Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Resolutions ... :)

The last post of the year on the blog ... Came across a very impressive phrase in a book - "There is only one purpose behind speech or writing - to communicate to others something one feels strongly". This is my space to write what I feel strongly about and 2009 will be about that :)

So, to start off 2009 in the most cliche way possible, here I shoot off some of my resolutions which I feel would actually be followed if someone else knew about them...

1. Value Health : Get in the best shape possible, physically and habitually
2. Value Friends: Keep in touch with old ones and not freak out the new ones ;)
3. Value wealth : Start keeping track of where the moolah goes, and be thankful about where it comes from
4. Value education: Where there's an asset, there's a liability - Gotta stay on the right (left) side of life's balance sheet!
5. Value love : They say it's the most beautiful of all feelings, I've been on that verge many a times - it's time to give back as much as I have received

If anyone out there thinks I'm about to break any of these, feel free to punch / bitchslap me (Not too badly though, remember resolution #1 :P)

Rahul aka Parcel

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Wi-fi in Shatabdi :)

Am sitting in the train on my way to Mumbai from Ahmedabad ... And to my pleasant surprise there's a 54 Mbps wireless network available !!!

Damn, never knew this or else all my journeys would have been in Shatabdis all the way !!! When did India get this ahead ?

And to top it off, its my bday today ... exams ended ... and am on my way home - maybe one is meant to be happy on a birthday :)

Signing off...

Be back soon with some new year resolutions


Monday, December 22, 2008

New day, new crib

The weather in Ahmedabad is to die for ... but exams are approaching, and I have no good company to walk around in this weather... A gujarati friend told me they term such a climate "Gulabi Thandi" - just the right amount of warmth and cold ~~

I so want to write, but thoughts are plentiful and need some structure, so they wait for some other fair day

Also, happy that i'm going home soon - 30th Dec, my bday too :)

Still pondering if new year's eve deserves a grand bash with frenz and intoxication or a sober entertaining affair with family at home ... seems like a nobrainer tho !!!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Kyunki Tom bhi kabhi Jerry tha

Just remembered a funny incident in class from a few days back

A very tired and angry father goes home to find his 9 year old daughter watching Kyunki Saas bhi kabhi bahu thi" late in the night. Furious, he scolds her :-

Father: What is this nonsense, why don't you watch Tom and Jerry like we used to in our childhood !!!

Daughter: Dad, are you joking - this is thousand times more entertaining and unpredictable... :)

To the uninitiated "Kyunki saas... thi" is a ridiculously popular soap which has seen common life defy all laws of nature like spontaneous and mass memory loss, rebirth, immortal humans, women that don't age and kids that grow 10 years in a day ... And these are all just the first season, now why would anyone not find this entertaining :P

Here's a youtube video on the Indian version of tom and jerry - pretty cute :)

Of monkeys and elephants

Some interesting behavioral lessons from the animal kingdom:

Have you often wondered how a mighty being such as an elephant can be bondaged by a small meta chain nailed to the ground? I never did, but this is the question a friend asked me... The answer lies in the self-image of the elephant. A baby elephant is often cuffed in the same way, and the mere clinks of a hammer hitting a nail and the subsequent failed efforts to break the cuffs dampen the poor kid's morale making the "chain and nail" combo undefeatable in his/her mind. And not surprisingly this very self-doubt continues all throughout life - if only it can find the courage to attempt a tug at the chain with its adult might, it could be free of all bondage - A lesson which maybe humans can use too ... I sure can !

Another interesting fact - How are monkeys trapped? wouldn't it be impossible to catch those naughty miscreants? From what I've been told, all u need is a bird cage and some fruits - put the fruits in the cage and lock it - make sure that the gap between the cage bars is very narrow. If there is a monkey around, he'll use his smarts to squeeze his hand in, but then failure to bring out a fruit-filled fist will not teach the bugger a lesson. Even at the cost of his freedom, the greed of a delicious meal prevents the monkey from letting go of the fruit and keeps his hands trapped inside the cage- smart, huh ? Needless to say, another "human" learning avenue :O

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Shaken ...

It must have been around 7 in the morning today when it all started. Ever since childhood I've been "nightmaring" about minuscule worries like being late to school (far too many times has this haunted me), or falling from a bridge; but the dream I saw today had me shaken the moment my eyes opened - I still am.

I saw a dream where mumbai was being targeted by Nuclear bombs - who sent these, I don't know. And it wasn't just one bomb - but strikes at 3 different places, I could feel the heat on my skin , the flames glaring in my face and it scared me bad... Writing this down brings back the images - I pray to God these images remain imaginary !

The worst part is that I am not in Mumbai, but everyone I care about is ... the thought scared me so much that I called up home on the pretext of inquiring about something as stupid as "has my phone bill arrived?" when I've been paying the same online for ages ...

