Sunday, 31 May 2015

Why marry a Sales(wo)man? : Blog # 221

Why marry a Sales(wo)man?

This post is dedicated to all my friends who are in sales and are getting married in the days to come. They can use this as a collection of USPs ;). If you are already married and are in sales, you might want to show this to your spouse.

To begin with, the biggest advantage is people who are in sales are almost always on the move. This means that your spouse will not be there 24*7 be it in the good days or bad ones. From whatever I learned from couples who have been married for long enough, distance increases fondness and more importantly, the arguments get cleared up on their own, thanks to the short absences.

Since a sales person travels far and wide, he/she will be aware of the best things to do, the best snacks to eat or the best places to go to in every nook and corner of the country. The roads and streets will be as familiar to them as your backyard which means you get a tour guide for free. Add to this, the contacts that they have in every single place. There will be one friend or mutual friend (in social media parlance) whom they can call up and get things done. Since there is a lot of travel involved, SOME of them will get gifts for you when they come back from a sales trip.

A sales person will be one who meets at least half a dozen people every day. This means that their ability to connect with people will be way above the normal. This will work in the spouses’ favour. Whatever one means to say through words or without them, they will understand it in no time.  Also, every marriage comes with a handful of painful relatives. They will handle them with ease as if they were born to do it.

It is said that conversation is key in a marriage. When you are married to someone who makes a living out of talking, you will never run out of things to converse about. On the contrary, there might be times when you want a bit of quietness. Don’t worry; just when you are about to reach that phase, it will be time for the seller to hit the roadJ.

A sales person is so used to chasing targets that if you want to get something done, all you need to do is hack their excel sheet and add that to their monthly target! Include a weekly status call about whatever you want and believe you me, by the month end, it will be done.

Now comes the biggest plus of all. Almost all the interactions you have will begin with a smile and end with one too J.

p.s.(clue for my fiancée) :  Recruitment, in a way is kind of a sales profile ;).

Arun Babu

Saturday, 23 May 2015

F.R.I.E.N.D.S : After Life # 3 : Blog # 220

F.R.I.E.N.D.S  : After Life # 3

*We, all diehard F.R.I.E.N.D.S fanatics have been waiting forever for the best sitcom ever made on Television, to resume. Here is an attempt to look at what our favorite characters are up to these days.

Ross came to visit Monica and Chandler. He told them about how difficult it was for him to get the current generation to be serious about his class. “It is surprising given the fact that students used to fall over each other to get in to your class in the earlier days!” said Chandler. Monica invited her parents for a Skype chat. “Hey dad, how are you? Where is mom?” “I am good dear. Your mother is busy with something. How do you like your new place and house? How are the kids?” “They are keeping me on my toes dad. Ross is here too. He came to visit us” “Hey dad, How are you?”, said Ross. “Hey Ross! How are you dear?”, said Ross’ mother. “Mother, I thought you were busy!” said Monica. Oh yes, I was. But I heard Ross saying hi”.

“Ross, How is Ben?”, asked Chandler.  “Oh he is doing great. He is in that phase where I am giving him insights in to Paleontology. One never know, may be another doctor in the family”. “Oh, now Ben will have something to talk about when he is asked about a traumatic phase in his child hood! Hey, look who is here! Jack, Erica, say hi to Uncle Ross”. “Monica you said Jack has gone after me!”, said Ross. “Oh yea, when it comes to screaming like a girl, he is totally Uncle Ross Jr.”

Ross rang up Rachel. “Hey Rach, how are you?” “I am good Hon. But missing you all like crazy. Paris is great but there is no central park here!” “Don’t worry. You are visiting us in a couple of months rt?” “Rachel, Tu est tres Jolie” “Rach, who is that who said something in that pretentious language? “ Oh , that is my colleague Eugene. He was just saying I look beautiful J. “ Why can’t he say it in English? Such pretentious people, these French I tell you”. “Ross, that is their language. Anyway, got to go. I am at work. Give my love to Monica & Chandler”.

