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Monday, January 30, 2012

So near yet so far !!!

“Coffeeee!! Teaa!!”
“Coffeeee!! Teaa!!”
The vendor called out as he passed the coupe.
The baby fell on its knee trying to walk across to his mother.
The mother ran to pick up the child and is busy placating him.
Ravishing young lady sat across him checking her flock of hair in the mirror of her mini clutch bag.
The chatter from the group of young boys engrossed in a card game relayed from above.
The train had halted at Varnasi for 15 mins. He hadn’t moved or uttered a word from the time he got on.
The newspaper covered Sanjay’s face; his eyes peered through his bi-focal spectacles and his hair rested neatly combed sideways.
A pencil in his hand was losing his grip.
Since Sanjay, an engineer by profession proceeding to Kolkata  to finalize a huge contract, was lost in thoughts trying to decipher the doodle he had scribbled on the newspaper unconsciously consisting of few random numbers and sketches earlier during the morning. He was suddenly jolted out of his thoughts by loud cheers of boy’s playing cards on the upper berth and then he noticed the child had come up to him and was eyeing the pencil. Sanjay gave the pencil and the news paper to the child for to scribble and the child went back and squatted between his mother and the ravishing girl on the opposite berth. It was then he noticed her beauty and sub consciously started to groom himself and was somehow desperate to initiate a conversation with this girl for she was the kind of girl he was looking to marry for last couple of years. 

A hour later the child became disinterested with the Newspaper and pencil and suddenly Sanjay hears the girl speaking to him in a cultured tone asking him if she could borrow the newspaper to which he immediately nodded his head as he was too shy to answer back. Sanjay closed his eyes and was once again lost in pleasant thoughts of this beautiful and ravishing girl sitting opposite him, when he felt tapping of news paper on his body. He opened his eyes to find the girl was returning the news paper back to him and following conversation took place

 She: You must be an engineer

He: Yes and how were you able to make out by just reading the Newspaper.

She with a sensuous smile on her lips replied: Your doodle on the newspaper tells it all

He: Really?? You mean that scribbling on the paper tells you of my profession? I am impressed. But then tell me how you came to that conclusion.

She: I have done psychology during graduation and I try to gauge various people around me. Well in your case, for a moment I thought that you are in finance because of the random numbers you have scribbled all around the sketches but then the sketches had clear boundaries with intricate patterns in them. Seeing it for some time made me realize that the sketches looked like some electrical circuits that I had seen my brother studying few days back and hence I deduced that you are an engineer. Am I not correct in my statement??

He: Yes you are correct and by the way my name is Sanjay and I am an electrical engineer staying at Varanasi and you??

She: Hello Sanjay my name is Monica and I am also from Varanasi and (pointing to her brother and his friends on upper berth) said we are going to Kolkata to attend a wedding of a friend.

He: Oh is it, well I am also going to Kolkata for a meeting with my client to finalize a contract and if it is successful then I would be doing the shopping mall project.

She: You mean the mall which is coming up near Gol Park? It is adjoining my house

He: Yes the same one. Now I know where you live Monica and if it is not a problem can we meet some time for a coffee when you are back from Kolkata.

She: Yes Sanjay we sure can. Just call me when you are free.

Continuous conversation gets interrupted by the ticket examiner and after he had gone Sanjay tries to catch the attention of Monica to continue with their conversation and get her mobile number but then she is busy chatting with the boys who have finished their card game and have come down to their seats. He overhears them talking of taking the return journey by next day morning train after the wedding as it would be easier to get seats on a day train. He decides too that he would travel back to Varanasi by the very train they are planning so that it gives him more time to admire Monica and possibly have a pleasant conversation with her on boring journey back home. 