It is an Indian superstition that dreams seen just before waking up tend to come true - in this case I hope it remains one and I would do anything to hope it stays just a superstition... But I feel helpless and powerless, what use has a so called elite engineering and an elite management education for me if it cannot put my mind at peace !

Shaken, yet to be stirred...

Friday, December 12, 2008

Missed writing ... :(

But this kept me busy for the last few days : ... spot me if u can ;)

If only the light guy had actually used some common sense, it would have been so much better :)

Thursday, December 4, 2008

The apathy of Indian Media

When the world tuned in to news channels to get news about their friends/families in Mumbai; many of them were exposed to this coverage on the "Effect of terrorism on the Pigeons from the Taj hotel", courtesy INDIA TV. The sentiment, although so noble has been degraded by such a pathetic commentary which winds on and on about how sad the pigeons look and how they are eager to go back to the luxury of the Taj... Sad sad ugly face of the media, and here's a clip to make you shout out WTF as loud as I did ;)

Also to add to this media debauchery saga, here's a photo from some years back, where another news channel took the term "celebrity care" to new heights altogether !

Amitabh bacchan ko thand lagi NDTV India news
Hail the Indian media !!! ... and my Mom used to complain I watched too many 'Western' channels :P

Hindu terrorists ?

This is an article a friend forwarded me ... am putting it here as a extreme view, which I might like to read somewhere in the future ....

"When the Mahatma's cowards erupt in fury, it hurts. It isn't terror - FRANCOIS GAUTIER

Is there such a thing as 'Hindu terrorism', as the arrest of Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur for the recent Malegaon blasts may tend to prove?
Well, I guess I was asked to write this column because I am one of that rare breed of foreign correspondents-a lover of Hindus! A born
Frenchman, Catholic-educated and non-Hindu, I do hope I'll be given some credit for my opinions, which are not the product of my parents' ideas, my education or my atavism, but garnered from 25 years of reporting in South Asia (for Le Journal de Geneve and Le Figaro).

In the early 1980s, when I started freelancing in south India , doing photo features on kalaripayattu, the Ayyappa festival, or the Ayyanars, I slowly realised that the genius of this country lies in its Hindu ethos, in the true spirituality behind Hinduism. The average Hindu you meet in a million villages possesses this simple, innate spirituality and accepts your diversity, whether you are Christian or Muslim, Jain or Arab, French or Chinese. It is this Hinduness that makes the Indian Christian different from, say, a French Christian, or the Indian Muslim unlike a Saudi Muslim. I also learnt that Hindus not only believed that the divine could manifest itself at different times, under different names, using different scriptures (not to mention the wonderful avatar concept, the perfect answer to 21st century religious strife) but that they had also given refuge to persecuted minorities from across the world-Syrian Christians, Parsis, Jews, Armenians, and today, Tibetans. In 3,500 years of existence, Hindus have never militarily invaded another country, never tried to impose their religion on others by force or induced conversions.

You cannot find anybody less fundamentalist than a Hindu in the world and it saddens me when I see the Indian and western press equating terrorist groups like SIMI, which blow up innocent civilians, with ordinary, angry Hindus who burn churches without killing anybody. We know also that most of these communal incidents often involve persons from the same groups-often Dalits and tribals-some of who have converted to Christianity and others not.

However reprehensible the destruction of Babri Masjid, no Muslim was killed in the process; compare this to the 'vengeance' bombings of 1993 in Bombay , which wiped out hundreds of innocents, mostly Hindus. Yet the Babri Masjid destruction is often described by journalists as the more horrible act of the two. We also remember how Sharad Pawar, when he was chief minister of Maharashtra in 1993, lied about a bomb that was supposed to have gone off in a Muslim locality of Bombay .

I have never been politically correct, but have always written what I have discovered while reporting. Let me then be straightforward about this so-called Hindu terror. Hindus, since the first Arab invasions, have been at the receiving end of terrorism, whether it was by Timur, who killed 100,000 Hindus in a single day in 1399, or by the Portuguese Inquisition which crucified Brahmins in Goa . Today, Hindus are still being targeted: there were one million Hindus in the Kashmir valley in 1900; only a few hundred remain, the rest having fled in terror. Blasts after blasts have killed hundreds of innocent Hindus all over India in the last four years. Hindus, the overwhelming majority community of this country, are being made fun of, are despised, are deprived of the most basic facilities for one of their most sacred pilgrimages in Amarnath while their government heavily sponsors the Haj. They see their brothers and sisters converted to Christianity through inducements and financial traps, see a harmless 84-year-old swami and a sadhvi brutally murdered. Their gods are blasphemed.

So sometimes, enough is enough.At some point, after years or even centuries of submitting like sheep to slaughter, Hindus-whom the Mahatma once gently more called cowards-erupt in uncontrolled fury. And it hurts badly. It happened in Gujarat . It happened in Jammu , then in Kandhamal, Mangalore, and Malegaon . It may happen again elsewhere. What should be understood is that this is a spontaneous revolution on the ground, by ordinary Hindus, without any planning from the political leadership. Therefore, the BJP, instead of acting embarrassed, should not disown those who choose other means to let their anguished voices be heard.

