It was just last night when this incident happened to me, and the moment it did, I knew I had to write of this. I was in BTM last night, out for dinner. I planned to stay at my friend’s place and he had asked me to get “a few supplies”. I went to the “store”, took whatever I needed and gave my debit card to swipe. As usual I got a message from HDFC of Rs. 450 being debited from my account (the message that I hate second most, first being my Credit Card bill). All done, and I was on my way home. I was a good 5 minutes away when I got another message on my phone, of another debit of Rs. 200. Now this tops my list of worst messages, a swipe that I did not make. That means money gone from my “fast depleting” account that I did not use, GREAT! Actually no, the credit card statement still is the worst. Anyways, I realized at this point that I had left my debit card back at the “store”.
One mad sprint later, I was back at the “store”. The moment I entered the cashier gave me this big grin. I had a whole mental speech prepared to bark out at the cashier or any other person in the management. The cashier then immediately started explaining that I had forgotten my ATM card back there and there was no way he could contact me. He did not want me to get worried, and so he had to swipe once again so that I get the SMS and realize that I had left it back there. He even went on to explain why he swiped Rs. 200 and not any lesser number. The swiped amount should be above Rs. 100. My immediate question was “but then why Rs. 200, and not Rs. 101 instead?”
“… Sir, suppose you had Rs. 500 exactly in your account. If I swiped Rs. 101 and gave you that money, you would be left with Rs. 399 in your account, out of which you can only withdraw Rs. 300 from the account. That would leave you with the 300 you can withdraw, and the 101 that I give you, totaling to Rs. 401, whereas otherwise you could have had Rs. 500…” He explained this entire thing in Kannada. With my wonderful Kannada expertise, I understood absolutely nothing. He went on to explain the same in Hindi, which made atleast a little sense. Anyways, this topic isn’t about my budding Kannada expertise, or my non-existent Hindi expertise.
Well anyways, in the age where people pretend to be deaf/dumb and steal mobile phones (Yes, that still hurts), it is definitely a breath of air to find someone like this who not only returned my ATM card, but also ensured that I would not lose a single Rupee. God bless you.
A quick piece of information – The 46 days between Ash Wednesday (13th February 2013 this year) and Easter Sunday (31st March 2013 this year) is called the Lent period during which some people decide to abstain from certain things. Common examples are abstaining from alcohol or non vegetarian food.
It’s not the first time, and it’s definitely not going to be the last time that it is only during lent that all the people decide to give treats. I quit non-veg every year for 46 days during the lent period. Invariably it is during this time that all my friends have their birthdays, all my friends decide to meet for dinner/lunch ever so often, some friend decides to come down from the U.S. or people decide to go to Goa. Now you tell me, what would a sober vegetarian do in Goa? I don’t need to go to Goa to eat Mushroom Kadai or Aloo Gobi, I can do that for much cheaper in Shanti Sagar, New Shanti Sagar, Sukh Sagar, Sri Nidhi Sagar, or any other of the gazillion Sagar’s there are in Bangalore.
This time I took lent one step further, I’m also abstaining from Social Media, so there is no FaceBook or Twitter for me during these 46 days. Not a real tough ask, except for the fact that I have a hard time remembering anyone’s birthday. Now I know the importance of FaceBook. Well, now my typical day consists of breakfast at one of the Sagar’s, lunch at Udupi park (not very different from the Sagar’s by the way), and dinner at… Guess where? One of the Sagar’s! Surprised? Well, every year during lent I actually think about how the vegetarians survive. I mean, no offence, but aren’t there lesser options? Or is it because I have a strong dislike for Paneer, and almost everyone who I ask for good veg dishes ends up suggesting Paneer something. Or is it that I am asking Punjabi’s that I get that particular response?
