Saturday, December 11, 2010

ये उड़ान जारी रहेगी...


संभल के चलो
गिरने से डरो
रास्ता चुनो वही....
...जिस पे मंज़िल
किसी ने तो हो देखी |

हारना बुरा है
उड़ना बुरा है

देखना वो.... ,
जो किसी ने ना देखा...
...पाप है|

ऐसे जियोगे तो दुनिया क्या कहेगी..
-----------

उड़ना रोज़ है मुझे
देखनी हैं मंज़िलें नयी

चलना संभल के बुरा नहीं..
...पर रास्ता क्यूँ हो वही ?

खुश हूँ मैं
हारकर ,गिरकर
शर्त बस इतनी है..की सड़कें हों नयी|

जीना ऐसे...
की एक मिसाल बन के रहेगी..

लाख रोको मुझे ज़मीन पे..
ये उड़ान जारी रहेगी...

Friday, December 3, 2010

Scale Or Intent


I am looking to buy a new car, and i am discussiing various nuances(technical/financial) with my friends.
One of my friends is in DRDO and he has recently bought a car.

I asked him for his opinion as to his experience with the model that he bought.
He told me  that the car is realy good and he had bought this car from the CSD..
Canteen Store Department is the army canteen and you really do get a handsome discount on your stuff.
He asked wether i also want to get it through CSD.

As the difference in amount was 40-50 k,
i agreed to it.
That same evening i told my fiancee about it and she also agreed to it.
I told my parents ,they also agreed to it.

In the evening i was watching some news channel and they were discussing the
Adarsh Society Scam.

The society was meant for the Widows of Kargil war Martyrs but was being used by some other influential people.It was(is) a painful news.
I really cursed the people behind it.

In next few moments...
A kind of analogy dawned on me.

Getting a car through CSD is almost similar to getting a flat in Adarsh Society.
Neither of the parties deserve what they are availing..

and moreover me ,my fiancee and my parents
were not even aware of the contribution that we were making to corruption
....the scale was really small i think.

What is 40k in front of 1000s of crores.

but is Corruption defined on SCALE or on INTENT?



Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Sycophancy


Praying,Worshipping and asking for Favours from GOD is the highest form of sycophancy.

The most able creation of yours bowing and begging in front of you would really be a painful sight.

Instead of spending 30 mins ...burning incense sticks...chanting esoteric mantras..
Won't he be happy if you act and do some meaningful work.

I belong to a state which is called the DEV bhumi and there is a temple in each and every corner.
People are bowing,praying,worshipping and BEGGING for results.

The more people pray to god,the more coward i assume that group of people to be. In a way the group is
humilating GOD by telling him that he has created a species which is not able to survive on its own
and needs help at each and every step.

ACT ,PERFORM, EXECUTE rather than PRAY,WORSHIP,BEG.

If some one feels guilty if he didn't worship for a day, it is very much similar to a sycophant feeling bad if he
hasn't payed a servile visit to his master.
I know the visit is totally driven by my own needs and nothing else.

If i would have made such a visit to my BOSS everyday...i think that would have  perfectly categorized as servile flattery.
Similar is the case with GOD.
I think we don't need to pay him those expedient visits rather we need to start taking action.

GOD would be more than happy if i forgot him totally for a month and engaged myself in passionate meaningful work.

After that month of passionate work

Don't bow ..Stand upright...
Don't close your eyes ...look straight into his eyes
Don't Pray for results but announce your achievement
Tell him that i'm doing great on my own.

Thanks for creating me.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Amma jiiiiii ......Amma Ji.

If you happen to remember Amma Ji... she is our maid.
It's almost an year that she is working with us.

She is a very God fearing women and religiously visits the temples and the gurudwaras. There are a few beliefs that she dearly holds true and accepts those to be nothing less than the universal truths.(सर्वभौमिक  सत्य )

Those beliefs can not be(absolutely SHOULD not be) questioned by any one at all.
I ,in my utmost innocence somehow happened to stand opposed to her beliefs at a few moments.
What follows are 3 incidents when i had to face the wrath and fury of Amma Ji just for falsifying her universal Truths.

Summers 2010-  Delhi's heat was beating on us and we were almost embarrassed of asking for cold water from our neighours. Not that they refused anytime but still disturbing someone on a Saturday some 20-25 times is shamefully embarrassing in itself.  We (me and Suresh) decided to get a refrigerator the very same day. We got the cash and we had made our research on the Fridge that we wanted to take. We waited for the evening and just when we were about to leave  Amma Ji comes for preparing us our meals.

She complained a bit about the heat and told us something about the electricty cut that they had at their place.
She notices us getting ready and enquired about it.

We tell her that we are getting her a new refrigerator today and she now nomore needs to throw the old sabji or daal.
First expression was "Oh wow!!!! Great...."
Second was  "Oh noooo!!! You fools don't do that."
I asked her about the disapproving expression that she gave.

She said "Aaj mat lo."
Suresh "Kyun amma ji?"
Amma ji "Shaniwaar ko loha nahi lete."
(it was a hindi version of  -- "Bloody Freak  you don't buy freaking Iron on a freaking saturday.")

A moment of silence
and then it was our turn to express.
First Expression "Desperation,Frustration... all synonymous and very close to WTF."
Second expression "A look at each other followed by a I-give-up smile."

The look that she bore suggested that she was in no mood for a discussion and indeed shaniwaar ko loha nahi lete to nahi lete.
Amma Ji 1 We 0. :(

October 2010 - I was just back from office and Amma ji asks about what she should prepare for dinner. she checks the refrigerator - (The same one that we bought  on sunday.) for some vegetables. She tells me that for the next 9 days she won't be using Onion in our food.

On enquiring further she says that "Navratras have started and she doesn't touch Onions in navratras."
This was too much for me and i disagreed to that...may be i would have agreed to her some other day but not after her having her way in that refrigerator incident .
I got rebellious .... Fridge came on sunday and now onions will be used in Navratras.
(It was more of a childish stubbornness then a rational opposition.).

She agreed to it but said that now she needs to change her clothes when she gets back as she can not sit in a Aarti after touching those onions. Irritated i was but in that moment of irritation i tried to restore some rationality ,i asked her to do the Aarti before coming. She agreed to that.  I had my little moment of victory.

Amma Ji 1 We 1. :|

Whenever Amma ji gets angry with us she kind of goes quiet. Not that she will make the food any less tastier but she won't talk to us. You can feel the cold war type tension in the house.

 We were into the third navratra and she arrives for making  breakfast. I had forgot everything about the onions . She asks in her usual way "Beta ji kya banana hai?"
"Paranthe bana do aunty."

Amma ji "Aaloo to hain nahin...."
We had had this kind of discussion earlier also...

I forgot we were in the middle of navratras and i totally forgot we were in middle of a cold war.
I was shaving...and while shaving only ....i went to the kitchen....looked at the tokri and in the most casual and obvious tones suggested   "Aloo nahin hai to Pyaaz Ke Bana do".

She slowly turned towards me fuming.
She felt i was doing this on purpose.
I immediately made out that i have committed a sin and now i shall be punished. 
In all this tension i felt that she was almost about to slap me.

After a few tense moments and a cold silence between us. 
She comes out with this....
"Rab se daro beta ,thoda to daro. Paranthe to main bana deti hun....kam se kam Tuesday ko to Shave na kiya karo."

Amma ji 1000 We 0. :)

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Delhi Doordarshan....Dhanyawaad

My Father is at my place this weekend and  he saw me busy with the Hindi discussions.
He saw something written in Hindi and he asked me about the topic of discussion. He has a natural penchance towards Hindi...and hence his interest.

He went through all the discussions and was visibly hurt by some of the comments.
He was disturbed by the fact when people were relating nationality with language. 

We had a discussion and in that discussion... he asked me to open youTube and search for a song....

The song was the classical "Mile Sur mera Tumhara...To Sur bane hamara"
Please do watch it...even if you have seen it ealrier...

