Friday, December 31, 2010

Reflections... Or whatever!!

Well, it is that time of the year when people talk about how good or bad or disgusting the year 2010 has been (really people, stop bitching about a year even before it is over. You would never understand it unless you are a year yourself); the time of the year when all blogs are filled with posts about 2010 and what they expect from 2011 (as if ALL our expectations ever materialize!); the time of the year when people invite suggestions for New Year Resolutions (how lame is that!); the time of the year when people invite suggestions for New Year Parties (that’s even worse); the time of the year when our intelligent and oh-so-sensible media is specializing on who-wore-what-where in 2010, and celebrity new year resolutions and what a huge super star Rajinikanth is, and whether SRK and Salman Khan will become friends in the next year, and whether Aishwarya Rai will have a baby in the coming year. And of course, what else is more important than all these topics?

Friday, December 10, 2010

Lonely Eaters Club

It amazes me how time could change everything and everyone. Time heals wounds, time makes a good person better, a bad person worse or a good person bad and bad person good… ok, now that you understand how disastrously awful I can get (which means this blog is NOT to be taken seriously this time around too), let us move on to the actual reason why I wrote the really stupid first couple of sentences. I have been very different in the past. Well, who hasn’t? We all used to be smaller (let me tell you, I know I am small now too) and more innocent and possibly more intelligent (until Education made us dumb); but we are not going into the details of that. This post is about neither innocence nor intelligence. Now I should really get to the point.


Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Stressed out!


More than a whole month away from my beloved space – I don’t think this has ever happened before. Why, you ask? No, you wouldn’t bother so much, I am sure. Well, whether you ask or not, the reason is that there is a certain block in my mind. Words just won’t come out. On my way to work, or when I am just sitting doing nothing (mostly at office. Oh wait, you know that already!), or when I listen to a certain song, or when I am walking around the campus, or… you get the drift, right? So when my mind is not doing any serious work-work, there is still a background train of thoughts that keep running (ah, girls’ brains can NEVER be idle). So this background train of thoughts keeps giving me more than enough topics I could write about – topics ranging from a short story to funny incidents with friends to innovative ways to mess up your home to how to become friends with your neighborhood’s stray dogs. But then there was something blocking me from opening MS-Word, in the normal world it is called laziness. Something blocks my mind from forming words, now that - I don’t know what it is.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Sometimes in Life...



Sometimes in life, you don’t get what you deserve. This is one of those moments. Well, to tell you the truth, such moments are part of daily routine. It is like bad luck chases me down the street, sits beside me, greets me, hugs me, and finally digs my grave. And before I know, I have made a wrong choice. I have made a choice that deprives me of what I deserve. I have made a choice that would make me doubt my capabilities; make me think whether I actually deserve what I thought I do. After a long time, after I have convinced myself that I do, in fact, deserve what I missed, remorse sets in. Why did I have to make that freakin’ decision?

Monday, September 20, 2010

Echoing his thoughts

Disclaimer: Except for Echo, all events and people mentioned in this post are imaginary. This is just a thought on what the pets really feel about their owners.

I was brought to this place about a month ago. When I came here, I saw two people in the house (I hadn’t realized that it was to become MY house) – a girl and a guy. They kept saying, “So cute. Looks like he is hungry.” Which I was. And gave me a bowl full of milk. I was hungry. I drank it all up. Oh by the way, I forgot to mention, I am a dog. I am now 10 weeks old – so technically, I am a pup. I was 4 weeks old when I came here.



They named me Echo. For almost the first one week there, they kept shouting ‘Echo, Echo, Echo’ whenever they fed me. Boy, human beings ARE a crazy lot. I understood by the end of the second day that my name was ‘Echo’. I wanted to tell them, “Ok, I get it. My name is Echo. I know I should look at you when you say ‘Echo’. Now stop the bullshit.” But these stupid human beings don’t understand my language. I also came to know that the girl’s name was ‘Di’ and the guy’s name was ‘Da’. At least that’s how they called each other.

Another thing I learnt very soon is that girls are crazy about pups like me. Whenever I wanted something (anything) all I had to do was remain silent, tilt my head a little bit and look into Di’s eyes. And she would go, “Oh, my poor baby. You’re probably hungry. Wait.” And off she would go into the room where my food and treats are kept and bring me a treat. But I had to endure all her kisses and hugs before she goes off to get my treat. Even if you are a very very good-looking guy and have a lot of girlfriends, you have absolutely NO idea how tight a girl could hug you. Ask me. I almost had a fracture once. I thought I gave too cute a look to Di. Sigh. Another trouble I have with Di is she keeps interrupting my play time with all her cuddling. She wants to cuddle me whenever she is at home. And she keeps forgetting my name. She says, “I love you, baby doll.” Hello, wasn’t my name supposed to be ‘Echo’?

I have learnt so many things from Di. Like, whenever she says, “Good boy, Echo. Good boy.” And she puts her lips to the space between my eyes; it means that I will get a treat soon if I wag my tail a wee bit. Whenever she comes with two bags in her hand, it means she is going to cuddle me and say, “Bye” and she will be back after my sleep time and play time and another sleep time. I miss her sometimes during my play time. In fact, I miss her hands – they are so damn yummy. Ok, that did not come out well. It just irritates me when she wants to cuddle me when I am playing or sleeping.

Da is from a different league, I could totally say. He thinks he is a commander. He is always the one giving me the orders. Just because he is a human being and is taller than me, he thinks he can boss me around. He has no idea that when I grow older, I will be stronger (oh yes, I heard this from a small black box in the house), and I will be big enough to push you down and bite you into pieces. Oh man, I am supposed to be a dog in a few months. I am a pup now, remember? I am supposed to be loyal to my master. And Da is one hard task-master. The freakin’ idiot takes my food bowl in his hands and makes me obey to his ‘Wait’ command when I am so hungry I could eat him up. Di isn’t that bad. All she needs is that cute look. It is amazing how stupid a person can be given she falls for it every single time.

Once in every 5 or so days they take me to another guy’s house or have other guys over at my home. Oh yes, by now it has become MY home, alright. And they bring big big bottles with them and some nice smelling food. Somebody has to teach them some manners about sharing their food with others. They never give me one piece of what they eat. I don’t understand why none of my cute looks worked with Di when it came to her own food.

And it gets crazier as they finish drinking from the bottles. They take me and squeeze me in the name of hugging (Di’s hugs are so much better compared to this agony). Then they take my front legs in their hands and make me walk with only my hind legs. What the hell!!! Isn’t the Animal Rights Commission listening? And that is not all. It only gets worse from there. Too much of sound emanates from the above mentioned small black box and they all start moving around in the name of dance. They mess the place around so much that they lose all rights to yell at me when I pee or poop anywhere in the house. I am only a little pup. They are all such grown-up adults and they behave much much worse than me. Sigh.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Such is life!

This happened at Coimbatore Railway Station. I was waiting for my train back to Bangalore. I was about lunch time. I was carrying a heavy bag and had just put it down on a bench on the platform. There was this little girl (of about 10-12 years of age), her head shaved, thin, with dark lips and sharp eyes. She had with her a box of railways’ food (which most of us despise because it is utterly tasteless).

She asked me, “Akka, where will the train go?”

I asked, “The train that is going to come on this platform?”

“Yes.”

“It goes to Bangalore.”

She asked, “Akka, will there be buses from there to Ranipettai?”

“Ranipettai? Why? Do you have to go there?”

She nodded, “Hmmm.”

“I am not sure if there are buses to Ranipettai from Bangalore. But there are buses from Chennai.”

“Chennai? Will the train go to Chennai?”

“The train that is going to come doesn’t go to Chennai. It goes to Bangalore. There will be some other train in some other platform that will go to Chennai. Ask somebody which platform and get into that train.”

She thought of something and nodded and said, “Ok.”

