Friday, December 31, 2010

The Experience That Was 2010

Over a hundred entries in a span of 30 months, out of which over 45 entries came in 2010 and out of that thanks to my Year End Entries, one-fourth came in this last one month. Wow, it’s not just the numbers which are big, this year what I write has seen a gradual change and that has made my blog ‘big’ qualitatively.

Till the end of 2009, it was just me and my life that used to feature in my blog. I kept writing on and on about my so-called boring life and I did get a few people who actually went through each entry and shared their views with me. This year, starting right from January when I saw 3 Idiots, and wrote an extensive entry regarding it, my blog writing style started facing a change.

I started topic based writing as I felt that relating certain topics of common interest with my life may bring a new life to my writing styles and probably my readers would be more interested in reading that. Yes, I was correct. This was something I was never good at, but slowly I found this art easier to craft.

Starting July, when I literally had nothing to do, I started writing about topics. Delhi and the Delhiite showed how life in the capital is and how it has affected me. KBC, INR and ME showed how a popular face of Bollywood had the power to influence a billion people in accepting something new. Do Not Read This actually showed the curious mindset of humans. Nau Baj Gaye Kya? ushered in my excitement to get into the popular TV reality show. The World in 2050 (Part 1 & Part 2) was an attempt to showcase how much the world can change in another forty years.

But I think the best ever entry that ever came to exist in my blog was the award winning entry “Thoughtful Thirst for Words”. Written as part of a competition at my college, this entry created an uproar which helped in building up zeal in me to write more and better.

Well, I think this was a year when I actually started understanding the psychology of my readers. I understood what my readers like to read and I wrote more in that direction. Yes, there was surely a loss of my personal interest somewhere but I won’t deny the fact that appreciation is something that I love to hear and I can do anything for that (which I know is not something good all the time). Moreover I somewhere feel that thanks to the many Free SMS services introduced by the telecom operators, I started making my blog commercial. No I was not earning anything financially. But yes, I was getting more web-visits and more people were getting to know about my blog. I liked it! :)

Well, I know this entry comes up at a time when all my fellow friends all over the world are partying hard and celebrating the last hours of this year while anxiously waiting for the New Year to come and bring new opportunities in their life. And I am sure I would get the first readers for this entry only next year. But whatever may be the case, I had to write this entry as my last entry in this most eventful year of my life. I hope you had a good time in reading this. Enjoy the New Year! :)

Part 9: So who tops the list?

Over the last 5 days, you have seen eight entries coming up here, which have listed the most influential people in my life in this last year of the decade. Now comes the last entry in this 9-part series which talks of the one person who tops the list of the most influential people of my life this year. And as I have maintained throughout the series, even here it is up to you to figure out who I am talking about. No names here again!

This has been a year with loads of ups and downs in my life, both personal and professional. I had no idea what I was going to study after 12th. I had no idea which course to prefer when I had got selected in more than one. It has all been an enriching experience.

Thanks to my confusion, I was travelling a lot and had my first air-travel experience as well (along with two visits to the cockpit where the pilot allowed me to click pics with him). There were times when I thought history was going to repeat itself, but it didn’t. There were times when I was actually thinking of all the promises that I had made to my friends but had been unable to adhere to them due to some reason or the other. There have been times when I have had no idea of what I was doing with my life. There have been seriously, a lot of such confusing and depressing times.

This was a year when people noticed that I was thinking beyond my age. This was the time when I got to know what exactly the ‘Psychological and Individual Differences Theory’ means. And frankly speaking, my Selective Exposure was very narrow, Selective perception was never expanding but Selective retention was, as usual, excessively strong. (I know that my non-BJMC readers may not be able to understand what I am saying! So I would request them to head to Google and find it out!) But whatever may be said, this was a very excessively eventful year in my life.

My previous eight posts have reflected knowledge about people who I said have influenced me this year. But, I don’t think without my permission, any of them could have done that. In fact, I believe it is always we ourselves who influence our thoughts, ideas, beliefs etc to get influenced by others.

Well, yes, you guessed it right, I declare myself as the one who tops this list of the Most Influential People in my Life in 2010. :)

Well, as you might have noticed, there is still 16 hours to go for the year to end. So probably you can expect another entry which comes up tonight at 8, my last entry in the last year of this decade! Till then you can enjoy my previous entries by clicking on the links in the side-bar!! Enjoy the last few hours of this to the fullest but do take care! :)

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Part 8: I exist, thanks to you

Yes, this is a special entry. For the first time in two years and seven months of my blog writing I am going to write about these people. They are the ones who have known me the longest. They are the ones who have known me the best. They are the ones who I term as ‘my family’. By ‘my family’ I don’t mean just my blood relations. Some more people have gained the opportunity of being included in my extended family! And I don’t know how to write this entry without mentioning the names! Well, I will try, let’s see…

This was one year when a lot of people in my family have influenced me in a lot of ways. There are some who never ever forgot to wish me luck before each paper of my board exam and the innumerable entrances that followed. There are some who have talked to me and have influenced my decisions of a future career about what I should not do. Well, I guess, some is a very useful word! :)

Being the eldest son in both my maternal and paternal families, of course when the question comes for a new decision, I have everyone telling me what to do. And being the eldest in the new generation also means that every experiment has to be performed on me. Ideally, a sense of responsibility should come to me (agar main aisa karunga, to mere chote bhai behen kya sikhenge?)

There have been some very bad and very good situations which I have been through this year. I am happy that I can proudly say that no matter what, my family has always been with me, supported me whole-heartedly, helped me out when I have needed help and have cared for me more than anyone else.

I am reminded of a dialogue from Madhur Bhandarkar’s Fashion: Thankfully there are some people who love you unconditionally. Their support for you continues when all other supports get withdrawn.

I am really lucky to have such a wonderful family. Thank you so much for everything! :)

Coming up next tomorrow morning at 8, exactly 12 hours from now: Part 9: “Did I leave anyone out?” Keep thinking…And till then you can have a look at the previous Most Influential Entries: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6 and Part 7. Keep reading!

