Sunday, October 30, 2005

one night@the call center

I liked the cover design of Five Point Someone apart from the character delineation and humour. After reading his second book, one night @ the call center (or even before reading it), I can say Chetan Bhagat is an intelligent writer. He knows his target audience and he knows how to market the books. Yes, contemporary but not classics as pointed out in his website.

As the title suggests, it deals with the life of Shyam Mehra or agent Sam Marcy as he hellos himself to his clients and his colleagues in a call center. It gives an insight (or do we already know?) on their lives.

Yes, it talks about people who kill their creativity and ambition to earn a few bucks more, of those who are forced to work to keep the family going, the hyped up and glamorized perks, of pizzas and cokes, pubs, dark circles, low-waist jeans, relationships and the tyranny of a boss.

However, the book did not have any character who felt that call center jobs are the coolest. I know a couple of them.

I also felt Chetan is trying to teach us Moral Science by bringing in a God factor and talking about inner voice.

I quote some lines here to highlight the essence of the book.

He remembered the suggested line in such a situation.’Sir, I request you not to use that language.’
‘Oh really?’ Then make your fucking hoover work.’
… ‘Sir, you need to change the dust bags when they are full.’
‘who am I speaking to?’ the voice on the phone became agitated.’Victor, sir.’
‘Tell me your fucking name. You’re some kid in India, isn’t it?
‘Sir, I am afraid I can’t disclose my location.’

‘I want a job that pays me to be mean. All they tell us in the call center is”Be nice, be polite, be helpful”. Being mean is so much more fun.'

'Only women think there is a reason to thank people if they listen to them. '

'Now, this is something women never have to deal with: standing next to your boss as he pees is one of the world’s most awkward situations.'

‘Think about this. The people who gave birth to me can’t stop hating each other enough. What does that tell you about me? Half my genes must be fighting with the other half. No wonder I am so fucking messed up.’

‘Our government doesn’t realize this, but Americans are using us. We are sacrificing an entire generation to survive their call centers.’

‘By the way do you have a condom?’, she said.
‘Yes, sir. We live in constant hope’, I said. "

As, I asked before, Do we already know? Yes, we do but I was too greedy to finish it and did it in a few hours. Published by Rupa & Co and priced at RS. 95, I don’t think anybody can stop the sell whatever be the reason.

Friday, October 28, 2005

A passing thought

Two years too late she realised she was just like an enticing flower in the wild to him-exotic, vibrant and almost seductive. All he did was admire her from a distance without actually wishing to take her home. Two years too late, she realised she had been living just the passing thought of a wanderer.

That was for you Zypsy, my story of 55 words. Sorry, I have been postponing it. I know it sucks but thats creativity at the moment. I am not tagging anyone. Anybody can do it.

We are celebrating Diwali today as we are not working for the next 5 days. How compromising God is!!

I am in a red saree. It was made a rule that those who do not come in ethnic wear will not get samosas and sweets. Naturally, I had to wear. It is going to be a long week-end and lonely one for me. J has gone home, 1 room-mate has also gone.

Visiting the orphanage with the Burmese roomie.

Wish you all a happy Diwali.

Going through a personal crisis too. I pray to God to give me one more day and a little more strength to face it all. On the left side of my chest, something pumps. ouch!!!!

Well, what’s pain if it was so easy to bear?

(people, I'll get back to my cheerful self soon.)

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

There, she goes

Too proud to say that I’ll be missing her, I stood all alone in the terrace just asking to myself WHY? She breezed through my life after 14 years, a smarter and a more confident woman and a complete transition from the frail silent classmate I knew. She had claimed in front of the class teacher and the entire class that I was her best friend. I really felt nice as it was a prestige to have someone claim that way in those infantile days. I shared lunches, let her copy home-works and partnered her in any group-games. We separated in between as she left the State to study in another.