There was something about her that made her look very vulnerable. It was probably her dress – it was a very old, dirty, cotton dress. Or probably because she was bare-footed; I felt very bad for her.

I added, “If you get into the train to Chennai, get down at Katpadi Junction and go to Vellore bus stand. You will get buses towards Ranipettai from there.” I had known this information because I had been in that route a couple of times while visiting a friend’s house in Andhra border. Otherwise I wouldn’t even have known that a place called Ranipettai even existed.

She was trying to grasp the words. “Katpadi? How far is Katpadi from here?”

“6 hours in the train that goes towards Chennai.”

“How will I know when Katpadi has come?”

It was then that I realized that the poor girl might not know to read boards. I told her, “Ask somebody to tell you when you reach Katpadi.”

“Will it be night when I reach there?”

“It will be around 7:30 in the evening when you reach there. Then go to Vellore bus stand and get a bus, ok?”

She nodded, but didn’t speak anything. I wanted to know what was wrong with her. Why was she alone in a railway station when she doesn’t know anything? Where were her parents? Has she run away from her home? I couldn’t stand it.

I asked her, “Who is there at Ranipettai?”

“My mother and my one big sister and small brother. My father passed away, no?”

“Ohhh, then how did you come to Coimbatore?”

“My mother didn’t have any money. She sent me with my uncle to work here. He was a very bad man. I came out of his house without his knowledge. I want to go back to my mom.”

And then she showed her feet – there was burn marks on both her soles. I wondered how she managed to go through such torture at such a young age and what an impression the world has left on her fragile mind.

And then she said she was hungry. I asked her to eat the box of food that she had by her side.

She said, “This is for my mom. She wouldn’t have eaten anything too. I am taking it for her.”

It killed me. She herself hadn’t eaten anything since morning (and it was already almost 1pm) and she was taking food for her mom whom she will meet very late that night (if she manages to go all the way without any further obstacles).

I told her, “The food will get spoilt by the time you go home. So don’t let it go waste. You eat it. You can buy something for your mom later.”

“But I have only 10 rupees.”

I was shocked. She didn’t have a train ticket, she has to take the bus from Vellore to Ranipettai after that and she had only 10 rupees and a packet of food in her hands. I didn’t know what to do.

At that time, the lady who was cleaning the platform came up to me and said, “This girl has been here since morning. I feel so bad for her.”

I told her, “Please tell her when the train towards Chennai will come. But she doesn’t have any money with her. How will she go?”

She said, “She is a small kid. She can travel without a ticket and even if someone asks, she can say she has come out of her house and they will understand. They won’t harm her. There is a train to Chennai at 2:20pm. I will put her in that train.”

My train was just pulling into the station. I knew it will stop at the station for 5-7mins. I had to find my compartment and board into it. I had 5mins to do that. I started walking towards the place where my compartment was most-likely to be when the train stops. But my mind was with that little girl – that helpless, powerless kid who has seen and been through what she was not supposed to at that tender age. I realized I wouldn’t have any peace of mind if I left her there, knowing I could have helped her.

I could not go back and wait for the Chennai train to come or go and buy a ticket for her – I cannot miss my train to go to Bangalore. My train had already come to a stop and I had to walk a little further to my compartment. I turned back and walked in the opposite direction towards the girl. I took out a few bucks from my purse and gave it to her and asked her to keep it for her ticket expenses and asked to get some more food for her.

Those few bucks will probably remain the best-spent money of my month. I felt a lot lighter. It was as if that one paper was weighing my bag down and now that I had given it to her, it felt lighter and easier to carry. This is not exaggerated one bit.

I am still worried about her and now, at work, I am thinking if she would have indeed reached her home safely, met her mom and I hope she is not sent to such filthy uncles in the future.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Questions of a confused soul


There is so much that I want to write, so much I want to pour out, so much I want to change, so much I want from life, so much I don’t want to be doing. And I am only 24 and I can’t even decide what to have for dinner tonight and my relatives want me to get married already. Give me a bloody break!

Alright, I agree that it was me that wanted to get married until two months back. And it was me that took the efforts to get talks underway and it was me that convinced and threatened and did-what-not to make this possible. Now that it is all becoming reality, it is scary. It is so damn scary and now none of them would understand why I am talking this way. None of them want to take a U-turn apart from me. None of them understand what I am going through. Sounds like development of cold-feet, doesn’t it? I thought so too. But this is much more than that. I cannot put a finger to what exactly is the reason behind my backing out of the “plan” (which, incidentally, was made by ME)! How are the others supposed to understand it? The point is: I am scared. I am scared as hell to get committed. I am scared that I would have to give up my freedom. I am scared that I will have to do what the others ask me to do. I am scared I cannot be what I am. I really don’t understand the whole point behind getting married. I want to run away from everything to a place far off where nobody can find me. Talk about cold-feet. I probably have the “coldest-feet” in the country.

The point is, by running away from all this, I might come across as the most selfish person that ever walked on the face of the planet. Also, that would make me a coward. There is a problem and if I choose to run away from it instead of hanging on and fighting for myself, it would make me a loser. I am NOT a loser. But the problem doesn’t end there. If I choose to continue fighting, I would for sure at some point of time hurt someone I love. I don’t want to hurt the soul that has been living for me ever since I was born. I love her too much to do that to her. But, I WANT TO LIVE MY LIFE.

I feel as if I am striving so hard to live up to others’ expectations that I have ultimately forgotten what I really want and now I want it so bad. I want to life MY life and not worry about what the others have to say or think. Either I stay back, doing what the others want me to do, sacrificing my wishes and letting the choice-not-made haunt me for the rest of my life. Or I go after what I want, live my life the way I want, let the world know what LIVING is; but in doing so I would be hurting my beloved ones, feeling guilty for failing to live up to their expectations. It is a very difficult choice to make, especially when you are from India, more so if you are a girl. A girl that is going to married within the next 8 months at that!

What is it that makes me think so much (with that non-existent brain of mine)? Fear. The fear of losing all the freedom I have, the fear of having to be bound to the rules of a society I have grown to hate, the fear of having to give up my choices, the fear of having to give up a lot of things I love, the fear of being forced to love things (and sometimes people) that I despise, the fear of having to compromise a lot, the fear of my intelligence being dismissed just because of the fact that I am a girl, the fear of losing ME and MY SPIRIT! I am nobody if you take that spirit from me. I am nobody if you take my thought-process and my decisions from me. I don’t want to live in (or as) somebody else’s shadow. I am too proud to do that.

Now whoever told me a marriage will take away whatever I have and leave me to be just a body with no soul? Nobody. It is just my intuition. I could be wrong. I am not marrying somebody I don’t know at all. In fact, I have known this wonderful person for five years and it was MY decision to get married so soon. But why am I backtracking now? I have no idea. Why am I so afraid of the entire process now? I don’t know. Why do I think I will lose my individuality now? I have no clue. All I want now is to flee off from everything. Selfish? Individualistic? Call me whatever. I want to be my own master.

If any of this crap made any sense to you and if you choose to voice your opinions please do leave a comment. I would like to know what you think.

Friday, July 23, 2010

What I wanna do


If only anyone would pay me for sitting in the last row, by the window, sleeping half the time, sending text messages to those innumerable friends (whose faces we still book sometimes) the other half without the knowledge of the lecturer, making rockets with paper, life would have been so much cooler. But no sir, nobody shows you the cake AND lets you have it. To be frank, I have never really understood the whole concept behind being in a job. Apparently, you can’t live with your parents’ money forever. And no, it is NOT funny to say, “I can live with their credit cards.” It is not appreciated (experience teaches you an awful lot).