Part 7: You deserve a special mention

I like the number 7 for a reason which might appear very stupid to you. (Yes, it’s related to Harry Potter! :D) And because I like this number, I thought I should make this entry for some people who I wrote about in Part 6 but thought they need a more special mention. This comes for a few people at MBICEM who have influenced my life to the maximum in the last months. Again this entry comes without the names, but with excessively high number of hints!

I think I should start with that friend who I got to know about on facebook 3 weeks prior to college starting and for one whole week in my ‘big’ college, we both couldn’t meet each other!! Wow! Well, it was a big surprise for both of us when we met finally, thanks to NDTV! And over the months for sure our friendship has nurtured well. :)

Next is the one who gave me shelter when I was a ‘fuccha’ at this place. Yes, I was afraid to be with this person initially. But till now, I haven’t found even a single reason to complain. Thanks to this guy, I was able to know many things about this new place and its people, which wouldn’t have been possible otherwise. A lot of similarity was found between us. Well, the senior-junior relation couldn’t be maintained for long. And for good, it has already changed to ‘brothers’! :)

The third is the one who probably tops my list of the Most Influential People of 2010. This was the one who happened to share his birthday with me. And as Sagittarians, many other character traits also matched! Emotional attachment did grow between us. And this last birthday of ours has become the longest celebrated and the most memorable for both of us! :)

There are a few more who I want to write about but I think I should wait for some more time to get them the special mention which they might deserve!

For now all I can say to these three people is a BiG Thank You! :)

And if you are wondering what’s next on my blog, well, I can just say, it’s not the New Year yet. So a few more influential entries probably? Keep a keen eye! And till then, if you have missed the previous entries, you can check them here: Year End Entries, Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5 and Part 6. Enjoy! And I just noticed that this entry contains 7 paragraphs exactly! Wow!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Part 6: Your wait is finally over

Probably now it’s finally time to mention those people who have been the most eager to see me write something for them. These are the ones who I see almost everyday. These are the ones who have probably not yet got bored of receiving my messages promoting my blog entries each day. These are the ones who have been telling me how much expectations they have from me if I write something for them. They are the ones who have been regularly keeping themselves updated with my blog even before I let them know of a new post, just to check if I have written about them yet! Yes, these are my friends at MBICEM. My college-mates! And the ones who will be with me for at least the next 3 years! Your long wait comes to an end guys… :)

When I joined college, it did not take me much time to come to the lime-light. Thanks to many reasons for that, some of which I like and majority of which, I don’t! My first few weeks at MBICEM were great. We had the NDTV visits, the Bloggers’ Day, the Teachers’ Day celebration and this was the time when our visits to Select CityWalk started. It took me some time to get adjusted with the ‘busy’ schedule of my classes. And after that, life took a different turn. Suddenly I was focussing on friends. The best thing about all this was people were starting to know me.

Initially I had thought of maintaining a cordial relation with everyone who comes in my life’s path. I shook hands with all and returned a smile when I got one. I maintained a care-free attitude with everyone- I was the Happy-Go-Lucky types! Thankfully my college was different from other colleges in Delhi, or at least different from what I had thought college life in Delhi would be like! And I liked this fact!

I am one person who is not-at-all good in maintaining a healthy social life. It takes me a long time to just start a conversation with a stranger. I get to know very few people that ways. And the advantage of this becomes that I get to know those ‘few people’ very well. Same has been my case with my college mates as well.

Probably just 4 months is a very less time to say anything about anyone’s over all personality. But yes, these 4 months have been amongst the best in my life in terms of the masti we have had. Starting right from the first NDTV visit discussions in the very first week of college to the endless birthday parties at various locations spread round the capital to the late night chats with facebook addicts, it has all been a wonderful experience for me till now.

Here I have met a variety of different people.  I have friends who have supported me in many bad situations. I have friends who have helped me in many ways to change my ‘selfish’ attitude by influencing me in ways unknown to them. I have friends who have told me about my short-comings, my negative traits, my not-so-good areas (in short, the BLIND Johari Window) and I am thankful to them for the same. And not to forget, the various people with whom I have taken shelter for residence have surely influenced me a lot in the past months.

This has been the place where I have discovered many hidden relations, have come across a variety of people who think so differently different from me and sometimes share the similarly same thoughts as me. Some way or the other everyone here has taught me something.

My camera is one thing which I always carry with me to all places no matter what! And I wasn’t surprised to find 10 GB of photos already in the memory with just two months of college life! A short memorabilia was able to materialize from this!

Frankly speaking, the things I have written about here have got a huge number of hidden meanings which clever people with a keen eyesight and deep memory would be able to locate. For others this may sound as a generally written piece of material which talks about all the ‘general’ stuff! I believe, this has been one of the most difficult entries that I have ever made. There are a few reasons why I am saying this. First of all, I had too much information which I wanted to put in this. Second, because of my policy of not mentioning any names, it was difficult to make the first reason materialize! If you got confused somewhere, then do go back and read the entry once again, probably now you would understand where ‘hiddenly’ I mentioned you! :)

Hope you had a nice time in reading this. In part 7 which comes up in another 12 hours, you can expect something special! Any guesses?? No? No problem! For now, you can have a look at the previously published parts of the Most Influential People in my life in 2010 by clicking here: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, and Part 5! And if you don’t know what is all this about, then check this one out: Click here! Enjoy!

Part 5: You thought I forgot you?

Well, first time ever I am writing for these people. Yes, I have never ever written anything for them ever. I hope after the successful launch of the batch website, these friends of mine, the ones from my school at DAV Burla, are not feeling left out anymore. Or are you?

No, I haven’t got so busy with my life that I have forgotten you although I remember I made an entry regarding this very thing but no, I can’t ever forget you!

