Saturday, August 22, 2009

Wednesday's vicissitudes

Life is full of accidents, some fortunate and some unfortunate. But when both of these inverses stamp together, they make one hell of the day, right? Wednesday was such a day. It was one of the weirdest days that I have ever experienced. It was full of emotions. Emotions that changed their phase as the day passed by. Let me share some of them with you.

The Client's meeting debacle

Wednesday was an important day for me. The Japanese partners of my office team had planned a visit that day. I was a little excited. This was my first face to face with the clien

ts (that’s what we call our business partners, yah it’s weird). So, I wake up early that morning (7 o' clk is really early for me), freshened up(everyone on this planet is forced to, otherwise, consequences can be disastrous), hurriedly took bath(so against myself) and groomed well(trust me, I always try to be well groomed) for the very first business meeting of my life.

You must have heard about JIT, right? Well for those who haven’t (I mean all of you), it’s an acronym for ‘Just- in- time’. This is something that Japanese preach and Indians loath. Japanese are known to be very particular about their timings and it’s like whatever it may take, they achieve it ‘just-in-time’. Contrarily, Indians follow their IST (Indian Stretchable time) standards. Of course no one insults the 4th dimension of continuum as badly as we do. But urging to defy the common practice and being a wayward Indian, I left for office well before my usual timing hoping to reach there before 9 AM.

But that morning I forgot a famous adage.

Mr. Murphy had stated-

‘Anything that can go wrong will go wrong’.

I realized this when I found myself stuck in a miles long traffic jam. And it was bad. For the very first time in Bangalore, I found the traffic halting due to an accident and not due to a traffic signal. I didn’t know whom to curse, my luck or Bangalore (which is again due to my luck). None would have cruise me to office anyways. So, desperately I started wishing that my clients get stuck too. The traffic crawled cohesively and I was late to the office by an hour and a half.

Thousands of things were running in my mind. I could imagine my lead scolding me for coming so late. I could imagine the clients waiting for me (though I had nothing to present to them). My watch struck 10.30 AM when I found myself in front of my office’s campus. But just when I decided to rush into the campus, my teammate called up and said- “Ashish, due to the traffic jam, our clients have been diverted to our old office, so rush towards the old office”. Screwed, I was damn screwed. All the curiosity, all the excitement, all the thunder was gone in a split of a second. After spending two and a half hrs in traffic, my company wanted me to spend another one hr. with it. I expected a better morning than this.

My Best Friend’s Tales

Well the noon was no better either. My best friend got upset with me on some trivial issue. And me being a little senti moron, couldn’t stay normal as it happened. Now, let me admit that– ‘Women are the most talented species on this planet ’. They can confuse you on anything, they can accuse you for anything, they can threaten you on doing anything, all just with a beep of one SMS. First they recommend you to change yourself. Then when you start changing, they feel that this is not how they wanted you to be, so, if you continue to change then they will get upset and will ask you to be the same as before. Something similar to this was what my friend wanted and didn’t want from me. Complicated, right?? Girls are complicated and nothing is complicated about this fact. I bet that no guy can claim that he can understand a girl. If he does, then he is a big liar.

Even, Oscar Wilde said-

‘Women are meant to be loved, not to be understood’.

No offence to my female readers, I am not trying to be chauvinistic but that day my friend really bowled over my mood. A little series of messages were enough to piss me off. So, please excuse me for venting out my frustration publicly.

A twist in the afternoon


After a screwed up half-day session, I wasn’t expecting things to get better. But call it a fluke or anything, all of a sudden the day turned green. At some 3 PM, I got news from my colleagues that we will be getting a hike this month. All tensed and grim I turned ecstatic and overjoyed in a second. The sudden swing of mood was sweet as sugar. I was waiting for it. I had enough being a mediocre for a while.

Like someone said-

‘A steady salary is an invitation to mediocrity’,

I will say –

‘Hikes are good; they keep you happy even on a screwed-up day’.


Well this was not all that the afternoon had to offer to me. At 4.00 PM my mobile beeped. It was my best friend again. But this time she was feeling sorry for whatever she had said in the morning. She knows how sullen I get when I fight with her. And she didn’t want to trouble me in the office. I know she cares for me even when she is upset with me. She is a sweetheart. I smiled when I read her apology. My mind was now a placid place again. She plucked out all the tension from it. I thought that I will give a call to her in the evening.

Perhaps she is the one best suited for this quote-

A best friend accepts us as we are yet helps us to be what we should’.

So, just like another bollywood movie, my ruined life had an happy ending at the EOD. But the last Wednesday was one of the few days where you get to experience both sides of the coin. For me, the coin of emotions flipped a little fast that day, making it an unforgettable Wednesday.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

The Perception

Oh it feels so good!! My quiescent coefficient has been reset. After being dormant for about 2 weeks, I am back and active on my blog. I wasn’t on a self-induced hibernation but was at my new hometown, Jaipur. My family moved to a new house and this kept me away from my beloved blogging world. Packed computer, no broadband, well I didn’t have much options. But now I am back in Bangalore so resuscitation wouldn’t be a bad idea at all, isn’t it?

