Saturday, April 14, 2012

Of A Lot of Things!

Long time no see!

This last week, all of a sudden, I got messages from old friends. I spoke to some of them after a really long time...after more than two years I think. K messaged me that "are you dead or alive?" And then T also called me and I spoke to him for more than an hour! The thing with speaking to old friends is that you can only talk about past incidents or general topics as of today. You cannot speak with them about what is actually going on in your life because it is very difficult to explain to them what the circumstances as they try to benchmark that with their own experience, which is totally different from yours. But speaking to them reminds you of the good old times. And I also met another friend T. A friend from school and from the same class for 12 years! It is such a big co-incidence. She joined the same office as mine and we are in the same cab. I got a mail that T would be joining the cab as well. I was like as if I really care whosoever joins. But the next day, I get a call from the person who is supposed to join and she asked about the pick up time and place. The voice seemed familiar but I just told the cab details. And woah! when we went to pick her up, I see her and I am like "yeh kahan se aa gayi" and then I figured out. She is now married, so the the last name is different, that is why I couldn't figure out it was she! I didn't talk much after all how much can you speak in front of other cab people when are not sitting next to each other. So in the evening while coming back, I spoke to her. The thing I mentioned, she still thought I was the same person I was in school..and I am not like that anymore..even she has changed..I am not blaming will people know when you are not in touch with them. I spoke about old school friends..who is doing what..who is going around with whom? Un dono ka break up ho gaya? *Shock and Horror* and things like that..

And I also spoke to S after about a year or so. I felt so terrible. She told me that her mother passed away about six months back. She has lost faith in some things. She is such an awesome person and am sure she will get the best in life. I then sent her an email in which I forwarded the passage that I posted a week back, from The Last Song of Dusk, about how life is like water..And did not say anything else. People don't want to hear sympathetic statements in such situations, better to leave them alone..I felt so guilty for not keeping in touch with friends. Aise thori na hota hai...

I also had my mid year appraisal about two weeks back. I just managed to become eligible (anyone joining before 31 December). Surprisingly, it was better than expected in spite of the sermons these people keep giving at regular intervals :\ He said that that you are one of the most positive people in the team (I was like seriously?? me and positive!?!?) And the same old areas of improvement that I have been getting in every appraisal till date - speak more and interact more :\ Theek hai..whatever..

And finally I managed to see Khosla Ka Ghosla this week. I hadn't seen it till the last week. Ya I must have come on the TV about a zillion times. I watched it on the DVD. I loved it. More than the plot (no pun intended), I loved the characters. The film beautifully portrays the nitty-gritties of a father-son relationship. 
In that scene, where Mr. Sahwney advises Mr.Khosla to become his son's friend, he goes and buys liquor and while he is coming back, he is so embarrassed just by the noise of the bottles..only to find out later that Cheery doesn't drink!

Or the scene where Mr. Khosla is worried about Cherry's career being destroyed by their plan to dupe Khurana. And then Mr. Sahwney says, all this while he had grudges that his son doesn't help him and now when he s trying to help, he doesn't want him to!

And the absolutely delightful scene where Mrs.Khosla comes and serves Pizza to Mr. Khosla and he asks her to tell Cherry to stop spending money on this plan. And she says why doesn't he say that to him directly. He says it is Cherry's money, let him splurge. And then she retorts then why are you so worried if it is his money, leaving him speechless and asking for 'chutney'. My dad does the same at times, using mom as the messenger! So true it is..

And finally, where he says to Cherry about Meghna that she is a nice girl, even though Cherry didn't say anything that he is seeing her...

It is one of those rare films where father-son relationship is shown so realistically..neither bound by moral ethos or the other extreme of rebellion..Subtle with no need of words.But the movie also made me sad..the Kafkaesque story could happen to any of us. Any common man would just run pillars and posts if that happens. You can only pray it doesn't happen to you. Only a true Delhite can make such a Delhi film - Dibakar Bannerjee, Jaideep Sahni and Habib Faisal are true Delhites!

And finally I have started watching The Big Bang Theory. It's fine. Maybe I will start loving it slowly. Comedy is not my favorite genre but I love the science part of it. Sheldon's concepts make me want to go back to science.  The bathroom has a periodic table curtain! And in one episode, Leonard wears a paradox shirt. This is so bloody intelligent. Perfect! D and OX are at para positions - Paradox! Is this structure actually possible? Maybe! Replacing one H atom with Deuterium and adding O and X (a halogen) at para position. Will this be stable? Unlikely!!  X, being more electronegative than O, would try to take the electrons from O, giving it a positive charge. And a positive O would not be stable? Ain't it? I don't know it made sense or not..miss favorite subject in Class 11 and 12. I still make the resonance structures of chloro benzene at the back of notebooks, newspapers, rough papers,etc. I want this shirt.

Talking about pictures, in an episode of Modern Family, Haley dressed as Mother Teresa..a sexy Mother Teresa..Her mom said why did she dress like that and she said when she would have been young Mother Teresa would have been like this..Heh!