Two and a half years since I left DAV and just a few months since I left DPS, and if I compare the two I can easily make out the difference. At one place I had friends who were with me for almost twelve years and at another for just two years. At the first, I had people who knew me really very well. At the other, ek saal to bas ek dusre ko jaanne mein hi nikal gaya!! The friends I had in DAV I never got too much attached to them emotionally. But still, today they are the ones who are in regular touch with me, know what I am doing when, stay regularly updated with my blog, leave their comments and they are the ones who I turn to for any kind of help if I need in my sentence structure corrections! Contrasting Classroom Chaos! Hehehe…

Probably the one thing this year that brought me and in fact all of us close together was the launch of our batch website on 10/10/10 at 10:10 AM. Thanks to this website, we got in touch with so many of our batch mates who we had lost contact with due to some reason or the other. The hard work of just 6-7 of my friends led to the creation of the largest database of information (of our batch) that one could find anywhere on this planet! The job was well appreciated by our school principal and teachers and we got a huge footfall of almost 250 web visits within 24 hours of the site’s launch! Thank you so much everyone for your efforts! And thanks to this launch party, some of us could plan a get-together at the school on 9th October and meet each other after such along time- almost two years! Wow!

These are the ones who know that I don’t need to tell them how much they mean to me. Since we have known each other since the time we can recollect our memories, we have, kind of, accepted each other as inbuilt parts of our lives! We know each other, our families know each other, we know each other’s families and everyone’s families know us! How can we ever forget each other then?

Well, now I fall short of words. And that is because I don’t know how to describe the innumerable memories that I possess with these people. Longing to meet you soon…Take care!

So what do you think I am going to write in Part 6, which comes up in another twelve hours? Keep your fingers crossed! And do check out the earlier parts if you have missed them. Click here for Part 1, Part 2, Part 3 and Part 4.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Part 4: You conquer the best parts of me…

Yes, I know I promised that there would be one entry every day, but this is the second entry for today. And if you ask me why, I would say that the list of people who influenced me just went on increasing and increasing as I thought more about it and so I found the need to increase my frequency of posting the entries here! Now you can expect an entry every 12 hours till the New Year begins! :)

With Part 4, now I move away from my DPS Vasant Kunj memories. And while this entry was originally meant to be a part of Part 3, but while writing Part 3, I thought it would be better if I separate the two and dedicate two different entries for my future makers! Yes, this entry again comes dedicated to my teachers, the teachers at DAV Burla and MBICEM.

I did my first twelve years of schooling from DAV Burla, a period of time which is almost two-thirds of the life I have lived till now! That was the place which taught me not only how to be a good human being but also how to turn my not-so-good areas of experiences into very good ones. That was one place where I spent my complete childhood, I met so many different types of people, so many new friends came and left, numerous teachers came and taught me, some of them have left, some are still there. The memories I have of this place can never be replicated in any form in any way at any future time. Those were the golden years of my school life with nothing to worry about as I knew there were people who were taking care of my weaknesses and giving extra concern to my strengths. It has been more than two and a half years since I left that school as its own student, but even today when I visit the place, I am still greeted with the same smiling and welcoming faces. My teachers remember me and I am sure they will always do. And for me, I am sure that I can’t forget them ever! I am still in touch with most of them and they are kept informed about all that I am doing regularly. My card reaches them each year on teachers’ day and I am sure they must be feeling very happy on seeing it each time. I myself get regular calls from some of them to know about what is going in my life. I still get advices and scolding on phone and it actually feels good that these were some people whose teaching didn’t remain confined just to the classroom walls. These are some people who are teachers in the term’s true sense! Thank you so much for being there for me! I miss you all a lot! Hoping to see you soon…

Moving on to my present time, I am really lucky to have got so many young faculties at my college. My college is not so big like any big institution but one thing is for sure: the kind of teachers I have got here, they can never be found in any other educational institution at this level of education. And this is not a vague statement that I am making, I am saying this because I have heard from many friends of mine about their teachers and the teaching procedure they follow in their respective colleges! I am not doing any buttering here if any of my fellow readers thought so, I am just saying the truth. Probably some of it was reflected in the speech I made on teachers' day this year! My teachers are hard working for sure and I wouldn’t stay behind from saying that sometimes it actually feels like I am back in school! The concern they show for us, for our assignments to be completed on time and then going through each assignment of each student to check for errors, seriously, hats off to them for their dedication! They don’t limit themselves to classroom teaching; if by chance I miss a class they help me out in completing the day’s assignments after getting a proper reason from me for my negligence! Hehe…! I would love to write many more things but I have to stay in this college for another two and a half years; so I need to keep some professional things in mind and not get too personal! Hope my teachers understand what I mean to say by this! :)

My word count right now shows a total of 757 words and that means this is the lengthiest Year End Entry that I have come up with till now! So, hasta-la-vista! And take care!

Keep looking forward to the next parts. And click here for Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3! Enjoy!

Part 3: I was nothing without you

With the last two entries of mine being about my hostel mates and friends at school, of course I couldn’t have left my teachers out! The teachers who were the guiding force behind my ultimate success in my boards!

The contribution of the six people who taught me in my last two school years is something unforgettable- I know that is something very easy to say, but I am sure if any of the six are reading this, they will know the true essence in these lines. I was a hosteller, away from my home and they were the ones who actually saw me struggling day and night to get hold of that “better score”. All the extra labour they put in, the special classes they arranged for me, the everyday scanning of my newly made notes that they did, the special five minutes they dedicated to me in their class each day, seriously I can never forget all that. Had it not been for their selfless attitude and uncompromised help, I could never have been able to score that well in the boards! I got 78.8%, and I was really happy about that. Half of my study had been made complete by these teachers of mine. Had I not received their guidance at the right times, probably I would have had to wait another complete year to clear the boards and reach college life! Thank you so much!

Yes, I was the teachers pet. I have got used to being called that since probably the time I got to know what it meant! And I don’t mind it, so it’s ok! :) But, it was not just academics that made me close to these teachers emotionally. I was the good boy. Even after leaving school I have been in touch with all of them regularly and I am sure all of them know exactly what I am doing and when. My recent visit to my school for the alumni meet was just a platform which I got where I could meet these most influential people of my life. And my friends were actually surprised when not only the teachers who taught me but many other teachers who just happened to know me by the many meetings in the corridors when I was in school, said that they were all updated about my many NDTV studio visits and were waiting for more! Well frankly, I was exalted! :)

In my last weeks at school, these were the ones who helped me in many non-academic spheres of my school life. I used to be so frustrated at times and not willing to study at all, I was confused about what I was going to do once the boards ended, what entrances I should give, what is good and what is bad for me- they were the ones who provided me with the proper counselling at the very right times. I am really thankful to them for everything.

