I have never written movie reviews on this blog before. In fact, I have never written movie reviews before, but this movie is just brilliant and so I feel compelled to write about it, to try and convince you to watch it, to have a great time and to laugh like never before. Yes, I am talking about 'De Dana Dan'. Have seen many Priyadarshan movies, but this one was amazing. So many characters, so many and all adding to their bit to have made tears flow out of my eyes laughing. Like all other movies, the central theme to this movie is also CONFUSION but its different. It is different in the way it has been executed, scripted, the way one event has been connected to other, the way one character is linked to other. Sheer brilliance.

The first 45 minutes or so are drape, I would now say, setting the foundation for a laughter hurricane, but by the time we enter the second half, you just can't stop but LAUGH and burst out more, LAUGHING. So much so, that you miss many dialogues, amidst the 'surround sound' and echoes of laughter! This movie is based around cash, characterssss and confusion and hats off to everyone for making it the way they have. I remember laughing as much (or less) last in some scenes during Garam Masala.

A movie which has Akshay Kumar, didn't bore you even when Akshay Kumar was locked in a cupboard for appreciable amount of time. In fact, you didn't even realize that he was there. They have made people laugh in  otherwise seemingly very ordinary scenes. Comedy out of nothing! And that was just the start, as I have said before, moving in to the second half, you may just slip out of your chair and actually experience 'LMAO'

I just loved the movie and would not mind watching it again and maybe again and then probably again and then give it the stature of 'Hera Pheri'. I think it deserves a 4/5 (being conservative), provided you leave your brains at home or maybe that is not required. There isn't enough time to try and use your brains, too many funny scenes lined one after the other.

I hope you do go and watch the movie and enjoy it as well. Good Night!
I have attended quite a lot of weddings all over India from Gujrati to Marwari but primarily Punjabi weddings because I myself am a Punjabi. I attended one yesterday as well and I realized how fun-filled and brilliant they are (not that others aren't, but I enjoy these more). There are some very interesting observations, some things you'll only see in a Punjabi Wedding:

* Baarat Reception time will be scheduled at 8:00 PM, but it won't reach before 11PM (this is the earliest).

* Through the entire Baarat procession, friends and family of the groom will be dancing in front of the ghodi throughout (and more often than not, fireworks being demonstrated steps away from the dancing crowd).

* Alongside, the baarat, there will always be few cars, running one after the other, stopping for sometime and then moving along. Whenever they stop, Khul Ja Sim Sim happens, the famous Dikki opens and I don't know why but children are kept away from it :)

* One of the rituals is for the bride's family to greet the groom's family at the entrance itself, and so the bride's family has sweets, gifts, garlands, etc in their hands. But the groom's family and friends will reach right there on the gate, call the dhol wallah and start dancing there. Its evident that the bride's side is getting impatient and are probably tired of holding so much stuff in their hands for long, but NO, the dance has to happen. Same 3 tunes on the dhol in a cycle and the dance continues. Currency notes waved over all dancing, and then tucked in the mouth of one of whom is dancing and then he will do his own sweet steps, take his time, before giving away then note to the dhol wallah. This dancing in itself can take HOURS!

* Once in, a lot of eating and with evolving trends, DJ with loud music, dhinchak lights and smoke! This DJ will play tracks totally different from any DJ in a disc, for obvious reasons of giving what is demanded.

Now here, I would like to draw your attention to one special event that happened in Indian history. This was the release of the movie Singh is Kinng. Songs from this movie hold special soft corners in hearts of everyone present there. The not-so-big dance floor witnesses a sudden rush when a song from this movie is played for 7th or 8th time in the movie. The 7 or 8 times that it has already been played will never see any crowd on the floor, but if you turn around looking here and there 360 degrees you will definitely find one or two people getting excited within and shaking their heads, moving hands or entire body expressing their intent to just jump on the floor.
Now all it takes is one person who would catch one or two other people on the floor when that song is played for the 7th or 8th time. And then what, other already excited people, get super excited and jump over. And as and when the population density on the floor increases, everyone goes out and gets at least 2 more people each to dance thereby flooding the floor.
What follows are totally traditional, otherwise unconventional (ask the experts) but total "fun" steps. These steps may seem funny to them, but you'll definitely enjoy them even if you are just seeing someone else perform them. Now there are so many many many different tracks, but NO, these Singh is Kinng tracks, and some other selected Punjabi tracks which exist since the Big Bang happened and formed the earth will be played often, in fact quite often.
One popular step is, Running away from the floor, getting a cola glass, keeping it on the hand, and slowly dancing your way to the floor again. gish! And you become the center of attraction, rightly so :)
Most of the weddings, still can't do away with dhols so they will have dhols being played alongside and will enjoy both.
Am actually not quite learned to be able to pen down the entire experience in words. You have to be there, see it to understand.

* All through the ceremony, the bride and groom will meet everyone, dressed in so much taam jhaam and full bright yellow mercury lights shining on them and click after click with people after people, stand up, click, smile, meet, sit down before the next set of people come. While the rest of the crowd enjoys eating, treating their stomachs, bride and groom STARVE!

* During the ritual of exchanging var maalah again its mandatory for groom's friends to lift the groom up away from the bride's reach. Another "fun" incident for another fifteen minutes or more.

* Lastly, when most of the people have left, a big table will be set for the families of bride and groom to have food and NOW, everyone will come and keep on feeding the bride groom, one gulaabjamun, while they were having roti, then laddoo while they just tasted daal. All that is possible is fed all together, not even considering that he probably has daal, rice and jalebi in their mouths at the same time!

Phew, long post :)
But I seriously enjoy attending these kinds of weddings. Truly brilliant and totally fun filled!
The one I attended yesterday, I was forced to EAT, EAT and EAT and then since I couldn't eat more, I was taken to dance, dance and dance and then EAT EAT EAT and then DANCE DANCE DANCE (on Jee Karda, Singh is Kinng, Oye Lucky and other few standard age old Punjabi Tracks). My stomach was on the verge of exploding by the end of it if only I would have fallen on my stomach, full blast :)
Much like 'Doosra' in Cricket, here is a workaround to update Twitter and Facebook via SMS (even if you are not an Airtel customer) at standard SMS charges (tested for India). I found it via twitter thorugh @testbot123 on this page.

