Monday, October 20, 2008

Back to Pune..

..feels good to be here, even if only for a day.
Had started out my career here as a college graduate. I remember my mom packing up my stuff and helping me move to a new city. Trying her best to hide her tears, and encourage her son who was nervous about moving away from his house for the first time in his life. I still remember the first day at Infosys, when i alighted from a bus alongwith dozens of other dreamy-eyed aspirants trying to make it big in the IT world.
Carrying just a college backpack, a notepad and a pen. And the dreams of making it big one day. Plus the fear of the unknown. The date was Oct 13th,2003.

And by the quirk of fate, i have come back to the same city after nearly 3 yrs ( i left Infy on Dec 9th, 2005). The date is 20th Oct, 2008. And i am still carrying a notepad and a pen in my backpack. Additionally, i am also carrying a laptop in it. And instead of a bus, i am travelling in a company arranged Toyota Innova. And i just completed a project presentation for some of my juniors, who are as dreamy-eyed as me and my colleagues were, back in 2003.

I guess i have progressed a bit. Just a li'l bit. In my career, in my life. Although i have thought about this at some point or the other, this is the first time i actually realized..
..the journey has well and truly begun.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Last man standing..

..or sitting, rather. Not me sir, I don't want to be that guy.

There's one thing i have recently come to know about myself. I hate to be the last guy in a restaurant during it's closing time. There is something unnerving about the whole ambience, with the waiters rushing you for your orders, the cleaners staring at you impatiently. Heck, even the cooks peep from the kitchens, to check out the moron who is keeping them away from their sweet homes. There is an air of negativity around as you try to tuck into a hurriedly prepared meal, which as you might expect, is a disaster borne out of a compulsion to do one's duty. It's even tougher when your partner feels that she is not 'in a mood to eat' (which a glutton like me can never fathom) and she opts for a glass of juice or a bowl of fruits. Stuff that can be arranged quickly. And consumed even faster.

So, as you bite into a rubbery, cold piece of roti dunked in a red, oily and tasteless gravy, you just wonder "What about the adage that the noblest deed is to feed a hungry man?". And then you notice the smiling face of owner or the guy at the cash counter.

Well, at least someone's happy.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Keep rocking..

Last Friday, i happened to watch (finally!) Bollywood's first movie based on the genre of rock music - Rock On. To be honest, I didn't have too many expectations, coz of late i have ended up being disappointed more often than not. Nor did the buzz that it generated influence me much, because if 'Singh is Kkkkkking' can be a hit, then anything and everything will be lapped up by our inane movie going public. Having said that, this movie turned out to be a pleasant surprise for me. The refreshing storyline, decent performances, the music (USP of the film) all seemed to work. But most importantly, i could identify with the central theme or the premise, if i can call it that:

What is a man, but for his dreams?

If you want to know what i am talking about, then catch the movie on big screen. I need not elaborate any further. The movie will speak for itself, and how well at that! Watch it.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Bangalore, Jaipur, Delhi..

..and next Mumbai, perhaps? Who really cares? Is it just me being cynical or have we become used to such barbaric attacks on innocent people? Life goes on, we have shown courage..blah, blah, blah. As i have already mentioned in one of my previous posts, try telling this to the near and dear ones of the victims.

All thanks to a corrupt to the core and inefficient Congress in power at the Centre.

Thursday, July 31, 2008

A big sunny field to be in.

In this strip, Hobbes reminds me of someone in my life. Someone very close to me. I wish i could be like that person, but i guess i am more like Calvin here. But as long as i have Hobbes on my side, do i care?

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Goodbye, Chandru Mama.

I will miss you. The simplicity with which you led your life, the sharp acumen you showed in financial matters, the ever smiling face. Most importantly, the amazing sense of humour that you were blessed with.

I still remember the time, maybe 20 yrs back, when you gave me a 5 rupees note and explained to me the importance of saving money. Your zest in wanting to repair electronic items like radios etc, that more often than not, ended in being messed up further ( just like your father i.e my Muthashan). Your explaination to me on how a TV works, which i used to remember when i was studying the subject during my engineering days. I want to go on and on, but words fail me today.

