Monday, December 31, 2007

Chennai 600080

What do you do when you have just finished your 9th std half yearly exams and are gonna have 2 weeks full of vacation? Collect 2 rupees each from the 25 odd people, buy two tennis balls and head to the play ground. There were quite a few of us – BK, Marla, VB, MB, Vidhyashankar, Thiaga, Sathya, Krishna, Tony, Bharani, Krishna Prasad, Manja, myself, Prasanna, Abdul, Vishwas, Kishore, Srini, Buddi, Gullu, Kulla, Palla, Naresh, Varuna, Shreenath…..

Usually UCO bank ground was our abode. It was just besides BK’s house – whose mom was great enough to tolerate us and feed us for a whole of 2-3 yrs that we spent playing there. The ground had a longer off side boundary (behind square was plain shrubbery, mid-off: there was a building - so square of the wicket and long off were the only scoring options). Leg side was restricted (by shrubbery yet again), max u could score was a 2G and between long on and cow’s corner it was no didnt have runs behind the stumps...since it was blocked by the wall of you had to be careful you dont hook or scoop lest the ball falls on the other side of the wall......

Generally we played 15 overs a side. Most of us enjoying the shade under the tree, while the wretched few baked in the sun and played. Those were the days…….we enjoyed a lot….it was usual for the tennis ball to get lost in the shrubs….and getting it out was an adventure in itself…..this BK always reminded me of adam gilchrist…..dunno why….but he was one cool character…one of the best fielders and calm headed batsman I have seen….

Vidhya was a class act on the off side….was vulnerable to balls cutting into him….but he always ha the knack of scoring when it mattered…..thiyaga was jekyl and hyde combo…a class act on the off…and a rustic wood cutter on the leg side…. Varuna was stylish….though I am tempted to say style over substance…fact is he had both in ample quantity….he was a perfect batsmen..a perfect bowler…a great fielder…just that it was easy to get under his skin…..Naresh was a complete cricketer….in fact he was the complete sportsman in our group..could play any game..and excelled in every game….Sathya and Kishore were scary fast bowlers…and maverick batsmen….home grown techniques..which served them well….MB was a nice player to watch too…Buddi had a beautiful action modeled on wasim akram…just that he couldn’t bowl….but a tenacious batsman….

The rest of us were mere pretenders…..trying this or that…we never knew when we would score and when we would not…it was always lottery…the only thing we were sure of was that we had immense fun…..

There were few gem in our midst too...there was this P.S.Ramakrishnan who was very very stylish....and Sathyamurthy who was frighteningly fast with the bowl and explosive with the bat...

Grudging!!!!! Get lost will ya :)

There are those whom you don’t care much about….if you speak wid them you have a good time…else….doesnt make much of a difference…..however they do become a part of your life….in a way in which you cant describe…..

She was one such lady….I respected her a lot – but that was before knowing her personally. And then, I would not say I despised her…but at least I no longer put her up on a pedestal….there wasn’t much more to it….4 yrs passed in college….

Then she came as my savior….when insomnia affected me….but I wasn’t too much intent on studying….i wanted to speak..or rather vent out my frustrations….she was there….always there I must say….(to give clarity to the context, I must say she was equally vela at that time..with nothing worthwhile to work on :D )….we spoke…we spoke…we spoke…..

To her credit, she tolerated me a lot – despite me being like that irritating mosquito which always seems to hum in the round abouts of your ear but never gets swatted….she helped me where she could….and was forthright in telling where she couldn’t…..went a long way in having no expectations…and yet have the confidence that it is truth which binds our pesky relationship….May God bless her….Amen……

Sunday, December 30, 2007

An Ode to Brilliance....

My visit to the GD panel was with mixed emotions….while one part of me was telling me to flunk it…there was another voice which said – just do it.

In the end I went in – not caring a damn as to what the outcome is gonna be and let myself be what I am. GD went on OK…and so did the interview….

Then we went for a small walk across the campus….I later had the privilege to be her classmate too…

One of the most simple and brilliant lady I have ever come across…as I used to so often say to my kkdi friends…the first girl to whom I could bow down with happiness….such was her brilliance (as I perceived it to be)

We shared a hi-bye relationship. Nothing much to speak of. But thinking of her will always remind me of her grace, her brilliance….and all I will do is wish her the very best in her life…. AMEN

Gone with the wind ……Part 3

  • Having that ‘why I am here?’ feeling once again……on the first night at b’lore
  • The happiness at the sight of a known face in my class…..
  • Our mktg project and the fun and food we had along with it….
  • Our nights (especially 2nd and 3rd sem) spent playing tsepak (in which I was a dud) followed by kadak chai at 4.30 in the morning before going to sleep
  • Those caffeine induced insomnia…..
  • Enter second yr….and our very own adda with vipro, oldie and myself…
  • Frequent chai time meetings in I-1st …..
  • Our daaru induced black out after our 4th sem….
  • Playing cricket in L block while I was supposed to work on my ccs….
  • Good times with sanju, jhingu, balti, ankur, jawanak, balle and sarangi….
  • Frequent canteen/CCD visits with sumeet….
  • The happiness I experienced at the sight of an uncluttered mind dancing her way to glory….
  • 15 movies in 2 days… interrupted only by the necessity to sleep…
  • Weekend outings (rare ones though) with mek and her gang….
  • The last daaru session we had post placements and the L^2 that followed….
  • When dancing actually meant stomping our feet and pumping our fists… a drunken stupor….
  • My happiness at the time of leaving blore

Friday, December 28, 2007

For you Meks........

Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens;
Bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens;
Brown paper packages tied up with strings;
These are a few of my favorite things.

Cream-colored ponies and crisp apple strudels;
Doorbells and sleigh bells and schnitzel with noodles;
Wild geese that fly with the moon on their wings;
These are a few of my favorite things.

Girls in white dresses with blue satin sashes;
Snowflakes that stay on my nose and eyelashes;
Silver-white winters that melt into springs;
These are a few of my favorite things.

When the dog bites,
When the bee stings,
When I'm feeling sad,
I simply remember my favorite things,
And then I don't feel so bad.

My Fav

The Yaksha: "What is that, abandoning which man becomes loved by all?"

Yudhishthira: "Pride, for abandoning that man will be loved by all."

The Yaksha: "What is the loss which yields joy and not sorrow?"

Yudhishthira: "Anger, giving it up, we will no longer subject to sorrow."

The Yaksha: "What is that, by giving up which, man becomes rich?"

Yudhishthira: "Desire, getting rid of it, man becomes wealthy."

The Yaksha: "What is the greatest wonder in the world?"

Yudhishthira replied: "Every day, men see creatures depart to Yama's abode and yet, those who remain seek to live forever. This verily is the greatest wonder."

These are the bricks with which the wall was built

Hmm...D'Anconia, Rearden, Galt, SIddartha.....There are few more i love...couldnt find a quote of theirs on net though Howard Roark, Gail fact there is this close friend of mine whom i call roark and myself wynand.....He was the person i wanted to be, but never could be......

Nainam chindanti shastraani, nainam dahathi paavakah, na chainam kledhayantyaapo, na evam shochayathi maarutah... There is always the proverbial slip between the cup and the lip....I am failing more times than I am succeeding. However, each success is so sweet that the failures are but a motivation to come out of the shell.

and yaaaaaaaaaaaaaa...........

I once had a friend who grew to be very close to me. Once when we were sitting at the edge of a swimming pool, she filled the palm of her hand with some water and held it before me, and said this: "You see this water carefully contained on my hand? It symbolizes Love.

This was how I saw it: As long as you keep your hand caringly open and allow it to remain there, it will always be there. However, if you attempt to close your fingers round it and try to posses it, it will spill through the first cracks it finds.

This is the greatest mistake that people do when they meet love ... they try to posses it, they demand, they expect ... and just like the water spilling out of your hand, love will retrieve from you. For love is meant to be free, you can not change its nature.

If there are people you love, allow them to be free beings.

Give and don't expect.
Advise, but don't order.
Ask, but never demand.

It might sound simple, but it is a lesson that may take a lifetime to truly practice. It is the secret to true love.To truly practice it, you must sincerely feel no expectations from those who you love, and yet an unconditional caring.

- Swami Vivekananda

A tribute to MB - the guy who brought me to this.....

“I wish that you, oh exalted one, would not be angry with me,” said the
young man. “I have not spoken to you like this to argue with you, to argue
about words. You are truly right, there is little to opinions. But let me
say this one more thing: I have not doubted in you for a single moment. I
have not doubted for a single moment that you are Buddha, that you have
reached the goal, the highest goal towards which so many thousands of
Brahmans and sons of Brahmans are on their way. You have found salvation
from death. It has come to you in the course of your own search, on your own path, through thoughts, through meditation, through realizations,
through enlightenment. It has not come to you by means of teachings!
And—thus is my thought, oh exalted one,—nobody will obtain salvation
by means of teachings! You will not be able to convey and say to anybody,
oh venerable one, in words and through teachings what has happened to
you in the hour of enlightenment! The teachings of the enlightened Buddha
contain much, it teaches many to live righteously, to avoid evil. But
there is one thing which these so clear, these so venerable teachings do
not contain: they do not contain the mystery of what the exalted one has
experienced for himself, he alone among hundreds of thousands. This is
what I have thought and realized, when I have heard the teachings. This is
why I am continuing my travels—not to seek other, better teachings, for I
know there are none, but to depart from all teachings and all teachers and
to reach my goal by myself or to die. But often, I’ll think of this day, oh
exalted one, and of this hour, when my eyes beheld a holy man.”

