When can a person be considered an achiever?

Does a guy become an achiever if he:
  • Marries the most beautiful girl in the world?
  • Ties the knot with the love of his life?
  • Manages to become a Crorepathi (India's version of Billionaire)?
  • Becomes the first cricketer to score 100 hundreds?
  • Becomes the first Indian scientist to invent hundred inventions?
  • Creates the second green revolution?
  • Becomes a superhero?
  • Saves the world?


  • Lives life to the fullest?
  • Has a dream in life, works towards it, and finally achieves it?
  • Fulfills every expectation of his loved ones?
  • Optimizes his talent and/skills to the point where impossible things suddenly become possible?
  • Achieves everything, but remains detached, and lives his life like a saint king?
  • Attains the atman (salvation) while still living life on his own terms?

A thousand questions arise in my mind. Even if I answer each of them, the answers give birth to another thousand questions? What's the point? What's achievement? What am I doing? What's even the point of posting this? As I try to seek to find answers to the never-ending questions, life continues and I remain an underachiever!!!



Life, work, and a lot of other things!!!!!!!

Many months have passed by and I have returned to this blog after a long long time..... I feel reborn. I feel like I am about to gain salvation...... No.... Actually, I feel like I am going to vomit....no not vomitting in the literal sense, but to dump out my negative thoughts so that I can live freely again... I am 29 and pushing 30..... this year.... I am now a father.... Yes the word "Father" gains prominence here because there is a completely new and happy responsibility in my life, my son, who is now a few months old.

Well, back to the point... For the past few months, I have seen some wonderful things and horrible things.... I have become so disillusioned with myself that I am losing focus of what's important and what's not. I don't care what people think about me because I realize that their opinion is worth shit as far as my family is concerned. I have been labelled many things - a slacker, a cocky guy, overconfident fellow, and so on.... but never wanted to be branded as an incompetent, especially considering that I truly have talent and potential.
I have been losing my mind due to a lot of professional and personal reasons, but fortunately, my family itself is enough to keep me from going insane.  I came into this industry hoping to earn enough to help my family. This industry has given me a lot of good things.... But as years have passed by, I have started to realize that it has also started taking some of the things that I considered so precious, my time, my family, and now my confidence..

The IT industry has been blamed for many things. I don't want to keep blaming it as I know that the problem lies not with the industry, but with my perspective and attitude towards it. Many people in India think that they need to earn XXXX dollars of money.. And they justify their hard and stringent timelines by thinking that their astronomical salaries are worth the hassle, but little do they realize that not everything is as fine as it seems. True, the money and the social status are a boon to any IT employee. But soon, the very milestones they cross turn into millstones on their neck. They slowly find that going to work becomes a hassle, a tiresome journey, and sometimes, work becomes hell and you start working on a Monday praying to god that Friday comes soon.You start seeing your family and children only on weekends, you start losing touch with your own brother, you go to office in the morning wondering what bomb is awaiting you in office.... So much negativity... Well, I just vomited my thoughts.. SO now, let's get back to reality.

Let's speak about the positive side of things for a change. I know I have digressed from the main point, but it is better to digress and feel positive than start thinking about mundane reality and stressing yourself.
I realized that I started to take things too seriously, so seriously that everything seemed to become a burden. I slowly lost the real perspective of things.. things that seem so trivial but actually make a huge difference. Things like sharing a good word of two with your colleague, friend etc, going for a happy tea break with your colleagues, sharing a light joke with your manager, and most importantly, smile and make each moment count. This negativity bogged me down so much that I started becoming a nervous wreck, affecting my family as well as my office team... As a result, my professional reputation got tarnished to such an extent that I felt like resigning immediately. Thankfully, sense prevailed and I am back to normal.. I understand that life is more complicated than it seems, but the solution to lead a happy life is so simple.....Be satisfied with what you have, learn to live with facts, work around your strengths, and ensure you choose the right path... MOre importantly, lead your life in the way you want it to be, not because someone told you so....

