Friday, 26 February 2010

WRITER'S BLOCK

We are all aware that at one time or other we pass through this syndrome, when you just seem to get stuck and cannot think of anything worthwhile to write or share. It can be really frustrating, believe me, that you can never rest till you got over it and could produce something good. To understand the basic problem I googled it. Apart from some explanations I also found a site offering to cure you of it through a seminar for only $ 87 !

The very idea of parting with $87 began to produce the necessary enthusiasm in me that I started thinking on my own to conquer this malady. To start, I felt this was, in a way, a much needed break for me from incessant writing, which anyway had a very small group of readers. Perhaps they would feel relieved too from reading my posts, hurled at them non-stop!!

I used this break to really follow other blogs related to my interests and spent time reading them seriously and sharing my sincere views with them. This blog hopping produced amazing results by adding to my Network of fellow bloggers and in increased audience for my work.

I got into the technical aspects of fine tuning my Blog like improving Loading time, Validating my HTML, CSS code compression, optimizing my pictures etc. I registered my blog with Alexa, Bing, Yahoo, Google etc and opted for the google analytics, which really helps you to study the visitors’ interests and to identify the popular content among your numerous posts.

I spent a lot of time doing research on my topics of interest by reading various articles , books and the Internet which provided me the much needed insight into what people think about them and what they would like to know about them.

Armed with all the inputs from my detailed exercise stated above I found that I had so much to share with my readers and there is no question of any “Block” which can hinder my progress.

Thursday, 25 February 2010

It appears that Sachin Tendulkar doesn’t seem to age with time as predicted by me! The little master is like vintage wine tasting better with every passing day. With a double ton he has made history!! Who can forget his merciless assault on Shane Warne and company or the drubbing he gave to Shoaib Akthar. Many a times he has silenced his critics with his willow true to the old adage, “While it is for the mediocrity to talk, it is for the genius to observe”. Now that he has scored the maximum runs in both the forms of cricket, maximum centuries in ODI as well as Tests the only think left is to break the record of Brian Lara for highest test score. I am certain it is only a question of time before he does it. Believe me he is not the type to relax even after that! He might try to set a record for the maximum number of records by any sportsman, which can go on unending till he decides to rest his willow. He is indeed a jewel on India’s crown and will glitter for a very long time!

Tuesday, 23 February 2010

We are all aware how one feels prior to an Interview, say for a job or a promotion etc., The stress and tension about a possible failure in the interview affects one’s performance at the interview. Hence it is absolutely essential to keep your mind cool and free of tension. Well it is easily said than done. Here are some tips to ensure that you donot get worked up and remain cool to give your Interview.

Beware of these Questions
  • Tell us something about yourself
  • What are your strengths and Weaknesses
  • Why do you consider yourself suitable for this job

1. By asking you to tell about yourself the Interviewer is looking for clues on your upbringing, ambitions, passion, leadership qualities, team playing etc. Do not talk about your high scores or academic achievements only because he has all the information he needs from your certificates already. Talk about your sincerity, favourite subject and what you would like to be, your activities in various forums during college and the roles you played in organizing the activities, projects/assignments which you completed successfully well ahead of time etc.

2. While he will be happy to hear about your strengths he will be looking more anxiously to hear about your weaknesses. While your identification of the weakness indicates your ability for introspection, a good quality, your further elucidation as to how you ensured that it did not affect your performance is what he is really interested in. Hence do explain how you got over the weakness .

3. He expects you to have clear knowledge about the job you have applied for, what it entails and how you are a perfect match for it. Hence do make a research to know the requirements of the job and make a note of how your qualification and skill set are a perfect match for the same, prior to the Interview.

Do not interrupt when the Interviewer is speaking to you. By listening to him fully you may gain valuable information about the job, organization etc which you can ill afford to ignore. Should you have some small deficiency in qualification, which you intend to acquire soon, be honest in admitting it and assure how you propose to acquire the same. This would build trust.

Never ever go late for your Interview. Get the details of topography, a day earlier if need be, and be there on time. No one likes a late comer however brilliant he may be.

While you should answer all the questions confidently, do not be flippant. If you do not understand the question please ask him to repeat respectfully and do not be shy to say you do not know when you cannot answer. It is better than exposing your ignorance by attempting a guess.

Please go neatly dressed! I am not saying that you should always wear a three piece suit. At least make sure you do not look clumsy with a crumpled shirt or pant.

Last but not least do spend some time in revising your academic information to recollect the important things relating to the job in question and a couple of very good references who would vouch for your knowledge, experience and integrity.

