Sunday, August 17, 2008

Midnight Farce


This is what everyone is hell bent on convincing me about, especially since the NOTTING HILL episode (which, mind you, has not reached its climax yet). First Saffrondude, then Ad Libber and then a train of people who picked up this idea from somewhere. On Independence Day, Mr. Procrastinator (alias Narcissist) asked me who my first ‘crush’ at ISM was. Then, the very next night AL came up with the same question, straight out of the blue, that too at 2.00 a.m.!

AL was recounting the events of yesterday on ‘Raksha Bandhan’ with his ‘mu boli behen’ and how they ran into three other ‘mu-boli bhai behen’ couples and what happened thereafter. But that will be relived some other day as it has nothing to do with the eccentric conversation which followed, and which lasted more than an hour.

Here are some excerpts:

AL (suddenly): Who was your first crush in ISM?

Me: WHAT???

AL: Have you had a crush in ISM? (has a goofy smile on his face)

Me: Yes (I surprised myself with that answer. YES? Why did I say yes?)

AL: You have? (His mouth ends up in a big ‘O’, obviously startled)

Who was it? (shouts it out)

Me: I am not telling.

AL: Why not?

Me: I don’t know. Just forget it.

AL: This is news. Come on, don’t be a jack-ass. Tell me who it is. I’ll not tell anyone.

Me: No.

AL(trying to emotionally blackmail me): I am your friend. You should share things with your friends.

Me: I’ve no problem sharing things, but these are thoughts and feelings.

AL: A**hole!

OK. There are 15 possibilities. No wait. Is it a senior?

Me: No.

AL: And obviously it cannot be a junior because you don’t know anyone. But then, you don’t need to know someone to have a crush.

Me (trying to take the conversation out of these dangerous waters): I like Speed of Sound by Coldplay (and I play the song).

AL: Don’t talk shit. Answer my questions.

Is it someone who is already committed?

Me: No comments.

AL: ‘No comments’ means yes.

Me: No, it does not.

AL: So, it’s a no.

Me: No comments.

AL: How many are committed now? Six as far as I know. So, that leaves nine. Wait. Come on, tell me, is she committed or not?

Me: No, I think. Well, I hope not.

AL: That means this crush is still there.

Me: No comments.

AL: F**k! You still have that crush. Have you ever spoken to her?

Me: Huh? How does that matter?

AL: It matters. Tell.

Me: Sort of eliminates half the list if I answer that. I won’t answer that.

AL: What the f**k? Give some clue, at least. (pesters me for about 10 minutes for a clue)

Me(giving in to his pestering): Her name ends with the letter ‘A’

AL: Ahh! Now we are talking.

(After about a minute’s contemplation bursts out): A**hole! Everyone’s name ends with ‘A’. Only 3 people’s does not. OK. At least it brings the list of probables down to six.

(Is silent for a while. Then again explodes): Tell me who it is. You should. This is bad. I am your friend.

Me: I am not telling.

AL(asks again): Just tell me this. Have you spoken to her or not?

Me: Nopes. I mean I am not telling.

AL(starts making a list of girls whom I have spoken to and ends up making an inaccurate one, thankfully): Which branch is she in?

Me: Will become too easy if I answer that.

AL: Is it MD?

Me: What? (surprised that that came up) What makes you think that it is so?

AL: Is it or not?

Me: (shaking my head) I am not telling anything else to you. Go to sleep. I got new pillow covers, need to use them.

AL: OK. Tell something about her.

Me: I need to know them to tell anything about them.

AL: Come on. Say something. What is the point hiding?

Me: Can you read body language?

AL: No. (Thank goodness. If he could, he would have got the answer by now.)

(after a pause): I am going to guess one name. You just say ‘yes’ if I am right. Nothing else. Deal?

Me: No way.

AL: You are useless. You know, if you tell me I can help you move things forward.

Me (almost tempted to give it away): NOOOOOOOOOOOO! Let it be.

AL: Is it crush or is it love?

Me: What is the difference?

AL: Crush is more a temporary phase.

Since when is this there? Since first year?

Me: Hmmm. I don’t know what it is. Forget it.

AL: Come on, man. Just let it out. Pleeease!

Me: Not telling.

AL: Fine! I am going. You wasted an hour of mine. F**K OFF!

Me: Yes. I did.