The song has a central idea of uniting different Sur and making a common tune out of it.

मिले सुर मेरा तुम्हारा, तो सुर बने हमारा
सुर की नदियाँ हर दिशा से, बहते सागर में मिलें
बादलों का रूप लेकर, बरसे हलके हलके
मिले सुर मेरा तुम्हारा, तो सुर बने हमारा
मिले सुर मेरा तुम्हारा
[ks-dev] चॉन्य् तरज़ तय म्यॉन्य् तरज़, इक॒वट॒ बनि यि सॉन्य् तरज़
[ks-nast]چأنِۂ ترز تَے میأنِۂ ترز، اِکوَٹہٕ بَنِہ یِہ سأنِۂ ترز
[pa] ਤੇਰਾ ਸੁਰ ਮਿਲੇ ਮੇਰੇ ਸੁਰ ਦੇ ਨਾਲ, ਮਿਲਕੇ ਬਣੇ ਇੱਕ ਨਵਾਂ ਸੁਰ ਤਾਲ
[hi] मिले सुर मेरा तुम्हारा, तो सुर बने हमारा
[sd-dev] मुंहिंजो सुर तुहिंजे सां पियारा मिले जड॒हिं, गीत असांजो मधुर तरानो बणे तड॒हिं
[sd-nast] مُنهِنجو سُر تُنهِنجي سان پِيارا مِلي جَڏَهِن، گِيت اَسانجو مَڍُر تَرانوبَڻي تَڏَهِن
[ur] سر کی دریا بہتے ساگر میں ملے
[pa] ਬਾਦਲਾਂ ਦਾ ਰੂਪ ਲੈਕੇ, ਬਰਸਨ ਹੌਲੇ ਹੌਲੇ
[ta] இசைந்தால் நம் இருவரின் ஸ்வரமும் நமதாகும்
திசை வேறானாலும் ஆழி சேர் ஆறுகள் முகிலாய்
மழையாய் பொழிவது போல் இசை
நம் இசை
[kn] ನನ್ನ ಧ್ವನಿಗೆ ನಿನ್ನ ಧ್ವನಿಯ, ಸೇರಿದಂತೆ ನಮ್ಮ ಧ್ವನಿಯ
[te] నా స్వరము నీ స్వరము సంగమమై, మన స్వరంగా అవతరించే
[ml] എന്റെ സ്വരവും നിങ്ങളുടെ സ്വരവും, ഒന്നുചേര്‍ന്നു നമ്മുടെ സ്വരമായ്
[bn] তোমার সুর মোদের সুর, সৃষ্টি করুক ঐক্যসুর
[as] সৃষ্টি হউক ঐক্যতান
[or] ତୁମ ଆମର ସ୍ବରର ମିଳନ, ସୃଷ୍ଟି କରି ଚାଲୁ ଏକ ତାନ
[gu] મળે સૂર જો તારો મારો, બને આપણો સૂર નિરાળો
[mr] माझ्या तुमच्या जुळता तारा, मधुर सुरांच्या बरसती धारा
[hi] सुर की नदियाँ हर दिशा से, बहते सागर में मिलें
बादलों का रूप लेके, बरसे हलके हलके
मिले सुर मेरा तुम्हारा, तो सुर बने हमारा
मिले सुर मेरा तुम्हारा

The idea is what is so pure and so beautiful....and the way it was put...this reached the masses...
this united the masses.

Each one of us could understand the real meaning of this song...in a language that he loves...this can unite us like anything....it wouldn't have been possible if this would have been in one of the languages.

Salute to the genius who made this and thanks to papa for giving me such a beautiful answer.
I'll call this song the  true National Song of  India. 

Thursday, September 16, 2010

दुविधा / Ambiguity

Some years Ago...
Teacher- What are your dreams in life and why have you chosen them?

Me- " मैं  शायद  एक  इंजिनियर   बनना  चाहता  हूँ , या  एक  डॉक्टर . शायद  scientist   भी  सही  है .
ये  सब  मैं  इसलिए  बनना  चाहता  हूँ  क्यूंकि  मुझे  इनकी  कहानियां  सुनाई  गयी  हैं ...
मुझे   तो  पता  भी   नहीं  है   की   ये  सब  क्या  करते  हैं ..पर  मेरे  घर   वाले  चाहते  हैं  की  मैं  इनमे  से  एक  तो  बन  ही   जाऊं  "

Honestly, This is what was going in my mind but to say all this i needed to convert it in English.
All this was lying in my mind but in हिंदी ...so i tried sentence by sentence.
Atlast when i tried to convey my thoughts i could come out with only the following 

"I want to be a scientist or an engineer  in dreams because i want to serve my nation."

Reason was something else...which i had thought in hindi but couldn't convey it in English, so i reiterated something which was mentioned by numerous students before me.


I am done with my schooling, done with my B.tech and it has been three years working in a Job.
In all these years English skills have been improved upon...

Today (After a few years) ..we were undergoing a training session in my new company.
Trainer asked about ourselves and our hobbies and our dream in life.

"I knew i am a computer engineer, i knew i love singing, i love reading books , cycling and writing. My dream in life is to become a teacher  and hopefully add value to children. I wanted to do this because education cures a lot of myths,it raises your mental horizons.I seriously like to work with people and work out a solution to help them and myself become a better ME and HIM."

I was about to answer this and  was mentally preparing the answer in my mind.
The moment i was about to start,he asked us to tell all this in हिंदी ..... शुद्ध  हिंदी  :)

I couldn't believe that inspite of me being so much clear of what i want to do in life,i was not able to come out fluently.
The english sentence used to come in my mind and i used to translate it in Hindi before uttering it out.

This is what i did 15 years ago with English. 

The way i spoke my English 15 years ago...
Same way i was speaking my हिंदी   today.

My thoughts were much more clearer ,crisper but they were in English.

Ironically it was the हिंदी  दिवस  being celebrated through out India.
Should i be sad for going  far from हिंदी  or should i be happy for atleast having a clearer and a more methodical thought process.

Or i should be indifferent to the language that i think in...? 
As long as i am thinking.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

I love you


We have been in a relation for the past 7 years.

It was in first year that i met you for the first time.
I liked you from day one but never knew that the relation would become so strong and get this far.
I still remember when the net use to come at 2:00 at night in the hostel,
and i used to be awake just to be with you for some time.

In all these years you are the only one whose knowledge about me is even more than i know myself.
I may have forgot the date when i first said I love you but you remember each and every thing.
You know everything about my dreams,my ambitions.

You know what i like,you know what i don't like.
I have always looked for the best suggestions and as always you have got the best answers to each of my questions.

You know all my friends, they also like you a lot.
I have also told my parents about you and they also adore you.

Sometimes i fear what would i do if you are not there with me for a single day.
I can't imagine a life without you.

The best thing about you is that i can discuss anything with you.
It can be love, it can be books, it can be friends or it can be just me and my ideas.
I was amazed to see that lately you have started reading my mind also...
It feels so good when someone knows you that closely.

You have been a great friend till now...

I love you a lot and i trust you a lot.
Please don't ever break this Trust.


Can we be together for a lifetime?


Please GOOGLE don't say no.


PS: Thanks for being a part of  our lives.Thank for the search, gmail,,chat,orkut,blogger,picassa,books, maps,news and zillion other things.
Please guys do check out the latest Google Instant and thank google for all that it has done for us in the last so many years.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Thoda Aur...


I was accompanying one of my friends to his job interview in South delhi.

The day started with the normal haggling with the Auto Driver.
If we went by the meter it would have cost us around 100Rs...but as usual Driver quoted us a higher price.

And the age old classical haggle began...

He says 170 ..

We refuse and ask him to leave..

then he says 160 ..we say 110
He keeps judging our expressions,keeps reducing the price as he knows the exact expressions that precede a YES.

finally we move at 140.

