Category Archives: Blogspot

The ruins of a blog that lays forgotten

Book Review

Recently, I received time off, courtesy PComm. While most of my time went in movie watching and phone calling, I used some time to read as well. And I did happen to come across one very interesting book.

Eoin Colfer created a BRILLIANT 12 year old mastermind by the name of Artemis Fowl. It’s a whole series of books that I think not many ppl would like to claim they grew up on. It’s very easy reading, and I think it’s meant for an age group much lower than my own. But it was, undoubtedly, very interesting to read.
The first book in this series primarily introduces characters – Artemis, his loyal butler Butler, his mother, the fairy Captain Holly Short, Commander Root and a host of other equally inventive characters.
As characters, our protagonist stands out as the most well written character by a long shot. A 12 year old genius, with a rich father and a sick mother make him a very well sketched character. As also, he is without a doubt a criminal mastermind that a lot of ppl would not like to have their lives intertwined with; one that u could almost loathe. But the way the young boy pulls off a very interesting heist, is amazing – makes u sympathise with his genius mind, makes u feel for the boy.
Butler, his loyal aide, is more than just a manservant – he’s a friend, almost a father to Artemis. Described in the book as a bulky man, I can onli imagine wat Artemis would’ve done to land Butler as a butler.
Captain Short, I think, will turn out to be a character to watch out for in many other books. She comes across as a headstrong fairy (yes, fairy, the ones that fly, the ones that steal teeth from under our pillows…) who is struggling to achieve something in life. The book mentions that she becomes involved with investigations relating to Fowl in future, but I sense a more long lasting bond between Fowl and Short.
Commander Root is ur average bully – likes to get his way, tries to prove his point.

What struck me most in this book, was not the characters or the story or the build up – it was the ease with which it was written. Science Fiction has been made a very complicated genre to write, read and comprehend. But the way Mr. Colfer writes this book even a 12 year old can relate to the boy genius, and understand the Law of the People. Apart from being a superb story teller, Eoin (pronounced Owen I think) Colfer writes a book that I would like to stay addicted to.

P.S. This is not the typical critique I do for a book. I’m not spending time analysing the characters, or the plot. It isnt even a book that I would write a review on. But if u can read this book, and NOT hunt for part 2 of it, I’d be more than surprised – which is what called for a review.

Chao buddies..

A New Year – not a new Blog

Hola ppl… welcome to a new year – a year with its own set of joys (and griefs), own friends but the same old blog. Not that many ppl visit this blog – Nonetheless it’s not gonna change unless the Apocalpse strikes – and even then I doubt that I will be too busy changing the face of my blog in the face of impending doom.

For those of u who use this blog to stay updated with my life, here’s a round of updates.
My end terms ended on Xmas Eve, and I shuttled off home to Mumbai to spend Xmas and New Year’s. Nothing spectacular occured over this tenure… I found the time to meet most of my friends (Sorry to u Payal, Urvi, Suns, Tanu, DJ and the rest of the gang…) and caught up wid my family as well.  I was stranded on Mumbai Aiport on New Year’s owing to fog in Delhi Airport, but I arrived cold and freezing back on campus on the evening of 1st January 2009.
Notice that the end terms were mentioned in a blur – that’s cuz that’s where they really belong. Our placement week commenced on the 5th on the month, and will carry on till the 12th or so – a week in which our college’s entire establishment is put to the test and the students prove their mettle in the corporate world. There isnt much that I can publicly comment about this week – but I can assure u that it is fun for those who are working for it, and more fun for those who arent.

Campus life hasnt changed much in the last week or so.
My friend AP leaves for France for a whole semester. So here’s wishing the fellow a good time in France.
My best friend has landed in the hospital – AGAIN. So here’s wishing him a speedy recovery – AGAIN.
Will has immersed himself in his work. So here’s wishing him good time at work.
Sonam hasnt joined office yet. So here’s hoping that she does.
Rajeev is still at odds with his newly found girlfriend. Here’s hoping some sense flows his way.
Tammy is still confused about what she wants to do with life. Here’s hoping she answers the Million Dollar question.
And I am still blogging at 7 in the morning. Here’s hoping that I find some shut eye.

