Monday, April 14, 2008


Woke up with this feeling,
of having lost it.
Realized I needed it,
and tried looking for it.

Found illusionary bits of it,
but it never felt complete,
Tried to complete it,
but it just wouldn’t fit.

Looked at my reflection,
realized where it had gone.
I’d lost it within myself,
and was looking all around.

Gone it has,
far away from me.
For after all it does have a life,
devoid of me.

It’s not in my nature,
to just let it be.
So run behind it I do,
pulling it back towards me.

I’ve abused it hard,

and murdered it harder.
It’s a dead living being now,
It’s ghost hiding in my shadow.

I’ve realized its worth,

and how precious it is to me.
But I know if I find it,
A life in it will not be.

My search, I will continue,
and change I will.
So when I find it,
I’ll know how to preserve it.

My search I continued,
and found it, I did.
Tried to hold onto it,
But it was only pieces and bits.

I’ve lost it,
and I’ve found it,
But it’s hardly,
how I’d first seen it.

Let(s) go...

There’s something with me and resignation. For reasons far beyond my control, I can’t seem to do it very openly. I wonder why? I spent all of today thinking how I would break the news to my boss. I passed by him several times but just couldn’t muster the courage to broach the issue. This, after dropping a significant hint to him on Friday evening. This guilt trip that I go through deep within is something so very hard to fathom.

Who am I answerable to? – No one
Is the length of my stay in the firm a concern? – Yes, but why, I can’t quite understand
Do I fear my boss? – No
Am I overtly sensitive about what he’ll say? – Partly yes, but should that over-rule the rest of it all.

Some people have vague tendencies and even weirder weaknesses. I’ve realized one of them in myself. I find it hard to let go. I preach it but fail to practice it. I reach out to people when I know they’re slipping away. I frown upon myself for moving on but eventually do by cursing the shit out of myself in the process.

What am I scared of? – The repercussions. Possibly yes.
Will there by any at all? – Not sure, but more often than not, I make them up and worry about them.

This thing about myself is really fascinating me.

I can do with a bit of learning on how to treat bygones to be bygones, and more importantly, when to make what a bygone…..

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Cometh the MAN !!!

I'm back to the place where I belong,
Back to the dust and still very strong,
Reminiscent with lessons learnt all along,
Numb and dumb to everything around...

Oh damn, it sure feels good. The hibernation of 10 months was well called for. Things have changed over this period. You will hear about it in due course of time. "Watch this space" - Muhahahahahha...I'm back to selling myself. Damn, Selling is something we've done since we learnt a language i guess.

Anyway, the trigger to come back here was a different reason altogether. I've completed a "quarter" century today (why does the name quarter "hit" so hard). I am so full of intended puns today. Over these 25 years, I've grown to become what I am today. Experiences, tests, risks have all added to the entire package. As I look back today, there's so much that I know about myself. Yes, the whole journey is about discovering and re-discovering, but I'm happy I've progressed on the discovering bit atleast.

Below are the most important things about myself that I've realized over the last 25 years...It might sound as a repeat of a post which is currently on my blog, but well, this state of being is so dynamic. What you are today and what you are tomorrow may have no co-relation to each other. Hence, having said that, any resemblance to any part of my earlier post on this blog, doesn't necessarily have to be coincidental. It's just that, that thought / feeling / emotion which has been repeated here has persisted for so long and might do so in the future as well. So, in all good spirits, here goes...

- I possess uncanny powers of imagination and I often spend a great deal of my life dreaming with my eyes open. "If only", are two extremely important words in my dictionary. They are my oxygen.
- I believe I have a natural dignity that my seem standoffish.
- When I pray, I believe I resonate with God, and pray I still do, quite very often.
- I have been very discrete about my love life, but I hope to break that barrier soon. Infact, 3 people will vouch for the fact that I've gotten down that road already. One of them might read this blog and have a cheeky grin on his face.
- I have had this uncanny knack of handling romantic disappointment well. For me, a breakup has been a good way to learn more about myself and my relationship with people.
- I have NEVER EVER doubted my own ability to succeed and I care two hoots about how long it will take me to actually succeed. Any uncalled for help / support coming along the way is unsolicited. Well, that's the way I am, rather, have been !
- I believe very little happens by chance. I talk about fate, but I don't think I believe in it too much. For me, it's about ability. Period.
- As much as I don't like it too much, I plan my life meticulously. As a result of which, I'm sometimes devoid of surprises. I hope to change that.
- The corollary to the above point could be that I am quite conservative in my approach to life.
- I am extremely good with money, and I know it :-)
- I take great interest in maintaining a good health. But yes, some things are out of my control, albeit for now !!!
- I am not overtly conscious about my diet, but do take care to not go overboard very often.
- In this journey, I really don't mind taking the longer route. The key for me is to enjoy the journey, not the final destination.
- Up until now, I have sailed through life without connecting deeply to too many people, but the one's I have connected with, it's a hard connection to break.
- Not given to emotional extremes, I don't think I'd cause rancor or great love among family.
- As a child, I had great love for my parents, and as a parent, I am more than sure that I'll have great love for my offspring.
- Having said that, I believe in allowing youngsters to succeed on their own, rather than providing emotional support.
Last, and might just be the least,
- In the company of people, I sometimes create an aura that is far bigger than myself and far larger than life.

Ah, I like this post. It's a mirror image of me. And these points go in to be part of that infamous book which is yet to come, the book that will showcase me to the world, in a package that very few people have ever seen before.

Cheers to this day my friend. Love ye all. This feeling of making a COMEBACK is VERY GOOD.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Merchants of Drama presents "Playing Along..."

Merchants of Drama is proud to present
Playing Along...
A riot of a comedy in two acts

Date: 27 May 2007 and 3 June 2007
Time: 6:30 pm
Venue: Yavanika Auditorium
State Youth Centre (next to RBI)
Nrupathunga Road, Bangalore.

Merchants of Drama is proud to present it's maiden production: Playing Along.... It consists of a series of sketches adapted from various sources followed by a self-scripted one-act play. Playing Along... is a much acclaimed comedy which has won awards at four national inter-college theatre competitions in 2005 including at Saarang (IIT Madras) and at Unmaad (IIM Bangalore). The play is in English and the duration is about 75 minutes. The cast of Playing Along... includes
Raj as Detective Andy
Rachana as Sandhya
Gyanesh as Kishore
Ashish as Arjun Singh &
Ajay as Viren

The play will be staged at the Yavanika Auditorium, on Nrupathunga Road.
For bookings
Call ME @ 98862 61719 to book/block your tickets. I have limited numbers for both the shows. Else, to reserve/block tickets, call 99806-44552
drop in an email at .

Tickets are also available at Crossword on Residency Road, and at the Alliance Française Café.
For more information, visit our blog:

We invite you to come and watch what we guarantee will be a riot of laughter. Hope to see you there!

