Thursday, February 23, 2006

For My Little 'Boy Friend'

You just connect with some people instantly. You don’t need long introductions, chats or meetings to develop that special bond. He is one of those special ones for me. I’ve just known him for a little more than a year now and our first meeting hardly lasted 5 minutes. After that it was only over phone that we spoke.

He visited my house a few months back and when he entered, he just flung himself in my arms and gave me a tight hug. The rest of the day was spent listening to his constant chatter. I finally visited his place in Dubai for a week and we had a great time with each other. He constantly hung around with me and showed me all his favourite places.
Every morning he would come near me and try to wake me up quietly and when it was time for him to leave, would place a cute little peck on my cheek and say good bye.

He has endless questions over everything and I really admire his parents for answering each one of them patiently. He loves eating at KFC and his favourite snack there is chicken popcorn. He sings ‘Kajra Re’ to perfection (only after our constant pestering) and dances to it as well along with his tiny friends! His non-stop chatter is something I miss everyday back home.

He is my little energetic bundle of joy, my little “boy friend”. He hasn’t quite yet figured out the meaning of ‘Bayko’( wife in marathi) and thinks that it means something that is his and keeps fighting with his ‘Mama’( his maternal uncle and my husband) saying that I’m his ‘Bayko’.

Dear T, your ‘Minal Mami’ misses you every moment. I’ve never been a great person with kids but somehow you have brought out the best in me. I hope this lovely bond we share will last forever. You seem to be growing up fast.

Here is wishing you a fun-filled birthday and a great year ahead.
May your naughty and innocent antics never stop and keep spreading happiness and joy to all the people around you.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Wisdom @ Work

From one of my favourite blogs, a few words of wisdom to tackle work life:

  • Your hard work will be rewarded. Specifically, your boss’s boss will reward your boss for making you work so hard.
  • Teamwork is what you call it when you trick other people into ignoring their priorities in favor of yours.
  • Preparing a Powerpoint presentation will give you the sweet, sweet illusion of productivity.
  • It is better to be an “expert” than it is to do actual work.

These and lots more pearls of wisdom from the man himself: Scott Adams

Mirror Mistakes

I did write about cricket played on Sunday 19th but not about this. My next pending post is about the series review which will be up soon but looks like Mumbai mirror decided to play psychic by guessing what I intend to write next!

I do not know whose post is this and why has my post been credited to it? First shot glad to have my blog post featured in print media for the first time but on a second glance not so much to have someone else’s content put up instead of mine!

I wonder if proof reading is a concept that is fast disappearing in the print media!!

Sunday, February 19, 2006

Heartbreaks Galore!

Sunday the 19th seemed a day that could go down in Indian history as Demolition Day! Atleast it was on the track till afternoon. The seniors were going about their mission in fine fashion. Almost pre-planned! That series review post will come later (On another note we can finally name Dhoni as our Demolition Man, he is just too smooth in his operation!)

Meanwhile I was also hooked onto the under-19 World Cup final being played in Sri Lanka. Ten Sports and Set Max were the only two channels that were working on my TV on Sunday!

It was the clash of old foes, two teams evenly matched up and scores to be settled. India was beaten by Pak in the last WC semi-final. This was their day to avenge the defeat. The performance against England in the semi-final, where they had wrapped them up for a meager 58, had given them enough confidence. In the first innigs of the match when asked to bowl they seemed to carry off from where they had left off!

India played to its strength and the spinners did the trick for India. Jadeja, Paramer and Piyush Chawla. The little lad Piyush, all of 17, is one hell of a prospect for India. Bhajji better be aware. He disguised his deliveries well and the googlies he bowled often, had the batsmen confused.
8.1 overs, 8 runs and 4 wickets! The bowling figures speak a lot for the young lad! He looks good to break in the big league. Maybe a year or two at the domestic level will serve him good but considering that Kumble does not fit in the ODI scheme of things, Bhajji has been far from performing well; Chawla could be tried out for the World Cup 2007 probables. No harm done! He is also handy with the bat as the innings would prove later!