It was just yesterday that we had re-lived those memories and laughed over how possessive we were about best friends in those days.
It was just yesterday that she had told me how she sat in front of a Lorry to direct the driver as she brought the furniture home along with the other roomie.
It was just yesterday that we had worn the shortest skirts and wrap-around we have and danced in the huge kitchen over loud music and a dal tarka.
It was just yesterday that I feigned surprise over her possessing a stethoscope. I teased that I expected Ayurvedic Doctors to feel the nerves and give a Chavanprash.
It was just yesterday that we had planned to float her resume as she did not want to join the hospital where she was appointed.
It was just yesterday that we allowed laziness to take over and stared at the flour expecting it to turn into chapatti on its own but decided bread and butter tastes better.
It was just yesterday that we decided to exercise to firm up everything that needs to be firmed up.

She suddenly announced that she is going home as there are problems, doesn’t want to work here and that she is getting married. Her guy told her he cannot live without her. I don’t know if the intransigence was mine or hers. After 45 minutes of talking almost glibly why she wants to throw away everything so soon, she finally reasoned this is our age to get married. I blurted,”Oh F@$#%! I didn’t know that this is the age to get married. I don’t have any problems at home and I don’t know how it is to be committed to a guy. Please carry on and get married.” Funnily, it made her cry. Told her she is welcome to come back anytime.

Slowly but surely, I find people receding from my life. The pleasure was mine in knowing them. I let them go gladly. I let them go gladly…

Life, friendship, love and the aching sweetness of them all!

Thursday, October 20, 2005


I am in a state of bliss
I am indifferent to the indifference
Provoke me
See if I care

Friday, October 14, 2005

Perfidious heart!!!

“I'm standing on the bridge
I'm waiting in the dark
I thought that you'd be here by now
There's nothing but the rain
No footsteps on the ground
I'm listening but there's no sound
Isn't anyone tryin’ to find me?
Won't somebody come take me home?

It's a damn cold night
Trying to figure out this life
Won't you take me by the hand
Take me somewhere newI don't know who you are…”

For most part of the past two years, I thought this was my song. Even while I was dating and flirting with some of the most eligible bachelors.

He was one of the best guys that happened to me. He crossed miles just so that things could be formalized. I don’t know how I ended up being so selfish. I don’t know when things went so askance, when my heart turned perfidious and when I slipped away? Read it true that the street slang of life is one word-irony. Perhaps, I just love being sad. Perhaps, I am not really a nice person to know.

Thursday, October 06, 2005

54 and counting

Haven’t been regular and I just realized that saying I am busy sounds like a loser. All of us have the same number of hours in a day. Therefore, I am going to gossip on this page.

This time it is about a guy. He is from one of the best Management Schools with a very successful career. What I am trying to say is he has got brains and let’s assumes he is a very nice person too. This guy went through the process of wife-hunting. He saw 54 girls. Here, by ‘saw’ I don’t mean just scanning through the snaps. ‘Saw’ as in going to the girls’ house or meeting her and trying to know her, scaling her with certain yardsticks. Very much like the serial Mr. Yogi played by the late Mohan Gokhle. The serial had a better ending as he went for someone who helped him one day without expecting anything back from him.

Perhaps, this guy got the inspiration from someone who said we often get the best if we insist on it but forgot to define what is meant by ‘the best’ according to him. He married the 49th girl and divorced her after 2 years. If he is happily single today, I have no comments but I pity this lost soul as his mission-wife failed terribly and if he decides to remain single, he is going to die without knowing one of the best joys of human bonding. He had even started writing a book on it.

Marriage, for that matter the Indian Marriage is still considered the best institution in the world. No matter how absurd it sounds, arranged marriage works pretty well. It is ok in chasing the illusion called perfection but before he goes through the ordeal, ‘Once bitten, twice shy’ or even ‘twice bitten never shy’, I wish to tell this highly educated moron not to flunk life (I don’t think those 54 girls must be just anybody. People do see the backgrounds both educational and social before approaching each other if it is an arrange marriage.) but to first know what he wants in a woman or even to believe in second chances. It is ok to expect but learn to give a little more and realize that even the so so oooh aah starlets do the boobs or the nose job.

Title suggested by Hemanshu.