Move Over, Chennai

Years ago, my uncle had moved from Kolkatta to Chennai, giving up a good job in an MNC to be with his ageing mother.

He had set up a factory in one of those outlying areas (may not be so, now) – Velachery – to make plastic components for the industry. Daily he drove by himself all the way to and fro his residence in Triplicane, a city suburb. Every so often, in his commute, at some point enroute he was involved in one incident or the other. One day it would be an old man or a middle-aged lady (the most aggressive lot), and on another day, it would be a chicken that would meet with his car. Immediately a neighborhood crowd would collect around the vehicle and one among them would take the lead in the cry for justice for the ‘poor victim’.  It took a while for my uncle to realize the victim was, in fact, no victim having flung himself deliberately against the car, ending up no worse than lightly soiling his clothes, so managed by clever choice of the moment and the spot at a braking distance in front of the car. Of course with a chicken thrown expertly, this was not possible – it would end up dead or near dead. But there was no way he could prove it wasn’t his doing to the small mob that would appear instantly out of thin air. It meant buying his way out by parting with a wad of rupee notes, feeling lucky to get away at that price. That done the mob would disappear faster than a magician’s now-here-now-where act. 

We learnt of these incidents only when he let it out much later in some context. And when he did, we would feel sorry for him and at the same time angry at the way of life in this city to earn a quick buck.

Another senior executive from the corporate sector who had similar experiences did a little differently under the circumstances, we learnt: to the dismay/shock of the mob, he always concluded the transaction, by carrying away the chicken with him as-was!

View of Chennai held fast over the years bolstered by other stories one heard or read as a second-to-none petty-scamming place underwent a sea-change when a few days ago on seeing this article/clip dated 2012!

Excerpts from the article translated and edited:

“…

The feigned casualties, a whole business.

These ‘artists of deception’ practicing all the tricks and deceptions to avoid going to work or collect subsidies fall into two profiles: one, “innocent or common picaresque” that seeks to escape one or two days of work to extend a weekend and the other that feigns pathologies that are not demonstrable as a headache or a backache, or something else fraudulent that goes further in the deception and simulates a serious illness even going to medical courts to achieve a low or disability in order to defraud the social security to collect the corresponding subsidies…

In the last years, forums, blogs or websites have proliferated in which Internet users exchange tricks and advice on how to self-harm or invent a credible excuse. There are even tutorials that detail the steps to follow to train you and become a “professional deception,”…

Among the practices carried out by some workers to simulate or contract a disease are some very ingenious, at the same time curious, such as placing a slice of onion under the armpit to suffer an allergy or hives, place for half an hour half orange on the bottom of the feet to suffer fever, heat in the microwave a few varied fruits and eat them hot causing severe stomach pains or even someone who snorts chalk, something really dangerous because among its consequences is pneumonia!!

Browsing the web can ‘help’ discover pages specialized in providing alibis or excuses to workers.Among the products that are offered on these pages are fake medical receipts and false obituaries, infallible proofs to be presented to the boss.

These fraudulent practices have caused companies to seek professional help and put themselves in the hands of specialized private detectives in order to demonstrate the scam they are being subjected to by workers and clients.

…”

Now watch the clip here:

(some parts of it may have been staged)

Chennai, now you lose your spot to be second-only-to-Spain in petty-scamming if things haven’t changed over there in the last seven years!

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PS: To be fair, maybe there are other cities besides Chennai no different or even worse in this regard. It’s another matter Chennai was/is never in the running for bigger scams, monumental corruption by shamelessly self-aggrandizing politicians and others in authority excepted.  

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World’s Shortest Horror Picture-Story…

with world’s largest cast – in fact, everyone of us:-((

Here’s what 9-years old Kuzhali thought of the subject in a recent competition held in Chennai under the auspices of Bharath Scout And Guides:

It’s interesting how the surface features like trees, farms, factories…are shown on the spherical globe conveying the universality of the problem and the solution!

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Source: Image from Science Lovers in FB. I found Kuzhali’s drawing in a FB post by her dad, the eminent author of children’s stories, Vizhiyan.

My Search Ended On Seeing This…

Can you fault this logic?

Personally I think it looks so becoming on Bezo, no hair is just right on his pate.

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Source: Gautam Iyengar in FB.

Light And Dark

If You Look Closely…

she’s me masquerading!

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Living Young…

A few days ago, a good friend of mine forwarded a piece, of which this is an extract, as a poem penned by our late Atal Bihari Vajpayee, India’s much adored/loved prime minister.

atal

Atalji on the essentials for living young (the translation is not word by word):   

 

घर चाहे   ‘कैसा’   भी हो………

उसके    एक    कोने में………..

खुलकर हंसने की जगह रखना..

May it be whatever,

set aside a place in the house

for laughing your heart out.

 

सूरज कितना भी दूर हो………..

उसको घर आने का रास्ता देना..

However distant the sun may be,

lay out a way for him to enter.

 

कभी कभी छत पर चढ़कर..

तारे    अवश्य     गिनना……

हो सके तो हाथ बढ़ा कर…..

चाँद को छूने की कोशिश करना….

Now and then be sure to climb

over the roof to count the stars and,

if you can, put your hand out,

to reach for the moon.

 

अगर हो लोगों से मिलना जुलना…..

तो घर के पास पड़ोस ज़रूर रखना…

If it be to meet up and mingle with people,

be sure to be blessed with a neighborhood.

 

भीगने देना बारिश में………..

उछल कूद भी करने देना……

हो    सके  तो बच्चों को…….

एक कागज़ की किश्ती चलाने देना..

Get out and wet in the rain,

jumping and splashing without a care.

Delight the kids, if you can,

floating in the waters a paper boat.

 

कभी हो फुरसत,आसमान भी साफ हो….

तो एक पतंग आसमान में चढ़ाना………..

हो सके तो एक छोटा सा पेंच भी लड़ाना..

When you’ve a little time and the sky clear,

fly a kite up high as you can. And, perhaps

even engage another in a little skirmish.

 

घर के सामने रखना एक पेड़….

उस पर बैठे पक्षियों की……….

बातें अवश्य  सुनना……………

Let there be a tree in the front.

The birds perched on its branches –

be sure to eavesdrop on their chatter.

 

घर चाहे   ‘कैसा’   भी हो……..

घर के    एक कोने   में…………

खुलकर हँसने की जगह रखना…

May it be whatever,

set aside a place in the house

for laughing your heart out.

 

End

 

 

 

 

 

Source: Thanks to Gopalswamy and image from indianexpress.com. Note authenticity not verified. 

 

 

 

Source: Authenticity not verified. Image from indianexpress.com.

He’s A Cat At (Emotionally) Connecting!

About This And That

Can teach Marketing/Advertising a trick or two!

From Jineesh Mathew:

jineesh mathew

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