Merchants of Drama

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

IBN - Thank you

I feel good as I go to sleep today. Finally, there is someone making noise about something million other people and I are screaming out. What do all of us have in common? Answer - The fact that cancer has touched us somewhere or the other in our lives.
If you scroll down my blog, you would find an article or two closely related to this disease, and why so? Simply because, after having gone through the rigours of what this disease has to offer, one just can't seem to keep quiet and let things happen their way. My motto is to ensure a change in the way cancer is looked at and more so, treated in the years to come.
Firstly, thank you CNN-IBN and specifically Sagarika Ghosh and the entire team at India 360. You are the cause for this post coming up on my blog.
Thank you also to Tanweer Alam. I don't know you man, but I sure can figure out what you are going through at this point of time. For those trying to understand things, Tanweer was featured on India 360 on the 8th of May as a CNN-IBN Citizen Journalist raising valid issues about the cost of cancer drugs in the market today and the price that companies who manufacture these drugs put on them. Tanweer himself is a cancer survivor. An IIMB graduate, he quit his plum job to be a budding entrepreneur when GOD decided to change things around. Today, he says he's run out on his savings and is dependant on his father to pull him through this disease. For those wanting to know more, here's a link to Tanweer's blog:
The entire program and this entire story just goes on to re-iterate my point and that was this. "Why on earth are people not able to understand the magnanimous cause and effects of this disease? Why on earth are people so ignorant to a disease which has statistically proven to have claimed more lives than AIDS itself? Why are health organisations across the world not driving this particular message down the throat of every human being alive today? Why are drug manufacturing companies looking to make business out of this catch-22 situation rather than coming to the aid of the lower and middle class suffering from this disease?"
I hope I find answers to these questions quickly enough. Else I hope I go out there and ensure that I find myself answers to these questions and in the process, help million others make a change in their lives. As someone who has been closely associated with this disease and in the process, has seen hard earned savings over 56 long years just dwindle away, I feel for every person going through the same situation today and that calls me to proclaim, "I'll make a change. I'll do whatever it takes to propagate a change in the way this disease is treated. I'll try my best to ensure that hard earned money is not lost completely on the treatment of this disease. I'll ensure that cancer survivors would long to survive to enjoy and make the most of their life long savings, not worrying about what they'll have to live with, if ever they do survive!!!"
Thanks once again Tanweer and Sagarika. This post is for you guys. And also for you Ms. Harmala Gupta, for your undying support towards this special cause.
Are the right people listening? Will all you cancer drug manufacturing companies come out of your patent wars and embrace something you are all ethically bound too? I hope, wish and pray you do.

Friday, April 06, 2007

To those people @ ABB, whose presence I'll cherish the most !!

It's a time to go but not to leave,
A time to bid good-bye, to mourn and grieve.
Of good ol' days, of non-chalant ways,
Of a life full of brighter days.

I'd rewind the clock to 3 years back,
and relive the joy that filled my stack.
Beer & Coffee, and those sametime chats,
Immortal memories, images that'll last.

Time has passed as the seasons changed,
And we all rolled on in search of fame.
From carefree souls to a mature youth,
The transition made, in a perfect cruise!

I look ahead on my journey from here,
But not without that frequent stop.
To relive the moments, the time spent together.
And thank ye all for now and forever.

The gratitude though, is just the beginning,
As we tide through life, continuing to sing,
The beautiful times spent, a lasting movie now,
Evoking a recreation, every then and now.


Love you all guys. We've had great times together and I'm sure they'll only continue.

Sunday, February 04, 2007

World Cancer Day

Yes, the 4th of February is considered to be "World Cancer Day" ! I'm not so sure, how many of you were actually aware of such a day even existing !
Nevertheless, for me personally, it carries a lot of relevance. And, on this day, I'd like to reiterate my pledges taken in this regard:
I, on this day, pledge to be associated in the best way possible, with activities working towards spreading awareness of this disease.
I, on this day, pledge to do my bit in helping people across the world understand the causes and effects of this disease.
I, on this day, pledge to do my part in making this world a better place to live in, a world where cancer is treated with as much concern, a world where cancer patients are made to feel at home with life.
I, on this day, pledge to dedicate a constructive portion of my forthcoming time on Mother Earth in doing whatever it takes, whether that be directly or indirectly related to this disease.
I, on this day, pledge to help cancer patients across the globe lead a better quality of life.

I, on this day, also hope that people across the world would stand up and take notice of the word CANCER and join hands in helping build more social awareness of the same. I, on this day, pray to GOD to infuse energy and spirit into all those lives affected by this disease.

I on this day, stand up and respect that one person closest to my heart, who showed me what resilience in life is all about.

Sunday, January 28, 2007

What is strength?

We've all heard of physical strength, and we all do agree that its one form of strength that can truly be quantified. But, what about the other "strengths" that people talk about. The kinds related to your emotions, your mental and psychological state of mind and your being. Can this be quantified? If yes, are there defined yardsticks to quantify them. As I try to think more and more on these lines, somehow, I end up finding the whole reasoning extremely absurd.

At the outset, let me make my stance very clear on this one. Personally, I do not think this form of so called "strength" can ever be equated and frankly, no effort in this regard should be made as well.

Is not shedding tears in public a show of strength? Is hiding emotion a show of strength? Is living life without fear a show of strength? Is being completely disdainful and carrying a lackadaisical approach to situations a show of strength? Is passing off failures in life with a certain amount of carefree ness a sign of strength? Is being able to laugh off some of the toughest of situations, a sign of strength? On the contrary, is fear a sign of weakness? Is crying aloud at the loss of a loved one a sign of weakness? Is seeking for solace in other people a sign of losing strength? Is putting up a fearful face making no facades that you are genuinely feeling scared a sign of a deep internal weakness? If no, then what is? And for all those people who say no, I ask, "Aren't these the same tools you use to judge people of their strength!!!" Think about it. Even as you vehemently deny these charges now, sub consciously we all do it. For me, that's a very sad tale to tell. And if your answer is a undoubted YES, then is it justified?

As ironic as it may sound, and try as hard as we can to ignore it, the words speak for themselves. Yes, this is how we judge people these days. A child not openly grieving over the loss of his parent is told, "You handled it well, very well". Huh, I ask, "and how do you say that, dear Sir", and pat comes the reply, "well, by the way you've reacted to the whole situation", for which I in turn ask myself, "Does he even know the reactions going on within me?", "Are they even aware of the metamorphosis going through me right now", "Can anybody even try and put themselves in to my shoes right now and comprehend things just the way I'm doing?"

Well, it's a situation all of us go through at some point of time in our lives. But is the chemistry of it the same for all of us. No right, then why equate it at all. There is a certain amount of difference in the choice and usage of words here. Handling a tough situation well, is a sign of growing maturity, but doesn't necessarily classify as a show of strength. I do not one bit disagree that there isn't something called mental or emotional strength. What I disagree upon is the mechanism used to compare it with that of others, and in turn quantify it. Just as each one of us are genetically different from each other, so is our mental strength and this is something that should never be compared. So then, that compels me to ask you this; how can you go ahead and utter a statement like, "You showed tremendous strength today". What are the root level basics for making a judgment such as that?

Just as we live in a world where everything is made to feel larger than life, where people/things/situations are made that much more unreal, where no point in any given discussion, however irrelevant it may be, if left unturned, where no topic is not with it's share of pros and cons, where for the most idealistic of good situations, somebody would come out with ten flaws in it, we got to realize that we're bordering on that state on an issue as sensitive as this as well.

We as human beings have learnt to respect each others feelings and sentiments, so that we grow together in a cordial society which would reap peace, joy and happiness for our next generations to come. In the same breath, let us also realize that subjective issues such as emotional or mental or psychological being (I refrain from calling it “strength”) are best left to that individual to comprehend. For all you know, the person you really look up to as an epitome of emotional "strength" might just be the one living his/her deepest fears every night within him/herself. And that person could be you, me or maybe, the next one to read this post.


This article has also been posted on at the following link: (Please do rate it to help me improve my writing accordingly.)

Thursday, January 18, 2007

A cut above the rest

Just this morning, I got this calender from one of my channel partners, and what a calender it was ! It happened to be the perfect potion I needed for this year. As I read it, it had transcending effects on my abilities to deal with the situations I have perceived ahead.
And, as I read it, the more was the urge to share it with the outer world and show them some simple things / solutions to the seemingly most difficult of situations. So here goes...

It is titled, "A cut above the rest"
What does it take to be a cut above the rest. Here are a few pointers for you to ponder, think and improve upon.

KNOW YOUR PURPOSE - are you wandering through life with little direction - hoping that you'll find happiness, health and prosperity. Identify your life purpose or mission statement and you will have your own unique compass that will lead you in the right direction every time.

KNOW YOUR VALUES - What do you value most ? Make a list of your top 5 values. Some examples are : security, freedom, family, spiritual development, learning. As you set your goals for this year, check your goals against your values. If the goal doesnt align with any of your top five values, you may want to reconsider or revise it.

