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Thursday, December 30, 2010

Times of Google

It is a funny thing, chatting.

There is something unexplainable as to why someone whom you can see right across the room would prefer to take the effort of typing a “hello” on his system and hit enter. Outcome and time wise it is greater than walking to the person and saying “hey” and efficacy wise it is definitely beaten by a loud hello shouted across.

But still people do it.

Maybe the inherent laziness in all people is the impetus, or it is the cloak of anonymity it seems to offer.

I guess it was the latter as to why we began conversing electronically, something which I really don’t relish. But I am grateful to this medium because the cloak of anonymity it offered also gave freedom to let things develop by their own rather than be shaped by external forces.

It helped that we had full time connectivity as well. I pinged her once, the “Hey what’s up “, part and then it hit off.

And boy did it hit off.

On the last count we had nearly 200 chat transcripts, each averaging about 500 words. That is about, 100000 words worth of conversation, equivalent to a nice book. I guess it is more than information than 2 love eyed birds would ever share in their ritual of holding hands and malling around.

And what did we talk about. Well everything and nothing. Or as one married female once told me about her courting days,  with her Sir Gahlad, “ There is no one thing pal, it is all and all and none at all” ( she is given it to hysterics, but it is kind of singsong so I put it here).

And that is what exactly it was. Perhaps the simplicity and inconsequential nature of the talk is the reason for its charm.

I also fell into the habit of texting her, (with alarming frequency) which is again not my preference. But soon enough I began enjoying it. I guess the time lag between messages leaves one apprehensive, as well as anticipatory, and that kind of builds up the excitement. However on the flip side there is the possibility of misinterpretation of short words, symbols, acronyms, but hey no harm done, because ignorance is bliss!

What started as a simple conversation, become a ritual.

 A fanatical …scary ritual, which left me fidgety when it did not happen.

Click here
  1. Prelude 
  2. Chapter 1 - Thunderbolt
  3. Chapter 2 - Times of Google
  4. Chapter 3 - Can you Chase a Dream ?


Now when was this, I guess sometime in the second year when we had a 3 day break and happily nothing major to do. The family clan at our campus had decided on some outing and seems it’s was a social affair open to all.

Enter Serendipity Occurrence (SO) 1, I joined it!!

Early morning all dressed spruced we sat in the bus. In entered lusty cheering of songs while driving and the happy cheer was infectious. The merry fun filled sounds were …..Well good.

We had to go in a bus to a base point beyond which it was a walk for some kilometers. I am a brisk walker and not much of a “this pose too “kind of photographer, so I soon left a sizeable chunk of my batch mates behind. I am not sure who met whom first but I bumped into this female and we began chatting up.

That female was a typical yakkity yack to begin with, but she knew when to shut up. There were pauses in the conversation which I filled up which is rather uncharacteristic of me, for it is normally the other way round. Soon enough we knew a lot about each other’s family, background and likings. She was from “laloo - land” and had spent her life in some far off industrial township. These types are normally good with numbers and she indeed had done her graduation in mathematics and looking forward to some do the same in some risk management course out here. There was a queasy feel about that female, on the face of it she appeared another air head, but I sensed some hard nerves too.

I liked her. She had an easy going way and a basic charm which most city breeds don’t. Physics states that unlike forces do attract and I am not exception to the universal laws. However I do not know if the attraction was a result of the extent of dissimilarity or because of the caged box of wild hormones inside of me not quite tamed by the raveling repair of structure and prayer.

I was unnerved, not in the least tired almost on a high. It was like an intense snort in session, plus a bucket party. I was scared and attracted to her at the same time. Scared because I really did not see someone like her before, you fear the unknown right whereas familiarity breeds comfort and contempt in varying measures. One of my friends, had once remarked that when you don’t feel lust towards a woman and she happens to be passably pretty as well as conversationally good , then you should be scared(not because of old age or the dick effect it is because of the mind effect).

Attraction, in turn was direct offshoot of fear.

I did not want to embarrass her, by hounding her. But I could not resist staying away from her; I just had to be near her. Journey back home, she was sitting in the last row and the back door of the bus was open. I stood near the back door almost the entire return journey under the pretext of the blowing draft cooling my body and sweat stained clothes. But in reality, I was stealing furtive glances at her, the entire time while she was lolling around all sleepy.

Back at campus we ate, showered and crashed. But I wasn’t tired not the least bit which was pretty weird as we had trudged quite long and hard.

Click here
  1. Prelude 
  2. Chapter 2 - Times of Google


It took a lot of time to commit this to paper and again a lot of time to come around to the idea of sharing it.I had circulated a few copies here and around to some people I trust and respect and all of them urged me to share it.

However, I have rejected the idea of a paper publication after lot of dallying around, I don't want to sell sordid tales .This,because I believe in Ustaad Bismillah Khan's philosophy, " You cant have the grace of Goddess Lakshmi and Saraswati together in life (2 women in life is disaster, even if they are goddesses , huh ustaadji?!).

If you do then you are fortuitous and also are strong enough to not be corrupted by the heady concoction".

Fortitude notwithstanding,I don't think I have the required strength, as of now.

The series of posts , that follow are true, or rather the version of truth I saw (There will be a bias!).The protagonist again is inspired from someone I knew............. or so I thought.

Finally, these are not in anyway meant to hurt/disrespect anybody , or be spiteful or vengeful, it is only meant to share some experiences/thoughts.

Click here
  1. Chapter 1 - Thunderbolt.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Autograph Please !!

Men are not from Mars, nor are woman from Venus. But yes, men will be men always and woman will be .....................   feminine (read bashful!).

I am traveling to hallowed establishments, the typical central government organizations which are characterized by red bricked walls, neat gardens and people who are kind of different in their outlook.

