I always believed that arranged marriages were better. Well I didn’t believe in the sanctity of the Indian “love marriages”. Here’s my hypothesis as to why. These guys never have the opportunity to date enough women to truly understand how they feel about them. Given the rare occurrence of meeting up with a girl and spending time with her, guys prematurely come to a conclusion that they are in love. Which in all probability is just their infatuation. They convince the women and get her to believe its love and eventually get married, or not.
However my point is, I firmly believed arranged marriages were better. Statistically, arranged marriages worked better than love marriages. There’s no hassle, no fights before the marriage. There’s no drama. It’s plain, it’s simple it all goes so smoothly. And usually the couple end up spending their life together happily.
It continued so, until I watched this movie, ‘The Notebook’. Normally I am not a sucker for the romance drama genre. But I liked this movie right from the start. It was a typical Indian love story. Poor hero, rich heroine, wicked mother; you know how it goes. But in the end, the couple in that movie really loved each other. And actually spent their entire life together. Just for each other. I am wondering whether such things happen in arranged marriages. How many people in arranged marriages really and truly love each other?
Such things make me question my entire belief system. Such situations are just maybe 1% of all love marriages. But is the possibility of being in that 1% worth switching my beliefs. Is it better to go out, find and love that one woman, or is it better to just sit around and trust luck to get a wife whom you would actually love!!
P.S. One another movie I really love in that same genre is ‘Kanda Naal Mudhal’
A year at WABCO
Its been a little more than a year since I joined WABCO. I will just rewind a bit and share how I feel about writing software and working for WABCO.
During my college days I liked to write code. I was the ‘coder’ of my project team. Though I wasn’t quite good at the algorithms and other complex stuff, I somehow wrote code that worked. At that time software development seemed easy for me. I used to wonder what all those software companies did. There were just too many of them out there. At one stage I felt that the number of companies who made software are far greater than the companies who use those softwares. How the hell do all these companies actually get clients and make profits!
After college, I joined BHEL, supposedly a ‘core’ company, dream job of many. My job was in no way related to computers leave alone writing software. Meanwhile most of my non BHEL college mates ended up in some Software/IT company. And they would go on and on about how they wrote some 3000 line code overnight and how it worked flawlessly after that. They would discuss java script and perl with the fluency with which I discussed movies and sports! That would freak me out, a lot. I was beginning to be “un-cool”.
Because of that and a hundred other reasons, I quit BHEL and I still held up my college day fantasy of joining a core company. But this time I was keen on joining a company which is related to some new technology. I interviewed with WABCO. During the interview process I observed that they worked with some microcontrollers and big motors. Impressed, I then choose to work there. That, and me not getting any other job at that time, made me join WABCO.
A week into WABCO and I felt my company had no culture. The office had a eerie calm to it. No one would just talk. Everyone was obsessed with the singular goal of “logging time”. We had to meet the stipulated time of 43:20 hours per week. Discussions if any surrounded the modus-operandi of how to achieve the dreaded “43:20”. I just started to develop a slight regret. But there was no space for it as I was ‘bonded’ to the company for 2 years. I was pretty lonely for the first couple of months. But the only thing I focused on was work.
But then gradually I started to develop friends. Most of them were my college seniors and I started to bond with them. I was sent to Germany and my trip was pretty memorable. But most importantly I developed a great perspective regarding work there. I understood why software development was difficult, and why clients paid so much for doing it. I understood why the software industry is not going down any time soon. There is just so much new software to be written, so much bugs to be fixed, so many feature requests to attend to.
Now after a year of working, I realize that I like my job. Very much. Everyday morning I enjoy going to the office. The atmosphere is friendly, the product I work on is kick-ass, I am learning a lot, I got a promotion, and now I have no regrets for quitting BHEL, or joining WABCO and am quite happy with my decisions.
Today I don’t know Java or TCL. I don’t work on servers. I don’t do database management. My company does not conduct hacking competitions. It does not sacrifice its time rule. But trust me, it is a good company to work for.
I still have one regret though! I wish they would have a fancier name.
Stop making fool of yourself
Can’t you sit simply and keep your hands and legs idle? What is your objective in life? To make others jealous? Then why you are simply keep on changing your profile picture? What is the reason? Come on tell me. I want to know the answer.
