Sunday, May 24, 2009

First Half is over - time for a "STRATEGIC BREAK"

Some how they managed to stick 30 candles on the same 1.5 pound cake that i have been cutting even before i knew what it was.

Counting the candles was fun and blowing them off was challenging. But every year i made sure i had enough to blow them off. Yeah I blew each one of them " year over year"

Nothing can be reversed, things already said (good/bad) can not be taken back but there are another 30 years to relive it; hour by hour day by day and year by year.

Bon Voyage!!!


Saturday, May 23, 2009


The caption on Marlboro lights makes for string of interesting thoughts.

" SMOKING KILLS " in bold, covers almost bottom half of the packet providing information to customers on ill effects of smoking, unequivocally - though am not sure it changes intent for any of us smokers. . .lol !

Warning of disastrous consequences on health is not brand new piece of information and really, reiteration of this by the manufacturers ( obviously to meet statutory requirements) has no bearing on their intent as well.

Information is powerful , yet intent rules -for both the customers and the manufacturer.

We all are party to similar behaviour, deep down we know what we need to be doing or what is the right thing to do in most situations, despite that it is the intent which differs.

Now, lets take this and turn it around, for a positive message to all.

Can we say willingness is more powerfull then intellect . If you are willing to give it a go even though you may not have complete information or intelligence , you are more likely to get favourable results. Let me give you an example to seal the argument . Forrest Gump was not very intellectually inclined.but he did stuff - be it cross country run, table tennis - and he excelled.

While not begetting intelligence and power of knowledge , at our individual levels the power really lies in going ahead of the doubt which information can create; and charting your way into the direction of your will ,even though intelligence might be sneering the decision.

The IBM ads which go " STOP THINKING - START DOING " or the vintage nike line " JUST DO IT "is a befitting extension of this thought.

Do write in your thoughts , while i go get a smoke .... :)


Thursday, May 21, 2009 it really so imp.??

So finally the day has come when things might change or will it. As much as i would like it not to change, deep down i know that things change and that it would change for good is what i am hoping for.

From being a complete nerd, anonymous, shy, small built, malnourished and i can continue...i have had quite a ride and many paths to tread. Its been a wonderful, exciting and eventful journey to say the least and when i look back, a very fulfilling one. This also takes me back in time when i was just about 11/12 and studying in a non decrepit school in town. Back then studying in a big school was a dream and i use to look with awe and admiration at students coming out of bus, wearing those really smart uniform. There was also a feeling of exasperation and envy for i was not the part of the elite group and was missing something big in life. Then suddenly as if it came from heaven like a meteorite that has shook the earth from nowhere, my dad asked me if i really want to join that school, like a oracle who knew all along what was in my mind. And before i knew it i was the part of so called elite group. To my surprise i mingled with them like water in milk and the feeling of being a part of privileged group completely vanished.
Then the next big event...cut to our 12 boards and i feared miserably, the only person who stared in disbelieve at my marks was...guess of course.

When i first landed in Delhi and it was like a revelation..everything seemed so big and hostile. Putting up in a flat on top floor with the weather showing no signs of mercy, no air conditioner, cooler the only saving grace and that too a shared with four friends, it seemed back then that having cold drinking water was a luxury, having a fridge would be a super luxury. We didn't dream of dating good looking Delhi girls but of drinking cold water.It actually seemed like a manna from heave only to wake up to reality and find that the nearest place to get water was a municipal established water cooler a kilometer away. If that was not enough the realization of the fact that we have to travel in the infamous Delhi buses know from everything but for safe driving.

But all this did not dampen our enthusiasm one bit and we made sure that we treaded every bit of Delhi never mind the hostilities. I must admit three years in Delhi changed me in more ways then i can think of.

That was then, crisscross to my Bschool days in Ahmadabad were life was king size. Two years went in a whisker, tried to do so many things but so many things left undone. When the end came too fast to soon, little did i realized that's it time to step in the so called real world.