So, its a simple 4 step process and here we start.

Step 1 - Create a page on Facebook with a suitable name under the "Brand, Product, or Organization" head and select "Website" from the list below it. Create the page and then Publish it.

Step 2 - We now have to Edit Page and look for Mobile option there. We have to Edit settings for Mobile by clicking on the icon as shown.

Now Activate Facebook Mobile but beware that doing so will end any previous link of facebook mobile with your account and you won't be able to update your profile status.

Step 3 - We now have to link this page to Twitter which can be done on this page.

Doing so will make the status message of your facebook page reflect back on your twitter profile.

We are half way through and ready to tweet via SMS. Send in your tweet as an SMS to 92FACEBOOK (9232232665). This will update your fanpage and thus your twitter status. Standard SMS charges apply as it is a 10-digit mobile number.

Step 4 - Now to use the same update even on facebook you have two choices. First choice is to use Twitter Application on Facebook and then use the option "Allow Twitter to update your Facebook status"

The second option is to use Selective Twitter Application which allows you to update Facebook ststus with your Twitter Update only if the latter has the tag "#fb" in it.

Now to get Twitter Updates referenced to you we go for two more steps

Step 1 - You need RSS Feed for tweets addressed to you which is of the form


Here Replace with your twitter username. For instance, if your twitter username is random543217654 then the RSS Feed for tweets referenced to you is (remember to prefix ur twitter ID with '@' symbol)


Step 2 - We now use Google SMS Channels and Create a New Private Channel and use the Link above in the RSS Feed option there as shown:

You can choose who all can subscribe to your channel by "Who can subscribe" option.

And we are done, make sure you have set your Phone Number correctly to use Google SMS Channels.

I would like to thank fundubytes once again for sharing this information.
It happened today that while browsing through different TV Channels I landed up on Star Cricket that was showing highlights of the age old ICC Knockout Semi-Finals between India and South Africa (2000/01). Ah! Few minutes into the match and a rhapsodic feeling from with said 'Yeh hai Asli Cricket'. Suddenly a boring, hot and sunny Sunday afternoon became as lively as ever. A walk down the memory lane of how we were so crazy about Cricket, collecting Center Fresh cricket trump cards, maintaining a diary with names of cricketers in alphabetical order to help us fare better in the Cricket Antakshri in breaks in between classes (I remember A se Andrew Hudson). Brilliance!
It was the fag end of the Indian Innings when I started watching and a 20 something year old boy next door resembling Yuvraj Singh was smashing the ball all around the park. Utter innocence on his face, boy it was some sight watching him smash the Great Great Allan Donald who in that match gave 34 runs in his spell of 10 overs that too with 12 off the 3 boundaries that Yuvraj hit in his last over. Allan Donald, the speed machine of his time, it took me hours to imitate his bowling style, especially the jump before he released the ball, turned half a kilometer away from the stumps while in the air :)
On the crease with our Number 12 Yuvraj Singh was one of the greatest (of course after Sachin Tendulkar), our Dada who scored 141 runs off 142 balls in this match. With thin, natural, unstyled moustache Dada seemed in great touch. Later in the match, while India was balling, I even saw Lumble sporting similar moustache. Chehre pe massomiyat jhalakti thi
Then it was that one delivery when Yuvraj tried to clear the park off Kallis and ended up being caught by another Great Legend, Jonty Rhodes. A player jiske haath mein ball khud aakar gir jati hai, the man who never missed stumps! Asli Cricket?
Guess what happened when Yuvi left? The not so slim, India's then Jonty Rhodes, the person who smacked Zimbabwe in one of the matches I can see blurred images of, Robin Singh came on the crease. That peculiar posture, the way he held the bat, memories :) He was out the first ball, run out, in a mix up with Dada (something which wasn't new, I mean like quite a few times in the match, I could rightly predict what is going to happen next, ganguly being involved in a run out wasn't new).
This was still ok, but eyes went wide open and needed to be rubbed twice when I saw Vinod Kambli on the crease. Out first ball to give way to Vijay Dahiya and slowly other names who had guest appearances in the Indian Cricket Team started coming to my mind. India ended up scoring 295 and soon the South African innings started. I was smiling from ear to ear to see now-our-coach, Gary Kirsten walking down the field followed by few of his brilliant well-timed, zero-power shots for 4s. Another chotta sa masoom ladka, Zaheer Khan then bowled a superb yorker to get rid of Andrew Hall. This reminded me of what was commonly said about him then, 6 ki 6 yorker daal sakta hai yeh, kamaal hai, express bullet ki tarha jaati iski gend
I then witnessed the greatest ever Sachin on the field with number 99 on his back. Those were the days. Kal bhi aaj bhi, Sachin the cricketer and Bucknor the umpire. Along with Bucknor was the Sandeep Patil resembling Peter Willey. All this while I was waiting for Prasad to get that one edge and the umpire's finger to go up so that Prasad can then run down the pitch with the index finger of his left hand up in the air, but that didn't quite happen, though he did bowl that famous 'leg cutter'. I missed Srinath, Cullinan and Cronje :(
Cricket I think has become much more competitive now as compared to then. When it came to fielding it was common to see Cover stretching out his hand pointing towards the extra cover, asking him to go after the ball, the fielder running along the boundary in an effort to stop the ball coming towards the boundary, failing, because he wouldn't dive, just run. All this could be seen, along with the famous rectangular view on the top-left of the screen, showing what the batsmen are upto. Asli Cricket :)
Past experiences do create stereotypes in your mind, which are proven to be correct as in the case of Agarkar being thrashed by the powerful greatness, The Maritzburg Mamba, Lance Klusener who hit the ball so hard that it travelled to the boundary line 100 times faster than Shoaib Akhtar could perhaps ever ball. And when this ball hit the Pepsi board at the boundary, the bang sound was enough to tell you that Klusener hit that one. Talking about stereotypes, it wasn't only the case with Agarkar, but also when I saw Dada standing on the slip, with Kumble balling. I somwhow, knew he would miss if there was a catch and he did! Not once but twice, consecutively. But her was quick (thoda quick) in moving himself out and getting Dravid there. Finally, India won this match but eventually lost to New Zealand in the finals.
Kya din the, kya Cricket tha, 50 over, mahaan player, mahaan batting, woh kalaiyon ka upyog, woh cricket text book se seedha utha ke rakha hua Dravid ka Cover Drive, Long on Long off ko cheerta hua Sachin ka chauka, Bharat ke opening GendBaazo ki description mein likha hua "Right Arm Medium", woh Pavillion End se aate huey Javagal Srinath.
Wahi to tha Asli Cricket!
As you might (or might not) be aware, am at home these days, since I have been posted in Gurgaon for my internship. One good thing that has happened as a result of this, though 'normal' is a better term to use here than 'good', nonetheless, the 'good' thing is that I have a 'normal' weekend off, which means Saturday and Sunday, which is quite different from my B-School Life where I get a Thursday off.
The point why I brought this up here is that on weekends, I spend a lot of time on reading the newspaper, my favorite, Hindustan Times. I browse through the main paper, the City edition and any other supplements to find and read anything that catches even the slightest of my attention and captures the minutest of interests. This is something I haven't been able to do for long now, as far as I remember I have done this only at home, during my tiny vacations. Even now I don't get to read the newspaper for so long on weekdays, but the newspaper becomes one good reason of why I enjoy a weekend (sounds boring, but true).
So, what I have noticed is that 'largely' there is no such news item that I would be reading, that is new to me. I mean to say, I have already read that or am aware of the happening beforehand. It had happened to such an extent today morning that for once I checked if I was reading yesterday's newspaper! So, how is it happening? The answer I think is The Internet. Though I don't follow any RSS Feed, nor do I have any feed reader, nor do I use FastFlip or Google News but still random browsing gets me all that info. Ok, on and off I  try and be regular on Twitter and I get CNN-IBN's IM Alerts on GTalk but am aware that people do a lot more. I have seen my friends having tens of feeds which they religiously follow, then there is reddit and other such similar sites. Still! With the bare minimum that I do (which am aware most people don't do even that), the newspaper now appears to be stale!
A good thing has happened because of it (yes GOOD thing) and that is that I have started reading editorials. Though, you might say even that is available online but the fact is that I 'enjoy' reading newspapers and its obviously a plus if I read something fresh. I know for a fact that I would not go and read a column by Karan Thapar or Vir Sanghvi online on a usual day. But since that is the only fresh thing available in the newspaper, I read it.
What is common in movies and have been witnessed at the signals by almost all of us - A guy running with newspapers in his hand shouting 'Aaj ki Taaza Khabar, Aaj ki Taaza Khabar' - will it become extinct (or has it already)? With the advancements in technology, Internet has been the biggest of all. Is it killing an industry altogether? There is barely anything Taaza in the Aaj ka Akhbaar because all has been spilled out either as 'Breaking News' on News Channels (which show more than news, relevant, irrelevant and still call it Breaking News) or for a slightly tech-savvy junta, available in abundance on The Internet
So, where are we heading? Already newspapers have put up their E-Paper version which has not attracted me one bit, except in case of searching their archives when need be. We are moving. Slowly, steadily towards a digital world. So, will the printing machine ever stop? Well, who knows, years down the lines we might have guys running on the signals, again, shouting  'Aaj ki Taaza Khabar, Aaj ki Taaza Khabar' maybe this time with Kindles in their hands :) But seriously, can the PRINT ever end?
Though I seriously don't want to think of an answer to this at this point in time because I already feel disturbed when I think of an answer to a small question - What if Sachin Tendulkar retires? Though, thinking about it even for a minute makes me feel terrible, clueless, disheartened and at times make my eyes moist (ya, seriously!) but still about the newspapers it was a passing thought which I discussed with my father earlier today so thought of putting it up here as well.
Any thoughts?
One rainfall clogged the roads so badly that a huge stretch of traffic came to a standstill, so much so that it took me 5 hours to reach from Delhi to Gurgaon which otherwise on a busy day takes around 90 minutes. As time passed, I could sense anger all around me. I noticed a few things, which I had been noticing for years not which is why the title. So what are we?

