Cool Buddies

We have our Cartoon!

Posted in Animals, Environment, Humour, Links, Politics, Sarcasm by Ratheesh & Sharada on February 26, 2010

We have started another blog where we have released our own Cartoon Series. Called Quibbles, the cartoon series will attempt to comment on various social concerns. You can read more about it here.

A distant dream [by Ratheesh]

Posted in Job, Sarcasm by Ratheesh & Sharada on January 7, 2009

“Dad, Can I go to the excursion next week?” Shreya asked while Akhil was still sitting in his bed with his laptop. He was staring at the screen with a blank look on his face. His face showed signs of exhaustion after the previous night’s marathon web meeting he attended with his peers. “Dad?” Shreya queried. “Yes, go, go, I am fine” Akhil responded finally. Many thoughts ran through Akhil’s mind while Shreya, his daughter ran away from the room.

Akhil is a senior manager with another not-so-heard-of software company based in Bangalore. And today, was not just another day for him. He had to start the process of choosing the employees he had to lay off as a result of the companies decision to do some cost cutting. And he had just three days to do that.

An urgent meeting was held the previous night presided by the company’s CEO and many others from the board. Akhil and others did not get to say too much, they were just the audience and future pawns. They were being dragged into a cruel game. A kind of game whose tagline reads ‘Either kill, or die’. Although the exact words were never used, it was clear to Akhil that if he did not choose to send off a few employees and participated in the game, he would be on the receiving end of it.

The company, like many others always claimed of success and popularity all the while. The products being made were mediocre, and Akhil always knew that, but in those situations too, he had to play the game of presenting a pretty picture to the employees. So as always, there were claims of huge customer satisfaction, major deals, so on and so forth. But now this. ‘If we are so well off why should we stoop so low to send a handful of employees away … and without dignity’, he thought.

“This is India Damn-it. We are an emotional lot. They can’t do this to my employees, they will be heart-broken” Akhil told his wife Sneha. “Why don’t you do something about it? You are a manager and all” She responded with the naivity of the school teacher that she was. Akhil had thought about it. What could he do about it? He was clearly asked not to discuss this with any employees. Infact one of the persons on the list was his peer who was not invited to yesterday’s meeting. He was to quickly come up with a list of names merely based on what projects they were working on. It was not based on talent, potential, any of that.

Some of the employees were below par, and Akhil knew that. ‘But still? How can you ask someone to just go away one day. After all the effort they had put in for this company. Agreed, they are just other human beings, living careless lives, marrying, having kids, watching movies, taking loans, and getting paid for their work. But were they not human beings? Wouldn’t this be traumatic?’ Akhil thought. ‘How would they react? What about their wife and kids, or their parents? You are hurting a lot of people’ Akhil could not stop worrying.

But did Akhil have a choice? He was just doing his job. And he needed his job. His status. His car. His posh home. Also he was beyond an age where he can attend interviews and wait in queues for jobs. ‘I shall probably send off some freshers’ he thought. ‘But what about their confidence, they would be shattered. Shit! my company sucks. It literally sucks the living blood out of human beings’

As Akhil entered his room, he could feel a deathly silence around the office. News must have spread. There were friend circles that cut across managers and other employees. ‘Someone must have leaked the news’ he thought. Akhil was always the diplomatic one. He never mixed friendship with work. And now he hated himself for that. Somehow, he felt people would think he is an asshole now. The ones who were humane and friendly would get away with lesser curses.

As Akhil stared at the list of employees he had chosen, many thoughts crossed his mind. He had chosen 5 veterans and 3 freshers. He had worked with all of them. All of these folks will be called to a meeting and just asked to pack their bags and leave. They will not be given a chance to say anything. Adding to the insult, they will be escorted by security personnel, lest they do any verbal or physical damage. They will not be allowed to have a cubicle chat with anyone before leaving. ‘How shameful’ he thought.

‘No, I cannot let this happen. I cannot let some power-and-money hungry, morally deprived people sitting in comfortable chairs insult my people’ Akhil thought. He sat up and typed a mail and sent it across. Later during the day he spent his day smiling at all his colleagues and went home.

