Category Archives: Thought-provoking

Sunrise and Sunset on Marine Drive

Sunrise, as seen from Marine Drive

Sunrise, as seen from Marine Drive

Taken on my trusty Blackberry, a few days ago, while in a cab on Marine Drive.

Sunset on Marine Drive

Sunset on Marine Drive

Oh, really

Bahraini protesters in front of the White House on 02/20/2011

Bahraini protesters in front of the White House on 02/20/2011. Image by messay.com via Flickr

New York Times writes:

Obama Administration officials say King Hamad had listened to President Obama when Mr. Obama urged him to pull back his security forces from the protesters and so has earned the right to try to manage reform on his own.

Oh, really.

Tsunami Trading Ideas

At office, the television showing CNBC is right behind me – and when the earthquake in Miyagi and the ensuing tsunami happened, a group of people started gathering behind me, exclaiming.

As soon as I read the headlines on TV, this is the first thought that went through my head:

This will be an awesome time to invest in the Japanese markets – all the losses will be covered significantly by insurance payouts and the ensuing economic activity to rebuild the country will give a much-needed fillip to the country’s economy. Now how do we take advantage of this situation?

I know: that’s cold. But that’s an investment banker for you. Then, later, on the way home, I realised that I was being insensitive – that’s when I thought of sending emails to my friends in Tokyo – to check whether they were okay.

Am I a bad person? No, not really. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have some other miserable situation I need to take advantage.

I just thought of something else: the whaling industry will take a hit for a few weeks, which should give the whales time to regroup. So, positive environmental effect. Maybe I am just an indefatigable optimist.

Gallery

Air India: Not out of the woods yet

This gallery contains 1 photos.

I pass by this building almost every other day – and Air India has held a special place in my heart, for various reasons. But that particular day, I remember reading about how they had not yet turned around the … Continue reading

Should parents be administered IQ levels before they have kids?

Remember that C&H strip about Calvin asking his parents, that how could he be sure that their parenting is not screwing up his life? Apart from the minor element of ironical truth in it, I just saw something happen today, that should warrant a law mandating parents should be administered a suitability test for parenting.

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There is a junction of 3 roads right outside my home. And even though it’s an inner lane off the main road, it still has decent heavy traffic at peak hours, enough to make you wait for at least 5-10 minutes before you can cross the road. To make the situation clear, I have included a schematic below.

Junction Schematic
Schematic diagram of the junction near my house. Done on Open Office Drawing 2.4

Today, when I was coming back from the local shopping complex, I watched this lady pushing a pram with a kid inside, and a kid being held by the hand, as she crossed the road.

If you are a sane person, you would choose option 1 or option 2, keeping a close watch on the kids, so that they are not in the way of the oncoming traffic.

But the lady in question was in a particularly creative mood today, and decided to trace the random path of a Boltzmann gas molecule, right in the middle of the road. If the area wasn’t so well-lit as it was, I hate to imagine what would have happened to the pram.

While this was happening, a man who had told her to be careful, because earlier, an Ambassador moving at a very fast 5 kmph narrowly missed her pram, when she shoved it in the car’s way, was hyperventilating.

Though before I judge her IQ, I must be sure of her intentions. She might be really clever and could have been playing dumb, in order to get rid of her pesky kids. In which case, she should be made Dictator-for-Life of the Kansa Society.

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I related this incident to my parents, and they said, that last night when they were coming back, they were waiting at a red light. Just as it turned green, the driver stomped down the brakes with both his feet and pulled at the hand-brake till he tore it off, because a kid on a tricycle, sans his parents, had decided that it was the right time for him to cross the road.

But when he heard the collective thump of cheeks hitting windscreens, he decided he just might be better off waiting for the cars to clear out before he put on his daredevil act again.

Again of course, I might be wrong about the parents’ intentions. Sending your kids, who have no traffic sense, out alone on the main boulevards, late at night, is a very clever way to kill your kids. KansaSoc, please to be taking note of such paragons, and to be giving them life-memberships.

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I think, and seriously that too, that the Kansa Society should put full support to bringing about the Parent-IQ law into existence. Complete with provisions for cops to randomly stop and subject parents to flash IQ tests a la breathalyser tests.

Maybe the State, (here is where the State has incentive also) could start licensing parents before they have kids. Just think of the possibilities – a whole new avenue for corruption, and stuff like that.

Later on, KansaSoc can then resort to beating up stupid parents like a certain Mangalorean vigilante group, claiming to uphold the law of the land. I am already rubbing my hands in glee.

Them Bloody Lawyers

Recently, a doting father bought his son, an unusual present. Though nowadays, when unborn babies get their own blogs or Twitter feeds, this gift may not be so unusual soon.

Dad bought darling beta a domain name on the web: Narnia.mobi.*

The son was a huge fan of the Narnia books and movies, and instead of being the run-of-the-mill dad, buying action figures, or quilts, or suchlike things, he decided he would notch up a few points on the cool-dad scale, and buy him a domain for the mobile version of the Narnia site.

