Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Top 8 at 8

The title has only partial relevance to the post below, but I loved the show on Radio City (I think it was two years ago). Continuing...

I was watching Season 9 of Friends for the 16th time yesterday and the episode in which Chandler quits his Tulsa job got me thinking. (See, I need a reason to think!) That resulted in a very productive way of spending time at office, which in return resulted in this list.

No 8: Wine taster
Drink the best wines in the world, for free! Get treated like a celebrity, lest you give a bad opinion. Also, once you start judging wine quality you directly get the license to act like you are a member of the top most stratum of the society. And you get paid to drink, voila! I know a lot of people would probably place this designation higher up in the list. But I would never apply for it anyway. Hence, its a number 8. (I qualified a week ago though).

No 7: 7-star hotel Valet
You get to work at one of the more expensive places in the city, drive the best cars, not only get a good salary but also some hefty tips for trivial tasks like parking the car. Perks of the job include getting to watch rich teenagers shamelessly make out, looking at drunk women, a peek at celebrities staying there blah blah. Its a good life.

No 6: Movie critic
No queues, no lines, no multiplex charges... nothing! Watch every movie on its release day, write a rude version of your opinion, get it published in national newspapers and get paid well for it. For the rest of the week, chill! These days you also get paid extra by producers to write a diplomatic version of your opinion to make the review sound nice. Stuff like "Tusshar Kapoor's performance was above expectations." Never mention how low your expectations were in the first place. Perks include invitations to all parties and release cermonies (with dinner, woohoo!) You also get to hand over trophies at million award cermonies. The reason this great sounding job is still at No. 6 is because it involves watching movies like "Kya Love Story Hain" and "Aap Mujhe Achche Lagne Lage".

No 5: Oprah
Star in your own TV show for 20 years, influence lives, get maniac celebrities to jump on your couch, promote your favourite books and give away cars to every single person in your audience! Visit the best places, get makeovers and talk to famous people! Its a dream job! And you not only just get paid for it, but you become the richest female entertainer in the world. Kudos,Oprah. (I read somewhere that Simi Garewal wants to be the Indian Oprah. Ooops! .....Sorry, err, I just fell off my chair laughing!)

No 4: Accident tracker
This is an actual job. A guy I know works for an auto company and his job description includes riding a bike (provided by them) all day (with petrol paid for by them) looking for accidents involving their cars and make sure their customers aren't too hassled. And he gets paid almost as much as I do. He freaks out every single day, (he can stay at home if he prefers to), bills the company for all his expenses and got a more-than-happy girlfriend within 2 months. Wow!

No 3: Weather reporter
You get to come on TV some 10 times a day, pointing at redundant national maps and occassionally mentioning the pollution levels in different cities. Unlike other news readers nobody relies on your piece of news, you can sing "Babuji..." for all that matters. Since you're the most attractive part of your 20 second report, you get better clothes than your colleagues. You don't have to work too hard, you get most figures from the computer/weather department. In case there are some facts missing, you can always make up predictions and reports. (Morning: It looks like its going to rain this evening. Evening: Though it looked like it was going to rain, it didn't.) There! Job done! Start applying..

No 2: Censor Board
Yeah, yeah... go watch all the shady movies and then cut it off for us. You, sadistic well-paid morons. Why is it that only you are allowed to look at Mallika's belly button and Udita's cleavage? Why can't we listen to what Sunil Shetty actually wanted to shout at the balding villians. Advantages of this job include getting your son the National Award for Best Actor. Hmmmph!

But the Number One Job in the world has to be (drumroll!!!) - Samantha Brown's.
No 1: Host of Great Hotels
Job description includes travelling around the world and visiting the best hotels in the world. Not just an insignificant report on them, but she gets to stay for a couple of days in the most expensive suites, eat in all their restaurants, enter their kitchens, jump on the beds, go shopping and run in to famous people. She has to make a weekly TV show on every hotel, gets to fly business class to the most exquisite places on earth, gets fundoo clothes to wear, gets paid liberally.... I see absolutely no flaw in this job!

Placecomm, are you listening?

Saturday, June 23, 2007


All my bags are (almost) packed,
I'm ready to go...
I'm jumping here, inside my home.
I hate to leave my folks,
And say goodbye.
But the term is starting
It is late June.
The classes will start,
there will be quizzes soon.
Already I'm so clueless.
I can sigh!

So miss me and pray for me,
Tell me that you'll comment for me.
Drop me on time, when I have to go.
Cause I'm leaving on an Indian plane,
Dunno when I'll be back again.
Oh! Babe! I can't wait to go..

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Tam Techie Question

I was deep in thought for a long time today and thought I'd put this up. Please leave your reactions as comments. What does the picture depict?

Pen Drive :)

Can anyone find my nerves?

