Thursday, October 22, 2009

Ek Heroin Jo Kharrate Maarti Hai!

Interesting title, ain't it! And how can you not watch or read about it.

Trust Aaj Tak and India TV to lighten up even the "dullest" day of your life. Now I am only writing the most interesting bits of this one-hour primetime special on Aaj Tak:
" Ek heroin jo kharratte maarti hai.... Kaun hai woh..... Aap bhi soch rahe honge ki aap ko yeh kaise nahi pata (bang on, that's what I think first thing every morning)....... khola Ranbir ne yeh raaz....... dekhiye break ke baad...... repeat all of it..... Ranbir ne khhule aam kia khulaasa ki Katrina kharrattein bharti hain.... apni aankhon dekhiye-> Quote Ranbir "At time Katrina laughs like: Snort snort snort"
And now the most interesting bit: ".... yeh ek raaz hai jo Sallu ko bhi nahi pata hoga.... aag babula ho jaayenge Sallu...bhala Ranbir ko kaise pata chala.... kya yeh hai ek Ajab Prem Ki Gajab Kahani ?.... aur humaare paas iske aur saboot hain..... Katrina ne khola Ranbir ka raaz.... Ranbir raat ko sone se pehle brush nahi karte (Damn!, Doomsday is here).... yeh raaz Deepika tak ko nahi pata.... and then they actually asked Deepika, who replied " I'm afraid I really don't know about Ranbir's toilet habits (giggles)"..... Aaj Tak's interpretation: dekhiye kaise sab ke saamne Deepika hui naraaz.... unhone saaf keh diya ki yeh unka niji mamla hai..."

Now wow!!! I don't remember being privy to such entertainment.... ever!! The look on Deepika's face when she was asked what she felt of Katrina Kaif's knowledge of Ranbir's brushing his teeth said it all. The reason I shared this was...well, I'm bored. And at such times, it takes something fairly stupid and lame to lift your spirits.

So at the end of a long, tiring, day...... Aaj Tak and India TV- Highly Recommended. Cause you've earned it :)

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Almost Robbed!

I've known for a while now that it would take something fairly compelling to get me blogging again. And I feel compelled to blog today. If life is about unexpected events, then today has surely been a "lively" day. Now this one is going to sound like one scripted story minus the heroism(alas)!!!

Story Background: I'm on my way back from work at 5 pm. If my boss is reading this, I don't do this often, just that I came into work at 7 am today. Any brownie points for that? Anyway, back to the story. I caught a sudden cold today and on my way back, decided to pay a visit to the doc. Parked my car road-side, made sure I kept my laptop bag in a manner that it wasn't visible to the normal passer-by, and was on my way. Unfortunately, the doc had just left.

A quick stop at the chemist to pick up some cough drops and I headed back to the car. The excitement begins. I thought I had spotted my car among the many parked cars. But the driver's door was open and someone was leaning in. It took me a minute to realize that IT WAS in fact my car, that the anti-theft alarm was blaring, and that a guy was reaching in for my laptop. I crossed the road after making sure I won't get run-over in the hurry. I wasn't running, as I wanted to surprise the guy right when I was "on" him. But I guess my piercing look gave me away. I realized he had spotted me and I started running towards the car. After panicking and freezing for a minute, the guy dropped my laptop right outside the car and started running away.

Now I am the impulsive kinds, or so I believed till today. And in a hypothetical situation, I would have bet that I would have run after this guy and nailed him to the ground (or at least tried). Thankfully though, I got to the car, put my laptop inside, locked the car, asked a sabzi waala to stand guard and only then- started chasing the guy. Man, I can't remember the last time I was so mentally alert. Completely aware of the traffic and the fact that I should not get carried away. Now, they say people in Bombay don't help. But this one guy on a Kinetic rode upto me and offerred me a lift to chase the thief. I almost got on when it hit me that Mr. Kinetic could well be an accomplice.(I'm sorry if I got that bit wrong.... in which case he really was a genuine guy. Thanks!). Anyway, I chose to run instead, and lost him in some khopcha (hidden corner). I found the Kinetic dude talking to another guy driving an Astra in the by-lane where I was. I realized that there were just the three of us and a boy walking his dog in this 500 meter long lane. I maintained my distance and got to the main road, again, very aware of my surroundings. Walked back to the car, got in, and I'm home typing on my laptop. Ha! and Ha again!