KNOW YOUR NEEDS - Unmet needs can keep you from living authentically. Take care of yourself. Do you have a need to be acknowledged, to be right, to be in control, to be loved? There are so many people who lived their lives without realizing their dreams. List your top four needs and get them met before its too late.

KNOW YOUR PASSIONS - You know who you are and what you truly enjoy in life. Obstacles like doubt and lack of enthusiasm will not only hinder you, but will not derail your chance to become the person you ought to be. Express yourself and honour the person who has inspired you to become the very person you wanted to be.

KNOW YOUR STRENGTHS - What are your positive traits? What special talents do you have? List three - if you get stuck, ask those closest to you to help identify these. Are you imaginative, witty, good with your hands? Find ways to express your authentic self through your strengths.

KNOW THYSELF - When you are true to who you are, living your purpose and giving of your talents to the world around you, you give back in service what you came to share with others - your spirit - your essence.
This is my agenda over the coming weekend !!! Yaay..its gonna be one rocking one !

Monday, January 01, 2007

2007 - The road not taken....

Its come....yes..its come....and its the big one for me personally. Yes, 2007 is here and like for many others, its the year of reckoning.. In more ways than one, I've made it that way for myself, but I kinda like it.
As I sat last night on my terrace with some close buddies, sipping on some wine, I stared up at the open laden sky and started to tell myself, "Make it count, make it count!". The theme for me over the next 365 days is simple and I've managed to bring it down to one word, "INDULGE", yes Indulge my friend.
Indulge in what you love doing the most,
Indulge in what you do best,
Indulge in something you've never indulged before.
Indulge, cuz it'll suck you in.
Indulge cuz what you see from the outside, is a bird eye view.
Indulge cuz once you get in, you wont bother coming out.
Indulge cuz now is the time to do so,
Indulge cuz this time will never repeat itself.

Hope I really can live upto it. Lots, infact tons to look forward too. I got quite a bit of feedback for the below poem that I've written, more destructive than constructive. Maybe, it did have some kinda impact on me. Well, not that the bone of contention you guys were using was right, but maybe, it did strike a chord somewhere within me, and I've surely learnt a thing or two from it.

To begin the year on a much much more positive note for me, I started by asking myself, "So whazzup in 2007????"

Firstly and most importantly, is that elusive MBA. A final crack at CAT, and I'll take what I get now. 2008 June - Bschool calling. Which one, I dont know?

Secondly, or rather, should I say, "Jointly first", ACT...ACT....ACT !!!!!!!!!! Yes. I see myself doing atleast 5 more plays this year. Five different characters, ranging from a 8 year old school going boy, to a 18 year old schizophrenic to much much more. Gonna also make my first foray into script writing. Yes, I have two in mind. Put them on paper and then hand them over to someone I think is an able man at direction. Looking forward to making my first short movie / audio visual play in march with the support of my entire Join the dots team. A big big big agenda for me in Q1 2007.

Thirdly, something that has to come back to the professional front doesn't it. Yes, my days are numbered at my job. Can't take it any longer. It's a matter of time, though I try hard not to think on that direction. I really really wanna drive up those high levels of motivation within me again, for whatever limited period it has to stay! Dunno, what it calls for me to do, but I really wanna do it. Wanna stop relating to the TATA Safari ad, where this guy says, " I always felt like quitting every monday morning!" It's something I've been trying to work on for a while now, but presumably, I'm struggling. Need to make it count baby, really need to. Just wanna get on the road back from work everyday thinking, "There was some value addition today, there really was!" It's too short a life to let go of a single day without pleasing your heart, really......
So yes, in pure numbers format, 3 important things to look forward too....and a year from now on, I hope I can come back to read this article and pat myself liightly on my back, "You done it boy, you done it !!!!"

Cheers guys to a eventful 2006 and a much to look forward, 52 weeks of 2007.....
Let the events unfold themselves, but I request thee to put me into a situation, where I'm atleast able to guess, what's unfolding.....

Friday, December 22, 2006

The moment of truth

Emotionally drained
Physically exhausted
A butchered mind
its life yet to find

Mentality in turmoil
A disgruntled heart
Low lying spirits
being killed to bits

Unaffected sorrow
Untouched happiness
Leading a life
dependant on borrow

Spiritually dehydrated
Psychologically flushed
Going through the motions
Totally unabated

Drowned in notions
Engulfed in desire
Trying ever so hard
to bust out the fire

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Ayee Mayytee, You'll be missed !

The news has come, a tad too early for my liking. A tad too early for any cricket lover's liking. A tad too early for even the most fiercest enemies of Australia. Yes, Warnie has called it a day. And what a way to leave. Riding on a possible 5-0 whitewash of the English, he leaves the game at an utmost high, something only matched by Steve Waugh maybe in the yesteryears.
The Aussies just have a knack of doing it, dont they. They're timing is so damn perfect. Steve couldn't and didn't find a better way to bow out, and nor has Shane. Ofcourse, he takes with him Glenn Mcgrath maybe, and that relieves a lot of nerves for most other batsmen across the globe. Glenn will always be remembered as this fierce competitor, a guy who hated to lose, a guy who could almost not cope with losing, remember Ramnaresh Sarwan. That to a certain extent dipped his popularity. But then, there was always something about Warne. Something that brought back those crowds throning for the one which pitched out leg stump and took the top of off !! Yeah, the ball of the century. The guy still claims it was a fluke, modesty at its heights you would say.
Warne will always be remembered for being this fantastic and entertaining cricketer, fiercely competitive as well. Someone who rose to the challenges posed his way, someone who had no qualms in accepting his failures or his struggles in public. Remember his infamous quote of the 1998 tour of India, he went back and told a local newspaper, "I still have hounding dreams of Tendulkar hitting me for sixes all over the park !!". One of those many instances where Sachin alongside Lara proved to be his biggest menace. His undoings off the field wont be forgotten so easily either, but then, the magnanimity of what he's achieved on that green turf, and on those 22 yards, is something that is just too big to ignore. For someone who revived the dying art of legspin, for someone whose on the brink of creating history by claiming 700 wickets, there was and there is no better way to go out. Yeah, its true that he would've gone off had Australia not let off the Ashes back in England last year. That makes me wonder, damn, had England retained it this year, maybe we would've seen the genius around for another 18 months. His duels with Tendulkar personally on Indian tracks are stuff that cricketing memories are made off. Tendulkar's alteration in stance to counter Warne's bowling from around the stumps is the definition of "tact" for me !! One of those glorious moments in cricket, where 2 champions respected each other mightily but were out to get the other one, get it the way they want ! Love him or hate him, he leaves a deepening void in the game, something thats going be unmatched. The Aussies may still go on to retain the 2007 World Cup, may still continue on this demolishing spree in their quest to always remain the numero uno team, but there never ever will be another Warne, Shane Warne.
For cricket lovers across the world, its a day or mourning, and a day of celebration too, for what the guy has given us over the last decade and a half. Sportsmen can have long lasting impressions on your character. He's done that to me.
Maybe, there would come that day when I would sit in the corner of room and shed tears upon hearing Tendulkar's exit from the game. Thats the reason I say, this is sport, and these are sportsmen.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Static memories

Yesterday's come and gone
You remain a loner
You look forward to so much
but it all melts apart.
You lie there on the couch
Thinking of what better you could've done
It takes you back there
Back to the past
The blood's flowing again
The fingers start to clench
The eyelids kiss each other

and together drop a tear
As imagination runs wild
your back in reflection mode
but you never were told
That today could be so sick
Maybe then
You would've picked
Option 'c' instead of 'b'

But did ya ever know
that life would be so....

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

In You....

In you I've found a reason,
A reason to look ahead...
In you I see my eyes,
Craving for a tear to shed..

In you I've found a sparkle,
A sparkle that relit the fire...
In you I see that drive,
To achieve what I most desire...

In you I see the strength,
and the will to carry on...
In you I try and find,
The purpose for which I was born....