The Buddha’s eyes quietly looked to the ground; quietly, in perfect equanimity
his inscrutable face was smiling.

Hank Rearden - His Trial

For a month in advance, the people who filled the courtroom had been told by the press that they would see the man who was a greedy enemy of society; but they had come to see the man who had invented Rearden Metal.

He stood up, when the judges called upon him to do so. He wore a grey suit, he had pale blue eyes and blond hair; it was not the colours that made his figure seem icily implacable, it was the fact that the suit had an expensive simplicity seldom flaunted these days, that it belonged in the sternly luxurious office of a rich corporation, that his bearing came from a civilised era and clashed with the place around him.

The crowd knew from the newspapers that he represented the evil of ruthless wealth; and - as they praised the virtue of chastity, then ran to see any movie that displayed a half-naked female on its posters - so they came to see him; evil, at least, did not have the stale hopelessness of a bromide which none believed and none dared to challenge. They looked at him without admiration - admiration was a feeling they had lost the capacity to experience, long ago; they looked with curiosity and with a dim sense of defiance against those who had told them that it was their duty to hate him.

A few years ago, they would have jeered at his air of self-confident wealth. But today, there was a slate-grey sky in the windows of the courtroom, which promised the first snowstorm of a long, hard winter; the last of the country's oil was vanishing, and the coal mines were not able to keep up with the hysterical scramble for winter supplies. The crowd in the courtroom remembered that this was the case which had cost them the services of Ken Danagger. There were rumours that the output of the Danagger Coal Company had fallen perceptibly within one month; the newspapers said that it was merely a matter of readjustment while Danagger's cousin was reorganising the company he had taken over. Last week, the front pages had carried the story of a catastrophe on the site of a housing project under construction: defective steel girders had collapsed, killing four workmen; the newspapers had not mentioned, but the crowd knew, that the girders had come from Orren Boyle's Associated Steel.

They sat in the courtroom in heavy silence and they looked at the tall, grey figure, not with hope - they were losing the capacity to hope - but with an impassive neutrality spiked by a faint question mark; the question mark was placed over all the pious slogans they had heard for years.

The newspapers had snarled that the cause of the country's troubles, as this case demonstrated, was the selfish greed of rich industrialists; that it was men like Hank Rearden who were to blame for the shrinking diet, the falling temperature and the cracking roofs in the homes of the nation; that if it had not been for men who broke regulations and hampered the government's plans, prosperity would have been achieved long ago; and that a man like Hank Rearden was prompted by nothing but the profit motive. This last was stated without explanation or elaboration, as if the words "profit motive" were the self-evident brand of ultimate evil.

The crowd remembered that these same newspapers, less than two years ago, had screamed that the production of Rearden Metal should be forbidden, because its producer was endangering people's lives for the sake of his greed; they remembered that the man in grey had ridden in the cab of the first engine to run over a track of his own Metal; and that he was now on trial for the greedy crime of withholding from the public a load of the Metal which it had been his greedy crime to offer in the public market.

According to the procedure established by directives, cases of this kind were not tried by a jury, but by a panel of three judges appointed by the Bureau of Economic Planning and National Resources; the procedure, the directives had stated, was to be informal and democratic. The judge's bench had been removed from the old Philadelphia courtroom for this occasion, and replaced by a table on a wooden platform; it gave the room an atmosphere suggesting the kind of meeting where a presiding body puts something over on a mentally retarded membership.

One of the judges, acting as prosecutor, had read the charges.
"You may now offer whatever plea you wish to make in your own defence," he announced. Facing the platform, his voice inflectionless and peculiarly clear, Hank Rearden answered:
"I have no defence."
"Do you --" The judge stumbled; he had not expected it to be that easy. "Do you throw yourself upon the mercy of this court?"
"I do not recognise this court's right to try me."
"I do not recognise this court's right to try me."
"But, Mr. Rearden, this is the legally appointed court to try this particular category of crime."
"I do not recognise my action as a crime."
"But you have admitted that you have broken our regulations controlling the sale of your Metal."
"I do not recognise your right to control the sale of my Metal."
"Is it necessary for me to point out that your recognition was not required?"
"No. I am fully aware of it and I am acting accordingly."

He noted the stillness of the room. By the rules of the complicated pretence which all those people played for one another's benefit, they should have considered his stand as incomprehensible folly; there should have been rustles of astonishment and derision; there were none; they sat still; they understood.
"Do you mean that you are refusing to obey the law?" asked the judge.
"No. I am complying with the law - to the letter. Your law holds that my life, my work and my property may be disposed of without my consent. Very well, you may now dispose of me without my participation in the matter. I will not play the part of defending myself, where no defence is possible, and I will not simulate the illusion of dealing with a tribunal of justice."
"But, Mr. Rearden, the law provides specifically that you are to be given an opportunity to present your side of the case and to defend yourself."
"A prisoner brought to trial can defend himself only if there is an objective principle of justice recognised by his judges, a principle upholding his rights, which they may not violate and which he can invoke. The law, by which you are trying me, holds that there are no principles, that I have no rights and that you may do with me whatever you please. Very well. Do it." "Mr. Rearden, the law which you are denouncing is based on the highest principle - the principle of the public good."
"Who is the public? What does it hold as its good? There was a time when men believed that 'the good' was a concept to be defined by a code of moral values and that no man had the right to seek his good through the violation of the rights of another. If it is now believed that my fellow men may sacrifice me in any manner they please for the sake of whatever they deem to e their own good, if they believe that they may seize my property simply because they need it - well, so does any burglar. There is only this difference: the burglar does not ask me to sanction his act."

A group of seats at the side of the courtroom was reserved for the prominent visitors who had come from New York to witness the trial. Dagny sat motionless and her face showed nothing but a solemn attention, the attention of listening with the knowledge that the flow of his words would determine the course of her life. Eddie Willers sat beside her. James Taggart had not come. Paul Larkin sat hunched forward, his face thrust out, pointed like an animal's muzzle, sharpened by a look of fear now turning into malicious hatred. Mr. Mowen, who sat beside him, was a man of greater innocence and smaller understanding; his fear was of a simpler nature; he listened in bewildered indignation and he whispered to Larkin, "Good God, now he's done it! Now he'll convince the whole country that all businessmen are enemies of the public good!"

