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Friday, April 20, 2012

That Cut of a Blade !

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An accidental cut,
a momentary gush of blood
Reassured me that,
color of my blood,
Is still red !

Somewhere beneath my skin,
its flowing effortlessly, smoothly,
Without me caring or knowing.
running all over inside,
Reaching, where it needs to be.

Am no selfless warrior,
or caring doctor.
I'm merely,
a morbid mortal.
A thankless cynical.
living heedlessly,
Still surviving on
several umbilical.

I'm in pain,
but, happy this time.
After a long time,
somehow, I realized
Am Alive !
grateful to,
That Cut of a blade.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Adrenalin, Cheer Girls, IPL and All that is Not Cricket..

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As we knew it !

Cricket was designed as a game to engage and entertain the families of the elite bureaucrats of the former British Empire. It survived Two World Wars (so what ?) and flourished in some of the former English colonies. Despite having a 200 years of legacy, decent money and glamour (till 2008) and yet only handful of countries decided to take it seriously. Going by shear numbers its safe to assume that almost 20% of the world population simply loves this game, and its considered not second to religion. But to put the numbers in perspective only 8 teams (countries) have been playing it consistently, seriously for more then 20 years now.

And then 2008 happened ! Yes, it survived the two world wars but not the year 2008.

Kim Raikkonen tops the charts of all time highest paid sportsperson per game ($2.94M/ game), whereas Alex Rodriguez tops the list for signing the world's largest sports contract ($275M contract for a period of 10 years) to date.

The most respected, successful of the football, baseball, basketball players play for around 30-60 minutes in a game, few games in a season and make millions. But, and this one will be a big but, mind you, what if they are asked to play the full game and all the games and all the series and tournaments possible in a year?

Remember the age old adage, Goose that Lays the Golden Egg ! So lets kill that goose and take out all the eggs at a time. Perhaps a 8 years old will tell us that the Goose the will die, but we grown ups have grown past the wisdom of age old adage, especially the ones sitting in cricketing councils, the die-hard fans and the business savvy czars and tycoons !

Usain Bolt can do a 100 in 9.58 (10.43841/sec) seconds but Patrick Makau could do a 42195 in 7418 seconds (5.688191/sec), so does that mean Bolt can run a marathon in half the time of current world record, if he wants to ? All the forms of sports have understood that its one thing to cross English channel and its totally different to swim a 50 mtr breast stroke. I hope as the cricket spreads it reach to more continents, as more and more league culture develop sponsors and board members will focus on nurturing and appointing three sets of specialists for the three prevalent forms of the game.

Cricket is a gentlemen's game, so lets not reduce it to a tug of war between the three formats !

No denying the obvious that IPL has added several new dimensions, adrenalin, cheer girls, 10x more money for 10x more players, benefiting the game in general, certainly a good beginning in a right direction.

So lets not kill the goose. We should not expect a cricketer to run a marathon in the fastest possible time and should not procrastinate a marathon runner for not being able to run a mile the fastest. Instead of putting all the monies in the factory which produces cricketers only on the fertile soil of Indian sub-continent, lets try to develop at least 29 good international cricket playing teams, so that I can no longer use my fingers.

Lets raise the ceiling because, there certainly is enough room to generate 10x more money then currently under consideration. IPL has certainly added cheer girls and several powerful aspects to the game, but both the crickets and those powerful people are trying to kill the goose, so as to make all the hay while the sun shines.

Dear Sponsors, Crickets boards, Trust me there will be a tomorrow and the Sun will shine all over again !!

Friday, April 13, 2012

Tabula Rasa !

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Watching my kid growing up, makes me wonder that how she knows that  jumping from a high chair can be dangerous even for the first time. She was bit curious and afraid when she saw fire for the first time. Chocolates, colorful balloons and animation attract her and I guess infants and toddlers all over the world, in almost the same manner.

Are we really are born clean slate ! I think irrespective of the place, family or surroundings the human infants are born with human instincts, which perhaps they learn/acquire genetically or experiencing the external world while sleeping lazily in the womb.

I like hot coffee, cold milk, tangy tomato sauce, sweet sweets but she likes cold tea, hot milk, sweet tomato sauce and spicy spices, though we are married for forty years now. Brothers and Sisters are raised for ten to twenty years under the same roof, but still they perceive, react differently to same situations. I don't think any of the identical twins will have similar liking and personality, though in addition to being exposed to identical surroundings they share few genes as well.

