Thursday, November 10, 2011

Masters of Puppets

For those who don't know my love for Classical Rock, probably would know that I wouldn't miss out on this. Hearing this awesome news, Pane (pronounced Pah-ne) Pai and I were excited like little girls. Pane is a girl so she just got little - figuratively; not literally. So everyone was asked from EW to Al to even the Miracle Monger, who through some miracle made through customs unscathed into India. Well that's another story. Anonymous, don't forget to give me that kick up my butt to pen that one. It's a twisted tale of love, hate, a lot of running around, goons, cops, hiding - in all a perfect masala movie and a great topic for gossip. And, since the monger is remotely logs on to the Internet, I can safely make money off him without any conflict or consequences.

Yes, after my customary digression, let's get back to the topic at hand. "Metallica!" That's exactly how I screamed when I heard that they were coming to India. When I found out that their concert coincided with the inauguration of India's only F1 track, more excitement ensued. When I found out the rates of the F1 tickets that excitement fizzled out into a limp murmur that I couldn't go to Delhi. Thank God for that, don't you think? Else, I would have definitely been a part of this and would have even contemplated streaking my way onto the race track. The world was saved from watching my black ass on the tarmac when Pane (pronounced Pah-ne) Pai offered me free boarding and lodging in namma B'lore along with a thinly veiled threat that I have now grown accustomed to, "Be there or else!"

Before I tell you everything about the show and my time in Bangalore, gear up for another twist in the tale. Last one, I promise. Every year, Cynnocent's father, Mr. Nitin Khot organizes plays or little shows for the kids and elders in their locality in Belgaum. This year, as per his brief, Cynnocent wrote a neat little puppet show. When we realised that there would be more than a 100 people gathered to watch us, the puppet show turned into us getting into costumes, which we in turn executed brilliantly.

Here are a few behind the scenes images shot by yours truly.

The cute little fairy princess played by Xara

Cyonncent explaining a scene to the actors

The two lovely ladies who later transformed into squirrels

Emily, who played Min Min getting into character

The VO artist, who also filled in as the owl clearing his thoughts before he clears his throat

Mr. Khot chilling with the Sound Engg

Brun the bear and the lovely squirrel planning on creating a new species

Shivu (who took over my part) played Bhondu the dog with aplomb
The cast and the support staff before going on stage
The video of the play will be uploaded in a new post, once I fill in the credits (there is one hilarious instance to point out and laugh at). Till then let me tell you about the place we lived in Belgaum. The bungalow was located inside a really old fort that the English converted into their residences when they took over way back in, whenever they did. The massive colonial bungalow was our home for a good 4 days. Diwali was celebrated in the traditional way and Mr. Khot gave us no reason to complain. Black Dog, 100 Pipers, Beer, Hukka and good food was just flowing, which made us not complain too.

Anyway, with a heavy heart we said goodbye to Belgaum on Saturday night - 29th October. But this just meant plonking our ass from one huge Bungalow to another. Pane (pronounced Pah-ne) Pai ensured that Jesu Bhai Patel (the man who played Brun the Bear and who would have shot to fame if it wasn't for me. I didn't upload this video on YouTube) and I were absolutely well taken care off. And, man is her house huge! And the weather in Bangalore? Beautiful. A hairy, long haired dude like me did not sweat one bit. To be frank with you dear readers, I have developed a little crush on the city called Bangalore. Pane (pronounced Pah-ne-I should probably stop this now) Pai spent two good days selling the city and subtly hinting that I settle down there. And, I must say, I am considering that as a serious option.

What about Metallica you say? Come on people, didn't I say I wouldn't miss it for the world? I didn't and it was awesome! All this in spite of the organisors trying their level best to, if not cancel then at least, dampen the spirits of every fan present with their shoddy arrangements and poor crowd control. But Jesu Bhai, Pane and I had the time of our lives (Not the Dirty Dancing one dumbfucks, the Metallica kind). The band was brilliant and they've promised to come back again. I'll promise to go only if they come during Diwali, if Pane okays to host me and if Mr. Khot and Cynoccent decide to tolerate me.