There are about a billion Hindus, one in every six persons on this planet. They form one of the most successful, law-abiding and integrated communities in the world today. Can you call them terrorists? "

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

To vote or not to vote...

Is the question every vela 20 something in the country faces. If you don't trust your local representative (I know ... how rare it would be to find such a scenario :P), you can choose to utilize the 49-O section of the election manual - Manual of Election Law, Conduct of Election Rules, framed in 1961. The link can be found here... (Page 86 of the document); for the lazy rats like me, here's a small REM on the same..

As per the rules, in section " 49-O" a person can go to the polling booth, confirm his/her identity, get his finger marked and convey the presiding election officer that he/she doesn't want to vote anyone! Yes such a feature is available, but obviously past + present leaders have never disclosed it.

Happy voting / unvoting ;)

Incase you don't have a voters' card yet, visit the website Jaagore to know how to cut all the bureaucratic crap and get one.


Monday, December 1, 2008

Pakistani Media

I've always been a strong promoter of empathy towards my fellowmen from the neighbouring country of Pakistan. It is however the Media reactions from across the border such as the one below which are making it increasingly difficult for me to maintain a level head.

On a lighter note, I am so proud of the Indian newsreaders after a look at the stammering plastic doll in the clip above. Equally envious about the presence of such a young female politician, something that I'd like to see in India soon.

Friday, November 28, 2008

An ad for India

Here's an ad dedicated to a billion of us fuming at the moment.

Feels good to know I'll be doing something like this which would reach out to all my countrymen at the same time at Nokia...

ISI Chief summoned by New Delhi

(Disclaimer: My opinions, my views... Please do not quote these as a source anywhere!)

Finally it's a move that speaks of some spine on the part of the Central Government, never before have I heard of such a bold move in the international political scenario. What good would a mano-a-mano in New Delhi do for the PM is something a rookie like me can't understand. There would be similar chants of "condemning terrorist attacks" by the Zardari colleague no matter where they are... Maybe the Pakistani administration has nothing at all to do with these attacks, but would they accept the allegations at face value just because they happen to be in Indian territory?

Waiting eagerly for the responses from across the border, and wondering just what a huge amount of our national resources would be spent ensuring security for probably the most unpopular guy in the country !!!


Thursday, November 27, 2008

India's 9/11

(All the opinions in the post below are strictly my ponderings - I do not wish to offend / provoke anyone, and I have been and always will be a Mumbaikar to the core)

"It's the day after - and the trains are still crowded - damn, the spirit of Mumbai is unbreakable"

Is a SMS I get from a friend stuck in his office all night thanks to the curfews in the city. I've been hearing about this "Spirit of Mumbai" ever since I was a kid - be it the Babri Masjid riots, the innumerable bomb explosions, the charred trains or the calamitous floods. Praises have been sung about this spirit in media across the world.

This factor which amused me at the start and gave me a certain sense of pride is now forcing me to rethink my perception of the "spirit". Conventionally, a spirit is something that is obtained after the death of a living creature, and that is precisely what Mumbai has long been - dead !

People move on back to work after such disheartening occurrences not out of bravado or the spirit of showing the miscreants that we are "invincible". On the contrary, people move on because they can't afford to stay and mourn... Life has to go on only because life depends on daily livelihood - quite literally in most cases. People feel bad about what is happening, badmouth the media, curse the administration, blame the Gods and damn the terrorists - and get back to their lives as if nothing has happened. How will anything be accomplished if the cycle of events is this predictable - when only those who have lost their near and dear ones shed tears and are hushed by the promises of monetary compensations. Will there ever be a collective uprising against injustice in Mumbai, or any Indian city for that matter?

They say the public memory is short - let's see how short it turns out to be this time !!!

For voices from fellow bloggers on the Mumbai terror scene, check out the list at Indiblogger

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

26 - the unlucky date

Another dark day in Mumbai's Book... Some how the date 26th has not worked out well for India. Be it earthquakes, floods or terrorist activities... It scares my heart to imagine that I've been to most of these places in the past 1 year -

Orchid Hotel
CST Station
Metro Cinema area
J W Marriot
Nariman Point
Leopold cafe...

As I write this post I see news of firings in JJ School and Cama hospital. Sitting in the TV room, these are some of the comments I get to hear...

"Koi AK-47 leke kaise ghoom sakta hai !"

"Is level ki planning karne waale smart log aise kaam kyun kar rahe hai"

"Isse to accha subah jaake vidhaan sabha mein aisa kucch kar dete"

Don't have anything new to write, just sitting still with hopes that no-one i know has been unfortunate enough to get affected. To my fellow Mumbaikars who have been unfortunate, I pray you find some peace and courage.

