29 November 2010

Mera number kab ayega?

Ah.Hello there.Saary Saary for the long absence.It was because I had nothing spectacular to write about.No,I don't mean to say that I normally do.Well, will you just continue reading already!!

Here's what happened.This weekend I was driving to work(Yes , i agree.What a horrendous thing to be doing).There was a Board PreInt issue which needed immediate looking into.Why? Because if we didn't resolve the issue , then my company would lose out on a delivery that its competitors made three years back.Do you get the urgency now?

Ok.Good.So as I was driving to work , I remembered I had to join a conference call.I dialled the toll free number with one hand while the other was trying to steer."Please punch in the pass code" said the disembodied voice.And I punched it in.And waited."Sorry!! Wrong passcode..Bye!!" she said.Wash.Rinse.Repeat.After about 4 iterations , I realised that irritating disembodied voice might actually be right in what she was screeching.I re-scanned the passcode 5-3-6-5-0

Oh...OHHH..Oh!! This was the SMS number for Radio ONE..India's ONLY music station!!

01 October 2010

To whomsoever it may concern ..

that I often wonder who you are :).Lets keep the mystery alive , but why don't you leave a comment, anon if you like ?

19 July 2010

Of managers and fatherhood

A mail from SRC's manager to their team went thus :

Hi All

X and his wife have become proud parents of Twins (Boy and Girl) today.

X, Hearty Congratulations on becoming a father of both boy and girl at the same time.(what the???)

Errm.. so this is like saying Congrats , X , with this release , you have managed to deliver Feature A and Feature B?? Did you like work it out? Now.. hmm let me think .. which is the most optimized way of having children?Eureka! What if it were to be a boy and a girl at the same time?? Oru kallula rendu manga!! (One stone , two mangoes!)


09 July 2010

Of thoughtful ex-colleagues

I love Fridays.The day ends with a lovely feel to it especially with the prospect of not having to see one's co-workers for at least 48 more hours.

And in all this , a innocuous little message pops up on the mobile screen.From an ex-colleague.After several odd months.In broken tamil.
"Eppidi Irukku? Naan Inge Bangalore vanthachu.Stomach eppidi?"

And you smile.The radio breaks into "Bhanwara mann".The signal turns green and the little car skips along , you glance at the rear view mirror and see a happy goofy face.Sometimes having a grueling week makes that particular Friday worth it all the more.

The song is from Hazaaron khwahishen Aisi..

hazaron khwahishen aisi ki har khwaish pe dam nikle
bahut nikle mere arman lekin phir bhi kam nikle
-Mirza Ghalib

05 July 2010

Current reads

For the longest time , To kill a Mocking Bird had been my favorite read.At the impressionable age of 16 , it left me with a startling visual.The Help by Kathryn Stockett , pretty much does the same.It nudges its way into your mind unobtrusively as it may seem in the beginning, and before you know it the characters are a part of your life.Set in the early sixties , its about Afro American maids working for white households , in Jackson Mississippi.

The writing is powerful , undoubtedly.It requires a great deal of literary prowess to be able to put your point across without seeming too pushy , especially on a difficult subject such as this.A
must read.The book is being made into a movie apparently.I have my own doubts if it will be as good.

I'm currently into my fourth volume of Alexander McCall Smith's

The No.1 Ladies' Detective Agency series.Give it a miss if you're into heavy reading.The language is simple.Endearing,even.Reading them is like sipping on hot tomato soup while being tucked into a warm bed.To give you a background , this series is based on "Precious Ramotswe" who has her own detective agency.She, along with her assistant "Grace Makutsi" help solve the problems that the people in their village approach them with.
Ramotswe's answer all issues is to follow the suspect :D.Man cheating on his wife? Follow him , get friendly with him in the bar , click pictures with him and voila , the case is resolved.
Client is very sad , but the wife is very happy.Follow the wife and find her having an extra marital affair.Don't tell the client because that'l make him unhappy.Give wife the clean chit.Man happy.Say Fini.
Client comes asking for more details about her estranged family.Follow the lady back to her house and ask around in the neighborhood!Re-unite her with her "brother" only to find out he's not!Turns out in the end they discover that they actually like each other enough to get married.