1. Consultants - We are specialist on identifying a cause (rather creating a cause) after the problem is already there and thereby, have our opinions on what could have avoided it. For instance, a car changed lane in the traffic-block today and angry people all around for quick to react - "Yeh, yeh iske aur iske jaiso ki wajah se jaam lagta hai. Yahi hai kaaran". 
I remember a couple of years back, when I was in a train and I asked an elderly person in front of me if he would get down at the next station and he replied, "Tumhe badi jaldi hai, lo aa jao, tum jaiso ki wajah se DESH aagey nahi bad raha". Ok! How to react now?
Moving on, the biggest obsession, Cricket is a hot favourite of all consultants. You will hear things like those follow often in a India-XYZ match
- Cover drive leni chahiye thee... dekh raha hai waha fielder hai fir bhi andho ki tarha utha di
- Toss jeet ke batting leni chahiye thee, inhe pata nahi hai yeh chase nahi kar sakte?
- Batting end pe throw karta CLEAR out tha, lekin inhe dikhe tab na
- Isko kisne liya hai team mein? Woh ABC ko bahar bitha rakha hai, use ghumaane le gaye the?
- Poori fielding legside ki laga rakhi hai aur ball offside pe daal raha hai, paagal, third man tak nahi hai jee, chauka nahi jayega to kya wicket milega?
- Inhe pichle match ke baad hi dekhna chahiye tha ki ABC ko pehle bheje batting pe, ab nahi bante jee run, Khatam hai!

And what if you complain of a headache?
- Crocin le lo jee ek, 15 minute mein tana-tan
- Disprin hai? Saradon? Ya haldi wala doodh peelo
- Chawal mat khana, garam doodh ke saath crocin lelo aur ek combiflam bhi le lena nahi to badan dard karega

So many doctors !
Coming back to today's traffic jam, many people were cribbing about traffic police not being there. Remember we are the same people who complain when we see them all around when we are travelling on a bike without a helmet!
Everyone was suggesting one or the other route as well as he was dead sure that that route has ZERO TRAFFIC!

2. Future Predictors - We can predict future as we always do and have been doing. For instance, one person was sure today that it will rain till 5PM and yet another was very sure that irrespective of till when it rains traffic situation like this will prevail till next 3 days.
Whenever some incident occurs, it is not hard to find someone who would have claimed otherwise in recent past.

