Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Prayers won’t help

Warning: This is a very cynical post, do not read further if you don’t want to get offended

Most of you did not pay heed to my warning. Human beings cannot stop themselves from doing things that they are asked not to do. They just can’t help it, but it is also not their fault. As per NLP, human mind cannot picture negative words like ‘no’ ‘not’ ‘do not’ and therefore if you ask a child ‘Don’t touch the vase’, what he pictures is he touching the vase, because there isn't an image that described the command given to him. Think that’s pretty much for any of our vices as well.

We are asked ‘NOT’ to – Pollute the air, Build houses on river beds, Engage in constant mining of sands for construction, Be greedy, Be corrupt, et al. Do we listen to these ‘nots’, no we don’t. We constantly do what is negative, what is wrong, what should have never been done.

Funnily, when things go out of our hands, and we start analyzing the consequences, we are back to the same statements of what one should have ‘NOT’ done. How because we ‘DID NOT’ do certain things, we are faced with the current consequences. We drill at the problem, trying to find out what went ‘WRONG’, never sparing a moment on how to make it ‘RIGHT’.

But then again, in a country where disasters spell TRPs, who cares for setting things right, not even us, the common man, the people who get impacted the most. How many of us complain against illegal construction, bother about the water supply we get, write to authorities to get the roads/bridges repaired, make sure our surrounding is as clean as our houses? Only a handful, and that handful is also mocked upon, asked to mind their own business. They are told, ‘DO NOT’ bother. But, like the rest of us, they also cannot picture the word ‘NOT’. So, what they end up with is this… ‘DO BOTHER’. 

Really, DO BOTHER...

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

The thirty+ 'innovators'

Ever wondered why we, the 30 plus generation, are so different from the millennial. What makes us that weird lot, who gets on everyone’s nerves by badgering them with questions? How we accept change so swiftly, trying out newer technologies, brands, food; travelling to places unknown and always sporting a heady attitude towards taking risks? What makes us distinct, crazy and often the outlaw?

The answer lies in our growing years, the 80s and the 90s. How should I put it, we have seen the best of both worlds. We have enjoyed the lull before the storm, as well as the spin at breakneck speed through the spiral of technological innovations. We waited for trunk calls from our cousins living overseas at our neighbor’s house and also made free calls through viber. We have seen our black-and-white TV sets locked in a cabinet and also bought a high-definition LED TV complete with a console. We were the first bitten by the video game bug thinking Mario is a cool guy and also adopted PS3 and Xbox with the same zeal. We went out for annual family picnics and also tried the hip lounges and pubs with friends. We shared the sole copy of Tintin with friends and cousins and also downloaded the entire collection on our iPads and tabs.  

We know by heart our childhood superheroes from the tattered comics we rented from corner shops as well as leap with the same joy when we see them through the 3D lenses at Inox. We are the generation that was driven around in Maruti 800s and also the Hondas, the Hyundais, the Mercs, the BMWs. We looked with curious round eyes as our parents bought the first desktop computers and also carried the ultra-slim notebooks in our handbags. We traveled by bullock carts when we visited our ancestral house and also used rented cabs to reach at the doorstep of our homes in the hinterland. We know what it means to receive an inland letter as well as an email. We have seen a majority party ruling the country and also the chaos of coalition government. We have been the last generation to take lengthy board exams filling sheets after sheets and also the first of the generation to take online courses.

The list is long, and each of us has something special that we carry from our growing years to our working ones. We have not just seen the change, but we were a part of that change. We accepted change as a way of our lives, and that’s why we are different, that’s why we like things in constant, we like the air zipping past us rather than being stationary or accepting the status quo.

We are a difficult generation, a generation that is unpredictable, fierce, independent. Don’t sell us random upgrades or illogical solutions. We have grown up with innovations, sell us the real deal, we will live them forever...

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

We are the 'mythical' phoenix

Most women are like phoenixes, they might get battered, soiled and destroyed, but like a true phoenix, they rise again, that too from their own ashes. What gives them such power? No one really knows.

They might look vulnerable, emotional, clingy, weepy and demanding, but with all of these they are also confident, rational, independent, smiling and understanding. Yes, they are the great contradiction, and it is this contradiction that makes them unique, with each claiming a little bit of sunshine.

When I see my women friends getting promoted at work, finding a new job, marrying the person they truly love, quitting their jobs to raise their newborns, juggling with project deadlines and school homework, raising their voice against injustice, standing up for their dignity, I feel a bit of a personal triumph myself, only because, I am a woman too...And, like every other woman, I also have a simple desire, to fight for my identity. 

Friday, June 7, 2013

Why Indians never question? Why are we fooling ourselves?

Wonder why Indian consumers never ask these questions? Why these never cross the mind of any self-appointed tech-guru or auto-critic? Why the Government as usual remain inert towards these issues? Why as people of this country, we never question our own motives?

Why not probe ourselves:

Why am I paying double the amount of money for buying the same phone that my western counterparts can buy for dime-a-dozen? Plus, why am I also not complaining about half the features that do not run on my mobile, restricting access because of my country of residence?

What makes us not blink an eye for shelling out half a lakh to buy a smartphone on EMI but turns us into stingy Scrooge and grumpy Grinch while buying vegetables from saabzi walas, haggling for auto fares, protesting against hike in school fees?

Why are the auto majors dumping their outdated oil guzzling machines in India and the Indian consumers lapping them by willingly paying a premium?

Why we never think of the next petrol price hike when we gleefully buy the oil guzzlers?

Why the Government never thought of putting anti-dumping duties on these oil guzzlers, instead of incurring more debts by buying oil from outside?

What sense does it make to transport vegetables and fruits from one corner of the country to another on wheels and charging a bomb in the name of inflation? Why not encourage farming at local level?

Why our farmers are never accorded the same status as the city dwellers? Why are they the ones who struggle to meet their ends and take drastic steps when nothing works out, despite being the ones to feed the entire nation? Why are we so apathetic towards their issues?

Why we have so much of corruption in the country? How come almost all our leaders are corrupt? Is that to do with us, because Democracy is – Of the people, By the people, For the people – which means, our representatives are our reflection – the people – are we the same as our leaders?

Why we never say, Jugaad is not a technology, it is a way to circumvent inefficiency? How long temporary solutions could work, don’t we need some permanent answers?

No, no need to give the answers. As Eugene Ionesco had famously said, "It is not the answer that enlightens, but the question."