Saturday, March 24, 2012

Just Did It!!!

Aaj tarikh 24 March saan 2012... mein US may hun... meray pachapan ka sapana ki mein s/w engineer banu orr Amrica (what we call it as) jaun...
ye sapna suru hota hai 1998 say.. 10 vi kaksha kay baad .. jaab apna future apna career decide karne ka time tha..pata nahi kahan say ye sapna meray maan may baas gaya tha ki Amrica
jana hai or fir ek safar suru hogaya... well safar ki details may nahi jayen gaay aaj.. fir kabhi

aaj yahan barish ho rahi hai.. bhot teej.. koe storm ayya hai.. esi hi barish meray gaon mein bhi toti barish dekhke aaj ghar ki yaad agayi.. barish may wo paper boat banana.. or us boat ko teranaykay liye barish mein bhegna ... good golden olden days ..

kash ye wakt wahin tham jata.. lakin nahi wakt ko to apni raftar say hi chalna hota hai...jesay jesay bade hue paper boat ka saath chut sa gaya..

barish mein aksar ghar ki batii (electricity) chali jati thi.. fir candle jalake padaee karna..wo din bhi ajeeb the..ek junoon tha maan mein kuch karne ka kuch banane ka..

junoon say juda hua hai ek kisa meray engineering kay final year exams ka.. exams say kuch hi din pehle mummy ka accident ho gaya tha jis wajeh say unhe bed rest karna tha or ghar may mein ek hi ladki thi or upar say final year exams... sonay pay suhaga ye hua ki practical exams say pehle ek tufan sa ayya or saray electricity kay pole gara gaya..fir kya tha.. computer ji to chalnay say rahe.. aab practicals ki tayari karen to kesay..lakin meray papa bhi elctrical engineer hain.. kuch jugad karkay computer chal pada or exam ki tayari ho gayi...

yehi nahi final year was all clear with distinction ... I "JUST DID IT"...

-Sonia Khanna

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Thursday, October 06, 2011

R.I.P. Steve Jobs

Sir, there can be never be any other Steve Jobs in this world ever. May your soul rest in peace.

"No one wants to die.
Even people who want to go to heaven don't want to die to get there.
And yet death is the destination we all share.
No one has ever escaped it. And that is as it should be, because
Death is very likely the single best invention of Life."
-Stanford commencement speech, June 2005

Thursday, April 21, 2011

What's in a name?

Mr. William Shakespeare had once said - "What's in a name?" I don't know whether he was shaken when he said it or whether it was some other reason which made him say these words. I too agree to this statement to a great extent. But there are times when the names make you think, especially when it is a name which contradicts the enterprise which it represents or when it is 'zara hatke'.

Some days ago, on my way back home, while travelling by bus, I saw you big signboard that read - 'Ram Bhavan' And there was some more text just below these words. These words were written on a board hung in front of an entrance of a structure by the side of the road. It was difficult to make out the additional text sideways. I waited for the bus to reach near the board or in front of the board so that I could figure out what it was. But that did not stop me from trying to guess what could the structure be. 'Ram Bhavan' - my first thought was that it was a temple. But then I quickly discarded that thought - the only reason being the structure was in a slum, the structure was a part of a line of shops or small enterprises and the board was too shabby & too un-temple like. The next thought what that it might be the signboard of a guest house or lodge... Quite possible, but then another thought intruded in my on-going chain of thoughts... A guest house - could it be one of those shady guest houses where all sorts of nefarious activities go on? Could be - but the name somehow does not fit the bill. My bus soon reached very close to 'Ram Bhavan' and I got a chance to read the words below it. I was surprised because all my guesses were wrong. The words were - Ram Bhavan Bar and Restaurant. :D The closest that I could reach to a contradiction was a lodge carrying out shady activities, and that too it was not a convincing thought. But a bar and a restaurant - well, I don't know what to say. Bhagwan ke naam pe log kya kuch karte hain... After this incident, I became a little more cautious in guessing enterprises by their name.

