Sunday, October 16, 2011

Conversations with my consciousness

Most people will never have an affirmative answer to this baffling question: ‘Do you love what you do at work or at home...’ But sadly that’s the way this life is. I can’t say I love what I do. Every evening after returning from work I don’t have much to look forward to. Switch on the laptop, check mails, facebook, chatting… But every night when I lie down on my cold bed, my consciousness asks me, ‘Did you do justice with your day… Did you achieve what you set out to get?’ It’s rare I can stare back at my alter ego and say ‘Yes, I did what I loved, I achieved what I wanted’. Mostly I hide my head under the pillow and shout back ‘Get lost! You moron… you don’t know a shit about this world… so better keep your mouth shut’. My consciousness gives me a good stare… laughs his heart out at me before going off to sleep till the next night when he can again throw the same rhetorical question at me. That sums up the life for me… may be most of the people.
But then there are days when I too get a chance to fight back. These days, though a very few, are pretty exciting days. ‘Yes I did what I love… achieved what I wished for’. There is an endless jour at heart when I get a chance to shout back these very words at my consciousness. But, he pounces back with an even terse ask. ‘What next… or for how long?’ He politely asks, leaving speechless and dumb. These barbed words hurt even more than ever before. At least earlier I got the chance to shout back. But where am I left stranded now? Whom I am trying to fool? I again crouch back, hiding my face when finally he decides to leave me alone but not before having laughed his heart out.
Tired of this every day ordeal, I decided one day to take my consciousness to a coffee shop for face to face talk. I wanted to settle this once for all. I started the conversation explaining him ’If I always do what I love or wanted I …’
‘How often do you do stuff that you love’, he shot back even before I could finish.
‘Quite often…’ I said, trying to avoid any eye contact. But he kept staring at me.
‘Ok! Not so often’ raising my eyes I replied to the unasked but obvious question. There was no change in his stance. I finally gave in. ‘I do things that I like rarely… but if I always do what I want I will end up nowhere.’
‘Define nowhere.’ He politely asked.
‘I don’t know’
‘Then checkup the dictionary’
‘Sure, I will as soon as I get time but let’s stay focus on the matter at hand’
‘We have time now. Why don’t you check out while we wait for coffee.’ He said in a manner I couldn’t deny.
‘Nowhere: in, at or to no place; not anywhere; not in a successful or a winning position.’ I read out loud from the Cambridge dictionary. ‘Satisfied’ I blurted. ‘Can we talk now… see the point I was making is that if I always …. rather often did what I loved I may end up being an unsuccessful person. I love to cook my meals but I don’t like to do the cleaning afterwards. So if I only cooked and never cleaned will I ever be successful.’
Nodding his head he asked ‘Why do you work at job’.
‘It pays me a salary at the end of every month.’
‘Which you use for?’
‘Doing things that I desire.’
‘Do you desire food’
‘I need food. I told you I love cooking.’
‘But do you really cook?’
I was stunned in silence.
‘So try explaining me… you work at a job which pays you a salary which is to be used for doing things that you like but you end up not doing things that you like!’
I was dumb founded.
‘Let begin it all over again!’ he suggested. ‘You said that if you do what you love you will be unsuccessful. Why don’t we check out what dictionary says about success’
I quietly flipped over the pages of the dictionary and read to myself. ‘Success: the achieving of desired results’. I could clearly see where this conversation was headed realizing the gloom of silence had descended all over the place.
‘Your coffee Sir’ the waiter’s voice ruptured through the darkness of silence as I released a sigh of relief. But this conversation was far from over.
To be continued… 

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

How global investment banks are following ancient Indian culture?

I came across this interesting article so sharing here!! Its bit long, but take my word, you will find it interesting. Please bear with it!!

Every wonder why the American Investment banks / Lalit Modi / or those get away lightly always......the Reason is Indian Mythology (It is Vishun's Kar-na-ma that world over people follow........of late)

Another thing which is crucial to the financial services industry is the concept of being too big to fail, which has been put to good use by Citigroup, Bear Stearns, and Goldman Sachs over the past few years in sucking money from American taxpayers. This beautiful concept was also invented by an Indian - Vishnu Sharma, the author of the Panchatantra, in the story of the Weaver and the Chariot Maker.