I am glad that you could make it to our place for my wedding, and bless us. The one final re-union of the entire family under one roof.

Your mother misses you, your siblings miss you, we all will miss you. A lot. The memories will remain forever with all of us, whilst you are re-united with our beloved Muthashan in heaven.

God bless your soul.

Monday, July 21, 2008

The irony of today's economics.

1. To be rich, you need to have money.
2. To be richer, you need to have more money.
3. To be the richest, you need to be a politician.

God help the rest of us. But appeasing God also costs money!

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

The Godfather - Category: Movies, Books

"I am gonna make you an offer that you can't refuse" the Godfather would say. Mario Puzo made us an offer that nobody could refuse. The amazing story of the Corleones. The Godfather.

I cannot decide which is better, the movie adaptations (Part 1 and 2) directed by Coppola or the book authored by Puzo.

The novel by Mario Puzo is a masterpiece. It is a must read for anyone with a penchant for stories related to the Mafia or the Cosa Nostra, as they are referred to. For anyone curious about the book (if you haven't already read it i.e) , you will find the details here. All i can say is that it is one of those books that you wouldn't want to put down once you start it. Which is big deal for me, as i have this habit of starting a book, dumping it midway and then taking it up again later when i feel like it. But not with this one, for sure. The novel has more details on the lives of characters like Luca Brasi, Johnny Fontane, Lucy Mancini as compared to the movie, which understandably focuses more on the main protagonists than the secondary characters. To sum it up, it is a must read. So either grab a copy from your nearest bookstore or i can lend you one.

The movie, whose screenplay was written by Mario Puzo himself, is a cult classic mainly because of the crisp editing, smooth direction by Francis Ford Coppola and most importantly, fine performances by the lead as well as the supporting cast. Al Pacino brilliantly portrayed the role of Michael Corleone in the trilogy, and i find it surprising that he never won an Academy Award for his roles. Perhaps it could be because of the fact that he was overshadowed by Marlon Brando as Vito Corleone in Part 1 and by Robert De Niro portraying the younger Vito Corleone in Part 2. Or perhaps, we always found the large-hearted father more intriguing than the calculating son.

Out of the two movies, i would dare say that the second one is marginally better than the first;mainly for two reasons. First, Coppola's depiction of the parallels in the father's early life and his son's ongoing battles is flawless. The transition is ultra smooth and you don't get a feeling that as a viewer, you are being forced to find parallels when the story keep swaying back and forth. Second, the rise and fall of characters such as Pentangeli, Hyman Roth and Fredo Corleone makes you marvel at the ingenuity of Puzo. Of course, the first one too had it's share of larger than life characters such as Sonny Corleone, Sollozzo and last but not the least, the dreaded Luca Brasi. But still, i prefer the second one.

I have probably watched these movies so many times that i have most of the dialogues memorized. They have been hailed amongst the greatest movies ever made.So that qualifies them as must watch for all the movie connoisseurs who haven't seen these yet. Trust me.

Post Script: This series, be it the movie or the book has been a personal favourite since many years now. I enjoy anything even remotely related to it, be it the music, the cult dialogues ("Luca Brasi lies with the fishes") and even the PC game by EA sports. The game can be rated 6/10 overall but the mere fact that it is based on the series, makes it one of my favourites. Also, the third part of the trilogy was a very average movie and it is not worthy of comparison to the first two. So let's just leave it at that.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

My Choice -- List of things i like..

My blogging has become very infrequent since the past few months. Lack of time has resulted in a paucity of thoughts, in turn resulting in a dearth of words.

But whenever i come across something that captures my imagination, like a brilliant movie or a captivating book or a melodious song, i feel an urge to share it with others. And that's exactly what i plan to do. Jot down my thoughts in the open dairy called "Second thoughts".

Monday, June 23, 2008

I dream of a fishie.