At all this, my friend was getting furious on the Driver. He threw all kinds of pejoratives on to him...
Cursed the whole Driver's community...

When i tried to calm him down, he tried to justify his outburst.
"You don't know yar... these people are here to ROB you. They'll not ask for the actual worth of their hard work. Isiliye gareeb hain saale...Gareeb hain aur gareeb hi rahenge."

I nodded ...not because i agreed to what he said but because of the reason that this was not the best time to disagree.

Where he was seeing a Robber,i was seeing a normal human tendency to get a little bit more out of every opportunity.
Driver also knows the ideal price should be 100 but he tries to get that "Thoda Aur..."

Still i didn't raise the point and asked him to calm down before the interview and focus on the interview at hand.

After 5 mnutes or so..he starts again..
"Yar i am not sure what they are going to ask me?"

I asked for his skill set..

"Yar i was on bench for the last 1.5 years and i am not in touch with things anymore.
I am banking on the last companie's(Sapient) Brand name to work for me. Aata to jyada hai nahi."

Hmmm...

then I asked about his expectated salary?

"I am getting 3.6 in my last company and i have 2 year's experience also. So i think i'll ask for 5 atleast."

I nodded and started looking at the buildings outside ...Thinking about the "BENCH"marking experience he was talking about..

After 5 minutes he starts again...

"Yar don't you think 5 is too less, i think i'll ask for 6 lacs. Who knows ...they are ready to give 6 and i am just asking for 5 lacs."

I just smiled in response..as again the "Thoda Aur.." phenomenon was at work.
The phenomenon made him think himself to be worthy of a lakh more in the last five minutes.

I wished him good luck and prayed to god that he doesn't haggle like this with the interviwer.

It would be really bad if interviewer said somethng like....
"You don't know ... these people are here to ROB you. They'll not ask for the actual worth of their hardwork.
Isiliye gareeb hain saale...Gareeb hain aur gareeb hi rahenge."


P.S.: "Thoda aur..." can be 70 Rs for the Auto walah, One Lakh for my friend...,few  Crores for Mr. Kalmadi.


Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Only for Ladies

9:20 am ,I was on my usual Metro Ride to office .On one of the stations an old  lady and her son boarded the train, with all courtesy and without any delay i jumped off my seat and offered the seat to that lady. She gave me a appreciative and thank you smile before accepting the seat.
There was a uncle and a young girl sitting in the same row with Aunty ji.

I got busy with my iPod but  i kept standing right in front of  Aunty. May be she gets off somewhere before my station and i get back my seat.

A few minutes later  ,the uncle sitting with the Aunty ji got off his seat...i gave a glance at the empty seat between aunty and that girl..
The girl adjusted a bit to make room for me to sit.  She knew i had offered the seat to Aunty ji . Aunty ji smiled and gestured towards me to have that seat.

I smiled in response and started moving towards the seat..as i was about to sit..she irritatingly kept her hands on the seat and furiously asked me to move away.
I immediately looked back to confirm as to whom was she gesturing to ?

It was her son..
He came, tucked his bag under the seat and made himself comfortable on the seat.

The girl gave me a cheeky little smile and laughed quietly.
I threw up my hands slightly in desperation ,slightly in amusement.

Again back to my iPod ...song that was playing was from PEEPLI Live
"देस मेरा रंग रेज़ है बाबु  ||
घाट घाट यहाँ घटता जादू "

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

I would love Indian Politics if..

I had a dream that some really nice people got into politics ...

Aamir Khan held the  "Ministry of  Meaningful Work" , 
E Sreedharan led the "Ministry of Building India".....
Sachin Tendulkar handled the "Ministry of Creating Humble Champions"...
Narayan murthy headed the "Ministry of  Empowering Others".

The cabinet was discussing the top goals they needed to immediately start working on.

Following is the debate that followed...

Aamir Sir -  I think i would want my nation to  Experiment..a nation where people don't fear the result of the experiment but are curious and excited  to see what happens when we add those two chemicals. It may blast or it may create a  beautiful new chemical but that would be known only after the experiment. In either case the journey is worth giving a Go. So i would go for a change in attitudes where Trying is rewarded much more than the failure is rebuked.

"Par uske liye is desh ke baapo ko sudharna padega...jab tak is desh ke baap nai sudhrenge ye desh nahi sudhrega .... kyun Sachin??

Sachin Sir -- I think Aamir is correct...I would just like to add that.....when you are doing those experiments... i am sure you'll surely get your dream experiment.There will be one experiment when you'll say that "Yes... this is what i always wanted to do. " When you find that something..please don't compare yourself with others...try and fall in love with that experiment and try to improve your expertise on that experiment day after day. When you are competing with yourself...humbleness automatically comes in your work..you can't be haughty and arrogant after improving on your last performance ,
I always have believed Excellence is the thing to be strived for...perfection is a myth. 
[Looks towards Aamir and gives a cheeky smile]

Murthy Sir -- I think Aamir should change his name to Mr Excellence... [everybody laughs]

Sreedharan Sir -- Excellence is truly the thing to be chased ...i second that hands down. I would like to add my point that for India to devleop... it has to believe in itself. 
I am very much against the notion of Developing nations and Developed Nations. The nations which call themselves developed nations ...have they stopped developing?  Each of us is developing infact the developed are developing at a faster rate. Those nations just want us to feel that ..the benchmarks will be set by them and we need to be following them in the development...every nation's development is relative and it has to be continuous..no nation is developed...because once you say you are developed..your improvement will stop and your downhill roll will start. 
If we think that being a "developed" nation will make us happy.... can we just feel developed for what we were 30 years ago and not feel "developing" for the things that we want to be 30 yrs from now. 
Being a developing nation is true for all nations.. then why to feel inferior because of this categorization. 

Murthy Sir, Aamir Sir and Sachin Sir Clap in unison ...Sreedharan Sir thanks in all humility.
All this while Sreedharan Sir was speaking, cabinet was in pin drop silence listening to his views and jotting down points. Speaker of the cabinet couldn't believe his eyes as this was not the usual Cabinet Meeting.

Aamir Sir...  I think Sree sir extended what Sachin just concluded. It's again competing with yourself and when a nation does that it never becomes developed..it is always developing. Brilliant. 

Murthy Sir....  I agree to everything that you people said...We have to be experimenters, we have to be constantly improve ourselves and  we as a nation have to start taking pride in ourselves for being what we are and for believing in what we can be .

I would like to extend this discussion by suggesting a change in the mindset of the working force. While working there has to be a shift in your earning paradigm. This shift is called S2T. Salary to Turnover. 
I want the knowledge workers of my country to make this shift as early as possible. In this change the person stops thinking about the salary and starts thinking of a turnover. This is a huge systemic change and would require support of the parents ,the institutions ,banks..etc. When we start thinking in terms of turnover...we start empowering people.We start to build the India of our dreams. We  leave our cushions and take the path to that elusive first turnover. Turnover need not be millions or billions...it isn't about the scale ..it is about meaning.  I really wish some school to come up where students don't talk about the highest package one got but the highest turnover his company generated.

Aamir Sir- Sir Your Catamaran Venture fund would surely help people take this shift.

Murthy Sir - ya Aamir i am doing my bit...you are doing the same job with you aamir khan productions.We need to empower people to realize their dreams.

Sachin Sir...  I think i should also start with some academy where i can help people understand the lessons which i myself got in 20 long years.

Sree Sir....India is really fortunate to have people like you...please carry on the good work...

Everybody shook hands and left.

Notice board had the following agendas
1)Be excited to Try and Experiment ,failure is secondary. 
2)Compete with just one Person. YOU
3)Take pride in being a Developing Nation....coz every single nation is.
4)Think Turnovers not packages.

Suddenly i heard a huge protest on the street..i went outside and saw an Aamir Khan effigy being burnt  because in some conference he spoke his heart out on Reservation .

