Friday, November 23, 2007

Of Marriageable Age

Suddenly we have all grown up, friends and foes. Interestingly what seemed to be the distant future now is a close reality. Suddenly all the relatives who were interested in “Kis class main padh rahe ho Beta” have changed the wavelength to “Aagey ka kya plan hai”.

Faced by the same question I enthusiastically started blabbering my best laid plans how and when I will switch jobs, for what career profiles. The trail of my excited voice meets an interruption and the brakes are applied like Michael Schumacher would if he suddenly finds himself driving on Hosur road in Bangalore during peak times instead of a Race track. “Nahi beta main yeh nahi Shaadi ke baare main pooch rahi thi”.

“What, No…….Yes…” I am cornered is there an escape. No doesn’t seems so, Save me somebody save me, God Please save me. No he doesn’t save anyone, who saves Mummy yes MUMMY!!!!. “Nahi, Aunty Jo mummy bolenegi wohi karenge”. Suddenly the key job in almost everyone’s life is to get me married. “I mean, I have nothing against marriages. Everyone gets married right? My parents did, your parents did. But suddenly the Idea that I am the one who would be tying the nuptial knot (I don’t know what on earth this means, I have been very bad on untangling knots since childhood, may be that scares the shit out of me).

Suddenly people around me asking about the height of the girl I would consider, I always thought, it mattered in the school health cards. I out of utmost honesty try to think on that line, will all my statistical analysis I can not come out with a cut off height as a parameter for someone who would be my wife. Now I wonder how difficult it would have been for my teachers to decide that 40 out of 100 is passing and 39.9 is fail. I have developed immense respect for them for coming out with such an objective figure, keeping in mind the kind of student I am, I would have been in clear trouble if they would have been as confused about passing marks as I am about the perfect height for a girl. I would never ever have managed to pass any of my exams.

I seriously thank all the elderly aunties engaged in the eternal tryst to find my second half, for not asking me the kind of weight and other important statistical features (which I might state if forced by them).

Suddenly everyone seems to have a view that “how well a working woman can adjust into my life style” or “How I need a housewife (wife is more important as I perceive) to manage my household affairs”. The decisions like these seem to be tougher than which MBA college to apply and which to join. I have suddenly become the talk of the parties, the other day my mom was telling me that everyone was asking about me in a marriage she had attended. I was amazed, that despite the fact that I haven’t attended a single marriage ceremony in past 7 years, people still remember me. Out of curiosity I asked on what context I was being discussed, “Good Boy”, “MBA Admissions”, “Career Suggestion”, “My whereabouts” were the plausible contexts on my mind when my mom made me aware of another possibility “of course!! marriage”.

With much continuous hammering on my head by everyone I seem to know, I have started taking this thought very seriously and sometimes I feel why I have to go through this ordeal. For better at least the idea of arranged marriage doesn’t scare me as it does to a lot of people (specially the fairer sex amongst my friends). But still the idea of marriage seems to be too far fetched at current point of time. The thought that scare me of that now I am grown up enough to get married and now children will start calling me “uncle”(actually some already have, more about this later). The whole business of being grown up and having a family is too difficult. A lot of words change their meaning, for example ‘Home’ would no more be my home where my parents lived, ‘Wife’ won’t be the antique my dad and other uncles have, ‘Kids’ won’t be what I am, ‘Planning’ will have gradually shift from career to family. Suddenly so much of change is a bit too drastic, even for someone who is prime advocate of change as an agent. Best of luck to all my friends who are on the same crossroads as I am, for achieving this beautiful dream in reality. When the old fat aunty asks you “Beta Shaadi kab kar rhe ho” you stand up to your full height and say “Meri shaadi ho chuki hai aunty but aap please mummy ko mat batana unhe maloom nahi hai.” And just enjoy the look on her face. Wish I could do it, sigh!!!!

Posted by Prats at 5:10 PM  

Friday, November 16, 2007

Ginger & Cardamom Turns 2

My sweet little blog celebrating its second birthday today. Celebrating its birthday with its new domain name & a sister stories blog

Happy Birthday Ginger & Cardamom

with lots of love

Posted by Prats at 1:30 PM  

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Memorable Times

Some of my memorable time spent in a past few month would include these, missing my life and stepping forward to finding my identity. Hope these time come back to my life.

  • Tapping the keys of my laptop and see the collection of letters giving rise to what is my first story after almost 3 years.
  • Relearning very old lessons I had learnt the hard way “Relationships are like investment, get out of a bad one ASAP”
  • Going out on drives and trips near the places.
  • Going to one of the best places to eat, sitting on the corner seat looking down at the ground 7 floors below enjoying the view. Ordering without looking at the prices.
  • Walking back to my room in the rain sipping my cup of coffee
  • Talking to a friend to revive an old friendship which was left bruised in a war of unmatched ego.
  • Buying things for people who really matter.
  • Traveling in an early morning flight and see the rising sun beneath from the clouds.
  • Talking to close friends and accepting you were wrong.
  • Pampering myself with new condiments for my life.
  • Sleeping late on a Monday morning.

Posted by Prats at 3:31 PM  

ERP Implementations.

Friday, November 02, 2007

imple, originally uploaded by guptaprats.

Posted by Prats at 5:28 PM  


consultant, originally uploaded by guptaprats.

Posted by Prats at 5:28 PM  

Sales Promise

Sales Promise, originally uploaded by guptaprats.

Posted by Prats at 5:27 PM  

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Congratulations Vinnie, I am so happy for you. I wanna PARTY :-)

Posted by Prats at 10:17 PM  

Sales Pitch

Friday, October 26, 2007

salespitch, originally uploaded by guptaprats.

