Let the Dreams Assume Wings!

I have a dream.

We all have dreams.

Are we chasing them?

Yes, we are.

Look from within, conduct a retrospective study, knock on the guts, ask your inners and from deep inside you will listen to an entity called your conscience.

It will, with all due respect, tell you that you aren’t, knocking over your nuts.

You wanted to be a sky diving instructor, yet you became a glassware salesman just because of the bizarre and freak accident that was covered on TV.

You wanted to drive cross country on that Harley cruiser with your friend, but didn’t, because your neighbour fell off a bike and lost his front teeth. He fixed it all right.

When Martin Luther King Jr. had this thing called a dream, he meant it. He wanted the Blacks to be treated in par with the Whites. When he dreamt it, he meant it.

When we dream of something, do we actually mean it?

We aspire to be something.

We can if we want.

There are some hapless souls in this world who want to be treated as humans. But we fail to do so. If I may, it is about the differently abled souls. The people who are born with genetic disorders, who fail to cope up with the challenges of life, who are called the mistakes of God, also have the right to dream.

What do we do to them?

Do we allow their dreams to take wings and escape beyond? We treat them as diseased, untouchable and uncouth. Was it their mistake to be born, to be born in this manner? They are left to fate. Left to bleed out while we try to pursue our long lost and forgotten dreams, many a times in vain.

How do we talk to a person who doesn’t know much English? We break and pause and hum and put all the sounds between the words so that they have enough time to register the words, transmit them to their brains, translate to their mother tongue, understand, think of the reply in their mother tongue, translate and reply back in English.

Have we ever thought of helping people out by showing care, compassion and courtesy? Have we? No one cares a damn about the normal humans. Everyone is carefully secluded in their comfort zone. If they don’t retaliate to the oncoming fire, they are the cusp of getting run over or hit or whatever damage that may befall.

By layman’s point of view, aren’t we all differently abled? We all possess different talents and an uncanny ability to mask our disabilities. Yet we discriminate the real souls who fail to dream big. 

Dream big and help other to realize something.

It matters, after all.

From the Memoirs- 2

Who started the Facebook group?

I don’t know.

But who ever did that did a wonderful job of creating and cementing relations. 

As we crossed the gates of Great Lakes, we were not going into an exodus of random people. Instead we were seeing live versions of the photos we had seen and stalked. We knew people, we knew that they were our friends.

The virtual friends got down into the physical space of their bodily existence and then began a saga of a journey called MBA.

We danced, crawled on our knees, learned salsa and let go off our inhibitions.
We learned eating food at the stipulated times. Sloshing sambar onto their plates were the roti clan. The sadam clan relished their breakfast with aloo parathas with melting makhan on top of it.

We learned to adjust. We learned to live. We learned life. 

We made friends. And as they say, we earned some friends too. 

Life was never made easy. But with friends, we just could get going. 

The first term was always difficult. To get us into the spirit and hectic spree of MBA, it took time. The engineering guys who hardly took any time off their schedule to study were actually glued to their books. The comm/arts/science guys who barely attended classes back there, were in the classes, actually listening to the Profs. with their eyes, ears and brain open. (How good a liar am I?)

From bath attached rooms, we graduated to common bathrooms and queuing to finish off the business. We brushed and talked at the same time. Our roomies doubled up as alarm clocks, always ensuring that we went to the 8 am classes. 

As one term went by, we went home and but were eager to be back with our Wolfpack.  

The goodies from the homes were shared, We ate khakras and banana chips side by side. We munched on the namkeens and devoured the pedas and rosgullas. We savored ethnicity. We understood the nation’s palette. 

We were the future of India nestling the souls from different parts of the country, yet kindling the soul. Well, that was a bit of context.

Thats for now, and more to follow. 

From the Memoirs-1

Well, 2 years before today, we all were sitting on the couches squatting flies with our CAT score card and gleaming at a seemingly bleak future that lay ahead. Some of us had dropped a year to bell the feline beauty of the Felis family. Most of them were either on the verge of getting their celebrated pink slip or being cracked open by insanity, thanks to harm done to the mankind by coding.   

