Archive for the ‘People’ Category

FOREWORD: This is a post that is dedicated to my grand uncle. The matter and content of this post is best understood by and most relevant to my family circles. Hence the intended audience to this post are my family members and relatives.


6th July 2017. The Hasnabadi family lost another jewel – Raghavendra Hasnabadi.

Education, wisdom, knowledge, eloquence and intellect are the traits all sons of Bhima ji Rao Bhishto carried and exhibited. And to say the least, Raghu ajja was more.

With every death of our grand dads and grand uncles, the protective umbrella of experience and wisdom that has guarded us through life seems to diminish greatly and leave us, the younger generation, exposed to ugly shallowness of our times. Makes me constantly realize that without our elders and the wisdom that comes with them, the heritage that they have guarded on their shoulders and flourished during their lifetime, our lives are too ordinary, superficial and shallow. But you know what’s funny, this realization always dawn’s upon us only after it’s too late. For most part of our lives that we spend with them around, we are seldom aware of the lives they lived and paths they treaded, the hardships they overcame and the challenges they faced. Like the grass that’s always greener on the other side, we read in awe about the lives of the freedom fighters and others whose lives are glorified by our text books. But little do we realize what our grand dads lived were no ordinary lives.

Our grand parents were special. For their actions were driven by sincerity, respectfulness, kindness, and faith. The kind of determination and grit that fueled their energy is no match to anything we have seen or experienced today. They were special, for every one of my grand dads and grand uncles had a story to tell.
Sometimes I wonder if I would ever have a story like that to tell my grand children when I have completed a significant time of my life. Our lives are technology dominated. Sense of superiority comes with superficiality and self esteem grows with picture perfect selfies, better cars and foreign trips. We depend on our phones and power of money more than we depend on our memory and abilities. Discipline is something that we learn only after we step into our 60s or when border line diabetes mocks us. Values and morals diminish with every new generation that sprouts. Our grand parents were special for we can never be like them.

I have always felt the rush to immortalise the stories and golden days our grand dads lived coz rest assured, going further this world will never see grandparents like the way our generation did, with technology seeping into the lives of the old and the young alike, in unimaginable ways, there by diluting the essence of innocence, grandeur and authenticity our grand parents came with.
So I planned to talk to Raghu Ajja and Shankar Ajja( the only 2 jewels who are with us, out of the 8 siblings, along with the other one being Sheku Ajji who is not quiet in a position to recollect anything from her childhood ) in depth about their lives and the message they would like to pass on to the younger generations to come.
But fate had it this way. I barely had 1 or 2 sittings with Raghu Ajja and he is no more with us today.
Well, all said and done, the cycle birth and death is vicious and eternal.
“jaatasya hi dhruvo mrutyuh, dhruvam janma mrutasya cha”
This verse from the holy Gita translates to “An entity that is born, is sure to die. And when it dies, it is sure to be born”
Like puppets, we watch the world take its course and let go of our protective umbrellas, feeling more empty and void than ever before.

But then, there is hope. There is still something that can fuel our lives for the rest of the years that we are to live without our umbrellas overlooking us at all times. Like the touchstone that acquires the properties of the gold that it is rubbed into, in the quest for knowledge and understanding of how our grand dads could do and and be all that they have ever done and been, a lucky few of us, try to learn( and hopefully emulate) how to live it large by spending a few precious moments discussing their lives with our grand dads. According to me, there can be no better life lessons than to carry out conversations with your grand parents.
I can proudly yet with all humility say that I am one such lucky puppet who got to interact with Raghu Ajja, my grand uncle, my umbrella, discussing his life in a couple of sittings.

With Raghu Ajja no more with us, this project of mine remains incomplete. However, I am sharing the details of those precious moments we spent discussing about the journey of his life on this page for us all, the uncertain and confused souls to read. Most part of those sittings went with him educating me about different policies available in mutual funds to invest money in a right way, though ๐Ÿ™‚
However, our last meeting was different. His ailment had taken away most of his charm. He had become a lot more quieter and restricted. He had stopped working ( he was self employed and into mutual mutual funds ) and had successfully handed over the same to his daughter Vidhya Atte. That day when I finally met him, like any other day of his ailment, he spent most of the time lying in bed, sleeping. But after he got up and realized I was waiting to talk to him, he sat up on his wooden chair and enquired about my well being. He later began to speak about his life at length for about an hour and a half with hardly a break in between. That was the moment I had waited for in a long time, ever since the seed of documenting the life stories of my grand dads had sown in my head. Ajja was in his elements that day, rejoicing every moment of what he recollected of his childhood days. I will never forget those moments I spent with him.raghu ajja.png