Mumbai is getting too big for the government to manage. Tears my heart to say this but I believe it's time the island city gets its own governance, security and entry barriers. The people of Mumbai have run the Indian economy for decades now, it's time they get their due diligence...What a big mockery it is that 26th Nov - Law Day in India was chosen to break the law and order in such mammothly disturbing ways !

Sunday, November 23, 2008

And this is plain sad google

The same joke two days in a row?? How 'un'googlish !

Today's fortune: The guy who reads your fortune disappeared and our boss is furious. We hope you have a lucky day

Friday, November 21, 2008

The google sense of humour

Orkut sayz:

Today's fortune: The guy who reads your fortune lost his psychic powers (and his job). We hope you are feeling lucky.

Thank God there's no blame on India / Indians this time around !!!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Second level of hell...

Here I always thought I'd get into the first level with my resume ;)

The Dante's Inferno Test has banished you to the Second Level of Hell!
Here is how you matched up against all the levels:

Purgatory (Repenting Believers)Very Low
Level 1 - Limbo (Virtuous Non-Believers)Low
Level 2 (Lustful)Very High
Level 3 (Gluttonous)Moderate
Level 4 (Prodigal and Avaricious)Very High
Level 5 (Wrathful and Gloomy)Moderate
Level 6 - The City of Dis (Heretics)High
Level 7 (Violent)Very High
Level 8- the Malebolge (Fraudulent, Malicious, Panderers)Very High
Level 9 - Cocytus (Treacherous)Moderate

Take the Dante's Inferno Hell Test

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

So you think you can dance...

Look at this guy ... the most amazing dance video I've ever seen ~~ ... If only I were half as good during t-nites, my section would have won hands down (and with a lotta stomach pains )

On another note, "Indian society" has progressed (?) by leaps and bounds ever since I' remember.. Every subsequent generation is more independent of the older one. I ponder over the day when I see 15 year olds moving out of homes and getting into live-ins. I've been away from home for the last 5 years, and I miss home :(

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Of Kangaroos and Mobile Phones

Got an offer from Nokia yesterday, but the task of being a semi-placecommer kept me busy - Won't write anymore ... I fear TOI will quote anything I put here as an article tomorrow, never expected a respected name like TOI to use "anonymous" students for an article, and that too with all the wrong numbers :P

On another note, am sooo hating Matthew Hayden these days, "India is a third world country" he says, well yeah - this third world country kicked your kangaroo ass fair and square. Alwayz thought the protagonist in the "grapes are sour" joke was a fox, maybe it's time they changed it to a Kangaroo :)


Tuesday, November 11, 2008

The stage is set

It's time to perform ... let's see whether there are applauds or rotten tomatoes in store for me ...

The world watches while young aspirations are tested...


Wednesday, November 5, 2008

From Longlisted to shortlisted

Guess I won't be completely vela on day ZERO here ;)

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Bell the CAT - Tips from a guy who got lucky :)

With CAT around the corner, and all those of you who care enough to prepare for it. Here's some stuff that helped me in the last few days: (Feel free to add on stuff through comments, I'll edit the post accordingly)*

  1. Mock CATs : Make sure you have got enough Mock CATs in your belly, the syllabus is restricted to the minimum of all 10th boards (To spare the anguish of different papers for doctors, engineers, CAs and so on). There's only so much they can do to frame new questions. Learn how to solve questions you don't from the Mock CATs - if you are unlucky enough, all 75 odd questions turn out to be those you thought would never come and never cared for !
  2. Strategize : You just need to get about 30% questions right in every section. Right at the start, decide how much time you need to give to each section (based on Mock CAT experiences) - Look at the total number of questions in the section, start reading, choose and solve the easy ones, and keep track of the number you have answered. As soon as you are confident that you've scored 30% of the total score in the section - Move on to the next. Repeat the cycle and read the remaining questions when you've got some surplus time left.
  3. Don't compare : CAT is not meant to be solved completely in 2.5 hours, so don't fret if the girl sitting next to you has solved 3 questions more - (compliment "her" if you see some future there though ;) ).
  4. Know your fractions : Although I never did, many people claim knowing things like 1/16 helps you in the exam.
  5. Look for candies : Someday, some papersetter might decide to give you an easy break with putting in some absurd options. Try to develop a knack for picking out that answer thats "screaming" to be picked. A little uncommon common sense like "evens don't add/subtract/multiply to odd numbers" , round numbers usually operate together to give answers in rounds etc... can save you a lotta effort.
  6. Choose well with verbal : It's smarter to answer questions where the answer flows from the question directly than to read questions where all 4 options need to be evaluated before a conclusion can be made. (Standard disclaimer applies)
Hope this is remotely helpful. If you happen to be reading this a day before CAT and haven't done any of the above - chill, it's a matter of how calm / lucky you are in those 2.5 hours.