Today when I meet them, the few moments I spend with them are moments of great pleasure for me. I am sure they feel the same. They have always inspired me to chase my dreams. Science was never my cup of tea, they are happy that now I am not doing something that wouldn’t make me happy. I am doing what I love to and I am happy. I am really thankful to the Almighty that He provided me with such inspirations who never ever in two whole years said that I, an Engineering student, was doing the wrong thing by not taking up IIT as my aim! Thank you Sirs and Ma’ams for being there for me! Thank you for everything! And please do miss me as I miss you all a lot!

And I really feel proud to dedicate this 100th entry of my blog to these special people of my life! :)

Click here for Part 1 and Part 2. Part 4 coming up tonight at 8! Any guesses who it would be about?

Monday, December 27, 2010

Part 2: Couldn’t have missed you out

Well, when I wrote about the 3+3 Idiots yesterday, of course I couldn’t forget the so many other people who were with me at all times: to support me at my bad times and so this Part 2 entry goes for all of them…

The hostel didn’t comprise of just my batch this year. The last 3 months I spent there, they were probably the ones in which we had the maximum interaction with our juniors both in the boys and the girls hostel. The wonderful farewell we received from these people- seriously, that was ‘unexpected’-yes, that’s the D-word! I was RGV of the hostel! And the song that was dedicated to me then, happens to be my hello tune now! (Call me up and check what it is, if you don’t know and want to know! :D )

Then there were my batch mates at the girls’ hostel, some of whom had the privilege of being termed as ‘bhabhi’ by me! I had some interaction with very few of them (those were seriously serious and funnily funny sometimes) and since one of them was in my section in school, we had some not-so-easily-forgettable conversations- funny, serious and suspense-ful!! I still wonder why these people don’t want me to upload their pics on facebook! Any answers? Surely they don’t look as ugly as they think they look in the pics!! Hehehehe…..

My classmates, a few with whom I had regular talks are thankfully still in touch with me. Even after leaving school we have met quite many times. For the suddenly planned and wrong 717 taken Science Centre visit and for watching the latest Harry Potter movie. Each one of them is at cornered locations now, in some cases outside Indian boundaries, but I am sure whenever we are able to make a proper plan for a get-together, it is going to be huge!!

But sometimes it actually feels bad when I realize that just a handful of them want to keep me in their memories and are in touch with me. I treasure this handful of people! Thank you for being there! The diary entries all these people have written for me (and mind it, I got the diary written only from my prioritized list of people), I still treasure those!

Thanks you for being a part of my memories and for being amongst the list of people who shaped my life in some way or the other. Thanks a lot!

P.S: After going through this entry and the previous one, probably you have noted that I have not mentioned any names any where. Well, yes, I am not going to mention any! (Although I remember a classmate of mine suggesting that I should mention people’s names for better understanding) I think I provide enough clues in each sentence that I type. It’s up to you to decipher the names! Go ahead…Good luck!

Coming up next tomorrow morning at 8: Part 3: “Guess who else now?”

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Part 1: Friends Forever

Yesterday when I let everyone know about this special series of Year End Entries, everyone was so excited to know what and when I was going to write about them! I was actually surprised by this friend of mine who actually called me, emailed me and texted me to ask when I was going to write about her!! Wow! Seriously, I was surprised! And of course I hope you know that you can't expect individual entries for each one from me! If I start doing that, probably I would reach the end of 2011 as well and still not be done with it!! Hehehe..... :D

Now its time to start....

Well, I guess nothing other than my life at DPS Vasant Kunj Hostel can be a better start to this series of Year-End entries! So here it goes…

When I rewind, it feels just like yesterday when we, the 3+3 Idiots went up to the Vice-Principal of our school and complained against all the injustices that were being practiced on us in the hostel! That was 3rd January, a day before our pre-boards started! And now a year has passed! So soon everything has changed… That was a time when our unity was something that the whole school used to talk about. Now, it’s difficult for us to even fix a perfect time for a get-together! But yes, I can be sure of one thing: the time we spent together at the hostel has made us united forever!

Boards came. Results came. Entrances came. Again results came. Tension was building up. I was confused! Well, we were the 3+3 Idiots after all, we had to crack it! Got our admissions done and thus began our college life!

But wait, there was the longest summer vacation in between as well! Seriously…the four and half months! Don’t want them to be back ever! Having nothing to do for such a long time can be too boring and it indeed was! An empty mind is a devil’s workshop and so, I desperately wanted college to start as soon as possible!

I did find some ways to while away my time then. My first movie “Blissful Reminiscence of a Bygone Era” had its worldwide release on facebook on 14th of April. And then many entries found their way to my blog. A website was also released. Well, yes… that was the time when probably we all hostellers were missing each other’s company the most. And so these were a few small dedications from my side! Yaadein....yaad aati hain...

Now when I meet any of these friends of mine, the few hours we are together, they are actually some moments we treasure. The moments of fun in the two most memorable years come rushing back to my mind. 1st June, 14th July, 4th September, 11th December and 24th December- Ginti ke paanch din! But yeah…some one has rightly said: Distance sometimes endears friendship and strengthens it! Our friendship, was, is and always will remain the best! 

Miss you guys! Do well in life and do keep in touch!

Coming up next tomorrow morning at 8: Part 2- “Guess what it could be about?”

Saturday, December 25, 2010

2010's Year End Entries

Well…another year comes to an end…I wont say this was the most eventful year till date because I say this every time in my year end entries and now I think every coming year is much more eventful than the previous one in every human’s life!

