Thursday, February 28, 2008

The Last Few Days

When was the last time you took time off and went for a long walk
All alone, into nature and in your own world
These are your last few days in the campus. Make the most of it. The ideal time to go out would be 6.45 pm when the night just sets in. Put on your jogging shoes and hit off ! The key is to choose a different path everyday. You could sprint/ jog/ walk..Thats not important. The key is to realize that you are with nature. Absolute silence. Those huge banyan trees on both sides of the road. Occasionally fellow joggers who I guess feel the same about this beautiful campus and are out there.
Flush all negative thoughts out of your mind. Infact I would say, any thoughts. Just focus on the present and keep moving. Half an hour everyday...and you'l enjoy. There is so much to see in this place, ive hardly explored it...These are my last few days and Il make the most of it.

Today was a long walk from main gate to the hostel...with a halt at the beautiful temple on the way..........! Tomorrow it would be some other place....

I just have a few days left and I want to make the most of it !

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Back to the Earth!
Expectations ! Confidence ?? Arrogance ???.. I sometimes wonder what is the difference between extreme confidence and arrogance ! Does one border on the other ? Or is there a stage when confidence becomes arrogance ? Interesting to think about it. When someone says ' Im sure Il get it'..Is he confident? Or does the tone in which he says it define if it is confidence or arrogance. Perhaps the stage where confidence becomes arrogance happens somewhere inside and in a lot of cases unknowingly...untill someone points it and says ' Dude, you're not good enough' !!! out or some incident jolts you and brings you back to the earth..

Back to the earth from the castles that you were building in the air;
Back to the earth to the same place where you were;
Back to the earth from the trophy you thought you already had won;
Back to the earth from the journey you had already embarked on !

Saturday, February 09, 2008

Sea - Waves

What a Saturday morning I had. Had promised myself that I would get up at 6 and start jogging..Ha ha..what a joke, woke up at 8 am and was extremely sleepy even after breakfast. Made a couple of honest attempts to keep myself awake (Washed my face with a newly purchased face wash), but no change. The only thing that happened is that I slept even better after lunch....

Decided to go to the Besant Nagar beach in the evening. I now have less than 90 days left in the campus and have decided to go out and enjoi !!! (The travel plan should be ready by tomorrow).
Coming to the beach, it was awsome. It was the first time in a long time. I used to come here often in Q1 but somehow lost the habit after that. To be honest Ive lost most of the things that I used to do in Q1!!

The sea has something special.The waves, the breeze....Just standing there, looking at the waves, listening to the hushing sound....makes you feel great. Within minutes you are transported to another world. The key is to forget about everything else and watch the waves. Ya, you can look upwards at the sky, gaze at the stars..but absolute silence is essential...Half an hour of this..and you would notice the difference....!!

No visit to the beach is complete without having a plate of molagai bajji (green chilli pakoda)...Its unhealthy, its unhygenic, its unclean, its unadvisable etc etc, but kya kare?? its so tasty !!!

Rejuvinated !!! The sea certainly has a calming influence...Need to come here more often.

Thursday, February 07, 2008


What is common between DDLJ (Dilwale), Black, Rang de Basanti, Kuch Kuch Hota Hain, Kabhi Alvida Na Kehna, Mohobatein......??????

Ya, each of them might have been blockbusters and created box office records. But there is something else. I havent seen any of them !..."Ya, man, hes crazy, he hasnt seen DDLJ....Paagal hain."....That would be the first reaction of any normal person. And if you also reacted the same way..Congratulations...You're normal !!! Ha Ha.....

Jokes apart, its quite surprising why I never saw any of these. I think I know the answer. Its that rebellious streak in me not to do something (or watch movies in this case) because everyone said its good. I know its a crazy argument but its true. Probably I never had the courage to say NO to a science and engineering career after 10th, though when I look back today, I would never have done the same. (given a chance I would have taken up journalism and become a leading sports correspondent of a national daily or even cricinfo !!!)

The point is since I followed the mainstream in the areas that affected me the most, I guess I looked for areas where if I behave differently it wont have an impact and movies was one.! And I dont think it was intentional..Something in the subconscious mind...I know Iwas stupid, but I guess this is the only rational reason I could think of as to why I never saw the movies that were declared the biggest hits of the year.

Ok..coming to the point. Taara Zameen Par had all the chances of falling in this 'esteemed list' until I decided to finally watch it...And didn't I make a good decision. First of all any movie showing school seems to strike a chord. Probably for that brief period my mind goes back to those good ol' school days !....But in this case it was more...What immediately struck me was 5th A class and when students used to get a pasting (and it was painful) for making mistakes in Mathematics and at times even their head banged against wall..I never faced the brunt, but yes there were a few of the students who were 'common casualties'. I used to wonder how they could make mistakes in something as simple as addition or the basic concepts. I never understood. Another example was reading out in class. At times we were asked to stand up and read out certain parts of the lesson. Again I found that it was a struggle for some ! There have been instances when we have laughed out loud when someone made silly mistakes....

