Magic Faraway Tree Series Review

Enid Blyton is well known for her school stories and mystery stories. But she has also made her forays into the realms of fantasy. Most of her works in this genre are short stories. However she has at least two complete series in this genre – ‘The Wishing chair’ and ‘The Magic Far Away Tree’. She has also written a nice fantasy novel adapting John Bunyan’s ‘pilgrim’s progress’ for children. The ‘The Magic Far Away Tree’ was probably my first introduction to the fantasy genre though at that time as a 12 year old, I did not know it as a genre. At that time I had been so besotted by the book “The Magic Far Away Tree’, that I borrowed it from the library and read it on four different occasions and still did not have enough of it. So I actually tried to forge the library seal on a different book and exchange the books.

Read the rest of the post here on my fantasy blog.

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz

The image of a young girl, a scarecrow, a tin man and a lion gamboling merrily along the yellow brick road has been immortalized by the 1939 MGM musical ‘The Wizard of Oz’. No other fantasy film captured the audience imagination like that until the ‘Lord of the Rings’ saga. The Oz books are no less enthralling. There are 14 of them written by Frank Baum. Due to its popularity the series is being continued even after his death. But I wouldn’t really consider them part of the series.

Read the rest of this post here on my fantasy blog.

Center Stage at Baldwins

Public speaking is considered the greatest fear a person can have, even greater than the fear of death. However research shows that a significant factor in people being promoted at work is the ability to express one's self in public or at a meeting, concisely and effectively, no matter how large the gathering. Like all mothers my mother dreamed about me having a successful career right from my childhood. So she wanted me to develop my oratory skills by participating in elocution contests since my early school days. But I did not share her enthusiasm. However events conspired to give me my first stage appearance at the age of 12 that too in a grand way in front of an audience of 5000 people in a hall amidst pin drop silence and all eyes directed towards me.

But before we get there, first things first. Let’s start off with the dull, dreary details of the school I studied in when this occurred. The school was one of those Christian Missionary schools that have been running for more than a century and believe in things such as Honor, Traditions and Discipline. Well. Or at least that’s what I believe. They had some Latin motto and an emblem having a pictures of a lion and a crow. I hope the meaning of the Latin words and the symbolism of the crow and the lion was something on these lines. Anyways whatever they meant, it is more dramatic to put it this way in a Mohabatein style. Every morning started with an hour of traditional marching and an hour of moral lessons to teach us honor. Discipline was enforced by regular strokes with the cane now and then. Over the years the teachers at the school had perfected the art of canesmanship. The canes themselves had an aesthetic appeal, being made out of the finest wood with a nice handle and slowly tapering towards the end. The teachers were able to execute masterly strokes on the student's back side with the slight flick of a wrist. It would seem so effortless that one would have to be there and experience the feel of the cane on one's backside to really appreciate the effectiveness of the methods.

As far as the marching was concerned, we were divided into 6 groups for this purpose, each one having a color and names after some Christian saint. The groups know as houses would march together. Each group was lead by a prefect, yelling 'left right left' at the top of his voice. The prefects would be alert and watchful of any sign of indiscipline. The most common case of indiscipline was trying to establish any kind of communication with the boys standing near you. The slightest noise and the prefect hauled you away to the teacher for a feel of the cane. At the end of marching we were lead to the big school hall for the chapel. The chapel consisted of singing of Hymns, retelling of parables from the bible and prayer. Sometimes there would be some announcements as well. During this entire exercise we were still under the watchful eyes of the prefects. It was at one of these chapels that I made my first public appearance. And that I did with a bang.


At that time Diwali had just ended and I happened to be in possession of a roll of roll caps used for the toy guns during Diwali. These roll cap toy guns used to be an immense source of joy for the children during Diwali times those days. I was no exception and so I always liked to carry a roll around. It so happened that someone had thrown a nice little button made of brass somewhere in the grounds and I had managed to retrieve the same. We were all seated in the hall and the chapel was about to begin. There seemed to be a slight delay. They say speech is silver, silence is golden. However extended period of silence can be quite unsettling. Not surprisingly even in prisons, they subject the worst criminals to silence by putting them in solitary confinement. It was really getting to my nerves and I began to fidget. Of course, when you’re fidgeting, nothing like a couple of objects that you can rub against each other. It is much more interesting than just rubbing your hands against each other. But it became a bit too interesting for my liking at that moment for the instant the brass button stuck the roll cap; the silence came to an abrupt end 'Boom'.

