Friday, September 12, 2008

Feeling mushy

This album was lying somewhere in the car. Listening after eons while driving to work on a drizzling Friday morning. Magical.

One wants to listen to Rekha Bharadwaj a lot more. She's gold.

Rambhai ekdum neat and fresh

They were doing a case study. That's what they had gone to B-schools for anyway. No surprises there. But why in the name of sweet Jesus did they have to get fresh with Rambhai? Sample this:

'The man after 25 years of service, today works relentlessly to make both ends meet. Students and staff of IIM-A passionately wait at the 'window' to get tea, cigarettes from Rambhai. People get bothered on not seeing Rambhai at the shop. They love to share a few passionate words(sic) with him.' link.

One feels seriously concerned for the wellness of the IIM-A students and Profs when they start getting all passionate with Rambhai. Now Rambhai is a world renowned figure who everybody worth his cup of tea on the net would have heard of. It's also good to see that the IIM-A academic body has roped in Mainstream media into Rambhai's life to give him his fifteen minutes of fame. It was just that the opening lines had me ROFL. I'd have let it pass thinking it was another TOI gem, but the article goes on :

These words are from a case material prepared by the Faculty Development Programme (FDP) participants at the Indian Institute of Management-Ahmedabad.

Great. Just great. Now that the team have presented their case (the case study, to my mind, is another reinvention of the wheel, since the successful small entrepreneur model is age-old case material in B-schools anyway), and Rambhai has had his day under the spots, all decked up and freshened, one has a word of caution for him.

Careful with them boys, Rambhai. These MBA types, I tell you.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Stand up and deliver, Sir!

To :
(Kind attention Shri Sri K.N. Prasad, DE(PG), O/o GMTD, Dhanbad)

Dear sir,

I am a consumer of BSNL landline phone service residing in ****** Steel City, Sector-IV, Quarter no. ****. I have a landline connection with telephone number 06542-****** and consumer no. 98060475. Since May.2008 I have not been receiving my telephone bills at my residence. For the bill dated 11/05/2008, I had downloaded the bill from your web address and deposited the bill amount. However, now the link on that page for Dhanbad SSA ( too has stopped working for the past two months. Since I did not receive my bill dated 11/07/08 on time and neither could I download it from the internet, I was waiting for the bill to eventually arrive and pay with late fine. But it never arrived, and this morning outgoing calls from my number has been temporarily suspended. On contacting the local exchange, I was informed that it was the local SDO’s responsibility to ensure delivery of bills, in which there was a failure for whatever reasons. I was directed to collect the duplicate bill from their office and deposit. This is a very inconvenient situation for me as I will now have to waste time and effort on collecting a duplicate bill. Moreover, I apprehend repetitions of this incidence in future.

Having understood that BSNL has little or no control over timely delivery of telephone bills, I would like to request you to henceforth kindly arrange to e-mail me my landline telephone bill at the following mail ID : ********** . This will help avoid a lot of harassment to a loyal consumer and ensure my peace of mind. Thanking you,

Yours sincerely,

(Partha Protim Chakrabarty)

Frankly, I don't believe for a moment mundane affairs like this should be put on a blog. Neither do I expect anybody to read through the long-winded grievance. It's just that I've got a good feeling about this. I remember my earlier panga-s with behemoth PSU corporations. Both these cases were marked with phenomenal and completely unlikely success since I decided to ditch the old world route and use electronic media. And in both cases success arrived after I posted them on zis here blog. Yes, I know this is mere correlation not causation, but for me it has become like the pale blue shirt I used to wear to interviews.

This time around it's Gormint machinery I'm up against, so I'm keeping fingers crossed.

Sunday, September 07, 2008

A game of hardball

My uncle and his friends used to play ball. My uncle and his friends used to play ball on lazy summer afternoons. My uncle and his friends used to play ball on lazy summer afternoons at the Green Garden club grounds.

OK, OK, enough. What I'm driving at is, my uncle and his friends needed to raise some cash at times, to write off and replace a tattered old ball. We all did. In fact this could be the story of my own life too. Only I didn't have the one of a kind friend like my uncle did. But I get ahead of myself.

Well, my uncle and his friends would go dig into their saved pocket monies and put their athannies or whatever it would take in those blissful times, into the common kitty. Off they would march to the Unique Variety Stores, to purchase the the finest soccer ball of the day, a size 5 fake Adidas.

Then, after the dust had been sprinkled down on the Green Garden soccer field, and the battle lines been drawn, the territories marked, and the ball about to roll (I could talk in cliches till the cows came home) and there was but a bated breadth between the whistle and forty-four feet engaging in combat, from somewhere a shrill voice of discontent would spring.

It would later become clear, that Poltu kaku had had some tiff with people in the group over the choice of the color of ball, or his wish to play in the center forward position in his team, or simply that he wanted to have golgappa on the way back from Unique Variety with the leftover cash, which he was denied. Intricacies of the discontent need not be gotten into, for all that mattered now was that Poltu would not allow getting the game under way. Not one inch, any which way.

"What do you want now, shithead?" the big bullies glared down at him, but the puny Poltu would glare back with equal force. "Give him his athanni back and kick him out of the football field", somebody would proffer. But Poltu was by now squatting on the ball in the middle of the field and he would have none of it.
"Shove your athanni, who wants it? I want my share back."
"But that's all there's to it, that athanni was your share, ghonchu!"
"No, I want my share in this ball. I want a slice of this."

I really don't remember how my uncle and friends got out of it with their balls intact, it was such an old story. But I'm certain violence was not an option. Poltu's dad was the school headmaster and his elder brother was in the NDA.

I guess Mr. Gandhi, Mr. Bhattacharya and many other well-meaning people of Bengal should go ask my uncle and his friends.

Update : Looks like they did, this morning.
Update 2 : But then, did they learn the secret technique after all?