The mail he sent to the V.P and Director read:
“After working for this company for five fruitful years, I have decided to let myself go. During all these years, I always thought I was doing the right thing. But as the company has decided to go on an all out low in morals, I decide to bail out and live like a human being. You might not immediately understand my harsh decision, but you will, if you turn around and smile at your colleague and appreciate him/her for the simple human being that they are”

Akhil lives, only in my imaginary, ideal world. How much I wish there were managers like Akhil, who would make me really proud to be a human being.

— Ratheesh Pisharody

The planet needs an euthanasia [by Ratheesh]

Posted in Environment, Sarcasm by Ratheesh & Sharada on November 18, 2008

That’s it! I am done. Go ahead and start destructing everything. All of you. Just go get all the weapons you can collect and start lynching this planet to death. I will not stop you, I will not come in the way. And I shall not distract you while you do it. I shall just sit and watch the whole thing peacefully. Once you are done, just let me know.

What are you waiting for? Ideas? From me? Sure, here are some.

Purchase the best electrical saw you can buy and start with your garden. Cut off all the plants at the stem. If you have got the time, uproot them. So that they do not come up again and invite those butterflies. Also, buy some cement and plaster the entire garden. No more mud and dust entering your sweet little home.

If you are done with that, move on to your street and cut down all those plants and trees in your street. No more noisy little bastards called birds disturbing your cricket matches. Burn the stem of those trees to be double sure. Create some panic and get together with others in your street, and cut all trees in your area. Tell everyone trees are dangerous and their children can get hurt when branches fall on them.

Now mobilise a mob and move towards the parks and forests and do the same. Do not let the momentum die down. Provide food and water to anyone who volunteers for such a cause. Do not stop till each and every tree in this city is destroyed.

Well, that was a good start. Now lets take care of all the vermin. Let’s start with dogs. You will need to buy some guns for this. If that is not easy, buy some poison. Mix the poison with rice, biscuits and/or milk and invite all the dogs in your street to your gate. Feed them this magical potion and release them from their lives. Again, plan to meet up with your friends throughout the city and ask them to do it too. I am sure one too many will be your willing partner. Do not stop at street dogs, conspire and do this to pet dogs too.

And why stop at dogs ( I said vermin right, anything other than human beings are vermin ). Do the same to cats, crows, squirrels, snakes, cows, horses, donkeys, pigs, rats, anything that is not human. Please take enough care not to harm humans lest you be called inhumane.

Now that all the trees are gone, and all the vermin have been shown their place, lets do some more damage. Pick up your car or bike or anything that you have that guzzles fuel. Fill it up with fuel and ride around the city day and night. If you can do it, just go for a hell of a long ride. If that does not sound practical, just switch it on and leave it day and night. Remember to fuel it up regularly. Get many people to do this along with you simultaneously. Do not forget, taking a flight is cheaper these days, so think about that. That should ensure we have exhausted all fossil fuels. That should also ensure the heating up of our planet real quick.

It would be really nice if you could also switch on all the lights in your homes and offices and leave it that way. Leave those electrical gadgets running too. Forever. Oh come on, you can do it. You have always done it, I am only asking you to do it in an organized way.

While you are on the bike or in that car, do not forget to incessantly honk your way through traffic. Also, if possible create some additional noise with the loudspeakers on your phone or switch on that radio. If many of you do it, there would be enough noise around to send those last two or three birds running for their lives (only to be shot down by one of your friends).

I actually erred when I said ‘human’. I should have told, ‘not to harm the urban-human’. We do not care about the rural ones, or the tribals, do we? So lets continue. Go buy all the expensive things you can buy (including vegetables) from all the corporates you can find. Fill up their coffers with your money. Let that poor farmer or tribal die. Why do we need them anyway?

Ah! Good job! Please do remember this. Do it together. All at once. I am sure it is going to be painless to mother earth if you do it together, and once and for all. Once you are done, some of us who go to bed crying about these oh-so-trivial problems can go on a vacation, without guilt or remorse.

Our planet needs a euthanasia … very soon.

Epilogue:

What bothers me today is the slow and painful death that our planet is going through. It is akin to someone who is my own, my blood, in death bed gasping for oxygen, pulling at the various wires inserted into her, screaming in pain and begging to be killed while a few hopeful doctors keep her alive. And that is the pain I do not want to see my mother go through. Hence my above mention suggestion, to end it all, with mercy. But remember, you, human might have the sword in your hand today, but you are by no means masters of this universe. The planet shall redeem itself, like it has always done, millions of years before you, and millions of years after you are gone.