It was not long before the prefects had swooped down upon me and within moments I was on the stage in front of the whole school, the hero who abolished silence from their world. The vice principal was standing there in front of me. Though he was a master in canesmanship, this was a special occasion and needed a more personal touch. So he focused all his energy into his palm and executed a well directed slap on my face. The whole school looked on spell bound without uttering a single sound. With that my few moments on the center stage came to an end.

The silver lining on the cloud was that I had no stage fear from then on for what worse can happen on stage?

Related Post: A Birthday Celebration

Is Flat the best shape for the World?

Thomas Friedman's 'World is Flat' was a revelation for me. It helped me truly apprecite globalization and its benefits on mankind. From then on I have always been looking forward to rapid globalization. So I was really irritated when I heard Baba Ramdev riling against globalization at 5.00 Am in the morning on Astha channel. Some people are just so archaic in their ideas and resistant to change.

But then everything else the Baba was saying made sense and all his arguments were based on sound logic. How could the Baba be so blind and prejudiced on this aspect alone? This thought kept running in the back of my mind. So I tried to put some thought to his reasoning. Ideally when examining the motives for someone's actions, the ideal starting point would be the driving purpose in the person's life. So what was Baba Ramdev's driving purpose? To revive ancient Indian traditions, especially in the field of medicine. How could globalization hamper this? Doesn't globalization provide more efficient means for dissemination of ideas, enabling pearls of wisdom from ancient India to reach greater number of people? So we seem to have reached a dead end here.

So I decided to pick a different thread and proceed. Why did the Indian traditions recede to the background in the first place? Even worse, why were the religion, culture and traditions of the Celts, Mayans and many other ancient civilizations totally decimated? We often hear of them having made so many valuable discoveries. Why they all were lost? A study of history would indicate they were not accidentally lost but systematically destroyed. Why did this happen? It is because the group of people who had established superiority in military technology used the superiority used their military victories to impose their ideas in all other sphere of life on the conquered people. So it happened that people in different regions independently developed solutions for problems in different spheres such as society, religion, medicine, culture etc.
Ideally the ideas in each sphere should have competed against the other ideas in the same sphere from other regions. The best idea should have triumphed and drawn in some of the best aspects of the other ideas. Then the different groups would have started from there and again developed parallel ideas. This process carried out iteratively would have lead to the most efficient system for development of ideas. But this is not what happened. Instead the battle of superiority of ideas was fought in a single sphere – the military battle field. So it came about that the ideas of the most brutal people who focused more on military became the standard for the world on all spheres.

Coming to the present times, have we wondered why in ancient times so many parallel technologies, art forms, music forms etc. developed in various parts of the world. But now there seems to be just a single stream of ideas centered on the American region. One cannot but avoid the conclusion that globalization is the reason for that. With the world so integrated, new ideas do not get the time and space to develop to their full potential. Instead they are exposed and evaluated at the nascent stage. So only a single idea gets to develop fully. All other get nipped in the bud. There is also another angle. The people in power are in power due to the current ideas. They would not want their power base to be eroded by emergence of new ideas. So they exercise their power to kill all new ideas. Earlier also the situation was the same. But the reach of these powerful persons were localized and new ideas could always spring up in areas out of their reach. But globalization has brought the entire world within their reach. There is no place one can be safe from the Microsofts, IBMs and Coca Colas of the world. We keep hearing how major pharmaceutical companies are strangling research by leveraging their patents. All major cities of the world are slowly beginning to resemble each other. We find McDonalds and Pizza Huts all over the world. Travel seems to be losing its novelty.
I can keep ranting on. But I guess I have conveyed the general drift of my arguments and I don’t see any more value to be added. So I will conclude with the refrain of a song from German rock band ‘Rammstein’

We're all living in America,
America is wunderbar.
We're all living in America,
Amerika, Amerika.
We're all living in America,
Coca-Cola, Wonderbra,
We're all living in America,
Amerika, Amerika.
This is not a love song,
this is not a love song.
I don't sing my mother tongue,
No, this is not a love song.
We're all living in America,
Amerika is wunderbar.
We're all living in America,
Amerika, Amerika.
We're all living in America,
Coca-Cola, sometimes WAR,
We're all living in America,
Amerika, Amerika.