There are many other things that are not appreciated. So I could not be a bicycle rider because I was in India; not in the Netherlands. I could not join the Army because all my friends laughed it off when I said I wanted to do it. I could not become a spiritual Guru thanks to the likes of Swami Premananda/Nithyananda types. I could not be a teacher because according to my mom, I was made to become something better. I could not be a journalist because my cousins were all pursuing their engineering courses. I could not be a news reader because my cousins were all planning to do their M.Tech/PhDs. Oh my God, why did you come up with the whole concept of cousins? They were all my dream jobs at one of time or the other. And they were all brushed aside because I was too young and too naïve to make my own career plans. But nevertheless, they were a very important part of my growing up process.

Currently, if given a choice, I would like to be a writer. It is something that gives me satisfaction, makes me feel as if I have achieved something great. But on the down-side, there is something that we all like to call ‘Writers’ block” that affects me every now and then. I sit in front of my computer, I have some thoughts in my mind, but they just refuse to come out as words. But there are days when the words just pour out like Champagne. Finding a balance between the two AND making a career out of it is no easy task.

Another career I am fascinated about is that of a behavioral skills trainer. I like to teach and from whatever experience I have gained from being a silly IT professional over the last three years, the average Indian IT professional lacks basic manners – from emailing to eating – it shows in everything they do. Since customer facing roles are on the rise, most companies would need their engineers to put on their best behavior while talking or emailing or chatting with their clients, which is where I would come in. I have a flair for making good communication (now, don’t you start rolling your eyes, if there is anything I do well, that is TALK. Don’t take that away from me!) And I like teaching. So what better than to combine the two things I like and make a successful corporate career out of it?

I am also good at organizing events and shows. So event management is an area I could dwell into. But I am not really sure about the roles and responsibilities there and so I cannot comment further on that.

Another career that I find very interesting is in the Advertising field. I like advertising and have always taken part in such events at school and college level, but I am sure that is not how the field works in real life. I would, for sure, love to be a part of an advertising campaign. Also there is some very good money involved in it!

But if there is one job that would supersede all the above and be “the one” dream job, it has to be the one where I am allowed to sit in the last row, by the window, sleep half the time, send text messages to those innumerable friends for the other half without the knowledge of the lecturer, making rockets with paper…

This post is an entry for a contest in Blogadda called MY DREAM JOB. This contest was an initiative by BLOGADDA and Pringoo .

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Dream on...

Never give up on your dreams, no matter how far-fetched or silly or impossible they are to become reality. Who knows; it might work out some time – by working hard towards it, by luck or by sheer power of thought. I was having this discussion with a colleague of mine about what we wanted from life. Our thoughts were quite similar – we both wanted to go outside of our respective countries (he is from Holland and I am from India), both of us want to work in Spain, but are too scared about what we have to leave behind or lose if we did what we wanted to. But we keep talking about the idea – what can be done to make it happen, giving up because there was no realistic way we could do it, then dreaming about starting our own company there, our roles in the company, whether Rafael Nadal can be employed there – all silly thoughts, that would just remain thoughts and nothing more.

But then the insane mind starts working, it starts thinking that moving to Spain (throwing whatever I have got here down the drain), with nothing but our own stupid minds and thoughts, no plausible idea that would help us earn our bread whatsoever – and I start liking the thought more than ever before. The very fact that something is impossible to attain makes it more exotic. The unpredictability factor is the most intriguing of them all. I am still thinking about it because I want to do it someday or the other, against all odds, sacrificing quite a few things and then say to the world, “See, it was not impossible”. No, it is more of proving to myself that it was not impossible than to the world.

It is so hard to let go of what we have and go after our dreams for fear of failure, fear of whether we would get something better, fear of having to lose what we have and fall flat on our faces – but that is a choice we have to make. We have got to leave something to gain something. Only in this case, you might end up losing what you have and not gain anything at all. Too risky, but too tempting. But every time I think about it the urge to do it is so overwhelming.

I mean, we will never know if we made the right choice or not without actually making it. Life is not something that could be simulated in a Test environment before being moved to Production. (Ahh, I should probably take a break from work). May be I should take a break from work and go to Spain. And do what there? I don’t have a clue. You get the drift. This is how my mind works. Whatever I think of, will eventually lead to Spain. And then stop there because it hits a dead-end – I don’t know any further.

It sounds crazy. But I believe completely in the power of thought and I have an intuition that I will someday be led towards that by destiny (ok, now I am just talking crap about destiny and all), but now I won’t be afraid to take the plunge when opportunity arrives. It may lead me to failure but I should still be fine because I was the one that wanted it. It was MY idea, MY interest, what MY mind told ME to do. No reasoning required.

Yet, it is true that you have to think about how your decision impacts others’ lives. But if you keep thinking about it, you are going nowhere – just staying in the same stagnant water as millions of others. You should have the courage to do what you want to do and be proud to do it because then, you would be one in a million and trust me, no matter how bad the consequences are, you would be proud enough to shout it out from the rooftop just because you had the will to do what others can only dream of.

Too preachy? Well, this is what I am telling to myself – like a self-realization thing. Sigh… I hope I have the courage to follow what my heart wants. Ok, now it just sounds like a stupid candy-floss Bollywood movie. Pardon me for that!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Eindhoven Times

Ok, so where do I start? With how crazy the place became when Netherlands won the semi-final match against Uruguay? Or how there are separate cycling lanes in all the cities? Or how punctual the buses/trains are? Or how I saw a few guys cry when Netherlands lost the final to Spain? Dressed in all Orange, blowing the vuvuzela thing, drinking beer by the barrel, the people are, needless to say, crazy about soccer – it is almost the same in India with cricket. I can totally relate to the madness.


I have been darn lucky to be in a country during a gorgeous summer, when the country’s national team is in the finals (after 32 long years) of the most celebrated tournament around the world, working under a really cool manager! And to think I was going to come here in January (that was the original plan) when it would have been freezing cold and no world cup was going on. I just love the people here (yes, it also includes hot guys who don’t care to wear a shirt ;) because it is too hot here – come on, anything beyond 35 degrees is impossible for them – which is one of the reasons summers are soooo good.)

While at Holland, I also go to do what I like to call “exploring the wilder side of me” (like I wasn’t already wild enough) – I spent a few sleepless nights exploring Eindhoven, having a barbeque dinner at my manager’s home, playing in the beach with friends, tasting some fine wine, watching the FIFA world cup semi-finals and finals at the city centrum, having a crazy dancing night with a total stranger, partying until the wee hours of the morning, listening to a live band perform, taking a lot of photos – I did all of that! I know a lot of you are really jealous of me now (as I could gather from the FaceBook messages I got). I admire the style in which they enjoy their lives – they work for nothing more than 8 hours a day, go promptly on their vacations, concentrate completely on their work when they are at office, enjoy totally once they are outside office!

I think I had the best manager one could ask for (no, I am NOT saying this to be on his good books, but because that is the truth). He took us to downtown Eindhoven for the semi-finals match and along with his friends took us to a party later that night. Then he invited us to his home for a barbeque dinner, introduced his family – his wife and his really beautiful 15-month old daughter, served us some really good food – I needed vegetarian food and they had made some corn and mushrooms and potato salad (it felt absolutely great that we were being taken care of so well). Then again he took us out for the finals match and not once did he talk/ask about anything related to work when we were outside the office.

It was a great learning experience too – well, I am not referring to the KT sessions here; I want to leave work out of the entire post. I learnt that people like it when you are honest and are not faking your actions, I learnt that there is one person who is crazier than me in posing for photos (Believe me!!!), I learnt to be patient, I learnt that you can hit it off with a total stranger and end up having one of the best night outs ever, I learnt that I am going to make a great wife (well, how and why is beyond the scope of this blog), I learnt that I have more energy than I thought I did (although I lived on one meal per day)… All is well that ends well. It ended quite well J

And here I am, on my way back home to appreciate paani poori more than ever. And I will not complain about Bangalore food anymore. Talking about food, I am already hungry now. My flight is 7th in the line for take-off from Istanbul airport and I will post this in about 7 hours when I have reached Mumbai and had a couple of samosas/vada paav (I can imagine the faces of my friends in Holland turning red with jealousy). But come on, I deserve so much!