Raghavendra Hasnabadi was born into a Deshashta smartha brahmin family of 9 siblings ( inclusive of him), As the 6th son of Bhima ji Rao Bhishto.
He recalled that his father had a government job, that of a land surveyor working for the British government in India. His father spoke good english and could effectively communicate with his higher ups. As the sole breadwinner of the family, his father often travelled with his mother on duty. This led Raghu Ajja and his siblings to grow up geographically away from one another and in the care of their relatives, meeting mostly during holidays. Owing to their parents transferrable job, the older of the siblings like Rangaraj Hasnabadi ( my loving grand dad) and Hanumantha Rao Hasnabadi moved to Bangalore early on in life and studied college, working and earning along side. The younger ones travelled with their parents and studied at various government schools. Raghu Ajja completed plus-two( translates to 2nd puc in today’s times) and got into a government job in irrigation department much against his wishes. He wished to study further but prevailing poverty led him to fetch a job.
He recalled that despite his father being poor, he was famously known for his righteousness and honesty. Despite not being able to earn a lot of money, all the respect he earned during his lifetime protected his children during their growing-up days. They were all treated with a lot of respect and dignity and were quiet well-known in their village.
Raghu Ajja got into irrigation department in the year 1952. That is where he met one of his closest friends for life Sri. Venkatesh Katti who later became Raghu Ajja’s guru and introduced him to the world of Adhyatma. Thanks to his job, Raghu Ajja got to travel along with Sri Venkatesh Katti across the state/country every time he was assigned a work responsibility. This enabled him to associate closely with his Guru and deeply into the subject of Adhyatma. He studied and discussed in depth, Advaita Vedanta like Shankara Bhashya and Bramha Sutra to name a few. While on travel, after working hours, they would both go looking of a serene place to sit in and around the place they were posted, for spiritual discussion that would go on for hours on end.
It could be a bank of river or a stone slab under a peepal tree.
He recalled that those were indeed some of the most enlightened days of his life.
He slowly began to withdraw from his friends, since their discussions normally happened to be about family-lives, dramas, work and politics which ceased to interest him. There were years of his life where he spent without any friends, with a guru to look up to and a family to care for and he was absolutely in peace with what life had to offer. He learnt astrology and delved into bits of astronomy in the process for about 2 years and even devised a ‘yantra’ after slogging for months! He said astrology charts and calculations were not readily available those days and astrology was also not everybody’s cup of tea, like it’s service is found selling in literally every ‘gulli’ today, luring commoners with a display board with a ‘show of palm’. Neither did astrology earn a single paisa for those who offered consultation, back then. Astrology was only meant for the learned and those who considered it a passion. ” You actually devised a ‘yantra’! How cool is that Ajja?! In today’s times wouldn’t that translate to building an astrology software, or a mobile app, to say the least?!” I marvelled. Bitter experiences related to personal life led him to discontinue his astrological studies.

Sometime around then, Raghu Ajja was introduced to yoga, which along with pranayama, he went on to practice rigidly for decades, which he discontinued due to the knee pain that he developed, barely a few years before he passed away, at the age of 84. Yet, he took to other form of exercises to stay fit! Even if I attempt to talk about his self discipline in the next couple of sentences, it will still be an understatement. So I leave it at that.
He briefed me about how pranayama and Adhyatma go hand in hand, and how one can achieve his goals in meditation when one adheres to rigid pranayama and accompanies that with spiritual studies. Simply put, for a person of his regime, I imagine, ‘self realization’ couldn’t have been too far to achieve.
While on one hand, Raghu Ajja was on his path to spiritual life, on the other, his guru, Sri Venkatesh Katti was on his way to expand his knowledge by studying ‘Tantra shashtra’ and black magic. I am led to believe that his son’s failure to get on in life and indulgence in bad company made his Guru take a plunge into ‘ tantra shashtra’. And that is where Raghu Ajjas ideologies deviated from that of his Guru. Raghu Ajja didn’t want someone practicing tantra shashtra’ for a guru and tried his bit persuading his guru, but in vain. That is when both their paths split and Raghu Ajja stopped his Adhyatma learning from his Guru. Thus, 12 whole years of in-depth learning and spiritual interactions and discussion brought about an enormous change and significant enlightenment in Ajja’s life. Raghu Ajja, though willing to continue his spiritual learning, did not find a suitable guru who could replace Sri Venkatesh Katti. ” Finding the right guru is the most important step towards self realization”, he stresses at this point. ” At the same time, it is a duty of a guru to find a right ‘shishya’ and successfully pass on knowledge for him to attain salvation. And neither is easy” he quotes.