Defense establishments have lots of proprietary issues when it comes to materials, and assembled parts coming in and out. Cutting end technology notwithstanding, administration is still manpower, paper/pencil dependent.

We had to rework some materials for yet another design change. These were duly packed, sealed and signed by the store manager, materials in-charge, and the project manager too. We took the box and made our way to the main gate. Here the security guard directed us to an inside office for getting the materials cleared.

Hooha, there was a crowd there. 

Seems lots of vendors had picked that day for coming and going out and sadly there was just one clearing table.

It was nearing evening, and most of the staff was in movement away from office mode. I did not want to waste another day for the same material to be carried off, but it was impossible to get to the clearing lady in that queue and I could see that she was also turning cranky.

Think Balak ! Think….

The devil in me lighted the flame of wit, or so I thought. 

It was a small box, unlike most of the others in the queue, so I could tuck it under my arm.

I navigated to the front. I plunked the box on the table, and flashed a Colgate smile and said “Autograph please madam!!” in what I thought was a balance between a kiddish and a mature uncle tone (read teenage)
There was silence.It seemed like I had committed an ultimate sin. The regular sales representative from my place, whom I had accompanied, was a diminutive girl who spoke very less, seemed scandalized at my outburst.

Another resignation…no no seems it was going to be firing this time, I thought slightly frightened.

Meanwhile aunty ji , looked up. Her eyes were droopy had some old fashioned spectacles with tags on the frame to dangle over the chest. She did a quick survey of me from top to bottom.

Then………… she smiled.

She appeared to be bashful at the purported compliment and coyly she replied in Tamil “What you want my autograph for ……. am I a star or what”.

Oh so aunty ji nursed showbiz ambitions at some time. I replied with all honesty in Tamil “Right now madam you are the star of this place, so I want your autograph”.

It is wonders, at what candidness can do. She moved her attention to the box and asked,”What is it?”

“Some small XYZ, we are taking to our place in Bangalore, we will get it back tomorrow after modifications, we have taken approval from ABC”, I replied.

ABC was good, very good. She gave a cursory look at the release forms and then signed on the gate pass.

“There you go, now you have an autograph! Happy now?” 

“ Kavita Ramanathan”,  the wordings were cursive and surprisingly the scribble decipherable.

A nod and a smile and then I mouthed “Thanks”.

So there you go ,  any woman no matter how old, still is a pretty woman in her heart .And it does no harm to remind her about that !! :) 

अजी सुनते हो................. चिन्टू के पापा ???

...... dong..... dong...... dong...  !

Tuesday, December 28, 2010


This one is a take on the early morning time for a doper , who hasn't had his fix.

" I am fidgety.......... I am cranky .....I am scared......

I haven’t had my fix, the fix………

Ever had a feeling that, you had an elephant nesting in your bowels, but your ass is zipped, not with a conventional zip but a Velcro. The right pressure, it would burst open, giving a blessed release, the release is tantalizing close, but not yet there.

“These are mints. Where is the regular gold flake king size?”  I bellowed.

“Manish had the last of them yesterday”, came the shout.

Damm the Manish,  always borrowing fixes. He would walk into any room and help himself to anything he liked, nobody could say no to him. He was the one who could land you anything, from a girl to a fix anytime.

I called Manish from my cell phone.A sweet ladies voice in a maddening slow pace from my cell, reminded me that the balance was low, before the blessed ring, came on the other end.

" Who the hell is this  " ?   , came the sleepy retort.

" I need gold flakes king size right now"  , I said cutting straight to the chase,I dispensed off with preliminary curses, but stored them for later use with full pressure.

" It is fucking raining, where do you expect me to find gold flakes now, do you forget that this a village ?"

" You bastard, what do I do now " ?, I was close to hyperventilating.

" Take some lifebuoy soap, the red one, peel it with a peeler and dissolve a pinch full in warm salted water and dunk it. Keep it down till it passes to your gut.Wait till about 20 minutes .It would do what gold flake does on early mornings" .

" Fuck where does this guy get to know all this?" , No wonder he could borrow fixes, after all he could fix anything.

Anyways I would have fucked a dog in the road to get rid of the situation I was in now. Lifebuoy soap  sounded  a lot better than it.

True to Manish's word it helped, not miraculously but yes passably.

That I swear is the last I see of those flakes again in my life, I resolved.But again I knew the futility of it , cause there is one way, one route of escape from life. There has to be one.

And for me it was the smoke.

Puff........ inhale........... and blow...

And trust me........... the worries....... all of them.........seemed to go.

Ding Dong !

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Men Who Love Their Machines

There is something refreshingly and comfortingly similar of these people; most of them are like one batch of assembly production, you know one and you know them all. Below is what I think sets them apart, or let me say their distinguishing factors:

1. Singularity – They are unable to multitask. Here I refer to tasks from a relationship and a material perspective. They would have one friend, one machine, one girl and if I extend an analogy one –two kids. The ability to multitask is reduced, and from a narcissist perspective I would like to say that it is because they are unable to sacrifice their passion.

2. Passion – Fight, study, or play there is passion in them. Typical Type As

3. Creative – Like to do things by their own hand. It can be bashing people, cleaning their vehicle, playing a sport or an instrument, again tied to passion or rather their inability to sacrifice it.

4. Violenceअपना हाथ जगनाथ ! Simple people, not much dallying around, cut the crap, talk to the point and if words don’t work, fists do. In the end no hard feeling, because once a blow is delivered, or a leg broken it is all back to square one and no love is lost between any of them.

5. Boozers – tank like capacity, funnily they are also built in extremes, either skeletal and gaunt or heavy set and huge.

6. Mama’s boys – They are not papas but mama’s boys who have now turned to men. Mother or sometimes it is grandmothers, can’t hear a word against them, so fights emerge with the other female in life.

