Monday, December 7, 2009

Another chance

Give me another chance, I wanna grow up once again - 3 Idiots

Monday, November 30, 2009

Wants

If you got everything you wanted/dreamt, then you'd have nothing to wish for and wouldnt' that be terrible, to live a life with no wishes or dreams.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

26/11 - first anniversary

  • It came
  • We screamed/protested/did candle marches/wrote volumes in papers and magazines for a day/had a debate on TV (only to increase the TRPs)
  • It passed
  • Nothing much happened
  • Not many care other than the ones who were affected
  • Typical story of India's reaction to terrorism
  • Typical story of Indian govt's apathy towards Indians

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Daru

Ek bahut bade sharaabi ki car ke peeche likha tha:

Daru peeo, insaan bano. Roti to kutte bhi khaate hain.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Born to win

Born to win is a concept which talks about how human beings are born to win. They start early, at the conception stage. Only one out of the supposedly 20 million fertilize and becomes a person. So you win amongst 20 million to be what you are. The theory says that you are constantly playing a game and always winning. Winning is immaterial as you will win no matter what. The important aspect is which game are you playing? Once you recognize that you will start playing games which you really should be and remember, winning is a given. Now, that is confusing enough, let's look at one example to make things simpler.

If you are running a race and you come second, then the game you are playing is the "reasons" why I didn't come first game and you are winning the game with your reasoning ability. You will have a million reasons, like wind factor, slow start etc etc and you will win this game as you have successfully come up with reasons.

Same holds good for anything you do. If you recognize the game you are playing, you will become a successful person as you will now choose the right games to play. Remember, winning is a given.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Quote of the day

When I was young I used to think that money was the most important thing in life. Now that I am old, I know it is - Oscar Wilde

Bride dumps groom during wedding

Read this news on Indiatimes.com.

AMBALA: The new-age Indian woman has arrived. A bride from Ambala Cantt on Monday walked out on her groom the moment she set eyes on him after the

jai mala (garlanding) ceremony, as if, in instant realisation that he wasn’t the man of her dreams. No amount of ranting and raving by the boy and his family or police intervention could bring about a change of heart. “We tried a lot to persuade Reena but she just wouldn’t listen. She said she didn’t want to marry Dharamvir Singh because she didn’t like him. There was no way we could have forced our will on her,” said the bride’s father, Ramkishan.

The link to the news item is below:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/chandigarh/Bride-dumps-groom-during-wedding/articleshow/5170718.cms

Now what could be the reason for her dumping the boy after the garlanding ceremony. Perhaps "Guitar ya Violin nahi baje"
Go women power.......

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Wacky happenings around the world

Check the link.

http://www.indiatimes.com/photostory/5136913.cms

Love the first one. Move over silicone, here comes the Knight.
Now this is what you call a knight in shining armor or a white knight to the rescue.
Alternatively, he can hypnotise men to believe they are bigger.

Do your bit and make it large

The link to the blog is below which lists the things which are simple enough and can be done by individuals and do not require advance degree in Physics.
http://busyriting.com/?p=366

Thanks Malini Chechi for the post. I am doing my bit by putting your link and saving on some space thereby reducing emissions.
Readers - do your bit and make it large.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

The Black Swan Event

I believe that the current recession is a black swan event. The theory propagated by Taleb states that black swan events are events which happen once in a lifetime and have an impact which is forever. I believe that this recession is exactly that. This not only has brought more focus on the importance of having adequate risk measures in place, but also integrated and united the world on having regulations to prevent a few people taking advantage of the system at the cost of the larger population. The bright side is that the growth pace will be faster now that the recession is bottoming out but the growth will be in a regulated framework so chances of things slipping out will reduce. The next phase of growth has begun and any one who is interested in making it big should make their move now as the world is at an inflection point ready to prance into the growth trajectory.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Austerity Drive

Cong has embarked on Austerity drive asking their MPs to travel economy class. Great thought. Shows our leaders do have a heart inside their corrupt bodies. We as Indians salute the leadership of Sonia and her team for becoming this sensitive. However, no thank you. Please continue travelling business. Otherwise, your ministers will only cause inconvenience to fellow economy passengers. With their body guards, entourage and high and mighty attitude and behavior, the simple economy class passenger will be put to a lot of trouble. So, a humble request, please travel business. We don't mind paying for it, just like all other expenses we bear for you.

Some where I can imagine someone hitting my head with Hindustan Times paper asking me to stop being this cynical.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Words of wisdom

Written by Regina Brett, 90 years old, of The Plain Dealer, Cleveland, Ohio:
"To celebrate growing older, I once wrote the 45 lessons life taught me. It is the most-requested column I've ever written. My odometer rolled over to 90 in August, so here is the column once more:
1. Life isn't fair, but it's still good.
2. When in doubt, just take the next small step.
3. Life is too short to waste time hating anyone
4. Your job won't take care of you when you are sick. Your friends and parents will. Stay in touch.
5. Pay off your credit cards every month.
6. You don't have to win every argument. Agree to disagree.
7. Cry with someone. It's more healing than crying alone.
8. It's OK to get angry with God. He can take it.
9. Save for retirement starting with your first pay cheque.
10. When it comes to chocolate, resistance is futile.
11. Make peace with your past so it won't screw up the present.
12. It's OK to let your children see you cry.
13. Don't compare your life to others. You have no idea what their journey is all about.
14. If a relationship has to be a secret, you shouldn't be in it.
15. Everything can change in the blink of an eye. But don't worry; God never blinks.
16. Take a deep breath. It calms the mind.
17. Get rid of anything that isn't useful, beautiful or joyful.
18. Whatever doesn't kill you really does make you stronger.
19. It's never too late to have a happy childhood. But the second one is up to you and no one else. 20. When it comes to going after what you love in life, don't take no for an answer.
21. Burn the candles, use the nice sheets, wear the fancy lingerie. Don't save it for a special occasion. Today is special.
22. Over-prepare, then go with the flow.
23. Be eccentric now. Don't wait for old age to wear purple.
24. The most important sex organ is the brain.
25. No one is in charge of your happiness but you.
26. Frame every so-called disaster with these words 'In five years, will this matter?'
27. Always choose life. 28. Forgive everyone everything.
29. What other people think of you is none of your business.
30. Time heals almost everything. Give time time.
31. However good or bad a situation is, it will change.
32. Don't take yourself so seriously. No one else does.
33. Believe in miracles.
34. God loves you because of who God is, not because of anything you did or didn't do.
35. Don't audit life. Show up and make the most of it now.
36. Growing old beats the alternative -- dying young.
37. Your children get only one childhood.
38. All that truly matters in the end is that you loved.
39. Get outside every day. Miracles are waiting everywhere.
40. If we all threw our problems in a pile and saw everyone else's,we'd grab ours back.
41. Envy is a waste of time. You already have all you need.
42. The best is yet to come.
43. No matter how you feel, get up, dress up and show up.
44. Yield.
45. Life isn't tied with a bow, but it's still a gift."

Monday, September 14, 2009

Do something worth writing or write something worth reading.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Friends

Friends do not not need words from you to understand. They will understand your silence as well.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Husbands

There are many things which can go wrong in everyday routine life. It's very important for wives to have husbands in their lives. You cannot blame everything on the government.

