Saturday, June 25, 2011

a sMaLLiSh sToRy

An unfortunate occurrence to be sure, but I have lost the ability to keep track of dates. What we do here in the Company is to assign work weeks and then track them as wwXX.2 or wwYY.4 which means the nth day of that work week. Now R pinged me yesterday and reproached me for forgetting her b'day. "What?? What do you mean June __th??? Why didn't you tell me in plain English that ur b'day is ww25.3??? What date is it today btw?? All I know is that it's ww26.6…

Now I've been reading quite a bit since the last one week and something seems to have come over me. an idea, nay in fact a germ of an idea in my head. If you would give me , but one moment, just a smidgeon of a moment and allow me to clear the idea in my head and jot down a few thoughts... I would be very much obliged, to say the least.

Now the Company [ henceforth it will always be the Company ] was pretty hard headed. Indeed , if the company had been a person, then it would be a steely eyed, gum chewing, expensive suit wearing, new york broker who'd give you one look and tell you how much money you had in your bank right down to the shilling.
But that's besides the point.
What's the point?... I know your wondering... Well lets get right to it then. The Company, though pretty hard headed, didn't begrudge it's employees some of the perks that some others considered an extravagance, but instead a justified means to boost employee morale, though secretly everyone had already guessed at the ulterior motives of the Company in providing the above said perk.
Since an excess of 10,000 employees worked in close proximity to each other, [ closer than they wished ] sitting in dull grey cubes that remind them of the 5th moon of Jupiter [ and by that I mean barren, icy and hellish looking ] , and these faithful employees worked from dawn to dusk and sometimes more, always loyal and mindful of the remaining 9999, who were simply waiting to jump on the chance to stomp the one down, in case of a mistake. And since all these employees had something called a lunch break which was an only natural and humane break to have considering the number of hours stuck in the hellish cubicles... Now you could imagine the pandemonium that was the 'lunch break'. 10000 ppl stomping out of the building and getting into their cars and hunting for lunch.. And then all of them stomping back an hour later, to their dull , hellish cubicles. But on second thoughts perhaps you shouldn't imagine it.

So the Company of course offered this perk. This perk of an in-house café. Now imagine , you could get lunch right in the building! Wasn't it marvelous. Never mind that the food reminded one of the nether regions of pluto [ and by that I mean so bland and pale and insignificant that even the gods rejected it and threw it out of the categories. ] and never mind that strange straggly, bearded and tattooed men were regularly ejected out of the kitchens bearing 'lunch' to the mute uncomplaining eyes of the employees in their plain tshirts and plain looking jeans, who were clearly impressed by the array of tattoos and a little bit disconcerted that the man was smoking a cigarette and still never mind that the one hour lunch now turned into a 20 minute break to pick up the food and the rest was spent pouring over the quarterly reports while stuffing one's face with the special of the day. Now not one of the 10,000 uttered a word of complaint at this, after all the Company had provided a wonderful perk! In the august form of the in-house café!
And thus we finally come to Bertie. He was simply one of those thousands thankful for this wonderful perk that the Company had provided , just like the basketball court outside the building which ofcourse no one used because they just HAD to complete this report. Everyday bertie would do a quick dash to the café to grab a box of something, no not something… he would grab a sandwich and a soup. Day after day, Bertie faithfully went down, stood in line , got a sandwich and a soup, stood in line, paid for the aforementioned sandwich and soup and climbed back up to his cubicle.

Life was pretty good. Bertie COULD have bothered to make lunch and get a lunchbox to the office, but then Bertie was a terrible cook and it's saying something that Bertie preferred the tattooe'd man's soup over his own cooking. Also there was another reason why Bertie never got lunch from home. A very special reason. And her name was April.
If there was one highlight to Bertie's god awful day in his hellish and drab cubicle it was the 30 seconds he got with April. He would patiently wait in queue with his sandwich and soup till it was his turn and he would hear the clear ringing tones of "Do you need a receipt with that?". Bertie of course could only stammer bleakly indicating that he didn't want a receipt and walk away feeling slightly dazed by the sight his eyes had feasted on for 30 seconds. He would then spend at least half of his afternoon reflecting on the many extraordinary qualities of April , not the least of which was her clear glowing skin, her bright eyes and brilliant smile while she always asked him the same question, "Do you need a receipt with that?". Even her tone was so refined, and so her words were spoken so melodiously and…. aaah Bertie was indeed happy to avail of the perks, the Company had so graciously provided him in the form of April in the in-house café.
Of course Bertie was no fool, he knew that he was never going to actually speak real words to April. "no" was not a real word when answering the same question and he didn't have the slightest intention to go beyond this kind of worshipful adoration done from far far away. Sometimes, like today when he was forced to also have breakfast in the café, he would meditate on all the charms his April possessed, that made her stand out amongst the rest of the café employees; her trim and neat appearance with her hair all glossed back and her neat black uniform with not a wrinkle in sight, her clean neat hands and well polished nails, unlike that hideous tattooed soup maker! Now, look at that martinet!! With her close cropped severe hairstyle and dour demeanor and never asking if anyone wanted a receipt! No, Bertie would not go to her if his life depended on it!! Once when April was not around, he was forced to pay at the only open cashier and the old pigeon had fixed such a baleful eye on him while ringing up his order that he very nearly spilled his soup in her lap!