As our thoughts resurfaced, we understood the plights we were going through.We were distraught with our wallets gone lighter by the day. We seemed to know the post office guy by his first name because of the sheer number of envelopes we’ve posted (to B-schools of course) Those who were bad in remembering numbers knew their credit card number by heart as they keyed it in numerous time a day.

And then were days of preparing for GD/PI process, booking tickets to travel around the country not only for the process, but also to explore the vastness and diversity the nation had to offer.
The GD/PI process brought in copious amounts of mind numbing and stressed moments. As the B-schools started issuing offer letters, those lucky ones were running helter-skelter to get opinions about their calls.

The selection was followed by queuing up in front of your bank manager for a loan. No ‘yeh’ form, run back to home and get it. No ‘woh’ form, run back to the municipal office, bribe the clerk and get it signed by the officer. Seeing the prospect that you would be a big shot and pay up the loan in no time or the possibility that he could be reporting to you in the future, the loan was approved despite making you run.

Great Lakes, yew… Is there a b-school like that?

Great Lakes…. aww…. Nice name? Where is it?

Great Lakes…. Omg! You got through Great Lakes… Well, no one said that!

Well, Great Lakes, hell yeah. Here we are! 

Movie Review- Jilla

Jilla explored the hearts of the masses only to excavate high hope-dipped disappointment.

With 2 stalwarts adorning the crest of the movie, the story should have been crafted for sheer exuberance of talent. Jilla depicted how talent of the Indian pinnacle of acting, Mohanlal was wasted to its core.

With too many songs and many uninteresting sequences, the movie undertakes a vicious cycle of events, a never ending loop of unnecessary stuff.

Illayathalapathy Vijay was impressive with his charming smile but nothing out of the world. His acting seemed just way too common, the mass masala flavored one. His timing and flair for comedy has deteriorated over the years. Neason’s attempt to portray the policeman Vijay was nothing but sheer mockery for the whole police force. With the transformation to show what a police officer ought to be, Vijay’s mannerisms shows how a police officer should not be sans the sanctity of his mission.

Smoking and abusing was what Mohanlal’s role confined to. Portrayed as a don, Mohanlal’s Shiva would have opened doors of classic acting to Tail cinema, had the script had a better yielding character for him. A clear deviation from the Georgekuttys of the world, the paradigm shift of Lalettan from Dhrishyam to Jilla calls for utter disappointment for him to have chosen the script.

Kajal Agarwal was pretty on screen showing less skin and more khakhi. Merely used as a pretty prop to extend the duration of the movie, she was either seen making faces to Vijay or sporting that smile.

Of the other actors who shared screen space with the trio, antagonist Sampath steals the show with a small but effective portray of ruthlessness. Soori was cracking witty remarks that failed to induce nothing more than a curve of lips.

Direction, editing, songs etc. etc. has nothing to boast about. Too many songs spoiled the mood as the movie, if devoid of its extensions could have well be curtailed the movie to less than 150 minutes.

Verdict: A mass masala movie for Vijay fans. Expect nothing during the 182 minutes inside the theatre- then its Paisa Vasool.

Rating: 2/5

The Drenched Down Diaries

Did we just think that the rain got lighter?
We did. 
And that was the reason that we went out of the comforts of the restaurant we dined and left the shades and powered the lifeless unicorn.
Within the 1st minute of riding, I could feel my teeth chattering with the icy cold downpour over our heads. My breath was going in and out deeply with the chill creeping up my spine. I could feel my heart beating against my Adam’s apple. I could barely breathe as the chilly water droplets were taking its toll. . My eyes went to the auto-tightly-shut mode and my body curved to expose to the minimum amount of rain. 
We were drenched head to toe and were shivering. 
By the time the bike gathered speed, I could feel the rain letting its might on us with pins and needles poking us, faster the bike, higher the prickles. 
Soon, whole drench made us rebellious to the after-rain-side-effects. I suddenly started getting warm. My eyes were slowly opening and was auto-focusing to the pitch darkness, erred at times by the oncoming headlamps and the electrifying lightning. 
Every turn was to be made with utmost precision and care.

