Category: Others (Page 1 of 2)

Will the real Pakistani team, please stand up ?

As Ramiz Raza tried his best to establish the failings of the Pakistani side, one could easily sense the disappointment in his voice. And why shouldn’t he?

Pakistan lost to India by 124 runs!

This Pakistani side is the weakest one in a long long time. An unforgettable one, indeed.

Being a 90’s born, we’ve seen how tough it used to be to beat the Pakistanis. We still trail them by a 72-52 win-loss margin in ODIs and 12-9 in Tests! Going by how our neighbor has performed in recent years, just goes to show how strong they were!

As hard it is to admit, their bowling attack used to scare most of our batsmen back then.

When I looked at their playing XI the other day, I was like, who are these people? Apart from a couple of familiar faces, they all looked like a team that Bangladesh could beat with ease. And I’m not being arrogant here. Apart from the first bowling spell by Mohammad Aamir, they confirmed this feeling of mine. There’s just nothing there in the Pakistani bowling side. To top it all, they have a spinner wearing colored goggles bowling. Thank you Pandiya for those 3 sixes in whatever-is-his-name’s over!

Sure, I don’t follow their cricket and don’t have much idea on what they did but at least earlier the side at least used to put up a fight.

Where is that Pakistani team?

The fast bowlers. The batsmen who could hit sixes at will. That sledging which makes for such good TV.

I feel so sorry for their fans. And so many of them still came to the stadium. Probably because their NRI neighbors from India were going to cheer for their team. Their flag waving appeared just to be akin to saving face in social meetups in the desi community. The ones who had seen the glory days might just be looking at these players and be going, ‘What have you done to the Pakistani team?’

There used to be so much fun to argue with their supporters with match stats. Sure, for most of their queries, Sachin was our only answer, but still, we managed!

Will the real Pakistan team, please stand up?

Littleapp-review

How I saved Rs 500 using this App ?

Work lunches are all about exploring places around work to eat. There has to be something to always look forward to. A new favourite every other week because you know, you get bored of the same stuff. Especially when it comes to food.

Exploring a new eatery is akin to conducting experiments for our taste buds.

But this pattern is last mostly for the first half of the month. As the month draws to a close, we end up on the office canteen’s meals. What a fall! 

However, last month was a little different. Yes, appraisals played a little part in that, but it was the discovery of a little new App. Literally, the LittleApp.

This deal-provider helped save at least 500 Rupees last month! How ?

Yes, I’ll tell you all about it. But first, let me tell you how this app works.

The app is a treasure house of some amazing deals, ranging from restaurants, spa, salons, activities etc.

Also, this isn’t limited to an app-based service. if you don’t want to download the app, you can also check their website for the exact deals. I personally prefer their app. But then, I’m not judging.

As per their website,

They are a hyperlocal deals discovery platform connecting customers and merchants across services like restaurants, spa, salons, activities etc. They help customers discover fantastic offers at their favourite outlets and also become a sales channel for offline merchants.

And even though they promote their app as ‘Little’ app, they help you save a lot. Fans of Shakespeare ? What’s in a name, anyway!

Although my experience with the app was limited to the deals it provided with restaurants. My colleagues ended up using it for Spa and Salon deals as well. And as per them, it was worth it the time. Time spent saving money. 

But let me just tell you about my experience so that you can give this a try as well. 

We wanted to explore a new Pizza place which opened in HSR but days away from salary-day, we had decided to wait. 

Crushing our desire for the mouth-watering pizza for a while. Melodramatic, I know. But then that’s me and food. A love story. You should check my Instagram feed for proof: Here!

But then LittleApp came into the picture and Voila! We got a 30% off deal for us and our Monday Blues were solved by the cheese-laden pizza!

What started with just pizza was followed by Biriyani, Donuts and even Coffee!

So, how does the App work?

All you have to do is follow these steps: 

  1. Download the app from Playstore/Appstore. It’s available for Android/iOS. 
  2. Sign up quickly for an account
  3. Search for deals from restaurants, spa, salons, activities etc based on what you like For example if you’re looking for best restaurants in Bangalore, you can make use of the app.
  4. Pay from the multiple payment options available
  5. All your purchased deals appear in the ‘My order’ tab
  6. Head over to the outlet (restaurants, spa, salons), show this at the counter and avail the deal.
  7. Eat or leisure to your own liking
  8. And yes, Count how much you saved!

