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Ra One

I am not reviewing this movie or giving it any ratings …………Honestly, it is not fair for me to give any rating because I stopped watching the movie just after the first 35 minutes….

The only input I have to King Khan is – Please REFRAIN from calling this movie as a CHILDREN’S ENTERTAINER……….

In general, average parents do not expect such explicit scenes and song sequences worth of a adult’s movie in a so-called children’s entertainer……..When my colleague talked about his ten-year old daughter asking questions which he was feeling uncomfortable to explain, I was retorting  –  ‘come on, it is a Bollywood movie and you can watch it with kids as it is supposed to be superman movie for Indian kids’…………….but then, I was wrong………I had to eat my words after I saw the movie!!

May be I am overreacting…..but, this is how I feel.

When Shahrukh can do a movie like “Chak de” which I want the kids to watch again and again, I can expect him to definitely refrain calling “Ra One” as children’s movie.

How to Dress Smart!

Let me declare that am still a novice on fashion and I continue to work on the mission to better my wardrobe …..!!So, what I am jotting down here are the three basic principles of smart dressing which work in IT industry in India (ideally, it should work globally for other industries also?)

Here goes the three basic principles of smart dressing

 What is the IMAGE you want to project about yourself in your official environment? Mostly, it goes with your value systems is my observation. For me, it is DIGNITY
 • Dress for your next desk! – Just means that you got to dress for the highest role you are aspiring to reach in your career! If you plan to be the CEO, think how a CEO will dress!
 • Think what dress you are comfortable with – when you go shopping remember the advice from Sandra Bullock in ‘The blind side’ – “before you choose something, ask yourself IS THIS ME?”

Once you have firmed up the above three, then you are already smartly dressed. While there are many opinions on “how deep  the neckline can be ? “to what is the right perfume  to wear at work, I strongly feel if you are clear on the above three, you can carry yourself well!

Some of the women who have mastered these are –  Priyanka Gandhi  (Politics),  Indira Nooyi (Business),  Bipasha Basu (Entertainment),  Mother Theresa (Social),  Arundathi Roy (Arts),  Sania Mirza (Sports) and  Kamala Selvaraj (Medicine)……..

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My Place – Always the best!!

Couple of days back, I happened to listen to my relative who said that they plan to settle down in Bangalore (that is a ten year plan from now!).    As always, I was rambling and listing down the good things about Bangalore  –  ofcourse, the recent post I did was on top my mind  –

When I finished my ramblings, I saw my cousin giving me a condescending funny look….I felt it meant ” so, what happened to the morning ramblings about the place you spent your childhood …… seem to be liking all places….”….

That made me think…..looks like  MY PLACE  – whichever corner of the world it is in –  IS ALWAYS  THE BEST!   –  It definitely is a wise saying  “East or West, Home is Best!”

Here is a list of what all I relished about my place where I spent my initial years of life  (If you have lived or visited interior TamilNadu in India, you will nod in agreement!)

1. Early morning aroma of filter coffee with the background of MS Subbulakshmi’s “Suprapatham”  –  (Narsus coffee, it was always!!)
2.  When you come out , the blasting sounds of Madurai Somu /LR  Eshwari’s devotional songs from a neighbourhood temple’s conical speaker  –  if it is the month of Margazhi, you will hear the audio of movies like “Thiruvilayadal”  –  especially Nagesh‘s Dharumi/Nakeeran dialogues
3. “The Hindu” newspaper –  If it is Friday, then you wait for “Ananda Vikatan
4. Saroj narayanaswamy’s news in All India radio  (” aal indhiya radio, dhilli vanoli nilayam, cheithigal vasipathu, saroj narayana swamy”)
5. Rajnikanth’s  movie posters  (“Udal mannuku, Uyir Thalaivanukku”)
6. Milkman milking the cow  at the doorstep
7.  The ringing bell from the temple  (“koil mani osai”)
8. Idly and chutney breakfast
9. Mom’s continuous tracking about being on time (“Time aachu –  kilambu, kilambu”)
10. Bicycle’s  bell and the loud screaming of classmate calling your name from the road
11. Mom’s consistent advice to be careful on the road and to come back home straight (‘Jaggrathaiya patthu po, school vitta neera inga vaa’ )
12. Had your breakfast?(“Saapaddu aacha?” ) enquiries from neighbours
13.  Smells of  jasmine and mixed flowers (Malligai, kadambathin manam)
14. Lovely girls with turmeric glitter on their face and the traditional half saree (“Manjal poosiya thavani mugangal”)
15.  Climbing the mango tree in neighbours house and  eating fresh raw mangoes sitting on the tree (got to keep a watch for elders!!)
16. Cattle on the roads  (need to balance the bicycle between them!)
17.  Taking the neighbour’s kid in the bicycle  doubles (“Supera irrundhu indha cycle roundu’ )
18.  Friendly postman who makes a conversation while delivering the post and knows who has sent the letter – ” this letter is from grandmom? how is she?” (letter enna pattiammava? Nalla irukangagala?’)
19.  temple diety’s procession on the road and the nice “maakolam” on everyone’s house
20. temple elephant

