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Holy Pig !!!

June 25, 2016

Armaan has always been a happy go lucky guy who likes to joke a lot. He is known for his sarcasm and doesn’t give two hoots on what people might think or feel. However, his intentions are never bad, atleast most of the time. Since people around him never took him seriously, he could get away saying anything he wanted and he enjoyed that luxury.

But, this time, in office, he got into a situation. While working with one of his female colleague on a crucial client deliverable, he made a comment on something he noticed in her bay. But, that casual remark of his didn’t go well with her which led to a huge hullabaloo inside office.

He was asked to surrender before the women harassment cell in his office to give a convincing explanation for his ‘misbehaviour with a female colleague’. The harassment cell in his office (the author doesn’t know if this is the case with other offices too) included two feminists and one weak guy who doesn’t have a voice against his dominating counterparts. His presence in the committee is more like an ‘eye wash set-up’ to show the male lot that the harassment committee is there for them as well. But, which committee for women has ever listened to a man!

The day when Armaan met the harassment cell in office

“You know the reason why you are here, don’t you?” asked one of the lady. Armaan had reported to this lady in the past and with his notorious exit from the team, he was sure that things wouldn’t be in his favour. The other lady is from the HR, with whom his wife had asked him not to interact. Armaan’s wife has neither seen this HR lady nor has she interacted with her, but his wife feels that the lady is way too cute and is always flirting with Armaan.

“Yes”, he replied, “and trust me, it is not a wonderful feeling to be here in this room with you all!”

Weak guy : You mean, you want to move to another meeting room? Errr…ok ok, you meant…

Ex Boss (interrupting) : We are equally embarrassed, Armaan, to have you here. Especially me, because you were in my team once.

Armaan : But, I didn’t say…

Cute HR : You owe us an explanation Armaan. Is it because you don’t respect women?

Armaan (remembers his wife’s instructions, answers her by looking at his Ex Boss) : It’s not that. I have been…

Cute HR : Then, what is it Armaan? What is it? You think you can say anything to all the helpless women in this world and get away with it? Gone are the days when you could suppress, oppress and depress women. Do you know Malala? Do you know Michelle Obama ? Do you know Sonia Gandhi?

Armaan (looking at his Ex Boss) : Wait…Sonia Gandhi? Seriously? (pauses) Look guys, what I am trying to say is….

Cute HR : Armaan, don’t show your anti-congress traits here. You need to understand the pain that these women had to go through to be noticed in this world which is forever dominated by men.

Ex Boss : Armaan, what went wrong? Please speak up. If you dont, we would have to go by the protocol.

Armaan : Sure. See, there was a task which I had given her two weeks ago with a deadline. She not only missed the deadline…..

Cute HR : But, she said she had to conduct her child’s birthday party and there were a lot of preparations for which she had to take leave.

Armaan (looking at his Ex Boss): If her daughter’s bday was so important to her, she could’ve mentioned it before. I would’ve given the task to somebody else in the team.

Cute HR : Armaan, first of all, you have a very bad eye contact. Each time I ask you a question, you look at her and reply. This attitude isn’t helping us. And, secondly, what do you mean by “if birthday was so important?” You are saying a woman can’t have other priorities in life other than listening to men? And, she is a mother. You are depriving a mother’s right to conduct a birthday party for her child. You should be ashamed.

Ex Boss (brushing her hair with her fingers and adjusting her specs) : Armaan, she is right. Bad body language. You are looking only at me, and that is starting to make me feel a little uncomfortable.

Armaan (finally placing his eyes at the HR) : I didn’t mean that. What I was trying to….

Weak guy :  and yes, I am not in invisible mode here. You can look at me too. By the way, my mom has told me that if a person doesn’t have proper eye contact while speaking, it means, he/she is feeling guilty. I love my mom. She is the best cook in this world. She can’t be wrong.

Armaan (scratching his head and wondering if he is actually in a multinational firm) : For heavens sake, will you guys let me talk?

After a brief silence, Armaan continued : See, I don’t know how this allegation came up. I gave her some work two weeks ago, she kept delaying it and when it was time for her to deliver, she left for her child’s birthday party without passing it on to anybody else. After I managed to get a buy in from the client for an extension on the deliverable, I decided to work along with her. The moment I saw her workstation and her desktop, I commented, “Please clean up all this mess. It looks like a pigsty”.

