Saturday, December 30, 2006

To Be or Not To Be

In the last post I wrote about our railway minister Mr Laloo Prasad Yadav. This man is one of the most talked about (good or bad, it’s a different issue) leaders of present India. I thank readers of this blog for their valuable opinions on the subject. I am glad to have received both-sided views.

Well, it is not a concealed fact that this person, for his own selfishness has ruled and ruined an entire state for more than a decade. Bihar is the state which became worse from bad under the leadership of Laloo Yadav. With unearthing of different scams from time to time, we all came to know of some of his ‘good’ deeds. And I am sure there would be many more undetected ones. Kidnappings, ransom, extortions, corruption, booth capturing, mass copying, mass murders, blinding in jails are part of daily affairs in everybody’s life and where bribing is considered infra dig and is laughed at?

I was shocked to see when his dumb wife was made a puppet chief minister and once again the whole world helplessly watched it happening. Nobody could do anything or should I say ‘did not want to do’ anything ? Self-interest and self-centeredness was the only motive of his life.

Aren’t we ashamed of this ? I would be the last person to see him as prime minister of India.

But but but.. there is other side of this coin too. As PM and Alok rightly mentioned, this man has some very good qualities. Leadership is one of them. He is a leader par excellence. Also he is an excellent manager and manipulator. He knows exactly how to take along a group of hooligons with him.
I think we should always appreciate and learn the good qualities of a person even if he happens to be our enemy. Don’t get me wrong. Look at the way he continues to achieve what he wants to... by hook or crook is another point of discussions.
Like Arjun of Mahabharat, he concentrates only on his target, doesn’t think twice about the mean strategies he is going to adopt to. He knows very well how to get the work done, how to be in limelight and how to take the credit. We must admit the fact that he is very sharp and shrewd. He constantly thinks of the future and his future moves just as in a game of Chess.

Concern - If only he utilized his these qualities in improving the affairs of his country. If only we could make him lead a clean team for betterment of India. If only we can make him change his personal goal to a national one. If only...

Current song- Love Me Do – Beatles

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Harvard !! We have a competition here

Dressed in a kurta pyjama, today he was at his usual best. Choosing to call himself as “Guruji”, he stole the limelight from the word go.
Today more than 100 students of Harvard and Barton (Ooops, Wharton) business schools came to meet him in
New Delhi and to study his role as CEO of a successful government organization.

One of the students said “We wanted to meet him to understand how he applied in practice what we learn in management schools. We had heard a lot about him and felt we should try and understand the principles he has been using.”

He explained to the students at length in Hindi how he had broken the western myth that unprofitable enterprise should be privatized and its employees downsized. In the past, he has given management ‘gyan’ to IIM Ahmedabad and Bangalore students and to the chief of General Electric.

He expressed pride at the fact that his department is now in a position to teach something to students of top management schools.
Now, think of the positive side, every year hundreds of students from
India go to these top management schools to learn something what this gentleman is practicing at home. Think of the Forex we can save by opting to study under this most enviable person of this modern India.

So what if he speaks Hindi most of the time and even if he tries to speak English (with due respect), it is beyond most peepul’z undershtanding. Wherri wherri diphicult.

After all, it ijh for us he has kept his plans of becoming prime minister of India pending ?
Yes, I am talking about our Railway minister, Laloo Prasad Yadav.

Current song- Love Me Do – Beatles

Friday, December 22, 2006

Of Helplessness

Why sometimes people don’t listen to you ? Even your near and dear ones? No, I am not advocating for any kind of skills here. It is neither a question of their inferior listening skills nor our inadequate communications skills. It is something about the human nature, human behavior.

Why some people want to fall again and again for something which is going to give them pain, pain and only pain ? It is so frustrating at times when someone you know wants to go down again to those alluring tempting short term pleasures and won’t listen to your words of caution. It hurts dreadfully... to all of us, them as well as us.
They don’t realize what they are doing to their life, neither do they think twice about how much they going to suffer after that foolish act and how much pain they going to inflict on us.

To me, it is a suicidal action to some extent. Reasons for these actions could be as different as the persons themselves.