and many more…………………   How does your list look??

Bangalore – the Best!

It was a pleasant surprise when I read the news about Bangalore being ranked as the best city to live in India……it actually surpassed all the four  Indian metros  –  Delhi, Kolkatta, Mumbai and Chennai!!!…….The news article can be read here

While I know the traffic and infrastructure needs more improvement, the upcoming metro train transport in Bangalore should address it is my sincere hope.  Ofcourse, it goes without saying that the state governance should be focussed and committed on this  – the live streaming of CM’s office which started with a big bang is facing technical snag and I hope the metro train plans are reviewed for any such snag….

Here is my list of top seven reasons on why I like Bangalore…………..

  1. Weather………lovely all through the year
  2. Greenery………you will be surprised by the small green patches in between densely crowded residential and commercial areas – don’t forget Cubbon park and Lal bagh
  3. People……….Bangaloreans are the best when it comes to making everyone feel at home  –  they are so polite and love peace
  4. Cosmopoliton……..the city itself is so mixed that it has its own cosmopolitan culture..From Malleshwaram to Koramangala it has the Mysore Iyengars to the MTV personalities
  5. IT companies……….gives loads of opportunities
  6. Darshinis………..the ‘stand-and-eat’ restaurants at every other street with their hot ‘idly-vada’, ‘masala dosa’, ‘chow-chow bath’, ‘rave idly’,etc with the fresh coconut ‘chutney’ and hot ‘sambar’
  7. Style……………..

No wonder, the silicon valley of India is the winner of the year!!   Bangalore, the best!!!

Pati, Patni and Rs.10,000 scheme!!

I was concerned that I am suddenly aggressive and becoming a feminist  (do you need to be a woman to call yourself  a feminist?)…….reason???Because all these days, I had been proud that I am very objective and look at both sides of the coin for any issue….but two weeks back, this is what happened……

Our house help came that morning as usual  –  but her face was swollen and she told that her husband hit her because she opened a bank account and moved the money from a private chit fund to savings bank account   –   given that she is totally independent financially and runs her household with two kids by her own earning, i found no reason for her to  let her husband manhandle her……..when I asked her why he hit her, I gathered that it is a common phenomenon………….and I got aggressive and told her –  “nodu, Lakshmi…..if he hits you again, just hit him back”….She looked at me and true to her innocence self said ”  he is stronger than me, it is difficult to hit him back”………

I never thought  before I retorted strongly  “take chilli powder and put on his face if he comes to hit you anymore”………..I was fuming…….Later when I relaxed and thought about my advice to her, I was concerned ……….

What happened to me? Did I always have these wild streaks within me?? I was sharing it with my friend saying that I probably have become wild…and not docile as i think of myself.  Was a bit conscious that I was reacting to an input without much thought………..

And a week later,  I was flabbergasted when i read the front page article in newspaper Deccan Herald  Pati, Patni and ten thousand…………..this is about an innovative (!!??)  proposal from a state minister in Andra Pradesh, India……….the proposal is for to establish a reward system  for women if they beat up their abusive husbands……

While it will take lot of effort to implement such an innovative idea and it is for the government officials to handle this,  this news item made me upgrade my concern to worry  –  an AP ruling minister  is thinking like me or vice versa!!…………danger danger………God, save me and my thoughts!!!!!   🙂 🙂

ps –  if you are yet to watch how the south Indian regional movies portray an AP ruling minister, you will need help from someone who does it to understand  why I am worried and reaching out to almighty to save me and my thoughts!!   🙂  🙂 🙂

Indian Women – Addendum to Chetan Bhagat’s article!!