And then the fight started.........

Thursday, August 27, 2009

How the fight started?

My wife sat down on the couch next to me as I was flipping channels. She asked, 'What's on TV?' I said, 'Dust.' And then the fight started...
+++++
My wife was hinting about what she wanted for our upcoming anniversary. She said, 'I want something shiny that goes from 0 to 150 in about 3 seconds.' I bought her a weighing scale. And then the fight started...
+++++
When I got home last night, my wife demanded that I take her someplace expensive... so, I took her to a gas station. And then the fight started...
+++++
After retiring, I went to the Social Security office to apply for Social Security. The woman behind the counter asked me for my driver's license to verify my age. I looked in my pockets and realized I had left my wallet at home. I told the woman that I was very sorry, but I would have to go home and come back later. The woman said, 'Unbutton your shirt'. So I opened my shirt revealing my curly silver hair. She said, 'That silver hair on your chest is proof enough for me' and she processed my Social Security application. When I got home, I excitedly told my wife about my experience at the Social Security office. She said, 'You should have dropped your pants. You might have gotten disability, too.' And then the fight started...
+++++
My wife and I were sitting at a table at my high school reunion, and I kept staring at a drunken lady swigging her drink as she sat alone at a nearby table. My wife asked, 'Do you know her?' 'Yes,' I sighed, 'She's my old girlfriend. I understand she took to drinking right after we split up those many years ago, and I hear she hasn't been sober since.' 'My God!' says my wife, 'who would think a person could go on celebrating that long?' And then the fight started...
+++++
I took my wife to a restaurant. The waiter, for some reason, took my order first. "I'll have the strip steak, medium rare, please." He said, "Aren't you worried about the mad cow?" "Naaah, she can order for herself." And then the fight started...
+++++
A woman is standing nude, looking in the bedroom mirror. She is not happy with what she sees and says to her husband, 'I feel horrible; I look old, fat and ugly. I really need you to pay me a compliment.' The husband replies, 'Your eyesight's damn near perfect.' And then the fight started.....
+++++
I tried to talk my wife into buying a case of Miller Light for $14.95. Instead, she bought a jar of cold cream for $7.95. I told her the beer would make her look better at night than the cold cream. And then the fight started....
+++++
My wife asked me if a certain dress made her butt look big. I told her not as much as the dress she wore yesterday. and then the fight started....
+++++
A man and a woman were asleep like two innocent babies. Suddenly, at 3 o'clock in the morning, a loud noise came from outside. The woman, bewildered, jumped up from the bed and yelled at the man 'Holy crap. That must be my husband!' So the man jumped out of the bed; scared and naked jumped out the window. He smashed himself on the ground, ran through a thorn bush and to his car as fast as he could go. A few minutes later he returned and went up to the bedroom and screamed at the woman, 'I AM your husband!' The woman yelled back, 'Yeah, then why were you running?' And then the fight started.....
+++++
Saturday morning I got up early, quietly dressed, made my lunch, grabbed the dog, and slipped quietly into the garage. I hooked up the boat up to the truck, and proceeded to back out into a torrential downpour. The wind was blowing 50 mph, so I pulled back into the garage, turned on the radio, and discovered that the weather would be bad all day. I went back into the house, quietly undressed, and slipped back into bed. I cuddled up to my wife's back, now with a different anticipation, and whispered, 'The weather out there is terrible.' My loving wife of 10 years replied, 'Can you believe my stupid husband is out fishing in that?' And then the fight started ...
+++++
I asked my wife, "Where do you want to go for our anniversary? " It warmed my heart to see her face melt in sweet appreciation. "Somewhere I haven't been in a long time!" she said. So I suggested, "How about the kitchen?" And that's when the fight started....
+++++
My wife and I are watching Who Wants To Be A Millionaire while we were in bed. I turned to her and said, "Do you want to have sex?" "No," she answered. I then said, "Is that your final answer?" She didn't even look at me this time, simply saying "Yes." So I said, "Then I'd like to phone a friend." And that's when the fight started....
+++++
When our lawn mower broke and wouldn't run, my wife kept hinting to me that I should get it fixed. But, somehow I always had something else to take care of first: the truck, the car, e-mail, fishing, always something more important to me. Finally she thought of a clever way to make her point. When I arrived home one day, I found her seated in the tall grass, busily snipping away with a tiny pair of sewing scissors. I watched silently for a short time and then went into the house. I was gone only a few minutes. When I came out again I handed her a toothbrush. 'When you finish cutting the grass,' I said, 'you might as well sweep the driveway.' and then the fight started...

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Decoding the ban on Savita Bhabhi

Q: Why did the govt. ban Savita Bhabhi?
A: Because the old geezers sitting in the parliament started getting desperate and frustrated seeing the porn comic. All of their fantasies were coming true but in a comic book format and not in real life and their yearning for such a person started becoming stronger by the day. How long can one keep those emotions repressed. So they decided to ban the site to save themselves from the torture of seeing their dreams and fantasies being made into a site without featuring them.

Who can act in Savita Bhabhi?

A lot has been written about Savita Bhabhi and how the government by imposing a ban on this site has imposed a ban on freedom and liberty of women. Pritish Nandy went as asking women to stage a dharna to boycott this ban as Savita Bhabhi represented their liberty, their right to free living etc. Bollocks. Savita Bhabhi was purely a porn magazine which was a product of a guy's vivid imagination and fantasies. He was just putting a sketch to his fantasies and a lot of guys around the world were getting pleasure seeing those as many must have had these too.
However, since the government has already imposed a ban, this topic has become a rage among bollywood producers especially the b-grade movie ones. So if they were to cast someone for this role who do you think would best suit? My picks are below in preferential order.
  1. Sherlyn Chopra - She looks the part as she probably lives it too in real life.
  2. Sophie Choudhary - She is the nice curvaceous punju woman who can fit quite easily, though she finds it difficult to fit into her clothes.
  3. Tanushree Dutta - Great body and a complete monopoly on come hither look makes her a good candidate.
  4. Sushmita Sen - She is very sensuous and can carry the docile and sensuality with ease. Remember Main Hoon Na.
  5. Riya Sen - she can't act but guess the role might not require much acting.

Any one you can think of?

Monday, July 20, 2009

If you make people think they're thinking, they'll love you;

but if you really make them think they'll hate you.

Attitude

“The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life. Attitude, to me, is more important than facts. It is more important than the past, the education, the money, than circumstances, than failure, than successes, than what other people think or say or do. It is more important than appearance, giftedness or skill. It will make or break a company... a church... a home. The remarkable thing is we have a choice everyday regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day. We cannot change our past... we cannot change the fact that people will act in a certain way. We cannot change the inevitable. The only thing we can do is play on the one string we have, and that is our attitude. I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% of how I react to it. And so it is with you... we are in charge of our Attitudes.” - Charles R. Swindoll

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Harry Potter 6

Don't judge a book by it's movie goes the popular saying. That is true for all Harry Potter movies except the first one. The first one brought those characters from the book alive and made it real for us. However, subsequent movies have not been able to do justice to the books. But in all fairness, movies are a shorter medium compared to books and therefore asking a movie to do full justice is asking a little too much. The post is not about gyan but by now you would have guessed that keeping me from giving gyan is like trying to take a candy out of a child's hand. Quite a daunting task.
Harry Potter's new visual instalment is indeed a visual treat. The director has redeemed himself from the debacle of the earlier movie and has made some spectacular strides in terms of story telling, visual effects and cinematography. The most striking feature of the movie is the beautiful and at times mushy build up of friendship and romance between the central characters. But the movie is all about how the friendship has evolved in 6 years, the chemistry between three best friends and this is one aspect which will appeal to most segment of the masses. Older fans will relive the friendship they shared during their youth, youngsters will look at each other and think we are like this and overall everyone will have this great feeling about friendship. This is where the hidden message comes through. If you have your friends around, you will tide over dark times.
Long live friendship.