Monday, July 5, 2010

Smile costs nothing

If there is one thing that people all over the world have in common, understand and reciprocate, irrespective of where they are from, what color their skin is, which God they worship, which language they speak – SMILE. This simple gesture is so versatile that it could convey anything from a polite ‘hello’ to a naughty ‘How you doin’?’ to a shy ‘Excuse me’. It amazes me as to how so many of us have forgotten to smile or greet another person when we meet. If you ask, “Why in the hell in should I smile at a person I have never met earlier?” it means you have forgotten the very fact that you are a human being and you are the only species to have been blessed with the power and capacity to smile at others. Put it to good use.

I am on a trip to the Netherlands now and I had a transit at Istanbul for a few hours before I could catch my flight to Amsterdam. I do not speak Dutch or Turkish. But language will never be your concern if only you knew how to smile at people. Being friendly has got nothing to do with knowing the language. Sitting across me is a middle-aged lady with eyes the color of the Sea. She is very pretty for her age. I don’t have to go and tell her she is looking very good. A smile would do. Next time you are asking for change in a shop, do it with a smile on your face. Don’t worry if the smile is not reciprocated. It just means that the person you thought was human was not that human, after all.

If you forget to smile for some reason, trust me, you would end up looking like a severely constipated gorilla; like the guy sitting opposite to me just did. May be you are not happy about something, may be you fought with your girlfriend/boyfriend, may be your boss shouted at you (which boss doesn’t is another story), may be you ARE constipated – but you cannot expect the others to understand your problems. You are expected to be friendly by default. An angry face and a dull response is enough to turn away people from you.

It is perfectly ok to think I have gone crazy. It is perfectly ok because there is absolutely nothing interesting about this post (as if my other posts were interesting, duh…). This one got a little too preachy. But I had to write it because I am seeing in front of me a person who looks like smiling is taking too much of his time and energy. It irritates and frustrates me; but maybe I shouldn’t expect him to smile. Whatever… But sitting in an international airport and exclaiming, “Everyone is sooooo white here!” is a little too much by anyone’s standards, don’t you think?

Ok, there you go! I cribbed, yet again. But when two people who are worlds apart in thought and taste are forced to travel together such things tend to happen. I only hope the objective of travel (which is learning, basically) is achieved. Meanwhile I will continue my ‘smile’ campaign when I meet new people (I am going to meet a lot of them) over the next two weeks and silently continue to thank Appa for giving me the interest and the encouragement to read about other cultures and making me a friendly person.

Ok, now I am going to have to stop being such a preachy pain in the you-know-what. And keep smiling, people! Even if you are called ‘Illicha vaai’ by your friends, it’s ok. ‘Illicha vaai’-ngaradhu ellam oru thittoda setha? Pona vaaram un machan unna eppidi thittinaannu yosichu paaru ;) Oh, I miss talking in Tamizh already.

I am also writing a travelogue (in a diary, because I enjoy writing with pen and paper) – I am not really sure how interesting it will be. So I am not posting it. Or may be I should?

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

My 100th post

This is my 100th post and it has taken me 2 years to come to this point. Looking back at the time I started writing in this space – I was a fresher in a big, tough world called ‘I.T.’ fighting it all by myself, armed with only my power to talk and nothing else. I was on bench which gave me ample time to write as much as I could. I had no readers. But this space grew in content and so did I and the number of readers. And now I am at this place where I feel like an old lady already. A lot of people know me (by ‘knowing’ I mean knowing my emotions, my actions, the changes in my life, what makes me laugh – everything there is to know about me) through this space and it makes me proud of myself to have achieved it in 2 years.

This started off as a personal blog – kind of like an online diary where I would scribble, crib and pour out anything that came to my mind (which used to be a lot). This was mainly because nobody used to read it. Later on, as people started reading my posts, I had to filter out a lot of what I thought, simply because it would scandalize a few of them – I had to keep readers’ feelings in mind before I put down anything that I felt/experienced. A few of my friends told me that I was losing my freedom as the number of readers increased; but I had a moral responsibility. I stayed away from a lot of hot topics for fear of being considered rude or judgmental.

Now I have learnt to strike a balance between what I want to write and what the readers may want to read. I wrote my first short story (for which I received a few bouquets and a lot of brickbats). In between, I got the courage to start with my first novel (which is still in its infancy due to my laziness). It is amazing how there is a learning process in everything we undertake. Blogging is something I started for personal satisfaction and now I have learnt so much about a whole new world, made a few awesome friends – friends who are ready to guide and help and appreciate me.

Blogging gave me an address – a door to a soul that was unknown to the rest of the world. It made me popular. Being an Arian and a girl, I enjoyed all the attention I got (and am still getting). Now I have an online diary of the past two years of my life – how much my little world has changed and how much I have changed! But one thing remains – I still go about doing my work (yes, I do work sometimes) and living my life (the happy and the not-so-happy moments) with a broad smile pasted across my face; that hasn’t changed and I hope it won’t ever.

I hope I get to the 200th post very soon. It will happen when I have interesting things going on in my life. And the next one year looks like it will easily become the interesting year of my life! It includes foreign travel, change in work (not the company, though), a wedding (perhaps?) – looks very promising and exciting. Need your blessings and wishes!

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Semmozhiyaana Tamizh mozhiye...


This time around, I am at Coimbatore to attend my friend Arch’s wedding. The city has been decorated as nicely as a bride-to-be – all for the Tamizh Semmozhi Maanaadu. The flyovers have been painted, the roads widened, new traffic signals, a lot of police at the Railway Station, a lot of traffic police deployed – all this for just the next one week. Lot of Tamizh cultural art forms are going to be performed at different venues in the city. I feel proud to be a Tamizhian. The schools and colleges in Coimbatore have been asked to declare holiday for the next one week. How I wish I were in school now! All city buses will be ticket-free. There is no need to buy bus tickets for the next one week. Food festivals are being organized. Now is the best time to be in this city; well, if you like crowded places.

I miss my dad now. He would have really enjoyed this Semmozhi Maanaadu – being a staunch Tamizh-patriot himself. He would have forced me to take a week’s leave and taken me to all the programmes and lectures and made me listen to the glory of my mother tongue. I can almost see the pride in his face when someone praises Tamizh.

But the city has lost a lot of its trees in the name of road-widening. The programme will last for about a week or so, but the city might never get its climate back. Sigh…

Although so much is being done to ‘improve’ the city and its infrastructure, the people of the city still remain the same. They still talk with so much respect, throw rubbish on the streets, wait for TASMAC (wine shop) outlets to open in the morning and form a queue in the counter there, the auto-drivers still demand exorbitant amount money from the people, the city hasn’t changed one bit in its character.

But no matter what happens to this city, no matter what the people are like, this will always be my home. This is the city that I have grown up in, the city that has made me what I am through the school and college I studied in, through the innumerable people I have met; it is my favorite city (ok, next to Chennai). Chennai is still my most favorite J

I have a couple of good news to share with all the kind people who visit this space. There will be an announcement in a few days’ time (if all goes well). Pray for me, people!!!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

My First Crush...

The day I saw you first, I was amazed by the color of your eyes. They were a clear bottle green. It was then that I remembered that I had not listened to your name correctly. It was so embarrassing. I didn’t want anyone to know that I had a crush on you and I didn’t ask for your name again. I had never been like that before I met you. Though we were classmates, I had to bring up every ounce of courage inside me to even look up to you in the eye. The toughest part of it was to hide it from others; mainly you. I fell for you again when you smiled – although it was not at me. What a kind smile you had! I fell for you totally – from the color of your eyes to the color of the clothes you were wearing. When I came to know that you needed help in understanding a few lessons, I volunteered to share my notes with you. When I knew that you hadn’t completed your laboratory record, I volunteered to write it for you. When I knew that you lacked attendance, I spoke to the professor (being the teachers’ pet) to set this alright for you. But still all this was overlooked by you. I was furious when I saw you chatting up to a pretty girl and exchanged numbers.