This Times of India article from Chetan Bhagat has been well read across India……..I got it forwarded from my collegue who thinks it is real nice quirky….Coming from Chetan ,  it has to be!  – you should read Two States to see what I mean, he indeed has a quirky sense of humour ……..

When I read this article first, I had an immediate good feeling  –  ‘oh-so-good’ of a celebrity guy to appreciate what a women goes through and give suggestions to be stress free…..  To make the ‘oh-so-good’ feeling last for ever…..i had to edit/ add to Chetan’s suggestions…

  1. It is nice of Chetan to make women aware of their power on  mother in laws……:) ….Be aware that women are all powerful  even beyond their mother-in-law….and always remember, with Power comes responsibility…
  2. Absolutely agree with Chetan…….do remember, doing A GOOD JOB is the key….once you understand the key, this law applies to all genders…..
  3. Financial freedom is a bliss… again,  expand your boundaries beyond your mother-in-laws and husband…… women got to be economically independent to say “go take a hike” to far more people beyond their husband and mother-in-law…..
  4. I am sure Chetan meant good when he came out with suggestion for the “STRESSED” women at large…. Still, I find it tough to stop thinking on why this suggestion for women to be less competitive on this gender inclusive world?? …..remember women are much smarter species of homo sapiens and wired to multitask…as long as women can prioritize their responsibilities, they are fine….Women still will be a
    A+  in that one thing (or many)  they want to be, if they want to be!!…….Set your goal and go for it, girl!! 
  5. When it comes to tiffin dubba and  diet, I agree with Chetan…. For me, Indian women think much beyond tiffin dubba and looks..…….and  women  are COMPETITIVE as they want to make a better world for themselves than what it was yesterday……..Just that  they compete on things which are larger than their tiffin dubba and looks ………..…so, let women keep that competitiveness with themselves……losing it may end up giving more stress!!

I may be biased too   (may be it is an Indian thing)……. for me, Indian women at large fight beyond mother-in-laws, husbands and bosses…………

I read  that in a recent survey India ranks as the fourth most dangerous country for women to live in (Afghanistan, Democratic Republic of Congo, Pakistan ranks above us)….….

Indian women are the most indomitable as I see   – they definitely need the spirit of competitiveness –  they will continue to be compassionate ..

Create an environment of inclusivity for the Indian women at large…….consider them as equals (in our heart, we know they are FIRST among equals) … that will take their stress away!!


Cricket Crazy

I almost got used to the fact that Cricket and my 8-year-old are inseparable.   But a recent conversation between us sealed this fact.

“Do you know what I want to become when I become big?”  –  this is how the conversation started.  I continue my house chores and ask absent-mindedly “what?”.   It is not that I am not interested about my kids future plans, but being a veteran parent, I knew by this time that these plans keep changing every summer / fall  and is cyclical.  I have heard things like “I want to be an astronaut” and also something like “ I want to be just a normal father/mother”.

While I heard  “I want to be a cricket umpire!!!”,   I dropped my chores and was surprised. This is something new….given the cricket crazy kid,  I would have expected something like  “I want to become a batsman, leg spinner….”   –  “I want to become an umpire” was a googly to me!!.

So, I asked with bewilderment “ Umpire?  Why?”.

The little one recites “ See, if you are an umpire, you will never get hurt frequently like the players and you can be always be part of cricket matches.  Also, the best position to watch a match is the umpiring position”

I was floored  –  call it Cricket Crazy nation !!!!!   I can vouch that cricket gets into the system of our little ones when they are in the wombs!   🙂 🙂

Rajnikanth – NDTV’s entertainer of the decade!!

Rajnikanth is awarded the NDTV‘s entertainer of the decade award!!

I already was  more than 100% convinced on his unique skills to keep his feet firm on the floor, irrespective of the soaring heights he reached in his life and career!! –  refer my earlier posts Simply (super)star! and Rajni&ARR – success factor.  So, when Prannoy Roy highlighted Rajni’s humbleness during the session, it was not a surprise at all for me!

