Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Post 20 - Big B to give 9CR gift to Lord Tirumala

I dont know why this makes news, but yes, now that it has been broadcast to me...I think I have an opinion on the same.
I don't know if God exists (being an atheist, has its own distinct disadvantages)....but yes, if he does, I am pretty sure, he better be omnipresent and not restricted to some piece of stone carved out to be a figure. If God cannot be confined to a place (tirupati) or a piece of stone (the idol), then why spend 9Cr on creating diamond gloves for the palm of the idol.
My point is Mr. B, get a life, you have got money, you have got some brains....use both of them effectively. Why not spend 9Cr to build a hospital at Dharavi...why not? because those 'fucking dirty niggers' who live in slums...don't need to feel healthy("why do poor people even exist, do they serve any purpose but minor distractions in our life", but wait.....aha....yes the Idol of the lord, needs diamond gloves, because the Lord's palms are the most important aspect of the idol. (thats what the lead priest mentioned).

To be fair though, I have no qualms with people's devotion, but sometimes things like these, get me ticked. On one thing, I agree, devotion cannot have a price tag. If I am addicted to a Ferrari, I shall spend 2 Cr to get it....and is my Ferrari more important than the idol's diamond gloves.....its debatable, and each viewpoint is myopic..... on the other hand though, I had an opinion I had to voice.

In my scheme of things, be good, God will come to you. Don't fuck around in public and private life, and then bribe the Lord with 9Cr. If he does not exist (which I believe), then you just wasted a fortune...but if he does exist, Mr.B, and even if he is half as intelligent as he is made out to be have had it....because he would see through it....straight through....khattam shud....what you are actually doing is counter-intuitive...and yes, why not....self-degenerative.

On a planar level, though, Mr.B is spending his own money, he could burn it, if it suits him (and he is almost getting there), why bother me? As they say, "shit happens", and yes, they also say, "a fool and his money are soon seperated." . Alas.

Monday, May 29, 2006

Post No. 19 - The earthquake that did not impact us

Its a strange world. On 27th we had this massive earthquake in Indonesia, which killed at least 5000 people. On 29th Morning, all we got on Times of India was a 5th page meagre mention.....but yes what did hog the front page, was the Pitt and Angelina baby named Siloh or whatever.....

For years the media people have been cribbing that "don't blame us, its a business, we only serve what sells". Without getting into a debate, I have just one thing to do now. Mourn.

Sunday, May 28, 2006

Post no. 18 - The ugly face of obscurity

I am a perpetual dreamer. Quite simply means, I have a hyperactive subconscious mind, and as soon as I reach REM, my dreaming starts. I have strong reasons to believe that my conscious mind is just a facade for my subconscious, which is a complete animal in itself, is brilliant and is completely independent.
Unlike others, I never actually remember any of my dreams, not even a scene out of them, unless its a very rare occasion, when I was very involved in the dream. I had one such dream yesterday night.
The era is about 100 years from now, which is around 2110 AD. Don't ask me how I am still around? I really have no answer to it. I remember looking at the world around me and being awed by a lot of things. But one of the things that I carried back out of that journey (one that went 100 years ahead in time) was that the icons of the day had all changed.
It was almost as if, I had been in a time machine, because in the dream it was almost like the me of today being transported 100 years ahead. I remember, trying to desperately looking for something around me that bore resemblance to my life (of today)....
Yes, the people were the same, life seemed much faster....but all the icons had changed, the brands were unrecognizable, so were the heroes, the movies, the music, the posters.....I could not recognize the name of a single political party or leader. The only redeeming grace was the painting of Michael Jackson on the walls of a music store (Is he truly such a lasting icon). No Elvis, no Beatles, no Rolling Stones.....
Also, I have a distinct memory of walking upto places associated with me (my home and my office), and firstly, they did not look like today at all, secondly they had all changed, no one had even ever heard of me. If I did have descendents, I could not find any at all.
What does this dream signify? Nothing, other than highlighting the fact that we are so fragile and transient....Nothing has the power to last, neither a Bill Gates, nor a Nike, nor an Amitabh Iyer.
The fear of obscurity has been haunting me for long.....and maybe this dream is just another manifestation of this fear.
Makes me wonder though, do we understand any part of life at all?

