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Long time…no see

Greed – excessive desire to acquire or possess more (especially more material wealth) than one needs or deserves avarice: reprehensible acquisitiveness; insatiable desire for wealth (personified as one of the deadly sins)

Wiki Answers

I have been watching….oh wait lemme rephrase that.

I have been re-watching ‘The Big Bang Theory’ and I must admit that I get enthralled every time by the characterisation of Sheldon Cooper. If you are wondering why a Barney Fan is rambling about Cooper (Yeah, that’s the way I like it, far better than Shelly) and that too on Baked Stale which is famous for rambling and whining. Did I say ‘famous’? Must have been a slip of thought. BTW Baked Stale has been receiving consistent traffic even when I was away from her (4 visits per day on an average…I know, lots of people are whimsical).

Enough of blowing own trumpet and lemme come back to the reason why I am rambling about Cooper. In the 4th season there is an episode called ‘Fever’ (19th episode) where somebody robs Cooper’s WOW account. And those of you who are not World of Warcraft fan, trust me, it’s a reeaallyy big deal. Now after watching the episode I thought to myself what may be the possible reason for being an asshole. ‘Greed’ is what comes to the mind instantly. But I asked myself ‘Is greed the answer?’ And then I asked ‘Is greed the only answer?’

As Gurucharan Das says:
When Raju crossed the line from his cheerful and familiar world of open and competitive capitalism into the dark nether regions of crony capitalism, he was no longer in control. He had walked from the transparent world of reformed India into the shadowy underworld of unreformed India, whose rules are set by crooked politicians. Why did he do it? Greed is too easy an answer. It might have been hubris, like Duryodhana’s in the Mahabharata, who thought he was master of the universe and could get away with anything. It is easy to believe your infallibility when everyone in Hyderabad tells you so.

The difficulty of being good

Greed is part of the reason, but it gives a very incomplete imagery of the intention of taking away something from a different person e.g. robbing WOW accounts. What else is in it? I think along with greed there is a superiority complex (I suffer from that a lot) and narcissist alter ego that may come into play. I do admit that every single person is greedy and conceited in one way or the other, consciously or subconsciously, but the fact remains that the man who steals (even with the availability of possible alternative) has an exaggerated image of self portrayal.

The scams, in India and throughout the world, clearly depicts that material gain is not the sole reason behind a herculean goof up. The people behind these scams had better ways to live and behave. But they chose a path of cheating and deceiving under the illusion of their superior stature. We should note that most of the people who are involved in big scams are generally educated, talented and successful. They are ambitious and worked hard to get a position of power. ‘With great power comes great responsibility’. Sadly they misused their power forgetting the fact that in this world of information overload, hiding is a tough task. It is not greed that accuses Google for being evil and tracking its users. It’s the power which drives them (and the funny thing is we can’t do anything about it).

I think if somebody gets power enough to misuse it for harming others then it is merely a curse. Lessons have to be learnt or else history will be told.

P.S. Excuse the excessive usage of visual imagery as the post lacks substantial literary value.

P.S.S. Staying in my college made me realise that we are not living in post liberalisation era.

P.S.S.S. FUNFACT

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The Glass Ceiling

I was given the above topic to write on for a competition. I didn’t win but here is my futile attempt:

What is common in the following list of people?

Naina Lal Kidwai

Chanda D. Kochhar

Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw

Indra K. Nooyi

Smt. Shikha Sharma

Sunita Ramnathkar

Apart from being of the same gender the common string that connects them is, they have successfully broken the ‘glass ceiling’ in a country known for its male dominance from pre-historic times. Not only India, even the so-called developed countries have shown burning examples of implicit gender discrimination. A woman walking past the office on her way to the cabin of CEO can be a very average scene in the mind of average human being but it is still very uncommon.

According to an old survey by ‘Businessworld’, women earn just 80% of their peers’ earnings in the first year out of college. At the ten year mark this figure drops to 69%. A trend has also been seen that in office culture single women are more preferred than married ones. Although many MNCs are trying to bridge the gap by some positive initiative, glass ceiling still remain a cliché. Even if they break the initial barrier the climb is very steep for them compared to their so-called stronger counterparts.

The underlying problem with ‘Glass Ceiling’ is that it is never considered official and always as matter-of-factly been ignored by women themselves. It is very hard to eradicate a problem which is still considered a myth. The silence has always been considered as a woman’s weakness. In the book ‘Connect The Dots’ by Rashmi Bansal, a women herself, mentioned only two women, out of twenty inspiring stories, who started their own business and are successful against all odds. Not because she is biased against her own identity but because it portrayed the dearth of bold risk takers among women.