Enter villain: The Estate of C. S. Lewis, who controls the rights to the intellectual property of Narnia. And like all villains in movies are wont to do, they did the stupidest thing possible: Sue the father.

The father claims that he is legally permitted to own the domain since there is some sort of window that is given to all owners of trademarks to book sites that would be pertinent to their trademark, and somehow the Estate of C.S. Lewis overlooked this one. Now since the domain name was bought after the window was closed, the father claims that he is legally in the right.

And obviously he would fight to keep it, seeing how difficult it is to get just the right domain name, unless you are looking for something nonsensical like, ummmm, Yahoo or Google :P. (put links)

Whatever; I am not going to argue about who is right.

But look at this: however the situation ends, whether the creative father or the lumbering C. S. Lewis Estate wins, the C. S. Lewis is going to get oodles of bad press, especially in the target market it’s trying to sell its merchandise, for example, young boys like the darling beta in this story.

Instead, what they should have done, to become heroes in this story, is to have gone and told the father and son that: “Look, we know you are huge fans, otherwise you wouldn’t have bought the domain. But let us make the site that goes on the domain in the Narnia fashion, or at the very least, do let us link up your site with our main site, and let us sell cute little Lion, Cupboard and Witch dolls on your site. Hell, you can even keep 10% of the revenues we make on your site.

That, my dear friends, is an offer, you can’t refuse.

And, this is not because there aren’t any clever guys who are advising the C. S. Lewis Estate. Mind you, they are too clever by half. It’s those lawyers who know that litigation will rake in more money than their hefty retainers, who said, let’s sue their puny little mobile domain asses.

Incentives, I tell you, make the world go round.

~

Any consulting company who still wants to hire me, can do so. Surprisingly for the amount of brain power I come with (I am selling myself here:P), I am willing to be paid salaries you pay your analysts.

I may not be that cheap much longer, if I keep coming up with such award-winning cost-cutting ideas. (“Fire them bloody lawyers!”)

Oh, and here is my resume.

* Interestingly WHOIS, a tool which tells you who owns the domain, shows that C. S. Lewis estate owns the domain now. Must have been quite the letdown for the poor boy. ^^

Sorry

Sorry.

This is generally how the Brits start a conversation: they first apologise for trespassing the airspace around your ears, and proceed to do it anyway. I don’t get it, why are you sorry, if you are going to inflict yourself on somebody anyway? And it’s supposed to be done thing, be polite for being polite’s sake. Which reminds me of an expression that a friend told me about, “All fart, no shit.”

But I digress.

Sorry for procrastinating on my blog. I didn’t realise that my blog was the high point of some people’s humdrum lives. Maybe I am being pretentious, but the dirty messages I saw left on my messenger, because I was taking this procrastination too far, from die-hard fans, whenever I got back from the loo, is testament to this fact.

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Anyway, some of the readers would know what has been going on in my professional life in the past few weeks. To cut a long story short, I and my friends was caught on the wrong side of the entire financial crisis on the other side of the pond.

This suddenly meant that we had a lot more time on our hands than we are used to usually. We, the creme de la creme of the nation, trained to burn the midnight oil 365x24x7, have nothing better to do except maybe swat those non-existent flies.

Overnight, the time we spent on Orkut and Facebook reached an all-time high, we have almost memorised the sequence of songs that comes on 9XM, the only Indian music channel that we get on our TV, and we are slowly becoming, … wait for it…, typical Indian housewives.

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Of course, the first week was kind of hectic, frantically calling whoever we knew whether they had any openings at their place, flooding the market with our CVs (Oh yeah, you heard something like 10,000 CVs in the market right? A few hundred can be attributed to the 5 guys in our house.)

Soon, all the emailing/calling/texting that we had to do, went down to a trickle, and we were had oodles of free time on our hands. If it’s one thing we are not prepared for, it’s a situation like this. It’s like visions of how our retirements are going to be.

Free time enables you to notice things like who left the Coke bottle open letting all the fizz out, or the guy who left a plate under the sofa for 7 days, with the ketchup on it dried on like superglue, or who made how many chappatties for whom yesterday. Believe you me, it sets up for interesting situations.

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“Who the hell heated the chicken tikka masala in the microwave?”

Silence. Person who did it, trying to imagine what he did wrong.

“Yaar, the entire curry is splattered inside the microwave. Atleast you should clean it!”

Person who did it: “Why don’t you ever clean anything!?”

First person, thinking ‘Aha! Gotcha!’: “Jaa, saaf karke aa jaa!”

PWDI: “Tujhe saaf chahiye, tu saaf kar le! You never clean anything!”

FP, matter of factly: “That’s because, I don’t mess up anything!”

PWDI, thinking of a classy retort, to match the astute observation, glaring.

FP: “Jaa saaf karke aa ja, be!”

PWDI, still frantically to think up of something, finally comes up with “NO! Main nahi kar raha hoon!”

FP: Sigh.

~

And, yes junta, my blog is going to reflect what’s happening in my current life. Till somebody gets me a job in financial services. Resume will be sent on request. So, if you want to make me stop inflicting a housewive tales on the world, kind readers, get me employed. Quick.