7. Love Causality – life for them is either black or white there exist no shades of gray, hence, their love for logic and causality. For instance, I bash his head, and it bleeds, there is nothing called less bleeding or lots, it is bleeding.

PS - After reading this an acquaintance of mine gave a nice definition of a male chauvinist (courtesy a lil' extra Christmas rum!), “A male chauvinist is a person, who can only see a female in a porn movie and appreciate it!”  , darn this one seems to link chauvinism to hypocritical …anyways we are still laughing our butt off !!

Finally, all the writes here, are observations/comments.There is no reference to any person, and if there is I would make that amply clear.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

The Accordion Concept of Strategy!

Late in the night…………… a random sector of my laptop…………. discovery of a note…….

It was scribbled after a very nice session on strategy by famed Dr Venugopal, if my memory serves me right it was the second/third session.(there is a lot more gyaan there to come !  )

Here is the essence of it. (I was the scapegoat!)

1.       Ok what is your objective?  
 a.       I am here to study and learn.

2.       Why do you want to learn?
 a.       That is because I want a good job

3.       Why do you want a good job?
a.       To earn well

4.       Why do you want to earn well? (Venu at this point was irritating me, lighting my rather short fuse!)
a.       To take care of myself, my family and friends.

5.       Why do you want to do that?
a.       That is because it would make me happy.

6.       Why do you want to be happy?
a.       My response, to this was the great Indian gesture number two, a mid air open palm twist and quizzical eyebrows.

7.       No , No  tell me why do you want to be happy?
a.       I don’t know.(enough of dallying come to the point you are trying to make)

A triumphant look in his eyes, he turns attention from me and sights the class.”So you see.......... that is the difference between objective and action, you never know which is what , it is like an accordion, once you spread it....... stretch it thin........... the folds vanish....... it is a smooth and  taught piece of fiber”.

In this case if you see, his objective is to be happy, and his action is to study and learn

He looks at me and says, “Poor strategy................. I really pity you”.

Ah, so that explains the C-.!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Why Does the World Hate MBAs?

I am one of the above breed, and I can see the hate/dislike/resentment in the industry and to a certain extent I would say it is warranted as well. (I am seeking refuge in a collective identity hoping that it washes away some of personal shortcomings, ding dong!)

What turns the dice against us?

I am trying to figure(this is some loud thinking here !!). Let me start with the process. Business educations is about finding value or as any Marwari/bania would put it, it is about, ”धंदे की बात करियो ....भायो”.

Value or its addition in any process/function is for an infinitesimally short period of time. For instance consider a TV soap opera; the entertainment value is only at the conclusion and the beginning of it. A daily one runs for barely 20(of the allotted 30), minutes and the starting and ending minutes are the ones which add value , or let’s say make you watch it again. The rest are just fillers. So the VAR is 2/30 = 6%.

Similar is the case in modern day business or organizational work. The real meaty work, which adds value, would typically have the same proportion.

So now what happens is most smart, and knowledge MBAs (pun intended!), believe in this philosophy. (can you blame them, they are doing justice to what has been taught)

They seek only to work during the value adding time, hoping that the other time washes away. Alas, it is not so, for there exists a weird causality and a strong one too and therein difference between a soap opera.

An advertisement in the middle of a soap opera it, will not change in any way the hero/heroine make out in the end. However the fillers in real world would determine the nature and longevity of the value added.

Hence the existence of resentment factor number one, the sentiment” that guy/girl will only talk during work, or when he needs something.”

I have no problems if someone comes to me and says they need my help, and the only reason they are talking now is because they need some work from me.However this reason should be clear, no dallying around of keeping in touch , blah blah....

But that is not the way the world seems to work.

Sirjee actually gave me a very nice example yesterday, he said, ”Hey you know G, at B-school he was always running here and there, seeking to be in the midst of everything, and now you don’t hear from him at all , in fact he did not even turn up for V wedding, in spite of being in the same place”

“Sirjee, that is a clay pot, out in the sun for long he cracks. At the risk of sounding boastful, I can say that he did not have any balls, and the influence part of it, was also limited. I know for sure, that if you or I raised a finger it was the end of it and even now we know for better what’s happening at any place”.

But we also have non-friends (I wouldn’t use enemies, for sirjee actually laughed it away) , said sirjee.

“What would you like sirjee?, everybody’s friend who actually has nobody, or somebody’s friend who has all those some “bodies”. , i shot out to him.

Hmm true , says Sirjee.

Secondly MBAs have a huge ego. Two years of education and they are out to defend the bastions of business established by gray haired veterans having a decade and a half worth of experience. This would not augur well with anyone. You cannot command work, or improvements, you would have to persuade them slowly and assiduously.

"What talk to him, he is barely a graduate?" , seems the sentiment.

Darn!! If you are so smart, why don't you use your knowledge derived from the degree rather than just the degree , to get some work done?

Bend, squeeze through and go to the next rung, or break in this rung itself, most choose the latter.

My business is to do with people.Meeting, talking, negotiating and fixing a deal, and in my business there are no fresh faced kids, only gray haired veterans. But the thing with those veterans is that they listen to logic, delivered with the correct amount of deference. Too much of deference and you are not taken seriously, too less you are on an ego trip, it has to be just right.(All right chadda saab I am a desi dalal a.k.a , dalakant !,and I am proud of it).

PS - Chadda and sirjee, my good friends experiences, in different powerhouses, prompted me to pen this down.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Viewpoints - Hilarious !!

We have all heard of the statement of the glass being half full and half empty but apparently there are lots of other viewpoints!!

This is from a site which I literally stumbled upon, and it is hilarious. I am adding a bit or more of my own along with the flow of it.

PS- The formatting is a mess.............I couldn't upload text and images together!!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

The Moral of the Story !!

Now this one is true!! 