Till further news… Merry Xmas, Happy New Year, Good Morning and Good Night.

The Mumbai Issue

Its been 2 weeks since the Mumbai debacle now, and the number of emails and blogs on this topic is mind bloggling. However, one must spend a few minutes on analysing if any of those measures are fruitful at all.

I saw this particular e-mail which an alleged citizen of Mumbai had written to an editor of a leading English Daily. Hilarious use of language, particularly distorting use of data, and more than anything – it seemed to reek with a sense of revenge; something NO Mumbaikar is akin to. Mumbaikars simply learn to live with the horrors of the past, and build their future on it, rather than fret about them and come up with non-existant solutions to an issue. Not that they arent angry – ask any citizen of Mumbai and he will speak at length about how he is angered by such attacks. But he will never direct this anger towards a source that cannot help him – he will approach the authorities (sometimes with the riots that Mumbai is famous for) who can assist him. He will never send an anonymous letter to an editor; an editor who is not a politician and who cannot rally for an issue.

I also witnessed a lot of ppl blogging for the first time after the incident. While this definitely helps them with improving their communication skills, it does very little to address the issue at hand. It doesnt feel all that good relieving the incident over and over again on various blogs. The emotions coming across on every blog are very much similar – shock, grief, anger, anguish. And all we can do is to read them, and feel for those who have lost.

Which comes to why I’m blogging about this issue at all. My loss is not as bad as many others’ I know. Nonetheless, I feel the need to let many ppl know that this is an issue close to my heart; it is not a journalistic venture for me at all. I am grieved by the loss of many others, and honestly wish that they may find the closure they so badly need.

For them I write…

Life goes on, as it always will
leaving noone with time to remain still.
In memory of those lives who have touched ours
let us savour their memories, in days and minutes and hours.

For those who grieve
closure is a breath of relief.
And for those who have lost in this war
wear this wound like a battle scar.

IMT Life

True to my style, the onli way I could have posted this first post was in the middle of class. Not that I have any apathy for rules – I merely get a kick out of breaking some of them.. 😉

Today, Monday the 8th, is officially one week before my End sems are due to begin. Yet, we’ve neither completed the course in any subject, nor completed project submissions in many subjects, nor do we have a clue about the syllabi in most courses. I have personally spent a good part of the last 5 days in completing projects for submission, and have still not completed one particularly bugging Marketing Project. My friends, Shrek, Shruti and Doc have tried to handle another particularly boring subject namely Operations Management. Another set of my friends, Pogu and Kapi were up all nite working on a data heavy BRM project, while Monu ran home to catch up on some sleep. As I type, Soni wraps up his CFA level 1 exam, readying himself for his first break in many weeks. AP and Kaj have been up for a good part of last nite tying up loose ends of their own projects, and were good company to me for the midnight snack at 4 AM.