A long time fascination has recently turned into a hobby. It's been over 4 months since i have installed my fresh-water aquarium. And i am totally loving the experience. It might be hard work, as well as a tad bit expensive at times. But at the end of a long day, if you can relax in your chair and be at peace watching these wonderful fishes play, then it's worth it. Every penny spent, every drop of sweat that goes into maintaining it.

Male Yellow Mbuna(Kenyii) cichlids

Male Blue Dolphin Moori

Note: I am yet to master the art of taking photos of fishes in aquarium. These guys keep darting around so fast that it becomes next to impossible to shoot them without flash. And flashes mean the light bouncing off the tank's glass. These are some of the best close-ups i could capture.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Clash of the Titans.

Tonight, two of my favourite football clubs clash in a mouth-watering Champions League encounter. Yes boys, its Arsenal vs AC Milan.
Unfortunately, it is a tad too early for them in the competition. These teams deserved to meet in the later stages.
So many individual battles to look forward to. Kaks vs Flamini/Gilberto, Fabergas vs Gattuso, Adebayor vs Nesta, Pato vs Toure and so on.
The only lowpoints are the list of missing (injured) players ( Dida, Van Persie, Rosicky etc) and the patchy form of both the teams.

But it is gonna be one special encounter. Whom do i favour more? I wouldn't be able to answer that one.

May the best team win!

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Better late, than never.

Let's save him, before it's too late.

It would be too much to expect this from our corrupt ,unconcerned and inept ministries. I just hope that for the sake of this magnificient creature, the rest of world does exert pressure on our government to save the tiger from extinction.

We owe it to our kids. And to Hobbes.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Nearing the end of the first month of the new year..

...and it's already curtains for few of the resolutions i took at the start of this year:

1. Thou shalt enroll in a driving school:
It's just been a decade since i started driving two wheelers, so what's the hurry to drive cars? Right, no?
2. Thou shalt go jogging every morning :
It's freezing cold in the mornings over here in Mumbai. Besides, i don't think i am too fat. Also, i got married,so which PYT would even look at me now? I rest my case.
3. Thou shalt go home early from work :
Kaam bahut hai re baba. My company's stocks would dip if i stop working late. It's a question of my dedication.
And oh yes, speedy Internet access is easily available during the evenings.
4. Thou shalt stop making New Year's resolutions :
I wonder why? If only people were as persevering as me!

Friday, January 11, 2008

Mauritian memoirs

If i were to pick one photograph that would remind me of our wonderful honeymoon in Mauritius, then it would have to be this one..

Now, neither will this snap feature as the most scenic one in our collection nor is it well shot. But it just reminds me of the time when we just let the sun fade into the ocean in front of us.

Good music, great weather, and the best companion i could find.

Monday, January 7, 2008

Look for an idiot, and you find ten.

Look for ten, and you become one.

The following is a list of people(s) who have been bugging me no end since yesterday for a variety of reasons:

1. Aussie cric team: Messers Ponting, Symonds , Clarke and rest. Champions, they are, but without the grace and eloquence. Pride is a must but not at a cost of arrogance. Hypocrites, all of them. Give me a Federer anytime.

2. Indian cric team: Cannot last on the crease for mere 10 minutes! Bunch of overpaid and overrated individuals.

3. Steve Bucknor: I will say no more.

4. Common fool protesting on the street: A monk is killed and they try to bring a city to a standstill. I was stuck in a traffic jam for what seemed like an eternity, courtesy a bunch of morons who think that it is their right to disrupt others' lives for no reason at all. Schools are closed, people are afraid to venture alone. All this because someone from some minority community/caste/creed/class/nationality is killed. An opportunity for a bunch of no-gooders to strut their stuff on the street. Shoot them all, i say. Would give me an opportunity to come out on the street and applaud.

5. Mumbai police: Watching the antics of such vermins from the sidelines, with a grin on their faces and tobacco in their mouths. Time for a show of solidarity with their brethrens. Duty be damned.

6. Myself: I let the people listed above affect my mood, my day. Another New Year resolution down the drain.

Look for ten and you indeed become one.

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