Friday, August 03, 2007

eight and counting

be warned - this post for a change will not be from Mr.K. It will be from me. Its about me, so to make it simpler, this post will be in the first person.

this july 19th, i completed 8 years as a software professional. thought will steal a moment to pause to look back on how it has been so far and see whats ahead. there have been plenty of things i have learnt over these 8 years. here are some of them.

1. there is always someone better than you and earning more than its no good comparing against others. it is more important to understand where you are with respect to what you were yesterday and to what you want to be tomorrow. matters a lot that you do the right thing always. it matters a hell lot more that you understand that only thing that is right is the thing suggested by the "powers to be". but what matters the most is you have the "right contacts"
3.the system is what it is. don't fight it. learn to flow with it and live with it and make it work for you.
4.remember, you are never as good as what they say you are. you are never as bad what they say you are. just hold your ground.
5.there is no room for friends,mates,trust and all that. most of them are pretenders. you become one too and don't feel guilty about it.
6.there could be a hundred things going wrong, a hundred people who feel hard done. listen to their woes and say "tough luck". fight only your battles. doesn't give second chances. seize the opportunities. else you will be left wondering if you get a chance when you reach heaven. it is always tough living with a feeling that "i didn't give it my all". trying and failing is always better than not trying at all.

just to sum up how these 8 years has been to me, i split them in to three parts - 3-2-3. the first 3 was all about learning, energy, results and being happy with an uncluttered mind. the middle two was tough, depressing and reached the lowest point reassembling a "dark night with no MOON around". then the GODS took pity on me and i woke up to the song "Here comes the SUN". it just made me connect to myself and feel the warmth inside. the last 3 years have definitely been on the "more better than bad" side.

whats on the anvil when the 8Th year ends?. - well, i am just going back the place where it all started.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

strawberries, cream, grass and..

let the games begin. yes, ladies and gentleman its that time of the year. July is fast approaching and that can mean amongst many other significant happenings that we would be seeing the worlds top tennis players in their sparkling whites display their talents in the green grass of wimbledon.

wimbledon has always been more equal than the other slams. because of its history, because of its tradition, because it is british..NO, to mr.K, it is matter of simple fact - the lawns at SW19, London have always made the best players become greatest. these are the moments that stand out for mr.k

1985 - "all rise for the king, long live the king". Mr.K's first wimbledon. unforgettable and stands out in the memory till now and will always stand, a blue eyed blond german set foot in the hallowed courts of aeltc..the sparkle in his eyes, the athleticism in his legs, the deftness in his volleys and the start of "boom boom" tennis. yes ladies and gentleman - "King Boris Becker" had arrived

1990 - "all good things come in threes" and so it was the case for wimbledon finals. stefan edberg and King Boris played their last of 3 consecutive finals and what a finale it was. the genial swede played the best tennis one could ever see for first two sets. the King looked listless and helpless. sadness engulfed. then something happened. Boris during the changeover cut his hair, trimmed his stubble in the center court of all places and went on to play the tennis he only can. winners all around. un returnable serve and in no time we were at 4-4 in the final set. what a nailbiter. what a script that these guys wrote. exhilarating quality. in the end the swede walked away with the trophy deservedly. no one lost that day. tennis won

1991 - "oh baby,poor gaby". if ever there was a chance for gabriella sabatini to get one over her former doubles partner in a slam, this was the match. she had beaten her 5 successive times before this match and it looked like lucky 6 was on the cards on july 6. it turned out to be one of the best finals. drama at its best. both women had one set each. it was the final set. gaby had chance to close out at 5-4 with match points, then again 6-5. she did not. she blew it away. she lost 8-6. oh yes, her former doubles partner ended up being mrs.andre agassi, who is the subject of the next highlight

1992 - "punk meets royalty". at the start of the tournament the talk was about this young american. he had been picked by many to become one of the greatest. and yes we did have a young american against a talented croatian in the finals. the only problem was that it wasn't the american everyone predicted - Pete Sampras but rather the young punk from vegas with the game's best return of serve and a stated aversion of grass court tennis. what an incredible talent. wimbledon was one tournament everyone said that he wouldn't win. ironically it was the first that he did and he remains the only player to have all the four in open era. the showman from nevada was the last man standing. what an incredible moment, when he finally fell down on the grass to kiss it and cry. the tennis buddha was born. awesome andre.