Phoebe was at home with Mike. “Mike, I was meditating today morning and a brilliant thought came to me. Why don’t we collaborate? You are a pianist. I am multi-talented. Why don’t we come together?” “Is that a good idea, Phoebs?” “Of course! See, I have an established fan base. I mean I hum smelly cat and people have tears in their eyes! We can capitalize on that!” “I am totally honored by the offer Phoebs. Believe me, I am. But, I am a bit worried. Your fans might not accept it. I mean, it might look like I am diluting your musical genius!” “Oh, I never thought of it that way! You are right Mike!”

Next Episode :

S11 Episode 4 :

Previous Episodes :

Monday, 18 May 2015

Sleeping with a Lion : Blog # 219

Sleeping with a Lion

Please play and listen to the video here before you read the blog :)

Whenever I have read about or heard about people committing heinous crimes in a fit of rage, I used to wonder as to what can make people so annoyed or worked up. Yesterday, I got a taste of how such incidents happen. I was travelling by bus from home to Chennai after the weekend. I am among those who cannot get even a blink worth of sleep while travelling in a bus. Thankfully, it was a new bus and hence very clean. It came right on time and they were even playing a nice movie. I told myself “Buses aren't that bad after all!” Little did I know all that was going to change in a minute!

The lights were dimmed and I was adjusting the seat to get a comfortable sitting position. Right then, there was a growl near my right ear. My first instinct was to think “How on earth did Casper, my 2 year old full grown Rottweiler get in the bus!” I slowly turned to see my co passenger snoring away to glory. Usually, snoring doesn't bother me much. My friends say I too snore. So I am not exactly in a position to judge. Moreover it is a condition which the person cannot do much about.

But this guy’s snoring started off as a mini motorcycle being started. I told myself that it will stop soon. But it was just the warm up! Minutes later, it graduated in to a full blown concert of sorts. The movie got over. The only sound in the bus was this person snoring. It was so loud that people in 3 rows in front of us and equally to the back could hear us. My empathy prevented me from waking him up. Then he started doing variations (akin to arohanas and avarohanas in Carnatic music). It goes up and up and reaches a crescendo. When I thought it was over and as I heaved a sigh of relief, he started from exactly where he stopped. I lost it and woke him up. He was duly ashamed and apologetic and he turned to the other side. Just as when I was beginning to feel bad, here comes the growl!!!

What surprised me was that usually people snore and stop. This guy’s consistency was to die for. He wouldn't miss a beat. Now, it had become like a tractor on the road with a failed silencer. I even recorded it on WhatsApp and sent it across to my friends. They said they also haven’t heard anything of this sort. My patience was waning. I started thinking of ways to silence him. I thought of landing a punch right on his nose so that it will open up and stop the sound. Then I thought what if the growl becomes louder! At one point, I pictured his head being smashed in to the glass window. I even thought of going the CIA way. I had a blanket and there was a bottle of water too. I thought I will do a bit of water boarding. I started elbowing him every time he snored and he took that as frikkin encouragement!

The beauty of it was that he continued it all through night till 7:30 in the morning today! I have never been through an endurance test of this sort. He woke up and asked me “Where have we reached”? I had half a mind to tell him that he has reached my skull and another minute more of snoring, he would have cracked it open with that sound. I also wanted to give him some career advise “Go and do dubbing for the Lion in the MGM cartoon”!

Arun Babu

Thursday, 14 May 2015

Conspiracy against Women? : Blog # 218

Conspiracy against Women?

            I was reading this book, ‘In the land of invisible women’ by Qanta A. Ahmed. It talks about life of women in Saudi Arabia. There was one interesting observation by the author which struck me. There, the women dress up for women. The laws of the land are such that women and men cannot meet socially as freely as they do in other countries. As a result of which, interaction between two sexes are extremely limited. If a woman buys an expensive jewelry or a great dress or goes to a parlor, it is not to impress anyone from the other gender. It is for one’s own kind, the women folk to see and appreciate.

            Initially, I found it as an interesting observation. Then I felt, isn’t it the same in our country? Yes, most of the women tell us that they are doing all the efforts w.r.t presenting themselves well for the men around them. But how many times has their husband or boyfriend or any man in their lives taken notice whenever they have made some change about how they look? Look at something as simple as a haircut. Many a time, we men fail to notice that change. But their girlfriends notice it without fail, every single time! For us to notice a change in the ear ring, it has to be the size of a mini mammoth. But women can spot it from a mile away.

