Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Their 3 Awesomely Pathetic Lives

The characters and events mentioned from now on are fictional and purely a figment of my imagination. Any resemblance to real people and real life events is totally unintentional :P

This is the story of 3 young gentlemen. They led their own lives totally unaware of the others existence for the first twenty odd years of their time in the world. Then fate intervened and they had a similar goal in life. Fate intervened again and brought them together in the same I-school. And it was fate again ..... two years down the line when they were picked up for jobs by the same large conglomerate (the-company-which-must-not-be-named). It brought them to the big metropolis of Dumbai, the city of dreams.
Now that they were working at the same place, they decided to rent out a flat (After all the-company-which-must-not-be-named did not provide them accommodation on a long term basis). But finding a place to live in the metropolis of Dumbai was not an easy task, a task made more difficult by the presence of someone else. Yet they managed, with the help of an agent whose extra-terrestrial looks were straight out of the sci-fi movies. But they had a huge falling out with the agent soon after. After being thoroughly abused by Funkaz & Niku, the agent took solace in the comforting words of Deyus.
Oops!!! I forgot to introduce our 3 heroes. So here goes
Niku: The tall fellow with already greying hair. Likes a peaceful, organized and comfortable life for himself. In reality a pretty lazy person. Hated his previous work, so is prepared for anything which the-company-which-must-not-be-named can offer. Takes pride in having amassed a big bank of useless information over the years. Before joining was told by pretty knowing people that his life was going to be hellish and tough. Reality was totally different. Work life (touch wood) has been pretty unlike described earlier.
Funkaz: The taller fellow with already receded hairline. Tries being funny and irritating at the same time with his wisecracks. Has a weird tendency of declaring every girl he sees as his "bhabhi". He had no idea what he was getting into after accepting the offer from the-company-which-must-not-be-named. Fun is something which has certainly gone missing from his life these days.
Deyus: The tallest fellow. Another store house of irrelevant and useless Data on anything and everything under the Sun. Has an unhealthy appetite for the most pathetic Hindi movies. Makes big plans which get scuttled. Orders the most exotically named dish in the menu. Deep inside him lies the desire to dance at friend's weddings. To fulfill this desire he constantly pesters the other two to get married. But so far wisely they have avoided this trap.
The 3 major issues in their lives
1. Increasing waistlines
2. Receding Hairlines
3. Girls (or rather the lack of girls)
Now coming back to their first house. It was with difficulty that they could find a place to live. But eventually they did find an awesome place. A 14th floor creek facing penthouse. in a building named after the third tallest mountain in the world. The view is awesome and rent was quite cheap (compared to other places in the megapolis). So they moved in. Then they learned more of their surroundings. The house had a huge nallah by the side. The lifts occasionally did not work (At those times, our heroes turn into mountaineers). There was an issue with the pigeons of the area too. They (i.e. the pigeons) decided that only birds can have homes at these heights. So they regularly fly in through open windows in the mornings. A pair of owls also have their nest there. Also a huge honeycomb. Now for the people. Now there was a collector in the building too who would keep on asking whether they had paid up for the pujas (even after they had). Another resident is a girl with a big dog who have a habit of terrorizing our heroes in the lift. And there are others too.
Social Life
In the neighborhood, the Purani Dumbai area where they live has 5 malls & 4 multiplexes (at the last count) where our heroes spend their Sundays. So their main social activity consists of going to malls and taking in the sights and scenes the places have to offer. Occasionally they go to movies also. Last movie being "Dostana" (:P). However their lonely and pathetic existence gets brightened up by the visits from fellow I-school mates, who drop in occasionally.
Office Life
Niku: Its awesome as he has got back in touch with some older mates of his.
Funkaz: Gets to hear pearls of the most beautifully phrased and pleasant sounding words in the office. An office which he has made his virtual home.
Deyus: The blue-eyed boy. Takes leaves anytime he wishes and has dealt in billions till now.
The Early DaysIt seemed to Funkaz & Deyus that Niku was known to everybody in Purani Dumbai. According to them he would win any election easily if he decided to contest from the Purani Dumbai area
The Current Pathetic Scenario
Internal communication takes place through Gtalk.
They discuss about the activities of Peter Petrelli and Barney Stinson (for the uninitated, the fictional characters from foreign TV series Zeroes & How I Met Your Father respectively).
Niku has begun pondering over the big issues of life, including his own existence and the meaning of life etc.... (Result of having too much time in his hands). And uses the term pathetic a bit too often to describe their lives.
Deyus is chatting and chatting and chatting and chatting..... (lives in a virtual world more than the real)
Funkaz does'nt get the time to think now. He is very busy with his work.