I have a project presentation in exactly an hour. The Final One. My PPO, next year's CRP, CV hike, everything depends on these 20 minutes. It can decide my future. There will be no looking back from now on. 10 weeks on non-stop slogging comes down to this! I can feel the nervous tension in the air. My fellow interns are rehearsing and taking prints and timing themselves and everything.

I am blogging.

I am not worried if I'll exceed time limit, if I'll stumble and stutter or if I turn out to be clueless in front of the VP of the division. I'm worried that I am not feeling nervous. I have felt more nervous during Pondi's class tests, for heaven's sake! Hence I am calling out,

"Where the hell are my nerves?"

If you find them please give me a call, if not just call up and wish me. Lets see what happens.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Happy Birthday!

My last few hours as a twenty-year old, I guess its time to sit back and just list down a couple of things I learnt this year. I’m guessing you (in most cases) would be past this age, (Ha! Losers), but what do you know, you might still benefit from it!

1. How to ride a bike! (I’m quite an expert)
2. One needs to stay away from people, if they don’t make one happy.
3. Geeks are the most fun people in the world!
4. Drunk people are extremely funny to watch, especially at 4 am on a wetnite.
5. PJs are enjoyable only to those who crack them and their girlfriends. (ahem!)
6. One tends to speak like another one, if one spends hajaar time with the other one.
7. I can still dance.
8. With experience, one can get up at 8.50 and make it to class (at 9) well in time.
9. Air Deccan completely sucks.
10. Your first salary/stipend changes the way you look at malls and brands.
11. One pack of potato chips is equal to 1 hour in the gym.
12. You can get away with extra luggage on a flight, if you can make Puss-like face.
13. Linux rocks, especially Shisen-Sho.
14. There are 20 different ways to make maggi more delicious, especially late at night.
15. Cheese cake is just unbeatable.
16. Northies just can’t make sambhar.
17. You can have the best year of your life and the most painful one at the same time.
18. Case study analyses aren’t as bad as they sound.
19. There are unlimited ways to pass time in office, even if the internet is restricted.
20. Its amazing to be the youngest in the batch.
21. I can actually sing!
22. Ctrl C + Ctrl V is the solution to half the B-school problems, unfortunately.
23. Coming to XL was the best decision I ever took.
24. Time flies, when you are having the most fun.
25. Most night outs aren’t for assignments, but for arbit conversations with friends.

Things I still haven’t managed to learn
1. How to tie my shoe lace.
2. The importance of Business Research.
3. The art of stress-free shopping.
4. Which is left and which is right, without my watch.
5. How to survive the one-way fundae in Bangalore.

Saturday, June 09, 2007

Size does matter!

I had heard that some 76.93% Americans are overweight. I had also seen parts of some obese Americans on TV, you can’t expect them to completely fit on screen! I just assumed that all the cheesy pizzas and McDonald burgers had finally conquered their race and I flipped channels. Little did I know that one day, it would come back to bite me, when I least expected it.

Different teams at my office occasionally get team T-shirts from the department and I really liked them on the others. I used to wonder when my team would get them and two days back, when I finally got an e-mail "requesting" me to accept the T-shirt, I almost fainted with joy! The next page asked me to specify the size I wanted and very innocently mentioned that these T-shirts were standard American sizes.

Now, I would be kidding myself if I even thought of 'small'. Not that I am 'large', but at 20, I am quite err.. fit. (internal guffaw!) I graduated to 'medium' two years ago and I am struggling to stay there. So I naturally selected medium and in the next page I was informed that I could collect the T-shirt the next day.

So at the scheduled time, I walk up to the guy in charge, sign on the sheet and pick it up. "Here it is, the coveted piece of cloth", I thought as I rolled it down and what I saw, left my lower jaw painfully away from the rest of my face. Was it supposed to be joke? Three full Sumanas could fit in there and could probably live comfortable lives. Medium? For what, a hippo? I regained what amount of composure I had refused to let go and asked the guy if I could get another shirt, small if possible. He showed me an-already-booked 'small' one and frankly there was not much difference. Resigned, I have to decided to sleep in this T-shirt when I'm 40 and well, fuller.

What’s with the Americans, seriously? They can't make these standards universal for heaven's sake! If they are screwing around with their lifestyle, why ask us to suffer too? Come here to India and look around, you'll find paunches on every alternate person, but they wear 'large' clothes, not a standard small. Its one thing to make your consumers feel nice about themselves, but blatantly lying? Not fair!

Coincidently, I today went to a mall to shop for a much needed pair of jeans. I walked in to one of the branded counters and asked for a size $@ (obviously I won't reveal that!) and the guy had the nerve to tell me that his company does not make jeans that size. I checked again to see if the brand was Chinese or something, who wouldn't make size $@? Do they expect the entire world to be skimpy? I moved to another counter and which thankfully had a few pieces in my size. I tried them on, and wow! They were really loose! Finally after a couple of trials I walked out in a size that I had absolutely given up any hope of fitting in to, ever! I actually got in to a size 30! Yay!