Raghu Ajja retired at 60 as an executive engineer in PWD irrigation department in Dharwad in the year 1993. Post retirement, Raghu Ajja was introduced to LIC and was encouraged to to become an agent by one of his friends, Mr. Yankanchi, the division manager at LIC. That marked another new beginning as he embarked as an LIC agent and later went on to become a certified advisor of mutual funds.
Now STOP and imagine what it is like to prepare for a certification exam and start a career afresh, at the age of 65?! #RESPECT. There after, he built a huge client base for himself in Dharwad and later in Bangalore, all of that, single handedly, which kept him busy and going, until only a few months before his death, when an ailment struck him and he passed on work related affairs successfully to his daughter to continue.
He believed in earning and saving till the end of his life. In one instance he quotes proudly that he has not only saved enough money for his grand daughter Chandrika but also invested in the name of his great grand child( yet to arrive into this world) in a way that Chandrika will get returns on the investment when the time is ripe, about 20 years from now! On the contrary, at 33, where I am half done with life, I am yet to begin a savings plan for myself!
Just as I was engrossed in worthy discussions with Raghu ajja, my 6 year old’s phone call brought me back to my world. I told ajja that I am still left with a number of questions and that I will come back soon. ( Ironically the next time I went to his house to offer my last prayers, I was unfortunate enough to not even get a glimpse of his body, I missed it by less than 10 minutes). As I walked out of his room, Ajja called me and said- ” Pratibha, come here. I have one important thing to tell you. Always remember, if there is ever a worthy investment, they that is only in your kids education. No other investment has ever proven to be of greater worth. Plan and save money for their post graduation and beyond. Education is most important.” I nodded my head in agreement and walked out to bid adieu to Shanta ajji and she remarked with glee ‘ in all these days, it’s only today that he has sat up for so long and had such lengthy conversation with such zest. His words are otherwise very limited and conversations rarely happen. He sleeps most of the time. ‘ Now can you agree more that I am one lucky puppet?! ๐Ÿ™‚

On the 6th day of July, did he already know the time was ripe and he would have to depart to his heavenly abode? I don’t know. But all of that day, he lay in his bed, holding his daughter’s hand firmly in his, as he narrated to his wife and daughter, the story of a roman king who executed the lives of so many of his country men for various reasons. The people who had to be hanged on that particular day stood in the queue waiting for their turn. There was an old man in the queue, on to whom his little grand daughter clung on, at all times. When the old man was asked about his last wish, he said that his last wish is to be allowed to hold his grand daughter’s hand, tightly clasped, even when he is on the scaffold with the rope around his neck, untill his last breath.
The Roman king granted his last wish. Thus the old man held his grand daughter’s hand till his last.
Ajja did hold on to his daughter until his last breath.

Today, in my eyes, Raghu Ajja stands as an embodiment of grit and courage, of perseverance and poise, of self-belief and success.

While a puppet like me can only show gratitude with folded hands and thank God for placing me in such lineage, I would also like to say, with all the ‘ancestral wisdom and intellect’ that I have, I would like to live the remaining years of my life, less ordinary.

May your soul rest in peace, Raghu ajja. You continue to live in our hearts.




