Friday, September 26, 2008

An Inconsequential Evening

It has been 1 long year since I left my 2nd home Kolkata (or Calcutta which ever you prefer) to work in Hyderabad. 1 year filled with incidents which as my room-mate says by quantity equals to the previous 20 some years in my life. I could have argued with him but truly the last 12 months have had so many incidents that I cant refute his claim easily.
But this post is not about the one year that just zipped by.
That summation was done by Marc Evans, my current "On-Shore Contact". Marc being typically the administrative guy that he is, summed up all the major incidents in my work sphere today evening, at a video conference set-up on my insistence. He was clearly at a loss of what to say. But again that is something else.
To celebrate I had planned to have an evening out. Sadly yesterday (the actual anniversary) morning was not among the best mornings & as an after-effect the evening was spent doing nothing important. Actually doing nothing atall
Today right after the conference I escaped from the modern day prison & landed up home. I did not enter & called up my flat-mate to join me in the restaurant right on the main-road. We planned the best for next week & had some delicious food. It tasted better because it is cheap. & considering it is the fag end of the month.....

Next we pushed off to the closest movie hall to watch the latest Shyam Benegal movie Welcome to Sajjanpur. A nice movie. The basic plot was fresh & the cemetography was great. But lately I have been expecting a lot from every-one & I left the hall thinking about what would have made it WOW.
I would have actually expected Munni-Bai to be dead in the end like the Compounder Ramkumar & his love. I would have expected a much stronger message from the movie. But I must give accolades & be happy with some other points.
The very concept of a letter-writer prespective was lovely. & very well enacted by Shreyas Talpade.
I must give kudos of presenting a transvite as a politician. They are pushed away from society & we must start accepting them as humans & our equals.
The fact that often someone helps us & we never end up saying thank-you to him/her was also shown.
And often people forget for their own petty narrow gains that they may be harming some-one else
The song "Desh Bhi Azad Hain" has fantastic lyrics & though I had visualized it some-what differently had pretty good picture-i-zation
The song "Abh Munni ki aayi bari" was perfect.

Keeping up with the latest fad of saying completely random stuff in some conversation I would shift to the brisk walk that me & my room-mate took post the movie.
Right near our home we came across a drunk. He was walking all across the road. He must have tripped some-where & was bleeding from his arm. My room-mate & I crossed him discussing what help we could have done to him. Whether we have medicines at home for him or could we take him to his home? What is the difference between a poor drunk labourer & a rich drunk brat? Sadly(!!!????) Shockingly(?????!!!!!!!) we just passed him & got back home.
He might still be roaming around at the dead of the night now. He might not have a home to go. He actually might not be drunk but have escaped an accident. Who knows? Who cares?
I once proudly claimed to some Londoners that Indians are perhaps the best host & the most helpful people. People would rush at a blast site to help those affected & take them to hospitals.
Today I feel ashamed to say that I behaved as a hypocrite. I would rather take side of a car-driver when he has crashed into an cyclist & argue with the crowed that has gathered than actually try & learn the local language to try & understand what my maid wants to tell me.

Where am I going wrong? Do you have an answer?

Friday, September 5, 2008

A Long Journey

From someone who can do nothing wrong to someone who can do nothing right... the journey is long... extremely long

Have you ever wondered how much long the journey life is?
Well the thing in your mind that is going i guess is "well nothing new in that. everyone knows life is a long journey"

Let us now relate the changes that one goes through.

A forward i received once. (yes i do take pains to read forwards. I am typically work-less to give even forwards importance)
A baby says "My Daddy Strongest" (yes horlicks did catch this mood very correctly). He is also the most intelligent man. All probs are so easily solved when he is around.
A teenager say "%#!$!& cant understand simple stuff". well not every teenager would say so i agree but all have atleast been frustrated enough to question the intelligence of his father.
A young man says "Old Man". A 30 something says "I know you need not give unsolicited advice on some thing you dont understand". A 40 something says "I think he may not be totally wrong". A 50 something says "How did he......"

Okiez you have either remembered the forward or have got the drift.
Now i guess you are wondering where does journey come into this & this blog.
No i am not an teenager any more to complain about my Dad. I am in my 20 something & i cant complain any more. He died some time ago.
Well i made that journey some time back.

Sorry i wont be able to tell that story. It is personal & i am not yet ready to put it on a blog for public reading.