You guys in the meanwhile, keep forcing me to post. Whatever would I do without you all.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Agency Blues: Fun at Work

This post ain't 'bout the blues man. It ain't about my miserable existence at a forsaken place. This one is about fun and a missing person and not about missing person. This post ain't 'bout the blues.

Well after a long time, I had some fun at the place I call work. A colleague and has been AWOL for the past two days (Yes, that's a major concern here) and he might be asked to leave once he is back. But, that did not stop us from having a little fun at his expense.

Design: Rajesh Jain
Copy: FOS
The missing man was fired from work on June 7, 2011.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Inspirational Quote

And a brilliant one at that:

"Imagine life is a game in which you are juggling five balls. The balls are called work, family, health, friends, and integrity. And you’re keeping all of them in the air. But one day, you finally come to understand that work is a rubber ball. If you drop it, it will bounce back. The other four balls — family, health, friends, integrity — are made of glass. If you drop one of these, it will be irrevocably scuffed, nicked, perhaps even shattered. And once you truly understand the lesson of the five balls, you will have beginnings of balance in your life."
— James Patterson, Suzanne’s Diary for Nicholas

So now, thanks to me, you know which balls are actually important and how to juggle them. It's cool, no need to thank me.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Agency Blues: Confirmation Anger

We all know what it feels like when you are promised something and it doesn't happen. In our personal lives, it hurts but in the professional world, it pisses you off. To such an extent that you want to enact most of the scenes portrayed by the disgruntled characters in the movie 'Office Space'.

Today's anger is directed toward most of my top management. I was supposed to be confirmed after a probationary period of 3 months. It's going to be 6 months now and when I finally garnered the courage (Yes, there are times when I am absolutely timid about confrontation) to talk to the Powers that Be, I got this curt response. "We will decide on Monday, after speaking to Revenges and the Boss." It has been 3 months since the fuckin' stipulated 3 months and they haven't decided as yet? Typical H. effin' R.

Now, I know for a fact that Revenges hates me. And he has the ear of the Boss. So, I am sure that the Boss doesn't like me too. Apart from that, the Boss has already fired close to six people to save costs. And whatever said and done, I don't come cheap. So, I am a cost liability. Therefore, when we add 2 + 2 and make it a number that I want it to be, it could mean only one thing - Termination. Come to think of it, Revenges does look like Arnold Schwarzenegger of yore.  

It's not so much blue as it is red today and you will find me scheming to recreate some of the scenes from the Office Space at my agency from Monday. Yes, I will wait till Monday 'cause you never know, they may promote me because of my laid back, chilled out attitude. Don't believe me, read this. 

Yeah! The clown in question was me. It's unbelievable that I haven't shared it with you guys till date.

Anyway, time to say goodbye. Pray that what I'm hoping for does happen and I am not hoping for a promotion.

A Black Blob. 

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

The Voices In My Head Say...

Do Not Quit

When things go wrong as they sometimes will;
When the road you're trudging seems all uphill;
When the funds are low, and the debts are high
And you want to smile, but have to sigh;
When care is pressing you down a bit -
Rest if you must, but do not quit.

Success is failure turned inside out;
The silver tint of the clouds of doubt;
And you can never tell how close you are
It may be near when it seems so far;
So stick to the fight when you're hardest hit -
It's when things go wrong that you must not quit.

Since the author of this post is unknown, I am going to credit it to the voices in my head. (In case you copyright infringement fucks are reading it, I'm just kidding alright.)

But it is not necessary that I listen to the voices now, is it? 