The story of the weaver and chariot maker is one of the Panchatantra stories that usually doesn't make it to primary school textbooks or Amar Chitra Katha, mostly because it's full of sex, war, and moral hazard. Since you probably haven't read it, here's a quick summary.

A weaver sees a princess during a festival and falls in love with her. As a weaver, he has no chance of marrying her, so he sinks into depression. His friend, a chariot maker decides to help him out. He designs a flying chariot in the shape of Garuda, dresses the weaver up as Vishnu, and tells him to fly the chariot into the princess's room, tell her that he is Vishnu and wants to marry her Gandharva style. That is, the wedding is kept a secret from everyone except the princess and the faux-Vishnu. The princess agrees, and the weaver comes back every night to consummate the marriage.

Eventually, the maids notice that the princess is spending her days in total bliss, suspect that she's in love, and tell the King. The King asks her what's going on, and she tells him that she's married to Vishnu himself. The King is absolutely delighted, and decides that there's no point in paying tribute to the Chakravarti now that Vishnu himself is on the kingdom's side. The next night, he catches the weaver as he enters the princess's room and asks him to fight the Chakravarti's army.

The weaver is horrified. Pretending to be Vishnu was fine when it allowed him to make sweet, sweet love to the princess, but taking on the role of Vishnu to face an imperial army single-handed is another thing altogether. On the other hand, if he confesses to the King that he is not actually Vishnu and has been boinking the princess under false pretences for the past month, he will have his head chopped off. So he decides to get on to the battlefield and do the best job he can, while the King is whipping up enthusiasm in the population by telling them that Vishnu himself is going to do all the fighting.

By this time, Garuda (the real one, not the mechanical one) has tipped off Vishnu about what's going on, and warned him that if the fake Vishnu doesn't win the battle, the people of the kingdom will lose all faith in him. Vishnu doesn't want to see this happen, so on the battlefield he enters the weaver's body and annihilates the Chakravarti's army. The entire army. Every single soldier. After this, the weaver marries the princess, everyone goes on worshipping Vishnu, and the king becomes the new Chakravarti.

The moral is that you should conduct your affairs in such a way that if you fail, it will lead to someone or something even bigger or more powerful failing too. This lets you get away with anything. 

The weaver got away with having sex with the princess on false pretences (this is rape under Section 375 of the Indian Penal Code), pretending to be a god (awesomely enough, this too is a criminal offence under Section 508), and annihilating an entire army that was fighting a just war - after all, it was the king who broke the treaty (you could make a case for this being genocide under Article 2 of the UN Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide). 
American banks and financial institutions were very good at absorbing this lesson, and leveraged themselves up to such an extent that if they failed they would take the global economy down with them. And just as the weaver lived happily ever after with the princess, banks have lived happily ever after with taxpayer-funded bailouts.

But no matter how hard American investment banks try, Indians still remain the masters of this art. If the whole truth surrounding Lalit Modi is revealed, big politicians might be trapped. Modi is, thus, likely to get away lightly -- as is A Raja, who might have given away spectrum at bargain basement rates, but whose sacking would lead to the government collapsing. All this goes to show that no matter what the anguished elderly gentlemen who write letters to the editor feel, Indians are still in touch with our ancient and glorious culture. 

There will always be a bail out in the EU. 
The PIIGS owe 700 billion to Germany and 900 billion to France. 
France and Germany are actually bailing out themselves.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Random Observations of an idle man lost in the labyrinth of Saas-Bahu Serials

Vacations are no doubt every man’s desire, but a really long holiday can become a pain, especially when you have nothing to do. Few would realize my pain, sitting in front of the Television sets aptly named idiot box, from 10-6 and watching the same news again and again and again. I cede the control of the idiot box to my mom in the evenings, who watches these hopeless soaps of the ‘Ekta Kapoor’ fame. With literally nothing to do, I too have to sit through the ordeal, during which I made some of the most bizarre observations:

1.       Every soap has so many unwanted twists that it’s impossible to figure out what the original story line was. (Instead of twist in a story, the story is entire story seems twisted).

2.       Without fail there is a character in every serial, mostly likely female, who is incarnation of Sati Savitri. She will be presented throughout as an epitome of Bhartiye naari. She will bear all kinds of domestic violence and cruelties quietly for months and even years until suddenly she becomes the embodiment of Goddess Durga.