I was just thinking of the same-name-but-tirelessly-worked-up rider who braved all the hardships and was valiantly riding to the destination.

The Light that chose to Shine

The silhouette that emerged from the darkness to the light of the single bulb in the room was of an enervated fragile lady. Her eyes were shallow and effete. The under-eye black marks and a scar-smitten pockmarked face made her otherwise charming face seem hideous. The breeze edged her long locks of hair. The sequins on her shoddy suit were glimmering as the fan blades cut the sheen of the bulb above her head.

The surroundings of the police station created in her a sense of fear. The last few days in her life was grief stricken for her body, mind and soul. Till that day, she was a girl of substance. On that day, she was torn apart from the façade of life. She was brutally assaulted and put into shame by the maniac-flesh-loving-heartless-dwellers of the darkness yonder.

The fighter in her freed herself from the clutches of the cables and cords of the dingy methylated spirit-smelling corridors of the hospital.

She was a rape victim, raped once, forsaken by humanity put to rest.

She was not raped once, but every eye that fell onto her dishevelled face gave her a glaring stare. She was getting raped psychologically by her kith and kin. Every look with pity at pittance was raping her. The whole world was putting her through an excruciating pain.

The number was piling on. Every look on her was raping her over and over.

The demeanour and individuality that she possessed had all been sacrificed at the stake. The interrogating policeman with a raised eyebrow and sly smile left her to tears after an eyeing attempt to capitalize on her lost chaste.

The hovering crowd at the gates of the police station wanted to see the rape victim. To see a sad and totally lost person burst to tears, to appease their sadistic hunger at her expense, to rape her all over with their callous eyes, she had to see it all.

As she left the station, the bandwagon of heartless ruthless humanity cheered for her bravery and in the inners, burning cinders jeering for her fate. Did she deserve the jeering of a fallen humanity or the humane touch of solace?

The light that shone over the soul left her astray. She had miles to go over a two forked path that either led her to a necropolis or to lead as an exemplary to fight against the cause she had been hit by.

The Idea of a Sunday Morning Breakfast

Lazing in the bed with the rays of the sun falling on the eye and the smell of breakfast being made running up the nose is a dream nowadays. 

Mom would have already been up getting the Sunday breakfast ready. 

Idlis, the typical South Indian delicacy that now adorns the crest as a breakfast option pan India would be on the cards.
The thick rice batter would be poured into the hemispherical moulds of the idli cooker. 

Soon steaming idlis would give signal to the cooker to let on the whistling and would be gently heaved off the stove. 

Shredded coconut, along with green chillies and salt would go to the mixer to form a uniformly blended thick concoction called chutney. The small tawa would be set on the stove where sautéing mustard and curry leaves would make them splutter and splatter in coconut oil to form a thin tadka topping for the chutney. 

The preserved ‘podi’ (sautéed urud dal, toor dal, asafoetida and red chillies made into a powdered form) would form a heap on the plate where the finger would take intense motions to mix the ‘podi’ with sunflower oil.

Soon the family would be seated around the table, laying their hands on the luscious, succulent, round, plump and soft steamed rice cakes, graciously dipping them in the two accompaniments and gradually washing down the breakfast with hot tea.


A 2*2 life

I have often been enthused by the idea of being the topper in class.

Well, my mom, too must have had the same feeling. 

That feeling in her kept me at the top till my 5th standard.

But then, things began to go out of her hand.

And marks went out of mine.

Slowly I sank into the ocean of competition. Went from the top to the top 5 to the top 10 and deeper and deeper.

I have had the privilege to touch the ocean bed once. And mind it, it sucks. All alone in the vast expanse of darkness. Never want to cast a glance again. Crossed fingers got intertwined!

Well, as time progressed, single digit classes went on to double digit classes. And single digit ranks too followed suit. 

As graduation graduated to a phase called post graduation, I was barely hanging on the shaky branch called 3 point CGPA. 

And yes, I wanted to be a topper there too. I had made up my mind to do it in the beginning, as always. But, as always, my mind deviated to the actual calling, to do what I was good at- being idle.