- Lo baithe raho jaam mein, maine kaha tha peeche se hi left le lete, khaali tha waha
- Lo ek aur wicket, maine kaha tha ise mat lo team mein
- Haarna hi tha, maine to kaha tha baating leni chahiye thee toss jeet ke
- Aur mat maano kehna, haldi wala doodh piya hota to abhi khel kood rahe hote, baithe raho ab beemar shareer liye

Worst of all or rather most surprising of all is when people UNRELATED to an incident will say - Kya kaha tha maine? Hai ke nai? - Even when that person himself is not sure of what has happened and how, but will not think twice before claiming a certain thing.

3. Experienced - Everyone seems to have ample amount of experience in every thing! This gives them a lot of confidence as well.

- Bauji, saalo se dekhte aa rahe hain maan lo baat
- Mujhe pata hai na!
- Umar beet gayi ABC karte/dekhte, lo yeh mujhe bata rahe hain... ha ha ha ha
- Humse zyada jaante ho kya iske baare mein?
- Arrey bhaisaab, kab se yahi kaam hai hamara, dekh lena jo keh raha hoon waise hi hoga

4. We Bet - We are ready to place a bet on almost everything!

Lagi shart?
- Bolo kya haaroge?
- Lag gayi ek-ek Pepsi ki
- Shart laga, fir baat kar
- Lagata hai bol?

And what will be the bet on? Petty things like next ball will be hit for a boundary, an argument on a "fact", and any random thing you can think off.

Thats we, including me and probably you (in fact yes, even you). Those 5 hours in traffic could have annoyed me as well, but I was sitting smiling to hear a lot and recall all that I have mentioned above, not to forget the dirty looks I got when they saw that smile on my face :)
Aam is a Hindi Word which means the fruit Mango or as it is widely used, 'Common'. I wonder why then is it the benchmark for comparison by companies that make all sorts of products, primarily the FMCG market.

Without taking big-big names here, I would like to draw your attentions to any one of the majority of advertisements in the FMCG sector. They do have a comparison of their product against the benchmark - 'Aam'.

Aam Sabun
Aam Conditioner
Aam Shampoo
Aam Detergent
Aam Toothpaste
Aam Fairness Cream
Aam Namak

'Aam' seems to be a very big company (FMCG at least). Every other player has one of these lines in their ads - Aam Toothpaste se 10 guna behtar, Aam fairness cream ke muqable 100 gunna zyada asardar.

Not sure about quality of products of 'AAM' company as every company's product is better than it's but the point here is that its used as a benchmark and is widely used. So, its because of AAM products that other biggies thrive for improvement.

This company exists in Biomedical Sciences as well because I remember seeing a company saying 'Yeh hai AAM zindagi aur yeh hai ****** zindagi'. Deals with LIFE !

If there doesn't exist a company with this name, then why not register one and earn royalty :)

Arrey, if there can exist Apple, Mango why not AAM.

PS: Just a random post, written in good humor, arose out of a small discussion with @desh over lunch.
Just posted on admark about how new-age communications are finding more and more innovative ways to try and catch consumer's attention by a mere what used to be "static" billboard!

The title of this post is provoking me to write this post in Hindi, but considering readability becomes quite big an issue, I'll refrain. Continuing where I left last, first about Twitter, I tried Spaz, Snitter, Tweetdeck and Seesmic Desktop in recent past and found Spaz to be the best of the lot, so uninstalled others.

And as informed previously about my internship in Gurgaon, I am back here in Delhi, my hometown. Today, I went around to Gurgaon, just to get acquainted with the location of the office and the route. Bit tiring, but hope that I will get used to it, or rather I have to get used to it!

Wondering, if anyone would read my blog at all, if I continue writing what I did and stuff like the last post and this one?

Anyways, coming back to the title, Delhi is as I have experienced, the best city in India (based on the very limited number of places I have actually stayed in). Why is it best and all, just not get into it. If you agree, then I don't need to explain and if you don't then there is no point arguing because I wouldn't agree :)
So, about the next two months, life will change a bit. How?

  1. Waking up early morning is compulsory as I can't expect a 85% attendance rule here (which by the way was in itself pretty high considering my college days @ DA-IICT)
  2. Bed to office is way too distant than the classroom in college, literally abolishing the scope of waking up 10 mins before the scheduled time, quick-dry-clean drive and rushing to the desired place.
  3. My body has to tune itself to work on a Thursday (weekly off at SPJIMR)
  4. Weekends for me will have the same meaning as for the mango people!
  5. Probably, I will sleep early, so a change in the body clock as well. 
So, those were the top 5 changes. Besides Delhi feels special, because I have a lot of friends and old contacts here or from here (even if they are elsewhere).
Ok, so now am sleepy. This post to an extent appears to be a formality to update it. So-be-it :)
I am cool with it!
Yesterday night's update on Twitter by @desh saying he is updating his blog made me realize that I haven't updated my blog for past so many hours, days, weeks, months, well I don't remember. I remember introducing my Marketing-focussed blog Fifth P that I had started with great enthusiasm and the first post itself got many hits.

The news on that front is that I have been given a chance to blog on admark and since the objective of both the blogs is the same, I am yet to decide if I will be shutting down Fifth P or just let it be there for something in future.

I have not been regular with this blog forever now. I remember starting a Photo Blog as well which I shut down because of lack of pictures and my irregularity. Fifth P seems to be another example, though it was my second most passionate start after this "as I see it" blog which has been reincarnated from earlier "CONCOCTION".

I remember that I also joined twitter with great curiosity to know more about it and how it helps. I have often been struggling with the regular-irregular phases there too but in that case one of the major issues have been my access to Internet through proxy. Of so many clients that I have tried that would work on my proxy Witty and Qwit are the ones I found. I didn't quite like Witty and Qwit is a recent find which is not-so-good but then not-so-bad though it lacks some very essential and I think basic features. To add to it, my reluctance to stick to Google Chrome and perceptions about Firefox being an application that eats up too much memory is also keeping me away from using Twitterfox.

Anyways, I am back on Twitter again with Qwit and its yet to be seen how long this "regular" phase is. Have started following lot of big-well-known names including Gul Panag, Shashi Tharoor, Mallika Sherawat, Chetan Bhagat and some others who either share interests with me or belong to a similar field as I am in.

