Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Live who you are

There are some moments/situations/phases/incidents (call it what you may) in life which are significant. While living in them I can feel their significance... that are life altering... that will change me as a person. I am living in one such moment right now. It is not about winning or losing... after all does anyone ever win? I mean... in life... there is some loss in every win. It is about the journey or specifically, the fight. I know once this blows over or is resolved... I will be stronger, less trusting, less naive and lose some of the leftover innocence. It is strange but through any such fight... what goes first is innocence and then trust.
I did try to keep my mouth shut and be diplomatic like it is expected in corporate life... but not for long. That is just not me... I need to speak up.... no matter the consequences. KC was soooo bugged with my diplomacy and I am glad to have a partner in life who will never let me forget who I am. And I am grateful to have friends like RT who will always give a listening ear... who will give honest, experienced and wise advice.

Should my job change who I am or what I believe in?
Last month my sub-ordinate was advising me how I should commit things to trade partners to keep them happy.
I told; "I will commit only what I can do. I do not believe in breaking commitments. Just because we do sales does not mean we cannot stick to our principles and achievement should not be at any cost. There is a right way to achieve the right targets". I don't know if these words had any impression on him... but I hope I can lead with example.

I probably sound like an anomaly. I guess, I began my career in a very ethical and clean sales company and that has shaped my views for life. Not everyone gets that opportunity.

Thought for the day: Don't let your organization or profile or seniors define your values and principles.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

I hate dirty fans

The first time a dirty fan bothered me was in the government hostel during my engg. I had never come across one before that. Every morning when I woke up and every night when I went to asleep the first and last views would be of the dirty fan. I would even see it in my dreams. Finally, I decided to do something about it. I cleaned it. This continued even in B school hostel.
I cannot sleep under a dirty fan, atleast not for more than a month.

The agenda for this month was cleaning the bedroom fan but somehow I was too busy. Last weekend KC was supposed to help me out with it. My height is a hindrance to cleaning. Anyway, today I was determined. The cobwebs on ceiling and the dirty fan would have to go. I asked my maid to come late. She comes at 7 am even on Sundays and cleans while I sleep. The session began at 9 am and continued till 12 noon. I cleaned and cleaned and cleaned. Whew!!! After lunch it was gym time and then some shopping.

I wonder how women do it... keep their homes spic and span. I can manage it on Sundays only when KC is not around. Once he shifts here the cleaning will go out of the window. I sincerely hope he can join me on the cleaning mission but that is a lost mission already.


I look at the friends closest to me and realize that most of them are from recent past. I wonder why.
Is it 'coz I have more in common with them now???
Is it 'coz of the circumstances? After all, distance does make it difficult to keep in touch.
Is it 'coz of the inclination and effort put into keeping in touch?

There are some things that are important... regular phone calls, sharing, caring, remembering important days like birthdays etc.
Earlier I was a 2 am friend.... friends could call me anytime (unless I was in class) and I would be available. That has become next to impossible now... I cannot give time to personal calls during work hours, nights are for sleep... that leaves a window in evening after work and before bed.
Facebook, blogs, mails, chat are great for catching up... but they cannot replace the personal touch.

I tried chatting with an old friend today... there was a time when we were close and now I could not find any topic to chat on. It was so weird I felt sad.

And then there are some people I can strike up friendship with anytime... last month I met a friend I lost in touch with 4 yrs back. We clicked immediately.

There are other friends who only call when they need something and it pisses me off.

There are friends who I am not in touch with (except through fb) and yet they are in my thoughts and memories.

Friendships can be more complex than a relationship especially 'coz they come in so many forms.

I was watching Sex and the city Season 4. I love and hate this season the most... love it 'coz Carrie gets back with Aiden... hate it 'coz they break up. There are some similarities in Carrie's and my life. But then there must be many women thinking the same. So I guess my life is no different from many others... which is comforting.

I am watching 'A Christmas Carol'. Thankfully, it has been adapted well without many deviations. I do not like classics being tampered with. I love reading books like Little Women, A Christmas Carol, David Copperfield etc. And I absolutely love Shakespeare. I was fortunate to read atleast one original play- Merchant of Venice. It broke my heart when I watched 'Romeo and Juliet' starring Leonardo. Instead of the balcony scene between R and J they were smooching in the swimming pool. Romance was replaced by lust. Lust is not bad but we see enough of it... it is romance that is rare... in movies and in real life.