– Ratheesh

(Moo)ving account of an animal lover’s life [by Ratheesh]

Posted in Animals, Environment, Humour, Life, Sarcasm, Social Work by Ratheesh & Sharada on March 20, 2008

Disclaimer:
(When you see a disclaimer on an article rest assured there is something fishy about it.)
Although with its polite manner and professional etiquette this article might impress you, please beware. This is a cheap marketing gimmick by an animal lover to bring you into his circle. (Sort of like Amway, but we don’t promise to make you rich).

“You both are mad, MAD”, aunty said, stressing on the second “MAD” to make sure we heard it clear. The aunty in question is my wife’s mom, an old lady with chubby cheeks, dimpled chin and a lot of good old features you would love to see in your mom. She loves us a lot, a LOT (this time I am stressing), as any mom would.

So why would she get so articulate about our perceived mental problem today? Truth is, she was not alone. There are many people around us who think we are mad, out of our mind. Reasons? You ask. We are ardent animal lovers. (Ooooooh, I see some of you throwing this article away).

Animal lover, Animal activist; call us anything. We are a special breed. All ten of us in Bangalore (just kidding); there are about 100 of us the last time I counted (Ha Ha). We were born-guilty; guilty for whatever our pathetic forefathers have done to this planet. We constantly try to make corrections. We demand justice (we receive none, but who cares; it is easy to get permission to sit in front of Gandhi’s statue on M.G Road). We spend our money on Animal NGOs who in turn spend it spaying and neutering dogs on the streets so that they don’t bite “your” sorry arses. (“Your” as in someone who is not an animal lover. An animal lover feeds the dogs on his street, so it does not feed on “your” sorry arses).

It is not an awfully big list, but we do try to do our bit to save endangered species from extinction.(Yes! the dodo is extinct, but that is not the only one that has become extinct, you non animal lover! From this point onwards, I choose to call you Non-Animal-Lover. Now, don’t try to get all ‘politically correct’ with man-is-an-animal theory. You should’ve thought of that when you were killing so many animals just for pleasure and for food, you non-animal-lover-cum-non-vegetarian!)

Recently someone asked us what we do on weekends. “We teach English at a school and we work for animals the rest of the time”. The “teach English at school” part evoked lot of interest and appreciation. “Working for animals” evoked reactions similar to the expressions you’d have when you heard Narendra Modi won the Gujarat election a second term (something like “How??”). Animals are after all some sort of side-effect in God’s creation plan.

This is true, but people actually think we animal lovers are wasting our time; some of them think we are not really enthusiastic about it, but do it because somebody asked us to. Some others sympathize with us. (You should see the looks we get when we sit on M.G Road footpath, beside paan stains and dog poop). To summarize, they (you non-animal-lovers) think we are fighting a lost cause. (With so many animals on the brink of extinction, I am tempted to agree). But we will not give up.

“So you guys work for PETA?” our colleague at office asked us. (The kind of guy who does not know nothing about animals). “No”. We do not work for PETA, or any other organization for that matter. But thanks to their great work, PETA seems to have become synonymous with animal activism. No complaints. “Do you love children?” it was our chance to ask. “Yes”, he said. “Do you work for CRY?” We have not spoken to this guy since.

Being an animal lover is a tough job (I should be careful what I call it, some of you cunning fellows might be waiting to prove that we are being paid by Maneka Gandhi). As I said, it is not easy; first we need to convince our family that we are not mentally retarded, then we need to convince the auto driver that we are not criminals (because we are mostly loading his auto with animals, birds or snakes depending on what we do). Then there are various men and women who work at NGOs (for some folks animal loving is a job) who look at us and wonder why we turn up on weekends, all smiling and happy and ready to help them with menial jobs.

Most of us love all animals alike. We all picture ourselves hugging a grizzly bear in a perfect world (a perfect world is one where all non-animal-lover-cum-non-vegetarians have learnt their lessons). But some of us like my wife shriek at the sight of cockroaches (I am guessing many of the fairer sex animal lovers do). Then again, I do not picture myself hugging a cockroach too.