“Aaaaaahhh” went the HR;

“Ooooooohh” went his Ex Boss;

“Teeeehheee” went the other guy. Well, he was checking his whatsapp messages.

Ex Boss : You called her a pig…..on her face….in front of eveybody??

Armaan : Errrr…. Why are you all acting so surprised now?

Weak guy : Yes, but it’s in our script to go over-the-top at such situations, even though we know what it is.

Armaan : But wait, when did I ever call her a pig? I was referring to her workstation and desktop, and that too, only to her. She got so worked up and started yelling at me for calling her a pig. And, that is when everybody noticed.

Cute HR : Tch Tch Tch Armaan. Your attitude is worse than I thought. How long are you men going to ask us to clean up places? Are we born only to keep things tidy?

Armaan : Whats wrong in tidying up your own place? It is a healthy practice, isn’t it? Don’t you guys send out mailers regularly explaining the importance of a clear workspace and desktop?

Ex Boss : Armaan, that is a totally different context. You are not supposed to talk like this to a woman. Pig is a very strong word these days, it is no longer just an animal.

Armaan : But I didn’t call her a pig and I wouldn’t have felt this miserable if I had actually called her a pig. For crying out loud, I was just referring to…

Cute HR (looking at the committee members): and, not just calling her a pig. He, like all the other men, expected her to clean up the office and even penalised her for attending her own child’s birthday party.

Weak guy (to the members) : Woah, so, that’s three allegations against him! We have never got such an elaborate case earlier! I hope this adds upto our appraisals!

Armaan : But, she had a problem only with the ‘pig’ !! And, why does anybody have to be so touchy?

Cute HR : Touch is a very strong word these days, it is no longer just a sensation. It creates sensation!

Ex Boss : Armaan, it looks like you are a serious offender. Look Armaan, we are here to enlighten women on their rights, to make sure they enjoy as much freedom here as they enjoy at home.

Just then, the Cute HR’s phone rings, she goes out of the room and attends the call, “I will be home soon…sorry…yes, I will cook…no, will not make your mom cook….don’t worry…your pants?…they are lying in the cupboard…yes, I arranged your wardrobe…honey..honey…please don’t shout…it looked so untidy…I am sorry…..what?..oh yes…I paid all the bills except electricity….I really didn’t get time honey….i am so sorry…no no…you don’t have to go…I will…please give me…hello..” She immediately gets into the room to vent out her frustration on the hapless ‘harasser’ inside.

Cute HR : Armaan, no more explanations. You will have to change your attitude and learn to live in harmony with the opposite sex. You will have to start respecting women from now on and one more complaint against you, we would have to take a stronger action. As of now, our victim demands only a public apology from you. We shall arrange a session tomorrow. You can go.

Weak guy : and yeah, come tomorrow! Don’t kill your already deceased grandfather or uncle!

The day when Armaan was asked to apologise publicly to the victim, in the office

“Madam…yes, henceforth, I shall address the women in my office like that…I have been asked to render an apology to you in public for comparing you with God. Yes, with God. I maybe an atheist, but you are a strong believer of the Hindu religion, aren’t you? So, what offended you, I wonder. Looking at you, I am sure there would’ve have been a few who had compared you to the moon, and you would’ve happily accepted it too. But, have you realised that moon is round and fat, and is filled with holes and craters?

Parallely, Armaan’s well wishers who are listening to his so-called public apology does the ‘facepalm’.

I am really sorry for having you called a God, if that’s what you really wanted from me. And, I take back my words. Your workplace and your desktop do not look like Gods heavenly abode. But if you really think, by reacting this way, you have actually insulted your God. You have failed yourself as a worshipper of God. Why do you look so lost now, Madam? If you know your Gods really well, you will also know that pig is an avatar of Lord Vishnu – Varaaha. Your Lord Krishna was also one of the avatars of Lord Vishnu. I doubt if Lord Vishnu will ever forgive you for showing such discretion to one of his avatars. You behaved like a racist. You have shown disgust towards Vishnu, towards Hinduism, towards the faith of all the Hindus sitting here. But again, I am sorry, if that makes you happy.”

By now, everybody in office has their palm on their respective faces. One of them even had his legs on his face.

Armaan turned towards the committee and asked, “Am I done? Or….”

The weak guy opens his wallet and looks at Lord Vishnu’s picture in it. He touches the pic, does one of those typical Hindu gestures on seeing God and tells himself, “Holy Cow, I mean, Pig! He is right! A Pig is as much a God as Krishna is!”