"Are we to understand," asked the judge, "that you hold your own interests above the interests of the public?"
"I hold that such a question can never arise except in a society of cannibals."
"What ... do you mean?"
"I hold that there is no clash of interests among men who do not demand the unearned and do not practice human sacrifices."
"Are we to understand that if the public deems it necessary to curtail your profits, you do not recognise its right to do so?"
"Why, yes, I do. The public may curtail my profits any time it wishes - by refusing to buy my product."
"We are speaking of ... other methods."
"Any other method of curtailing profits is the method of looters - and I recognise it as such."
"Mr. Rearden, this is hardly the way to defend yourself."
"I said that I would not defend myself."
"But this is unheard of! Do you realise the gravity of the charge against you?"
"I do not care to consider it."
"Do you realise the possible consequences of your stand?"
"It is the opinion of this court that the facts presented by the prosecution seem to warrant no leniency. The penalty which this court has the power to impose on you is extremely severe."
"Go ahead."
"I beg your pardon?"
"Impose it."
The three judges looked at one another. Then their spokesman turned back to Rearden. "This is unprecedented," he said.
"It is completely irregular," said the second judge. "The law requires you submit to a plea in your own defence. Your only alternative is to state for the record that you throw yourself upon the mercy of the court."
"I do not."
"But you have to."
"Do you mean that what you expect from me is some sort of voluntary action?"
"I volunteer nothing."
"But the law demands that the defendant's side be represented on the record."
"Do you mean that you need my help to make this procedure legal?"
"Well, no ... yes ... that is, to complete the form."
"I will not help you."
The third and youngest judge, who had acted as prosecutor snapped impatiently, "This is ridiculous and unfair! Do you want to let it look as if a man of your prominence had been railroaded without a --" He cut himself off short. Somebody at the back of the courtroom emitted a long whistle.
"I want," said Rearden gravely, "to let the nature of this procedure appear exactly for what it is. If you need my help to disguise it - I will not help you."
"But we are giving you a chance to defend yourself - and it is you who are rejecting it."
"I will not help you to pretend that I have a chance. I will not help you to preserve an appearance of righteousness where rights are not recognised. I will not help you to preserve an appearance of rationality by entering a debate in which a gun is the final argument. I will not help you to pretend that you are administering justice."
"But the law compels you to volunteer a defence!"
There was laughter at the back of the courtroom.
"That is the flaw in your theory, gentlemen," said Rearden gravely, "and I will not help you out of it. If you choose to deal with men by means of compulsion, do so. But you will discover that you need the voluntary co-operation of your victims, in many more ways than you can see at present. And your victims should discover that it is their own volition - which you cannot force - that makes you possible. I choose to be consistent and I will obey you in the manner you demand. Whatever you wish me to do, I will do it at the point of a gun. If you sentence me to jail, you will have to send armed men to carry me there - I will not volunteer to move. If you fine me, you will have to seize my property to collect the fine - I will not volunteer to pay it. If you believe that you have the right to force me - use your guns openly. I will not help you to disguise the nature of your action."
The eldest judge leaned forward across the table and his voice became suavely derisive: "You speak as if you were fighting for some sort of principle, Mr. Rearden, but what you're actually fighting for is only your property, isn't it?"
"Yes, of course. I am fighting for my property. Do you know the kind of principle that represents?"
"You pose as a champion of freedom, but it's only the freedom to make money that you're after."
"Yes, of course. All I want is the freedom to make money. Do you know what that freedom implies?"
"Surely, Mr. Rearden, you wouldn't want your attitude to be misunderstood. You wouldn't want to give support to the widespread impression that you are a man devoid of social conscience, who feels no concern for the welfare of his fellows and works for nothing but his own profit."
"I work for nothing but my own profit. I earn it."
There was a gasp, not of indignation, but of astonishment, in the crowd behind him and silence from the judges he faced. He went on calmly:
"No, I do not want my attitude to be misunderstood. I shall be glad to state it for the record. I am in full agreement with the facts of everything said about me in the newspapers - with the facts, but not with the evaluation. I work for nothing but my own profit - which I make by selling a product they need to men who are willing and able to buy it. I do not produce it for their benefit at the expense of mine, and they do not buy it for my benefit at the expense of theirs; I do not sacrifice my interests to them nor do they sacrifice theirs to me; we deal as equals by mutual consent to mutual advantage - and I am proud of every penny that I have earned in this manner. I am rich and I am proud of every penny I own. I made my money by my own effort, in free exchange and through the voluntary consent of every man I dealt with - voluntary consent of those who employed me when I started, the voluntary consent of those who work for me now, the voluntary consent of those who buy my product. I shall answer all the questions you are afraid to ask me openly. Do I wish to pay my workers more than their services are worth to me? I do not. Do I wish to sell my product for less than my customers are willing to pay me? I do not. Do I wish to sell it at a loss or give it away? I do not. If this is evil, do whatever you please about me, according to whatever standards you hold. These are mine. I am earning my own living, as every honest man must. I refuse to accept as guilt the fact of my own existence and the fact that I must work in order to support it. I refuse to accept as guilt the fact that I am able to do it better than most people - the fact that my work is of greater value than the work of my neighbours and that more men are willing to pay me. I refuse to apologise for my ability - I refuse to apologise for my success - I refuse to apologise for my money. If this is evil, make the most of it. If this is what the public finds harmful to its interests, let the public destroy me. This is my code - and I will accept no other. I could say to you that I have done more good for my fellow men than you can ever hope to accomplish - but I will not say it, because I do not seek the good of others as a sanction for my right to exist, nor do I seek the good of others as a sanction for my right to exist, nor do I recognise the good of others as a justification for their seizure of my property or their destruction of my life. I will not say that the good of others was the purpose of my work - my own good was my purpose, and I despise the man who surrenders his. I could say to you that you do not serve the public good - that nobody's good can be achieved at the price of human sacrifices - that when you violate the rights of one man, you have violated the right of all, and a public of rightless creatures is doomed to destruction. I could say to you that you will and can achieve nothing but universal devastation - as any looter must, when he runs out of victims. I could say it, but I won't. It is not your particular policy that I challenge, but your moral premise. If it were true that men could achieve their good by means of turning some men into sacrificial animals, and I were asked to immolate myself for the sake of creatures who wanted to survive at the price of my blood, if I were asked to serve the interests of society apart from, above and against my own - I would refuse. I would reject it as the most contemptible evil, I would fight it with every power I possess, I would fight the whole of mankind, if one minute were all I could last before I were murdered, I would fight in the full confidence of the justice of my battle and of a living being's right to exist. Let there be no misunderstanding about me. If it is now the belief of my fellow men, who call themselves the public, that their good requires victims, then I say: The public good be damned, I will have no part of it!"

The crowd burst into applause.

Rearden whirled around, more startled than his judges. He saw face that laughed in violent excitement, and faces that pleaded for help; he saw their silent despair breaking out into the open; he saw the same anger and indignation as his own, finding release in the wild defiance of their cheering; he saw the looks of admiration and the looks of hope. There were also the face of loose-mouthed young men and maliciously unkempt females, the kind who led the booing in newsreel theatres at any appearance of a businessman of the screen; they did not attempt a counter-demonstration; they were silent.

As he looked at the crowd, people saw in his face what the threats of the judges had not been able to evoke: the first sign of emotion. It was a few moments before they heard the furious beating of a gavel upon the table and one of the judges yelling:
" -- or I shall have the courtroom cleared!"
As he turned back to the table, Rearden's eyes moved over the visitor's section. His glance paused on Dagny, a pause perceptible only to her, as if he were saying: It works. She would have appeared calm except that her eyes seemed to have become too large for her face. Eddie Willers was smiling the kind of smile that is a man's substitute for breaking into tears. Mr. Mowen looked stupefied. Paul Larkin was staring at the floor. There was no expression on Bertram Scudder's face - or on his wife, Lillian's. She sat at the end of a row, her legs crossed, a mink stole slanting from her right shoulder to her left hip; she looked at Rearden, not moving.

In the complex violence of all the things he felt, he had time to recognise a touch of regret and longing: there was a face he had hoped to see, had looked for from the start of the session, had wanted to be present more than any other face around him. But Francisco d'Anconia had not come.
"Mr Rearden," said the eldest judge, smiling affably, reproachfully and spreading his arms, "it is regrettable that you should have misunderstood us so completely. That's the trouble - that businessmen refuse to approach us in a spirit of trust and friendship. They seem to imagine that we are their enemies. Why do you speak of human sacrifices? What made you go to such an extreme? We have no intention of seizing your property or destroying your life. We do not seek to harm your interests. We are fully aware of your distinguished achievements. Our purpose is only to balance social pressures and do justice to all. This hearing is really intended, not as a trial, but as a friendly discussion aimed at mutual understanding and co-operation."
"I do not co-operate at the point of a gun."
"Why speak of guns? This matter is not serious enough to warrant such references. We are fully aware that the guilt in this case lies chiefly with Mr. Kenneth Danagger, who instigated this infringement of the law, who exerted pressure upon you and who confessed his guilt by disappearing his guilt by disappearing in order to escape trial."
"No. We did it by equal, mutual, voluntary agreement."
"Mr. Rearden," said the second judge, "you may not share some of our ideas, but when all is said and done, we're all working for the same cause. For the good of the people. We realise that you were prompted to disregard legal technicalities by the critical situation of the coal mines and the crucial importance of fuel to the public welfare."
"No. I was prompted by my own profit and my own interests. What effect it had on the coal mines and the public welfare is for you to estimate. That was not my motive."
Mr. Mowen stared dazedly about him and whispered to Paul Larkin, "Something's gone screwy here."
"Oh, shut up!" snapped Larkin.
"I am sure, Mr. Rearden," said the eldest judge, "that you do not really believe - nor does the public - that we wish to treat you as a sacrificial victim. If anyone has been laboring under such a misapprehension, we are anxious to prove that it is not true."

The judges retired to consider their verdict. They did not stay out long. They returned to an ominously silent courtroom - and announced that a fine of $5,000 was imposed on Henry Rearden, but that the sentence was suspended. Streaks of jeering laughter ran through the applause that swept the courtroom. The applause was aimed at Rearden, the laughter - at the judges.

Rearden stood motionless, not turning to the crowd, barely hearing the applause. He stood looking at the judges. There was no triumph in his face, no elation, only the still intensity of contemplating the enormity of the smallness of the enemy who was destroying the world. He felt as if, after a journey of years through a landscape of devastation, past the ruins of great factories, the wrecks of powerful engines, the bodies of invincible men, he had come upon the despoiler, expecting to find a giant - and had found a rat eager to scurry for cover at the first sound of a human step. If this is what has beaten us, he thought, the guilt is ours.

He was jolted back into the courtroom by the people pressing to surround him. He smiled in answer to their smiles, to the frantic tragic eagerness of their faces; there was a touch of sadness in his smile.
"God bless you, Mr. Rearden!" said an old woman with a ragged shawl over her head. "Can't you save us, Mr. Rearden? They're eating us alive, and it's no use fooling anybody about how it's the rich that they're after - do you know what's happening to us?"
"Listen, Mr. Rearden," said a man who looked like a factory worker, "it's the rich who're selling us down the river. Tell those wealthy bastards, who're so anxious to give everything away, that when they give away their palaces, they're giving away the skin off our backs." "I know it," said Rearden.
The guilt is ours, he thought. If we who were the movers, the providers, the benefactors of mankind, were willing to let the brand of evil be stamped upon us and silently to bear punishment for our virtues - what sort of "good" did we expect to triumph in the world? He looked at the people around him. They had cheered him today; they had cheered him by the side of the track of the John Galt Line. But tomorrow they would clamour for a new directive from Wesley Mouch and a free housing project from Orren Boyle, while Boyle's girders collapsed upon their heads. They would do it, because they would be told to forget, as a sin, that which had made them cheer Hank Rearden.

