Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Lets Meet!! *GROAN*

Nowadays I shudder every time I see the words “weekend plan”, “XYZ’s birthday – what plan” , “meet up”, “guys – what plans” on the subject line in my mails. Even something as harmless as “Hi guys” can send shivers down my spine.

These terror mails are mostly started by either Yellow or Aki the two people who constantly strive to keep our group together (which is a euphemistic way of saying they are pretty jobless. I know coz a coupla months back I was one of the few “striving to keep the group together”:P).

Don’t get me wrong. I love these guys. Honestly I have known them for so long that meeting them is always a pleasure but not when I have to read 73 mails (NO exaggeration. Check image). And even after reading 73 mails I am pretty clueless about the “meet”.

When I was working it was a different thing. I would check my mails 3 times every second and could delete mails faster than they were produced by my friends. But now with me checking mails just about twice during the day the amount of backlog I have is HUGE (as if backlogs in assignments weren’t enough) and at the end of the day there seems to be no consensus about the place, time, day date of the meet.

So though I get to know valuable facts like F had dosa with sauce for breakfast (ewwww) and that N is on a diet, which essentially means she will eat chocolates only twice a day instead of four times and that yellow’s manager has loud conversations on the phone and that A’s onsite coordinator appreciates her work (its very rare u see so she makes sure we all hear of it) and lots of other things, I am COMPLETELY clueless about the actual “Meet” which was the purpose of the mail.

So a frustrated me sits at 5 in the evening after my classes and patiently reads those mails trying to find out if ANY of those 73 mails even remotely talks about the meet. Nope!! Though there are a BUNCH of excuses given for not being able to come to the meet and other inane conversations no proper plans of a birthday surprise or a meet. Trust me it IS a pain when u go through EACH AND EVERY mail, when u click on each and every one of those 73 little tabs to find out what the other person has said and still remain as clueless as ever.

And following are the top excuses which are given by the “group” to not attend a meet.

1. I can’t come because I have to take a bath man. So you guys carry on.

(No shit. The person who has used this excuse has not only used it once but several times as a result of which we have stopped calling her for the meets. Cleanliness is before Friendliness apparently :P)

2. The sun is too hot on Sundays. I don’t like to come out on a Sunday.

LOL!! :D. This is my favorite excuse. And the rest of us would go, “eh??? Errr. Dude!! The same sun shines all through the week. How can it be any hotter or colder on Sunday. If anything it should probably take a break and shine less on Sunday”.. But this person can be excused because when the sun is not “too” hot she always makes it to the meet AND on time.

3. Hey I am on a diet. So if we go out we are BOUND to eat out and that’s bad for my diet. Please. This is my first sincere attempt at dieting (YAWN!!). Don’t spoil it. Why don’t you come over to my place?

The person who gives this excuse lives in one godforsaken corner of the city and reaching that place is like undertaking an expedition. So all of us politely back out!! :P.

4. My parents are sleeping. Someone has to lock the door if I leave. Sorry I can’t come. Gee. That’s seriously the lamest I have heard till date. Ermm.. How long would it take to drop a vessel in the kitchen, act like it was by mistake, wake a parent and ask them to lock the door?

5. I have to study for my mock CAT (*YAWWWWN!!*).

The person who uses this excuse would probably excel in CAT if they posed questions about sleeping patterns of humans and had average sleeping time as a criterion for admissions.

6. I have office.

Sometimes genuine but most frequently abused excuse. Used when you are actually lazy to go out and so call up a friend and say “office maaan!! Soo sorry” :P

7. It’s my mother in law’s birthday guys.

Sighhhhh!! No comments.

8. I have assignments.

The person giving this excuse is an extremely nice person who usually makes it for every meet so she can be excused :P

So these are some of the most commonly used/abused excuses. And FINALLY by the time we actually reach a consensus, decide on a date and time we realize that it’s Monday and we have effectively lost the weekend in mailing each other. (We quit calling each other long time ago when we realized that all of us are equally bad at picking up the phone and answering calls or talking sense for more than 28 seconds.)