I was just going through my last two years’ year-end entries where I have summed up what happened throughout the year in my life in bullets. I noticed that none of them has even a single comment on them. Well, that clearly shows that my readers found those boring and otherwise, my life was not so interesting! So I thought of moving away from this traditional style of mine this time, for a change!

This year- 2010- so much happened! Life has changed so much, not just for me, but for all people around me!

So for this end of the decade, I have come up with a host of new blog entries. Dedicated to all those people who influenced my life in some way or the other throughout the year. Starting tomorrow, that is 26th December, I shall be posting some entries in as regular an interval as possible till the new year begins!

So...enjoy the holidays! And keep looking forward with crossed might be the next one I would write about! :) :) :)

And yes, today is 25th already. So, wish you a very Merry Christmas! Have a great time!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

The World in 2050! (Part 2)

Due to popular demand from my readers in my previous blog entry, I decided to put two more stories of the future here. They are quite long. So have a look at them, patiently...

Hydrogen Finally Pushes Gasoline Off the Road
Iceland: Today was a historic day for Iceland when their President this morning at a symbolic ceremony officially shut down the last gasoline pump in the country. Iceland is a model country when it comes to the fuel transition from gasoline to hydrogen and became today the first country in the world to complete it.

This date has been planned for about 5 years so it came as no surprise to the Icelanders that they can no longer fill their cars with gasoline. The governmental subventions for motorists to scrap their gasoline vehicles, combined with a mature used cars market of hydrogen vehicles due to their early adoption have made the transition possible. Another key factor has been the low price of hydrogen, Iceland has the cheapest hydrogen in the world since their domestic production meets demand.

Iceland is not only self-sufficient with hydrogen, all of it is produced through electrolysis based on hydro- and geothermal power. This means that 100% of the hydrogen consumed in Icelandic cars are produced from renewable sources, known to the consumer as Re-Hydro, compared to about 10% of the hydrogen in the US cars.

The transition has also resulted in that Iceland now has the most modern car fleet in the world. Half of the 233,000 vehicles are hydrogen-hybrids and half are fuel cell models, even though now three of four cars sold are fuel cell.

35 years ago the Icelandic car fleet consumed as much gasoline as the marine fleet, but due to the automotive subventions and the longer life length of boats, the marine fleet has not been able to keep pace. It will most likely take another 10 years before the last Icelandic fishing boat with a diesel engine is taken out of service. By then Iceland will have decreased their oil consumption with about 80% since year 2005.

India's richest village at Haosi
Haosi village, set up in 1961, has been declared India's richest village. In this village of Haosi, a booming market town of 36,000 in Orissa's affluent central district of Ganjam, every family has at least one house or villa, two cars and Rs 250,000 in the bank.The villagers homes/villas are of around 4,000 sq ft to 6,000 sq ft area.

One man is credited with turning around the fortunes of the village: Ajit Kumar, who was the secretary of the village's local branch of the Biju Janata Party. Ajit adopted a set of policies that were an amalgam of free market economics and customary principles of communism. About 90 years ago, Ajit, a farmer himself, propelled a movement which saw Haosi transform itself from an agriculture-driven economy into an industrial powerhouse. The village built factories by the hundreds and the disciplined villagers, who all work seven days a week and take breaks only once in a while, soon realised the fruits of hard labour and smart transition from agriculture to industry.

Big items like villas and cars are distributed in a uniform way to the villagers here. People do not have to pay for it as the village distributes this wealth. The construction and decoration are uniformly designed by the village, and also paid for by the village.

The village itself is like no other Indian village or city. It resembles a western suburb that has been just plucked from the American countryside and transplanted into India. Officials from elsewhere in India have toured Haosi to find out how this once sleepy village, with just 576 residents in the 1950s, is now so rich and why non-local businessmen would donate million-dollar factories to buy the privilege of a local residence permit.

Haosi Village has adhered to a path of 'relying on the collective economy and working for common prosperity', says The People's Daily.

Again this time, I give the credit to the internet for helping me with these articles.

Coming up next is a set of funny news stories that will put your nerves racing, and heart laughing! Till then, Adios!

Saturday, December 18, 2010

The World in 2050!

In a recent class assignment where we had to design the front page of a newspaper, I made a paper named The Sunday Indian Herald dated 25 December 2050. With some help from the internet, I compiled stories to be published in it. Have a look at some of these and enjoy! 

IH Completes 1 year as India’s only printed newspaper:
With today’s issue ‘The Indian Herald’ completes one year of success in the print. After the last newspaper printing press was shut down in April 2039 after all newspapers were converted to epapers, The Antarik Anwesan Co. & Ltd, in October 2049, decided to re-establish the age old tradition of newspaper reading in the printed format. Specially designed to keep the memories of our senior citizens intact, of how they used to get news from a printed paper when they were kids, IH has been successful in getting over 2,000 avid daily readers now, 80% of which are in the above 60 age group.

Population of India tosses China to No. 2
New York: It is now officially declared that India has passed China, excluding Hong Kong, as the most populous nation in the world according to the UN. The two nations "met" at 1.593 billion people  each. The population of India is estimated to increase to 1.768 billion by year 2070. The reason for the switch on the population throne is the lower fertility for China that will continue to decrease the number of Chinese to 1.532 billion for the next 20 years.

First civilian heads to Mars: 
Washington DC: At a press conference here on Friday evening, it was announced that the first tourist heading for Mars will be the 38-year-old US businessman Patrick Clifford. He will leave the earth in the launching window of June 2052 and set his foot on the surface of Mars in November, together with the other 6 astronauts assigned for the mission to further explore the planet. Patrick now has two years of training ahead of him to get ready for the trip. Not only will he spend five months in getting to Mars, but another 600 days there before he can go back home. Patrick was of course very excited: "This has been my dream since I was four, and seeing the first man on Mars 7 years ago made me realize that it was possible.” To be able to pay the US$ 1.3 billion for his ticket for the trip Patrick sold his majority stake in the business empire his father had built. "I know that my father would have been proud of me if he had still been alive today, he knew what this means to me", says Patrick. There is no risk though that you will find Patrick begging in your street corner when he comes back, rumors says that he was paid twice as much for his part of the company. So, how is he going to spend his 600 days on the red planet? "Well, since I don't have a job when I get back after selling the company, I have plenty of time to come up with a new business idea", he says and laughs. If he brings a shovel he can start building the first hotel there, but maybe he shouldn't expect too many guests until someone can offer a lower transfer fare.