Related Post: Thus Spake the Last Tiger

Gulliver's Travels

Talking about Budha, Swami Vivekanda mentions the irony of Budha, who stood against idol worship all his life, only to be he himself made an idol and worshipped after his death.’ Gulliver’s travels ‘presents a similar irony. A misanthropic work seeking to bring out the failings of human civilization ended up delighting children for centuries. Not that Jonathan Swift did a bad job of it. He rather did a too good job of it. He has put so much attention to details and written so lovingly that people can’t help falling in love with the book, satire though it is.

Most books have a general purpose: to entertain, to put across a point, to educate etc. At the outset, it may seem fantasy would always serve only to entertain. Nothing can be farther from the truth. Fantasy provides much more scope that any other literary genre to explain complex or abstract concepts and to prove a point. For instance an ‘Animal Farm’ can teach you what is communism better than any political science text book. Similarly fantasy is a very good tool to examine the current social conditions form a detached stand point. Aesop’s parables and Panchatantra are classic examples of social messages conveyed through intelligent animal societies. ‘Gulliver’s Travels’ can be counted in their ranks as it tries to illustrate the vanity, frailty and baseness of human spirit in general through fantasy.

You can read the rest of the post here on my other blog dedicated to science fiction.

Alice in wonderland

I just did what I do best. I took your little plan and I turned it on itself. Look what I did to this city with a few drums of gas and a couple of bullets. Hmmm? You know… You know what I’ve noticed? Nobody panics when things go “according to plan.” Even if the plan is horrifying! If, tomorrow, I tell the press that, like, a gang banger will get shot, or a truckload of soldiers will be blown up, nobody panics, because it’s all “part of the plan.” But when I say that one little old mayor will die, well then everyone loses their minds!

The above words from Joker in the movie ‘Dark Knight’ best summarize the effect Alice in Wonderland had on me when I read it the first time at the age of 12.

Ckick here to read the rest of the review on my Fantasy Blog.

A Historic Perspective of Chinese Strategy

Kashmir is reeling under terrorism. Terrorism had raised its ugly head in Punjab demanding Kalisthan. Insurgency is still rampant in the northeast. China is consolidating her iron grip on Tibet. Communist parties routed for China during the war of 1962. China is emerging as the leading economy in the world. Vietnam, Myanmar and North Korea are all but satellite nations to China. Nepal has gone Maoist. Sri Lanka is leaning towards China under Rajapakse. Chinese is censoring internet content. Pakistan has tested nuclear weapons strongly suspected to have been built with Chinese help. Chinese are strengthening naval presence in India Ocean. Are these all just unrelated events or is there a pattern?

While we are pondering, let us go back 1000 years in time to ancient China. It was a large country like that of the present age. It was ruled by a supreme emperor, who was supposed to be the representative of God on Earth. The kingdom was known as the middle empire, with the heaven above and rest of the world below it. Many of the kingdoms in South East Asia were vassal states paying tribute to the Chinese emperor. In fact that was the only kind of diplomatic relation the Chinese monarchy recognized. When European emissaries had first landed in the Chinese shores, the Chinese emperor had offered to accept the European countries as tributaries. The state was completely self sufficient and the only thing they required from any outside state was acceptance of Chinese sovereignty. But then this complacence had proved to be their undoing. Having had to not fight wars for many years, they failed to develop advanced military technology leading to their humiliation by the Europeans and later by Japan.