Posted by Prats at 9:57 AM  

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Ineffcitvemeeting, originally uploaded by guptaprats.

Posted by Prats at 5:26 PM  

meeting value, originally uploaded by guptaprats.

Posted by Prats at 5:09 PM  

workfrust, originally uploaded by guptaprats.

was going through a blog where I came across the idea of representing the idiosyncrasies of life in a pictorial form. Did something on the same lines. Hope you people like it. :-)

Posted by Prats at 5:08 PM  

Monday, October 22, 2007

Movies: My Take & Reviews

With this habit of watching movies at every weekend, I realized that I have developed a taste to appreciate movies as a whole and in elements. I was reading across one of the public forums and I came across statements like “Bhool Bhoolaiya- remake of ApthaMitra” , and “This film is a remake of south film. In Malayalam this film was Manichitrathazhu and in Kannada this was ApthaMitra As many are aware that Priyadarshan usually remakes all south films to Bollywood”.

I am not contemplating on the facts of the statements above but their tone seems to be condescending for the director & producer who has made the movie. I believe that movies are cultural artifacts. It’s a different piece of art, its far more than story telling. We actually fail to understand and undermine the movie as a piece of art when they judge it solely on the basis of the story. A movie not only consists of a storyline, but also other essential parts that make it a different art form all together as compared to story writing. Movies is the story, the art of story telling, the art of living the story, the art of showing the story, the art of holding interest, the art of music and dancing and moreover so the art of placing other art in it’s place. So even if someone makes a remake of another movie (irrespective of the language) he should not be despised of his creativity. It is not that he lacks creativity or the art of movie telling. What matters is that he is trying to tell an old story in his way, with his choice of presentation and its contents. That can not be wrong about the movie, when a director picks up a storyline already used than it does not necessarily means the movie is bad or the quality has been compromised.

There are a lot of things which are reused including the story; the important question is to view it as the art form and the intent behind it. For example rights for the song “Pretty Woman” were bought from Hollywood for Rs. 800,000 to use it in the movie “Kal Ho Na Ho”, but isn’t the song original. Similarly, when Farhan Akhtar made Don, and RGV made Aag, they openly made the remakes in the sense the story was already told by someone else but still the movies are accepted as different movies. So why degrade the movies just because the story has already been told, judge them accordingly and benchmark it to the previous movies. My take on two recent movies I saw-

Bhool Bhulaiya- Story: The story line was good and relatively new (p.s. I haven’t seen the Kannada or Malayalam movies mentioned above, and I am not aware of another Hindi movie in the same genre), though there were some loopholes in the movie and couple of questions are left unanswered towards the end. Over all the story keeps you interested. A weak part pointed to me by a lot of people was Akshay Kumar doing comedy amidst of a ghost being present. I will grant it to Priyadarshan because of the line Akshay says towards the end, that he knew from the very beginning that who the ghost was and why it was acting this way. Overall the story line was good enough to keep you occupied for the duration of the movie.

Acting: The star cast was well chosen and everyone did a very good job, even Rajpal Yadav was humorous, instead of being irritating like he was in Partner and RGV ki Aag. Characters like Paresh Rawal, Asrani and Manoj Joshi played their part extremely well. Akshay Kumar and Shiney Ahuja were also good. On other hand Amisha Patel had a very subdued role to play. She didn’t left any substantial impact. Vidya Balan was the centre point of the movie, specially in the later half. The kind of acting she has done in the movie is amazing specially towards the end. It’s been commendable to see her journey through Parineeta, Lage Raho Munnabhai, Guru and now Bhool Bhulaiya. She has proved time and again that she is not an actress who can be ignored on the face of the hindi cinemascope.

Music, Cinematography & Dialogues: As usual for a Priyadarshan movie dialogues of the comedy were very well written, but the dialogues could have been more effective at a lot of serious places. Specially the dialogues for Radha (Ameesha Patel) could have been a lot better for her role. The choreography is good, and the location entirely fit the setup and background of the story. The music by Preetam is average except for the title song which is a very rocking tune. While the rest of the songs I can’t even recollect.

Laga Chunari Main Daag: Story: This is the age old story of a woman turning into a prostitute because of her family troubles. There is nothing new in the storyline, those who willing to watch it for the story it’s a strict not watch kind of movie. The ending is one of the most stereotyped Hindi cinema ending and a very shabbily wrapped one.

Acting: Rani, Konkana, and Jaya Bachchan have been amazing through out the movie, the expression and the delivery of the characters is outstanding and one can relate to the scheme of things through them. They make the entire movie watchable. Kunal kappor and Abhishek Bachchan have hardly any role to play in the movie. They are just there to give a happy ending. Hema Malini, in her 5 minutes of role created a dramatic impact. While Anupam kher was not even half as good as he generally is.

Music, Cinematography, and Dialogues: The dialogues of the movie are very well written giving the strength to the characters and are a backbone of the film. Cinematography is very good the locations and the expressions have been very well taken into account. The treatment of the Banaras, Mumbai and Zurich all has been equally good. The music of the movie is really good and evenly placed, the title song in the voice of Shubha Mudgal evokes a lot of emotions, while the songs like “Hum to Aise hai Bhaiya…” and “Kachi Kaliya…” are very refreshing. I would say Shantanu Moitra some more pieces of awesome music to his name.