1997 - "rivalry, what rivalry". the 97 finals was billed as the one for ages. it was the best serve vs best return of serve. discipline vs genius, serve and volley vs baseline and pass. as far as Mr.K can remember, there was only one man playing tennis that day. the other was just to fill the role of losing finalist. the tennis of the winner was as close to perfection as one could get. he was in a zone that he only could reach. what a champion - Pete Sampras

2001 - "thank you emperor, welcome the new emperor". It was the passing of key ceremony. it had to happen. it always happens in wimbledon. Borg to mcenroe, Boris to Pete and this one. it wasn't the finals. it was a quater final match up. the key to the center court was handed over. the young pretender cried at the end of the match after dethroning the emperor. it was a kodak moment. the fans applauded. pete to roger.

2001 - "good goran final arrives". the amiable croat once said "there are 3 gorans ( 3 ;)) - bad, crazy and good inside me". we saw the crazy edition in 92 and 98. the bad one at 92. in 2001, considered as the best finals ever, the good goran finally arrived in the center court. as a wildcard, he conquered many opponents but most importantly he conquered the crazy goran inside him. he finally did what he was expected to do many times and he did it when he was almost forgotten. maybe the good goran shows up only on mondays. yes the final was played on monday. for the record, it was the amiable aussie patrick rafter who endured the pain of losing a wimbledon final for second time in a row. this time in 5 sets.

The King
seven matches mr.k has listed down. but one player stands out the most. pete might be the greatest ever, roger might be the most graceful ever but no one held audience in the center court like boris. from the innocent 17 yr old to the tired old stubbled gent - he grew up in these courts. for him it was his home. it always seemed like it was the place where he left all his demons elsewhere and expressed himself. it was as if it was the only place he felt freedom. it was sheer joy and for people like mr.k it was sheer joy to see the King. it was not about his forehand, his serve, his volley. it was all about his "mystique", his "aura" and his "persona". it must have really been the only place he felt connected to himself. after his last match he went and experienced what he would later quote as "the most expensive five seconds of my life" :)

The Script that wasn't
and about the greatest of all - 7 time champion Pete. he ended his wimbledon in the court they call "graveyard of seeds" and never looked like a champion. it was the perfect script. he made it imperfect by winning the usopen that year. did he have to win the 14th grandslam. he shouldnt have. he should have stuck at 13.

Saturday, April 07, 2007

apocalypse today..a new dawn tomorrow

many of you must have heard of the new movie "apocalypto" from the highly controversial mel gibson. happened to read reviews of the movie, which in turn got me thinking about the original apocalypse movie - "apocalypse now" - a movie that is so intensely insightful about " human mind in love with hatred" that it disturbs you. if you have time to rent a good dvd, then don't miss this movie. what got mr,k interested was some of the things the characters in the movie say. reading it and re-reading it, it struck me that quite a few things hold good even for our lives. so here you go - with an absurdly cynical take on some quotes from the movie.

a) on moral ethics - on the ethics that we are taught at our schools, colleges, corporate world and how we figure out that ethics are only for good for boardroom talk - nothing more than that.
"We train young men to drop fire on people. But their commanders won't allow them to write "f***" on their airplanes because it's obscene!" - Col Kurtz
b) on the politikos of the world - well, nothing much left to say
"What do you call assassins who accuse assassins?" - Col Kurtz

c) on mavericks - well, for all those people who want to improve the system - don't bother improving it unless you have it in you to go the full circle.
"Never get out of the boat. Absolutely goddamn right. Unless you were goin' all the way. Kurtz got off the boat. He split from the whole freakin' program." - Capt Willard ( On Col.Kurtz, who finally gets his reward - death)