A day in the life of kashmiris

Posted: December 3, 2016 in People, Social
Tags: ,

“Toh Shabbir, aap kya chahatehain, Kashmir Bharath ke hi rahe ya Pakistan ke hojayein?” I asked Shabbir, my cab driver during our tour of ten days in Kashmir. We were on our way to the foothills of Gulmarg. He smiled, shrugged and said ‘ what I want or don’t want doesn’t matter me’m saab, no one asks us ‘. There! Yet another time he had dodged my question- I grinned.
Ladies and gentlemen, what came next turned out to be the most unforgettable 15 hours of my life.
Suraj and I trekked Gulmarg uphill for over 6 km, scaling all the way to its summit and got back to the foothills on horses back.
There had been a rumour all of that day that the riots could begin any time with no confirmed reports.
We had to drive 56km, all the way back to Srinagar and were glad our Gulmarg trek went well without any hitch. Shabbir started driving back, while we removed our jackets and gum boots, trying to get comfortable In the back seat.
Suddenly, Someone out of nowhere threw a fire lit tyre right into the middle of the road. Shabbir brought the taxi to a sudden halt, safely pulled up to a side and frowned as he announced- RIOTS HAVE INDEED BEGUN. The clock showed 3 pm. After 4 hours of trekking uphill and 2 hours downhill on horse back, we had not even had our lunch.
Shabbir took an inside route that would connect to the highway, assuming in all probability, that the route will be open. After driving for 50 whole minutes, we did see the highway ahead at about 200 meters away, but our path was blocked by huge tin cans dipped in kerosene and torched up. We saw a man making an attempt to move them, enough to let his taxi pass. I told Shabbir that we should help him too, so we can sneak out as well. But Shabbir gave a firm NO. He decided to drive all the way back, so we drove for another 50 min, now back to square one! My mind kept telling me that Shabbir didn’t really care and was just wasting time.
As we joined so many other taxies treading their way through, only a few meters at a time, we reached a junction where there were a bunch of hooligans, standing and waiting across the road, ready to throw boulders at anyone who dared to drive past. I saw Shabbir get down and speak to one of those guys for 5 min, occasionally chuckling. I was stunned! I was convinced that Shabbir is one among them- Just another con man making money out of India tourism but an outlaw supporting the miscreants. As we finally managed to steer past these hurdles and hit the Srinagar highway at around 6 30pm, it was evident that the protests on the highway were very severe, with mob spanning every half kilometre, waiting with gunny bags filled with stones,weapons and kerosene ready. The road of the highway ย itself was donned with fire and soot, with flakes of carbon lingering in the air, smelling of kerosene everywhere. All the tourists vehicles including ours entered an abandoned petrol bunk and waited there, judging too well that driving through that highway was nothing short of digging our own grave. Just as we began to discuss restlessly amongst ourselves, we saw a huge military convoy pass by. A ray of hope?! Every single vehicle waiting at the petrol bunk now quickly sneaked into the convoy since it was known that no one would throw stones at the military convoy. But We were the only ones remaining. Shabbir had refused, despite me begging him to join the convoy till the moment had passed, and the convoy was out of sight. I was worried we would get stranded through the night. I was now out of my wits. “Shabbir, what the hell do you think you are doing? Exactly what is your intention? Do you even want to help us and get us back safe to Srinagar?” I yelled at him.
Just as Shabbir, not losing his composure, had begun to explain that our safety is foremost on his mind, something unbelievable happened. The buses and other tourist vehicles that had sneaked in through the convoy came rushing back at once to the petrol station. We were shocked to see that ALL the vehicles were severely damaged. They say riots are the language of the unheard, and that day, Suraj and I got a first hand view of a typical riot scene- All window panes broken, one of the drivers lip cut because of hurling of stones at the windows, the stepney wheel of a TataSumo splashed with kerosene and lit up, and a whole bunch of tourists with glass pieces stuck in their hair, bleeding here and there….
I began to carefully pluck glass out of people’s hair and forehead, while Suraj and Shabbir doused the fire on the stepney wheel of Tata sumo, and tended to the severely wounded drivers. Those miscreants had obviously spared the convoy but had clearly aimed for these tourist vehicles and busses.
Amidst what seemed like mayhem to me, I couldn’t make time to express a word of gratitude for that presence of mind and thoughtfulness Shabbir had exhibited at that moment when he decided to NOT join the passing convoy, for, I was busy giving first aid for the injured.
Finally, at 10 30pm, Shabbir drove us back safely to the hotel, arranged for food to be parcelled and delivered to us and left.
That was the last day of our tour and we never got to see Shabbir again.
My words of gratitude remained unsaid. the next day, we took the flight back to Bangalore.
On the occasion of new year’s eve, 2 months later, we wrote him a thank you letter along with new year wishes and shabbir in return had sent his family picture with new year greetings written at the back of it. I still have that picture with me. His children, as beautiful as their home land itself, happily
ย pose for a photo with sparkle in their eyes oblivious to the world of uncertainty and chaos around them.
As I lead a life of comfort here, I can’t help but think of the lives of kashmiris dreaming year after year, for a life, that is NOTHING but normal.

It is said that in 1971, John Lennon along with a couple of others wrote the song “Happy Xmas (War Is Over)” exhibiting optimism despite the ongoing war waged by the US on Vietnam. Fast forward to 2012 – As the most heinous and brutal gang rape victim breathed her last on December 29th and the humanity in India is at the peak of its haplessness, the people and the media are collectively giving their struggle and fight a new face by calling it a ‘National awakening’ assuming that the protests and peace walks have taken it to a different level. Thats not just optimism, but hope against hope. But this time, I am neither pessimistic nor optimistic, I am cynical.


I will not believe that the nation has awakened to the atrocities on women after the rape incident. We are what we are. We are a nation whose demographics of male politicians ruling the nation is far superior compared to the number of women in governance. We are a nation where most of our men exhibit male chauvinism and medieval attitudes. Our thinking is orthodox and irrational when it comes to our women. And I am saying all this, not with a head held high, but low in shame.

I am shocked beyond wits with the kind of response from most men holding responsible and elite positions in social hierarchy to the outrageous rape incident. A chief minister of India’s capital had once said that in order to keep such crimes at bay, women have to be always accompanied my men at night. How ridiculous is that? I say, if the men out on the streets canโ€™t control themselves pouncing at women, then it is they who need to be accompanied, for they have a serious problem. Someone who calls himself a God man says that the girl who was raped should have called the culprits bothers and pleaded them to stop! And what can you say about this other specimen who said that women in urban India are under the influence of western culture and hence get raped?! Disgusting.ย ย  These statements coming out from people of elite stature in responsible positions ruling our nation makes one think where our country is heading.

Lets face it. Peace walks, protests, media hype canโ€™t change much. They might at the most bring pressure on the government to give financial aid to the victim’s family and make public assurances of turning things around. With passage of time, assurances and promises will dissolve into thin air, media will have new events to be covered and no one will follow up. What India really needs at the moment is legal reforms. The dogmas of the quiet past are inadequate to the stormy present. But then, if it took the government of India 4 years to hang Kasab, convicted terrorist behind the 9/11 terrorist attack in Mumbai that left nearly 3000 people dead, I have no reason to believe that one brutal rape incident will make the government change the law. I say – If the law says that the rapists will be castrated at the India Gate publicly then these men will not dare do any such acts even if the woman walking in front of them is visibly naked. Why can’t we revise and enforce strict laws? I donโ€™t know how many more rapes and assaults it takes for the Indian government to understand that RAPE is not just a physical violation but mental, physiological and emotional violation and make the punishment to rapists more severe.