In my previous company, one of my colleagues was a smoker. His father had died of throat cancer because of excessive smoking. This young guy of twenty-six years was aware of the reason of his father’s illness and subsequent death, still he continued smoking. All advices from the whole world fell on deaf ears. He had responsibilities to carry out. Today, as I write this post, he is a married man and has a small kid. He has continued his smoking, has become a chain smoker now. He and his infant child both cough all the time. He has his old mother, young sister besides his wife and kid to support.
Some people want to smoke and drink knowing very well the risks involved in it. After sometime they realize that this small pleasure has been converted in a non relinquishable habit.

I know of a girl who believes in wafer thin body. She thinks she looks beautiful that way and to achieve that look she is starving herself. She is depriving her body of nutritious food. At present she is not realizing the importance of good strong bones and a healthy body. Being a female she is prone to many health related problems later in life which she is not able to understand now. Also, I don't think men admire very thin, stick like structures to be their companions.

Another genus of human race believe in ‘love’ at first sight, get attracted to someone without knowing the feelings of that other person and then ‘fail’ to succeed in their love. After that failure, start painful heartbreaking nights with drinks and burying in cocoon. Whether it is love or infatuation is not a point of contention. The point is that these emotionally loaded people seek love at a place where it may or may not exist. Luck just doesn’t want to favour them for some more time.
It is good to have a positive attitude towards anything but not at the cost of your own sentiments. I fail to understand why do they play with their own emotions knowing very well that this will lead to nowhere except for giving them more pain and anguish than before and in turn pain to their near and dear ones.

Whatever be the problem, it knocks you down physically as well as emotionally. It doesn’t matter what you become first – an emotional fool or a physical ramshackle in search of that momentary bliss.

And why the hell are we bothered for these people when they themselves do not want to make an effort ? Why do we care for them so much ? Much more than they care for themselves ? Is there any solution to this ?
At times we all are so speechless and helpless.

Current song- Dil Mein Ek Leher Si Uthi Hai Abhi – Ghulam Ali

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

To All

An Update :- Many readers are still not able to comment on my blog. One simple solution. It works well for me and some other bloggers.
Before commenting please make sure that you are logged-in to blogger with your blogger id. Then proceed to comment.

To All,

Many of you readers who come to my blog have conveyed their inability to comment here due to some problem with Beta blogger especially the ones who don’t have a Beta blogger account.

Some of you have even opened a Beta blogger account solely for this purpose. Thanks for all your efforts. I guess some overhauling of blogger is going on, will find out and update you all.
In the meanwhile you can comment in my Chit Chat box and I’ll paste it on the comments page with your name.

Also, the new members of this gang here... please leave your site link..I am not able to visit your blog. It always says “Profile not available”. So, Jac, Prashanth M, Alok, Anil P, Deepak M, Aditi, Raman and all others who want me to visit their blog.. pls leave your links here.

I have the links of older members.

Thanks once again.

P.S. – Prashanth, I could go to your blog through your other blog.

Current song- I Just Called to Say I Love you - Stevie Wonder

Monday, December 18, 2006

Pawn of Dirty Game

On December 9, Santhi Soudarajan won a silver for India in the women’s 800m run at the Doha Asian Games. On Sunday, the very next day, it was revealed that Santhi is not a woman.

The 25-year-old runner failed a gender test, which was conducted in Doha after the race was over and the test report was sent to the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) by the organizers. Till now the organizers have denied receiving the reports (but till when ?? ).

The report mentions that "Santhi does not possess the sexual characteristics of a women".

This is all the more shocking since the Athletic Federation of India (AFI), which selected ‘Santhi’ (I’ll not mention her or him) for Doha, was aware of the issue. Santhi has been denied employment in Railways on the same ground.

Nevertheless, Santhi continued to manage to find a berth in the Indian contingent for several international events as also for Doha. 'Santhi' had first made headlines after winning a gold in 800m at the inaugural Asian Indoor Games at Pattaya last year.
I am not here to speak about how she rose to this phenomenal success despite of her extreme poverty or how many medals she has won till now. I am not even bothered whether Santhi is a ‘she’ or ‘he’.