Five years into reality and so much water has flown under the bridge. Somewhere between the time span i come across a grey strand of hair, just to realize that i am ageing but that feeling disappear quickly in the haze of the day. And now i have just turned 30..does it change anything...i have always believed in "18 till i die" philosophy but is it time to relook at old thoughts and give way to new set of rules? I don't know and the question has not found a answer. I guess with every new phases i have changed without realization and improvisation; and would be best if the process is natural and not forced upon. The point is why the hell should i care when the process has always been natural. As i had said earlier things change but there are something that never change and neither will i want it to change.


Sunday, May 17, 2009

Bill Gates to the Gen Next----

Here's some advice Bill Gates dished out at high school speech about 11 things they did not learn at school. He talks about how feel-good politically correct teaching have created a full generation of kids with no concept of reality and how this concept set them up for failure in the real world. Go ahead tell the kids:-
1) Life is not fair, get use to it
2) The world wont care about your self esteem. The world will expect you to accomplish something before you fell good about yourself.
3) You will not make Forty thousand dollars out of high school. You wont be a vice president with a Car, Phone until you earn both.
4) If you think teacher is tough, wait until you get a boss. He doesn't have tenure!!
5) Flipping burger is not beneath your dignity. Your grandparents had a different word for burger flipping they called it opportunity.
6) If you mess up its not your parents fault, so don't whine about your mistakes, learn from them.
7) before you were born your parents weren't as boring as they are now. They got that way from paying your bills, cleaning your clothes and listening to you talk about how cool you are. So before you save the rain forest from the parasites of your parents generation, try delousing the closet in your own room.
8) Your school may have done away with winners and losers but life has not. In some school they have abolished failing grades and they'll give you as many times as you want to get the right answer. This doesn't bear the slightest resemblance to anything in real life.
9) Life is not divided into semesters. You dont get summers off and very few employers are interested in helping you find yourself. Do that on your own time.
10) Television is not real life(nor are video games). In real life people actually have to leave the coffee shop and go to job.
11) Be nice to nerds. Chances are you will end up working one. 

Words of wisdom there from the worlds most successful man. Sure we can relate to our lives even if we are working and in some sense we all are students, still learning and growing.



Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Reclaim Your Life

Looking at the misty sky with rain drizzling down, the chirping of bird, the aroma of the hot darjeeling tea mixed with the smell of earth and to compliment it all a Sunday afternoon. Sometimes one cannot help but count the blessings and be grateful for all we have but that is an ephemeral feeling. Come Monday morning and the whole feeling is lost in the daze of the day, where the chirping of bird is replaced by the mobile phone ring tones, shouts, and arguments, the aroma of tea is taken over by sweaty summer and the relaxed attitude is metamorphised into a hyperactive mode. The whole feeling of containment is overridden with dissatisfaction and distress.

It is a fact of life that one has to go to work on a Monday morning, toil hard to achieve success and sweat it out but the whole thing can be made into a much more enjoyable experience rather then a drag that one has to go through every day. I have encountered some people who take the level of enthusiasm in work to altogether a different level and from the look of it seems that they are thoroughly enjoying their work even when doing what it seems to be a very menial work.
The other day in gym we again chanced upon a discussion on happiness and containment in life. There were skeptics who said that there was too much of a problem and confusion to really enjoy and be happy, others had a differing view. One of them came up with a very meaningful quote “Problems are inevitable, worrying is optional”.

Imagine a life without problems and challenges, the whole world would be so dull, there would not be any aspirations, people would be content with what they do without any hint of anxiety and to be honest a situation beyond comprehension. 

I believe the so called Ethiopian world would have made our lives more miserable, stunted any kind of growth and taken us back to Stone Age. In fact problems are a boon to the mankind and the progress of our race can be directly attributed to the problems we face. The current financial meltdown has caused lot of distress and depression, the big corporations who had a air of invincibility has fallen like a pack of cards and a domino like affect has gripped the whole world. With such a grim scenario it is easy to fall prey to the lure of negativity and worry but I am convinced that a new world order will emerge rooted to ethical standard and will be much more robust and firm. As Obama had said “House on the rock”.