And then what about human trafficking, domestic violence, acid attacks, child marriages, female foeticides… how and when are we going to address these problems?

For those who don’t know what I am referring to, here’s some insight. How are these issues handled in your country? Like I said, I have no hope, this time, I am cynical…

ย โ€˜A country is considered to have achieved its full independence only when women can walk safely in street at anytime without fearโ€™ –ย  Mahatma Gandhi, Father of the Nation

My Adobe Friends!

Posted: February 16, 2012 in People

FOREWORD: This is a post that is dedicated to my friends in Adobe. The matter and content of this post is best understood by and most relevant to my friends whose references are made in the post. Hence the intended audience to this post are my friends from Adobe.

17th Feb2012: My last day at Adobe!! It doesn’t feel complete without taking time to mention you guys who made my stay here so much fun! Even silliest of events got so memorable, only because of you guys. Remember how we always had something to say in the last hour on the last day at work? I have lots to say too, and I am penning them down here so u have ur share too!

Jumping straight to the point, I am taking all of u one by one to scrutiny,so face it!

ACHALA: The sizzler
’bout U: Shez moody, shez outright, shez a drama queen, shez ebullient, shez loud. But what the hell, I like it loud! +10 for all the dramebaazi that she does. Xoxo ๐Ÿ™‚
She makes a perfect friend for me and i haaate losing her friendship! We share gregarious instincts, and that’s what tea times are for. We loooooooove tea time —ย  Gossip, and more gossip!
Retrospect this: U know Achala is workin’ hard when: a) she has at least one big argument with Sailesh b) She is all around the aisle and there is a gush of storm where ever she goes c) you hear her blast her project BSA on phone d) And soon after that she and I leave for for tea…
Pick words: the thing is thaat…,tough ide.

AMIT: My confidant
’bout U: He ‘bhaav-khaao’s like no other:) Not many people can really interpret his silence. He normally comes across as a docile person… but when u r friends with him, you get to see the other side of him: witty, silly and his best!
Tea times are very important,coz a secret a day keeps boredom at bay.
Retrospect this: Like it was not enough sharing the room with the boss, he shared the toothpaste as well in Mangalore! Now lets just hope he stopped at that.
Pick words: Wait,let him first talk, and then you can try to pick words from that!! ๐Ÿ˜›

KUNAL: The stud
’bout U: Kunal is Kunal, he first decides if he wants to be arrogant and mean, OR if he wants to be sweet and helpful. And when he is the later, he’z a darling, I swear!
Former?, Ask Achala…!
Like I know him, He is an absolute convivial, a go-getter, and a warm friend. Looks like a model. Well?? Or atleast, some one in pink pants thinks so ๐Ÿ™‚
Retrospect this: Kunal blocked Ms.Pink pants on Gtalk after she complimented him for his looks ๐Ÿ˜€ How ruuuuuuuude!
Pick words: Aaj lunch keliye bahaar chalte hain…!

SAILESH: The sweeetest!
’bout U: Saaailesh is from Orissa, Land of temples, land of floods and land of Maoists too. And i love teasing him for that! ๐Ÿ™‚
Hez the sweetest of the lot and I cant reiterate enough! Pluky at work, very helping and inspiring.
Retrospect this: What was meant to be a life time secret was brought to light by a candid picture of Sailesh taken in Ooty!Now, Kunal, was that your candid camera?
Pick words: arey baba, no re baba. And ofcourse, not to forget Sailesh’s universal password that the whole Web team knows: letmein

DEEPAK: The chipper
’bout U: Deepak is slapstick, witty, jovial and fun. He is the gossip guy too, his involvement makes any gossip complete and spicy ๐Ÿ˜›
Deepak is very friendly by nature and is the first one to go n talk to any new comer in the web team!
Retrospect this: He made a hearty and a very significant contribution to the ‘Adieu Ms. Pink Pants’ episode. Little did she know such a day would come when she made the (in)famous statement that she wants a guy like Deepak for a husband!!!
Pick words: Cant think of one, any bids???