In you I see the license,
Of a bird let free...
In you I'd like to be,
what I dont see in me....

In you I see hope,
Hope of a better tomorrow...
In you I see that life,
A life devoid of sorrow...

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Road trippin'

There are a bunch of people on this planet who believe in living life meticulously, in making sure that whatever happens or whatever that is going to happen has been planned for and executed in that particular way. I don't know if that's a good thing to do or not to do. I can't even guage if it's a good bunch to belong to or not to. But I do know, that by default I fit into that category. I'm usually the kinds who plan my weekends on the friday either on my way to work or back from it. Again, by default, it just so happens that it goes to plan as well.
The weekend must've been the long diwali weekend. A jolly good 5 days (fri-tues) off the rigours of corporate life. As most others were, me too was looking forward to 5 days of peace, 5 days of lounging on my bed watching tv, eating chips and maybe stepping out to catch up on a few plays in town! Now comes the turning point, how mistaken was I? Sac, Sudi n' Ravinder were calling me for this road trip over and over again. I'd kinda made up my mind of not going for many a reason. One of them being this deep notion I had that trips not headed towards the coastline were not as much fun! Well, seems like I was mistaken on that one as well. As I sat pondering that sunday morning, I felt this desperate urge to just drop everything and gooooo. And goooo, I did...Trust GOD to give anyone friends like these. Our men had left town at 10:30 AM and were on the road to Tumkur, when I called them back and they duly obliged....So back home I was after sneaking out of class midway, picked up my back-pack, and there they were waiting, at my doorstep. I hoped on, and then we headed off again. Destination - Hampi.

A journey of 330 odd km was completed in about 5 hours. A beautiful road, 4 good friends, the sun beating down and a jolly ride in the awaiting. Reflecting back, I guess the road was the best part of the trip afterall, what with all 4 of us vying for the driver's seat each time. I ofcourse drove a good 130 odd km of the drive in about 90 mins (good speeds eh!) and felt mightly thrilled about it and after it as well. Hampi beckoned at about 6 PM. We entered the holy portals of this mortal town with the rays of the setting sun hitting us in the eye. Some amount of directionless driving ensured that we consumed an hour more before we reached the only hotel in town. A refreshing shower in the waters of the Tungabhadra i guess, and jeered up we were to give some much needed beer to the tummy!

Food afterall wasn't the best we've eaten in our lives, but nevertheless we relished it maybe because of the tiresome journey. Incidentally, we also managed to hook up with a guide for the next morning tour of the city. Up we were around 8 AM, a good healthy breakfast and with our guide and another very weird gujju family(!!!), off we went on our interior road trip...
It was an absolute pleasure to relive all those memories and bits and pieces of knowledge gained from our history books of the 8th and 9th std's. Whether it be the magnificient Vijaya Vithala temple, or the Queen's bath, the stepped tank or the Maharaja's palace, they all stood out in their enigmatic fervour. Our guide was a very well read man too, explaining in detail to us, all the intracacies of the place, the monuments, the architecture, the history, the craftwork et all. 5 hours round the town had us all soaked in the cultural spirit of Hampi. We bid goodbye to the fella at about 2PM and headed out not knowing where to go.

Alternating between the 4 of us in the car was the map of karnataka. It being monday evening and with tuesday a holiday, none of us were really keen on heading back home just yet it seemed. So we sat there racking our brains to find suitable spots on that small li'l map as the guy at the wheel continued to rip at 100K/hr going where the road took him! Sadly for us, we'd landed up a place much in the central - east side of karnataka where apart from Hampi, there just didn't seem anything else worthwhile. With the next nearest getaway being a good 300K more towards the coastline, guess we unanimously called it off and headed back on the Bangalore highway.
A flat tyre added to the time consuming process, a good stop for lunch at a road side dhaba at 4PM and back we were on the journey home. Another beautiful and much treasured drive brought us back to our abode on the stroke of midnight bringing the curtains down on another memorable trip I've undertaken.
Well, with the whole thing done, there was surely one common thought running in all four of our heads, "These kinda road trips are much called for on a much more regular basis !!!"

Cheers boys, to Hampi's rich culture.....

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

I just wanna....

I woke up this morning with this strange feeling running all over me. There come these instances in your life where you undergo a transition. Some people call it emotional, some say mental, some even say hormonal???? But whatever it is, it's always been something hard to explain...explain to yourself as well as to others. Maybe, today was one such day for me. As tradition says it, in such situations, the first thing to come out the person who hears this, would be, "Oh, you must've woken up from the wrong side of the bed!". Ah, ya the brain adjusts it's thought process differently to different sides of the bed. I'm thinking, maybe I'll buy a circular bed?!?!?!?!? Who knows which side I woke up from! (Atleast, I won't have to hear that crap again...) Ah, sad joke again.
Anyway, I've also realized that in situations like these, you, or rather atleast me, tend to associate it to the lyrics of some song..and that's precisely what I did. I racked my brains to find the perfect song, and I did find it, on my way to work. It was one of my favourites, and continues to remain so. Here goes it....or rather parts of it...

I just wanna feel real love,
Feel the home that I live in.
’cause I got too much life,
Running through my veins, going to waste.....

I don’t wanna die, but I ain’t keen on living either.
Before I fall in love, I’m preparing to leave her.
I scare myself to death, That’s why I keep on running.
Before I’ve arrived, I can see myself coming.

Yeah, Robbie Williams with Feel. A great song with some truly deep lyrics, at least the chorus I must say. And ofcourse, as I sang this on my way to work, it worked on me, more on me, and more and more on me....

Guess I should start doing this kinda stuff more often afterall.

Monday, October 30, 2006

Area of Darkness - How to cope with the death of a parent...

I read this article in the TOI - Letters to Editor section some weeks ago, and since then it's been all over me. Dunno why, but I always go back to reading this article in the most despondent of times I feel. It jeers me up and makes me realize....Damn...I've pulled well so far haven't I...then why can't I just continue doing it !!!! Today, if there's one thing I thank God for after this entire saga, it's for a simple reason. He gave me the time, a lot of time. He prepared me for this eventuality, and he atleast alllowed me to say, "Good-bye Maaaa, I loved you...."

For those who've felt the worst possible heartache any human can go through, read on...for here is something that you will relate to, and something you will carry all your life.

One of the major challenges we face as a palliative care team looking after people with advanced cancer in their homes is helping children prepare for the death of a parent. Nothing is more difficult and more necessary. When it comes to children, there is a shared belief across the board that they should be spared bad news.
Contrary to what we adults may like to believe, children hear and see everything. If ignored, children end up causing themselves unnecessary harm, as they tend to imagine the worst. This often includes blaming themselves for the ill health and death of a parent.
Children need explanation and information just like anyone else. They are keen observers. We may think that we are not communicating with them when we do not speak to them, but we are, in fact, doing so all the time. Our body language and expressions speak for themselves. If we shut children out from what is a momentous event in their lives we run the risk of scarring their psyches forever. This is especially so if the surviving parent does not have a loving relationship with the children or is so wrapped up in personal grief as to be unable to offer support. Such a parent may end up looking for support from children. Children grieve as much as adults do, even though they may not have the language to do so. Their actions speak loud and clear.
Children act up in school and at home when there is trouble close at hand. It is their way of expressing sadness and distress. We as parents, teachers and caregivers need to recognise the emotional turmoil behind these external acts and provide safe avenues for its expression and validation.
Losing a parent at any age is a tragic occurrence. It is traumatic when we are children and our universe revolves around our parents. Our lives are going to change in so many ways and yet no one wishes to prepare us for this or pay attention to our need to be considered part of the family. As adults we might wish to shield our children from the pain of death and separation, but this is a reality that they have to confront sooner or later. While we cannot spare them the pain, we can share it with them, and spare them the guilt of being unable to say their final goodbye to the parent who died.
Children, we are told, fear losing memories of the parent who has died. It is necessary to help them actualise their loss and grief and keep memories alive. This includes talking about the dead parent as often as possible. A family album is a great tool for this. In the West, parents prepare a memory box for their children full of personal knick-knacks that children can look at whenever they feel the need to do so. There are parents who sometimes choose to write letters to children they will never see growing up so that they may open them on special occasions in their lives such as graduation and marriage.
The idea is to help children heal themselves by continuing to keep the relationship with and the memories of the parent they have lost, rather than suppressing memories and holding on to pain and denial.
Support groups for bereaved children facilitate healing. Children hate to be different from their peers. Being the only child who has lost a parent in a classroom setting or in the school is a terrible burden for a child to carry. Meeting with peers who have faced a similar situation is therapeutic suddenly you are not the only one to have lost a parent.
One of the worst things you can do as a parent is lie to your child. If found out, you will lose their trust. It is also a sign that we do not respect our children. If we have a right to know, so do our children, albeit in a fashion that fits in with their level of comprehension. All too often, children know much more than we suspect or give them credit for. If we do not meet their need to know they will look elsewhere. It is better that we give them the information they crave in a loving, gentle and supportive way.
Death is more terrifying for a child than for us. They have fertile imaginations, which can run riot and cause them great anguish. There are children who believe that the parent will become a ghost after death, that a big black bird will pluck out the eyes of a dying parent. Talking to children to gauge their understanding of death is necessary as is the need to openly grieve in front of our children. If we do not cry in front of our children how will they know it is alright to express their sadness? They may grow up suppressing their feelings, unable to come to terms with their sense of loss.
We must share our happy and sad moments with our children if we want them to grow up as healthy and stable emotional beings. If we do not help our children handle death and bereavement we will be crippling them emotionally forever.