Sounds good?

Give this app a shot and let me know how you saved, while I buy a few more coffee vouchers to write a few more articles like this while sipping Coffee. 

ReveringThoughts_100thPost

The 100th Post of 2017: Feedback and the way forward

The light drizzle and the soft blowing wind. The thunder cancels out the traffic while the coffee brewing on the side provides the much-needed energy. There cannot be a better setting than this for me to (finally) type down the 100th Post for this year. (Yay!)

The intent was to make this post extra special and write a meaningful post describing the 100-post journey. A big ask.

I’m not being humble here but it is extremely difficult to play matchmaking for intent and output. They are literally never on the same page. Even if, in my head, the intent was always to write a piece that specifically touches people’s thoughts and provides meaning to help grow a discussion. The response, often, tends to be bleak.

Not complaining. There’s a ton of good content out there and it is difficult to stand out.

On the other hand, posts written as an after-thought of a far-fetched reverie tend to garner a few heartfelt responses in return. Feels good? Hell, Yeah!

But figuring out ‘what works’ and ‘what doesn’t’ is an analysis that is bereft of metrics that can lead subsequent action. And, results.

Self-analysis is tricky. One tends to throw themselves at the either end of the yardstick. I cannot, in my best day also, identify myself as a writer. Pretty sure, I’ll tremble to get that word out even if a gun is put on my head.

Hence, I thought of asking the good folks around for their opinion on my writing and of course the blog- My companion extraordinaire!

And Boy! People were kind enough to share their thoughts. All I can say is, I’m grateful!

I’d be happy to return this favour, in any way possible.

To summarise what I’ve learnt at the end of this 100-post experience and rephrasing few of the comments, here’s a 10-point list:

  1. Proofread, at least once, before hitting the publish button.
  2. Grammar Issues: Check for tenses in sentence structuring, Subject-Verb agreement
  3. Don’t be in a rush to finish off posts
  4. Pick a broad range of newer topics and experiment
  5. Readers prefer personalised and positive stories over negatives/rants
  6. Stick to a schedule as readers get used to one
  7. Writing has to be funny, witty and has to have dollops of sarcasm
  8. Writing can be less vague and control over ‘writer’s indulgence’ is required
  9. Focus on the Introduction to get reader’s attention
  10. Continue Writing regularly

I had initially thought of including, word-by-word, feedback from the readers in this post. However, as those were provided to me while conversing on WhatsApp/fb, I thought to add all the feedback without adding any names (for now) and wait to get their permission before I added the names. You might see more of them on this page soon: Click here for Feedback

I’m not sure if you’re still reading this longish post. Although, I can add a few more hundred words to this, but I’d restrain myself.

The biggest lesson I’ve learnt is that perseverance pays off. A friend reminded me to check my writing from a few years back and check myself on how much I’ve improved. And yes, I have.

I still write with the same zeal and flow like years before, and I reckon that’s a good thing. Right?

That flair for writing has remained constant. The road ahead is ambiguous and certainly won’t clear out anytime soon. But baby steps, perhaps?

As always, please comment away your feedback! See you soon!

PSY’s new Song is here and It’s catchy!

PSY is Back!

The Gangnam style guy!! How can we forget him ?

(He won’t let us :P)

This new song is catchy. Called “NAPAL BAJI”, which Google translates it as, ” Trumpet Trousers”.

Meanwhile, he also released this other song called “Daddy” as well, where his face is planted on a Baby!!

 

From his crazy humor, to his dance moves there is that crazy PSY experience. One common theme in all his songs, apart from the crazy moves, lots of Girls, is the presence of a Commode. I mean why ?!But then, It’s PSY after all!!

 

You can check his other songs in this Official Playlist here

 

[wysija_form id=”3″]

#TheSonaTentProject: Digital Transformation

I’ve never been involved in our Family business of Tent Decorations, not as much as my father would have liked, unlike my younger brother. It was sort of an accepted fact that I won’t be joining the business.