This was recounted to me by a friend of mine, who incidentally has just shifted base from Chennai to here. At Chennai he was sharing a flat with 3 other people, one of whom was a person,  about which this incident is.

Now this friend of mine was pulling of night shifts, so his weekend quite did not begin at Friday night, rather Saturday early morning. Many times he would walk in only to see, that there were just a few minutes to sunrise. Starved of human tendencies he would catch some tiny winks and wake up early, welcoming the early morning sun with a cup of tea with his roommates.

Now one Saturday morning, he was late by his usual standards and that meant it was quite the morning he walked into the room. He was greeted by the sight of one person, all disheveled, sweaty in the kitchen surrounded by a variety of pans and pots. Evidently something big was in progress
“Hey good morning”, my friend was greeted by (let’s call him K) “here have some kheer , I just made it”.

Kheer in the morning, on a weekend, something was definitely amiss. All they normally used to have was a late lunch, a heavy one though and then doze off again.

Anyways he took the steaming plate and sat down to enjoy it.

Soon other also woke up, and all were subjected to early morning greetings and plates of delicious kheer.

My friend raised a quizzical brow at others wondering why the sudden affection came from him , K  however was oblivious to the effect he was creating.

A couple of hours later, the kitchen was clean again (they had a rule as those who dirty the pots should clean them!), but we still needed lunch. Something was found that was edible and my friend decided to cook for all of them. He asked K “hey you in for lunch right?”

K said “ no no I have plans”.

“Cool”, my friend remarks, something told him that the early morning kheer was connected to his afternoon plans.

All dressed spruced, and dosed with a liberal helping of cologne, aftershave and perfume, K made his way outside. Couple of minutes later he ran back and asked.

“I left a box on the kitchen table, can you wrap it up and give it to me, please use the black polythene”.

Ok, so now this K has apparently cooked a gift for someone. I suddenly knew where this was heading to and I interrupted my friend and asked “A female birth canal expulsion date right”

Shhhhh…wait for the coup de grace, Rajan I was chided.

So now my friend cooks lunch for the remaining of the roommates.

“Finish it all off, only we three are there. I had measured some rice for K too but he had some plans”, remarked my friend.

“I know those plans. It is S birthday, today and he has gone there”, added R wryly.

Bingo I said to my friend. I knew it.My friend raised a finger threateningly and I immediately clamped shut

“That’s good right, it is really nice of him to take that kind of gift, beats a bunch of flowers any day”, my friend remarks to R

R nodded, somewhat absently

Lunch done, my friend makes his way to the kitchen to scrape off the pans, suddenly K reappears, all sweaty and huffing.

“You back so soon, it is just been a couple of hours, you had lunch”? , Asked my friend.

K ignores him and makes his way to the cooker; some rice was still there and he immediately scoops it off, dumps it into a plate and begins to eat.

A few gulps later, he said” no lunch yaar, there were some change of plans”. His tone indicated no malice, just a matter of fact tone.

My friends cell phone rings up at precisely that point, It was S(R was right!!), “hey it’s my birthday today, I am sure you would have forgotten.”

“Happy birthday”, my friend remarks the clichéd statement.

“Anyways It is dinner tonight on me, please come to XYZ at say 8PM”, says S.

My friend nods and then looks at K.

Someone makes the effort of cooking up a dish with limited resources on a weekend morning for somebody and they don’t even have the time or courtesy to ask him for lunch.  What kind of person could that be? More importantly what kind of a person is K? , my friend winds off with a rather frightening intensity.

Aila this has turned a bit garam, !! 

In order to lighten the mood, I say” So the moral of the story is that use you big head to do the thinking, not the little one”?

I get a back thump and sudden guffaws, from my friend, “Yea I guess that is the moral of the story.”

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

The Answer to Everything

Any guesses on what it could be?

Well, I am going to take the circuitous route to give the answer and it is something I can identify with and I am darn sure most you would too.

It is Wednesday morning, and it is not a holiday. Contrary to popular belief I look forward to Monday mornings, but the suffering or rather the ennui reaches its peak by Wednesday.

There is mountain of mails, and the digital post-it seems small for the updates, so I create a word document. Once I have the music created for the day, my role of a music director commences, waving the baton in front of a symphony.

Keep your ego aside, is what I have learnt. My education is of no consequence, my knowledge however a little bit maybe (assuming zero correlation between the two, or rather negative is the way I have often seen it to be).

When I sit down for my first cup of tea, I am stuck by it .

What is the purpose of it all, the divine reason for existence?? 

(नहीं.......... मैं गीता उपदेश का इचुक नहीं हूँ !!  )

A little bit more thought, and another point comes. If I have to figure out one word, a sentence, a phrase or a gesture that would be the answer to this question or rather any question what would be it?

Any guesses ?

Well it is “This too, my friend shall pass” 

(This is from a dog eared compilation of writing by Osho, picked from some alley in Bangalore. No, I am not going “Hare Krishna”, route but there is no denying the power and intellect of Osho).

For all ye people like me, figuring out their reason for existence. We lose ourselves in something or the other, in the hope that it might be permanent or everlasting and that is the eventual cause of sorrow.

That’s the power of transience and that sentence is my friend is the answer to it all. 

Sorrow or happiness, love or hate, pain or ecstasy, all these are transient, they eventually pass, reach an end.

बहुत ज्ञान हो गया, मैं आज के लिए होता हूँ .......  transient.Goodbye ---I think.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Vroom Vrooooooom !!

I had just finished my lunch at my standard hotel, the standard fare, and was pondering on options ahead. Someone mentioned Nandi hills and its resemblance to a modest hill station and its existence some 60 kms, in the adjacent tables.

My dame had just clocked 209 kms, and now putting an additional 120 odd on it?

To zap or…….. to not……..? …….The eternal question.

“No”, decided the better part of me, “Yes” decided the not so better part of me, and I j...............just sat there and ordered another rava dosa.