Let us now move on to another nation, another time. Consider communist Russia under Stalin 50 years back. They had formed the USSR absorbing all the small nations in the neighborhood and formed satellite nations of countries that could not be absorbed. Poland, Hungary, Bulgaria, Yugoslavia, East Germany were all under the Russian hegemony. Communism as an ideal itself is hegemonic in nature. Marx had envisaged communism breaking all national barriers and uniting workers under a common banner. Of course Lenin and Mao had improvised it by adding ‘common banner under the ruling communist party’. Russia however failed in its attempt because it failed to build a strong economic base. Secondly it had not homogenized the country through ethnic cleansing and resettlement.

So now what do we have here. Current day China is not repeating the mistakes of imperial China. They have developed advanced military technology and are now one of the 5 elite nations having nuclear weapons. Nor have then repeated Russia’s mistake. They have kept the expansionist tendencies on the backburner and have been building a strong economic base. Now they are having one of the strongest economies in the world, what next?

Vietnam, North Korea, Myanmar are already more or less Chinese vassal states. Sri Lanka and Nepal are falling under its influence. China is having an increasing influence with the ASEAN countries. Now comes the roadblock– two troublesome nations to the west - India and Pakistan, both too big and ethnically and ideologically too different to absorb or convert into the Chinese’ commonwealth’. If you are getting where I am leading to, you might think I am crazy and paranoid. Frankly I myself thought so too till I read the below article.

It is a master stroke, isn’t it? Play Pakistan against India. Get Kashmir out. Then Punjab and Assam will follow. Then snatch Arunachal, Sikkim and rest of the north eastern states. Comrades will bring people’s republics of Bengal and Kerala to the fold. It would only be a matter of time before the rest of them come apart. Meanwhile Pakistan’s internal contradictions would pull it apart. So there we have around 30 odd small nations waiting to be harvested into the fold.

Now one may argue if this is the only way ahead for China. So let us consider the alternative. So far the people had willingly given over the decision taking authority to the communist party leaders to get the country back on its feet. Now country is an economic superpower. Isn’t it time people got their right to self determination and start enjoying life like their neighbors? Once democracy sweeps in, multiple parties will come. Tibetans, Manchurians and Uyghur will start demanding autonomy. Slowly the power of the communist party would begin to decline till they will be no better than their comrades in India. What a fall it would be, my friends? Would anyone ruling in their right mind want this to happen? Temporarily you can avert the disaster by screening the internet and not letting people see what people in other nations are upto. But in the long run, way to go is to motivate people and keep them going by raising the bar for national achievment. Having achieved economic supremacy, follow with political triumph and then world conquest to re-establish the middle kingdom. Isn’t freedom a small price to pay for such a lofty goal? Find below an article that reaches a similar conclusion

Am I missing something in my analysis or is India and the rest of the world just waiting for the much cherished goal of world peace to be established under the suzerainty of the Middle kingdom?

Related Post: The Aman Ki Asha Paradox

Man biter of Rajajinagar

Jim Corbett was an Indian-born British hunter, conservationist and naturalist, famous for slaying a large number of man-eating tigers and leopards in India. Between 1910 and 1938, Corbett shot much-feared man-eaters such as the Champawat Tiger, the Leopard of Rudraprayag, the Tigers of Chowgarh and the Panar Leopard, who had cumulatively killed over a thousand people. At the age of 10, I too considered myself no less a hunter, conservationist and naturalist in my own right. I had hunted not so-much-feared man-haters such as the 5th cross butterfly, the dragon fly of Gandhi Road and grasshoppers of Navrang park. I was also considered something of an expert on the mango, Guava and pomegranate trees in the neighborhood. Whereas Rajaji Nagar was definitely no Kumaon, one can not definitely rule out the presence of beasts of violent nature in the precincts either. There was one such animal right next door - the man biter of Rajaji Nagar.