So this is the the sum total of the current awesomely pathetic existence of our lead trio.

P.S. This blog post was inspired by a friend's post on similar lines.

Monday, December 15, 2008

The Chase: Victory at Chennai

First the bare facts. India beat England in the first test at Chennai by 6 wickets chasing 387 in the fourth innings after having conceded a 75 run lead in the first innings. The sensational run chase was kicked off in the most imperious fashion by Sehwag and the rest of the team built on the start provided by him. There were good performances all around by the Indian players except Dravid. Yuvraj Singh cementing his place in the middle order and Sachin Tendulkar scoring the match winning runs to reach his 41st century. It can now be safely said that the Indian team is on a roll and is looking good to replace the Australians as the numero uno in all forms of cricket.

However this victory was not about cricket alone. The test occurred in the backdrop of one of the most horrific terror attacks in the country. The England team had abandoned the one day series midway and left for home. It was a good decision as cricket was the last thing in anybody's minds when the commando operations were going on. However it was a much braver decision to return to the country for the test series. The matches were rescheduled but the fact that the match took place at all was considered a big victory for all concerned. The England team is easily the most admired team to have come to play in India in recent times. The match is easily amongst the best test matches ever played. And it was a perfect endorsement for test cricket itself. And the perfect finish was provided by Sachin Tendulkar, himself from Mumbai, scoring the winning runs.

Now coming back to the cricket. So many times in the past we have seen India buckle under the pressure of a big run chase in the fourth innings. In fact when the innings started, my expectations were a fighting draw at best. But Sehwag simply turned the game on its head with his audacious innings for which he rightly got the Man of the Match award. However more importantly, the others built on the start provided by him with support from Gambhir. Yuvraj and Sachin put the finishing touches with a huge partnership for the fifth wicket and ensured that the match was won. Sachin silenced his critics by scoring his 41st century and winning the game for India.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

The Five Places

Its that time of the year, when lists are drawn, a time to remember what happened. So I am also going into the spirit and take a trip down memory lane. But with the simple life that I have I don't think an year in my life would be worth an entire blog post. Instead decided to put in a post about the five places which I believe have had the most role in shaping me into whatever I am today. By these I refer to the five schools/colleges which I went to. So here goes.

1. Biharilal Khandelwal Comprehensive Public School, Kanhan (1986-88, LKG & UKG)
My first school in Kanhan, a small town near Nagpur. The place where I learnt the alphabets and numbers. To be honest twenty years down the line I do not have too many memories about the place. I remember my first teacher (Ms. Julie), the school's location besides the Kanhan river and the railway line on the other side. I have faint recollections of going to school in a rickshaw. I can recollect the rabbits and the school gardens. For memories all I have are the two report cards and a class photograph (in which I locate myself with some difficulty).

2. Woodlands School, Patna (1988-1992, Std. 1-5)
It was a return to roots when the family shifted back to Patna. I got enrolled in Std. 1 with only 3 months left in the academic year. But still managed to clear it (I was good then :)). Cleared 4 more academic years in the school. From this point on I remember all my teachers. The school did not have any building of its own and separate classes used to run in various rented rooms across Rajendra Nagar. The school though had its own playground with a basketball court. Made quite a few friends here. Still am in touch with a couple of them, thanks to the social networking sites. Unfortunately the school closed a couple of years back. For memory sake, I have the school report cards, class photographs and the little trophies I won during my stay there.