Why were they ready to renounce their highest moments as a sin? Why were they willing to betray the best within them? What made them believe that this earth was a realm of evil where despair was their natural fate? He could not name the reason, but he know that it had to be named. He felt it as a huge question mark within the courtroom, which it was now his duty to answer.

This was the real sentence imposed upon him, he thought - to discover what idea, what simple idea available to the simplest man, had made mankind accept the doctrines that led it to self-destruction.

John Galt

For twelve years you've been asking "Who is John Galt?" This is John Galt speaking. I'm the man who's taken away your victims and thus destroyed your world. You've heard it said that this is an age of moral crisis and that Man's sins are destroying the world. But your chief virtue has been sacrifice, and you've demanded more sacrifices at every disaster. You've sacrificed justice to mercy and happiness to duty. So why should you be afraid of the world around you?

Your world is only the product of your sacrifices. While you were dragging the men who made your happiness possible to your sacrificial altars, I beat you to it. I reached them first and told them about the game you were playing and where it would take them. I explained the consequences of your 'brother-love' morality, which they had been too innocently generous to understand. You won't find them now, when you need them more than ever.

We're on strike against your creed of unearned rewards and unrewarded duties. If you want to know how I made them quit, I told them exactly what I'm telling you tonight. I taught them the morality of Reason -- that it was right to pursue one's own happiness as one's principal goal in life. I don't consider the pleasure of others my goal in life, nor do I consider my pleasure the goal of anyone else's life.

I am a trader. I earn what I get in trade for what I produce. I ask for nothing more or nothing less than what I earn. That is justice. I don't force anyone to trade with me; I only trade for mutual benefit. Force is the great evil that has no place in a rational world. One may never force another human to act against his/her judgment. If you deny a man's right to Reason, you must also deny your right to your own judgment. Yet you have allowed your world to be run by means of force, by men who claim that fear and joy are equal incentives, but that fear and force are more practical.

You've allowed such men to occupy positions of power in your world by preaching that all men are evil from the moment they're born. When men believe this, they see nothing wrong in acting in any way they please. The name of this absurdity is 'original sin'. That's inmpossible. That which is outside the possibility of choice is also outside the province of morality. To call sin that which is outside man's choice is a mockery of justice. To say that men are born with a free will but with a tendency toward evil is ridiculous. If the tendency is one of choice, it doesn't come at birth. If it is not a tendency of choice, then man's will is not free.

And then there's your 'brother-love' morality. Why is it moral to serve others, but not yourself? If enjoyment is a value, why is it moral when experienced by others, but not by you? Why is it immoral to produce something of value and keep it for yourself, when it is moral for others who haven't earned it to accept it? If it's virtuous to give, isn't it then selfish to take?

Your acceptance of the code of selflessness has made you fear the man who has a dollar less than you because it makes you feel that that dollar is rightfully his. You hate the man with a dollar more than you because the dollar he's keeping is rightfully yours. Your code has made it impossible to know when to give and when to grab.

You know that you can't give away everything and starve yourself. You've forced yourselves to live with undeserved, irrational guilt. Is it ever proper to help another man? No, if he demands it as his right or as a duty that you owe him. Yes, if it's your own free choice based on your judgment of the value of that person and his struggle. This country wasn't built by men who sought handouts. In its brilliant youth, this country showed the rest of the world what greatness was possible to Man and what happiness is possible on Earth.

Then it began apologizing for its greatness and began giving away its wealth, feeling guilty for having produced more than ikts neighbors. Twelve years ago, I saw what was wrong with the world and where the battle for Life had to be fought. I saw that the enemy was an inverted morality and that my acceptance of that morality was its only power. I was the first of the men who refused to give up the pursuit of his own happiness in order to serve others.

To those of you who retain some remnant of dignity and the will to live your lives for yourselves, you have the chance to make the same choice. Examine your values and understand that you must choose one side or the other. Any compromise between good and evil only hurts the good and helps the evil.

If you've understood what I've said, stop supporting your destroyers. Don't accept their philosophy. Your destroyers hold you by means of your endurance, your generosity, your innocence, and your love. Don't exhaust yourself to help build the kind of world that you see around you now. In the name of the best within you, don't sacrifice the world to those who will take away your happiness for it.

The world will change when you are ready to pronounce this oath:
I swear by my Life and my love of it that I will never live for the sake of another man,
nor ask another man to live for the sake of mine.


Rearden heard Bertram Scudder, outside the group, say to a girl who made some sound of indignation, "Don't let him disturb you. You know, money is the root of all evil — and he's the typical product of money." Rearden did not think that Francisco could have heard it, but he saw Francisco turning to them with a gravely courteous smile.

"So you think that money is the root of all evil?" said Francisco d'Aconia. "Have you ever asked what is the root of money? Money is a tool of exchange, which can't exist unless there are goods produced and men able to produce them. Money is the material shape of the principle that men who wish to deal with one another must deal by trade and give value for value. Money is not the tool of the moochers, who claim your product by tears, or of the looters, who take it from you by force. Money is made possible only by the men who produce. Is this what you consider evil?

"When you accept money in payment for your effort, you do so only on the conviction that you will exchange it for the product of the effort of others. It is not the moochers or the looters who give value to money. Not an ocean of tears nor all the guns in the world can transform those pieces of paper in your wallet into the bread you will need to survive tomorrow. Those pieces of paper, which should have been gold, are a token of honor — your claim upon the energy of the men who produce. Your wallet is your statement of hope that somewhere in the world around you there are men who will not default on that moral principle which is the root of money. Is this what you consider evil?

"Have you ever looked for the root of production? Take a look at an electric generator and dare tell yourself that it was created by the muscular effort of unthinking brutes. Try to grow a seed of wheat without the knowledge left to you by men who had to discover it for the first time. Try to obtain your food by means of nothing but physical motions — and you'll learn that man's mind is the root of all the goods produced and of all the wealth that has ever existed on earth.

"But you say that money is made by the strong at the expense of the weak? What strength do you mean? It is not the strength of guns or muscles. Wealth is the product of man's capacity to think. Then is money made by the man who invents a motor at the expense of those who did not invent it? Is money made by the intelligent at the expense of the fools? By the able at the expense of the incompetent? By the ambitious at the expense of the lazy? Money is made — before it can be looted or mooched — made by the effort of every honest man, each to the extent of his ability. An honest man is one who knows that he can't consume more than he has produced.

"To trade by means of money is the code of the men of good will. Money rests on the axiom that every man is the owner of his mind and his effort. Money allows no power to prescribe the value of your effort except by the voluntary choice of the man who is willing to trade you his effort in return. Money permits you to obtain for your goods and your labor that which they are worth to the men who buy them, but no more. Money permits no deals except those to mutual benefit by the unforced judgment of the traders. Money demands of you the recognition that men must work for their own benefit, not for their own injury, for their gain, not their loss — the recognition that they are not beasts of burden, born to carry the weight of your misery — that you must offer them values, not wounds — that the common bond among men is not the exchange of suffering, but the exchange of GOODS. Money demands that you sell, not your weakness to men's stupidity, but your talent to their reason; it demands that you buy, not the shoddiest they offer, but the best your money can find. And when men live by trade — with reason, not force, as their final arbiter — it is the best product that wins, the best performance, the man of best judgment and highest ability — and the degree of a man's productiveness is the degree of his reward. This is the code of existence whose tool and symbol is money. Is this what you consider evil?

"But money is only a tool. It will take you wherever you wish, but it will not replace you as the driver. It will give you the means for the satisfaction of your desires, but it will not provide you with desires. Money is the scourge of the men who attempt to reverse the law of causality — the men who seek to replace the mind by seizing the products of the mind.

"Money will not purchase happiness for the man who has no concept of what he wants; money will not give him a code of values, if he's evaded the knowledge of what to value, and it will not provide him with a purpose, if he's evaded the choice of what to seek. Money will not buy intelligence for the fool, or admiration for the coward, or respect for the incompetent. The man who attempts to purchase the brains of his superiors to serve him, with his money replacing his judgment, ends up by becoming the victim of his inferiors. The men of intelligence desert him, but the cheats and the frauds come flocking to him, drawn by a law which he has not discovered: that no man may be smaller than his money. Is this the reason why you call it evil?

"Only the man who does not need it, is fit to inherit wealth — the man who would make his own fortune no matter where he started. If an heir is equal to his money, it serves him; if not, it destroys him. But you look on and you cry that money corrupted him. Did it? Or did he corrupt his money? Do not envy a worthless heir; his wealth is not yours and you would have done no better with it. Do not think that it should have been distributed among you; loading the world with fifty parasites instead of one, would not bring back the dead virtue which was the fortune. Money is a living power that dies without its root. Money will not serve that mind that cannot match it. Is this the reason why you call it evil?