With this new found, so-called solution, i am getting back to work.... Not sure how much I will succeed, but at least, I will be happy... Hoping to return to this blog with a lot of happy things to sure.


Thought-provoking Tea Shop Discussion?

A scene from a common tea shop in Saidapet, Chennai, Tamil Nadu; Characters: Two 50-old guys and one 29-year old guy from IT.
Situation: Curious IT guy listening to the conversation between two commoners discussing about the so-called prosperity of their sons.

Dialogues: Tamil, mixed with random English words (Translation provided)

Old Guy 1 (Sipping tea while talking to his friend): Yenna pa Ramu, yeppadi irukke, un paiyanukku Americavula vela kedaichathame…Yeppo poran
(Hey Ramu, how are you, I heard your son got an opportunity in a US company, when is he leaving?)

Old Guy 2 (Throwing away his half-smoked cigarette): Ada avan innum athe company’la than pa irukkan. Yedho onsite opportunityyaam, athaan 2 varshuthakku America poga solranam…. 2 Lakhs per month kedaikkumam!!! Yellam antha maariyatha kodha varam… Adhu seri, un paiyan yeppadi irukkan

(No buddy, he is in the same company. They are sending him onsite to US for 2 year tenure. They say he will earn a salary equivalent to 2 lakhs per month. By the way, how is your son doing?)

Old Guy 1 (With a worried face): Avan kedakkaran pa…B.sc la 4 arrear …. Seri kaludhaikku padippu than varaliyennu… 2 lakhs kaasu koduthu yenna venunnalum pannu…. Yenna vittudunnu sollitten.. Ippo sondhama business panren… Mylapore’la 1 kadai, Mandavelila oru kadainnu yedho polappu oduthu…

(Ah, leave him, useless fellow, he  had 4 arrears in his B.Sc. As he is poor in education, gave him 2 lakhs to look after himself and told him to get lost. He is now doing business, has two shops, one in Mylapore and another in Mandaveli… Heard he is doing ok)

Old Guy 2 (With a confused look): Ada parava illaiye paa, 2 lakhs vachuttu rendu kadai vachuttana,, yeppadi paa.. Advance kodukarrathukke 2 lakhs aagumame. Yeppadi pannan… Adhu seri, yevvalavu varuman kedaikkkuthu… Vettu selavakku pathutha?? 

(Hmmm.. not bad, how come he could manage to run 2 shops with just 2 lakhs as capital….. I heard the advance for a shop itself runs into lakhs,… Anyways, hope business is good, is it enough to run the family?)

Old Guy 1 (Slightly irritated, skips the part on how his son managed to run two shops with a mere 2 lakhs as capital): Business yellam nalla than odudhu paaa…Yedho friends help panni bank'la loan vangi kadai vachan. Pala hotelku thengai regulara supply panrathala, maasathukku yella selavum poga 50,000 rupees nikkudham… Yenna panni yenna prayojanam… Un paiyana mathiri US pogara yogam irukkudha…. 2 Lakhs salaryna summava.. Yevvaluvu gouravamana vazhkai…. Velacherila 60 lakh’ku flat vangittannu kelvi patten… Yen paiyyana paaru… Avan ippo than Tambarathula oru ground vangi irukkannu… Yenna than kadai vachalam,… US pora yogam varuma

(Business is ok. Heard he got a bank loan with the help of his friends. As he is supplying Coconuts to nearby hotels on a regular basis, he is earning 50,000 per month. What’s the use anyways? He is not able to earn 2 lakhs per month like your son… or even have a white-collar job… I heard you son got a 60-lakh worth flat in Velachery, look at my son, he just managed to buy one ground in Tambaram…. What’s the use? He is no better compared to your son)

Old Guy 2 (With a proud face): Ada viduppa, yellam pona jenmathu punniyam…. Un paiyanum nalla varuvan kavalai padathe…..

(Leave it buddy! Only the fortunate souls reap such benefits. Don’t worry, your son will also prosper in life)
29-Old IT guy (Listening to the full conversation): Dei, ungala yellaraiyum yenda Tsunami thookala…. 50, 000 rupees per month varumanam namma naatula kadaicha, naanga yenda veli naadu poram…. Ada paavigala!!! 