The animal in question carried the innocuous name of Babloo that hardly reeked of any danger. He was some kind of a mixed breed. A perceptive observer could decipher traces of a Pomeranian and Alsatian ancestry. But there were probably others ancestors too all of who did not make themselves so evident on the surface. So much so as far as appearances go. Lets now dwell a little deeper and get into the realm of the psyche. As they say no man is born a criminal nor a tiger a man eater nor a dog a man biter. But it is circumstances that make them so. Probably that was the case with Babloo too. This poor animal was kept tied up day and night deprived of the most basic needs, chief among them being food and love. Nature took care of at least one of these needs for the place was infested with cockroaches and it was not too difficult to grab one and have a nice roach steak snack even within the confines of the chain that held him captive. But as far as the other need went, it was a different ball game. The only opportunity he got to satisfy this need was on the rare occasion when he was allowed to roam free in the presence of young boys or girls, for whom he had developed a special love. He would express his affection by placing his forelegs on their shoulders and sniffing all over the face and licking the face. But then being kissed by a mangy old dog was definitely not a typical pre-teen’s idea of fun. So most kids in the locality lived in dread of Babloo.

On the fateful day, I was at the Navrang park as usual with my friends. At that time we were practicing climbing trees. In those days, computers and video games were largely unheard of. Doordarshan used to be the only channel on TV and there used to be nothing there till 6'o clock in the evening. So children used to devote themselves to the pursuit of royal arts such as climbing trees, grappling, wall scaling etc. most of which have now been pushed to obscurity due to the onslaught of electronic media. I was still an initiate and had still not attained sufficient proficiency to climb a tree unaided. The fact that I was among the younger kids and not really tall for my age did not help either. But slowly I was learning the ropes . That day there were 5 of us -myself, Nagaraj the notorious the oldest of the lot, Deepak the dependable, my friend, philosopher and guide, my arch rival Pradeep alias Ragi and the baby of the group Nanjesh also know as Kulla (dwarf in Kannada.). Nagaraj and Deepak were the experts and they were giving us tips on tree climbing. Ragi was already up the tree having been hauled up by Nagaraj. From his vantage point, he was surveying the surrounding when he suddenly sighted danger and raised the alarm. Babloo had somehow managed to break free of his shackles. He had been sighted entering the park and fast approaching the tree.

As per the standard protocol in times of crisis, women and children had to be given the first chance for safety. So Nagaraj hauled Kullah up the tree. Next was supposed to be my turn when Babloo made his appearance. The sight of Babloo caused protocol to be thrown to wind and it was everyone for himself. Within seconds Nagaraj was up the tree. It was not long before Deepak was also up there and it was just me left all alone to face the monster. I was reminded of the story from Indian mythology where 2 friends had been in a similar situation, only that time it was a bear instead of a dog. One of them had managed to climb a tree and the other one had been left in a predicament similar to mine. So with a quick presence of mind he had lain flat on the floor. The bear has sniffed him and then thinking him to be dead left him and gone leaving him unhurt. Of course there was more to the story, a moral and all that. But then that is immaterial here. What is material is I did not wish to lie down on the ground and test the truth of the story. Even if it were true, what worked for a bear need not work for a dog.

Then I had not yet heard of the other story where a Japanese and an American had encountered a lion in the jungle. So the Japanese had begun to put on his running shoes. The American had looked at him skeptically and asked "Do you expect to out run the lion?" He had replied "No. But I do not have to outrun the lion. All I have to do is to outrun you" Babloo was not a lion and nor was there an American in the park for me to outrun. But as I said I had not yet heard the story. So I decided to run anyways. Of course I could not outrun Babloo, who had begun to enjoy the chase. I soon tripped and fell. I knew I was trapped. This situation reminded me of yet another of grandpa’s stories this time from real life. A hare has been cornered by a hound at the edge of a cliff and had nowhere to run. The situation had caused the hare to summon courage. In his last moments, he had turned back and 'faced the brute'. This sudden show a bravado had startled the hound. Of course Babloo was not a hound but at least a hound was a better approximation of Babloo than a bear or a lion. So I decided to try the hare’s tactic of turning and ‘facing the brute’. By the time I had reached this resolution, I was already feeling a sharp surge of pain in the back of my knee. The man biter had found its prey.

So it was that a man biter was born. Babloo subsequently managed to bite 2 or 3 more kids in the locality. Babloo's owner had managed to reach the spot with the legendary timing that was the special preserve of police in Indian movies: after everything is over and the movie is about to end. After seeing Babloo safely secured my friends had climbed down from their positions of safety and come down to check me out and take me home. I had to take anti rabies vaccine injections around my stomach for 5 successive days. But then I had learnt my lesson : “There are 2 kinds of people in this world – Those who can climb trees and those who get bitten by dogs.