  1. It is possible not to let the adrenalin rush take over. I surprised myself by thinking straight and knowing when to back off. Thank God I didn't hitch a ride on the Kinetic or chase the guy into the deserted lane
  2. Never leave your valuables in the car, even in a crowded place. And never assume you are the smart one by tucking away your valuables under the seat. Someone might just be waiting for a smartass like you (me, in this case)
  3. When we read about people working in groups to rob others, it seems improbable that it could happen to us. But just being aware of such happenings can help you in tricky situations
  4. Whatever happens, it really is for the better. Imagine if the doctor would have been there...mera bechaara laptop!
  5. Girls have it all figured out: Major mistake on my part- not screaming like a girl..... a filmi immitation of the "chor, chor" dialogue could have served me well. I suggest that's the first thing you do should you find yourself in such a situation
  6. Stay fit, kya pata kab bhaagna pade..... that's true for the thief variety and the almost-robbed variety
  7. At times, it takes weird things and rude shocks to get you to do something you like. This got me blogging again :)

On a serious note, please beware of ---->your valuables, the fact that someone might be observing you and also be wary of people who offer help in such cases. Do not get carried away in the moment. Even if he had indeed run off with the laptop, it's better not to put yourself in a situation where things could turn out worse. At the cost of sounding dramatic, I'll still say that it never hurts to be cautious.

Done. My first blog this year. I hope the others aren't as filmi.

@ Uday, Aneesh, Chandu.... guys, I'm waiting for the promised blog-posts on my page

@ Priyanka: I promised I would ping you when I blogged again, hope to be more consistent this time

@ NK: Thanks for the motivation to get me blogging again. (Just to clarify, he wasn't the guy trying to flick my laptop. Nk was telling me to blog just the other day)

@ all the others: Hi!

Sunday, May 31, 2009

The Trip Goes International

Way overdue, but a promise is a promise. Mr. Bansal, this one is for you

There are trips and there are TRIPS..... and this one was the latter!

Flashback: Goa-March 2008: We were on the boat heading back from Goa's so called "Butterfly" beach.(the machwaara uncle told us that's where u find the hot firangs sans the clothes :o. The only topless ppl we found were petu uncles . Bansal felt @home). Anyway, Mr. Microsoft (thats Bansal) decided to tell us about a land of dreams where you get sandwiches of a completely different kind.

May 2009: Bansal, Poddar and I were at the Mumbai International Airport. And yes, we were all set to board the Cathay Pacific flight to Bangkok. Did I mention we got the tickets dirt cheap. Now these Microsofties sure know how to live it up. Bansal flashed his priority lounge card and the feast was on. Cakes, pastas, booze and juices, waiting for us in a nice, plush, exclusive lounge, and free! After eating like we'd never seen food before, we were looking forward to the nice meal on board the plane. Pure gluttony!

Finally, after a long international flight (5 hours is long, ok?), we landed at Bangkok. After Poddar's due dilligence of finding the "cheapest" bus service to Pattaya, Bansal and I decided to take a cab anyway. Now all along the way, the pardes feeling just wasn't setting in, in spite of the nice roads and no traffic. But Pattaya ne hume kya pataya!!! Now that's a view I won't easily forget. Reminded me of the Monaco Grand Prix I've watched so many times. Absolutely breath-taking.