Old Guy 1: Aamam pa... Un madhiri pullaiya perathukku koduthu vachirukkanam, un paiyanai kettadha sollu! Naan poitu varen!

(Yes buddy.... Only fortunate folks get blessed with a son like yours. Convey my regards to our son. Bye)

(Both men leave as the IT guy starts thinking aloud.)
IT Guy (Thinking aloud): Dei ungala mathiri aalungala yenda Tsunami thukkala..... Gouravama maasuthukku 50,000 sambadhikkara pulliya vachikkuttu, ooran vittu pillaiya periya aalunnu solre, Maasathukku 50, 000 rupai kedacha naanga yenda polappu thedi veli oorukku porom... Aandava, ivangala mathiri aalunga kitte irundhe yengalai kaapathu)

 (Fools! Folks like you people should have been killed by the Tsunami…. Old man 1 should be extremely proud to have a son, who is doing business and earning 50k per month... Instead, Old man 1 is proud his friend's son....only because of his white-collar job and onsite opportunity.. If people like us got the chance to earn 50k per month here, why on earth would we even go onsite???…Oh god, please save us from fools like these).


An Unforgettable Day!!!!!

In each of our lives, there comes a day in which we would have experienced some horrible, exciting, dangerous, or not-very good events. I have had many such days in my life and September 11, 2013 happened to be one such unforgettable day.... for many wrong reasons.. I almost lost my bike and perhaps my life.

The day started off with some frenzy as I had to rush to the the Passport office at Tambaram to submit my documents and avail a passport. Unlike my usual self, I had made a checklist of all documents required for verification, took photocopies of each relevant document, and placed them in neat folders... Very not typical for me as I am a person who never had the habit of doing things in a planned manner.

I started off the day rushing to the passport office. The weather was not a pleasant one as it was drizzling heavily and I had to rush to the passport office..... Throughout the 6 kilometer journey, my heart kept telling me that something bad was about to happen.... Fortunately, there was no hindrances in the passport availing process and I completed the formalities within a hour and half..... I left for office around 12 PM with a satisfactory feeling of having applied for a passport finally.
The first half of the day ended in happiness.

I left to office around 12 PM. As I had to attend a birthday party of my friend's child in the evening, i decided to start a bit early. So, I logged off my system around 6:20PM and took my bike. Then, I took a bad decision. Instead of taking the regular route that goes from Ramapuram-->Guindy-->Chromepet, I took an alternate route that starts from the backside of DLF IT park... This was due to the fact that the traffic in the regular route was always bad during the rainy season. I thought that taking the alternate route might help me save a few minutes.... Boy, how wrong I was!!! Things were going well smoothly till I reached the place called Kolapakkam..... This is a silent village near the Airport... The beauty of the fact is that not many people in the Chennai city even know its existence.....  While riding my bike towards Kolapakkam, I noticed that the road, normally buzzing with vehicle activity, was deserted..... I assumed that it was due to rain... I didn't realize that this silence was a warning.

Upon riding my bike for 2 kms, I came to a spot, which contains a 40 feet long bridge that is the only way to pass from Kolapakkam to Gowl Bazaar (A sleepy village 5 kms from Pallavaram). I saw a crowd that had gathered nearby, but didn't realize the reason. I saw two lorries cross the bridge and decided to ride over the bridge.
A picture of the Flooded Bridge is shown below:

 Just as I entered the bridge, I realized that the bridge was flooded upto a feet in height. The force of running water made my bike stop abruptly. I got down from my bike and tried to return to the shore, only to find that the strong flow of water was pushing my bike inch by inch into the river... Before I could react, I slipped from the bridge, along with my bike, into the river.