I was on an official visit to Bangalore and once I decided to go for lunch in the complex where I was working. There were a few restaurants and I was strolling around trying to figure out which one should I opt for. There were the usual Pizza Hut, KFC, CCD and some more restaurants like Civet, Route 19, Paramount, etc. But there was one name which was 'zara hatke'... And the name was 'The Geeky Dhaba' and its punchline was - 'Desi people, Desi pakwaan'. Now that's a strange name for a restaurant and the punchline somehow does not fit with the word 'Geeky' that the name carries. Besides, I can understand 'Dhaba', but 'Geeky' - am not very sure if a restaurant can be called 'Geeky'. Whatever it be, the name sounded interesting enough. My next thought was "Will it be good enough?" But that thought lasted only for a fraction of a second becuase I could see a lot of people inside. Almost all the tables were full. So I decided to experience the geeky side of this dhaba and walked in. This restaurant had glass walls and so the people outside could see inside and the people inside could see what was happening outside. I had noticed that people were eating rice, biryani, chapati and different varieties of food. I had also noticed large menu cards stuck to the 2 glass walls on different sides of the restaurant. And the only item that the menu listed belonged to the category - 'Dosa'. It had a wide variety of Dosas and Uttapams along with the prices. And the little that I know about cooking, I was sure that there is nothing 'GEEKY' about dosas. I was wondering if I would get a proper meal inside since the menu advertised only Dosas and I had seen people eating everything other than dosas. I decided to believe what I saw i.e. people eating rice, chapati, biryani, etc. rather than believe the menu. I decided to walk in. I thought may be the actual menu card will be placed on the table or put up on a board behind the cashier. There was nothing geeky about the restaurant - not a sample of some modern or fundu technology which would make me think that this restaurant is geeky indeed. When I reached the cashier's desk to buy my coupon, I saw a few menu cards lying on his table. The meal names were very different from what we normally see in any restaurant. And this is where the restaurant had tried to include geekiness. There were meals called 'Control A', 'Control C', 'Control S'. When I read these names, I was stumped. I was wondering if I am going through a menu card or is it some document highlighting PC shortcuts. I was wondering how would I be able to eat geeky stuff. But then I remembered seeing people eating 'normal' food. So I decided to read the contents of the dishes. Thankfully, the contents of the dishes were not written using geeky words. And they were dal, rice, chapati, sabzi and so on, which we are well aware of and also eat. I was wondering if I should move to another restaurant or continue with my lunch here. My stomach growled and I decided to eat my lunch in the 'Geeky Dhaba' itself. Thankfully, the food was normal and fine and there was nothing geeky about it. And the name kept me on tenterhooks till I took the first bite. After these 2 incidents, I have actually started wondering if the statement - "What's in a name????" should be taken seriously or not. What do you think?

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Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Culture Shock

While my last trip to US had its elements of culture shock, this trip is no different. However, this time, I have experienced culture shock in office... yes - in office. And I have been left speechless. And the free use of expeltives makes me wonder if I still have a lot to learn in English language. If not the expeltives, it is the idea that some intelligent soul comes up with and these ideas are strictly categorized as A or A+, if there is any rating like this.

One fine day, when we were sitting in a meeting, the topic of animal rescue officers came up. Here is the conversation that followed-
AB - Yeah, the Police Department does have an Animal Rescue officer on the force in each county. There was one in my husband's unit as well, but they removed him.
JB - Removed him? Why?
AB - He was sleeping around with the wives of the people whose houses he would visit for rescuing animals. And he would charge them.
JB - Charge them...??? I can understand sleeping around...
AB - Yeah, but he would charge them.
(Note - Animal rescue act should not be charged. It is to be done for free by the animal rescue officer.)
JB - Sleeping around... I don't think any husband would have a problem with his wife sleeping around with the animal rescue officer, but charge them... that is not right...
AB - Yeah, exactly... he would charge them.
JB - Would he charge them for animal rescue or for sleeping with them?

By this time, I was too stunned to react. The smile that I had on my face at the beginning of the meeting had disappeared and I was feeling wierd. I was actually waiting to move out of the meeting... Itna saara discussion in a business meeting - phew, that is too much.

Another meeting - a differnt agenda though... I was preparing a project plan and we were discussing all the activities involved in the project execution so that I could add it to my Project Plan. The meeting was going on well, till the time yours truly decided to ask a few questions with a purely genuine intention of knowing what is going around in the other groups. After a couple of questions, somebody said louldy - "I don't know what the F*** are those guys doing." I was clean bowled. And I decided not to ask anything any further.