So I think Neither the Blank Slate hypothesis (Tabula Rasa) Nor the hypothesis that we are product of our surroundings is true in isolation, in totality.

More importantly we have to understand the significance of this non-blank slate hypothesis while raising our infants and toddlers. It might sound surprising but yes even the infants and toddlers do have a personality, idiosyncrasies. If we assume that they are Blank Slate and try to impress upon them our ideologies, our ways of behaving, it might work in some cases but I dont think its the best way to interact with infants and toddlers.

Parents keep telling their kids that they are free to do, choose career, marry as per their liking, free will. But is that actually true! By assuming that the new born is a blank slate, the parents intentionally or unintentionally start not just guiding but largely influencing and shaping them the way they  wanted to live with a secret desire that their kids grow up to become what they always wanted to, but never could !

Sunday, April 01, 2012

Information Pollution !

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Sometimes we tend to believe that by reading everything, by writing whatever we want to and sharing whatever we like, we are exercising our fundamental right to free will which is also reinstated by the founding fathers of our nation via document publicly known as constitution.

You and me, i.e We, want to take unbiased decisions out of our own free will. We want to process all the information available to us and then would like to decide, what is right and what is wrong for us, them and everybody else around us. No matter how much powerful we think our brain is, at least the conscious brain has some severe limitations. It can only process X amount of information at a time and only a total of Y amount of information every day and after analyzing and processing all that information, it needs Z amount of rest.

Today anybody randomly can generate Data by touch of a button. And randomly we keep feeding, harping and sometimes even critically analyzing those pieces of irrelevant information.

What happens next! Fatigue, tiredness, sore eyes, loss of appetite, headaches, cramps, never seen/heard/ experienced before cravings, liquor as we gain weight on our way to Consumption Nirvana !

I am not against consumption, don't get me wrong. Infact I think that's the purpose of our lives. This post is only about the by-product of Consumption Revolution, i.e Information Pollution.

Marketers, Media and a very less know, but perhaps world's best know marketers knows about this Information Pollution very well. Infact they are sitting at the helm, with desire and power to worsen this pollution, create a hazy cloud of information always in front and even behind our eyes, so that we see what they want us to see, dont act and always react, so that they can make hay even when the sun is set. Yes, I am talking about our age old friends, our so called representatives, who are here to serve us, so that their interests are served to the maximum, our friendly, but not living in neighbourhood anymore Politicians!

Those of us who can, in order to save time, are busy buying gadgets and later on updating and upgrading them simply because we need them inside our toilets, cars and offices and bed-rooms. We are spending this saved time or whatever time left with us, in consuming more things and in the process generating more and more data about what we consumed today, who's the biggest consumer among us, what our friends must consume and what they should not etc.

We try to analyze all the advertisements, test, taste free samples and buy the most appropriate Cream or Mobile phone for us. We tend to believe that we have made a rational decision by buying the best product. I think actually we are simply buying the best marketer. All the shampoos and toothpaste available in the market claim to solve all your problems, yet none of them does solve anything. Perhaps we know it as well, yet we buy, consume something, because we have to. So is this A battle of creating most luring pieces of information (by the ways of advertisements, paid reviews, social media campaign, save the world campaigns, videos, news paper ads etc) only ?

Call it Irony or Travesty, but we don't realize Our mind works on the same basic principles on which a computer works. Yes, its widely know as GIGO - Garbage In, Garbage Out. No matter how much we try to be a Free Thinker,  we become what we consume !

They (the marketers,the media and our cute politicians) also know about an almost forgotten principle in an era of Quad-core processors, FIFO- First In, first Out!

That's why our cute politicians tend to chillax, make money day and night for the first four years of their tenure and announce some populist policies, attend marriages, opening and closing ceremonies and feed us with whatever possible, in the last year of their tenure, so that we recall them after we enter the Ballot Box. They know that Elections will happen on a hot, sunny day. Their will be a huge ocean of people behind each of us, and our GIGO mind will FIFO the candidates, confused by the plethora of information bombarded by several sources (including the neighbourhood uncle-ji, brother-in-law from Patna and Boss's sister's husband from Rai-Bareily) muddled with intrinsic desire to consume something as soon as we get back home, will take only few seconds to decide, push the button or put the stamp to handover our future in safe hands.

So next time, whenever you are thinking, think before thinking whether your free willy thoughts, your assumptions and even your seemingly innate desires to Consume and Act Freely are actually influenced and literally governed by this Information Pollution!!