Once bitten, police turn Barabati into fortress:
Cuttack: Cuttack police provided heavy security to the Barabati Stadium, which hosted the fourth ODI between England and India here on Saturday. Security was further tightened following the blast at the Har ki Pauri in Haridwar on Friday evening, which killed a girl aged two and injured at least 35 others. The police were extra cautious since the day-night match was held on the day of the Babri Masjid reconstruction anniversary. Additionally, the April 16 blasts outside the stadium during an IPL-37 semi-final, too, prevented the police from taking any chance. “The city police have been on alert since Friday, as December 24th was the anniversary of Babri Masjid reconstruction. Also, the cricket match being held is of high responsibility and all security measures have been taken to ensure the players as well as spectators are safe,” commissioner of police Shankar M Bidari said. As many as nine assistant commissioners of police, 40 inspectors, 60 sub-inspectors, 90 assistant sub-inspectors, 130 head constables and about 500 constables were deployed in and around the stadium as Andrew Strauss and Paul Collinghood walked in to bat. Traffic around the stadium was also under strict police surveillance. The traffic flow was smooth. Parking was allowed at only a portion of the BRV Grounds adjacent to the stadium, due to the ongoing Christmas eve celebrations. Vehicles were allowed to park on connecting roads and also in Central Park. “The number of security personnel has been doubled from that of last time. Security lapse led to the previous attack. This time, with the kind of security cover, nothing can go wrong,” a senior officer, guarding the stadium, said. However, a few men were seen fleecing motorists by charging them Rs 200 to Rs 1000 as parking fee. The ODI was the second international sports event in Cuttack after the April blasts. The first was the Asian Grand Prix at the Sree Kanteerava Stadium in June. Following the Haridwar blast, police went into overdrive and beefed up security at bus stands, railway stations and other places.

So what do you think now? Will 2050 be something actually like this?
Do let me know if you would like to read more such stories. There are some more which I haven’t put up here!

Monday, December 06, 2010

Fashion Trends Face Drastic Changes @ MBICEM

Antarik Anwesan, New Delhi

6 December: It’s been just three months at the Madhu Bala Institute of Communication and Electronic Media and my perception of Delhi’s so-called “ultra-modern teenagers’ ultra-ethnic fashion trends” has changed completely! I have been observing this since some time now and it was just today morning that I realized the importance of the clothes you wear to your workplace and what effect it has on the people around you.

[Wait a minute, I need to check something. Umm… What (fashion trends), Where (my college), When (last 3 months), Who (my college mates), Why (something happened today morning) and How (by observation). Okay, I have put the 5 Ws and 1 H of media writing (I am sure if my Writing for Media lecturer reads this she would be having a hearty laugh!)]

So coming back to the point…

[Following chronological order]

Before coming to college I had for sure imagined that this place would be one where one’s dressing style would matter a lot, especially when the college is located in the national capital- supposedly a very ‘posh’ area! I remember having a class discussion on the very first day of college about having uniforms in college and at that time I had supported the statement with the fact that it was a headache for every teen to get dressed for college each day and look the best amongst his/her peers. I myself had practiced this for some time. I say ‘some time’ because my perception changed very soon.

[Varied openings of sentences]

“One of the best thing about our college is that here no one is considerate about how we dress, unlike the scenario at DU”, said a friend of mine in a recent discussion of the topic. No body here judges you by how you ‘look’, in fact I am sure the ease with which people here ‘read’ each other’s body language (that exclusively does not go for my faculty) is something I was awe-struck on finding out! People’s perception of how you are is determined by your attitude rather than your dressing style!

But the main reason why I am inclined to write this ‘out-of-my-box-thinking’ kind of entry suddenly today is quite different. The external practicals of my seniors started today and the way they all had dressed up to look ‘decent’ to the external examiner is something I couldn’t help but notice. The guys in formal shirts and trousers and the girls in salwar-suits! “Lag raha hai aaj MBICEM mein insaan padhne aaye hain (Seems as if today humans have come to study at MBICEM)”, remarked a friend of mine. Haha… I am sure he was correct in saying that! I don't mean that those who are not dressed in formals are 'animals' or something else. In fact I am myself one who hates formals! What I mean is just that it was just weird to see my seniors dressed up in such a different style! MBICEM is facing some really drastic fashion trend changes! Haha…

And now I am wondering what I should wear for my practicals next month? I don’t have even a single pair of ‘formals’!! Never thought a need to buy those!! Aren’t those what adults were??

This is surely going to be an awesome experience…and I am sure this time you enjoyed reading this entry…awaiting your comments!

P.S.: I have ignored the fact that while writing a news story we should avoid using ‘I’ and ‘you’! Hehe… 

Friday, November 19, 2010

Potter Finally Spells LIVE Magic on ME!

A very ‘longly’-long wish fulfilled- that’s what I can say about today! Truly, I haven’t been so happy and so excited in days!

Let me recollect some old memories first. Before I came to Delhi in June 2008, I had never hoped to see a Harry Potter movie in a theatre. Last year in July when ‘Half-Blood Prince’, the 6th Harry Potter movie released, I was in Delhi and could have easily watched the movie on the big screen had I not had restrictions in my hostel. My friends were so good that they saw the movie and texted me to tease me “Antarik, guess what, I am watching Harry Potter” and I must have been probably the biggest ‘jealous’ in the world at that time! And after almost 3 months, I had been finally able to watch the original print of the movie!

This time, being in college, restrictions were minimized. But I got to know that I am having my exams in the coming week and I was least prepared. That meant I was planning to see the latest instalment of the series, after my exams got over on 26th.