Posted by Prats at 5:43 PM  

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Zindagi: La Vie Leben Vida Vita

One of my close buddies asked a harmless question "whats wrong with your zindagi or whats right?" I gave him the following answer, Nothing wrong with it. I told him exactly what I was thinking at that point of time, but I am not thinking on these lines at every point of my life. I really believe that if I can carry this form of attitude at all points of time in my life. I don't know about anything else I would be a better person than I am now-

The only thing right about anyone's zindagi is it's mere existence the fact that it is still there, the clock and the beats are still ticking and u have another second to live by and everything other than this what we perceive about zindagi is wrong. It is the weight of expectations that we bind in our own desires and ambitions to the zindagi.The only fact is sometimes the weight is light and the zindagi zips past. While the others its heavy and then we say life sucks but life never sucks, its our expectations from our own life that make it suck so if anything that is wrong with my zindagi is me.

so THINK!!!!!!

Posted by Prats at 4:33 PM  

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Airtel: Kusht-mar Care

I was reading an advertisement of Airtel which read 50 million and another 950 to go. Amazing feat for a company, I have had a mixed experiences with the services. I like it because I feel indebted to Airtel and Reliance with their closed user group & intra network calling schemes. When I could not actually afford, I managed to have conversation, whose thought sends shivers down my spine, how on earth I could manage such long hours on phone while now even an hour on phone and I get bugged of like hell.

I have had a personal sense of gratitude for these two cellular companies. I am going to talk about Airtel today, I remember seeing the golden lettered display in Airtel Office (Swargate, Pune) where they desire to become the top most consumer brand in their category. I smiled at it and felt with pride of being an Airtel user.
Leave aside the pride, the amount of pain to be a Kusht-mar of brand like this. I have seen people having including myself having really painful experiences with the brand which wishes to be the apple of the consumers’ eyes. Few examples-

1- Having a pre-paid number in pune Airtel, reaching Kusht-mar care executive through 121 is a pain. First of all they would not connect you, even if they do in most cases the query will not be resolved appropriately. And mind you if you dialed to them more than 3 times a day they block customer care number on your phone (No you don’t need to talk rudely to them, neither you need to be abusive, you just need to tell them sorry ma’am my problem is not yet solved) and three times you are simply gone. Forget that you might ever reach to customer care. You will have to drive all the way to their office. I am sure brands do that, its excellent service and I am happy to believe that 50 million are facing this and the company desires it shove it the backside of rest of 950 million lucky Indians.

2- One of my close friends, did the grave mistake of activating GPRS on his mobile phone which was liable for daily deductions of Rs. 11 (I don’t remember exactly might be 10 or 12 also) and after few months he realized that he wasn’t using the service extensively. So he decided to deactivate it and the prompt reply from the customer care was that service would be deactivated in 24 hours and indeed it was. But for the next 3 months despite 100 calls and trips to Airtel office we could not make them stop the daily deduction for Rs. 11 and finally my friend had to surrender his connection, go through the ordeal of changing his number. Now he is a proud Idea cellular customer who vouches never to use Airtel in his life.

3- This one is an amazing experience with the real kusht-mar service of Airtel. Read through the mails of one of my colleague and Airtel

Message 1:


Please activate International roaming on my phone. Request you to do it on urgent basis as I am travelling today and will reach Singapore by 4:30 AM IST on 29th Sep.



Message 2:

From: []

Sent: Saturday, September 29, 2007 4:30 PM

To: Kusht-mar

Subject: Regarding your mobile number 9999999999 [REF:00000]

Dear Mr. Agarwal,

Thank you for contacting Airtel. (Now that you have called us, your bad time has already started)

You had requested us to start International roaming facility on your Airtel mobile number 9999999999. (Lets see you going foreeen land, and me sitting in India… Irony of life isn’t it??)

We request you to send us a scanned copy of Passport through email to document in our records. (he he he nahi ji mazaak kar rahe ho aap, passport bhi hai aapke paas foreeen jaane ki baat karte ho)

Alternatively, you could also send the passport copy in the below mentioned formats for further action.

1. Hard copy of the passport copy in the nearest Airtel Relationship


2. Scanned copy of the passport copy

3. Fax copy of the passport copy

You could fax the letter to us on 9845500121 / 9845600121.

Please be informed that the monthly rental for the international roaming facility is Rs. 149/- and the same would be charged on prorate basis.

Click here for tariff details of International Roaming.

We would start the International roaming facility within 24 hrs on receiving your document. (24 ghante, Singapore nahi yeh India hai mere bhai, 24 din main ho jaye to badi baat hai)



Customer Support Service


Message 3:

Dear Yuvraj,

Thank you for responding so late with an unsatisfactory reply.

Question 1:

Why was all this not informed when I called up customer care? I specifically mentioned in the mail as well as during my interaction with the Customer care agent that I have to leave on the same night and requested for the services to be activated urgently.

If you can not process the request within requested time or without certain documentation can you not inform the customer upfront rather that running the loop over multiple interactions? That too, with no sense of urgency whatsoever (I had placed the request at 10:21 PM on 28th Sep, your reply to which is received at 4:30 PM on 29th Sep, which itself is more that 18 hrs


Question 2:

What exactly is the need for my passport? As I understand relevant Government authorities for both the countries have verified my documents including passport/visa/bank statements etc and the fact that I am accessing the services from Singapore should be sufficient enough for you to bill me. Why so much of a fuss?



Message 4:

From: []

Sent: Wednesday, October 03, 2007 11:58 AM

To: Kusht-mar

Subject: Regarding your mobile number 9999999999 [REF:00000]

Dear Mr. Kusht-mar,

Thank you for contacting Airtel. (aao, pata tha dubara aaoge, kaha than a 24 din se pehle nahi hoga)

You had expressed concern over the activation of International roaming facility on your Airtel mobile number 9999999999.

We understand your concern and will work together to resolve your issue. (Work Together, samjhe kuch? Work karoge tum aur hasenge hum he he he )

We would like to confirm that mobile number 9999999999 is on the Company employee scheme.