Damn, these Americans are creepy! For them, it is normal to gain weight, but a huge thing to lose it though. If an American lost some 100 odd pounds in three odd years, he/she gets to come on Oprah (one guy even got a Porsche), but when Indians lose weight they usually end up with grooms. Bah!

Get off your couches, get some exercise! Do everyday things! My office, I guess like most other MNCs, does not have a staircase! We only need to use elevators! No wonder their idea of ‘small’, is like a full fledged swimming pool! (which reminds me of Ana Ivanovic, ok… deviation alert!). If nothing, have more sex!! Get thinner! (This advice holds for an average American, not an almost invisible Paris Hilton. There is no way she can get any thinner! Or have more sex, for that matter.)

Shady American companies, size 30 it seems! I guess one of them must have read my request in my previous post!

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Koffee with Rohan*

A few weeks ago, I was having coffee with an old friend of mine, Rohan* at office. I had just found out that he too was working there and I mailed him, we decided to catch up. In fact, I'm glad we did because we hadn't spoken to each other since we left college (a year back).

After the usual, How-are-things-at-home and I-heard-he-broke-up-with-her, he asked me the question I was waiting for. "So, How is life at XLRI?" I immediately started a rant on how its the best place in the world, the most fun experience ever and how we somehow land up with fat packages at the end of it. He took me over the moon and reminded me how I was always the most brilliant person, I totally deserved to get in there and that he always knew I would make it.

Now, I don't understand when people say they don't like flattery, because its the best thing that I ever get to listen to. It lifts me up when people say nice things to me and for my own listening pleasure, I tend to believe them. In fact, I boast of modesty only in being modest. So, I nodded along, as listened to him call me a genius and how I should give his little sister career guidance.

Thats when a colleague of his walked in and my friend immediately called out to him.

"Hey, Rahul!* Come here!"
"(approaching) Tell me."
"Remember, I always used to talk about this friend of mine, Sumana? She topped my college and she got in to XLRI when she was 19! Remember??"
"(clueless, irritated, yet confidently) No!"
"Oh! (hesitantly) Meet Sumana" (pointing at me)

I don't know who was most embarrassed at that point. I got up to shake hands with him, but we never actually got to doing that. The three of us somehow found other people at the cafeteria interesting and hence started looking at them to avoid further awkwardness.

Ah! So much for what I thought was a good day for my ego. I'm still feeling down, I could do with some buttering. Anybody else has something nice to say about me?

Disclaimer: "The story you have just heard is true. The names have been changed to protect the guilty."

Sunday, June 03, 2007

'Intern'al issues

Ah! Just another Sunday morning I thought to myself, as I woke up to the persistent alarm ringing next to me. But as I rubbed my eyes and sat up, wondering why I had kept an alarm in the first place, it flashed. Damn! I need to go to office today, at 8 in the morning!

It felt weird walking into my office in jeans. But who cared! The 15 km ride on my bike had been pleasant and quick, and I walked in to my room feeling pleasant. I had a good feeling about my project presentation, as I waited for my manager's phone call. She called on time and the first thing she said to me was "I have a plane to catch in a couple of hours, Can we rush through this, please?"

Well, not a great start, for a presentation that was planned to stress on the details. I began, thinking if I rushed she probably would miss any hidden flaws. The second thing she said to me "Don't take this personally, Sumona. But your accent is a bit of a problem. Would you mind going a bit slow? I don't understand anything that you say!" I have a problematic accent! What would you call 'Sumona' then?

So far it hadn't gone well, she made me skip all the parts that I believed were results of the pure genius in me. I went on anyway. At the end of it, (rather she cut me short), and said "Sumona, there are a few loopholes in your project. With the given information, you have done quite a great job! But I'd really like it if you were more detailed and did a deeper analysis."

In the split second of silence that followed, several thoughts ran through my head. I had put in a great deal of effort! She never guided me in the first place! Did I really think that an internship would be this easy! Why couldn't she just accept what I had done! If nothing, couldn't she consider the fact that I was in office, early Sunday morning!

"So Sumona, you can take another week to work on the project. Can you present again, same time, next Sunday?"

All I can say is that I was glad this presentation was on the phone. Glad that she couldn't see my face at that precise moment. Tough work for another week, Sumona.

Alter blogo

Change is inevitable, except from a vending machine. ~Robert C. Gallagher

Well, following the above said wise words, I have changed around a lot of things on my blog. The template, the frequency of writing, the links, the side bar blah blah. I have even brought out new lists and what I call "Pic of the week". Hopefully I'll be able to keep this updated regularly.

Do let me know what you think of this!