Somehow yesterday I was growing more and more excited about this upcoming movie by seeing the innumerable posters of the various cinemas in the newspaper. And yesterday another great thing happened with me. I forgot my laptop’s charger in my classroom at college where I had used it to charge my notebook. As a result of this I was not able to pre-book my tickets for a show today. I asked my father and he tried, but due to some technical errors, he was unsuccessful as well. And then I was sure that watching the first day show was going to stay as a dream for some more time now!

Today morning I checked the PVR Cinemas website for tickets for PVR Saket and I could spot many vacant seats. Around 1 PM, a school friend of mine called me up and asked if I had booked the tickets for the show. I hadn’t. I went to Saket and booked seats for us for the 4.45 show. Next was what? My excitement level just grew and grew by the minute.

The movie started. Oye…now hang on! I am not writing a movie review here! If you haven’t seen the movie you wouldn’t like your experience to be spoiled right? Hehe… So my views on the movie? Umm…the best Harry Potter movie yet, should I say that? I guess yes, that’s completely true! For the first time ever, I loved a Harry Potter movie on the very first viewing. Probably I was too excited because of my first ever theatre experience of Harry Potter, but job hi…the experience was awesome!

The way this movie starts is a completely new style adopted for a Harry Potter movie. A sense of despair after losing something important is clearly evident right from Scene 1! (We lost the Hogwarts headmaster at the end of the previous movie, remember?) The main thing that puts this movie aside from the previous instalments is the absence of Hogwarts, the sole background for each of the 6 previous stories. Throughout the movie a sense of restlessness and the urge to finish a quest is on the minds of our beloved trio, Harry, Ron and Hermione. Well, I wouldn’t like to go in details of the story, as the story is not something new for any of us who have read the book!

Seriously, David Yates has learnt a lot from his experiences with the previous two instalments of the series. “Order of the Phoenix” and “Half-Blood Prince” were big disappointments for Harry Potter fans but “Deathly Hallows (Part 1)” has surely been able to camouflage this easily.

The decision of the producers to split this last book into two films is not going to be questioned any more. For the first time it seemed that each scene was getting full justification from the camera. I personally found the first half of the movie a bit ‘dragging on and on’ kind, because the scenes were long, filled with action at the very right times. The second half seemed much better with most of the story being covered here. The story has been kept true to the book this time with minor changes here and there and with addition of some really exciting new scenes which J K Rowling’s brain probably didn’t cook up 4 years back when she was writing the book. My personal favourite was the visual incorporated during Hermione’s reading of ‘The Tale of Three Brothers’- I just loved the animation there! Wonderful!

This time there was a clear synchronization and linkage between the scenes and no haphazard placing of elements was felt, as was the case with the ‘Goblet of Fire’. I was surprised at how cleverly Steve Kloves, the screenplay writer had been able to balance the utterly serious scenes with the satiric and comedy-filled dialogues! The one scene thinking about which I can’t control my laughter still is probably that of Dobby’s on the chandelier at Malfoy Manor. That was ridiculous and seriously unexpected. Hahaha…! And I was not surprised when I saw the complete theatre go silent in the moments that succeeded our little elf-friend’s death. Alexandre Desplat’s background score seriously was able to create a magical aura throughout the movie! Wow! Loved it!

This article has seriously become quite long and my word count says 915 words as of now. I guess you are already bored and are wondering why you read this boring stuff! That is none of my concern, I guess. But I am able to write this so long probably because I am too happy and too excited and too overly-excited after seeing this movie! Seriously the ending of the Part 1 leaves the quest mid-way and the viewers wanting for more! The epic scenes of the “Battle of Hogwarts” in Part 2 now seem to be like they will actually be epic!! Let us see what records this movie is able to break at the box-office worldwide: the most successful Potter movie ever may be?? Or an Academy Award Best Picture nomination. Let’s keep our fingers crossed! All the Best!

Do leave your comments! I am waiting. How did you find this movie? What else did you expect? Could have been better? If you haven’t seen it yet, when do you plan to see it?? Excited?

P.S.: I have broken all my previous records and am ending this longest ever blog entry of mine with a total of 1108 words! That’s saying something, isn’t it??

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Sleeping Beauty

I wrote this entry on "Creative Call", the official learning platform for MBITEC's Creative Young Minds. And after getting positive reviews from many, I thought I ought to share this with a larger audience. So here it goes...

On 13th of this month, I visited “Manjusa”- The West Bengal State Emporium in Connaught Place as part of a college activity. The traditional richness of the fascinating culture of the state came out in the form of the innumerable traditional handicrafts, sculpture and clothing. I, not being one who has ever been interested in this ‘cultural’ stuff, preferred to roam about the area a bit. As soon as I moved out of the building to the State emporium’s filthy pavements, the down-side of life in a metro which had just hosted the 70k rupees CWG was not going to be unnoticed. 

Children, who I don’t think would be more than 8-10 years of age, in tattered clothes were ‘begging’ for money to have a square meal for lunch. Being considerate to them is something I have never felt since the time I saw Madhur Bhandarkar’s “Traffic Signal” some two years back. But then, I saw a scene which I don’t know why moved me so much. A person, I guess she was a middle-age lady (I am not sure), in a badly worn out salwar suit, was ‘resting’ on the pavement near a wall that connected the emporiums of two states, with a tattered piece of dupatta covering her battered face. I guess there is nothing new for something like this being spotted in India- they are found in every other railway station. But the thing that left blood in my heart rushing was the fact that hundreds of ‘house-flies’ had also found a nice, cosy place to rest on the whole body of the ‘sleeping beauty’ and our hostess didn’t even mind to shoo away these little guests! She slept coolly, unmindful of what was going around her.

For a few minutes, I was surely left bewildered and I noticed that only when a friend enquired why I had grown so silent and was not talking. I had no answer to his question, but surely somewhere this visual had made a deep impact on me, otherwise I don’t think I would have ever thought of making a blog entry of this kind on such an un-noticed topic!

Do leave your comments and let me know what you think about this…

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Kuch Yaadein Ankahee...