Ok but before I start I have to admit something. I have fallen in love with Sandy’s blog – ‘The Village Idiot’. Well it really sets me thinking. It’s like the more I read it, the more I get besotted to it. And this infatuation has been very well endorsed by the mountains of similar thoughts that transcend through my mind. The impact is such that his post –‘The divine question’ has now urged me to write something on the same line. I feel that ‘The concept of right or wrong’ can be elucidated with an even broader exegesis (in fact a confusing exegesis) of ‘Perception’.

Let’s take an example of the two arch rivals. If you are an Indian then I bet you know whom I am talking about. Of course, it’s gotta be India and Pakistan. In 1947, the Great Britain (as one stand-out comedian said- “The only country that puts an adjective before its name, so why not call it ‘The Fucking awesome Britain’???”) concluded its honeymoon (which was an orgy full of continuous ‘Rapes’ of India’s affluence and harmony) in the subcontinent that lasted for some 300yrs. Of course there were some unintentional rapists mixed with the Englishmen in the longest orgy in the world’s history, most of which were Indian maharajas who were later left hapless by their naivety in understanding the sly Britishers. Also, the brainy Englishmen made full use of a diversified India with their ‘Divide and Rule’ policy to exploit our resources. But when it came to let go everything, the magnanimous British administration as a goodwill gesture before leaving, gifted us (oops, to the world) Pakistan. Now unlike many people I don’t believe in hating Pakistan. Yah, I know I am being sacrilegious. But a saga of empathy drove me to this anti-belief.

Pakistan since its existence has been paranoid of being eaten up by its very own neighbour, India. This has been the base of all the problems b/w the two countries. Since the 60yrs of existence, its perception about India hasn’t changed. The cynic army of Pakistan has always viewed India as a sniper ready to take pot-shots on her ass. “India is our first and foremost enemy”, their army believes. But why?? Cause according to them, Indian majority i.e Hindus hate Muslims (the seed of hatred planted by Britishers during their rule). The few now and then communal riots in India induce reverberations across the border deepening the hatred between the two countries. Secondly, they think that like China, India also dreams of being a super power and to show its dominance in the region, it may abash Pakistan commercially or may also invade her to grow its influence. India is more threatening than China because the hate that spawned during the partition in 1947 is still very much alive in people’s heart. So, if you ask 1000 Pakistanis about their view on India, then 995 of them will admit that they take India as a threat and only 0.5% of them would be sacrilegious like me. Hence, the Pakistani army in the very interest of securing her country designed a policy for countering the illusive Indian threat. Insurgency in Kashmir and support to radicals like Maoist in the east is a part of their foreign doctrine. The aim is to disintegrate India into smaller and weak states, thereby, eliminating any threat to Pakistan’s survival. ’ Smaller and divided India is also in the benefit of China’; it’s a typical Chinese communist party’s perception. They think it’s good for their nation’s supremacy in the region.

So, my question is that if your country is paranoid about such a threat from any of your neighbours then what will you do?? After all we all are living to live. We want to survive. Well we will do exactly the same things that Pakistan does to India (believe me, I am right). Thus we should understand that Pakistan is doing the right thing in the quest of saving its sovereignty. Pakistan’s perception is right.

Now if you ask me about India’s perception about Pakistan, then I will keep it short. I don’t know why a nation so small, so trivial is busy in keeping my nation busy with all the unwanted stuff. I don’t know why it is always scared of us when we have never attacked them first. Communal rights in my country are my problem, not Pakistan’s, so why it has to always interfere. The more number of Muslims die every day in Iraq bombings and Northern African civil wars, so why is it only concerned with the few unfortunates in my country? Majority of Muslims in India are better off than from any other part of the world. Well all I think is that Pakistan is just a paranoid nation and I am right (yah believe me, I am right).

You see, it’s impossible to figure out who is absolutely right in the two points of views presented above. The reason lies in our Physics books. It’s the ‘Theory of relativity’ again. Deciding on what is right or wrong is a subjective matter, it is relative. What’s wrong for some is right for others and vice-versa. The same people for some are the ‘Mujaheedins’ (the strugglers) and ‘terrorists’ to others. Those who like metal genre can’t appreciate classical sitars for guitars and vice-versa again though both are pieces of art. Those who like Shahrukh khan cannot accept Aamir Khan as the king of bollywood and vice versa though both are excellent entertainers.

Sandy wrote that when two incompatible custom-tailored value systems collide, there are conflicts. And he is right. Well India and Pakistan themselves are such custom-tailored value systems, and unfortunately the geographies of the two make the collision between the two inevitable. We will never agree with Pakistani perception and they will never agree with us.

Sandy's conclusion that ‘Might is always Right’ is also very apt. Perceptions that have perpetuated through the generations for past 60 yrs. in the two quarrelling neighbourhoods have been continuously nurtured by their governments and armies. It’s they who have kept them prevailing. The news, the media, the government (the powerhouse of information), has kept this distrust between the two countries prevailing through their dubious propagandas. And that’s why we believe that what we think is right and what they believe is wrong. No doubt Sandy got everything correct on this topic :).

Now before I sign off, I will like to reiterate - “There is nothing called absolutely right or absolutely wrong. It’s all relativity, it’s all perception”.

And this is what I perceive and I know I am rightJ.