Life here on campus, typically, is nocturnal. The 8 30 lec is a NIGHTMARE – with a major chunk of the junta in their pjs, and in sleep. The next 2 lecs generally go by in a blur, primarily because we’re just awaking. Lunch time consists primarily of waiting in queue at the mess, grabbing some averagely cooked food, and gobbling it before rushing to class at 2 15. The 2 15 class has its own disadvantage – we are sooo sleepy in this lecture, that it would take Harry Potter to keep us awake (as Tambe has rightly proven on multiple occasions..;))Post this set of the day’s lectures, we ready for our sleep sessions, or group  meetings for various projects, as the case and mood may be. Snap to 8 pm when we awake from our siesta. We spend a half hour waking up, showering, waking each other up, and deciding when to land up for dinner. We agree for dinner at arnd 9 pm, and spend another few minutes in line at the mess, and a half hour catching up on each other’s days. We then continue to spend another half hour or so walking around the campus, chilling, chatting, brooding, or just whiling away boredom.
Our routine snaps into place at 10 pm, when we resume working – on projects, committees and studies. Ppl are seen running to the library to cram for a quiz the next day. Ppl are seen travelling with their laptops from one lobby to another, to complete a project due for submission. The DLP, our in-house all nite canteen, throbs with ppl catching up on some food amidst project submissions. We spend a large part of our time on Google, merely collecting information, and Microsoft Power Point and Microsoft Word, collating such information. Snap to 12 am, when we regularly celebrate batchmates birthdays outside J Lobby – the onli open space available near the dorm blocks. We return, generally well fed, and get back to working on our projects. Generally, around this time, we’ve realised that its past 12, and that we need to work FAST if we need to grab ne sleep before the class next morning. So, post 12 am, we have a much more efficient way of working – with ppl generally googling faster, thinking harder and typing much faster. Another break is due around 3 am, by when one bunch of batchmates turn in for the night after finishing their projects, and we run into the second half at the DLP over Maggi, Paratha, and Juice. All work we do post 3 am, is completely and utterly on account of panic, since we shud have ordinarily finished with this work by that time. 1 out of 5 members in a grp is generally in a verry sleepy state and needs some shut eye is he is to continue ne work. The other 4 now enter mega panic mode, and try to finish as much of the work as they can in an hour or so. An hour or so later, the 5th member awakes to realise there’s very little work to do, and dutifully finishes the work by 4:30 or so, and lets us all rest. One or two of us are still up, trying to finish the formatting of the report, the format of the presentation, or readying the notes for the presentation. We finally hit the bed at around 5 30 am, tired and cold.
Snap to 8 10 am, when we are dutifully woken up by our faithful roomies, or batchmates who are already up. We have just enough time to freshen up, change and run to the mess for breakfast. We enter the mess at 8 27, grab a piece of bread or a fruit or a paratha, and exit the mess at 8 28 to run to class. We make it to class by 8 30 am, and catch up on breakfast in class. Now, well fed, we settle for another round of sleep.

Strange how this very blog, in the 10 15 lecture, has gone by relatively uninterrupted. I haven’t been caught dozing, which is what I generally do throughout the lectures. I haven’t even been chatting, since no1 is really up at this time of the day. Nonetheless, this blog outlines a typical day in the life of a student in my B-School.

Until further updates.. ciao.

Ghazi ventures – Part 1 of many to come…

One of our most eventful nites and I couldn’t help but pen it down.

It started around 8 30, with us hurrying to East Delhi in AP’s car to drop off some clothes at Kajal’s friends’. Post that, we drove, thru HEAVY traffic to Noida, to pick up Shrey. We decided to stop midway for dinner, since we souls from college hadn’t found time to feed our groaning tummies. Special mention shall be made of the AWESOME Gobhi Paratha, that I myself consumed a huge chunk of. We were on our way back, and Avi’s call patched thru to Kaj. The usual ‘aww you can come meet me’ requests followed. We lissened. Quietly. Then acted.. 😀

A U-turn from halfway to college, we decided to head back into Delhi, to meet Avi at IIT-Delhi. Mind you, it was already way past 11 30 or so, so we were wayyy past deadline in college. Nonetheless, we reached her campus, battling heavy traffic and trucks and barricades along the way, to end up below her building; only to find her utterly shocked that we had turned up at her doorstep. After a minute of ‘Oh My God!!s, it sank in that we were really at her place, and that she really had to show us around. As you wud already kno, any IIT campus, is not really nutshell sized. So she began with a tour of the most interesting place – the Nescafe; the lifeline of every residential college. The nite wore on wid a few teas, coffees and some verrry uncrackable PJs.. special mention to be made of the Little Johnny jokes.. .;)

Somewhere about now, Avi gets a brainwave that we can get on to her rooftop, and chill there NOISELESSLY. We agree; she assumes we agree to the silence clause as well. So we land up on her rooftop, not all that well dressed for the slight chill that was already creeping into the nite. Somewhere between the Nescafe and the rooftop, Kaj had her own adventreu, that I consider too personal to pen down.