More gyaan on the exam general prep by a fellow vela-iima-guy boondiii here


*If you are attempting to read this ridiculously small font, you need to get a life - Blogs are not subject to any jurisdiction and all standard disclaimers about the author's view blah blah apply by default ;)

Friday, October 31, 2008

I soo wish I had started blogging years ago...

So that I could read about my days back in engineering when I was one of the big fishes (yeah, well... some explanations after the mild bugging by the remote few I nudged into reading this clog.. oops, blog). Those were the good old days, the profs were chill, the TAs were non-existent, the juniors did all the work while you watched, you debated for hours on what movie was in and where a story was headed, walking was done for liesure, eating out was not a luxury and you attended PPTs for the pizzas !! And ofcourse, shortlists included your name...

Yeah, shortlists are reallly getting short at IIM - A ... been 5 declarations and not one for me :( ... so what if I don't join the company, I'd still like to be offered ;)

But as some people say, whatever happens... happens for the best ... so here's hoping with some crossed fingers !

PS: Atleast I have some cool startup offers to think about : MMI, Loot and VMukti (so what if you haven't heard of em yet... jus wait till I perk em up ;) )

To all the friends with shortlist jitters : Hang in there...

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Grim times lie ahead

Just an advice to all those big fish who are the rulers of the pond - although the sea will give you many smaller prey, it is a monstrous place with unexpected and dark currents and bigger fish waiting to feast on you ...

A clarification on this dark metaphor the next time !

Sunday, October 26, 2008

The so called "Communication skills"

Ever since I remember, I've been filling up my CV and company application forms with "Good communication" skills as a core competency ... but today a 10 year old kid proved better at the very art...

As a core-team insight (, I was posted at the registration desk ... reminiscent images of freshie year in engineering college flashed through the mind, but here I was using a laptop instead of a desktop ;)...

Looking at the banners and hoardings placed in the city, a certain 60 year old veteran was curious to know what insight was ... Entering the brick and mortar campus, I happened to be the first person he encountered at the "welcome" desk. And here I was, struggling to sift through the form of a 10 year old standing in front of me. (A 10 year old, who insisted on calling me uncle !). The old man, let's call him Mr. AB asked one simple question :

"Your banner claims lifetime ki masti ek din mein... Aisa kya hai yahan ?"

And I was speechless !

And then the natkhat 10 year old came to the uncle's (me!) rescue... With vivid images of a food-mela, fun-fair and adventure sports camp all in one, he painted a picture which I would have simply said " We have games, stage shows and a food court"... No matter how precise and bs my answer would be, that of the kiddo would still be sweeter and more convincing...

Damn, the MBA is teaching me to communicate in short, but what about conversations which are done just for the heck of talking ? Read an article somplace which said that even though trinity colleges of IIM A,B and C may teach you how to talk to the CEO of the world's largest oranisation, you'll never learn how to talk to the labourer working in your house in a MBA ... point proven, subtly, but still...

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

The persian carpet syndrome...

Just a new thing I learned today:

In the past, Persian carpet-makers apparently believed in the idea that God is the only one who can create perfection. Hence, if they happened to create a flawless carpet sometime, they would stain/chip it so that it was no longer "perfect" - just to save themselves from God's wrath !!!

My twisted logic to this twisted logic is as follows:

If God created humans, and if humans were created with a specific role in mind; then the carpetmaker that God created would have to be a perfect carpetmaker ? Hence the perfect carpetmaker would be required to make perfect carpets keeping in line his own perfect carpet-making skills ^^ . Ceteris paribus, the carpet would never need to be chipped / stained (qed)

Monday, October 6, 2008

India Shining ....

Had an opportunity to interact with one highly revered alumnus from IIM A a few days back.

Here's the gist of the conversation:
"The tables of the world have turned. No country that traditionally had an advantage of "information" still holds the trump. It's all up for grabs in the cyber world. Economies that were years ahead of the so called "third" world ones are now running helter-skelter putting together crumbled pieces of their worlds !"

The country that swore by capitalism has the government owning 80% of all homes today. The country that stood for royalty and imperialism today boasts of being ruled by migrants from its very colonies.The country that consider "population explosion" to be it's curse today sees the confluence of minds as a boon.
The tables have turned. It's time for a new beginning - the world's a blank slate and I wanna leave my mark unto it. India is the place to be, for me atleast. Won't end with a cliche "Jai Hind" or "Saare Jahaan... Accha" - Just a mild nudge to all my winged friends to reflect back upon those childhood days where you learnt about great civilizations, ideas, philosophies and inventions - all coming from similar roots. Time to give someone Her due acknowledgement !

Saturday, September 20, 2008

A letter from the LA Times ... how rebuking !!!