What you do take home from the book is the fact that sometimes you don't really need to create an aha moment to make people smile.Sometimes happiness lies in the simplest of things.

"I am an African, not because I was born in Africa but because Africa is born in me."

-Nkwame Nkrumah

22 June 2010

My cousin A

Today I happened to talk to my cousin A after a very long time.A is JC's son.
I had had a long tiresome day behind me and it was a welcome change to hear that
A was getting his visa done to Bangladesh.Get me something from there A , a souvenir of sorts said I.Pat came the reply "I'll find poor hungry people , shall i bring back some?".
Bah.Sarcasm must run in the family.

The standing joke in
A's office is that his boss-man throws darts randomly on the world map while deciding A's travel destination , the imperative word being random.A couple of months back , A was asked to make a business trip to Guatemala.A landed , and after the customary garland ritual(??), he found himself being escorted to a plush five star.A found himself thawing.Boss-man wasn't so bad after all , he thought.After a king sized lunch , A wandered into the lobby and asked the hotel manager for a list of places to see and shop at.He must've walked 10 feet out of the hotel and before he knew it , he got mugged.

A confused
A ran back into the hotel and related the incident to the hotel manager who nodded calmly and said "Yes, that happens.Next time take only 100 dollars , nothing more."
A , who must also inherit the pig headedness from the family ventured out again.This time , he made it till Curio shop.The owner said he had some rare pieces in the room behind , and asked A to accompany him.And mugged him.

A hurried back to the hotel manager who said , yes calmly "Yes, that happens.Never enter the rooms inside".

A third time ,
A set out.I don't whose nagging had been worse , mine or his sister's.He had walked about 100 feet , when he heard shooting and gunmen.He was standing amidst a gang war.

"How was the trip
A ?" I asked, handing him a cup of coffee."What did you bring back?"

"My life" he said.

16 May 2010


Yet another SRC post , for the lack of anything better to say.Maybe you guys could tell me what to post about next? What say ? :)

Meanwhile ,here goes yet another post-lunch conversation with SRC ..

Seren:bhams is wearing lemon green(Bhams==Manager)
SRC:yeah bhams wore something interesting yest also
SRC:bhams has a new person in his life i think
Seren:Life begins at 50..
Seren:whenever i type a doubt in google
Seren:like say , "how do i share memory between two cores"
Seren:google gives me a drop down menu with
Seren:"how do i get pregnant"!?
Seren:"How did i GET pregnant" !?
SRC:ppl grep for that!?
Seren:u type how and u get it
SRC:i got options like 'how do i know am pregnant'
SRC:yes i saw
SRC:apparently they r the most searched for options,so if we search for 'how do i share mem between cores' about a hundred times each day, its priority might rise a bit and a week later it might show up in the list in the 8/9 position
Seren:You think? :D
Seren:Then we could overthrow this person who thinks "how" is synonymous with pregnancy..
Seren:Hey ..do you think we could apply for a patent with this idea..come!lets call that arora woman who does the patent thing!!
SRC :The one whose car u scratched?
Seren :Focus , please

The company's share prices are currently 2.54$ , this might be why you think?

16 April 2010

Mera naam Joker

Friday.A day to think and wear out of the box.Now , being an ardent Fab India fan and also considering Bangiland's soaring temperatures , I picked out my most recent buy from FI.A pair of Kalamkari trousers and a plain brown kurti.
And this is how the day went.