The HR lady walks away without uttering a word, opens her laptop to draft a letter and says to herself, “That guy needs to be suspended; atleast for a week!”

The other lady, his ex boss, stares at him with eyes wide open. And, without any reaction, tells, “Armaan, you need psychiatric help!”

Confessions of a first timer!

May 19, 2016

“First time??  Are you serious?? You are 35, right?” – this was the response from almost all of them when I mentioned about my interest in voting this time. Quite natural for them to feel that way considering the fact that I go on and on about the lack of basic civic sense amongst us Indians. In my defense, I was never around in my native during the elections. And, if I am not wrong, this is the first time it’s happening on a Monday so that I could go home for an extended weekend. But to think of it, that’s not all. I think I am finally growing up 🙂 Politics and sports are two areas where I never showed any interest in the past. Sports is still nowhere close, but thanks to the social media and the news coverage these days, politics has been really intriguing.

The scene is a little funny here in Kerala; we have never had the same government for more than 5 years; atleast for a couple of decades. We, Keralites, are so generous that we give both the leading parties, the UDF (Congress) and the LDF (CPIM), equal opportunities to take advantage of us. Oh, BJP is a pretty new entrant here, having said that, it would be interesting to see how far the Lotus will be allowed to bloom.

The day I told my brother that I was going to vote this time, he asked me a very simple question, “so, whom are you going to vote?” I guess,I was just excited by the fact that I am finally going to vote and never actually thought to whom I should give it. To start with, I do not follow any specific ideology. My dad and his family are staunch communists, whereas my mom and her family are congress followers. I can’t deny the fact that there is a communist or a socialist in me; it could be the genes or the kind of values that were instilled during my upbringing. However, I would not leave my current way of living to be one of them and it would only make me a bourgeoisie if I said I am a communist. Most of the arm chair communists or today’s social media communists and even some of the leaders today fall under the bourgeoisie category, but yeah, they are never going to agree to this.

I am not religiously inclined either to make a blind choice. Religion was never part of our homes, not even today. So supporting a fascist party is again a no-no for me. Oh God, they might ban me or brand me anti-national for writing this. Or even worse, put me behind bars for a while and make me a national hero! I do respect the PM and his various initiatives for growth, but I hope he kept his bandar-log in check and asked them not to get touchy on really trivial issues. The only other party left is the UDF (how ironic is that sentence). UDF, or Congress, in Kerala is a mess. What am I saying ! Congress as a whole is a huge mess. I really don’t understand what people see in them to cast their votes. As a saying in Malayalam goes, it’s like giving the keys to your house to the best burglar around. And over here, it is like asking the burglar to stay around for a while, take bath, have dinner and get a good sleep. Of course, they did bring development to Kerala in the last 5 years in spite of all the opposition they faced from ‘Left’, Right and ‘Center’ (and I mean, literally). But none of us can forget the scams that had come out in the open. Some of them are yet to be proved, but yeah, we know what the Congress is capable of, don’t we ? 😛 😛

So, the obvious choice for me was to support LDF, or the Communist party. But they lost all my respect in the last two years by stooping to the worst levels possible. Allegations that involve a moral less woman and her connection with the CM who must be her dads age, and constantly dragging his name with cheap innuendos, is totally uncalled for. If this is how you want to develop a good will amongst the public, sorry guys, you just lost a couple of votes for being obnoxious. These baseless distasteful accusations and their desperate attempts for attention by opposing any new initiative put forward by the ruling party made me realize that these aren’t the people I need to get associated with. Also, nothing wrong in working for the down trodden, but that doesn’t mean you shun any development for the people in the upper strata. Come on, they are tax paying citizens too. And, like I mentioned earlier, they have had their share of governance after every 5 years; the poor has always remained poor. Even if they got continuous governance, I am not sure if it would make any difference. A good example we have is West Bengal, where they were in power for more than 30 years continuously, after which they lost pathetically to Trinamool Congress. Oh, speaking of West Bengal, we know what happened to both the parties there. If Guinness Book of Records had a category for shamelessness, those guys would win it hands down. So, two parties who are arch rivals here in Kerala, are brothers in arms in a state that is normally considered as a cousin of Kerala. I realised politics doesn’t have any friend or foe, only a bunch of idiots as blind supporters.