Dear United States,
Welcome to the Third World!
It's not every day that a superpower makes a bid to transform itself into a Third World nation, and we here at the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund want to be among the first to welcome you to the community of states in desperate need of international economic assistance. As you spiral into a catastrophic financial meltdown, we are delighted to respond to your Treasury Department's request that we undertake a joint stability assessment of your financial sector. In these turbulent times, we can provide services ranging from subsidized loans to expert advisors willing to perform an emergency overhaul of your entire government.
As you know, some outside intervention in your economy is overdue. Last week -- even before Wall Street's latest collapse -- 13 former finance ministers convened at the University of Virginia and agreed that you must fix your"broken financial system." Australia's Peter Costello noted that lately you've been "exporting instability" in world markets, and Yashwant Sinha, former finance minister of India, concluded, "The time has come. The U.S. should accept some monitoring by the IMF."
We hope you won't feel embarrassed as we assess the stability of your economy and suggest needed changes. Remember, many other countries have been in your shoes. We've bailed out the economies of Argentina, Brazil,Indonesia and South Korea. But whether our work is in Sudan, Bangladesh or now the United States, our experts are committed to intervening in national economies with care and sensitivity.
We thus want to acknowledge the progress you have made in your evolution from economic superpower to economic basket case. Normally, such a process might take 100 years or more. With your oscillation between free-marketextremism and nationalization of private companies, however, you have successfully achieved, in a few short years, many of the key hallmarks of Third World economies.
Your policies of irresponsible government deregulation in critical sectors allowed you to rapidly develop an energy crisis, a housing crisis, a credit crisis and a financial market crisis, all at once; and accompanied (and partly caused) by impressive levels of corruption and speculation. Meanwhile, those of your political leaders charged with oversight were either napping or in bed with corporate lobbyists.
Take John McCain, your Republican presidential nominee, whose senior staff includes half a dozen prominent former lobbyists. As he recently put it, "I was chairman of the [Senate] Commerce Committee that oversights every partof the economy." No question about it: Your leaders' failure to notice the damage done by irresponsible deregulation was indeed an oversight of epic proportions.
Now you are facing the consequences. Income inequality has increased, as the rich have gotten windfalls while the middle class has seen incomes stagnate. Fewer and fewer of your citizens have access to affordable housing,healthcare or security in retirement. Even life expectancy has dropped. And when your economic woes went from chronic to acute, you responded -- like so many Third World states have -- with an extensive program of nationalizingprivate companies and assets. Your mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are now state owned and controlled, and this week your reinsurance giant AIG was effectively nationalized, with the Federal Reserve Board seizing an 80% equity stake in the flailing company.
Some might deride this as socialism. But desperate times call for desperate measures.Admittedly, your transition to Third World status is far from over, and it won't be painless.
At first, for instance, you may find it hard to get used to the shantytowns that will replace the exurban sprawl of McMansions that helped fuel the real estate speculation bubble. But in time, such shantytowns will simply become part of the landscape. Similarly, as unemployment rates continue to rise, you will initially struggle to find a use for the expanding pool of angry, jobless young men. But you will gradually realize that you can recruit them to fight in a ceaseless round of armed conflicts, a solution that has been utilized by many other Third World states before you.
Indeed, with your wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, you are off to an excellent start.Perhaps this letter comes as a surprise to you, and you feel you're not fully ready to join the Third World. Don't let this feeling concern you. Though you may never have realized it, you've been preparing for this moment for years.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Delhi burns ....

Dunno why such acts sadden me even though (touchwood) so far noone I know has reported anything bad ... I guess that's what makes me human!

But then, why doesn't the heart wrench when blasts occur in Afghanistan. Is this concern fuelled by fear of disaster closer home ? Or is it the spirit of patriotism manifesting in a different form? Spare me the flaky comments; in the end, I am just a romantic fool...

I started this blog during my last endterm examination... guess the urge to splurge time will see me posting a lot more thanks to the ones beginning on monday ...

Grim and worried.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Parcel's list of things to do before 30

(FYI ... my dorm name at IIM A is parcel)
Feel free to make suggestions thro' email/ IM / comments

  1. Sing in a Karaoke bar
  2. Dance before a crowd like noone's watching
  3. Make a really naughty prank call
  4. Crowd surfing at a concert
  5. Sky-dive
  6. Bungee jump
  7. Be in a near-death situation
  8. Confess a crush
  9. Go on a blind date
  10. Go biking in Goa
  11. Make a large anonymous donation
  12. Be a rebel for something good...
Awaiting many many more additions

Some good quotes ...

From a fellow blogger, whom I can't name here upon request ...

"Streenam Chittam, purushasya bhagyam" - Things noone has control upon !

"Lives of great men all remind us, we can make our lives sublime, and, departing, leave behind us, footprints on the sands of time. " - If only my aspirations could transcend beyond a fat pay package with a good brand !

Friday, September 5, 2008

Orkut says: You are talented in many ways

How true ... just got my first "A" grade at IIM A. So what if it was a course on MS excel ;)

Also, just got a confirmation that I'll be getting an alumni scholarship award. Not a very big amount compared to the exorbitant fees that we pay here, but it's great news newayz - Now, only if I spend it wisely :)

Wish I was equally talented at writing huge reports- got a WAC submission (1000 words) due tomorrow at 12:30; and this one's a biggie worth 35% of the grade ... God help me !!!