Verdict on the movie - go watch it NOW

Dangerous Discovery

Do you know the most dangerous of all discoveries? It's not Dynamite, Atom Bomb or Biological Weapons. The most dangerous concept discovered is "Reading between the lines". I tried Wiki, Google and even the newly launched beta version of Bing to find out who came up with this "men destroying concept" and found nothing. So I am going to go out on a limb here and say it was discovered by a woman. A rather modest woman (sounds alien, right) but since she did not leave her name as the discoverer I think she was the exception in the modesty department.

Men don't read between the lines. Hell, most times they don't even read the lines. But women, they read the lines all right and then they proceed to read between the lines , whatever that means, and sometimes flip the pages to see what else is written. They analyse things by reading the lines and then over analyse by reading between the lines and then since they have a convoluted logic all hell breaks loose. Sample this example:
Guy - honey, you are looking pretty.
Girl (reading the line) - Really. I know.
And now Girl (reading between the line) - Am i really looking pretty or is he just pulling my leg. Am I looking fat? Is the dress OK? Did he see something which he is not telling me? Is he seeing someone else and just saying this to keep me happy.
You see what I mean when I say the most dangerous discovery is reading between the lines.
Guys - don't even bother to read. We are good at that.
Girls - the reason i wrote this long post is so that you have enough to read between the lines.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Women on crusades

Hvae you ever noticed that woman never go for nice guys. Like the Surinder Sahani's of the world. They like their alter ego, the smart alec who has too many opinions, who thinks too much of himself and who will pamper you but will also let you know that he is a god gift to her. However, once they marry that smart alec, all women want the alec to turn into Surinder Sahani, the nice, docile, quiet, I will do anything you want and you are the apple of my eye kind of a person. I don't agree with nice guys finishing last. It's an oxymoron or someone who said was definitely a moron. All women want the arrogant prick to turn into a nice guy after marriage. I believe women are on a crusade. The kind of crusade only women can embark on and which no one understands. Well, with women, no one can really understand them and I am digressing. They want the world to turn into a nicer place and for that they all are willing to fall for the bad guy so that they can change him into a nice person eventually making the world a nicer place.
And like a man and only a man could say this, they have it all wrong. Simple solution to making the world a nice place is go only for the nice guys. Once all bad guys realize they are not getting women, they will either turn nice guys or turn to nice guys.

Q: What is common between an angry woman and monsoon

A: When it rains, it pours.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Q: What is common between weather and women?

A: Unpredictability.

Friday, July 10, 2009

There are so many things that are incredible about me. The most amazing is my humility - Will Smith.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Money cannot buy love but improves the bargaining position.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Priorities

Earlier - you'd call friends and say let's meet and plan something.
Now - you'd call and say let's plan and then meet someday.
Friends are same, guess priorities have changed.

Kambakkht Ishq - update

I was talking to a friend of mine who lives in Kolkata and is totally clued into Tamil movies. He told me that Kambakkht Ishq is a remake of Tamil film Pammal K Sambandam (PMK) featuring Kamal Hassan. I haven't seen PMK so cannot tell you dear readers whether it is a better movie. And, you already know my take on the Hindi remake. I wasn't aware of the remake thing and when i read the director's and producer's interview claiming that this was an original idea scripted just for Akki I believed it as it sounded quite believable. But like all "originals" in Hindi movies this one is also an "original" fake..oops..remake. Only wish that they had learnt from the makers of Ghajini the art of remaking a movie and making it watch worthy.

Monday, July 6, 2009

The Piracy Code

I have finally managed to break the Piracy Code (couldn't resist the cheap imitation of the DaVinci Code). Meaning, why people go for pirated DVDs instead of watching the movie in a theatre or wait the official DVD release. Piracy thrives due to movies like Chandni Chowk and Kambakkth Ishq. Who would want to spend 500 bucks for a movie which is absolutely trash?

Same thing goes for music CD. Why spend for a movie CD when only one song is good in the entire album. It is better to download it from the net or go for an assortment of good songs in one CD.

Friday, July 3, 2009

Kambakkht Ishq

Why watch:
  • Kareena's quintessential pout which she takes it to new levels in the movie. If you are a bebo fan, you can check out any of her magazine pics in which she is pouting.
  • Kareena's clothes and shoes. Some of them are fabulous. No, I am not gay and coming out of the closet now that Article 377 has been modified.
  • Akshay's stunts though they could have been handled a little better. Instead of giving them a comic theme they should have been made purely action oriented.
  • Akshay's regular comic acting. He is a good comic actor and has done a good job in this one too.
  • Exotic locales of Hollywood studios, Los Angeles and Italy. Free ride around the world sitting in a movie theatre.
  • The title song which is really nice. Hummable track and great music.
  • Lots of women in itsy bitsies giving the paisa vasool experience.

Why avoid:

  • Juvenile comedy sequences. Done to death scenes repeated in a million movies all across the world and fail to make you laugh.
  • Kareena's over the top acting. Bearable at times only.
  • Amrita Arora - why the heck is she in a movie. She took over the size zero crown from Bebo and looks emaciated. She has shown a lot of skin wearing lingerie and all along you'd wish that she covers up and spare you.
  • Aftab Shivdasani - same as above.
  • Denise Richards - What the heck is she doing in the movie. Does not up the glam quotient if they were trying to get that effect with her presence. She looks old and haggard.
  • Flimsy plot just like the itsy bitsies worn by many women in the movie. Actually no, the plot is flimsier.
  • Tried to achieve the Hollywood class of movie making but the plot and theme is only for the masses who like cat calls and wolf whistling.

Certain scenes are funny but the rest of the movie fails to make you laugh and you feel "kambakkth" for going to the theatre.

Overall: My suggestion is to watch it on DVD with the remote firmly gripped in your hand. You will save money on the tickets and on headache pills. You will also end up finishing a lot of pending work at home while watching the movie. Or, invest money in the dvd of Hangover. A much better movie.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Reduce waste, save the planet

  • Standardize chargers across devices like phones, cd players, mp3 players etc and across the globe. This way one charger can be used across multiple devices thereby reducing the need to manufacture different charging devices. Currently, they are not compatible and thus result in a lot of waste being dumped harming the environment.
  • Standardize electricity requirements of devices so that they do not require different voltages, wattage's for running across the globe. Different countries have different requirements for same products. This results in manufacturing of converters which can be totally avoided if the requirements were standardized across the world. Will help reduce waste being dumped in the soil and increase the life of the planet.
  • Ban all electric bulbs and subsidize the manufacture of energy saving bulbs. Subsidy can be given in the form of tax breaks.