“So you say you are an animal lover?” this guy asked me once. He had the look on his face that reminded me of some lawyer in an movie. “How can you be sure that you do not hurt small insects, like you might crush ants and cockroaches while driving?” he continued. I do not remember my response (I must have smiled or something), but I do remember visualizing crushing him under my tyres some day. If all you losers out there did not (and do not) work towards a perfect world, where all loopholes are closed and all clauses are satisfied, then how can you ask us to strive for that (let me make this clear; we would like to, if you co-operate). Think about it, atleast we try. Not sit in front of the TV and watch some sixteen year olds play cricket or sixty year olds build six packs.

“So when will you be back? Will you come home for lunch?” aunty was at it again. She realized that her taunts were not going to make us give up a juicy protest march (This time some Swamiji was also supporting it for his own publicity). “We heard they are giving us biscuits (Parle-G to be precise, which both dogs and animal lovers love alike)” I replied, as we rode away on our bike, leaving aunty fuming at the gate.

Brother (or Sister) (or Others), we animal lovers are not your enemies, nor are we in need of your sympathy. We represent that part of your soul that is still humane. Accept us and be with us. Let us make this world a wonderful place to live in … for animals.

Cowards !! – Part 2

Posted in Humour, Job, Sarcasm by Ratheesh & Sharada on April 20, 2006

[read this first]

Well.. we got news today that “Dishonesty is the best policy” will not be published by the other business group too. The reason was it did not comply to the company’s policies. Ha ha ha. There seems to be a policy somewhere that reads “There will be ongoing crime within the company, but talking/writing about it is against the company policies”. Great. The funny part is we haven’t mentioned the company name anywhere. So both these guys who rejected are so damn guilty of about their place of work. Anyway we are still here for now, among a bunch of criminals.

Art of Bullshitting [by Ratheesh]

Posted in Humour, Job, Sarcasm by Ratheesh & Sharada on April 7, 2006

We all know what the familiar, long haired, bearded, soft spoken, modern day guru conducts. Yes! Art of Living; nicknamed AOL by the ever growing ‘shishyas’. Bangalore being the center of IT-activity (I heard its Hyderabad now, but I guess I am a little slow), we should be soon starting a new kind of mission. And that one should be nicknamed AOB which stands for Art of Bullshitting.

Why AOB for the IT field? Good question. You have probably never been in the IT sector my friend. Try inquiring with your son or daughter or a buddy. He/she probably goes through hours and hours of bullshitting sessions while at work. Its absolutely amazing to sit in awe and respect when the ones higher to you in hierarchy go about bullshitting when they get a chance to speak.

Just a few hours ago we attended one of these. And the bullshitter (as we will call him/her from now on) started off with words from another world. Words which you probably read while you learnt them by-heart in school or later while reading a GRE book (you are lucky if you never read one!). While the bullshit flowed at us like cats n dogs all I could think of was write about it. When I thought further, I realised there is scope of a career change here.

Why not start an ‘Ashram’ of our own. We could call it ‘Art of Bullshitting’. Obviously with a big gate over which would be written. ‘Bow your head and bullshit while you walk in’. I could sit in there on a pedestal with long hair and beard (Sharada could of course sit beside me using a fan on me probably he he 🙂 ). And yes, the ashram will surely be inagurated by the best bullshitters from the IT sector. We could also pull in one of those business celebrities (ya, those regular folks who bullshit on business channels on TV).

If you come to think of it, bullshitting is not a new art. It is not something which is always done wearing a well pressed formal trousers/shirt (with a clown tie as bonus). A large amount of bullshit was always thrown at us over the decades by politicians who came post independence. So I guess this is just version two of bullshit, 🙂

Now lets try to break down the characteristics of a good bullshitter (might help us in future when we set exams at the ashram)

1. A good bullshitter talks on demand. Almost like a robot. Click the button and he/she starts talking. What is being talked about is unimportant. But yes, if its an IT bullshitter it will have something to do with software, delivery, model, policy, revene, some shit..

2. A good bullshitter stops to listen to you (unlike your dad), but once you stop, continues from where he/she left off and you will sit there wondering what happened to what you just told.

3. A good bullshitter always ensures he/she produces information that they obtained recently; whether that information is important in the current context or not is secondary. For e.g, a good bullshitter always mentions that the IT company X aquired Y just even when someone is being buried at a funeral.