For the next two months, I'll be in Gurgaon (hopefully). I will be working as an Intern with Microsoft, India SMSG Division. I am really looking forward to the experience and hope to learn a lot and contribute with something valuable.

Just wondering on the irony of me being irregular with my blog because of lack of time, that I have completed this blog post in one of my lectures :)

Good Bye for now, as I end it often, I would try my best to be regular here. A line about the title of the post, it actually seems like disowning my blog, but I will be here, regularly!
And I have started a new marketing blog by the name Fifth P (more on naming later). Through this blog I will try and analyse (rather discuss) the new practices relating to the many brands present in India (and the world) like new ad campaigns, altered positioning, launching of a new product or brand, etc.

Now about the name. Its fairly intuitive. Hope you are aware of the name Philip Kotler and his theory of 4Ps (they are 7 in some cases) of marketing. Even if you are not, then yes there is something like that. So, through Fifth P, I try and introduce another P, that could be my Perception, Perspective or me (Prateek) itself. Or maybe you can take it as lack of a better name if that its easier to digest.

Of the first few days, I have had a good response, with readers across continents flocking in. Hope to have that figure rolling.

I wish your visits and reads on Fifth P provide a fruitful experience. Comments and suggestions are always welcome.
Some fell in love with them, the others find it irritating, whatever be the case, you just haven't ignored them. Yes, am talking about the new face(s) of Vodafone - The ZooZoos. A huge series of commercials, this campaign aims to make the consumer aware of the Value-Added Services that Vodafone offers. There are reportedly around 25 or even more number of ads in this campaign with the aim of showcasing one new ad everyday during the second season of IPL. The ad is being telecasted just at the right place at the right time - at the time of IPL. ZooZoos were even shown talking to Gaurav during one of the matches in IPL.

Rumors had it, that what at first appeared to be animated clips were not actually animations but real humans and that too females who were made to wear body suits to make them ZooZoos.

“It took me three weeks of pre-production to understand how it will work. There were two fabrics that were considered for the body suits, and one was rejected for it had too many wrinkles and was shiny. The wrinkles would have shown when the characters moved, thereby shattering the illusion of animation. So we chose the more practical, thicker fabric,” says Prakash Varma, ad filmmaker at Nirvana Films and the man behind the Zoozoo commercials in India.

He continues, "The practical aspects of how they will move, talk, gesticulate and emote were very important. Essentially, costume design and artwork were crucial elements.The production team divided the outfit into two parts: the body and the head. The body part of the outfit was stuffed with foam in some places, while the head was attached separately. To make it look bigger than a human head, a harder material called Perspex was used, which in turn was stuffed with foam (with scope for ventilation).

"We kept the hands and legs thin, which is why we cast women and occasionally children wearing the costumes" says Varma.

Here are some snaps I got hold off showing how these ads were made.

As many of you, I have also been spending most of my time watching IPL - 2. After the Royals' onslaught on Kings XI Punjab this Tuesday, the next match was between Kolkatta Knight Riders and Delhi Daredevils. KKR hasn't had a good season, in fact they have had a horrible season. They are at the bottom of the table with only ONE victory in their kitty. I wonder how did that happen, I pity the losing side.

So, seeing the match and the horrible performance by the Knights I spent a few minutes thinking about what is wrong with this team.

Nothing, absolutely nothing went right for them. Again that sounds much better than what it actually is, i.e. EVERYTHING is going WRONG for them.
The skipper McCullum lead from the front by dropping a not so difficult and important catch of DD's skipper Gambhir. The team simply followed their captain and put in their best in dropping most of the catches, misfielding and giving as many boundaries as they could.

On one occasion when I thought that Gambhir had nicked it and it was a clean catch, this time it was the umpire who refused to raise his finger and adjudge Gambhir out. Not only this, every few deliveries you could hear the commentator say something like "Edged and four", "Edged, over the keeper's head", "Edged, past first slip for four", "Edged and that would beat the third man". It was all going wrong for the Knightriders. They were taking a beating from LUCK itself and the fielders were anyways not helping themself out of the mess they were in.

Taking a look at their team, I think they have a pretty decent team on paper. But they have not preformed to their potential. The dangerous McCullum ripped of the opposition attack only in ONE innings and that was in match number ONE in IPL season ONE. Another explosive batsman, Ricky Ponting had just failed to perform last year. Chris Gayle, the most violent of all when it comes to thrashing the bowlers, was injured in the last season and has failed to do anything significant this season as well. KKR's bowling attack got a blow when Pakistan players had to keep away from the IPL. What they had was Ajantha Mendis who I personally don't admire as much and think is an overhyped player. You can bowl the 'Carrom Ball' and trick batsmen once or twice or even thrice, thats it. There is nothing extraordinary in that bowling other than that.

Poor batting, bowling and fielding has ensured that they don't win any match. They are on a losing spree! I am doubtful if team owner SRK (who came back to India and said that he won't return until his team starts winning again) will get a chance to come back to SA from India if they continue like this, which I think is very likely. And that isn't all. The tiff between coach Buchanan and Ganguly, the multiple captain theory and the captaincy being taken away from Ganguly and handed over to McCullum, all shows the atmosphere within the team management and the players.

Add to it the sacking of players like Aakash Chopra and Sanjay Bangar, what has just happened to this team? And as if this was not enough, that problem took another avtar, this time in form of the FakeIPLPlayer (a blogger who claims to be a member of the KKR Squad and keeps on giving updates about the team's strategies, differences, tensions amongst players and management and many other happenings in and around the team).

They are going through a really bad phase. It is difficult to say which was worse, Bangalore Royal Challenger's condition last year or KKR this year.

PS : Just saw a report on NDTV, saying that Buchanan and his team will no longer be with the KKR Team in the next season of IPL. They went on to the people of Kolkatta for their reaction on this news. Boy, they were really excited and celebrating it. One guy said that he is very happy and he riduculed Buchanan top to bottom and even blamed him for bringing all Aussies into the team and destroying the KKR team while keeping the best Bangladeshi bowler Mortaza (who KKR won in the auction after a hard-fought battle with Punjab).

Strange enough but the reporter said that SRK and Co. have deliberately removed 'Kolkatta' from their team's name and that it is now referred to as 'Knight Riders' only. Now I didn't know that.