The writer is Ms. Harmala Gupta - President, Cansupport (An NGO working towards spreading cancer awareness). Website :

Monday, October 16, 2006

You....yes You...Will you ever........

You - Sitting right there in the corner...
thinking harder, acting smarter....
Wake up...
Who the hell are you trying to fool here?

You - cuddled up in a sense of fright...
ruffled hair, wrinkled eyes...
wake's a time to see, it's a time to live...
What the hell are you achieving in here?

You - with your face clouded in deep smoke...
step on the gas....stop being trash...
Wake up...
When the hell will you cut out that fear?

You - morose and self indulged soul...
looking for pity, craving for sympathy...
wake up...move on...
How the hell did you get in here?

You - yes you, that wretched groggy face..
those skinny bones, those faded eyebrows...

You - yes you, with those nervous trembling hands,
those cold feet and that malicious stand..
Will you ever wake up?
Will you ever see the glow of the sun on your face?
Will you ever sing, dance and rejoice?
Will you ever strain those rusty muscles and smile...
Will you...
Will you ever........

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Of newspapers and TV...

Well, this aint gonna be a scathing attack on the journalism and media sector, however, its again a question that's been pounding my head for a while now. And more often than not, when such questions pound my head, I just can't seem to put them off !! Is that good or bad, well you decide....
To come to the question under fire today, "Isn't Indian journalism perceiving negativity at its heights!!".
To point out my case, let me take the Mumbai blasts in perspective. Well, I am part of the revenue bank of one of India's most prominent national dailies, as a result of which, I have their paper thrown religiously at my balcony every morning. I probably dont literally remember the headlines, but I for sure know, the jist of them all. And here's how it went I think, If I'm not too mistaken.

July 12th - Serial blasts rock Mumbai.
July 13th - Estimated death toll touches 150 and is still rising.
July 14th (By this time, Mumbai was up and running !!!) - Death toll touches 200, police launch nationwide hunt against the suspects.
July 15th - Over 200 people interrogated at Mahim. Suspects still elusive. Mumbai slowly crawling back to its feet.
July 16th - CM announces relief to all injured. Bomb hoax at various places.
July 17th - Are Indian cities equipped to fight terror?
etc etc etc....(forgive me if this information is not absolutely correct. I am just using it as a platform to drive home my point.)

Is there an end to this mayhem? Well ok, we are living in feared times, that's well announced, but why the hell do you want to rub it in dammit !
Lets move to the TV. There isn't a lack of news channels today is there? Afterall, they have a business to run as well, and are bound by normal business policies such as market share, market potential blah blah blah. Now, to put this into perspective as well, almost 6 days after the blasts (the following sunday), a prominent news channel was holding a show, "Mumbai shows it's resilience". A week or so later maybe, the ruckus was still very evident. " SMS _ _ _ _ Y if you think the peace process with Pakistan should be cut off or _ _ _ _ N if you dont think so". Now this was to be the limit for me. I mean, isn't there a limit. For the sake of revenue, for the sake of tapping into larger audiences, you're forgetting that you're putting them(the common man) through the ordeal all over again.
I still vividly remember, on the evening of 18th July, the President Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam was in Mumbai and had announed a nation wide 2 min silence at 18:25 hours in memory of those who succumbed to the henious crimes of the previous week. I was with this French colleague of mine at the Delhi airport at that very moment about to go in for my security check, when I saw these images flashing on TV. I paused, dropped my luggage, placed my right hand over my heart, closed my eyes, and wished for a more peaceful world to live in. A world where journalists had better things to project that blood, a world where human beings could have the same amount of freedom as a butterfly in the sky, a world where the security guard standing right there in front of me (at the airport) would have nothing to do, as a result of which he could look out for a more enhanced employment. Those were 120 seconds where India came to a standstill, 120 powerful seconds where Indians vowed not to bow down to such acts, 120 electric seconds where Indians showed their solidarity with victims of this disaster, 120 seconds, where maybe, every man and woman told him/herself at the back of his/her mind,"Every moment on this planet could be my last!!!"
Well, the expression of solidarity over, I felt this innate feeling of warmth go through me, a feeling of having connected to millions of Indians across the country, only to see them vanquished as I opened my eyes to reality yet again, and this time, I squarely blame journalism for it. As I opened my eyes, the TV screen was poised right there in front of me, as if India's TV journalists were telling me, "You gotta see buddy, you just can't ignore it". On screen, was this woman journalist, asking a man at Churchgate station in Mumbai,"Ek hafte ke baad, aapko kya mahsuus ho raha hai? (What are you feelings like, a week into the incident?)". Thats when I told myself, damn, to hell with you man. Here is a country trying hard to put the past behind herself, and move ahead, a country and a city determined to truly 'move on', then why are you holding us back???? Aren't there some things you really want to forget quickly in life? Well, these may also be the same things you just can't seem to forget either. But when, there's somebody behind your back trying to drive it into you each and every time, I'd surely not forget it as much as I'd want too. And maybe, I'd let my inability to forget vent itself out on the cause, in this case, journalism.
For starters, aren't there good things happening in this world today. How often have you opened the newspaper, to see a truly inspirational headline hit your eye? How often have you switched on the TV not to see stories of blasts, deaths, rapes, murders etc.? Well, these are important in their own rights too, and it's the duty of the media to highlight these to keep the common man informed. But, but, but...there is a but to it......afterall.
When will I wake up to see the picture of a blind boy or girl trying to study and enhance his/her knowledge? When will I wake up to see a 15 year old kid, doing his/her best to support his/her ailing parents? When will I wake up to see an inspirational act, be it in politics, sport, academics etc truly grab the headlines? When will I wake up to see the underlying words, love, compassion, human spirit strewn all over the headlines?
I've started longing for this day now. And it's also important, that amidst all the noise, journalists do realize that life goes on afterall, and it's not necessary to sit back and harp on the past, rather, it's about aiding the common man in his journey ahead. Whether that be to instill faith and inspiration in him, whether that be to throw light in his path, or whether that be to just help him forget the past, I don't know! It's something you guys (the journalists) need to analyse for yourself.
As for me, that's probably why I've started reading the newspaper only at night. Cuz afterall, sleep beckons soon after, and I wake up the next morning with filtered and clean thoughts. Most of the headlines would've seeped through my memory during the night ofcourse, cuz if I were to avoid heading the paranoic way, It's time I learnt to forget !