Poddar though was panting for a different reason altogether. Baby Dinosaur sounds were emanating all around....... "Kaaaahhhmm, Kaaaaahhhhmmm" (shrilly and nasal). After a lot of deliberation, we figured this was local slang to allure HANDSOME tourists and actually meant "come, come". For Poddar, this was the reason he undertook this arduous journey in search of inner piece. Thats not a typo! Out of nowhere, we suddenly felt what neither of us had ever before: sharam and haya. We actually felt weird and avoided all eye contact with the dinosaurs, that was till we finally mustered the courage to walk thru an inhabited lane. a brisk walk it was, with our heads held so low, anyone observing would have felt we were just caught doing something very bad.

Now there is way too much censored stuff between the last paragraph and this one. Doesn't that create mystery.... it's our official way of not accepting that our trip was rather uneventful. Although Poddar did almost find us a bhaabhi....Yoovi, was it? Walking Street, what a place to find us a bhaabhi, way to go dude. For those who don't know, try googling "Walking Street, Pattaya" and you'll know what I mean. Anyway, lots of eye popping stuff, but I'll focus on adventure sports of a different kind.

We had hired scooties and went biking quite a distance. Found a nice place for kite-boarding and other fancy water sports. After realizing that some were way too expensive and others we weren't eligible for, we went sailing. Really nice. I'd like to own a boat someday, as long as we can push Bansal off it the way we did in the sea there. And Poddar, i suddenly remember that this was the first time we noticed Bansal's now famous seductive pose, the one u got a pic of ;). Back to Pattaya, we were pretty thrilled when we decided to jump off the 53rd floor of a building. After debating whether we should sell it back home as a bungee jump, we've decided to come out clean. It was more like a really high slide. But that first step off the building sure is scary. Next day, we headed to Koh-Larn by ferry. For Bansal and me, it was the long water-scooter ride and the deep sea walking that made it worth it. For Poddar, it was the sasta price at which we struck the deal. Or was it the free coke we got after spending a grand each. Wait, it was the realization that other Indians were getting completely ripped off for the same stuff, while we weren't. All worth it, I must say.

There were more relaxed, quieter, less exciting moments like the massages, the late night swim in the uncleaned swimming pool of Nantra'de'Boutique, our hotel for the first day and a half at Pattaya. We then moved into Citin's Loft, again a steal deal. This entire trip was about steal deals. Amazing hotel guys, anyone visiting, I recommend you stay there, unless of course u got loads of cash and can afford the spa-resorts. Pattaya was done, I'm sure jucier details shall follow in the ensuing discussion.

Bangkok was all shopping, consciously not eating at the Pakistani restaurant, and bumping into the same Saradar-ji 10 times in an hour. Very India. Bangkok as a city is an obstacle course in itself. i wonder why Hitler built gas concentration camps. The stench in the streets of Bangkok could put the Machi market at Versova to shame. The tuk-tuk was fun, so was our shopping spree at Indira market and the night market, I forget the name. Thanks to Poddar's hour-and-a-half spent buying one pair of chappals, he got called a lady boy by the Thai sales girl. Much needed entertainment for Bansal and me. Don't miss MBK mall, the ferry ride, of which you will hear from Poddar, and the massages. Good things at the end of a long day I say.

Good trip, great friends, and memories for a lifetime. What could be better?
That's what girls would think. For us, it was the FREE BUSINESS CLASS UPGRADE on our way back. I'm sure we looked like bhooka, nanga bachaas who were just given a black forest cake, each!
The privilege lounge was vandalized again by three unidentified Indians. Their loot, about 10 cans of Beer/Coke was caught and detained, however. How cheap.... not that we took the cans, that they kept it!! Damn Thai Airport Security. We faced none of this non-sense at Mumbai.

On our way back, my first Vodka- the Cathay Pacific Special!

Way to go guys............ can't wait for our North-East India trip to Amritsar, Jammu, and Rajasthan :)

Sagar, missed you dude. Seriously, wahaan par bhi we were missing being able to pull your leg. But we made up on our trip to Hyderabad. Bansal, uss par tu likh ek post and I'll pitch in.

Cheers to living it up!

p.s: Microsofties so-called "free" priority lounge card cost us 8 grand a month later. I'll repeat it again, these Microsofties sure know how to live it up. Hum bechaare lut gaye!