PPS : Just Googled and found out that they actually dropped 'Kolkatta' from KKR. Reports also suggest that SRK has approached Nokia, Sahara and Anil Ambani Group to sell-off his team. Ooh La La. Thats some 'Too HOT Too Cool' News :)
End of March followed by April in Mumbai or even hotter Delhi would have been one of the places I would have been had it not been for DOCC. Well what is DOCC is a question which I'll answer in some other post but for now all I want to say is that I am in Himachal Pradesh.

My journey started with Delhi -> Shimla and from there on to Jwalaji -> Khundiya -> Era and in between Kangra -> Dharamsala. Well some of the places I mentioned above are remote but all of them are in Himachal :)

Its a great place, perhaps the best tourist destination in India. Amongst all of them, I think Dharamsala is the best. Below are some pictures from my trip so far :)

What all I see around me these days, have only seen them in wallpapers so far :D

क़ानून जितना पेचीदा कोई विषय हो ही नही सकता। यह पोस्ट हिन्दी में लिखने का मन् हुआ इसलिए गूगल ट्रांस्लितेरेशन का लाभ उठा रहा हूँ। हाँ तो मैं कह रहा था कि क़ानून एक बहुत ही पेचीदा विषय है। यह Financial Management जितना कठिन तो नहीं है पर इसमे शब्दों का प्रयोग जिस प्रकार से किया जाता है, यह विषय अत्यधिक कठिन बन जाता है। यह पोस्ट लिखने कि वजह भी मेरे End Terms के दौरान की गई पढ़ाई है।

उदाहरण के तौर पे Company Act में दी गई Company की परिभाषा ही ले लीजिये
"company" means a company formed and registered under the Company Act
इस परिभाषा से किसी को क्या और कितना समझ आता है? ऐसे ही अन्य उदाहरण मैंने अपने End Terms की तैयारी के दौरान देखे।

पर एक बात जो काबिल--तारीफ़ है जिसे मैंने और मेरे बंधुओ ने बहुत सराहा है कि यह जिन्होंने भी क़ानून लिखा होगा उन्होंने कितना सोचा होगा, कितने समय के लिए सोचा होगा और क्या क्या सोचा होगा। कितना विशाल है यह क़ानून।

यह ही नही बल्कि मुझे तो यह तक प्रतीत होने लगा है
कि क्योकि कानून की भाषा इतनी उलझी हुई लगती है, इसमे loopholes ढूंढ के उन्हें exploit किया जाता होगा.

जब भी मैं कोई अंश अपनी पुस्तक से पढ़ता था, एक समझ मेरे दिमाग में बैठ जाती थी। पर कुछ ही क्षणों में जब उस पढ़े हुए अंश का उदाहरण पढ़ता था तो सब गुड़ गोबर हो जाता था। वो उदाहरण text से बिल्कुल contradictory व्यतीत होता था।

कभी कभी तो पहली पंक्ति और बिल्कुल अगली पंक्ति ही contradictory लगती थी और शायद थी भी।

मुझे अभी तक promissory note, bills of exchange और cheque वाले section में payable to bearer, payable on demand, payable to bearer on demand, payable at sight, payable at presentment के बीच में अन्तर नही समझ आया।

घोर असमंजस।

एक और उदाहरण है public company की परिभाषा।
public company is any company which is not a private company
अरे मानुष यह तो हमें भी पता है। इसमे आपने ऐसा क्या बता दिया जिससे क्रांति जाए?

एक और मिसाल betting की लेते हैं। betting क़ानून के ख़िलाफ़ है पर horse race को मान्यता प्राप्त है।

Contingency contract और उससे related कुछ, betting और wagery में कुछ कुछ, सब इतना confusing है
कि अब याद भी नही है।

ऐसा नही है
कि यह सब ग़लत हो। बस थोड़ा confusing है और लिखने का ढंग अलग है। जैसे की अब आप director कि परिभाषा को ही लें लें
director includes any person occupying the position of a director by whatever name called.
अब इसका मतलब मुझे समझ आ गया जबकि दिखने में यह भी बहुत अजीब सी परिभाषा है।

चलिए अब यह पोस्ट अपने शिक्षक द्वारा कही गई पंक्ति के साथ ख़त्म करता हूँ।
honesty is the best principle but not the best policy
चलिए अब आज्ञा दीजिये, दोपहर के तीन बज रहे हैं। मैंने कुछ खाया नही है, खाना छोडिये मैंने तो अभी दंत मंजन के दर्शन भी नही किए। लैपटॉप खोला और अचानक से हिन्दी में ब्लॉग पोस्ट लिखने का जी हो उठा।

काफ़ी मज़ा आया हिन्दी में लिखने का। और भी पोस्ट हिन्दी में लिखने
कि इच्छा है अब। लिखूंगा कुछ और हिन्दी में। तब तक के लिए अलविदा।
[Note: If you think this post will be complex and that you are not well-versed with terms used in Finance, well I am on the same plane. I know as much as you do or maybe slightlyyyy more. So, don't shy away from reading it for that reason. Read it just for the joy of it and who knows you may get some idea and earn some extra buck.]

The title may be misleading, but it is a disaster, though may be in a different sense of whatever picture you have in your mind.

One of my most dreaded subjects of all times has been Financial Management. Reason? I don't know. I just find it too complex.

While studying for my exams was going through Bonds, Shares, Warrants, Convertibles, Options, etc. I realized that its all gambling !

The theory about which I heard long back, The Bigger Fool theory, seemed cent percent correct. The theory is nothing but the belief held by one who makes a questionable investment, with the assumption that they will be able to sell it later to "a bigger fool"; in other words, buying something not because you believe that it is worth the price, but rather because you believe that you will be able to sell it to someone else for an even better price. (source: Wikipedia)

Why, for instance, do you buy shares of a company? Isn't it only because you believe that the prices will go up from hereon (or someday) and that you will sell it and earn profit.

What is a warrant? The right to buy shares of a company in future at a price decided today ! When you buy a warrant, you will always think that tomorrow the share prices will rise and I will be able to buy it at today's price and earn profit.

Why do you buy a bond? What do you get? You buy say a Rs. 1000 bond today that gives you x% interest every year for 'n' years and then you get back your Rs.1000 as well after 'n' years. Seems like WOW right? You pay Rs. 1000 today, get back Rs. 1000 after 'n' years plus you also get some money everywhere. Would you even like to think for once that things may go sour, your money may go down the drain.