“Sir you look like Surya from Singham,”, the dyed in madras waiter from the hotel interrupted my dense thoughts.

Ahh the moustache, I thought and retorted back in Tamil, dallied with him for some time with a smile on my face.

Way out I drove leisurely to my room and parked my bike outside the gate which was locked. I got down and went inside to unlock it. There is a building being constructed adjacent to mine and there are a lot of construction workers and their families in temporary makeshift huts nearby.

One kid had another half her size perched on the hip. She was staring at the smooth finish of the bike with an indefinable expression on her face. She did not see me as I was well hidden by the parking gate wall. Slowly she took her finger and traced it smoothly on the fuel tank, blowing her warm breath on it and tracing her finger simultaneously.

I suddenly interrupted her flow and walked towards my bike with a determined stride. My countenance seemed to inspire detestation in her, and she stepped back slightly. I ignored her and saw what she had scribbled.

She had traced a perfect “pulsar” in a similar manner to the metal plate, which was fast vanishing against the cool breeze.

I looked at her and felt a sudden twinge of sadness. 

What was the difference between me and her, a couple of feet, some additional kilos and miscellaneous resources?

“Coming for a ride?” I asked her in Tamil. She did not understand …

Meanwhile a woman came briskly from the huts, with a menacing expression on her face, directed towards the kid.

I told her “I am taking these kids for a ride”, mimicking riding expressions.

The woman was puzzled. I did not really look like the street kid lover part of the image. I mimicked road distance and said I wouldn’t go far. She nodded, so I guess I did not quite look the street kid grabber image too. I hoisted the girl on the pillion who was then relived of the younger one by her mother. She clutched my ample midriff, (no corrections these are love handles!!) and I took off.

One spin around and I came back.

The girl jumped off and walked away. No thanks …… acknowledgment

I was disappointed, I expected, a nod or at least a smile from her.

Anyways, this little episode over me parked the beast, made to my room, and promptly dozed off. When I woke up it was evening, I decide to mall out.

I walked down, and was greeted with a gleaming bike. It was no superficial cleaning, I looked at the kick and the rear mud guards, and they were sparkling too.

The security guard seeing my self gave a thin whistle. I looked up and he pointed his finger towards the hut and said softly, “She just went back“.

Ahh, so that’s her way of saying thanks. She wanted to mean it, not just say it. She was a rare breed of a street child, a rare one indeed.

In a sudden burst of inspiration I kneeled down and blew my breath against the fuel tank. In a manner that could be termed as artistic, (stretching the term wee bit far), I traced a “thanks”. As I straightened up the “thanks” was fast vanishing too, however I believed that my point was well conveyed.

Friday, December 3, 2010


Last evening I got off early. And now courtesy wheels, my commute time is barely 5 minutes.

I reached my room, and voila, it was dark.

“No electricity sir, it was not there the whole day!!”  , said the security guard.

Wow this just about does it, back from office and nothing to do. I am sick of coffee days, pizza huts and malls. All were barely a couple of minutes drive away, but I wanted none of it. And I am now sliding down the utility curve of the sight of an idiot box, so there is nothing much to do.

Into my room, and I wanted some music. I switched my laptop on, and it gave a feeble try and blinked off. No battery. My cell phone took inspiration from the Lithium ion in the laptop and blinked off too, so much for smart phones.

I stripped down to my underwear and lay comatose on the bed, opened a bag of ruffles lays extra large and Saint pure grape juice for company. 

“Crunch” and “slurp” sounded loud in the stillness of the surroundings, almost disturbing. I pushed it aside and just lied down, savoring the stillness.

It soon turned very dark, and my abode being a remote place, absence of light was kind of magnified. I struck a match and lit a candle, (I had a box just in case). 

Woohooo the breeze blew eerily outside. The flame flickered, but did not give up. It was like a game between the breeze and the flame, and somehow I was rooting for the flame to win, possibly because it was tangible, and visible.

Staring at the flickering candle flame, I thought,” When was the last time I stuck a candle apart from the purpose of adorning “happy birthday to you cakes”?

The realization hit me. It was during my days at Noida, when blackouts were common and kind of looked forward to. This was the time when you could play hide and seek in the night apart from the stipulated hours and that kind of made it exciting.

No phone…… no songs…….. No sound…….. No food and ……… nobody around.

The winds blowing…… ……… eerily dark surroundings ………….. The slightly damp night…….A railway crossing just about a 100 meters away. 

This was all the stuff horror or let’s says non-love movies were made of. 

However it was not horror I was reminded off, it was Harry Potter.

Almost on cue “ Woohoo” ,  the breeze had turned to a wind intensity. I felt it moving over my lips like it was kissing me.

Dementors …it is the night of the Dementors.

Stop it Rajan, this is the stuff imagination is made off, I reminded myself sternly.

Déjà vu though. I still couldn’t shake the Dementors off me.

Chocolate, yea chocolate is the cure; I had some with me at that instant.

I broke of a piece and slipped on my tongue, it was Bourneveille, rich cocoa.

The piece had become all soggy, and squashed and immediately dissolved. The feel was good, and as a self serving bias, I imagined warmth in my body, mocking the chilly winds, like the flame was mocking it.

“ मुन्नी बदनाम हुई ”, screamed as the room was illuminated , suddenly.

The spell was broken; the Dementors I believe were scared of मुन्नी  ....... but chocolate…well it had its day!!  

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Pulsar 220 Street Fighter_Hamara Bajaj !

Hookers take a break , now it is time to appreciate one more body .... an Indian engineering first !!

After waiting the minimum possible time,  for a maximum cubic capacity bike I finally rolled out a pulsar 220 cc street fighter edition.Took this one, to get the max power to weight ratio.