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

"The 3 Mistakes of My Life"

“The Three Mistakes of My Life”

For anyone who has read “Five Point Someone”, reading this book would seem to be the Fourth Mistake of your life. Well, initially that is. If you are one who would still give it a chance and continue reading, “The Three Mistakes of My Life” redeems itself.

An easy read which tries to combine Cricket and Religion, Business and Relationships and the ups and downs of all these. That’s just what it is. Coupled with this and the fact that it is a 250-odd page book, you don’t need to put your life on hold to complete this one. I personally finished it 24 hours after I bought it. And for the cost, it is a decent addition to your collection.

For the downside, the initial bit does leave you wanting more and wondering why the plot isn’t gripping enough, in spite of it’s fast pace. The answer to that, I believe, is that the fast pace comes from the many “few-month” flashbacks and jumps in the future. And that leaves certain gaps in this narrative. Another thing which I found off the mark is the fact that the small-town characters speak rather fluent and “teen slang” English. No offence here to people from small towns, but it’s something that’s difficult to connect with. It is almost as if every spoken word in Gujju and Hindi is literally translated to English. That fact stands out in the indulgent use of profanities. Also, death is a powerful instrument to evoke sentiment and emotions. In this book, however, you just don’t feel that “something” when faced with death. It is a matter-of-fact-thing where you are still left looking forward to the “big event”. Then there are certain plots that are too far-fetched, like the trip down under. And seem to be inspired by the author’s recent foray into Bollywood script writing.

But Chetan Bhagat is an IIT-IIM combo, and one only expects these guys to know their stuff. This guy knows his target audience and knows what they want too. Enter: a complicated romantic plot. Again, not half as gripping as the one in “Five Point…” but it does add the much needed masala and something to look forward to. The saving grace of the book is its last 4 chapters. Absolutely gripping. They tell a story all of us know and that’s when the true connection with the readers is made. This is where you begin to visualize what you read and want to know what happens next. The author has chosen to tread carefully, and without inviting the wrath of political parties and workers, he reflects incidents which we have all read about.

To sum it up, the book just isn’t gripping and thought provoking enough considering that it combines cricket, religion, rioting, business, money and love. But for those who indulge in serious reading (the Biz reading types), “The Three Mistakes of My Life” is a good opportunity for a light read which isn’t too time consuming.

Overall Rating: 6/10

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Few Good Men

FAQs about the Indian Defence Forces:
  • You guys get free stuff from the canteen, right?
  • Nice parties man!!
  • Why complain about the pay, as it is you get free rations, house, phone and transport
  • Is the booze free?
  • The last war was in 1971, so what does the army do at other times? Nice job... sit free, be home for lunch, and golf in the evenings. Life is one party.

Those are questions every defence kid has been asked several times over. And honestly, nothing could be further away from reality. Who is responsible for such a severe lack of information, or rather such widespread misinformation about our armed forces?

For starters, it's movies like Shaurya which command great critical acclaim, but paint the forces in a sorry light. For a moment I actually considered trashing Shaurya as a really pathetic rip-off of the classic- "Few Good Men". But this is a topic close to my heart and warrants a more serious view. As an ardent supporter of the armed forces and an army kid, I don't say that the army is the perfect organization, sans all faults.

But let me set some things straight:

  • No defence officer is allowed to smoke while in uniform
  • Brigadiers of the Indian Army DO NOT play golf at the LOC. Hell, they don't play golf in office hours at all
  • No one enters an army facility just by claiming to be some one's cousin
  • Agreed, drinks and army parties do go together. But no more than any party elsewhere in this country. And rarely do you find the kind of brazen drinking that you do at other corporate gigs.

Lest entertainment houses claim that their movies and portrayal of the forces is plain fiction, it's time we realize the responsibilities which come with the ability to reach the masses. Let us discuss real issues and probe possible solutions.

While we expect the media to play it's role with the responsibility it demands, what are the Armed Forces doing to ensure the circulation of factually correct information about themselves? The answer is a rather disappointing "Nothing".