Agreed boss, you have gone abroad.Your 26th relative uncle is also proud of you. We are also happy only. That is why we even came to airport to say bye and all. But why you are killing us with your pictures?
Ok, I agree ki I have seen that place only in map and you have seen in real life. That’s all no? Every alternate day you are putting one new picture. What you want? You want all of us to press the ‘like’ and say “Wooowwwwww”, is it? Secretly you are monitoring the comments every minute, but like one lord, you will reply only after 4 days saying “Thanks guys!”.
See, that is also acceptable. You have spent so much money and gone there and so you want everybody to appreciate you. Understood. But why you are putting plants and trees and CATS (?!?!) as profile pictures? You have any common sense? Crazy man!
There is one more category. You will put the picture of your baby instead of your picture. I don’t even want to talk about those people.
Best is the ladies. If you convert your picture to black and white means, you suddenly will become good looking is it? People will look at you and think “Wow. Nice!” and send you friend request and all. I only know how you look.
As it is you were doing nothing here. You got married and you went there and again doing nothing only. What is there to be proud of? Every day, evvreee day you are updating on what you are cooking. “Today I made curd rice for my darrrlinggg hubby”.
Really? And that idiot husband will ‘like’ it and publicly kiss you. “Thank you wifey, mmuuaaahh”.
You are from India only no? Don’t you know such things are indecent and doing this in public place is not allowed? If you go out of India means immediately you are forgetting everything.
And then you are putting the pictures of your food. “Yummy!” you will put as title. Who knows how it tasted? Heights is, when some other idiot in some other country asks you for the recipe. Arey goose, you are using internet. Just Google and find out.
Now you tell me, when you were in India, have you cooked like this for ONE day? Your brother is also a gentleman only. Have you cooked like this for him? Hello husband, I am asking you also. When you were here, have you said “Mmmuahh” to your mother because you liked her food?
Of all the monkey pranks that you are playing from “abroad”, worst is when both you and your spouse act like you are always happy 24 hours and 365 days. “Had the best dinner ever at King Cole’s Oriental Palace at the 35th and 16th. Awesome Thai food!”
Just some Thai food only no? Why you need so much scene for that? India is closer to Thailand only.
Boss, in case you didn’t know already, here is the truth. Nobody is happy. How much ever money you earn, you will not be happy. You will only sit on the WC tapping your fingers and think, “Why I came here?”
If I say this truth, immediately you will flash your i-Products at me. For your kind information, iPad2 is also available here, that you know? So shut up and listen to me. Stop making fool of yourself.
Now you are thinking ki I am jealous and so only I am talking like this, no? See, till I also go somewhere and do all such things, I will talk like this only. What you can do?
What is love?
I don’t intend to be philosophical. Its rather a question I want an answer.
I had heard many people say that they love their parents, their friends, their girl friend, their wife. But what exactly is the feeling LOVE?
Sure I like my parents very much. To a great extent indeed. I admire them. I feel happy when I talk to them. I cry if they are hurt. I would like to take care of them. I teach my mom to ride a bike. I help my dad to use a mobile phone. But is this just love?
Take friends for instance. I consider myself very friendly, and I truly care about my friends, have fun with them. But supposing one of my friends has gone ahead to achieve something, that I can’t seem to, what will be my reaction? Sure I would be happy for him. But I would be lying if I say ‘I wasn’t jealous at all’. That is not how love is defined historically is it? Isn’t love supposed to be selfless?
Yes I don’t have a girl friend. But its pretty hard for me to imagine what ‘love-at-first-sight’ would feel like. Isn’t that infatuation. A kind of animal attraction. How can any one person love another person at first sight. Say if she’s damn beautiful, and you fall in love immediately. What if, after you speak you realize she’s a devil, will your love end? Then it is some sort of liking the other person. Is love just a fierce liking of another being/thing.
Anyone who has loved, or who is loved please enlighten the idiot that is I.
The worst lie..
The worst lie one could tell a prospective BE student is this.
Take ECE in your admission counselling. Nee ‘Core’ kum pogalaam ‘Software’ kum pogalaam.
and that is a lie and a life changing one. The truth be told, a normal ECE student can neither get a good core job, nor an high paying software job. All that he gets in the end is some menial IT job. That quote may be valid for some topper, a best outgoing student, or in some rare case a truly deserving candidate. But making that a general statement is wrong.