Dil ki dooriyan

A saint asked his disciples, ? Why do people shout at each other when they are upset?'
Disciples thought for a while, one of them said, 'Because we lose our calm, we shout for that.'
'But, why shout when the other person is just next to you?' asked the saint. 'Isn't it possible to speak to him or her with a soft voice? Why do you shout at a person when you're angry?'
Disciples gave some other answers but none satisfied the saint.
Finally he explained, 'When two people are angry at each other, their hearts distance a lot. To cover that distance they must shout to be able to hear each other. The angrier they are, the stronger they will have to shout to hear each other through that great distance.'
Then the saint asked, 'What happens when two people love each other? They don't shout at each other but talk softly, why? Because their hearts are very close. The distance between them is very small.
The saint continued, 'When they love each other even more, what happens? They do not speak, only whisper and they get even closer to each other in their love. Finally they even need not whisper, they only look at each other and that's all. That is how close two people are when they love each other.'

Monday, June 22, 2009

Law on arresting a woman...

An incident took place in Pune - a young girl was attacked by a man posing as a plain clothes officer; he asked her 2 come 2 the police station when she & her male friend didn't have a driver's license 2 show. He sent the boy off 2 get his license and asked the girl to accompany him to the police station. Took her instead to an isolated area where she was raped.

The law [which most of us are not aware of] clearly states that between 6 pm and 6 am (from sunset until sunrise), a woman has the right to REFUSE to go to the Police Station , even if an arrest warrant has been issued against her.

It is a procedural issue that a woman can be arrested between 6pm and 6am, if and ONLY if she is arrested by a woman officer & taken to an ALL WOMEN police station..And if she is arrested by a male officer, it has to be proven that a woman officer was on duty at the time of arrest.

Please be aware of this and circulate it widely.

Friday, June 12, 2009

You are only as good as what you practice. But you can only practice what you learn.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Attacks on Indians

Much is written about in print, covered in the media and discussed over coffee, lunch and dinners world over. So will not bore you dear readers on elaborating on the same. Racism has been prevalent since the time of Adam and Eve and across all countries and continents. But that does not mean we take it lying down.

If the Aussies are attacking Indians then Indians have every right to retaliate. Eye for an eye. So what we are immigrant to Australia or for that matter to Canada or England. We contribute to their economy, we work there, we study by paying exorbitant fees to schools / colleges and also end up paying taxes. That practically makes us citizens of these countries albeit without a formal citizenship document. Also, this is not a one way relationship that we are the needy ones to be in Australia or any other place and quite desperately that the racism attacks are justified. If we are needy, so are they. We need better education, they need more people to fund for the service so that they can keep their economy going. If this sounds like fair business transaction where both needy parties are interacting then the attacks are quite despicable. So is the Indian and Aussie govt stand. They are all talking but no one seems to be doing anything about it. It was heart warming to see the Indian govt asking the Indians to calm down and not retaliate when they are being hunted like animals. I say retaliate and in same measure so that people know we will not take this crap lying down and will not go down without a fight.

If Australia is so concerned about its own citizens and feels threatened by the incredible talent of Indians stop giving visas to them. Problem solved. No visas, no immigrant, no insecurity feeling in the local population. If they cannot live without the dollars from the immigrants then provide them adequate security. It is their moral duty and obligation.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Locking systems

Lately I have gotten into the habit (read OCD) of checking the main door of the house to see if it is locked or not. Many a times I have come back after driving a couple of miles to see if the door is locked. This got me thinking. Brace yourselves reader as you are going to be graced by divine wisdom. How about having a security key similar to the centralized locking key systems found in cars for the house. Also, the house security key can be mapped to your phone so that at the press of a button the door will shut and lock. Build an sms based locking mechanism. If you have forgotten to lock, or like yours truly suffer from OCD, then send an sms to the system and it will automatically lock the door. No more driving all the way back to check or worse yet fretting over it all day causing unnecessary stress and heartburn.
Now many readers might tell me that I am already too late with the idea and there is already an existing system in place on the same logic. My question is how come no one is talking about it and where is that system.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Bird repeller

Why don't airlines carry a ultrasonic or some sonic bird repeller which will constantly emit a sound which can only be heard by birds and will discourage them in coming near to a flying aircraft. At least this will eliminate one potential risk which can bring down a plane.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Elections 2009

Boy, what a result. The 2009 Indian elections turned out better than the current season of IPL. What twists, turns and finally a surprise winner at the end. No one predicted Congress to have a thumping victory but they proved everyone wrong, and how. So much for these exit polls, surely they will be looking to make a hasty exit from the limelight now that all of their predictions have gone wrong. So much for these chaand taare waale babas (read astrologers and numerologists) who got it wrong and by a mile. A lot of positives came out of this election. Now, hope they deliver the goods. But for now, celebration. You have to "hand" it to Congress and by extension Sonia, Rahul and Manmohan.

Friday, May 15, 2009

By all means marry; if you get a good wife, you'll become happy; if you get a bad one, you'll become a philosopher - Socrates

Thursday, May 14, 2009

2009 Elections

Rahul Gandhi has finally come of age is the new notion doing the rounds of the hallowed Lutyens, buzzing kailash nagar and the queens necklace. However, I feel that he has a long way to go. Policits is not for novices and Rahul is as novice as they can come. He needs to read from scripts for his speeches and go back to his old timers to know the history of each constituency. This is being pitted against the season charm of LK Advani or the rousing rhetoric of Narendra Modi. Fat chance I would say. However, UPA might have a minor advantage over NDA as NDA has been out of action for a long time now. Internal feuds, missing Vajpayee and the much needed money which Pramod Mahajan was supposed to have stashed away in some Swiss bank has taken their toll on the popularity of NDA. But if one had to hand over the country then it has to be the congress. They are stable, they have steered the country through a rough economic patch affecting the world and this experience will give them a better handle on managing the economy and thereby growth for the next five years. This also is a time for Rahul to take on a major portfolio and show his mettle as a leader and start preparing himself for the ultimate honor of leading the country.

Monday, May 11, 2009

How is it that people who can talk 19 to a dozen develop writer's block?

Friday, May 8, 2009

Flu

Is the Swine Flu really an epidemic? So far only 1,000 people have been infected and only a handful dead. Every human life is sacred and each life taken is a huge loss.
But in today's day and age when the world is so easily connected the spread of such a flu could have been rapid and resulted in an epidemic of mammoth proportions. Some estimates say that if the Spanish flu epidemic in early 1900s is taken as a criteria, the flu this time around can claim more than 150 million people. Now that is a pandemic. However, so far, touch wood, only around 1,000 have been reported infected when potentially millions could have been. So, is this really an epidemic or this is just being too safe than sorry. If this epidemic scare shuts down countries, aborts trade and exchange of goods, stops people movement on business, that would be a epidemic of mammoth proportion as this can result in potentially billions of dollars of economic impact. Theoretically, flu might not claim a lot of lives but the economic impact it can cause might make it a huge epidemic.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Eating a humble pie

Roadies 6.0 winner is Nauman. Totally contradictory to my predictions about Palak winning the Roadies and becoming the first woman to win Roadies. Guess, MTV does truly believe in gender equality and let only the best man (read contestant) win. Literally. 