Incidentally i have made quite a few journeys along with that.
1. I had said i would not advertise my blog. I have changed moved from that stance to 1 where i shamelessly put it up in my status message
2. Once i wanted not to post personal views. I realized that i post stuff whch are actually my views. I cannot but help make personal comments or put in stuff for which i have a personal bias
3. Once upon a time i had wished i would stop cribing & be happy with all that i have. I realized i cannot be happy come what may.

I have serious no idea why i posted this blog.
I started writing at i time when i was at least in the position to post a blog. I guess i needed to vent out my feelings somehow>

I have come to a position where i would start writing on something i have least idea on (contary what i would like people to belive). Please bear with me. I have nothing more to contribute at this moment

Take care

Have Fun

Monday, September 1, 2008

1 Particular Statistic

In a country not so far away, there used to be 1 Prime Minister named Mahamantri.

The parliament had started only 5 weeks in the summer & he was already in a position where he wished that the post of Prime Minister had bit more glory than the gory that he had to face.

15 minutes into the Question Hour today, he was asked why healthy lifestock were being smuggled across the border. And the question was raised by none other than the leader of the opposition Gyanpapi himself. The issue that Gyanpapi wanted to be discussed was how the government could allow the sacred alligator to be smuggled across to be slaughtered along with sick or dieing livestock.

He was furious when he returned to his office half an hour before lunch on a Tuesday. The blistering heat outside his fully climate regulated office was adding up his anger for sure. He after all, would have to lunch with some rich international business-man. The eccentric businessman was the owner of the Kalo Koila. He had sales all over the world & was listed in the Fortune 10 list of richest people. But he remembered his roots & had a farmhouse just outside the capital. The Prime-Minister needed to visit him there to request sponsorship of a new power plant. But that is a separate story.

The Prime Minister called his Head of Animal Department Janoar & asked him to come to his office. The conversation was short & as follows.

Janoar: Good Morning Sir

Mahamantri: How many alligators are smuggled out of the country?

Janoar: emmm I……. think Sir not many. Cant be many

Mahamantri: Who would know? You obviously never know anything.

Janoar: Sir I do know something….

Mahamantri: Ok tell me the exact count of living livestock in the country?

Janoar: emmmmm…..errrrrr….

Mahamantri: I give you 7 days time. By next Wednesday Morning Hour I must know the exact figure. Now go & send me Jagroto

Janoar: yes Sir

& Janoar fled the office.

He stopped by the department of Foreign Trade previously part of Department of Trade to tell Jagroto of the Big Boss call. Jagroto practically scampered from his couch almost toppling the new secretary.

Janoar was too distressed with his own problem at hand that he gave the cute girl a pass-by-glance & headed towards the Department of Plants, headed by Bhuson. The Daily had recently run a story where they meticulously proved that Bhuson & Janoar were young dynamic bureaucrats along with being partners in crime for quite a few recent political turmoil’s. They were after-all childhood friends. Langotia Yaar literally.

Janoar: I am doomed

Bhuson: What did you do this time?

Janoar: Big Boss wants to know the exact count of livestock in the country.

Bhuson: ooh…. You are doomed. Let me think.

Bhuson lighted an imported cigarette. He has been smoking these ever since he started traveling abroad & frequenting the foreign bureaucrats club.

Bhuson: Let us just form a committee for Livestock Count. And actually we two are enough. & let us ask all the State Head's to report to us how many livestock they have at their states. We would add up the numbers & that should suffice.

Janoar: Ok. Let us send a circular right now. Time they have is till next Tuesday afternoon.

The State Heads received a simple circular almost as the same time Mahamantri sat down for lunch on the ground in the blistering heat. Well not directly in the sun but in a shade created by hay. The eccentric owner of Kalo Koila loves to be in sync with Mother Nature. But that is a separate story altogether. The circular stated in the grandiose bureaucratic language to send over the count of total livestock along with count of alligators.

The State Head of East didn’t waste time & by the time Mahamantri was getting up from lunch they were in a meeting with his most trusted workers trying to figure out the exact count of livestock. What they did figure out after a good amount of time spent deciding what to eat in that impromptu meeting, which was just after lunch for most, was to take a stand similar to the centre was the best route. A circular went out to all Heads of District in the state that they had time till Monday lunch to report in the count of livestock in their district.