Within seconds, I was dragged along the river. I could feel the strength of the river current and realized that I might die. After all, this was a river that ran for miles and had depths of fifty to sixty feet. I struggled for breath as I tried to stay afloat. For a few seconds, I thought I could hold on to something and go ashore. But after sometime, I realized that all my attempts were in vain as I was being dragged, perhaps to my death, helplessly...... I removed my helmet and looked into the skies wondering whether I could never see my wife or my unborn kid again...... I could only helplessly watch as people from the banks shouted at me to swim ashore (Little did they realize that I could not swim). For a few seconds, I was getting ready to say my last prayers thinking that I was definitely going to die... Fortunately, I was rescued by three young men from the village. They dragged me ashore and sent me home. While making the journey home, I just thought about my struggle in the river and how I could have evaded it... I realized that in life, you should never take unnecessary chances without knowing the repercussions.... I could have avoided the whole embarassing incident if I had not taken the alternate route or even taken a minute to assess the water level on the bridge... I am blogging this to remind myself that in the future, I should always think twice and act wise before taking any decision, no matter how small it is.

I wish to take this opportunity to thank the villagers for saving my life and god for saving me.
This incident has been like a rebirth and I am hoping to make it count for good.


Ramblings of a Confused Man

I have been away from this blog for almost 2 years now. A lot of things have happened since then, I saw the love of my life get married, I got married to a lovely lady, and I will becone a father, a Dad, by the end of this year.
It's funny how time passes by. In April 2002, I was seeing the world as a confused teenager with a lot of dreams, expectation, and apprehensions. All I wanted was to complete a degree and get a job. Getting a good job was one of my goals, if not my only goal. Then, years passed by and I completed graduation in 2005. 3 beautiful years in college. Life was so heavenly.  I still remember the day I passed an interview and got an offer letter from the then-popular BPO Sutherland Global Services. It seems that life was bliss until reality struck.

I learned soon enough that I was never a proper fit in the BPO industry. I quit the company within 2 months. In the subsequent months, I joined and quit 2 more jobs. Continuous failures haunted my mind and I was becoming a mental and financial wreck. Finally, sense prevailed when I stumbled upon this career, Instructional Design, by accident and since then I have never looked back.

The point that I wish to make from this completely long and nonsensical post is that, without ambition life is pointless. I never had a proper ambition and as a result, I am not sure what the hell I am doing now. From a pretty young age, I had many ambitions - Scientist, Astronomer, Paleontologist, Writer, Actor, and so on. As they say, a person without a goal is like a missile without a target, it will only end up nowhere.

Although life is going pretty fine, sooner or later I have to decide what I need to do with my life. I have decided to update this blog today as a part of my goal. From now onwards, no matter what, I will not waste my energy on meaningless things such as reading stupid and meaningless articles, news, that never make a difference. I will focus and spend my energy only on things that benefit me, my family, friends, and the society.

As someone once said, If you want to do something good and meaningful, the best time to start would be NOW. With this long article, I take the first baby step towards my ambition.
Thanks to you folks, readers of my blog (even though the number may be in single digit), for guiding me through this long journey even despite my constant ramblings in this blog.


Love, Life, and Destiny

Life sometimes can be bittersweet. I always knew that there had be a day when I would say goodbye to my old love, but never expected it to end it in a bitter sweet way. Yes, I got engaged to a distant relative recently and it happened before the very eyes of my former love, Boss Lady. It seemed somewhat ironical to think that a person, whom you loved so much, would be the first to hear the news of your engagement and wish you "Good Luck" much to your dismay.

Truth be said, I was hurt and it really bothered me to be in such an embarassing situation. On one end, I have my prospective life partner sitting besides me and on the other end, I have my love, now my ex-love, someone whom I loved more than my life for over a decade, looking at me with a mysterious smile.

My mind raised a thousand questions. Why did she smile? Was she relieved? Was she happy that her guy found a better girl? Was she really happy or simply did not care about whatever happened? Did she sigh in relief that I wouldn't/couldn't disturb her anymore.

  As I said those fateful words, "Yes, I am ok with the Girl", I could hear sighs of joy on the faces of my parents, smiles around, and people sighing in relief. But all I cared was about that one person. When I looked around, I just saw her smile. As all the drama occurred and I returned home to Chennai, I thought of all those sweet moments that I had with her. Boy! Such wonderful moments. How I wish I had succeeded.Alas, such is love, such is life.