The forces, with all their hierarchy, traditions and tried and tested theories, refuse to move with times. While the entire corporate world strives to create customer wow and strike a chord with employable talent via innovative engagement and awareness campaigns, the Army cries hoarse about shortage of officers and a declining national image.

In a hypothetical situation, is it that difficult to empower and necessitate formation commanders to contribute towards information dissemination about the forces. If it were one of the performance appraisal criteria, wouldn't the army, with all its "get-going" attitude, be able to drive awareness amongst the masses. Just speaking to school kids, teenagers, grown ups and under-grads could achieve a lot. And considering that these are the people who the Army aims to employ, doesn't it make sense to take on the main competitors- the corporates.

The media on its part reports every "Brigadier Booze" and "Ketchup Colonel" for days altogether, while the martyr or the astute administrator finds a mention(maybe) in some four liner, buried between spicy articles like "IPL Glory".

Its time the Armed Forces take the prerogative, adopt some policies from the corporate world and together with the media, provide accurate and timely info in the public domain. As one of the IT companies says, "Our aim is to provide 95% info, to 95% people, 95% of the time". Maybe the Armed Forces need to adopt the 95-95-95 principle too.

This post is a longer than average one, the topic is too personal to me to be able to cut it short. I invite your views on issues ranging from fake encounters, low salaries, corruption, lack of transparency, unfair promotion policies and other real issues which plague the Indian Defence Forces. A humble request here would be to discuss solutions too. While assigning blame is part of the natural process, solutions are what make the difference!! And a difference we will make.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

the a(u)nti(e) theory

its mostly me who appreciates my theories. and theories i've got plenty. but after validation from my two roomies(they may feature frequently in my blog, so u better memorize their names- aneesh and chandu), i've decided to post some of the more far reaching and world changing ones. the "aunty theory" is one which dwelves in human behaviour...or more aptly, behaviour of boys!! and in time, i'll link this to concepts like time and effort invested, return on investment, and depriciating value of "goods". so this should appeal to bankers and marketing guys alike.

Its called the aunty theory. ever noticed this hottie who u'd like to be friends with. nd all the effort that goes into that first intro. then the moment when u finally talk to her for the very first time. what a thrill!! in time, u become friends( and i'm speaking from the point of view that just friends is where it will remain).
Suddenly, shes not that great looking. Just a good looking friend. Is it just me or is it natural to just not find the hottie soooo hot nemore. Who turned down the heat..... nd thats the question from where it all began.
well....shes still the same. hot. and apparently there are still others who'll swear by that. everything else being constant, the only variable is that u now know her. nd that changes your perception of her? well..... YES. just knowing her removes the mystery. no mystery, no interest. so that hot chik u used to eye has suddenly become your good looking friend. damn this theory. cos its true. (the same happens when u loose hope. no hope, no interest. apply the above theory to the cute girl who gets married. the initial disappointment soon changes to "whoaaaaa, she looks like an aunty now!!!". funny how loss of hope leads to her being termed an auntie. poor girl. aneesh will vouch by this one. a day after i shared this thesis with him, he noticed its practical implications)

extrapolate this theory nd u'll know that life is doomed for all us guys. we can't hope of being with someone hot/cute/pretty/... forever. Cos temperature falls drastically (bad attempt to compare hot with temp) with increase in proximity. Now I know this doesn't read too well for the majority of the male population of the world. But being an optimist, I hope i'm one of the few who gets to take away others' hope by actually ending up with that someone who I find hot. And here is the light at the end of the tunnel..... technology helps in weird ways to control temperatures. Hail global warming. I guess I just stumbled on the topic of my next post.

Lemme know your views. Expected topics in the near future:
World Domination
Co-operate to dominate
Show and tell
Bad boss theory
Data warehousing and mining- preventing terrorism
MBA-to do or not to do

and guys, please recommend more topics. I'm good at sharing gyaan. Let me know what you want me to write about. Please don't say "Stop Writing". I'll make it better in time :)