Santhi is an unemployed graduate in Business Administration and a MCA. Why is it that Santhi’s classmates or other fellow athletes never raised any doubts about ‘her’ gender ?? In fact, one of the classmates is full of praise for Santhi. And as far as my knowledge of south India (especially rural Tamil Nadu) goes, they are NOT very open with the idea of mixing up with a classmate of opposite sex.

The most baffling aspect is that now people are unaware of Santhi's whereabouts. When contacted, Santhi’s state coach Nagarajan or her fellow athletes said 'Santhi' had not contacted anyone after winning the medal. Nagarajan said, "The news comes as a shock. Santhi has been training with me for the past two and a half years. I never felt that 'Santhi' was a man and such things are very scientific for me to comment on."

Apparently Santhi had “left” Doha before the closure ceremony, stating some family problems. Or was Santhi asked to leave ??
One sports official who was part of the contingent to
Doha said, "In Doha everything went off well. But I believe someone leaked the information to the organisers, who then got the athlete tested.".

Now that is another shocking piece of news. What exactly he wanted to convey ?? That if the leakage of such a disastrous information had not taken place they would have continued to field Santhi as a woman ??

That we are part of such a hopeless country of 1,000,000,000 plus where it is hard to find a genuine man or a woman who can represent the country with dignity ??
What were we trying to achieve by sending Santhi as a woman ?? One or two medals ?? Is that all we want ? Don’t we have any dignity, self respect left in us ? How many times more ? How many times ?

Compared to the bigger game being played by our so called saviors of rules and regulations, I don’t blame Santhi at all. The extreme poverty has forced that person to accept some morally wrong things.

Santhi is just a pawn of this entire dirty filthy game.

The whole affair is very shameful, scandalous and immoral.

P.S. – Have lots to blurt out. Expect one more post. If I get time, I’ll definitely write it. :))

Current song- Bahaaron Phool Barsaao, Mera Mehboob Aaya Hai – Md Rafi

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

For Once...

For once I want to be a man. I admit, I want to be a guy.. just for a day. God, do you hear me? I am missing on life’s some of the most significant, essential and fun-filled pleasures.

When two male friends meet after a while, hug each other tight and say those most envious words ”Saale, kaisa hai tu?”, I die of jealousy then and there. The amount of love oozing out of that debatable word “Saale” is incomparable. At that moment it becomes the most intimate & passionate word in the world. Try replacing it with ‘Buddy, yaar, dost, friend’, the unmatched, unparalleled love loses its intensity instantaneously.

On the other hand, however close we girls are, generally neither we hug each other so tight nor we utter those golden words “Saali, kaisi hai tu?”. Duh !! The entire meaning changes with the change of just an alphabet.

I go green with envy the amount of freedom and closeness these guys enjoy. I want to be a guy and impress that beautiful girl who has recently joined the team and would definitely want to take her out on a date before that Satish does his magic on her.

I also want to have a light fun with friends discussing the vitals of those girls standing near that gate. “Heyy, tell me which one do you like most? That with blue top ? Do you know where does she stay? Arrey yaar, for the last four days I am trying to grab her attention”.

I want to pee wherever I want to, without bothering for a clean toilet, or even a pole. This is one freedom I envy the most. Long road travels and we all know how difficult it is for us females.

Want to race with guys in a car or on a Harley Davidson (what the heck, any damn thing will do) and make the girls freak out in the process as I speed. And then want to put sudden brakes for that added ‘effect’ especially on bike ;). Yaar, how much I love doing that. Last time when I did that with Sanika, she just clung to me for full 30 minutes !! ;)

I want to party, go outdoors, trekking alone, water rafting, sleep half naked in the open, on the car, in the car, have loads of beer & cigarettes as many times as I can. Oh la la ! What a life !

I want to smoke and make smoke rings sitting in a bar, shouting (read discussing) Schumi, Alonso, Federer, Agassi and Sachin.
I once again want to watch that strip dance that I saw last month. Shhhhh my wife doesn’t know about it. Wow, how well that girl danced ! I still remember her beautiful legs. ;) And what a hot babe she was !

Being a girl, I really envy guys when I see them freely roaming around in shorts without even being looked at, but if we follow suite (Hey this one is for not so urban India), all the manly creatures, young and not so young, would have to visit doctors for sprained necks and some for higher anxiety levels as well.