After those initial days of adoration where I was bowled over by your personality and your eyes and your smile, I started observing you much more. It was then that I realized that you were human too and not flawless. I noticed that you had a Himesh-like nasal tone to your voice, a little too short to my dream-guy (not that I am tall or anything, but you did not match up to my expectation), your green eyes were in fact fake (you wore contact lenses), lacked the IQ that I wanted my guy to have, a little too slow in grasping things, no knowledge whatsoever of the books I was referring to – all in all hopeless to have a future with. But still my heart wouldn’t listen. Whenever I saw you, there was that familiar drum-roll in the place of the heartbeat, that involuntary smile popping up on my lips, that tiny corner of my heart wanting you to come and talk to me, to hold your hands, the jealousy when you spoke to other girls – all that was still there, only for a moment though. Because the very next moment, when my brain started giving out instructions, it started emphasizing on the flaws in you and I saw you as someone not worth all my attention.

Now all that is gone, it has been a long 5 years since that first day. I don’t think about you every day now. I have grown out of being that silly teen into a busy professional. I simply don’t have the time to reminisce about the past or to feel bad about having missed your company for so long. You are not on my Orkut/FaceBook/Twitter friends’ list. But I still do visit your page and think about how different it would have been if you and I had indeed gotten together. The very reason I am writing this post is with the hope that you would visit my blog just the way I visit your pages and know that I still think about you and even now for a moment my heart beats twice as fast. But as you can see, I am very happy with my life and you are nothing but an occasional, distant, drunk thought. Nevertheless, you are my first crush and will always be special to me.

Oh, how confused I am! One minute I say I still want to be with you and the very next I say you are like one of my pets that I grew when I was younger. I guess that is just me or are all first crushes like this? I would never know. But I am not worried about it. I am happy with what I have and the occasional visit to your pages that remind me that you are alive in some part of the world.

Cheers!


This post has been published for a great contest called My first crush! organized by pringooand blogadda.



Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Remember those times?

Life cannot be any better for me. Now, at this particular minute I am writing this, I am happy. I am a very happy person now. Finally, life at Bangalore and this office are becoming something to look forward to every morning. Until last week, Bangalore could not give me the kind of happiness that Chennai gave; my present office and my office-mates can never compare to the awesome friends I made at Wipro, Chennai; I couldn’t go to meet Baba here. And all that has changed now. I have made very good friends here at Philips Innovation Campus. Now, I can say I have a gang – as in a bunch of really cool people with a great sense of humour – that I can hang out with. A big welcome to my new friends to this blog and to my life! And now I am back to my normal self. I plan my weekends during my weekdays and write about my weekends on this space. I have got a bunch of friends to go around with now.

It has been a crazy couple of weeks now at work with trainings and meetings all day long. But otherwise it is so much fun here. Last weekend, I and my friends from work - Rama, Barath and Sreekanth - had been to Nandi Hills – a tourist destination about 45km from Bangalore and enjoyed Saturday afternoon there. We went there to see the sunset from atop the hill, but forgot about it as we sat there chatting and looking at the mommy monkeys carry their lil’ ones.





On Sunday, Sabal and I went to Forum and met up with Dhinu, who I was seeing after almost 3 months. He had been to Norway on an official trip. Then we went to Dhinu’s place and just as we were about to leave his house, we saw the most amazing black clouds ever. And it started pouring. It was one of the best rains I have ever witnessed and needless to say most of the roads on our way back home were clogged. Our cities NEED to be planned better! The auto in which we came had a radio and we listened so many of our favourite songs, singing along loudly and time just flew by and we reached our home back.

The day wasn’t over yet. It was Sunday and I HAD to meet Baba. Barath had come by and he took me to the temple although it was raining. There was not much crowd in the temple and I met Baba, spoke to Him for a few minutes and came back home. The weekend, unlike the umpteen boring weekends I have been having ever since I came to Bangalore, went off in a flash. For some time, I felt like I was in Chennai with my gang, hanging out and laughing and playing and simply jumping up and down with as much joy as the time when India won the World Cup (remember 3 years back, when Sreesanth actually used to bowl well and caught Misbah ul Haq in the T20 World Cup Finals against Pakistan? That’s what I am talking about). Sigh… That was a long time back, indeed!

Thursday, April 29, 2010

I never thought I would pen this down!


I have always been a happy girl. I guess I have had a great childhood and was exposed to a pretty good lifestyle and education and had great parents. I was loved so much and was given so much freedom and knowledge by both my Amma and Appa. Amma insisted that I learn Hindi, while Appa was dead against it. But Amma had her way in this matter and both Gayathri (my sister) and I took to learning Hindi as our second language. So Appa somehow wanted us to learn Tamil and I was given comic books in Tamil to make me recognize letters and improve my reading speed. He also introduced me to the world of books, being an avid reader himself. He was an inspiration. He taught us to play Chess and taught us the rules of Cricket and Tennis and Football and Hockey. In all those school-going years, neither Amma nor Appa ever forced us to ‘sit and study’. Those were the happiest years – no tension, no worries, no idea about the financial situation of the family and in my case, no worries about tests and exams as well – I was a good student, duh… The biggest worry was eating – Amma and Appa and Paati and Athaipaati always forced food down my throat and well, it never stuck to my body. I was always underweight, still am.

Nobody’s life is full of roses. We all have our share of bad days. I have mine too. No, I am not going to start cribbing about kosu again – I guess I have grown used to it and am slowly learning how to tackle this. As my Gurudev Swami Chinmayanandji said, “This too shall pass” and I totally believe in his words. Now more than ever before! My point is, in order to understand where you stand and who your real friends are and who is trustworthy and how tough you are, you have to go through the dark patches of life. I went through a couple of them. Well, right now, I don’t actually remember the first one. But hey, I am sure it was there. I felt bad; maybe I was too young to comprehend it or something. But the second one, I remember quite well.

I was in college. Right now, nobody will believe me if I said I was more of an outcast there. I was popular – hugely popular would be more appropriate – but for the wrong reasons. Now what reasons they were and why they made me popular is beyond the scope of this blog :D (Effect of reading training documents, you see) Well, to be frank, now it makes me laugh and I feel like an idiot for worrying so much about such a non-issue. But yes, back then it made me a bitter person – I went into my own shell and refused to come out of it or allow anyone inside it. Well, to tell you the truth, nobody wanted to come inside, hold my hand and take me out of the darkness and the sadness. Everyone was busy too with their own lives to find out what went wrong with me or to verify the facts and simply stuck to listening to made up stories. There was no one to listen to me. I thought how true these lines were,

"Iruttinile nee nadakkaiyile, un nizhalum unnai vittu odi vidum;
Nee mattum dhaan indha ulagithile, unakku thunai endru vilangi vidum"

(When you walk in darkness, even your shadow deserts you. It is then that you would realize that you are your only companion)

My only strength was my studies. No matter what happened, I never let it affect my studies.