"Money is your means of survival. The verdict which you pronounce upon the source of your livelihood is the verdict you pronounce upon your life. If the source is corrupt, you have damned your own existence. Did you get your money by fraud? By pandering to men's vices or men's stupidity? By catering to fools, in the hope of getting more than your ability deserves? By lowering your standards? By doing work you despise for purchasers you scorn? If so, then your money will not give you a moment's or a penny's worth of joy. Then all the things you buy will become, not a tribute to you, but a reproach; not an achievement, but a reminder of shame. Then you'll scream that money is evil. Evil, because it would not pinch-hit for your self-respect? Evil, because it would not let you enjoy your depravity? Is this the root of your hatred of money?

"Money will always remain an effect and refuse to replace you as the cause. Money is the product of virtue, but it will not give you virtue and it will not redeem your vices. Money will not give you the unearned, neither in matter nor in spirit. Is this the root of your hatred of money?

"Or did you say it's the love of money that's the root of all evil? To love a thing is to know and love its nature. To love money is to know and love the fact that money is the creation of the best power within you, and your passkey to trade your effort for the effort of the best among men. It's the person who would sell his soul for a nickel, who is the loudest in proclaiming his hatred of money — and he has good reason to hate it. The lovers of money are willing to work for it. They know they are able to deserve it."

"Let me give you a tip on a clue to men's characters: the man who damns money has obtained it dishonorably; the man who respects it has earned it.

"Run for your life from any man who tells you that money is evil. That sentence is the leper's bell of an approaching looter. So long as men live together on earth and need means to deal with one another — their only substitute, demands of you the highest virtues, if you wish to make it or to keep it. Men who have no courage, pride, or self-esteem, men who have no moral sense of their right to their money and are not willing to defend it as they defend their life, men who apologize for being rich — will not remain rich for long. They are the natural bait for the swarms of looters that stay under rocks for centuries, but come crawling out at the first smell of a man who begs to be forgiven for the guilt of owning wealth. They will hasten to relieve him of the guilt — and of his life, as he deserves.

"Then you will see the rise of the double standard — the men who live by force, yet count on those who live by trade to create the value of their looted money — the men who are the hitchhikers of virtue. In a moral society, these are the criminals, and the statutes are written to protect you against them. But when a society establishes criminals-by-right and looters-by-law — men who use force to seize the wealth of disarmed victims — then money becomes its creators' avenger. Such looters believe it safe to rob defenseless men, once they've passed a law to disarm them. But their loot becomes the magnet for other looters, who get it from them as they got it. Then the race goes, not to the ablest at production, but to those most ruthless at brutality. When force is the standard, the murderer wins over the pickpocket. And then that society vanishes, in a spread of ruins and slaughter.

"Do you wish to know whether that day is coming? Watch money. Money is the barometer of a society's virtue. When you see that trading is done, not by consent, but by compulsion — when you see that in order to produce, you need to obtain permission from men who produce nothing — when you see that money is flowing to those who deal, not in goods, but in favors — when you see that men get richer by graft and by pull than by work, and your laws don't protect you against them, but protect them against you — when you see corruption being rewarded and honesty becoming a self-sacrifice — you may know that your society is doomed. Money is so noble a medium that it does not compete with guns and it does not make terms with brutality. It will not permit a country to survive as half-property, half-loot.

"Whenever destroyers appear among men, they start by destroying money, for money is men's protection and the base of a moral existence. Destroyers seize gold and leave to its owners a counterfeit pile of paper. This kills all objective standards and delivers men into the arbitrary power of an arbitrary setter of values. Gold was an objective value, an equivalent of wealth produced. Paper is a mortgage on wealth that does not exist, backed by a gun aimed at those who are expected to produce it. Paper is a check drawn by legal looters upon an account which is not theirs: upon the virtue of the victims. Watch for the day when it bounces, marked: 'Account overdrawn.'

"When you have made evil the means of survival, do not expect men to remain good. Do not expect them to stay moral and lose their lives for the purpose of becoming the fodder of the immoral. Do not expect them to produce, when production is punished and looting rewarded. Do not ask, 'Who is destroying the world?' You are.

"You stand in the midst of the greatest achievements of the greatest productive civilization and you wonder why it's crumbling around you, while your damning its life-blood — money. You look upon money as the savages did before you, and you wonder why the jungle is creeping back to the edge of your cities. Throughout men's history, money was always seized by looters of one brand or another, but whose method remained the same: to seize wealth by force and to keep the producers bound, demeaned, defamed, deprived of honor. That phrase about the evil of money, which you mouth with such righteous recklessness, comes from a time when wealth was produced by the labor of slaves — slaves who repeated the motions once discovered by somebody's mind and left unimproved for centuries. So long as production was ruled by force, and wealth was obtained by conquest, there was little to conquer. Yet through all the centuries of stagnation and starvation, men exalted the looters, as aristocrats of the sword, as aristocrats of birth, as aristocrats of the bureau, and despised the producers, as slaves, as traders, as shopkeepers — as industrialists.

"To the glory of mankind, there was, for the first and only time in history, a country of money — and I have no higher, more reverent tribute to pay to America, for this means: a country of reason, justice, freedom, production, achievement. For the first time, man's mind and money were set free, and there were no fortunes-by-conquest, but only fortunes-by-work, and instead of swordsmen and slaves, there appeared the real maker of wealth, the greatest worker, the highest type of human being — the self-made man — the American industrialist.

"If you ask me to name the proudest distinction of Americans, I would choose — because it contains all the others — the fact that they were the people who created the phrase 'to make money.' No other language or nation had ever used these words before; men had always thought of wealth as a static quantity — to be seized, begged, inherited, shared, looted, or obtained as a favor. Americans were the first to understand that wealth has to be created. The words 'to make money' hold the essence of human morality.

"Yet these were the words for which Americans were denounced by the rotted cultures of the looters' continents. Now the looters' credo has brought you to regard your proudest achievements as a hallmark of shame, your prosperity as guilt, your greatest men, the industrialists, as blackguards and your magnificent factories as the product and property of muscular labor, the labor of whip-driven slaves, like the pyramids of Egypt. The rotter who simpers that he sees no difference between the power of the dollar and the power of the whip, ought to learn the difference on his own hide — as, I think, he will.

"Until and unless you discover that money is the root of all good, you ask for your own destruction. When money ceases to be the tool by which men deal with one another, then men become the tools of men. Blood, whips and guns — or dollars. Take your choice — there is no other — and your time is running out."

Gone with the wind ……..Part 2

• The ‘bursting of heart’ feeling I had when appa left me at karaikudi,
• The days of tiger biscuit and tea at SCH,
• Days of being kulikaadha medhaigal (tribute to scienti and aamai – my co partners)
• Adai and vellam at ramchander’s house, cricket conversations with uncle,
• Bhai, begum, their children….and the briyani that I missed,
• Keerai with thengai paruppu courtesy amma,
• Murungai keerai and palaa kai kurma courtesy periamma,
• Kathrikkai and aloo fry courtesy sithi,
• Gopalan sir and KRV sir….
• Those dilemma when faced with – ‘pesalaama vendaama?’ at the sight of some really heart warming thaai kulams……
• Listening to old melodies along with dhaaru…..
• Placement works in placement room often accompanied with bondas, bajjis and teas…..
• Washing the ‘saaptu minji pona paathrams’ of visiting companies
• Those very rare instances when I revealed my heart to my karaikudi nanbargals…..
• Having the unspoken trust, faith and camaraderie with mottai,
• Watching the mighty sambar saying with ‘feelings’ that TC et with an accident – laughing at the description given by TC about his valiant adventures
• Fruit mix, nannaari sharbat and lime in Marine..
• The happy-sad void I felt and shared in the evening after narmadha akka’s marriage with padhu, gopal, prabhu and subbu anna

Gone with the wind ……..Part 1

Days spent with appa, meks, gautanna and anukka going to beach every Sunday morning,
Telling out the score of all and sundry cricket matches whenever my thaatha asked for,
Playing cricket in the terrace with buddi and co,
Roaming the street of korattur (in the name of purchasing groceries) and putting vetti pongal,
Times spent cycling from house to beach with like minded mad-caps,
Calling out ‘Amma coffee’ the second I stepped into my house,
Hot and mouth watery aloo parathas amma used to make,
Leaving the school in a hurry to finish my cup of tea and go to play cricket in UCO bank ground,
Those laziness filled vacations where meks and myself saw one movie after another,
Two weeks spent in padmaja mam’s home (srik, vidhya, varuna and myself) in the name of preparing for board exams and ending up gaining weight after eating her lunches,
Walking the streets of korattur with cat eye discussing our problems,
Time spent with pakki speaking anything and everything under the sun,
Silence and solitude experienced with sriks,
Seeing my valentine cry in front of my eyes and realizing helplessly that I cant do anything to make her feel better

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Route bus diary…….

Back to the good ol’ days in karaikudi. There were two types of buses – make it three…..govt ‘saadha’ bus, govt ‘pp’ bus and pvt bus…..prices were not too different, but the demand was….if you had all the time to kill, saadha bus was the one to go for….pvt ones if you want ‘sogusu’…..the lazy me always chose the saadha models…..