4. A good indian bullshitter almost always ensures he/she uses a foriegn accent. Now, the fact that the foreign accent used by him/her is foreign to even foreigners is globally known truth.

5. A good bullshitter is easily recongnizable in the crowd simply because they are very typical. They would always pick up the ‘Business Today’ when waiting in a public place. When speaking to you they constantly look at the watch and pretend to be a very busy person.

Well, those were some primary characteristics. Ofcourse, there are more. Also, bullshitting is not really limited to the people in the upper echelons of power in various industries; these days it is trickling down to you and me too. Its around us. Have a look around you, the developer bullshits when asked why his code does not work. The celebrities on TV bullshit all the time in their interviews. There is an hour of bullshit thrown at you after every cricket match that india plays. And who can ignore the bullshit in the fashion world. Recently a model walked the ramp after her ‘wardrobe malfunction’ (trying to save herself from the numerous cameras in vain). The fashion designer said ‘Oooh, she was so poised, so elegant, she recovered well’. Ya ya. And in the same show I heard some more bullshit; this time it was one fashion designer commenting on another’s creation. ‘There was an underlying tragedy in her creations. A poetry’. Well, all I can say is if there is nothing ‘underlying’, then its a ‘tragedy’ baby.

So here we go, back to our big bullshitting world. Bye for now.

Cowards !!

Posted in Humour, Job, Sarcasm by Ratheesh & Sharada on March 13, 2006

Today we just achieved what we wanted. We just got a call from one of our colleagues in office who heads the Internal newsletter dept. We had sent them our latest creation “Dishonesty is the best policy” (Found as a post here).

We always knew none of them had the guts to publish it. We have sent it to another business group in our company. Lets see what happens. Truth is bitter dude. Better be ready to face it.

Article: Dishonesty is the best policy [by Ratheesh]

Posted in Humour, Job, Sarcasm by Ratheesh & Sharada on March 13, 2006

Squeezing myself out of the local BMTC bus was in itself a great achievement. I had spent the last ten minutes planning the escape route in my head. I was seated in the last row and had to make it alive through atleast 30 people before I could reach the door. Should I say ‘Excuse Me’ to each co-passenger; or should I stick with ‘Swalpa Jaaga bidtheera swami’ lest I make myself sound too important with my English (which usually resulted in angry stares), I wondered.

Anyways, I was out; I had done it. Now walking towards office my thoughts went back to the incident which occurred while I sat in the Bus. This shabbily dressed guy got into the bus at K.H.Road. And I noticed he stood a few feet away from where I sat. Soon enough the conductor came to that area to issue tickets and I could hear this guy say ‘Pass’. The conductor wanted to see it. The next thing I heard is the conductor shouting at him for trying to cheat him with a pass that belonged to someone else. And the guy was standing there listening to that but with no fear or remorse on his face. He says ‘En saar, drama maadtheera? Ticket thagobeka, thagotheeni’ (Don’t create a scene, I shall take a ticket if you want me to)

The conductor issued a ticket and walked away shaking his head. Now if the audacity of that person to cheat and be so proud of it did not shock me, what happened next, did. As soon as the conductor was out of range, some of the usual I-SPEAK-LOUDLY-IN-BUS types started discussing it. One chap indicates it’s not a big deal. Another one says the conductor was in fact making a huge thing out of it. Another person points out that conductors themselves are cheats… so on. ‘What is happening here? Is there public support for crime now?’ I thought.

I had reached my reception by then; and had wished a ‘silent’ good morning to some of my colleagues with the usual straight-lip, raised-eyebrow, facial expression. That’s when it struck me; I was mute witness to a whole lot of crimes everyday, committed by my colleagues, shamelessly.

Just yesterday as I was walking past a cubicle I heard one of them yelling out pretty loudly. ‘Did you submit the IT proofs too? I just did. I put in a letter saying I pay rent to my dad. That way I can get exemption on rent.’ The other one was laughing; another buddy of mine in the next cubicle got up and started asking details on how to do it. I could just walk away wondering what was happening to our people.

A week before that someone I knew very well at office comes to me and inquires where I collect my travel bills from. On my question of ‘What travel bills?’, he says ‘Your fake travel bills?’ I was taken aback and politely changed topic. Apparently this chap pays a few thousand bucks to get fake travel bills so that he can claim the LTA.