Or consider that scrawny looking thing with the messed up hair and the numerous ghastly pink beaded necklaces around her neck, gulping down her eggs. Her hair was a complete mess! [ Bertie worshipped neatness above everything ] what? She was wearing a tank top in the august offices of the Company and not a suit with a tie?? Bertie frowned unbelievingly that one of the Employees would be so impertinant and flippant as to disregard the dignity of the Company. [ Bertie was all about dignity ]. Surely she did not work here… Any by GOD was that a cigarette tucked between her B______!!! Scandalous. Look at those hideous pimples on her face. Poor thing !! How unlucky to not be blessed with April's clear creamy complexion… to not have her gift for tidiness and order. How unlucky to be so severely marred that it was literally painful to hold her countenance while it was just pure joy to behold his April. Surely she did not work here.. That top was just too scandalous, noted Bertie frowning and squinting to look more closely trying to see if he could recognize this person. Wait a minute.. Was that.. It couldn't be, Bertie almost choked and joined his venerable great grandfather. But .. But… how could…
And thus finally was Bertie introduced to the miracles of modern makeup.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

sEttiNG tHe riGhT eXPEctAtioNs

i'm not sure i've mastered it yet. the art of looking at a new born baby and lying with ease about how cute i think the baby is. don't get me wrong, i'm not saying the baby is uuhhh 'not-cute' [ do i dare write in bold that i think a baby might look like a baby chimp or monkey ?? will i get stoned out of existence?? ] .. it might be the cutest cherub born on this side of the galaxy.. just that i don't really see it.

i mean i see it. but i don't "see" it. ppl tell me its supposedly different when / if i have one of my own. i guess the human id is a funny thing and pride and evolution combined will force me to coo and oooh and aah over a mini-me. but i just don't see it.
my very esteemed colleague says never get pets. they roam all over your house using it as a litter box and eat ur food and generally leach off of you. well KD , you have a daughter who's in her 8th yr of undergrad college.. you made a very good argument never to have kids.

anyways with multiple ppl around me popping out the lil monkeys. it's all i can do to smile politely and tell them how cute the thing is. R keeps reminding me. it's not a 'it' it's a she or he. ok ok.

well i wish you all proud parents good luck. and i probably will have to join your ranks some day. i'm either going to look back and read this post and wonder , "what was i thinking!! i was soo wrong" or i'm going to read and be "aaah i knew EXACTLY how it was going to be, and i was SO right."

ofcourse i have a private bet which one it'll be.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

caLL oF thE wHisPheRinG temPtaTiOnS

finally! i feel alive again. i feel a strange lightness in me. a hmm or a buzz if you will. for a while now i've been sad that no book has kept my attention fixed for more than 10 minutes..... had i really lost interest in a passtime, once so dear to me?
but then A sent me a link. to the professor , C Bronte. and ofcourse! stayed up half the night and did not stir till i finished the book. it was done in 1 night flat.

it wasn't enough and i needed another. i could feel the old madness descending. i can't remember when was the last time i went crazy like this. i found another. now its been 2 days.. and i still hadn't finished. 15 more , then 10 more , then 5 more.. the chapters steadily dwindled, and yet monday was here..

for the first time in a long long time i thought about not going. well i had stayed up till 2AM and my eyes were a little blurry. but i stumbled in to the office. there was just too much to do. and my mind was too bzz'd up to actually read the book. but tuesday. enough was enough. i walked in, checked email and continued to read the book. i must finish !

ha! so i did. and both the professor and villette are excellant books. extraordinarily exquisite. the characters are drawn so subtly and so fine.. that you feel you could touch them and they'd be solid like you or me. [ also i always write with a very markedly different touch after i read the classics, you'll just have to bear it. ]
aaha ! atlast once again a book where a sentence is almost a page. where it takes slow thinking to understand what the author means.. where its not junk food for the brain. my brain is abuzz.
you can't help but feel the feelings , that the author wishes you to. the suffering , the joys, the suspense of the characters become your own. always a fan of the bronte sisters. one day i hope i have the courage to re-read the wuthering hights. the one and only time i read it, i felt such strong sensations that really i don't think i could go through it again. all that anguish and all that despair. i've only read it so exquisitely defined in the victorian books.