Legend: has it that...ok sorry for the baaad joke :D
SRC:Of this fame

Seren:me is in my clown outfit
SRC :wat is a clown outfit?
SRC :can i match it ?
Seren:yes pleasse...
SRC :how bad is it?
Seren:everyones staring
SRC :that happens in a sari also
SRC :which is not clown
Seren:i can bet its not the same
Seren:theyre different stares
Seren:like omg whats this
Seren:experimentation is so wasted here
SRC :ok wat exactly r u wearing?
Seren:fab india pants
SRC :dont tell me salmon pink skirt
SRC :aah ok
Seren:and fab india kurti
SRC :now i cant get that
SRC :its arty classy...
Seren:so its clown like coz the bottoms printed
Seren:and the tops plain
SRC :leave it ...its wayy above the average heads we have here
Seren:its loose and comfy
SRC :i used to hv one like this!!
Seren:yeah so find it!!
SRC :the bottom had fish painted on it
Seren:fasstt find it..!
SRC :i made pants for my son with it
Seren:can u bring him?
Seren:..in it?
SRC :no, i come to office to get away remember?
Seren:this is what happens when i listen to u!
Seren:on the rare occasion that i do
SRC :sigh i dont have anything to match it
SRC :i wish i had red pants
Seren:ok so ur like going to come normally?
Seren:maybe they might stare lesser if i took off the pants

Yeah while we are still on SRC.. apparently somebody stole her Dads Scorpio.. and the Police people(as she put it) have traced it to a....BOAT in Kerala.She plans to "investigate" by bribing the boatmen with toddy whilst peering into each engine.

Yes , I wonder why I listen to her.

04 April 2010

The tale of two poles

North Pole:Dad
South Pole:Ma

It is the month of April - When SP's students celebrate their well deserved summer vacation and turn 180 degrees wherever they happen to spot SP.Needless to say , this has rendered SP bored and what does she do to give vent to her pent up emotions? Nag NP.

SP:"After 30 odd years of being married , you would think we would be doing something together , wouldn't you?"
NP:" Hmm .. Amar Singh is being unreasonable"
SP: "Maybe its because he doesn't go anywhere with his wife"
Np: "Hmm.."
SP: " Let me call Amit and see if he's wasting away his summer without studying"

The next day , NP came home laden with two passes to the yearly Ramanavami Concerts held at the Fort High School.He loves music and even goes to bed with the CD player humming in the background.The competitive streak in SP was suitably aroused.She came hurrying to me with a pained expression and an ipod in tow.

SP:"You have to help me"
Me:" Errmm.. see I can't promise you anything"
SP: "Please download all songs in Hamsadwani for me , so that when it plays I will recognize the raaga instantly"
Me: "Wouldn't it be easier to see the brochure?"
SP: " Would it would it?"
Me: "Sigh.Ok"

On the first day of the concert , as I was trudging back from work,I was duly greeted by SP and NP who were at the front door poised for a sprint.
Me: "But I told you guys I had the key! Why didn't you leave?"
SP and NP:" Lock the doors , DO NOT OPEN THE DOOR FOR STRANGERS, Peep before you speak etc etc"
Me:"Sigh.Ok..Shooo now"

About 15 minutes later , I got an SMS.It was from SP.It was cryptic.It went "Hi".
I messaged her back wondering what in the world she could be up to "hiing" away in a concert.She replied with a "Flash message".
Did you know there was that option?? I didn't!
I said I had received her flash message, but why wasn't she listening to the concert and why was was fidgeting around with her cell.
She replied "^^^^^^^".
What?? I said."^^^^^^^" came the reply.
I gave up and called her."Hullo" she whispered sinisterly." Ma , what did you say"
"ooohh !" she said sounding extremely kicked." I sent you a message in tamil , did you get it?"
"Ma , does Appa know you're not listening to his precious concert?"
"Yes , he is now replying to my messages in tamil.Do you want to speak to him??Also , please come and pick me up in 10 minutes..Bye ..!"

Of late , my Dad sends me flash messages from the concert.SP has convinced him that the concert is an audio only concert , and the hands could do with some exercise.

Lord , save me.

More pole tales here.

11 March 2010

The Englishman’s Cameo


About a month ago , Altoid suggested this book to me.On one of my shopping trips to Bangalore Central(I bought myself a tee that read "Paris..ooh La La!") , I popped in to Crossword and emerged with "The Englishman's Cameo" by Madhulika Liddle.In the author's own words , "My first novel, The Englishman’s Cameo, is a detective story set in 17th century Delhi.Muzaffar Jang is that rare creature in Mughal Emperor Shahjahan’s Dilli – an aristocrat with friends in low places.One of whom, Faisal, stands accused of murder. "

Up front , I liked the design of the book , its bejeweled daggers , blood stains , the font et all.The story begins with the hero of the book , Muzaffar Jang whose close friend has been accused of murdering a nobleman,Murad Begh-unfairly so as Jang believes.What works for Jang is that the police officer in charge of the investigation happens to be his own brother in law.The plot thickens with the murder of the Begh's bodyguard, closely followed by a courtesan whom Begh frequently visited,interestingly due to a poisoned paan.