We are unable to process your request as we are not in receipt of the salary slip. (acha passport nahi hai, koi baat nahi fir bhi Singapore jaa rahe ho, chalo acha batao kitni salary hai? Fir hum decide karenge tum Singapore jaa rahe ho ya mazaak kar rahe ho)

Further, if you wish to start the International roaming facility, a copy of the salary certificate has to be provided.

The requirement of the Gross salary depending on the service requested for is as follows:

ISD 20K Gross

International Roaming 40K Gross

If the salary slip does not match the requirement, the relevant deposit amount will have to be maintained.

For the above mentioned mobile number the refundable security deposit amount to be maintained would be Rs.6000/- in order to avail the International roaming facility. You may visit the nearest Airtel outlet to make the payment towards the same.

Please find attached the details of nearest Airtel Relationship center along with this mail for your reference.

Kindly be informed that there is a monthly rental of Rs.149/- towards the International roaming facility on prorate basis.

Click here for tariff details of International Roaming.

International roaming facility would be activated within 24 hours of receiving your salary slip and request for the same.



Customer Support Service


Message 5:

Dear Josmy,

Thanks for the response. Your reply does not directly answer to any of my 2 queries (1. why relevant documentation was not informed upfront? and 2.

What is the need of Passport?).

However, looking at your answer now I am even more perplexed. Now you are stating that it is not the Passport but my Salary certificate that is required. Now this number is with me for at least 3 months. I have never been informed about the need of salary slip/certificated as a required documentation for a Corporate number. Neither was I informed about it during my interaction with the customer care executive when I raised the request for ISD activation. So why and from where these prerequisites are surfacing now.

I would be obliged if you could please let me know:

1. Why relevant documentation was not informed upfront by the customer care executive when I raised the request for ISD activation?

2. What exactly are the necessary documents required? Is it passport? Is it salary certificate?

3. If there were certain documentation to be provided when I applied for a number under Company employee scheme, why were they not intimated then, and why there has been no intimation since till now?

4. I was promised that the ISD services would be activated within maximum of 24hrs and minimum of 4Hrs of sending a mail request to This was "The only" requirement mentioned to me. On what basis such commitment was made?

5. Why was such a huge delay in response from your end even after mentioning that it is urgent? I even mentioned the date and time of my arrival for your convenience.

For your kind information, I have concluded my tour to Singapore and have already suffered the inconvenience. However I am pondering over why I should not take appropriate action against you for "Non providence of promised services within assured timeframe".

Hoping to here some satisfactory response from your end.



Message 6:

From: []

Sent: Wednesday, October 03, 2007 3:37 PM

To: Kusht-mar

Subject: Regarding your mobile number 9999999999 [REF:00000]

Dear Mr. Kusht-mar

Thank for contacting Airtel. (satisfactory response chahiye tere ko satisfactory!!! Abhi deta hoon )

As we understood that you had already requested us to activate ISD facility for your Airtel mobile number 9999999999. (Humko sab samajh main aa gaya hai, ISD ya International roaming hum toss kar ke pata laga lenge. Yaar passport nahi hai to salary certificate de do. Apna nahi to padosi ka de do, kyon faltoo argue kar rahe ho?)

We apologize for the inconvenience caused to you in this regard and would like to assure that appropriate action would be taken to rectify the same.(really really sorry, we wanted to irritate and exasperate you but kya karein sirf inconvenience hi hui aapko. Don’t worry we will make up for it in near future)

We realize that this situation must have greatly inconvenienced you. We are a customer centric organization and as such would want every interaction you have with us to be a pleasant one. (he he he customer centric organization…. Joke suna hai kabhi aisa… Pleasant kaise yahi soch rahe ho na?? Who pleasant humare tumhare liye to irritating tha kyon ???)

Further, we would like to confirm that ISD facility has already been activated with effect from 08/08/07 as per our records. (Abhi toss main aaya tha ISD to ISD kar diya ab roaming ke liye mat rona… zindagi main har kisi ko sab kuch thode hi milta hai)

Please find attached the tariff details of ISD for your reference.

Alternatively, please click here for ISD tariff details for your rate plan for your kind perusal.



Customer Support Service


Message 7:

Dear Shibu,

Just a small correction. My request was for activation of "International Roaming" and not "ISD".



Message 8:

From: []

Sent: Wednesday, October 03, 2007 8:25 PM

To: Kusht-mar

Subject: Regarding your mobile number 9999999999 [REF:00000]

Dear Mr. Kusht-mar,

You had requested us to start International Roaming facility on your Airtel number 9999999999. (Abey yaar kaha tha tumko panga mat karma ISD kar diya hai ab roaming maang rahe ho??? Yaar life main sab ko sab kuch nahi milta…. Main bhi jana chahta tha Singapore jaa tum rahe ho… Jo hain usme khush raho… Santosh dhanam param sukham school main nahi sikhaya kya?)

We would like to inform you that, your mobile number is on the Company employee scheme and we are not in receipt of your latest salary slip.

To enable us to process your request, kindly send us a scanned copy of the salary certificate would have to be furnished.

The requirement of the Gross salary depending on the service requested for would be as follows:

Regional Roaming / National Roaming - 15K Gross

ISD - 20K Gross

International Roaming - 40K Gross (Along with

Photocopy of Passport)

Request you to send the Salary slip in the below formats

1 Scanned copy of the salary slip with company seal

2 Salary slips with company logo in Acrobat format.

3 Hard copy of the salary slips with the company seal.

4 Fax copy of the salary slip with the company seal.

We request you to kindly make the refundable deposit for the activation of required facility. You could visit the nearest Airtel outlet to make the payment towards the same.