            The conspiracy that I am talking about here is the one which women are doing against women, most of them without realizing it. So if women stop judging other women on the kind of clothes one wears, make up they put on, accessories they choose to flaunt, life becomes much easier for everyone around. For instance, try and watch the fairness cream advertisements. In most of them, after a woman uses a fairness cream, the response or the reaction comes from another group of ladies and not a guy. In some of them, men are completely absent. When a multinational firm designs an advertisement, it is very conscious about its target group. If men were key influencers, they will definitely be there in the advertisement. The fact that presence of a man is minimal in such advertisements points to the fact that men are not an influencing group in this regard. Even the voice over is that of a woman in almost all the Ads.

            So if you try and play down the appreciations or the passing remarks based on how one presents one self, you might save an annual expenditure to the tune of about $950 Million. That is the size of cosmetics industry in our country. 

           Also, many a time feminism emerges only when  a woman is being attacked by the other gender. Somehow the thought of a woman putting down another woman doesn't knock on the feminist conscience! Don't you think it should arise as a support system for the fellow women rather than adding one more aspect to be bothered about? It will be nice to be empathetic ( Thank you my friend, Harleen for putting this seed of thought) rather than pointing out flaws.

            Now, before some of yours claws come out, let me tell you that we the men folk also fall prey to such conspiracies. What we fall for are things like white goods, sports shoes, high end watches and such.

Arun Babu

Sunday, 10 May 2015

F.R.I.E.N.D.S : After Life # 2 : Blog # 217

F.R.I.E.N.D.S  : After Life # 2

*We, all diehard F.R.I.E.N.D.S fanatics have been waiting forever for the best sitcom ever made on Television, to resume. Here is an attempt to look at what our favorite characters are up to these days.

                Chandler was chatting with his colleague, Tony who also became a father recently. “Tony, how do you manage the sleep? I mean I can barely keep my eyes open. My kids keep me awake all night! They keep on getting up in the middle of night” Oh that’s easy Bing. When the kids start crying, you go to the kitchen to prepare the baby food and never come back. Or, you can go to get the diaper as well. “Hmmm...interesting! Did you ever think of writing a letter to your wife that you are leaving and will be back after 5 years? No? Who would do that, right?” Yea, only crazy people do that! “Or, those people who haven’t slept in months do that !!! I was thinking whatever happened to all the happy kids in the world! My kids are always cranky”. Bing, kids are happy only in movies and on television.

            Phoebe ran in to Ross on the way to her apartment. “Hey Ross! Come home. You haven’t met Dr.Gupta. You will like him”. Who is Dr. Gupta, Phoebs? “ He lives next door. He is an Indian scientist who seems like he is in touch with his spiritual self. We have long discussions over coffee about life, yoga and science”.  Science, Phoebs?? “Of course not your kind of science which is constrained by the boundaries of reasoning! We talk about the possibilities - the what ifs and could have beens- and the world beyond the periphery of science”

            Phoebe rings the door bell. “Ohm”, goes the door bell. “Phoebs, did you hear that? what on Earth was that noise”. Oh it is just the door bell Ross! Dr. Gupta, meet Ross, my friend. He is also a scientist like you. Palaeontology is his area of interest. “Namaste Ross, please have a seat. Do you believe in destiny, Ross? If you do, please extend your hand, the right palm please.  A son and a daughter from different mothers and yet no marital bliss. Academically brilliant, parents’ proud son but with limited social skills in comparison to your sister.”  That is a quick summary of Ross’ life of three  and a half decades, Dr. Gupta, said Phoebe. Stunned, Ross said “Dr. Gupta, how do you know so many things about me?”. “The answer for everything lies in the universe, Ross. All you need to do is seek. Now it is my time to meditate. Shall we meet at a later time?” Thank you Dr. Gupta for your time, Namaste, said Phoebe. “Wow, Phoebs! Who is this guy? Can I be like his disciple or something?” One step at a time, Ross. One step  :)