Yet another meeting, with all male members - it was a discussion about the updates to the Project Plan because of the delay in the implementation schedule. The topic veered towards a CR that is being worked on by another team. Yours truly entered the action just to provide some information on a bug that had come up in testing. During the normal course of discussion, one of the guys said - "What the f*** have those guys done? It should not be this way."

Wow, such a free usage of expeltives in the corporate world... Can things get any better??? How wrong was I!!! Every morning we have a standup meeting where we give the status of our work and the plan for the day. One fine day, we had a lunch meeting and while having lunch we were discussing about certain things that should be done to improve the performance of the team. Things were going on fine, when all of a sudden -
LO - We have SK's birthday on Thursday. Can we invite a stripper for him?
ha ha ha ha ha ha he he he he he he ho ho ho ho ho - Laughter all around.
I was shocked. I was stunned and was not able to figure out what was happening - I mean, we are discussing about how to improve the things and all of a sudden a stripper comes into the conversation.
KH - Oh no... We would all lose our jobs.
AB - Yes, we would have to start searching for another job from Friday.
LO - Don't worry. I am ready to take the rap for everyone.

As long as it was just the usage of expeltives, it was still ok. I am not saying that the usage of expeltives is right, but if you compare the expeltives with the stripper incident, the stripper incident crosses all limits. Phew... these culture shocks have actually shaken me quite a lot... And I don't know what is in store for me for the remaining few days that I will be here.

And for those of you who are still wondering whether the stripper came to office or not, well... the stripper was not invited. Thank GOD for small mercies.

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Friday, January 21, 2011

What a contrast!!!

Yesterday was a day of storms and turmoils... And today - it has been normal, touch wood. And I don't know what got into me. I started watching 'Khichdi' movie on YouTube... O man... it is non-sensical humour... As I am writing this, the movie has progressed to the point where a condolence meeting is being held for "Chandrakantbhai Tribhuvandas Sheth". And they are singing songs on the tunes of popular bollywood numbers... Never knew this movie was so crazy. I have been laughing like anything since the movie started... Phew. Thank God, times do change. But then life is a cycle... lets see when does the next storm come and what does it deal with... till then, live life KING SIZE

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Thursday, January 20, 2011

Izz All Really Well???

Today's day has been a day which has shaken me up. A storm had been brewing inside me and I guess, today, it has predicted its arrival. And going by the sneak preview, it seems that this storm will blow away a few bridges. The best part was - the sneak preview happened just as the work day was beginning. And this storm arose when I had called up home. I do not know how long will it take for the raging storm to subside, but I do know that the time has come to take a final call and settle things down.

I had somehow managed to curb the raging storm when someone very close to me said - "It's high time you come back to India; you have been in US for long now." And it makes me all the more anxious and eager to head back to India because that is where my heart is...

Confusion hi confusion hai, solution ka pata nahi. Solution jo mila to sala, question kya tha pata nahi!!! And I am still expected to say - "All iz Well"!!!

p.s. - Names have not been revealed and much has not been written about the stakeholders to protect their identities and myself too. :P

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Wednesday, December 22, 2010


The last few days have been completely nostalgic. It has been so cold that you cannot think of venturing out. So I decided to listen to a few songs that we would be crazy about during our school / college days and even when we stepped into professional life. I followed it up with a few serials that were in the good books of almost all viewers, including children (seedha saadha bachcha log like me...) during their time. Following are the songs and the serials-

1. Kaoma Lambada - This is my all time favourite. A dance track to the core and has the very passionate Brazilian dance for couples that goes by the same name : 'Lambada'. I never had any partner for this dance (or for that matter for any other dance) either in school or college, but that did not stop me from enjoying the music of Kaoma Lambada. It is a delight. The moment I heard this song, my school's annual day flashed before my eyes where small children had danced on this song and they were looking so cute... I was in 8th or 9th std, that is the reason I could call the performers small children. And they were actually small - maybe 4th std or something. Not too sure about that. I am not sure of the lyrics, but the tune has been incorporated in Vishwatma, a movie starring Sunny paaji. And that is not a part of the nostalgic feeling.