No, because optimism is the way forward :)

What is the concept of Time Value of Money for that matter? In evaluating a deal, you essentially calculate the NET PRESENT VALUE of the future cash flows you will be getting, which is nothing but DISCOUNTING future cash flows by a certain percentage, say R.

Why so?

Because anyone and everyone who has money right now will lend it to you and charge you R% interest, because he is pretty sure that if he hadn't given you the money, he would have used it to EARN more money which he now cannot because you have the money and so he should get some compensation. Ya, right ! Its so damn easy to earn than too lend (you may call it invest).

Though, slightly off-track, the concept of a Leverage Buy Out came to my mind all of a sudden. Now, this one is truly hilarious ! Trust me on this.

Company A wants to buy Company B.

What do you think about this now?

Company A mortgages (or pledges) all assets of company B (company B's assets on which A has no rights!) and raises debt (loans). Now using this money from loans it buys B. So simple.

Tata actually did a Leverage Buy Out of Tetley, that you now have Tata Tetley :)

How interesting and hilarious is this, that you take some company, based somewhere and PLEDGE that company's assets to someone and TAKE A LOAN. Using the money from the loan, you actually end up buying the company, whose assets you pledged. What about the loan now? Ah! thats a loan, you keep on paying installments and waive it off someday.

Besides, it seems loans are the most easiest way of getting money. Every now and then you take a loan and you do something with it, say buy a company's bonds. You may call it investment but it is actually giving out a loan to that company and earning interest.
So, it looks like A takes loan from B, B could give that loan because he had money which he borrowed from C, C in turn had raised debt from D, D had issued bonds which E bought, E got the money to buy bonds by issuing SHARES... and so on....

Its loans and loans, what is the ultimate source I wonder :)

Update : Just recalled the concept of SHORT SELLING, which to my understanding allows you to sell something you don't own and earn profit. Say, there is a share S of company C with price P. Now, even if you don't own this share S, by some logic (to me magic) you can sell this share 'S' at a price P + p (often the short-seller sells it to earn profit so we assume 'p' profit). Here, what he gets is profit 'p' only and not P + p because he didn't own that share worth 'P'. I know its pretty confusing. Am as much confused and amuzed as you are. And ya, now if you think even you want to earn this way, to my knowledge, as things stand today, short selling is not allowed in India.

Post Update : As Gunjan says, short selling is allowed now, toh jao kamao paise sab. And ya he mentioned futures which is nothing but buying or selling something in future at a price fixed today. The one who buys a future hope the price will go up and the one who sells is greedy, and thinks the price will go down.

When I asked how is it different from warrants, he said.

warrants mein you pay a premium...
and it is an option
future is an obligation
you have to irrespective of what the price is
warrant mein you have an option
future mein there is not option

Jisko samajh mein aaya ho woh thodi saral bhasha mein mujhe bhi samjha dena..par koi jaldi nahi hai...khud samajh lo...kama lo thoda bahut...if successful, then come and explain me.

(Image courtesy: thegoldguys.blogspot.com)
And after a long long time, I am here back again to update my blog so thought of revamping it first. I was bored of the previous look and am not that happy with the current look, but its ok for the time being.

Had something else in mind, that I wanted to write and that too for long, but too many assignments, quizzes and exams kept me lot more busy than I could imagine. Just when I was about to start writing I saw that I hadn't updated my experience of selling Dimdima on Day 3.

I would keep it really short.

It was tiring, we went on door-to-door full on and got all sorts of responses. One of the most interesting responses being

You have exactly 2 minutes, sell me the magazine. Your time starts now !
Seemed much like some entrance interview.

Another instance was when one of our prospective customers, though interested in subscribing, found it difficult to trust us. We had a really tough time convincing her and finally did manage to convert prospective to actual customer.

One instance is from one of my friend's experience who also went door to door and at one door while he was 'playing his record about Dimdima', he heard a familiar voice and to his surprise he saw the actor Om Puri coming out. Yes, he gate crashed Om Puri's house unknowingly. He had a great time, the actor called him in, spoke to him for sometime and finally even bought one subscription.

Getting back to my team's results.

--------------------In a Nutshell---------------------------

Attempt(s) : 1 + 1 + 50+(lost count)= 52+
Places Visited : 4 + 9 + 50+(lost count) = 63+
Success Count : ZERO + 5 + 5 = TEN Subscriptions
So, its a Thursday, officially a holiday for me but still I gave up on my sleep and went on a hunt. Hunt for prospective customers. Went out stood in front of a school and waited for parents to come up to pick their children.

They DID !

Starting with one, two, three, four, five, six....quite a many rejections we saw one INTERESTED candidate and that seemed enough !
Within minutes many more mothers came and started hovering around to see what was going on and we handed over the old issues to each one of them and started with a seemingly recorded message - Mam we are so and so from so and so with so and so magazine, Mam this magazine has Comics, Stories, Puzzles, Activities, Science and Maths related stuff, General Knowledge and Mam its only for this much and Mam if you buy this offer you get this free and if this then you get this, Mam reading abilities of children...Mam personal experience se I am telling you that....Mam it is very important that....Mam it is from the editor of Tinkle...Mam Mam Mam Mam Mam Mam Mam Mam...

And people thought only Shankar Mahadevan could sing Breathless B-)

Phew ! After this Mam Mam Mam convincing attempts we managed to sell ONE subscription and seeing that ANOTHER and few more wanting us to come tomorrow because they were not carrying enough cash and that there would me more parents tomorrow and that they could discuss it in groups and that we might be able to sell more. Sounds Good? Ya, tomorrow is OK and so is more sales but what about now? Thats what was going on in our heads.

"Mam, if you could give us your address then we would drop in there and you can subscribe there itself".

Sounded like WOW to them. Convenience you see :)

So we noted down some 5-7 addresses and continued talking to people and doing the Mam Mam thing again and again and it was just 15 minutes since we started with the process that it was only us left there. Everyone had left so we set on to reaching the addresses we had.

On our way, whosover appeared to be a potential customer, we stopped them and did Mam Mam Sir Sir thing again and again. No success.