No Nostradamus, am I? 

Thursday, April 23, 2009

New Afghani Law

Husbands can refuse to feed their wives if they refuse to have sex with them.
In a sense if you don't "feed" a man, he has a right not to feed you.
Now try faking that headache.

Jokes aside I am amazed at abilities of the Afghani religious lawmakers to become regressive. Just when you think they have peaked out in regressiveness, they surprise you with a gem like above.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

M

M is the symbol for 1000 in Roman system. Finally, the hits on this blog has reached 1000 today. Mostly contributed by yours truly. But, want to THANK all of you who patiently read the posts and persevered in a hope to find an intelligently written piece (maybe some day) and in this hope kept returning to the blog and thereby contributing to the hits.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Roadies 6.0 - twist continues

The twist in the finals was fantastic. Could not have imagined that they will bring in three ousted roadies to compete for a place for the grand finale. However, I still stand by my last point in the earlier post. This time they will want to make a woman win the competition and considering Palak is the only woman contestant she has a better chance than both Nauman and Kiri.
How do we find out who won - wait and let the events unfold.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Roadies 6.0

My bets are on Palak to win Roadies 6.0. Why you might ask? Ask :-)

Too many coincidences to ignore.
  1. Palak was one of the few who was selected to come back to Roadies after getting eliminated initially.
  2. In the second last episode, the twist was very conveniently designed to keep Palak in the game when she was voted out.
  3. Nauman had a change of heart in the last episode and he decided to take her to the final episode. Only god and love can bring about this change in a person and don't see signs of either here. How will he face Tamanna after this can become another reality show. MTV, hope you are reading this.
  4. She is very entertaining, obnoxious but entertaining.
  5. Little known fact - she featured in the movie Singh is Kingg in the song 'bhootani ke" as the bride. So she is already in Tinsel town and making her the winner will only give MTV more publicity.
  6. Last but not the least, Roadies has not been won by any woman so far. This will give MTV an opportunity to set an example and make more in-roads in the women segment.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

"Good Deed"

The 'rapists' in the Andheri rape case of a TISS students are feeling cheated. They were surprised when the girl filed a case. After all, they played gentlemen to the hilt. First, they offered themselves in a sexual act. They didn't charge a dime for this so called service. They bought drinks and that too by truck loads. They even rolled up a joint and volunteered to teach a novice in the art of smoking. Last but not the least, after gang raping, they get a contraceptive pill to avoid any unwanted pregnancy. If this is not gentlemanly behaviour then what is. 

As they say, no good deed should go unpunished. This shouldn't either. Jailing these guys will not be just. Castrating them after pouring hot wax on their testicles, yes, that would be fair. 


This is what all smokers and drinkers say.

Comic strip taken from Explosm site. They have some pretty cool comic strips there. URL is www.explosm.net



Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Shendi

First credit card fraud, now car fraud. Looks like my planets and stars are in really favorable positions and alignment.

I was recently a victim of a car fraud, executed with Swiss precision. A con job worthy of a movie. I was returning home last night and at a signal one guy pointed out that there were sparks coming from the car. I thought to myself, rather modestly, that with me inside the car sparks are bound to fly. Modesty aside, i took that guy as a nut case and drove a little further when another 'gentleman' pointed that there were sparks coming out of the bonnet.

Now modesty was totally aside. I parked the car to the side of the road to look into the bonnet and this gentleman who pointed it out also tagged along to see. I did not suspect anything and was feeling nice and warm inside the heart by the gesture of this good Samaritan. I parked the car, opened the bonnet and started the car. This gentleman the said that sparks were coming out so i got out to see it for myself. Lo and behold, there were sparks the size of bonfire coming out of the ignition plug. He said that I am lucky and had I driven at a speed above 40km/h the sparks would have ignited the petrol which was going into the engine and engine and car would have exploded. Just like Hindi movies, in high air. He then went in search of a mechanic and the mechanic said that I need to change the ignition plug. But he called it Alternator and said that it will cost me 6K. However, I learnt today that the thing is called ignition plug and costs around 1.2K.

The mechanic said that he just closed his garage but will do this favor to me by checking what is wrong. He checked, asked me to change the part, volunteered to get the part from his shop, gave me his owner's cell number to find out the prize and the owner said that since the garage is closed, he will send me the warranty card by courier next day.

How did I find out the scam? I decided to get the warranty card myself and when I went to that garage, found that no one by the mechanic or the owner's name worked there. The garage specialises in two wheeler servicing and not four wheeler and the owner of the garage, a nice lady, chuckled and said I was a victim of a elaborate scam. She called it Shendi, which in Mumbai means someone made a fool of you.
I have the cell number of the guy (probably a prepaid), do you think it's worth filing a complaint?
Consolation - atleast the car didn't blow.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Women have a much better time than men in this world. There are far more things forbidden to them - Oscar Wilde

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Miss India

Like the new femina miss India collection from d'damas ad which is being aired on TV these days. Hats off to the ad agency guys who came up with this brilliant ad which makes a total mockery of the miss India contest and contestants. I think the intent of the ad was to promote the jewellery line and miss India contest but ended up making a huge mockery of the whole show.
On a different note, totally impressed by Ekta Choudhary. Her answer to the final question was mind blowing. Shows a sharp and sensitive mind. She was impressive from the 'get go' even though she fumbled a bit. Was rooting for her as she came across with a lot of personality and glad to note that she won. Wish, I had put my money on her as well. Would have made a bundle.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Affordable housing – 20th floor slums

India is moving towards affordable housing. Translation: developers will start building houses which will be in the sub 30 Lakhs per flat category. In smaller cities, typically tier II and III, this translates into, 1000-1300 sq ft, 2-3 BHK flats which are reasonably sized. However, in Tier I cities, specifically cities like Mumbai, Delhi, Bangalore and Hyderabad this will translate into a 600-800 sq ft flats in the 1-2 BHK category. I like delaying getting into the main topic, just like the developers who like delaying the project after taking money from customers. To make it affordable developers will start squeezing the space out of the flats without changing the per sq ft rate. Their profit is important than a living space for an individual so the sizes will become small. Living room will look like a small bedroom, room will shrink to the size of a small bathroom, and bathrooms will shrink to the size of bathrooms found in Indian trains. So now a person will own a house in a plush apartment complex in a nice suburb in Mumbai but the living space in the house will not be enough for a family of four. Each building will have more than 6-8 flats per floor to maximize floor space. The dividing walls between the flats will be reduced from 8 inches thickness to 4 inches. That’s why the title. If you have been to a chawl in Mumbai, you will easily understand. This is how people in chawls and slums live. They are totally cramped, in each other’s spaces and without any privacy. In case you haven’t seen a chawl, suggest watch Vaastav for better understanding. You might feel like killing yourself after watching the movie but atleast you will die a knowledgeable person.

