Musing of a verbose mind. It borders on all that takes a skeptical and highly critical view of whatever is happening or has happened in our world..... do read it and post your comments..... discourse is welcome.....

It's a guy thing


Posted on Saturday, September 26, 2009 | By Gautam | In

Would You Like Fries With That?
Tom Steele Answers The Tough Questions - The McDonalds™ Analogy

Why guys don't want to be friends with a girl who breaks up with them…

I know a girl who broke up with a guy and she told him she wanted to “still be friends.” He said, “No thanks.” She wondered why he couldn't fall back to being just friends after they had a romantic relationship. I came up with the ”McDonald's Analogy” to try and explain it in a simple way that would help all women understand this tough question.

Imagine if you went to McDonald's a lot and ordered a Big Mac Combo meal. A Big Mac, Large Fries and a Coke. You really like this meal. One day, you pull up to the drive through and order the Big Mac Combo meal and the girl tells you, “I'm sorry - you can have the Big Mac and the Coke, but you can't get fries with that anymore.” You think about this for a moment, and sure - the Big Mac is the centerpiece of the meal, but McDonald's has some really good fries and you like their fries with your meal. So you say, “I've been able to get fries with that before, why can't I have fries with my Big Mac combo anymore?” The girls says, ”Well, I just think it is better if you only have the Big Mac and the Coke from here on out.”

At this point, a lot of guys are going to go to Wendy's or BK and see if they can get fries with their combo at that drive through window. But there are some guys who REALLY like McDonalds Big Macs and they might think, “If I keep coming here and ordering the Big Mac and Coke, maybe she'll change her mind and give me some fries with that later.” So they will keep on getting the combo without the fries until the deal breaker happens: One day that guy is going to order the Big Mac and Coke and then he's going to pull up a little bit to pay, and someone else is going to pull up to the drive through speaker and order the “Big Mac Combo” and he is going to hear the girl say, “Would you like fries with that?”

That's why guys don't like to be friends with a girl who breaks up with them.

Aptitude or attitude???


Posted on Saturday, September 26, 2009 | By Gautam | In ,

Here's to one of the timeless and classical debates (maybe controversial too)- aptitude or attitude??? This question becomes all the more pertinent for people going in for professional courses like MBA's (which has become a bastion for all the jobless- due pun intended) or those looking for jobs. The old school folks will prefer the aptitude route for it's so called ability to quantify(?) the skills of a person. But seldom do they take cognizance of the fact that such tests can be be-fooled by rote. We all have come across bookworms (no offense guys)  who would bury their heads in books and mug up stuff all-day-long. But is it enough? Does it suffice the objective and obligation of us being social animals? Aptitude tests are designed to find out whether the person has the innate, acquired or learned or developed component of a competency. But are these tests really designed to find such qualities? Of all the aptitude tests that I have come across, one fact stood out, glaring down into my eyes (as I bravely attempted to answer the questions)- that it would have been better if my parents would have brought me up as a bookworm.

And since I have lambasted aptitude so much (also because of the fact that I HATE them), here's my share of praises for attitude. This has been my firm belief since long that the only difference between a successful and a non-successful person is their attitudes. I will defend my attitude even at the cost of being called arrogant. It is the attitude which has made seemingly common people stand out of crowd. Unlike aptitude which dwells upon the amount of formal education one has acquired (read mugged) during the course of endless years, attitude will be a better yardstick to judge people for their abilities. I suppose quoting the example of Bill Gates would serve as a testimony to all these facts. MIT threw him out because he, supposedly, did not possess the right aptitude. But look at the results. MIT now runs machines on the products created by the company whose head was kicked out by the same university. Some irony there. And why did he succeed? Attitude. Period.

So where are we getting to? All those hackers and script-kiddies who would run havoc on networks around the world would have been fruitfully employed had some people given up the notion of aptitude's superiority over attitude's. Just look around sirs. The world has changed. Why should we confirm to the yardsticks that have been set by you? The IIT-JEE is invariably the toughest aptitude test in the whole-wide-world. It ensures that the sharpest(?) minds get through. But how many patents do these premier institutes hold? How many SUN Microsystems or Googles have they produced? None. Instead they produce engineers who sit in yet another aptitude test called the CAT to get into IIM's. Where are we heading anyways?

It seems that life has become a vicious cycle of endless aptitude tests!!!

Happy endings.....


Posted on Thursday, September 24, 2009 | By Gautam | In

I'd come across a very good blog on written by Rati Agarwal which beautifully portrays a relationship between a wife and a husband. Read it and enjoy :)

My Happy Ending

I saw you again today in the lift. You looked lost somewhere which gave me ample time to take in your beauty. To take in those eyes, deep deep eyes. That chiselled nose, and those lips. I loved that chin of yours, tilted to that stubborn angle. You seem like a matured guy with a kid inside. Seeing you makes me want to love the kid inside and to be loved by the man.