There was this lady, the descendant of the zinc baron, all set to the strings into her course of action and was of course beyond ‘question’. 

Also a lady whose name followed the 1st avatar of Vishnu kept that tag ‘topper’ forbidden to others. 

The third lady, who is to finance as Prof Minerva McGonagall is to Transfiguration, sealed the fate. 

Guys, shame on you.

Shame, shame, puppy shame, man! Oh me!

I was caught busy striving to seal the shakiness of the branch. Hence couldn’t pick on the mocking and stayed put.

The weight on the branch was shaking down those who had a less tighter grip on them. 

We, the MBAs from a premier B-school, who believe that we are God’s gift to mankind and bear a diadem encrusted with gems dazzling with innate braininess, often use 2*2 matrices to work out on the aspects of management.

After hours of futile thoughts and bizarre streaks of imagination, 
After many cups of coffee and midnight oil burning, 
After going through hundreds, no, thousands of research papers, 
I have come up with a theory that could set the earth off its course. 

A path breaking invention, the brain child of a thought leader designed to classify parameters that could make or break the formation of the future – a blessing to the mankind in disguise. 

I present before you, a 2*2 matrix, one of its kind- for you, for the future CEOs. 

Oh, wait! 

Did you mean to say that some teeny-weeny company called Boston Consulting Group has already come up with this? Is it? For corporations, that too to analyze their business lines. 

We lack IPR. We lack IPR big time.

Et tu America. Et tu BCG. Et tu world. No offenses otherwise!

Cricket Fever!

Cricket is a religion as far as we Indians are concerned.
The breathless moments, the edge-of-the-seat anticipation and the associated excitement- these are some things that the whole nation has bestowed to this game and is second to none.
Well, as we skew the sample size of the nation to within the boundaries of a small b-school nestled in the serene and picturesque hamlet off the coast, 60 kilometers from Chennai, the cricket fever is pitching in high and hard at Great Lakes Institute of Management.
The Great Lakes Cricket League or GLCL in short is the amassment and exhibition of cricketing talent and prowess at its majesty.
Four teams representing the four corners of the nation feature the best of the players of the Mamallas.
The teams namely Madras Macchas, Red Vikings, Royal Strikers and ShandaarLaundey represented the four cities of Chennai, Delhi, Kolkata and Mumbai respectively. Led by valiant captains (Srinivassan Rajan, Mukund Chndran, Arnav Talwar and Saheel Joshi), the teams started to battle it out from 8thAugust 2013.
Just a few days back, there was emancipated enthusiasm as the auctioneer Dron Malhotra took the reins of the auction to the next level. The teams were sold with their captains and managers as over 6 different consortiums eyed for the 4 different franchisees.
In the end, those who emerged victorious in the run for the teams were Om Joshi who roped in Saheel, Sundeep Babbar who bought Mukund’s team, Sanjay Gajja who bought Arnav as his captain and Anand K V who bid for Srinivassan for the highest amount in the bidding process.
Soon the event started with an IPO issuance which allowed teams to allot up to 50% of their shares to the interested investors.
And then it began. Money flowing in and excitement flowing out, unbound. 
After undergoing many predicaments of choosing the better out of the best lots of players, the match between the final 8 of Royal Strikers and Shandaar Laundey went live at the basketball court from 1530 hours on the 8th day of the 8th month.

The match summaries:
Match 1: (Royal Strikers v/s Shandaar Laundey, 8/8/13, 1530 hrs- Match drawn)

The high octane adrenaline pumped match wrapped up in a draw with the second batting Laundeys failing to hit that one winning run.
Match 2: (Madras Macchas v/s Red Vikings 13/8/13, Madras Macchas won)