No changes, I am stereotyping in my cage.This is the fifth Bajaj in my family, my dad had a penchant for chetaks, he got 4 of them in his lifetime !!

Anyways, back to the review.

All would have heard the cliched term of allowing the engine to break in before you race it........a thousand times??

I did not pay any heed to it !!

I rolled out the machine and flicked the electric starter.It purred to life, then after some gentle maneuvering through high traffic roads I reached the outer ring road Doddenakundi village street.I opened the throttle, and it raced on easily.No vibrations , no hint that I was doing a 100 kmph.

I happened to glance at the digital display and then realized that this is the first night case.You shouldn't be too harsh should you !!

Jokes apart, it is indeed a good engineering piece.The closest YZ , and R 15 look big, but in the end capacity matters.What is the use of adding hoods and side benders when your engine gives a puny 150 cubic capacity? The piston would only have a small distance to move,  so high speed for long time would naturally heat up the engine.

There are some hiccups,in it too.It seems huge and slightly unwieldy.The hood which gives its mean look also makes sitting slightly uncomfortable.Turning radius is good , but I lost track of which gear i was on, it pulls on easily on any gear, with the minimum rattling noise you would associate, when you lose speed on a higher gear.I read through the manual in detail, they allow for a max speed of 65km, till the first 1000 kilometers.It reaches that much in about 5 seconds , and I barley rotate the race !

And it has no kick, so god forbid if you lose battery on a highway.A single lever gear makes it tough to shift up and down, I got marks on my leather shoes. But 2 days later the gear shift became very synchronized, almost moving in on cue, rather sliding into place.

The bike is carbureted,  which is kind of a step back from fuel injection. However this shift back , gives a power output that is raw, high and a bit frightening.Obviously mileage will go for a toss, but not a huge one it seems :)

Long rides will take a bit more time, but I am looking forward to them :)

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

The Diary of a Hooker – Final Part

The simplicity and the finality of that statement made me smile, not smile laugh.

I released her and asked, “Do you always like your customers?”

“Mostly, but they don’t meet me in the middle of the night in the middle of the road. But your case I made an exception”, she replied in a matter of fact tone.

“Because you did not like me right”, I said curving my eyebrows towards her.

“That’s correct" , came along with a flash of gleaming white teeth.

“Well if you did not like me, then why did you want to meet me? That was pretty evident from the “look” you gave me”.

“We have been reading a lots of Mills & Boon, and watching friends rerun have we”, said she  in a flow, giving away her convent education.

“Sudha, don’t play around ……..tell me……. Why?”

“Why……… what?” , a maddening open ended retort by her.

“Why are we here?”, a soft plea from me.

“It is because I don’t like you, but I ….lust you”, came an equally soft but firm reply.

She was speaking like me, she was resonating my frequency. That perhaps explained her dislike for me. Nobody likes a duplicate version of himself, particularly if he loves his/herself too much.

It is self hate that makes you go against the world, snarling and growling at everyone. However it is a modicum of self love that makes you distrustful of a person having the same emotion.

“So what are we going to do about it?” , I asked.

“Fuck mostly”, the matter of fact tone returned.

“And …what apart from the mostly part of it? “ , I asked.

"Kiss perhaps" , a flash of gleaming white teeth , again.

This is it, I thought. Goodbye the last vestige of pubescence, the last remnant of the stretch marks on my arms. This it seems is the way it is going to end.

A hooker………in the middle of Banglooru …………a nondescript hotel and….. 11 minutes.

I will not go into further sordid details. I don’t want to do a mast ram, or a desi M&B here, but yes the hotel wasn’t nondescript.

When you have a lot in your mind, and when you have gone through a lot of unexpected, or experienced a high degree of non–conformance, within a short span of time, it manifests somewhere. Astronauts who experience the bone jarring takeoff get some fluid accumulation in their legs. I however am simpler, I just can’t sleep.

And, neither could she.

A formal goodbye later…I realized.

After blowing my half months pay, on a spur, for a mere 11 minutes, I did not really fell burdened. I just felt …happy!!

Reaching home, but first to my friends place. One look at my face told him to keep shut. We both acted that it was just another night, I took my stuff, we lunched and I came and finally crashed into his room itself.

Later when I woke up, I went on to this (winword) and put this down. On a spur, I hit Google for Sudha. Some names and hits popped up. “Sudha Bangalore”, was not forthcoming either. Finally I hit on images. I scanned each image, till the last page. (Now how many times have you gone beyond the second page, what follows next is a lesson that Google is not all that mighty)

I hit pay dirt on the last “o” of Google. There was a giggling snap of her, among a gaggle of friends. None of whom seemed familiar from the night drive before. I searched for the source, but “oops the link is broken”, appeared. It was a nonsensical link indicative of nothing; it was like an internet pensive, a ghost of information that perhaps escaped slaughter (just guessing this part)

Do I wish to see her again, not really? Do I lust her, no not much. Do I disrespect her for her profession... no …

Then probably I do respect her….. Not for her candidness, nor her brazenness or defiance. It is for the power she knew she had over people, and her willingness to use it ruthlessly for herself.

I bid goodbye to my friend, and then I made it down the staircase, to the open door. The poly bag, fluttering on his door was a common sight, it was for the milk. But it was having something inside of it and it said “Sudha”.

Darn she followed me here!

I opened it and found some wads of money. A note, written in cursive said” I lusted not you!!(It ended with two apostrophes also, which I most often do)”.

So here is the diary of a hooker!!

PS – I got a lot of dings on Google uncle, asking me if this is true. You are free to believe what you want to …………..I am neither going to deny nor confirm it.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

The Diary of a Hooker – Part 2

“Can we take a walk “?

“It will cost you “she said in a melancholic manner. I had withdrawn quite some money for my rent, and had enough cash.

“This do for a 10 minute walk...?” I said drawing a couple of notes.