Ah! Me and my fantasies again. I should admit that for a married woman I have not lost the imagination. At times I think of speaking to you, to tell you a lot of things, to tell you how lonely I am. To tell you that the guy, this society calls my husband is no where related to me. Emotionally we lost contact years ago and after the three miscarriages, he lost interest in me physically too. I am like the phone number which cannot be deleted from your contact list and is never dialled. The unpaid maid who sleeps in the master’s bed.

Ah! Leave it. Now days I don’t like thinking about him or cry on my miseries of life. Now I have you to fill my dreams and thoughts. To fill the void created and thats whats makes life beautiful. In the past two years I had lost the urge to dress up or try and look good. But now days I can’t stop staring in the mirror and blushing like a love sick teenager. At times I make faces in front of the mirror imagining you to see from somewhere laugh and talk to me. You at times feel like the manna from heaven sent to make me happy again.

Can’t forget the day you came to our flat, talked to Ashok, and told him you were shifting to the flat next to ours. And borrowed the stool. I was there, looking at you from behind the curtain. From that day onwards my heartbeat has not been back to normal. Even Ashok noticed some changes. He actually after years of ignoring said that I look different and asked the reason. Why should I tell him, that it’s because I am in love again. I feel pretty again. The love songs make sense again and every time I open the door, my eyes search for that known face again. It’s like am alive again.

This is no bollywood movie so I know that there will be no happy ending. May be you will never know my name let alone like me, u will not even know that I exist let alone touch me. But you know what I have no hopes and no demands, because after a long long time I am happy, happy, not for him, not for you but happy for myself and in the end isn’t it all that matters. My happy ending.

Split second


Posted on Saturday, September 19, 2009 | By Gautam | In

Humans just don't get tired of harping on the merits and needs of planning deeds. Since our cognizance is wired in such a manner that we love creating a shell, a comfort zone inside which we feel safe, feel cozy et all. So what does one do to create this shell? Obviously plan. We love to brag as to how planned our lives are, that how well we've mastered the variables that affect, that constants is what we deal in. But this assumption cannot be farther than the truth. The truth that split second decisions shape, make (or break for that matter) our lives.

Slapping someone, using profanities, making choices, deleting that folder you loved so much, and the list would just go on. These are some of the acts we don't think through. Impulse rules our reason. Choice? Well we don't have any. To quote from Matrix itself- we've already made our choices, we're here to simply understand our choices. And when have we made our choices or rather how have we made a particular choice? Split second. Imagine this scene (and I'm sure this has happened with most of us who actually have conserved the gray cells to recollect it)- a competitive exam, say CAT is going on. You stumble upon a question to which you supposedly have derived the solution but still are in that ubiquitous dilemma as to which choice to mark. In that split second (some even term it as heat of the moment) you mark your answer. It turns out to be wrong. No amount of kicking yourself will redeem you of the sin you'd committed. Endless hours are spent contemplating the choice we made but to no avail. It's something we've just done.

Maybe this quote of Merovingian from Matrix will testify my stand on choices. He says- There is no choice. It's an illusion created by those with power to pacify those without power.

The decision to drop Fat Boy on Hiroshima, wars being fought, what stocks to buy/ sell, marrying, breaking up, this, that, everything rests on that split second which overpowers our emotions, logic, rationale. No matter how much we hate to confess, the truth is we all indulge in decision making which, to put colloquially, just happens (just the way shit happens!!!). But that moment has a bearing on our lives (on a micro level) and maybe millions (on a macro level).

Split second..... how small is it anyways?!!

PS: This post is a result of a conversation between me and Nidhi.



Posted on Monday, September 14, 2009 | By Gautam | In ,

I've been listening to a lot of OSTs these days and one particular song that makes me stop and take look around is 'Burning Hearts'. The lyrics are simply too good. I dedicate this post to one of the greatest fictional protagonists of out times- Rocky Balboa. May he continue to inspire future generations too.....

Two worlds collide - rival nations,
Its a primitive clash - venting years of frustrations,
Bravely we hope against all hope - there is so much at stake.
Seems our freedoms up against the ropes.
Does the crowd understand?
Is a east versus west, or man against man,
Can any nation stand - alone.

In the burning heart - just about to burst,
Theres a quest for answers, an unquenchable thirst,
In the darkest night - rising like a spire,
In the burning heart - the unmistakable fire.

In the warriors code - theres no surrender,
Though his body says stop - his spirit cries - never!
Deep in our soul a quiet ember,Knows its you against you,
its the Paradox that drives us on
Its a battle of wills, in the heat of attack,
Its the passion that kills
The victory is yours alone.

Salutes for whom?


Posted on Thursday, September 10, 2009 | By Gautam | In

A gleaming black Merc S-class stops in front of the gate. The guard at the gate jumps off his seat (literally), opens the gate and what follows is something which I would term as utterly disgusting. The guard actually salutes the person sitting inside the car. Now the distinguished citizen inside the car was definitely not the President of India nor was he associated to the defense forces (or his car would have declared so!!!). The disgusting part? That the salute is now cheap enough to be available for every tom-dick-or-harry who has the coffers to buy obscenely expensive cars or so to say for people who are rich.