I was all alone inside a dark room for so long and finally when light came, I was afraid of it. I was starting to be afraid of being happy. But slowly, the light grew on me and I started enjoying my day in the sun. It just felt right. I started feeling so light (NOT weight-wise) and slowly started becoming the same girl that I was during school.
I got into Wipro – 2008 was one of the happiest years of my life – my project at Wipro’s Chennai One office, my (rather big) gang of friends, weekend trips to Vandalur and beach resorts with the ‘gang’ – each day was filled with so much laughter that I felt that God was giving me the laughter that was long overdue. 2009, too, was a very happy year. I enjoyed my new project and the early morning shifts – the only time when Chennai’s heat was bearable :)

I still consider my college days to be the most productive years. I went through so much of trauma, but I came out stronger – much stronger than I ever was. I kept on telling myself, “God is putting you through it, because you are one of His favorite children and He wants to make sure you come out strong and tough. And don’t worry; He is doing this to you because He knows you will overcome it successfully. He is just trying to build your confidence.” Now I am happy and strong and know who my TRUE friends are and who is trust-worthy. Behind all that suffering was a learning process. :)

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Kosu Tholla...




Four days of rest and relaxation at home (not to mention made-by-Amma food) is a bane. No, I haven’t become any fatter (in fact, becoming a little plumper would make me extremely happy). It is a bane because at the end of four days, I have got to return to this city which is very similar in climate to Coimbatore, but horrible in terms of water, food and most importantly traffic. But return I did and stuck I got at work. And it does not help that I have a teamie who can’t see through a prank and escalate it to all managers (yes, I have multiple managers… sob, sob). It is certainly not easy for a small (read: shummall) girl to handle all this. I just turned 24 for crying out loud.

Just when you think it can’t get any worse, life bowls yet another one of its bouncers (IPL effect, you see) and says I will have attend a training from 10am to 7pm everyday for two weeks and then do the support activities from 7pm to 10pm. WTF!!! And any training is bound to put you to sleep. Don’t you lie to me that you have always been awake during any training you have attended! No? Not even during the post-lunch sessions? Then you are either a compulsive liar or an alien. Now is a post-lunch session and I am terribly sleepy.

I haven’t read a book in months, I haven’t read the newspaper in 3 days now and I don’t have time for anything besides work. It sounds nothing like me. I have always been the person that gives more importance to personal life than work. My priorities were and are and will be this way for the rest of my life. But I have to go through this for the next couple of weeks and I will have to put up with. There might not be further updates in this space until May. I hate me for quarantining myself from the outside world. I hate this job. I hate my work. I hate myself now!

My teamie (who I disgustedly call “kosu”) is getting on my nerves and is hell-bent on getting everything from high priority issues to pranks I play to his digestive disorders escalated to equally incompetent managers (when have we ever accepted that managers are competent?). He manages to piss me off and irritate me and make me want to pull the hair out of my head – ALL AT THE SAME TIME. Now I understand why Goundamani said his infamous dialogue “Indha kosu thollai thaanga mudila da Narayana… Marundhu adichu kollungada idha” – the same dialogue that I have been using for quite some time now and had mentioned the English translation in my previous post. As I am writing this now, kosu is showing off in front of everyone how resourceful he is by running up 4 floors to get different color markers for our trainer. Hold on a sec… that is the job of the Admin/House-keeping department staff.

Before exiting the door, he asked, “Do you need anything else?”

I couldn’t stop myself from saying, “Some coffee, perhaps?” And everyone (including the trainer) burst out laughing.

What pleasure he gets out of asking questions that in our domain are as dumb as, “How is 1+1 2 and not 11?” (The same dumb question multiple times and still not understand…) beats me! I have heard God helps those who help themselves. That explains my need for all the Tortoise/Mortein/Good Night/All Out. Hayyo Hayyo!!!

Friday, April 9, 2010

Happy Birthday to Me...


All of us go through different phases in life. And when we are passing through one, we keep saying a particular thing frequently – a particular proverb or sentence or movie dialogue or humming a song. Most of you know what my most frequent dialogue was. Well, for the late-comers, it is “I am soooooooooooo cute”. Okay, now don’t close this window. I know it was quite indigestible, but hey, so is seeing Sudeep Tyagi being in the playing XI for the Chennai team. After receiving numerous requests and warnings and threats from friends and others for refraining from saying that sentence, I stopped it. In fact, I got a better one!

This time it went, “I am the best in the world” (said like drunken SRK in OSO in his baatli award acceptance speech) and needless to say it annoyed people around me more. It was something I said to cheer myself up when I was down and no, I didn’t give a darn about what the others were thinking. These were my dialogues when aal waas wel… But it is not so any more. Aal izz not wel. I hate it here now and my current dialogue is: “Indha kosutholla thaanga mudila da Narayana, marundhu adichu kollungada idha” (This mosquito is annoying me too much, somebody spray the insecticide and kill it). Well, who this mosquito is and why it was annoying me is not good enough to be written here; kosu does NOT deserve so much.

But apart from kosuthollai, life is great. My birthday came and went and the day passed off too quickly. I missed being with Amma, Kiya and Paati. But still, I had great fun that started with cake cutting at midnight (the result of which devastating because it made me want to take bath at the middle of the night), Yals had come to my PG to wish me, I wore new sari and went to the nearby temple with Sabal in the morning, came to office, cut the cake at office, went with Sabal for a walk, had paani puri and aalu chat for dinner. It was just perfect J

But still, “Indha kosutholla thaanga mudila da Narayana, marundhu adichu kollungada idha”!!!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Mokkai...

It was one of those rare days when I had nobody to be with. I am the kind of person that cannot live without being surrounded by friends constantly. Loneliness kills me. I mean, I am a normal girl. I don’t like to be left alone and I love talking and that’s why I need company all the time. Last weekend, Sabal wasn’t here in Bangalore. He had gone to Ernakulam choosing a get-together (read: free beer) with college friends who were going off to Dubai (that is where most Mallus go, right?). It was supposed to be a farewell party kind of thing and off he went without any reserved tickets. How am I supposed to fight with “free beer”? I, in fact, told him I would buy him unlimited free beer in a bid to make him stay back. But he earnestly said, “You know I won’t drink much.” (Oh really?) “I am going because I promised the fellows that I would be there.” (Poda poda, rascala)… At that time I didn’t realize how lonely that would leave me for the whole weekend. It was probably the first time ever that I felt bad that I didn’t have to go to office on a weekend.

I made it a point to catch up with friends. I watched Vinnai Thaandi Varuvaya with Vinod. Thank you, Vinod for a pleasant evening. I really enjoyed it a lot. About the movie, what can I say? I felt that Gautam Menon hadn’t clearly made up his mind as to whether the boy and girl live happily ever after or not. Very confused and even more confusing. I really loved the Cinematography and of course Rahman’s music. Oh, and also Trisha’s saris (I am a girl, after all). It has been a long time since I saw a movie without any bloodshed and violence and villains. However, VTV was too mushy and romantic for my taste.

On Sunday, I slept like Kumbhakarna. Semma thookam! By the time I woke up, it was evening and I remembered I had promised Yals I would visit her place. We met up and walked up and down Brigade Road (buying nothing much except two plates of Paani puri and some coffee) and it was like old times again. Talking about mutual friends, careers, relationships… what you would call typical girl-talk – it was about everything and nothing. For a couple of hours, I forgot I didn’t have anyone to go back to. That is why they say, girls should always stay in touch with their girlfriends… Thank you, Yals for being there for me.

Somehow the weekend passed and Sabal is back from his trip and here I am back at office wishing it was weekend again. Namma dhaan thirundha maatome!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

What can I say...

After 7pm is the best time to write blogs – that is when the office is almost empty (there are not many losers like yours truly, you see). I like the calmness here. My desk has been shifted to a place far away from my managers and far away from all the people that make the maximum noise. I generally love being surrounded by loud people; I myself am a loud person and now I feel left out and lonely. Literally lonely because there is nobody here; nobody to see what I am doing – I might as well watch some movie, but I prefer reading something/writing stuff to bore you all. I have a strong feeling that every time I write, I get worse. I am probably one person that challenges the proverb “Practice makes one perfect” – the lesser I write the better is what I feel about myself.