Click here for tariff details of International Roaming.

Further, with regard to the enquiry of the documentation, kindly be informed that we require the above said documents as per our records for the activation of the International roaming facility. (He he he… Gussa aaya… karo karo… Jyada gussa karoge to khud hi jaldi maroge mere baap ka kya jaata hai)


Prem latha

Customer support service


Message 9:

Dear Prem Latha,

This response have already been given to me and I have replied to that too.

Please go through the entire chain of mail.



Message 10:

Dear Mr. Kusht-mar,

You had expressed concern over the non activation of International Roaming facility as per your request in the previous mail on your Airtel number 9999999999.

We understand your concern and will work together to resolve your issue.

We would like to inform you that, your mobile number is on the Company employee scheme and we are not in receipt of your latest salary slip.

To enable us to process your request, kindly send us a scanned copy of the salary certificate would have to be furnished.

The requirement of the Gross salary depending on the service requested for would be as follows:

Regional Roaming / National Roaming - 15K Gross

ISD - 20K Gross

International Roaming - 40K Gross

Request you to send the Salary slip in the below formats

1 Scanned copy of the salary slip with company seal

2 Salary slips with company logo in Acrobat format.

3 Hard copy of the salary slips with the company seal.

4 Fax copy of the salary slip with the company seal.

Also, if the salary slip does not match the requirement, the relevant deposit amount would have to be maintained. For the above mentioned mobile number the refundable security deposit amount to be maintained in order to avail of the roaming/ISD facility, please find below the deposit details:

International Roaming - Rs.6000 (Rs. 149/- Monthly rental Prorate Basis)

Since there is no deposit available in your account, we would request you to kindly make a deposit of Rs. 6000/- in the nearest Airtel Relationship Centre, if the salary slip does not match with our requirement in order to activate International Roaming facility on your mobile number 9999999999.

Please find the details of Airtel Relationship centre for your reference.

Click here for tariff details of International Roaming.

We would like to assure you that International Roaming facility would be activated within 24 hours on the receipt of your salary slip and if it matches the criteria. (Lo ab aur Gussa karo…. Dekha humein aapka kitna khayal hai aur aap humesha shikayat hi karte ho)



Customer support service


Now seeing this we can actually see how prompt and attentive is the customer service actually. Isn’t it a responsibility of the companies to tell people if they are taking some documents, then why they need it, how would they use it and ensure that these documents will not be misused in any way. Is it not the responsibility of the company to their call center employees that customer service is not about giving a response in a definite time, but it is giving the response to customers’ problem that would define customer service. Not a monologue of what is defined by the system. A small amount of common sense needs to be applied.

After all this I still use Airtel not because of anything else but for the sense of gratitude I have towards this brand and a hope that someday they will understand I am not a Kusht-mar but a customer.

P.s : The comments inside the message in italics and brackets are my personal comments

Posted by Prats at 11:53 AM  

Friday, October 05, 2007

Change: The Universal Constant

When I was in third grade I guess I would have learnt this word called “change” which simply mean “to make the form, nature, content, future course, etc., of (something) different from what it is or from what it would be if left alone”. I never thought that how the word would change itself in style and meaning,

Third grade:
Change was a new 6 letter word, easy to spell. Teacher gives it in the dictation and I get an extra mark

Fifth Grade:
Time out for bicycles, Change was zooming through the city on my new bike.

Eighth Grade:
Change was the newly added F- words to my lingo and the sexy pictures on the debonair covers.

Tenth Grade:
Change was the board examination and growing awareness of my own self.

Eleventh Grade:
Change was the moustache and an option to take science as my career.

Twelfth Grade:
Change was being the senior most in the school and leaving the place where we spent 12 long years.

1st Year:
Change as being ragged and treated like shit. Change was the everyday changing crushes.

2nd year:
Change was the power to rag and Computers becoming my second life.

3rd year:
Change was being against everyone else you knew and still sticking to it. Change was my first girl friend.

4th year:
Change was getting my first job. Change was getting hooked to reading as a hobby which still exist.

Change was a whole new world beyond computers and programming. Change was the power to express in this blog. Change was a powerful force. Change was what made the good company’s great.

Change was traveling through flights instead of trains. Change was sitting on the window seats and see how small things become when you are 35000 feet high. Change was my first Goa Trip, change was my second job and my lost love. Change was the movies I started to love.

Workex year 1:
Change is shifting to aisle seats from window on planes. Change was the salary in my bank account. Change was the designation under my name. Change was the acknowledgement that I had so many new and old people in my life that mattered.

This has been my tryst with change so long, I don’t know if I have changed with the change or because of the change. I know one thing for sure, if there is one virtue I am ready to accept anytime and ready to for it is “Change”.

P.s. Where this is coming from, reading “Out of My Comfort Zone- Steve Waugh”, amazing lessons on how change can make you or break you. The question is Do you have the change? ;-)|

Posted by Prats at 3:34 PM  

Monday, September 24, 2007

India wins the Twenty20 World CUP, I am elated. Cricket can't get better :-)

Posted by Prats at 10:04 PM  

Benched: Learning from Supply Chain and IT

Now that I am getting into shoes of my new job of being a Fun(ctional) Con-Sultan-t. Its high time I should write something about it. I deal with Supply Chain Management in my work are so I found it the most appropriate to write something about it. The post has been a result of my thought process during I spent two long weeks on the bench. So here I go about my learning from Supply Chain Management and an IT Organization-