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Post No. 17 - People I admire - 1 - Aamir Khan Rocks

I am beginning to like this guy. Its easy to be famous and politically correct (aka Sachin Tendulkar).....I inherently like rebels, who live life the way they feel, rather than how society tells them to.
I think Aamir is brave to take on the politicos, when he hardly needed to. He has gone on record to support the NBA.
Mr. Khan, you are possibly the most dimunitive Khan in Bollywood, but in real life you stand way above the other wishy washies. Take a bow.....

Post No. 16 - Crack-Jack F***king Bunnies

My favorite question these days is, "Why do I even pay any taxes at all?". I felt the same way today again. Our beloved (bunny) PM, announced that the would go ahead with the qouta, the way its planned by Mr. Arjun Singh (the 'original' bunny).
Does anyone care that a lakh students are protesting over this, and our a***hole police officers are cracking the whip on them? Its my taxes that feed the bunnies and the crack-jack police officers?This is a strange war. My own money, feeds the parasities, who shall rape me, suck me dry me off my life force and then move onto another victim.
Mr. Orwell, did you write '1984' to be a cicra 2006 India.
I feel helpless, its David vs. Goliath, just that Goliath is pitting David's weapons against David.....

Monday, May 22, 2006

Post no. 15 - Even my gamma' blogs

Post No. 14 - Its almost unreal....

Too much travelling is not doing me any good. I seem to getting these bouts of melancholy (not depression, not sadness, not anger)....just melancholy.

Today is another day. I am sitting wondering, am I getting too old? Am I dying? may ask?

I don't know, but a look in the mirror, and I am not the same I used to be. Too much apathy surrounds me towards normal issues. My emotional response to some issues (to which others are apathetic) is conversely very strong. (These are the best of terrible times, these are the worst of terrible times)

I sit, I wonder....Is this the process of growing up....finding your feet........

Am I slightly autistic, that I am too inbalanced around certain areas?

Too many questions, it just another day. On days like these, I want to go by the sea shore, stare into the infinity, and hope life is just like the waves.....rocking back and forth, but with no real end.

('Its almost unreal' is a lovely song by Roxette in the soundtrack of "Super Mario Bros")

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Post No. 13 - Goddess of all things....

I have been quite a big fan of Arundhati Roy (actually got converted in the past 3 years)....

For those who have never read her, please read "The greater common good"....Link below

The post is not only thought provoking, its a fundamenatally great write up on NBA - the power of the pen, and its lyrical dance.

Post No. 12 - Amused to death....Roger Waters

I am an unabashed Floyd fan. I can listen to it on repeat for months on end (In case you dont believe it, I have actually done that - for over 9 months).

Was listening to Amused to death by Roger Waters and must admit, it still makes me feel very melancholic, (almost in the same league as "Sorrow"). I though I must post the lyrics for those who have never heard it.

One last point, I like floyd, because its so lyrical, so melodic, yet so devoid of the traditional bars of a harmony......

Here goes......

Doctor Doctor what is wrong with me
This supermarket life is getting long
What is the heart life of a colour TV
What is the shelf life of a teenage queen
Ooh western woman
Ooh western girl
News hound sniffs the air
When Jessica Hahn goes down
He latches on to that symbolOf detachment
Attracted by the peeling away of feeling
The celebrity of the abused shell the belle
Ooh western woman
Ooh western girl

And the children of Melrose
Strut their stuff
Is absolute zero cold enough
And out in the valley warm and clean
The little ones sit by their TV screens
No thoughts to think
No tears to cryAll sucked dry
Down to the very last breath
Bartender what is wrong with me
Why am I so out of breath

The captain said excuse me ma'am
This species has amused itself to death
Amused itself to death
Amused itself to death

We watched the tragedy unfold
We did as we were told
We bought and sold
It was the greatest show on earth
But then it was over
We ohhed and aahed
We drove our racing cars
We ate our last few jars of caviar
And somewhere out there in the stars
A keen-eyed look-outSpied a flickering light
Our last hurrah
And when they found our shadows
Grouped around the TV sets
They ran down every lead
They repeated every test
They checked out all the data on their lists
And then the alien anthropologists
Admitted they were still perplexed
But on eliminating every other reasonFor our sad demise
They logged the only explanation left
This species has amused itself to death
No tears to cry no feelings left

This species has amused itself to death

(Switch Channels)
[Alf Razzell:]"Years later, I saw Bill Hubbard's name on the memorial to the missingat Aras[?]. And I...when I saw his name I was absolutely transfixed; itwas as though he was now a human being instead of some sort ofnightmarish memory of how I had to leave him, all those years ago.And I felt relieved, and ever since then I've felt happier about it,because always before, whenever I thought of him, I said to myself,'Was there something else that I could have done?'[Background: "I'd rather die, I'd rather die..."]And that always sort of worried me. And having seen him, and hisname in the register - as you know in the memorials there's a little safe,there's a register in there with every name - and seeing his name andhis name on the memorial; it sort of lightened my...heart, if you like."(Woman) "When was it that you saw his name on the memorial?""Ah, when I was eighty-seven, that would be a year, ninete...eighty-four, nineteen eighty-four."


