Monday, December 05, 2016

Locked By A Loiness

I had started taking classes at IMS, Bhawanipore, Calcutta, in evening time slot for my MBA preparations.  I left the classes, mid way, since they had shared most of the study material and I realized, if I can take care of the fundamentals, self study will save me travel time, gossip time and the embarrassing class test time and it's even more insulting result time.  Miraculously, I got calls from three MBA institutes. I sat through the GD/interview rounds for all. The sequence of final letters had made me think I will need to go back to University to finally become Master of my fate. The first letter was from an institute thanking me to appear for the rounds and stated I was put in the “waiting list” for top 15 people. I did laugh that i am in the top 15 of some list! The letter from the  next institute was a regret letter. The fair assumption was to wait for the Top 15 to shorten to Top 1, for me to get a final call. The day the third letter had come, I was told about it coming in and kept on the fridge. I didn’t even open it the entire day, assuming, it’s a regret letter so will read it at leisure with the last smoke of the day after dinner. I had moved out of my grandmother’s place and was living with one of my school batchmates in my parents’ flat in Calcutta. I opened it, read it, mind still programmed that it’s a communication, starting as “with regret, we inform you…….” . I gave it to my friend to read. He read it out loud is when I heard, “with pleasure to inform you……. “

We were supposed to report to campus on 1st June.  In the early hours of 1st June 2001, Karunanidhi was woken up from his sleep, apparently dragged out of bed and arrested on grounds of corruption. I never had much interest in politics. I still don’t. But the news was “super se bhi upar wala” fun! A former CM dragged out of bed by the current CM!! And all this had happened while she could not hold office due to major chaos over criminal offenses and guilty charges of corruption etc. I had only heard of the southern part of India and its fascination with living (and dead) legends. She surely seemed one to me. That was perhaps the first time I could feel, in some odd way, what, how and how much could Ms. Jayalalitha do when she meant business. People from the northern part of India who were to join with me in my batch had already landed on campus, a day or two prior to 1st June, fortunately, or unfortunately. Post this historic lock down, the state was closed for almost 2-3 days. Paralyzed, it took a week to get back to activity and almost a month before normalcy returned. The formal joining was delayed and happened ten days later. But that first week with only 5-7 of us in the entire campus was another great lovely, lazy and enjoyable wasting of time.

During my stay in Tamil Nadu, there were other episodes which made me like the lady, love the scents around and get fond of Chennai. I spent four good years in Tamil Nadu. I love Chennai. After Lucknow, the only city I would love to settle & die. And I believe, Amma is one of the prime reasons to make such a statement.


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Thursday, October 20, 2016

Mard, Men & Morons

Since I have aired my views on women, it is my moral responsibility to share my observations on my own self, we the men. And for this, I don’t need a drink. It is another matter that I will drink! Having been brought up in an all boys residential school, I was witness to a whole lot of different kinds of boys/men. And after almost four decades on earth, I can largely categorise us in three categories, as the title suggests. According to me, you can tell way beyond years how will a boy turn out to be as a man. There have been exceptions and those exceptions mostly become the diagonally opposite of what we would be as boys. However, majorly, we tend to create a range for ourselves to oscillate our existence.

Mard
In boys schools, we are young boys. And there are some older boys among the young boys. With physical strength to our advantage, many of us start reaping some usual benefits. You know, like better at athletics, getting to do more macho stuff in front of little girls & ‘young’ lady teachers, and of course, start bullying younger and weaker boys. We find sycophants who encourage us in order to stay in our good books. Bullying slowly becomes our habit and as time passes it only becomes worse. We not-so-young boys grow up to become ‘mard jisko dard nahi hota’ types. We want to bully our way to movie tickets queues, parking lots, traffic signal; even our own wedding procession, sometimes. We get our Tobu cycles, by hook or by crook. Bought by parents, snatched from friends, steal it just for fun & then dump it in an abandoned place. 'Ignorant abandon' is our birth right. We are the kind who have no respect for fellow beings, least of all for the ones who could never stand up to our ill behavior. You could never tame us. We live & die as wild animals. We have no limits & we fight without a reason.