The Socialist Manifesto - 10 Point Agenda for our Nation's Development

An election manifesto modeled on the lines of some of the socialist parties in the countries.

1. We plan to abolish movies and all entertainment programs on television and radio. Television and radios would be used exclusively so that the Indian public can listen to the speeches of their favorite political leaders. Why should people enjoy entertainment from far away studios when one can be entertained by local people? This move will ensure development of local singers, street play artists and drama artists. That way we have twin benefits of development of local culture as well as employment to so many more people. Similarly people will watch the local sports tournaments. That again will provide employment to hundreds of local people involved in organization of these tournaments.

2. We plan to abolish use of all motorized vehicles by general public. Every car that is replaced by a palanquin will quadruple employment opportunities. Moreover people will stop travelling to far away places. That will reduce immigrants from other states snatching away the jobs of the local people. This will also ensure our country is no longer held hostage by oil exporting nations. Moreover this will lead to promotion of more inclusive industries such as maintenance of horses and oxen that can be easily carried out by one and all without need for any specialized foreign language or computer skills. Moreover more animals would mean more animal excreta which would give fillip to the manure industry.

3. We plan to abolish all modern weapons. Use of these weapons require specialized skills which is against the principle of exclusivity. Clubs, spears, pikes, bows and arrows and blow pipes are weapons that are much more easier to manufacture and deployment by one and all. This will also ensure we are not held hostage to larger multi national weapon manufacturing companies. We can compensate for the loss of effectiveness vis a vis guns by employing more people. That way we are also addressing the problem of unemployment.

4. We plan to abolish printing presses and all forms of mechanized publishing. Why should there be printing presses when so many more people can be employed to copy manuscripts by hand?

5.We plan to abolish electricity. The very concept of electricity is too complex and hence discriminatory by nature. On the other hand clay lamps and cotton wicks and hand fans can be made by every common man. Moreover these industries are so much more labor intensive that they will further reduce the unemployment problem. Also when we don't use power at all, there is no question of nuclear power. Hence we will not be held hostage to the evil designs of foreign powers. An additional benefit is so many deaths that occur as a result of electric shock can be averted.

6. We also plan to carry out a major revamp of our education system. We are thinking of removing science, history and mathematics from the school curriculum. Over the years our young minds have been corrupted by teaching science. Science is the root cause of all evil, bringing machines to replace humans. Mathematics is cryptic mumbo jumbo that is being used by the elites to enslave the masses. As far as history is concerned, why waste time reading about past leaders and past events instead of reading about the achievements of the current leaders and their contribution to the social upliftment of the downtrodden?

7. Many of the reforms planned to be introduced by us are so sweeping in nature that they might cause many of the current ministries to become redundant. If this were to happen we would have solved the unemployment problem of the public only for it to resurface at a ministerial level. So we plan to introduce new ministries. We plan to have individual ministries consisting of a cabinet minister and a minister of state for the welfare of each and every caste, religion and other social group in the country.

8. Having addressed the unemployment problem, our next focus would be to address the inequality issue. After deep consideration we have decided to attack the problem at its roots. Inequality exists because of money. If money is eliminated, inequality would disappear for ever. So we plan to confiscate all money in the country and send it out of the country. Our ministers have been kind enough to take on the burden of disposing this rubbish. They have graciously agreed to open accounts in Swiss Banks to serve as dustbins for this garbage.

9. We have also evolved an unique foreign policy based on the principles of independence from American intervention and cooperation with our neighboring nations. We are planning to constitute a steering committee consisting of the Prime ministers of Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal and Sri Lanka, headed by the premier of China. Any law in this country would be sent to this committee for ratification before being enacted. We are also planning to get our constitution reviewed by this committee. This would ensure that we do not offend any of our neighbors and maintain a congenial international atmosphere.

10. The first nine points solves all the issues faced by the nation. But we are a party that follows the time honored tradition of having 10 point agendas. So we have included this point for posterity's sake.