Thursday, September 4, 2008

About the mad judge dilemma

We beat the odds, one of us went to the gallows after some random draws (Google docs random function) ... Hit the warden; and came back to the family ...

In case you don't understand this, don't worry ... it's arbit !

Saturday, August 30, 2008

The bitter truth of life

They say it's always good to be a kid at heart ... try doing that and see how life spits at you in the worst possible ways.

Consider this situation :

Who would u choose if a mad judge gave you the option of choosing 3 ppl from your mom, dad, brother and sister and the remaining one goes to the gallows?... or that all 5 of you rot in separate cells, who would u choose ??

Quite similar to the choices I am facing right now !

Thursday, August 28, 2008

What kinda personality are u??

I am a field marshall :) ... Maybe I am right for a MBA !

Thank God I finally know now ... how lost would I have been if somebody asked me what my personality type was over a date !

ENTJ - "Field Marshall". The basic driving force and need is to lead. Tend to seek a position of responsibility and enjoys being an executive. 1.8% of total population.
Take the test here

Extroverted (E) 57.14% Introverted (I) 42.86%
Intuitive (N) 52% Sensing (S) 48%
Thinking (T) 52.17% Feeling (F) 47.83%
Judging (J) 51.72% Perceiving (P) 48.28%

(These are the kinds of tests you get to administer when you choose HR... maybe HR as an option won't be bad after all)

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Confidence rocks.... over-confidence kills !

Had this concept drilled back into my head today. 4 years of engineering made me confident about numbers and probabilities... but 2 quizzes at IIMA got me crossing the threshold to overconfidence ... Screwed the midterm to score just about the class average :( ... Hopefully, the battle is not yet lost and I'll get a chance to pop back !

Dreading other results to be announced !


Saturday, August 23, 2008

An Ode to Crushes...

Original composition .. hence the amateur verses !

Crushes begin in the sandbox
Stealing smiles amidst paper-scissor-rock
They roll their eyes
You break all ties
They flash a smile
You blush a while
They say you're smart
You hold your heart
They peck your cheek
Your limbs go weak
The sun rises, they leave
You hold your breath for the next eve
Scanning faces with eyes that believe
Only to prove that you are naive

The body enters a new place
The heart begins a new phase
Kaleidoscopes of many new faces
Rainbows of lives full of graces
And then the mind of the bard
Flashes a new placard
Is this the one?
Who'll make your life fun...

Crushes begin in the sandbox

No matter how much ya bug me, my latest crush is one that goes to my grave with me ;) ... or till the time I get tipsy enough to confess it ...

Friday, August 22, 2008

This ones for all the baaps, bhais and bacchas from IITB ...

Here u go guys, the repost from Algo when I left IITB ;)

Half an hour before ALGO was “finally” sent to be printed, I was requested out of the blue to write a ‘senti message’ on behalf of my batch… 30 minutes to sum up nearly 4 years of experiences, 30 minutes to pen down the perceptions of around 80 of my hostelmates, I thought I would hit a dead end writing this but somehow words are overflowing in my mind…

A very cliché way to begin would be by saying that I remember my first day at Hostel 13 … my first day at IITB - I remember the day I gawked at the beautiful hotel-like structure that stood before me, I remember the relief I felt when I found out that my room was not be shared with other species of the animal kingdom, I remember the fear I felt when some seniors said that H13 had no culture and the thrill it gave me to go through the welcome document compiled by the first freshie batch in the hostel, unfortunately meant for us … the last freshie batch of hostel 13. I remember the thrill it gave our huge freshie batch to sneak into SkyB after 10 to watch the most tattimax movie ever made – and the scolding the GSec gave us after that… I remember the roars of cheers 13 had, which deafened one and all in the LT…

We were titans … rightly so, there were just 2 groups in the insti, one was from 13, and everyone else against it … I remember the things our group of freshies & our seniors did … We swam with cramped legs, we anti-cheered with such zeal that even fifthies were put to shame, we forgot about quizzes altogether to work for the PAF, we ran cross-country races not to win, but just to put others to shame – others who claimed that 13 was good only for numbers and had no culture, others who shouted things like “insti ka dustbin” (!) … I remember the GBMs we had in the skyB where groups of freshies questioned even the warden, I remember the fights we had in the comproom over miniscule things like chatting v/s acads and the water fights we had followed by all of us, both crackuA1 and phoduC1 cleaning the hostel on our knees, I remember people coming to 13 from all over the insti to study before the exams – the inverse never held true, afterall we were titans, the brightest and the best…

The sophie year separated many of us from each other… but gave us access to a wonderful batch of seniors, seniors who up until a year ago had been kids, seniors who stepped up and metamorphosised to make sure we did all the chutiyaaps we could as sophies… seniors who took us to treats and who took treats from us … Sophie year was the first time I truly felt that a valfi was time to bid adieu, say goodbye to some of the most closest people in your lives, time to take leave of your second family…

The third year was one of power, the power Team Techfest gave me, the reverence of the ignorant freshies, the awe of the fresh sophies entering the home of the Centaur5. The academics went haywire with seminars, projects and electives alike... but then there was a certain feeling of knowing the workarounds that gave u reassurance!