Advantages:

  • No need for a TV as saas bahu episodes could be heard from each household. Thanks to the thin dividing walls.
  • People will be in each other’s spaces. Just like married couples and every one knows how happy married couples are. Sukh dukh ke saathi. This will promote community bonding and harmony.
  • Kaam waali bai will not have to search for multiple jobs in different locations. She will be able to work all day on one floor.
  • BMCs dream of restricting usage to 45 litres per person can be realized as smaller house will require less water.
  • Every person’s dream will be realized. Ek ghar ho sapno ka will not just be a catch phrase or a dream but will be a reality.
  • Population will come under control. Earlier it was hum do humaare do. With space constraint it will become hum do humaare ek or better yet, hum do humaare rehane do.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Credit Card Fraud

You always hear about credit card frauds happening all over the world but never imagine that one day you might also become a victim. You will have one person in your group who will advice you against using the card online or using a credit card altogether due to such frauds. You would have brushed such fears as unwarranted and gone on using the card happily. I am one of those, who have always brushed away the thought of becoming a prey to credit card fraud, until today.

I am a proud contributor to the statistics about people whose credit card has been used fraudulently. Mine was online purchase of tickets for Delhi and god knows which other destinations. The perpetrator/s used the card to purchase flight tickets on two different airlines. In the second purchase they ( I am using plural as I believe there has to be more than one) cancelled the ticket immediately to get a credit note from the airline which can then be used at a later stage to book tickets.

Angry, irritated and indignant that something like this can still happen to you in this day and age of hi-tech security, enough fraud checks in place and more importantly the trust you place in your vendors to keep the sanctity of the credit card information. Extremely impressed with the ICICI credit card fraud detection department for promptly following up with me to confirm if I made the purchases or not and then taking appropriate action. This timely step will save the bank and yours truly a bundle as all the tickets have been cancelled and the credit note blocked.

Extremely pissed at the airlines that in-spite of repeated complaints, a case filed against them and won and many protests they continue to give a credit note to the customer in lieu of ticket cancellation than refund the money back to the customer. To avoid such frauds they have to start paying back the refund money to the customer. If this refund system was in place don't think anyone would have used the card online to buy flight tickets and then cancelled to get the credit note which can then be sold to some spurious travel agent who can use the note to make tickets for someone else. The criminals don't gain anything if they cancel the ticket as the money goes back to the cardholder. Not saying that this solution will put an end to frauds but will at-least result in one additional control in place to prevent frauds.
My entire family believes in 'cash is king' and I was the exception. I can see all of them now with the "listen to your family, told you so" expression.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Jab bhi hum unka naam lete hain
apne dil se inteqam lete hain
apni barbadiyon ke fasane main
apne dosto ka naam lete hain
unki galiyon mein ab basera nahi
khud ko yehi paigam dete hain

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Salim Must Die – Mukul Deva

Recently read this Indian thriller. Normally Indian writers don’t feature with the likes of Ludlum, Sheldon or Forsyth when it comes to thrillers and definitely don’t feature in my ‘to read’ list. But Mukul was a pleasant surprise. His book is simple, easy to read, fast paced and doesn’t get too caught up in the clich├ęs most Indian writers fall prey to. The plot is relevant and more so today, frightening and completely believable. The line between fact and fiction often blurs and this makes the premise even more frightening.
Flip side – Gets too preachy and technical at times but doesn’t become too boring. Ending is a little lame and expected.
Recommend reading if you are a fan of thrillers.
BRIC has become CRIB. Which is what every one invested in these economies are doing.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Manager

Being a manager is like being a goalkeeper. The only thing people will ever remember is not that you delivered flawlessly many times but that one time when you failed.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Helpline

I was feeling a little depressed one day, so I called the helpline.
It turned out that the helpline was routed to some call center in Pa*istan and they got very excited when they heard that I was feeling suicidal. They asked me if I knew how to drive a truck.
Well, what the heck.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Tata Nano

Nano - small car, big personality.
Nano - small step for the automobile industry. Giant leap for mankind.
Nano - is like a diamond. Sometimes priceless things do come in small packages.
Nano - means 'One Billionth'. Literally will help realize dream of owning a car for billions of people.
Nano - a 'huge' salute to tatas.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Indian traffic police and flying car

One of the most sought after inventions of this decade was the flying car and it was unveiled and tested successfully. More details at the link below.
http://www.informationweek.com/news/showArticle.jhtml?articleID=215901270
Sometime in future, a conversation between traffic havaldar and flying car owner will go like this.
havaldar: thamba thamba
owner: sir, kya hua
havaldar: lison dikha.
owner: checking the glove compartment for lison and car papers.
havaldar: daru marela hain kya? FUI (flying under influence) ka charge lagega. chal 10,000 nikal.
owner: sir, road pe to iska fine sirf 1,000 hain. yaha pe itna jyaada.
havaldar: maila....mere ko bhi hawa main latka diya hain aur poochta hain fine itna jyaada kyun. saala apne demotion hua hain isi liye SI bola hawa main latak ke traffic manage karo. nikalta hain ya hawa hawai banau.
I can imagine bribes going sky high, pun intended, with the launch of commercial flying cars.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Before and After

The old saying is - before marriage a man is incomplete, after marriage he is finished.
The new age saying for professionals who are running in the rat race to become the top dog is - Before blackberry a professional is incomplete, after blackberry he is finished.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Happy Holi

Yeh silsile yuhi chalte rahe,
Aap aur hum milte rahe
Gham ka suraj aapki jindagi se dhalta rahe
Rango se aapka daaman guljaar rahe
Khushio se aapka jeevan bharta rahe
Yeh silsile yuhi chalte rahe

Rang barse..........
Wish you all a very happy holi.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Name

What's in a name, so said Kalidas in Shankutalam. Ok, just kidding, it was by Shakespeare but again, what's in a name. Now that we are done with today's PJ here is the serious issue.
Grew up in Madras and then one fine day, one of the politicians decided to rename it as Chennai. This opened the floodgates for all others who decided that names kept by the British was not acceptable to Indian sensibilities (like women exercising their freedom in a pub is not acceptable to ram and shiv senas) and therefore all cities have to be renamed. Thus, Bombay became Mumbai, Bangalore became Bengaluru etc. However, this is old news and not what this post is all about. For some reason, Madras did become Chennai in my head and in all subsequent conversations but Mumbai and Bengaluru remain Bombay and Bangalore. In spite of living in these cities for considerable time. Does it mean that Chennai brings out the characteristics of the city but for other two it has to be the anglicized names only? Or is it that Madras was never the right name for Chennai? You decide. I have.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Technology

Why is that when you really require technology it fails. There are a lot of reasons which make murderers out of people. Add one more - technology failure.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Conspiracy theory

A terrorist attack is a great fodder for all closet conspiracy theorists to come out, rack their brains, get all philosophical about and come up with reasons, rationales and theories regarding the attack. In short, people with no work get swamped. The recent theory from yours truly is that the recent attack on Sri Lankan cricketers was the brainchild of the ISI to divert the attention of the world from the Nov 2008 Mumbai blasts. Their excuse can now be that they are under siege by terrorists in their own country, how will they control anything which happens outside. Another theory is an extension of the above. Now, they can look to US for help against terrorism by letting US deploy troops in Pakistan and for letting them do that get billions of dollars aid for economic development which generally translates to sponsoring more terrorism. Like manufacturing is the industry for China, IT and services for India, terrorism is for Pakistan. They promote terrorism and then look for aid from others to curb it. Great return on investments considering the damages is generally hundreds of millions of dollars but the aid run into billions. Now that is a lesson in capitalism. So many precious lives were snuffed out is accidental and in the larger scheme of things incidental. After all, the population of the world is approx 6+ billion.
I hope Obama will act a little wisely and not fall for this act. Instead, he will take a strong stand which might be painful in the short term but over a long term will help break the back of the terrorists considerably and lead to a safer, peaceful world.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Home

