilbert

Author: Prateek Gupta

Pull a Kramer

Author: Rads

A tweet on twitter that caused such a flutter

Author: Shalini Puthiyedam

Daughter of Mine

Author: Indy

Saala Ek Machchar Aaadmi Ko

Author: Sourabh Biswas

Do You Do Home Audit?

Author: Minal

1.8. Most Humorous Post

Time Flies, Yeah

Author: HyperMom

Daaru Pradesh – Gawd’s Own State

Author: Tantanoo/Shantanu

1 Socialite, 1 Entrepreneur and 1 Software Engineer

Author: Abhishek  Iyengar

Gay Pride Takes Violent Turn in Pub

Author: Hades

No Excuse for No Exercise

Author: Salil

We are Indians and so is Our English

Author: Gauri

1.9 Best Satirical Post

The Undibloggies awards – the Indibloggies for the rest of us

Author: Neo Indian

Corporate Code

Author: Partha Pratim

Driving in Delhi

Author: Amreekandesi

Politics for Dummies

Author: Sraboney Ghosh

Dear Foreigner: Here is Guide to India

Author: Jammy

We Need More Reservations

Author: Hades

1.10 Best travel post


Author: Avada Kedavra

Coorg – A journey to Scotland of India

Author : Rahul / Santosh

Sarson Patal

Author : Ashwin Baindur

Travel to Munnar as told

Author: TRNaren

When I Saw God in Valparai…

Author: Radz/Radha

London files

Author: Parul

1.11. Best Visual Post

I Am Going On A Short Break

Author: Sakshi

New Guests In Our Garden – A Bird Family

Author: Sandhya

Iftaar Party

Author: Patricia Torres

Diversity of Wildlife

Author: Sandeep R

What I Have Been Upto This Summer

Author: Home cooked

I Love My India

Author: Swaram

1.12. Best Culinary Post

Gulab Jamun Recipe for Indian Cooking

Author: Srivalli

Not so Boring Potato

Author: Gunjaish

Hyderabadi Dum Gosh Biryani

Author: Varunavi

Dolmas Stuffed Grapes Leaves

Author: Anita

French Macarons with Chocolate

Author: Parita

Bread Banana Pudding

Author: SJ

1.13 Best Consumer Rights Post

Mystery of Landline Connection

Author: Tarun Goel

Who is Ripping and Cheating?

Author: Madhurie Singh

Newspaper Columns for Sale

Author: Charakan

Newspaper Myths Deconstructed

Author: Sraboney Gosh

HSBC Credit Card and Unending Trauma

Author: HyperMom

Net Neutrality and Indians

Author: Indyeah

1.14. Best Poetic Post Award

For Brave Lady

Author: Suranga

I Remember

Author: Mystic Margarita

Sleepy Blessing

Author: Aparna Karthik

In Reassurance

Author: Usha Pisharody

Michael Learns to Rock

Author Ekta Khetan

Ode to my once slim waist

Author: Ritu

1.15. Best Tech Post

Analyzing Twitter Lists-Follower Ratio As An Indicator Of Influence

Author: Mahendra

Google Public DNS- a ploy to get handle on the real-time pulse of the internet?

Author: Sandeep Gautam

How to Do everything with your mobile phone

Author: Jay

8 Google Wave plugins you must try when you get an account

Author: Dinsan

Some blogging errors bloggers should avoid

Author: Vikas Gupta

Which Webhosting Should I Take

Author: Sanjay Goel

1.16. Best Public Interest Post

Sex Education Has Nothing to Do with Blue Films

Author: Indian Homemaker

Year After Mumbai Attacks

Author: Snigdha SenHalf plus seven and all that jazz

Author: Usha Vaidyanathan

Is Homophobia an Alien Legacy of the Victorians?

Author : Man of Roma

Are We an Unclean Nation?

Author: Smitha

In Silence I Suffer Hidden Hurt

Author: Tikuli

1.17. Best Personal Post

When Amore is Parasitic

Author: Liana

All for Kiss: Crazy Confession from Sam

Author: Sam

If I Knew What I Know Now

Author: Minal

My Worst Lies Are The Ones I Tell Myself…

Author: Pinochina

Of Robbers, Inspirational Teachers and Folks who forced me to do this

Author: Dreamer

Slumdogs. White Tigers. Indians.

Author: Amit

1.18. Best 55er Post

Caught in Her Own

Author: Shilpa Garg

55 Fiction – #23

Author: Shruti

Her Fault

Author: Shail

Hide and Seek 55

Author: Chandni

The Dark Knight

Author: The Solitary Writer

The Silence of the Noise

Author: Pal/Pallavi

1.19 Most Evocative Post on Parenting

Daily Dose

Can We Hear Sobs of Tiny Voices

Author: Passionate Goof/Goofymama

Three Generations
Author: Mad Momma

You Know You are a Dad When
Author: Masood

I want I want I want
Author: Kiran/Karmic Kids

I Don’t Want my Child to be Obedient
Author: Smitha

2.1. Most beautiful header award :

Psych Babbler


Monika Manchanda – Mommy Blog

M. A. Rauf



2.2. Most Interesting SideBar

Psych Babbler


Indian HomeMaker (IHM)

Monika Manchanda



2.3. Best About Me Page :



Amreekan Desi


Avada Kedavra

About Vivek

2.4. Best blog design award:



Psych Babbler

MayG and UTP

Figments of Imagination (Leo)


2.5. Best Professional Blogger

Rupa Rajgopalan

Shefaly Yogendra

The HR Store



2.6. Most Disciplined Blogger :

Rakesh Vanamali




Indian Homemaker (IHM)

Psych Babbler



Arun Prabhudesai


Monika Manchanda

Madhurie Singh

Ugich Konitari




Xpressive Thoughts


Maradhi Manni

Sujata headed to India



Quirky Indian



2.7. Most Networking Blogger :

Arti Krishna Kumar


The Chronic Writer




2.8. Most responsive blogger






Indian Homemaker



Madhurie Singh



1. Posts in Best Musical Review and Best Consumer Rights Post category went directly for polling as nominations were few.