what is it about that era , that made them so pathos. and so surreal ??
not rude, not crass, not vulgar at all. something fine in their sentiment [ or atleast portrayed as such ]

hmm i don't think i can get anyting done today. and already i can feel the pull towards another book. just one more whisphers the voice .. one more. just a few more chapters.. no harm could possibly come of it. but after the last two nights of 3 hour naps instead of sleep.. i'm not sure i can afford another book. ofcourse the temptation is strong. just the first few pages, the voices continue. but i try to remember why i stopped reading for a while in between.

reading is a dangerous addiction for me. i don't eat, barely sleep, don't move, don't talk to anyone. ha! i see you scoffing at me. you don't believe! you think i simply exaggerate. well never you mind it then. what do i care?? to me, i feel it. its a single minded obsession that pulls me on and on.. continously towards the last page... to know what will happen.. i need to know, and need to know now. and if someone in the book dies. well never mind....

yes. it is time to step away. and take a breather. but i wonder how long before i slip back in .....

Sunday, June 19, 2011

kEePinG iT liGhT iN tHe cLasSifiEDs

i have to admit , i'm a little freaked out.
for the first time i've posted something on craigslist and getting these replies from random ppl asking for the stuff.

so i'm selling my gigantic tv and dining table. and i'm glad to give it for free, which is when i suddenly get flooded by enquiries.

for a week my posting languished, imageless and unfree or notfree and no one cared. the moment i put it in the free listings.. whAm ! suddenly i get a delude of emails.
and they all want the TV. guess we all know what's important.

now ofcourse craigslist works because we have implicit faith that all we meet are not axe murderers or stalkers.. but some ppl have wierd signatures and wierd names.. and they sign off as Service Guy Extraordinare.. [ i mean what is that?? ]

so here's a note to the 17 of you, my apparent faithful followers. [ and the unsilent one's who do not wish to notify me of their perverse stalking nature ]. if suddenly i don't post a follow up [ and let's hope it's not just me forgetting as usual ]
please launch an intense manhunt for me somewhere in the northwest of the US region.
it's fine. you don't have to hurry. i'll probably be decomposing in peace anyways..

[ ugh, gruesome thoughts. i HAVE been watching too much of CSI and FBI and NCSI and criminal minds and missing something and etc etc ]

well i've packed 3 bags. got another 2 more to go. things are slowly moving.. hopefully forward i say. i'd hate to be moving backwards now...

Saturday, June 18, 2011

pLanS fOr neXt weEkeNd

there is only one way to describe this video.

jaw dropping

i can't believe a human has actually done this. that many humans have.


Saturday, June 4, 2011

pAcKinG yOuR bAgs isN't sO eAsy

its funny. i keep hearing this phone ring. but its not mine.
is it the guy who lives next to me?? if i can hear his phone ring... does that mean he can hear me speak on the phone.
not that i'm saying anything terrible.. but still i'm just saying... u know?

thats downright weird.



is it paranoia if it's true? i feel like everyone in the office knows. hey, what r u staring at me for? yup i'm leaving in a couple of months. what?? u didn't know.. oh come ON. don't pretend you didn't know that i'm mov.. i know just by the way ur staring at me. i can hear kD asking me, "why are u arguing with urself??"

i like kD. he's cute. he's like this big santa claus. must be atleast a 100. ok i'm exaggerating. kD's divorced. but he's so laid back and funny and cool, that i wonder how someone like him could ever get so mad at someone so as to get divorced.
i'll miss kD.

and for those guys in the office who don't know yet, and keep giving me work. i look at them. just look at them. how will they react when i tell them i'll not be around to do the work. that they'll have to count on someone else to share they're long term dreams and projects. i'm not saying they'll be devasted, come on. i'm not THAT vain [ only a little vain, but not THAT much ], but still they'll need to reset their expectations.
and what about those idiots arguing with me for control of the project?? will they be happy? will they be relieved that they are the 'owner' of the project. will they smile and say "good lord, finally??". i wonder who they'll ask for data now.

I is a funny company. you need to shout at the top of ur lungs to tell ppl that u've done something. toot ur horn. report ur brag sheets. its frustrating, annoying and quirky. but yet...yet i spent almost 3 whole yrs in a funny grey building. day after day. it taught me a few things. i met a bunch of incredibly smart ppl.... some not so smart ppl. and i found that i could do more than i thought i could. it taught me that my limits are not where i thought it was. i haven't found it yet. my limits. its just a matter of training. it's here that i found i could run 2 miles. that i got leg-shackled. that i went from a scared kid to ..a not so scared kid.

yes perhaps its time to move on now. and looks like i've finally made my peace with the thought of leaving. i'm ready to follow the tide once again. and i can feel the tides turning. i dont know where they'll go, but i'll end up somewhere and the most important lesson of them all, that i learnt here in portland, is that i can be happy no matter where i am. doing anything in the world. as long as i got something useful to obsess over.

que sera sera.

i gotta go to china once again. hmmmm.....