What’s that app?

I ain’t on Facebook, irrespective of the fact that I am there as part of my friend’s posts, but then since I ain’t being tagged and for the fact that I don’t have an account over there (pseudo or not) I can claim that I am not there, yet (even in spite of being pressured a lot recently). But ever since I joined gym last year, I am on Whatsapp (even when I had my old phone with access to very less data using 2G) because the timings or any updates to my classes were done through Whatsapp. I am not fond of texting and try to avoid it as much as possible. That in turn means that I don’t take part in the Whatsapp conversations unless and otherwise it is necessary.

I literally groaned my frustration when my brother created a Family Whatsapp group and included all of my family members (yup, the only one who was left was my Mom who got an Android phone as a gift from my brother for her birthday last year and he set it up for her with¬†an email account and loaded it with enough games for her to spend her free time). My brother is too much into all these social media stuff. He is the one who introduced me to blogging (even though he doesn’t do it anymore) and I will be grateful for that. But he texts too much for my comfort. But imagine my surprise when my sister also gets a little bit more involved in texting in Whatsapp, sharing the photos of kids, their daily activities, their fights, normal chit chat of the day and this inspite of them being in the same town and much closer to each other. No wonder my dad went running for the hills in a day or two , in other words , it means he left the group ūüėČ My mom is still figuring stuff out and I haven’t spoken to her yet on this to get her feedback on her view of this whole new text world. So yeah, suddenly everyone is on Whatsapp (well because every one has a phone now, duh!) irrespective of whether they are on Facebook or not. There are lots and lots of groups created to communicate (my brother told me that there is a 60+ member group he is part of , which consists of members of a whole village, imagine that), people share forwards and all those stuff they did earlier through FB using Whatsapp groups.

And not to mention the famous blueticks and the set of jokes and repercussions that it triggered when that got enabled. Blueticks should be used only when you really need to know if the other person received the message or not and not for why they haven’t replied. If you are able to disassociate receiving and replying you can live in peace with it. I just don’t care about it, blue or gray. What triggered this rant like post on Whatsapp ? Well this article, where they were talking about the growing numbers in Whatsapp. If every single person who has a phone and with the data getting cheaper (comparatively) start using Whatsapp instead of texting over Facebook it is obvious the numbers will grow exponentially. And I know¬†I am already part of that when I got added to the Family group in Whatsapp.¬†And I am already considering the mute option on them.


Also part of JustJoJan

Word Play

In Bangalore there is a bar called ‘Bak Bak Bar. Its a little high end and since no one treated me¬†in this place till now, I haven’t been there yet. So I wouldn’t know anything about it. But this post is not about that anyway. The outside of this building has this line written ‘Come and Bak Bak‘. The first time I ever laid my eyes on this and the name of the bar, I was wondering why someone would name it on how a chicken sounds like and why would they ask you come and make noise like a chicken. Of course, I kept these thoughts to myself, lest that I appear more stupider than I actually am to my friends.

Then after some time, on a nice and shiny day, ¬†the light went on inside my head and I realized the true meaning of it (even though it took some time , but I was glad that I ¬†did not ask any one). Bak Bak in Hindi means ‘to chit chat‘. So it is a place where you can spend time and talk all you want about anything and everything. That is why they had written it :¬†‘come and talk for as long as you want’. Gee!!! the relief I had that day to have that one finally figured. I couldn’t help chuckle inside a little at my stupidity. But how would a person know that it was supposed to be understood in Hindi and not in any of the 28+ languages we have in India or even the common language of the chicken. And you want to know another fun trivia. Bak Bak in Norwegian has as different meaning (I have to verify it with Maggie May¬†though). Google translate tells me it means ‘Behind the rear’ or rather ‘back back’ ¬†(peeche peeche in Hindi) (according to proper Norwegian to Hindi Translation of Bak Bak).Now when I read it I just couldn’t help myself¬†but laugh out loud , in office. I have no more words.

So near, yet so far

We had a training session for a week for which employees¬†from other buildings of my company also attended, along with some customers too. It was for 5 days and I had one person from my team, so I sort of had company. If that happens, I usually avoid talking or interacting with anyone else except may be when they start the conversation. During¬†the last day of the training, when I was almost ready to run out of that place (the training happened in a god forsaken part of the city, which I don’t like), suddenly the woman who was sitting next to me that day turned and smiled and told me that my copper bangle which I wear in my right hand looks very nice. Out of the blue, hearing a comment like that in a technical training session which is about to end in another hour or so, I wasn’t sure how to respond. So I did the usual response thing, ‘Thank you’ and smiled back. That got her talking.

She was telling me how she joined the company a few months back and how she is liking it and asked me how long have I been and was surprised by the answer and all that stuff. After a few more questions from her related to the company, the teams , the overall performance, the usual monetary benefits that employee enjoys etc etc she asked me from which building I came from and when I told her my building name, this is how the rest of the conversation went.

She: Oh my god I am from the same building, but I haven’t seen you there even once .

Me: Really ? (my hint at sarcasm with a surprised expression got lost on her :-< ) May be because I am hardly in office. Mostly I work from home and even if I come I wont be seen out of my cubicle much.