3.       What’s the point in having a resolute hero, if there is no villain? So, each soap inadvertently has to have a devil, generally male but lately fair sex can also be seen, whose only job seems to me is to plot against the lead character. These plots, read shadyantras, are so overtly complex that sometimes I feel why can’t our intelligence agencies use their services for unraveling the conspiracies?

4.       Irrespective of the social standings in the serial, every female character is loaded with tones of jewelry all times, even when they are to sleep, an omnipresent,  large sized mangal sutra hanging down their necks like a noose, an overdose of sindoor in maang and lastly high heeled footwear. I actually wonder how people shown, in the soap, living in mud houses afford such expensive jewelry and even absurd is the idea of wearing them 24x7. Frankly, I am confused that how many females wear high heeled shoes instead of casual slippers in their homes?
            The males, in these soaps, are even more overtly dressed. Lately the trend has been extensively embroidered long kurtas. Phew! I tried the same, but sincerely I would never give up the comfort of Tees and shorts, for such things.
      Another amazing fact of these soaps is they rarely conclude in less than 3-4 years. Most of them meet the fate of being booted out when their TRP’s hit the rock bottom. I wish I would ever watch a serial end gracefully. 

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Weekends!! Why Saturday and Sunday only??

I have been idling at my home for quite some time and my not so good health is not permitting me to venture out frequently. An empty mind is a devil’s workshop and probably few would realize it better than me. With absolutely nothing to do, some weird thoughts are bound to cross my mind and one such thought that tickled my feather of thought was why weekends mean only Saturday and Sunday? Why can’t other days of the week be made into regular week offs? 

The source of this weirdo is the recent initiative of the Tamil Nadu courts to run family courts on Saturdays and Sundays so as to help working professionals to fight family court cases. One of the reasons for this initiative was the spurt in the number of family disputes (read matrimonial disputes and divorce pleas). While this shows that matches are not made in heaven, but the point of interest for me was the working on so called weekends.

I sincerely feel that this initiative should be extended to other offices too. Rather than having Saturday and Sunday as weekly holidays, we can make a particular day in week holiday for a particular department. Pondering over this I came across some ideas:

Welcoming the Tamil Nadu initiative, it would be better if the same is implemented across the entire judicial set up(Supreme Court, high courts, etc.) across the country. The courts can have weekend on Monday and Tuesday, enabling working people to avail judicial services on Saturday and Sundays.

Considering that state governments and union governments rarely agree on anything, it would better if union government sets aside different days as weekly offs. Starting with the financial institutions (read banks, stock exchanges) can enjoy their weekend on Wednesday while other central government offices can be closed on Thursdays and Fridays.

Idea of having any day of the week as holiday has many fold advantages. The working professionals will not have to take unwanted leaves from their works for just trifle works, resulting in increased productivity. Another aspect is even distribution of traffic ensuring that on Mondays roads are not overly crowded while on Sundays roads lie bare. 

No doubt that such a system would feel chaotic initially and may face stiff social acceptance challenges but over the time it might just prove to be vastly productive.

I don’t know whether this is a great idea or another absurd thought of an empty mind, but I wish to see it being implemented at least on trial basis.      

Thursday, May 20, 2010


This is my last blog before I leave Indian School of Mine, the place that transformed a school boy into an engineer. Leaving friends is painful.... so its bit senti... hope readers will bear with me...

Tonight I walk past the same tall and imposing gates of ISM for the last time which I entered four years ago with dreams in eyes… but the eyes this time are wet, not with tears to fulfillment of dreams but that of the pain of leaving my friends with whom I shared the best moments of life…
I will miss the days which were spent in dreams and those happening nights full of joy and mirth when you all were around…
I will miss the 5am tea at RD, 2am dinners at station… late night shows at Fame and the long walk back, not because the tea of extra-ordinary or the movie was a super-hit… but because you all were around. The warmth your hearts made the cold food at station the best delicacy and a boring movie more enjoyable than anything u can ask for. 
I will never forgot you all for I am taking back with me the biggest treasure… the memories of you all.