Effectively by the end of the day we have a terribly bad strike rate. Out of 25 meets planned 3 materialize and only 1 has all of us together (in which everyone will forget to bring the camera so we don’t even have any proof of THAT one meet when we were all together.). Going by statistics the only times when we have succeeded in meeting without hearing any excuses from anyone were the times when someone got married. And that was in December of last year.

I think it’s time someone got married. It’s been quite long since I saw everyone together.

Lets meet!! :P

P.S: I am GLAD gmail shows all 73 mails as just one mail. Imagine having to open 73 different mails and delete them one by one. *Shudders uncontrollably*

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Natural Haircut or a Haircut in Naturals? Former for me please!! :-\

Now I am one of those people who hate getting a haircut. I get a haircut once a year when I go home and this is not because I think I need a haircut but because you can get haircuts done for really cheap rates in Jamnagar. Yeahhh!! I am a cheapo because I just don’t (will not) understand the funda behind spending anything more than 50 bucks for a haircut. Though in essence, that’s what this whole post is about. About how I almost had to sell my kidneys to pay for a haircut. Sighhh. Am not a cheapo any more. No sir.

Anyway so about three weeks back I realized that it had been a year since I last went home and my hair errr…euphemistically put would make birds look lovingly at my head and go “Sighhh. Home Sweet Home”. Don’t get me wrong. I love animals and all that but not when they are thinking of starting a family on top my head. (I better be careful about what I say about animals. You say something as harmless as cattle class and a whole bunch of anally retentive politicos will start letting out steam).

I am digressing. Where was I? Yeah so I realized I was majorly overdue for a haircut because given my trichotillomania and my hair which is prone to split ends I had hair of varying length all over my head and let aside looking lady like, I didn’t even look human.

So I set out to get a haircut done. Now never having had a haircut done in Chennai I had absolutely no idea about the rates. So I started calculating. Since Jamnagar last saw civilization in….. oops. Sorry. Jamnagar has never seen civilization. My bad. So since Jamnagar has never seen civilization it was but obvious that the rates in Chennai would be say three times more than the rates in Jamnagar. So I guessed that a haircut in Chennai would set me back by 150 bucks. Not bad I thought. Given the fact that I had last gotten a haircut 15 months back it wasn’t bad at all. But yet I thought it would be better to ask coupla friends.

So I sent out a message saying “Hey. How much do you guys pay for a haircut in Chennai man?” to about 4 of my friends. And I got replies from two of them saying “Depends on the parlor and the cut” and I sent back an “eh?”.

My friends knowing me elucidated that there were different ways in which you could get your hair cut, called U, V, W etc and depending on the cut you would be charged. So how much for a straight cut I asked and the casual reply I got was “Ohh. About 250-300”.

And I freaked. 250-300 bucks for a bloody haircut? Who was I? Julia Roberts? Hell!! ideally beauty parlours ought to be paying me coz I am GIVING them MY hair. 300 is what I spend in 6 years for a haircut. So I decided to ask in a couple of parlors. First I went to L’Oreal (Sighhhh) coz that was closest and I walked in and asked them the rates. I shall not repeat the price for many a faint audience might suddenly choke and die. So I gasped uncouthly at the receptionist when she told me the price and made a hurried exit.

Next stop was Naturals (double Sighhh!!) where I was told that I would be charged 250 bucks. Now in relative comparison to the price I heard in L’oreal, Naturals sounded so cheap I agreed at once and sat to get a haircut done.

12 minutes. I counted. She cut my hair for 12 minutes and I sat there stupidly for 2 minutes when she came and told me “Over madam” and I gawked. What?? I had paid almost 25 bucks a minute for this express haircut?

“Hmmm. How much?” I asked

“275 ma’am” replied the receptionist with perfectly made eyebrows, delicately powdered nose and bright red lipstick

“umm. You said 250 right?”

“Yeah ma’am. But with tax it will work out to 275. Cash or card?” she smiled sweetly.