One more faulty argument for opting ECE is that, EC engineers have an option of doing higher studies or taking a good job, while students from the Computer Science dept just have to take jobs since computer science just does not have any “higher” studies.
After all how much research can a twelfth standard student do. And note, we never had access to Internet.
Sometimes I just feel bad that I did not take computer science. Maybe in the end, it all works out for the better, but nevertheless, that piece of advice was wrong. And the saddest part is students still believe this.
Date a girl who reads. Date a girl who spends her money on books instead of clothes. She has problems with closet space because she has too many books. Date a girl who has a list of books she wants to read, who has had a library card since she was twelve.
Find a girl who reads. You’ll know that she does because she will always have an unread book in her bag.She’s the one lovingly looking over the shelves in the bookstore, the one who quietly cries out when she finds the book she wants. You see the weird chick sniffing the pages of an old book in a second hand book shop? That’s the reader. They can never resist smelling the pages, especially when they are yellow.
She’s the girl reading while waiting in that coffee shop down the street. If you take a peek at her mug, the non-dairy creamer is floating on top because she’s kind of engrossed already. Lost in a world of the author’s making. Sit down. She might give you a glare, as most girls who read do not like to be interrupted. Ask her if she likes the book.
Buy her another cup of coffee.
Let her know what you really think of Murakami. See if she got through the first chapter of Fellowship. Understand that if she says she understood James Joyce’s Ulysses she’s just saying that to sound intelligent. Ask her if she loves Alice or she would like to be Alice.
It’s easy to date a girl who reads. Give her books for her birthday, for Christmas and for anniversaries. Give her the gift of words, in poetry, in song. Give her Neruda, Pound, Sexton, Cummings. Let her know that you understand that words are love. Understand that she knows the difference between books and reality but by god, she’s going to try to make her life a little like her favorite book. It will never be your fault if she does.
She has to give it a shot somehow.
Lie to her. If she understands syntax, she will understand your need to lie. Behind words are other things: motivation, value, nuance, dialogue. It will not be the end of the world.
Fail her. Because a girl who reads knows that failure always leads up to the climax. Because girls who understand that all things will come to end. That you can always write a sequel. That you can begin again and again and still be the hero. That life is meant to have a villain or two.
Why be frightened of everything that you are not? Girls who read understand that people, like characters, develop. Except in the Twilightseries.
If you find a girl who reads, keep her close. When you find her up at 2 AM clutching a book to her chest and weeping, make her a cup of tea and hold her. You may lose her for a couple of hours but she will always come back to you. She’ll talk as if the characters in the book are real, because for a while, they always are.
You will propose on a hot air balloon. Or during a rock concert. Or very casually next time she’s sick. Over Skype.
You will smile so hard you will wonder why your heart hasn’t burst and bled out all over your chest yet. You will write the story of your lives, have kids with strange names and even stranger tastes. She will introduce your children to the Cat in the Hat and Aslan, maybe in the same day. You will walk the winters of your old age together and she will recite Keats under her breath while you shake the snow off your boots.
Date a girl who reads because you deserve it. You deserve a girl who can give you the most colorful life imaginable. If you can only give her monotony, and stale hours and half-baked proposals, then you’re better off alone. If you want the world and the worlds beyond it, date a girl who reads.
Or better yet, date a girl who writes.
Back in September ‘09 I desperately needed a camera. I was still in my BHEL job. I was traveling a lot and my mobile camera was not good enough to capture all the essence. Besides I was very much interested in photography and I have had my stints with photography and photoshop. During that time, my job sucked, I was away from friends and family. So getting a very good camera was the only thing that kept me going.
So when I decided to get a new camera, I started to do all the research about it. I read hours and hours about what Megapixels are, why to go for higher “X” in zoom, and why focal lengths matter and so on. I had initially started from a pool of around 10 cameras and after carefully analysing a lot of factors I had zeroed in on two models.