Lemme chalk out the route that I used to go most often…..scene 1 – have the heavenly coffee made by periamma and then have ur brother drop u at the pudhu bus stand….get yourself an outlook, sportstar or india today and then hop on to one of the saadhaa party… you have the luxury of choosing the seat that you want unlike the maddening frenzy in pvt models….these buses take so much time to start that more often than not, even before they start you are almost through your magazines….

Now I listen to the conductor’s whistle…and the bus has willed itself to start much like a kumbhakarna waking up….first stop is periyar selai…some more crowd…then..water tank…and then….ram nagar….hmm now this is some crowd inside the bus… we are entering the country side….though our area is supposed to be one of the driest area…I have found it to be pretty green….lots of ooranis you get to see here…..the setting sun adds a romantic angle to my journey…..but the…sun and the scene are the only romantic partners…..

As we cross kottaiyur and near tirumayam, I slowly come out of my zombie like gawking at the roads…and tune my ears to all the chit chats happening inside the bus….it is a mixture of nice, sad, ironic, jovial, and mundane banter….eyes roam this side and that to see if there are any parties worth seeing….then while I close my eyes trying to reason out my existence, our bus crosses khalif nagar and reaches the pudukottai terminus….time for some chaaya…..

Post pudukottai, it is mostly time for recalling fond memories of my school pals….trying to recapture the butterfly in the stomach feelings you get, whenever you are excitedly happy in the presence of a girl…make plans for visiting some of the really close frenz of in the 2-3 days that I would spend in chennai…and trying to figure out where I went wrong with regards to my relationship with my loved ones….most of who tolerated me even though I hurt them….there was one burning desire to be perfect..and there was one foregone answer to it – now way…..but should I stop attempting? Is it the journey in which my victory lies or is it the destination? In due course I realized, journey it is – and onwards I continue in my quest….we cross keeranur…its pretty dark now…..

30 more minutes and I will be at the trichy bus stand…..time to remember the good things in life and praise the lord for this… here I go….i thank you my god for my wonderful parents, sisters, brother, uncles and aunties..i thank you for that gy who went to erumai maadu univ…I thank you for laura, for my tamil teacher, that cat eyed child who masqueraded as my classmate, for buddi, for those wonderful comrades of mine who made my benz diaries eventful, for all those thaai kulams in my college who couldn’t escape my pestilence…for those select few who would go on to define my life….i thank you for making me realize there isn’t much of a difference between me and you……AMEN….

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Nazar na lag jaaye….

Those black eyes bored into me……have never seen such a look before….. have heard a lot about razor sharp eyes and other such adjectives, but this was the first time I experienced it. There must surely be something about her eyes, something is amiss in my judgement……..Ohhh I get it…….i realize at last….its got nothing to do with her inherent looks….it was just a strong streak of mascara on her eyelashes……Shucks……and I thought I had witnessed my Dagny………how naive of me….. La Mushkila…it happens gent(h)lemaan……..

Sharmaana Chod Daal Baath Dil Ka Bol Daal.....

Ok….so here we go…….
It was in the end an easy choice to make…… a chance to compete with the best at extempore (for the coveted prize of a trip to London) or a chance to roll your arm over in the cricket field? I chose the latter…… not because I thought I had a better chance of winning at it – just that I knew I would enjoy myself more only on the physical playing field.
And so I became the part of my school cricket team dreaming of making it big (win a trophy at the MAC?). We modeled ourselves on the Windies team of the late 70s……bombastic batsmen, athletic keeper and a battery of pacemen……Kournikova had once said when someone hinted that Hantuchova would be a threat to her stardom – ‘An original is always an original’ and so was it with our cricket team.
Terrifying batsmen were replaced with batsmen who forgot their abdomen guards and remembered in horror seconds before it hit them. Spine chilling fast bowlers were replaced by medium pace trundlers whose fastest ball reached the keeper in the second bounce. However to our credit, we did have good fielders – a bit too overenthusiastic though; much like a puppy at the sight of a bone thrown to it. We skidded and dived and made fantastic leaps. However where we dived – the ball went underneath us, where we slided – we slided a bit too soon and while momentum was taking us eastwards, the ball slowly went past us westwards.
Ok, with this introduction about our ability, I am sure none of you would have a doubt as to what the outcome of our opening match would have been? Well we were not creamed – we were just…….err…….raped beyond repair. But enjoyment we had a lot, add to it the inherent shamelessness that you see in people of my ilk – we also had the gall to give advice to our opponents on their techniques.
You must have noticed I have kept really quiet about the scores? Well in order to prove there is indeed no shame – let me let it out too. We magnanimously chose to bowl first on winning the toss (You see there is no point batting first, getting blasted and then being able to bowl only 3-5 overs in which they canter home). Those guys lost three quick wickets – it had got to do more with the surprise element (the speed at which a ball reached the batsmen was inversely proportional to our arm rotation speed – we were honest triers you see). It was then the real pasting started. We packed the off side field in order to cramp them, but our lack of andharooni kaabiliyath (core competency J ) ensured that despite such a field we bowled a dolly on the leg side – and there she flies to the boundary with the speed of a rocket. It was the same story – just the field settings, our bowling varied. The runs from then on was always on the upward curve. At the end of it, they scored 189 in 30 overs. To cut things short, we were bundled out for 92 in 16 overs, of which 49 were extras. Yeh hai meri kahaani….yeh daasthaan purani…..thagde ballebaazon ke haathon se maar khaathaa hoon……

I would still stand by what I started out with….in the end…it was an easy decision to make.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007


If I were to pen down all that I am feeling right now, I am sure it will be a random stream of thoughts….but I have always felt that there must be a connecting strand between anything and everything. So let me give myself a free rein to scribble all that I can and then find out what the heck is it that connects my thoughts………So here we go…..

Today I had a great time with my friends….some of whom I have know for only the last 2 weeks…..most of them for the last 2 days…….it is surprising how strangers can bond well so soon…..especially if they have to live together…guess the fact that you have gotto live together tunes your mind to the compatibility mode….but it I not that….i actually had a good time without feeling that I am being compelled to do anything…….

There was fun, laughter, empathy and implicit understanding of what we are going through in our life…..hmmm……

The other day, I was talking with my fiancée about how I should be learning a bit more of Arabic so that I can make my hosts feel that I have made an effort knowing them, their culture and move well with them….all she asked me was….why cant you make the same effort in your personal life with your family members? Fair enough……I can say for sure I could not turn my face to that question…..there is more than an element of truth to what she implied……why is it that I take my family for granted? Or for that matter who mean something to me – I tend to take them for granted…….where there is a need for me to make an effort, I tell myself….people would understand even if I didn’t put in the effort….but when it comes to strangers….well I am all effort…….

I have made lots of friends over the years….but whenever I look back, there is a tinge of regret…..i have never put in the effort to understand anybody……why? Whatever I say now will sound like an excuse I know..yet let me try….this is my inquisition….and I have gotto clear my soul……truth is I never wanted to be entangled by anyone or anything……I wanted to lead my own life… what I want……and for this I felt sharing my life with others…..will be a roadblock…..and so will understanding somebody else fully….that very act to me meant bringing somebody into my life…..and for me that is adding one more chain…which in all honesty I did not want……in reality…..i actually ran away from myself…..all of what I did were mere symptoms…….the disease is this…..i did not want to see the real me….i lived in a world…where the image of ME was sketched by ME and my mind…what others thought of me was of the least importance to me….this was a very fragile bubble….which got burst many a times….and yet rather than seeing the futility of it…I went on constructing a sand-house right next to the waves…….

There was one week in the middle of January 2007 that I spent in Korattur in my friend sbalaji’s house…..that was a period of bliss…. Spent it knowing that such a time will never come again and that I nee to make the best out of it…..i had gone to Chennai to supposedly prepare for my GD……the first 2 days I signed in to a professional training organization….but 2 hrs into the program, I knew I was a misfit for the style of GD tactic they were advocating….i was so vexed that I called my dad and said that if this is the way things are going, I don’t need it….i will do it my own way…and if no one accepts me…I would rather think they don’t deserve me. Huffing and puffing, I then went to balaji’s house….incidentally, there were a group of our guys preparing for this mba thing at that time. Vidhya, thiaga and balaji… when I said that I will there for a week, we all chalked up a plan of how we were gonna spend the week preparing for the finale. What transpired then was pure bliss……we got up everyday at 6…went to play cricket till 10..came back for breakfast…..has our bath and then went to vidhya’s house to study…..half an hour into our study…we started playing cricket there till about 2…came back for our lunch….then gossiped till tea time…then played cricket till 6 and then….used to go for a stroll around our korattur reminiscing our old days….day in and day out for 7 days, this was our routine……looking back I am most grateful to those project mates of mine who gave me unflinching support to be a freerider in their group – guess they understood they were better off without me than with me……

One of my all time regret (though I hate to say I ever have one) was that none of my school mates joined me in engg…then….none of engg mates joined me in PG……as a result of this…I went on to have three mutually exclusive set of friends….all from different background, different upbringing…different perspectives in life….i am richer from the experience – NO DOUBT….however there were plenty of instances when the differences in the lifestyle, attitude and ethos between the three circles created a turmoil in me…it was like three forces pulling me in three different directions…it was in those times that I felt the need for somebody who would have been with me at least in two out of the three circles of mine…..where I wanted support..i could get none….i couldn’t tell this to anyone..they couldn’t really relate to what I felt..and what I was going through…..definitely I don’t blame them……just that….those moments:in more ways than one….went on to chisel the ME……. While it gave me the sort of independence and free thinking spirit that I always wanted, it left me vulnerable in the most unexpected of times too….but then I guess..that’s life…..