Part 1 of our adventure begins here. A couple of minutes on the roof, and 2 surly looking guards corner us on the roof and forced us downstairs. One bloke was so thick, he wasn’t even willing to listen that Avi in fact LIVED in the same building. Another bandha, whom I will refer to as good bandha, at least heard our part of the story out – that we weren’t drunk, we weren’t up to no good (definition of good in UP and Delhi is so GOOD…), and that we in fact had no idea that the rooftop was out of bounds to us. Bloke 1 still refuses to hear us out, and Shrey and AP, our gallant heroes, rush to our rescue and swoop down on him. They cornered him, literally… (the term I wud use here is kopche mein le gaye…)and tried to get our version of the story across. For some reason the bloke, who apparently was a new entrant in the security division, had obviously never seen Avi before, and was just trying to harass her. Our knights in shining armor have made all readiness to bribe our bloke, when good bandha intervenes and decides that its time our sweet party broke up and that we left campus. We agreed, assuming that the matter would end right there. Bloke had other plans tho… just as we were leaving, he accosted Shrek, and insisted on calling Avi’s parents to lay some claim on the story. Very aware that this nite-time venture was definitely not plan of our good friends’ parents’ idea of an ideal holiday, Shrek tried to worm his way out of the situation. Worried that Shrek might actually BE in more trouble, our college negotiator, SAC member, Soni rushes to the spot, only to be brushed off by bloke. Worried that it’s getting too late, and the matter’s getting outta hand, AP rushes to assist Shrek, and is promptly shooed off. Shrek appears a few minutes later, running towards the car, with a look of relief that says “All’s been sorted out..”. We are later privy to his illusive tactics…

“Main aapka chota bhai hoon. Is naate se chod deejiye humein. ” (Accompanied wid innocent face)

“Hum vaada karte hain aisa dobaara KABHI nahi hoga.” (Innocent face attack part II. Here bloke suggests we SETTLE the matter)

“agli baar hum yahaan aayenge to aapko kaise bhoolenge… aap ke liye zaoor kuch laayenge.”

Part 2 of our adventure begins almost where part 1 ends. On the way to Comesome’s, which is all Kaj could think off in the dead of the nite, we somehow manage to convince Avi that all’s OK, and that she is safe, her house is safe, her aatma-samman is safe. Obviously, she is far from convinced; but we had to try neway dint we 😉

A not so long journey later, we reach Nizamuddin Station, which houses Comesum, both on the platform, and in a location just outside of it. As luck would have it, we were on the side where neither outlet was, and we had to walk a distance to the station, and then could only manage to make our way to the outlet on the platform. The paranoid kids that we were, we decided to play the ideal citizens, and try buying ourselves a platform ticket. As per regulations in Delhi, no platform tickets will be sold till Nov 15th, for security reasons. The studs that we were, we decided to go neway, since we were hungry. Checkpost looms. Policeman watches 5 very carefree students glide past him.

“Accha kahaan ja rahe ho aap..??”

And if the events of the nite weren’t enough, we had to explain to THIS policeman, how we hungry students from Delhi, who study in an insti in Ghaziabad, need only to eat and care nothing else about this world. He refused to admit we were students; apparently jeans and tees on a chilly nite weren’t proof enough. So my ID card was left as collateral, while we were meant to traipse to the joint, eat and traipse right back as soon as we could. We literally RAN to the food joint, and ordered whatever we could get for ourselves in as little time as possible. Minutes turned to seconds, as 3 plates of wada-sambhar disappeared before my eyes. We packed a few sandwiches, eats and drinks, and left for our car.

Not knowing that our luck couldn’t get any worse, we were stopped on the platform by a TC. The faces that showed on all 5 people were the same – we’ve have ENOUGH for the nite Sir… if we can find someplace to crash, we would. LET US GO!! He let us go, without fighting at all. After retrieving my ID card with another settlement, we headed back to the car, with the hope that our luck don’t get any worse, and we find the car missing, or some other factor of luck work against us.