She: Is it…They allow you to work from home just like that.

Me: Well, I was injured and couldn’t walk so they don’t have a choice now , do they ?

She: I understand. Which floor are you located ? I could look you up sometime

When I told her my floor she gasped.

She: Oh my God I work on the same floor. What is your location?

I was secretly hoping that she isn’t in the same wing as mine…That would have seemed¬†so bad. Thankfully we are seated in different wings.¬†Oh, the sigh!

And while departing she said that she just loved my bracelet (I seriously didn’t understand…its just a copper bracelet…)1-IMG_2563

At least I was happy that I am not the only one who doesn’t know who sits next to me or everyone else in the floor¬†(some people tend to know each and every person and their personal history too), unless and otherwise it is my team member with whom I have to interact if we share a project. Even if¬†I sit close to someone¬†or have to talk to them occasionally I can¬†still be far out of reach personally.

And I never¬†would have started a conversation even if I wanted to with some one by complimenting their copper bracelet ūüôā



As long as I understand what you say

English is not my native language. I don’t necessarily think in English all the time. And I haven’t read many classics in English except for the ones that are taught in school in abridged format. My English vocabulary isn’t that good. And honestly, all these apply to my mother tongue too. That is because I had trouble speaking my native language because of my stammer. A lot of tongue twisting takes place in my mother tongue. When I had to relocate for a job in another state which has another language for communication, I had to learn it on the go for my survival. FYI: In India, almost all states have their own language and even though Hindi appears to be commonly spoken, not all of them are entitled or obligated to learn it. So we might have some difficulties in communication, especially in remote areas or areas that aren’t well developed. With such an environment, for me, English is just another form of communication. I may not adhere to the grammar all the times. Hell, I don’t even know the terms used in English grammar or for that matter even in Tamil Grammar anymore, other than the ones I absolutely need in my normal day to day communication. When I came across this debate regarding the English Language, I was interested to see what the¬†elitists (yeah , I learnt that word today ūüėČ )¬†¬†had to say.¬†Between You and I – English is going to the dogs:¬†This is the topic of discussion in Intelligence Squared. Its an hour and a forty minute long debate session, but is very interesting interlaced with humor and fine details of the language. I really enjoyed the debate. But my opinion ? I don’t care ūüôā ¬†because I still see it as a form of communication. I don’t want to think too much about fine points of grammar when I am using the language. But having said that I definitely would like to know how to use certain words and sentences because I wouldn’t want to communicate mistakenly with wrong word or phrases (I thought of using the word¬†miscommunicate ¬†here but wasn’t sure if it was actually a word or not). As long as I am able to correctly communicate to the other person I don’t mind. Currently, I do care a lot about communicating with the proper grammar in my software code because the machine that is actually trying to interpret it, is not having a sixth sense and is only programmed to follow the grammar to the letter T or letter G (how ever that it pronounced). But with humans, we have the ability to understand a few things even beyond the word, which in a way is a blessing as well as a curse. So ‘Between you and I’ , as long as the language does what it was meant to do, to be a form of communication, I am OK with the changes. I do admire people who use it very well and reading their works is always a pleasure too ūüôā

Talk with the eyes

When we had been to a movie the other day, we were making fun of the ads that were playing in it, when the topic of ‘talking through the eye’s’ came up. There is this one ad where the husband and wife just use their eyes (lifting of eye brows, shrinking etc) to communicate and they get it without even using words. I thought it was done a little over the top. I am not a great fan of using eye language to talk but if it was done very diligently I don’t mind, especially in the ads. There is this one ad where the husband and wife get separated in a crowd (newly weds) in a railway station and are not sure if the other got in the train and when they find each other searching still , even when the train is gone, they are so relieved to be in sync and to find each other. That was done very beautifully where you could almost feel the relief that shows up on their face, especially their eyes. So yes, I am not against it, but doing it in real life is something I am not sure will work out, except when you are staring a hole on someone who is revealing your secrets, which you don’t want exposed or glaring at the kids to let them know that you don’t appreciate their behavior etc. There came a small discussion where one of my friend was like ‘ why not? people do it, don’t be cynical, its cute’. I was like ‘its cute, but when I can’t even manage a proper communication with a well known medium called words, imagine how many mis-communications are bound to happen with eye signs’. We were bickering a while on that until the movie started.

In the dance form of Tamil Nadu called Bharatnatyam, eyes form a very important role, because we should be able to show a lot of emotions through it. Ideally the whole face, but yes, eyes are the prominent element in it.

Navarasa – Courtesy: asianpaints.com

I really like people who are very expressive with their face and eyes. I see it in my niece who says a lot with her eyes because sometimes she doesn’t get a particular word to express how she feels. So yes, I understand that it is a sort of an art to be able to reveal something through the eyes and we all know that eyes are the window to our soul, even scientifically¬†or psychologically. A small expression , yes, I get that. But a full blown line or a discussion, I don’t know if that is possible. Not a lot of people can do that, but even if they did, will I be able to understand it anymore ? I am not sure. A few years before I would have said yes, being the hopeless romantic that I was. Now that I have gone to the other side and have become the hopeful romantic, I am not sure. May be I have become cynical and a little cold hearted.