Anyway it all looked over for Pakistan. 109 all out on a good batting track and India was out to bat for a few overs before lunch. The cup seemed to have been in their pocket until lightning struck in the form of two young speedsters from Pak!

Yesterday’s three overs made me agree that we are still a trifle bit under prepared to face sheer pace! It still shakes us up! And Imran is not joking when he keeps harping about how of the current lot of teams in international arena Pakistan has the richest pool of talent in the pace bowling department. If you had seen Jamshaid and Anwar you would agree with him!

Jamshaid and Anwar bowled the most amazing dream overs one could expect at the start of the innings! I can’t recollect the last time I saw such a dream start!

Dhiman out first ball, then Sharma gets a four, then Anwar bowls in and gets Pujara out, then Sharma, then Tehlan! The Indian score card reading a dismal 8-4, chasing a meager 110 on a good decent track!

The best part though was seeing both the teams play to their strengths and be successful at it. Pakistan a trifle more! India deploying their spinners and Pakistan their speedsters. The captain Shukla even pulled the same ploy as Martin Crowe did in the ’92 WC. Like Crowe had deployed Deepak Patel the spinner to open the bowling; Shukla brought in Jadeja to do the same and Jadeja responded well with two vital wickets.

At the end of it; it was heart wrenching to say the least. Before the lunch-break in a span of three overs India was reeling at 9-6. No hope, not even the slightest chance. What looked like all theirs had gone away in few minutes of sheer havoc! I did not follow each and every match in this tournament but from the reports and commentators India had been the best team in the tournament only to fail at the final post! The batting had been rock solid with the top three batsmen always getting good starts and it had to fail only at the final juncture.

Those kids are in their teens and it must have been heart-breaking to cave in this fashion. Maybe they will seek inspiration from their seniors in the ODIs. Remember Yuvraj and Kaif were a part of the team that had won the U-19 WC in 1999. So this tournament sure does produce stars for the future and take my word Piyush Chawla is the one that will soon shine on the horizon for us!

As for Pakistan, after a forgetful ODI series for the seniors the country has something to celebrate! Also Sami, Rana, Shoaib better be on the lookout, those young guns Jamshaid and Anwar just might blast their way through and then it would be too late to realize what hit them;-)

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Give a Thought-9?

  • Everyone has a photographic memory; some people just don't have the film.
  • When I was born, I was so surprised I didn't talk for a year and a half.
  • Until I was 13, I thought my name was 'Shut Up.'
  • I say no to drugs -- they just don't listen!
  • I've never been drunk, but often I've been over served.

Source: From Mangi's list again...

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

What’s in A Name?

So you haven’t changed your last name yet?
Why have you kept both your surnames?

Everyone considers these questions as their birth right to ask a lady who has been recently married and mind you this does not apply to Indians alone!

I have all along wondered why it is such a talked about issue. It’s my name and it’s my personal choice. Today a lady can retain her maiden name, and there aren’t any legal hassles. All that she should have is the marriage certificate as a proof of her marriage to her husband. Her name is a matter of her personal choice. Yet we are to accept it as a norm. The norm that is easily accepted is to simply take up your husband’s name right away.

Why exactly? I don’t see the husbands changing their name to their wives’ name! (Have I turned on the feminists, one more point to debate about?) I don’t even want people to do that, that’s being foolishly extreme, but surely the girl must have a choice in retaining her maiden name, keeping both surnames or changing over completely to her husband’s name. That choice should be hers and hers alone. It’s her name and identity we are dealing with. We talk of educating the women, giving them liberty and yet when she chooses to retain her maiden name or keep both surnames, it is often met with raised eyebrows. And raised eyebrows are not only from the older generation but from your own friends and peers. Your own generation! (In fact I have found it easier to convince the elders than my peers)

I find it increasingly funny when I hear justifications that no one from any side in both families has done it before. Well that is not a reason for me to not do it :-)

I have simply thought about it on a few lines:

  • For most of us it’s our parents who are responsible for what we turn out. We do owe them a lot. Tell me how can one suddenly stop identifying as somebody’s daughter simply because she has become someone’s wife? They are the ones who give you your identity, so what is the need to drop their identity from one’s name.
  • To look at it practically and logically, the name change process can be quite a pain. These days most girls get married after they have been working for sometime. This means that their bank accounts, initial investments, correspondences, documents like passport, credit cards, etc all are in their maiden name. Imagine the pain one has to go through to communicate to all of them about the change in name. (Surprisingly the men don’t seem to go through this hassle when they get married!) So the ideal situation would be to not change the maiden name at all and continue as is.
  • But then when you are a mix of traditional values and rebellious streak, the two-surname choice is a more lucrative one. I love both of them, my parents and my husband. I have to have them both in my identity. They after all are important in defining me :-)
  • It is definitely easier to relate to the old and new identities if both names are retained. For e.g: I’d relate to 'Miss Maya Ray' as 'Mrs Maya Ray Sen' much better than only 'Mrs Maya Sen.'
  • By keeping both names the lady depicts the union of two families forever

What I hate is the safe universal assumption that the lady getting married will change her name to her husband’s. I can choose to call myself Princess Consuela (But I’m no Pheobe and I won’t go to those extremes) instead , it’s my choice after all. Earlier I tried giving everyone my point of view but I now see it as a fruitless exercise and I’ve come back to telling myself the same thing. It’s my name and I decide what I do with it. No more questions asked, no explanations given.

Surprisingly the one person who should have raised some concern is completely okay with whatever I choose :-) Ah the wonders of having an understanding friend in a hubby!

Monday, February 13, 2006

Birthday Wishes…

Cards aplenty,
Bouquets so pretty,
E-mails flow in from afar,
And so do the SMSes,
Blessings from the elders,
And the belated wishes continue for a day or two,
All echoing only one thing, wishing a wonderful birthday and a lovely year ahead…

It is truly wonderful, how year after year, your loved ones go to different lengths to make your day a special one, and each year is different from the one before.

I can only thank God enough for blessing me with such a lovely bunch of people around; for if it weren’t for you all, yesterday would not have been special…

Thank you:-)

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Does He or Does He not?

Harsha asks for Shoaib to undergo a test to see whether he chucks or not. He puts a fair logical reasoning to it. Many a times when one watches him bowl you get the feeling that he could be violating cricket rules, anyway that's for the ICC to 'check' and Pak to accept.

The article makes for some good reading and invites a lot of debates as well.

Friday, February 03, 2006

10 years...

Shopping at the grocery store she saw a familiar face.

All of it suddenly came back, the memories flooded. Memories she had tried hard to kill, to bury. She thought she had done so until she saw that face again. It all came back, the sorrow, the hurt, the pain at being cheated, the false promises, the lies, the betrayed trust, the death of a fine friendship. He had murdered it all for her in one go. It was so sudden then that she had never reacted. She had taken it quietly. She wanted to yell, she wanted to kick him hard, she wanted to slap him, to get her revenge, and bring out in the open that selfish being.
She had done nothing. She had questioned nothing and accepted it all. For most she had shown dignity through it all, only she knew deep down what she really wanted to do and for years she wondered why she had not done what she always wanted to.

Today her time had come, she decided to walk up to him and ask. Finally question his actions of ten years ago and seek the answers to questions that had haunted her. She dared, she walked up to him and then stopped.

She turned back. His existence did not seem to matter to her anymore, it did not then, it did not now. She had the answer for all these years but she had just realized; that he was simply not worth it. The man up there seemed to have conveyed it to her in the best possible manner 10 years ago yet she had questioned his decision to do so. And now she knew what he had meant.

She smiled and walked back.
Life seemed to have started again.

Shopping at the grocery store she saw a familiar face.
All of it suddenly came back, the memories flooded. Memories that still brought a smile on her face. The face that had made her blush the first time, that had made her knees go weak, her first crush.

He turned and saw a familiar face looking at him. All of it suddenly came back, the memories flooded. Memories that still brought a smile on his face. The face that made him that made his knees go weak, the smile that had melted his heart, his first crush.