As the train is nearing Kolkata there is a rush of daily commuters entering the coach from the previous coach crowing this coach and Sanjay has not got a chance to ask for Monica’s mobile number yet and he glimpses her through gaps in the crowd that she is still occupied in animated conversation with her brother and his friends. As the commuter throng towards the exit Monica goes ahead without any backward glance. Sanjay is shattered that he was not able to get her contact details today itself but then thinks that he would be able to get the same during the return journey the next day.

Alas the next day Sanjay searched for Monica on the entire train on the return journey and she was not aboard the train. With a heavy heart Sanjay takes out his pencil and starts doodling on the newspaper again lost once again in his thoughts.

This post has been written for Tell a tale contest posted by Divya

My  two fellow bloggerTags 

Am too shy to show my face !!!!

                                   It seems that the bird was too shy to show its face while i was photographing it !!!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

A Moment of madness

This morning called up the auto stand for an auto and I was informed that a driver unknown to me is being sent as none of the regular auto drivers were free at this point of time since most of them drivers are mourning the death of a fellow auto driver Vasu who self immolated himself. During the travel I chatted up with the new driver and I was surprised to find out that the person who committed suicide was just about 25 years of age and he is survived by his wife and a 15 month old son and the reason was constant fights with his wife each day last few days about money to run the family. In a fit of inebriated rage after a bitter fight two days back he drained the petrol from his auto and doused himself in it and lit a match in front of his wife and other neighbors. A moment later in fiery pain he was repenting the action taken by him and he urged the dazed onlookers to save him from his predicament, in spite of dousing the fire he was severely burnt and was rushed to the hospital where he later succumbed to the burns. 

 A moment of madness is all that takes for a person to commit suicide and as the madness subsides and when reality sinks in and there is an urge to live but then it may be too late. Those who have survived their attempt guilt and shame prevent them from getting any help they need to overcome the crisis. The victims’ family members and friends are greatly affected by this cowardly act and it takes a very long time for them to overcome the stigma left behind.   

A bad day for the family of Vasu, the auto driver for sure but then when one hears of such incidents it does dishearten them. I do not want to dwell on this topic for long for it is too despairing.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Random clicks -01

One day when i was watching out of my window i saw a group of labourers getting ready for their work for that day to concrete a second floor of  the house about 50 meters away and without thinking just clicked few pictures of the same.

Concrete bucket lift being assembled using scaffolding rods

Women labourers carrying concrete for pour
From morning to evening the gang completed the pouring of concrete of the second floor with just a break of 30 minutes for lunch.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Made to order baby????

Recently a Chennai couple looking to start their family has placed an online advertisement looking for sperm donors for artificial insemination but with specific conditions. Before I go into the advertisement placed by them I would like to touch upon a little background on the artificial insemination process. Every parent would aspire that their child should be intelligent and good looking but then nature and genetics take precedence in this process. If a couple is not able to conceive naturally for any reason then artificial insemination is the process is undertaken if the couple wishes to have a child. Mankind has been fascinated by the process of pregnancy and has experimented extensively to perfect the insemination process so as to bring a bundle of joy to the childless couples.

But then there have been experiments by few doctors in this field to conceive a super human being by using sperms or eggs of the intelligent, brave, handsome and beautiful people living during those eras. It is well documented that Dr Karl Clauberg and his assistant Johannas Golbel of Germany, during the Second World War were conducting many experiments of artificial insemination on the imprisoned Jewish woman so as to perfect the process so that a untainted Aryan race could be born. This reminds me of the old joke involving the chat between George Bernard Shaw and Marilyn Monroe, wherein Marilyn tells that a child between two of them would have her beauty and GBS’s brains and his response was “what if the child has my beauty and your brains”. There is no recorded evidence of the child being born by artificial insemination being progeny even though the donor had been endowed with very high IQ. It clearly proves that even if you tweak the process, the nature and genetics would take its course and decide the final characteristic of the child that is born.