Champak was the Junior State TT Champion when he was only 11 yrs old. He had always been the sportsman. His admission to every sphere of his life was through sports. Well the Sports Quota was above all quotas. And he had used it well. He never studied but scraped through college before he got into the bureaucracy & was the Head of District of Aampara. Today afternoon he was playing TT with Kanu, his counterpart in Exchequer. He had won the 1st set. Lost the 2nd and at lead with 19-17 in the 3rd. They usually played 5 sets every Tuesday afternoon before hitting the bar. Since both were through sports quota they needed to keep their practice up. After all this was the only thing to do.

Bamu the secretary of Champak walked into the sports floor with the circular. It was marked urgent. Champak had no interest in the circular especially when he felt he had got his form finally. He told Bamu to put it in his dispatch box. He would read it sometime. Anyways no work can be done once it was afternoon. When he reached home that night he had to listen to his wife’s day & plan for their week-end trip to the outing at Murguma. He had to promise to take her shopping tomorrow before they could retire for the night. He read the circular in the car ride next morning but didn’t find time to think on it. Wednesday’s were always busy days. And he had to leave early. The shopping trip is obviously accompanied with a movie in a multiplex dinner at some swanky restaurant. He was fuming the next day when he realized the total amount he had to shell out for the Murguma trip. But he could not back out since many of the state’s bureaucrats were going. Friday went by planning & getting ready for the weekend. Saturday morning they left.

As it happens in all of these trips or parties, the bureaucrats got together in the bar & the females got together in the spa. Saturday zoomed by & it was the last round of drinks on Sunday late afternoon when Champak was in a group where Sidhu the District head from Jaampara was entertaining them with a story of a silly circular from the State Head. Sidhu trying to showcase his brilliance declared that he had applied statistics to find the number. He didn’t want to waste time to find the number through census but had taken two sample areas of 10 cubic fins & then calculated for the whole state. He of course didn’t mention that he was sure of the area of the two plots because he was the owner of both. The second one was behind his office & he had counted the number of livestock in it during Thursday afternoon siesta & just because he could not sleep. The brilliant stroke of using statistic had come since he was musing about Sheetal his college crush. She was in the same class & he distinctly remembers the first time she had smiled at him. The professor was talking something about sampling. For statistic of the whole population sampling allows one to to do something. A small sample would give the values of the population. He had sent the report on Friday.

Champak realized that he had to send his report too. While returning he asked the driver to stop at a plot. He knew that this plot was of 10 cubic fins. He had received a packet from the owner of it. While counting in the fading light of twilight he could not decipher whether the last animal on the field was an alligator or a crocodile. So he marked 5.5 alligators & 16 livestock. He knew the plot was of 10 cubic fins & he had total of 65780 cubic fins in his district. So he should have 36179 alligators & 1052480 livestock. He sent his report 1st thing on Monday morning. The State Head’s personal secretary Sheetal, added all the numbers & submitted a report to the State Head on Monday evening. She did not mention that not all districts had sent the figures yet. She averaged out the received values & multiplied it with number of states. She had a major in Statistics though she would agree that through college she was more interested in counting the number of hearts she broke. She got a tongue lashing for being late. She had been waiting for it since Monday can't end without one. The report was immediately dispatched for the centre.

Tuesday morning Janoar’s most trusted aide summed up the numbers after calling secretary of State Head of North to send their figure immediately.

Janoar was very please when he got the neatly typed perfectly worded report was placed on his desk. He appreciated his aide for his consistent good work & set him the task of getting the name & details of the secretary of Jagroto. Good juicy gossip material should always be investigated. Janoar went to Bhuson to discuss the number. They decided to go to Mahamantri just before lunch. If he was pleased then maybe he would have lunch with them today. Every morning all Head of Department check if Mahamantri had any lunch plans. If none then they would try to have their lunch fixed with him. It is a great prestige if you are seen having lunch with the Mahamantri.

Janoar & Bhuson: Sir we have the figures

Mahamantri: What figures?

Janoar: Sir the livestock of the country.

Mahamantri: For what?

Janoar: Livestock sir. Alligators, crocodiles,….

Mahamantri: I know aht livestock means but why the earth would I want that?

Bhuson: Sir you would wanted to know that last Tuesday after Gyanpapi asked about smuggling...

Mahamantri: ooh yes. & what is it?

Janoar: Sir the value is 855739274 livestock of which 99246357 are alligators.

Mahamantri: Please add yourself & all Heads of State & all Heads of District to that. My daughter told me how his husband calculated the total for his district. We have achieved the mental intelligence of sea-donkeys.

the above is my first attempt at writing fiction. The plot is sadly not mine.