1- People = Resource/Raw Material

2- Resource on bench= Safety Stock

3- Resource under Training = Inventory in Transit

4- Resource Transfers= Move orders

5- Onsite= Interorganization Inventory Transfer

6- Billable Resource on a Project= Sale of Goods

7- Compensation= Cost of Goods Sold (Direct)

8- Buffer Resource on a Project- ATP (available to promise)

9- Cubicle of the Resource= Locator

10- Daily Attendance- Physical Counting

11- Appraisal- Work in Process

12- Head hunters, B-Schools, Engg Colleges- Vendors

Some times this restless soul wonders that all the IT organization who talk about lowering the inventories all across the companies are unable to do it with in their own organization. All this and so more when I was BENCHED……

Posted by Prats at 2:46 PM  

Monday, September 17, 2007

Busy!!! Call U Back

I got a message from an old friend saying “Bhool Gaya Mujhe, Corporate ban gaya tu!!!” (You have forgotten me and turned into a corporate). This line set me into thinking what I had been on my mind a lot lately, Is this true? I out of habit keep pinging and calling friends and acquaintances to be in touch. Yes that’s true that I actually have nothing to say but just a small phone call to say that I still do care. I have discovered some responses on which actually I can categorize conversations-

1- Hey Prats!!! What are you doing man? How is life?….blah… blah and a 10 min conversation.
With all said and done 10 minutes that make your day, make you feel that you exist apart from your employee number, cubicle number, and extension number. There is more in life than e-mails, the replies and the contemplation of to whom it should be carbon copied.

2- Hello!! Who is this? Prateek?!?!?!? (a minute of mourning silence for the dead memory cells) oh yes!! Prateek. How are you?
This one is a tricky kinds, if the short term loss of memory is temporary there can be a hearty conversation like the earlier one. If not then the situation becomes a lot funny. The conversation goes like following-

Ol’ Buddy: So tell me man how is life?

Prats: Cool yaar, I have recently moved to Bangalore.

OB: Oh Banagalore!! Lovely place lovely weather.

P: Yeah man very true, U tell me how r u doing

OB: Nothing much man, some good work keeps coming on and off. (Good answer Have and have no work keep guessing). How is your company doing?

P: Oh its been fine except for some jitters because of the weak dollar.

OB: (Thinking and fitting correlations & regressions) oh you in IT services?

P: yes, I am with Infosys.

OB: Oh man I completely forgot. I thought you were with Goldman Sachs.

P: ( Confused) I was in marketing not finance.

OB: You were in my class…eh… y..eee….s!!! Aur batao Howz Life?

P: Blah Blah …. Acha chalo will talk to you later!! BBye.

3- Hey Prateek!! I am a bit occupied can I call you back later.
And they call back. Take time to talk and show true professionalism.

4- The most interesting ones are who say “I am a bit busy, I will call you back.” And they never call back. This is one category I seriously pity. They don’t want to keep in touch and don’t give an F word. But they would be diplomatic they might need to revive the contacts in future.

Of all things said and done I was wondering when my friends says that I have turned into a corporate, have I fallen in the dreaded 4th category myself. I hope not, because always in my life I have believed in some principles which I found were articulated in a blog, Whose I don’t remember but the exact worlds stuck to me as a paraphrase of my own thoughts “When Business and relations are difficult to pull together, Relations must survive.”

P.S.- To my old friend, I have not turned into a corporate, couldn’t call you because I missed your number trying to get it from the common friends and will give u a buzz ASAP.

Posted by Prats at 3:27 PM  

Monday, July 09, 2007

On The Job: Alternate Careers

The other day I was watching one of the TV shows on M-TV. The show is called “On The Job”. It’s a very fresh concept and with a very different perspective. The show concentrates on the alternate careers. In this show people every week there is a alternate career in focus, something like a product designer, choreographer, DJ, VJ, radio jockey, bartender or a stylist. People are screened in the top 3 make it to the screen where they are provided with the setup and facilities and made to do tasks which they need to do on the job. During the course of the show it provides ample information for people who are planning to pursue the alternate career of the week. Finally the winner of the show who does the given job best gets a chance to be an intern with one of the best names in the career in focus.

First time in India, the alternate careers are being focused by such a mass media. One of the greatest problem with the people who are willing to follow alternate career paths is the resistance from the family. Despite all the cosmopolitan culture influencing India, still the mom’s psyche out when a son says he wants to be a bartender or a daughter says that she wants to be a choreographer. Answers like “Kya tum engg ya medicine nahi kar sakte” or “ Complete your degree from here and do an MBA”. This resistance from the families majorly because of two reasons one being lack of information, and the second being the amount of uncertainty associated with alternate careers.

With M-TV bringing the idea of alternate careers right into our living rooms, makes it acceptable that people are willing to join these careers. There has been a plethora of shows which were necessarily talent shows and they primarily concentrate on the talents of people and career opportunity associated with them. First time with “On The Job” a TV show has tried to sneak peak into the world of alternate careers. Focusing not on the talents of the participants but on the career choices people would like to make.

It is a very good opportunity identified by M-TV, as it connects very well with its target audience. Which essentially consist of youth and the cosmopolitan crowd of India. It not only entertains but also gives a very different perspective to the people who actually are looking forward to pursue alternate careers. With all the monotonous monologue on the television, “On The Job” provides a refreshing change.

Posted by Prats at 12:57 PM  

Monday, May 14, 2007

With or Without You
(Couldn't think of anything else for the title)

The world has stopped, life is dull and slow,
The humans still, the trees silent as seeds were never sowed.
The roads lying speechless all along,
The skylarks are numb without a song

yesterday as beautiful as it could have been,
For me the words and the world she seemed.
My life had all the reasons it had to be,
Every time I opened my eyes, in front was she.