These two beautiful verses make sense in life, true? But I don't think they were not written for a crappy work environment. Talking about crappy, Crapvertisement is sporting a brand new post. Go and check it out simply by clicking here

And regarding the 'Don't Quit' Movement initiated by the voices in my head, I 'm not going pay any heed to them. Plans are in motion. Watch this space for more.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Agency Blues: I feel the blues

"There's a hard life for every silver spoon.
There's a touch of gray for every shade of blue.
That's the way I see life.
If there was nothing wrong...
Then there'd be nothing right."

— Shinedown (Shinedown - The Sound Of Madness) 

OK, not that I was born with a silver spoon, but life has not been quite the way I would have liked it to be. I have not complained till now. What's the blog for, you ask? Well, it was a tool for me to rant and share. Share and rant, a blah blah here and a blah blah there. But you know these days, I am suffering from the blues. And here's why...  

I know the immense potential of the jokes on the name of my workplace. But now the Six Inches up my ass is kind of getting painful.

I was asked to stop my looney behaviour. Yes, seriously! People who run an ad agency actually had the audacity to discourage the very behaviour that leads to great ideas. Then they asked me to quit playing games, not with my heart but on my computer (That little spot was sponsored by CrazyDaisy and the Back Street Boys). There is a lot more. I feel there is a conspiracy but I disregard that because I feel that the powers that be have no clue how to run an agency.

So, what happening is every morning I wake up not wanting to work.What do you guys think is the cure to my blues? What do I do to make things right? or wrong...

Monday, March 21, 2011

Agency Blues: Overheard (Anger)

I overheard this interesting anecdote at work. Unrelated to my trials at work but a story that does want you to make a difference, maybe...

An Indian and a Japanese were waiting at a bus stop in Japan. When the bus arrived, the India got in by inserting the required amount to open the doors of the bus. The Japanese did the same once the India entered. The Indian, once inside the bus, asked the Japanese "The door was open such that both of us could have entered. You could have come in without paying a single yen."

The Japanese guy's reply floored the Indian. He said, "I do not want to cheat my country."

Whats the connection? Sign up for this and let's start by stopping cheating our country and thus, ultimately ourselves.

I said maybe at the start of the post because even in a group of friends, you cannot get people to agree to it. If they were in Singapore, they will gladly stop spitting, littering and/or accept the harshest of fines and punishments meted out to them. But out here, they feel it is alright to do as they please.

This "follow the leader" and "crab" mentality is sending our country to the dogs. Let's stop that.

Friday, March 11, 2011

New Blog!

Summer has arrived and I have trimmed all my chest hair. But that's not what the new blog is about. What do you mean why? It's too hot people. But now it itches.

Oh! you mean why a new blog? Well, the idea was planted (Inception style but without the fuss and the kicks) when I came for an interview at my current firm and my friends Let Me Be and CrazyDaisy.  Let Me Be, CraizyDaisy and I would keep making fun of certain brands (One of them is already made fun on in the new blog) regularly and that's when I thought, we should put this down. When I interviewed with Six Inches Communications, yes, my current agency is called Six Inches Communications (@Pussy, you didn't know that, did you?), they asked me to rewrite the campaign for an ad that I disliked on Indian Television.

Thus, the urge and the (not-on-my-chest) itch grew stronger. To celebrate the completion of three months at Six Inches, I came up the blog. And without further ado, I announce Crapvertising officially open! Go ahead and check it out by clicking on the link.

And listen, if you guys have anything intelligent to contribute or wish to be a part of the blog, write to me at ajayd81[at]yahoo[dot]com. Cheers!

And do let me know, out there or over here what you guys think.    

Wednesday, March 02, 2011

Agency Blues: There is someone worse then EW

In terms of hair, you have balder men. In terms of colour, you have Leo, who I can say (in muted whispers) is darker than EW. In terms of intellect, there was Minni. But EW was unrivaled in the jokes department. There was no one willing to take the bar even a notch lower. A sad joke in the Stoned Circle is still called a Hermanism.

Not anymore. Something strange happened today. A colleague was asked (in Hindi), "Tu peeta hai kya?" [Do you drink?] His reply was, "Meri shaadi nahin hui hai!"