All that has happened now will be history and all that matters is what is going to happen". I recently heard that Boss lady got engaged too. And the most ironical thing is that her marriage is just hardly a month away from mine. Well, I guess that great endings happen only in films. I called her yesterday to have a small discussion before we finally part our ways. As I dialed her number, it occurred to me that this could probably be the beginning of the end. As she picked the phone and said Hello, I gasped for breath. I took a few moments and finally told her that it was me on the other end. She spoke for about 20 minutesbefore finally ending the conversation with those fateful words, "I can't say my husband is a smart man. To be frank, he is not that good looking. But I said yes because he was a good man like you. Wishing you all the very best, my dear friend". As I disconnected the call, I wondered what she meant. "If she wanted a good man, why couldn't it be me?", I said to myself as I walked away in grief. Such is the tragic fate of love, such is life and destiny :(

"Oh dear friend, I need to say good bye.
Please don't ever ask me, WHY?
Because although I know the reason, I can never tell
that life without you is as good as hell........
I will always love you no matter what
because even as we part, we will stay close at heart.
I always wished that we would  live together in harmony,
but such is love, life and destiny.
So Good bye dear,  till we meet again.
I wish we could relive those good old days again."


Rest in Peace, Steve Jobs

This imaginary post is dedicated to the late Steve Jobs.
Scene: (Steve Jobs goes to heaven and is welcomed by God and a group of Angels)

God: Welcome back, Steve.

Steve Jobs: Hey, what place is this? Who are you folks?

Angel 1: Steve, your tenure at Earth has come to an end. You are in heaven. You can rest in peace here.

Steve Jobs: Rest…. You guys crazy… You interrupted me.. I was discussing with my Apple folks on the next big Apple product.

God: WTH!!!! Steve, for heaven’s sake, gimme a break. You have created several path-breaking projects. Apple, Next Computers, i-Pod, i-Pad, i-Phone, i-Mac and several other beauties. All these in 56 years of lifetime. Please stop now. Enjoy your time in heaven.

Steve Jobs: Sorry boss, I need to finish my product, I call it i-Car……

God and the Angels shout aloud: i——What????????????

Steve Jobs: i-Car. You see… I want to redefine the way Cars are made. So we designed i-Car- the first smart car. All you have to do is type your destination and it will suggest

The various routes to the desired destination
The variour hotels, shopping malls, and cineplexes on the specified route.
Recommend the list of tourist destinations that you can see
God: Hmm, interesting,. So what else does it do.

Angel 1(Smirks): He defies the maker!!!!

Steve Jobs: Well….. we have also incorporated the functionality to ensure that the car stereo plays tracks suiting the mood of the driver. Also, the Air conditioner will adjust its temperature according to the surroundings and the number of people in the car. Plus, the car has two fuel modes - Solar and Gas.

The car will automatically charge in Solar mode if the Sun is bright and shining……..

Also, the car has an in-built 12MP camera, which takes pictures of the scenic destinations on-the-go..

God: Great mother mary…. stop it Jobs. Stop it…..enough with your creativity…..

Steve Jobs (observes the surroundings): Oh jee, that’s a nice place you have here. You just gave me inspiration for the next big product I am gonna create.

God: Next big product…… here… in heaven. What exactly will it be?? Ah,… let me guess… An i-robot???

Steve Jobs: No

Angel 2: i-restaurant??? i-Mall???

Steve Jobs: No

God(loses his patience): What the hell is it???

Lucifer: Hell!!!!!!!!!!!!! Don’t speak about my place in a derogatory manner.

Steve Jobs: Nope, it is i-GOD!!!!

Angels 1 and 2: OH GOD…………………

Lucifer: Damn it…. And I thought it was difficult to handle one god. And now he gives the great one company &*&^(&(&(&)&)(&*()(+_)+_)*(*()DAMN YOU STEVE JOBS

Steve Jobs: Excuse me, I gotta start work now…………….

GOD: Send this guy back!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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