Monday, June 26, 2006

When passion overrides common sense....

As I carefully watched the progress of the 2nd match yesterday, the match which was to decide who would meet England in the quarters, the battle of 2 European powerhouses (Portugal and Holland), none short of pride or footballing skill or history, I couldn't help but think of two things FIFA have been publicly promoting throughout this World Cup campaign - 'A time to make friends' & 'Fair Play'. But sadly, very sadly, none of it worked yesterday.
A bruised and battered Portugal will now take on England in the quarter finals on the 1st of July, and I can't help but think, if this is afterall England's World Cup!!! Everything just seems to be falling into their platter as and when they need it, they're barely getting the goals to take them through and destiny has supported them with their scruffy defending.
As Steve Mc'mahan said at the end of the game yesterday, "The true winners and beneficiaries of all the mess that unfolded last night is England'.
Luiz Felipe Scolari would have to bring out his magic wand if he were to put it past England again this time. No Deco, No Costinha, an injured Ronaldo and a captain Luis Figo likely to face further implications for his head butt on Mark Van Bommel(a 3 match ban as per standard FIFA regulations), are the least of worries that poses Big Phil right now. With Pauleta not scoring as many, and the teeth taken off both his wings, Scolari will be up against the odds on Saturday at Gelsenkirshen, hoping against hope that Maniche would deal the final blow yet again. Add to it the fact that if England were to score first and score early, then our good ol' man Sven would revert to his most shambolic ways - Defense. He'll simply pack the midfield and with Scolari hardly left with any attacking options to choose from, I can just about see this turning out into another school boys encounter. People are ceasing to ask whether England are reserving their best for the rest, but I just can't seem to digest that one!!!!
With every passing day in this most eventful 2006 FIFA World Cup, my belief in destiny and its support to England seem to multiply.
Sometimes, the best footballing teams play the most boring football, cuz' they're not interesting in entertaining people, they're interested in Winning. England seem to be on that course now.

Sunday, June 25, 2006

I guess I'll die another day...

That’s precisely what England are saying to themselves at this point of time. Yes, they’ve lived to fight another day in Germany, but it’s going to be just another day, only one more day.
Portugal or Netherlands would determine their future in this World Cup, and as I write this, neither you nor I nor the rest of the world knows who it’s gonna be. But one thing’s for sure. England have had it dead damn easy till now, but it ain’t getting easy from here on.
Continuing to be the die hard English fan that I am, and given a choice between Portugal and the Dutch, I would pick neither, but under the circumstances we're in now, I’d wish for the Dutch. And I’d substantiate this wish by saying that the Dutch look weak at the back, and that’s England’s chance, the only chance. Scolari I’m sure is already plotting England’s downfall again, and if he were to get there, no one would dispute the fact that he’d win the battle over Sven once again, a repeat of Euro 2004. In comparison, Marco Van Basten does have a very energetic and young squad, the kinds that get over excited every now and then, and herein lies England’s chance.
I’m struggling to look at the positives they’ve had from this game, and there’s hardly anything to count from. No team is ever gonna win the world cup by scoring from dead ball situations. You need to make more of open play, and crack defenses open, the kinds England are not able to do right now. They look listless, directionless, unfocused, dispassionate, disillusioned, wary, creatively lost in a maze and physically exhausted. And yet again, it’s the Sven aroma! Initially, I was happy that he’d gone with the 4-5-1 system, somewhere deep down thinking, he did read my blog afterall! But then, you can't test something in a knock out match can you, you need to have worked on it in the past and ensured that it would work to your advantage. Did England’s performance suggest that they worked on this formula earlier– NO!
As I tire my eyes to look through the statistics of this game and what it unfolds for the future, the only thing that hits me is this. England’s most energetic (and I use the word energetic, not best) performance came against Sweden – A European nation. Whom are they gonna face next – A European nation! The other 3 teams they’ve seen off till now have been non-European, having their distinct way of playing football, the kinds England struggle to get used too. Most European countries play the same brand of football, the pacy, hard fought midfield battles, and this is what England is decently good at, though they’re yet to show that as well. As I look at the the Dutch or the Portuguese, I’ve come to realize, that they’ll stretch England, and in turn England can stretch them too. Whether they really do it, is left to them. Though, a close watch at the Sweden game would make you ponder, that Sweden did stretch them after all, and they did stand up to the test, albeit with a couple of defensive blunders. That’s precisely the only positive I can take out of this game!
If I had the rights to enter the England dressing room today, I’d go in there and stick this banner up loud and clear – ‘You’re just living to die another day!’

Saturday, June 17, 2006

England – In strategic turmoil...

Yes, I’m writing this. Just to clarify, I’m also writing this in my complete senses. I’m probably one of the biggest fans of the English game and the EPL, which by default, makes me support England too. But then, the last 2 games of the world cup, which have featured England, have made me realize the true meaning of ‘STRATEGY’. Yeah, the word is all over the place. You talk of business strategy, market strategy, product strategy, it’s everywhere, and in simple terms what does it mean – A PLAN.
Does England have it when they get on the football field? NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO……..
Eleven individually talented players, eleven exceptionally skillful men with the ball at their feet, all eleven of them world class in their own right, and one _______ (you fill it up!!!) as a manager. Yes, I’m talking about Sven. This article’s not about England’s shambolic performance at the world cup so far, but is about England’s shambolic management in the world cup so far!!
Firstly, don’t blame any of the players. All of them are doing what they’ve been told to do. And who tells them what to do – Sven Goran Ericcson! A guy whose already hung up his boots and is hardly bothered about England’s progress / doom in this world cup. A guy whose been with this team for the last 5 years and has hardly done anything to suggest, that he was the right man for this job. A guy who seems to have to the least amount of passion for the job, or the country, or its players, or its fans – at least he shows very less. Let me give you examples, infact lets analyze individual players:

The Captain – David Beckham. For me, he’s the Sourav Ganguly of India. Ok, I might be too harsh on him by saying that, but he’s very close. Amazing looks, no disputing that. If I were a woman, I’d have tripped for him as well. But let’s talk football. For me, he shouldn’t start, or even if he does, he should come off at half time or so, especially if the game goes the way it did against T&T. He is the prime reason, behind England’s lack of pace. He negates all of it, simply because he can’t make any kind of darting runs at defenders. For England to progress far in this tournament, they have to inject pace into themselves, and Beckham’s presence will kill it on the right flank.
Let’s talk at what Beckham does best – To deliver classy balls in the box. Alright, you have Crouch now. But then, Rooney’s fit and he is most likely to start against Sweden and for all the remaining games of the World Cup. Owen partnering him would be an obvious choice. Both short guys, which in effect means, that Beckham’s crosses into the box are negated, and England will have to revert to the short passing game.
Now in a situation like this, whose gotta take a call – The coach. Will he? I doubt it, seriously! Beckham will play 90 minutes of all England games, rest assured, as long as Sven is at the helm of things, and adding salt to injury, would be the fact that Crouch will start too, to support what Beckham’s primarily there to do.
The kingpin – Steven Gerrard. For me, he’s the best player in the World, and what’s he best at doing – Controlling the play. Has he been allowed to do that with England? NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO…..
In more ways than one, England have sinned themselves by bringing out 2 exceptionally talented midfielders, Lampard & Gerrard at the same time. Both play the same kind of football, in the same position, excepting the fact that Gerrard gets back more often to help his defenders out, forcing him to play 2nd fiddle to Lampard when they pair up for England. People, who’ve seen Gerrard play for Liverpool, especially over the last season, couldn’t have ignored the metal he’s made off.
So what does Sven do again? Nothing, I mean nothing. He continues to play both of them in the same position, and you can see, Gerrard is not happy & is neither comfortable, but country comes first, doesn’t it! Truly experienced coaches have the power to identify loopholes like these and fix it immediately. Sven I’m sure has the brains to figure it out as well, or the press might have told him by now, but the difference being – He’s too afraid to do something about it.
For me, I’ve always maintained it. England should at least try playing 5 in midfield, with Carragher or Owen Hargreaves playing the holding role in midfield. This gives both Gerrard & Lampard to oppurtunity to push up, create a link up with the forwards and thus crack open defences. Remember, this also gives Gerrard the opportunity to show the power of his right foot from 25-30 yards out, the stuff he’s been dishing out for Liverpool regularly over the last season. I still do remember, Sven had the audacity to try this out during one of the qualifiers, and it worked wonders, with Ledley King doing the holding role. But why did he try it then? Only because one of his regular forwards (I don’t remember who!) was injured, so he just left 1 upfront and played 5 across the middle of the park. How can he do it now, with both Owen & now Rooney fit as well? is the million dollar question.
Innovation i believe, is totally lost on this guy.
The motivator – Wayne Rooney. Ask any English fan, whose gonna get the goals at the World Cup, pop comes out one name – Rooney. His injury was most unfortunate for himself and England. But ofcourse, the Gods must’ve been crazy, to get him fit so quickly. Nevertheless, he’s not gonna get goals out of nowhere, he needs support, which ain’t coming right now, because of the mind block Sven has created for himself and England in midfield. Though, no one would dispute the fact that he’s one helluva motivator. If not for him coming on against T&T, England might have well settled for a draw.
The silent performer – Joe Cole. For me, he’s England’s trump card. He’s been quietly performing week in, week out for Chelsea and has in the process solved one of England’s biggest nightmares – The search for a left sided midfielder! The only one in the England squad right now, whose got the ‘ballzzz’ to run at defenders and beat them too.
The Rock – John Terry. He’s the sole reason why I believe England are still tough to beat in this World Cup. If his goal line clearance against T&T is anything to go by, then rest assured, scoring against England is as tough as it can get. Ok, England aren’t scoring goals, or aren’t playing the kind of football they’re known or supposed to play, but they’re not conceding either, and that’s the only positive aspect for them so far, the credit of which largely goes to this man in my dock right now.
The poacher – Micheal Owen. Class is permanent, form is temporary. I believe, it’s just a matter of time. Leave this guy alone for a while, and he’ll get back to doing what he does best. Scoring goals! Yet again, don’t squarely blame him, because the midfield right now is just not doing enough to facilitate him.
The creator – Frank Lampard. I believe this guy is confused. His understanding with Gerrard has not been of the highest quality, leaving him in the wrong positions with the wrong frame of mind most of the time, not sure whether to shoot or to pass. Yet another illustration of the doom England are bringing upon themselves with Sven’s rigidity.
The rest, Paul Robinson, Ashley Cole, Rio Ferdinand & Gary Neville, well, they aren’t doing anything substantially great or grave to alter the course of things. So let’s just let them be.
I don’t know how many of you know about Sam Allerdyce – The Bolton Wanderers coach. If I was the president of the FA, I’d have paid him bombs to get him here and manage this team. Cuz, after all it takes someone like him and his pedigree (going by what he’s done at Bolton over the years) to change the fortunes of this team, and more so, he is English!!!
Overall, I’d still support this team till their last appearance in this World Cup, but can’t help appalling the tactics of the Ol’ man. Add to it his attitude or the lack of it, and any English fan across the globe would boil with fury. Going by what Argentina did to S&M yesterday, going by what Spain did to Ukraine, or going by what the Czech did to USA, if England continue this way, the last 8 (maybe, that’s an overestimation as well, if they end up meeting the host team in the round of 16) will be the farthest they will get..
Wake up Sven, wake up. Be a MAN.

Thursday, June 08, 2006

and I'm down with the sickness...

Add me to the casualty list !!!
Yes, I've been smitten and smitten hard. I'm truly going down with the sickness, the Soccer Sickness (SS). It's getting increasingly tough to concentrate on anything right now. As ESPNStar say 'Life is in an 8 inch diameter now'. Blame it on publicity, blame it on the beautiful game itself or blame it on the players and the hype surrounding them, it still has to be accepted, that football is the single largest thing that binds the world, that cuts across barries, bridging gaps, refuelling lost causes and evoking charm.
It's less than 24 hours and it's probably gonna be the most testing for me in terms of holding back my excitement. Brazil, england, spain, france, portugal, argentina, italy, netherlands, czech, sweden...woaaah..they're all in there. Personally, I'm rooting for the English...Booooooo, all you Brazilian fans might be saying, but huh, What if they are the most flamboyant afterall !! All of you would still agree, that if there's anyone whose gonna come the closest in challenging them, its gotta be England..
So let's pray and hope for 31 injury free days, filled up drama, excitement, joy, sorrow (for 31 teams), hope & immortality. Let's also hope that amidst all the noise, the referres dont snatch all the limelight, cuz in most cases, when they do so, its for the wrong reasons !!!

Cheers to a memorable world cup at Germany 06. Happy Watching....

Thursday, May 25, 2006

The journey so far......

Quite frankly, I’m pretty jobless in office today, and that’s the reason why this article comes your way. People say, ‘An idle mind is a devil’s abode’. For me, it works slightly differently. ‘My idle mind is my creative side’s chance to blossom’. Given that, I just wouldn’t mind being idle more often than I am now, if in the process, its gonna enhance my creativity!
I was thinking today, all of the possible things I could write about, and bang – there was no end to the thought process. Firstly, I wanted to write an article on myself, then one on my so-called ‘Top 10 reasons to live’, one of course on my BOSS (?!??!?!?!?, don’t worry, its not going to be derogatory), and one dedicated to my mum!
So here I kick start it all off, and guys – pls don’t blame me if you don’t after all see the other posts I’ve mentioned above, simply because, my thought process is undergoing a rapid series of changes these days, sometime I’m trying hard to cope with.

In that line of order, the first one takes off, right here, right now.

This one’s a take on my life, my experiences over a span of 23 years, my methodologies, my beliefs, my thought process, what life has given me, what I’ve given life, how I look at life today, How I’d want to look at it in the future, my, my, my … blah blah blah… (Ah, what a selfish guy, writing only about himself! But whaddha hell..)

Today, I believe in certain concrete things. I also believe in certain statements, some of them created by me, for me, and some created for me by some GOD-sent strangers or should I say literates. So here goes....

I believe I’m an average guy, no better or worse than the one next door..

I believe I’m fighting life every step of the way. My turn to enjoy the essence of it is yet to come, but I do know, it’s somewhere round the corner..

I believe that GOD has sent me onto Planet Earth to fight my sophisticated opponent, and that opponent is called – LIFE. I also know that my sternest test is going on right now, at this very moment.

I know for sure, that I’ve seen the worst of it all at 22, and that’s the reason I’m still alive today, cause the future can only be better, much better…
Today, as I stand at another crossroad of this journey, my past experiences are whispering to me, "You've lived long enough to know that anything's possible, anything", and I've been compelled to believe this.
On the road to this juncture in life, I've gone on to become fiercely independent by the moment, learning it the hard way in the process, and this i guess, is my biggest strength today.
As Pearl Buck says ‘Inside myself is a place, where I live all alone, and that’s where I renew my spirits, that never dry up’. I worship him, for coming up with this.

I’m extremely religious. I fear GOD, cause I’ve come to realize, that he’s the Master. He’ll stretch you to the limit, and still have his way. That’s his power, and those kinda powers are only to be worshipped, not ignored or messed around with.

I know I’m not cut out for a 9-6 job. There’s a creative self within me dying to come out, dying to show to the outer world, what he’s made off.

I’m still trying to figure out, the who’s, what’s and why’s behind me being an engineer today. I just don’t feel cut out for this…Damn (This calls for a SWOT analysis)

I know for sure, that before I get the call of the ktulu, I’d have put my hands into all of the following – an MBA in marketing (just as an avenue to open up my mind and make me look at life and it’s situations more differently than the way I am doing right now), theatre (something, I’m already into today), playing a part in cancer awareness, RJing, modelling(?!??!?!) and advertising. Somewhere in between, if I’m jobless, I might have done a desk job too, like the one I’m doing now.