I didn't bother to ask for an explanation thinking that there was miscommunication somewhere. But the guy went on to explain that since he wasn't married, he couldn't have a child and because he didn't have a child, he was not a pita or a father.

I just spat out whatever I was eating. On him!

They say that a joke is really bad if you need to explain it. One thing about EW was that his jokes are bad but not bad enough to require an explanation. Sorry EW, we have found someone worse than you!  

Monday, February 21, 2011

Weddings, Waters Blue and Self Propaganda

Let's begin with the wedding first, shall we? MM, being MM, called us on the 4th of Jan to tell us that he is getting married. The repercussions of which were to be felt a little later. Even then, he insisted that it was tentative. Atom-D went ahead and booked the tickets and out set Willy the Silly, A-D and moi.

The wedding was a nonchalant affair much to the pleasure of MM's hitleresque father. Once you get to know his dad - the strictest one ever known to any child, then you realise why MM has turned out exactly the way he is.

Because MM didn’t involve us in the wedding, I had a lot of time to wander around, my camera in tow and click some shots. Non-involvement in the wedding party put only one thought in Atom-D’s mind – “Blue Waters”. We went there the day we arrived, we went there the next day, we went there on a Saturday night, which was the most fun and then we went there on Sunday.

The Saturday night trip was the most fun. We were denied entry, which is nothing new. I was used to being a stag in my days in college and right up till about two years back. Ever since Emily has walked in to my life, I have never gone to discs or pubs that demanded couple entry. Oxymoronic, I know. But on that fateful Saturday, saw us struggling once again to gain entry as single men, but this time we were obese, ugly, and a good 10 years older that the average crowd men. Maybe that’s why they didn’t let us in, you know, we were bringing up the average age of that place. I tried explaining it to my good friend A-D but to no avail He was hell bent on getting in. He begged the bouncers, much to my embarrassment. He called people, again to my embarrassment. He went out and begged again. He called up other people again.

Just before I was about to melt with shame, we gained entry. Each of us was 800 bucks lighter and the entry fee promised us only one free drink. And guess what, the drinks on Saturday night are double in value and as good as drinking in a pub in Mumbai. Anyway, the adage of the night has only begun rang true for the umpteenth time.

After we entered, Willy, yes Willy was hit on by a bunch of firaang women. I’m not being condescending here but when we guys get hit on by women, you should know that there’s something fishy going on. After a few seconds of ribbing Willy about what happened, we noticed the women fleecing the guys sitting next to us. This trio of women went on to con about four other guys for shots, drinks, water and food. Atom-D at the end was cursing me and Willy for not letting him encourage the girls. It’s not like he would do anything but that’s Atom-D for you.

Then there was a Christmas miracle, or so I thought. One pretty looking girl came and spoke to me. Yeah, I know! Never in my 6 six years of Manipal life and 29 years of existence has any girl ever, ever, spoken to me in a pub. They even haven’t dared to ask me for a cigarette. Man, you should have seen my face. As you guessed, this girl too turned out to be a con artist.

Atom-D called up anyone and everyone we knew, from UK to Timbaktu to tell them about the night. We spoke about the night the whole of next day to anyone who cared to listen. Even though the wedding and the trip were just passable, this one night made out trip memorable.  

The images of the wedding are up on Facebook. My uncle also launched his second boat to fish in the Arabian Sea. I was there with my Nikon D5000 (you can stop applauding and whistling, please. It’s a little embarrassing) to cover the event. And I have clicked some more and am using a generous and abashed helping of Social Media to propagate my captures. You can view my choicest and favorite pics here or here. Please go through the images and criticise, like, comment, etc. Basically, give me your feedback. 

Also, note that Atom-D’s image has the highest number of views that I have ever got in my life. Gives me the same thrill that I experienced when the girl spoke to me. OK a little more. Kidding. Or am I?

Monday, January 24, 2011

Another One Bites the Dust

And another ones down...