A Canon Powershot SX 120
A Sony Cybershot H20
Both had very similar features. 10 Megapixel, 10X zoom, HD video recording, very good focal lengths etc. But still I wasn’t able to decide on just one. The decision was hanging on very minute details like: SX120 had 1 cm macro but the Sony one had 2 cm while it had better night mode with 30 sec exposure time while the Canon had 15 sec.The bottom-line is both cameras were equally poised. After a coin flip I decided to go with the Canon SX 120 camera.
The Canon SX 120 cost around 14k in India while it costs less than 10k in the US. Since that was some significant savings, I decided to ask my dad’s ex-colleague to buy one for me. I had sent him a very clear mail about the camera model and its approximate cost in the US etc.. I gave him some conditions also. Not to buy if the price is greater than 10k rupees; Not to buy any other camera if this one was not available.
He was returning back the next week and I was eagerly awaiting the camera like a 9 year old. Alas my photographic needs could be truly satisfied with my new camera which met all my needs. A week later he came to Chennai and called me.
“Thambi nalla camera vaangitu vanthu iruken. Etho 12 Mega pixelu, 4 GB ellam iruku. Nalla Camera vaangitu vanthu iruken paa!”
But the SX 120 had 10 and not 12 Megapixels. I was thinking may be he’s just wrongly stating the specs. But just to make sure I asked,
“Uncle Canon SX 120 thaane..?”.
Back came the reply “Aaama aama.. IXUS 120 thaan”.
“Illa uncle SX 120 thaane..?”
“Aama paa IXUS 120 thaan, nee thaan mail anupi iruntheeye”.
I went like “Nnnooooooooooooooooooooooooo” (with slight tears in my eyes).
“Enna paa aachu.. Nee nalla camera solli anupi iruka.. 12 Mega pixel ellam iruku 4X zoom iruku”
“UNCLE!!! (now raging with anger) IDHU NAA SONNA CAMERA ILLA”
(just when I thought it couldn get any worse he said)
“Ennavo paa.. but vela thaan konjam adhigama iruku.”
“Vela adhigama..?!? :-O Evalo uncle?”
“17k paa. Idhoda kammi velaiku neraya camera irunthuthu.. Nee sonniye nu thaan intha camera vaangitu vanthen”
(with pure wrath) “Ok uncle, ROMBAE thanks”
Finally when I checked the specs, it had 12 Mega pixel, a meagre 4X zoom and all the minute details which I had pondered on were pretty pretty bad.
Oh Wait.. It gets worse. I checked the price of the new camera in India and it was just around 15k.
Later I came to know from him that, before leaving he had forgotten to buy the camera. So while leaving he went to some shop inside the airport and asked for some camera called “120”.
Bulb in the elevator!
It was just two months since I joined YYYYY back in April. It was in the Tidel park. When I first entered the Tidel park I was amazed by the number of companies in it. There was this one specific company next to mine. It was called “xxxxxxx”.
As much as I hate the name of my company, I hate the name of my neighbouring company even more. Generally my impression of xxxxxxx was not that good. Besides, it didn’t even have any lockers or pantry for its employees, while mine had. I was proud all along about how my company was better than them.
One other day I came to know that a junior girl from my college had joined xxxxxxx. I have seen her in the corridor a couple of times but didn speak to her yet. But when for the first time I spoke to her in the elevator the following conversation took place:
Me: Hey Hi.. seems like you joined xxxxxxx..!!
Her: Yeah.. Just last week
Me: Oh ok.. why did you join here.. didn you get placed in some good company back in college.
Her: Mmm.. I got CTS
Me: Oh great.. then why did you join here..?
Her: I got this offer too so I joined
Me: (still confused how xxxxxxx was better than CTS) Ok! What are they doing..
Her: US pension projects (and some other technical stuff that I didn’t get)
Me: Oh Great! (more like, Yeah whatever). So what’s the pay here.. I mean do they pay you..?
Her: 5.5 lpa
Me: (coping with the sudden heart pain, and my pay, after a yr’s experience, being pretty less that that, I managed to say) Oh.. 5.5.. err.. not bad.. decent salary for a fresher!
Just when she was about to ask me back about my pay, my floor had arrived and I immediately closed the conversation with a “gtg bye”. Phew! that was close.
Since then I have been hiding from her. I wait till she leaves the area before going there.
Damn! For God’s sake, the company didn even have a pantry or a locker !!