            Joey was at the studio. “ Hi Joey, I am Elinor” How are you doin, Elinor? “I am good, Joey. My grandmother had warned me of the rustic Italian charm that you exude. She was right. I am Estelle’s grand daughter. On her death bed, she said you and her go back a long way and if ever I needed a job, I should come to you.” Your grandmother was a terrific lady, Elinor. I am looking for an agent. If you are fine with it, you can join me now. “Wow! Joey tribbiani’s agent?? Ofcourse, I am ready”. Great, do you speak French? “Sadly, no!” Start taking French classes. Some of the French film makers are looking for actors. If you can speak their tongue, things will be easier. It is not a tough language. I have kind of got a hang of it. Bloo blaa blee! “Sorry? What did you say Joey?" In French, it means see ya later!

Continued at :

Friday, 8 May 2015

FRIENDS : After Life # 1 : Blog # 216

FRIENDS : After Life # 1

*We, all diehard F.R.I.E.N.D.S fanatics have been waiting forever for the best sitcom ever made on Television, to resume. Here is an attempt to look at what our favorite characters are up to these days. 

         Monica woke up to a bright sunny morning. The twins were sleeping blissfully in the next room. Chandler looked like he is imitating an athlete while sleeping in the bed. Monica went to the living room and sat on the couch. The magazines on the table were not arranged as per their thickness! “Why can’t Chandler follow the manual!!! It has not been even a week since I took the orientation for him.”

            The twins started crying. Monica went in and saw Chandler standing near the twins with a puzzled expression. “What did you do!!!?” I did not do anything. I just wished them a very good morning. Monica started pacifying one of the kids. “Pick up the child Chandler! You are the father!”

            Chandler left for office. Rachel was going to have lunch and thought of calling Monica. She called Monica on skype. “Hey Mon, Comment allez-vous”. Wow! Someone is frenching up Rach. “Yes Mon, if you are referring to the men here, indeed I am frenching up;). Where are the kids?” I have just fed them and they are in the room. Chandler has left for office. “So playing the suburban housewife to hilt is it?” Yes Rach. But I am beginning to get bored of this. The chef in me is dying to wreak a kitchen. “How is Chandler? Has he got used to the house yet?” He likes the house. Just that he is a tad bit skeptical about the neighborhood. He says there is something spooky about the old lady living next door and the couple living opposite to us is acting weird! You know how he is! “Ok Mon. Going to have lunch with my boss. He should have been a priest! Even if I wear a cheer leader’s costume, he will tell me “Oh child, blessed be you!” Rach , I got to rush. Looks like Jack is up. “ How do you know Jack from Erica?” Jack has gone after his uncle Ross. He screams like a girl. When Erica screams, it is like a war cry!. Bye Bye Rach. “Bye Mon!”

            Phoebe and Joey were at the café. “Joe, how’s life?”. You tell me. How’s being Mrs. Mike coming along? “Who is Mrs. Mike?” Oh Me!!! I should start getting used to it. Marriage is fun Joe as long as you don’t see each other. Mike is enjoying his free spirited pianist days. I would have enjoyed it more if he were a fat-pay-cheque-earning-attorney-who wants to please his wife by showering her with expensive gifts and extensive holidays. “I thought you always wanted a simple life, Phoebs”. Yea, that and a castle is what I want out of Life J. How is your new soap coming along Joe? “ I am thinking I am on the verge of super stardom. My director says with this, I will become a huge star in at least 11 continents!”. But Joe, there are only 7 continents! “Really? You are sure, Facebook isn’t one?” Oh that way, yes! So who will you take along with you to your globetrotting trips? Monica or Rachel? “Hmm…I am thinking..Rachel?”. That was a trick question!!! You should take Me! Phoebe! Me, Joe, Me! “Okay, Okay, I will take you”

            Ross was taking a class on the emerging trends in creating awareness about Paleolithic age. As usual, half the class was asleep. “How many of you have dreamt of becoming Paleontologists? How many of you want to get in to the list of honorary curators in the MET?I would appreciate a show of hands. No hands? Hmmm? Yes, the gentleman in red shirt. Please tell me”. “When will the class get over? I have a movie to catch!” Ok then, yet another disillusioned millennial, aren’t you? This is professor Geller signing off.

Continued at :

Arun Babu