A business started by my Grandfather in 1981 and which continues to remain part of our Family Identity. Of course, Entrepreneurial instincts have always been there, but the inclination to be part of it, have been missing. I won’t go into the reasons for the same.

SonaTent_Jamshedpur

However, while being a Digital Junkie and sort of marketer, have this urge to be part of the transformation of the family business into the 3rd Generation. A generation which even I am also a part of.

To carry out this initiative, even sitting 1800 kilometers away in Bangalore, the only contribution I can make is to make the digital Transformation of our business.

For a market like Jamshedpur and the target audience, it is not very late for digital presence. A start can always be made. Sona tent and Decorations is taking the next big plunge. It has been 34 years of being in business and it is time to push for change.

I would of course need support from all of you to kick-start this initiative. A simple “like” on the Facebook page, would be good enough for a start.

[Just hit the like button on our Facebook Page]

Your suggestions on improvements on what do you expect from an Event Planner, or a decorator, would be much appreciated. Anything which you feel would be helpful in a new projection of a decades-old business would be helpful.

SonaTent_Jamshedpur

Your support will be a valuable addition in this Transformation process.

Thank you.

Thank you Sehwag

Thank you Sehwag

First ball of every innings kisses the boundary ropes, like it was a rule. Part of a ritual and accepted match routine.

The first few overs were a treat to watch because of this man. A flurry of fours, stand and deliver, and most often play a careless shot to head back to the pavilion. Yes, we hated it when he got out, but like those bowlers we expected him to get out after a few hits. But even in those few overs, he would ensure that the team got a flying start. He was a far more consistent than Afridi, but was known to follow a similar line of thought. Hit the ball, or get out of the way.

He was Sehwag. Virender Sehwag.

Thank you Sehwag

[Image courtesy: Telegraph.co.uk]

The guy with hand-eye coordination so perfect that he didn’t required any footwork. People talk about techniques, but surely had something of his own. The flair with which he batted, and when on a song, is the most musical thing you’ll ever watch it on the 22 yards.

People who have grown up watching cricket, can hardly hate this man. He was a treat to the eyes. Those swiftly timed hits on the offside, where the ball reaches the fence at lightning speed or a few on-side flicks. He even perfected Sachin’s cheeky over the keepers’ head 6 onto his own. (Remember when Sachin Hit one on a Shoaib delivery in the ’03 WC?). After, Sachin-Saurav, probably one of the best opening pair that I’ve seen, has been Sachin-Sehwag’s. 

Sachin Sehwag

 

[Image courtesy: sportkeeda.com]

He admired Sachin like a hero. One famous incident which probably many know is when Sehwag sledged back Shohaib with , “Baap baap hota hai” in reference to Sachin. Such was his admiration and confidence on the man.

Sehwag Shoaib Baap Baap hota hai

 

[Image courtesy: CricketCountry]

Generations which is going to hear about him, will assume him to be a typical ODI player, assuming they still play ODI’s then. But his innings in Tests, where he was surprisingly far more effective, are something that his stats also shout aloud.

It is like an era, Sachin, Saurav, Dravid, Kumble, Laxman, Zaheer and now Sehwag, has finally come to an end. I feel old. Seriously. A couple of days back when Zaheer announced his retirement, reading his letter was so heartwarming and pleasing. His humbleness was something that made me miss his bowling even more. Yesterday, when there was confusion on whether Sehwag has quit or not, I was hoping (like others who love him) that I’d see him again in India colors. Of course, I do accept that the Sehwag we once knew, had lost a bit of touch over time, yet being a fan, you do expect things like these to happen. Don’t you ?

Alas, that wasn’t supposed to happen. And he finally retired from all forms of International cricket effective today.

He was a visionary, probably the first person who said scoring a Double Century in an ODI is achievable. Of course, Sachin achieved the feat before him, but I’m pretty sure that if Sehwag would have been able to play till the 50 overs, he would easily have achieved it before itself. But then, he was not a guy who stayed long at the crease.

The time when Sachin used to close in on centuries and suffer the nervous 90s, I still remember Sehwag hitting a 6 to complete his centuries. And this is much before, Dhoni made finishing innings with a 6.