I thought Dream was better...reality is a nightmare.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Cycling Dilli

It has been around 6 months now that i have been cycling in and around Delhi. Trips to Noida and Gurgaon have been a real strength and endurance testers .So in a nutshell cycling has been fun but the post is not about my cycling expeditions ..it's about something else.

It's about how the people of Delhi have taken my cycling? 
It's about their reactions....

Normally i leave for my cycling expeditions looking something like this  ------>

Ok so.. now we start with the reactions....


Comment  1- "Beta ji aapko sharam nahi aati..office cycle pe jate ho." :-o 
Source -  Aunty Ji(Neighour)
My reaction  - Confused, i mean i was like speechless.Why should i be ashamed ???????  What have i done ??

Comment 2 - "Aapki salary kam hai kya..."
Source  - HDFC guard ,he sits right in front of where i park my cycle.
My Reaction - Hanji bahut kam hai ...kuch nahi dete ye log.Cycle se metro ka paisa to bach hi jata hai. 
He nods his head as if his assumption had just been validated by my answer.

Comment 3 - "Oye.... cycle utte bhi helmet laya hoya hai..ki gal oye.??"
Source -  4-5 Punjabi Boys in a Santro car. They were having beer and music was blasting loud.
My Reaction - Smile on the face and the most vulgar of pejorative in my mind. They made fun of me for some distance and i was just wishing for them to get lost out of my sight.



Comment 4 - "Commonwealth se pehle nahi rukne wala ye"
Source - Blue Line bus conductor
My Reaction - Smiled and hoped the conductor was true...i really want to continue my cycling .The conductor made that comment and then did a small hi five with one of his co conductors.


Now the last one is quite creative



Comment 5- "Ohhh michael jackson side ne ho laiii......" [Ombir style- khosla Ka Ghosla]
Source - Rickshaw Wala
My Reaction - I mean i am not sure if Michael Jackson ever did bicyle...even if he did he was not famous because of that. I very politely got to one side[i should have moon walked]...and  with utmost politeness i offered him the pass.

These were the top 5 comments that i remember.Cycling in itself is fun...these incidents make it  funnier.
Infact i have started enjoying them.... 

Monday, July 5, 2010

Inflation


"I am Leaving for some party meeting,would be back by evening." Ramesh tells his wife.

"Who will take Rahul for his Exam? He has his Entrance today." Sudha asks Ramesh.

"Arey..Arey i forgot ..Acha do one thing keep Rs500 and please drop him at the centre.
I am getting late ..i'll leave now."

"500Rs won't do...I'll need more."

Ramesh grudges a bit and then hands over a 1000 Rs note to Sudha.

On his way to the meeting he is visibly frustrated and irritated as he has no idea of what was expected of him in the meeting.
On reaching the meeting ,his party leaders tell him about some BANDH today.
He was given the responsibility to stop the METRO train.
Being a loyal worker of the party he accepted the responsibility and left for the metro station.

He had to wrestle the security officers but he overpowered them and managed to enter the Dwarka Metro Station.
Without wasting any time he jumped on the track ,followed by hundreds of similar clueless party workers.

Train entered and around 500 passengers had to be evacuated as Ramesh and comrades were lying in front of the train.
Ramesh was dancing in front of the train.

Amongst the passengers were his wife and his son.
Rahul had prepared very well for this test and there he was almost..about to miss the test and that too because of his father.
He was petrified at the mere thought of missing the test and ironically Ramesh was busy in his bhangra on the track.

Sudha and Rahul somehow forced there way out of the station.
They had to take an auto and paid Rs 250 to reach the center(150 more than the normal).
The autos were charging exorbitant rates as they had to circumvent these dharnas and the bandhs.

Exam finsihed around 2:00 in the noon but by then Delhi had been brought to a complete halt.
Metro Service was disrupted,buses were punctured ,effigies burn't and all this was done by people like Ramesh.

It took around 3 hours to reach home,the auto guy charged them 350 on their way back.
Both of them were cursing the people who had disrupted the metro service.
The trip which would have cost them just 60 Rs had cost them a hefty 700 Rs .

Reaching home..they saw that all the vegetable vendors were also made to close there shops.
They couldn't buy any thing for the dinner.
Moreover these bandh people closed down only the small small vendors.
Five star hotels and the other big eateries were wroking routinely.

Sudha thought of ordering some food from the nearby three star hotel.
Rahul and sudha had there dinner .

Ramesh came home at around 10 in the night.
He loved the dinner..it was delicious.

Before sleeping..he picked up the diary to write today's expenses.
He was shocked to see his wife's entry for the day..

5th July 2010
---------------------------
Auto to Exam Center --Rs 250
Auto Back  home - Rs 350
Dinner  - Rs 1500

Total - 2200

----------------

He took a deep breath ....
and sighed ...
"My god ...how expensive this city has become? I don't know where this country is heading?"
and then he SLEPT....

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Bhuvan

Who is a good manager?
In a team how do you separate a good manager from a bad one?
What are his characteristics,how does he behave,what his management style?

I have tried to come up with a small differentiation.
Good Manager(GM) is a LEADER.
Bad Manager(BM) is a MASTER.

I'll explain what i mean...

There is a jungle to be crossed ,no one knows the path.

A GM(Leader) will assign responsibilities to each of his team members .
Each one in the team is working on the same task,everone is contributing to the same task ,the GM is leading them.
Formation of the team is like this

***
***
***              --------------------
***    GM          Jungle                                
***              --------------------
***
***

Everyone is happy and the team morale is high

however in the other case it is like

Jungle has to be crossed ,Master (BM) is sitting on a chariot commanding his troops to make a way.
He expects the team to know a way or if they don't...they better figure it out.


   
         ***
         ***      --------------------
         ***         Jungle                                         
BM   ***       --------------------
         *** 
         ***
         ***
   
Probably the boss is happy...team morale takes a dip.

In both cases the work is done but i think the latter is an authoritarian way of doing things.
If one says that he has mastered his team..that means he has created an army of robots,who don't think on there own but just obey the commands.

You Master skills...you master technology...you master tools.
People are never mastered....they are led.

They are led the Bhuvan way(lagaan), they are led the Gandhi way.
However ...Cricket is Mastered the Sachin Way , Music is Mastered the Rahaman way...

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Amma Ji

I was anxious for my IIM S result. The more i tried to stay cool..more the anxiety got the better of me.
I decided to move my mind ahead of the result and act as if i was selected and what all would i do after my selection?

The first thing that came to my mind was that now my roommate would have to change the house.
Second thing that i could think of was that our maid(Amma ji) would be left jobless.

Amma ji is a lady in her early 70s. Off late God has been really angry with her..Her husband stopped working,the only source of incopme stopped  ...in another few months he lost his mental balance. She had to take control of the family. She was battling her way out of this trouble..but God had more surprises for her. She lost 3 sons in a span of 2 years. All 3 sons left their children(6 in total) with her. 4 were somehow adjusted in there respective mother's family but 2 of them were less fortunate. After losing their father they lost their mother as well. Amma ji decided to take care of these two children and since 10 years she has been looking after these kids.

Amma ji earns Rs 1700 from our home and Rs 1300 from another house where she works.
I was feeling uneasy as to how will i tell Amma ji regarding her job being terminated? I decided that being a good employer, before leaving... i am going to pay her 3 months of salary(as this is how good employers fire their staff).
This was something i had learn't in the corporate world.
This was something that came under good management practices.
but still i didn't have the courage to confront Amma ji and give her yet another shock in her already troubled life..

All these thoughts were running in my mind and i was doing all the Post Result planning. Suddenely the negative devil came back and told me that all this would only happen ,if i cleared the Gd/PI process.What if my name is not there? What if i am not selected? Again anxiety started taking its toll on me.So many people are waiting for my result...what will i tell them if i don't make it this time also? These thoughts were taking away my happiness..i was feeling uneasy. My pain was that i wanted to get through to the IIM S.