2. Best Disciplined Blogger and Best Networking Blogger will be decided only by voting. Therefore, more than 6 entries will be going for polls.

3. Polls, which is the final phase, start on Monday.They will be held for a week on Avant Garde Bloggies Blog.

4. Also, have decided to do away with the idea of party. Original intent was just to bestow appreciation, so that is what it will be. Also, not many souls seemed excited by the idea.

5. Two of my blogger-friends, Solilo and Indyeah had withdrawn their nominations from all categories. However,  I managed to persuade Indyeah to retain her nomination in Best Consumer Rights post category since there were not many worthy contenders there.

Interview with the Braveheart, Dr. Ritu Biyani

Today I bring to you an extraordinary story of a courageous woman, Dr. Capt. Ritu Biyani, who is based in Pune. She is a woman who has worn several hats – a dental surgeon in army, first Lady Officer paratrooper from the army dental corps, a mountaineer, skydiver and a thorough nomad.

Her story can be an inspiration to you, me and everyone who has faced, even for a moment, the dreaded fear that – This is it. The precious life that you have so far taken for granted, may no longer be there.

Dr. Ritu grappled with this fear in 2000 when she was diagnosed with breast cancer. She fought back and survived.

It is after the struggle for survival is over and acceptance for the inevitability of the situation seeps in; comes the hardest part – rebuild your new life. How you choose to do it, is where heroes differ from the common folks.

Dr. Ritu decided to dedicate her life for educating people on cancer, preventive measures and offering supportive care for those afflicted with it. She decided to reach out. To thousands of women and men, living along the length and breadth of the entire country. Yes, the length and breadth of the country. Literally.

She drove solo across the country, the four tips of India, along with her 14-year-old daughter Tista in a Ford endeavour for 177 days! Distance covered – a whopping 30, 220 kms! First woman to go on such a solo drive, she, along with her daughter Tista holds Limca Book of Records for first mother-daughter  duo  expedition on cancer awareness across the country.

Here’s a quick Q and A with the lady herself:

Why a road journey? Why this need to reach globally and not focus on just local awareness?

(Naughtily smiles) Yes, a good question when going only local could have made me famous as well, at least locally. But cancer is not a local problem. It does not recognize geographical, cultural, political, socio-economic boundaries.

I am a doctor, and yet I was taken unawares by breast cancer at a young age of 40. So my thought after survival was what about so many of the other women who in the course of multitasking in their different roles in daily life are unaware of their health. They keep their own health on low priority.  It is imperative that they must be forewarned and be groomed to prevent.

Traveling is second nature to me.  I am at peace when I am at roads. So I thought I would travel to people with my story, with scientific facts and basic awareness about cancer. I focus on oral cancer and cervix cancer, besides breast cancer.

That explained, I have undertaken several local initiatives like cancer walks, workshops etc. in Pune.

Continue reading ‘Interview with the Braveheart, Dr. Ritu Biyani’

Avant Garde Bloggies Awards Update

As you know, the judgment phase is going on. Delayed as the first phase.

Except for few categories, 6 best posts for all categories have been decided. For these some categories, two revered judges Anshul and Nikhil are still to revert with results. These two bloggers have unfortunately been too busy with their travels and work. Between them, these categories remain to be judged: Best humorous, Best Satirical, Best How to, Best Book Review, Best 55er and Best Interesting Personal Rant.

What happens after judges score arrive?

After ALL judges decide the 6 best posts in a category, these 6 best posts will go for poll. Polls for each category will last only for a week. Now my question to you readers is: Would you like me to start polls for the categories I already have received the judgement for? That is, staggered polls in batches.  Or should I wait for all results to arrive (in aforementioned categories that are being judged by Anshul and Nikhil) before starting polls?

One of the judges for movie review category Meetu has some prize in mind for the winners in this category. Also, the winner gets to post a movie review at her Web site WOGMA,  which is a popular movie review site. Yay!

Also, there has been a suggestion that we can hold a closing ceremony for Avant Garde in Pune for all runner ups, winners, volunteers and judges . Though I have so far been reluctant to host any prizes or ceremony, since idea was just to laud the best of those who participate. Also, having a party in Pune means several winners/runner-ups residing in other cities would not be able to make it. So what do you say, should we have any party as such or not? Your thoughts? Please write in the comments section.

Before I sign off, a big THANK YOU to all the wonderful judges: Meetu (first one to send her scores and generously offered to do more), Muse (who has time and again stood by me irrespective of my sporadic communication), Rashmi (Worked late to send me scores before she took her vacation, she also started a new blog here), Withering Willow (Ditto, worked late alongside her hectic job), Nita (Sent me her scores even though it conflicted with her professional projects, I was after all delayed in compiling first cut list), Magik (who also gave me word of mouth feedback about good ones), Vee (Did a thorough job at reviewing and detailing each entry and sent me score before he went on vacation).

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March 2010