Men
There are some boys, who right from the start, just know they are either at the right place at the wrong time or at the wrong place at the right time. If we were at the right place at a not so pretty time, we ensured to make the most of the time available. And god forbid, if we were at the wrong place, we would make it the best time of our lives. We flourish in chaos. We borrow Tobu cycles so cutely, that it look as if it is ours which was loaned to the actual owner. We could play without shoes, walk alone; run in groups; not study for an entire trimester and then mug lessons for 14 hrs straight without sleep to vomit all on the answer sheets & get pretty marks. We never bothered to top the class academically, though some of us could, if we made half an honest effort. We could debate with a wall, sing without a mic, laugh at our own butts; yet stand up for a genuine fight. We grew up to embrace life, the boys who possibly, learnt the art of social living. With time, there are glimpses of such a man turning into a ‘mard’, once in a while. Mostly, we were civilized beasts. We know our limits & we play to participate.

Morons
And then there are boys who are mostly in deep trouble. Or, are the reason why someone else is in deeper crap of a situation. We are the weakest, meekest, dumbest, sissiest, lousiest & perhaps the most entertaining of the lot. We are made fun of the most, bullied the most, avoided the most & rallied the most. In fact, gradually, everyone starts believing we are God’s ‘special child’. We cannot stand for our own rights because we believe we are weak and incapable. But we quickly expect someone to support us. And hence, mostly, we are the ones because of whom ‘mard’ and ‘men’ get into a fight. Naturally, men are battered. Mard mostly becomes a hero of the campus because we never had expulsions, barring very exceptional circumstances. My guess is, in all probability, he would be a moron disguising as a man, who would be rusticated.  Else, why would you do anything so idiotic or stupid, that people are forced to throw you out. Mostly they are good riddance. Being a moron is the limit. Beyond us, there is stardom.


Ofcourse, there are exceptions. I could be a ‘mard’ who somewhere down the line, became a man. Or, I could be a man who due to the need of the hour, just acted as a ‘mard’ and then, started enjoying the frivolous life to stay a ‘mard’. There are a few of us, who are actually morons but have truly found the most perfect way to fool the world by declaring ourselves, a man. And then, there is a minuscule population of morons, who flip their butt coin to suddenly become a ‘mard’. And that’s when the world comes to an end.


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Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Ladeej Log

Disclaimer: This write up was written over a weekend, when spirits, tempers and moods, all are at an all time high. The writer has been forced to write on the most mysterious & enigmatic species on earth, women. Kinds of Women at Work, to be more specific. Though novice at writing, the writer is not stupid and shall try to be as diplomatic & professional in presenting his views, about her. An absolute spoof on himself. Comments may be shared at dontdisturbme@gmail.com

I swear I come to office to work. And not to ogle at women. I respect women, just as I respect any fellow being, breathing next to me, below me or above me. No. No. I didn’t mean it that way. Anyhow, I really don’t know how and why am I writing this. The discussion was on the kinds of women one can hope to meet in any work space. In my experience, a working woman is the most explosive combination of a wet Diwali bomb, about to dry up and ready to explode, anytime. Why would I want to become the match stick igniting that slick chic! Anyhow, being the Alpha Male types, am always up for challenges. So, very very, very reluctantly I have agreed to bring out my observations on women at work place (not specifically my current workplace). As I see (and not stare at) women in office, some kinds that I can relate to are:

1. Girls School Vice Captain: A lady who just missed getting the most coveted Captain’ badge on her chest. She is talented, self confident, capable but always frustrated at being short on luck. Great on ability, attitude is work in progress.
2. New Bride: This is the lady who has been selected by all the elders of the family basis a short test on personality & personal ability. And now that she is in, she is over zealous, over eager and over ambitious in trying to impress the family. Great at initiative, results need better orientation.
3. Feminist Fanny:  Don’t mistake it for the name I have given. Here is a lady who has no problem with men. Her biggest problem is, problem of women. Any male related problem and she will ignore you like the one sided used A4 sheet on the printer. But let a fellow lady colleague utter “laptop issue” and she will assemble a laptop from things in her purse. Strong women, mostly caught amidst weak moments.
4. Pea-hen Behen: Rain or shine, dance floor is mine. Well, not literally. The most forthcoming, volunteering and over-enthusiastic set of women, mostly for extra-curricular activities. Great team players.
5. V for Vaastu Shastra: You will find the most exquisite sculpture of a three legged ostrich or pretty painting of a purple banana dipped in pista green yoghurt. Highly creative and structured minds.
6. Mocktail Madam: This is the kind which is a spicy mix of all the above kinds and some more thrown in. This is the kind I personally like very much. They are the ladies who show-off a certain attitude, are very positve souls and perform in extremely competitive enviroments.

All in all, there is no way you can stop a woman from shining. She will sparkle, through her superlative work, fantastic attitude or by showing off the diamond on her finger.
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Q