With all these thoughts I was staring blankly on my laptop and thinking of how do i tell Amma ji about the pink slip.
Amma ji used to work so honestly and diligently that it was not at all her mistake ,but still she will be fired.

I was imaginging myself going to her and giving 5000 Rs in her hands and telling her the bitter truth.I knew she would cry and then i would have to console her giving her the resons as to why i can not continue with her.

I was imagining all this and Suddenely Amma Ji comes from the kitchen and with a smile asks me..
"Beta aap ja rahe ho padhne?"
I was perplexed as to how does she know that..may be my roommate has informed her..confused i answer
"Amma ji ..hmmm...abhi to nahi ...abhi to result aana hai,Pukka nahi hai abhi"
She kept her hand on my head and  blessed me like a mother...it was a divine sort of blessing..
"Beta aap pass ho jaoge.Khoob aage badho..aur khub taraaki karo..mere liye thoda ruke rehna aapne"

I was frozen as this was something i had not imagined...
She wanted me to go ahead and achieve my dreams and this was something absolutely pure.
My going away meant a 60% slash in her salary but still she blessed me for my future.
I was dumbstruck as to who was taking care of whom....
would i have reacted the same way if my employer would have asked me to move on and leave?

God has been so cruel to her..yet the faith has not shaken .
"Beta ji aap aage badho...bhagwan hai na hamara dhyan rakhne ke liye.Sab badhiya hoga."

All this while, in that moment it was Amma ji who was making me understand as if everything is fine with her and i am the one who needs to be consoled.
She was again and again reinforcing her belief in god...and by this time it was me who was about to cry.
I felt so small ,so non existent .
I felt guilty of cribbing my small little fear of not making it to IIMS.
Amma ji stood there smiling at all the adversities she has faced in life..it was as if these things don't bother her anymore.

I realised i had no right to complain...i had no right to crib..instead i should be thankful to god for all that he has done for me.

Next day i got my result and i wasn't selected...i was sad for a moment but then Amma ji came flashing to my mind. If she can be happy with all that that has happened with her....
i have no right to be sad. Atleast not in front of her....
I reached home and Amma ji asked about my result...
"Amma ji nahi hua.." I said with a sad smile..

Amma ji immediately made out that i was not my happy self...
"Are beta isme kya ho gaya ...aise ni hote udass.Sab hi lag gaye pass hone to sab hi nahi pahunch jaenge wahan... jahan pahunchana hai."

I was left frozen at the innocence and the concern that Amma ji showed at that moment.
I wanted to be strong in front of her...although i couldn't stop wondering...a few days ago i was thinking that i'll take care of her as an employer..and today the tables have turned...
Amma ji might not be knowing the best management Practices but she surely does know some other practises that all of us need so badly in our life.

I asked GOD to take care of her and give her some happiness atleast in the last few years of her life.

Amma ji helped me a lot in leaving the IIM S thing behind and move ahead on my path to my dreams...IIM s would have been a great catalyst but even without it ..the reaction has to occur.
It always does complete even without a catalyst...

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Michael Phelps

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Content of the blog series(This one and two previous to this)  are directly  taken from Phelps' Autobiography...No limits. The author just wanted to share the thrill with his readers and has not tampered with any of the narratives. Infact my creative contribution to this blog is just 0.0001% (reading from the book and typing it for all of you).


If you liked the blog series ,you'll like the book as well . Please order a copy for yourself. (I got it from flipkart.com).
 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Beijing olympics had started and i was preparing myself for the first race. 400 Mtr individual medley..
The most demanding of all races...Butterfly..Back Stroke...Breast Stroke and free style.100 mtr each

I had told bob that i would not race 400 mtr IM ever again as this was a very very demanding race.
This was my first shot at the supposedly the  first Gold out of the 8 Medals that i had promised my country.
I could have taken it as a pressure but i decided to take it as inspiration.I had to do it because so many people who loved me  wanted me to do it.
I had to win it for mom,
I had to win it for bob ...
I had to win it for America..

I was told that my races would be shown at prime time in USA.I was thrilled to hear this as i was trying to leave  Swimming bigger and better then what i had received.

All the values ,hardwork and endurance that i had built over the years were to be tested in the next few minutes. Moreover i didn't want to falter at the very first step as if i did falter.. the excitement and the thrill would go away  from the rest of the races as it will break my 8 Gold dream.

I was feeling good..infact very good .  Bob had taught us to visualize the race in your mind before you actually do it.

All of us were standing on the blocks....Announcement was made and Beep went the buzzer.

The best of the best athletes from all over the world dived in...i took it easy for the first 50 mtrs..I wanted to pump it up in the next 50.
After the butterfly i was having a one body length lead ,I figured i would be ahead for the next 100 mtrs as well but my fellow competitor Lochte had some other idea. He took away my lead and sent me into second position.

At 200 i was just in front but not that much as i had visualized earlier.Coming of the 300 mark i had no idea of the rest of the swimmers....i only knew that i have to give it everything in the last 100 mtrs of freestyle.It wasn't until 350 that i knew what was what and who was where.I took my first breath and couldn't find either of my competitors.I knew i had won...i went underwater , i smiled as i was going for the finish line and yes i was going strong.

I won the race and i smashed my own world record by 1.41 seconds.
Race to eight was still on...

After the race i could see my mom,Bob and George Bush clapping and cheering for me in the stands.
It was a absolutely pure and a proud moment for all of us.

On the medal stands American Flag went up..and the American anthem started playing.I was awarded the Gold medal. I was overwhelmed by the moment and I started crying...i was sobbing. I wanted to sing the anthem but the purity of the moment got the better of me. I could see my mother having tears in her eyes..This was such a proud moment for all of us. I was trying to control my tears and start singing the anthem...

The moment anthem reached "....the land of the brave" and the moment i was about to join in..
Some technical glitch occurred and the anthem ended abruptly.
The moment meant so much for me , i mean it was apart of a dream that i have surrendered my life for but sadly it got spoiled because of a technical fault...

I couldn't stop myself from laughing...i was laughing with tears in my eyes...In such an emotionally rich moment how can you stop the background music?

I was crying...i was laughing and i was thinking...
"Seven more Chances ,may be, for the Chinese to get the American Anthem right."

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Phelps' Mom

I am really blessed to have a mother who was so supportive of whatever her children wanted to do.
I'll like to share a few incidents which have left the strongest of impacts on me and my life.

I was pretty bad at chemistry...and by pretty bad i mean the worst that one could be.
My teacher called my mother and complained about my performance and my efforts.
Mom just kept listening and after some 15 minutes of complaining ,she told the teacher that
"May be your are not teaching interesting stuff."

To this teacher replied "Mrs Phelps you mean to say that we are the ones at fault and your child is a special talent.I'm sorry but he isn't and he is not going to be a succesful man in life."

We left the office and on our way back my mom told me
"Mike you have travelled 5 countries this year,swam with the top international athletes.This is much more important than those chemistry lessons.I know this will help you a lot in life.So don't worry and just relax as you are not just going to be fine in life but you'll do great. "

This gave me a huge boost and i gave my absolute very best at each of my laps.

Another event that i remember is that before leaving for Beijing olympics,it was kind of hugely advertised that i would win 8 gold medals.Hype was amazing and at every press conference i was just answering as to how i would win those 8 gold medals.

My coach and my mom were not ok with it.My mom talked to the coach and both of them planned something.
My coach asked me that "Are the press reporters going to help me win those 8 medals?"

I thought and i said "No"

Then why are you wasting your energy discussing it with them..

Mom came to my practise and held a banner in her hand,that said "Actions speak louder than words."

Mom made me go even harder that day..as you don't win gold medals in press conferences.
You win them in the pool and thats where you should be.

Another thing she told me was that we just have control over our own actions.Rest we can not control but in order to realize that perfect dream....we need a bit of fate.
It doesn't matter if fate is in our control or not...we decide our fate if we put in the hard steps.More the number of hours i would spend in the pool..more would be my chances to get those 8 gold medals...more would be the chances for everything to be perfect.