Coming back to the recent online advert, the conditions imposed by the couple were that “the donor should be an IIT student, healthy, no bad habits, tall and fair if possible” and the compensation offered is Rs 20,000.00 which is a lively sum for students in college. This advertisement has given rise to lots of resentment among the students of IIT Chennai and also the general public who has come across this bit of news because of the conditions imposed.  Some of the comments were “This is insane. How can sperm from an IITian make any difference? Intelligence cannot be measured. You can only identify intelligence in a person, but one cannot measure intelligence by the institution he comes from,” said a second year student” & “This advertisement is ridiculous. I think IIT brand name is taken out of context here. May be genetics do play some role, but hard work makes a man intelligent. If they were right, Albert Einstein’s relatives should be the brightest of all in the world. Excellence is mostly hard work,” another student said.

It is quite surprising that an educated couple is bench marking only students in IIT to be intelligent, tall, and fair, for I personally know few IITians who have struggled to complete the course even though they fared well in the entrance exams. Few Childless couples wanting to have babies through artificial insemination think that they can determine the characteristics of their baby by deciding the donor….similar to ordering the toppings while order the pizza from Pizza hut or Dominos, but then they have to understand that nature and genetics has a major role in this matter otherwise I am sure each child in the society may have been a Newton, Einstein, John McEnroe or a Mohammad Ali

Your take on this bit of news please!!!!

Monday, January 9, 2012

Today's Special Menu - AuMd (Gold plated Dosa)

Gold has been a valuable and highly sought out precious metals Jewels, coinage and art long before the beginning of recorded history. Due to its malleability, electric conductivity, resistance to acids and chemical reaction Gold has other practical uses in addition to jewelry such as in dentistry, Electronics, electrical wiring, colored glass productions and finally eating.

Now you must be wondering that I must be mad…..but hey Read here about the Gold plated Dosa at Bangalore. People are queuing to eat the gold plated dosa at a cost of Rs 1011.00 each which does not have any medicinal value but just a show of opulence.  After reading the article I googled about gold plating on eatable and I was surprised to see that this is not a new fad and in fact has been used in world over in form of flakes or powder to add a perception of luxury and high value. They are used in various desserts and confectioneries in Asian countries similar to silver foils used on mithai in India. From the 16th century Europe has used gold leaf in liquors such as Goldstrike from Amsterdam, Schwabach from Germany and Danziger Goldwasser of Poland. 

Since metallic gold is inert to all body chemistry, has no taste and no nutrition value it would leave the body unaltered and am sure that someone even more enterprising at Bangalore would start a process for separating this precious metals from the human refuse …thought of it is quite sickening .aaaaaghh
Food for your thoughts !!!!!!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Six months off ....a sad state of affairs

Newspaper today carried a story about the number of Holidays in Government offices in Tamilnadu and other states of India.Based on this news most government offices in India except for Revenue, Police, Health, Transport departments work just about six months a year. Additionally the time wasted by the employees taking long tea/lunch breaks, gossiping and procrastinating cuts down the effective working hours of the office to 5-6 hours per working day .There is absolutely no accountability for delays in governance and the cost overrun thereof .This certainly takes its toll on the efficiency and there is no mechanism or a system to measure the productivity of the Government sector. 
General public is aware of the delays and pitfalls they encounter in a government office and to avoid these they are prone to grease the palms of the government official to speed up the processing of their papers ... an indirect catalyst to bribery. Lok Pal bills if passed would only be a tool to curtail the bribery but it does not address the root cause of the problem... inefficiency and accountability. There needs to be an immediate change in the way the Government operates, should India aspire to become a fully developed nation in the near future. Why not follow the rules and regulations being used in Private sector where an employee need to work for nearly 10 hours a day 6 days a week for over 280 days a year since deadline and targets are sacrosanct and stiff penalties are levied for non performance. 

I know that this is a very difficult task to be undertaken as there would be lots of objections and  protests from the government sector employee unions and other bodies who are used to easy life and easy money. 

Hope there is a change for good in the coming years.