Oh God Oh God, I really want to strip and be only in my boxers or even in my undies (if that is possible). How freely my roomie moves around in those.

Want to be a topless bare-chested guy at the beach mesmerizing girls with my well-built hairy body. God, how do I tell you that it is almost impossible for me not to curse my fate at such times.

Do you really think it is fun to be under a waterfall with full clothes on? Ohh how difficult it is for us girls to be always wrapped up even in scorching heat.

And back home, want to have that inbuilt feature of male community. Yes, you guessed it right God, I want full control over TV remote, shuffling the channels, enjoying the muncheon...
I want to have that most sought after x-box in my hand without giving a damn to this world. We men can’t do without these ‘x’s in our life..x, xx, xxx.

And God, the list goes on..
Oh I want to be a guy, want to be a guy.. Heyy God ! Hope you have not put on your ear plugs today. Oh God listen to my pleas, help me pulleeeeeeease..
For once I want to be a guy...

Current song- summer of ’69 – Bryan Adams

Friday, December 08, 2006

Feminism ??

Two days back as I was discussing something with one of my friends, the topic popped up was feminism and he called me a feminist. I didn’t feel proud or ashamed but at the same time didn’t know how to react to it. It had started with as simple a question as whether after marriage ladies should change their surname or not. When the question was directly thrown at me as what would have I done, I answered in negative and after a few minutes of why’s and why not’s kind of arguments I was called a feminist. :))

A feminist? Am I or am I not? Being a feminist is bad or good? Just because I don’t want to part with my current name, have I become a feminist?

What is feminism after all? I do not know the correct meaning of it and how differently people can interpret it. As far as I know, in simple terms, it is a belief in equality of the sexes.

But then who does not believe in equality of sexes? Don’t you? This is 21st century and we better ought to make it true. So then, does that mean whoever believes in this equality of genders is a feminist ??

Well, if the meaning restricts only to this then I can gladly announce about my being a feminist which will also cover a whole lot of bigger world. But if this also means unnecessary protests on the roads, blowing out the issues to gain political advantage, unwanted intrusions and harassments to someone’s life with or without intentions, then sorry to say, I am NOT a feminist. I do agree, sometimes these measures are necessary as well, but not always.

Being a feminist, especially a female, does not mean doing exactly opposite of what you are supposed to do in your normal life.. without giving a thought to it.

By not changing my name or surname after my marriage will not make me rebellious as some people would have the opinion. Though I was given a number of ‘advantages’ for doing it, I just don’t think it is going to benefit me anyhow. It is just a matter of choice for me.

First, why do I need to change my name/surname when it belongs to me and I like it very much ?

Just because my mother changed her surname to my father’s or
that is the universal tradition or
that is what ladies are
NORMALLY expected to do after their marriage ??
And for so many other or's ?

Then I beg to differ, I want to be abnormal.

After all, it’s my life and it’s my name/ surname and I just do not want to part with it. What’s wrong if I want to keep it? In this free democratic world at least the decision to keep or change my name should reside with me and not with anybody else. Am I asking for the impossible if I say that ? My negative answer to my friend was in this very context. It’s another thing that I would like to get immersed myself in someone, I would love to lose myself in him but then it takes the romantic turn, a matter of heart not mind... hence not in this post. :)

When a child is born, he/she is given a name. And he has to keep it for at least some years whether he likes it or not, at least till the time he is grown enough to rethink and take his decision. But what about us females? Won’t we be allowed to do the same?

When I was seven years old, I wanted to adopt my mother’s maiden surname as my surname. At that age my reason was very simple and apt. The surname was short and I didn’t have to write more on all my notebooks, drawing sheets etc. In fact, I had even started using it and when my teachers came to know after 10-12 days, all were shocked. Them as well as me. I was not allowed to write my new surname and was told very coldly that it is my father’s surname what I must have. Within no time I was branded as undisciplined and intrepid child. No issues there as had I been a boy, same thing would have happened. But back then I had felt terribly bad.

And now after all these years when I have really started loving my name and don’t want to part with it, they all want me to change it ?