The movie has made me realize that those mistakes might have been silly for me, but would have been a struggle for someone else. There was no one to tell me these things then. But I hope the kids who have seen the movie now are more sympethatic towards their fellow classmates. Not everything about the 21st century is all that evil. We do make some good and meaningful movies.

Sunday, February 03, 2008

3rd Feb
Its that day of the year, 3rd of February. So whats so special about this day? It seems like another usual Sunday characterized by a late breakfast at Tiffanys an excellent post-lunch sleeping session and a visit to the temple in the campus. Ya, to think of it, seems like a routine day, but wait a minute..I just need to go back a few years...Few ?...Oh, its 5 years now.

krrrr....krrrrrrrrrrrrrr........krrrrrrrrrrrr....(That was the sound of the tap rewinding ! )....Now its 3rd of Feb 2003. Wow ! Seems so good. The day we all joined the wonderful campus at TCS Trivandram. The day I met 34 of my amazing batchmates. Well, thats an understatement..This is the best collection of people from across India that I have interacted with..

2003 was a tough time. The economy was just about limping out of recession. 2001 and 2002 was characterized by a US slowdown and 9/11 which had a direct impact on the campus recruitment in India...The impact was so strong that we had IIT grads who joined TCS along with me..(Under normal circumstances they wouldnt have)...And the rest were from engineering colleges all across India. (Equal representation from the West, North, South and the East). Infact looking back, I consider it as one of the greatest learning experiences. Having lived in Mumbai all throughout my life, I was used to a certain line of thinking. But here away from home, we had different opinions from different people on the same topic. And boy it was fun !

Weekend trips to various places in Kerala (We covered it all, starting from Munnar to the backwaters and we even went to Cochin ! ), watching the world cup, dinner @various restaurants in trivandram...Boy , wasnt it fun..How can I ever forget pulling out my t-shirt and running topless on the streets of medical college junction of trivandram (we were a group), to celebrate India defeating Pakistan in the World Cup....I bet people in 'traditional' Trivadram would have experienced a cultural shock !

There are so many incidents that I can recall..The hard fought cricket matches, the Mowgli episode, designing a t shirt to celebrate the World Cup, the great music group singing away to glory on the long bus rides, slogging the last few days to come up with a class magazine...The list is endless....

But the best part of it were the people...The way we gelled together. Absolutely no differences. Learning about each others culture..Iyer speaking in Hindi and Mangu dada learning Hindi was just awsome ! And Droops Hindi which was heavily laced with a Bong accent... ...Awsome...

Each of us were unique and got something to the table...And we celebrated our differences.....Needless to say we developed great bonds of friendship that has grown over these last 5 years.

Tomorrow I would get back to classes and then the routine schedule and before I know it would be 3rd Feb 09'. One things for sure. I would definitely be celebrating it...!!!

Friday, February 01, 2008

Statistics and all of that.......

Im having so much free time these days. Nothing much to do...Post December life has changed. Its become so difficult to motivate myself to open a book and read......!!!

Reading and accademics brings me to the topic of the day..Statistics....January seems to be the time for great people to hang up their boots and say they have had enough. Last year it was Glenn Mcgrath and Shane Warne and this year its Adan Gilchrist. So what, everyone has to go sometime or the other, so whats new?..I guess its the timing..

They were all playing good enough to go on for a couple of years more. In cases of Gillli he was just 4 test matches away from playing a 100 test matches. Who doesnt want that record? Imagine 50 years from now his he could tell his grand children about it !. Couldnt Mcgrath have gone on and claimed 700 test wickets? Could'nt Warne have touched the 750 wickets mark?

But they didnt. They didnt go after the numbers...Its so contrary to the way we in India approach life. Its inherent in us. ...We use numbers and statistics a lot more. We use to judge where we are, we use it to compare ourselves with others.

The very first topic of discussion after a new child is born is how much he weighs !...This is just the beginning....Starting from kindergarden his ranking in class is dissected. How much did your son get in Math? 19 and a half out of 20? Oh ! my son got 19 and 3/4th.. What is his aggregate percentage? We don't hesitate to go upto the 2nd decimal level...I got 89.63%. Ah! I didnt get a call..I got 99.13 percentile. The cut off was 99.23........My CGPA was 8.89, they didnt shortlist below 8.9..I missed out by a fraction.......My salary is 18.63...Her son earns just 15.38 lakhs. The story goes on....Not just in accademics...I guess it spills over to other areas as well.....

Just makes me wonder..Do figures always tell the true story? Do we stress a bit too much on them?....Do we play for records?

I would end with what Gilchrist said " So if the fire is not burning, theres no use to dragging on just to achieve a number or a milestone. And I always looked to Rodney Marsh's stats and he played 96 tests and I always thought to myself ' Why did'nt he play one more series or 4 more games? ' But I now know. When your time's up your time's up"