I did what was required of me and yes i did attract some fate.....
Everything Seemed so perfect, i felt so good at Beijing....

All of us were standing in the Olympic stadium and staring at the giant screen...the opening ceremony was just about to start...

I had just one number in my mind....and that was 8.
Suddenly the countdown to start the games began on the screen....
Games started at 08/08/08 8:00pm.

I saw the screen ,smiled and thanked mom.
The fate was sealed.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Phelps' Coach

I was just 12 and i was preparing for the national swimmmers meet where i had to swim the 200 mtr buttrfly.
The national record stood at 2 min:04.06 secs.

I was excited and enthusiastic to compete in that race,i wanted to win the race and shatter all the records.
However at the end of the race clock read -2min:9.37 secs.
It was really disappointing as i was someone who was supposed to break all the records.
BOB was furious yet attentive enough to make me take note of the lesson.
Coach made me understand that there is no substitute for hardwork,talent is fine but nothing can replace time spent in the pool.

After that I started some rigourous routines.I used to swim some 80,000 mtrs/week.
Be it christmas..be it thanks giving day..I was training in the pool.
I never missed the routine 5 hour training.It was kind of a third degree drill but i knew it was making me stronger.
In the olympics most are strong enough physically... it's the mental toughness that will decide your fate.

Going through the hardest of routines for the next two years..i was again ready for the 200 mtr butterfly and this time i just wanted to swim the best that i could.
With the kind of practise that i had done i was sure of doing well but at the same time i had to ensure anxiety doesn't get the better of me.

Record stood at 2:04.06secs.I had to better it...

I dived... swam a beautiful race ,enjoyed every stroke of mine...after 4 laps i came up and glanced toward the score board.
It said 1:59:06... i had bettered the record by a massive 5 seconds.All the hardwork of the past two years came down to these 2 minutes.

I was happy ,my family was happy.Infact my mom had prepared a huge banner to welcome me home ,she had arranged a small party for me.
When my coach came to know about all this preparation ,he tore the banner and threw it away.
None of us could understand why he did that.

My mom got disappointed as she wanted to celebrate my success.

Coach asked her to temper the joy and keep everything in perspective of the bigger picture..as.... if I had to go 3000 steps ,this was just the 30th.
The party was cancelled and all of us just had a quite dinner.
Next morning i was again in the pool..

Everything went to normal and it wasn't taken as much of an achievement.
I was again doing those killer sets one after the other.
I continued competing with myself and kept on improving.
Coach always told me to not put any limits on what i could achieve.
He always said  "Two seconds faster than the world record..doesn't matter.3 seconds faster.. doesen't matter.You can swim as fast as you want.You can do anything you want.

Just dream it,believe it and achieve it."

One thing that he has got hardwired in my mind is that never get satisfied prematurely.
Every finish line is nothing but start of yet another race.

I have lived this suggestion all  my life .

Thanks BOB, i owe you a lot.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Big Bazaar

On my way back from office i was struck with this very weird thought.

There is a place....where market is the producer and producer is the same as the customer.Same person does the advertisement and the same guy takes care of the Operations. 
Market,producer,customer,advertiser and the operations guy are all the same.

I know it's weird....but in a while it will start making sense.
I am talking about myself.

I am the market....I can get each and everything within me.

I am the producer who is creating different products .I can produce happiness,sadness,courage,integrity.
I am the creator of my future ..i'll create my successes and failures.

I have several consumers inside me..One is an optimist..other a pessimist.One is a go getter ..other is a lazy fellow.
One wants me to be the change...Other asks me to relax and enjoy the status quo.

I am the advertiser...I can advertise motivating stuff,depressing stuff,happy stuff or sad stuff....
Whatever i advertise it feeds to the strengths of any one particular customer.
Suppose i am advertising depressing stuff...the pessimistic customer will become dominant in the market. 
Equally true for the motivating stuff as well.

Whichever customer relates to the advertisement...you feed his strengths and the other customers start getting weak.
Only thing to remember is that advertisements have to be consistent.The moment you relax on the advertising front..demand starts to drop and customer loses on its excitement and the urge to buy that product.

Similarly i am the operations manager...advertiser got me excited for a particular product but without proper operations i may not be able to buy that product.It has to reach me when i ask for it.I have to manage all the logistics of the product to reach me at the right time at the right place.

Just like any well run company...if all these guys can work in perfect synchronization.. i'll get a amazing Product.

..and yes... the Product will again be me.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Happy Hours

I was in NIT H  last week..and it was exciting and nostalgic to be back in a place to which i owe a lot.
Luckily Bhowmick Sir was also in college and he was staying right next to my room in the guest house. In one of our interactions i asked him that
"What should be the role of a teacher in contemporary times?"
Sir thought for  a while and answered after a brief pause...
"I think the only role of a teacher is to keep his students excited."

That's it...the simplicity of the answer baffled me...Just to keep the students excited and nothing else.
I thought a lot over that answer and i think he was absolutely correct.

We have attended 1000's of lectures in our education till now..can you remember a few lectures at the end of which you were left in a higher excited state?
My answer is very very few and these few lectures were taken by teachers whom i respect till now.

Excitement and enthusiasm are the basis to learning,without them the learning won't be effective and moreover it won't be fun.
So if a teacher can keep us in an excited state i think we can do wonders....

but with majority of our formal education done ...there is a little chance that we'll find some teacher who'll excite us for something.
but informal education will go on for life...so we can either get some mentor or may be we can be our own teachers?
Can we tell ourselves a few things which might keep us excited and hence feel the joy of learning and keep teaching ourselves to be a better person everyday.

I think we can...a major issue that i have come across with my own behavior is that... most of the times i don't find myself excited enough towards the things that i am doing.

Can i make my day so exciting that i love what i am doing and at the same time i am excited about the next thing that i am going to do.
There is no cribbing,no frustration ....just loving what i am doing and i am dying to do the next thing.

I tried to keep my self excited for one full day....

I got up early at 5:30am because i was excited to do cycling afterall it's a cool bike and i am the only one who has that helmet.
I enjoyed cycling because i was excited to do swimming at 6:00am plus i want to be like Lance Armstrong.
I enjoyed swimming because it is a very good exercise and it will make me fitter.
After swimming i had to get back to my flat but what will motivate me to enjoy cycling on the way back.
While coming it was swimming but now what...??

I asked my maid to prepare some delicious Aloo Puris...I know its high calories but if it's the yumminess of Alloo Poori that will get me excited..so be it. :P

I enjoyed the Aloo Poori and it was around 8:30 in the morning...i had loved the hours till that time.They were just so happy.

After Aloo Poori i had to read the autobiography of Michael Phelps.After all... that'll give me a new hero and a completely different angle to how i view Swimming....

Next inline was office. I tried to do my work well and tried to do it fast because it gave me a sense of professional satisfaction plus the leverage to leave early and again enjoy my cycling back home.

The day was in a highly excited and energetic state...I loved the regimen and was excited to discuss it with you...so that's why i wrote this blog,excited to see how you find this funda. I had to write it fast because it was already 11:30pm and i should have been slept by that time.
After all i had to repeat all this tomorrow.

Phewww....A day full of happy hours...how i wish to make each of my days similar.

Thanks a lot Bhowmick Sir....I'll definitely try to keep myself excited about anything that i do,after all these Happy hours are the building blocks to a Happy life.

Needless to say you are one of the best teachers as just like the thousands of your students you have got me Excited as well.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Lemon , Chillies and Baisakhi


I  was on my way to the school after my Physics tuition in the morning.It was around 7:30 in the morning.Suddenely i crossed a lemon tied to a green chilli and surrounded by haldi.All this stuff was kept on a chauraha (crossroads).This is a black magic trick and harms the person who crosses it.
My Friend -"hey gaurav see what you crossed just now."
Being a science student i ignored it and moved on.I had a normal day at school and i got back at 3:30pm.Usually my parents used to get home at 4:30 pm but that day they were both at home.