2. Brazil (by Vengaboys) - This is another very good dance number. Very popular during my college days and can be heard even now. Ashu / Piyush, remember how we were dancing to this song during one of our annual days. And I believe somebody had clicked our photo too - Piyush, you and me dancing. (I think the photo was clicked during some other song... not very sure.) And Maulik, the great, had drawn our individual sketches using that photo. Latin American music is good and better still is any Latin American dance form, be it Salsa, Merengue, Samba, Rumba among others.

3. Sha la la la la (again by Vengaboys) - This is a catchy tune. Ashu, remember the guys gang at your place one weekend and how we were enjoying Sha la la la la. It was Milind, Vinayak, Deepak, Gautam, you and me. Piyush, Maulik and Krupal were not there.

4. Living next door to Alice - Need I say anything about it... :) This song was played during some function of someone's coaching class. I am sure it was not my coaching class function. It doesn't matter where it was being played, but it was a song that everyone liked. And at that time, there was a remix version containing the 4-lettered unparliamentary word and that version of the song became very popular. I remember there was a Toad mix of this song too wherein a toad would keep croaking at regular intervals. The song that I was hearing yesterday was not the unparliamentary one or any remix version. I was listening to the original song
I don't know why she's leaving
Or where she's gonna go
I guess she has a reason
that I just don't want to know...
For 24 years I've been living next door
to Alice...

5. Summer of '69 - One of the most famous songs of Bryan Adams. The guitar being played in the song is just too good. Very popular during our college time.

6. Point 5 hai chandrama, raat point 5 - Don't start thinking too much into this guys. This song is our version of "Aadha hai chandrama, raat aadhi... reh na jaye teri meri baat aadi, mulakaat aadhi". Harry - remember this song... We used to sing it on every trek after we would return back to the base... You, me, Kiran, Manish, and others...

7. Tum itna jo muskura rahe ho - A Jagjit Singh classic. Jaggu dada has some amazing ghazals in his list.

8. "Yeh dil yeh pagal dil mera", "Hangama hai kyon barpa", "Chupke chupke raat din", "Kal chaudveen ki raat thi" - Some of the ghazal gems from Ghulam Ali saab.

9. Giant Robot - Johny Sako and his Giant Robot. I used to wait to watch this serial. A robot controlled by a kid wearing half pants... How many of us harboured the thoughts of swapping places with Johny or even owing a robot - not as big as Johny's robot, but one that would obey our commands.

10. Duck Tales - I am sure this serial has a big big fan following. Uncle Scrooge and his 3 nephews : Huey, Dewey and Louie. And yes, Uncle Scrooge's gold treasure... :P I wish I could get 0.1 % of Uncle Scrooge's wealth. I would be content with it. :P

11. Street Hawk - The man... The machine... Street Hawk!!! One of the good english serials to be shown on DD. I used to pray to GOD for that bike, but GOD did not listen to me. Then I decided to steal it and after stealing, ask GOD for forgiveness. GOD turned out to be smarter. I couldn't find a single Street Hawk around which I could steal... :)

12. Dekh Bhai Dekh - Simple and clean family comedy. And I think it is one of the best shows till date... Interesting and funny characters always enjoying and helping each other get out of trouble... Remember the dialogue "Tere mooh mein keede, tere mooh mein dhool"

13. HeMan and the Masters of the Universe - "By the power of Grayskull..." and the fireworks sounds that followed would echo from each and every home in my building. HeMan is an all time favourite of quite a few people.

14. The theme of Malgudi days - Ta na na nana nana na... Who can forget SWami...? I guess this is one of the very very well known themes.

15. Byomkesh Bakshi - Having grown on a staple diet of Nancy Drew, Hardy Boys, Famous Five, Secret Seven and some of Alfred Hitchcock, this was a good way to test my detective skills... never managed to solve any though... and decided that I can never be a detective, leave alone being a good one...

I know you guys must be wondering - the description of songs is bigger as compared to the TV serials. Yaar, likhte likhte thak gaya. Isiliye descriptions chote hote gaye.

I am sure you guys too would have remembered your days of school / college and these songs / serials and some other ones too. Think of it and smile because it happened. And if you want to enjoy them once again - YouTube baba ki jai!!!

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