All the best and take your shot!

The meet was really a refreshing experience for the Bangalore Bloggers who had gathered in large numbers. It was my first meet and I was impressed by the informal way in which the organisers went about conducting the proceedings, while keeping things under control. Full credit to Renie and his team of youngsters.
While Kingfisher sponsored beer for the occasion I wished that something was also available for the tee-totallers who appeared to be quite a few. The discussions were on a variety of topics from plagiarism to monetizing and technical inputs for blogging etc. I was really surprised to hear about one blogger who has been blogging professionally and could earn quite well through this medium. There were different views on monetizing but in my view earning through blog per-se is not bad as long as the purpose of blogging was maintained.
It was a nice opportunity to meet the popular bloggers like MohanBN, SR Iyengar, Dhiman,Renie (the Anchor!) etc whom we know from the virtual world. True to his form, Mohan won a IndiBlogger T-Shirt for getting the second maximum comments about him in the meet!! The general standard of bloggers was so very good that am sure this medium is in for a good time.
Incidentally I was wondering whether indiblogger can arrange a meet on the eve of LIVE BUDGET presentation so that the bloggers could discuss and present the Indibloggers view on the Budget Impact for the information of fellow bloggers and the other readers. On the whole it was a pleasant experience and I look forward to the next one in Bangalore!

Thursday, 18 February 2010

Dare-Devils were the latest sensation in Indian Cricket for the past 2 years. Group of talented cricketers combined very well and the team was winning all the seasons’ tournaments continuously. With their unstoppable wins they were topping the charts, week after week.
Intriguingly their scores began to drop slowly as their winning streak was snapped by a couple of defeats. Still they had the highest scoring batsman and largest wicket taker in the league in their team only. This began to worry the Captain.
Very disturbed by the turn of events, the Captain called for a meeting of all the players to find the reasons for the drop in standard of performance and to discuss the strategy for reversing this sudden debacle.
In the team there were 4 accomplished batsmen, 4 extraordinary bowlers and 3 able all rounders which, by any standards, was a formidable combination any team would aim for. Still the team was beginning to lose matches!
Deepak Chopra, the Captain, was a mature and brilliant player who knew his players individually and was quite happy with their talents per-se. He was also aware of the fact that his players held the top rank for best batsman as well as Bowler in the weekly rankings.
Eapen Mathew the star bowler of the team was asked how many wickets he had taken in the season. He replied that he took the maximum number of wickets, 35, during the season. Deepak asked him in the matches they lost what was the average runs conceded per wkt he took. He said 50.
Deepak pointed out that in the matches they won he had an average of just over 23 which meant that in his efforts to lure the batsmen to commit mistakes by bowling longhops and flighted deliveries, he had conceded invaluable runs. His haul of maximum wickets were for an exorbitant price!!


When the Team assembled Deepak started explaining his point of view. He called his senior batsmen, Ram and asked him how many centuries he had made in the matches that were won by them. He replied 2. Deepak pointed out that he made 4 more centuries in other matches which they lost. The problem was the time taken to carve out a century had resulted in low overall score which contributed to the defeat.
Erick, the wicket keeper, was having the record for maximum stumpings .Deepak asked him as to how many byes he had conceded in the matches that they won. They were just 10 runs. However in the matches which were lost he had conceded an enormous amount of 75 runs which turned the table in close matches. Deepak explained to him that in his eagerness to get more stumpings he stood so close to the stumps that he failed to collect the balls that were outside the line of stumps on several occasions.

Frederick the allrounder was the leading run getter for the team. Deepak asked him how many runs he had conceded while fielding. He replied that they were quite a few, especially in the matches which they lost. Deepak pointed out to him that while he was justified in aiming to improve his performance as a Batsman, he had lost sight of his responsibility to continue to be the best fielder that he was. He was called the Rock Wall for his fielding talents.
After all the team members were individually counseled by Deepak, they were asked to jointly discuss the strategy for the team and make a presentation.
Locked in their conference room, the players shared their misgivings uninhibitedly and could easily land upon the real cause for their malady. They were pleasantly surprised with the outcome because it was such an error which they could have easily avoided, if only they were aware of it!!
Leslie Thomas, the baby of the team, was given the honour of making the presentation of their findings to the Captain. Thomas started by saying that there was nothing wrong with the players on their performances per-se. However he submitted that the Batsmen were playing for higher scores, Bowlers for taking more wickets, All-Rounders for scoring all round points and the wicket keeper for making more stumpings. Alas! There was no one who played with an AIM for winning the match. Yes, we were good individually but failed as a Team Player. United we stand and Divided We Fall.

