Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Zen and the art of seat-thaeching

Thaeching is a tanglish word which originated from the efficient style of working
of Tamilnadu or Indian government employees. The employees currently or in the past have a fantastic record for sitting on any official matter for days or months or years together. Since they are sitting on it for a long time, a intelligent deduction might be made that they might probably be wearing out the old wooden chair purchased by the mountbatten for all govt empl.s before he left in 1947. This in tanglish is coined seat-thaeching. A very obvious thing is the construction of the MRTS system in Chennai. It is being built for years and years accumulating to more than a decade. What for? For just 10 to 15 KM of rail. What could be the actual reason? Probably some employee who has to sign on a piece of paper providing for budget is expecting "something" from somebody. He is seat-thaeching on that file.

Therefore a new law can be arrived at that the experience of an employee is directly proportional to the wear and tear of the chair. If the chair is looking more or less like a wreck, assume he is about to retire.

Gentleman, Please don't think it is an easy art. I know how difficult it might be. Of my 7 years experience as a S/W engr., the maximum time I might have worked will not be > 104 weeks. ( saamy sathiyama! ). The reason for this is either I was not in a project or not in a mood to work or not feeling I was being properly compensated for the work I'm doing. The difficulty arises in tackling the guilty feeling that arises from not properly doing ones duty. Apart from this, things like peer pressure (other people who are working properly), duty-conscious manager, duty-conscious team member (if u r a lead/manager) are some deterrents in this fight. If you win this, then you have mastered the art. You can then stop working and start merrying without a single iota of guilt. For a s/w engineer these are tremendous challanges though. But take our entry-level government office clerk. He would probably be inspired by senior employees who are already champions of such things. oh! How I would love to work in such places! I think our government offices are the ultimate is workplace comfort and employee security. Things a developed nation like US is still not able to provide to its citizens. What a pity! Bush should first visit chennai RTO office and try to get a licence inorder to get a feel of happy employees.

India is a really progressive nation and I'm sure compulsory seat-thaeching might probably make it as a law after office of profit law. I hope they also pass the same law to apply to private sectors also. The law might probably say thus "Every work estimate should include 20% idle time, 27% tea and coffee time and 10% gossip time". You know, they would not have time to think about how to arrive at these numbers. They already have a reservation template and who says cut-paste is propreitary of indian s/w engrs only!



Friday, June 02, 2006

Sky diving

I have wanted to sky dive ever since I came to Toronto.
No, I donot believe toronto's sky is better than any other sky. Just
that there are many people around me here who have dived from Toronto sky.
Last week, I happened to talk to a colleague of mine who had done canoeing.
I was interested again in that too. It's then I realised that the adventure bug has
'stung' me really!

I remember the first time ever I came nearer to such experiences.
We went to MGM Dizzee world, a theme park in chennai when we were in my college first year. We were a bunch of wild first years. You know how engineering college first year students can be. Ready to dare anything after getting ragged like hell by seniors. That was a period when we wanted to beat the world. So we were there, ready to go into those rides. I went on the first ride and shit ... it was so scary for me. In the second ride, I went down from the world-daring first year student to the original me scared of getting dangled again from heights. But my friends were real daredevils and continued on all the things. I remember telling them that it is not the heights but a stomach upset, as if more g-force is going to react with idly and sambar making it rocket fuel. I tried to play as cool as possible. In the end, I really missed out on all the fun. After each ride those guys were coming out with sillier grins and hearty laughs and I could not imagine how that was possible. I always came out with the effect of having gone through a pregnancy.