Related Post: Reservation Policy: My Views

The MBA and the CEO

People fresh out of college, especially business school have so many expectations when joining a new organization. Organizations on the other hand have a different kind of expectation. This mismatch in expectations often creates strange situations for the B school grad when he begins his career at his new workplace. I have tried to create an imaginary conversation inspired by some real experiences to illustrate this kind of a situation.

New management trainee has just joined. Let us call him MT. the CEO is CEO.

CEO: Welcome to our company. We are happy to have young people like you joining our organization.

MT : Thank you, Sir
CEO: I hope you are very passionate about your role.

MT : Definitely, sir. I am very passionate about ensuring operational excellence through lean six sigma initiatives.

CEO : Very good. You may find this discouraging but I don't believe in operational excellence. I believe in human excellence. It is humans who run the operations. So instead of targeting operations, I target the humans who run the operations. You try to make the operations lean but before that the operators have to be lean. That is why I have introduced more salt in the canteen food. That way the operators eat less and remain lean. How eez it?

MT : Sooper, Sir.

CEO : Let me tell you an inspirational story. There was a factory like ours. There was a man who worked in the factory. He used to wear a red shirt everyday. He used to come in the morning, work for 12 hours and leave at the end of the day. Everyone used to call him 'The man with the red shirt'. Isn't that an amazing story? I hope you will take inspiration from the story and show it in your work.

MT (To himself) : What the heck! Am I supposed to wear a red shirt or work 12 hours a day? How the hell did I land up here?
MT (To CEO) : That was highly insightful, sir. Whenever I face a tough situation, I would take inspiration from the story. By the way, Sir, can you tell me more about my responsibilities?

CEO : Take it! The whole factory is yours! Go out there and do whatever you want. Take decisions, implement them and bring profits. You don't have to ask anybody's permission. Nor do you have to bother about anybody's criticism. First they will ignore you, then they will laugh at you and then they will resist you. But you don't bother. Keep doing your job.

MT : Sir, can I meet the team I will be working with?

CEO : What team? Panni than daa koottama varum; Singam single aa than varum (Only the swine comes in herds; The Lion will always come alone.) Get it? I want lions in the company, not swine who work in teams.

MT : One more thing, Sir. during the company presentation we were promised 10 Lakhs per annum but now my offer letter indicates only 8 Lakhs.

CEO : Adikamaa aasikkira aanum adhikamaa kopikkira ponnum vazhntha sarithirame kedaythth (The overtly ambitious man and the overtly angry woman have never succeeded on earth!!!) Be happy with what your getting. kaiyil konjam kaasu irudhaal needhaan adharku ejamaanan kazhuththu varaikkum kaasu irundhaal adhudhaan unakku ejamaanan.( If you have a little money in your hand, your its master. If your filled with money to your neck, it is your master. )

MT : Sir. But during campus interview, I was promised something altogether different.

CEO : Naan solrathaiyum seiven, sollathathiyum seiven. Ha ha ha ( I will do what I say, I will also do what I don’t say.)

MT : I have done my MBA from India's most well known institute. I demand better treatment.

CEO : You young boys think too much of yourselves. You can study and get any certificates. But you cannot get your death certificate. You can become an engineer if you study in engineering college. You cannot become a president if u study in Presidency College. A mechanical engineer can be come a mechanic but a software engineer cannot become a software. Same is the case with you. Go and do your job and bring profits for the company.

MT (resigning himself) : Ok, Sir. I will do as you say.

CEO : That is better. Forget all the Toyota Way, McKinsey Way, Dell Way and all other ways you learnt at B School and follow my way. En vazhi , thani vazhi. (My way is the original (a unique) way!)

MT (Getting ready to leave): Nice meeting you, Sir. When can I meet you next to review the progress of my work?

CEO : Naan eppa varuven, eppadi varuvennu yarukkum theriyadhu, aana varavendiya neratthil correct-aga varuven. (No one knows when I will come, or how I will, but when I come I will come in the right time.) Naan leytta vanthalum leyttestta than varuvaan…. (Even if I come late, I will be the latest one to come!). Go on.

Related Post: A Corporate Parable

For whom the bell tolls

A book of faces