She did not count or examine, she just took it and pocketed it.

Scary…………weird ……….and definitely something amiss.

She did not seem to treat me like a customer, rather as a connoisseur out to samples some wine or an art lover out to display her works.

“This way”she said leading, I waved to my companions and mouthed you guys leave I will find my way back.

We walked into a crack in the wall kind of lane. It was the kind of lane which silhouettes people, giving plenty of scope for hanky panky. She seemed to be floating rather than walking .We weren’t holding hands .......rather just fingers............... not even holding rather we were ............just touching tips.

There was no perfume, or spray on her but................. she was having a nice smelling sweat.

यह रंडी तो नहीं है बालक...........!!

Let’s try the brute force method of debugging, or rather the potshot theory, I thought. Sometimes when you talk to people, particularly in sales, you tend to spot tenor changes in voice if you keep giving them options to choose from. Chadda once told me this, after a meeting with UPPCL,for the veteran the right tenors can then be identified, to be built into a symphony. My boss is a veteran Zubin Mehta ,  and I have seen him in action, once.

"Where do you study? " , I asked.

“I don’t “, no change in tenor, so probably true, no skeletons.

“So what do you do other than this? I find it hard to believe that this is your only vocation” ….

“This…... “, a rather mischievous tone I her voice.

Tenor change !!

Suddenly, with no warning I grabbed the back of her head, yanked a chunk of her hair and then pushed her against the wall heavily.

“Don’t force me darling,” I tried to mimic the schizophrenic lady beater image.

There was no response; none. 

It was blank, no smile........ no rage........... no defenses and no ........peace

“Time perhaps , could make her react “, I thought. I pushed more against her, feeling the warmth of her body, getting aware of the curves and the senses.

There was a response, a definite physical response.

She then replied,” My name is Sudha and I …….do not like you”

The simplicity ............and the finality.............. of that statement made me smile....... not smile laugh.(To be Continued!!)

The last part ...Click here

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

The Diary of a Hooker – Part 1

Some stereotypes of sadness ,  are the kinds which hide their demons behind a veil of gruffness, or violence. You would expect hookers to exhibit some remnants of this sentiment. Alas, it is not so!!

Not all hookers are abject symbols of exploitation, or symbols of misery. There are indeed a lot of layers to the proverbial grease some predictable............ some surprising......... and some........ rather astonishing.

I spent a night with a surprise. Hold your horses as they undertake their flights of imagination. This is not Chandani Bar or Chameli rehashed. It however is definitely,  wild.,  unplanned and of course pleasurable. (Definite pun intended!)

This happened last Sunday when I was with a third party acquaintance stretching the term friend by a wide margin. I did not like the guy, and he had not planned in joining us for dinner, but it just so happened that we three were together.

Now a little about this guy, he is very recently married in fact he had just returned from his honeymoon, and he was the types who are victims of quantitative metrics, bigger, finer, expensive. Case in point, for sake of conversation all he could talk was about his honeymoon suite and how costly and exclusive it was.

“Lets go to MG road, you know at this time and day we can find a lot of birds, if you know what I mean”, in a rather I know and you don’t know manner.

Woho he wasn’t quite doing justice to the ideal husband part. Although his other half was not here, the activity he was suggesting did not quite fall within the ambit of ethical.

I am a horny techie, there is not much I don’t know or haven’t seen. But this guy was definitely one exotic specimen.

“ Sure “ ,  I said at once, I wanted to hang out a little bit more with this guy and see what type he actually was and of course also curious to visit a red light area after a long time.

The first time was in New Delhi, and it was a very sorry affair, or in real terms I did a bunk.

Anyways, this guy also had a new car (ostensibly to steer his wife, if only she knew!), and surprisingly the drive to MG road was traffic free too. We went in there and pretty very pretty birds’ line greeted us. They went on to the extent of throwing themselves on the car, yakketing and chattering in alternate measures.

I had suddenly spotted a very different specimen. I can’t put a finger down and say what attracted me to her but I just had to be near her to find out. Our eyes were locked for quite some time and then she did a curt disengagement.

“Stop the car, I wish to get down”, I said.

My tone had an edge of hyper in addition to authority. So there was a screech of brakes.

The guy who I had intended to meet was, concerned and turned back, only to find me staring at the fast vanishing specimen.

I made to unlock the door, and he intervened and said, “Are you mad, we are here only to see (he said indicating the gaggle of girls), if they get you once you can’t escape. Don’t play around here it is dangerous. And you look like a newbie too.”(Clean shaven alas!!)

"I am not a kid, and I can handle it don’t worry", for posterity sake I handed all my cards, purse, sans cash and other identifiers, including my beads, and threads to him, before brushing him aside and getting down.

“I am Srikant “, I said extending my hand to her. There were guffaws and cat calls from all around including the driver I had come with. She however extended her hand and shook mine. 

Handshakes are often revealing. However hers, wasn’t soft, nor firm neither authoritative nor submissive, it was ……….seductive to say the least.

“Can we take a walk “? , I asked with a smile .......To be continued.........Cause there is a lot !!....

Click here for second part  .......

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Institutionalizing the Art of Helping

Look around, these days there is always help available. Oh corrections, modern colloquialism dictates that I use the word counseling/coaching, for “help” by its very nature seems to indicate a diminished self capability.

A kid is born ……………hallelujah!!!

The celebrations over the first couple of years rush by in a haze of dirty nappies and now, he has to go to a school. Admissions are not so easy, so in step coaching to guide the child in the form of preschools. Thanks to my humongous memory I remember my pre-school and school days as times where I just ate (and ate I used to have 5 meals a day ,  morning breakfast, school lunch, back home another lunch, evening snack and dinner, courtesy amma) , played and slept.