I moved to Mumbai in 2006. Until then, I wasn't a very big fan of Mumbai. I was a hardcore Chennaite. I have been living in Mumbai for over two years now. I visited Chennai in early 2008 and for some strange reason didn't feel that attached as I was before relocating. I assumed that Mumbai is my new home and maybe I don't feel the same way about Chennai anymore. So in my hierarchy the order of homes became:
  1. Mumbai - current residence
  2. Chennai - grew up here
  3. Bangalore - studied here
  4. Sikar - born here
However, I visited Chennai and Bangalore last week and the love for both the cities is totally indescribable. It was love at first sight again. The familiar prickly heat, sweat and grime in Chennai and the crispy morning chilly wind in Bangalore brought back memories of a life which grew and evolved in these cities. That's when I realised the true meaning of the phrase - home is where the heart is and the heart truly belongs to Chennai. So, the new hierarchy is (the true order and was distorted temporarily).
  1. Chennai - grew up here
  2. Bangalore - studied here
  3. Mumbai - current residence
  4. Sikar - born here

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

DevD - the movie

I had written about DevD earlier. How the songs were the find of the decade and how they have changed the music scene. Was eagerly awaiting release of the movie. I have received mixed reactions of the movie. Some people I know said the movie was truly 'emosional atyaachar' and was not bearable after 15 minutes. However, and more important surprisingly, Mayank Shekar and Nikhat Kazmi agreed for a change and gave the movie 4+ stars. The people who trashed it are the types who will like alternate genre of films so it is not a review from the 'un-intellectual' class. That makes me wonder, is the movie worth the astronomical multiplex ticket price or should I wait for the dvd to come out. Any thoughts?

Monday, February 9, 2009

PINK is the new BLACK

Necessity is the mother of all inventions. In this case necessity to stand up to bullies who go on a rampage in the name of 'culture, tradition and god' is mother of an extremely creative campaign, Pink Chaddi, to fight these so called 'moral' righteous pricks. The 'senas' of the India be it Ram or Shiv are up against a different kind of gandhigiri this time. No public litigation, no dharnas, no burning effigies but sending 'pink jhaddies' to protest against the Mangalore incident. Pink is the new black, to blacken their faces as a punishment for their outrageous behavior in Mangalore. I hope at least now these moralistic pricks will realise that drinking in a pub is as much a woman's right as a man's right to drink in a bar. Women are not destroying any culture by indulging in a hard earned drink at the end of the day to unwind, relax and hang out with friends/family.
My request to all women - please send only the really tattered, torn underwear as sending them something which is in a fine condition will be a) giving them too much attention, b) wasting a good set of lingerie.
However, what a way to leave them 'pink' in the face.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Boy scouts from Airtel

I "love" customer service call centres, esp the ones belonging to telecom companies. Interacting with them is a complete contrast to the 'no signal' reception one gets on their mobile phones. These guys/gals provide a lot of reception, mostly funny. Here is one of them:

Me: - Hi, I'd like to deactivate my airtel number.
CC Guy:- Sure Sir, I will deactivate it within 24 hours.
Me:- Gee, thanks. How will I know the number is disconnected?
CC Guy:- We will send you an sms on your airtel number confirming the deactivation.
Duh!!!!
Ta na na na nana nana na na nana nana nana nana nana na......Airtel tune.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Gaffe in Resumes

Came across this in one of the resumes:

  • Awarded the Certificate of Excellency in November 2007 & July 2008 for the outstanding work.

I guess this could be a great motivational tool. Instead of awarding 'Certificate of Excellence', give them royal treatment and make them king/queens by awarding Certificates of Excellency and then start addressing them as 'Your Highness'. Truly, out of the box.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Worst Predictions in 2008

Just about everybody got wrong-footed by 2008, but some people's mistakes were truly spectacular
By Peter Coy - Coy is Business Week's Economics editor.
Here are some of the worst predictions that were made about 2008. Savor them—a crop like this doesn't come along every year.
1. "A very powerful and durable rally is in the works. But it may need another couple of days to lift off. Hold the fort and keep the faith!" —Richard Band, editor, Profitable Investing Letter, Mar. 27, 2008
At the time of the prediction, the Dow Jones industrial average was at 12,300. By late December it was at 8,500.
2. AIG (AIG) "could have huge gains in the second quarter." —Bijan Moazami, analyst, Friedman, Billings, Ramsey, May 9, 2008
AIG wound up losing $5 billion in that quarter and $25 billion in the next. It was taken over in September by the U.S. government, which will spend or lend $150 billion to keep it afloat.
3. "I think this is a case where Freddie Mac (FRE) and Fannie Mae (FNM) are fundamentally sound. They're not in danger of going under…I think they are in good shape going forward." —Barney Frank (D-Mass.), House Financial Services Committee chairman, July 14, 2008
Two months later, the government forced the mortgage giants into conservatorships and pledged to invest up to $100 billion in each.
4. "The market is in the process of correcting itself." —President George W. Bush, in a Mar. 14, 2008 speech
For the rest of the year, the market kept correcting…and correcting…and correcting.
5. "No! No! No! Bear Stearns is not in trouble." —Jim Cramer, CNBC commentator, Mar. 11, 2008
Five days later, JPMorgan Chase (JPM) took over Bear Stearns with government help, nearly wiping out shareholders.
6. "Existing-Home Sales to Trend Up in 2008" —Headline of a National Association of Realtors press release, Dec. 9, 2007
On Dec. 23, 2008, the group said November sales were running at an annual rate of 4.5 million—down 11% from a year earlier—in the worst housing slump since the Depression.
7. "I think you'll see [oil prices at] $150 a barrel by the end of the year" —T. Boone Pickens, June 20, 2008
Oil was then around $135 a barrel. By late December it was below $40.
8. "I expect there will be some failures. … I don't anticipate any serious problems of that sort among the large internationally active banks that make up a very substantial part of our banking system." —Ben Bernanke, Federal Reserve chairman, Feb. 28, 2008
In September, Washington Mutual became the largest financial institution in U.S. history to fail. Citigroup (C) needed an even bigger rescue in November.
9. "In today's regulatory environment, it's virtually impossible to violate rules." —Bernard Madoff, money manager, Oct. 20, 2007
About a year later, Madoff—who once headed the Nasdaq Stock Market—told investigators he had cost his investors $50 billion in an alleged Ponzi scheme.
10. A Bound Man: Why We Are Excited About Obama and Why He Can't Win, the title of a book by conservative commentator Shelby Steele, published on Dec. 4, 2007.
When a girl marries, she exchanges the attentions of many men for the inattention of one.

Diaries!!!

Her Diary (Jan 26, 2009) - He seemed very quiet today. I asked him if it was my fault. He said no but he was very upset. I told him that I love him. He smiled but was still a little aloof. I am sure he has lost interest in me and is thinking of breaking up. I cried all night.