Some little facts my heart refuses to explain,
Her glittery eyes and shiny hair how they released my pain.
What a bliss it was seemed like a boon,
But never understood why it had to end so soon.

The life is empty, loneliness surrounds,
All around is a vacuum, memories profound.
A surreal touch and a loving glance,
A long wait to life another chance.

All off a sudden the folklore of my life,
has lost all it's stories.
Without her I am the sun,
Who has lost its glory.

Posted by Prats at 10:34 AM  

Monday, April 30, 2007

A Walk Down the Lanes of Yesterday

It has been 7 years when I last walked down that gate, and thought I would never return back. Have rushed across the familiar building a zillion but didn’t ever felt like strolling through those corridors. After seven years here I decided to go to the same building where I started my life. Almost a quarter of century and a journey where I have reached an end of being a student. I believe that I started my career from PCVN, because I really don’t remember anything much from my former school where I did my education till class III except for some people who joined with me to PCVN and one Mansi Khare (which my mom and dad will keep praising because of her good hand writing).

It was so nostalgic to walk in there, walk in those corridors, and classrooms where I have grown up got my education. The place which introduced me to computers, books and above all my friends which are still with me. I couldn’t believe when people say that I have changed a lot, my teachers could still recognize me. My class teacher from the eighth and ninth grade still remembered me and also remembered how I used to carry those diskettes with me all the time (p.s. CD ROM were not into fashion at that time and I used 3.5” floppies to carry my data). The librarian whom we used to call library ma’am was still there and told me that how she always knew that I used to bunk library classes to go and sit in computer lab. My English teacher was still as stylo and arrogant as she always used to be. Things had changed, lots of faces were new, and the ones which were not the age showed on them. Life changes a lot of things, when I walked through those corridors they were so familiar the grey stone and the red brick wall. The wall magazines of the houses placed towards the right. But none of the faces seemed familiar, I was just wondering the people who would be passing out now would have been fifth graders when I used to be in school.

It was so good when I saw genuine smiles on faces of people who had taught me when I was a kid. Such feelings and compassion hard to find in the professional world, when people celebrate your life and trivial achievement with pride not with just a passing smile. The 2 hours which I spent in the school were few of the best times of my vacation. No matter where I go and what I do I will always remember PCVN.

Posted by Prats at 5:26 PM  

Monday, March 12, 2007

World War III

I am sure you people would have been shocked by the title, but I was checking my spam folder one of these days to delete all the Crap I get. I read the titles of some of the spam messages. Actually its sometimes so funny and all the subject lines suggested me only one thing that the third world war had begun and unknowingly I or if not me then at least my mail box has been a party to it.
I am just writing this to tell the world that i have nothing to do with any missiles, aircrafts and satelites that have been talked about in all those spam mails. More so about the attack on the Supreme Court and the terrorist. I have read the news of Saddam Hussain being hung to death and I believe the media, and I have nothing to do if he is still alive. I mean I didnt even opened these mails.

Its so ridiculous to have such mails in ur mailbox as spam. IThey really expect someone sane who would open mails like these. Spammers at least you can think of better subject lines. Best of luck next time!!!

Current Song: Let it be- The Beatles (Real words of Wisdom)

Posted by Prats at 2:51 AM  

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Search for Search Optimization

I know I have been either too lazy or too busy for past few days to contribute anything to my little space in this virtual universe. Now that I am back, and yes I am amused and I am angry. Actually I am unable to decide that what reaction is more suitable for the occasion. The Google Analytics shows me that I have been getting hits on my blog despite it not being updated frequently, and these hits are coming directed from searches on Google. It is quite relaxing to know that Google is aware of my miniscule existence, but the greater matter of my amusement and concern are the keywords that are directing users towards my blog are-

1- Infosys girls pics

2- SIBM sexy girls

I mean, please I haven’t even joined Infosys and I hardly know anybody from Infosys. I agree that I made a community for the new management recruits there, and I know a couple of girls from that, but for heaven’s sake I don’t posses any pictures. Nor do I have any intention of posting them and converting my decent little blog into a official infosys girl watching center. But it sounds like a good idea, may be I can make money through adsense. :-)

Now coming back to my very own SIBM, I am speechless. People can be so optimistic that they believe that SIBM is going to have so many sexy girls that someone will manage a portfolio online. If these searches are by someone from within, buddy you already know what you got. Searching online won’t produce new results, so why don’t you just look around I am sure, the search would be far quicker, cleaner and effective and won’t leave trails like these. Now for the outsiders, I believe you are being too optimistic about your search results. There are only very few so called sexy girls in SIBM. Why don’t you just walk inside the campus and see the huge parity existent. Now for the SIBM girls who mistakenly got to read my post (I know some u have been forced by me to read.) if you are wondering you belong to the SIBM sexy girls. Please don’t ask me to comment on that, decide that for yourself, I can’t help you with this all I can tell you is that the amount of your being ogled at is not a function of how hot you are, but rather a function of the skewness of the gender ratio in SIBM.

But you know writing all this doesn’t solves my problem. Does it?

Anyways adieu till next post….

Current music track: Ya Rabba (Very Nice Song)

Posted by Prats at 2:39 PM  

Friday, February 09, 2007

Terra Incognita

It has been a month now since the news has been out and I have been told that I will be spending some next few years, months and days of my life with Infosys Technologies. Since then, something has changed. A lot of thoughts are flowing around in the empty space above my neck casually referred to as head. It’s going to be a new place, new people, new environment, new expectation everything new. All that’s going to be old is may be a quarter of century antique me. There are so many questions propping all over, that the world seems to be hazed out. It was so easy few days back, when all I wanted to do was to reach where I am. But now over a month, the world is unclear, which I thought was my goal is just an intermittent destination and I don’t know where I will be going henceforth. Till here the journey was so far so good the terrain was familiar, and the feet were held strong. But what about the land ahead, is it a swamp which will swallow me completely with nothing left of my antiquity, or will there be a strong wind that will blow me away. Will the sunshine in the east, will the moon still shine or the seasons would stop. It is like passing through a gate where you do not know what lies ahead, but you also know that once you enter there are no comebacks.