Satisfied that nothing else could go wrong with the nite, which was incidentally now around 4 30, we headed back into Ghaziabad. Throughout the journey, we tried hunting for some decent entertainment on the radio and were rewarded every few minutes or so with songs that we could sing (Aditi…), or ones that we could hum along. Thanks to some terrific driving by our very F2 aspirant AP, we reached college sometime before 5. The watchmen and we were both so tired, for very different reasons, and fgot to enter and announce our entry back into college.

People in the story will realise that are very many tidbits missing from the story… the ice-cream, the radio discussion, the kathi roll walla, the kababs… I chose not to mention them for 2 reasons a) they weren’t all that relevant to the context of the nite and b) they dint fit into the storyline as smooth as all these other events did. However, for a reader, this is an eye-witness account of the nite that was the 18th of October.

Comments and suggestions are welcome… 🙂

The Bloodbath continues

The sensex takes another dip; Lehman files for bankruptcy, BoA takes over Merill Lynch… all in the course of one day. What does it really mean..?

First and foremost, I’m gonna have to keep my fingers crossed for the next year and a half that things get back in order, or I’m doomed to a jobless career.

Secondly, and I’m genuinely sad about this, my friend the intern at Lehman, will probably be out of a summer job, and will probably have to get back in the fray like the rest of us.

Thirdly, the Indian markets so proud that they are invincible, will realise that even true invincibles like Merill and Lehman have taken a hit, and that they had better start reacting before we any domestic trouble begins to worry us.

Most of all, I’m worried about how much of this is gonna affect our work atmosphere in the country… does this mean pessimism all the way ..?? If yes, will this pessimism move in the same cycle that the crisis is moving in..? If not, how much more different is it gonna react..??

While these questions bother me, so does the fact that my marketing paper tomorrow needs a LOT of mugging… so I’m gonna put my nerd glasses on, and get down to finishing this book (Kotler btw is known to be one of the best in the field of anaesthesia; one dose and u wont feel pain, onli sleep)

Another post post the exams is due.. hang on till then


Hey all

It’s been 4 weeks to the day that I’ve landed here in Ghazi, so I thot the auspicious day called for an update on the blog, that I’ve been promising people.

The first month here has been an altogether new experience for me. A roomie, hostel life, mess food, responsibility (tic..) is all something I’ve never had a full-dose exposure to. So I’ll begin with a timeline explanation of my month here.

As my previous post indicates, the first week went thru with sleepless nites and numerous references to shavasan (mind u.. tht one aasan was legitimate reason to be found dozing..).One week down, I suddenly realized the 24 hour clause in the day, and with the whole day to myself and not too much to do, I took to basketball, badminton, football even. Apart from this, I’ve found some time to mail, chat, and even study!! (yea, the studies is a minuscule part of the schedule, courtesy onli 5 subjects this term..) A good part of the 2 weeks after that were spent in AlCom and PlaceCom interviews.. which went on into the unruly hours of he morning. The experience was a new one, especially since I’ve never been asked to light a candle under a fan, or connect Beethoven with a question mark. Or for that matter build a bridge out of newspaper and wrapping tape. Eventually, I made it through to the final rounds of both, and opted out of PlaceCom in favour of AlCom, and Alcom opted me out in favour of some 14 others. No hard feelings there… but would have a fun experience on that front to report as well…

My past few days have been spent quizzing, which is our own internal assessment criterion, and I’ve been spending considerable amounts of time cramming for quizzes (read close to 2 hours a day..) The worst part is never the questions, or the lack of answers… but the fact that someone else knew them!!! As always, there are always some geeks who are the know-it-alls who get pitiable know-not-everythings like me into a very uncomfortable corner, by scoring a cent percent on their quizzes (and whose guilt factor is so high that they almost end up on the verge of tears on hearing that they scored 4.5 and not 5!!) It doesn’t help to be part of a batch where GPAs are paramount… I can onli hope that I cna convince this batch to change their attitudes a wee bit… 🙂