What worked for me:
The idea I thought was very interesting.A murder mystery set in the Mughal era.

What didn't

Oddly enough , Mr Jang thought and talked like a 21st century businessman.I quote
Salim: " Why hasn't a good man like you married yet ?"
"Good man , my foot(might he have said meri jhoothi?).Honestly , Salim:surely its wise to maintain some hold on reality?"
"Just because I haven't married yet doesn't mean I avoid women ....There should be more.There should be substance. "

Period writing is tough.Even if it is fiction.It is not as simple as slipping in a eunuch here , a coy courtesan there and why oh why is Shah Jahan called Maa'badaulat? Good question.And there is no glossary also.

Jang's quirk - his penchant for coffee.Ho Hum.Been there , done that.Inspired by Poirot's love for tisane.

The thing in Christie's books was that she told you when something was amiss, For eg "Eileen Carthwright called the gardener late that evening.But didnt she love repotting her plants by herself?".And you would remember it till the end.And you would go "Ahhh.. that fits" when she told you about Eileen the murderess who had not called the gardene
r but Mr Gardener, her partner in crime.Or something to that effect.But then Ms Liddle expects your memory to be 1GB RAM with 32KB Cache."Oh.. this is why Terrys brother waved goodbye to the boatman" it seems.And you start shuffling pages , and given that this Terrys brother waved a good many times , you're better off taking his word for it.

I guess there is something about growing up on Christie's books.She has raised the bar so high ,she's almost impossible to match up to.I have read all her 72 books thanks to the City Central Library and not once have I got the murderer right.Ok.But if we already know the murderer , then let us atleast know the how part in a interesting way no?

The ending.Sigh.The worst part.She keeps you guessing on one of the murders,which is a total turn off with

If ever I meet you Ms Liddle , I would tell you that your average reader is dumb.Like me.That's because they're brain dead software engineers.And what with Anandi dead/In coma , we are already under a lot of stress.

Englishman's Cameo:
Recommended when you are sitting in the 201 bus and the guy next to you is as uninteresting as Mr Jang.

2.5 cups of coffee on a scale of 5

25 February 2010


About a couple of months back , I heard a song on the radio while driving back home.The song I thought was simply beautiful , the voice especially.I made a mental note of some of the lyrics so I could get home and google it up.In vain , advanced search , "I'm not feeling lucky" yeilded the same result.String not found.

A couple of days more , and the lyrics grew hazier.. "Maleya Bindu..?" "maleya Indu?" .. was there a male(rain :D) at all I wondered.Me being me , I resorted to Plan #2:Bug the friends out.Hi Aksa , you know there's this song..which goes alalallala maleya(I/B)indu? Aksa:Hmm..No..Will call you later ...boss breathing down my neck.Sigh ok.
Vi: Maleya what? Is it Indu or Bindu???
Me:!!!!!!(I knew I could count on Vi!!!!)So which song is it????
Vi:First time I'm hearing it.But if you tell me exactly , I will launch on a five day plan and find it for you
Me: !!!
NGupta:What is this malea yaar
TR: Illayarajava??

Sigh. I gave up finally , if I'm destined to find it , I will I thought.Good Grief , Amma is rubbing off on me.

And I heard it again today while driving back .. on 92.7 and it was Bindu and maleya and appiko and kusuma and and oh the green light.I muttered the words over and over again.In the worst case , i will call up RJ Rohith today wonly and find out.And die in peace.I googled yet again.And NO RESULT.So what I did? I went to English to Kannada translation and googled in Kannada "ಒಂದು ನಿರ್ಮಲ ಮಳೆಯ ಬಿಂದು" and found it.
Happa.Now I wilt die in piece.

Shubha Raatri.

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