So next time you encounter a problem stop worrying and start acting. This video of Tata Safari is absolutely amazing…do check it out

Recommended Reading –
“The Pilgrimage”



Sunday, May 3, 2009

Talk to me

For me reading is conversing with the author.

More appropriately listening . Words flowing into sentences ...talking to me.Like swishes of a brush giving form and colour to thoughts...holding my attention and leaving me elated.

I present short excerpts from two of my favourite books: Wind in the willows & To kill a mocking bird.

Wind in the willows is an endearing fable of Toad, Rat , Mole ,badger and otter . Their frolic around the river and confrontation of problems created by Toad who lives in an imposing "Toad Hall " . The animals talk and behave like humans and the result is jolly mischief and sheer entertainment .

Toad is imprisoned and depressed . He hasn't spoken for days , but now he has a daughter of the jailer attending to him :

"When the girl returned, some hours later, she carried a tray, with a cup of fragrant tea steaming on it ;and a plate piled up with very hot buttered toast, cut thick , very brown on both sides , with butter running through the holes in it in great golden drops,like honey from honeycomb.The smell of buttered toast simple talked to toad and with no uncertain voice talked of warm kitchens, of breakfasts on bright frosty mornings, of cozy parlour firesides on winter evenings, when one's ramble was over and slippered feet were propped on the fender; of purring of contended cats and twitter of sleept canaries."

The description is so amazing that its no surprise that my culinary vices arise every time i read this. Samuel butler has rightly said : " all animals, except man, know that principal business of life is to enjoy it"

And still further , listening to these men/ women has given clarity to jumbled thoughts which ,on many occasions, I've willingly embraced as code of conduct for life; Like these few quotes from Harper lee's classic novel which talk about innocence and goodness of life :

"Mockingbirds don't do one thing but make music for us to enjoy. They don't eat up people's gardens, don't nest in corn cribs, they don't do one thing but sing their hearts out for us. That's why it's a sin to kill a mockingbird"

"I wanted you to see what real courage is, instead of getting the idea that courage is a man with a gun in his hand. It's when you know you're licked before you begin but you begin anyway and you see it through no matter what."

Suggest u pick one of these as soon as u can !


Friday, May 1, 2009

Its All in the Mind….

Watching David Blaine the other day on television makes me realize what mind power can do. Even if the unbelievable shows he put up has to do with tricks, illusion and camera work, the show of endurance and courage like being in the Box for 44 days, hanging over river Thames with no food, Spending 7 days in a transparent coffin with 6 inches of head room or standing on a pole for 42 hrs, 62 hours standing encased in an ice block etc is nothing short of superhuman effort.. He even sets a world record for holding his breath for 17 minutes on The Oprah Winfrey.

Amazing feat by any standard, just goes on to show what powers does human poses if only he starts believing. Watching some amazing feat in Riply’s Believe it or not makes you wonder if it is humanly possible to pull off such mind-boggling trick with such ease. One cant help but to relate it with ancient Indian saint and yogi’s who performed such amazing acts which are beyond the comprehension of humans in today’s times. Even today one can trace them to some remote corner of the world and be spellbound by their acts.

The other day in Gym we were discussing usual stuff about life and work, and somehow this discussion took a turn about being successful. I came up with the argument that everyone in his capacity does his best, puts his best foot forward and does everything he/she can to be successful but not everyone is successful. This gentleman had a very interesting point to make, he said that it’s true that everyone in his capacity tries his best but what makes the difference is the extra mile one is willing to travel. That extra or the little push, believe in oneself and sincerity of effort is what differentiates an achiever from a non achiever.

I couldn’t have agreed more and could immediately relate with the quotation by Arnold Schwarzenegger hung in the gym right in front of us, it says:-

“The Mind always fails first and not the Body; the trick is to make the mind work for you and not against you”.

Off course he was relating it to the art of Body Building but this is so true for everything that we do in life. Most of us cannot be David Blaine or even come close to being those Yogis’s but we can certainly travel that extra mile, give that little extra push, endure a little more and play even harder and that may makes all the difference.