Some employers prefer male employees over women as they doubt their commitment, sincerity and ability to work hard. The company does not want to invest in women talent pool as they believe that women will quit as soon as they tie the sacred knot or to take care of their children or elderly parents. This is a virtual reality as a woman quits because of the lack of opportunity to grow in a male dominated environment or unfair analysis of her dedication.

A recent survey by Europe’s Institute of Leadership and Management (ILM) gives us some hard facts to chew, which breaks the prevalent myth of gender equality. The study found that lack of confidence and lower career expectations are the main reasons of holding them back. Although the corporate workforce has a gender diversity of 50-50, only 12 % of the managerial positions are commanded by the fairer sex.  So this time also the blame game is lost by women as they are considered responsible for this invisible barrier. Although it has been scientifically proven that women are good at multitasking they are still avoided to endow with great responsibility. Lack of role models increases the seriousness of the unjust appraisal of achievements.

Different strict laws have been introduced and implemented to ensure equality in wages and position. These laws have only served the purpose to solve the problem in the entry-level scenario. To cope up with the ‘effect’ we have to find the ‘cause’. We have to analyse the situation at granular level. Solution cannot be derived from compliance but from commitment of both women and men. Although we speak and formulate rules in favour of equality, at the grass-root level the superiority of a woman always haunts a man. Thus an environment gets created in the workplace which is not favourable for a woman to ‘Realise her potential’. This can be changed if we change the mind-set of the society. We have to develop a warm atmosphere of trust, not of hostility. It is not the responsibility of a single person or a single gender to bring this change and this change cannot be brought drastically because of faint visibility of the unspoken discrimination.  The change must be brought from within and the way we help the children to grow irrespective of their gender. In corporate level the change can be ensured by eradication of fear, efficient mentorship and constant encouragement to break the glass ceiling. Voices must be heard and initiatives must be taken whole-heartedly.

On a personal note, I work in a team of 9 out of which 6 are women. My module leader and team leader are women. I feel blessed and proud.

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Weekend, McD and a lots of shopping

Yesterday I woke up at 8:30 in the morning and believe me it’s late. I am an early riser. Last night drank few pegs and slept like a pig (I don’t snore, thankfully). Was about to meet an old friend after a long time but she didn’t call the previous night to confirm. Yes she is a girl and we became friends in my second year on phone. After that we became very good friends. So I called her to ask her why she stood me up. The reason she gave me was quite genuine. She told me that she didn’t forget that she had to call but she didn’t. She doesn’t know why. I know girls and believe me this is a perfectly believable and genuine reason not to give a call back. So she asked me if I can meet that day only. No no, she said, “If you want to meet me, you can today”. I, not being rude, said okay and she told me to meet her at Rashbehari. Moreover I was bored to hell, a typical Saturday morning. From there we went to Park Street. I love Park Street as it has life not like our Sector-V. We went to McDonalds as we can sit there for hours and no will bother. She ate a McChicken burger. I had one McMaharaja and Filet-O-Fish. We both had a dessert and chicken nuggets. After spending a couple of hours there we came out and here begins my shopping spree.

I went to Music World after that. Although I experienced a bad service I bought a lot of music from there. I could not resist myself from sheer music greed. I bought

Joe Satriani – Definitive Collection (3 CDs) – Sony Music

Guns n Roses – Greatest Hits (1 CD) – Universal Music

Perfect Day – 100 amazing songs (5 CDs) – Sony Music

Aamar Hiyar Majhe – Rabindrasangeet (6 CDs) – T Series

Movie DVDs:

  1. Chalti Ka Naam Gaadi, Half Ticket, Jhumroo (all Kishore Kumar classics)
  2. Gol Maal, Chupke Chupke, Bawarchi (all Hrishikesh Mukherjee classics)

Most of the music is for gifting to my friends. Then after that I thought of returning home and was walking back on Park Street with my friend when I spotted – ‘The great Oxford Sale – upto 80% off’. We Indians are always attracted by the ‘sale’ thingy and I am attracted to books. So I headed straight to the Oxford Bookstore to buy books and enjoy the ‘sale’. I bought

Connect The DotsRashmi BansalEklavya Education Foundation

The Ultimate India Quiz Book – Derek O’BrienPenguin Books

Freakonomics – Steven D. Levitt & Stephen J. Dubner – Penguin Books

Mother Pious Lady – Santosh DesaiHarper Collins and The India Today Group

And I was very happy. After a long time I felt like it was worth spending money and the shopping was fruitful. I don’t know whether I will be able to finish these books in my hectic schedule. Fingers crossed. By the way I returned home after that and saved a whooping Rs. 109.80 (I don’t have the India rupee symbol handy). I watched Half Ticket and fell in love with Madhubala.

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