I thank God for being lucky to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

बदलाव : the change

ये जीवन बहुत लम्बा है, पर बदलते क्षणॊ में कट जाता है,
नहीं बदलते हैं हम, बस हमारी जिंदगी बदल जाती है |
नहीं बदलते हैं ये रिश्ते, पर मिठास फीकी हो जाती है,
नहीं बदलता है सत्य, बस पर्याय खो जाते हैं|

प्रेम है वही , पर चाहत बदल जाती है,
लक्ष्य भी है वही, बस उद्देश्य बदल जाते हैं|
जीवन सफ़र है वही, पर साथी बदल जाते हैं,
जवाब भी है वही, बस जिंदगी के सवाल बदल जाते हैं|

अंतिम मंजिल तो है वही चिता अग्नि,पर पहुँचने में ये जीवन लग जाता है |
नहीं बदलता है ये संसार, बस एक किसी पल में हम ही खत्म हो जाता है ||

Friday, December 11, 2009


Having recently paid a visit to not so friendly Topaz canteen, I noticed a change. No the change wasn’t in the variety items available or the cold reception accorded to you, but the change was in the way I was paid back… 5 centre fresh instead of currency!

I was literally taken back! Till now it was acceptable to have a candy or two in case of lack of ‘change’ but candies worth Rs.5 /- is bit difficult to digest. Before I could even argue , pat came the reply Kya Karen saar, change nahi hai!!” Instead of forgoing my money for later reimbursement ( its rare that it will be returned to you without an argument and even more difficult to keep a record) I simply pocketed what was at hand, not before sharing them among juniors and friends.

Trying to figure out the implications of the candy currency, the first thing that struck me was It’s a damn good business strategy. On average there are 500 customers and even if half of them are paid back in candies that an additional sale of over 200 candies that translates into additional sale of over Rs. 6000 per month. (Not a bad venture I guess!!).

Another aspect that this brings forth is the absence of low denomination currency from the market. Initially, I couldn’t figure out the possible reason but soon it became apparent that this can be at best attributed to the ATM’s. Almost all students depend upon ATMS for their cash requirements, which only dispenses Rs. 100 and 500 denomination notes , so absence of ‘change’ can be explained.

I am not very sure of the legal (those interested in law can definitely help!!) implications of these transactions but for one I am sure that there are certain rights in the Consumer Protection Act that deal with these. More over almost all banks as per RBI directives provide for exchanging money to lower denominations by simply filling a form. So these canteen walas can procure change easily from bank. (But considering additional sales, I doubt they will ever think about it).

As of now I am saving most of these candies and planning to pay the canteen wala in candies the next time and waiting eagerly to see the reaction on this!!!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

What were We doing there???

The Delhi tourism official website reads:The Garden of Five Senses (GFS)is not just a park, it is a space with a variety of activities, inviting public interaction and exploration. The project, developed by Delhi Tourism Transportation Development Corporation, was conceptualized to answer to the city's need for leisure space for the public, for people to socialize and unwind. Such spaces add atmosphere and life to a city and cater to all sections of the society.

Looking out for a place to spend our pleasant evening, Sunny came up with this brilliant idea to visit this Garden after his friend told him that you can hours there. (What his friend meant was all together a different thing....). So seven stags went out...
First things first, most of the auto drivers didn't know where GFS is ! Finally, a chai-wala provided us with the directions...
Unfortunately, our autos dropped us about a kilometer away. Walking down the lane, we asked directions from a 'thaele-wala', he replied with an unusual wry smile on his face (though none of us paid much heed to his smile..). Upon reaching, at the entrance the ticket guard made a strange comment 'Saat ke Saat Bande!'. Still we failed to guess whats in store for us.
No sooner did we land inside, we realized why that thaele-wala had that peculiar smile, and why did the guard looked amused.We have landed in a totally out of context place. The place which 'was conceptualized to answer to the city's need for leisure space for the public, for people to socialize and unwind' was couples paradise. Every nook and corner was occupied by love birds. If we were taken aback, equally shocked were the couples. Initially, I thought of killing 'Sunny' there, but decided otherwise, It wasnt so bad after all, we were in a really 'hot' zone (pun unintended). We set out for a stroll in th garden, recieving unpleasnt stares from every couple.
But this hardly made any difference to us. We actually posed for well over 15 mins infornt of the couple, for group pics . On our walk back , made sure I did not make even eye contact with that thaele-wala.

Still, when we sit together and recall the incident, it amuses us beyond doubt. Just think of the curse that were 'showered' upon us by the love birds for spoiling their evening. Think about the thought going through the thaela wala and guard's mind. Probably thay would have guessed that 'Jamana badal gaya hai' or might have recalled the famous song..'AAdmin hun, AAdmi se pyaar karta hun'..