I had gone past the reception now. While I fished in my bag for my access card, I was still trying to recollect all the other kinds of crimes I was witnessing in my daily life. Everyone was into it. They were proudly cheating the company, the country, themselves in the process. Some of them were committing large crimes like showing wrong income while filing their IT, and some of them were involved in petty crimes like not putting the soft drinks coupon before shamelessly taking it out of the cooler.

As I dug up my brain I found more and more instances of well educated young and old men and women like us taking the path of dishonesty. Recently I met up with a colleague who worked in night shifts. His work times were supposedly 7pm to 3am. I happened to ask ‘Don’t you have a choice? Why don’t you opt for a morning shift?’ His reply was ‘Boss its just called night shift. I come in at 7.30, work a little beyond 12 because they pay allowance only if you work after 12, then I just go home at 12.30 or so. I bill for 8 hours a day but’. He smiled and walked away. ‘Wow’ I thought. ‘Hope his manager who gives bhashans on customer satisfaction hears that’.

Firmly seated at my cubicle now, I was comparing the crimes in my office to what I saw in the bus. And suddenly the incident in the bus felt so minor. There he was, some guy, probably not very educated, maybe unemployed trying to avoid a 5 rupee ticket. And here they were, a bunch of highly educated people, who earned in thousands (and lakhs) committing crimes everyday with ease and pride; and yes, with a lot of colleague-support. Being dishonest was starting to become a trend now.

That’s when my desk phone rang. It was my manager. As soon as I picked it up and kept it to my ears, he started talking ‘Good morning Ratheesh, Did you send me that estimate I asked you to send me yesterday’. ‘Yes, I sent it to you yesterday evening just before I left’. ‘I don’t find it in my Inbox, you sure’ he replied. ‘I sent it to you just after the call. Must be some issue with the email server or something’ I replied. ‘Ok, just send it again’ he hung up. I smiled back shamelessly at the smiling Gandhiji Wallpaper on my desktop as I decided to send him that email…’again’.

Mr. Bush visits India [by Ratheesh]

Posted in Politics, Sarcasm by Ratheesh & Sharada on March 12, 2006

Here we have a large country, with its large share of problems. We can boast about remote villages which the government is not even aware about. We can boast about the ever increasing population. We have illiteracy, malnutrition, female infanticide. We have a society full of goons who look at the women folk only with the eyes of lust. We have schools with no infrastructure. We have the court of law which cannot be approached by the common man due to the amount of time it takes resolve legal issues. We have corrupted politicians. We have almost rowdy-like police force. We even have corruption in our county’s defense.

We can boast about public and government who have complete disrespect for the rules and regulations of the land. We have a government which seems to encourage the mindless destruction of natural resources. We have politicians who are ex convicts and still pursue their prior jobs while in power. We have children dying of hunger. We have old folks refused their pension by pot-bellied, corrupted officers. We have traffic police who flaunt their talent of extortion in broad daylight. Yes, the problems in our country can run into pages.

And yet, we call ourselves the ‘developing’ country. I recently heard that we can call ourselves ‘developed’ too. I could not help but laugh.

With all these issues in our homeland, our Prime Minister just had a welcome party for the worlds most ridiculed and hated man, who also happens to be the President of the United States. What for? For bringing to his notice that India is now ‘ready’ and ‘responsible enough’ to be a Nuclear Power. Now, my laughter gives way to certain sadness. Should our Prime Minister be really bothered about making India a Nuclear Power, which end of the day means India throws away it’s ‘Peace’ garb and accepts on warfare mentality?

Isn’t it time our Prime Minister set his priorities right? Or does he not have the right to decide what is wrong and right for his country? I personally do not know. But all the more, it makes me feel ashamed that I live in a country which keeps its Nuclear power status, it’s Cricket, its Bollywood actress and its fashion guru’s in the forefront and shoves the actual problems of the countrymen aside.

It is time our Prime Minster had a reality check of sorts. We are not going to gain anything from Mr.Bush visiting India. This is a country where the rich become richer and the poor become poorer day by day. The rich one in the large car with his ‘Business Today’ might care about this visit. But our very own dear farmer in the remote village of India would only bother about getting his daily rasam rice for his family. I wish our PM realizes that, before it’s too late.

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