The above statement might make you want to say, ‘This guy is confused, totally confused’. Strictly speaking, I’m not…and yeah, someday I'll learn to play the drums or the guitar maybe, cause I don't wanna go to my grave thinking, 'Freak, I didn't learn a single musical instrument all my life!'

I believe in spreading a smile, onto every person’s face. Dunno, how far I’ve gone in achieving that. I still get a large amount of satisfaction, when I see someone smile or laugh cause of something I said or did.

I’ve had no derth of friends, and I truly thank GOD for this. It’s an irreplaceable gift.

My friends abhor my sense of humour. Some of them say, that I’m still trying hard, very hard to reach the average level of humour, but nevertheless, they do laugh at my wisecracks, occasionally…very occasionally; most other times they beat me up!

I’m very conscious of the way I look, even within the 4 walls of my own room.
I love clothes. Well, who doesnt ! To add to the misery, I mostly shop alone, cause I dont want anyone else's opinion in this matter ?!??!?!? Weird, aint it !

I introspect a lot. Every now and then, I sit down to think of how my days have gone by, my reactions to situations, to people, and how differently I could’ve done it.
I’m a cleanliness freak. Everything around me, should be spic n' span. Drop by my house, and you’ll see for yourself!

My perspectives today, are quite different from most 23 year olds. Sometimes, my brother says ‘ You talk like a 45 year old’. Frankly, I don’t want to, I’ve been made to. And, that's the reason I act like a 6 yr old, at times !

If I were to live out the average age of a human being today, I’d say 40% of it is almost over. By the time the next 40% comes around, my take on all of the issues mentioned above might be drastically different…Hope they are as well, otherwise, what’s the meaning of ‘Evolution’.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

AIDS vs. Cancer

This article would surprise a lot of you again I would think, but don’t most of my articles do so? It’s been on my mind for quite a while, and I always felt I needed to write about it, simply because, I couldn’t hold back the reasoning within me.
Firstly, for all those reading this, please note that I am no medical practitioner, neither am I here to discuss the medical consequences of AIDS over Cancer or vice versa. Let me also make it clear, that I have no intentions of maligning / harming any organization, image or person who were/are contributing towards the fight against any of the above mentioned 2 diseases.
For all those who’ve known me well, will also know, why I’m writing this article today. I’m doing so because I feel it relevant enough to talk about the awareness levels of these 2 diseases amongst the youth of this country today. I’ve also begun to genuinely indulge myself in this subject nowadays and it wont be too long, before which I decide to stand up and help the millions fighting against the subject in question.
I was just about completing 21 years on planet Earth when this word was thrown before me, almost forcing me to embrace it and take it into my stride. Not one to deter, I did the most defaulted thing there was to do – embrace it, albeit with loads of apprehensions. Back then; I had no idea what Cancer was all about. Truly, my knowledge of the subject was Zilch! Don’t know, If I was so naïve not to know about it, or was society at large ignorant of this word and its consequences, which in turn led to my downfall. And herein, lies my question:

Why is the youth of today so much more aware of AIDS and its consequences as compared to CANCER, or for that matter of fact, any other deadly disease there is?

But, I’m going to talk about Cancer in particular, because, I don’t see it as any less deadlier than AIDS today.
I might be totally wrong in putting up this question itself, but as I’ve observed and lived everyday of my life, continuously interacting with a number of people of my age in the process, I’ve come to believe in this very question itself, and my strife to find the reasoning behind it is also taking unimaginable proportions by the day.
Yesterday, I was watching a cricket match on ESPN. Ceremoniously, at the end of the over, they broke off into a commercial break. On came, Virender Sehwag speaking in his highly developed and very new English language, trying to spread the message that he of course has everything now, but what about the millions suffering from AIDS, especially children. Another one that stands out was the commercial I saw at PVR the other night, where this lady gives statistical figures of the number of women affected by AIDS today, simply because, their husbands didn’t believe in the concept of condoms. A few standouts amongst the many sincere calls made by celebrities/ the common man alike, across the world to join hands in the fight against AIDS. I truly appreciate these efforts. I also truly commend The World Health Organization (WHO) and other health organizations / Governments / NGO’s etc who are working day and night in their effort to support AIDS victims as well as spread the awareness of AIDS. I also do believe like most of us do, that they have achieved at least 30% of their motive today, going by the encouraging results (albeit small) right in front of us, that too in an progressively developing country like India.
But I just wonder, somewhere down the lane, have we neglected other and equally important diseases, such as Cancer.
How else would you explain the fact, that 4 out of 6 people I asked had no idea what ‘Chemotherapy’ was all about, but they did know, the various means through which AIDS could be spread? How else would you explain the fact, that the same percentage of people actually said that ‘Cancer is a curable disease and has been medically proven’, when posed with the inevitable question? How else would you explain the fact, that many people I asked didn’t have much idea of how Cancer was caused, or the general foundation for Cancer cells to grow, whereas, they not only knew the full form of the acronym AIDS but also knew the necessary precaution to be taken to avoid being on the receiving end of it? A small number you might say. A number that does not truly reflect the medical knowledge of Indian citizens you might say. A number that needs to be much larger and must be able to cut through diverse barriers of culture; if we were to draw such conclusions, you might say. But all said and done, I didn’t do it as part of some national survey. I did it on a random basis just to see if it enhances my belief even more, and you bet, it did – That Cancer is after all not as popular amongst the Indian public as compared to AIDS, and more often than not, it acts as a second fiddle to the big daddy himself.
And now to reason out, why I believe, Cancer is as dangerous and needs to be given as much importance as AIDS. At the outset, before I go into this, its vital to know, that Cancer has not yet been completely cured today – which leaves it on the same benchmark as AIDS! This in itself is a grave misconception, a trap that I fell into myself. Across the world today; humans have done a grave mistake by generalizing the world Cancer. Cancer in itself is just a parent object, with millions of child objects that are actually responsible for the consequences, this disease is known to possess. This inturn has played a role in the overall assumption that Cancer is cured today. As most of you would know, Cancer occurs in various forms and in various parts of the body, and each of them are genetically totally different from each other. As far as I know, and I may be wrong as well, breast Cancer and a few others are the only ones for which standardized cures have been found. But then again, note the word ‘standardized’. These cannot be considered as permanent remedies simply because they don’t have the same consistency when tried on different patients. The most vital thing in Cancer is the stage in which it is detected. Oncologists across the world, rarely carry a glimmer of hope, when Cancer is detected at Stage III or above, though they never openly express it (there are the miraculous exceptions of course). However, it is also true, that Oncologists would most probably give a breast cancer patient more chance of surviving as compared to someone else, simply because, standardized solutions are now available for these, and they have a very high probability of working (but never 100%). Not to forget that the biggest thing about Cancer, is the symptoms it produces, which in many cases, are so well hidden that the patient could continue living a normal life till the cells progress into Stage IIC or IIIA.
True blue media hype whenever such solutions have been found, have also been dramatically responsible in spreading the wrong notions. For ex, I read this article in the newspaper the other day. The headlines said ‘___________ Institute of Oncology successfully tests Cancer drug.’ As I went on to read, the article was specifically pertaining to bone marrow Cancer. I was left thinking, how ridiculous can it get? When the research is specifically meant for bone marrow Cancer, why can’t they explicitly mention it! For someone who indulges himself only in headlines, couldn’t this prove to be a big disaster?
Overall, I am not saying that Cancer and its cause / effects haven’t been promoted properly by the corresponding organizations, but what’s being done is surely not enough. It just pains me to read statistics of the number of people succumbing to Cancer every year, and to then realize; that the number is actually not too far behind AIDS itself!
I just hope that positive steps would be taken in this direction to spread awareness of this deadly disease, firstly amongst the educated youth of this country. I on my part am ready to do anything, to help in this cause….