Now preschools are no longer about kids having fun, even if it is having fun it is always with an intent to cram in some statistic in the kid, to prepare for an interview (kids giving an interview , they are still shitting their pants and they are expected to know the name of the president of India !).

Pre-schools proudly show their success rate in getting admission to “convent” schools. Convent, again a remnant of our colonial mentality, I regret not having gone to a government school, but I kind of made it up in graduation, (unintentionally though).

Ok, school is in now. Now the harried mom needs to unwind, after all a 3-4 year gap in life has to be compensated. So she takes up her life hopefully where she left it, obviously there is less time now for the kid.

Fear not, tuitions are available.

Tuitions and school make up a major part of a kids life. Soon he enters into high school. Now tuitions won’t do pal, you need coaching. Specialized coaching granting you a chance at elitism (read engineering and medical).It is really a pity that the options that are considered good socially, are of a binary nature.

Coaching is now done; outcome is now derived, elite or otherwise. Now, studies have to be continued, and of course it is all so tough. Having been through a prop at each stage the kid (ok, a grown up), now finds it hard to walk without crutches. He sends an SOS home, “I want to leave this place “.

Parents get all harried….. They look up………. and look down…………….wondering if it is in heaven………… or is in hell ..........the dam elusive solutionel.(Scarlet Pimpernel love the sing-song of it !).

Someone is found who can give coaching at engineering level too. I came to know about it in Mumbai, for I saw a card that read, “Specializing in thermal engineering for all engineering students”.

Come on, coaching at engineering level, you are undermining the value of the course, of course with engineering colleges mushrooming all around, is also adding fuel to the fire.

What would engineers do when they realize that a bridge can’t take the load it has been designed for, or the material ordered is adding a tad bit more weight to the assembly, or there is a last minute design change that may just work? Go figure.

It’s coaching all the way, all to the point of entering an organization. Thankfully you don’t have coaching for carrying on your regular work, here of course training is there, (courtesy generous HR budgets!) Finally it is time to find your own path, your own way and throw off those crutches.

PS – I am not undermining the importance of support in life. I am merely highlighting that we have conditioned our self to rely on props for support and institutionalized the art of helping.I am one of the above cycle, having gone to coaching institutes all the while, thinking that it is a magic wand for all worries.

I realized pretty late, that the best things in life are learnt by oneself, nobody can teach it to you !

Finally, it is curious to know that while I was typing this away, an acquaintance(Gtalk!) suggested that I put something similar to this here on the blog

Monday, November 15, 2010

The Orifice Theory.. !

" Where are they going " ?

' When will we eat " ?

Remember the 3-4 year olds who have a lot of questions about everything?

I bumped into a little guy, in a social gathering and he was one fast track shooter.No sooner had he received a answer, another question would pop up. He seemed to have internalized the lean methodology of finding the root cause for analysis .Patience is not really one of my virtues, but I really wanted to build it up, so I went on and on.Also, to a certain extent he was asking logical questions only, and I love logic and structure.

Now any traditional gathering would have some predictable items.I was sitting in a place where they were stocking up all paraphernalia, and one such item was the humble coconut.A small one rolled to where we were sitting and the little one picked it up, ready to fling it back to the mound.However he stopped midway, trudging the nut upside down , he saw what we often miss out the three black orifices at the bottom of the coconut.

" Why are there 3 holes in a coconut " ? , he asked with a genuine look of curiosity.

I was stumped.I could answer logically questions about obvious orifices in human beings, but again these were just two in number(OK, gender unspecific !! , Ignoramus).However I really could not extend the same analogy to a coconut.

Sometimes...... the answer is in the question itself.You just dig and dig......strategically. The person will say something and then a look of realization will dawn ........ so you are happy.

So I sidestepped  this motor mouth, " OK I  will tell you...first you tell me ...what is the color of the coconut "

" That's easy its brown ' , he replied gleefully.

" And the shape of the coconut".

Round...again very happily.

" What is inside the coconut " ?

" Water…

Then he rushed and said " Not just plain is sweet water and there is soft white flesh too "

" So there are two things right ..water and flesh ".

" It is sealed how do you put the two things inside the coconut "?

Funti was lost….I picked up a nut which was near me and showed him the holes.

" See one hole for putting in the water and one for putting in the flesh ".......…I realsied that I had shot myself in the foot…literally. Now I had no answer for third orifice.

The funti however had other plans…he put his tiny finger on the third orifice and said " And this last one is for taking them out ..right "............!!!

Yea yea , that’s is correct !! , I said with releif, " Now why dont you run to you amma and tell her what you just found out ...."

The rocket took off, and I  did too.Later I saw them both sitting in the dining hall waiting to be served and I caught his eye , he became animated and shook his mother, sitting besides him pointing towards me.

I waved to both of them with a smile.

Later, as I was walking out of the hall, the lady caught up with me, and " What exactly did you say to him, he is running around with a coconut, in his hand and saying one two and three again and again !! "

"I did not say anything, i just asked him questions ..." , I replied with a smile

The lady had a look of astonishment on her face, "  Now that is a refreshing change ,  for it is normally the other way round,........".Looking back at him, she added softly , " He is indeed very happy today .A pause and then a barely audible  " His father has no patience you see, and........... I am always running around... "  with just a hint of weariness in her tone.

At a loss of words again I said," I got to go, else it would be hard to get a bus , say goodbye to him from me too ...and good night to you too " ...

' Why dont you come around someday to our place for tea, I am sure he would love to see you again "  ..., she said in a rush.

" I am not a part time baby sitter.........." , I wanted to say...but I  held on and did the great Indian nod, a circular movement that can mean anything.

" This is my number "  she said handling me a scribble , just give me a call if you are planning to come.

Sure !! aur phir .............bhago !!

PS - I did not throw away the number, I got to respect that sentiment, but baby sitting......the jury is out !!