Post No. 11 - Stock Picks for 2006

What is my favorite distraction, stock picking.....Am I good at this, you tell me?

For first quater 2007, I have the following stock picks.....

Asahi India glass CMP - 95 Target - 140
Satnam Overseas CMP - 85 Target - 180
Apollo Hospitals CMP - 450 Target - 650
Indraprashta Apollo CMP - 33 Target - 48
Mahindra Finance CMP - 235 Target - 380

I dont claim to outperform all stocks on the sensex. I think these stocks will do well irrespective of where the sensex is in the next year. On a risk factor, if I were to rate the stocks, starting from the MOST RISKY ONES: (as in the ones whose business model itself is quite shaky)

Satnam Overseas (Most)
Indraprastha Apollo
Asahi India Glass
Mahindra Finance
Apollo Hospital (Least)

I own Apollo Hosp, and plan to pick a few of Mahindra Finance, if my cash reserves permit.

Happy investing....if you do make/lose money on these bets, do let me know, eager to hear either ways.....

Saturday, May 20, 2006

Post 10 - Banglore Blues

I liked this so much, that I thought I must post this. It makes me feel happy to see signs of life in this degenerate world.

Post No. 9 - Jo bhi ho kal phir aayega.....

No guesses, yes, I picked it up from Waisa Bhi Hota Hai-Part II, a song called 'Allah Ke Bande' by Kailash Kher.
Its quite a simple philophical song, about how one needs to live inspite of hitting roadblocks, and how every (supposed) loss is actually the beginning of the win.
One of the refrains (radiif in ghazal terms) of the song is the oft repeated line....Jo bhi ho kal phir aayega, which primarily means ' Whatever happens (today), tomorrow shall still be another day'.....more evocative about fresh beginning tomorrow than anything else.
If you know hindi, enjoy the song....its refreshing, simple and yet sublime.......

The song reproduced verbatim for your pleasure .....

Toota Toota Ek Parinda Aise Toota
Ke Phir Jud Naa Paaya
Loota Loota Kisne Usko Aise Loota
Ke Phir Ud Naa Paaya
O O O O Toota Toota Ek Parinda Aise Toota
Ke Phir Jud Naa Paaya
Loota Loota Kisne Usko Aise Loota
Ke Phir Ud Naa Paaya
Girta Hua Woh Asma Se
Aakar Gira Zameen Par
Khwabon Mein Phir Bhi Badal Hi The
Woh Kehta Raha Magar
Ke Allah Ke Bande Hasde Allah Ke Bande
Allah Ke Bande Hasde Jo Bhi Ho Kal Phir Aayega
Allah Ke Bande Hasde Allah Ke Bande
Allah Ke Bande Hasde Jo Bhi Ho Kal Phir Aayega
Kho Ke Aapne Par Hi To Usne Tha Ud Naa Sikha
Kho Ke Aapne Par Hi To O O O
Kho Ke Aapne Par Hi To Usne Tha Ud Naa Sikha
Gham Ko Aapne Saath Mein Lele Dard Bhi Tere Kaam Aayega
Allah Ke Bande Hasde Allah Ke Bande
Allah Ke Bande Hasde Jo Bhi Ho Kal Phir Aayega
Allah Ke Bande Hasde Allah Ke Bande
Allah Ke Bande Hasde Jo Bhi Ho Kal Phir Aayega
Aa Aa Aaa
Tukde Tuke Ho Gaya Tha Har Sapna Jab Woh Toota
Tukde Tuke Ho Gaya Tha Aa Aaa Aa
Tukde Tuke Ho Gaya Tha Har Sapna Jab Woh Toota
Bhikre Tukdon Mein Allah Ki Marzi Ka Manzar Paayega
Allah Ke Bande Hasde Allah Ke Bande
Allah Ke Bande Hasde Jo Bhi Ho Kal Phir Aayega
Allah Ke Bande Hasde Allah Ke Bande
Allah Ke Bande Hasde Jo Bhi Ho Kal Phir Aayega
Toota Toota Ek Parinda Aise Toota
Ke Phir Jud Naa Paaya
Loota Loota Kisne Usko Aise Loota
Ke Phir Ud Naa Paaya
Girta Hua Woh Asma Se
Aakar Gira Zameen Par
Khwabon Mein Phir Bhi Badal Hi The
Woh Kehta Raha Magar
Ke Allah Ke Bande Hasde Allah Ke Bande
Allah Ke Bande Hasde Jo Bhi Ho Kal Phir Aayega
Allah Ke Bande Hasde Allah Ke Bande
Allah Ke Bande Hasde Jo Bhi Ho Kal Phir Aayega
Allah Ke Bande Hasde Allah Ke Bande
Allah Ke Bande Hasde Jo Bhi Ho Kal Phir Aayega
Allah Ke Bande Hasde Allah Ke Bande
Allah Ke Bande Hasde Jo Bhi Ho Kal Phir Aayega