And I think you would have noticed that Central Board of Film Certification has now changed its certificate. It is now in English. Another thing changed. RIP to the old Hindi certificate that used to be shown before the beginning of every film. Now its clean and all in English!

I am so disappointed I will not be able to the Takshashila's GCPP program this time also. It starts in June and ends in September. I won't be here in August :\ So will miss the exam. I really want to do it. I am in complete awe of such smart people like Pratap Bhanu Mehta, Nitin Pai, Vikram Sood, Atanu Dey, Bibek Debroy, Swaminathan Aiyar, Swapan Dasgupta, Mukul Kesavan, Shekhar Gupta (yes, still respect him in spite of the 'C' word, it was a story that needed to be reported!) and so many more...To learn public policy from such intellectuals is  such a rare opportunity. I really wonder why aren't these sensible people running the country. Just read some of the columns by Pratap Bhanu Mehta here: 

In addition to the high quality content and the points, the way he writes is so beautiful..what language.. literary orgasms if I may use the word. Superb. Like in the article about the Right to Education, he says:

The objective should be to remove deprivations based on caste, but using the instrumentality of caste itself to address that deprivation often reinstates the very identities we are trying to dissolve.

Or in this one about the Peter Heehs visa controversy, he says,

The relationship between “higher experiences” and ordinary life, the relationship between the transcendent and the social, has also continuously plagued modern Indian intellectual history. For figures like Aurobindo and Vivekananda, this tension is resolved at the plane of their consciousness. But it is never even remotely resolved at the level of social existence. For followers, bereft of the experience, what remains is the assertion of faith. We put ourselves under the yoke of the Divine when we feel its presence the least.

The complete articles here:

Or this where Swaminathan Aiyar talks about the concept of inclusive growth-

Inclusive institutions lead to creative destruction, which is essential for sustained prosperity but threatens extractive regimes, and is typically sabotaged by them. Only politically-free regimes will ultimately allow creative destruction. This is why some nations fail and others succeed. All Indian parties swear by inclusive growth, but define inclusion in terms of subsidies and reservations in jobs and education. This is vote-bank politics parading as inclusion.For Acemoglu and Robinson, inclusive growth means the spreading of opportunity to all to participate in economic activity, leading to creative destruction in which newcomers oust the old.

I really want to do something like this in life. But I just keep on saying..never do anything :\

And these days one of my favorite websites is It has been started by Madhu Trehan, well known author, also the wife of Dr.Naresh Trehan. It is a site on the happenings in the Indian news media. Some great content! Also, every week, Madhu interviews a journalist and asks them uncomfortable questions. It is really nice to hear candid confessions by journalists. This is where Sagarika  Ghose speaks

Sagarika makes a very interesting point. She says journalists and politicians should not be friends but should be friendly. Very valid point but as you know it is an ideal situation. For example - Anuradha Prasad, the well known face on News 24, is actually the wife of Rajiv Shukla and the sister of Ravi Shankar Prasad! NDTV's Sonia Singh (one of my favorites) is the wife of UP Congress leader RPN Singh. And of course, Prannoy Roy and Prakash Karat are brothers-in-laws. Do we expect media to be impartial then? I really don't know. There are so many links between politicians and journalists...hiding under the guise of 'sources'!!

And finally, the weather in Delhi has been so pleasant the last week or so. I was really hoping it doesn't rain as untimely rains would destroy the standing crop! Such freaky weather patterns we are witnessing. And when the weather is pleasant, one tends to enjoy the surroundings. While going to office, I see such beautiful trees in Delhi that I am amazed. Trees with purple leaves, trees with maroon leaves, trees with no spellbinding they are.. every tree has its own physiology..almost like an individual telling its own story...standing under a neem tree is so comforting..I wish I knew photography :\ I love my is the best place in the world!

I wrote a lot today...anyways, still have so much to write..Will write later..

Dialogue of the Day:

We like to think we're so smart, that we have all the answers. And we want to pass that on to our children. But if you scratch beneath the surface, you won't have to dig deep to find the kid you were, which is why it's kind of crazy that we're raising kids of our own. I guess that's the real circle of life. Your parents faked their way through it. You fake your way through it. And you just hope you didn't raise a serial killer.
 - Modern Family


  1. hi pankaj..i just came across your blog and went through some of the posts..and i must say i really liked the way you analyze various characters of a movie...and the "dialogue of the day "thing is superb !!!
    im also a movie buff but never thought about the characters as u do...gr8 job man..
    nd one question- is ur sunsign virgo???

  2. Awesome post today and really agree with your point of not having much to discuss with old friends, except stories from our past. BTW, i also absolutely love Delhi :)

  3. This is precisely the important information I'd been searching for. Incredible blog. Very inspirational! Your posts are so good and also detailed. The links you come with are also very beneficial as well. Many thanks :)


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