Adieu with that thought.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

3 years of work experience

I have completed 3 years this month and here are pearls of wisdom:
  • Don't trust anyone... not friends or foes or even family working in the same company
  • Don't believe anything unless it is given in writing
  • Even if something is written... read between the lines
  • The organization does not give a damn about the employees
  • Employees only care about furthering their own career
  • There is nothing like "company loyalty". Loyalty has to be bought with money and good profile
  • The average burn out time for an employee is between 3-5 years
  • There is an agenda behind every gesture... good or bad. Be aware about the big picture
  • Put everything on e-mail... and I mean EVERYTHING.
I am not sure what I like about corporate life... I have realized all that I don't like.
I hope in the next 2-3 years I get to know what I like.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Back to back movie session

Last night was a back to back movie session.

It started with Parzania which has been critically acclaimed.

Thanks to my net I was able to watch it. The Gujarat riots sicken m
e and another movie which shows the violence was revolting. Parzania is the true story of a Parsi family who lost their son in the riots. They have not been able to find him even now... not even his dead body. They live in the hope that someday he will find his way home. Sarika and Naseeruddin as the Parsi parents are superb.

I cannot believe the master mind behind the riots- Modi is still in power. The Gujjus (those who reside in Gujarat and not necessarily Gujaratis) have to be sick, blood thirsty, Muslim hating people to keep him in power.
I found Firaaq more bearable because it covered the aftermath of the riots...
Parzania is worth a watch... specially for Gujjus.

The next movie was 'The Japanese Wife'. I missed it in the theatre and am feeling bad about that.

Based on a short story by Kunal Basu and directed by Aparna Sen it stars Rahul Bose, Raima Sen, Moushmi Chatterjee and a japanese actress. The movie is a mix of Bengali and English. Unfortunately there were no sub titles and I could not make out the Bengali dialogues.
The movie is about a middle aged man- Snehamoy Chatterjee (Rahul) who becomes pen friends with a japanese 18 year old female. Rahul stays in a village in Bengal and the pen friend is in Japan. They fall in love and marry- all through letters. Both are too poor to even call each other. In the meantime Raima- Moushmi's friend's daughter, a widow with a son, comes to live with Rahul and Moushmi (Rahul's masi). No- Raima and Rahul do not fall for each other.

I won't let out the end. It is a fabulous movie. Rahul's Bengali accent is perfect. He is such an amazing actor. Any movie with Rahul is worth a watch and he is HOT.
Earlier, art movies had a lot of takers- Shabana, Nasseeruddin, Om Puri, Smita Patil etc etc.
These days there are very few- Abhay Deol, Rahul Bose, Konkana, Raima Sen, Sandhya Mridul, Boman Irani- thats about it. And yet all of them are a pleasure to watch.

It was an extremely successful and enjoyable movie marathon.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Shutter Island

Dhruv and I watched this one on my b'day after reading the positive reviews. Till the interval we were wondering what the hell is going on. It was kind of confusing. Thankfully, at the end we know... and that makes it worth it. I should have guessed the movie would be like this... after all it has been directed by Martin Scorsese.

Worth one watch.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Rain... rain... go away

Day 1 of rains in Mumbai and its a fiasco. I took a rick to office today since the car is punctured. In hindsight it was a good decision. At 5 pm it started raining. I left office at 6.15 pm and tried to flag an auto. Nobody stopped. Finally one of the colleagues sent his car and driver to drop 4 of us to Kanjurmarg. We planned to take an auto from there. It was raining heavily with knee deep water near Powai lake. We managed to find an auto which accommodated all 4.
As luck would have it it stopped at Bhandup and wouldn't start. We got out in the rains (with our laptops) and tried to flag another auto unsuccessfully. Thankfully the earlier auto started and rescued us. Near Asian Paints- 5 mins from my house, there was a big jam. We got out again in the rains and walked all the way. The other 3 took another auto to Thane check naka at the signal while I walked home. The area between the mall and home was flooded and I had to wade through really dirty water.
The cook could not come so I had to order in... and there was no water to even wash clothes.
The monsoons are going to be a trying time.

Its better when it rains at night... instead of during the day. Atleast then I will be able to stay home incase of water logging.

My earliest memories of rains are of Mt Abu. It would get dark, cold and gloomy. Rains were torture... sticky everywhere... the umbrellas, raincoats and rain shoes had to be with us at all times... days had to be spent indoors with nothing to do... clothes wouldn't dry and when put near the dryer (with coals) the lace/ends of undies would burn a little and become hard... very uncomfortable.... snails, earthworms, hari buchis (caterpillars with spines) everywhere.

A'bad rains are good... it is sunny and raining... rain dates were fun... and driving in the rain was so much better...