Nascent little speck of life, just introduced to the world, was flapping its hands and crying for milk. How incredible that a little baby, just out of mother’s womb, knows that only crying babies get Milk! Sister Martha, who was standing near the front portico was surprised to hear the voice of a baby, looked outside.

Enthralled by the sight of what she found, she exclaimed,”Oh my God! What a beauty! . Who on earth could have the heart to leave a thing as pretty as this baby and walk away.” Yes, the little speck of life, lying on the floor of the portico was a female child abandoned by her mother.

With her trembling hands Martha held the baby in her hands and looked around to see if she could find anyone. Confirming that the child has been abandoned, by some unfortunate mother, unwed destitute perhaps, Martha carried the baby to her quarters.

Doting on the pretty girl, the sisters at the church named her Cindrella as she was so very beautiful like a princess. Despite her unwelcome entry into this world Cindrella grew up to be an intelligent girl under the fond and affectionate care of the church.

As a young girl, Cindrella was very good at studies and topped her class in all academic ventures. Blessed with an uncanny talent at painting, she could almost infuse life into whatever she painted. She had all the love and affection she needed from Martha and her band of sisters. Still she longed for that one soul which was responsible for bringing her into this world.

Wondering as to how her mother would have looked, Cindrella painted the portrait of a woman. Martha was stunned to look at the Picture as she could relate it immediately to the new entrant in the Destitutes’ Home run by the church. She rushed to the Home and called for Mariam, who had joined the earlier day. When Mariam entered the hall, Martha deliberately left the picture in the middle of the room for her to see. Shocked by the portrait, Mariam asked Martha as to who was the woman.

Nodding her head, Martha asked Mariam what she did with her little baby seven years ago. Mariam was shocked as to how Martha could know about the child she had abandoned so many years ago. She cried and admitted to leaving the baby on the portico of the church due to her helplessness and abject poverty. Martha led her to Cindrella and introduced her. Cindrella leapt with Joy and hugged Mariam with tears running down her face. Yes, her Dawn has been ordained.

For Acrosticonly

Wednesday, 17 February 2010

Prem was a brilliant student with the spirit of adventure. After finishing his degree in commerce, he began taking lessons for becoming a commercial pilot. He was always fascinated with flying and was hell bent on pursuing a career as a Pilot.

Hot on his heels was his friend Amar, who, apart from being his college mate, was also an admirer of Prem. Seeing Prem’s exploits with flying Amar couldn’t help joining Prem in taking flying as a career. The whole neighbourhood used to look at them with awe when they set out for their flying lessons everyday.

On completion of the required number of flying hours successfully both Prem and Amar qualified for the Commercial Pilot’s License and were eagerly awaiting their Job offer from leading commercial airlines. Having shown exemplary competence while undergoing training they were looking forward to an exciting career.

Eventually the much awaited offer came from an airlines company offering Prem and Amar jobs as co-pilots in their short haul budget sector routes. Both were so happy that they celebrated with their friends. As years rolled by they were getting more experienced and were adjudged the best by their airlines who honored them with several awards and promoted to command the aircraft.

Nearing their tenth anniversary of Job as pilots they decided to go on a Holiday with their friends. They boarded their flights to Kashmir and were looking forward to meeting their friends. Their thoughts were abruptly snapped by a sudden drop of the Airplane and the uncontrolled turbulence which began to shake the plane violently.

It did not take more time for Prem and Amar to know that something was seriously wrong with the aircraft and the movements indicated malfunction of the equipment on board. The pilots in command were also quite experienced but could not bring the aircraft in their control as the malfunction was very serious. Immediately Prem and Amar offered to talk to the pilots and began checking the equipment. After a long examination they discovered that the only way out was to make an emergency landing though the under carriage may not open landing gear.

Xenophobia began to grip the foreign passengers on hearing the news about a possible emergency belly landing and there was near pandemonium in the aircraft. Prem , assisted by Amar requested for permission to handle the aircraft and took control. Slowly they surveyed the landscape for a possible level ground far from the city limits preferably a paddy field with wet ground to douse the flames, if any, that might erupt on landing. They noticed a small speck of land amidst the green fields, although very small and began gliding the aircraft towards it. With a lot of shakes and twists that made the aircrft wobble like a rudderless ship they managed to land the aircraft on the field and it came to a screeching halt spilling dust and slurry. After all the passengers were evacuated through the rubber chutes along with the original Pilots and crew, Prem and Amar slid down the Chute and walked away from the aircraft to a roaring sound of applause from the relieved passengers. Yes they looked indeed like a PHOENIX emerging from fire to them.