GAURAV: Mr. Nice guy
’bout U: Gaurav Rihan was the guy who did my buggy test round during interview.
Generous in suggestions, gentle n caring and always smiling ๐Ÿ™‚
Retrospect this: Gaurav is Sweet…Very sweet…soo sweet that he didn’t mind sharing his cubicle with Ms. Pink pants when ever she wanted. We rarely got to see Gaurav alone in his cube those days! Keep up the spirit Gaurav, Work is worship ๐Ÿ™‚
Pick words: Good hain, ..Sir Ji

MOUMITA: The decorous
’bout U: Moumita comes across as a silent person. But when you make her your friend, you will know that she talks enough to make you feel good. Shez gentle, caring and warm hearted. Shez a perfect friend material.
She officially took over the ‘Bouncer’ title after Achala left Adobe. She is doing better than Achala actually, she bounces at the rate of 3 times a day. Right Amit?
Retrospect this: Moumita is a good listener, she only listens to us conversing about salary and bonus, but she never reveals/shares her’s. Didn’t i say shez a quiet person?!
Pick words: Lunch!! Saloni…Chaloni! (that’s how she calls ppl for lunch)

KANCHAN: Pathaka
’bout U: Everytime Kanchan and I begin a conversation, it gets saucy. We normally begin talking across the cubicle, but end up chatting on Gtalk after a while since we can’t say it loud ๐Ÿ˜€
How can I forget this!!! Kanchan and I once went to ask permission to leave early when he was in good mood, and ‘the man’ gave us permission just like we expected, but we didnt expect this coming from him – “Fine, you can leave early ,Enjoooy, go n bang!” BANG?!?!? ^%^$%@$$#@!# We needed a min there to get back to Gtalk and digest what he said before leaving for the day ๐Ÿ˜›
Retrospect this: Someone called Kanchan aside and asked ‘the Kanchan'(now u knw who that some one is) to tell this other colleague not to wear short tops while gyming. well, i don’t know if she was able to get the message across, but Kanchan did wear a long tee herself next day! That message was not for u sweety, he likes it short as far as u are concerned ๐Ÿ˜›
Pick words: no pick words, shez not that repetitive!

LONG HAIL the KINGMAKER…All of you “please tries” to shout that out loud along with me.
And no one shouted?? no wonder, u guys have made it to his hate list, unlike ‘the Kanchan’!!

Facts about Facebook…FACE IT!!

Posted: December 20, 2011 in People

Most people open an account on Facebook only so they don’t have to face the embarrassing question ‘U r not on Facebook??!’
Half the people are confused as to what to do once they are on Facebook, most of them don’t even upload a profile pic in the first week, or they may not even log back in.
Once established on Facebook, they spend hours uploading best of pics and revisiting their profiles. People then start looking out for old crushes, friends, just any body/everybody of their interest on Facebook and send friend requests. And once they are added, they scan their pics and see what is happening in their lives.
People then want to upload more and more fancy pics to exhibit how colorful and spicy their lives are, or at the least keep changing profile pics every now and then to grab attention.
And then comes a phase where before every travel/party/events, most people already plan that they have to take pics for the sake of displaying on FB, and then cant wait to upload on FB.
I personally know a college mate who has absolutely changed the way she dresses ever since she has joined FB, she has started splurging on clothes and uploading pics on Facebook to get noticed. She is desperately looking for a prospect for marriage and is using the medium to the best of advantage.
Most of the engineers who have access to Facebook at work place spend more than one third of the time visiting Facebook, this has become more of a habit, not to forget that I belonged to this category at one point of time. It simply becomes addictive…. a weakness.
And then, there are people who are doing, well, not so bad in life, but compare their weekend end activities, hang outs, ET AL, with that of their friends and feel jealous/depressed.

But again, Facebook DOES really bring the world closer…You not only get to see your friends/cousins pictures, but also the ‘Whats on your mind’ feature and notifications give people a sense of belonging, familiarity and closeness.
Some of my cousins and one of my best friends live in US…I have kept a tab on their FB profiles, and always have a feeling that distance cannot do us apart as long as we follow each other on FB.We exchange emails only for elaborate conversations. I would have also missed this colleague and friend of mine after she quit the job, but thanks to Facebook and Google Talk, we are still very good friends.
Some times, I keep wondering if Facebook has reduced the popularity of Picasa and other Picture viewers and web albums that were once a must have. Recently, a friend of mine needed some clarification regarding a course that his wife wanted to opt for, he posted it on FB, and got overwhelming responses. Better still, when I went through his friends comments and suggestions, I got an answer to one my own worries regarding a similar course…How easy it all was!

Common man finds Facebook very handy to express views at the drop of the hat. Starting and promoting groups, communities and ideas have become easier than ever before.
Minister of communications and Information Technology, India, Kapil Sibal’s remark that social media like Facebook, Google must censor derogatory and defamatory contents wrt politicians created a stir in the Nation. Not only the Internet companies but also the media and the common man have expressed criticism and disagreement regarding Kapil Sibal’s remark. Facebook is officially banned in Syria: they believe that Facebook can lead to promotion of false teachings about religion and war!!

Now, Moderation is the Key. As long as you don’t take FB too seriously, and vow not to be irked/intimidated/green eyed by friends albums and flaunting, FB is GOOD.
And yes, Please pleeease don’t spend hours on Facebook, its totally not worth it!! [No offense meant, Mark Zuckerberg!!]