Today I went out to eat with three of my acquaintances, wouldn’t say friends…as of now just acquaintances….made me could I ever bring myself to this… go out with somebody more out of obligation than out of interest……yet I did it…..not that I felt bad….

In this short life of mine… of all the various things that I have learned, one thing that I value the most is this – always believe you are the best in the world and always be ready to learn from anyone

There are quite a few people who have left an indelible imprint in me, my life, my attitude… everything….i salute each and every one of them……

Extremes of selfishness and selflessness are one and the same….or so have I held so far….do I believe in it still? Is it a valid credo at all? Well……I do believe in it…..but so far this belief has only brought me grief….because since the end result was only in my mind….i have always favored for selfishness rather than selflessness…… where I could have given….i had taken……where I could have relented…I pressed forward….all in the belief that if I did (with sincere heart) what I felt was right…..i will be right on at least one count (that i did what I believed in)…… I did not want to do anything without first believing in it….. speaking of doing something only after believing in it, I remember of my friend HOMO2…..who once told me…..there are times when you have to let go….do something with full belief…….without questioning it… happened just after just after my engineering got over….i had gone over to his house.and every evening we use to go for a walk in the mountains…..and discuss anything and everything under the sun….on one such evening, we were discussing about faith, god and stuff……where I tried countering him with logic..all he said was this….when we try defining or describing something, we do it within our level of understanding (which in principle is bound)…and what we are actually trying to comprehend in life is unbound…..infinite… such things are not to be dissected logically and then need to experience it without questioning….that’s belief…..that’s faith….am I read for it yet? I don’t think so……

Hmmm…so here ends my brief scribbling… what are the connecting thread? Lets go over once again….. the only thing I can say in all humility is that who ever wrote this piece of shit…is an ego maniac…..

However, I do believe that…..In Confession Lies Redemption……

Friday, October 19, 2007

To all those smiling faces around the world……

Thanks a lot for making our lives so happy….for giving that radiant smile and reminding us that there is more to life than worrying…..

Thanks for lifting up our spirits when we most needed it…..

There have been many friends of mine who fall into this category…and many more whom I know but haven’t spoken to also are from the same species – the ever smiling ones. And I am sure that such wonderful people would have graced the lives of almost everyone. Aaah what a wonderful feeling it used to be to be smiled at (after all the ‘laughing at’ business J )

And when such a smiling demeanor is coupled with a never ending optimism about life it is really a humbling experience…and a very useful one at that…..

There was this girl (dei…nee pasangala patthi pesave maateyaa?) whom I knew (aaana CM ku enna theriyaadhu!!!!) One of the few people whom I always wanted to see just for their smile. I have never seen anyone in a sober mood when with her. Such was her ability to infuse happiness in others. And to cap it all, she was game for anything – it taught me that what ultimately matters in life is not the outcome…but the intention and the sincerity of the effort that you put.

One of my greatest regrets – not having known her personally. Not knowing someone also proves to be a boon (especially when what you see in them is only goodness)……you hold only the positive things about them in your mind…and RESPECT them for it ..…and that acts as the driving force for you….

Main usse pyaar karta hoon…main yeh nahi kehta ki who bhi mujhse pyaar kare – aaaargh…..po da dei…indha dialogue naanga laam DCH la ketutom la….

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Brotherhood series – Weighing the options

For the species that calls themselves as men, one of their most defining aspects is to look ahead in life and not dwell on petty things……what constitutes petty things is an entirely different matter. The stroke that Misbah played to get out is not at all a petty matter. In fact it is something worthy of deep analysis in the psychology of human mind. If you have been shown your place (nose cuttings u see) by the other gender – it is the most pettiest matter…thing to be forgotten in a jiffy in order to look ahead…to this list of trivialities is the concern about one’s weight…..made all the more trivial due to the extreme importance accorded to it by the ladies of the world…..when will they ever understand it is not how you look but what you are?? J See…nirvana is never far from the grasp of the brotherhood.

It was a nice meeting arranged in the house of a close pal of mine who had studied with me since my childhood. As a visitor we had this wonderful gal who was also my school mate. We discussed lots of things – life in general, latest escapades of the unmentionable kind…out of the blue this guy blurted out to the girl – ‘hey you look fit’…and that was it….it was like having opened a pandora’s box….she started lamenting about how she has put on 1.5kg in the last 2 months (that is peanuts to us!!!!!!!!) and how she is now having to work really hard to fit into her clothes….she cant stand the sight of herself in the mirror..bla bla bla…..It was then that my friend commenced with a firm OK….now why don’t you come to that room….what transpired next was something for the ages……

Both of us (this lady and myself) followed him…..he said…yes dear I understand your problem….i too went through such phase…in fact I gained 10kgs in the last 3 months, you थो only cant stand the sight of urself..i for one cant see myself in a mirror…it is too undersized for me….(Hey wait..all this is fine…but I have never seen this guy so serious..neither do I remember him doing anything so great so as to advice her!!!) and then he dropped the bomb….so what I did is this….he then opened his wardrobe….i bought myself trousers of the next size…simple isn’t it?? (SIMPLE IT IS…….FOR SURE!!!!) for a second this lady gaped in disbelief….at such lack of seriousness in a person who has bloated like anything…We (this guy and myself) of course split our spleen laughing….Call it juvenile….call it obnoxious….whatever…but my take is why worry? See if you can do something about it…if you can well and good..if you cant…don’t break your head…just move on…..take a break da….

Tuesday, September 25, 2007


  • Walking hand in hand along the sea shore (ever thought would you be doing the same if your hands were clammy or the waves spewed forth garbage as so often happens in marina???)
  • A candle light dinner in a cozy confines…..(dei….enakku nolla kannu da..nalla naaleye ozhunga theriyaadhu…)
  • A ring for your lover…..(Ohh no..this metal cause allergy to me)
  • Call up every now and then to enquire… are you (nalla illa nu sonaa enna pannuve?)….have you eaten (yaen..nee samachu thara poreyaa?)…what are you doing (adhan unnoda pesaren nu theriyaradhu illa…enna mannu ku wat r u doin?)….i love you so much (haiyyoooo….ennakku idhu theiryaama pochae…)……
  • Go out for some movie…..(wow…movie is much more interesting than the company)
  • Nuzzle up to your lover…and coochie coo with them….(seems good…..waitice…..i am just about to fart…do you mind????)


Long long ago….when I was supposed to be sane, there was a voice within me which rebelled at my sanity. ‘Sanity’ in those days was defined by conformism, talking politically correct stuffs, ensuring no one is hurt and most importantly not to show the imaginary mirror at a person lest he see his own hypocritical self. It was an age when everyone realized the truth yet no one spelt it out. To say that you don’t know something is a sign of weakness, to accept your mistake was the most evil of things you could ever conjure in your lifetime. Such circumstances should direct you to point towards someone else. Doesn’t matter who. So long as it is not you.

Then insanity got the better of me. It got me lots of enemies and a few very valuable friends. It ensured that I knew what I was doing, and that I would be man enough to be accounted for my actions. It also meant that I would give MY mind a free rein and not simply follow the diktats of some slob.

And now painfully I am realizing that the ghost of sanity is still within me and is attempting a comeback.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

In search of solitude.......

Have been a firm believer in the credo that two extremes of anything are similar in its consequences......Got a hint at what I am alluding to? Yaaa......never could possibly lose myself from the crowd...possibly never had the courage....or was too lazy to do it....So the next best step? Immerse fully into the inane mundaneness of everyday life - fully understand the stupidity of what you are doing...of what others are doing.....and have the balls to laugh at your own mediocrity.....and the candidness to laugh at others too :)

OK....but why the 'unmentionables' do I want solitude? Hmm that sets me doing the most difficult look into myself with all acknowledge my shortcomings.....and NOT go into a state of denial (as one lady so aptly told me).....

seri...keta kelvi ku badhil solu daaa daaashu

Why do i want solitude???? SHould there be any reason to wanting something other than just wanting it???? (No wonder this was the question i found most difficult to answer in interviews too - why do you want XXX) OK.....the closest to reality answer that i can give myself for this is - it takes too much effort to be be speaking what others expect to be conniving the false play that happens all around you......Then why not stand up against it?? Now that is a good question...why not stand up against it??? is definitely worth a try ....truth of the matter is maybe....i have taken the easy way out of closing my eyes...being content with mediocrity....all because i am lazy enough not to make an effort to come out of my comfort zone.....

Thursday, August 9, 2007

You hurt them most whom you love most....