Now I'm not biased against the riches. But the salute should be reserved only for our armed forces. These so called educated and responsible citizens should apply their common sense(?) and ask these guards not to indulge in saluting. Poor souls do it to feed the egos of their shameless pay-masters. This act stinks of feudalism and of the worst kind. Standing up in respect for someone is acceptable. But to go ahead one step as to expect salutes is simply inexcusable. Are the corporate head honchos who are battling in the boardrooms doing such an gallant act as to merit a salute? I don't think so.

Feudal tendencies still rule the roost in free India.....

Gangs of the World


Posted on Tuesday, September 08, 2009 | By Gautam | In , , ,

Gangs of New York..... a film full of gore for some..... a masterpiece for some. But this post is not going to be one of the innumerable threads which discuss the the film-craft of Scorsese, rather it's going to discuss the larger underpinnings of the movie. Of how the dream of equality of men was a farce then and how it still is. Of how outsiders were not welcome then which is true till date. Of how men feel threatened from people coming in from different countries to earn wages. Of how hoping for a better future is reserved for some.

So why do I feel in such a cynical manner when the whole world is talking about holding high the dignity of humans (?), of justice and equality. Following events materialized in the recent past and I hold them testimony to the fact that we still are living in a draconian era.
  • A few days ago the news of Indian students being bashed up in Australia was the only thing media.
  • Obama warning the US companies against Bangalor-ing the jobs.
So how do these seemingly incoherent mutually exclusive events link up? In both the cases the natives were threatened by cost arbitrage i.e. people from third world countries gobbling jobs because they do it cheap. What was true in 1846 is true even today. The worst part is that so-called-statesmen (yes I am referring Obama) who assume offices on the pretext of bringing about changes but what they do instead is to beat-around-the-Bush (pun intended). Even the Australian government went about lip-service only condemning the attacks. The attacks went on unchecked for many days.

So is all this high talk just a farce? By the looks of it, YES!!! The movie had just showcased the gangs of New York..... the world has many..... My only hope is we learn from the movie even if it is considered gory, obscene because Roman Polanski said
“You have to show violence the way it is. If you don't show it realistically, then that's immoral and harmful. If you don't upset people, then that's obscenity.”
And yes, countries are born in the streets!!!

Preachers not allowed


Posted on Wednesday, September 02, 2009 | By Gautam | In ,

Aim for the stars!!! Aim high!!! People want YOU to succeed. Outperform. Deliver. Be geeks in our respective fields. Expand our horizons. Dream big. Even become CEOs of companies. Drive around the town in expensive Mercs, Audis and their ilks. Sorry, not interested. Period.

The pretext that people assume is that everyone wants to be successful which is sort of true. Well sort of. One of the fundamental flaws in this logic is that people are preaching their version of success to hapless souls. It's akin to pushing something down the throats of kids because they are not allowed to question. It's good that preachers want to see us go ahead in life. But the idea of success is different for different people. What maybe success to one maybe mediocre stuff for another. Here's what I think about this whole brouhaha about preaching- people want to be successful. They even try hard. But somewhere down the line they're unsatisfied with the results. So now they have us as their targets. Those endless lectures on how to be successful, what to do, what not to do!!! Take a hike......

Success is now measured in matrices now. I suppose we have templates in excel now. We even have sure-shot formulae which have a certain input, a process, and an outcome. Can you guess the outcome??? It's success. Wallah.....

And what about happiness? Ain't I supposed to be happy? Picture this- I want to lead a decent lifestyle. A good enough package will do. I don't give a damn if I'm a line manager for the rest of my life if my ends meet. But no, I'll be rounded up and be informed that this is not good enough. That I need to look at life with someone else's filter. That I need to aim higher. That I need to write down on a piece of paper where I will be in next 10 years.

To sum it up for all those who preach- Those who can, do it. Those who can't, teach (preach in this case!!!).....



Posted on Tuesday, September 01, 2009 | By Gautam | In

I was watching a video of George Carlin yesterday (yes the same fellow who uses the 'f-word' more time in a day than breaths) and this is what he quoted:
I am fed up of being told who to choose as my hero!!!
And it is pretty tough to deny this flawless point. Pick up a newspaper, magazine, log onto a website, switch onto a channel. What do you find (apart from all the gore or terrorism related news)? That this is how an ideal idol should be. He/ she should be your hero. You should have morals/ ethics like this/ that person. Yes, whatever!!!

I do not need to be told who to look up to. I do not need to turn onto these self help gurus, who in my opinion are in dire need of some self help themselves. Better they read their own crap before they start preaching. I am fine the way I am.

I have my own heroes and I'm happy the way things are!!! And yes, George Carlin, your logic IS flawless.....