I have always been surprised by the ability of life to bring new and still new surprises for me. Sometimes pleasant while other times not so pleasant. There are a lot of questions which are standing straight in front of me. The only answer to them is to live them with the time. The only way I have ever won from being surprised by the life was giving her back surprises in a bigger and better way. All I can feel from my gut, there is going to be a competition between me and life and its going to be array of surprises and an era of unpredictability for the next few years. All I can say to life is let the best between two win……. Adieu till the next post.

Posted by Prats at 3:43 AM  

Monday, February 05, 2007

Education & Courage

I was always thought good education is the most important constituent of a sensible human being. Education I always believed brought to the human beings the power to judge right and the wrong and act accordingly. Lately after going through the plight of a very good friend I realized that all this education stands waste because of the lack of courage and availability of independence in social structure.

When I look forward to the issues and really think about it, education seems to be one of the biggest ironies of the life of my friend. Actually not only she but I am sure there would be hundred of other women who would be under going the same thing for lack of courage and independence in social structure and may be men too. One of the better students in the country, an engineer from a fairly good institute and an MBA from a renounced Institute in her profile. She after all this knows what is good for her and what she wants out of life. 24 years of life with 6 years of a technical and professional education has given her a lot of perspectives about life. With roots descending to an unknown village in Uttar Pradesh, she has seen a lot of life and is very competitive in all spheres of life.

I always believed education could bring changes in people that made them great as they were but I guess I was wrong when I see her plight. Despite knowing what is good for her, what she wants out of life. She will start making compromises in her life, for her orthodox family has never heard of a women who can have her own will in the family. So how can she be spared? Is it not the Males who spent most of life in that village know how she should spend her life, they already know what is good for her. If she doesn’t agrees may be she can be killed, or her mother for that matter. Does it makes a difference? Can education help u save from the bullet or a give you courage to stand against one. I think her mother did really a good job to make sure that she studies so hard and go high above all expectation, but she really forgot to teach her to stand for what she thought was right.

The interesting fact is that all her education has made her plight more unbearable, a girl who has probably never seen a school will never be able to sure what was right for her and what was not. But girls like these will always know that what is happening to them, what has happened to them is wrong and they will live with it all their life. They will do what the males of the family wanted them to do and at the end may be tell their daughters too that they should follow the same league. Was all that education able to brought a change? Wasn’t one of the finest minds in the country is going to be wasted, and deprived a right of choice? Does she actually have a say in her own life or family? There can not be a more waste of education than this for the lack of courage. I have no answers to these questions to help my friend. But I wish the only solution is a pinch of courage, to sit down and listen and then stand up and say that I am what I am and I know how to handle my life and I need to take charge, and my Time is NOW!!! There are scary thoughts when I think of this, but it is still better than a life suffering and living like hell for rest of her life agonizing every minute for the single minute when she had a choice to stand up.

Posted by Prats at 3:29 AM  

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Memoirs of 6 Weeks

There has been a trail of events that has put my life on a roller coaster ride, I have been too lazy all this while to post anything on this blog. The only justice I can do is to post a memoir and mentioning snippets of my life…

SOLD!!! Auction Closed-

Finally this sheep is sold to, Infosys Technologies. The experience was so good, Two years dreaming IT, and trying to living the dream. Finally I am part of the great organization. It has not long when I used to talk about the great Global Delivery Model, or the Zero Debt Company, or the Millionare Driver of the founder himself, or the splendid cash reserves all with such awe and now I am going to be part of this great legacy. I will have a chance to live what Thomas Friedman talks about as “The World is Flat”. I am afraid will I be lost in the crowd of the 55000 people who will be around me or will I be affecting the NASDAQ 100 Index. A lot of questions makes life exciting because I know equal number of answers would be coming by very soon.


I plan to do following things in this New Year. When I say I plan, it is quite clearly understood that they might fail and they are there in the first place to provide me a metrics of how much I missed.

1- Read twice the number of books that I did last year. I know this would be a state of Ideal Utopia but this comes in the light of that after being place I do not intend to slog myself ass of for the MBA curriculum and also if I can predict odd with Infosys predictability, there would be a high probability that I might get to spend some time on bench, which I intend to utilize for constructive purposes not for forwarding mails ( but I am assured that these odds are not in my favour).

2- Keep touch with friends- Will keep touch with old friends, will call people write emails and letters.

3- Will not help people at my own cost and allow them to enjoy their lives at my expense

4- Save money for contributing generously for Help Prats Get Rich Quickly Fund.

5- I will try and respect other view points than the right view point (which is obviously mine)

6- Will drive in a more sane manner, and clean my bike ever weekend (I have already missed two in the time between I thought and I am writing this)

7- Will not give anyone advice on their love life, and will apologize people from my past who are into a relationship and are cursing me to make their relationship work (Yes some are looking forward to break my head for all obvious reasons)

8- Will cut down on coffee, cold drinks, pizza, burgers, Chinese (is anything else left, yes a good question is what I will be living for)

9- Will exercise regularly at least one hour a day.

10- Follow all this to maximum time of the year possible.

Adieu!! Till the next post :-)

Posted by Prats at 5:14 AM