First Test : Pakistan v India

 

[Image courtesy: wisdenindia.com]

Coming from Najafgarh has made his own mark in the history books as far as cricket goes. Opposition was most concerned to get him out than any other in the Indian Line-up. I strongly believe, that one of the biggest reasons our batting line up became such a perfect fit, was because of starts which Sehwag gave.

We can remember him as the first Indian to score a Triple century. We can remember him for providing quick starts to the Indian bowling or simply destroying the opposition new ball bowlers on every occasion. Even when he would be in a bad patch, at least a couple of boundaries were expected to come off his bat.

He has been my favorite batsman and will always be. Yes, it is definitely true that each batsman does lose his way after a while, but in the time he has played and entertained us, he has become a legend for us. I still possess the scrapbook made of newspaper clippings and magazine cutouts of Sehwag.

The Viv Richards of our generation. As people who had witnessed him play, referred to Sehwag. Time will tell, whether we’ll have another Sehwag or not. But this moment, when you hear that this man won’t be playing for India again, it feels like something is lost. A Glorious chapter of Indian Cricket has ended.

Wish you a great life ahead Viru. The Sultan of Multan, will always rule our hearts. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for being the best entertainer of the game. There will be players, but I doubt there will be another Virender Sehwag.

Cheers!

Zaheer Khan Bowling Action

Thank you Zaheer!

India were being crushed by the Kiwis. Low scoring games in the fast and bouncy tracks of New Zealand and even though our bowlers were bowling well, our batsmen were not able to contribute much. The Test series was lost. The one-off t20 match, perhaps India’s first, was also lost even though Sachin scored a great knock and even won the MoM. We even lost the first two ODIs.

I remember the DD News anchor reading the headline, “Bharat ne jeet ka swaad chakha” (India finally tasted victory?). The person responsible for that ODI-win was the tailender, Zaheer Khan.

Zaheer khan batting

[Image courtesy: Sportskeeda.com]

It wasn’t the only time that he made it happen. The famous Natwest ODI chase, where Kaif and Yuvi got India home, and is more famously known for Dada’s antics in the Lord’s pavilion. The winning shot was also hit by Zaheer Khan.

Of course, he isn’t known for his batting, but these were some memories that are entrenched in many Cricket lovers’ mind.

It was around the same time when a new team India was formed. The Men in Blue team led by Saurav Ganguly came into being. The rise of Virender Sehwag, Yuvraj Singh, Harbhajan Singh, Mohammed Kaif and Zaheer Khan had all happened at the same time. Indian Cricket which was in deep trouble post the Match fixing scandal, was finally being rebuilt. Zaheer Khan was one among the many heroes which made it possible.

As Dhoni rightly pointed out, Zaheer is the Sachin of Bowling. No other words are fit to describe his contribution and stature.

I still recall how while playing as kids, would try to copy his bowling style. In my head I was trying to take a run-up like him and leap right at the crease and bowl. Of course, I did looked funny and nothing like him and probably the time my bowl reached the wicket, Zak would have already bowled two deliveries. Not just me, many who have played around the time when Zaheer was at his peak, have tried to do the same.

Zaheer Khan Bowling Action

 

[Image courtesy: Yahoo Images]

He had that effect on a lot of cricketers. He had a certain charm and style to his action and you ended up feeling that you ought to be like him. At least try to.

Years later, when he was out of the Indian team, he went back to basics. Got his fitness back, played in the English county and finally got back to the team.

In his retirement note, clearly mentioning that winning the World Cup was the most cherished moment of his cricketing career.

Zaheer Khan World Cup

 

[Image courtesy: Daily Mail]

He was a hero of Indian bowling, a mentor for many fast bowlers and I do wish that sooner than later, he gets associated with the Indian team in mentoring our fast bowlers.

Thank you Zaheer khan, for being an inspiration for many. No matter how much I write, it won’t be enough to thank you.

Have a great life ahead.