PS: Though I have tried to skip details, those interested can always mail me.
Also I sincere apologize to all those people whose evening we unintentionally spoiled. Hate mails invited!!
At the hind sight I do want to thank Sunny's friend and Sunny's intelligence for all the 'scenic beauty' that we witnessed.!!

CSE Summer Workshop-II

This my second blog, where I will try to introduce some of the people whom I missed in the first(especially the girls):

Vikram Parihar: This lad from NIT,Raipur, is one of the most serious people. Follows a strict routine, goes to the lab regularly. One of the only guys to visit Library, seldom goes out.

Nidhi: She has a really good sense of humor, she takes everything in lighter vein. Her favorite passtime is 'Bando ki Band Bajana' waise, she doesnt hesitate to pull legs of girls either. In case you call her anytime, the most probable reply is' Yaar abhi to main doston ke saath bahar hun'.

Malvika: She is a real chatter box, though after she started working on her project, she has been a bit quiet, keeps boredom away from the group.

Gazal: Probably she is the most 'senti' girl around. Always seems to be in worry about something(GOD know's what).

Haseen: She is the studious type, has a really good concentration, doesnt like to fool around. Doesnt like to leave campus after 7:30. Her catch line is 'its getting late.'

Joyeeta: Doesnt know much about her, waise she is not too outgoing, but definitely 'daring'.

This completes the introduction of my friends out here in IIT Delhi. In my next blog(s), will try and describe some of the most funny and amazing incidents out here.

Monday, June 22, 2009

CSE Summer Worshop @ IIT Delhi.

It has been a considerable time since I penned down an article.... partly because of busy schedule and partly because I was mourning the loss of my invaluable luggage (including laptop, handycam , certis and what not....). But as it is said life has to move on, so I will try to move over these.. sooner or later...
Now, this is my first blog on my experiences during summer workshop at IIT-Delhi().

I am almost halfway through the Workshop, so I think I can at least write something about my friends here....
I will begin with (No ladies first this time around...):-

: Nick for Suryaveer, young fellow from BITS, about to leave for US for a six month Intern @ DreamWorks Animation.Cool, cheerful guy, big movie geek...

My roomie, from NIT Hamirpur. Is bande ka sirf ek kaam hai.. ghoomna... Always ready to roam about, koi tension nahi.. Banda Bindaas hai...

My project partner, from CJSM Kanpur. Has been wasting his college lifeby living as PG, so easily gets miffed. Banda tension bahut leta hi....

yeh banda thoda unpredictable hai.. kabhi kabhi binaa baat hi naraaz ho jata. Waise ghoomne ka shaukeen hai, but takes work too seriously.

he is the 'good boy' of our group(according to the girls). Iski jindagi main sirf do cheez hain... padai and his novel.

Apna pyaara 'Chotu',(got this name because he is in 2nd yr). Always ready to raom about in delhi, but equally good at work. Big supporter of unix.

There are a few more guys, but I dont know them well enough to write.Probably will get to know them better by the end of workshop. As regards the girls, probbaly will write about them in my next blog.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

The Art of Saying 'NO'

Sid has mastered it!! DD is not willing to learn!!! I am still a student of it!!!

How difficult is it to master the art of saying ‘NO’.

The first question is obviously whom are you going to say ‘NO’. At times it becomes increasingly difficult to say no to people to whom you are too closely attached, or who are just too good a friend to say no!!

Next, how can you say no and still not hurt someone?

Frankly speaking, I am too bad at this.... At times I am too outward spoken ... If I don’t want to do something, or not like something, I just say that too flatly.... and those who know me are unfortunately have been at receiving end many a time... (Sorry friends!! I can’t help it.... still mastering this art)

Finally, how do you cope up with offending some?

Now, that’s the most difficult part for me.... Probably since I have offended a lot of people because of my ruthlessness and too flat talking I feel this pinch the most. No matter how much I try to overcome this, it always lingers somewhere at the back of mind and it hurts more than anything else. (It’s really painful to when people rightfully change their behavior towards you)

So friend who have mastered this art help me out with your in valuable suggestions...

And not to forget those whom I might have hurt!! Hate mails invited!!