His Diary (Jan 26, 2009) - India lost to Bangladesh by 10 wickets. DAMN IT!!!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

RahMAN - Again

Slumdog did it again, this time at Oscars. Getting nominated for 10 categories is no small achievement. Getting two of the three nominations in best original score is even bigger. Feb 22 will be eagerly awaited.
Jai Ho!!!!!

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Life is easy come, easy go. If you make the best of the time in between the come and go, you can call it a good life.

Gem from the 'Guide'

My capacity for mental activity of all kinds is as boundless as the infinite reaches of space itself - The Hitchhiker's Guide to Galaxy

Monday, January 19, 2009

Movies

Saw Chandni Chowk (CC2C) and Slumdog this weekend.
Suggestion for CC2C - Don't "C".
No wonder piracy is so rampant in the country. If a movie is not able to give you entertainment worth the cost of the ticket, why waste time and money on something which is truly horrendous. Get a dvd and then watch the movie in fast forward mode.
Slumdog - Brilliant movie. A little retro in terms that the portrayal of Mumbai is classic 90s than current times. It might not be applicable so much now as it was then. But the movie connects at a deeper level. Most of us have grown up seeing the 90s unfold so it is easy to relate to every scene in the film. Some scenes are quite gory and might make you close your eyes but you cannot escape the reality in them.
Rahman's music especially for "ringa ringa" and "jai ho" is amazing. Gives the dark side of the movie a completely sunny shine.
The main character is such a wonderful actor and Anil Kapoor with his shades of gray is marvellous.
Amitabh wrote a scathing post on the movie and the main character idolizes him, goes through shit, literally, for his autograph in the movie. Quite ironic.
The movie is a true portrayal of one side of Mumbai and only Indians could have brought that out so convincingly unlike the way the western press is lauding Danny for bringing out the true character of Mumbai. Someone commented that only a westerner can bring out the true nature of Mumbai. Really???
Writer of the book "Q&A" on which the movie is based - Vikas Swarup (Indian)
Casting and co director - Loveleen Tandon (Indian)
Music Director - A R Rahman (Indian)
Director - Danny Boyle (not Indian)
I think the stats speak for themselves. I am not taking away the directorial brilliance Boyle brought to the movie but without the remaining team members Danny might not have captured the true spirit of Mumbai and for that he and the world should thank his team and not just him.
I read in ET that Slumdog put Mumbai on the world map. If that is what everyone feels then either Mumbai needs a good PR agency or the world needs to educate itself better. In my view, latter will work more effectively. Now, back to the movie.
Slumdog is gritty, gripping and gory.
Slumdog is a tale of hope, friendship, family and love.
Slumdog is a must watch. Save the money by avoiding CC2C and watch Slumdog instead.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Saw this key chain which says - I love my job, it's the work that I hate.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Bye Bye Bush!!!

Bush is spending his last week in the white house. We will miss him sorely. Not for his foreign policies or his war on 'terror', read I don't know nothing so I will bomb Iraq or his brilliant understanding of industrial sector but we will miss him for his Bushisms. He was probably one of the most entertaining presidents ever and second only to Bill Clinton.
His farewell speech might say - I am 'bushed'

Monday, January 12, 2009

Rah"MAN"

Music really transcends age, sex, race and geographical borders. Rahman got the Golden Globe for his music in Slumdog. Finally, a world wide recognition, not that he needed one. He truly came out as the top 'dog' in music. The song for which he won the award goes "jai ho" and is totally apt for him too. Jai Ho (means praise be to) Rahman for achieving this honor for self and India. For decades he made us hum, sing and dance to his music be it Roja, Dil Se, Yuuvraj, Minsara Kanavu, Rang De Basanti, theme music of Airtel or the national anthem and still continues to do so with Delhi 6. Now, he is making the 'globe' dance. I know a one year old baby boy whose eyes and face lights up when he listens to Rahman's music. Now, that is Music.
The history of music will be re-written as before Rahman and after Rahman.
Oscar - here comes the Man. Rah'man'.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Khel

Satyamite to Raju - Tumne mere career se khela

Investor to Raju - Tumne mere paise se khela

Regulator - Tumne mere law se khela

Raju's brother - Well played, well played.

Friday, January 9, 2009

World class built on fraud

Satyam is a company which employs 53,000 people. It was one of the top 5 IT companies in India. It was voted as one of the best companies for training and development. It was voted as one of the best in terms of service delivery and quality. It boasted of more than 185 companies from fortune 500 as its clients. A world class organization but built on the foundation of fraud. 
One man or few men committed the fraud. If you take these men out of the equation Satyam will still remain a world class company. If given to a management like Infosys, it will continue to service its clients to their satisfaction. It will continue to employ its 53,000 staff. It will continue to be one of the best in terms of training and development. Should the employees, clients and investors pay for a crime committed by few men. Prosecute these men but save the organization. Satyam is one of the best company in its space and if given a chance to survive might come out as one of the top IT companies in India and world. 

In addition to criminally prosecuting the promoters of Satyam, law should also attach Maytas and other companies owned by them, liquidate and use the cash to pay off Satyam's investors and employees.  Wouldn't that be a fitting penalty? And a great message to all other current and would be fraudsters to clean up their act. 

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Cell (jail) to Chair (govt)

Will truth set you free? In Raju's case, I don't think so. Truth might get him a cell room in a high security prison. But the big question is - Why would he confess now?

I have a theory. I guess Raju was tired of running the company and decided that he was made for bigger things. So he confessed to the fraud, might probably get a jail term of 5-10 years, do half or less than that, come out and then run for government. Maybe he felt that he was meant to become the chief minister of Andhra Pradesh and what better and easier way to get there than doing a jail stint (history and current parties are ample proofs).

US:- Mere paas Madoff hain.
India:- Mere paas Raju hain.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Corporate Terrorism

Ramalinga Raju admitted to a corporate fraud at Satyam and confessed to cooking up balance sheet and income statements to show inflated revenues, imaginary expenses and non existent cash reserves. First Sub-Prime, then Madoff and now Satyam. Where is the much spoken corporate governance? What are the regulatory bodies like SEBI & SEC, independent board of directors and external auditors doing?

Satyam lost more than 60% of its stock value on one trading session after the news broke. A lot of people including common man would have lost a lot of money, in some cases maybe their life savings. With the erosion would have gone the dreams of a good retirement, marriage of daughters, sons education, buying that house, taking a vacation and so much more. The erosion is not because of market forces or a bad economy but because of greed of one man hand in glove with few others who thought resorting to any means justifies the end. The end being making more money for self. Raju's stake in the company came down from 25% in 2004 to a mere 3% in 2008. So he was steadily selling his stake and amassing cash knowing fully well about the screwed up balance sheet and the fear that the fraud might come out and he might lose money in stock erosion. He converted his paper money into real money and left others hanging dry.

This is one form of terrorism. "Corporate terrorism" where promoters, insiders, directors make a mockery of rules, bend them to satiate their greed and in teh bargain massacre dreams of many innocent civilians who believe in these leaders and entrust them with their life savings. This should be treated at par with murder, rape and terrorism and the punishment should be equally stringent. Otherwise, there will always be a Raju or a Madoff ready to make money at some innocent person's expense.

No 'Truth' in 'Satyam' anymore!! Satyam is not Sundaram.