I looked in my wallet and found a lone 100 rupee note laughing almost derisively at me as if saying “Ha ha. And you thought I would be enough to pay for your haircut? Sheeesh”

“Card” I grunted

And I came out with 275 bucks less in my already impoverished account. (I am a student remember. Its been 3 months since I last received a salary) and a couple of hairs less on my head.

My cell beeped. I opened the message morosely and it read

“Hey sorry. Was sleeping so couldn’t reply. It will cost you 80-100 bucks for a straight cut in Green Trends”

It took everything in me to muster all the self respect I had and not sit in the middle of the road and bawl shamelessly. Green Trends was two streets away.


I think I will next get a haircut when I am 37 years old and I am NOT going to Naturals!! GAH!!!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Of easy exams, strange students and electives

Had an anti climax of a test today. My first open book test in college and I dunno what i expected that i studied like it was an IIT entrance exam or something.

Its like you study for a paper of Advanced Mathetmatics and the question you get is "Please add two, two digit numbers (Calculators allowed)"


Anyway not that I am complaining about the paper being easy and all that but saala mazaa nahi aaya paper likhte waqt. You know the usual reactions ranging from "Is this the subject I studied for" and glancing at the title to confirm your suspicions to "Do I know enough to pass" to counting every mark of yours to see if you are anywhere near the border to "How long will it take to study all this shit again if i fail" was all missing. But a part of me is also immensely glad because I have had it uptil here with exams.

It is liberating to be in a college where they give you truckloads and truckloads of assignments and say no to exams. It is so much more easier and helps improve your understanding if you ACTUALLY do the assignments than sitting on your backside and reading for some shitty exam. One of the main reasons I joined this college was because the prospectus said "no exams" and like all colleges which lie through their teeth, we are having exams for a couple of papers this term but if they are as easy as this one was then all i can say is "Bring it on" :)

I somehow cannot understand the attitude of people who hound the lecturer after class to ask "doubts". I mean what is so secretive and special about your doubt that you cant ask it in class in front of everyone? Or do you think that the lecturer will suddenly reveal something which will help you become the best journalist? Or do you believe that the lecturer's intellignece will rub off on you if you stand close enough to him/her? I just don't get it.

And this is not one stray lecture/lecturer I am talking about. But lecture after lecture the same people hound the lecturer and if thats not enough there are a couple others who probably think they will choke and die if they sit in their seats for one more second when they see some other person asking a doubt and they will go and swarm around the lecturer and furiously take down notes.

So effectively one person has a doubt and goes to clear it but ultimately 10 people are standing around the lecturer, nodding their heads prosaiclly though they probably cant make head or tail of what he is saying. But hey thats ok, because we are atleast standing there and not losing out on any pearls of information thrown by the lecturer. DUH!! This goes on till someone has to come and shoo these people like flies and rescue the lecturer. I mean seriously. The average age here is 23 or probably more. And yet this kind of 5th standard behavior. Sighhhhhh.

Submitted my elective choices today. I hope I get my environment and gender electives. I loved those two lectures and are probably the only two things I am passionate about. Aaaaaaaaaaaah!!!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

India Won....Yayyyyyyy!! :)

Nothing helps people bond like cricket does.

Come a cricket match and you find yourself slapping hi fives and hugging people whom you generally wouldnt touch with a barge pole and people whose rightful place, you thought, was either the kindergarten or a drug rehabilitation centre. Yesterday's India Srilanka match was one such. Every wicket, every run, every sixer and every four, found us hooting and shouting like banshees bringing down the entire hostel.

You watch a cricket match and you realise people arent that bad. What IS bad is probably your perception of that person and your pre conceived notions about him/her. I am not coming to say that I watched the match with people who were descendants of Mother Theresa, who I originally thought were flesh and blood of Saddam Hussein, but you know, you just learn to look beyond certain flaws of people and enjoy that particular moment of pure ecstasy when you see Sachin come up to collect the Man of the Match and Man of the Series award.

Aaaah!! Am getting too philosophical aint I? :-|

Anyway, Its also funny to watch a match when you have a couple of Srilankans around you. Every time you cheer you warily look around to see if you have offended that person and grin sheepishly. And you try to get the people from other SAARC countries to support you and root for your country.