(and AL leaves)

It was around 3 a.m. when he finally left and I dozed off immediately. Readers of my blog, you are the best judge. If I was in love or had a crush, wouldn’t I be wide awake throughout the night thinking about her rather than sleep like a baby?

P.S. Any girl who has started imagining things, I ask you to please continue to do so. And if, in the unlikely event, you have a crush on me (which I cannot imagine WHY), please express it as you cannot expect the same from me.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Friends and Poli

Had a great time last Sunday. Friendship Day after all. These two friends decided the day was apt to give their birthday treats which were due for about 4 months. First lunch, then CCD and finally bought a pillow! Also found out that we were probably the most boring group of people. At least some of us are, people like me, DD and SU hardly had anything to say. To top it all, we were all recounting the most embarrassing moments of our lives and all of us spoke about incidents from the classrooms in our schools. Is that all our lives are made of?
Friends are great. I can’t live without them. They are there when you need them etc. etc. bla bla bla.

But what do you do when your friends turn out to be not as innocent as you had thought them to be? What do you do if you find that some of them are wolves in sheep’s clothing? The thought that your closest buddies can be the shrewdest foxes going around sends a chill down my spine to be frank.

It’s that time of the year when people are selected for the different posts, and as with most other institutes you have rivalry between different factions of the student community who are looking to go one up on the others. I just happened to overhear some of these conversations in the recent past. I cannot recount them but it confirmed to me that there is more to my friends than meets the eye and while I was oblivious to things around me these people were busy plotting and planning their next moves- which profs to approach, what strategy would the other party be playing, who are the different candidates for a given post and so on. From their words, it was also apparent that the female population was also involved to a large extent, something which I had not expected. SILLY ME! How is that possible when there are cries for gender equality all around?

Ohh! How I miss those days to return when you could trust all your friends blindly. Now, it is difficult to decide whom you can still call a friend and who is going to stab someone at the back (at least figuratively). Best of Luck, buddies! But, keep me away from this please.

P.S. This post does not attack any person, so any friend of mine reading this, please don't take it personally.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008


(Here is a piece written by DD. Both DD and me are members of Team MD. For background information, MD in this post stands for ‘Mailer Daemon’. It is the students’ newspaper of ISM University. The setting is of us taking interviews for a new team.)

A year has passed since I pushed myself into Team MD. And I have managed to stick to it till today. My colleagues in the team are aware of two kinds of Team MD members: one, those who are dedicated to it and work hard till the end. They ‘eat, dream and think MD’ while working on an issue. The second category belongs to those who were not able to cope up with the pressure and left MD for its and their good. Guess I am a third kind- a category still needed to be researched. (Right now, my colleagues are working on our last issue, while I am typing this article.)

But this article is not about ‘how I fared for MD’. So let us forget this part and let me tell you what is going on in MD right now. Right now, we are interviewing candidates for selecting a new team for MD. How I had waited for this moment since the day I was selected. Back then, I imagined this day as one in which I would scrutinize, analyze and cross-question each candidate so as to bring out the true successors of our team. Now, I amuse myself by watching my colleagues do the same. Just on the second day of the interviews, I found myself hardly uttering a word. (Don’t dream of an HR like me!) ‘My colleagues, try to recall, I was there sitting right beside you.’ I watched, as some anxious, some nervous and some energetic faces took the chair before me while Ishant from one end and Shreya from the other, hovered like vultures, ready to peck at every slip of their tounge. Among the remaining enthusiasts were Sid, Divir, Sukanya, Sukhi, Vijit and Avinash, ready to chip in their part whenever they got a chance. ‘The dedicated and sincere team MD.’ Meanwhile, ‘the Bad Boy of the team‘(that’s me) was busy planning this article and was randomly generating numbers to fill up his analysis sheet. I decided to go back in time and put myself in the interviewee’s position to analyze how I would have fared in the same test.

Interviewer (MD): Would you like to introduce yourself?

Me: (Actually no. My name is a bit too long and you would forget it, the moment I leave this room. My branch will sound alien to you and my hobby-reading books- is of no practical use to you. Anything I mention thereafter about myself will generate further cross questions- causing myself to land in trouble. It is most unwise to introduce myself. But will have to say :) Yes.

MD: Introduce yourself.

Me: I would blabber out the usual intro and add nothing extra, lest I provoke further questions. All this, I would say in a loud tone, with an accent so that you get irritated and leave me quickly.

MD: What do you want your role to be in MD?