Adding color with home theatre & speakers

Music is bliss. It affects our mood, changes our mood and even makes us dive deep down along with the feelings we experience. It has many peculiar ways to invade our mind and soul equally. Music is part of our life, like nothing else is. It is there to fill up spaces, while travelling, while working and some even use it while studying. It is there to enlighten our moods or to be there during sorrows. Our music choices become a part of our lifestyle. Over time, we have changed how we listen to music or for that matter, how we  get ourselves entertained. We want a theatre-like experience right in our homes. While the iPods, phones and mp3 players of the day are pretty common for personal usage, home theatre & speakers are something we are also exploring a lot. These options serve for a lot of your entertainment needs by giving a better experience. Exciting times we live in. Right? You can add colour to your home with these fancy speakers available in the market.

home theatre and speakers

The choices for the same are immense. Depending on your budget or needs, and the kind of décor, you can go with varied set of options.However, a few important things that you need to keep in mind when purchasing a home theatre are compatibility, Audio-clarity and User-control. Instead of blindly following the herd on the brand which everyone seems to be buying, do a little research as to which type would suit your home or even office. More than anything, with the amount of competition we see in the e-commerce bandwagon, you can expect huge discount, if yu know where to look.

Home theatre & speakers bring an amazing entertainment option in the confines of your home, but also bring colour to your life. After a hard day at work, imagine listening to your favorite band while you relax. Or simply snooze around the couch watching your favorite action movie with the audio quality as if you’re in a theatre. Amazing, right ? So, what are you waiting for, just hook yourself with one and enjoy.

The Wash Bucket Challenge

Like every month, when all plans were in place for the trip, I searched up my wardrobe to fill up the travel bag. It is kind of the only time I end up looking for clothes with so much importance. You need to figure out what kind of clothes to carry, how many to carry and most important of them all whether there are any washed clothes or not.

Sadly, this time around, there were hardly any!!

The trip was a day away and I serious;y needed to wash ‘em up. Giving out to a dhobhi  wasn’t an option. It was late-night and even if I somehow managed to  give it off early morning, there was no way, he would return it to me before the my train leaves for Kerala.

Finally, I had to take the plunge. I decided to wash them on my own.

Ariel wash Bucket Challenge

With Ariel Matic and a bucket full of necessary clothes, I put them all in the washing machine.

It is not like I do not wah my clothes, but it takes a lot of effort you know. I mean you need to take these clothes, wash them, then dry them out and not to forget the fact that sometimes, it ends up raining, and all your efforts are gone down the drain. Down the terrace pipe, to be precise.

But the fact that once, it all is done, you feel happy. Happy to have done something productive.

In particular, washing with Ariel Matic was a delightful experience. It requires very less detergent and the clothes just get rid of all the dirt they might have accumulated over time.

Finally, I packed up all my stuff for the Kerala tour.

Ariel wash Bucket Challenge

This post has been written in collaboration with Blogadda for Airiel’s #WshBucketChallenge

I also nominate Sarabjeet, Akshay, Shreya, Shreesha and Preethi for the #WashBucketChallenge

Remembering RK Laxman

Every morning, before handing over the newspaper to my Grandpa, I used to check out this page in the newspaper. Among all the other things I used to check, there were these cartoons which always topped the list. It was very rare that I understood those. But I made it a point to read and understand them.

Much as I miss handing over the newspapers as well as I miss my grandpa, I also miss the joy of once-in-a-blue-moon feeling of having understood those cartoons. Most of the times, it was grandpa who would try to help me out in understanding them.

 

The name of RK Laxman is synonymous with those cartoons. It was then; it is now and will be for a long time.

A picture speaks a thousand words. His cartoons spoke more than that. Over the years, they have explained the plight of the common man without the paint of biased viewpoints which the media of today reeks of.
rk laxman
The appeal of those cartoons is not limited to any age-group but catered to one and all. They brought out the plight of a common man. The problems of the common man, just with the help of his cartoons.

His name is synonymous with these cartoons which he began in 1951 in the cartoon strip, “You said it”.

His cartoons were a very important part of his famous brother, RK Narayan’s Malgudi days adaptation on Television.

RK Laxman, you’ll always be remembered. RIP.

Freedom of speech ?

Have you ever wondered how families of criminals, murderers, rapists feel when one of their own gets arrested for their crimes, or it comes out that one has done any crimes ?