Miracle Monger has decided to tie the know on the 29th of this month. Atom-Dom, Willy and I are planning to attend the wedding and the pre-nuptial festivities.

I am planning to buy a swanky new DSLR before I leave so hopefully you guys will be treated to some good images of the horrific looking MM.

So till I'm back, wish him luck and me, a bon voyage!

Monday, January 10, 2011

The Quitter's Diary - Year Review

The midnight of 9th January last year, I made a promise to myself and after a year of smoke free existence, I had the following proclamation to make on twitter:

At midnight, I have completed 1 year of #smokefree existence. If after 13 years of being a chimney, I can #quitsmoking, then so can you :)

Yes it is true. If I could quit, then even you can too.

I spent two years of Junior College perfecting the art of smoking. I was caught twice. Once by my mom because my lab partner ratted me out and the other time, thanks to my moralistic coaching classes. I promised my parents that I would quit, but I never thought I needed to.

Manipal saw me progress from a 7-a-day-Goldflake Kings (Bada Goldflake for Mumbaikars) to a 20-a-day Wills smoker. On a visit to Mumbai, a friend's uncle had been admitted to some hospital that had a special ward for people who smoked Wills but that too didn't deter me from the evil of smoking. All it did was make me switch from a terribly strong brand to a lighter brand of cigarettes - Goldflake Lights. I smoked 20 a day for the next 9 years. Every new year I would decide to quit but I would just end up smoking 10 a day for a week before moving back to smoking my mandatory 20s.

Then finally, a year back, I decided to free myself from this habit. It worked and I don't foresee myself going back. The first few days and weeks are chronicled. You can begin here and move upwards. It was tough. I figuratively bit peoples' heads off in the first few days. Then it all went away - slowly but steadily. I still, albeit rarely get the pangs. A sudden urge to smoke. The urge can be laughed off now. All this because I made a promise to myself. A promise that I will never smoke. Ever. Again.

P.S.: I am also proud that I influenced one friend to quit, who in turn has influenced two of her friends to quit. Not that I am a quit smoking evangelist but if you ever need help, moral support or you just want to talk, give me a shout out.  

Saturday, January 08, 2011

Agency Blues: "Revenges"

The New Year, as usual, brings with it the promise of a new theme. Presenting the Agency Blues.

After the huge success of my post - 10 comments baby! (even though the comments were a conversation between me and my good friend Pussy) - on how my Client Servicing Executive is adept at listening, I am going to write all my (OK. Whatever I think is funny) agency experiences under one theme.

Why "Revenges" you ask. Well, the Surname of my Copy Head when translated from Hindi/Marathi translates to Revenges and here is my usual (yes, usual) interaction with him.

I had to come up with a line for the Six" World Cup. Before you perverts go on a joy ride in your minds, let me clarify that I now work at an agency that goes by the name Six".  Yes and I have trouble adapting there because I am bigger you know. Like a big fish in a small pond. Anyway, I digress; Focusing back on the main topic:

Me and Revenges had to come up with a line for the Six" World Cup scoreboard and I instantaneously came up with "Boss, score kya hua?"  But Revenges had other things in mind after reading my take on the line. His feedback was:

"The line should have rhythm..."
"Then, make it spunky..."
"C'mon the line should motivate the teams...Think of something on those lines"

After I came up with a few lines that adhered to the above mentioned criteria, I was told, "Keep it short." When finally I gave up, Revenges comes up with the following line: "Boss, score toh bol."

Yeah! My 9 hours at work usually pass by like a breeze. A breeze that contains the stale scent of meat mixed really well with the breath of a thousand ogres.

Wish me luck.

Tuesday, January 04, 2011

Greetings for the New Year

We at S.C.O.F.F. have this year's resolutions already made and we would like you guys to follow them too.

(Image stolen from here)

Before we forget, wish a Very Happy New Year! In this new year,

(Image courtesy oatmeal)