Me: (Let me think. If I choose editor it means sitting at my comp, reading other’s articles, sometimes writing by myself. OK, I will manage that, others will most probably help. Reporting will mean running here and there, speaking to admin etc etc. That is too much work. Easy decision.) I want to take up an editor’s job.

I now realize that back then my decision to choose editor actually got me selected. I escaped the PI round, something -I now feel, I would never have qualified.

MD: Where is the campus administration building and the maintenance department?

Me: (Campus Administration has to be within the campus. That is one thing I am sure of. But Murphy’s Law states that: ‘the greatest myth about administration is that, it exists.’ That makes CA a mythical place. What the hell!) I don’t know where the CA is.

Of course, I know where the maintenance department is. It is right behind the workshop. I went there once in the first year to get my window’s glass fixed. I had broken it, made it drop right from the first floor. The complaint got registered, nothing happened thereafter.

MD: What are your likes and dislikes about ISMU?

Me: (I must be cautious about this question- a tricky one. These guys love to point out shortcomings about ISMU, be it students or the admin. So to impress them, I must do the same. The part about ‘likes’ is just a pitfall, I must avoid. I am a clever guy.)

I dislike the students of ISMU. They make too much fuss about everything. There is a breed in ISM which wastes a year discussing ‘why shouldn’t we give certificates of merit to our rivals?’And prior to this, they would plan out a strategy for a month to ‘reach to a particular high status so that they can discuss the previously mentioned question.’ There is another species which goes on claiming for ‘more space.’ Then there is another which spends most of their time in challenging this claim. There is a group that has decided that its life’s ambition is to see all the infrastructural developments that ISM is ever capable of within their four or five years of stay in ISMU. Also ISM must have an increased area and the net speed must build up every year-all this they must witness while they are here. Finally there is MD which compiles all of this into six pages and hands it back to them.

What do I like about ISMU? I like the students of ISMU. There is a breed which is hell-bent on making a mark at ISMU. They would go up to any extent to fulfil their ambition, while they are here at ISMU. Be it promoting their departmental identity, helping the poor, or inspiring entrepreneurial skills, they are always out at the forefront. They are warriors. Remember the shout when the trophy of Muqabla was brought home. Remember Mechathlon, remember Sparx. Those were the times when ISM shone like never before. Ask yourself, don’t they deserve a little more than what they are getting? Maybe they asked for coaches, maybe they asked for a little more departmental and admin cooperation. Shouldn’t an effort be made to grant these? Remember: ‘A college is known by its students.’ And finally there is MD, which is composed of heroes selected from this breed. (When shall the groups mentioned previously get merged with this breed? But I guess, they are one and the same. ‘A mere flip changes the face of the coin.’)

MD: Improvements for MD?

Me: MD. When was the last time I read the complete paper? I remember noticing bar graphs in one of the issues. Then once, there was an article about status of girls in ISM - written by girls of course. You generally expect such stuff from them. ‘Good (status) generally leads to the expectation of Better (status).’ Once again, there was a full page of ‘Ruby Survey’. But that article was not for me. I have stopped staring at them since the time they started staring at me as if they were looking at an ‘ascetic kid.’ No wonders there. I hardly speak, while in a group. Other than these, I hardly recall any other article. Therefore you must increase the frequency of MD so that people like me at least remember a bunch of articles to speak about.

The final question was usually based on a situation, where one had to interview an admin member usually. I having chosen editorship would have escaped this question. So let me tell you, that my colleagues pretended to be part of the admin and conducted a mock interview. From their act, the following things about the admin were clear:

  • The admin is ready to come up with excuses at every mistake that is pointed out.
  • The admin/G.Sec is ready to take up any action if ‘approached through a proper channel.’
  • Everything is student’s fault. ‘No proper events are conducted because students don’t turn up.’(So no point conducting a better event.) ‘The sports complex need not be improved since the students won’t maintain it.’
  • The Yahoo HR will never accept the existence of ISMU at least in this life.
  • G.Sec will simply act as an interface between students and admin. He lacks the brains or guts to gather support and fight for a cause.
There were further inferences, but I don’t remember them right now.

There you go. I have spoken my heart out. I seldom do that. Judge for yourself whether I deserve to be in the MD team after giving such an interview. By the way do not mistake this for a BC article. Trivial BC is not my job. I am totally serious regarding all views expressed. Also if I am responsible for any hurt feelings upon reading this article. ‘Hate mails invited.’

(For more visit the MD website The site is under construction.)