Nostalgia…School’s Calling…
I just look back at the years that have passed by, all the emotions and thoughts stirred in my brain at once, and walk ahead to face the next day that’s in store for me, with a shrug on my shoulder and a smile on my face, nothing really to say.
Yes, I just have nothing more to say!! When you remember school, more often than not, you just have nothing more than probably “Those were the best days of my life :)” to say!!
Why is it that we spend more than 10 years in school and yet, we yearn for more schooling?
We have all the money in the world now but still cant buy those precious bygone moments with best friends within the walls of a classroom.
Now, I have no homework to do(just have thankless never ending work at office), no punishments for talking in class and being naughty(I would rather stay mum now to save some energy and restore peace), no black marks for poor performances(needless to talk about carrot and stick policy in IT companies), no complaints from teachers written in our diaries to bring back home(nobody really cares anymore, just make sure the work is done), no impositions to write for not doing home work(I have forgotten how to hold the pen in my hand,for now, I only type).
no rounds to run during Physical training (PT) periods for not polishing shoes(I lack fresh air and good exercise), no more waiting for school vans to pick up and drop(now that I do the job of a driver too, driving to and back from work everyday) no red circles marked in note books for spelling mistakes(no scpe fr spelln’ mstkes while smsing u c), no getting drenched in rain on the way back home and lying at home that I never found shelter(Is it raining? I am at office, no open windows, I didn’t realize) no more crushes and blushes(lets get serious in life, how much does the guy earn? ), no more giggling in the class during lectures till your stomach hurts(My stomach hurts all the time now, I eat at work place), no standing on the podium with a spark in the eyes to receive Individual championships, medals and certificates(I now compete for a star performer of the year/bravo awards) no sleepless nights thinking about crushes in school(I have a boy friend now, no choices anymore), and yet I love my school days and give anything to get back to school.
I now miss just anything and everything about my school- Stealthily nibbling chikkies, chocolates and channa(remember ‘Take It’ channa for Rs.5/- ?) during classes, linking and pairing up my friends with other guys n gals in the classroom, throwing chalk pieces and paper parachutes randomly at others and pretending like I am not aware of it, sharing and leaking small secrets amongst us and making a scandal out of it the next day, by-hearting a poem and delivering the poem before the whole class, kneeling down near the board with hands up for being mischievous in class. Oh, I so miss my friends too, who made my schooling very special:-
Jo – my best friend(Now after 13 long years, we still are inseparable), Divya, cute little girl with a sparkle in her eyes – with whom I studied from class 1 to class 10, Ranjani – we have laughed endlessly, and continued to laugh after school,even at home, Anu- The Ever blushing chick, Vivek H N- Guy with a great sense of humor,Prashanth- The scandalous and most notorious,my male counterpart for School Sports Captain – we used to religiously cat fight every day, Sukla – Mr. Hot tempered,Pavithra, Archana – the Karanth Sisters, Sudi- One to secretly share with me all the ‘guys-only-secrets’ safeguarded by our class guys, one of my closest friends, Manoj – not too loud, but the master mind behind most mischiefs, Rajini – prettiest of all faces, Lakshmi- the first ranker, Chotta-shortest of the lot but the most mischievous, Vani -The PJ queen, and the list goes on…

The sports day celebrations, the punishments, exams, gossips make me nostalgic even to this day.
How every silly little thing seemed important to me then! We were just not aware of anything beyond our note books, exams, friends, secrets, ranks, clean uniforms, little crushes. Even new/fancy pencils and erasers could bring a bright smile on our faces and a single mark more than our counterparts in tests could make our day.

Everyday would begin with a long prayer, followed by NEWS reading and thought for the day.
Classes would commence and we would start counting minutes left for short break.
Lunch breaks were never enough for all the talks and gossips and teasing and playing around that we did.
It was almost impossible to sit through the ‘Last period’ of the day, all of us would pack our bags before hand and wait for the bell to Go.
Just how can i forget this prayer, every day in school had to end with this cute little prayer, with folded hands and closed eyes:-

School is over for the day
Done out work and done our play
Thank you God for the beautiful day
Guard our school by night and day.
Thank you God.
Good Evening teacher, Thank you teacher.

Today we were randomly talking during break and happened to discuss Habits. I decided to share it here.
Habits can get very peculiar and unique and even annoying at times, After a discussion, A friend of mine and I had once concluded that at times, the most important decisions in life were made while in the loo!!
Well, come to think of it, Loos are the best places for deep thinking! lol
While in school, i had a habit of shrinking my nose every now and then, I used to do this to adjust my spectacles on my nose correctly.
The habit continued to remain with me even after I switched to lenses, without my awareness. Just any onlooker would find it funny that I should casually shrink my nose every few seconds. I gave up this habit only after watching myself in the video my uncle shot without telling me.
Man, I hated to even imagine that those cute guys I was trying to impress and also those guys who had a crush on me would have noticed this ugly habit of mine!