We were walking when someone called us from the back saying that some kid from some building is calling us. We went there and it was same kid's house who gave us her address at the school. We sold one more :)

Next address - We sold one more and not only this got clues to 6-7 more prospective customers. Sadly, we could convert only one out of those 7 but then we take it as a bonus ;)

Next, we went to yet another outside-school-address-customer. Annoying. Very annoying.

At first, they give their address, call us at their place, that too in a specified time slot and when we reach there, some 'representative' attends us with a pre-thought dialogue. First few words we hear our 'No, she is not at home and she left a message that she is NOT interested in subscribing'.

One thing that surprised us was 'attitude' of one 4-year old girl whose mother on talking to us gave her a copy to see if she was interested. Her mother said this magazine has this this this and this, see if you will read. GOD! you should have seen the way she was flipping the pages and she then said, 'I don't care, your wish mom'.

Yet, another kid was very interested but his mother said no. One another kid even started crying and howling but his mother said NO.

What we saw was that more than convincing the customer to buy it, whats more difficult is to FIND them and then REACH them.

At times, it feels so weird, all these years the way I react on seeing some salesman approach me, I am seeing it, facing it (but still I never claled anyone at my place and then made someone say that I am not there and that a messages has been left for the salesman that I am not interested)

Anyways, we have identified one more target area and plan to go there sometime soon.

--------------------In a Nutshell---------------------------

Attempt(s) : 1 + 1 = 2
Places Visited : 4 + 9 = 13
Success Count : ZERO + 5 = FIVE Subscriptions

And so from the moment it was announced I was pretty excited.
What was announced?

Well, it was one of the Marketing Field Visits where we had to go out and sell Magazine - Dimdima. Dimdima is a kids magazine that contains Comics, Puzzles, Activities, Stories, Science, Jokes, etc. Personally, when I was first given an issue of the magazine, I found it pretty decent. It is from the author of TINKLE ! Priced at Rs. 20 its printing is also of a very decent quality. We were supposed to sell Yearly and Half-Yearly subscriptions of the magazines.

Day 1 : From the time the field visit was announced (I was prett excited and had a lot of plans in my head) to the actual schduled slot for the field visit (second half of the day when I was already tired and due to lack of time couldn't do a single thing I had in my head the previous day), things were different.
Ah, all this while I forgot to introduce you to my team member Charanya. We both as a team were supposed to sell the magazines.

What I had in mind was and was all the time thinking was how to convince people to buy it? Whom should we target? Kids or parents? What should we say them to convince them?

And ya, another fundamental question, Where do we get hold of people? We thought we would go to a school and talk to parents.

So, we left for our first hands-on sales experience. We had no idea where the schools are and what all schools are in the area alloted to us. Still we managed to find two schools and we visited the first one where we found NO PARENTS. Secondary level had already left at 1PM (it was 2:45 PM when we reached there) and Primary level would leave at 6. We came to a consensus that our Target was the Secondary Level which has already left, so we go to the 'other' school. Moreover, the 'first school had School Buses standing outside, so we doubted if parents would come to pick their child up.

AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA....It was HOT...So much traffic....Nevertheless, we went to the 'other' school. No one at the gate, we just gate crashed, spoke to someone in the OFFICE and got to know that school timings were same as the 'first' school. I insisted that we talk to HEADMISTRESS of Primary Section.

No interest...they were busy...

What now? Nothing..

Knowing that the next idea is bad wouldn't reap any results, we still went to a mall. After wasting sometime there we came back.

I tried one last time....went to a school...FOUND PARENTS...spoke to few of them...they liked the magazine...were interested inbuying but wanted to consult the SECOND PARENT...few of them took my phone number.

This gave me hope that the reason for our failure today was primarily that we couldn't meet our customer. Convincing comes next. If we meet them, we might sell some.

We will try our luck again tomorrow :)

Some of my friend's managed to sell 'a lot'. I want to at least MEET the customer.

God Damn! Sales is difficult than I thought. If convincing the customer appears to be a difficult task, finding ONE to TALK to is Herculean !

Nevertheless, wish us luck for tomorrow :)

--------------------In a Nutshell---------------------------

Attempt(s) : 1
Places Visited : 4
Success Count : ZERO Subscriptions

Once upon a time there must have been people who would have made the first fire, the first wheel and the first house. Hundreds of years later someone touched the surface of the moon for the first time, someone was the first to scale Everest and someone was the first to gauge the depths of the oceans.

This year is special too as something big is going to happen for the first time.

Shall we take a quick peek into the recent past? Let's!

The first to arrive - from the ledgers of Finance,
Was Khoj, with equity research as its major draw.
Then emerged Shrinkhala, from the shop-floor of Operations,
An eclectic, exciting mix of events, in it we saw.
The third one came from the algorithms of Information Management,

BhavITva promises to use IT to allay industry fears.
And last (but far from the least!), from the taglines of Marketing,
Blossomed BuZZ-aaR, truly the marketing event of the year.

But there's something bigger and better,
Than each of the four jewels mentioned above.
This is the thing which is going to happen for the first time,
This is with what we are all going to fall in love.

A confluence of ideas,
To foster which we took the onus.
We proudly unveil to you,
The New Sensation –

SPJIMR is delighted, and proud, to introduce OJAS '09 – The Sparkling Annual Festival of the College – which integrates the four worlds of ceaseless motion – Finance, Marketing, Operations and Information Management – into a unified whole.

The very word 'OJAS' traces its origin to the Vedas – It is a mixture of eclectic elements which gives birth to a perennial fount of vitality, vibrancy and endurance. OJAS is a celebration of the very power which resides in each one of us and manifests itself in forms like diligence, creativity, intellect et al. While you all have already witnessed the launch of the four central attractions – Khoj, BhavITva, Shrinkhla and Buzz-aaR – we thought we'd keep the last one a surprise!

So here it is now! Please welcome Melange – a potpourri of events guaranteed to enthral the participants and challenge them to explore their intellectual and creative potential. This is going to be a magical potion of events which you would never have dreamt of! But we can guarantee one thing – there won't be a single dull moment around when Melange takes the centre stage!

We, at SPJIMR, warmly welcome you all aboard the maiden voyage of OJAS! It promises to be a journey which would require the use of the twin forces of competition and collaboration to foster mutual growth. Come, live with us for three unforgettable, high-octane days and soak in the electricity which the very air around will be charged with.

Looking forward to having you with us!

For further details please visit www.spjimr-ojas.com

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