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Post No. 8 - Quota, Mandal and bundle of apathy

It bothers me, that my generation is a generation that is immune, its lifeless. On an artistic plane, it cannot fathom the difference between Beethoven and Crazy Frog.....its not as if they are focussing on beauty, its just that they are oblivious to it. On a more dangerous plane, they can exhibit apathy to everything around them.....our news channels have not helped in resolving this problem.....with rape and mayhem all around you, its but a natural survival instinct that a person switches off, often at the risk of drowning the relevant with the noise.

On this quota issue, Mr. Arjun Singh (we shall call him crack-jack bunny or something like that in the rest of the article), has proposed a 50% reservation for scheduled tribes in professional colleges like engineering and medicine.

Do I like it? My answer to that, I wonder why do we (the real bread earners of the nation) pay taxes at live out this grief, doled out by a bunch of crack-jack bunnies.....who really would not know how to operate a shit bowl, if left to their own devices.....are we not feeding our own parasites.....we are a strange nation, I must admit.

The positive spin to this is, I am mighty impressed with how some of the youth have taken the fight to the bunny army.....out on the street.....non-violent, yet man to man.....I am loving it.

Every single student, youth out there is a hero....unsung heroes, fighters who have listened to a call of their emotional response.

Did I do anything at all? Nah....just sat in my living room, preached and did shit-shat....the usual. Did any of the people do anything? Nah....shit-shat again....

What will it take to get some of us out of us out of this apathy.......invasive rape....will it be any worse than quotas......death by sleath.....possibly it will be too late after death.

Wonder, when will our emotional responses come out....or will we just be too busy minting monies, kissing through glasses of wine, sleeping around........

Lastly, spare a thought for Rajiv Goswami, the original Martyr, who died in 2004.

Cut and paste from The Hindu....25th Feb 2004

NEW DELHI, FEB. 24. The former Delhi University Students' Union (DUSU) president, Rajiv Goswami, who set himself ablaze during the anti-Mandal agitation in 1990, died in a city hospital here today.
Mr. Goswami had attempted self-immolation in the Deshbandhu College in South Delhi when the anti-Mandal agitation was at its peak, sparking off a series of self-immolations by students. Subsequently, he was inducted into students' politics and became the DUSU president, contesting on a National Students' Union of India ticket. Mr. Goswami later gave up active politics due to health problems and established his own business. He was always in and out of hospitals following severe health problems

Post No. 7 - Notional wealth, real unhappiness

I have been through two bubbles and busts in stock markets, and must admit, I believe I am wiser for the same. I have become what I think classifies as a 'contrarian' investor. I have made quite good bets in the past few years, value picks, completely ignored and exited them when the time was right.

I believe I am fairly mature to handle the troughs (or the crests) when they do come. I had invested in a stock called HTMT at 3oo approx in Jan 2005, and exited from it in April 2006 at 560. For me beyond 560, the stock was risky and the upsides should have been rationally limited.

Today, on 17th May the stock is at 800....I still think my rational decision was wise, the sword could have cut either ways, its just chance that it cut in the direction which was opposite to the one I chose.

