playing to the gallery

yesterday and today, IIMB hosted a mini performing arts fest. invitation based only for a few arts and science colleges in bangalore(notable non-invitee was MES college, which usually wins Saarang Choreo – probably our TDC culcom decided MES is too KT to be called).

it’s obvious that given our deadlines, etc. we can’t practice as much as these arts and science colleges and hence there’s little chance we can win. in the circumstance, our performers did a wonderful job by simply playing to the gallery…

nice insight… if you know you can’t win, at least play to the gallery!

ps: there was a “cheering competition” because of which there was quite a bit of noise from the crowd. in fact, i never knew that our own IIMB junta can emulate the Padayappas of Pachaiyappa who throng the backbenches at CLT during saarang… and arbitly hoot…

speech…

gave a speech today… at some “IIT aspirants seminar” organized by 2 juniors from IIT along with the able support of The Hindu. It was aimed at 10th and 11th standard kids to inform and motivate them regarding IIT so that more people from B’lore would land up at IIT (right now it’s an abysmal avg. 30 per year; gultland puts in 200).

other speakers included a retired IIT prof, cueballs’s dad (IITM alumnus; former Sr. VP at Infy; now founder and CEO of dreamworks) and Hareesh’s dad (an IAS officer; IITM Mech; said he follows this blog !!??!). me, as usual, was last to arrive, arriving JIT at 2 pm.

event started off with a set of speeches by some ppl in the Hindu and us getting our momentos (!!??!… i thought momentos were typically given at the end). then, one by one each of us speakers was introduced and then asked to address the gathering. for my intro, i had sent them my resume and also a short write-up about me written by sathya. the announcer chose to read out my resume (a two page thing) in full!! wanted to laugh but the focus was on me…

speech didn’t go too well… though mom told me i spoke well… i thought i stammered too much, there was way too much discontinuity… i forgot stuf… etc… however, i managed to pick myself up before the Q&A session and was back in my elements while taking on the questions…

and before the questions, there was this arbit “parent” from Davanagere who started rambling on arbit stuff about district headquarters. no one was listening, not the least us “dignitaries on the dais” (i thought when one of the ‘dignitaries’ was speaking, others were supposed to listen; but the other dignitaries (much much senior to me) kept talking to me… me being the bachcha, had to talk to them). finally a firm tap from someone from the Hindu sent back this arbit guy…

at the end of the talk, there was some ACP by some students and some parents (remniscient of the speech i gave at the BASE function last year)… and yeah, cueballs’s dad had been informed by hareesh’s dad about this blog, so he comes and asks me for the URL. so i guess he’s also reading this…

then, i was almost pissing in my pants (had made up my mind to finish the aquafina before me on stage)… slowly walked to my car and then my parents weren’t picking up the phone… 20 painful minutes later, my mom picked up and told me where she was… (was quite nearby actually)… what a relief…

nice footage these kind of events give you… probably since this was the first time, i kinda enjoyed it. though i still think i could’ve done much much better. hmmm…. let’s see…

thread issues…

today happens to be upakarma the day when you are supposed to change your sacred thread, the three strands that declare you to be a brahmachari. Some elaborate functions are held in some temples, priests’ houses, etc. where people go en masse and change their janavaaras. And then wear two sets of threads for a day and remove the old dirty one the next day after 1008 iterations of the gayatri mantra

i’ve never been too religious so my routine over the past 4 years (before that i didn’t have a thread) has been to take bath early, wear the new thread, take bath early the next day again and then remove the old one. like i change my clothes!

however this year the issue has been simplified since i’d chucked my old thread into the thames four months ago… simply woke up (obscenely) early, took bath and wore a new thread… as simple as that!

if i’m not wrong today also happens to be rakshabandhan, the day when many a budding relationship is nipped. a piece of thread and some colored cotton that says “i’m your sister so i can’t be your girlfriend” or some such thing… i remember in school when we used to try not to go near certain girls on this day, afraid that they may do “something untoward”.

thankfully (??!??) i’ve managed to maintain a clean wrist (save my cousin who invariably ties it a few days too late 🙂 ) for the last seven years in successsion!

wanted for bangalore

had a guest lecture today by Leo Saldanha of some NGO talking about the Bangalore Mysore Infrastructure Corridor Project and why it is flawed. Was a very sensible talk for someone from an NGO.

Had another lecture presenting the other side of the same story. Was delivered by Manjunath (formerly “Master Manjunath” of the Malgudi Days fame) who is currently PR for NICE, the company implementing the project.

Definitely don’t regret the course “Technology, Infrastructure and Market Reforms”. Prof. Narasimha Rao rocks bigtime.

AFter the talks here is what i think should be the state govt’s plan for bangalore:

1. Develop a REALLY outer ring road… one that won’t come into the city’s confines for another 50 years. and it SHOULD NOT be tolled. this would be a good passageway for trucks just PASSING BY bangalore.

2. Develop infrastructure at Mysore, Mangalore, Dharwad and Gulbarga. Set up incenives (something like tax breaks for at least another 10 years) for IT and other companies to shift to these places from Bangalore.

3. Develop the public transportation facility at Bangalore. Build teh Metro Rail or whatever ASAP. Develop dedicated bus lanes and drastically improve frequency and quality of BMTC buses.

4. Once the public transport system is sufficiently developed, impose a “congestion charge” (a la London) and extremely heavy road taxes and parking fees.

5. On an immediate note, encourage companies to have company buses to ferry employees to and from office. Probably incentivize companies where a larger proportion of employees use company/public transport to reach office. Incentives could be in terms of tax or otherwise.

6. Implement the above point for schools also.

will take time and a lot of initiative but if it is done it would make bangalore a much better place to live in…