I still remember the first time I observed Lent. It was when I was a kid, and the whole idea of quitting non veg seemed like climbing Mt. Everest (trust me, it’s a lot tougher). Well, I went through the entire ordeal, and on Good Friday, I went to church. I am not really sure what happened there that day, or what I ate/drank. All I kno is, I was admitted to the hospital for food poisoning. 2 days in the hospital, which meant Easter Sunday I was treated to hospital food. I was discharged on Sunday and asked to avoid non veg food for another week. Are you kidding me? This was my first lent experience. The only silver lining I thought back then was “it can’t get worse than this”. Thankfully so far, it hasn’t.
On this occasion of International Women’s Day, I look back at the women who have made a difference in my life. The first year of my life, I was taken care of by another woman, a woman who perhaps is the one solely responsible for me being a brat, because she pampered me so much (she still does actually), my dear grandmother. There is a story of me crying like a baby (actually I was a baby), in the airport the day I was leaving back because I missed my grandmother. I finally stopped crying only when I saw an elderly lady wearing spectacles like my grandmother’s.
After that, there was the maid at home, who took a lot of care of me. I still remember being the menace in her life – I bet she still has nightmares about me. The next influences in my life came in the form of teachers. Throughout my schooling, majority of my teachers were women, and almost all of them, left a mark on my life. From the teacher who used to share my breakfast during the interval, to the teacher who held me in her arms crying, after I rolled down a hill (that’s a long story), to the teacher who insisted that I couldn’t get a 100 in Maths (she was right!!), to the teachers who liked/hated me only because my face reminded them of someone else. But I still shared a unique bond with them all. I still remember each one of them, and I hope that a few remember me too.
I have a lot of female friends as well (few of them who I converted into sisters), and each of them have taught me a lot in life as well. I believe that no female has a grudge against me (Oh shit, I forgot, some do.. Oops..), but most of them don’t (I hope). All these women have made a change in my life, some way or the other. Needless to say the first on that list of women in my life would be my darling mother. Though some say that it is impossible that a sweetheart like my mom could have given birth to a rascal like me, I still believe that I am her son. This post is dedicated to her, sitting on her couch possibly watching serial, maybe even cross stitching (her latest hobby). This post is to tell her that there is a spoilt brat sitting in Indiranagar thinking of her. Happy Women’s Day to my “First Lady”
After much deliberation, I have come to the conclusion that I have lost my interest in writing. I mean, there used to be a time, where any incident that happens in my life, I would be mentally framing sentences to write on the blog. But that’s just gone now. Today if I want to write a blog, I ask every source I have about what topic I can write about. I get a million topics, which so many writers could do justice to, but then I realize that I cannot do justice to it. So that topic goes down the drain.
The problem with me is that I find every topic either boring, too serious, too generic, not my style or just plain adult rated, which I prefer not to write about. I got a lot of suggestions this time, politics (boring), Vidya Balan (not my style – I prefer not to write about one particular person), a controversial red card (too serious), women (too generic), etc. Yes, I purposely left out the adult rated topics.
And after adding up all those topics, and deciding against any of them, what do I finally write about? My unsuccessful hunt for a blog topic. Is this the irony of life? A blog about not having a topic to blog about. This blog was just to put to rest my need to blog something tonight. So till I find something else to blog about, Adios Amigos..
The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.
Here’s an excerpt:
600 people reached the top of Mt. Everest in 2012. This blog got about 4,100 views in 2012. If every person who reached the top of Mt. Everest viewed this blog, it would have taken 7 years to get that many views.
Amidst all the confusion and all the protests in Delhi, a great man bid adieu to ODI cricket. A man who single handedly carried Indian cricket on his back for over 2 decades. In a country where cricket is a religion, he is indeed the God. This generation has grown up watching this great man work his magic with the willow. A majority among us also had posters of him caressing the ball through the covers, or lofting the ball over long on for a maximum.