Anyways, for me, being feminist forms a bigger canvas than changing names. One doesn’t have to revolt each time he sees something wrong happening. There could be other ways of dealing with the situations. Not painting a very big picture here like raising all those issues and hold processions. I am not the right person to do that. What I always try to do on a very small scale is for satisfaction of my conscience. I’ll narrate two small incidents here. Probably they are irrelevant here but still... sometimes thoughts just flow.

As I said feminism means equality to me. Not only equality but care (support & upliftment automatically follow) for the weaker sex. Yes, I agree, we are THE weaker sex…not mentally but physically. Mentally we are much much more stronger and tougher than our counterparts. Come on, have a heart to admit it !

The first incident has happened many times with me with only faces and characters changing. Once during my college days I was traveling in a bus, was fortunate(??) enough to get a ladies seat. Besides me, there was a gentleman (was he a gentleman?) sitting at window seat. After sometime the bus was packed to its capacity, at next stop, a pregnant lady got into the bus and as luck would have it, seeing a male sitting on a ladies seat she made her way straight to us. The not so gentleman started looking out of the window as if he had not noticed anything. Nothing unusual. The lady asked him once, he didn’t respond. Nothing unusual. Without uttering a word I immediately got up and gave my seat to that lady. Nothing unusual again.

Had I been standing instead of that lady, I wouldn’t have asked the guy to give me the seat even after knowing very well that he was occupying a ladies seat. Yes, when I say I believe in equality of sexes, I mean it. If I consider myself to be equal to a man I should be able to travel like him... standing. The case of pregnant lady was different. She should have been offered the seat irrespective of where she was standing .. near a ladies seat or somewhere else. Tell me how many of us care to do that? How many of us stand and give our seats to the needy ones ? Not talking about the exceptions here.

Thousand of times I have seen men taking a general seat in bus with the quote “Here I am safe, ladies seat se to uthna padega”. Doesn’t that mean that if a needy comes near your seat... even if he happens to be an old man, you are going to do the same what that guy did ? And on top of that you gentlemen grumble over petty matters like ladies occupying a general seat !

I believe the reservations should always be for the needy and not for any gender or caste. (Don’t expect any post on reservations now ;) )

Second incident is around two years old. I was traveling by Rajdhani Express ..from Delhi to Mumbai. As always, I was traveling alone. I never ask anyone to drop me or pick me up. It’s not a question of arrogance but I have made myself capable of doing things on my own.

I had the lower berth in 2 tier AC and there was an old Gujju widow around 65 years old with the upper berth allotted to her !! All other passengers including the occupants of side berths were males, all between 22 to 40 years.
She was visiting from her one son in Delhi to another in Mumbai. When the train had started moving, general chat session started, she after sometime mentioned how difficult it would be for her to climb up and before she even completed her first sentence I had offered her my berth. No one, I repeat, no one from those educated, cultured four gentlemen of this generation, who till now were listening to her wanted to do that. It is such a shame for all of us.

Later I came to know that she had been asked by her Mumbai son to alight at Borivali station where the train stops only for 2 minutes. I was wondering how she’s going to make it with 13 pieces of luggage !! And what if her son was a bit late and didn’t turn up at the station. Again, she looked at me and like a fool (am I ??) I started moving her luggage near the door. No one from our so called superior sex offered any help. They had immediately made themselves busy by reading book or some other thing.
I was even prepared to get down at
Borivali in case her son doesn’t turn up. Fortunately I didn’t have to do that.

I sometimes (well, most of the times) wonder why this male community behaves like this. Why her son at Delhi didn’t make sure before the start of journey that she gets a lower berth? Why the Mumbai son asked her to get down at Borivali station knowing her age, her luggage and her traveling alone ? Why other people didn’t offer any help ? Why people always expect others to lend a helping hand?

It is always assumed that we, females are going to support you, come what may, for all your good or bad deeds so can’t we expect something in return when we are really helpless physically ? Don't you think we deserve a better treatment than this ??

When a help is needed, it is needed. Period.

Gentlemen, we, the weaker sex need your support, your help in the same manner as we support you all through your life for all your needs without you even asking for it.

Current song- Piya Baawree – Ajay Pohankar