I didn't notice their being early but i did notice my mom's tears .I asked papa as to what happened.He didn't tell anything but instead pointed towards my mother to get my answers.

I asked her as to what had happened..
She kept crying and asked "Did you cross over some black magic today?"

I was absolutely shocked as i had crossed it in the morning but how could she know it? She was nowhere near to see me crossing it.
I answered in affirmation and her tears increased many folds.

With great persuasion she started telling me what had happened with her throughout the day.
She is a teacher and some baba(GodMan) had come to her school.

Baba told her that my grandfather is ill from last 13 years(which was true),he also told that there were blood drops surrounding our house a few years ago(again true).
He said that her son(me) sometimes gets up from sleep totally shocked(again true).

These things were enough to get my mother in confidence.

He asked her to take him home as something bad was about to happen with me.My mom got scared and immediately signed off for the day.She and baba left for home.The moment baba reached outside my room he started doing a tandav kind of dance.He was dancing awkwardly and shouting "Ghor Sankat ,Ghor Sankat".

My mother was petrified and shocked...she didn't know what to do and how to handle this.She called papa and asked him to come home at once.He refused at first but my mother pleaded and asked him to come for me.
"Please come for Gaurav and please swear of gaurav that you won't say anything to the baba."

Papa reached but he doesn't buy these baba-isms. Baba gave him a black thread and asked him to close the thread in his fist.Then he asked him to move that fist over my belongings,my bed,my books etc.He declared that if i was in danger ,the thread would shorten in length else the length would remain the same.

After doing what baba had asked, papa opened his fist and to his astonishment, thread was 3/4th of what it actually was.

My mother was almost stoned..she was absolutely still and had no clue whatsoever as to how she could save me from that danger.

In all these scenes Baba made an announcement

"Your son has crossed some black magic today.It ws not meant for him but as he has crossed it ,he has to pay the price.In 3 days from now ,on the day of baisakhi...he would DIE. He cannot be saved."

Hearing this ...my Papa lost his cool,he asked the baba to pick his stuff and get lost.However my mother wanted some solution and somehow beleived that the baba could save me.

She asked for some antidote...Baba just concluded by saying

"I'll not take any money as it is useless,i just came to inform you.He can not be saved..but if he does survive the baisakhi he is going to be hugely succecsful.
Survival although is really tough,he is going to die this baisakhi."


This was 10th of april and baisakhi was on 13th.

After hearing the day's proceedings ,i was making a mockery of the baba and my mother's superstitious nature.I asked her to prepare good food for me as i was left with just 3 more days.It was fun for some time but after an hour or so i also felt the intensity of the prediction.

I started thinking as to what if this comes true.
Just three more days and over.....

I had recently been selected for the school cricket team and i had to play my debut match in the next three days...I wanted to play that match but somwhere deep inside i was fearing the leather ball as it could become the reason for my demise.

My mother wanted me to opt out of the team,my father dared me to play the match .(agar mera beta hai to khelega) :(

It was getting scary...i was not allowed to play football in school...my friends asked me to cover my nose in the chemistry lab as we were never sure which fume could have taken away my life.

Baba had made the next three days some sort of a suspense thriller for me,....my mother kept crying and worshipping.My father tried to be very positive and practical but deep down he was also afraid. I also was praying to all my gods above to save me.


As if One baba was not enough ,my mother took me to another one.She said that the second one would tell us if the first one was right or not.

The second baba took out a huge magnifying glass and started analysing my palm.He zoomed in,zoomed out...suddenely he made a cross on my palm and shook his head side ways as we often do while refusing some thing.

I interpreted the movement as to everything is wrong(cross on my palm) and nothing can be done now but second baba had someting else to say...


second baba "everything is fine,there is no issue.These people(first baba) can tell about the past but none can tell about the future you are absoulutely safe beta."

"...but still if you feel afraid,take ganga jal ,chant hanuman chalisa while stirring the ganga jal.after the hanuman chalisa sprinkle the ganga jal in a circle around yourself before you sleep."


I did what he told but that made it even more scary....it felt as if all the spirits and the ghosts would be dancing just outside that ganga jal circle but they cannot enter the circle. They will be electrocuted if they try to enter the circle.

This feeling made it even more spooky and haunting...

However i spent the next two and a half days(10th to 11:40pm on 12 th night) like this only.....
It was 11:45 pm and in 15 minutes from now..baisakhi would start.I was imagining myself getting breathless and choking to death,or may be  heartattack and blood from the nose.Basically all the aahat shows were coming again and again to me....
Hanuman chalisa was on...ganga jal was all around me...


Clock struck 12:00..noithing happened.
12:05 ..still nothing.

1:05am nothing happened...i was not dead...baba was wrong.Black Magic was ineffective.

Next day i was on a leave and my mother sat right besides me the whole day.She thought that she could save me if something bad happened.
The day was over...infact 5 baisakhis have been over from that date and i am doing quite fine.

But whenever this festival comes ,it sends a chill down my spine ....
As i pay tribute to those three days....i wish you all a very joyous and a happy baisakhi.




Sunday, April 4, 2010

Fan Of Kalam

A hot sunday afternoon,mercury around 40 degerees.I am lying on my bed reading Wings of Fire by APJ Kalam.
Ceiling fan is blowing at full speed but the heat is such that the fan literally seems to have Wings of Fire.

Kalam ji shares a really interesting story in which he defines leadership really beautifully.

Kalam ji was working under the leadership of Dr. Satish Dhawan and they were working on a very ambitious project.It had been almost 3 years of efforts and it had to be launched in a weeks time.Whole of india was excited about this project but somehow on the day of the launch,something went wrong and the rocket plunged into water.

Whole of india wanted answers as to why did this happen? Whose fault was it?
The young team of Kalam and other scientists was petrified and nervous at the failure. Dr. Dhawan told the team to be calm and take it easy.He himself handled the press conference. Kalam was struck with this incident and after the conference he was called by Dr .Dhawan for the explanations.

Dhawan had immense confidence in Kalam ji and hence he gave him another year to get the fault fixed.

Kalam and his team slogged in for the next year and as expected rocket launch was successful the next year.Again a press conference was waiting,this time Dr.Dhawan asked Kalam ji and his team to address the conference.

Kalam ji says that this type of lesson can never be learn't in some business school or class.
He was humbled by the actions of Dr. Dhawan who taught Kalam that...

"Failure is for the leader and success is for the team".

I was also deeply touched by this story and i immediately rolled back to remember if anytime i had been in such a situation and what did i do as a leader?

Laying on the bed and thinking of a similar incident the fan above did take me to one such event.
It was i think 1996-97 ,summer afternoon.I was sitting under the fan and tossing a coin.I had been doing this for quite some time now...i gave the coin a toss and to my amusement it went straight through the fan and came down without touching the blades of the fan.

I caught the coin and looked at the fan above.It was almost impossible...fan blowing at full speed and still the coin manages to come untouched.

I got a bit excited at this and called my sister to see this miracle.She comes and i again toss the coin..it goes up ..but this time it strikes one of the blades and bang...the coin blasts the light tube in the room.It was a small blast sort of thing...white powder scattered in the room.

My excitement turned to shivering ,i was absolutely stunned and was already feeling the pain of the destined beating .

One of my neighbor came rushing after hearing that blast and cleared up all the mess.
When she was gone i immediately opened my books and started studying.My sister also thought that it was really a good idea  to get down to studies.

I wasn't able to concentrate ,the books were open but mind was elsewhere. Why didn't the coin go through? Why did it have to strike the blades?

At 3:30 my mother came from school and asked how come both of us were studying at this hour?We didn't reply.She sensed the unusualness around and may be  my ealrier trackrecord made it a a bit easy for her to guess.