My next few days will go in quizzing, and then gearing up for the B-School events, which I plan to actively haunt. B-Plans are certainly not my forte, but then again.. wats impossible for me..??! 😉

Until the next update from Raj Nagar…

IMT Ventures

Finally made it to IMT. Ghazi, as I told u before, is less than an hour from Delhi… of course, that doesnt involve the time u spend in looking for the college on a wrong road, and then backtracking.
In the sweltering heat, our registrations were done on the 22nd, and I discovered (sounded better than invented, which was my second choice) my roomie. And the fact that hostel life is, well, hostel life and not home life.
My schedule here till now has involved waking up by 5 am, for Yoga at 5 15. Then a run back to the hostel for a shower, a jog to the mess for breakfast (which I generally gulp down, as I’ve always managed to make it just in time for the first lecture) and a run to the academic wing for the day’s first lecture. An hour long lunch break is a reprieve in the jam packed day. Mind you, I use free time at lunch to catch up on long lost friends on wonderous modes of communication (read email).
The rest of the day involves more lectures, and then the famous Personality Development Program, which runs into the wee hours of the morning (explaining y i’m awake at this insane hour typing furiously at the keyboard…). And then a re-run of the schedule with a new day.

As for the place, the campus is considerably large, and the lawns and tennis courts will at least ensure that I can stay fit (lets hope…)I have connectivity to internet, which you wud have guessed by seeing this blog update. I also have, for the record, responsibility after a fairly long time – responsibility of my room and belongings, my health, my career, and it goes without saying my fun time. I have goten my guitar here, so I will hopefully try hard to practise so that i may get a little better at it before a particular student/bandmate gets back in town n beats me at it..

As u may have guessed, the long drawn out update is since i am unable to sleep (surprise..) and I thot writing (like reading) might have some positive effect on this erratic sleep pattern, but to no avail.
Till I can sleep at nite

Just a filler

Hopefully as this post comes out I will be in Ghaziabad, baking in the sun and waiting on my hostel room. I thought that since I was posting this a little in advance, I should leave some blank space where you imaginative fiends can fill in my experience on the train; but thought against it since you would do that neway 😉
Leaving work wasnt as easy as I imagined it would be; I am leaving behind friends and a culture of easy days for more friends and, from wat i hear, a lifestyle with erratic sleep patterns. Nonetheless, its a seperate kind of excitement that I will be spending majority of the next 2 years away from home.
Till ne further news, its adieu from me.

MBA Calling

Finally, I have news to report on the MBA front. I got thru to the PG program at IMT Ghaziabad, which is roughly an hour frm Delhi.

For one, this means that I finally have my chance to spend 2 years away from home. Secondly, and more importantly, it’s another step on that education ladder that i thought i wudnt have to climb for a while. It seems like an experience to look forward to, considering that every1 has been congratulating me. That and the fact that its my first time away from home for an extended period.

Which means that its a comma on the era in my life that was Bombay. I get that its been pretty mundane, considering that I dint party too often, get into too much trouble, and sure as hell dint have a life to die for. But this city is still wat I will always call home, wat I will always come back to – even if it is the crowded local trains and the run-of-the-mill stalls that I will hang on to, they are part and parcel of this city that I will always have in my blood.
Enough of Bombay now…I wonder how I even got on to tht track. Must have been tht book that I was last reading titled (dont be surprised) Bombay – Lost and Found (authored by Suketu Mehta). A very interesting outlook to a city that I thot i always knew; a dimension that I knew always existed but that I could never really pin down. For now, Im reading Nora Roberts, since the insanely long train journey could do with a dose of literature. And also Freakonomics, cuz thats a book with concepts that im very open to exploring. As for music, Im growing into different genres of rock… since they sound amazingly gr8 on the guitar that im falling back on to easen out my life.

Chao for now