It is almost time to go now… I speak for every single one of my batchmates when I say “We will miss the life we had here, the liberty to walk up to any door at 3 in the night to ask for some company, the freedom to trust anyone with some of our most hidden aspects, the chance to start anew everyday of our life here, the balls to speak up and question anything that upsets us, the groups to crib about some of the most miniscule of things, the teams to stand by us even when the rest of the world isn’t, the seniors who would lend us their fundaes without a qualm, the juniors who respected us and took our words without a question, the loyalty we had for H13, the home we found in IITB”


Rahul S. K.

H13, IIT Bombay.

Thursday, August 21, 2008


This number has defined me for the past 4 years ... The 18th student in the 7th department (EE) of the 2004 batch at IITB ... Surprisingly, even though I had a relatively eventful undergrad life - the things that I remember the most are the mistakes I made and the things I vowed never to do again. If only the journey between words and deeds was much easily traveled, the world would be a much much better place!
Speaking of the world and places, China and India are THE places to be today... everyone is soo pumped up about the arrival of a new threshold. A few years back through those numerous elocutions and debates in school, the best line to use was the 21st century modern India. Something that the teachers inserted in the speeches and we repeated without an inkling of the implications... But today, I am kinda proud to be an Indian, and I actually aspire to do something to make India a better place. Thanks to so many patriotic songs, movies, speeches etc. "India first" has become a part and parcel of my life !
The mention of the word 'parcel' brings a faint smile upon the face ... That's what people call me here :) . The reason - I would tell you, but then I'd have to kill you !!!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

The T-nite Sagas .....

What forces a 25 year old guy who's backpacked throughout Europe to get up on stage in front of 300 odd people and start shaking his booty on "Choli ke peeche" (Clarification: This was NOT ME, pls do not request such a performance!) ... Add to this the fact that this guy is one from an elite batch of 300; chosen for one of the most academically rigorous programs in the world - just one word - "T nite"

Some call it a Talent nite, some call it Togetherness nites ... for me it was just coupla Tough nites... Really tough, really really tough. If you think the worst part about IIM A was the mammoth HR cases, or the surprise Accounting quizzes - T nite was a notch above. 4 days - 80 people - Run, draw, paint, dance, sing, jump, dance, act, shout, cheer, jeer, dance, choreograph, cry, laugh, think ... did I mention dance !!! ~ 16 hours to present a 40 minute show to one of the most rowdy (even Bihar doesn't match) audiences in the country - all to defend the honor for your section... and the tag sticks for years to come! To give you a glimpse of what we did .. here's a "kutti" vid (a word i learnt from the Tam junta in the class)

So great is the impact that a day later, when a certain consulting biggie was on campus for a talk, they started off congratulating the winning section and anecdotes were shared ranging from ancient batches to this year. And surprisingly, every one of us identified with what they said and couldn't stop rolling eyes and letting out innocent smiles. All things said, it was one hell of a management experience - time management, people management, marketing, accounting, and dance :) - I finally agree that I too can dance ... after years of slumbering dance bones at IITB and being amazed at a brother with a rubber body - the genes have awakened... Alas, the sprains and pains ruin the nostalgia!

So many random thoughts... Almost forgot to mention, I was lucky enough to attend my convocation in the midst of Tnites (Sorry guys, but I had to leave you for a day) minus the trouble of a rehearsal or the golden opportunity to hear the President's speech ;) ... Double victory !

More random cribs later ...
Auf wiedersehn

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

End of the first exams ....

It was kinda dissapointing .... a month and a half of grueling classes end in 3 days flat :) ... Anyways it's time to look forward to my tnite and convo !!!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Test post using email

Still Velaofying ... (In case you don't know this word, it's a part of hinglish - the Indian way of getting back at the British)

Finally ... the saga begins

With all ways of wasting my time being exhausted... I turn to inaugurate this online piece of me ... As a policy, the address stays hidden until I get something substantial to boast about :)

Got an ID (Individual Dynamics) exam in the morning, at 9 .... it's 00:45 and I've completed 10% of the syllabus - This just goes on to show how the efficiency of mugging rises exponentially as the exam comes nearer ... or rather "Difficulties bring out the best in a person"

Bear with me on this theory ... "If practice makes perfect" and "Difficulties bring out the best in one" are individually true, shouldn't one wait till the situation is difficult, reach his best potential temporarily and repeat / practice this multiple times so that one becomes perfect at being the best possible :) ...

So going forth by this twisted logic ... I'll try to be vela for some more time !!!