The second match of the season was a game of classy stroke plays and solid partnerships. The local boys wrapped it up in style.
Match 3: (Madras Macchas v/s Royal Strikers, 15/08/13, Royal Strikers won)
The season’s top scorer emerged in this game with a stellar performance from Striker’s Tarun Ajwani. The gap was too hard for the Macchas to wade through and the Strikers took the game away in style.
Match 4: (Royal Strikers v/s Red Vikings, 16/08/13, Royal Strikers won)
With 2 wins and a draw under their belt, the Royal Strikers won the match after a nail biting finish. Arnav’s boys royally cruised to the finals.
Match 5: (Shandaar Laundey vs Madras Macchas, 16/08/03, Madras Macchas won)
A pompous display of excellent bowling and a great batting performance by Jeetesh made the Macchas’ day with a resounding win.
Match 6: (Red Vikings vs Shandaar Laundey, 29/08/13, Shandaar Laundey won, to meet Madras Macchas in the semi-finals)
A convincing batting line-up and a good show with the ball made the Shandaar Laundey, the favourites of the game and the Red Vikings were knocked out of the tournament.
Match 7: Semi-Finals (Madras Macchas vs Shandaar Laundey, 29/08/13, Shandaar Laundey won, to meet Royal Strikers in the finals)
The pay back was paid with its due price. 
Sreeni’s boys bowed down with pride.
Match 8: Finals (Shandaar Laundey vs Royal Strikers, 26/09/2013, Shaandar Laundey win, Champions)
The most anticipated game of the series was yet again a pay-back time for the Laundeys for the denial of that one run. The only 12 over match in the series swung in the favour of the Laundeys to get them on the top of everything, the cup. 

Wrapping up the series and clinching the cup, the Great Lakes Cricket League has its first champions- the Shaandar Laundeys.  

The Yogam for Experiencing Leadership!!

A 15 minute wait at the gate for the transport followed by another 5 minute wait for the driver to come.

A beep from the phone and you see a message from the god-forsaken-same-destination-bound-person- ‘wait for 5 minutes, me too coming’
The wait for him would take ages to get done with. After another 15 minutes and puppy face to cover his face, he would join the crew to get started for the ‘yogam’. 
The bus chugs and chooes through the kachcha village road and by the time, you  reach the ‘oors’ and ‘backams’ and ‘purams’, you become black and blue. 
The rickety bus ride ends as the battered bus pulls into the shade of the banyan tree that sprawls into the peaks of infinity. 
The tired backs yearn to rest on the protruding roots of the tree which doubles up as comfy seats. The coordinator from the ‘P’ would suggest that we should set forth to the north side of the village. The D representative bounces back with a reply to go to the school and teach the poor ‘blessed’ souls.
While the tag in the turf progresses, the other members would have made the shade of the banyan tree and its benevolent roots home. Somebody would grab packs of crisps and cokes from the neighbourhood shop and start munching and global talks. 
The time when a consensus reaches, the members would be 3 or 4 bottles down and the empty covers of the crisps would pile to form a small mount. 
The sun would be blazing enough for the lice on the ladies’ head to take a sunbath. The walk to the decided place- the village school would be hindered by the sun and the ogling by the village ruffians at our group’s gender diversity. 
The children in the village weren’t notified about the arrival. The Sunday morning crucification of having us deprive us of our sleep and the children of their playtime. Finally we would manage to get hold of around 10 scantily clad kids and thus the war of the words was waged.
Most of the children knew little or new English. Except the coordinator, none in the group could speak fluent Tamil. 
The children would ask something in Tamil. The response would be the assumed up answer of what the hearer perceived based on the situations, in English. Thus the fun would go on.
Showered with doubts on random things like ‘What is 1 in Tamil?’ and ‘How do you ask the child his name in Tamil?’, the Tamil speaker would be in a fix.
By the time the conversation gets to the other, yeah, the allotted 3 hour limit would have ticked off.
The major aim of such a noble thought, an idea of philanthropism and social commitment seems nullified with the bridges as wide as ever. 
The underlying emotion to serve the world with disparities on both the sides hampers the effect of generating leadership for the benefactor and the benefits for the beneficiary. 
After all, the contemplating actions to serve the society is supposed to come from the heart. The imposed mandate on the corporates to earmark 2% of their profits for CSR is nothing but branding and advertising for the company. Drawing analogy to the fact, the question that still remains is ‘ Does the action sink in to the heart as much as it does to the mind?’
Jaago ‘V.’ Jaago!!