When terror attacks happen (which, apparently only Muslims commit), we get the exact same feeling. The feeling that someone from our extended Islamic community did the horrifying act. We feel hurt, just like anyone else. To tell you the truth, we feel more hurt than anyone else. Its understood that some of you, who would be reading this will have their own notions about Islam and Muslims, notions which are largely part of how you see us painted by Media.

Picture this, “a shooter opens fire in a school in London”

and this, “A jihadi-militant opens fire in a school in london”

I don’t even have to tell you, to create opinions on your own about Muslims and Islam, as you already might have.

I don’t want to make this another “justification”, which we have to do after every attack and that is partly why I didn’t even made a statement condemning it. Why, you ask ?

Well, because that is what we do. It is as if to tell the world that we didn’t do that, there were some nut-heads at work, so please don’t brand us along with them.

Being branded is not new to us, we have grown accustomed to it. We have to carry an additional baggage of feeling hurt and guilty that there are people who wouldn’t blink an eye before blaming Islam for everything that happens by the acts of a few. I’m tired. Actually, we are tired. But then, there is always this hope that people will understand this, someday.

We are questioned for everything.

There’s Bakried (Eid-ul-Azha), and a whole lot of organisations up in arms telling the world about so many animals being sacrificed in the name of religion. Yes, we do sacrifice animals in the name of our religion, we eat the meat, distribute it among the poor and even revere that meat for days and not waste it.

Media brings out topics on terrorism and asking us views of Muslims on that. Please keep a note, we condemn every one of those attacks. We also condemn all attacks on our religion. We also condemn derogatory speeches or cartoons which violate our religious practices. We, also condemn the attacks on people in the name of our religion or Prophet. We don’t want to kill people who don’t agree with us, but then what you can do about some crazy ones ?

We are responsible for so many things. All the problems in the world is just because of us. Right ?

Someone even filed a petition to stop the morning azaan (early morning call to prayer) as it disturbs sleep. Talk about freedom of speech. Irony, anyone ?

I’m all okay, and so would other Muslims be, with the idea of freedom of speech. But don’t be selective in that. The daily, which was hell-bent on publishing offensive Islamic cartoons, rejected a few cartoons publications as they were antisemitism. Yeah, right freedom of speech!!

I’m okay, sad but okay, to see people use their freedom of speech. But it is very difficult to digest the hypocrisy. Just don’t support Freedom of speech for your convenience.

For the record, I don’t like Tasleema Nasreen or Salman Rushdie, because their idea of Islam is wrong. I won’t go and kill them or issue fatwas against them. I didn’t liked MF hussain too, I wouldn’t have let him leave India too.

This quote, sums up my Idea of Free speech perfectly

This quote, sums up my Idea of Free speech perfectly

Don’t blow the horn of Freedom of speech when you are the one speaking.

Thank you Dhoni

To MSD: A fan-letter

There were no “news leaks” floating around about retirement, there was no marketing to make a full-house farewell and nor there was any photo-op to bid farewell to the longer format of the game. Everything was same as it has always been.

A silent march, with stumps in his hands, and the same attitude which he has always carried on, he called it a day.

MS Dhoni retirement press conference

[Picture Courtesy: Crickradar.com]

I won’t argue with people on whether he was better in tests than One dayers or he wasn’t in any or any random accusation which the anti-dhoni brigade will come up with.

You die a hero or you live long enough to see yourself become the villain. Was he slowly inching towards that ?

For someone who has admired him from the time he played in the India-A squad in Zimbabwe, and then being called in for the Bangladesh tour, it is difficult to imagine him being the villain. Not now, not ever.

It is not just the aggressive batting style, or his captain cool avatar but also the way he has carried himself off the field. He is an icon.

Its a little unusual to take in, that he has retired. But with him still being there for ODI’s is a relief.

 

Kohli is amazing batsmen and it would be great to see him lead the test side with his brand of aggressive captaincy.

To the captain, who carried the team of veterans as well as youngsters.

Thank you Dhoni

[Picture Courtesy: India.com]

Cheers to Mahendra Singh Dhoni!! You’ll always remain an icon.

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