In the early morning hours of 31 October 2010, my friend Kshitiz and I decided to make a short video clip that would include our photos of the 2 months that we have now spent a t college. We didn't plan out anything. And within 3-4 hours starting from 1 AM at night, we had this 14 minute music video in hand:

As not expected, this video was already senti-stuff and so, we did get appreciation for it. Do have a look at it and please leave your comments so we know what was good and what was bad, where we committed mistakes and what better we could have done.

Take care.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Ek Din Achanak...

It is 2 hours past midnight, on the 14th of October 2010, while I wake up to write this 'untimely' entry…

Just 15-20 minutes back I switched off my computer and went to bed. I was just lying down and going through my phone’s message inbox, deleting the many chat messages and other rubbish forwarded ones. I kept my phone on the ‘Do not disturb’ mode and prepared to sleep. The day’s events crossed my mind. Waking up-finishing chores-starting with my college assignments-facebook-shopping in the evening-work after dinner-facebook again-and then sleep. Somehow I felt there was something missing…

I tried to rewind my past few weeks at college and my social life. I had been chosen as the Best Blogger-had delivered Chatur’s Speech from 3 Idiots at college on Teachers’ Day-had become an integral part of MBITEC-had attended all lectures-had loved each one of them-had got loads of assignments-had always tried to complete them on time-had made loads of new friends and some really good friends in a very short span of knowing each other-had made frequent visits to Select Citywalk and DLF Place-had enjoyed college life to the utmost-had never allowed any kind of a compromise with my studies-in short, I was doing really well in my professional as well as my personal lives. But now somehow I felt there was something missing…

I lay in bed thinking…

The past few days have been really exhaustive for me. After reaching home I got busy in completing the batch website that I was designing for my school-mates and almost every day I spent 7-8 hours in front of the computer doing just that. On 10/10/10 at 10:10 AM the site was launched and on receiving the rave reviews I felt satisfied that I had done a good job at it. Then I saw ‘4’ days of my vacation left and started with all my college work. At that time it seemed to be an easy task, but now I am craving for more time to do all the pending assignments! This was something that had never happened to me in school. I was always the teacher’s favorite and completing the work before time was my hobby! Surely there is something missing now…

I am in deep thought…

Three months back at this time I and all my friends were sitting at our homes, idle, having nothing at all to do. The long vacation that we had received after the Boards in March was no longer welcoming. We had wanted college to start as soon as possible. Long telephonic conversations and friendly chats were like our daily bread and a day with no conversation, due to any unlikely reason, meant that the next day’s talks were double dipped! (Yes, you guessed it right; it’s the new KBC terminology!)

And then our colleges started. Each one of us went in different directions…in different courses…in different colleges…in different locations…in different parts of the country…some far away and some close-by. But of course, we had promises to keep…promises of meeting as often as possible…promises of not losing touch with each other…promises of talking on every opportunity we got…promises…and promises…and promises…

But somewhere in our paths we have become very busy…really busy. So busy that we have no time for anything. Citing my own instance, I have been at home since the last 10 days but I haven’t had even a single good long conversation with my parents (because ‘I have been too busy’ with my work!!) and now it’s time for me to leave tomorrow (and I might not be meeting them for the next 7-8 months!!). I have enough balance in my cell but haven’t even once called up any of my good school friends; in fact I have ignored calls from many because ‘I have been too busy’ and not thought of giving a call-back. I have many friends and family-friends living nearby but I haven’t even once thought of paying them a visit because ‘I have been too busy’. This blog of mine, which used to have almost 4-5 good entries every month, now rarely has an update because ‘I have been too busy’. The rare new entry that comes up, has no comments, not even ‘one’ from any of my ‘eighteen’ followers because probably like me all my ‘friends have been too busy’ as well!!

There has been a big change somewhere, and I am yet to discover that. Probably if one of my dear friends reads this entry, he/she might try and address this dilemma of mine. And I really hope that this ‘dear friend’ is YOU, the one who is reading this right now! I hope ek din achanak I get your comments!

It is 3 hours past midnight now, on the 14th of October 2010, and I am now going back to sleep… 

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Nau baj gaye kya?

Starting mid-July, when the initial news of the new season of Kaun Banega Crorepati were doing their rounds, I was all geared up and excited as now I was already 18 years old, the minimum age required to enter the show. A decade ago, when KBC first came into picture on Indian television, it didn't take Senior Bachchan long to make it the most anticipated TV show. The 'junior KBC' that was a part of Season 1, had all kids raked up. KBC had fast become the show with the maximum TRPs.

This year, the phone lines opened from 2nd Aust and I didn't miss a single opportunity to answer the questions daily which if luck favored could lead me to the hot seat. Since I have been associated with KBC earlier (click here to see how), I was even more excited. But of course, the computers at KBC probably didn’t like my mobile number!

I went shopping with my parents yesterday with the condition that I should be back home by 9 PM. Well, I was indeed in front of the TV set at 8.59 PM! Nau baj gaye and the fourth season of KBC kicked off with an initial dramatic pre-recorded entry of Big B, which frankly speaking, I found really boring!!

The actual show began and some minor changes could be seen in the studio set-up, that included the introduction of the LCD screens in the backdrop- well, times are changing fast and so is the technology! The game began and changes in the format were visible. The viewers surely didn’t expect a prize money of less than 2 crores (as was the case in the previous edition of the show) and everyone was gaping at the fact that it was just one crore this time! The channel couldn’t have dared to take a step that would drastically reduce its TRP and so came Big B’s ‘Big Surprise’ of the jackpot prize money of Rs 5 crores! Now that is something keeping with the times again!

Another thing that had my interest kindled in this first episode was the second contestant on the hot seat- a 18 year old guy from my home state and a student of Mass Communication! He didn’t have such a good start but let’s see what happens in the show tonight!

Although this time, our association with KBC is for just 9 weeks (that means it would be over 3 days before my birthday!), Big B promises to regain the previous season’s lost glory! Had I been studying in Mumbai, probably I would have been easily able to become part of the studio-audience of the show, just as I am in the NDTV 24x7 shows…nothing is impossible, is it?

Now go and check your watches, “Nau baj gaye kya?”

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