Sunday, June 13, 2010


Its official... I hope there are no more sequels to this.
I was soooo looking forward to it and it has totally let me down.
Here are the details... WARNING: Movie spoilers ahead:
  • The movie has little meat... as in hardly any story. More time has been devoted to the Abu Dhabi trip
  • The director does not understand SATC... he has taken the most obvious characteristics and put them here. He does not know how their minds work... and I feel cheated. I feel they have been used to create something horrible
  • After 10 yrs of dating 'Big'... Carrie would never ever cheat on him. It was the most convenient to do... show her bored with Big... find Aiden and kiss him.
  • Aiden would NEVER EVER EVER EVER cheat on his wife... and thats why he is my fav guy. I wish Carrie would have ended up with him... he is so much better than Big... so much nicer... and gentler... and kinder... and thats why he would never cheat. Showing him initiate the kiss takes the blame off Carrie... BUT Aiden would never do that
  • Samantha maybe a slut... but she has class. The way she was shown acting in Abu Dhabi was demeaning.
  • I didn't get to see enough of Harry and Steve. Why were the husbands side tracked?
  • The fashion was disappointing. It was made TOO obvious
  • I wanted to cry when I saw how women of Abu Dhabi are portrayed... thats what Hollywood does with India... puts cliches. Sigh. I wish there would have been more research done about UAE and its customs
  • Why did the 4 women agree to this stupid script?
I need to watch re-runs of the series to forget a nightmare of this movie.

Good things don't last too long.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

B'day boy

It was KC's b'day on Monday and this time I decided to gift him something good instead of the usual PS2 game CDs. He had been ogling shoes from Puma and I bought them.
I have a strange connection with gifts... I am more excited about the gift than the receiver. Everytime I buy the gift, get KC curious about it and then surprise him. The worst part is when he buys me something and I don't let him keep it a secret.
Anyway, I hadn't planned anything special for bud'day... his friends and I had surprised him at midnight last year and it seemed predictable this year. On Sunday I took him to Powai lake which is soooo dirty. Govt is spending crores on placing fountains around it... how about cleaning it instead. There were couples all around making out... the thought of watching tongue on tongue action was not too appealing and we headed to Mainland China for dinner. I miss Gurgaon's outlet... they had an awesome buffet.
We planned to finish house agreement renewal on Monday morning but it got postponed to Tues night. For some reason the landlord was being very chatty and snobbish. Well, well, I have seen worse.
KC was kinda down on Monday and I took him for a drive to Palm Beach road in the rains... I was hoping it would slow down a little so we can hang out at the lake... but that was not to be. We headed to mini sea shore where they have paddle boats... I was excited. We went paddling and it started to rain. It was kinda funny... Dinner was at his parents... and after meeting friends at night we headed home. It was a good and chill day.

The nightmare started today morning. KC and I got into the lift at 4.30 am... it was going up and we wanted to go down. I asked him to get out but he wouldn't listen... finally, we were both inside and the lift closed and stopped moving. It was a nightmare... KC's flight was at 6 am. Last time this happened the liftman had pulled up the doors... I tried the same thing (without KC's help) and we took the stairs. On dropping him off I noticed a puncture... I didn't say nothing so he wouldn't worry. It was raining hard... I stopped at the nearest petrol pump but there was no mechanic to change the tire. I begged the guys there to help. Very reluctantly they changed the tire but as luck would have it... the other tire was punctured too (I got the tube changed last week... I am sharpening my knife to murder the garage guy). Finally, I got enough air filled in the tyre and reached home before it give way.
Sigh!!! I remembered last night I am going to B'glore tomorrow to celebrate my b'day.. don't want to be alone in Mumbai on that day.
Wish KC could be there too... but sometimes it just the thought that matters.

Songs of Blood and Sword

This book is written by Fatima Butto- daughter of Murtaza Bhutto- niece of Benazir Bhutto- grand daughter of Zulfikar Bhutto.
A good book... but a little biased. I don't think Murtaza was the saint he is made out to be... politics is not for the saintly.
Its gives a good look at Pakistan's politics... the tensions, sufferings etc. I don't understand how people live there... but then again maybe people from developed countries wonder how we live in India.
Every person is someone else's weirdo.


Whatta movie.... after a long time... a good Bollywood movie.
It is not a new story- a mix of Mahabharta and Godfather.
The performances are amazing... Manoj Bajpai is Duryodhan, Ajay Devgan is Karan, Nana Patekar is Krishna, Arjun Rampal is Yudhisthir, Ranbir Kapoor is Michael Corleone from 'Godfather' or very loosely- Arjun.
I loved Manoj Bajpai acting and clothes. Fabulous... and after so long.
Katrina Kaif has "tried" to act and failed, as always... but full marks for effort. Ranbir is still raw... good but raw.

Do not miss this one. The songs are good too.

For some... the violence and killings may get too much... 'coz a lot of people die... but then again, politics is like that. Look at Bhutto family, Gandhi family and also Mahabharta.