3. Loyola School, Jamshedpur (1993-2000, Std 6-12)
Easily my favorite amongst all my schools. I spent the most time here and feel that this is the place that has played the biggest role in shaping me. The first thing I fell in love with were the school buildings and the huge ground. The friends I made here are still connected. Almost all the memories are still fresh. This was my first time in a boys only school (the previous 2 had been co-ed). The memories I have with Loyola are too many to list down, the buildings, the grounds, the libraries (there were 3 of them), the clubs (around 30 at last count), the events (both inter-school and intra-school) and many more. I took special pride in representing and winning for the the school. The collective joy the entire school took in your success was a feeling which has no parallel. Loyola taught me to believe in myself. After all if you do not believe in yourself , then who will. The school started in 1947 and still is going on strong. And hopefully will go on and on. My memories include report cards (again), the photographs, the various medals and certificates, the honour cards, the yearbook... As I write this I can hear the school anthem going on in my mind.
Till the echoes ring again

4. Indian School of Mines, Dhanbad (2001-2005, B.Tech)
This was one place where I never really wanted to go. Well, after all when someone prepares for IIT-JEE, then you would want to go to an IIT. But having cleared IIT-JEE with a rank of 2724, the IIT option got closed. Not intending to drop another year, I took up the Petroleum Engineering course at ISM. It was an entry to a totally new world. My first time outside the safe confines of home. The age of 18 was the right time to take these first steps into the real world. The campus spread across 200 acres with buildings dating from 1926 to some under-construction did not really seem a home away from home in the initial days. After all, ragging (though much milder than expected) does not make one feel at home. The sight of seniors would be enough to send anyone running for cover. But as time went by, the place did become home. In fact, the number of mid-semester trips to home reduced from 10 in the first to none in the last. This was the place where I got a chance to meet people with varied backgrounds. People who had got together for similar goals. Also this was the first place where I really thought about what I want to do with my life (that I still don't know is another issue). The memories of ISM, well, the semester grade sheets (:P), the certificates for extra-curriculars, the photographs, the degree certificate (:D), the job treats at Mani's Cafe, Ramdhani, the mess, watching cricket in the common rooms, the first steps in connecting to the world, my first computer, the trips to Dehradun, Gujarat and Mumbai for training (:P), the slogging during the semester times and the fun at all other times, the elections and the games of poly-poly, Pratibimb & Srijan. ISM was the place where I got a reputation of being a decent quizzer. And it was also the place from where I got my first job. As I look back they were four truly memorable years.

5. Indian Institute of Management, Indore (2006-2008, PGDM)
Unlike other schools, this was the one place I went by my choice. Of course my choice had been limited to 3 by a few small mistakes (Basically, the choices were IIM-I, IIM-K or continue working in OIL). Continuing working wasnt really an option and after a little deliberation I chose I ;). So 20 months were spent in Planet-I. Wouldnt really go into too many details about my stay there (Already covered). I did feel at home at I from the very beginning. However one thing that the place did do was open up the world. Now I knew more about the options existing in the world than earlier (leads to more confusion actually, I still dont know what I want to do with my life after all). But the time was wonderfully spent. As for memories, photographs & videos (too many of them, but dont want to delete a single one of them), the walks down the hillock, the night quizzing sessions (my reputation as a decent quizzer remained intact), the movies and serials, the occasional trips to the city and outside; All still very fresh.

So this is it. These are the five places which have shaped me. The post went a bit long but I dont feel I have done justice to the subject.

P.S. I would like to get in touch with people with the same shared meories, specially relating to BKCP & Woodlands. So anyone who reads this please feel free to cotact me.
P.P.S This post took up nearly 3 hours of a Sunday evening (phew).