For Acrosticonly Short Stories

Manoj was a teacher in a small village in Mumbai. Despite his meager earnings he educated his son Ram who was equal to the task by performing extremely well in his studies. Aiming for highest qualification in Computer Science, Ram stood first in school followed by a top 10 rank in entrance exam of Indian Institute of Technology.

Yearning for recognition, after Completing B.Tech with top honours, Ram got an Offer from the top university in USA for doing his masters with full scholarship and he sought his father’s consent. Considering the enormous opportunities it provided, Manoj reluctantly agreed to send him abroad.

Completing MS in Computer Science Ram got a job as research executive in a software company. He wrote about this offer to his dad, His parents were expecting to spending their last few years of life with their son in Mumbai and the thought of further delay pained them. Nevertheless the news that Ram was coming to Mumbai for Diwali, a fortnight later, offered some solace to the elderly couple.

On this pretext Manoj wanted to get his son married during the visit so that Ram could take his wife with him to USA. Manoj’s friend Rakesh met him in the market and informed him that he was looking for a suitable boy for his daughter Shreya, who had completed her medical degree. Manoj shared the information about his son with Rakesh, who was keen to get his daughter married to Ram.

Upon his return from market Manoj informed his wife about the offer and said that he had invited Rakesh and his daughter to come home for Diwali, when they can meet Ram also. Ram arrived from USA and was told about the proposal to marry Shreya .

Nevertheless his mother was not happy because Ram would be leaving with Shreya to USA after marriage. Shreya and her father spent Diwali with the Manojs and Ram gave his consent to marry Shreya.

To complete various formalities that remained to be done , Ram was running around. He had to tie up some loose ends for his Job. He returned one evening yelling, “Mom I have made all the arrangements for the Job and it is just the Marriage that we should take care of.”

Reacting slowly his mother asked him when he was planning to leave for USA with Shreya. Ram winked at her and asked , “Mom do you feel you had enough and want me to leave soon !!”.With tears streaming down her face she started crying. Ram hurriedly apologized to her , “Mom I was just kidding, don’t I know how much you love me,”

Yet she was not consoled. He then made his parents sit comfortably and started saying. “Mom I am not going anywhere leaving you and Papa. Technology has improved so much that Location is no more a constraint for business. I have made arrangements to work from Mumbai and send the software abroad.”. His Mom leapt with Joy and hugged Ram and Shreya.

For Acrosticonly Short Stories

Friday, 12 February 2010

TOGETHER WE STAND

Take on a challenge
Obstacles will fade away
Gain your self confidence
Ensure the resultant success
Tactfully form a team
Hardships are no worry
Evolve a Joint strategy
Resist temptation to fight

Wanton acts of violence
End in tragic tale

Sustained effort at solidarity
Triumphs against any opposition
Aiming at success always
Needs well balanced group
Demonstrating collective wisdom

For Acrosticonly

MY FAMILY

Mother at the Altar
Younger siblings gather around

Fond faces ever smiling
Always ready for party
Mutual love and affection
Instill sense of togetherness
Lasting bond of relationship
Yearning for peaceful Life

For Acrosticonly

SISTERHOOD

Serene and sober souls
Involved in charity work
Sincere and dedicated hearts
Trained to take care
Ensuring prompt service always
Ready to make sacrifice
Humble and soft spoken
Overwhelmingly compassionate and gentle
Oblivious to worldly chaos
Duty and discipline entwined

For Acrosticonly

Sunday, 7 February 2010

MY COUNTRY

Majestic and beautiful Peninsula
Yearning always for peace

Cordial with every neighbour
Overwhelmingly rich in resources
Unspoiled and pristine landscape
Nature’s gift to cherish
Trust and friendship underline
Rejuvenating art and culture
Yes India, my country

For Acrosticonly

COMETS

Celestial objects incessantly mobile
Orbiting the space eccentrically
Mainly ice and dust
Enveloping a bright nucleus
Trailing long tails develop
Seen when nearing sun

For Acrosticonly

NEW DAWN

Nascent desires of heart
Estranged relationships needing solace
Weary limbs yearning rest

Destitute looking for savior
Aspiring souls wanting salvation
When will it be
New dawn for all

For Acrosticonly

PHOENIX

Perished on a pyre
Had the strong will
Overwhelming the natural elements
Evolved itself once again
Never accepting the defeat
Immortalized in the history
Xenolithic to be re-born

For Acrosticonly

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