All that apart, I have made up my mind to mokkai pottufy and there is no sparing you. I have learnt so much from blogosphere. It has certainly given me great friends like Satish, Chan, Vinod, etc… and has improved my confidence a lot. Not that I was ever low on confidence. I have been a pain from the beginning. Or that is what Amma says. I wish she writes a blog ala Chennaigirl – kiddie talks. I used to talk a lot. Amma says I starting talking very young and started off with full sentences instead of words and never had that ‘mazhalai pechu’ – she says I started talking like a big girl. She and Appa used to feel very proud of me – I was their first child and they probably thought I was a genius because I started talking earlier and clearer than their friends’ children. Now Amma is feeling “Appo aarambichava innum nirutha maatengarale” (She started so early and has not stopped since)… Well, I am proud of it. Ever since I have been paduthufying Amma with my nonstop nonsense.

I have always been a talkative person and my friends can’t agree more (please read my testimonials in Orkut if you are THAT jobless). It is like a gift. At the same time, I have ended up creating a/being in the middle of a mess ever since I can remember. I once went and told my teacher (when I was in sixth standard), “You are being very partial towards G (a girl in my class). It is wrong. You are a good teacher, but I don’t like this.” Years later when I met that teacher she told me that I had told her something like this and I didn’t even remember the incident. To say it was very embarrassing would be an understatement but I really felt ashamed of myself for saying something like that to one of my favorite teachers and at the same time proud of myself that I had the guts to speak my mind to someone way older and respectable than me.

Ippidi palappala saadanaigala pannitu vandhurukka indha Sandhya… Enna poi velai ellam panna sonna, kaduppaagaadhu? Enna nenachutu irukkanaga? Oh God, let someone understand my genius (no, before that let me recognize my potential) and appidiye ennoda life-ahye maathiranum. Hayyo hayyo!!!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Lazy me!

Why oh why is hard-work so important in life? Why do Amma and scores of others keep telling me that the only way to success is hard-work? Why isn’t there a ‘fotcut’ or a ‘chota fotcut’ that I could take? Well, the reason I am asking you this is really simple. It also explains why I have been writing lesser and lesser here these days. Laziness. Yes, I have been THIS lazy since birth.

Once when my mom asked me how I managed to be so lazy, I replied (thinking I was really smart) “You should ask yourself that question Amma. Why did you give birth to such a lazy baby? It is a manufacturing defect.” How smart that ended up to be was revealed last week when the epitome of “Nunalum than vaayaal kedum” (yours truly) asked Amma a variant of the same question – “Why did you do this manufacturing defect? It is entirely your fault. Because of this defect people are branding me as lazy and useless (as usual, you think? Fine by me!) and I just don’t feel like doing any work.” Amma gave me a one-liner – “Sorry, warranty period over. Goods once sold cannot be taken back.”

What a P.J. that was! You don’t know what a P.J. is? P.J. means Poor Joke. Was that a P.J. as well? Yes? Wow… I am the Lord of the P.J’s. But hey, I am far better than a few Bollywood movies that have released in the recent past and no, I am NOT going to write a review on any of them simply because I don’t spend time and money to watch such flicks. I prefer watching Balachander classics over and over again than watching the newly released, watch-me-if-you-have-the-IQ-of-a-cabbage movies that bore me to death. And now I understand completely what my blog does to you. I think the last Hindi movie that I loved watching was Ishqiya – way back in January.

Talking of movies, did you happen to watch the Filmfare Awards ceremony this year? Seriously, how much cool do SRK and SAK think they are? It was over-rehearsed and over-done and so long that it bored me to death. The only good thing about the function was Shahid Kapur’s tribute to Michael Jackson (drool drool). Well, it is no secret that I love Shahid, is it? And yes, I am very disappointed with the jury’s decision too. Shahid (darling) slogs it out at the gym and works so hard (and actually acts) in ‘Kaminey’ and who do they give the award to? Amitabh Bachchan. There is no taking away any credit from the hard work he has put into ‘Paa’, but I somehow liked Shahid’s performance better. Perhaps it is because I love him, but what the heck, this is MY blog J

Monday, March 8, 2010

God's Gift...

This time around I have a very sensitive issue. A friend of mine has a notion that women are inferior to men and should always listen to men and that he can never accept that women are equal to men. Well, that was a bold statement to make in front of me on any day – and he specially chose Women’s day for that. Needless to say, I and another female friend of mine gave him back nicely. He was left battered and bruised. No, we did not get violent; we believe in Gandhiji’s words – we explained that is NOT how it is with the maximum amount of patience we could muster. But he went on with his bullshit about how women should do all the household work and husbands should be their Gods. WTF!!!

Now I agree that women can’t do everything that men can. But what my dear friend had to understand was that similarly, there are (more) things that women do that men can never do. He also went on to say, “Girls who work in the IT industry are always looked down upon by the society. The society respects only those that are teachers or doctors or IAS officers.” Really, that was more than necessary to get on my nerves. No amount of saying or arguing was going to instill any sense into his non-existent brain. The reasons he gave for his filthy mind-set were:

  1. I cannot accept that women are equal to men. They can never be equal to us men. (Oh yes, that is a very valid reason).
  2. Most IT girls have bad character. They don’t deserve/get any respect from the society. (I understand it is because we are educated and independent and are able to support ourselves and our families).
  3. Women should stay at home and do all the household work and men should go out and earn for the family – that is how God intended it. (Oh really? God told you what He intended? When did that happen?)
  4. Men do hard work. Women are inefficient. (Oh yes, you do hard work? Like plough your land? Lay a road? Dig a mine? What?)
  5. I cannot accept that women are equal to men. They can never be equal to us men. (Was it the first point all over again? Yes, that’s what he said – again)

When would men like these understand that women are individuals and they need their space and freedom where they could do whatever they want? Finally he said, “I would keep the girl I marry very very happy.” I just burst out in laughter and said, “The only way you can ever keep a woman happy is by staying away from her.” That was true in his case.

But for all the men out there who want to keep their mothers/sisters/friends/girlfriends/wives/daughters happy, this is how you do it. THE ONLY WAY TO MAKE A WOMAN HAPPY IS BY LETTING HER DO WHAT SHE WANTS TO DO. That is simple, right? The next time your girlfriend asks you, “When can we meet?” try telling her, “We can meet whenever you want to” and live up to your words. The next time your mom asks you, “What do you want for breakfast?” try telling her, “Whatever you want to cook” and then see how truly happy and touched she will be.

Understand that women are delicate and fragile and yet stronger and more courageous than men. Women are precious and without them, life will not be worth living. She can make your life heaven and hell – it depends upon how you choose to behave with them. She is truly God’s gift to the world.

Praise her, celebrate her presence!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Chennai is the warrast?

There is something that I have to ask you. One of my friends says, “Chennai is the warrast (worst) city in India”. Do you agree? My friend has not made that statement without reasons. There are a few reasons he has listed out and he is more than willing to give “hundreds… no thousands of reasons” to prove his point. He was also curious to know what the others are feeling and in fact, insisted that I write about it on my blog. Please do go through the reasons he had mentioned (and pardon my language, support projects do make your communication so formal that you end up talking like the E! news guys who talk about celebrities’ hook-ups and break-ups like it is the most important news)

Reason #1: Chennai climate – it is the warrast climate. It is so damn hot.

My thought: I have got to agree with him on this one. Chennai is hot; but I liked the heat and he didn’t.

Reason #2: Chennai people don’t know how to behave. They are harsh and rude.

My thought: Ada paavi makka, Chennai makkal are the warmest (well, not as respectful as Coimbatore makkal) and very friendly. They are a little conservative, but that is the best part about it. It is a modern city with traditional values.

Reason #3: Chennai’s dirtiness and ugliness.

My thought: Well, I am still contemplating what he meant by ‘ugliness’; and if he expects any city to be ‘clean’ by his standards, he would have to travel to Singapore, I guess)

Reason #4: Chennai’s drainage system – big open drainage lines running all over the city (in front of major IT parks too)

My thought: The other Indian cities are no better, Krishna! Chennai is a city with one of the best infrastructures in the country.

