Friday, July 30, 2010

Appo & Ippo

This can be called a recollection of transformations over the last couple of months.

I might not cover every aspect, but this is all I can remember as of now, I will add more as and when I remember stuff.

Sleep – There was a time a if I woke up at 8.30 in the morning, Appa gave me blast on how important it is to wake up early, and help around the house.

Now – When I wake up at 8.30, Amma tells me, sleep for some more time if you feel like it. (me thinks WOW). In addition to the surprisingly good treatment, I had breakfast laid out and this included piping hot coffee.

Coming in late – then, it used to be a barrage of angry missed calls after 9.00, with people demanding to know where on planet earth I was and if I ever had plans of coming home.

Now, I get anxious, and very lovey dovey calls asking me, if my brother should come and pick me up from the bus stop. And yes, she also says – please come home safe. And when I reach home, I get awesome cold rose milk.

Hanging out – then, going out was sheer waste of time and money. You are wasting time by not studying, what will you ever do in life?

Now, it’s more like, why don’t you stay home this Sunday, I don’t even get to see you. And last Sunday a very senti me cancelled the plans, sat at home, watched tv, ate lots of vadam, slept and went out for dinner with Mummy and her friends.

Getting Dressed – previously if I’d spent more than 15 mins in front of the mirror, I was asked to stop being lazy and get ready asap because we had to leave.

Now, I’m asked to dress up well before going to office, and this is apparently to look more presentable, because people observe you at workplace. (aiyo aiyo) :P

Then, if I told my mom that some random guy passed a comment, she’s give me a super stern scary look and say, don’t go by that lane tomorrow, and stick very close to Sowmya. Talking about Sowmya, I so miss that girl who has gone away to Manipal, and that stupid thing hasn’t got a new number yet!

Now, when I tell her that some roadside romeo sang Hosana when I crossed the road, she says “that guy should’ve been blind”.

Spending Money – then, I had no problems in splurging on whatever I wanted, and I had an ever ready sponsor. They did give into every whim and fancy of mine.

Now, when I spend money on something, I feel the *pinch*.

I will not elaborate more because I have another post with this topic in mind.

Money – then I had all the time on planet earth, but no money to spend. Now, I have all the money I want (my needs and desires are extremely limited), but nobody and most importantly no time to spend it.

Then, if I dint reply back to texts in a long time, the reason had to be – me sleeping away to glory in class. And now, it’s some random meeting. When I reply back to a text saying, “sorry di/da, I was stuck in a meeting with a dodo speaking about some random crap”. I get a reply saying “Kekave perumaya iruku” :P

Then, If I started working on maths homework on a Friday evening, Amma would've been mighty proud of me. Now, when I open a couple of documents on a Friday night hoping to finish up pending work, she tells me "Office is where you work, and home is where you don't think about work".

If she'd given me the same kind of advice back in school or college, I can guarantee that I'll still be n LKG :P

Another important transformation is the name by which I am addressed. Before you get funny ideas, I have exactly two-three variations of my name at home, and now I get addressed as kozhandai more often. This is contrary to a lot of other beautiful names that were used before.

The only constant has been – 5.50p balance. Like always in most cases, calls don't get returned because, well, you know the reason - Balance ille :D

Ippo I feel, I should've started worked eppovo :P This royal treatment meted out to me, feels very good :D


Chees :)

Monday, July 26, 2010

The Paradox of Corporate Life

Last Friday when I decided to leave home early, I was given work at the last minute, and I had to stay back until 8 to finish and leave home.

Monday morning, I came in looking for lots of work to begin with. I was expecting a new project. And I’ve been idling around all day long.

10.00: Read Economic Times
10.30: Ping and ask – What do I do for the day
10.45: Lead says – Chill maro. :D
HAHAHA! And I’ve been doing just that… :P

I logged into blogger, checked out blogs, read economic times, even visited HBR website and read a couple of articles. Had lunch, and now I’m back to wasting time.