d) on those highly committed,successful and lowly paid people - some point of time, all of us can relate to this
"You're an errand boy, sent by grocery clerks, to collect a bill." - Col, Kurtz

e) on most of the leaders of today - ( with due apologies to women )
"who is in charge", "In charge? I don't know, man. I'm just doing what I'm told - I'm just a working girl." - Willard

f) on mission, vision and purpose
"You are fighting for the biggest nothing in history." - Hubert

g) on endings - we humans, everyone of us loves a good ending. we pray, we yearn, we dream, we imagine, we so want to make it a happy ending only to realize that we even don't have the power to write the endings the way we wanted to.
"this is the way the world ends, this is the way sun sets, this is the way brightness dims, not with a bang but with a whimper" - T.S Elliott re-edited by Col.Kurtz further re-edited by Mr.K

but cynicism and darkness also ends only for the sun to shine again and one wakes up to a new tomorrow If.

"do you know that 'if' is the middle word in life? If you can keep your head when all about you are losing theirs and blaming it on you, if you can trust yourself when all men doubt you, if you are losing everything and you never breath a world about loss, if you can fill the unforgiving minute of self doubts with sixty seconds of "hold on", yours is the sun,the stars, the earth, the moon, the universe and everything in it and which will be more - you will be a man,my son" - Rudyard Kipling re-hashed by Col.Kurtz and re-framed by Mr.K

Friday, April 06, 2007

cricket india inc

since our multi millionaire cricketers came back from their Caribbean sojourn with more sun burn than they would have bargained for, there has been nothing left unsaid about the state of indian cricket. even our fellow blogger INF has written a post on his quit watching cricket plans. mr.k couldn't resist the urge to put his thoughts down. staying away from the usual "dissecting what went wrong at world cup" and "who is to blame", this post directs at a 10 point solution to eradicate the woes of cricket in our nation.

1. make the BCCI a corporate body much like american/european sports clubs and appoint a professionally paid CEO/General Manager who is accountable for the indian team's performance
2. have full time contracted selectors / scouts who have the job to select the best team possible all times barring injury
3. have a pool of 30 centrally contracted players - the contracts should be a) a flat amount plus incentive based bonuses based on performance b) provide all professional expenses for players for the contracted time including medical care c) provide clause for re-negotiation of the parameters during anytime of the contract d) retain partial image and branding rights of players
4. hire a "director of player development" whose responsibility is to run developmental teams and make players ready for the bigger stage
5. change the domestic cricket format to have not more than 10 teams at the highest level.
6. improve the facilities and pitches to international standards while retaining the indian feel. have developmental teams visit abroad to help them acclimatise with various conditions.
7. for the indian team, hire a head coach, specialist assistant coaches - fielding, batting, bowling, wicket keeping, a media manager and team manager
8. keep the fan happy - provide for the best stadium experience possible. for heavens sake get rid of no water, no rest rooms, no food, hot sun stadiums
9. get rid of the star system - probably the toughest thing to do in india as it exists everywhere
10. finally, the fans should learn to accept failure as part and parcel of the game and continue to support their team. indian cricket fans, learn from red sox nation.

talking of redsox, their end to years of misery and drought was engineered by a yale educated, young professional GM, who had the strength to do what it takes to "win at all costs".

ps: learn more about theo epstein at

Friday, March 23, 2007

i said it, but ofcourse

.. I din't mean it..

why is it that some people have the gift of saying things that they never intended to mean it, how is it that this gift continues to exist with them often?. do they not realize that by being so consistent with it, they are asking their credibility to walk out of the door..and if credibility is not around, how soon before its partner respect is asked to leave..

the following text is excerpted from "The Kite Runner"

"would i ever lie to you, amir agha" . Suddenly i decided to toy with him a little. "i dont know, would you". "I'd sooner eat dirt " he said with a look of indignation.

"Really? You'd do that? "

He threw me a puzzled look. "Do What"?

"Eat Dirt if i asked you to". I said. Hassan's face changed..........

"But I wonder, if you would ever ask me to do such a thing, Amir Agha", and just like that he has thrown his loyalty test.he'd toy with me, he was testing my integrity.