Brave and rational that I am, I still could not help feel slightly depressed that I could have enchanced my portfolio by over 30% in just the matter of 45 days. My objective mind tells me, I did perfect, I exerted my safety heart, my emotional side does not seem to quite understand. It feels the pinch.....I also wonder, is this what they refer to the difference of 80:20 in terms of making the right call.....did I call too soon.

I feel so humbled, so weak.....for all the garbled shit I spew around discipline and investment theory (which I did actually practice), my heart is not brave enough.....I still have a long road ahead towards becoming even a baby image of the Sage of Omaha.....

Time will tell, I hope I get there someday......but I know the answer.....I know the answer......and I won't say it loud......and I am sure it won't matter in the end.....for in the long run, there is only one truth, we are all dead (Keynes).

Post No. 6 - On the road to dead....

On 3rd May 2006, Pramod Mahajan, a local politican had died after a two week struggle in hospital. His own brother, Pravin had shot him. In more senses that one, it proved to me again, that death (and hence living to die) is a great leveller. It corrects the past, PM was accused of the death of Shivani Bhatnagar, a journalist, and all signs overwhelmingly pointed the guilty finger at PM...yet he got away (in 2002) using his political clout. It was also a fair retribution that one's own brother commits the necessary incision that starts and completes the process of death.
I was quite amused and harried by one point though. On the day of the cremation, which was to be at Dadar's Shivaji Park, the powers-that-be had blocked the whole crematorium and the roads that lead to it. This was done to 'ensure' a peaceful farewall to PM, and to 'ensure' the lives and security of other 'dignitatries'(what a crack jack fucking misnomer) who had flown down from all over the country to attend the funeral.
If I had been living in Dadar on that day, and had my loved one died, then I would have to travel all the way to Sion to have my love cremated. Is that fair? Can a crematorium which usually handles 30 bodies a day, be reserved for one larger-than-you-and-me soul.......I could not help wonder, is it fair to you and me, who cough up a 35% tax, to maintain these crematoriums, to not use it, because some politico died. Is PM's life more important than my mother's.....Not in my eyes.....should not be in your eyes......
Is my mother's death cheaper than PM's death.....Rewind, I am not sure that death is the leveller.....all deaths are equal, but some deaths are more 'equal' than others....

Monday, May 01, 2006

Post No. 5 - Heroes 2 We could be heroes for just one day....

Sharmila Irom, is a lady from Manipur who has been on fast for over 5 years now. She has been force fed 4-5 times a day for all this duration (incidentally she has always been under arrest, because the police feel she is trying to commit suicide....our judiciary is not only ridiculous, it borders on the ludicrous as well).

As I often say, it amazes me that 1 single human life (will) can stand so effacingly over others a la Gandhi. I am not sure whether I understand clearly what drives Miss Irom, but it makes me glad that there are still people who can listen to their emotive responses and tranpose them into full fledged revolutions.

Miss Irom, I don't care if the world thinks lesser or more of you, for me, you are an inspiration to live, to emote and to react.

The following intro I have cut pasted from

Irom Sharmila is a symbol of a lay person fatigued with the atrocities committed. She has neither political affiliations, nor a strong background of an activist. She was seen in public for the first time during the people's enquiry headed by Justice (Rtd.) Suresh.
Then an incident took place. A place called Malom near the Imphal airport witnessed cold-blooded killings of innocent people by the Assam Rifles. They shot at point blank range eight people sitting at the bus stop in the usual garb of encounter with the insurgents.
This sadistic action was taken 'lawfully' under the draconian law of Armed Forces Special Powers Act. The moment this news spread, Irom Sharmila, a very common girl of Manipur felt deep hurt inside her. She instantly declared fast unto death till this law is abolished. After some days she was taken to Hospital. There she refused to co-operate and was sent to Sajiwa Jail as she refused bail after being arrested on the charge of attempted suicide. Thereafter she is being commuted to and fro Jail to Hospital. Since last 4/5 months she was compelled to undergo nose feeding.
Her condition is deteriorating everyday with her vital organs being slowly affected. Recently it was reported in newspapers that on hearing some rude remarks passed by some nurses she has refused even the nose feeding and has started sleeping on the floor along with the patients who are suffering from severe viral infections which are highly infectious so much so that other patients of the same ward have been evacuated. Nobody is allowed to meet her. What Irom Sharmila is demanding is neither an assertion of Meitei rights nor the Naga rights. She is demanding what the people in Manipur, as humans should have got long, long time ago.
She is the only one at the moment who I think is a pure activist of "human rights".