They both walked towards each other steadily. He offered her a cup of coffee. She accepted. All those college memories revisited. The fun and the banter, it all blossomed again. They spoke about their lives after college. They had gone pretty much the way they had always wanted to.

After a pleasant chat both parted ways. They looked up and thank god for not giving them the courage to express their feelings 1o years ago. It was far more beautiful having each other for friends than anything else after all these years. Sometimes the man up there knows you better than you do yourself.

They smiled to see their better halves waiting to greet them at the doorstep of their homes.
Life seemed to have started again.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Give a Thought-8?

  • The light at the end of the tunnel is the headlight of the oncoming train.
  • It's not the fall that kills you; it's the sudden stop at the end.
  • I'm not afraid to die. I just don't want to be there when it happens.
  • Born free; Taxed to death.
  • Life is unsure; always eat your dessert first.

Source: My dear friend Mangi with his sense of humour could probably cook up better ones!

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Kolkatta’99 Revisited at Karachi ‘06

After day one I prayed that the ghosts of Kolkatta 1999 did not return to haunt us. Unfortunately that is exactly what seems to be happening!

Irfan pathan came up with the three most important deliveries of his career. Hat-trick in the first over of the match! We could not have hoped for a better start. It was like a dream! The ball was finally wrecking some havoc. After the leather being belted around it was time for the furniture to be brutally dismantled.

RP Singh and Zaheer chipped in and we had Pak reeling at 39 for 6 just like we had them reeling at 26/6 then(at Kolkatta in the Asia cup in 1999). As always instead of further tightening our grip we let it lose and let Pak recover to a reasonable fighting total. Moin Khan the then wicket -keeper rescued them and here it was the current young wicket keeper- Kamran Akmal.
The script has gone eerily similar, only this time Pak has put itself in a far more commanding position, having declared at 599 in the second innings!

Kamran Akmal though was a delight to watch. What a lovely innings he played. It is even more worth applauding considering the match conditions. None left to stand with you and the ball seaming wildly. A little bit of patience and loads of natural talent was the key for Akmal. He played splendidly and if Pak wins this match he deserves the man of the match for his innings have to be the one that turned it around for Pakistan.

Post day one it has been nothing but disappointment for the Indian team. First we did not bat sensibly at all. Specialist openers, anyone heard about them? Never mind! What’s the point in talking about it in the hindsight! Why did Dravid and Laxman open? Sehwag injured? Get a regular opener in his place!

Saurav Oh Saurav, they crucify and keep the sword hanging on your head. I thought you played with a lot of grit and that one mistake turned out to be your last! Time and again the same shots bring about your downfall. That lad Pathan plays it better than you! Do you not work on it? If not forget it, try to avoid playing it. Clumsy is the one word when I see you playing the hook shot! That shot is a sight for sore eyes when executed well, ask Dravid or Ponting. One fifty and you could have taken India to a respectable total but it was not to be.

Asif impressed. A little bit assistance and the guy bowled extremely well. Boy Pakistan really has talent in the fast bowling arena. But they seem to come and go; none seems to last a while. Razzaq had a terrific match too. 45 in first innings, 90 in the second, three crucial wickets: Tendulkar, Dhoni and Ganguly in India’s first innings. He bowled a snorter of a delivery to Yuvraj, Yuvraj was lucky he did not nick it!

One word for Simon Taufel. Awesome umpire! I wish we could have ten more of him on the panel! Yuvraj had one LBW appeal against him which Taufel turned down. Even the commentators did not realize in the replay that there was a faint inside edge of the bat before the ball hit the pads. They were convinced that he was out but several replays proved otherwise. That Taufel was correct. The next time when Yuvraj got out, Taufel got it perfect. The ball hitting the pad before it took the edge of the bat. That guy is seriously good! No doubt he has got the Best Umpire of the Year Award at the ICC awards for last two years.

Finally to end, we have our backs to the wall and Sachin has failed again. Is it the same pitch that Pak batted a while ago? I wonder! How we seem to squander a perfect lead position is something I fail to understand. Sometimes sticking to the basics helps, especially in tests.

Sigh! All it takes is one bad session to turn the tide against you. We have only ourselves to blame!