Heard this long back.....have thought a lot about it....may be there is an element of truth to it....why do we hurt? It is never done knowingly i guess...but maybe it is coz we take our loved ones for granted....and tend to go a wee bit too far..that it aches....Revert back and ever felt hurt by the actions of your loved ones? father? mom? son? freind? sister? wife? Why????? Expectations i guess.....we also tend to expect certain things from others (almost as a right) that if it doesnt happen....we let our fuse go off....never the right thing to do...we think twice, thrice...when we want to act in the same manner to a third person..but why does it change when the person in question is our loved one? To show how close you are to them that you can affect their feelings? Aaaaw come on......Small things left unsaid....thin string stretched too far....any solution to it? or do we live with it?
Difficult to say barkhurdhaar.....Haan par yeh baath toh hai ki....come what may you will always be at their side in times of need and vice versa....if THAT is taken care of, everything else is mere filling of details....or so i think...

Main Zindagi Ka Saath Nibhaatha Chalaa Gaya...

Hum bekhudi mein tumko pukaare….chale gaye…….Hmm so the cassette has started after all….too long to start…must check out if the audio system is ok….you come across variety of situations in your life…and needless to say there is always a lot to learn….how can you touch your nose? He says directly in front of ur eyes….i say…by twisting my hand behind my head….end result? Both of us touch our nose….the method matters…..when the means is going to be rewarded….but if it is only the end that matters…then I would rather do it in a way in which everyone are in harmony….(signs of compromise???? --- naaaahhhhh don’t you worry….i am still a long way from it)….Kabhi khud pe…kabhi haalaath pe ronaa aayaa… efficiency vs. local efficiency….something we have studied about….the latter should be subservient to the former…everyone implicitly understands it..more so in a manufacturing set up….ut no one wants to take the plunge in implementing it…why? No machine (or man) should stay idle you see…..cant catch the point?? Well…your mouth (teeth included) can chew and eat food….your stomach can digest it….and you can shit it out….now what if I say…no matter whether you can digest or should always be eating? Or no matter if you can shit it out you should be stuffing yourself? Practical? Then why the bloody hell here? Kya hua hai..hua kuch nahin hain….baath kya hai..pathaa kuch nahin hain….So what you do? Tell once, tell twice…that one should not eat more than what he can digest….if adhered to..well and good…else??? Bloody stuff him with all delicacies and wait till he chokes and bursts out….atleast then the system will be cleaned… will stink..the stench shall remain….but you can now turn a new leaf…..Ab kya soche…kya honaa thaa jo hua…achcha hua……

Nikle teri thalaash mein…aur khud hi kho gaye….kuch ban saki na humse toh deewaane ho gaye…..deewaangi ne fir tera koochaa dikhaa diya……have you experienced this?? Naaah..chuck out the romantic angle of this song…have you ever worked towards something so hard and so long..unable to reach the goal though you could always see it just in front of you? Each time putting just that extra bit of effort so that you may get it…and yet…unable to have it? Personally have had such exciting experience while working out some numerical problems…you break your head in all possible and redo a problem in all possible ways..and when you don’t get the result…there is this gnawing incomplete feeling within you…..and all of a sudden…like a flash of lightning you hit upon the result…how it came about…you never just happened…

Its been a long time since I have loved anything so much that I go the extra mile to achieve it….while I prefer believing the reason to be an attainment of nirvana – the understanding that everything is ephemeral… is not always the reason..and I know….’it is a sin to knowingly waste your latent potential’ said a close friend of mine…’you switch off very soon’ said another….there is an element of truth to it…So what am I doing about it? Nothing much….just flirting with the thin line that divides normalcy and insanity…..doing something just for the heck of it…not doing something…again..just for the heck of it….Opportunity cost??? Bull shit…that is one terminology I have relegated to the dustbin ages ago…then what drives you? Impulse….it doesn’t always reap dividends….who asked for it? Then you might be a perennial underachiever….in whose eyes? You seem to be getting into that zone of indifference again? Now that is a great discovery….you want me to buy you a drink? Holy Christ…..Yes what shall I do for you? Now where did that come from? Anbe Sivam….I must have known that….Late realization…When will you ever get serious….why should i? What..if anything matters to you da? Good question….Well..a questions begs for an answer….Hmm…what matters to me??NOTHING…..what?? it is not humanly possible….(smiling) you gave the answer yourself

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Meri Jaan Meri Jaan Sunday ke Sunday....

It was a nice little home…we were five brothers (well I was their cousin) and two sisters….an uncle, aunt, sister in law and a kid. A very happy family with a nice comportment. But all this used to change, come Sunday morning. It used to represent a battleground…..lots of strategizing, disussing the tactical issues like how to go about doing it? When to assemble, whom to delegate responsibilities to…would be doing the rounds…for what??? Ahem… cook…….i used to get reminded of the Satte pe Satta brothers…if it was Sunday, it had t be murungai keerai….and palaakkai kurma….and kathrikkai varuval and murungakai sambar…..and since all of us-brothers-were decently voracious eaters…the quantum of cooking required all of us to give a helping hand to my poor aunt (a great lady-whose only worry used to be IF she could finish her cooking in time). And so – we used to down a drumstick tree…(whose life cycle of regeneration of leaves was such that we had sufficient quantity every Sunday despite our raping it stark naked of all its leaves)…and then heaping it on to the floor we got into the process of keerai aayaradhu…..doing this also won us a round of sooooperb filter coffee. As this was being done, two of us (depending on who was in mood) oiled our hands for the forthcoming job – of slitting and cutting that darned sticky jackfruit…..and our sisters would be on the job of cutting brinjals and cooking them….

Aprom enna??? Elaam samaiyalum pannittu nalla saaptutu thoonga poiduvom…..

Waking up at 4 to sweet aroma of a coffee…we used to drink sleepy eyed watching some crap in the tv. Refreshed with caffeine, I made my way to thaatha’s abode…spent the rest of the evening gossiping only to come back at 7.30 to witness the next battlefield scene – this time I am welcomed by a cleanly washed floor (whats this??? Washing the floor on Sunday???evening??? well……) then my aunt used to unload few kgs of atta on to the floor (ohh yeah..forgot to say.if its snday evening its gotto be rotis J ) why on the floor? Else she cant knead all her requirements of flour….

Those were the days…carefree cycling…carefree eating…..sleeping like an oaf….always having somebody to look after you…… a nice bhaai who used to torture me by not giving me any of his home cooked briyani ( he mistook me for an orthodox vegetarian) and I out of compulsion couldn’t disclose my carnivorous tastes to him….a great street where almost everyone knew everyone…..that made my life in karaikudi…..

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Benz Diaries – Weekend Plans……Boredom reigns…..

Mottai has gone to trichy and so had Adam (who by the way considers weekend spent in karaikudi as a sin unless it is exam time J ). That leaves thaatha and dead as the only remnants in the house that they had rented….to give them company are quarter, tc, myself, scientist. A typical day…..i have my stomach’s fill in my house (where perimma would have cooked a wonderful kathrikkai kari and murungakkai sambar)…our guys eat at their mess….i stay just a little longer in my house..doing nothing so that I can get one more round of coffee….and then I take out my benz to go to our adda (the abode of thaatha and dead)…..there depending on who is playing on the comp, the other person loads on a music list, and the rest f us play chess or read newspaper or just chit chat gossiping about all and sundry…..come 11.30 a beautiful nap…..and then wake up by 1 by which time..our guys go once again to the mess, while I go to my house…post lunch we re-join at around 3. one more round robin at the comp. after the customary sleep, at about 5 we take out our cycles and roam the town or go to hostel for further vetti paechchu…..after that we head in to the town for a early dinner at royal…have our stomach full..and then get a movie or two… to watch in the night…..

Our first movie experience – this was the first time….to me fell the responsibility of choosing the movie to be watched…and in some enthu state…decided to go for westerns….and hece we cam back with Mckenna’s gold..and Good.Bad&Ugly….ohh whatta experience it was???? At the end of the first 30 min, I was in serious danger of being drubbed by my comrades…reason??? In all enthusiasm…we loaded Mckenna’s…..we wait…to see Gregory peck..he doesn’t come…what comes instead is a song..sung by one of our own ilk….OLD TURKEY BUZZARD…… a drawling voice….accompanied by some bugger on a horse back…..strutting across a canyon….we wait….nothing happens..he continues to strut…..that dash continues to wield his throat…..and so we waste 15 min…we are running out of patience..just when we should probably have waited a bit longer…we call it quits…and remove the cd…we now load it with the good, bad and ugly…..hmmm…post the intial casting list…we atleast get to see an actor’ face….ohh atlast some story brewing this…..but no…..he walks….goes into a room…shoots the shit outta some poor guy….and walks out…..screen change….scene change…..he struts in a horse….comes to a house…is seen by a boy who runs into his house…(maybe to tell something???) but whatever word he might have said are not for our ears…so silence reigns….he goes in…the host is eating..he sits down and also eats…still no dialogues….and then this bugger shoots him……holy Christ….

And so 30min into our movies…we are yet to see any meaningful dialogues….any story developing…but this time…we wait it out…and thankfully the GBU works out just fine….

And so the movies end by arnd 2…..i sleep in their house itself…get up at 6is…go back to my house…for the morning coffee…that was the Saturday isshhtory……Sunday’s next…..