The clock reads 2.00PM and I’m still vetti, and enjoying it!

Now that I'm dead jobless at work, I'll give you tips on how to kill time at work and act busy and hardworking at the same time.

Step 1 - switch on the monitor and open some 15-20 tabs of random websites. These websites have to necessarily be work related.

Step-2 - Keep a notepad and pen handy. The page HAS to have something scribbled on it. This is very important and remember that the paper and pen have to make some contact every now and then.

Step-3 - Plug in your headphones, and stare at the monitor with great intent. You can listen to Sutta Na Mila if you feel like it, but keep a straight face.
if you want tips on how to stare at your monitor, please watch some random Hindi movie which has at-least one working scene in it. Eg: Farhan Akhtar in Rock-On. Note that my creativity is at an all time low.

Step-4 - Your start menu has to be full. I mean it when I say FULL. Open a presentation, Chrome or Mozilla, a folder, a couple of PDFs , Outlook Express and the likes.

Step-5 - Drink lots of water to look like you are working hard, really hard. If you are a guy, please run your fingers thru your hair to look konjam serious, girls can do the same :P

This is it - you are all set to look like a workaholic.

Happy Monday ;)

PS: Nobody knows that I blog at work.
PS1: Promise me that you don’t spread the word.
PS2: If I continue being vetti for the rest of the day - you might end up reading a couple of more posts.
PS3: I'm not complaining :P I'm Lovin' it - McD style!

Thursday, July 15, 2010


This is my adaptation of Rudyard Kipling's Poem If.. An ode to the 2 glorious years of Post Graduation, taking into account that I'm not going to step in to a classroom for a long time to come.

If you can get used to waking up at an ungodly hour in the morning,
If you can travel 30kms a day,
If you know your college is in another district
Yet you say it is in Chennai.

If you can travel by roads which have more cows than humans,
If you can “yippie yaay” when; your driver races against other buses on the road.
If you reach college at 7.45 sharp, and not feel sleepy when you get off the bus.

If you can, survive 120min lectures
And not curse the lecturer,
If you can, sit through 4hr lectures
And watch movies in mute.

If you can, sleep in class
And not feel ashamed about it.
If you walk to the hostel to catch some sleep.
If you learn to sleep in any position
and not complain of body pain.

If you can treat seminars and guest lectures alike,
And not bother taking notes.
If you can, copy assignments
And get away with it.

If you can, flunk in internals
And not feel sad about it.
If you can, bunk classes for no reason,
And not bother about attendance.

If you can, line marofy engineering boys,
And say “oh shit, they’re like our brothers”.
If you can, be mistaken for a first year,
And get ragged by engineering kids.

If you’ve copied, more movies than class notes
And deleted class notes to make space for a new movie.
If you can repeat the same clothes in a month’s time
And not talk about shopping.

If you can, walk over a wooden plank to get to the canteen,
And have the best time of your life over cheese sandwich.

If you can play Farmville in the first bench,
And not bother about Corporate Finance.

If you can SMS a friend sitting across the classroom and say “Macha BREAK”
If neither incessant missed calls nor glares from professors can wake you up when you are fast asleep.

If you can, never get tired of texting, but don’t feel like taking down notes.
If you can, talk to old men and students alike,
And not lose the sense of humor.

If you can speak a full sentence without any swear words.
If you can, love and hate people with a vengeance you’ve never known.
If you can, form opinions and judgments, and not force it upon people.
If you can accept yourself the way you are, and yet make way for change.

If you can, attend a dozen interviews, and not feel disappointed when you don’t make it.
If you can, get ripped apart in presentations, and put up a brave front when confronted.
If you can, treat good feedback and awful feedback with a straight face.

If you can, survive Anna University exams and more,
And not once crib about the retarded life,
If you have done this and a lot more that has gone unmentioned-
You will be an MBA :D

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Aapice Stories

This post is for Kumar Sir, he wanted me to write him a mail on my experiences at work. There is a lack of a good post, so, I’m publishing it here.