She asked "Kya toda?"
I pointed towards the non existent tube.She looked above and was taken aback at the missing tube.

She pulled me by my ear and asked about the modus operandi of this operation.All this while my sister seemed to have got more involved in her studies.She was not even looking at me getting thrashed.My mother smacked me on my face and the smack triggered the following explanation....

"Mumma I was sitting on the chair and tossing this coin. I was just tossing it and nothing else. I don't even know when Kitu came and turned on the fan.She didn't tell me that the fan is on and suddenely one of my tosses hit the fan and hence blasted the tube."

That called for a series of slaps but thank god this time they were divided.slaaaaap me slaaaaap Kitu slap me slap her.

I was the leader and i did exactly opposite to what Kalam would have wanted me to do.For me,Failure was for the team.All this while my sister remained quite and kept on dividing my share of beating. May be my team loved me but the leader was an outright _____________.(fill in the blank with whatever you like.I'll fill @33hole.)

I have improved over the years but i would certainly like to say sorry to my sister and thanks to Mr Kalam for such a beautiful lesson.

Today the Fan has made me a even bigger Fan Of Dr. Kalam.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Rondurance

In yet another attempt to keep myself fit and the process fun,i am doing a lot of cycling these days.
Infact over the weekend i rode for around 100 kms.

There are a few things for which i am doing this..
1)Lance Armstrong is my hero and you generally idolise your heroes.
2)I want to get fit.
3)I want to win over my mind.I want to fool it and keep enduring in situations where it tries to give up.

The first two are self explanatory,they are obvious and i won't detail them for you.

It's the third one that is quite interesting....

Last Saturday
Morning -5 am
Destination - India gate ,16kms (one side)
I started at 5 in the morning and was doing quite well for the first 10-12 kms.I had checked the google map and was knowing almost all of the path.when i was just 2-3 kms away from the India Gate...i started getting tired and i wanted to reach the Destination as soon as possible.My mind was racing ahead of me and it wanted to be there before we were actually there. I was  feeling like stopping and resting for a while but as Lance says "Pain is temporary,Quitting lasts forever"..i stuck it out.I reached india gate...enjoyed the view there and started back to my place.

So the first day i tired around the 12-13 km mark on a journey of 16 kms.

This Saturday
Destination - Noida (31 kms one side)
I again started at 5 in the morning..and this time i knew it's going to be a long journey.This time i started getting tired near the Akshardham mandir(almost 25-26 km mark).I stuck it out..reached noida and back to Delhi.
So i could analyse that mind is behaving relatively..it gets tired relative to the job at hand.
It is the same me and first day i get tired at 12-kms .
On the second day i know it's going to be 64 kms(both ways) and i can not afford to be tired at 12 kms..so i get tired around 25 km mark.

This Sunday
Destination -Again India Gate,(16 kms)
I started at 5:30am ....I was again doing well for the first 10-12 kms and then i started my legs getting heavy.Mind had again started it's game..but this time i told it to shut up as i knew yesterday it had covered 64 kms.I knew it can't tire today as 16 km was just the 1/4th of what it had covered yesterday.

The moment i said this ,i stood up on my cycle..pumped in pedal after pedal for the next 3 kms.With my head down ..i was going at speeds almost 3/4th of the speed of autos.

I think ,the funda worked and it will never ever allow my mind to tire at a journey less then that of Noida.
Any thing more then noida will get to me the first time but then we can always raise the bar.

I think i 'll name this funda
Let's call it "Enduring the Roads"  or
hmmmm... may be we can call it -- Road Endurance
or may be a portmanteau  -- Rondurance. :)

Monday, March 15, 2010

BUT AND

I like you a lot BUT.....
I think you are really hardworking BUT....
I think we played really well BUT...
He is intelligent,smart,handsome BUT .....

If you see all the sentences written above they start positively but "BUT" spoils them all.
But has a unique capability of nullifying the former part of the string.
Recently i read two books which just hated the word "BUT".
They were so against "BUT" that they implored the readers to never use the word in their conversations.

You are debating a person and in the counter argument say that ...
"I totally agree to what you said BUT....."

The moment you say BUT the earlier person's point of view is finshed and now it's all you.

"BUT" increases the friction,it is resistance to an opinion.

Now just replace the BUT with the word AND....

I like you a lot and.....
I think you are really hardworking and....
I think we played really well and...
He is intelligent,smart,handsome and.....


Just by replacing the BUT with AND we have changed resistance to acceptance.
Now we are not opposing a view but we are providing an extension to the earlier view.
You are in a discussion and in the counter argument you say that...

I totally agree to what you said AND .....

Try and use AND in your daily conversation ...and see your point's acceptance level going up.
You'll also feel that people now seem to listen to your point as they feel it to be a natural extension to there point.

This state leaves you in a state where you have the leverage to  get your point across ...better.
The chances are much more higher than they would have been after a BUT.


PS: I have added a few examples in the comments section and i would love it if you could come up with some real innovative ones.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Solution 2

There must be ways to get things done your way...
It's a subtle and nuanced art where Artist makes you see what he wants you to see.

I have witnessed three instances where one type of command didn't get the desired result
but tweaking the command a little got you the anticipated results.

Instance 1

Goal--Delhi Metro authorities want only the old and the handicapped to use the lifts.
Problem -Young people are using the lifts and that too very often.
Solution 1 - A notice was put outside the lifts which said "Only for Old and physically handicapped".

Now the solution was authoritarian and that's one reason it was not obeyed,we ignored the notice time and again .
Lifts were still being used by the young people blatantly.

Solution 2 - Another notice which said "If you are young don't use lift...or even if you feel young don't use lift".
Me and my father were about to take the lift,i read the notice.
I was obviously young and hence told my father that he could take the lift and i would be meeting him on the platform.
Watching me leave ..he probably read the second line and stopped me.He said "Beta i feel young...i'll also not use it"

Solution 2 rocked...

Instance 2...

Goal - I wanted my family members to stop the Masala Gossips and discuss something worthy of a discussion.
Problem - How do i tell the seniors of the family that their discussion is worthless crap?

Solution 1- I told them to discuss ideas..new ideas .how we can make a better society.I told them to take initiative and improve the facilities in the society etc.

They just didn't listen.They nodded in agreement when i was lecturing them but very soon they  resorted to the juicy gossips.

Solution 2 - I read them a quote
"Small minds -discuss people
 average minds - discuss events
 great minds - discuss ideas"

After i told them this quote..a self correction mechanism was set into place.No body would talk about the juicy gossip as that would make him/her a small mind.
Just because every one wanted to be a great mind,they started coming up with weird ideas.

"One of my uncles came up with an idea that why don't we make roads that move.
We'll just put a car on the moving road and the road will take us to the destination."

Anyways no matter how weird the ideas were..they were ideas and gossips had stopped.
Solution 2 worked again..


Instance 3..

Goal -To prevent people from peeing on the walls.
Problem - Peeing on the walls.
 
Solution 1--Authorities wrote several messages for the person urinating in open ."Yahan peshaab karna mana hai "-Khosla Ka Ghosla fame
None worked.Our chatur lingams  cursed the authorities for not providing enough urinals..and kept on irrigating the walls.Solution 1 failed badly.
No message could help the person control his pressures.

Solution 2 - In New Delhi  i have seen those weird messages being rubbed and instead..the authorities are putting TILES on the walls with GODS on them at evey 3 metres.

Ganesha-3 mtrs-Lakshmi-Another 3 mtrs-Vishnu-3 mtrs -Rama.This pattern is repeated for 100-200 mtrs.

However lousy we may be in our public ettiquetes but we respect our GODS.
We can't be urinating in front of them.
After so many years walls have realised "The joy of being DRY".

Solution 2 proved effective yet again and this makes me believes that things do work out...

Next time i'll not stop if the plans don't work out in Solution 1....

...there has to be a Solution 2.