What’s most hilarious is this incident that happened in my sister’s class room.
After the test papers were distributed, this student(lets call him Pappu) went to the lecturer to bargain for more marks or he would fall in the ‘below avg category’
that would have to take up the test again.
He is in this gross habit of throwing up saliva while talking, and apparently till date he has never felt embarrassed.
Should anybody feel embarrassed, its always the other person talking to him!!
So while bargaining for more marks, the lecturer kept on declining his appeal for a couple of extra marks. The chap, all desperate and hell bent on getting some free points, in the process of convincing the lecturer, threw out a huge ball of spit and
a part of it entered the lecturers eyes!!
The lecturer, being a not-so-loud-person, not knowing how to handle this nasty situation, gave him a stare for a whole 15 seconds and scribbled a +5 on his sheet and pushed him away!! The whole class burst into laughter and Pappu was glad his habit fetched him some extra marks but never felt ashamed of it!

Consider this. How many times has this not happened to you –
–> You end up sitting next to a person in the queue/bus/train who is constantly digging into his seamless nose pits, concentrating hard on picking his nose like you have never before concentrated even when you watched India strike a six on the last ball.(Aaaaargh)
–> You get into an auto rickshaw, half way through he stops to take a leak, you get all paranoid and look into your wallet for change just so you donโ€™t have to
take change back from him, and you realize that you have a single 100 rupee note(Sigh!)
How abt this-
You are sitting in a crowded bus on the aisle seat , person standing next to you is blissfully scratching his ass to Glory?!! (:|)

Death and After…

Posted: October 23, 2008 in Love, Life, Laughter, People

Yeah, I know, this is one very common but interesting topic you generally get to read.But before you start imagining things, let me tell you right away that this has NOT got anything to do with ghosts or spirits. Now, having said this, if your spirits are already dampened, then, sorry about that. You can still save a couple of your precious minutes by exiting this blog right here. But if you want to save yourself from one grave unforgivable mistake, if you do not want to live half of your life with the worst possible regret, then read on.

I chose to speak about death simply because I had a few thoughts hovering in my mind. And when thoughts overflow, this is where I pour them. ๐Ÿ™‚

Very recently, I lost my uncle to Cancer. This is the third time that ‘ Death’ kissed someone in my very close circle of relatives. The first time death struck my family, it gave me an unforgettable blow, some thing from which I have not been able to completely recover even to this day-It took away my favorite person, the sweetheart of my family, my Grand Dad.

I personally believe that Death takes some virtual form, may be that of a human being (Or shall we say Yama?). Although I do not know exactly what Death looks like, I know for certain that Death, when it hits, it bears an unfading impact on the person’s family. Although I do not know for sure if the moment for the arrival of the death for a person is deterministic, I know for sure know that when Death becomes one with the person, it cant be undone. It is probably the only loss of such indescribably huge magnitude that cannot be made up for in this world, even to a small degree. Every time Death strikes some one very close to me, it gets me thinking about it all the time, it is always at the back of my mind irrespective of what I am doing, what time of the day it is.

And then, comes the toughest part- finding answers to some of the toughest questions that often pop up in my mind, out of the blue. This requires some serious thinking. This blow called Death might approach different people in different forms and ways, but the one thing that is certain is that the magnitude of this big blow on the every person’s family is more or less the same.

Everybody goes through the same trauma, the same thought process and most of the times, the very same questions pop up in our minds. Like say – Did it have to be him/her? How can it be that a person was very much alive and “existing” till yesterday and is no more today? What is death exactly? What is it that is missing in that person if he has to be dead now, is it just the heart beats in layman terms? How can I even imagine a world without him/her? What about all the good times that I have had with this person, will they now only remain bygone memories?

Many such questions come and go…some answered and some unanswered. Some of these questions only remain at the heat of the moment, and as time passes, these questions go into the oblivion unanswered. Probably this is what they mean when they say ‘Time heals everythingโ€™?! But there is one thing which will always remain with you till the very Death strikes you, and that is – REGRET.

Regrets for not being there for the person when he/she needed you the most. Regrets for not completely understanding his/her feelings, regrets for hurting him/her at times. Regrets for not taking good care, showing due love and affection, regrets for not bringing that smile on his/her face. Regrets for not expressing benevolence and gratitude, empathy and consideration to your loved ones, particularly parents and grandparents.

I have pondered on such thoughts ample number of times, and each time I have arrived at only one answer. The only way to ensure that you are not given to regrets is by showering infinite love and affection. Learn to be oblivious to small unpleasant incidents that happen in everyday life. Realize the importance of parents in your life, realize that parents can only get older as time wares, and elders are meant to be treasured. Remember that any amount of explanation and reasoning after losing the person will not help and this regret will continue to haunt you for the rest of your life. Remember that we will also become old one day, and history repeats.

I sometimes feel it takes the death of a loved one to teach us what life really is. To this day, I haven’t been able to make up for this void that was created in my life the day my grand dad died, and I know that the space in me that can never be filled again.

Parents are the only asset that you can die for. Act now before its too late.

–When we lose one we love, our bitterest tears are called forth by the memory of hours when we loved not enough. ~Maurice Maeterlinck, Wisdom and Destiny, 1901, translated by Alfred Sutro