With the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge going viral here this summer the last fortnight saw a rash of big names rise to the challenge.
Among the likes of Bill Gates, Mark
Zuckerberg, Oprah Winfrey, Tom Hiddle-
ston, Robert Downey Jr, was Satya Nadella,
chief executive officer, Microsoft. He par-
ticipated thanks to former NFL player
Steve Gleason, who suffers from amy-
otrophic lateral sclerosis, also known as the
Lou Gehrig’s disease, and has been working
with Microsoft for a few years now.
Other than tagging Amazon’s Jeff Bezos
and Google’s Larry Page, Nadella also made
a personal donation to Team Gleason —
they recently won Microsoft’s first Global
Hackathon — and the ALS Association,
while the company donated $25,000 total
to both organizations.
Harvard Business School Dean Nitin
Nohria also took the challenge — in honor
of a former student, Avi Kremer, and oth-
ers in the Harvard community who had
become afflicted with the neurodegenera-
tive disorder — and further tagged Harvard
University president Drew Faust, Harvard
College dean Rakesh Khurana, and leader-
ship professor Bill George to the challenge.
The challenge, which involves responding
within 24 hours of being tagged and dump-
ing a bucket filled with water and ice cubes
on your heads to raise funds and awareness
about ALS, also travelled to India with ten-
nis star Sania Mirza, and actors Riteish
Deshmukh, Bipasha Basu and Abhishek
Bachchan being among the earliest respon-
The result, despite criticism, has been
tremendous awareness and close to $42
million in funds (as compared to $2.9 million in the same period last year) and
Gokul Venkatachalam clinches the 2014 MetLife South Asian Spelling Bee Finals August 15 by cor- rectly spelling ‘becquerel,’ (a unit of radioactivity). The Missouri-based speller competed with 23 other finalists for the title. Vanya Shivashankar from Olathe, Kansas, and Ananya Kodali from Highland Village, Texas, were the National Runners-Up. Gokul had finished third in the 87th annual Scripps National Spelling Bee in May and left with the promise of returning and doing better. Come May 2015, we are definitely going to be keeping our eyes on him.
The Funny Indian
Comedian Rajiv Satyal is witty and hilar- ious and we adore his humor. But after this Indian Independence Day, we
must admit, we adore the Funny Indian even
more. How can we not after that witty and
patriotic message he dropped on the occasion?
‘I’m Indian. Just Indian. I’m not South
Asian any more than Russians are North
Asian. I’m not ASIAN Indian or EAST
Indian. There are 1.3 billion of us — we don’t
need a cardinal direction, OK? It’s not our
fault that Christopher Columbus got lost,’
begins the just-over-2-minutes video. And
continues on the same note. Funny and
Satya Nadella takes the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge.
COURTES Y: FACEBOOK. COM/FUNNYINDIAN
On the sets of the I AM INDIAN shoot in Los Angeles.
COUR TESY: ME TLIFE SOU TH ASIAN SPELLING BEE Spellers watch out