Oh it was nothing like the cricket matches I have seen in hostel in SSN where atleast 50 of us would be huddled in the TV room to watch a match and completely lose it when India won. This doesnt even come close to that but my first match watching experience in ACJ has been good.

And this is the first time I have seen it with such a Pan Indian audience.Right from Punjab to Bombay to Delhi to Kolkata to Chennai, people from all over bowing before GOD (read: Tendulkar). Wowww!! An experience indeed.

When you are in India there is NOTHING that promotes communal harmony better than cricket. Trust me, NOTHING!!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

And like it or not.. I am Back!! :)

Suddenly I decided I didn’t want my blog to be private anymore. Don’t ask me for explanations because I don’t have any. I just sat thinking about the reasons for which I blocked my site and after almost six months I realize that it was as smart an idea as Himesh Reshammiya thinking that he would look nice in weaved hair. You get the drift? In both cases the ideas and final outcomes were disastrous. It was an impulsive decisions and my impulsive decisions always suck and today morning as I missed GBCI sorely I said “To hell with it. I am gonna start writing on GBCI again”.

For all you people who didn’t even know that my blog had gone private – Pfffffbbt to you – (author maturely putting out her tongue at everyone who is going “Really, you made you blog private?”). And for all those who mailed me asking for permission to read my blog, Thanks so much. I never did know that there were so many people who read the stuff I wrote and it was one of the main reasons for my coming back (No use cribbing now. I am back now and back for good – I hope so :P)

A lot has happened in the last 6 months. For one I have quit my job. Yeahhh. For people who have been reading my blog you know HOW much I have cribbed about having to sit in front of a computer for 15 hours everyday and doing something which was OBVIOUSLY not coming to me (read: coding). I am a student now and doing something which I have always always wanted to do. I get to read a lot, write a lot and talk and lot and I wake up every morning thanking all my stars and wondering how in hell did I get so lucky? But that’s the thing about life. The minute you least expect it, whooooosh it sweeps you off your feet and leaves you breathless

I am doing a course in journalism at Asian College of Journalism here at Chennai. I love the experience so far. I love being a student. I love all the courses and the lectures/lecturers. I almost shrieked with happiness when Bharadwaj Rangan (one of my favorite bloggers) came to talk on film reviewing, I watched in awe as Navin Chawla spoke about the election in India and cringed in disgust when Sitaram Yechury spoke about how Left is the way to go. Kancha Ilaiah provoked me, Krishna Ananth delighted me and I have realized how badly read I am and how little I know about my own country and the world. I feel insignificant when I look at kids (Yep!!) two years younger than knowing much much more than me. It’s a humbling experience but worth it.

I have met a lot of like minded people. I have met people who are skeptical about Gandhi (yayyy!! finally) and people who don’t go “Hawwwwwww!! He was the father of the nation. How can you talk like that about him?”, when I would air my opinions about him. I have also seen a lot of people who I d have been better off not knowing but when you are 23 you learn to live with all kinds of people, never mind if they smoke weed, drink like a fish (NOT water mind you) and smoke a lot. And yeah passive smoking does not kill instantly like I originally thought. I mean I thought the minute someone smoked on my face my lungs would shrivel and I would choke and die. Nope. That doesn’t happen because I have had quite a few people smoking on my face and I have learnt to hold my breath and talk at the same time.

I have also seen more of my dear city Chennai in the past two months than I have in the past 8 years and I love the city all the more. I have watched more plays, dance shows and music concerts now than I have in the past eight years. I have made new friends, been in touch with old ones, known again what it is like to stay awake for 36 hours straight (did that last before Artificial Intelligence exam during engineering) and do work I actually like.

Oh I have learnt a lot and I now that GBCI is “open” I think I will write about it one by one as and when I think of it. Today I am just a happy and contended person. Today I have no regrets. Today I am as much in love with life as I was during engineering (for totally different reasons but in love nevertheless). But lets talk about all that some other time.

Today, I live :)