 NDTV’s presentation ceremony  (watch here)

What surprised me was –  Rajni is the  unanimous choice between two generations, even with the famous ladies of Bolly wood  –  Vidya Balan and her mom, Katrina Kaif and her mom and the south indian beauty Trisha and her mom!!   Ofcourse, stardom is not about looks and age  –   Rajni proves it is the capacity to be what you are all the time!!  Kudos!!

Management lessons in Maaribetta Trek!!

As part of our team’s 2011 annual goal setting/team bonding sessions in Bangalore, we had a trekking session in Maaribetta day before yesterday (Saturday).  It was a team of 22 who came from all over India for the two-day sessions!

Maaribetta or Banathamaaribetta  is a little known adventure destination, near Bangalore.  We took the help of Woody Adventure Inc, an adventure event management company (Thank you, Raj!  You referred the right organizers) in Bangalore.  The hill is located 55 km from Bangalore near Kanakapura and 6 km on the Ramnagar road.   The trek through the rocky slopes, thorny bushes made the trip very challenging and interesting.  This place is also an ideal destination for photography – actually couple of eligible bachelors ensured that they captured their pictures in Maaribetta background for their matrimonial picture portfolio  🙂 🙂 !!!

The group was a  mix of male/female and young/old.  While couple in this group had experienced trekking earlier, for most of the participants,  this was the first time trekking experience.  Mr.Muniraj was our guide from Woody Adventure,  and was ably supported by Sangeeth, a 3rd year electrical engineering student from BMS engineering college, Bangalore (he said, it was his part-time job!!).  Through the entire trip, Mr. Muniraj was giving us lot of instructions and I found that  there were many management lessons in them to remember and implement  –  read them below!

We  reached the foothills of Marribetta at around 9.45 am (I have to commend the skills of the driver who drove through those muddy village narrow roads).  Mr. Muniraj requested us to form a small circle and addressed us  –  “  We have two options for this trek.  One  –  easy but takes longer time and the second one  is moderately difficult but takes less time. I will suggest the second one.  We have taken even 5th grade school children on this and they made it easily.  Let me know your choice”.  There was hustle and bustle with the team, when three of us opted for the second moderately difficult option, there was a sudden wave and everyone (even the ones who was skeptical about the whole concept of trek) opted for it.

  • Lesson 1  –  Give the options to the team.  Set expectations  – state the real scenario.
  • Lesson 2 –  When the leaders make the decision and set an example, it becomes easier for the team to follow.

Once our guide saw that the team is up for the trek, he went on with the instructions.   “We need very minimal things with us  –  just water and some light snacks, caps and coolers.  Avoid all fancy bags  – if you have a small light backpack, take it.”

  • Lesson 3:  If your goal is on something high, keep your requirements minimal.  Less baggage, more comfort.

We started walking and it was indeed a memorable one.  Mr.Muniraj was so knowledgable and kept the team motivated  through the trek with his instructions. While we did not spot any wild animals, he did show us the droppings/footprints of elephant, bear, panther, rabbits, porcupine, antlions.  He also showed us the trees which are dangerous (itchy trees) and the antiseptic plants.  He insisted that nature is beyond us and if we understand it, we will become very humble.

  • Lesson 4 –  Understand the big picture.  You will know who you are.

While the climb up was very steep and the climb down was very slippery, all he said was the following

  • Lesson  5 – Take Small steps –  one step at a time
  • Lesson 6 – When you need support, ask for help
  • Lesson 7 – Lead, follow or get out-of-the-way
  • Lesson 8 – In a team, the leader leads the way  and everyone has a part to play

At one point, I was almost stuck –  perching on a steep rock, not sure of my next step.  The guide saw me and said  –  “Feel the rock and focus on your steps”.  It just hit me…….how true…..all I need to do is to focus on my next step and not on anything else.

  • Lesson 9 –  Focus on your next steps.

We had a wonderful time and came back as a satisfied team  with more learnings  to operate as a team!!

ps- This post is my entry for the ‘Cleartrip My Purpose‘ contest in Indiblogger. If you enjoyed this post, you can vote for this in Indiblogger.

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