The campaigns, this time, were so in your face and to be honest, a little annoying. I don’t see any opposition party going out of their way and getting a bus shed built or a public toilet or doing anything that could be a little helpful without expecting anything in return, not even votes. The money that each of the political parties had spent in the last few weeks in the name of elections could have been used for any of the right causes and that itself would’ve been the best campaign for them. Also, commotion is not campaigning; many a times we, the public, are at the receiving end of these campaigns. When the end objective is to serve the public, it doesn’t really make sense when the same public is getting infuriated with your campaigns.

So back to that simple question, whom do I vote? My decision has to be solely based on the individual and not a party. And, for this, I have to understand the candidates, their background, their election manifestos or what have they done so far for their constituency. I did check with my dad and also did a little bit of research myself, but was still indecisive. During this period, friends and really close relatives started influencing me to vote for their desired party. Nobody knew who was standing and what he/she represents; all they cared for was the party. Even if they had criminal background, it was fine with them and this logic was too dim-witted for my understanding. It’s not that I have too many choices, but each time I thought about my own reasoning of forget the party and vote for the individual, the party did come in between.

And, trust me this thought kept disturbing me until I went inside the polling booth. The officials took my ID card and verified, inked my finger and asked me to proceed to the booth. I saw the three options in front of me now – the Sickle, the Palm and the Lotus. In addition to that, there were three other options too – two independent candidates, I guess, and the option of NOTA (None Of The Above). Why would people click on NOTA, I thought – is it when they are indecisive, like me, or is it when you have no hopes or regards on the candidates who are contesting? I couldn’t stay longer there; people are waiting to ‘exercise their right’. The mind started playing again, but I let my brain take over the heart for a change, and I finally pressed on the option I felt best.

By the end of today, we will know who is going to govern Kerala for the next couple of years. Fingers crossed! I exercised my right alright, but I am still not sure if I did the right thing. This inner voice, it keeps telling me that I have not wasted my vote. But why did it turn out so challenging? Would it have been this difficult if I had a good choice? Or, atleast, a better one?

An open letter to Snapdeal!

February 20, 2016

Edited to add : I finally got the other half of the charger today (29th Feb). Thanks  people, for the support and encouragement.

Leo got his award and I got my charger; whatta day !


Dear Snapdeal,

This is my first open letter to anybody and let me take this moment to thank you for providing me this wonderful opportunity. Don’t gloat yet; there are many more ‘thanks’ as you read on.

Thank you for teaching me what tolerance means when the whole country was confused with this term last year. Look Team Snapdeal, when somebody orders a laptop charger (Order no.11125320451, Jan 14 2016), he/she would normally expect the whole thing to arrive. Not once (Jan 21), not twice (Feb 5), but THRICE (Feb 18), you sent me only half my order, that is, half the charger. I still haven’t learnt the art of charging laptops with half the charger; they didn’t teach me this at school, NIIT or later in office, dammit!



I really want to know what happened to the better half of my charger; this, I find, is as mysterious as the missing flight of Malaysia or the Bermuda triangle. I mean, how can somebody pack and send half the order thrice, inspite of multiple emails and follow up calls. Oh, btw, your customer care executives are a bunch of super intellectuals; they advised me to buy the rest of the charger from the market, and even this happened twice. They taught me what patience means. Tell me something, who in their sane mind will sell half the charger and if at all, I have to go to the market to get it, I wouldn’t have approached you guys in the first place. That said, I appreciate your replacement process; only if you showed the same dedication in delivering the order properly.

I am left with no other choice now but to approach consumer court; have never done it before and thanks in advance for the experience. It has never been about the money, it is about the trauma a customer faces while dealing with unprofessional teams like you and also, let me see if I could get justice (big word, I know!); I read your recent tussle with Mr. Nikhil Bansal, which just opened my eyes.

And, speaking of purchase, never ever will I come to you guys for anything, and that’s only because I do not have the reputation to do mistakes more than twice. Not that my small order would make any difference to you, but I shall ensure to tell anybody I get associated with to stay as far as possible from the blunder that is Snapdeal. Oh, I missed to include thanks in this para. Thanks for the realization!

Btw, who packs your stuffs? One helluva sadist this person should be to play this prank over and over again, until it turned out this humourless!


People, please do share this. I am not asking Snapdeal to compensate me with a laptop, all I am asking for is the ‘rest of my order’; the other half is feeling naked, it seems!

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