Just like every player, he had his purple patch. Just like some players, he came out of this purple patch all guns blazing. Just like very few players, he kept going on and on. And finally just like Sachin Tendulkar, he achieved greatness. There are very few records that this man has not achieved, whether it be in terms of individual runs, centuries, or even partnerships. I am not good with numbers or statistics, and I find no need to google it and find out, because frankly, one doesn’t need facts to comprehend his greatness.
There have been a lot of things that people have said about him in the past, praises and criticisms both included. Sir Don Bradman said that Sachin batted just like him. Hashim Amla said that nothing could happen to them on a plane in India if Sachin was on board. Mathew Hayden said that he has seen God, and he bats at No.4 for India. The icing on the cake should be when President Obama said that he watches cricket to see Sachin play just to try and understand why his country’s production goes down by 5% everytime he is batting. These are just some of the quotes I remember, and once again, there is no need to dig up stuff online to prove a point.
All said and done, I am not a die-hard Sachin fan. I respect him for all he has done, and I am glad that I was part of the generation that watched him play. The sole reason why I wrote this post, is just because of something I noticed yesterday. A lot of us have a lot of junk written in their own description, “sports fanatic”, “avid blogger”, “loves to eat”, etc etc. I happened to read his description. All it said was “Proud Indian”. That summed up his entire career, his entire life. All he wanted to be known as was a proud Indian, and that I am sure he is.
Many more brilliant batsman may come and go, but no one can quite take the place of Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar, the greatest Little Man to walk a cricket pitch in an Indian jersey. Hats off to his class. Hats off to his humility. Hats off to his achievements. Hats off to HIM. #RESPECT
A normal Saturday it was meant to be. Was at home in the morning, had a nice heavy lunch (Dominos Pizza), met friends and spent the entire evening and night in a café sipping on Sulaimani tea. We finally vacated from the café at quarter past 12, when they finally chased us out. The entire day was perfect, but what followed simply was the perfect ending to my “Oh So Perfect” day.
We were standing outside the café, when we noticed a maroon car park right in front of us. Out stepped an old man, perhaps in his 60’s, dressed in a white shirt and brown pants. As always, a pack of dogs headed towards the car, to make the wheels of the car their own personal commode. To my surprise, they all just walked up to the passenger side door and waited for the man. He walked over to the passenger seat, took out a plastic cover from the passenger seat, and whistled. A pack of dogs turned into a truckload. The man then took out biscuits from the plastic cover and put them on the ground. One handful at a time strategically placed so as to give enough for each dog. I looked through the glass to see the front passenger seat carrying a bigger plastic cover, filled with something.
Curiosity got the better of me. I had to talk to this man. I walked upto him while he was busy feeding the dogs. He stayed about a kilometer away and came down this road every single day and fed the dogs. He fed close to 60 dogs a day. I was just in awe. He just said one thing “We all live, just like these dogs. And if they are man’s best friend, then we should uphold our end of the friendship. That’s what friends are for”. I normally have a million things to say to everything anyone says, but now I was just speechless. My single thought was just “RESPECT”.
A phone, one of modern man’s most valuable possessions. It has become a symbol of social status today. You have a smart phone, it would mean that you either are being paid very highly by your company, have a wealthy better half, or generous parents. The pain and sorrow that comes with the loss of a phone, is beyond measure. Phones can be lost in many ways, dropped on the road, left in the rickshaw, misplaced in a theatre, or even stolen. I am sure many of you have lost your phones in one of these ways. I am a victim of the same. Not just once, but twice. Funny stories actually. I have been dying to write all about it.