I forced a smile, "don't be stupid, Hassan, you know i wouldn't". Hassan returned the smile and his was not forced.

And thats the thing about the people who mean everything they say. They think everyone else does too.

--- Khaled Hosseini

and for people who don't have this gift, praise the lord - it's a blessing in disguise

Monday, February 12, 2007


mr.k loves the english alphabets..the good old "a" to "zee", it is after all the fundamental building block of communication (discounting text messaging or what is widely known as sms ) i decided to bring about some viewpoints and thoughts (of mr.k ) on some english words..words, which missed the list - well they were simply not thought about. so here you go.

on (A)pple - that which attracted Eve, then fell on newton, keeps the doc(i know someone is blushing ;-)) away, now makes i-pod and more recently i-phone
on (B)irth - the eternal welcome ceremony that is common to all living elements
on (C)hildhood - the phase of life when you looked forward to every new day ;)
on (D)eath - oops, so soon ? :).. the day when you stop judging and you are judged ( if you go to a paradise ( not the hyd restaraunt) or to doomsbury ( smile on my face cause i came up with a word, which sounds like a english village and we all know england is as close to doom we can get in our world)
on (E)nlightenment - that which made siddhartha in to buddha
on (F)ood - that which gets reviewed by everyone and that which everyone can't live without ( could have written about family and friends, but decided not to as it doesnt have a clear definition )
on (G)OD - HE who makes the statement "dont believe in what you hear unless you see" as downright stupid. [ have a confession to make, was so tempted to write about GODDESS instead of GOD, but then i might have had to let a CCD confession out ]
on (H)ealth - the biggest wealth, which everybody ignores till they meet death :D
on (I)ndia - Krazee Kiya re, Krazeee kiya re - that which stands for "chaos is craze"
on (J)ewellery - that which fools think can make women love you more, get a life losers, if your women loves you more for the jewels you buy, then she is "no women" :D
on (K)iss - [ don't go in to dreams now ], the only thing that french are considered to be the best
on (L)ove - something that would befuddle einsteins of this world but would be so beautifully explained by the buddhas,krishnas and us :D [ okay karan johar too ;)]. Since we talked about love, we should also talk about its evil twin
on (L)ust - that everybody has it ( well not necessarily for opposite sex) but loathes to admit it
on (M)arriage - that which is made in heaven, but if you don't respect it could take you to Hell
one more M - on (M)oney - the greatest ever seductress known in the "universe book"
on (N)irvana - seattle rock band ;-) [caught you, you thought i would act philosophical again, didnt you ;-)]
on (O)ffice - where you understand that life is a two faced coin [ up/down]
on (P)rayer - so powerful, that it is more powerful than "power" itself
on (Q)ueen - someone who even the best of Kings are attracted to
on (R)aise - that which you hope for every year during appraisal and that which keeps proving "hope is the most mysterious weakness of mankind(okay woman kind for fairer sex readers)"
on (S)mile - cure for many illness, not patented too, but becoming quite corrupted and adulterated these days
on (T)ax - till this world ends, even if oxygen supply ends, this will continue to exist. it is quite possibily the best vacuum cleaner ever made with the highest suction capacity
on (U)niverse - read Douglas Adams 'hitchhikers guide to galaxy'. he sums it up beautifully that iam not even attempting to disgrace the master
on (V)egetables - when you buy it, you spend energy. when you eat it, you gain energy. didn't you guys read energy is never lost in translation - it is always converted. our good old vegetable proves the theory
on (W)ater - that even the alcoholics cannot ignore. [ thought about writing about wife, but mr.K overruled it as it falls under "to each his own" category]
on (X)erox - company which invented copiers. smart chaps, brilliant invention.
on (Y)ankee - one who thinks he has the GOD given right to Win everything and take everything that is in offer

on (Z)ero - the more you have in your bank account the more happier you are. except that it should not be the first digit.

guess next mr.k would write about 1 to 10..till then take care, make merry and love yourself.