So here Iam, the scared guy ready to once again try out all these adventures. Near Toronto, we have whitewater rafting in a four hours drive. Sky diving is near niagara. Canoeing is also nearby. And there is a wonderland similar to disneyland where they are equally competent in scaring the shit out of guys like me with all those rides. I heard that there is bungee jumping and also rope-hanging seesaw where they hang you with a rope and pull sideways till your body is parellel to the ground and you can see all those people down from a birds eyeview. Then they let you go. Poor soul will be going around here and there for at least five minutes like the pendulum of the clock. They also videoshoot this wonderful experience and give it to you free it seems. I will never get that video even though it is free. Thinking about it again, I shall send it to Manoj night shyamalan, he can use those reactions in one of his movies.

I'm first trying to learn to swim in preparation for the rafting. Other things need more practice in daring which I think I might have after 1 and a half years of marriage(It had been a very happy thing except for some nail-biting moments, when vessels were flying all over. No, I'm just kidding .. he he .. As u can guess, my wife may read this post. :)) ).

This is my agenda for this summer and I hope things workout.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Om blogaya namaha

Hello to you all,

In true Indian tradition, I would like to start this blah-blah account by paying my respects to the god of the Blog. Intha medium-la namma oor vazhakkapadi elumichankai nasukki thengai udaikka mudiyala. Athukku pathila inga irukkara pazhaiya mouse-a udaichu en blog-a aarambikkiraen.

I plan to talk about what comes in my mind whenever I'm succesful in finding mine. Otherwise I shall fill you with junk and leave you to generate knowledge from junk like generating power from waste. If you expect things like opinions about Bush, Reservation policies in India, the social and political structure of India, global warming, then you will be disappointed. This blog is going to be about the inner thoughts of a south Indian man dulled by 7 years of work in the software industry and who has no clue about what the next hour holds for him, leave alone next day or month or year. People always say that I'm a man with a hidden mission. Unfortunately that's not the case. I'm planning to have a commission to choose my mission soon. More of that later. Ok, enough of vettu-kothu.

The main purpose of this blog is to break ground and put the first post here. There are some things which touched my heart this week apart from my vest. They are the stock market and the stock market. Machaan, I will tell you, they really make you bleed out there. I went in search of a rosy future and they gave me the finger. I'm really going to sue these bloody FIIs and the mutual fund managers who are really creepy. They pull the carpet from under your feet just when you step on it. Naan vaangum pothu vikkuraanunga. Naan vikkum pothu vaanguraanunga. Romba kazhzhaattam aaduraangaba! Anyways I'm not going to bore you further with the statistics of my inspiring losses but I'm just saying think before you direct ICICI to buy a small piece of any company this month.

The long memorial weekend must have been great for people who had a plan and it should have sucked for those who did not. I did not! But I played tennis for a couple of hours on Sunday morning and again a couple of hours on sunday evening. Morning I defeated the guy I played, with a set score of 6-2. Evening he defeated me by 6-0 and 6-0. Dude that was so suckin. The reason is this. I squeezed in a four hour walmart showdown with my wife and I promise you Walmart is the biggest exercise physically and mentally for a South Indian Tamil Paiyyan who is married or has a girlfriend. We walked and talked and decided and vetoed all my decisions and decided and talked. De-moralising. Nowhere else my decision is worth less than this. This cycle happened for all the products in more or less all divisions of Walmart. It is EXHAUSTING!!!

Last thing to be discussed here is this. With all this hype about how reserving a seat in the last row in the engineering/medical college can be more and more hazardous for people of some origin, I dreamt about this. I dreamt that there is reservation in train reservations and bus reservations also after 12 years, 2 kids and a big tummy. My wife is standing beside me and I'm begging an unknown TTE that I'm an NRI from canada and not to include my seats in the open quota and to put me in the NRI quota. He asked me lanja for 40 canadian dollars (some love for FOREX huh) and I gave him that and he let me go. While I did that, I was stared at by all the under-previleged upper clases who had to sit in a seperate compartment. That was absolutely crazy. But the way it goes, I will not be surprised. Reservation-ukke reservationaa?!!!

I wish you all a happy anacin day/night now that you have come this far. Anyways, leave some comments with good words in it. Jai Hind! ;)