Incident number 1 happened in the year 2010 I guess. I was returning from a friend’s place in Kormanagala walking towards the main road to meet my friend who was waiting to pick me up. I was walking past Empire hotel and running to the Ring road. I was almost there, when it suddenly started dizzling. I could actually see my friend waiting for me in his car in the distance. I tried to make a run for it. I had to cross the road, and while doing that I realized that my phone was in my shirt pocket. (This phone was a 1 month old phone; I do not even remember the model. It was a metallic colour Nokia slide phone which I was totally in love with). While running across the road, in order to ensure that the phone doesn’t fall off, I tried to hold onto it. This made the phone jump right out of the pocket and fall in the middle of the road. I had reached the other end of the road by then and turned around to see my phone in the middle of the road. I started walking back towards it, when I noticed a bike heading my way. It was a RX-100. He slowed down seeing me, and stopped right next to my phone (which was 2 steps away from me at the moment). He bent down and picked it up and looked straight at me. “What a nice guy, stopped his bike, picked up my phone and is now looking towards me to give it to me”, I thought. Imagine my surprise when the look on his face changed into a smirk as he raced off on his bike, with my phone in hand. I was dumbstruck for about 10 seconds, after which I ran over to my friend who was waiting for me to chase down this thief. Needless to say, it was an effort in vain.
Incident number 2 happened a couple of months back. I was sitting in the office, doing some work on the laptop. A guy came in with a piece of paper and a diary. He handed me the piece of paper in his hand, and waited patiently for me to read through it. It said something about him being deaf and dumb, and any money donated would be helpful for his organization. He put his diary on my table, as if ready to write down my name and the amount I was willing to donate. I gestured to him trying to let him know that I had no money at that time to donate. He just looked at me with a disappointed face, took his diary and left. After a few seconds, I realized that my phone was not on the table. I checked my pockets, and remembered that it was on the table right next to the laptop, where the “dumb and deaf” guy placed his diary, and then it struck me. It was about 20 seconds at most from when he left the office. I stepped out of the office and saw the guy already at the end of the road, walking hurriedly. I sprinted as fast as I could, but by the time I reached the end of the road, he was nowhere in sight. I still went in the direction that I thought I saw him go, but to no avail. I walked back to the office, and told my colleagues what had happened.
When I went to file a FIR, the cop actually showed me a file filled with missing mobile cases. He laughed and said, now one more is added. He went on to say that he can’t file a complaint as theft, but only as lost. Since we did not have any proof that it was indeed the deaf and dumb guy who stole it. Why of course, we should have asked him to sign a contract stating that he is a thief, and he intends to steal my phone, so I have some written proof to show to the cop. Dumb-ass.
2 stolen phones. 2 FIR’s filed. 0 results.
As I was saying, since it was a small city, there are many people you see a lot. One such lot of people was the guys at the ADNOC Petrol Pump. I saw them once in every 3-4 days. They all knew my Dad very well, and in turn always saw the young kid who accompanied him each time he was there. I was totally in love with the aroma of petrol. I used to love going with my Dad to the petrol pump just to get a sniff of the petrol. That is when I made the biggest decision till that date. I had decided, I wanted to be a petrol pump guy at ADNOC.
I realized that a petrol pump guy isn’t cool enough by the time I was in the 6th standard, and it was time I thought of a better career choice. We had these annual day plays, and I very diligently took part in each and every skit. Though at first I got a lot of “not-so-important” roles, once I reached the 9th and 10th standard, I started getting roles which actually had dialogues, and not just me going across stage as “Wind” dressed in a grey, wavy cloth. I played Artful Dodger (from Oliver Twist), and Julius Ceaser (from Julis Ceaser, DUHH! – though that wasn’t on the annual day), and… Ok once again, straying off topic. Well what I am getting to is, I realized that what I wanted to be was an actor.
I don’t know where the actor interest vanished. Me changing schools probably had a big hand in that. Well, when I reached the 12th standard, it was pretty much already decided. “Mera beta Engineer banega”. After a few years, voila I was an Engineer. The only problem was, I was still doubtful about what I wanted to do for the rest of my life. I attended a wedding anniversary party of one of my friend’s parents. That is when I saw my true ambition. I wanted to be a MC (FYI – Master of Ceremony). Yes, the MC at the function was super cool, and kept cracking jokes. Everybody loved him, and I was in awe. Ok, so it was decided, MC it is.