7th successful week at work, come Friday and I will complete 8 weeks, and that’s approx two months. The salary came, sat pretty in my bank account, and when the weekend arrived it disappeared into various stores across the city.

A typical day starts like this – Wake up, yoga class, get ready and run to the bus stop which is unfortunately two stops away, and wait for the bus to come. Mind you the bus is invariably late, and none of us reach office on time.

Coming to work, I’m not doing an individual report, but I’m helping another guy in his report. This doesn't mean I get to while away time. I have to work doubly hard to make sure the data I collect and pass on to him his flawless, and my report and his are at par with each other. And the cycle continues until Friday evening. The week flies, and the weekend flies faster.

Talking about weekends, after a hectic week at work, I sleep thru the entire weekend interspersed with catching up with friends. But given an option I’d like to switch on the AC, pull on the curtains and sleep.

The transition from College to Corporate world is a rude culture shock, and the only thing that common among the two is, they start with the letter “C”. In college you can do whatever you want and get away with it, and it wasn’t half as scary as the corp world.

When JD says “You either re-do the data collection the way we want you to, or you can finish your course next year”, there is a flicker of hope somewhere which says – I can deal with him. But when your Sr Manager calls the new hires to his glass room and says – in this vertical you either swim or sink. It scares the shit out of you, and that very term can freeze every emotion of yours.

Work has been pretty decent so far... After 4 weeks of training they threw us into the ocean and said swim. Thankfully, the guy whom I report to is quite chilled out. **touchwood**. The vertical assigned to me is the Mecca of Death in office parlance. Everybody has a very creepy feeling about it, and I received more condolences than congratulations.

To be really honest I wouldn’t have fit anywhere else. The risk vertical was beyond reach, because they had already hired people, and it’s a huge relief for the simple reason that – joining risk would’ve been the greatest risk for the company. Moreover the deluge of numbers and risk ratings thrown at me, I would have happily laid myself to rest.

The learning has been immense. 2yrs of MBA is as good as no MBA when you try to apply what you’ve learnt to what you do. It’s very embarrassing when people from random institutes talk more jargon, and you remain tongue-tied. This goes a long way in throwing light on all the bull JD has been spewing.

The crowd is pretty good. A fair mix of wannabes, chamchas and goodie people like yourstruly. I can never be a wannabe; I’m too quiet for one, I can’t show off to save my life. I’m probably obscure, and I’m happy this way. I’d rather be known for what I do than be known for how many people I talk to. I don’t want to discuss being a Chamcha, primarily because there is no point wasting words over them. Again, I can never be one. I cannot lick another person’s feet even if you pay me a million bucks to do so. I’ve hated Chamchas for a long time now; they are the ones who steal the thunder, be it school , college or workplace.

And I have found a bunch of people whom I’m quite comfortable with. And the journey so far has been good.

I have one little prayer to the one above me – please don’t turn me into a heartless and absolutely lifeless corporate. Let me have this teeny weeny bit of sensibility that has held me in good stead.

Cheers :)

Friday, July 9, 2010

Project Life Cycle Model

Before we get on to the post, let me warn you that this is anything but technical, and has nothing to do with work.

A 16 week project rigor is a compulsory part of Anna University’s syllabus and this by all means is the most awaited. The only time when you get to bum around at home, sleep all the time, and get bored of sleeping and eating routine.

The final reviews got over a couple of days back, and I’ve wanting to write about this for a long long time now.

Come December and all of us start looking high and low for companies that would allow us to warm our respected backsides inside their air conditioned halls. And also it is the time of the year when we hope that biggie corporate come in hordes.