Reason #5: Chennai people can’t speak any other language – not even Hindi/English.

My thought: Babu, when YOU visit a city, YOU should learn the local language and NOT crib about the people there. And do NOT expect the locals to learn a new tongue in their own city. Also, Tamil is a simple and beautiful language, try learning that! When God gives you an opportunity to learn a new language, grab it. If you get an onsite opportunity and go to France or Netherlands to Spain wouldn’t you learn French or Dutch or Spanish? Or will you forgo the opportunity and demand that your client learns Hindi/English? If you can adjust in a phoren country, why not do it in your OWN country?

Reason #6: Non-Tamil movies (by this he means Hindi movies) don’t release in Chennai. If they do they are released in very few theatres and they don’t last for more than a week’s time.

My thought: Really? This point proves how little you know about Chennai. During my stay there, I watched almost all the Hindi movies that were released. From Hit to Flop, I saw everything there.

Reason #7: Auto-walahs are very rude. There is no meter system.

My thought: I agree there is no meter system. But not all auto-walahs are rude. They respond depending on the tone and attitude with which you ask them. Give respect, take respect! :-D

Reason #8: I went to Ponnusamy hotel. I had chicken, mutton, and everything and I ended up vomiting. Chennai’s food is bad.

My thought: I couldn’t stop laughing at this one. Nadakaradhu, odaradhu, parakaradhu, neendharadhu ellathayum ore time-la vettina, vomit varama? Sinna pulla thanamala irukku? Team lunch-na ippidiya kattradhu? Oru limit venaam? Oru self-control venaam? But anyways, it is just not acceptable that Chennai is the warrast city because Ponnuswamy hotel provides bad food.

Reason #9: Chennai (Marina) beach is the warrast beach (compared to RK beach in Vizag)

My thought: Payapulla, compare panradha vuda maatiya? May be Marina is not as clean, but I am sure the life in Marina is something incomparable. The kids, the kites, the sundal, the wind, the under-the-boat-lovers – it is just out of the world. Instead of enjoying all that, if you choose to concentrate on the cleanliness aspect of it, you are the loser.

Indha maadhiri palappala reasons sonnar avar! I think that you should enjoy whichever city you visit as long as you are there. Try learning the local language, use public transportation to explore the city and I am sure you will have a nice time. What say people?

Monday, February 8, 2010

A February Saturday in 1998

Feb 14, 1998

Thank God, it was a Saturday. That meant my mom had to work only half-a-day and therefore left office before 3pm on that fateful day. It was 12 years back – 1998. It was when people came to know Coimbatore as the ‘Bomb Blast’ city than as an industrial city. At first, when we heard the news of a bomb blast within the city, I was scared – Amma hadn’t returned home after office and there she did not carry a cell phone in those days and she was practically not reachable. After what seemed an eternity, she reached home. After that, we were kept updated by friends and colleagues (of my parents’) about the various bomb blasts and the riots. It all sounded so unreal – there was no way so many people could have died, there was no way anyone could have planted bombs in the Govt. Hospital (no one was THAT insensitive), there was no way people could set fire to shops in Town Hall and loot stuff from burning shops, and there was absolutely no way there was a 3kg RDX bomb right in Amma’s office building (that was diffused later). I was 12 years old. I thought the world was full of nice people. And villains who murdered people existed only in movies (this was when I was ‘innocent’ as I claimed in my previous post). All the same, I was excited too, because schools declared holiday until a car bomb was diffused and that took around 4days.

The fact was that over a hundred people died (although the official figures claim that it was only one-third of it), and so many were injured and the incident changed the image of the city in a flash – suddenly, people were more unwilling to come and work in Coimbatore (even though it is a beautiful city with a great climate and awesome water), Real Estate prices hit rock bottom (of course, I didn’t realize it then), and business slumped and it took half a decade for it to come back to normal. And for the first time in my life, I felt unsafe. I felt afraid to go out; little did I know that such attacks would become a way of life in the years to come!

I think that is enough and more reason why, as a Coimbatorean, I won’t celebrate Valentines’ day – the day that made my city weep and bleed. To me it is a day of mourning. Celebrating is the last thing that I would do on February 14th.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Nothing in particluar

Well well, the only thing I took seriously after I wrote my previous post was to learn Spanish (in hopes of meeting Rafael Nadal someday and him falling hopelessly in love with me ). Sigh… And I am being taught Spanish by Google as well as a few native speakers. And I must say it is a very nice language to learn. By now, it is no secret that I am a huge chatter-box and can’t stop talking and I also love learning new languages. So the next language on my hit-list was Spanish (maamiyaar, maamanaar-ah impress panna vendam? Not just that – Rafa is also Peter-la weak) and I am so excited by the opportunity I am being given to learn a new language which sounds great. But bad news is that Rafa is injured (yet again) in his right knee (yet again) and has pulled out of the Australian Open – I was hoping to see him defend his title and reclaim his #1 spot. Oh my God, I am really in love with him!!!

Ippolaam ennavo theriyala, I am beginning to enjoy Kuthu Songs – from Nakka Mukka to En peru Meenakumari to Aathichoodi – full time I am singing these songs and this irritates everyone around me. Obviously, I have come a long way from my Bhajan and Bhagwad Geeta Chanting to this and it really makes my family angry. They still expect me to be that little girl who was innocent (hey, nejamma… believe me, I used to be innocent – once upon a time) and the problem is I have grown up and they haven’t! Indha ammakkale ippididhaan pola…

My sister has gone to Mumbai with her friends – Industrial Visit-am. Engalukku theriyaadhu, indha I.V.-la enna pannuvaanganu? All ore kuttai-la oorina mattais dhaane? With her around it is easier to handle maamis who want to marry me off like it is the purpose of their birth – at least I had someone to laugh it off with. It will be really nice if gets married first and no one seems to agree with me on that. Enna vaazhkayada!

Monday, January 25, 2010

I wanna be a...

When I listen to some songs, I feel I should have taken up singing more seriously and continued those Carnatic music classes. When I watch Shahid Kapur dancing (and not trying to be SRK), I feel should have taken those dancing classes that my sister used to take and have something to talk to Shahid when we meet (Sigh…). When I watch the Australian Open matches, I regret not having gone for those Tennis Coaching classes that few of my friends attended; now what the hell am I supposed to talk about to Rafael Nadal when we meet? Oh, I should learn Spanish first for that, you say? Okay; that I can start even now. Well, my point is, everyone is good at something or the other – some are athletes, some are singers, some are painters, and some are trivia-freaks – each one has his/her own hobby – something they have been good at or trained in right from childhood.

I am good at nothing – I sing well enough to wake people up from sleep (so much so that few are considering my songs as their Alarm Tunes), I dance as if I am having one of those epilepsy attacks, I just can’t paint (never have and never will), I can’t even beat my 35+ years old colleague up a flight of stairs. And I am doing something I hate for a living. Sigh… Each passing day makes me feel more like a loser and hopelessly pathetic. In Chandler’s words, could life be any worse?

I need to figure out what I am good at (no, I don’t take, “You are good at nothing” for an answer). I need to contact the right person to channelize my potential. I need to take it up seriously without giving way to my laziness like I did with singing. I need something that would keep me sane (if I have not already lost my sanity) and kill my boredom and make me a better person. I am sure I will be good at what I do if only I were doing something that makes me happy. To excel in something, I have got to enjoy it. I am also sure that there are so many of you out there, stuck up doing something you hate but sticking on to it because there is no other go, praying for relief from the monotony, unable to enjoy your work/chosen field of study – simply because it was chosen by someone else.

I guess that is enough ranting for now.

Sparing you from a boring long post (read: before you choose to kill me)…