This ambition lasted exactly one week. In the hostel, I watched a lot of stand up comedy, and I realized that with a lot of practice, and a lot of readymade jokes (either copied or borrowed), I could try being a Standup Comedian. This particular ambition of mine lasted 15 minutes. Come on, who am I kidding. Spontaneously say funny stuff, oh come on, not my cup of tea. So yes, my small attempt at being India’s own Russell Peters went off just like that.
I was in Bangalore, and forgotten all about my past ambitions. As is the case with most of us, I found myself working in a job I wasn’t sure of doing for the rest of my life. I had time for one last ambition – so what could it be. The decision which was going to shape my career and stay with me forever. I randomly saw a picture of one of my friends on Facebook, and he was working as an Event Mangager for some company. The pics showed a rosy picture (I believe), and I had decided yet again, I wanted to be an Event Manager. Nothing could stop me, or so I thought till I called up one of the biggest event management companies in the country. The receptionist laughed at me, and connected me to the HR just to humour me, I guess, who shun me off saying something about me not having relevant experience. I tried explaining to them that I had experience managing and co-ordinating activities for a lot of Diwali dances, one fashion show and one farewell party to our seniors. Apparently, that wasn’t enough. So there it went, the Event manager dream out of the window.
That was almost a year ago. I decided on that day that I was never thinking or dreaming of any job. I would just take it as life would decide to dish it out to me. But then, once in a while, I still do close my eyes, and think of that little kid, who used to stand in the ADNOC petrol pump, sniffing petrol pump sniffing away to glory.
P.S. With the way the price of petrol is rising, I believe a lot of us would be happy just to get a sniff.
A few years back, you say “Premier League”, and all that could be imagined was the English Premier League. The thoughts would be revolving around Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool and Manchester United. Before anyone gets any thoughts, the above list is in alphabetical order and no other ordering. Not to stray from the topic, Premier League. Well yes, a few years back, these were the thoughts, but today, well here goes the list:
English Premier League (as mentioned) – ESPN & Star Sports
Indian Premier League – Set Max
Hollywood Premier League – Sony Pix (I think)
Bangladesh Premier League – Neo Sports (I think)
and so on and so forth…
But let us just focus on the two most important ones (according to me atleast), the IPL and the EPL. This isn’t a cricket against football blog, so that is not what I am trying to do. Two different games, but played in similar format (round robin matches, one home and one away), overseas players (no limit in EPL, actually more foreign that English players there), and the main similarity is (in the words of Vidya Balan) “Entertainment Entertainment Entertainment”.
This year’s EPL saw the best anti climax ever, with Manchester City taking the title with a brace in the last 4 minutes. The title was for the first time decided over Goal Difference (no battle there though). Even the relegation battle was ongoing till the last day, with the result of one team affecting another and vice versa. This year’s IPL is perhaps the closest IPL so far, with many teams still fighting for a spot in the play-offs. The EPL gave us a truckload of nail biting finishes (especially the last game), some beautiful football, some attempts at beautiful football (no offence ), some not so beautiful football, some breath taking goals and many OMG moments. The IPL gave us all that it promised so far, numerous last ball finishes, unbelievable fielding (Steve Smith comes to mind), breathtaking batting (Gayle-storm, need I say more), and some pin point accurate bowling (Slinga Malinga). To add to all that we got to see Danny Morrison entertaining us with his madness. Apart from the Siddhuisms I even found even the pre match telecast The Extra Innings very entertaining, and it has nothing to do with the presence of a certain female on the show.
So well, which has entertained us more? I can’t answer that one. All I know is that this year has been a good one for a sports lover, and we are just mid way through May. Let us hope for the rest of the year to be just as action packed as the first 5 months.
P.S. On a totally unrelated note, it is my birthday in a couple of weeks. Any gifts or cash prizes should be sent to me directly. And just so all of you know, I am strictly against the “Gifts in Blessings” line.