The project Lifecycle is more like this –

  • January – YaaaY! I got a project.. Now what next? Will the Oldies in the college agree to this...
  • Feb- Review! God-damned crap. I have no idea what to present. I'm dead.
  • March – One review comes to an end. Another month until the next one comes about. Please wake me up when April comes..
  • April – Oh God! I’m so screwed. Some miracle has to retrieve me from the shit hole.
  • May- Ok this is the last leg. This too shall pass and I will survive

And then comes June the signature is on 5 copies of the record, and then you are free to go!!

July- One day loss of pay. The external examiner turned out to a finance guy who knew zilch of marketing. The review was a cakewalk, and if my reviews with the monsters had been this easy, the cakewalk wouldn't have felt as good.

I'm almost an MBA, and results awaited. Fingers Crossed.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

So, it’s over?

The date was fixed, and leave sanctioned. The no dues certificate was complete but for the signature from the bank, and I was on my way to college in the deluxe air-conditioned bus. Everything seemed fine, the butterflies in my stomach before the presentation, the general banter, usual cribs about life, and there was a cursory smile stuck on my face. The presentation happened hours before its allotted time, and it all seemed really fine until they issued my course completion certification. Then came jubilation mixed with apprehension. This was to happen someday, and today was the day.

Somehow it feels like the days flew away in a jiffy. All of us feel that way right? Press the rewind button and pause at 23 months, this was the very place I dint want to be a part of. I had an admission offer, and I dint want to waste a year, and this was one of the quickest decisions I’d taken.

And this happened on my way back home from college after the presentation. The trail of thoughts that hit you when they're least expected...

This goes out to all you guys from the batch of 08-10.

I vividly recollect the day when I gingerly walked into a campus far far away from the city; 30kms to be very precise. I looked like a dork on my very first day, and I stopped by the corridor to ask for directions to the classroom, and suddenly somebody recognised me- I’m sure it was plain guess work. The girl asks “You are S, right?” I mumbled a yeah, and entered the classroom only to have people stare back at me.

I did not want to be known, I did not want friends at all. I’ve come a long way from being all that... In the September of 2008 the only thing on my mind was to get an MBA degree and walk back in the opposite direction with no encumbrances whatsoever. I did try and stick to my guns for as long as I could, spoke very little and to very few people. Somewhere the good trust I had in human beings was lost on my train to Chennai. I had an invisible shell around me, a shell so strong that even powerful nuclear rays could penetrate them. I had an invisible “leave me alone” tag hung around my neck as a precautionary measure.

And then, the something happened. Probably I realised I was killing myself being what I could not be. I started smiling more, talking more and getting caught in class more often. By then I had almost lost my 1st semester of college. From then on, it’s been a helluva rollercoaster of a ride.

It would be plain redundancy if I recollect everything that we’ve been thru in the last 23 odd months. I’m sure it’s been a great learning experience. Each one of us has forged bonds of friendship, trust and goodwill. Personally, I’ve changed a lot, mellowed down a lot more, and made awesome friends (I would have missed them, had I decided against joining the insti). I’ve been able to break the mould of the attitude girl (perceptions) to be known for what I am.

Thanks a bunch for being there all you boys and girls. From now on we will be addressed as “Corporates”. Today they have stripped us of that safety net of being a student. We’ve been thrown into a sea full of sharks, hoping that we’d grow up to become friendly sharks one day. I’m sure that made no sense.

As we move on in different directions, each pursuing his / her own end goal, let’s make an honest attempt to stay in touch, and keep the spark going.

I don’t know what to call myself,


PS: Reminiscing, I couldn't help but wonder what life would have otherwise been like. And when I could take it no more, I let the little tear slide down my cheek, in full public view.
PS1: All this happened in a crowded bus back home, and the girl seated next to me asked me "Break-up"? Well, yeah.. But a break up of different kind. Here you part with happy memories. Memories so beautiful that you'd want to revisit them every other day, laugh at the goof ups, and get senti over the happy moments, and wish and pray to the one above you and each one of us remain the same.